Samson Stories 03

The brothel had a pine tree just on the other side of the street.
Hidden by the large trunk of the tree, Samson stood there for over fifteen minutes and contemplated going in.
Two months had passed since the failed wedding with the Timnite but his pride was still hurt from the mockery made of him and his family.
Since the day it all happened, he had only visited his parents once.
He needed no reminder of what would have been. And he hated the idea of his father telling him the usual ‘I told you not to…’
Over and over again, Samson asked himself if he really ever loved the Timnite. Or if it was just pure lust as is father suggested.
When he heard the news of the carnage done to the Timnite family, he wasn’t even pained that she died.
He doubted if he would ever marry again.
‘What the hell am I doing here?!’
His conscience brought him back to the present, in the shadows of the tree.
‘For goodness sake, I am a judge in Israel, I can’t enter a brothel!’.
He stopped to think about the folly of his plans and thought about going back to Isreal.
But his passion held him back.
He longed for a distraction from the worry and depression he got for the day’s work judging the children of Israel.
As he was about leaving the shadow of the tree, he spotted a woman walk out of the brothel.
The guards standing by the door hauled abuses at her and laughed.
One of them made to slap her back as she clung to her dress and ran down the street.
‘Thank God! This is it’.
Samson smiled at the gift that had just been presented to him.
But he was careful.
He removed the cloth tied around his waist and laid it on his head like one of the prophets.
He then emerged from the shadows and walked down the street after the harlot.
He was careful not to cast any look at the guards, and he made sure they never saw his face.
But he had underestimated his popularity within the city of Gaza.
All the guards in the land of the Philistines had been given detailed description of how he looked and a bounty promised for anyone who could offer information about Samson.
So as soon as he was out of sight, the two guards exchanged glances and with a nod, they knew what had to be done.
But Samson had other ideas.
His flesh screamed for him to give in to his dark passions, and do it quickly.
Following the young woman, Samson drowned all the voices in his head telling him of the folly of his actions.
‘There is nothing any human can do to me, not the least, a woman’. He silenced the last lingering conscience as he stopped behind a house and watched.
When the woman stopped in front of a very small house with a single door in front and a window by the side, Samson knew she was home.
He looked around and when he was sure no one was watching, he stepped in front of the hut and knocked the door.
He didn’t hear any voice from within, so he knocked again and pushed open the door.
As soon as he entered, someone grabbed his hands and tried to push him back out the door.
With the tiny hands and weak push, Samson realized it was the harlot.
‘Shhhhuuuussshhh!’
He whispered as he held her and calmed her down.
‘Are you ready to make a coin of silver before you retire for the night?’ He asked wryly.
The harlot stepped backwards and swept her eyes over Samson.
‘You are Samson, the Israelite!’
Shocked, Samson withdrew his hands, stepped towards the door and locked it.
‘So you recognize me’. He smiled as he asked, enjoying the pride of popularity.
‘Why! Every child in Philistine knows you!’
‘And they would kill me if they find you came to my room.’
‘How about a gold coin for me to sleep here tonight?’ Samson retorted, still smiling.
It was a trap, she knew it but a gold coin seemed too attractive to turn down.
‘Well, so far you go in peace when you are done.’
She smiled as she poured some wine in the cup standing on a table in a corner of the room.
‘Hope you are a Philistine, and not an Isrealite?’
Samson asked the young woman as he sat down on the bed.
He had promised himself he would not sleep with any woman from Isreal.
Not that he respected his office as a judge, but he didn’t want people regaling details of his escapades to his parents.
‘No, I’m certainly not!’ The harlot snapped.
As he drank the wine, she put out the fire from the lantern and went to Samson.
.
It was midnight, the room was cold and dark but sweats dropped from Samson’s face.
He had just woken up from a nightmare.
This is the fifth night in a week he would have the same terrible dream.
He sat up on the bed and felt around the matress with his hands.
When his hands touched the cold body of the harlot still sleeping, he realized where he was. And what he had done.
A bitter taste filled his mouth and he felt sick in his stomach.
Hatred grew in his heart for the woman but it was quickly replaced with anger and guilt at his own actions.
He felt around for his clothes as he suddenly was in a hurry to leave.
Wearing the clothes, he staggered through the dark room until his hand touched the door knob.
He opened and stepped out, thankful for the fresh wind that filled his lungs.
Still feeling the guilt, though now passive, he realized what he needed to do.
‘I have to get back to Israel and offer a sin offering’.
He walked through the streets of Gaza that dark midnight and knew immediately something was not right.
There seemed to be shadows following him behind the houses.
He smiled to himself, relishing the possibility of another fight, another chance to kill of some Philistines.
As he approached the gates of the city of Gaza, he looked around but didn’t see any more shadows.
But the gates were locked shut.
And strangely, no one was standing by the door.
He knew it meant they were waiting in the shadows, ready for him to turn back and pounce on him but he was unfazed.
‘You will all live today so you can die tomorrow!’ he shouted into the air, hoping they all heard him as he grabbed the gate bars with his two hands.
He shook the gates with his might and broke the iron rods away from the bricks and sands they were anchored into.
Then he lifted the gates with his hands, bars and all, and pulled them right off from the posts.
He placed the gate on his shoulers and carried it to away from the walls of the city and into the darkness.
Hidden away in the shadows of the night, even the strongest of the Gazites cringed in fear and marvelled at such strength.
And none of them stood up from their hiding place till Samson carried the gate up to the top of the white hill east of Hebron.
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Samson Stories, Episode 3.
-#VJW

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