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Ozila's Adventures

Welcome To Ozila Home Of Supernatural Stories

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Adanna: The Mysterious Aba Girl || Brouhaha In The House Of God || Brouhaha In The House Of God 2: the guardian angel || Fucking With The Devil || My Woman My Everything || The Carpenter, The Witch And The Mysterious Mirrow || The Mysterious Twenty Thousand Naira || There And Back On Time: Germany Dilemma || Adanna 2 : Seeds of Adanna || Deji The Pool Boy || The Private Lesson Teacher || The Tales Of Ozila Laveda And The Bank || The Preachers Son || Adesuwa || There And Back On Time Season 2: Europe Wahala || Brouhaha In The House Of God 3: Road to hell ||Sex And The City || Fausat The Fish Seller || Who Love Me Most || Witches And Wizards || The Magnificent Brothers season one || Confession Of Funnab Yahoo Boy || Honest Illusion || Sex Robbery And Delivery Service || Once Upon A Nite Stand || My I.T Sexcapade || Murica My River Wife || How I Cherish My Sister || A Clarion Call To Confusion || Adanna3: The Sacrifice || Secrets And Scandals || The Magnificent Brothers 2 || Sins Of My Past || Diary Of An Assistant Girlfriend || Allen Avenue: Story Of A Call Worker || Cassandra || Church Rats || The University Prestos || The Curious Case Of Boda Meko || Dark Tears Of Babylon || An Ace For Oscar || The Coffin Of Errors || A Merry Chrismax || The Nemesis Of Daddy || Me And My Supernatural Girlfriend || The Road To Stardom || Three Days To Remember || || heart of a lucifer || Murica 2: How Do I Return || Three Days to remember 2 || Brother Paul || My Imsu Desire || Diana the mermaid || Belinda: tender beauty || The Darkest Hour || The Darkest Hour 2 || The Last Smile || Omolara's Faith || Blinkered || Behind Her Smile || Bukky Alakara ||Intermission: The Love ||The University Prestos || M.A.R.Y || The President Son And I || Abominable Act || In The Dark || Act Of Faith || Act Of Faith 2 ||Mr Rajas Daughter 2 || Shattered Dreams || Adanna 4: Unavoidable Nemesis || Brouhaha In The House Of God 4: Die Another Day || Brouhaha In The House Of God 5: Judgement Day || Brouhaha In The House Of God 6: Political War ONGOING STORIES
Tarasha || Endless Tears || 7 Days || The Hole In The Wall || Behind Her Veil || Married || Maimed Soul || Belinda 2 || I Fell In Love || M.A.R.Y 2 || There And Back On Time 3 : The Shadow Chase || Is It A Sin || Is It A Sin 2 || Is It A Sin 3 || Isabella : In Love With A Mermaid || Once A Lover || There And Back On Time 3: The Shadow Chase || The President Son And I : 2 || Fierce || Ownets Adventure || Brouhaha in the house of God 7: Retaliation || Apocalypse: The Second Coming || The Heart Of An Assassin || M.A.R.Y 2 || Murica 3: The Forbidden kingdom || Adventure Of Tanaboy || Act Of Faith Season 3 || Isabella Season 2 || All In The Name Of Love

Tarasha final

Episode 81
‘All these cameras have been optimized to recognize the suspected faces and also send alarm signals to the main point,’ Tarasha was explaining to the Vice President and the three security men who were following him, they came out from one of the rooms in the house into the extension at the left side of the house. ‘The cameras here are responsive and they adjust themselves based on the light available and the image being captured.’ Tarasha continued explaining. She led them closer to the transparent glass wall, she asked the Vice President and his security officials to move back for her to explain something else. They obeyed and paid rapt attention.
The Vice President’s phone began to ring, he took it out from his pocket, silenced it and signaled for Kimberly to continued. Just ten seconds after she continued, the phone rang again. Chief Elvis picked it out and checked the caller again, it was still the same unknown caller. He silenced it again and held it in his hands. He apologized and asked her to continue.
‘The light that comes into here varies with time of the day, weather and even season of the year, that’s why the cameras here had to be optimized specially.’ Tarasha explained, facing the Vice President and his crew. Then she saw what she was looking for on his body, the blur thin red light, it was still moving to and fro, she knew it was Cole trying to focus on his target. The Vice President’s phone rang again, he looked at the screen and silenced again, then he gave the phone to his security officer to attend to the caller. Tarasha continued with her explanation while keeping an eye on the light.
‘Sir,’ his personal security official called him softly after taking some seconds with the phone.
‘Yes, you’ll relay the message to me later.’ the Vice President replied him reluctantly, not willing to take his mind off Kimberly’s explanation.
‘Sir, let’s watch it from here and see if you’ll notice anything’ Tarasha said and began moving towards the man now, she stopped and stood some centimetres by his left side near the second security officer, the red light on the man’s chest had now been balanced. She began to push some buttons with her fingers on the device in her pocket while waiting for Chief Elvis to make his observation. ‘1…,’
Chief Elvis stared at the camera, trying to make the observation, that was the same process he had gone through for every section of the house they had been to.
‘Sir, there’s a dangerous security threat.’ the man’s security officer said aloud.
‘What is it?’ Chief Elvis took a quick glance and shouted at the security officer for disturbing him.
‘2…’
‘Sir, we have to move you out of…’ the security officer persisted and moved close to the man’s front, trying to persuade him to listen.
‘3…’ Tarasha pushed the third button.
As Chief Elvis moved back, annoyed by the security officer’s persistence, the red blur light on chest moved down and two bullets pieced in through the glass wall and entered into his right lap.
+++++
‘Shi*t!’ Cole cursed loudly as he missed the target. The man had suddenly moved back at the Boss’ count of three. He quickly refocused the sniper and tried to aim at the man again but he saw one of the body guards squatting before the fallen man, he quickly placed his focus on the bodyguard’s head and fired two shots in it. Before he could get another clear aim, two more bodyguards had entered into the place and immediately come to the transparent glass wall. He saw one of them looking at the holes made by the bullets on the wall and trying to trace where it came from, he quickly sent another bullet into the guards chest. Before he knew it, more of the guards had entered. There was no way he was going to have a clear shot at the Vice President again, the game was over.
_____
Henry kept trying Chief Elvis’ phone number even though his call was being rejected. He continued to walk fast towards the gate of the man’s mansion, hoping to get there before the assassins release the bomb or whatever they had to release.
He began to think of better ways to reach the Vice President, maybe the man wasn’t even at home, he could be at a meeting and his phone could be with one of his assistants, he then decided to send a message to the number. He stopped some few metres at the opposite mansion to the Vice President’s own. After the message was marked delivered, he decided that that was the best he could do, he turned back to return to his car. That was when he noticed that he hadn’t covered his head with the hood since he removed it.
Suddenly as he took two steps, there came the sound of two gunshots, he needed no prophet to tell him where the shots came from. He increased his speed and began to run towards his car, then more gunshots were heard from the same direction.
__________
As expected, Kimberly the NSCC official ran for cover when she heard the first two gunshots. More bodyguards entered into the place and rushingly carried the Vice President outside, they also led her to safety.
She ensured that her eyes were full of tears as she watched them calling for an ambulance and rush the Vice President for first aid.
‘Hope you were not hurt?’ one of the guards asked with deep concern in his voice.
‘No, thanks.’ she replied in a teary voice. He tapped her shoulder and went back to his work.
Tarasha quietly walked away from the living room, cursing under her breath. The plan had failed, the man was going to survive the two bullets in his laps.
______
** One hour later**
‘Send the names of the guest who took room 654 to the office right now,’ Inspector Clem said to one of his assistants. He was standing in the security room of Godax hotels with three other police officers, three security officials of the hotel and the receptionist who was on duty.
‘Is this him?’ one of the security officials asked the receptionist as he paused and zoomed a video clip on the computer.
‘Yes,’ the receptionist answered, looking into the screen. She saw herself attending to the guest, he had only a small brief case with him.
‘Did he not pass through the security screening or how was he able to take in a sniper into the room?’ Inspector Clem asked.
‘I personally checked this man, there were only two clothes and a laptop in the brief case.’ one of the security officials answered Clem.
‘Then does that mean the weapon was already in the room?’ Clem asked.
‘Sir, we don’t have such weapons with us, I only suspected him.’ the receptionist said thoughtfully. ‘He insisted on using room 654 even when I told him that there were better rooms available that wouldn’t need him to go that far.’
‘Do you not have regulations guarding how you assign rooms?’
‘We have sir, but he said he was a geographer and that he had something to do with his laptop on the tenth floor at that particular side of the building.’ the receptionist replied.
‘And how did he know room 654 was the perfect room for his geographical work?’
‘He said he had used the place before,’ she replied.
‘Okay,’ Clem said and then turned to the security official controlling the computer. ‘Haven’t you seen how he left there?’
‘No,’ he was replied. ‘But there’s something here you need to see. Here’s a lady at the door of room 654,’ he said pointing to the screen where a cleaner was standing with a big bag and knocking on the room’s door. The door was opened and the cleaner entered, she walked out two minutes later without the bag.
‘Interesting!’ Clem exclaimed. ‘Then it means one of your cleaners took the weapon to him.’
‘No,’ the computer operator replied, he rewound the tape. He paused when the focus of the camera was on the cleaner’s face, then he zoomed. ‘She doesn’t look like any of our cleaners,’ he said before minimizing the window. Then he opened a folder which contained the passports of all the cleaners. ‘She’s not one of us,’ he said after comparing the faces of all those in the passports to the face zoomed in the video.
‘On low cut again!’ Clem exclaimed. Everybody’s eyes in the room turned to him. He stared more at the face in the video, ‘that’s Aisha Bello, a member of the Samantha Osman assassin group disguised in another form.’
____
**2 hours later**
‘I don’t think Henry could be seen there, maybe it was someone else,’ Dakolo said to Clem as they made their way to the computer room.
‘It’s him sir, the NSCC cameras captured his face and even the car he drove in.’ Clem replied.
‘When was the file received from the NSCC?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Fifteen minutes after it was requested for,’ Clem answered.
‘Okay,’ they entered into the computer room and went straight to the screen displaying the videos. The computer operator rewound the footage and stopped when it got to Henry’s place, he began to play the footage backwards. Agent Dakolo watched in awe, shocked to see Henry whom he thought was lost somewhere or hidden by the assassins.
Henry was seen trying to make a phone call directly opposite the gate of the Vice President’s mansion, then it was taken back to the car he came out from. He was seen entering the car to pick the binocular, then he climbed the top of the car and looked through the binocular. The computer operator paused the video, he studied the binocular and observed the angle it made with the ground. Then he minimized the footage and traced the angle from the point Henry stood. Another footage popped up and the Vice President’s mansion was showed, then it was traced again to Godax hotels.
‘Interesting! He was even watching the Vice President’s house and Godax hotels. That means he knew what was about to happen,’ Clem commented.
‘He was also at the front of the Vice President’s house when the gun was shot twice.’ the computer operator added.
Dakolo was speechless, he was frustrated and his eyes were teary. He couldn’t get himself to believe that Henry was working with the assassins. Henry who had not fully recovered, who was even attacked at the hospital and Rugbe village by the assassins.
‘Sir, I knew it.’ Clem began in a strong tone. ‘Henry E.G was playing a game all along.’
Dakolo gave him a sharp look, ‘how do you mean?’
‘Sir, looking at it from the hospital when the South African Dr David’s imposter came, if he actually came to hurt Henry, they wouldn’t have injected the cure instead of the poison. I think the plan was to take Henry out that day but because of the police’s presence, they couldn’t. Also, I believe Henry E.G was pretending all along, he knew his mother, he knew everyone, he had his memory and he even had contacts with the other assassins; that was why they could plan together and bomb the hideout in Rugbe village. Think about it sir; why was he the only one that wasn’t killed by the bomb? Even Inspector Ken that wasn’t killed still got killed by one of the assassin’s gun. Then they escaped with Henry.’ Clem let out his thoughts.
Dakolo hated to admit but he knew Clem had made sense and wasn’t far from the truth. The assassins must have also played a game with Henry’s poisoning, that was why the sample for the cure had to be left in Henry’s house. If they really planned to kill him, they wouldn’t have dropped the cure. Henry was surely one of the assassins, Dakolo was dead sure about it.
________
**5pm**
Omotara walked into the house quietly and went straight into her room without greeting Henry and Jefa who were seated in the living room. Jefa got up and followed her immediately, he was worried about her but before she entered into her room and locked the door before he could get there.
Jefa sighed and returned to the living room, ‘I thank God she is safe.’ Jefa said to Henry who was looking less bothered.
‘Yes, thank God she’s safe. Thank God the Vice President is not dead too.’ Henry said. The silence continued. Henry busied himself with the phone.
‘May I come into your room? I have something to say about your attack on the Vice President.’ he typed into his message box and sent to Omotara’s number which Jefa had given to him.
*
Omotara ignored her brother’s knock and began to take off her clothes slowly. She felt stupid and useless, this was the second mission she had failed. The first was failing to kill Henry and the second was failing to kill the Vice President. All started when she began to develop feelings for Henry. She hated to think about it, it made her head ache.
She thought she was made to kill, that was how she lived her life for the past fifteen years and she had never failed in any of her tasks until the past few weeks. If she was really a killing machine and was created to kill, then why was she failing to perform her tasks? Why were feelings taking over her body if she was a machine that was created not to have feelings? Or was Henry right when he said that she had been lied to? As she pondered on these questions, her phone beeped and she picked it up to check the notification. She had already taken off her top and was left in her bra and black trousers.
‘May I come into your room? I have something to say about your attack on the Vice President.’ she read the message from an unknown number. The only person who came into her mind was Henry, but she decided to reply the number first. ‘Henry?’ she typed and sent. In less than twenty seconds, the reply entered. ‘Yes.’
‘Come,’ she sent back and went to unlock the door.
The knock sounded on the door after a minute. ‘Come in,’ she said.
Henry walked in slowly and closed the door. He stood still in front of the door and stared at her.
‘What do you have to say?’ she asked in a cold voice. ‘And how did you know about the attack on the Vice President?’
‘I told you I’ve been watching you through the NSCC cameras, you’ve been keeping the operation running effectively.’ Henry replied.
‘D–n! Don’t you have any other thing to do that to stalk me?’
‘Yes, I don’t have any other thing to do for now.’ he replied calmly.
‘What do you have to say?” She asked after a silence of ten seconds.
‘I tried to stop you from trying to kill him but I failed,’ Henry said, unaware that it was his text message that eventually saved the man.
‘You can’t stop me, no one can stop me ; we only had a little miscalculation.’ she said and turned away from him, she began to take off her bra.
‘God stopped you,’ Henry said.
Tarasha turned her face and gave him a sharp look, then she turned back again.
‘It wasn’t the man’s time to die yet, so God prevented it.’
‘You can say whatever you want to say, but he’s still going to die soon, even before he fully recovers from the bullets in his lap.’
Henry was moved by her words and the fact that she admitted she was still going after the VP, he moved closer to her and stood beside her. He avoided looking at her half naked body and focused his eyes on her face. ‘Omotara, what has he done to you?’
‘Nothing,’ she replied blankly and stared back into his eyes.
‘Then why are you after him?’
‘I don’t breach contracts, he’s the last person on the list of my contract in Nigeria, I have to take him out.’
‘You don’t have to,’ Henry said in a pleading tone. ‘Whoever gave this contract to you is misusing you, this is not what you’re meant to do, you are meant to do something better in life.’
She sighed and stared at him for some seconds, ‘Well, Henry. I’m not convinced yet about all these stories, I’m not convinced about God or love, I’ve never felt God or love in my life, how do I know they’re real and not just deceptive feelings you’re trying to get into my head?’
Henry heaved a sigh of frustration, he didn’t know how to answer her question but he just had to talk. ‘Look here Tara, you don’t have to feel it before you believe it, that’s what is called faith. You believe and it works for you.’
‘Haha,’ she suddenly laughed loudly. ‘What you’re saying is hogwash man, yesterday you talked about the feelings of Love for strong people, now you’re saying I don’t need feelings to believe in your God or Love again? I know you have been brainwashed already but you can’t brainwash me like they’ve done to you.’
‘I’m not trying to…’
‘Shh…’ she cut him short. ‘Do not tell me about God or Love again until you can show them to me.’ she said, staring straight into his eyes. ‘Now leave this room,’ she shouted.
Henry was confused on what to say, he wasn’t knowledgeable about the things of God, so he didn’t know what else to say to her but he remembered once hearing a preacher say that you don’t need to know much about the Bible before becoming a soul winner. He decided to go back and pray about the issue.
‘Get out!’ she shouted at him again when he was sluggish **February 23, 2031**
The days rolled by in silence. Activities in the country and it’s capital went on as usual. The Vice President had been flown to the US for treatment and safety and only little news about him was disclosed by the press because they got little information themselves, the government made sure that everything about the Vice President’s treatment and safety was done secretively.
Omotara and Henry avoided themselves like plagues even though they stayed in the same house. Both of them went out early in the morning but a different times and also returned at different times in the evening. Henry avoided staying in the living room, so he did Tara; she always remained in her room everytime she was in the house while Henry stayed in Jefa’s room.
After several days of not greeting or talking to each other, Henry finally knocked on her door this Sunday morning.
Omotara did not waste time in opening the door as she thought it was her brother knocking, she was shocked when she met Henry smiling at the door. She tried to close it back but he stopped it with his leg and pushed the door open.
‘What do you want?’ She said as she proceeded straight to the bed.
He closed the door and stood with his two legs slightly apart, ‘Good morning Omotara.’
She turned to face him and stood straight, she folded her arms and gave him a contorted look without replying his greeting.
‘I see you’ve been trying to avoid me for the past few days,’ Henry added, not bothered about her not replying.
‘Hear who’s talking,’ she said with a mischievous smile.
‘But I’m saying the truth,’ Henry insisted.
‘Well, if that’s the only thing you’re here to talk about, I believe that this conversation is not necessary.’ she said with a dismissing note.
‘I’m not here to talk about that, I’m here to invite you to lunch with me,” he replied.
‘Lunch?’ she rolled her eyes in surprise. ‘And what makes you think that I’ll accept your invitation.’
‘You will,’ he said briefly and paused to see her reaction. ‘I can already see it in your eyes that you need something like that.’ Henry added and moved closer to her.
‘Come on, stop this trash. You see nothing in my eyes.’ She said and moved back.
‘Don’t let us argue, you’ll go with me this afternoon.’ Henry said, raising up his hands as a sign of surrendering. ‘Why don’t you dress up now and let’s go to church together?’
‘Never would I go to waste time with you in such a place again.’
‘You call it wasting time?’ Henry moved closer to her again.
‘Please, I don’t have time for this religious bullshi*t this morning,’ she said and turned to make her bed.
He drew nearer to her and placed his hands on her shoulder, she turned back sharply and gave him a warning look. He was a bit scared but he refused to be moved. They looked into each other’s eyes for close to two minutes before the frown on Tarasha’s eyes began to vanish. She tried to move away but he placed his hands on her shoulder again and stopped her from moving, she felt intimidated by his boldness.
‘Henry, what do you want?’ she asked softly.
‘I told you what I want already,’ he replied.
‘And I said I’m not interested in going anywhere with you, what else do you want?’
He looked into her eyes for some seconds before replying, she tried to move away again but he pulled her back. ‘I want you,’ he finally replied.
She gave him a questioning look, he smiled and rubbed his palm on her cheek. He touched her lips, it was soft and inviting. His head moved closer and hers, until their lips met.
___
** Mayo Clinic, Rochester, New York **
‘D–n Matvei, he’s not as efficient as you said he is,’ Chief Elvis cursed loudly into his phone. His right leg was bandaged from the top to the knee and hung on a suspender. The bullets had been removed but reports from the doctors suggested that he may never be able to use the leg anymore. The first bullet had entered into upper region of his thigh while the second one into his knee.
‘Elvis, he only arrived in Nigeria few days before you were shot, so there was no way he was going to know about that attack.’ Matvei replied in his thick Russian accent.
‘He came into Nigeria on the same day I returned from my medical leave, so that is already enough time to study the environment.’ Chief Elvis said. ‘I even gave him two people to work with.’
‘Is it up to two weeks already?’
‘Yes, it is.’
‘Okay, what instructions did you give to Rex?’ Matvei asked.
‘What kind of question is that? I asked him to go after Samantha Osman.’ Chief Elvis replied.
‘That’s all you did?’
‘Yes, isn’t that’s why I requested for him to come to Nigeria?’
Matvei gave a short laugh, ‘ I’m very sure he’s doing his job well. Rex is one of the best assasins in the world now.’
‘What do you mean by that? If he really good as you say and he is going after her, then she couldn’t have still tried to kill me.’
Matvei laughed again, ‘You fool, you asked him to go after her and he’s doing that. He does only what he’s asked to do, I’m sure he’ll get and kill her soon. Nothing concerns him with you.’
‘Nothing concerns him with me?’ Chief Elvis asked in surprise.
‘Stop being a dummy man,’ Matvei said mockingly. ‘You didn’t ask him to protect you, so he has no business whether you’re dead or alive, all he’s going to be doing is going after that Samantha.’
‘What? So you mean I have to ask him to protect me specially.’
‘That’s another job entirely, he can do that if you ask him to. But remember, Rex is an assasin, a killing machine and not a bodyguard.’
Chief Elvis heaved a sigh of frustration, he was tired of the pain and torment. He had returned to Nigeria after his medical leave when boldness and confidence because of Rex’s arrival into the country on that same day. And his boldness had increased after he also spoke to Rex and gave him the vision, he had been inspired by Rex’s firmness and fearful look.
_____
‘I hope Chief Elvis is safe,’ Stainless commented as they drove in the Hyundai sonata. He was driving and was seated at the front with Don while Rex who had been working as their boss for more than a week was seated at the back.
Rex was a man of very few words, that was if he could even be qualified as a man; he talked like a robot with calculated words and made them brief always.
However, he had a very handsome and innocent face when he smiled but it becomes scary whenever he was giving an instruction or communicating something serious. He had a fairly dark skin like that of a black American, coiling hair and neatly carved moustache, only his Russian-like accent would make one know he wasn’t an American or he didn’t live in America, one couldn’t really tell where he was from. He was way younger than both Don and Stainless but he seemed not to consider that as he ordered both of them around like small boys.
For him, Don and Stainless had been almost useless for his mission since the Chief introduced them to him. He was supposed to be given a month to learn about his new environment and strategize, but with them, he told the Chief two weeks would be enough. But contrary to his expectations which had been raised by Chief Elvis when they were being introduced to him as leaders of two of the top most assassins gang in the nation, he found them ineffective. Most of the technical things he needed to know about the environment were discovered by himself, the only things they were able to provide him with were the names of the places and the routes to take in and out of them which he considered useless as the electronic maps on his devices could provide him the same information. The only thing that made them useful to him was their hostage, Benny. Rex was the one who mixed the solution they injected into Benny’s body before he revealed Tarasha’s locations to them.
‘Boss, have you gotten any other information from the Chief since he left?’ Don asked, turning to Rex at the back seat.
‘No,’ Rex replied briefly. To him, the welfare of the Chief didn’t matter, all he wanted to do was finish off the lady assassin whose real name he had been said to be Tarasha but was popularly known as Samantha Osman.
‘We are few metres close to the place,’ Stainless announced and pulled over to a space at the left hand side which was supposed to be for vehicles returning.
‘So, here is Gwagalada?’ Rex asked in his thick bass voice.
‘Yes,’ Stainless replied. ‘That’s the gate,’ he added, pointing to a gate some distance away at the other side.
‘Keep driving,’ Rex ordered. He picked out a device and held the both sides in his two hands.
Stainless returned to the other lane and kept driving towards the gate, they drove past few metres away without any instruction from Rex.
After they drove close to a bush was when Rex instructed for them to drive back. Stainless reversed the car.
‘There are no cameras watching outside that house,’ Rex said. ‘But we need to find out how the place looks behind the gate. We’ll wait around till night time.’
______
2pm
Tara and Henry ate silently, stealing glances at each other’s faces. For Tara, it was the first time she was on a date with someone she wasn’t planning to extract any information from or kill, it was the first date she agreed to without having any plan. This was different from the first time she had lunch with Henry at Elymax hotel, then she did it to extract information about the NSCC from him. This time, she didn’t know why she did it exactly, she just knew she couldn’t reject.
The kiss she had shared with him earlier that day was the worst she ever had, it was short and unexciting but it still kept her longing for more. Henry was a bad kisser, she concluded. The first time she kissed him, she was trying to cover up her act in her attempt to extract an information from his laptop and get him to follow her Chief Jubril’s party, this time, she couldn’t tell the reason for it, all she knew was that Henry was bad in the act.
Henry ate in silence but his heart was filled with thoughts and questions. He wasn’t of the school of thought which proposed love as blind but he began to consider the thought to be accurate now. This was he in love with an assassin, he who believed in the sanctity of human lives was madly in love with one who killed without thinking.
His kiss with her in the morning had been the worst kiss he ever had, even the first one at the NSCC’s house was better, he considered her a very bad kisser. He didn’t mean for the kiss to happen but it did anyway, he wasn’t even planning to touch her or have any romantic activity with her. All he wanted was to see her change and see her express real happiness which he hoped he could help her find.
He had gone to church with Jefa after Tarasha had refused to come with them but he ensured she didn’t refuse to go out for lunch with him.
They finished the meal eventually and there was no excuse for the silence anymore, Henry had to take the bull by the horns.
‘Omotara,’ he called softly, looking into her eyes. She stared back at him expressionlessly. ‘What are you thinking about?’ he asked.
‘Nothing,’ she replied briefly.
‘Nothing? You mean there’s nothing on your mind right now?’
‘Yes, what is supposed to be on my mind?’
‘I am,’ Henry said.
‘You?’
‘We should be on your mind, I mean.’
‘We? You and who?’
‘Both of us,’ Henry said.
‘There is no ‘us’, huh?’
‘There is.’
‘Hehe,’ she chuckled, ‘look here. I could…’ she paused to look around and then placed her hands on the table and poked her head forward. She lowered her voice so that only Henry could hear. ‘I can kill you at anytime,’ she said in a tone which suggested she was serious about it.
Henry was disappointed at her answer, he wondered why she had to bring killing into every of their discussion.
‘Why don’t we forget about who’s killing who right now and focus on us,’ he said.
‘There’s no us, but there’s always going to be death.’ She replied stubbornly. She knew what he was going with the conversation and was trying to avoid it.
‘Okay,’ Henry said with a smile, understanding her plot to avoid the discussion. ‘Let’s talk about us before you kill me.’
‘What do you mean?’
‘I love you Tara,’ he said and paused to see her reaction, she didn’t make any facially. ‘I want to know if you feel the same way about me. I need to know that before you kill me as you say.’
‘I don’t know what is love, so I don’t love you.’ she replied coldly.
‘So I mean nothing to you?’ he asked. ‘And what happened in the morning, you don’t see it as anything?’
‘What happened?’ she asked and paused to see his reaction. She knew what he was talking about and the truth was that it meant something to her and she was longing for more but she couldn’t bring herself to admit it.
‘IIf you’re talking about the kiss, it was horrible and it meant nothing. I’ve kissed several other men and I ended up killing them, most of them claimed that they love me just like you are doing now.’
…to be continued moving. He began to proceed slowly to the door.
‘And don’t try to stop me again, I won’t spare you.’ she added before he got to the door.
**February 23, 2031**
The days rolled by in silence. Activities in the country and it’s capital went on as usual. The Vice President had been flown to the US for treatment and safety and only little news about him was disclosed by the press because they got little information themselves, the government made sure that everything about the Vice President’s treatment and safety was done secretively.
Omotara and Henry avoided themselves like plagues even though they stayed in the same house. Both of them went out early in the morning but a different times and also returned at different times in the evening. Henry avoided staying in the living room, so he did Tara; she always remained in her room everytime she was in the house while Henry stayed in Jefa’s room.
After several days of not greeting or talking to each other, Henry finally knocked on her door this Sunday morning.
Omotara did not waste time in opening the door as she thought it was her brother knocking, she was shocked when she met Henry smiling at the door. She tried to close it back but he stopped it with his leg and pushed the door open.
‘What do you want?’ She said as she proceeded straight to the bed.
He closed the door and stood with his two legs slightly apart, ‘Good morning Omotara.’
She turned to face him and stood straight, she folded her arms and gave him a contorted look without replying his greeting.
‘I see you’ve been trying to avoid me for the past few days,’ Henry added, not bothered about her not replying.
‘Hear who’s talking,’ she said with a mischievous smile.
‘But I’m saying the truth,’ Henry insisted.
‘Well, if that’s the only thing you’re here to talk about, I believe that this conversation is not necessary.’ she said with a dismissing note.
‘I’m not here to talk about that, I’m here to invite you to lunch with me,” he replied.
‘Lunch?’ she rolled her eyes in surprise. ‘And what makes you think that I’ll accept your invitation.’
‘You will,’ he said briefly and paused to see her reaction. ‘I can already see it in your eyes that you need something like that.’ Henry added and moved closer to her.
‘Come on, stop this trash. You see nothing in my eyes.’ She said and moved back.
‘Don’t let us argue, you’ll go with me this afternoon.’ Henry said, raising up his hands as a sign of surrendering. ‘Why don’t you dress up now and let’s go to church together?’
‘Never would I go to waste time with you in such a place again.’
‘You call it wasting time?’ Henry moved closer to her again.
‘Please, I don’t have time for this religious bullshi*t this morning,’ she said and turned to make her bed.
He drew nearer to her and placed his hands on her shoulder, she turned back sharply and gave him a warning look. He was a bit scared but he refused to be moved. They looked into each other’s eyes for close to two minutes before the frown on Tarasha’s eyes began to vanish. She tried to move away but he placed his hands on her shoulder again and stopped her from moving, she felt intimidated by his boldness.
‘Henry, what do you want?’ she asked softly.
‘I told you what I want already,’ he replied.
‘And I said I’m not interested in going anywhere with you, what else do you want?’
He looked into her eyes for some seconds before replying, she tried to move away again but he pulled her back. ‘I want you,’ he finally replied.
She gave him a questioning look, he smiled and rubbed his palm on her cheek. He touched her lips, it was soft and inviting. His head moved closer and hers, until their lips met.
___
** Mayo Clinic, Rochester, New York **
‘D–n Matvei, he’s not as efficient as you said he is,’ Chief Elvis cursed loudly into his phone. His right leg was bandaged from the top to the knee and hung on a suspender. The bullets had been removed but reports from the doctors suggested that he may never be able to use the leg anymore. The first bullet had entered into upper region of his thigh while the second one into his knee.
‘Elvis, he only arrived in Nigeria few days before you were shot, so there was no way he was going to know about that attack.’ Matvei replied in his thick Russian accent.
‘He came into Nigeria on the same day I returned from my medical leave, so that is already enough time to study the environment.’ Chief Elvis said. ‘I even gave him two people to work with.’
‘Is it up to two weeks already?’
‘Yes, it is.’
‘Okay, what instructions did you give to Rex?’ Matvei asked.
‘What kind of question is that? I asked him to go after Samantha Osman.’ Chief Elvis replied.
‘That’s all you did?’
‘Yes, isn’t that’s why I requested for him to come to Nigeria?’
Matvei gave a short laugh, ‘ I’m very sure he’s doing his job well. Rex is one of the best assasins in the world now.’
‘What do you mean by that? If he really good as you say and he is going after her, then she couldn’t have still tried to kill me.’
Matvei laughed again, ‘You fool, you asked him to go after her and he’s doing that. He does only what he’s asked to do, I’m sure he’ll get and kill her soon. Nothing concerns him with you.’
‘Nothing concerns him with me?’ Chief Elvis asked in surprise.
‘Stop being a dummy man,’ Matvei said mockingly. ‘You didn’t ask him to protect you, so he has no business whether you’re dead or alive, all he’s going to be doing is going after that Samantha.’
‘What? So you mean I have to ask him to protect me specially.’
‘That’s another job entirely, he can do that if you ask him to. But remember, Rex is an assasin, a killing machine and not a bodyguard.’
Chief Elvis heaved a sigh of frustration, he was tired of the pain and torment. He had returned to Nigeria after his medical leave when boldness and confidence because of Rex’s arrival into the country on that same day. And his boldness had increased after he also spoke to Rex and gave him the vision, he had been inspired by Rex’s firmness and fearful look.
_____
‘I hope Chief Elvis is safe,’ Stainless commented as they drove in the Hyundai sonata. He was driving and was seated at the front with Don while Rex who had been working as their boss for more than a week was seated at the back.
Rex was a man of very few words, that was if he could even be qualified as a man; he talked like a robot with calculated words and made them brief always.
However, he had a very handsome and innocent face when he smiled but it becomes scary whenever he was giving an instruction or communicating something serious. He had a fairly dark skin like that of a black American, coiling hair and neatly carved moustache, only his Russian-like accent would make one know he wasn’t an American or he didn’t live in America, one couldn’t really tell where he was from. He was way younger than both Don and Stainless but he seemed not to consider that as he ordered both of them around like small boys.
For him, Don and Stainless had been almost useless for his mission since the Chief introduced them to him. He was supposed to be given a month to learn about his new environment and strategize, but with them, he told the Chief two weeks would be enough. But contrary to his expectations which had been raised by Chief Elvis when they were being introduced to him as leaders of two of the top most assassins gang in the nation, he found them ineffective. Most of the technical things he needed to know about the environment were discovered by himself, the only things they were able to provide him with were the names of the places and the routes to take in and out of them which he considered useless as the electronic maps on his devices could provide him the same information. The only thing that made them useful to him was their hostage, Benny. Rex was the one who mixed the solution they injected into Benny’s body before he revealed Tarasha’s locations to them.
‘Boss, have you gotten any other information from the Chief since he left?’ Don asked, turning to Rex at the back seat.
‘No,’ Rex replied briefly. To him, the welfare of the Chief didn’t matter, all he wanted to do was finish off the lady assassin whose real name he had been said to be Tarasha but was popularly known as Samantha Osman.
‘We are few metres close to the place,’ Stainless announced and pulled over to a space at the left hand side which was supposed to be for vehicles returning.
‘So, here is Gwagalada?’ Rex asked in his thick bass voice.
‘Yes,’ Stainless replied. ‘That’s the gate,’ he added, pointing to a gate some distance away at the other side.
‘Keep driving,’ Rex ordered. He picked out a device and held the both sides in his two hands.
Stainless returned to the other lane and kept driving towards the gate, they drove past few metres away without any instruction from Rex.
After they drove close to a bush was when Rex instructed for them to drive back. Stainless reversed the car.
‘There are no cameras watching outside that house,’ Rex said. ‘But we need to find out how the place looks behind the gate. We’ll wait around till night time.’
______
2pm
Tara and Henry ate silently, stealing glances at each other’s faces. For Tara, it was the first time she was on a date with someone she wasn’t planning to extract any information from or kill, it was the first date she agreed to without having any plan. This was different from the first time she had lunch with Henry at Elymax hotel, then she did it to extract information about the NSCC from him. This time, she didn’t know why she did it exactly, she just knew she couldn’t reject.
The kiss she had shared with him earlier that day was the worst she ever had, it was short and unexciting but it still kept her longing for more. Henry was a bad kisser, she concluded. The first time she kissed him, she was trying to cover up her act in her attempt to extract an information from his laptop and get him to follow her Chief Jubril’s party, this time, she couldn’t tell the reason for it, all she knew was that Henry was bad in the act.
Henry ate in silence but his heart was filled with thoughts and questions. He wasn’t of the school of thought which proposed love as blind but he began to consider the thought to be accurate now. This was he in love with an assassin, he who believed in the sanctity of human lives was madly in love with one who killed without thinking.
His kiss with her in the morning had been the worst kiss he ever had, even the first one at the NSCC’s house was better, he considered her a very bad kisser. He didn’t mean for the kiss to happen but it did anyway, he wasn’t even planning to touch her or have any romantic activity with her. All he wanted was to see her change and see her express real happiness which he hoped he could help her find.
He had gone to church with Jefa after Tarasha had refused to come with them but he ensured she didn’t refuse to go out for lunch with him.
They finished the meal eventually and there was no excuse for the silence anymore, Henry had to take the bull by the horns.
‘Omotara,’ he called softly, looking into her eyes. She stared back at him expressionlessly. ‘What are you thinking about?’ he asked.
‘Nothing,’ she replied briefly.
‘Nothing? You mean there’s nothing on your mind right now?’
‘Yes, what is supposed to be on my mind?’
‘I am,’ Henry said.
‘You?’
‘We should be on your mind, I mean.’
‘We? You and who?’
‘Both of us,’ Henry said.
‘There is no ‘us’, huh?’
‘There is.’
‘Hehe,’ she chuckled, ‘look here. I could…’ she paused to look around and then placed her hands on the table and poked her head forward. She lowered her voice so that only Henry could hear. ‘I can kill you at anytime,’ she said in a tone which suggested she was serious about it.
Henry was disappointed at her answer, he wondered why she had to bring killing into every of their discussion.
‘Why don’t we forget about who’s killing who right now and focus on us,’ he said.
‘There’s no us, but there’s always going to be death.’ She replied stubbornly. She knew what he was going with the conversation and was trying to avoid it.
‘Okay,’ Henry said with a smile, understanding her plot to avoid the discussion. ‘Let’s talk about us before you kill me.’
‘What do you mean?’
‘I love you Tara,’ he said and paused to see her reaction, she didn’t make any facially. ‘I want to know if you feel the same way about me. I need to know that before you kill me as you say.’
‘I don’t know what is love, so I don’t love you.’ she replied coldly.
‘So I mean nothing to you?’ he asked. ‘And what happened in the morning, you don’t see it as anything?’
‘What happened?’ she asked and paused to see his reaction. She knew what he was talking about and the truth was that it meant something to her and she was longing for more but she couldn’t bring herself to admit it.
‘IIf you’re talking about the kiss, it was horrible and it meant nothing. I’ve kissed several other men and I ended up killing them, most of them claimed that they love me just like you are doing now.’
…to be continued
Episode 81(edited)
Dakolo was seated in the back of the ambulance with the doctor and Henry laying in the bed. Ken was seated in the front seat with the driver, leading the way to their destination.
Dakolo glanced at Henry’s calm face from time to time and would take a deep sigh of relief after. He was glad that Henry was going to live after all, even though if he didn’t remember anything like the doctor said, he was a young man and still had the opportunity to start a new life. Dakolo made up his mind to help Henry have that new life and have it to the full.
Just after fifteen minutes of driving, Dakolo’s phone began to ring. He took it out and checked the caller, it was from the office.
‘Hello officer,’ he answered the call and spoke in a low voice.
‘Sir,’ the female computer operator’s voice sounded. ‘The profile we got yesterday wasn’t from the hospital in Capetown, the signature and logo have some slight differences. The assassins must have created a fake profile and deceived us with it.’
‘Okay,’ Dakolo replied after few seconds of silence, feeling defeated but not surprise about the report. ‘What about the network provider’s report, where did they say the call was answered from?’
‘They haven’t been able to find the exact location sir but it has been confirmed that the call wasn’t answered from South Africa.’
‘It’s okay officer, thanks, you may now retire for the day and allow the officers on night shift take over.’ Dakolo replied.
‘Yes sir, goodnight.’ Dakolo could hear the happiness in her voice before she cut the call.
Dakolo took another glance at Henry immediately the call ended, he stretched forth his hand to the bed and to touched Henry’s fingers. Henry’s hand was warm but there was no reaction made to Dakolo’s touch.
‘For how long is he going to stay unconscious?’ Dakolo asked the doctor.
‘I’m not really sure, only Dr Tobi can give us the most accurate prediction,’ the doctor replied.
‘I wished you were the one to stay with him, I can trust you more. Dr Tobi seems younger, inexperienced and more naive.’ Dakolo said.
‘Dr Tobi is not inexperienced, he’s a professional who has dealt with several other cases successfully, he’s one of the best in Africa and in the world. Even though this case is quite unique, he’s still the best man for the job. I don’t think any other Doctor in the world would do better than him.’
‘Why are you so confident about him?’ Dakolo asked, raising a brow.
‘He’s good, I know him, I’ve seen him perform excellently several times. He has even proved it in this case.’
‘How did he prove it?”
‘You see, in cases like this where the substance used to induce the brain damage and paralysis to the patient is unknown, the only person who would be able to produce the cure has to be the manufacturer of the poison. But in this case, Dr Tobi was able to come up with the cure. The highest point several other doctors in his line would have ever gotten to was knowing that the cure could be derived from that liquid, they would have never been able to know how to purify the liquid and make the cure.’
”Hmm… I see,’ Dakolo commented and took his gaze away. He stared blankly at the wall of the ambulance for sometime.
‘You’ll pick him from his house tomorrow as planned,’ the doctor continued. ‘Now that he would even be left alone with the patient and the patient would be the only responsibility he has, he might be able to come up with several other things to make the patient recover faster.’
Dakolo bit his lips and nodded silently in agreement with what the doctor said. Quick recovery was what he wanted for Henry, very quick recovery. So that they would be able to fly him out of the country once and for all to save him from any other possible attacks.
++++
‘I’ll have to return tomorrow then,’ Tarasha said, stepping into the car. ‘Call me at once Benny is back and also inform him that I need to have a meeting with all of you tomorrow.’ she said and closed the door to the driver’s seat. After waiting an hour for Benny to return, she had no choice than to leave and come back the next day. ‘Make sure you keep an eye on the Senate President, we should administer to him the poison very soon, it’ll take about three days before he finally dies.’ she said before starting the engine. She wind up the window glasses and began to reverse, Cole went to open the gate for her. In one minute time, she had driven out already.
Cole and Aisha returned back into the house quietly, still wondering where Benny could have gone to and what could be wrong with him.
++++
Benny kept on walking hurriedly down the streets, he had gone out of Gwagalada already and was on his way to a motor park. He planned on boarding a bus that night or very early the next morning to Lagos, then from Lagos he was going to travel out of the country to another African nation where they would not be able to trace him to. He had enough money in his bank account to settle down there for the moment and maybe take up a responsible job or start a business.
The roads were already almost empty, there cars were passing by occasionally. There were also very few people on the road and by the side, most of them were people coming from work who could be seen at the joints of Mallams who were selling late night food to people.
He crossed the road to the other side of the junction, he stopped to wait for a cab or a good Samaritan who would be driving towards the direction of the motor garage he was going to.
Not more than two minutes of waiting, the good Samaritan came by. A black car stopped at his front.
‘Hello,’ the windows were wind down and the car reversed a little. A man at the passenger’s side of the front seat waved at Benny. The man’s cap covered his face partly, making it impossible for Benny to see the face properly.
‘Hello, I’m going to the Lagos motor garage there.’ Benny said, approaching the car.
‘Do you have some money?’ the man asked.
‘Yes,’ Benny replied, confident of himself. His gun was in his pocket and he wasn’t scared of entering into a robber’s car. He had received extra training under Tarasha, so entering a robber’s car would even make things better for him; it would give him good enough reasons to snatch the car and use it personally for himself, maybe drive himself to Lagos.
‘Hop in,’ the man said and the door to the back seat opened.
‘Thank you,’ Benny said as he entered and placed his bag beside him. He saw the eyes of the driver peeping at him through the rearview mirror but couldn’t see the face properly. The light in the car was turned off before the car drove off.
The driver began to play one of Tupac’s album, raising the volume so high that it could damage one’s ear. Benny did not complain but just used his palms to cover his ears.
Twenty minutes later, the car began to approach the point where the motor park was.
‘Can you slow down your speed? We’re almost at my destination,’ Benny said but the driver and his partner weren’t listening, the loudness of the music would not let them hear. Benny tapped the driver on his shoulder gently, the music volume was reduced a little.
‘We’ve passed the motor garage already, please stop and tell me how much you want to collect.’ Benny said. The driver did not reduce his speed, he increased it instead and increased the volume of the music too.
Benny took out his gun and wanted to place it on the neck of the driver but unluckily for him, they were close to a police road block. He hid the gun under his legs until they passed the police joint several metres away.
‘Now pull over,’ Benny commanded the driver, putting the gun’s tip at the back of his neck. The driver refused to stop and continued to drive until Benny cocked the gun, he finally pulled over and raised up his hands surrendering.
‘Bro, take it easy.’ the man on the passenger’s side said in a relaxed voice.
‘Hey man, calm down. I’m just playing a late night game with you,’ the driver said in a voice that sounded familiar to Benny. ‘Or would your boss scold you for playing a little, harmless game with me this night?’ the driver added in a mocking tone.
Benny was taken aback, his hand began to drop slowly. Then his heart almost failed him as the driver turned back and Benny saw his face.
‘Nice to meet once again, did you miss me?’ Don asked tauntingly.
++++
~~~~ Monday Morning ~~~~
Tarasha resumed her work in the NSCC that morning, she was given a special office, just like Henry’s. On resumption, she met several uncompleted projects on the table, most which were rolled over from Henry.
The last night had been refreshing for her. For over fifteen years of her life, she had not had so much rest like she did, after spending much time with her brother. They decided to suspend all their talks about the past first and talk about the future. Even though both of them still had those past memories haunting them in their hearts, they decided to pretend to be okay to each other.
Jefa still had a wish to see the Inspector General punished but he left it unvoiced, not wanting to stir up bad memories in Omotara’s head again and not knowing that she had it in mind too. One other important reason why Jefa agreed to stop sharing his past was because he did not want to lie to her, which he’ll be forced to do if he continued. There were a lot of things he did which he thought could make her hate or become scared of him when she hears about them.
Omotara on her own part, decided not to go further with hearing about his past immediately, she was going to hear it from him little by little, so that he would not suspect anything when the people whose names he would mention would pay for their sins with their blood. Her next target was the Inspector General of Police. She was going to add him to the Vice President’s job, after killing the both of them, then it’ll be the appropriate time to hear more stories about the past.
Tarasha began her work immediately, she started to go through all the jobs Henry had not completed and check the structure of the softwares. She was able to make quick progress because of the reports she had gotten from the other developers who had been working with Henry, she was going to be meeting with them by 1pm that day. She also had a meeting with the Vice President the next morning by 9am. She, Mr Sylvester and the other developers would be going for the meeting at the Vice President quarters.
Her phone beeped twice, a text message had entered. She picked it up to read. The sender was one of those numbers which was usually used to send spam messages by the network providers. She wanted to ignore but the first word of the message caught her attention, she opened it to read more. ‘Henry E.G moved from the hospital by the police, rumour has it that he was taken out lifeless… read more on youngicee.com.’
She clicked on the link to get more details of the news. ‘Our sources have gathered that the intelligent programming expert after being attacked was moved out of the hospital that same night. Whether he was moved out dead or not, we’ve not been able to confirm. All efforts to reach the hospital authorities have proved abortive but we were able to reach one of the nurses who was present while he was being moved out. Nurse Titi (real name withheld) spoke to our correspondence, explaining details on how he looked lifeless on the night he was being moved out from the hospital. Only one of the senior doctors in the hospital (name withheld) went with the police in the ambulance and returned to the hospital the next morning, this would mean that there is no Doctor from the hospital who is presently with Henry.
Reports also has it that the doctor who was previously in charge of Henry’s case may have been suspended or sacked by the hospital management as his name has been removed from the duty roster and all other patients he was previously in charge of treating has been assigned to it other doctors…’
Tarasha stopped reading and dropped her phone on the table, she wondered why the police was hiding the news of Henry’s death, why they had to take his body away from the hospital and hide it somewhere else.
She picked up the phone again and dialed Benny’s number, it still wasn’t going through. She dialed Cole’s.
‘Hello Boss,’ Cole answered in a lively voice.
‘Hey Cole, how are you this morning?’
‘Fine boss, you?’
‘Excellent, how about Aisha and the Senate President? Have you poisoned the man already?’
‘Yes, the poison was added to his food last night.’
‘Okay, the effects will start to show tomorrow. That means you’ll take him out of the lodge tomorrow after inserting the microchip in his hand.’
‘Yes boss, I’m still very aware of the plan.’
‘Okay, any news from Benny yet?’
‘None yet.’
‘Conduct a search for him, I’ll send you the data for the cameras in that…’ Tarasha paused suddenly, remembering that the street cameras were not present in some parts of Gwagalada, including the street where their lodge was. ‘Well… Just begin a search for him, make sure that he hasn’t gotten himself into trouble.’
‘Okay boss,’ Cole replied and the call ended.
++++
He sat quietly on the bed, resting his back on the headboard. He stared at everything in the room which he was. It was a very neat room painted white, the door was a transparent glass door which allowed for people in the room to see those outside. Occasionally, he would see one or two people pass through the corridor. Who they were he did not know, neither did he know who he was.
Soon, a young man dressed in a doctor’s coat came in leaving the door opened. He recognized the Doctor’s face as the person who had been administering drugs and injections to him since the day he had found himself there. He didn’t know when he got there or how he did, he also did not know how many days he had spent there as he never left the bed since when he found himself there. He never saw darkness too, the room was always brightened by the florescent bulbs placed at strategic corners of the ceiling.
Two other men entered after the doctor and closed the door. They were dressed corporately in black suits and white shirts, he wondered who they were. They came closer to his bed and stood at his front with smiling faces.
‘How are you?’ the doctor finally broke the silence.
He didn’t reply, he wasn’t sure of what to say. He didn’t even know if he could speak.
‘Hope you’re feeling better?’ the doctor asked again.
‘I’m fine,’ he said, not knowing where the words came from.
The doctor smiled on seeing his tensed state, he placed a hand on his shoulder. ‘Don’t worry, you’ll be fine. We are your friends.’
He looked at the faces of the two other people to see if he could find friendship there. The men were nodding their heads in consent to the doctor’s words.
‘I’m Doctor Tobi,’ the doctor started the introduction, ‘and this Agent Dakolo and Inspector Ken.’
Henry took another quick glance at the two other men, he didn’t like their faces and he wasn’t sure he could trust them, the Doctor’s introduction made them look more dangerous to him.
‘What do you want from me?’ he asked in a frightened tone.
Agent Dakolo moved closer, ‘Henry, we are your friends. We don’t want anything from you, we want to help you.’
‘Who is Henry?’ he asked looking back to see if they were referring to someone else.
‘You,’ Dakolo gave a brief chuckle. ‘You are Henry and we are your friends, we’ve come…’ Dakolo’s phone rang interrupting him. He stopped and stepped back. He brought out his phone and checked the screen. He silenced it and stepped forward again.
‘I want to be alone,’ Henry said, he laid flat on his back and used the blanket to cover his whole body including his face.
Dr Tobi signaled to the officers that it was time to leave. Slowly and without making noise, they marched out of the room.
He took the blanket off his face after the three visitors had left. ‘Henry,’ he muttered to himself. ‘What does the name mean?’
*
‘Please Dr Tobi, ensure you do not make calls to anybody. Keep your line switched off completely.’ Dakolo warned.
‘I’ve heard you Agent, you said I can only make calls when I go into the town.’
‘Yes, but never from this location. We would reach you on the landline provided whenever we want to.’
‘Okay Agent,’ Dr Tobi said.
‘Thank you,’ Dakolo concluded and marched away with Inspector Ken. He had several officers guarding the house, they had also introduced military personnels to the job. After their meeting with the Vice president that day, Inspector Ken would return to the location to monitor the doctor and keep an eye on other security officials.
..
October 3, 2016 at 8:33 pm #852645 Reply
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2pm
They were all seated at a round table, Mr Sylvester was sitting at the middle, Tarasha, Frank and the second guy who worked with Henry were also there.
‘She’s Kimberly Evelyn Alexander, but I love to call her Evelyn because my first daughter is Evelyn too.’ Mr Sylvester introduced her to her colleagues, smiling.
‘Nice to have you Kim,’ Frank was the first to speak, offering her a handshake.
‘Kim or Evelyn, I don’t know which to choose.’ The other guy joined.
‘Choose Kim, I prefer to be called Kimberly.’ Tarasha said politely, receiving the handshake from the other guy too.
‘Okay, Kim it is.’ the guy replied.
‘I’ll choose Kim too, since it’s what you prefer,’ Mr Sylvester continued. ‘Some… I mean most of Henry’s jobs have been rolled over to her,’ he said to the two guys. ‘So she would need the coperation of the both of you to work well.’
The guys nodded in satisfaction and agreement to work with her. Frank had met with her before and was sure of her abilities. The other guy had also heard about her exploits from Frank, so he had less reasons to doubt the lady’s ability.
‘Miss Eve… Kimberly,’ Mr Sylvester faced Tarasha. ‘I know you must have gone through the documents and reports on your table already. Do you have any question now or you would like to leave it for later?’
‘Thank you sir,’Tarasha adjusted her seating position to address them properly. ‘I have questions, so many but I don’t think I can ask all now rather do I think it’s the appropriate time for questions.’
‘Well, you may do it anytime you want. They are gentlemen and would always be willing to help you.’
++++
Like students who had just broken their parent’s rules and were being reprimanded, Dakolo and Ken stood before the Vice President and the Inspector General of police answering questions and making explanations of their recent movements. Dakolo felt awkward having the Vice President question them always, he wondered why the man could not just collect and read the monthly reports that was sent to the IG. As far as he was concerned, the Vice President had never made why meaningful contribution to their investigation, but he had no choice, he had to always answer because he was under the man’s authority.
‘So no news has been heard about the Senate President yet?’ Chief Elvis asked.
‘None sir, we’ve not been able to make any reasonable conclusion yet.’ Dakolo replied.
‘Rikau, these your boys are just messing up and wasting time,’ the Vice President turned to the Inspector General. ‘These assassins are gaining more grounds everyday and getting bolder, very soon they may come for me and then the President himself.’
Rikau was silent, he didn’t know what to say. He also had not been able to make reasonable contribution to the case himself, so he could not chastise the officers.
‘Please, you guys should leave my presence.’ Chief Elvis said angrily.
The officers bowed and walked out of the place silently, happy that they could now leave finally. Dakolo’s happiness was mixed with a little unhappiness though, he didn’t like how he was made by the IG to reveal Henry’s new location to the Vice President, he was of the view that the man wasn’t supposed to get that information yet. But he consoled himself on remembering that the Vice President was once a police officer and a very respected one at that, with several of the new innovations and successes of the day’s police force to his credit.
‘That girl is coming after me soon, something has to be done quickly,’ Chief Elvis said to the IG after the officers had gone out.
‘But what about the guy you said you’re ordering for?’ Rikau asked.
Chief Elvis sighed, ‘he’s coming. He’ll come but he may not arrive very soon, even when he arrives, he still has to take some time to study the area and understand the country.’
‘Hmm, we just have to take extra security measures then. Let’s study the cases of the past victims and see how the assassins got them, that way we won’t work into any trap or be deceived by anyone.’
‘I’ve started that already,’ Chief Elvis cut in. ‘I already began to study the cases of the past victims and I’ve discovered a lot. She always comes to them with something like a business proposal and ends up gaining their trust before killing them.’
‘Did she come with a business proposal to Chief Nasiru too?’
‘Come on, why are you asking me that? Are you not the Inspector General? I should be asking you.’
‘No, I just want to point out to you that it wasn’t really a proposal for business.’
‘Yes, but it was a proposal of a kind.’
‘Yes, you’re correct.’
‘What I’ve decided now is not to start any personal deal with anybody, even if I receive an international body, I’ll ask one of my boys to handle it somewhere far away from me.’
‘Hmm… That’s a good protective measure. One thing I think you should add is that if anyone comes with a proposal, no matter how harmless or innocent it looks, investigations on it should start immediately.’
‘Yes, you’re correct.’ Chief Elvis said, he paused and took in a deep breath. ‘I’ll be traveling soon.’
‘Traveling? Is it an official trip?’
‘No, it’s personal. I’m not feeling too fine and I’m going to the United States for medical treatment.’ Chief Elvis replied.
‘Oh! You’re not fine sir? Since when has the illness began?’
‘Come on, I’m not sick.’ Chief Elvis said, shaking his head in disgust of Rikau’s response. ‘Don’t you understand what I mean?’
‘I don’t understand what you mean sir?’ Rikau replied. ‘You just said you’re not feeling fine.’
‘It is you who is not feeling fine,’ Chief Elvis slammed and got up, Rikau got up too. ‘I’m going to the United States to hide for some weeks and my excuse would be that I’m not feeling too well, I hope I’ll be permitted to stay as long as I planned.’ he said and began to walk away slowly.
‘Hmm… But sir, wouldn’t they question your decision not to stay in Nigeria for treatment?’ Rikau asked, following after Chief Elvis slowly.
‘No one won’t, what happened to Henry E.G last week is enough excuse not to want to stay in Nigeria for treatment.’
++++
Dakolo was quiet as he drove in the car with Ken back to the officer. They had people who were lined up for questioning, one of them was the bold journalist who was replying Agent Dakolo on the day the attempt on Henry’s life was made.
Dakolo was more determined to nab the assassins now, they were really getting bolder and dangerous as the Vice President had said. There was no day that passed by that he wouldn’t wonder and ask himself what kind of person the leader of the assassin group could be. Whether it was Samantha Osman, or Aisha Bello or even Henry’s girlfriend Evelyn, she must really be a genius, he thought. But no matter how genius she was, he was going to bring her down one day, that he was sure of.
They got to the office after twenty minutes drive and went straight to the interrogation room to question their invitee who had been waiting for them. The journalist appeared to be seated patiently in the room, waiting for them. There was an untouched bottle of soft drink and a glass cup on the table.
‘Sorry for keeping you waiting man,’ Dakolo apologized as he walked towards the man with Ken and another junior officer behind. ‘Why are you not taking your drink?’
The journalist have a crooked smile and raised his brow, giving Dakolo a stern look. ‘I can’t take the drink Agent, I’m not aware that the Nigerian Police now entertain those invited for interrogation.’ he spoke calmly, his voice showed that he didn’t trust the source of the drink.
‘Well, that means you’ve not been invited to the police office for quite some time,’ Dakolo said, taking the seat directly opposite the man. ‘Police officers are humans, so they are sensitive to the feelings of their invitees and other citizens.’
‘Go straight to your questions sir, I’ve wasted about an hour here already.’ the journalist said impatiently, in contrast to the way he appeared.
‘Okay, I’ll just like to ask some more questions about those two who came to alert and gather the rest of you to the hospital.’ Dakolo began his questioning, he rounded up all in thirty five minutes.
‘Thank you so much for your clear answers, as I said earlier you may have to return tomorrow, so that you’ll try to identify the both of them from the pictures we would show you. We may also require you to describe both the male and the female to an artist that would be present here tomorrow.’
‘But how am I going to be able to describe very well people I’ve only seen once?’
‘Don’t worry, the artist has his way of getting what he requires from you.’ Dakolo replied.
++++
‘Ben, Ben’ Don called slowly and softly. ‘What did she give you to make you this loyal to her? Tell me so I can give my my boys too.’ Benny was seated in a wooden chair while Don was seated directly opposite him in leather settee, his two legs were on a footstool and his cigar was in his hand. The room was dark and filled with smoke, there was only a small window in it which did not allow for proper ventilation.
‘She didn’t give me anything, I was loyal to you also, remember?’ Benny answered him.
‘But you ain’t loyal anymore,’ Don countered. ‘You ain’t loyal to me anymore, the girl has turned you to a dog, a very loyal one at that.’
‘I was loyal to you,’ Benny corrected, ‘I can’t be loyal to you anymore because you’re no more my master.’
‘Hahaha,’ Don laughed hysterically, he got up from his seat and moved closer Benny. He placed a foot on Benny’s seat beside his laps and lowered his face, blowing smoke from his mouth at Benny’s face. ‘So a girl is your master right?’
‘She is more than a girl, she’s a man, more capable than you are.’ Benny said boldly to Don.
Benny’s words earned him a resounding blow from Don. Benny fell off from his seat and rolled on the floor.
Don followed up with more blows on Benny’s face and belly. Benny tried to resist for a while but when the blows were getting too much, he used his feet to push Don away and quickly struggled to get up. He had never attacked Don before, Don had been his master from the beginning and Benny was no match for him. But he knew Don’s secret, Don was a drug addict which had over the years continued to make him weaker. Benny was sure he could beat up Don now, especially with his new experience and tactics learnt.
Don staggered back and struggled to maintain his balance. After standing properly, he stared straight at Benny, amazed that Benny now had the effrontery to attack him back. He rolled up his sleeves, picked up the footstool and charged towards Benny in anger.
Benny waited patiently for Don to make the attack with the footstool first, he bent down and the footstool passed over his head while he swiftly pulled Don’s leg with his two hands. Don fell backwards to the floor, his head hitting the wooden chair Benny was previously seated on. Benny pulled Don up immediately and attacked him with jabs in his belly. Don tried to defend himself and attack back but all his moves were countered excellently by Benny.
Don finally landed on the floor, weak. Benny rose up and climbed over him, placing his strong fingers around Don’s neck, he fastened his grip and began to squeeze life out of Don.
Don was hitting his fists on the floor in his struggle to escape death but his struggle was not enough to save him, his strength continued to reduce as his struggle increased.
Benny continued to tightened his hand on Don’s neck, though not with the intention of killing him. He was about to release Don’s neck and stand up when something hard hit his head. He blacked out.
Don was gasping for breath, his eyes still closed in readiness for death. Then he suddenly felt a relief on his neck and then his body felt free, he managed to open his eyes slowly. Then he saw Stainless standing behind with the butt of a gun in his hand.
+++++
**Tuesday Morning, 11am**
Inspector Ken had just arrived from his new place of primary assignment, the secluded area where Henry was. Dakolo had left him there the last evening after they both visited Henry, Henry refused to talk or even look up. He remained covered on the bed till they left. They had also involved Dr Tobi in an interrogation where they asked him to tell them everything the lab scientist told him, he was also asked describe the nurse who deceived him out of the lab.
That Tuesday morning also, Dr Tobi was connected to the office via a video chat where he described the nurse’s face to an artist who interpreted it on a drawing sheet.
The artists was also made to interpret the interrogated journalist’s description of his unknown male and female colleagues who led them to the hospital. After taking down all the sketches, they couldn’t match them with any in their memory. Agent Dakolo and the other officers began to take out pictures they had in the archives. They took out all of Don photos and Facebook pictures that they had and compared it to Benny’s, there was no resemblance in any way.
It was when they took out Aisha’s pictures and compared it with the sketch of the unknown female journalist that it began to make sense. Being black and white, the sketch did not really show the complexion, but some of the facial features on the sketch was the same as Aisha Bello’s. But a notable difference was that Aisha Bello never had her hair cut in all the pictures that they had, but the person in the sketch had a low cut.
‘Sir, the journalist must be the same with the nurse who deceived the doctor,’ Ken finally noted a huge similarity between the two sketches. ‘Both had their hairs lowly cut and if you look well,’ Ken said and moved to the board on the well where the pictures and sketches had been pinned to. ‘Their nose is the same,’ he said as he touched the noses on the two sketches. ‘I believe that Dr Tobi didn’t see the nurse’s face very well, that’s why he missed other descriptions. You know he also said the nurse was putting on a wig before.’
‘You’re correct Ken, very correct.’ Dakolo commented as he moved closer to the pictures too. ‘People’s descriptions can never be the same but the highest point is that the nurse and the female journalist both had their hair cut and not plaited.’
‘Yes sir, ‘ Ken said and stepped back for Dakolo who wanted to touch the sketch on the board.
‘Now we can also connect this sketch,’ Dakolo continued talking, touching the sketch gotten from the journalist they interrogated. ‘We can connect this sketch to Aisha Bello’s pictures especially the most recent ones, the eye brows, nose and lips look alike.’ He paused and let out a breath, ‘but the cheeks are quite different, the person in the sketch has puffy cheeks.’
‘Yes sir, there’s also a big difference in their jaws,’ Ken noted, stepping closer again. ‘The lady in the sketch also has dimples.’
‘True,’ Dakolo turned and returned to his previous position, he folded his arms and stared at the board for a minute. ‘Go check if the journalist is done writing his report. If he’s done, bring him here to see the pictures.’ Dakolo said to the junior officer with them.
The junior officer left and returned six minutes later with the journalist.
‘Are you done with your statement?’ Dakolo asked the journalist.
‘Yes and I was about leaving,’ the journalist replied with an unhappy face.
‘We’re sorry for taking your time, we just need you to see something.’ Dakolo said with a light smile. ‘Please come closer,’ he said, leading the journalist to the front of the board.
The journalist stood in front and folded his arms, he began to stare at all the pictures scattered all over the board.
‘This is the sketch of your description,’ Dakolo brought his attention to the two sketches gotten from him. ‘This guy,’ Dakolo continued slowly, pointing to the male picture now. ‘Does he in anyway look like this?’ He asked, making reference to the place where Daniel’s pictures were pinned.
‘No, not at all.’ the journalist replied in a strong tone, shaking his head to emphasize point.
‘Okay,’ Dakolo moved his hand to the female sketch. ‘Does she look like this?’ he asked, making reference to Aisha Bello’s pictures.
‘Nnn…N.. ermm…’ the journalist stammered for a while first comparing the pictures of Aisha Bello’s younger days with the sketch. He narrowed his eyes when he got to the recent pictures. ‘No,’ he finally said, after a total of two minutes.
‘Are you sure?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Yes,’ he answered with confidence. ‘The girl is the picture is way darker than the journalist and the journalist’s face even looks kind of funny, not as half as pretty as the girl in the picture.’
‘Are you sure you’re not saying this because the journalist was on low cut?’
He paused and stared at the pictures for another two seconds. ‘No, they are not the same.’ He stated with certainty in his voice.
Dakolo remained quiet for a while, someone who had had physical contact with the person they were trying to identify just disconfirmed that the she wasnt the same with Aisha Bello while he and Ken was just trying to connect them. After some seconds of thinking, he suddenly remembered that a lady on low cut was also one of the abductors of the Senate President, he remembered Fatima, the Senate President’s daughter telling him that the ladies who visited were on heavy make-up.
‘Did you notice if the female journalist was on makeup?’ he asked the journalist again.
‘No, I don’t know about that but it’s normal for ladies to use makeups.’ the journalist replied.
‘Hmm…’ Dakolo sighed, the journalist did not understand what kind of makeup he was talking about, they had to go back to Fatima for more questioning. ‘Well, thanks.’ he said smiling, offering the journalist an handshake. ‘Thank you for your cooperation with the police force, we’ll get back to you if we need your assistance again.’
‘You’re welcome,’ the journalist replied, taking his handshake. With that, Dakolo dismissed him. The junior police officer led the journalist out, leaving only Dakolo and Ken
Dakolo turned back to see Ken staring intently at the board. He joined him and stared at the same place.
‘It looks like I’ve seen someone like this recently,’ Ken said, referring to Daniel’s picture, the supposed boyfriend of Aisha Bello.
‘Where?’
‘I can’t really place it but I’ve seen someone like this recently.’
Episode 82
++++
**1pm**
The two staffs of the NSCC were sitting while waiting patiently for the Vice President to show up. They had arrived in his mansion over an hour ago and there were no signs of him yet, they were only told by his assistants that he we going to join them soon.
Mr Sylvester poured in the remaining content of the bottle into the glass cup and sipped it slowly, fixing his eyes on the TV. A particular advert was gaining his attention.
‘Do you watch Young C.c’s movies?’ he asked Tarasha who was seated at the other end of the three seater sofa.
‘Ermm… Yes, I do.’ she replied him. ‘I love his action thrillers.’
‘Yeah, I and my wife finished watching ‘A New Creation’ which he produced with Donkross. It’s thrilling as usual.’
‘I’ve not seen that yet but where can I get it if I want to buy?’
, you can get it from there.’ Mr Sylvester replied her.
‘Okay, thanks. I’ll do that,’ Tarasha said.
‘Have you heard about the new story coming up too?’
‘Nazaretha’s Hood?’ she was already getting tired of his questions about movies, she felt he was only trying to display his knowledge.
‘Yes, I’m looking forward to that one too.’
‘Good afternoon people,’ the Vice President greeted as he entered into the living room and began to proceed towards them.
‘Good afternoon sir,’ Mr Sylvester and Tarasha got up and greeted in unison.
‘Sylvester,’ Chief Elvis called fondly, offering him an handshake. ‘Kimberly,’ he calleda after shaking hands with Mr Sylvester, smiling at Tarasha. ‘I’ve heard so much about you, I’m pleased to meet you.’ he also offered her an handshake.
‘My pleasure sir,’ Tarasha replied, bending her knees slightly as she took his big hand in hers. She never forgot to curtsy like a proper Nigerian girl when greeting elders, all that she had learnt through reading about the different tribes and their cultures before she began her job in Nigeria.
‘You may be seated,’ Chief Elvis said, pointing his hand towards their seat while he took the sofa opposite them. ‘Sorry I kept you waiting, I was with the President for something very important and I’ll still be going back to him after this meeting. Now, straight to the matter. I called this meeting to get acquainted with you, Kimberly.’ he said and paused to look at her face.
‘You’ll be working in Henry’s position now and it means you’re holding a critical position at a critical moment in the country. I want to work closely with you to make your job more efficient and for you to make my job easier too. I’ve also started my own personal investigations on Samantha Osman’s case, so I would be needing to communicate to you directly.’ Chief Elvis paused again and turned to Mr Sylvester. ‘I hope you told her everything I want to do with her.’
‘Sir, you didn’t tell me anything else. You told me that you were going to tell her directly.’ Mr Sylvester replied.
‘I said that?’
‘Yes sir.’
‘Hmm… Okay,’ Chief Elvis heaved a sigh. ‘Then you have to leave us alone now.’ he said to Mr Sylvester.
‘Sir?’ Mr Sylvester questioned as if he didn’t hear, just to confirm if the Vice President really meant what he said.
‘I mean you have to excuse us,’ Chief Elvis repeated. ‘You can wait in the other living room.’
‘Okay sir,’ he said and got up. He made some eye gestures at Tarasha, as if he was advising her to behave well before walking out as instructed.
As soon as Mr Sylvester was out of sight, Chief Elvis joined Tarasha on the three seater sofa.
‘Kimberly, I’ve got a proposal for you,’ he began. ‘While you work for the NSCC, I want you to also work for me. I’ll like to always get direct information from you and not through Mr Sylvester or the police.’ he paused to see if she was following.
‘I don’t understand sir,’ she stated.
‘Okay, what I mean is this,’ Chief Elvis adjusted himself on the seat to enable him explain properly. ‘In your work, while you report to your Boss Sylvester and maybe the police if they give you a direct job, you’ll also report to me, directly.’
‘Does that include everything I do in the office?”
‘Ermm, No… Not all, only with matters particular to the assassin group of Samantha Osman. Like I said, I’ve started a personal investigation on the matter.’
‘Okay sir, I understand now. But are you the only one carrying out this one investigation or you have some agents carrying them out for you?’
‘Yes, I have some secrets agents that are not known to the police. I’m only telling you now because you’re going to work with me and I believe it would remain a secret between us.’ he said and paused to see her reaction.
‘Yes sir, I won’t tell anyone.’
‘Good, you’ll be paid well for your services and may even receive bonus from time to time if you work efficiently.’
‘I’ll do my work efficiently sir,’ she replied in a promising tone.
‘Good.’
‘Sir, ‘ Tarasha called, trying to make a suggestion. ‘The reason I asked if you had other people working with you was that I thought it may not be possible to reach you directly at all times because of your work as the Vice President, what if I send the messages directly to the other agents working with you?’
‘No, you can’t send them for now. You still have to get directly to me first, once you can’t reach me, you can always drop a message which I’ll get immediately I’m free.’
‘Okay sir, then I’ll have to get your contact now.’ she said staring at his body. She would have killed him right there but it would be impossible for her to escape, the number of security officials and thugs in the compound were five times of those in the Senate President’s house.
‘Yes,’ Chief Elvis agreed, searching his pocket for his phone. ‘My phone is not with me now, but I’ll send you directions on how to reach me. I’m traveling tomorrow to the United States for medical treatment and I don’t know how long I’ll be staying precisely, I only know that I’ll be there for at least seven days.’
+++++
‘We’re so close to bringing back your father already, we just need a few more details to enable us launch properly and bring him back safely,’ Dakolo was saying to Fatima when Ken walked in and whispered something into his ears, for almost one minute.
Fatima stared at the officers hopelessly, she had been listening to them repeat the same promise for several days now and nothing was seen coming out of it. But she had to keep answering them because she wished to see her father again.
‘Thank you Ken,’ Dakolo said, before turning back to Fatima. ‘We would need you to identify some pictures,’ he continued, making a signal to Ken.
Ken opened the bag with him and took out some photos, ‘I remember that day that you said a lady on low cut was one of the visitors.’ Dakolo said.
‘Yes, I did,’ she answered, staring intently at the bag from where Ken was taking out the pictures.
‘Can you recognize her? I mean the lady on low cut.’ Dakolo said. At that moment, the head security officer which doubled as the Senate President’s personal guard, the one who almost killed Cole on the night of the abduction walked in. He stood close to Ken and said some things in low tones to him.
‘No, I don’t think so. I can only recognize the face of their leader who tied the bomb around me. I can’t even tell if I’ll recognize her if she isn’t putting on the same kind of makeup she used that night.’ Fatima replied Dakolo.
‘Let’s try, if you’ll know her.’ Dakolo said and collected two pictures from Ken. He showed it to her and waited for her response.
‘These are drawings,’ Fatima said.
‘Yes, we couldn’t get the photo anywhere, so we had to get her description from people who saw her and put it down into drawing.’
‘I’ve never seen anyone like this,’ Fatima said and handed back the pictures to Dakolo.
‘What about you?’ Dakolo said to the head security official.
The man stepped forward with heavy steps and collected the pictures with his plastered fingers, which was one of the results of his fight with Cole. He stared into the pictures for some minutes. ‘The only resemblance between the girls in the picture here and the the visitor on low cut is the low cut, nothing else looks the same.’
‘So you’re saying the visitor on low cut isn’t any of those in the pictures?’ Dakolo asked.
‘I don’t know, you know it could be difficult to recognize from sketches. But we have real pictures of the visitors, our cameras captured them.’ the security officer answered.
‘What? Why didn’t you tell us that all these while?’
‘You never asked, I believe you should know that there are cameras in this house.’
‘Yes,’ Dakolo stated with a tone of regret. He had allowed Henry’s case take over his whole mind and had skipped doing the right thing. ‘Can we get it now?’ he asked.
+++++
‘But how can he disappear just like that?’ Tarasha said, looking baffled, folding her arms as she stood in the living room before front window of their lodge in Gwagalada. Aisha and Cole were seated on the sofas behind, looking baffled too. ‘Did something go wrong in his task?’ she asked no one in particular.
‘Has he been acting or talking strange before that day?’ she turned and asked Cole.
‘No, he was okay until he finished the task.’ Cole replied.
‘Something looks fishy about the whole situation, the press has not said anything about Henry’s death also, is the police planning to hide his body forever?’
‘Boss, I have an idea.’ Cole said with his face lit up.
‘What idea?’
‘We can confirm if Henry is dead or alive if you check the databases of the NSCC, it’ll be an easy job to do since you’re there now.’
‘Yes, I was thinking about that too. I should have done it but for the several meetings we’ve been having.’ Tarasha replied.
‘I also have an idea,’ Aisha cut in happily.
‘What’s that?’ Tarasha asked, hoping it’ll be an idea on how to find Benny.
‘I read the news few minutes ago and I learnt that Henry E.G’s mother is in town, she was at the hospital and police headquarters today, crying and demanding to see her son. It was reported that the police have not given her a clear response yet but they managed to convince her to return tomorrow.’ Aisha said.
‘Okay, what do you suggest we do now?’ Tarasha asked, although already determining what to do with the news in mind.
‘I suggest we track the woman and follow to see if they’ll allow her see her son. With that we can confirm if Henry is alive or dead.’ Aisha spoke succinctly, exactly the same thing Tarasha had in mind.
‘Good suggestion,’ Tarasha commended, she felt cool that they were beginning to think more now, not like when she just started working with them. Now she could entrust more tasks to them, even Aisha.
‘Thank you,’ Aisha said with smiles, proud that she had been able to make a useful contribution. But her joy disappeared few seconds after, when Tarasha spoke again.
‘You’ll handle that for us,’ Tarasha said to her. ‘Find out before the day runs out where the mother stays and place a tracker or a bug to monitor her movement.’
Aisha wanted to argue but the look Tarasha gave her warned her not to dare.
‘Cole, you complete the job of the Senate President.’ she said, turning to Cole. ‘The poison should have done a lot on his body already, cut off his tongue tonight and send him home tomorrow morning. Make sure that his hands have been paralyzed before sending him.’ she instructed and walked towards him. She dipped her hand into her jacket and took out an envelope, ‘send him home with this letter,’ she said and handed the envelope to Cole.
++++
‘I’ve been observing him for the past few days and he’s recovering fast, he’ll be strong enough to travel soon.’ Dr Tobi said to the officers.
‘I know he’s going to recover soon,’ Dakolo said, ‘I only wished he could become his old self once again.’
‘You mean regain his memory?’ Dr Tobi asked.
‘Yes.’
‘It’s possible for him to regain his memory, ‘ Dr Tobi said slowly. Dakolo and Ken suddenly got excited. ‘I’ve been administering to him some of my specially prepared formulas which would make his brain more relaxed and able to recall.’
‘Wow!’ Dakolo exclaimed in joy.
‘But…’ Dr Tobi said in a sad tone and heaved a sigh.
Dakolo paused to listen to what the doctor had to add.
‘He would never be able to recall those memories now that he’s going to be taken out of the country, he has to be close to the environment which he was previously used to.’
‘So are you suggesting that we live him here?’ Dakolo asked in an indifferent tone and returned to his seat.
‘Leaving him here won’t solve the matter. His case is a complicated one and it’s a pity that it’s not good to expose him to the public now because of safety reasons but if he stays here, chances of ever recalling would fade with the length of time he stays here.’
‘I don’t understand you Dr Tobi, you just told us that flying him out wouldn’t help me recover and now you said staying here would also make him loose chances of ever recalling.’
‘What I mean is that for him to be able to recall, he has to exposed to things and the environment he has been exposed to before, particularly his recent environment. That means he would have to be taken to places like his apartment, his place of work and other places he has been to recently before he was poisoned. It would also help him if he could see people who has been on his mind before the poisoning.’
‘But all these things are not possible now, taking him back to Asokoro would endanger his life. He has to stay here or overseas till everything is settled.’
‘How long would it take for everything to be settled?’ Dr Tobi asked the agent.
‘Ermm… A couple of months, five to six hopefully.’ Dakolo replied.
”Hmm… If he spends two months here or anywhere else without being exposed to his usual environment, he would have completely lost his memory.’ Dr Tobi said in a sad tone. ‘Well, I think his life is more precious than his memories right now.’
‘I have a suggestion sir,’ Ken said to Dakolo. ‘What about bringing his mum here? Wouldn’t that help?’
‘Hmm…’ Dakolo nodded, remembering that Ken had whispered about the mother’s presence to him in the Senate President’s house. He turned to the doctor to hear his say.
‘Well, that could help. But taking him to meet her in an environment he’s used to would be better. Even if he doesn’t regain his memory immediately, it’ll take him a step further.’
**Wednesday Morning**
Immediately Tarasha got to the office the next day, she began to find a way to trace the movement of the police with Henry from the hospital. She needed access to the raw files from the regional blocks but as a new staff and person whose job isn’t related to it, she couldn’t ask Mr Sylvester directly. After getting the area where the hospital was located, she began to look for the section of the NSCC that was monitoring the area. Before 10am that morning, she already found it. But she still needed to break into the regional office and steal the raw file. She decided to strike by break time when most of the staffs wouldn’t be on seat.
++++
‘Good morning sir,’ Ken greeted as he walked into the large room were Dakolo was.
‘Good morning Inspector Ken,’ Dakolo replied without taking his gaze off the pictures he was staring at on the board. ‘How is Henry doing this morning?’ Dakolo finally turned and asked Ken after a minute.
‘Henry is fine, he’s still the same. He doesn’t know anybody or himself, doesn’t want to see or even talk to me. The only people he sees and likes to talk to are the maids and the doctor,’ Ken replied. ‘He even shouted at an electrician today when the man tried to fix some wires in his room.’
‘But what did the doctor say is the reason for his hostility?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Fear, he said he’s afraid of people. The reason he’s more comfortable with the doctor and maids is because he’s been hearing their voices ever before his eyes opened and they’ve also been the one taking care of him.’
‘Then how would we take him out of there if he’s hostile to us? The doctor and maids won’t be with him for a long time.’
‘The doctor said I should try act more friendly and smile whenever I come near to him, that way he’ll start becoming comfortable with me and learn to trust me too.’
‘Well, you have to enroll for smiling lessons then,’ Dakolo joked. “I just hope everything works fine.’
Ken waited for some seconds before he started to speak again. ‘Sir, what do you think we do about Henry’s mum? Should we allow them meet like the doctor said?’
‘Yes, I believe it’ll be cool if we could allow them to.’ Dakolo replied, ‘but on the other hand, I still think it’ll would be stupid of us to do so.’
‘Why did you say that sir?’
‘Ken, the whole nation is aware of her presence in town, the media reported everything she did at the hospital and the office here yesterday. It means that the assassins are also aware of her presence, they could be keeping tabs on her and that means taking her to Henry or bringing him to her would expose Henry to danger.’
‘That’s true sir,’ Ken commented thoughtfully.
‘It’s a complicated situation Ken,’ Dakolo heaved a sigh. ‘Had it been she had come in quietly, it would have been easier.’
There was silence for the next two minutes, Ken’s eyes were fixed on the pictures pinned to the board while Dakolo was lost in thoughts.
‘Sir,’ Ken called Dakolo. ‘These pictures, there is only that looks so close.’
‘Yeah, only the girl on low cut’ Dakolo agreed with him and touched disguised Aisha out of the four persons in the picture. ‘The baffling thing is that her facial features is always different, the makeup she uses must have very thick layers.’
‘Yes sir, that’s what I’m thinking too. But what about these other people? Any close person found?’
‘I’ve asked for a search on matching photographs to be done on them.’ Dakolo answered, he picked his phone from a table nearby. ‘I’m sure the search should be completed already,’ he said and turned back. ‘Let’s go get the result.’
Both of them walked out of the room and headed for the computer room, to meet the same officers who had been charge of contacting the Government City Hospital in Capetown.
‘Are you done?’ Dakolo asked as soon as his eyes came in contact with the lady.
‘Yes sir,’ she replied, she minimized the application she was using on the computer and opened another. The separately cropped pictures of the four disguised assassins showed immediately, then other pictures began to show underneath each one.
‘For this lady who was called their leader,’ the lady computer operator began her explanation. She clicked on the picture of Tarasha which was captured in her disguised form, two other pictures displayed underneath.
‘Oh!’ Dakolo exclaimed as he saw the pictures, he had seen them before. ‘Isn’t this the fake desert Reporters journalist who interviewed John Obiano?’ he asked.
‘Yes, it happens to be the same person, Samantha Osman. The facial structures are the same, only the colour and hair are different,’ the lady affirmed. ‘But the problem now is that her pictures do not match with any in the citizens’ directory, it doesn’t match with the immigrants’ or even visitors’ directory.’
‘Her pictures has never matched with any, she’s always heavily disguised,’ Dakolo said. ‘It’s not her face.’
‘But how come the security officials never knew that she was Samantha Osman?’ Ken asked thoughtfully.
‘Even both of us wouldn’t have known if we were in their shoes,’ Dakolo answered him. ‘She wasn’t looking like the same, here she is fairer as the desert Reporters journalist than the way she was when she visited the Senate President’s House, no one could have connected it.’ Dakolo explained, pointing at the pictures. ‘The reason we’re able to connect it now is because we’ve conducted a search.’
‘Hmm… This is strange,’ Ken heaved a sigh of frustration, placing his fingers on his nose and mouth. ‘And I’m sure the facial structures aren’t even original.’
‘Yes Ken, her real facial structures must have been covered by the thick layers of makeup.’ Dakolo added.
The lady computer operator closed the picture and opened another, Cole’s disguised form to the Senate President’s mansion. ‘This one does not even have any matching picture,’ she said before closing it. She opened Benny’s picture as Mr Alfred, ‘this does not have any match too.’ she closed it again and opened Aisha’s own. ‘This one doesn’t really match too but we can identify her to be Aisha Bello if we compare the pictures and sketches. Her features here looks similar to the real Aisha Bello’s pictures, there are still big differences anyway. The matching factor is that her nose in the sketch looks like her nose in this picture but her cheeks are different while her nose in the real Aisha’s Bello pictures looks far different from the two but her real cheeks are like the one in the sketch.’
‘Well, it must be Aisha Bello. Although, a sketch isn’t really that reliable but with all these connections, it must be her.’ Dakolo joined. ‘And this also confirms that Aisha Bello is different from Samantha Osman, Samantha Osman is the real leader of the gang.’
‘But sir, ‘ the computer operator gave a confused look. ‘ We only found little similarities, there are lots of discrepancies between the Aisha Bello’s pictures too. The jaws, the foreheads…’ she was saying but paused and opened her mouth like she was shocked about something.
‘Sir, see,’ she urged Dakolo to look at the computer screen. ‘The ears are the same.’
‘Wow!’ Dakolo stared in surprise too. ‘Why didn’t we ever notice that?’ he said, smiling at Ken who had joined in the surprise too.
‘It’s Aisha Bello, no doubts’ Ken stated with certainty in his voice.
Dakolo’s smile soon turned into a frown, ‘well all these discoveries would not lead us any closer to getting her,’ he said in a discouraged tone. Everyone’s smiles also disappeared. ‘Or is it possible to post her ears to the public and declare it wanted? Who’s going to be searching for people’s ears?’
There was a deafening silence for the next three minutes, the slow and calm breaths of each officers could be heard.
‘But,’ Dakolo suddenly began again, with excitement. ‘We can do something about this,’ he said and began to take out his phone.
The others stared at him in awe, wondering what the reason was for his excitement.
‘Hello Mr Sylvester, are you at the office?’ he said into the phone. ‘Okay, I’ll be there very soon.’
‘Do something about the ears sir?’ Ken asked as soon as Dakolo was done with the call.
Dakolo paused and stared at him awkwardly, ‘no, do something about the pictures.’
‘How?’
‘Don’t worry, I’ll explain to you later.’ Dakolo said and patted Ken on the shoulder. He turned to the computer operator, ‘please make five photocopies of the pictures for me, I’ll be back to get it in ten minutes time.’
‘Okay sir,’ the computer operator replied.
‘Ken, let’s go plan about Henry’s mother,’ Dakolo before he and Ken walked out of the room.
++++
Aisha had been monitoring Mrs George since the day before. Mrs George was staying in her friend’s house and brought with her no car which Aisha could place a tracker on and monitor with. Aisha had no choice than to resume her monitoring by 5am in the morning.
It was until12pm, Mrs George came out of the house with a young man in his late teens. Aisha who was already dressed in a pullover whose hoodie covered her hair, and a dark eyeglass to cover her face began to follow them closely. Soon, Mrs George and the young man stopped by the road side to wait for a cab. An idea came to Aisha, she took out her phone and uncovered her head.
‘Good morning ma,’ she said approaching the woman where she was standing.
‘Good morning,’ Mrs George replied calmly, but her body language showed that she wasn’t comfortable with the stranger approaching her.
‘I’m Seun, a journalist from YTV.’ Aisha made an introduction, she pressed the recording button on her phone and brought it closer to the woman to show that she was ready for an interview.
The woman sighed on hearing the introduction and looked away but Aisha pressed on.
‘Ma, I have some few questions for you,’ she said, turning to stand at the woman’s front.
‘Young lady, I’m not in the mood for questions. As you can see, I’m on my way to somewhere very important.’ the woman said in a warning tone.
‘Where are you going to ma?’ Aisha asked, disregarding her warning.
‘It’s none of your business, please leave me alone.’ the woman replied and tried to walk away but Aisha followed.
‘Would you leave her alone please,’ the young man shouted at Aisha, standing at her front in readiness to give a fight.
‘Oh!’ Aisha slowly backed out acting defeated but she had accomplished what she wanted to do already, a tracker and a voice recorder had been fixed on the woman’s clothes.
Aisha walked back to where her car was parked and waited inside until Mrs George and the young man got a cab. She clicked open the screen of her phone and opened the tracking application, she could see the position of the woman on the road. She took her makeup kits bag from the back seat and began to apply a quick solution to disguise her face briefly, she had to do that because it was possible she ran into someone who knew her face. She took off the pullover, leaving on only a small blue blouse. Then she put on her wig before driving off, in the direction her tracking application was pointing her to.
After driving for a total of thirty minutes, she stopped when she noticed that the woman’s movement had stopped first. But the stop was brief, there was another movement but a very short one, she could tell that the woman only moved a short walking distance. Aisha took out her headset and plugged it into the phone to listen to the recording, what she could hear at first were brief greetings and questions in low voices, she could easily tell that the woman was in an organization.
Five minutes later, the movement stopped totally, by this time, Aisha had been able to decipher that the woman was in the police headquarters.
‘Good morning ma, I’m Inspector Ken.’ she could hear someone say to the woman.
*
‘Good morning ma, I’m Inspector Ken.’ Ken introduced himself to Mrs George. They were inside his office, Mrs George and the young man were seated on the visitors’ seats.
‘Where is Dakolo?’ the woman asked in a distressed tone, thick Igbo accent. ‘He should come and tell me where he has kept my son.’
‘Please calm down ma,’ Ken said politely. ‘I’m working with Inspector Dakolo on all issues that has to do with your son, Henry.’
‘So you people are in it together? Where have you kept my son?’
‘Ermm…’ Ken hesitated for a while, staring at the young man. ‘You have to excuse us for a moment,’ he said to the teenager.
‘Tell me, did anything happen to my son?’ Mrs George was impatient.
‘I can’t say anything until he leaves ma,’ Ken maintained his position. The young man got up reluctantly and walked out of the office.
‘Ma,’ Ken continued in a serious tone, after the young man was out of the office.
‘Tell me what you people have done to my son,’ the woman said in a low but tensed tone.
‘Ma, first of all, we have to agree now that everything I tell you here would be kept secret between us.’
The woman stared at him without replying, she twitched her lips and squinted.
‘You have to agree ma,’ Ken repeated. ‘It’s to make sure everything turns out well.’
‘Okay,’ she finally said.
‘Good, your son is fine, hale and hearty.’ Ken announced and paused to see the reaction on the woman’s face. As expected, her face was lightened up and her lips covered with smiles.
‘Where’s he? I want to see him,’ the woman said happily.
‘That’s the first problem, you can’t see him now.’
The woman’s smile changed into a frown, she instantly began to doubt Ken’s words. ‘Why can’t I see my son?’ she asked.
‘You can’t see him now because f he’s in danger,’ Ken replied, he took a brief pause before he continued, Mrs George’s face was already showing her eagerness for more explanation. ‘Ma, you know the circumstances that led to his condition. His life is being threatened by the dangerous Samantha Osman assassin group.’
‘But what have my son done to them?’ the woman began to wail. ‘My son does not look for trouble.’
‘Calm down madam,’ Ken hushed. ‘Your son is fine and recovering very fast.’
‘But how would I know you’re not lying to me?’
‘You’ll know Madam.’
‘How would I know?’ the woman argued. ‘You’re saying my son is fine but the news says he was in a condition of mental instability; I tried to contact him but I couldn’t, I tried to contact you people but you wouldn’t respond. Now the news says he was already poisoned by Samantha Osman, how am I going to know if my son is not dead.’
‘You’ll see him ma,’ Ken replied.
‘You’ll take me to where he is?’ the woman’s face brightened up again.
‘No, I won’t take you there neither would I bring him to you. It’s very dangerous for you to go to him now or for him to come to you, the assassins may be trailing either of you.’
‘Ah! Assassins trailing me too?’ the woman became alarmed.
‘Don’t worry madam, we have everything under control, we’ll provide security for you.’
‘They should even come and take me,’ she said in a frustrated tone, raising up her two in surrender. ‘I’m old enough to die but let them leave my son alone.’
‘Madam, both of you won’t die if you do what we say.’ Ken tried to encourage.
‘But wait,’ she put down her hands and stared at Ken with all seriousness. ‘Is it true that my son has now become a dummy?’
‘No,’ Ken couldn’t do but smile at the manner which she asked. ‘It was true, but now your son has recovered, he has his senses back.’
‘How am I going to know you’re telling me the truth?’
‘You’ll take to him via video chat,’ Ken replied.
‘Video chat?’
‘Yes.’
‘When?’
‘This night, we’ll connect you to him. We’re also making arrangements for you to ensure your safety, you won’t leave here now. Some policemen would accompany you to get whatever you need from where you came from this morning.’ Ken explained. ‘But please, do make sure that nobody else hears this.’
+++
It was past break already and Tarasha had gotten all the data needed. After watching the video files over and over again, she wasn’t satisfied with what she got. The officers had taken Henry to a very far distance, far from the cameras’ reach. She was getting more impatient about Benny’s return now, she needed to know if the task of killing Henry was a successful one. She picked her phone and dialed Cole’s number.
‘Hello Cole, hope you’re getting prepared to send the Senate President back home?’
‘Yes, all is set already.’ Cole replied.
‘Okay, have you heard from Benny yet?’
‘No.’
‘What about Aisha?’
‘No news also.’
‘Okay, if you don’t hear from Benny or locate him before the day runs out, you guys have to move from the lodge.’
‘Okay, back to Asokoro?’
‘Maybe, but to an hotel, not where I am.’
‘Okay boss,’ Cole said and the call ended.
Aisha’s call came in few seconds after. ‘Hello girl,’ Tarasha answered.
‘Boss, Henry is not dead.’ Aisha stated flatly. She waited for a response from the boss but got none as the boss was too dumbfounded to speak. ‘His mother would be speaking live to him through a video chat tonight,’ Aisha continued her message.
Episode 83
Tarasha was still furious about the news she had just gotten from Aisha, she was angry with Benny and was willing to skin him alive if she could see him at that moment. She continued to pace around angrily. She didn’t think Henry being alive would disturb her plans with the Senate President or the Inspector General but she didn’t just like the idea of keeping him alive.
Her doorbell rang, she paused and stared at the door, then she walked back to her seat and checked the person behind the door. They were two, Mr Sylvester and somebody else, she didn’t see the man’s face very well. She tapped the door’s open button on her table and the door was unlocked. Mr Sylvester entered with the visitor.
‘Good afternoon sirs,’ she got up to greet, staring at the visitor’s face, within few seconds, she was able to identify him.
‘Good afternoon Kim, this is Agent Dakolo,’ Mr Sylvester introduced as they took their seats.
‘You’re welcome Agent,’ Tarasha said with a smile.
‘Thank you miss Kimberly,’ Dakolo smiled back.
‘Agent Dakolo has something for us to work out,’ Mr Sylvester said after they were all seated. He collected an envelope from Agent Dakolo and began to take out the pictures inside, he handed one the Tarasha and said, ‘these are the abductors of the Senate President.’
‘Hmm,’ Tarasha hummed in a surprised tone as she collected the picture and stared at it. ‘These guys are all young people,” she said.
‘Yes, young but killing people and throwing families into pain.’ Dakolo commented.
Tarasha smiled lightly, trying her best to conceal it. Dakolo’s comment sounded more like a compliment to her, killing and causing pain for people was what she was trained to do, so she felt proud when the agent confirmed that she was doing a good job at it. She studied the pictures for some more seconds before looking up.
‘Miss Kimberly, I heard that you’re very intelligent,’ Dakolo continued. ‘I hope you’re patriotic too?’
‘Yes sir,’ she stated firmly.
‘I believe you,’ Dakolo continued. ‘But before I explain the details of this job to you, I have to warn you about telling anybody that you’re working on it. I know you’re very aware of how dangerous this assassin group is. So please, do not tell anybody; your friends, family members or even partner anything you discover while on this job.’ Dakolo stopped to get her response.
‘I won’t sir, ‘ Tarasha replied in wx promising tone.
‘Good. Now, these pictures we are giving to you contains the members of the Samantha Osman group. Apart from this one, Aisha Bello,’ Dakolo pointed to Aisha on the picture in his hand, ‘we’ve not been able to get the real identities of the others. This is because these people are heavily disguised. Now, the reason we’ve brought these pictures here is for you to track them, Mr Sylvester has said that the data from the past seven days would be provided to you. We want you to trace all these faces and spot anywhere they’ve been to recently.’ Dakolo paused as he noticed a deep frown appearing on her face.
‘Sir, I don’t understand; for which locations am I going to check?’
‘For all locations,’ Dakolo replied.
Tarasha’s expression turned into a shocked one. ‘Sir, I alone cannot do the job for a single town in Abuja, I mean that means observing up to hundred videos of at least fifteen hours each.’
Dakolo paused and took in a deep breath, he realized that he was just about giving her an impossible job. If only a town would have up to hundred videos, then the whole of Abuja would more than two thousand videos of fifteen hours each and that would mean they would need up to thirty thousand hours of watching and observing all those videos which was equal to 1,250 days of watching.
‘Sir, monitoring successfully for the past seven days in Abuja wouldn’t be possible even if we had twenty people working on it and if we are to divert the attention of all regionals to it, then there would be more trouble because anything can happen while they take their eyes off the ongoing transmission.’
‘Hmm,’ Dakolo inhaled deeply and rested his back on the chair, his idea wasn’t good after all.
‘But sir, we can work on monitoring the faces of these individuals for the coming days. We’ll have to build a system that would keep traces of their facial structures. Once any of them is located in any region, there would be an alarm in the regional office which would be sent here from the region.’ Tarasha offered.
‘Excellent! Then begin to work on it immediately,” Dakolo sat up and said excitedly.
‘Alright sir, we’ll start work as soon as possible,’ Tarasha replied with a smile. She had a plan, there was something like that she had seen installed in the system.
‘But…’ Sylvester cut in, he looked like he was trying to recall something. ‘I think Henry E.G was working on something like that already.’
”Ermm… Yes, ‘ Tarasha joined, ‘I think I saw something like that too, but I’ll confirm later.’
‘Then when can it be ready for use?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Once I check and find it already installed, we can turn on the process immediately.’ Tarasha replied. ‘If it has not been installed yet, it’ll take us about twenty hours to install but if it has not been developed at all, then we’ll need a week to develop and fix a new one.’
‘Okay, how long will it take you to confirm if it has been installed or not?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Just an hour,’ Tarasha stated.
‘Oops! I can’t wait for that, but I’ll call you to get the report,’ Dakolo said and began to stand up from his seat.
‘I’ll get back to you as soon as possible,’ Tarasha assured. She got up to receive a warm handshake from Dakolo, then the Agent and Sylvester walked out of the office.
Tarasha sat back and returned to work immediately, she had found the opportunity to call for Henry’s presence.
++++
‘Ah!’ Benny groaned as Don continued to dish out blows to his face. His face was bleeding and mouth swollen, his two hands were tied with strong ropes to two separate poles at the two sides, his legs were also tied in the same manner. That was how he met himself when he woke up, the last thing he remembered doing was fighting with Don. He was ready for death; he was sure death was coming soon as his body was drastically losing strength and his hosts were not ready to show mercy on him except he gives them the answer they were seeking from him.
‘He’s not spoken yet?’ Stainless asked Don, walking into the darkly lit room with a bottle of alcoholic wine in his hands.
‘No,’ Don replied in a frustrated tone. He stepped back and took a stick of cigar from the concrete table, he lit it and took a quick drag.
‘I think the guy loves to die,’ Stainless said mockingly, standing in front of Benny with his wine. He poured a quantity of the liquid on Benny’s face and it washed down some of the blood. ‘Homie, you wanna die because you want to proof loyal to a b**ch?’
‘I’m dead already,’ Benny spoke softly, like a drunken man. ‘It’s better you kill me here because I don’t want her to kill me for being a betrayal, that would be worse.’
‘Oh boy,’ Stainless said and laughed sardonically. ‘She doesn’t have to see you as a betrayal man, you can just tell us her operation base and we’ll send you back to her as if nothing happened, and we won’t attack her, even if we do, it would be on your conditions.’
‘You can’t get to her operation base or even attack her, she’ll kill you before you make the move.’ Benny said.
Stainless laughed again, ‘You think all men are sissies like you?’
‘Don’t mind the f*ol, that b**ch must have poisoned him with something that made him lose his mind.’ Don said, moving closer.
There was quietness for a while, Don kept smoking while Stainless was drinking. ‘Benny,’ Don called softly, blowing smoke at his face. ‘Do you know who sent us? It’s the Vice President,’ Don stated temptingly. ‘And he is offering us huge sums of money, you too can be a partaker if you’ll only cooperate with us.’
‘There’s no need for me to join a team I know has already failed from the start,’ Benny remained adamant. ‘You can’t beat Tarasha, she’s not your match.’
Don stared at him in silence for a couple of seconds and took in some few drags before he continued to dish out blows to Benny’s face.
++++
< br/>
**Two Hours later**
‘This has not been properly developed sir,’ Tarasha said, explaining some things to the three men by her side. Mr Sylvester was sitting beside her in the second visitor’s seat in his office while Frank and the other guy was standing and staring into the laptop.
‘But I thought Henry installed it already,’ Frank put in, looking confused.
‘Yes, that’s where the major problem lies now,’ Tarasha continued to explain. ‘He installed it while still developing and optimized it with the systems, I know he wasn’t anticipating anything evil, that’s why he installed it and even made the only way to unlock the API his finger print.’
‘That means we can’t continue to work on it without getting his fingerprint?’ Mr Sylvester asked.
‘Yes, that’s our password to continue developing.’ she replied.
‘Wow!’ all the men in the office exclaimed in unison, letting out sighs after.
‘What about creating a new one? Just stop his process and i run another?’ Mr Sylvester asked.
Tarasha turned to face Frank and the other guy, ‘I thought you guys worked with him on it,’ she said in a questioning manner.
‘Yes,’ Frank was the one who replied. ‘But he never carried us along, he only said he would tell us later when it was the right time.’
‘Oops!’ Tarasha sighed and turned back to Mr Sylvester to answer his question. ‘We can’t initialize another process, not when this has been optimized with the system already. We need to first take out the keys which Mr Henry has locked with his finger print.’
‘Hmm,’ Sylvester took in a deep breath and got up. ‘So that means that we won’t be able to help the police with their investigation.’
‘Yes sir, we won’t.’
‘Hmm… I just hope they’ll understand us, it may seem to them like we are only handicapped and inefficient because of Henry’s absence.’
‘But sir, that’s the least we should be worried about now,’ Tarasha said and turned back to the computer.
‘What do you mean?’ Mr Sylvester asked.
‘We are facing more danger than not being able to help the police, we’re facing more problems of the camera system being closed down for a year or more.’
‘What?? What are you saying?’ Mr Sylvester sat back on his chair and began to stare intently at Tarasha’s face.
‘Mr Henry has optimized the process with the whole cameras system of the nation and has configured it to start working next week, I believed he thought he would have finished working on the process by now. But now the process hasn’t being fully developed and he’s not here to rush the development process up. It would mean all security cameras in whole nation would start malfunctioning from next week.’
‘What? How can he start up such a process?’ Mr Sylvester slammed angrily. He got and began to pace around as he envisioned his job as the chairman of the NSCC at risk, which was his greatest fear.
‘He was doing it for the good of everyone,’ Frank said in a soft voice, trying to allay Mr Sylvester. ‘It would have been a great invention if he was here to complete it.’
‘But now that he isn’t here, what do we do?’ Mr Sylvester had frustration written all over his face. ‘Now that he’s not here, nobody else can continue the process because he secured it with his finger print, why on earth didn’t he used a simple password that Kimberly would have been able to decrypt even in his absence? Now, can we make duplicates of his fingerprints? No.’
‘Sir, he did it for security purposes. He had to do it with his fingerprints so that the assassins or anyone else wouldn’t have been able to decrypt the key.’ Frank explained.
‘I think what we should do is find a solution now instead of going back and forth on why Mr Henry did the things he did.’ the other guy suggested.
‘We have only one way out now, ‘ Tarasha said, drawing the attention of everyone else. ‘Get Henry to unlock it for us with his fingerprint.’
‘But that’s almost impossible right now, we don’t know if Henry is alive or not. The Agent refused to tell me anything concerning him.’ Mr Sylvester said.
‘Alive or not sir,’ Tarasha continued slowly; trying her best not to sound insensitive, ‘we need his fingers to unlock the process.’
‘So we can still use his fingers even if he’s no more?’
‘Yes,’ Tarasha stated.
‘Hmm…’ Mr Sylvester sighed, sitting back on the chair. He really hoped that Henry was still alive. ‘The problem now is that the police are not ready to reveal if he’s dead or not.’
‘I think you should try more to convince the Agent; if you tell him all these dangers we could avoid, he may consider us. Remember sir, we have less than six days until the whole of NSCC crashes.’ Tarasha said in a warning tone.
Mr Sylvester doorbell distracted them, he clicked on the open button on his table in anger and one of the junior staffs entered.
‘Sir, our system has been hacked again; some regional offices have complained of static footages in their transmission.’ the junior staff announced.
‘What?’ they all exclaimed, including Tarasha who was aware that it was Cole at work.
++++
‘Here, we go sir,’ Cole said to the Senate President who was sitting beside him in the front seat of the car. ‘I’ll open the door for you and you get out immediately we get to to your house, I’ll speed off immediately.’
The man nodded in reply, that was the only way he could respond; his tongue has been cut off and his hands paralyzed by the poison.
++++
8pm
‘I’m ready sir, I’m about to give him the solution now and we’ll connect to you,’ Dr Tobi said into the phone. The call ended and Dr Tobi handed the phone back to Inspector Ken.
They both walked into Henry’s room, Dr Tobi holding a small bottle and a teaspoon with him. The small bottle contained Dr Tobi’s prepared solution which would aid Henry in recalling his memories. Ken was carrying a bag which contained a laptop and other gadgets.
‘How are you Henry?” Dr Tobi said as he approached Henry who was sitting on a settee close to his bed.
‘I’m fine,’ Henry replied with a smile to Dr Tobi but frowned on seeing Ken who was doing his best to look friendly and put on a smile.
‘Have you had your dinner?’ Dr Tobi asked, placing the bottle on a table beside Henry’s seat.
‘Yes, I have.’
‘Good, it’s time to take this drug; it’ll help you become stronger.’ the doctor said, handing him the teaspoon.
Henry collected the teaspoon from Dr Tobi, placing an awkward look on Ken. The doctor helped in opening the bottle and poured part of the content into the spoon. Henry ended up taking three teaspoonfuls of the solution.
‘Doctor, you said you were going to allow me talk to someone tonight,’ Henry asked after two minutes of resting. The doctor was already seated beside Henry while Ken was still standing. ‘I hope he’s not the one?’ Henry asked, pointing at Ken and staring at him frightfully.
‘He’s not the one you’re talking to tonight, but I think you should also be nice to him; he’s also your friend and won’t hurt you.’ Dr Tobi said.
‘Hmm…’ Henry hummed and stared at Ken’s face for a while, as if trying to see if he wouldn’t hurt him like the doctor said.
‘Let’s connect now,’ Dr Tobi said to Inspector Ken.
‘Okay,’ Inspector Ken replied and took out the laptop from the bag. He carried it to where the flat screened television was and squatted, he placed the laptop on the floor and turned it on. Then he took out an audio video cable from his bag and connected it to the laptop and to the television.
After few minutes of working on the computer, he placed a call to Agent Dakolo. ‘We’re ready sir,’ he said.
‘Where is the person?’ Henry asked out of curiousness, wondering what Ken was doing.
‘Be patient, you’ll see her now.’ Dr Tobi answered.
‘The person is a lady?’ Henry asked. He had never seen any other lady apart from the three maids in the house where he was.
‘Yes, she is your mother.’ Dr Tobi stated.
‘My mother?’ Henry’s eyes widened in surprise. ‘I have a mother?’ he asked but got no reply except a kind smile from Dr Tobi.
The video chat was on already, Mrs George was shown on the screen, she was sitting and just staring, most likely still waiting for video signals at her end.
‘Is this her?’ Henry got up suddenly and began to walk towards the television, Dr Tobi followed him immediately.
‘Henry,’ the woman called as Henry got midway. He paused and stared thoughtfully, Dr Tobi and Ken were looking at his face, expectant.
++++
‘I’ve been disconnected boss,’ Aisha said into the phone.
‘How?’ Tarasha replied her from the other end.
‘I think she took off the clothes I placed the recorder on,’ Aisha replied.
‘But you know her location now?’
‘Yes.’
‘Good, you and Cole has to leave that lodge this night, I’ve given instructions to Cole already. Benny is a traitor, we don’t know what he would do next.
‘Henry,’ Mrs George called as Henry showed on the screen. ‘Henry, how are you?’ she asked, the look on her face clearly showed she had been longing to see him.
Henry did not reply but kept staring at the screen intently. ‘Henry it’s me your mother,’ she said, placing her hand on her chest to emphasize. Henry just kept staring without replying, after sometime he glanced at Dr Tobi who gave him a look of encouragement.
‘You don’t recognize me Henry? Don’t tell me it’s true what this people has said about you losing your memory,’ she said in a grieving manner but the man she was talking to looked indifferent. She saw him turn and take some steps backwards.
‘I don’t know her,’ she heard him say to someone she couldn’t see as he proceeded towards a settee.
‘Ah! Henry, Ekene. His father’s son, boy with the large heart, man of so many dreams and visions,’ George began to speak words that he was used to hearing from her. Henry stopped just before the settee, he thought something sounded familiar. He turned back to the screen with a suspicious look, he couldn’t just point it out. He hissed and sat down.
‘I don’t remember her,’ he said to Dr Tobi again.
‘Henry, I carried you for nine months, breastfed you…’ the woman began to wail.
Henry got up and walked closer to the TV again, he stared at the screen for a while without even paying attention to all Mrs George was saying. He wondered why a woman he didn’t know was acting so emotional about him, there was nothing she said that he could relate with. She even called him ‘Ekene’, he had never heard that before. He turned back and walked straight to his seat, he paused midway again when he heard her screaming.
‘Ekene, please it’s me your mother, look very well at me. You took after me in all aspects, see,’ the woman said, pointing at her face. ‘We look alike.’
Henry turned to look at her face again and a confused smile formed on his face, to him there was no resemblance.
‘You look like her,’ he could hear someone say to him softly. It was Ken who was staying close to the television.
He gave Ken a deep frown and became more suspicious about the whole set up. He began to think Ken was trying to lure him into a trap with the woman.
‘Please, I don’t want to see for now,’ he said to the doctor and walked back to his seat. He picked up a towel from headboard of the bed and cleaned his face with it, then he sank into the bed and buried his face in the pillow.
*
‘Please disconnect, it’s enough for now.’ Dr Tobi’s face appeared Mrs George’s screen.
Dakolo went to the laptop and closed the chat. He turned back to see Mrs George weeping.
‘Don’t worry ma’am, everything would be alright,’ he said to console her after which he signaled for the junior officer who was with them in the room to lead her out. His phone rang.
‘Hello Mr Sylvester, sorry I’ve not been able to speak with you well; I was busy. You were saying something the other time which I didn’t quite understand,’ he said into the phone.
‘Yes sir,’ Mr Sylvester’s said. ‘I was trying to explain to you our need for Mr Henry’s presence, the whole of NSCC may crash if we don’t have him in three days.’
‘But you know that isn’t possible sir, Henry is in a critical state and we can’t take him around. Even if he comes, he wouldn’t be able to do anything, and you know that already.’
‘Sir, we don’t really need him to do anything, we only need his finger print to unlock a process,’ Mr Sylvester said. ‘We found out today that he already began the process Kimberly suggested but the problem is that he locked it with his finger print and we need him to be here this week.’
‘What about taking the fingerprint from where he is?’ Dakolo suggested.
‘No, he has to be brought to the office. Our system is inbuilt and can’t be moved.’
‘Mr Sylvester,’ Dakolo called and then took a brief pause. ‘I can’t believe I even agreed to get his fingerprint for you, it’s impossible to get that for now. Let’s wait till everything settles.’
‘But sir, it could crash the whole NSCC,’ Mr Sylvester pleaded.
‘Just forget about it and wait,’ Dakolo said, not minding the seriousness in the man’s voice, he ended the call.
++++
‘But Doc, what’s up with Henry? Do you think your solution is working?’
‘Yes, faster than I imagined,’ Dr Tobi answered, smiling.
‘Faster?’ Ken stared at him in surprise, ‘how can you say that it worked when he was even callous to his mother?’
‘It worked,’ Dr Tobi answered confidently. ‘I know it worked, he responded as I expected.’
Ken kept staring at the doctor’s happy face in surprise, to him Henry did not respond as expected.
‘He would start recalling some things while he’s sleeping or when he’s alone and his mind has wandered far,’ Dr Tobi explained. ‘What he needs now is more of things like this, even if he doesn’t recall his memory fully, the fear in his mind for people would be erased.’
‘So you’re saying it’s possible he doesn’t regain his memory?’
‘It’s a fifty-fifty possibility,’ the doctor said. ‘But the chances of him regaining would be increased if we can take him to the places he has been recently and expose him to people he has related with before his poisoning.’
‘But what about me and Agent Dakolo? We’ve related with him recently, he was with us that afternoon before he was drugged at evening.’
‘Are you someone special to him? Or did you do something special to him that day?’ Dr Tobi asked.
‘No, we actually questioned him about some matters relating to Samantha Osman. We felt he was hiding somethings and we threatened for him to speak but he didn’t.’
‘Oh!’ Dr Tobi exclaimed. ‘You threatened him? That explains why he’s still scared of you. It also shows that my solution is working. He has a very faint memory of you guys, but he sees you as monsters.’
Ken gave the doctor a sharp look. The Doctor smiled and clasped his palms together apologetically, ‘sorry about that, I didn’t mean to insult you with it but that’s just how he sees you.’
‘Okay,’ Ken shrugged. ‘But how can we make his recovery faster without taking him to town?’
‘We can’t make it faster, we can only try. But I suggest that we keep showing him videos; show him videos of his hobbies; for example, if he loves to watch football and we know that his favorite team is Arsenal FC, we can play several videos of their past matches for him to watch. We can also record videos of his house, his room, his resting place, his office; that could help too.’
‘Hmm…’ Ken nodded thoughtfully, ‘I’ll communicate this to Agent Dakolo.’
__________________
** February 3, 2031 **
‘Good morning sir,’ Mr Sylvester could hear several of the junior staffs greeting him from every corner of the building as he walked to his office, one of the messengers was following him with his bag. Mr Sylvester noticed an unusual frenzy in the corporation building that morning but he couldn’t tell what it was. He kept on marching to office, hoping that someone was going to come and brief him soon on the matter.
‘Good morning sir,’ Frank joined him from another block, he collected Mr Sylvester’s bag from the messenger and began to walk with Mr Sylvester to his office.
‘Good morning Mr Frank, why don’t you allow the messenger take the bag, you shouldn’t be doing that.’ Mr Sylvester replied.
‘Sir, there’s trouble.’ Frank stated, ignoring the man’s last statement.
‘There’s trouble?’ Mr Sylvester paused just before the door to his office.
‘Yes, there is. The cameras system have stopped working,’ Frank said.
‘Aww!’ Mr Sylvester exclaimed and his shoulders dropped. ‘Just as we have all discovered beforehand. Is Kimberly in her office?’
‘Yes, she is,’ Frank answered.
‘And what’s she doing about it?”
‘She’s been in her office since morning trying to control the situation but as we all know, the solution is to get Mr Henry’s fingerprint.’
_____
**Two days later**
‘Vice President to return into the country in three days time,’ Tarasha read the headlines of the news. Chief Elvis had been reported to have traveled out of the country for medical treatment, Tarasha couldn’t wait for him to return so that she could begin to execute all her plans. She had also began to study the Inspector General and was already making plans for his death too.
‘Senate President still in Coma,’ she read the next headline. Nasiru Attahiru had been flown to India for treatment but it was only a waste of money, the man would not survive the poison that was administered to him, Cole had waited for appropriate number of days for the poison to digest and mix with his blood before sending him home. The last headline she read before her phone rang was ‘NSCC in confusion as cameras begin to malfunction. She picked up her phone and stared at the caller’s name, it was Cole.
‘Hello Boss, I was in the bathroom when you called.’ Cole’s voice came through.
‘Okay, any signs of Benny yet?’
‘No signs yet.’
‘Alright listen to me now,’ Tarasha said in a serious tone and lowered her voice. ‘The cameras system have began to malfunction since Monday but it seems that wouldn’t be enough motivation for the police to give me what I need. What I want you to do now is to cause confusion, install some bombs in certain areas of the town, maybe three to five places. But make sure that it isn’t close to where people are, so that it doesn’t kill much.’
‘Okay boss,’ Cole replied and the call ended.
That was Tarasha’s first strategy to force them to bring out Henry. She was sure that the police would run to the NSCC for help on footages that captured the people who installed the bombs but the NSCC would not be able to help because the cameras have been malfunctioning. That should make the police bring out Henry for the fingerprint but if they still don’t, it could cause distractions that would make her able to trace Henry and even start work on the Inspector General..
++++
Henry stood at the balcony of the house, wondering what life was all about, wondering who the people he lived with were and why they cared so much about him. He also wondered why there were so many policemen around the house.
Only three days ago had he began to come out of the house, he noticed that the house which he lived in was the biggest and most beautiful in that area, the other houses were ancient and small. The people were different also, their dressing and culture was different, they spoke a strange language which he never heard before.
He was enjoying the moment, the cool breeze was blowing on his skin and he was having a nice time viewing the women walking up and down with logs of woods on their head and some baskets of farm produce while most of the men were moving with their cutlasses and hoes, some could also be seen coming out of bushes with local guns on their shoulders and small dead animals in their hands.
A certain old woman passing with two of her children made him recall something which he saw the previous day while taking a stroll with Dr Tobi. He had seen a woman about the same age with this advising two young people; a male and a female; telling the male one who was the eldest to look after his sister when they got to the city. From then on, a voice had been echoing in Henry’s head, ‘Henry, look after your sister very well; remember that you’re the father she has at school.’
The voice kept echoing in Henry’s head and anytime he heard it, he would have a feeling of guilt and failure, maybe he had failed in the responsibility which the voice gave to him, he thought. Later that night, he began to relate the voice he was hearing in his head to the woman he had seen on the television days ago, the voice sounded like Mrs George’s own.
He took in a deep breath, closed and opened his eyes, something caught his attention. He stepped down from the balcony hurriedly and began to walk towards the road, soon he started running.
‘Henry,’ Dr Tobi and two officers called as they an after him but he wouldn’t stop. ‘Just follow him behind, don’t stop him,’ Dr Tobi said to the officers.
Henry was running after two people who were riding a bicycle. A girl was at the far front, her speed was more while the guy was following after her, trying to call unto the girl.
After some minutes, the girl stopped and dropped off her bicycle. The boy stopped also some metres behind her. Henry stopped running and watched them from afar. He saw the girl pack some quantity of sand and throw at the boy.
Something suddenly flashed through his mind, he saw himself riding on a power bike. He then saw a girl in front of him in a bush, she had her back turned to him. Suddenly she picked up a stone and threw at him, the stone met Henry’s forehead.
‘Ouch!’ Henry screamed and touched his forehead, the two officers behind him came to his rescue. Although, no stone had touched his head today, he still felt the same pain he felt in the picture he recalled.
The police officers began to lead him back home.
‘What do you remember?’ Dr Tobi asked him as he stepped back into the balcony.
‘A girl,’ he replied, still holding the part of his forehead where he felt the pain.
‘What does she look like?’
‘I didn’t see her face, I only saw her from behind.’ he replied the doctor.
‘Try, you can remember,’ the doctor encouraged.
Henry closed his eyes, his brain traveled fast. He saw the same shape of the lady’s behind, but this time in a room; he was lying on a three seater sofa, a drip bag was hung above and the liquid was running into his body through the drip line.
‘Can you see her face now?’Dr Tobi asked, bringing him back to the present.
‘No, but I saw her with a pin,’ Henry said, illustrating a syringe with his hands. ‘I was sleeping on the chair and water was entering my hand,’ he added, showing the position where the fluid was entering into his vein.
Dr Tobi smiled, ‘come, let’s go in.’
++++
‘Hello Mr Sylvester,’ Dakolo said into the phone in an urgent tone.
‘Hello sir,’ Mr Sylvester replied back in a tensed tone.
‘I know you’ve gotten the news of the bomb blast which happened simultaneously at Roffman and Denril streets,’ Dakolo said. ‘It’s a surprise that the officers in charge just told me that the NSCC has not provided any data yet.’
‘Sir, we’re working on providing the data already,’ Mr Sylvester replied.
‘What do you mean by working on it? The normal procedure is that the data should be sent at least thirty minutes after a casualty.’
‘I know sir, we’ll try and get back to you now.’
‘Better do.’
+++
**45 minutes later**
‘Guys, we really need to do something quick,’ Mr Sylvester said as he walked into the general computer room. Tarasha and the guys who worked with Henry were seated in front of different computers, very busy with what they were doing. They all looked up to stare at Mr Sylvester on hearing his voice.
‘This is the third bomb blast that has been reported in Abuja today and we can’t provide the police with videos captured around the place before or after the blast,’ Mr Sylvester added.
‘We can’t provide what we don’t have sir,’ Tarasha was the first to reply.
‘The cameras have not been functioning and we couldn’t have recorded anything.’ Frank put in.
‘But we have to do something quick to get our cameras working again,’ Mr Sylvester said, trying to encourage them to work more.
Tarasha took her hands off the computer keyboard and placed her eyes on Mr Sylvester conspicuously. ‘There’s nothing we can do,’ she said flatly.
‘So Kimberly, you mean you’ve not found a solution by all you’ve been doing since?’
‘I’ve told you the only solution already, it’s Mr Henry E.G’s fingerprints,’ she replied him and got up from the seat. ‘All we’ve been doing since is just a waste of time.’
Mr Sylvester heaved a sigh and put his left hand on his head, his phone rang. Whoop! It’s the Inspector General,’ he said and decided to take some time to think of what to say. The phone rang twice again before he answered.
‘Mr Sylvester, why are you not answering my calls?’
‘Sir, we’ve been running around trying to fix things.’ he replied with no apologies in his voice.
‘What are you trying to fix? What’s difficult in sending the data you’re supposed to send?’
‘We don’t have any data sir,’ he stated flatly.
‘What do you mean?’ Rikau replied.
‘Our cameras have stopped working; I spoke to Agent Dakolo about it and I also sent you a petition but got no positive reply.’
‘But you know that what you’re asking for is not ideal,’ Rikau said.
‘Sir, that’s the only way we can get our cameras to start working again; without that we may not function for the next one year,’ Sylvester said, almost shouting on top of his voice.
‘I’ll get back to you Mr Sylvester,’ Rikau said calmly and the call ended.
Mr Sylvester closed his eyes and took in a deep breath, he opened his eyes to see Kimberly and the two guys staring at him.
++++
10 minutes later.
‘Good afternoon sir,’ Agent Dakolo said into the phone.
‘Good afternoon Agent,’ the Inspector General was the caller. ‘I heard that there’s a friction between the anti bomb squad and the NSCC.’
‘Yes, there is,’ Dakolo replied.
‘The NSCC claims that their system is locked and that the only way to unlock it is with Henry EG’s fingerprint.’
‘Yes sir, they told me that.’
‘Find a way to get Henry E.G to the NSCC office as soon as possible.’
‘But sir…’ Dakolo tried to argue.
‘Shh… Don’t be insensitive, over thirty people have been displaced, five people killed. The bombers are capitalizing on the fact that the cameras are down, we need to rectify it immediately.’
‘Sir…’
‘Shut up and just do as I say,’ the IG commanded.
‘Okay sir.’*Episode 84
February 6, 2031**
__8am__
Dakolo kept pondering on so many things as they rode down the untarred road. He already did his best by putting in place reasonable measures to make sure that Henry gets to the town safely and returns back safely to the hiding place. Their appointment with the NSCC was by 9am but with the time he was seeing on his wristwatch, they would get there thirty minutes earlier.
Several pictures kept flashing through Henry’s mind; especially that of Mrs George, now he began to see an elderly man with her; most times both of them were sitting before him and giving him certain instructions, he couldn’t hear whatever they were saying but he knew from their expression that they were giving instructions or advice.
‘What are you thinking about?’ Dr Tobi who was seated with him at the backseat asked in soft tones.
‘Nothing,’ Henry replied and sniffed in. His eyes met with Dakolo’s in the rearview mirror and another picture flashed through his mind; he saw himself talking with Dakolo in the compound of Elymax hotel, and then he saw a strange man walking towards them; the picture faded away again. Another picture popped up in his mind immediately; he saw himself walk into the Elymax hotel building, then to the restaurant; after some minutes, a lady joined him. He could see her belly, she was about taking her seat, he almost saw her face.
‘We’re almost there,’ Dakolo announced disrupting Henry’s thoughts; the pictures faded away.
++++
‘Hello sir,’ Tarasha said as she answered the phone call.
‘Miss Kim, Henry E.G has just arrived with the police, join us in the control room now.’ Mr Sylvester said.
‘Okay sir,’ Tarasha replied and dropped the call. She rolled her swivel back a little and opened the drawer. She took out a device that looked like a flash drive, she took off the cover and detached a tiny piece from the cover. She put the tiny piece into the inner pocket of her suit jacket before standing up. After straightening up her black trousers which she wore to match the black jacket, she walked out of her office.
**At the control room**
Tarasha, Frank and Mr Sylvester were patiently waiting for Henry and the police officers, the third app developer had been sent to lead the visitors to the place.
They stood before a large box with several buttons on it which made it look like recording mixer. It had a 110 flat screen behind it which served as the monitor for outputting the commands given on the box.
They all turned to face the door as it opened, officer Dakolo was the first to come in, followed by the computer operator who was sent to bring them, then Inspector Clem; they all stepped in and gave way for the people behind to enter except for the computer operator who proceeded towards his colleagues. Then Henry came in, followed behind by Inspector Ken, the http://www.coolval22.com/Vforum/vforum/booksnovelsarticles/ and two uniformed police officers. He began to march forward as he was directed but stopped suddenly as his eyes met with the people he was heading forward to.
He began to vibrate with fright as his eyes moved from Mr Sylvester’s face to Frank and to Kimberly. He couldn’t tell what was wrong but a certain fear dominated heart especially when his eyes met with the lady’s eyes.
‘You guys have you to give him a smile, he does not need all these bony faces.’ The doctor reprimanded the NSCC officials standing before the screen. Tarasha, Mr Sylvester and Frank tried to put on a smile. Henry continued to walk towards them with the encouragement of the Doctor, he moved slowly but his eyes never left Tarasha’s face.
‘Here,’ Mr Sylvester said to the other NSCC officials and they made way for Henry to come before the box. For a minute Henry took off his eyes from Tarasha and stared at Mr Sylvester’s face intently, the man’s voice had rung a bell to him.
‘Good afternoon Henry,’ Mr Sylvester said to him as they got closer to each other. Henry did not reply but another similar voice to Mr Sylvester’s began to ring in his head. ‘I don’t want to lose my job… My job… My job,’ Henry kept hearing as he stared at Sylvester’s face.
‘You have to put your thumb here,’ Mr Sylvester said to him, Henry obeyed and put his thumb on a transparent part of the box. He had been already briefed about what he was going to do, he was also told that he was going to meet with some of his colleagues at his former place of work.
His finger print appeared on the screen but it was blur. Tarasha moved closer to the screen and swiped down a vertical bar, the notification on the screen showed red, meaning that the print wasn’t correct. ‘I think we should get him a chair,’ Tarasha said.
Frank made the move to get the chair while Tarasha moved closer to Henry. Henry’s eyes was on her face but she didn’t mind; she believed that even if he was fine physically, the effect that the poison had already had on him would not make him remember anything; oblivious of the work that Dr Tobi had done.
A chair was gotten for Henry and he sat on it, then Tarasha helped him place his thumb on it properly; the correct print needed appeared on the screen. Then it disappeared and the word ‘Authorizing’ displayed, and then unlocking, it began to read from 1℅ upwards.
‘It’s done,’ Tarasha announced to everybody, she helped Henry adjust his collar as she returned to her previous position. Henry’s eyes kept following her around.
‘Finally!’ Mr Sylvester exclaimed, making Henry turn his gaze to him.
‘Henry, let’s go now.’ the doctor said with a pleasant smile.
‘I don’t remember anything yet,’ Henry objected loudly.
Tarasha felt something strange strike her heart as she heard Henry talk like a child, she didn’t know what it was; she had been trying to avoid staring at his face but his voice was something she couldn’t ignore. A feeling of guilt also began to rise in her heart, as she saw him looking at the doctor for help. She quickly discarded all her thoughts with a hiss, then she cleared her throat and pouted her lips with the determination to remain focused and not allow her emotions take over.
‘Don’t worry, you’ll remember,’ Dr Tobi said with an encouraging smile which made Henry stand up. ‘Let’s go to some other places now.’
‘Thank you Agent,’ Mr Sylvester said to Dakolo as they began to make their way out of the place.
‘It’s okay Mr Sylvester,’ Agent Dakolo replied. ‘I hope you guys can now return sanity to your system.’
‘Yes sir,’ Tarasha answered him from behind, Agent Dakolo turned to her and smiled. ‘That’s all we need, we can now also track the faces of those killers.’ she added.
‘Thank you Miss Kim, thank you Mr Sylvester; for making this as brief as promised.’
++++
An alarm began to sound on Cole’s phone, he picked it up to check. It was the message he was expecting; his boss had placed the tracker on Henry’s body. He walked back to the bed where Aisha was sleeping and sat beside her. He gently tapped Aisha’s shoulder before he picked up his laptop and placed it on his laps.
‘Yes?’ Aisha answered his tap hesitatingly.
‘The tracker has been placed, remember the boss asked you to call her immediately we get the signal.’
‘Yes,’ Aisha hissed and sat up. ‘She asked me to come pick the drive.’
______
Saturday 8th February, 2031
___5.30pm__
Two days after Henry had been taken to the NSCC office, normality had returned to their system and Henry had also returned to the hiding place safely but not after he met with his mother in his apartment. Dr Tobi and the police officers had hoped that with his exposure to the NSCC office and it’s staffs again and to his mother and his own apartment, he would have regained his memory but that didn’t happen; the only thing Henry continued to say was that he saw faint pictures of the people and kept hearing their voices. Even when he met physically with his mum; after an hour of talking with him, all he could say was that the voice was sounding familiar but he never remembered her being his mother or even if he had a father. Another person he kept mentioning was the girl who held his finger for the thumb print , Frank and Mr Sylvester but he never mentioned anything specific.
Dr Tobi began to lose hope on the case and fear began to envelope his heart. His solution had not made the desired effect of returning Henry’s memory and with the way Henry was responding, Dr Tobi was scared that it could later turn into a mental illness that would make him start to hear voices in his head at all times and also hallucinate uncontrollably.
+++++
‘I think this is a comfortable distance for us to stop,’ Aisha said to Cole.
Cole slowed down his speed of driving and took a look at the tablet device on Aisha’s lap, he confirmed that they were really at a reasonable distance to stop. He pulled over close to the bush and took the tablet device from her, he took note of the distance in metres from their targeted place to where they were; it was a distance that the bomb launcher could cover and even go beyond. Luckily for them, they were also close to a forest of several tall trees where he could climb, locate the house from and launch the bomb. If he could get a very good tall tree that would allow him straight access to the target house, there would be no need to wait in the area overnight to strategize again.
++
**5.30pm**
‘Doctor, can we take a stroll?’ Henry cut through Dr Tobi’s thoughts as he joined him on the balcony.
‘Yes sure,’ Dr Tobi replied eagerly, hiding his worries with a smile.
‘Thank you,’ Henry said smiling. As usual, two officers were about to escort them but Ken stepped them when he came out of the house.
‘You are going to take a stroll right, may I come with you?’ Ken asked.
Dr Tobi turned to look at Henry’s face but Henry turned away without saying anything. ‘Yes, you may. I don’t think Henry would mind.’ Dr Tobi said to Ken.
‘Thank you,’ Ken said and signaled for the officers to return.
They stepped down from the balcony to the road and took the left turn.
++++
**5.50pm**
Cole was up on a baobab tree, the house in target was on a high hill and not difficult to spot, it was the most beautiful in that village. Maybe it was their King’s palace, Cole thought to himself.
‘Faster,’ Aisha whispered to him. She was down the tree, watching for passers-by who may want to interrupt while she acted like she was just sight seeing.
Cole heard her but gave no reply, the leaves on the branches of the tree had him covered and he could not be easily seen by passers-by who looked up except if they were staring intently. He took off the bag from his back settled well on the branch of the tree. Then he brought out the bomb launcher from his bag.
*
The day’s stroll was not a unique one in any way, nothing different or exciting was seen. The village and villagers seemed to be unusually calm that day. Henry was about complaining when Dr Tobi reminded him that it was Saturday and that on most weekends, the villagers were in their huts resting or at playgrounds catching fun.
‘Or do you want us to go to the game centres or the palm wine joints?’ Dr Tobi asked Henry. They were just some few metres away from the balcony, they were still on the road, facing the house from where they were.
‘What kind of games do they play at their game centres?’ Henry asked the doctor, considering the suggestion.
‘They play Ludo, Ayo, draft and a lot of others,’ Dr Tobi answered.
‘Hmm… I’ve not played those games before,’ Henry said.
‘You must have played one or two of them, you’ll remember when you see the game boards.’
‘They have boards?’ Henry asked again.
‘Yes, they have boards…’ Ken tried to come in. Henry gave him a sharp frown as if to warn him from talking and tell him that he was only interested in the doctor’s explanation. The doctor made a signal to Ken to continue explaining. ‘They have boards and they have other items used in playing…’ Ken continued but Henry did not wait to listen, he began to proceed towards the house.
‘Wait Henry,’ the doctor ran after him and stopped him. ‘I think we should go to the game centres.’
‘The games do not sound interesting to me,’ Henry retorted.
‘Ermm… Okay, let’s go to the palm wine joints then. You would get to taste the freshness of the wine gotten from palm trees, I’m sure you would like it.’
‘Hmm,’ Henry licked his lips, the offer sounded better.
‘Okay, but I want to take my handkerchief inside first, I forgot to take it before.’ Henry said.
‘Okay, just wait. Let me ask one of the officers to get it for you,’ the doctor said and began to walk towards the balcony while Ken and Henry waited at the two opposite sides of the road.
The doctor climbed the stairs up the balcony and began to approach one of the officers who also began to come closer on seeing him. As the doctor was about giving the instruction for the handkerchief, a missile hit the house and the whole place went up in flames.
The surroundings of the house were also affected, Inspector Ken and Henry were flung away into the bush by the vibration. Just few seconds after the first explosion, another missile hit the crumbled house again, more of the particles from the building were scattered abroad forcefully. Ken and Henry were lifted away from where they were previously flung to and moved to a farther distance by the second vibration.
After a minute of waiting without any more explosion, Inspector Ken rose out of the bush where he had been flung to with bruises all over his body and his forehead with a slight cut, he began to look for Henry. In few seconds, he was able to locate the place where the Henry was. He watched for few seconds more before crossing to the place Henry was. Henry had passed out already, his head hit the stump of a tree; he was bleeding badly. Ken pulled him out of the bush carefully. He took another look at the exploded house; he was sure that even the doctor could not have survived the explosion.
He lifted Henry to his shoulder and began to carry him slowly, hoping to get somewhere that was safe enough for him to help with any kind of first aid.
++++
‘How are we sure that Henry EG has been killed now?’ Aisha asked Cole as they entered back into the car.
‘There is no way anyone in that building would survive what we just did to them,’ Cole replied throwing the bag to the backseat.
‘But how are we sure Henry is in that place? Wouldn’t he have taken off the clothes he wore yesterday?’
‘He would have taken it off, but he couldn’t have left the house.’ Cole said as he kicked off the engine. ‘Let’s visit the place before we leave.’
He began to drive in direction of the exploded house. He horned furiously at the villagers who were coming out of their houses carelessly to see the exploded house. The people gave way for him, wondering what kind of person was driving towards the place where everyone was running from.
***
‘Drop me, drop me,’ Henry forced himself down the Inspector’s shoulder. The Inspector had not been able to go too far as Henry’s weight which was almost more than his own slowed his steps.
‘Inspector Ken,’ Henry said after coming down from Ken’s shoulder.
‘Henry, you recognize me?’ Inspector Ken asked in surprise.
‘Yes, I recognize you.’ Henry replied.
Officer Ken was glad but he knew it wasn’t the right time to be rejoice yet, he turned around to look at the villagers who were staring at them on the road. He quickly approached one of the old men to ask for help, Henry followed him behind slowly and started a conversation with another villager, the villager made him move about a metre away from Ken.
‘Sir, please can we get somewhere to hide right now?’ Ken asked the man but the man stared at him helplessly as he couldn’t understand English language.
‘Papa, oni…’ a young man tried to explain to the old man in their native language but their attention was drawn by a car that was approaching them. Ken turned to look at the car, the window by the driver’s side gently rolled down and a gun was pointed out to Henry who had his back turned to the car, he and the villager he was talking to didn’t notice the car.
With all the strength remaining in Ken’s body, he ran towards Henry screaming. ‘Noooooo!’ But it was late before Henry turned back, the gun was already fired, twice.
Inspector Ken received the bullets into his belly
‘D–n it!’ Cole exclaimed in anger as Ken shielded Henry from the bullets and the people dispersed in fear, Henry was also seen running away. Cole hurriedly reversed the car and angrily released two more bullets into Ken’s body, then he opened the door and stepped out of the car with his gun.
‘Drive the car and keep tracking me,’ he said to Aisha, putting a piece in his ears which worked as a communication device and also a tracker. ‘Tell me at once if the police or any threat comes into sight.’ He said before running after Henry in the same direction he saw Henry take.
_________
‘You’re welcome sir,’ Agent Dakolo greeted all smiles as he received the handshake offered him by the Vice President.
‘I heard about your success in bringing Henry to town and back to the hiding place,’ Chief Elvis said smiling, Dakolo nodded in affirmation. ‘Congrats, I hope you’ve made success in other areas too.’
‘We’re trying sir,’ Dakolo replied as he began to lead the man to the car they brought to take him from the airport.
The Vice president looked more refreshed, healthier and confident on his return. He kept on smiling as he watched the crowd of people and journalists who had come to have a view of him at the airport, the security officials were doing the bests in shielding the lookers from coming closer.
Dakolo watched as the chief’s personal security officer opened the door to the back seat of the car for him, he waited for the Vice President to settle inside the car first before he hurried on to the car he was going with.
‘You’ve had several missed calls sir,’ Inspector Clem said to him as he entered into one of the cars which was going to be following behind the Vice President’s.
‘Let me see,’ he replied, taking his phone from the Inspector.
‘This is from the office,’ Dakolo said as he stared at the missed caller’s ID.
‘Yes,’ Inspector Clem affirmed and started the car engine. They began to drive slowly after the Vice President’s car which had also moved, there were two other cars in front of the Vice President’s car.
‘I would call later when we get out of the airport,’ Dakolo said as he dropped his phone and put on his seatbelt. Inspector Clem’s phone began to ring.
‘They’re calling me from the office sir,’ Clem said to Dakolo, not wanting to take his hands off the wheels.
‘Oh! Maybe it’s quite urgent then, let me call them right away.’ Dakolo said and picked up his phone again, he waited for Clem’s phone to stop ringing before he dialed the office number on his.
‘Hello Agent, it’s officer Koko answering ‘ a voice came through as the call was answered without delay.
‘Officer, what’s up?’
‘Sir, there was a bomb blast this evening,’ the voice announced.
Dakolo sighed, he hated to hear bad news like this especially at a time like this when he was planning to go home straight after they leave the Vice President. ‘What time was that?’ he asked.
‘Exactly 5.55pm,’ the officer replied.
Dakolo raise up his hand to take a glance at his wristwatch, it was 6.42pm. ‘That’s sad, but have you contacted the anti bomb squad?’ he said; it was his friendly way of telling the officer that he had no business with the matter.
‘Yes, I’ve told them already.’ the officer replied.
‘Good, they’ll take care of it.’
‘Sir, we’ve located the place and the police station in the area, we have sent some officers to the place.’
‘I’ve heard you,’ Dakolo said in a stressed tone, wondering why the officer was reporting details to him when he wasn’t the IG or agent in charge.
‘The place is Rugbe village sir, Abuja North.’ the officer said.
‘Ehn? What village did you call it?’ Dakolo replied, half shouting.
‘Rugbe Village sir, the AIG insisted that I get the information across to you,’ the officer said.
‘Thank you,’ Dakolo said hurriedly and ended the call.
‘Rugbe village sir?’ Clem asked as they drove out of the airport but got no response from Dakolo.
Dakolo quickly dialed Ken’s number but his call wasn’t answered, he tried three more times before trying to reach the phone in the house which was used by the doctor but the line wasn’t connecting at all. He tried some other officers numbers and none was connecting.
‘You have to pull over here,’ Dakolo said to Clem.
+++
Henry’s heart was beating fast as he watched Cole searching all around for him. He froze in the bush and dared not to make any movement, Cole was carefully listening and would hear the slightest noise he makes. There was a white bird behind him in the small empty space picking somethings on the floor.
The whole village was dead quiet, everyone had run into their houses to hide themselves and their children. There was no other person in sight, not even the village security guards; Henry couldn’t blame them, he was sure that the weapons and expertise they had could not conquer Cole, he also knew that the village may have never experienced such vandalization of property they had seen the bombs do to the house.
He saw Cole’s face and recognized him at once, ‘Tara’s boy,’ he whispered silently to himself.
He shook in fear as Cole looked towards his direction as if his whisper was heard. Then Cole noticed the shaking in the bush and began to move closer in his direction.
Henry was scared to death as Cole continued to march towards his direction with his eyes fixed there, then luckily for him the bird behind him flew out of the bush.
Cole hissed and turned back, then walked away from the place.
+++++
Aisha stopped by the side of the bush where the map on her phone was indicating Cole’s location, in less than a minute, Cole came out of the bush. She gave way for him to enter into the driver’s side.
‘Did you find him?’ Aisha asked after Cole kicked off the engine and drove away.
‘No,’ Cole replied bitterly.
‘And we’re going back?’ she asked in surprise.
‘Yes, do we have any choice? The police would soon be here and it would be difficult to leave then.’
‘But what would the boss say?’ Aisha asked in fear.
Cole gave her a sharp funny look, ‘she won’t say anything; we’ve done our best. We did the major thing she asked us to do, bomb the whole house.’
‘But we missed our target,’ Aisha said.
‘We didn’t miss our target, we brought down the house.’ Cole insisted. ‘We even went farther than she instructed, we went closer to the house to check and even pursued after Henry E.G.’
‘But we still missed the target,’ Aisha argued stubbornly.
‘Yes, maybe we missed the real target though,’ Cole said without showing much concern.
‘The Boss would be mad at us,’ Aisha said with her widened eyes staring at Cole, wondering why he was so confident.
‘No she won’t,’ Cole replied with confidence. ‘It’s wasn’t just the both of us that missed it, the boss missed it with us.’
‘What do you mean by that?’
‘She was quite sure that he’ll be in the house, so she asked to take down the house believing that he would be in it.’
‘But I’m scared,’ Aisha said shaking her head thoughtfully.
++++
**2 hours later**
It was night already but the place was as bright as noon. The halogen lights placed there by the police officers helped them defeat the limitation of darkness in carrying out their investigations. Different police teams had flooded the scene of the bomb blast, the anti bomb and anti terrorism squad were scrutinizing the destroyed property and trying to locate where the bomb could have be placed while members of the medical team were carrying out the remains of the victims into the ambulances. Members of Dakolo’s team were asking questions from the eyewitnesses of the explosion and taking down notes. Several journalists were also there taking pictures, videos and asking questions.
Dakolo who was supposed to be with his team leading the questioning couldn’t do that but stayed with the medical team, looking at each body they carried out. He had seen Ken’s body already and that had almost brought tears out of his eyes but he decided to hold it in because he was sure he would do worse when he sees Henry’s body.
One after the other, the anti bomb squad brought out the bodies, this was the eighth body now and Henry’s body had not been brought out; maybe because his room was at the far end of the building, Dakolo thought to himself. He was still looking out for Henry’s body when Inspector Clem came to meet him.
‘Sir, we found out that Inspector Ken wasn’t killed by the bomb,’ Clem said to Dakolo.
‘Yes, I know; the officers I met here told me that.’the Agent replied, not bothering to take a look at Clem who was speaking from behind.
‘And we also found out that he wasn’t the real target of the shooter, Henry EG was.’
‘Of course Henry was the real target of the bombers,’ Dakolo said.
‘I’m talking about the person who shot Ken sir; it was Henry who he wanted to shoot.’
Dakolo paused first to process Clem’s words, then he turned to listen again, ‘wait, do you mean Henry was with Ken when he was shot?’
‘Yes, the eyewitnesses said that the terrorists were two; a male and female. They came in a red car and after the second explosion, they drove towards the house and saw Ken with Henry,’ Clem tried to explain pointing towards the place where the car had met with Henry and Ken.
‘I don’t understand,’ Dakolo said, stepping down from the hill with Clem, they began to walk towards the place.
‘This is where Inspector Ken’s body was found,’ Clem said after they got to the place where the shooting happened. He was pointing to a blood stained place close to a tree in the bush. ‘Henry was standing here, talking with one of the villagers; I spoke to the villager myself.’
‘Okay,’ Dakolo signaled for him to continue.
‘He confirmed that Henry was talking with him when the red car drove close to them, a gun was pointed out from the driver’s side and then pointed at Henry who had his back turned to the car. But Inspector Ken saw the gun first and shielded Henry, thereby receiving the bullets in his body.’
Dakolo heaved a sigh, not of relief but of pity. He knew that Ken was too experienced to just die after escaping from a bomb blast; especially in a place where there were several bushes and trees were he could hide.
‘But how are you sure that Henry was the one with Ken?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Inspector Ken wouldn’t have done that for a junior officer, the doctor and Henry EG are the only two people he could have done that for.’ Clem said.
‘That’s true,’ Dakolo agreed, nodding thoughtfully.
‘Besides, the villagers seem to recognize Henry EG; they described him as the sick person who used to take a walk with the doctor and two officers.’
‘But where’s Henry now? What happened to him?’
‘Sir, he could have been taken.’ Clem replied in a sad tone.
‘Taken by who?’
‘The villagers said he ran this way,’ Clem said pointing to a narrow path along the bush and the shooter got out of the car to pursue him. That was the last they saw of Henry E.G and the bombers.’
‘Have you gone in that same direction?’
‘Yes sir, we’ve searched everywhere.’
++++
Omotara and her brother Jeffrey were both seated in the living room after dinner, watching the channels TV news. About three times already, a breaking news segment had been broadcasted but details of the news was just being told.
‘Our correspondent has been able gather information which proves that the house bombed was the place the police had hidden Henry EG to protect him from another assassination attack but as at this moment, it has been confirmed that a young man and woman carried out the bombing of the place. It has also been confirmed that nobody found in the house survived; this could mean that Henry EG had also died with other victims of the bomb blast. Thirteen people including Henry EG, Dr Tobi, three maids, Officer Ken and six other police officers were occupants of the place. Only six bodies have been recovered now; the bodies found includes Dr Tobi’s, four police officers and a maid. A brief question segment with the anti bomb squad of the police reveals to us that there are still bodies yet to be brought out of the place.’
‘Oh God, please preserve Henry’s life,’ Jefa cried with teary eyes. He covered his face with his hands and began to make some silent prayers. ‘Did you know he was in Rugbe village?’ Jefa asked his sister after he was done praying.
She didn’t give a reply immediately but paused to think, she never wanted discuss Henry. She couldn’t understand what she felt anytime his name was mentioned. She sometimes wished for him to survive and at other times was anxious to hear the news of his death.
‘No,’ she finally replied, trying not to show any feeling or empathy. She faced the television without taking a glance at her brother’s face.
Jefa stared silently at his sister’s face for a while before he spoke again. ‘Why do you act as if you don’t love him?’
Omotara’s breath seized for a moment, she turned and stared at her brother’s face. ‘Love?’
‘Yes, you love him and you pretend not to.’
She chuckled, ‘I don’t love anyone brother.’
‘No Tara, you love Henry. I can see it in your eyes.’
‘You see nothing in my eyes sir, you are misinterpreting. Right now, I’m tired and the only thing in my eyes is the crave for a restful sleep.’
‘But he loves you too, so why are you resisting?’ Jefa asked her in a serious tone.
She wanted to respond but she felt a lump in her throat. She stared at him for a while and then shouted in a loud voice, ‘did he tell you he loved me or why are you pushing this so far?’ she got up and began to walk to her room hurriedly.
Jefa just watched as she walked away, he was more convinced that she was in love with him. What he couldn’t decipher was why she was hiding it, maybe Henry had done something grievous to her, he thought.
*
‘Where are you now?’ Tarasha said into the phone after locking the door to her room.
‘I don’t know the name of this place but our hotel is just thirty minutes drive from here,’ Cole replied.
‘Okay, I’ve listened to the news she I confirmed your job, well-done’ she said.
‘Boss,’ Cole interrupted, not wanting her to commend him further. ‘Henry wasn’t killed,’ he stated.
‘Huh?’ Tarasha eyes widened in shock. She didn’t expect Henry to still be alive even after so many people have had to die for him.
____
‘Who’s there?’ Henry could hear someone shout from inside the compound. He knocked the gate again and the person shouted the same way but this time closer to the gate.
‘Can’t you knock properly?’ a man asked as he opened the gate to the village clinic. He looked more like a security man, though he wasn’t dressed in any uniform. He gave a suspicious look at Henry who was looking like a war survivor.
‘I’ve been knocking for some couple of minutes now,’ Henry said and pushed his way into the compound. He began to walk straight into the clinic.
Soon, he was inside and was already being attended to by a nurse.
‘Sir, you have to deposit five thousand naira for us to continue the treatment,’ the nurse said after applying first aid to the wounds especially the bleeding places.
‘I don’t have any money here,’ Henry stated.
‘You don’t have any money and you came in for treatment, do you think this is a free hospital?’the nurse shouted.
‘I’ll pay you,’ Henry said confidently. The nurse stared at his face with questions in eyes like how he was going to pay without money. ‘Don’t you know me?’ he asked.
She stared at his face for another one minute before she spoke. ‘Are you the Henry, the NSCC man?’ she asked.
‘I’ll pay you but not today’ he said without responding to her question.
She didn’t give any reply either but continued with the treatment. She bandage his head where he had a cut, his stomach and his arm. After a total of thirty minutes, she was through with him.
‘I’ll be back,’ she said, cleaning her hand with a towel. ‘You can lie on the bed if you want.’
He got up immediately she walked out and went to the door, he opened it slightly and peeped outside.
In ten minutes time , the nurse returned to the ward with an elderly nurse and a doctor but Henry was nowhere to be found.
*Episode 84
February 6, 2031**
__8am__
Dakolo kept pondering on so many things as they rode down the untarred road. He already did his best by putting in place reasonable measures to make sure that Henry gets to the town safely and returns back safely to the hiding place. Their appointment with the NSCC was by 9am but with the time he was seeing on his wristwatch, they would get there thirty minutes earlier.
Several pictures kept flashing through Henry’s mind; especially that of Mrs George, now he began to see an elderly man with her; most times both of them were sitting before him and giving him certain instructions, he couldn’t hear whatever they were saying but he knew from their expression that they were giving instructions or advice.
‘What are you thinking about?’ Dr Tobi who was seated with him at the backseat asked in soft tones.
‘Nothing,’ Henry replied and sniffed in. His eyes met with Dakolo’s in the rearview mirror and another picture flashed through his mind; he saw himself talking with Dakolo in the compound of Elymax hotel, and then he saw a strange man walking towards them; the picture faded away again. Another picture popped up in his mind immediately; he saw himself walk into the Elymax hotel building, then to the restaurant; after some minutes, a lady joined him. He could see her belly, she was about taking her seat, he almost saw her face.
‘We’re almost there,’ Dakolo announced disrupting Henry’s thoughts; the pictures faded away.
++++
‘Hello sir,’ Tarasha said as she answered the phone call.
‘Miss Kim, Henry E.G has just arrived with the police, join us in the control room now.’ Mr Sylvester said.
‘Okay sir,’ Tarasha replied and dropped the call. She rolled her swivel back a little and opened the drawer. She took out a device that looked like a flash drive, she took off the cover and detached a tiny piece from the cover. She put the tiny piece into the inner pocket of her suit jacket before standing up. After straightening up her black trousers which she wore to match the black jacket, she walked out of her office.
**At the control room**
Tarasha, Frank and Mr Sylvester were patiently waiting for Henry and the police officers, the third app developer had been sent to lead the visitors to the place.
They stood before a large box with several buttons on it which made it look like recording mixer. It had a 110 flat screen behind it which served as the monitor for outputting the commands given on the box.
They all turned to face the door as it opened, officer Dakolo was the first to come in, followed by the computer operator who was sent to bring them, then Inspector Clem; they all stepped in and gave way for the people behind to enter except for the computer operator who proceeded towards his colleagues. Then Henry came in, followed behind by Inspector Ken, the http://www.coolval22.com/Vforum/vforum/booksnovelsarticles/ and two uniformed police officers. He began to march forward as he was directed but stopped suddenly as his eyes met with the people he was heading forward to.
He began to vibrate with fright as his eyes moved from Mr Sylvester’s face to Frank and to Kimberly. He couldn’t tell what was wrong but a certain fear dominated heart especially when his eyes met with the lady’s eyes.
‘You guys have you to give him a smile, he does not need all these bony faces.’ The doctor reprimanded the NSCC officials standing before the screen. Tarasha, Mr Sylvester and Frank tried to put on a smile. Henry continued to walk towards them with the encouragement of the Doctor, he moved slowly but his eyes never left Tarasha’s face.
‘Here,’ Mr Sylvester said to the other NSCC officials and they made way for Henry to come before the box. For a minute Henry took off his eyes from Tarasha and stared at Mr Sylvester’s face intently, the man’s voice had rung a bell to him.
‘Good afternoon Henry,’ Mr Sylvester said to him as they got closer to each other. Henry did not reply but another similar voice to Mr Sylvester’s began to ring in his head. ‘I don’t want to lose my job… My job… My job,’ Henry kept hearing as he stared at Sylvester’s face.
‘You have to put your thumb here,’ Mr Sylvester said to him, Henry obeyed and put his thumb on a transparent part of the box. He had been already briefed about what he was going to do, he was also told that he was going to meet with some of his colleagues at his former place of work.
His finger print appeared on the screen but it was blur. Tarasha moved closer to the screen and swiped down a vertical bar, the notification on the screen showed red, meaning that the print wasn’t correct. ‘I think we should get him a chair,’ Tarasha said.
Frank made the move to get the chair while Tarasha moved closer to Henry. Henry’s eyes was on her face but she didn’t mind; she believed that even if he was fine physically, the effect that the poison had already had on him would not make him remember anything; oblivious of the work that Dr Tobi had done.
A chair was gotten for Henry and he sat on it, then Tarasha helped him place his thumb on it properly; the correct print needed appeared on the screen. Then it disappeared and the word ‘Authorizing’ displayed, and then unlocking, it began to read from 1℅ upwards.
‘It’s done,’ Tarasha announced to everybody, she helped Henry adjust his collar as she returned to her previous position. Henry’s eyes kept following her around.
‘Finally!’ Mr Sylvester exclaimed, making Henry turn his gaze to him.
‘Henry, let’s go now.’ the doctor said with a pleasant smile.
‘I don’t remember anything yet,’ Henry objected loudly.
Tarasha felt something strange strike her heart as she heard Henry talk like a child, she didn’t know what it was; she had been trying to avoid staring at his face but his voice was something she couldn’t ignore. A feeling of guilt also began to rise in her heart, as she saw him looking at the doctor for help. She quickly discarded all her thoughts with a hiss, then she cleared her throat and pouted her lips with the determination to remain focused and not allow her emotions take over.
‘Don’t worry, you’ll remember,’ Dr Tobi said with an encouraging smile which made Henry stand up. ‘Let’s go to some other places now.’
‘Thank you Agent,’ Mr Sylvester said to Dakolo as they began to make their way out of the place.
‘It’s okay Mr Sylvester,’ Agent Dakolo replied. ‘I hope you guys can now return sanity to your system.’
‘Yes sir,’ Tarasha answered him from behind, Agent Dakolo turned to her and smiled. ‘That’s all we need, we can now also track the faces of those killers.’ she added.
‘Thank you Miss Kim, thank you Mr Sylvester; for making this as brief as promised.’
++++
An alarm began to sound on Cole’s phone, he picked it up to check. It was the message he was expecting; his boss had placed the tracker on Henry’s body. He walked back to the bed where Aisha was sleeping and sat beside her. He gently tapped Aisha’s shoulder before he picked up his laptop and placed it on his laps.
‘Yes?’ Aisha answered his tap hesitatingly.
‘The tracker has been placed, remember the boss asked you to call her immediately we get the signal.’
‘Yes,’ Aisha hissed and sat up. ‘She asked me to come pick the drive.’
______
Saturday 8th February, 2031
___5.30pm__
Two days after Henry had been taken to the NSCC office, normality had returned to their system and Henry had also returned to the hiding place safely but not after he met with his mother in his apartment. Dr Tobi and the police officers had hoped that with his exposure to the NSCC office and it’s staffs again and to his mother and his own apartment, he would have regained his memory but that didn’t happen; the only thing Henry continued to say was that he saw faint pictures of the people and kept hearing their voices. Even when he met physically with his mum; after an hour of talking with him, all he could say was that the voice was sounding familiar but he never remembered her being his mother or even if he had a father. Another person he kept mentioning was the girl who held his finger for the thumb print , Frank and Mr Sylvester but he never mentioned anything specific.
Dr Tobi began to lose hope on the case and fear began to envelope his heart. His solution had not made the desired effect of returning Henry’s memory and with the way Henry was responding, Dr Tobi was scared that it could later turn into a mental illness that would make him start to hear voices in his head at all times and also hallucinate uncontrollably.
+++++
‘I think this is a comfortable distance for us to stop,’ Aisha said to Cole.
Cole slowed down his speed of driving and took a look at the tablet device on Aisha’s lap, he confirmed that they were really at a reasonable distance to stop. He pulled over close to the bush and took the tablet device from her, he took note of the distance in metres from their targeted place to where they were; it was a distance that the bomb launcher could cover and even go beyond. Luckily for them, they were also close to a forest of several tall trees where he could climb, locate the house from and launch the bomb. If he could get a very good tall tree that would allow him straight access to the target house, there would be no need to wait in the area overnight to strategize again.
++
**5.30pm**
‘Doctor, can we take a stroll?’ Henry cut through Dr Tobi’s thoughts as he joined him on the balcony.
‘Yes sure,’ Dr Tobi replied eagerly, hiding his worries with a smile.
‘Thank you,’ Henry said smiling. As usual, two officers were about to escort them but Ken stepped them when he came out of the house.
‘You are going to take a stroll right, may I come with you?’ Ken asked.
Dr Tobi turned to look at Henry’s face but Henry turned away without saying anything. ‘Yes, you may. I don’t think Henry would mind.’ Dr Tobi said to Ken.
‘Thank you,’ Ken said and signaled for the officers to return.
They stepped down from the balcony to the road and took the left turn.
++++
**5.50pm**
Cole was up on a baobab tree, the house in target was on a high hill and not difficult to spot, it was the most beautiful in that village. Maybe it was their King’s palace, Cole thought to himself.
‘Faster,’ Aisha whispered to him. She was down the tree, watching for passers-by who may want to interrupt while she acted like she was just sight seeing.
Cole heard her but gave no reply, the leaves on the branches of the tree had him covered and he could not be easily seen by passers-by who looked up except if they were staring intently. He took off the bag from his back settled well on the branch of the tree. Then he brought out the bomb launcher from his bag.
*
The day’s stroll was not a unique one in any way, nothing different or exciting was seen. The village and villagers seemed to be unusually calm that day. Henry was about complaining when Dr Tobi reminded him that it was Saturday and that on most weekends, the villagers were in their huts resting or at playgrounds catching fun.
‘Or do you want us to go to the game centres or the palm wine joints?’ Dr Tobi asked Henry. They were just some few metres away from the balcony, they were still on the road, facing the house from where they were.
‘What kind of games do they play at their game centres?’ Henry asked the doctor, considering the suggestion.
‘They play Ludo, Ayo, draft and a lot of others,’ Dr Tobi answered.
‘Hmm… I’ve not played those games before,’ Henry said.
‘You must have played one or two of them, you’ll remember when you see the game boards.’
‘They have boards?’ Henry asked again.
‘Yes, they have boards…’ Ken tried to come in. Henry gave him a sharp frown as if to warn him from talking and tell him that he was only interested in the doctor’s explanation. The doctor made a signal to Ken to continue explaining. ‘They have boards and they have other items used in playing…’ Ken continued but Henry did not wait to listen, he began to proceed towards the house.
‘Wait Henry,’ the doctor ran after him and stopped him. ‘I think we should go to the game centres.’
‘The games do not sound interesting to me,’ Henry retorted.
‘Ermm… Okay, let’s go to the palm wine joints then. You would get to taste the freshness of the wine gotten from palm trees, I’m sure you would like it.’
‘Hmm,’ Henry licked his lips, the offer sounded better.
‘Okay, but I want to take my handkerchief inside first, I forgot to take it before.’ Henry said.
‘Okay, just wait. Let me ask one of the officers to get it for you,’ the doctor said and began to walk towards the balcony while Ken and Henry waited at the two opposite sides of the road.
The doctor climbed the stairs up the balcony and began to approach one of the officers who also began to come closer on seeing him. As the doctor was about giving the instruction for the handkerchief, a missile hit the house and the whole place went up in flames.
The surroundings of the house were also affected, Inspector Ken and Henry were flung away into the bush by the vibration. Just few seconds after the first explosion, another missile hit the crumbled house again, more of the particles from the building were scattered abroad forcefully. Ken and Henry were lifted away from where they were previously flung to and moved to a farther distance by the second vibration.
After a minute of waiting without any more explosion, Inspector Ken rose out of the bush where he had been flung to with bruises all over his body and his forehead with a slight cut, he began to look for Henry. In few seconds, he was able to locate the place where the Henry was. He watched for few seconds more before crossing to the place Henry was. Henry had passed out already, his head hit the stump of a tree; he was bleeding badly. Ken pulled him out of the bush carefully. He took another look at the exploded house; he was sure that even the doctor could not have survived the explosion.
He lifted Henry to his shoulder and began to carry him slowly, hoping to get somewhere that was safe enough for him to help with any kind of first aid.
++++
‘How are we sure that Henry EG has been killed now?’ Aisha asked Cole as they entered back into the car.
‘There is no way anyone in that building would survive what we just did to them,’ Cole replied throwing the bag to the backseat.
‘But how are we sure Henry is in that place? Wouldn’t he have taken off the clothes he wore yesterday?’
‘He would have taken it off, but he couldn’t have left the house.’ Cole said as he kicked off the engine. ‘Let’s visit the place before we leave.’
He began to drive in direction of the exploded house. He horned furiously at the villagers who were coming out of their houses carelessly to see the exploded house. The people gave way for him, wondering what kind of person was driving towards the place where everyone was running from.
***
‘Drop me, drop me,’ Henry forced himself down the Inspector’s shoulder. The Inspector had not been able to go too far as Henry’s weight which was almost more than his own slowed his steps.
‘Inspector Ken,’ Henry said after coming down from Ken’s shoulder.
‘Henry, you recognize me?’ Inspector Ken asked in surprise.
‘Yes, I recognize you.’ Henry replied.
Officer Ken was glad but he knew it wasn’t the right time to be rejoice yet, he turned around to look at the villagers who were staring at them on the road. He quickly approached one of the old men to ask for help, Henry followed him behind slowly and started a conversation with another villager, the villager made him move about a metre away from Ken.
‘Sir, please can we get somewhere to hide right now?’ Ken asked the man but the man stared at him helplessly as he couldn’t understand English language.
‘Papa, oni…’ a young man tried to explain to the old man in their native language but their attention was drawn by a car that was approaching them. Ken turned to look at the car, the window by the driver’s side gently rolled down and a gun was pointed out to Henry who had his back turned to the car, he and the villager he was talking to didn’t notice the car.
With all the strength remaining in Ken’s body, he ran towards Henry screaming. ‘Noooooo!’ But it was late before Henry turned back, the gun was already fired, twice.
Inspector Ken received the bullets into his belly
‘D–n it!’ Cole exclaimed in anger as Ken shielded Henry from the bullets and the people dispersed in fear, Henry was also seen running away. Cole hurriedly reversed the car and angrily released two more bullets into Ken’s body, then he opened the door and stepped out of the car with his gun.
‘Drive the car and keep tracking me,’ he said to Aisha, putting a piece in his ears which worked as a communication device and also a tracker. ‘Tell me at once if the police or any threat comes into sight.’ He said before running after Henry in the same direction he saw Henry take.
_________
‘You’re welcome sir,’ Agent Dakolo greeted all smiles as he received the handshake offered him by the Vice President.
‘I heard about your success in bringing Henry to town and back to the hiding place,’ Chief Elvis said smiling, Dakolo nodded in affirmation. ‘Congrats, I hope you’ve made success in other areas too.’
‘We’re trying sir,’ Dakolo replied as he began to lead the man to the car they brought to take him from the airport.
The Vice president looked more refreshed, healthier and confident on his return. He kept on smiling as he watched the crowd of people and journalists who had come to have a view of him at the airport, the security officials were doing the bests in shielding the lookers from coming closer.
Dakolo watched as the chief’s personal security officer opened the door to the back seat of the car for him, he waited for the Vice President to settle inside the car first before he hurried on to the car he was going with.
‘You’ve had several missed calls sir,’ Inspector Clem said to him as he entered into one of the cars which was going to be following behind the Vice President’s.
‘Let me see,’ he replied, taking his phone from the Inspector.
‘This is from the office,’ Dakolo said as he stared at the missed caller’s ID.
‘Yes,’ Inspector Clem affirmed and started the car engine. They began to drive slowly after the Vice President’s car which had also moved, there were two other cars in front of the Vice President’s car.
‘I would call later when we get out of the airport,’ Dakolo said as he dropped his phone and put on his seatbelt. Inspector Clem’s phone began to ring.
‘They’re calling me from the office sir,’ Clem said to Dakolo, not wanting to take his hands off the wheels.
‘Oh! Maybe it’s quite urgent then, let me call them right away.’ Dakolo said and picked up his phone again, he waited for Clem’s phone to stop ringing before he dialed the office number on his.
‘Hello Agent, it’s officer Koko answering ‘ a voice came through as the call was answered without delay.
‘Officer, what’s up?’
‘Sir, there was a bomb blast this evening,’ the voice announced.
Dakolo sighed, he hated to hear bad news like this especially at a time like this when he was planning to go home straight after they leave the Vice President. ‘What time was that?’ he asked.
‘Exactly 5.55pm,’ the officer replied.
Dakolo raise up his hand to take a glance at his wristwatch, it was 6.42pm. ‘That’s sad, but have you contacted the anti bomb squad?’ he said; it was his friendly way of telling the officer that he had no business with the matter.
‘Yes, I’ve told them already.’ the officer replied.
‘Good, they’ll take care of it.’
‘Sir, we’ve located the place and the police station in the area, we have sent some officers to the place.’
‘I’ve heard you,’ Dakolo said in a stressed tone, wondering why the officer was reporting details to him when he wasn’t the IG or agent in charge.
‘The place is Rugbe village sir, Abuja North.’ the officer said.
‘Ehn? What village did you call it?’ Dakolo replied, half shouting.
‘Rugbe Village sir, the AIG insisted that I get the information across to you,’ the officer said.
‘Thank you,’ Dakolo said hurriedly and ended the call.
‘Rugbe village sir?’ Clem asked as they drove out of the airport but got no response from Dakolo.
Dakolo quickly dialed Ken’s number but his call wasn’t answered, he tried three more times before trying to reach the phone in the house which was used by the doctor but the line wasn’t connecting at all. He tried some other officers numbers and none was connecting.
‘You have to pull over here,’ Dakolo said to Clem.
+++
Henry’s heart was beating fast as he watched Cole searching all around for him. He froze in the bush and dared not to make any movement, Cole was carefully listening and would hear the slightest noise he makes. There was a white bird behind him in the small empty space picking somethings on the floor.
The whole village was dead quiet, everyone had run into their houses to hide themselves and their children. There was no other person in sight, not even the village security guards; Henry couldn’t blame them, he was sure that the weapons and expertise they had could not conquer Cole, he also knew that the village may have never experienced such vandalization of property they had seen the bombs do to the house.
He saw Cole’s face and recognized him at once, ‘Tara’s boy,’ he whispered silently to himself.
He shook in fear as Cole looked towards his direction as if his whisper was heard. Then Cole noticed the shaking in the bush and began to move closer in his direction.
Henry was scared to death as Cole continued to march towards his direction with his eyes fixed there, then luckily for him the bird behind him flew out of the bush.
Cole hissed and turned back, then walked away from the place.
+++++
Aisha stopped by the side of the bush where the map on her phone was indicating Cole’s location, in less than a minute, Cole came out of the bush. She gave way for him to enter into the driver’s side.
‘Did you find him?’ Aisha asked after Cole kicked off the engine and drove away.
‘No,’ Cole replied bitterly.
‘And we’re going back?’ she asked in surprise.
‘Yes, do we have any choice? The police would soon be here and it would be difficult to leave then.’
‘But what would the boss say?’ Aisha asked in fear.
Cole gave her a sharp funny look, ‘she won’t say anything; we’ve done our best. We did the major thing she asked us to do, bomb the whole house.’
‘But we missed our target,’ Aisha said.
‘We didn’t miss our target, we brought down the house.’ Cole insisted. ‘We even went farther than she instructed, we went closer to the house to check and even pursued after Henry E.G.’
‘But we still missed the target,’ Aisha argued stubbornly.
‘Yes, maybe we missed the real target though,’ Cole said without showing much concern.
‘The Boss would be mad at us,’ Aisha said with her widened eyes staring at Cole, wondering why he was so confident.
‘No she won’t,’ Cole replied with confidence. ‘It’s wasn’t just the both of us that missed it, the boss missed it with us.’
‘What do you mean by that?’
‘She was quite sure that he’ll be in the house, so she asked to take down the house believing that he would be in it.’
‘But I’m scared,’ Aisha said shaking her head thoughtfully.
++++
**2 hours later**
It was night already but the place was as bright as noon. The halogen lights placed there by the police officers helped them defeat the limitation of darkness in carrying out their investigations. Different police teams had flooded the scene of the bomb blast, the anti bomb and anti terrorism squad were scrutinizing the destroyed property and trying to locate where the bomb could have be placed while members of the medical team were carrying out the remains of the victims into the ambulances. Members of Dakolo’s team were asking questions from the eyewitnesses of the explosion and taking down notes. Several journalists were also there taking pictures, videos and asking questions.
Dakolo who was supposed to be with his team leading the questioning couldn’t do that but stayed with the medical team, looking at each body they carried out. He had seen Ken’s body already and that had almost brought tears out of his eyes but he decided to hold it in because he was sure he would do worse when he sees Henry’s body.
One after the other, the anti bomb squad brought out the bodies, this was the eighth body now and Henry’s body had not been brought out; maybe because his room was at the far end of the building, Dakolo thought to himself. He was still looking out for Henry’s body when Inspector Clem came to meet him.
‘Sir, we found out that Inspector Ken wasn’t killed by the bomb,’ Clem said to Dakolo.
‘Yes, I know; the officers I met here told me that.’the Agent replied, not bothering to take a look at Clem who was speaking from behind.
‘And we also found out that he wasn’t the real target of the shooter, Henry EG was.’
‘Of course Henry was the real target of the bombers,’ Dakolo said.
‘I’m talking about the person who shot Ken sir; it was Henry who he wanted to shoot.’
Dakolo paused first to process Clem’s words, then he turned to listen again, ‘wait, do you mean Henry was with Ken when he was shot?’
‘Yes, the eyewitnesses said that the terrorists were two; a male and female. They came in a red car and after the second explosion, they drove towards the house and saw Ken with Henry,’ Clem tried to explain pointing towards the place where the car had met with Henry and Ken.
‘I don’t understand,’ Dakolo said, stepping down from the hill with Clem, they began to walk towards the place.
‘This is where Inspector Ken’s body was found,’ Clem said after they got to the place where the shooting happened. He was pointing to a blood stained place close to a tree in the bush. ‘Henry was standing here, talking with one of the villagers; I spoke to the villager myself.’
‘Okay,’ Dakolo signaled for him to continue.
‘He confirmed that Henry was talking with him when the red car drove close to them, a gun was pointed out from the driver’s side and then pointed at Henry who had his back turned to the car. But Inspector Ken saw the gun first and shielded Henry, thereby receiving the bullets in his body.’
Dakolo heaved a sigh, not of relief but of pity. He knew that Ken was too experienced to just die after escaping from a bomb blast; especially in a place where there were several bushes and trees were he could hide.
‘But how are you sure that Henry was the one with Ken?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Inspector Ken wouldn’t have done that for a junior officer, the doctor and Henry EG are the only two people he could have done that for.’ Clem said.
‘That’s true,’ Dakolo agreed, nodding thoughtfully.
‘Besides, the villagers seem to recognize Henry EG; they described him as the sick person who used to take a walk with the doctor and two officers.’
‘But where’s Henry now? What happened to him?’
‘Sir, he could have been taken.’ Clem replied in a sad tone.
‘Taken by who?’
‘The villagers said he ran this way,’ Clem said pointing to a narrow path along the bush and the shooter got out of the car to pursue him. That was the last they saw of Henry E.G and the bombers.’
‘Have you gone in that same direction?’
‘Yes sir, we’ve searched everywhere.’
++++
Omotara and her brother Jeffrey were both seated in the living room after dinner, watching the channels TV news. About three times already, a breaking news segment had been broadcasted but details of the news was just being told.
‘Our correspondent has been able gather information which proves that the house bombed was the place the police had hidden Henry EG to protect him from another assassination attack but as at this moment, it has been confirmed that a young man and woman carried out the bombing of the place. It has also been confirmed that nobody found in the house survived; this could mean that Henry EG had also died with other victims of the bomb blast. Thirteen people including Henry EG, Dr Tobi, three maids, Officer Ken and six other police officers were occupants of the place. Only six bodies have been recovered now; the bodies found includes Dr Tobi’s, four police officers and a maid. A brief question segment with the anti bomb squad of the police reveals to us that there are still bodies yet to be brought out of the place.’
‘Oh God, please preserve Henry’s life,’ Jefa cried with teary eyes. He covered his face with his hands and began to make some silent prayers. ‘Did you know he was in Rugbe village?’ Jefa asked his sister after he was done praying.
She didn’t give a reply immediately but paused to think, she never wanted discuss Henry. She couldn’t understand what she felt anytime his name was mentioned. She sometimes wished for him to survive and at other times was anxious to hear the news of his death.
‘No,’ she finally replied, trying not to show any feeling or empathy. She faced the television without taking a glance at her brother’s face.
Jefa stared silently at his sister’s face for a while before he spoke again. ‘Why do you act as if you don’t love him?’
Omotara’s breath seized for a moment, she turned and stared at her brother’s face. ‘Love?’
‘Yes, you love him and you pretend not to.’
She chuckled, ‘I don’t love anyone brother.’
‘No Tara, you love Henry. I can see it in your eyes.’
‘You see nothing in my eyes sir, you are misinterpreting. Right now, I’m tired and the only thing in my eyes is the crave for a restful sleep.’
‘But he loves you too, so why are you resisting?’ Jefa asked her in a serious tone.
She wanted to respond but she felt a lump in her throat. She stared at him for a while and then shouted in a loud voice, ‘did he tell you he loved me or why are you pushing this so far?’ she got up and began to walk to her room hurriedly.
Jefa just watched as she walked away, he was more convinced that she was in love with him. What he couldn’t decipher was why she was hiding it, maybe Henry had done something grievous to her, he thought.
*
‘Where are you now?’ Tarasha said into the phone after locking the door to her room.
‘I don’t know the name of this place but our hotel is just thirty minutes drive from here,’ Cole replied.
‘Okay, I’ve listened to the news she I confirmed your job, well-done’ she said.
‘Boss,’ Cole interrupted, not wanting her to commend him further. ‘Henry wasn’t killed,’ he stated.
‘Huh?’ Tarasha eyes widened in shock. She didn’t expect Henry to still be alive even after so many people have had to die for him.
____
‘Who’s there?’ Henry could hear someone shout from inside the compound. He knocked the gate again and the person shouted the same way but this time closer to the gate.
‘Can’t you knock properly?’ a man asked as he opened the gate to the village clinic. He looked more like a security man, though he wasn’t dressed in any uniform. He gave a suspicious look at Henry who was looking like a war survivor.
‘I’ve been knocking for some couple of minutes now,’ Henry said and pushed his way into the compound. He began to walk straight into the clinic.
Soon, he was inside and was already being attended to by a nurse.
‘Sir, you have to deposit five thousand naira for us to continue the treatment,’ the nurse said after applying first aid to the wounds especially the bleeding places.
‘I don’t have any money here,’ Henry stated.
‘You don’t have any money and you came in for treatment, do you think this is a free hospital?’the nurse shouted.
‘I’ll pay you,’ Henry said confidently. The nurse stared at his face with questions in eyes like how he was going to pay without money. ‘Don’t you know me?’ he asked.
She stared at his face for another one minute before she spoke. ‘Are you the Henry, the NSCC man?’ she asked.
‘I’ll pay you but not today’ he said without responding to her question.
She didn’t give any reply either but continued with the treatment. She bandage his head where he had a cut, his stomach and his arm. After a total of thirty minutes, she was through with him.
‘I’ll be back,’ she said, cleaning her hand with a towel. ‘You can lie on the bed if you want.’
He got up immediately she walked out and went to the door, he opened it slightly and peeped outside.
In ten minutes time , the nurse returned to the ward with an elderly nurse and a doctor but Henry was nowhere to be found.
Episode 85
**February 10, 2031 **
The nation woke up to be greeted by the sad news of the Senate President’s demise, the other news in circulation was Henry E.G’s abduction. The atmosphere was filled with sorrow and grief, most of the citizens were asking God questions of what the nation did that warranted the loss of some of their respected citizens. No one knew exactly what the problem was but some of the citizens began to carry rumors that the victims of the assassinations could have been members of a particular cult group.
Immediately the Senate President was confirmed dead, President Emeka and his Vice called for an urgent meeting with the security staffs and top police officers. He told them about the need to double up their efforts like never before, he also asked that top officers who they thought could make the work fast should be summoned to headquarters in Abuja immediately.
Meanwhile, work at the NSCC continued to go fine. The cameras were working well and the officials especially Kimberly, were coming up with new innovations that would improve the quality of their job.
__9.30am__
Chief Elvis Richards stepped out of his bathtub and picked the towel from the rope, he stared into the mirror as he cleaned his body. As soon as he got out of his bathroom and entered in his room, his phone beeped, it was a text message notification. He moved closer to the table where his phone was and unlocked it, he was actually expecting a message from the Governor of his State of origin.
The message he saw there was a strange one and it made him begin to think deeply. ‘How are you planning to pay for your sins?’ he read it again and again. After thinking deeply for a moment, he decided to check the sender as the ID was not displayed where it should be, the name he saw on checking was ‘Samantha Osman’. A sudden fear gripped his heart and he held the phone close to his chest, he could feel and hear the sounds of his fast beating heart.
He tried to check for the phone number carrying the name but there was none, he also tried to reply the message but the message could not be replied.
He stared blankly at the wall, having only one prayer point in mind; a prayer for the assassin whom he had hired to be stronger than Samantha Osman.
++++
__11pm, same day __
‘Thank you,’ Henry said to the driver as he came out of the cab. The cab drove away immediately. Henry covered his head with the hood of his pullover and then stared round the place before crossing over to his gate. He knew where the cameras on the streets were, so he made sure that he wasn’t facing anyone or revealing his face. He pushed something on the gate and a flat box rolled out for him, he pressed in a code and the gate opened for him to enter. Soon, he got into his house and proceeded straight into his upper rooms where he locked totally and made inaccessible to anyone else. After about two and half hours of working upstairs, he came back with two bags, one strapped to his back and one held in his hands. He took another glance at the three seater sofa where he laid while Tara set up the drip, he also recalled how she appeared to him suddenly after the darkness that day disappeared. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath before walking out of the place.
++++
**Next Day, 10:50am**
The security at the Vice President’s House was tightened up immediately he got the first message. He had immediately called the Inspector General to tell him of the development and then asked for competent officers numbering about twenty who could join his large security team.
‘Good morning sir,’ Tarasha stood up to greet as she saw the man coming towards her in the living room.
‘Good morning Kim,’ Chief Elvis greeted back. ‘Please have your seat,’ he said, taking a seat directly opposite hers. He first busied himself with something on his phone for a minute before he started to converse with her. ‘How are you Kim?’ he said, still doing some final pressing on his phone.
‘Fine, thank you sir.’
‘Okay, I’ve heard about the good works you started already and I want to commend you; you’re really good at what you do.’
‘Thank you sir,’ she replied with smiles.
‘I also got reports from you about thrice but sorry I didn’t acknowledge receipt, it’s just that I already have someone doing a similar job for me,’ he said.
‘It’s okay sir,’ she replied, wondering who could be doing the job for him or if the man was just saying without meaning it.
‘Okay, the reason why I called you here today is simple,’ he continued speaking with a tone of seriousness and then adjusted himself on the chair. ‘I heard about your recent work of raising alarms through the camera system whenever one of the suspected assassins’ appearance is captured by the camera, is that true?’
‘Yes sir, it is.’
‘Can you do the same for me in this house?’ he asked.
‘Yes sir, it can work.’ she replied.
‘What about my office and other houses?’
‘Yes sir, it can work anywhere it is installed.’
‘Nice, I want you to install the process here for me. How long will it take you to do it?’
‘Hmm… A week for installing the process at a new location.’
‘Okay, when are you going to start the job? I mean start installing it in this house.’
‘As soon as you want it and once I’ve been permitted to be absent from the office for that duration the job is going to take.’
‘Permission? Who’s going to permit you?’
”Ermm… My boss sir,’ she replied stammering.
‘Forget about the permission,’ he said with a wave of the hand. ‘You’re working for me and I’m permission myself.’ he added and both of them smiled. ‘So how do you start?’
‘I’ll start by first locating the points at which all cameras are in this house.’
‘Okay, come.’ he said and got up immediately. ‘Let me show you who you’ll work with.’
___ February 13, 2031- 3 days later___
**5pm**
Benny rose immediately to his feet as he saw the big loaf of bread being tossed to him from the small opening. A bottle of water was also thrown to him. He picked the loaf of bread and began to devour like an hungry lion, that was the only meal he had gotten in three days now.
He wondered why Stainless and Don were still keeping him alive, even though they were sure he wasn’t going to ever tell them what they wanted. Maybe they wanted to punish him by giving him a slow death, he thought.
He gulped down the water after finishing the bread in one minute. Surprisingly, another loaf of bread of the same big size was tossed to him again with another bottle of water. He picked them up this time with suspicion in his heart, was it that they had finally agreed to kill him by putting poison in his meal? He stopped to think for a while.
After a minute of considering everything he could, he began to devour the second loaf too. Even if they wanted to kill him, he had no problem with that, he thought he was better off dead already.
In another two minutes, he was done with the second loaf. He gulped down the second bottle of water and gave a loud belch, then he moved to the corner where he always sat and rested his back on the wall. After ten minutes, he began to feel dizzy. He knew it must be a result of the bread he ate as he had just woken up from a long sleep before eating the bread. Maybe it was his death finally coming, he positioned himself properly in readiness to die, thanking Don and Stainless in his heart for giving him a peaceful death.
++++
**5.30pm**
It was the third day of Tarasha working in the Vice President’s House, and the man was getting closer to his death but he seemed to be very confident by the security measures he had put in place.
Chief Elvis had already informed the police about the threat messages he was being sent on phone but warned them against releasing information to the press. The police had tightened the security in his house and in the area where he lived in, the NSCC regional office for the area had also kept the place under close observation.
Tarasha drove home quietly, her plans were going on smoothly. After taking out Chief Elvis, then she would have been through with her work for Chief Gab, though her contract period wouldn’t expire until a year after.
Immediately she’s done with Chief Elvis, she’ll go one after the other for those who destroyed her family’s peace and kept her brother in pain for years, starting with the Inspector General.
Tarasha was already driving into the street to her home when she noticed that a car had begun to follow behind her. She monitored the car for a while and decided to play along, she drove past the house and continued to watch the car. It followed her for a while but she could see that it was with reluctance after passed the house; then she knew that the person or persons in the car must know that she had driven past her house.
After driving for twenty minutes more, she stopped to think for a while and then turned back. She had a feeling of fear that something could have happened to her brother at home, but she discarded the fear immediately, there was no way anybody was going to enter into that house without her receiving an alarm on her device and there was also nowhere her brother could have gone without her knowing. She began to drive back home but before she got back to the house, she noticed that the car had stopped following her.
As she got to the balcony of her apartment, she noticed a visitor’s shoe at the entrance; then she heard two people laughing inside. She could deduce that it was her brother who had a visitor but the surprising thing was how the visitor had come in without her receiving an alarm of intrusion on her device.
She ensured that her gun was ready in her pocket before she entered into the house.
‘I think Tara is back,’ she could hear her brother say as she opened the door.
‘Oh! Okay.’ a familiar voice replied.
She walked into the living room to meet a very big shock. Henry was seated comfortably with her brother, watching television and sipping wine.
‘Hello Tara.’ he said to her with a crooked smile as their eyes met.
++++
*5.30pm*
Benny didn’t die but was still dizzy and finding it hard to close his eyes. A strange kind of ache visited his head, almost running him mad. He couldn’t understand himself anymore, everything had turned double; the door, his shoes, the floor and even his body. The Nigerian praise song, ‘Everything na double double’ began to ring in his head.
Not long after, he heard Don and Stainless coming closer to where he was. They got to the door and opened it gently, more light entered in through the door, making Benny to block his eyes with his hands. They both stepped into the place and approached him slowly, Don squatted before him.
‘You refused to tell us the location of your boss right?’ Don said in a mocking tone, Benny gave no reply. ‘I know it’s more than just loyalty, you must have been sleeping with the wh*ore,’ he accused in a threatening tone.
Benny’s vision was becoming clearer as he could now see Don as one and not two anymore but he felt very weak in his body, it was as if his whole body except his brain was paralyzed.
‘Tell me, how sweet is she on bed?’ Don continued taunting. ‘Is she very good in the act like my Aisha or she’s manageable or useless?’
Don rose to his feet and continued with his speech, ‘I’m sure her body on bed must be like a log of wood, poor thing!’ he exclaimed in a mocking tone. ‘But what I don’t understand is how she could get you to be loyal with the poor sex she offers you. Maybe I’ll bang her one of these days to see what you’re enjoying.’
‘You…can…never,’ Benny said, his lips were heavy and trembling. ‘She…is not like…your Aisha whom I have banged her brains off.’
His last words infuriated Don and it earned him a blow on his mouth. Benny’s headaches increased and his vision became blur again.
Stainless and Don dragged up Benny together and began to pull him out of the place. Benny could not resist as he was being carried out, he only hoped that they were taking him out to kill him finally but his hope did not materialize yet.
They placed him on a metal chair and made him sit up right, they chained his arms to the armrest of the chair and chained his legs too. Then Stainless picked up a syringe and drew into it some liquid from a bottle and then passed it into Benny’s veins.
Benny felt weak and hot all over his body, then suddenly he felt cold again and began to see visions. Don and Stainless standing at his front had turned to carton characters, Pinky and the Brain. He began to laugh hysterically as he saw them dancing together, hitting their butts against each other.
His laugh earned him another resounding blow from Don, his vision suddenly became clear again, like a miracle.
‘Now, tell me. Where does your boss operate from?’ Don barked at him.
‘I…will…never…tell…you…that,’ Benny spoke in low tones.
‘Tell us and stop suffering yourself,’ Stainless said as a kind of advice.
‘No…you two should…stop… suffering yourselves… Just kill me now,’ Benny replied. Don threw him another blow. Benny felt like his head had fallen but it was still there; just that it had become too heavy for his neck to carry.
‘Inject him again,’ Don said to Stainless who repeated the process with the syringe again.
Don supported Benny’s head with his hands, ‘Now, tell me Benny boy, where does your boss operate from?’
Benny gave a short weak laugh, he closed his eyes and opened again. Don removed his hands from his head making his neck bend sideways again. ‘My…boss operates…operates from Cotonou,’ Benny said and added another short weak laugh.
Don wanted to blow him again but Stainless restrained him. ‘Don’t let him pass out without us getting what we want; remember we were told to keep injecting him and even leave him for a while if he doesn’t speak immediately. Don breathed heavily and stepped back for Stainless to take over, not wanting to spoil things with his anger.
Stainless injected Benny the third time and waited for five minutes before asking the question this time. ‘Tell us where you boss operates from.’
Benny stared at his face sleepily for a while before speaking, ‘we… have two main places of opera… operation…in…Abuja.’
Stainless quickly picked up his phone to write down the information Benny was about spilling.
‘One… is… in Gwagalada and…the other one…Asokoro. The addresses are…’ Benny said everything in details before his eyes closed and he slept off.
Tarasha’s bag dropped from her hand to the floor, her heartbeat increased and her eyes became full of frustration.
‘Henry, what do you want here?’ She asked angrily.
‘Is that how to welcome a friend who you haven’t seen for a while?’ Henry replied, still sitting comfortably.
‘And who told you that you are my friend?’ She slammed.
‘Hey Tara, calm down.’ Jefa interfered, he got up from his seat and faced his sister. ‘Did he wrong you so much that you don’t want to see him here at all?’
Tara gave her brother no reply but fixed her eyes on Henry who was smiling mischievously.
‘Uncle Jeff, I think we can fix this ourselves,’ Henry said, standing up from his seat. He touched Jefa’s shoulder in a calm manner.
‘Are you sure you don’t want me to come in?’ Jefa turned to look at Henry’s face.
‘No, we would handle it ourselves.’ Henry said with a smile.
‘Okay,’ Jefa said. He took another long stare at Omotara’s face before he turned back and walked into his room.
Henry and Tarasha stared at themselves eyeball to eyeball quietly for almost two minutes, there was a tensed atmosphere around them. Henry smiling face gradually changed into a serious one while Tarasha maintained her furious gaze, soon her hand was going into her pocket.
‘Calm down Tara, don’t bring out the gun yet.’ Henry stopped her in a loud tone. ‘I’m not planning to run away, why don’t you hear what I have to say before you kill me?’
‘Shh…’ Tarasha hushed him with a frown and pulled him away, not wanting Jefa to hear their conversation, she knew Henry was speaking very loud to ensure Jefa could hear from his room.
She pulled him to the front of the entrance door and stared into his eyes coldly. ‘What do you want from me?’
‘You want to kill me…’ Henry continued loudly.
‘Oh Shi*t!’ Tarasha frowned at him for speaking on top of his voice. She thought of taking him outside to talk but the neighbours could hear their voices, so she had no other choice than to pull him into her room.
Henry went straight to the bed and sat comfortably, watching her as she locked the door and threw the keys behind the bed.
‘I could kill you, you know?’ Tarasha said in a threatening voice.
‘I’m not afraid to die in your hands,’ Henry replied, he got up and started walking around the room. ‘You tried to kill me and failed, now I brought myself to you,’ Henry said as he got to the table where her laptop was placed.
‘What do you want from me?’ Tarasha asked.
‘I want to ask some questions, I hope you would give me the answers,’ Henry said.
‘I’m not obligated to give you any answers,’ Tarasha said coldly. ‘In fact, I think it’s time for you to leave; I don’t want to see you near me or my brother anymore.’
‘You don’t want to see me?’ Henry asked tauntingly.
‘Yes, I don’t want to see you,’ she shouted.
‘But I need you to answer my questions or you’ll keep seeing me until you kill me.’ Henry replied.
‘Get out of here,’ Tarasha commanded, leaving the way to the door.
Henry stood unmoved and kept looking into her eyes, he took in a short breath. ‘If you don’t want to answer my questions, then you have kill me but you should let Uncle Jeff witness my death.’
Tarasha was getting angrier, not understanding his intention, she moved closer to him slowly, dipping her hand into her pocket. She didn’t plan to kill him but to scare him to leave. Her heart was beating abnormally and her body vibrating all over, there was a strange kind of overwhelming fear around her; one that she had never felt whenever she tried to scare or kill someone. It was as if she was the one in danger of death.
Henry didn’t step back for her in fear, he was as calm as a dove, he was little bit confident that she wouldn’t kill him because he knew she was intelligent. He knew there would be questions and doubts in her heart as to whether it was a set up by the police for her.
Tarasha stopped at his front and stared into his eyes, she took her hand out of her pocket when she saw that he was unmoved. She looked away from him and opened up her laptop on the table. She quickly pressed the boot button. The fear in her heart began to increase even as she stood very close to him, but she choose to ignore and act like the fearless assassin that she was.
‘You’re scared,’ Henry said after shifting back a little as the computer began to boot.
She took a quick glance at him and turned back to the laptop without replying.
‘There’s no need to check anything, I didn’t inform the police or anyone else of my coming here, so nobody is outside. Your cameras are also working, I only made them stop operating for ten minutes.’ Henry said to her, making her freeze for some seconds. She took another quick look at him, wondering how he knew exactly what was in her mind.
‘What exactly do you want from me?’ she stood straight and asked again in a serious tone.
‘I want to know why you wasted several lives just to get me and now I’m here and you can’t even kill me,’ Henry slammed at her.
She stared at him in silence, not knowing what to do or say. Was he really right about her not being able to kill him or was she the one sparing him because it was not the proper situation to kill him?
‘Can’t you answer?’ he shouted at her. ‘Do you think God would be happy with you for wasting several lives?’ he paused to look into her
‘Hehe,’ Tarasha began with a short laugh which turned into a roar of laughter.
Henry became the confused one now but her position about God quickly came into his mind.
‘But seriously do you think all these things you’re doing wouldn’t come back to hunt you?’ he asked again.
She stopped laughing suddenly and looked into his face, her fear had disappeared; now she saw Henry like a weakling; the same way she saw those who reverenced God.
‘Who’s gonna bring them back huh?’ she asked mockingly. ‘Your god who is a great murderer himself?’ she continued speaking and began to walk in a circle round him. ‘I’ve not killed half of those who your god has killed and I’m not hoping to beat him in the records, he’s too good in the act of murdering people.’
She stopped at his front and looked into his face, ‘I kill for people who pay me, I don’t kill because I’m a blood sucking viper; those who I kill are worthy of death in one way or the other.’
‘Nobody is worthy of death, why would you say they are worthy of death when you’re not the God who created them?’
Tarasha laughed aloud again, ‘believing in god is enough reason to be worthy of death, how can you believe in a blood-sucking flesh eater and say you don’t want to die?’
‘Omotara, God does not kill, God does not love to see his people die,’ Henry said calmly.
‘Hehe, god doesn’t love to see his people die? Maybe that’s why he doesn’t come down to kill them himself, he doesn’t see them die but he sees them after they are dead and takes delight in their blood and pain.’
‘Shut up, Tara! Don’t blaspheme, God is love,’ Henry said briefly, running out of words to say to her. ‘God helps those who submit to his authority and give him the right over their lives.’
‘God is love?’
‘Yes, God is love.’ Henry stated.
‘Love doesn’t exist, that means if God is love, god does not exist.’
‘Love exists, Tara. Love exists,’ Henry said. ‘Or tell me why you’ve not hurt your brother, tell me why you’re keeping him here and protecting him, isn’t it because you love him?’ he paused to look at her face.
She was quiet as she pondered on his words. It was true that she was supposed to have killed Jeffrey under normal circumstances but she didn’t understand why she kept him and the feeling she always had when she thought about him as her brother, could that be love?
‘You love him as your brother and that’s why you’ve kept him here,’ Henry said and took another brief pause. ‘And why are you scared of killing me?’ he asked a question which made her shake visibly.
She took a quick glance at his face and frowned at his accusation. ‘I’m not scared of killing you, I’ve not killed you right now because it’s not right place to.’
‘No, Samantha. You’ve not killed me because you are not bold enough to do so. You’ve taken out more secured people even at unideal places, so why can’t you take me out?’
‘So what are you insinuating?’
‘You can’t kill me Samantha, YOU CAN’T KILL ME!’ he shouted.
‘Shh, lower your voice please and don’t call me Samantha again.’ she replied.
‘I won’t lower my voice,’ he continued. ‘People call you Samantha Osman, so why shouldn’t I call you that?’
‘Are you crazy? People in other apartments could hear you.’ she said in a scared tone.
‘People in other apartments?’ he said and gave a short laugh. ‘No, Tara. You’re not scared of people in other apartments, you’re scared that your brother could hear. Your fear has even made you to forget that you have this room soundproofed. This shows that you are desperate not to allow your brother know who you really are. You don’t want it to hurt him, do you know why?’ she was silent. ‘Because you love him Tara, you don’t want him to become disappointed on hearing that you’re an assassin.’
‘You don’t know anything about me Henry, I’m not scared of allowing anybody know who I am. They die immediately if they are not supposed to know,’ she said, trying to put up a bold face.
‘But why have I not died immediately?’ Henry asked.
‘Stop making yourself look special,’ she slammed. ‘I don’t love you and never would I do.’
‘Hehe,’ Henry chuckled. ‘Now, you just unconsciously agreed that love exists but you say you don’t love me?’ he said and waited for her response but she didn’t reply. ‘I agree that you don’t love me, but I know you love your brother and want to protect him, that’s why you’re so scared of letting him know the real you.’
‘I don’t love anyone, I could kill him now if I want to.’
‘Haha,’ Henry laughed again loudly. ‘The look in your eyes says opposite; you won’t kill him Tara, he means a lot to you and you want to protect him.’
‘I don’t…’
‘Stop arguing,’ he interrupted her. ‘Accept the truth, strong people accepts the truth; they don’t deny even when they know they’re lying to themselves.’ he said and paused to see her response; he was making the desired effect. ‘Tara, you are better than what you think of yourself. You’re better than a tool made to kill people. Think about it; your brother, you want to make him happy, you don’t want to see him cry, you want to put a smile on his face at all times but what about those people who your work has caused to cry, whom your work has thrown into eternal pain?’ He paused again.
Tarasha felt suddenly weakened by his words, her bones felt lifeless and she pulled out the chair and sat on it, tears formed in her eyes.
‘Think about the fulfillment you feel when your brother is happy, think about how you feel happy when he smiles,’ Henry continued. ‘Don’t you think you’ll feel happier if you could make a lot more people smile instead of making them feel pain and giving them sorrow?’
Henry moved closer and squatted before her, looking into her eyes directly. ‘Why have you allowed someone lie to you about God being wicked? Why have you allowed other people’s words and theories control your life? Why should you deny love just because you were taught it doesn’t exist even though you feel it?’ he said and got up again, he began to walk around.
‘Strong people don’t allow what others have said to control their lives, they live and discover what is right, they let go of whatever they’ve learnt before whenever they find out that they’ve been wrong and they try to live right when they discover the right way.’ He stopped in front of her again and squatted. He placed his elbow on her knees and held her palms in his. He could see the tears formed in her eyes as he looked. ‘Why don’t you release those tears?’ he said softly. ‘Don’t keep them in stubbornly; it would mean holding back the things you’re supposed to let go.’
‘I can’t let go of anything ,’ she said stubbornly and got up. ‘I’ve gone too far already.’
‘No,’ he rose up with her and stood behind her. ‘Don’t allow that mentality stop you from doing the right thing. You can start a new life, you can live a life of value; making other people’s lives better. I know you’ve been through a lot but don’t allow those memories keep you like the scoundrels that caused you pain, that would mean that they succeeded. But you can prove them wrong, help others like you avoid the pain, help them get a better life.’
A knock sounded on Tara’s door, she remained still and there was no answer until Henry spoke. ‘Uncle Jeff, is that you?’ Henry asked, going towards the door.
‘The key is here,’ Tara said softly to him. He turned back, remembering that she had thrown the key behind the bed. He picked up the key and went ahead to open the door.
Jefa popped in his head, he glanced at Omotara and looked back to Henry. ‘I wasn’t hearing anything, so I wanted to find out if everything is alright.’ Jefa said.
‘Yes, everything is alright.’ Henry answered.
‘Okay,’ Jefa glanced at Tara once again and stared around the room before closing back the door.
Henry locked the door and turned back to Tarasha.
‘I think it’s late, it’s time you go,’ Tarasha said to him, folding his arms.
‘I don’t have anywhere to go, I’ve been sleeping outdoor for days.’
October 12, 2016 at 3:14 pm #860792 Reply
somkhid
somkhid
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☆☆
The morning was calm and cool, Henry had just opened his eyes from the best night rest he had had for days. As he calmly took in air in the fully sure conditioned room, Omotara’s last words to him the last night began to play back in his head.
‘Just leave my room,’ she had said to him after he mentioned that he had nowhere to sleep.
‘Where should I go?’ he replied her with a question.
‘Go anywhere you like, just go.’ she said and waved him off.
‘Okay, I’ll sleep outside the gate. I think there’s a shop there with a neat balcony that I can spend the night.’ Henry had replied and turned towards the door, he took two steps forward and placed his hand on the knob.
‘Do you really want to sleep outside?’ she turned back and asked in a concerned tone.
‘But you just said I should go anywhere I like,’ Henry paused and replied.
”Ermm… You can sleep in the living room.’
‘Are you sure you want me to stay there?’
Omotara hissed and turned to lay her bed properly, ‘please sleep anywhere you want,’ she tried to act coldly but he could hear it deep in her voice that she was concerned about him.
He then unlocked the door to her bedroom and walked out. He proceeded to the living room and completely turned off the television which was already partially off, as it was programmed to do when nobody was watching.
He searched for the switches to the bulb in the living room and found the box, he turned the lights off and then laid on the three seater sofa, staring up at the ceiling which had lost it colour due to the absence of light. He was like that for the next one hour, unable to sleep; he kept on reminiscing on all that happened that day. He thought about Omotara, if his words have made the desired impact on her. Would she change and turn over a new leaf?
He wasn’t clear as to what would be the outcome of his discussion with her. She was an assassin, one who had been used to killing people and he believed that she must have learnt a lot of things that had formed her and formed her beliefs, how could he then just change her with a night’s discussion?
His heart began to pound in fear as he thought of her waking up the next day to be the same assassin that she used to be, maybe all the words he had said to her would have even been washed away from her memory. Maybe she would have even developed enough confidence to murder him the next morning. He was still lost in his thoughts when noise of a door opening caught his attention.
He looked through the darkness and only saw something that looked like someone’s nightgown, it could only be Omotara because the noise was coming from the direction of her room. Maybe she was restless like he was too, he thought.
He began to hear her soft footsteps and then the light was turned on, he used his palms to cover his eyes to shield the light from entering too much, then he slowly removed his hands after his pupil was able to accommodate the light.
She stood some centimetres away from him, in her cream coloured night gown, with her arms folded and her lips pouted in a serious manner. Her skin shone under the light, her face still looked beautiful even though she wasn’t smiling.
‘Why are you not sleeping?’ Henry asked and sat up, covering his mouth with his palm as he yawned.
She moved closer to the three seater sofa slowly, then she stopped at Henry’s front and looked into his eyes. She closed her eyes, let out a deep breath and sat on the sofa, facing him directly.
‘I can’t let go of these things, I can’t let go of killing, that’s who I am. I was created to kill, I was created like god; to be a murderer…’
‘Shh…’ Henry hushed her, ‘Don’t say that anymore, God is not a murderer, God does not kill. Those guys lied to you, God did not send them. God is good and would never wish for anybody to die gruesomely.’
Tarasha stared silently at his face for a while, the words of her brother rang back in her head. ‘God has been good to me.’
‘Okay,’ she finally continued. ‘If God is really good, then I don’t think I know the good God, the only god I know is the one at my home, the Nefary City. That god killed always and taught us how to kill, he taught us through his several servants how the other gods operates, the ones of the Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and several others. I wasn’t created by these other gods and I don’t serve any of them, I was created by the god of the Nefary Clan and he created me to kill…’
‘No! The god of the Nefary Clan or whatever you call it didn’t create you, you were created by the only true God who created the heavens and the earth.’
‘You don’t seem to get it Henry,’ she said and got up from the seat. ‘I can’t stop killing, that was what I was born to do.’
Henry got up and stood in front of her, he held her hands and made her sit back on the sofa.
‘Listen to me,’ he said, looking into her eyes. ‘You were made for something better, not to kill. Don’t let the bad people have the victory over you. They’ve made you do a lot of wrong things already but you’re still young and you could still do a lot of other things that will impact the world better.’
‘No, Henry. I don’t think so,’ she said and looked away from him. He tried to turn her face to his but she resisted for some few seconds. ‘I’ve only come to ask you one question,’ she said after turning her face back to him.
‘What’s that?’ he asked.
‘I know you have me already if this is a trap but I can’t find anything around the house and I’m confuse,’ she paused to see his reaction but his face was expressionless, so she continued. ‘Tell me the reason you’ve come here, even though you know I want to kill you.’
Henry stared at her face expressionlessly for a second and then he smiled, ‘I came here just to tell you the things I told you.’
She seemed confused about his answer, she didn’t talk but the confusion was well written on her face.
‘I’ve been watching you for some days now, been monitoring you using the street cameras. I decided to take the risk and come to you.’ Henry paused and took in a deep breath. Tears filled Henry’s eyes, a drop rolled down from the left, ‘I don’t want you to continue the way you are, you may end up badly. I want you to choose another path that isn’t of destruction, so that you can have a fulfilled life and enjoy your future.’
‘And is that the reason you came? So that I can change?’ Omotara asked in a loud voice and got up from the sofa again. ‘And what is a fulfilled life? How does one enjoy life?’
Henry got up and faced her, this time he placed his hands on her shoulder. ‘Tara, I learnt from Uncle Jeff that you’ve been with him for a few weeks now. I know you’ve spent some quality time with him. Tell me, that feeling you have whenever you’re with him and that excitement in your heart when he’s happy, do you wish to have them everyday and everytime?’
Henry paused to wait for her answer, she didn’t reply, but from the look on her face he could tell what her answer to the question was.
‘I know you wish to feel like that everytime,’ Henry continued talking, he took his right hand off her shoulder and rubbed his palm on her cheek, then he repeated the same process with the left and returned the both hands to her shoulder, holding the shoulder muscles. ‘That feeling is fulfillment; you feel fulfilled when he’s happy, you feel fulfilled when he’s smiling, you feel fulfilled when you’re with him. You know why? Because that’s what gives you real joy. You never feel the same way no matter who is executed by your hands, am I right?’ he waited for her reply again but got none.
‘Look at me Tara,’ he said and turned her face back to himself as she tried to look away. ‘You enjoy life when you’re with those you love. That’s why I came to you.’ he dropped his hands off her shoulder and turned his back to her, taking some steps forward. ‘That’s why I came to you, I couldn’t stop myself from loving you even whenever I remember that you sent people to kill me, I only wish to see you happy always. I had to muster courage to come here, I don’t care if I die or not.’ Henry paused and turned back again. ‘I don’t just want to die without having the chance to see you enjoy your life. I know you Tara, I see it in your eyes. You’re a person who can show love to the world, you’re a person who can inspire young ones to be strong and take hold of the future, you’re a person who can change the world with your strong passion and will.’ He stopped and stared straight into her eyes, ‘if only you can convert this negative energy into positive.’
‘… You guys have not slept yet,’ sleepy Jefa was saying as he walked out from his room towards them.
‘Not yet,’ Henry turned back with a smile.
‘I’m going to bed,’ Omotara said and proceeded to her room immediately.
‘Goodnight,’ Henry said to her as she walked away.
‘Are you not going with her?’ Jefa asked after she had entered into her room.
‘Going with her? You mean sleeping in her room?’
‘Yes,’ Jefa replied.
‘No,’ Henry said with a smile. ‘I’m staying here,’ he added, pointing at the three seater sofa.
‘No, why? Didn’t she allow you stay in her room?’
‘No, not that.’
‘Okay then, come into my room.’ Jefa offered.
‘No, thanks. There’s no need…’
‘I insist,’ Jefa cut in.
And that was how Henry found himself in Jefa’s room. He didn’t find the man in the room when woke up, after some minutes of stretching and turning lazily, he finally decided to sit up. Jefa walked in that moment, he was holding a new toothbrush and toothpaste.
‘Good morning sir,’ he greeted Jefa.
‘Good morning Henry, did you sleep?’
‘Yes, thank you sir. What about you?’
‘I also did,’ Jefa said, stretching forth the toothpaste and brush to Henry. ‘Omotara has gone to work already, she left so early, immediately after preparing breakfast.’
‘Hmm… It’s okay.’
_____
‘Can I become a better person?’ this question kept on ringing in Tarasha’s head as she drove to her office, even after settling down to work.
It was nine o’clock now and she was supposed to be at the Vice President’s house by 10am. She was already halfway in her plans to take out the Chief, she already studied the in and out of the mansion. She knew when and where to walk in and walk out. All she was waiting for was the right time to strike.
Now Henry’s words were echoing in her mind, she thought of going with what Henry had told her but she finally decided that it was going to be after she took out the Vice President. She may consider leaving the Inspector General since his matter was already a long forgotten one but she just had to take out the Vice President which would mean completing the mission Chief Gab had brought her in for.
She would end it that day, she had everything she needed to take out the Vice President already.
++++
10am
‘It’s time babe,’ Cole said to Aisha who was still dressed in her black underwear. She rose up immediately and put on her gown. She passed the bag containing the weapons to Cole who had it strapped to his back. Aisha picked up the bag containing the kits for makeup which they were going to use for changing their disguise.
++++
11am
‘Good morning sir,’ several officers saluted Dakolo as they passed by him and Clem. The place was crowded with several uniformed and non uniformed police officials. They had come to pay their last respects to officer Ken and carry out the official parade required to be done for officers who died in service.
‘Ken lived a great life dedicated to the service of the country, he fought for his country and gave his life for what he believes in.’ Dakolo was saying to Clem and other officers. ‘It’s our job to protect the citizens and we would continue to, Ken has died for this good course; and we know that one of desires is that the police force continues to wax stronger.’ he ended his speech with a salute and walked away with Clem.
‘Agent James Elvis would be coming to work with us, I believe that with his input, we would be able to defeat the assassins.’ he said to Clem.
‘Alright sir, but what are we going to do about the Henry issue?’
‘Since we’ve placed new boys to watch over the place, that should be enough for now.’ Dakolo replied. ‘The mistake we made before was to stop watching, that was why it was broken into.’
‘But sir, do you think someone else could have broken into Henry’s security room?’
‘That is what I’m still baffled by,’ Dakolo said, looking confused. ‘The fact that the security room was broken into suggests that it was Henry who entered into the house himself. His bank account was also debited, the bank says it was through the ATM. Nobody else except Henry would know the details of his ATM card. The only thing that makes me strongly doubt it was Henry is because Henry’s memory has been lost, so he couldn’t have remembered any details about his card details or house, since he doesn’t even know himself.’ Dr Tobi who was making efforts to help him regain his memory is now late, his final burial is tomorrow.’
_____________________
Henry sat quietly in the car, with his eyes fixed to the tab. He was monitoring Omotara’s car through the streaming from the street cameras. The last place he saw her drive into was the Vice President’s compound. With the security beef up at the chief’s mansion, Henry could tell that the man was already receiving threats and was getting himself ready for the assassin’s arrival, not knowing that he was already working with the assasin.
At fifteen minutes to two, he saw the Tara’s car been driven out of the compound. Then it was driven a little distance from the man’s house, into Godax hotels. Henry could see her park the car and take off the seat belt, she made no movement for fifteen minutes which suggested she was waiting for someone or something. Henry minimized particular footage and checked the other ones capturing the surroundings, he could find nothing, so he opened back the footage capturing Tara’s car after eight minutes.
Henry stared intently at the screen as he noticed that someone had joined her in the front seats of the car, then he noticed another person at the back seat, a lady. Tara was talking to them. The visitors stepped out of the car after five minutes, the man had a big bag strapped to his bag which he gave to the lady, then the lady turned to the back of the car to take something from the boot. Then Henry saw the man’s face, he recognized him at once, it was Tara’s boy, the same one who killed Ken while trying to shoot him. His heart began to beat fast, he knew that they were up to something.
______
‘Room 654 on the tenth floor, the window is directly opposite to the left side of the Vice President’s House. You focus on the place where you see the transparent glass wall, it’s a small extension of the house. I’m going to bring the man there between 2.30pm and 3pm, I’ll be showing him how the surveillance camera works. We would be there for fifteen minutes, so you have enough time; it shouldn’t take you more than two minutes to aim at him. I’m going to be looking for the radiated red light on his chest and once I see it, I’ll count to three with my fingers, then you send in two bullets. Okay?’
‘Okay boss,’ Cole replied.
Tarasha then turned her face to Aisha at the back, ‘in this car boot, there’s a cleaner’s uniform and ID card in a black bag. You take it and go to the left side of the hotel, you’ll find a dressing room. Change into it and take in Benny’s bag to room 654 for him. You won’t be screened by the security because you are going as a staff of the hotel.’
‘Okay boss,’ Aisha replied.
‘Good, everyone should do their tasks properly,’ Tarasha said and then added a warning, ‘mistakes this time would be heavily paid for’.
With that she dismissed them, Aisha went to the boot to take the bag while Cole went straight into the hotel. By 2.10pm, Tarasha drove out and proceeded straight back to the Vice President’s house.
+++++
2.20pm
Henry was standing directly opposite the Godax hotel, he was sweating in the pullover he had on but couldn’t take it off so as to keep hiding his face. He checked the past footages from the street cameras and saw that she had driven out already but not with the two people that joined her in the car. He tried to find out how the her two companions entered but he couldn’t, so he concluded that they could have come from inside the hotel.
What Henry had in his mind was that the assassins were planning to do exactly what they did at Rugbe village but the footages from his device just showed him that Omotara had driven back into the Vice President’s house, and so he knew they wouldn’t bomb the place without allowing her come out first.
He turned back and entered his car, planning to wait until he sees Omotara come out of the VP’s house. After ten minutes of waiting, he decided to check around with his self-customized binocular. He took the covering off his head and looked through the binoculars, first all around the streets and then to the hotel, he was still checking around when he saw a straight long red line being emitted from window of one of the rooms on the upper floor of the hotel. He came out of his car to check where the line was reaching to, he couldn’t see it until he climbed on his car with his binoculars, then he saw where the line ended.
‘All these cameras have been optimized to recognize the suspected faces and also send alarm signals to the main point,’ Tarasha was explaining to the Vice President and the three security men who were following him, they came out from one of the rooms in the house into the extension at the left side of the house. ‘The cameras here are responsive and they adjust themselves based on the light available and the image being captured.’ Tarasha continued explaining. She led them closer to the transparent glass wall, she asked the Vice President and his security officials to move back for her to explain something else. They obeyed and paid rapt attention.
The Vice President’s phone began to ring, he took it out from his pocket, silenced it and signaled for Kimberly to continued. Just ten seconds after she continued, the phone rang again. Chief Elvis picked it out and checked the caller again, it was still the same unknown caller. He silenced it again and held it in his hands. He apologized and asked her to continue.
‘The light that comes into here varies with time of the day, weather and even season of the year, that’s why the cameras here had to be optimized specially.’ Tarasha explained, facing the Vice President and his crew. Then she saw what she was looking for on his body, the blur thin red light, it was still moving to and fro, she knew it was Cole trying to focus on his target. The Vice President’s phone rang again, he looked at the screen and silenced again, then he gave the phone to his security officer to attend to the caller. Tarasha continued with her explanation while keeping an eye on the light.
‘Sir,’ his personal security official called him softly after taking some seconds with the phone.
‘Yes, you’ll relay the message to me later.’ the Vice President replied him reluctantly, not willing to take his mind off Kimberly’s explanation.
‘Sir, let’s watch it from here and see if you’ll notice anything’ Tarasha said and began moving towards the man now, she stopped and stood some centimetres by his left side near the second security officer, the red light on the man’s chest had now been balanced. She began to push some buttons with her fingers on the device in her pocket while waiting for Chief Elvis to make his observation. ‘1…,’
Chief Elvis stared at the camera, trying to make the observation, that was the same process he had gone through for every section of the house they had been to.
‘Sir, there’s a dangerous security threat.’ the man’s security officer said aloud.
‘What is it?’ Chief Elvis took a quick glance and shouted at the security officer for disturbing him.
‘2…’
‘Sir, we have to move you out of…’ the security officer persisted and moved close to the man’s front, trying to persuade him to listen.
‘3…’ Tarasha pushed the third button.
As Chief Elvis moved back, annoyed by the security officer’s persistence, the red blur light on chest moved down and two bullets pieced in through the glass wall and entered into his right lap.
+++++
‘Shi*t!’ Cole cursed loudly as he missed the target. The man had suddenly moved back at the Boss’ count of three. He quickly refocused the sniper and tried to aim at the man again but he saw one of the body guards squatting before the fallen man, he quickly placed his focus on the bodyguard’s head and fired two shots in it. Before he could get another clear aim, two more bodyguards had entered into the place and immediately come to the transparent glass wall. He saw one of them looking at the holes made by the bullets on the wall and trying to trace where it came from, he quickly sent another bullet into the guards chest. Before he knew it, more of the guards had entered. There was no way he was going to have a clear shot at the Vice President again, the game was over.
_____
Henry kept trying Chief Elvis’ phone number even though his call was being rejected. He continued to walk fast towards the gate of the man’s mansion, hoping to get there before the assassins release the bomb or whatever they had to release.
He began to think of better ways to reach the Vice President, maybe the man wasn’t even at home, he could be at a meeting and his phone could be with one of his assistants, he then decided to send a message to the number. He stopped some few metres at the opposite mansion to the Vice President’s own. After the message was marked delivered, he decided that that was the best he could do, he turned back to return to his car. That was when he noticed that he hadn’t covered his head with the hood since he removed it.
Suddenly as he took two steps, there came the sound of two gunshots, he needed no prophet to tell him where the shots came from. He increased his speed and began to run towards his car, then more gunshots were heard from the same direction.
__________
As expected, Kimberly the NSCC official ran for cover when she heard the first two gunshots. More bodyguards entered into the place and rushingly carried the Vice President outside, they also led her to safety.
She ensured that her eyes were full of tears as she watched them calling for an ambulance and rush the Vice President for first aid.
‘Hope you were not hurt?’ one of the guards asked with deep concern in his voice.
‘No, thanks.’ she replied in a teary voice. He tapped her shoulder and went back to his work.
Tarasha quietly walked away from the living room, cursing under her breath. The plan had failed, the man was going to survive the two bullets in his laps.
______
** One hour later**
‘Send the names of the guest who took room 654 to the office right now,’ Inspector Clem said to one of his assistants. He was standing in the security room of Godax hotels with three other police officers, three security officials of the hotel and the receptionist who was on duty.
‘Is this him?’ one of the security officials asked the receptionist as he paused and zoomed a video clip on the computer.
‘Yes,’ the receptionist answered, looking into the screen. She saw herself attending to the guest, he had only a small brief case with him.
‘Did he not pass through the security screening or how was he able to take in a sniper into the room?’ Inspector Clem asked.
‘I personally checked this man, there were only two clothes and a laptop in the brief case.’ one of the security officials answered Clem.
‘Then does that mean the weapon was already in the room?’ Clem asked.
‘Sir, we don’t have such weapons with us, I only suspected him.’ the receptionist said thoughtfully. ‘He insisted on using room 654 even when I told him that there were better rooms available that wouldn’t need him to go that far.’
‘Do you not have regulations guarding how you assign rooms?’
‘We have sir, but he said he was a geographer and that he had something to do with his laptop on the tenth floor at that particular side of the building.’ the receptionist replied.
‘And how did he know room 654 was the perfect room for his geographical work?’
‘He said he had used the place before,’ she replied.
‘Okay,’ Clem said and then turned to the security official controlling the computer. ‘Haven’t you seen how he left there?’
‘No,’ he was replied. ‘But there’s something here you need to see. Here’s a lady at the door of room 654,’ he said pointing to the screen where a cleaner was standing with a big bag and knocking on the room’s door. The door was opened and the cleaner entered, she walked out two minutes later without the bag.
‘Interesting!’ Clem exclaimed. ‘Then it means one of your cleaners took the weapon to him.’
‘No,’ the computer operator replied, he rewound the tape. He paused when the focus of the camera was on the cleaner’s face, then he zoomed. ‘She doesn’t look like any of our cleaners,’ he said before minimizing the window. Then he opened a folder which contained the passports of all the cleaners. ‘She’s not one of us,’ he said after comparing the faces of all those in the passports to the face zoomed in the video.
‘On low cut again!’ Clem exclaimed. Everybody’s eyes in the room turned to him. He stared more at the face in the video, ‘that’s Aisha Bello, a member of the Samantha Osman assassin group disguised in another form.’
____
**2 hours later**
‘I don’t think Henry could be seen there, maybe it was someone else,’ Dakolo said to Clem as they made their way to the computer room.
‘It’s him sir, the NSCC cameras captured his face and even the car he drove in.’ Clem replied.
‘When was the file received from the NSCC?’ Dakolo asked.
‘Fifteen minutes after it was requested for,’ Clem answered.
‘Okay,’ they entered into the computer room and went straight to the screen displaying the videos. The computer operator rewound the footage and stopped when it got to Henry’s place, he began to play the footage backwards. Agent Dakolo watched in awe, shocked to see Henry whom he thought was lost somewhere or hidden by the assassins.
Henry was seen trying to make a phone call directly opposite the gate of the Vice President’s mansion, then it was taken back to the car he came out from. He was seen entering the car to pick the binocular, then he climbed the top of the car and looked through the binocular. The computer operator paused the video, he studied the binocular and observed the angle it made with the ground. Then he minimized the footage and traced the angle from the point Henry stood. Another footage popped up and the Vice President’s mansion was showed, then it was traced again to Godax hotels.
‘Interesting! He was even watching the Vice President’s house and Godax hotels. That means he knew what was about to happen,’ Clem commented.
‘He was also at the front of the Vice President’s house when the gun was shot twice.’ the computer operator added.
Dakolo was speechless, he was frustrated and his eyes were teary. He couldn’t get himself to believe that Henry was working with the assassins. Henry who had not fully recovered, who was even attacked at the hospital and Rugbe village by the assassins.
‘Sir, I knew it.’ Clem began in a strong tone. ‘Henry E.G was playing a game all along.’
Dakolo gave him a sharp look, ‘how do you mean?’
‘Sir, looking at it from the hospital when the South African Dr David’s imposter came, if he actually came to hurt Henry, they wouldn’t have injected the cure instead of the poison. I think the plan was to take Henry out that day but because of the police’s presence, they couldn’t. Also, I believe Henry E.G was pretending all along, he knew his mother, he knew everyone, he had his memory and he even had contacts with the other assassins; that was why they could plan together and bomb the hideout in Rugbe village. Think about it sir; why was he the only one that wasn’t killed by the bomb? Even Inspector Ken that wasn’t killed still got killed by one of the assassin’s gun. Then they escaped with Henry.’ Clem let out his thoughts.
Dakolo hated to admit but he knew Clem had made sense and wasn’t far from the truth. The assassins must have also played a game with Henry’s poisoning, that was why the sample for the cure had to be left in Henry’s house. If they really planned to kill him, they wouldn’t have dropped the cure. Henry was surely one of the assassins, Dakolo was dead sure about it.
________
**5pm**
Omotara walked into the house quietly and went straight into her room without greeting Henry and Jefa who were seated in the living room. Jefa got up and followed her immediately, he was worried about her but before she entered into her room and locked the door before he could get there.
Jefa sighed and returned to the living room, ‘I thank God she is safe.’ Jefa said to Henry who was looking less bothered.
‘Yes, thank God she’s safe. Thank God the Vice President is not dead too.’ Henry said. The silence continued. Henry busied himself with the phone.
‘May I come into your room? I have something to say about your attack on the Vice President.’ he typed into his message box and sent to Omotara’s number which Jefa had given to him.
*
Omotara ignored her brother’s knock and began to take off her clothes slowly. She felt stupid and useless, this was the second mission she had failed. The first was failing to kill Henry and the second was failing to kill the Vice President. All started when she began to develop feelings for Henry. She hated to think about it, it made her head ache.
She thought she was made to kill, that was how she lived her life for the past fifteen years and she had never failed in any of her tasks until the past few weeks. If she was really a killing machine and was created to kill, then why was she failing to perform her tasks? Why were feelings taking over her body if she was a machine that was created not to have feelings? Or was Henry right when he said that she had been lied to? As she pondered on these questions, her phone beeped and she picked it up to check the notification. She had already taken off her top and was left in her bra and black trousers.
‘May I come into your room? I have something to say about your attack on the Vice President.’ she read the message from an unknown number. The only person who came into her mind was Henry, but she decided to reply the number first. ‘Henry?’ she typed and sent. In less than twenty seconds, the reply entered. ‘Yes.’
‘Come,’ she sent back and went to unlock the door.
The knock sounded on the door after a minute. ‘Come in,’ she said.
Henry walked in slowly and closed the door. He stood still in front of the door and stared at her.
‘What do you have to say?’ she asked in a cold voice. ‘And how did you know about the attack on the Vice President?’
‘I told you I’ve been watching you through the NSCC cameras, you’ve been keeping the operation running effectively.’ Henry replied.
‘D–n! Don’t you have any other thing to do that to stalk me?’
‘Yes, I don’t have any other thing to do for now.’ he replied calmly.
‘What do you have to say?” She asked after a silence of ten seconds.
‘I tried to stop you from trying to kill him but I failed,’ Henry said, unaware that it was his text message that eventually saved the man.
‘You can’t stop me, no one can stop me ; we only had a little miscalculation.’ she said and turned away from him, she began to take off her bra.
‘God stopped you,’ Henry said.
Tarasha turned her face and gave him a sharp look, then she turned back again.
‘It wasn’t the man’s time to die yet, so God prevented it.’
‘You can say whatever you want to say, but he’s still going to die soon, even before he fully recovers from the bullets in his lap.’
Henry was moved by her words and the fact that she admitted she was still going after the VP, he moved closer to her and stood beside her. He avoided looking at her half naked body and focused his eyes on her face. ‘Omotara, what has he done to you?’
‘Nothing,’ she replied blankly and stared back into his eyes.
‘Then why are you after him?’
‘I don’t breach contracts, he’s the last person on the list of my contract in Nigeria, I have to take him out.’
‘You don’t have to,’ Henry said in a pleading tone. ‘Whoever gave this contract to you is misusing you, this is not what you’re meant to do, you are meant to do something better in life.’
She sighed and stared at him for some seconds, ‘Well, Henry. I’m not convinced yet about all these stories, I’m not convinced about God or love, I’ve never felt God or love in my life, how do I know they’re real and not just deceptive feelings you’re trying to get into my head?’
Henry heaved a sigh of frustration, he didn’t know how to answer her question but he just had to talk. ‘Look here Tara, you don’t have to feel it before you believe it, that’s what is called faith. You believe and it works for you.’
‘Haha,’ she suddenly laughed loudly. ‘What you’re saying is hogwash man, yesterday you talked about the feelings of Love for strong people, now you’re saying I don’t need feelings to believe in your God or Love again? I know you have been brainwashed already but you can’t brainwash me like they’ve done to you.’
‘I’m not trying to…’
‘Shh…’ she cut him short. ‘Do not tell me about God or Love again until you can show them to me.’ she said, staring straight into his eyes. ‘Now leave this room,’ she shouted.
Henry was confused on what to say, he wasn’t knowledgeable about the things of God, so he didn’t know what else to say to her but he remembered once hearing a preacher say that you don’t need to know much about the Bible before becoming a soul winner. He decided to go back and pray about the issue.
‘Get out!’ she shouted at him again when he was sluggish at moving. He began to proceed slowly to the door.
‘And don’t try to stop me again, I won’t spare you.’ she added before he got to the door.
**February 23, 2031**
The days rolled by in silence. Activities in the country and it’s capital went on as usual. The Vice President had been flown to the US for treatment and safety and only little news about him was disclosed by the press because they got little information themselves, the government made sure that everything about the Vice President’s treatment and safety was done secretively.
Omotara and Henry avoided themselves like plagues even though they stayed in the same house. Both of them went out early in the morning but a different times and also returned at different times in the evening. Henry avoided staying in the living room, so he did Tara; she always remained in her room everytime she was in the house while Henry stayed in Jefa’s room.
After several days of not greeting or talking to each other, Henry finally knocked on her door this Sunday morning.
Omotara did not waste time in opening the door as she thought it was her brother knocking, she was shocked when she met Henry smiling at the door. She tried to close it back but he stopped it with his leg and pushed the door open.
‘What do you want?’ She said as she proceeded straight to the bed.
He closed the door and stood with his two legs slightly apart, ‘Good morning Omotara.’
She turned to face him and stood straight, she folded her arms and gave him a contorted look without replying his greeting.
‘I see you’ve been trying to avoid me for the past few days,’ Henry added, not bothered about her not replying.
‘Hear who’s talking,’ she said with a mischievous smile.
‘But I’m saying the truth,’ Henry insisted.
‘Well, if that’s the only thing you’re here to talk about, I believe that this conversation is not necessary.’ she said with a dismissing note.
‘I’m not here to talk about that, I’m here to invite you to lunch with me,” he replied.
‘Lunch?’ she rolled her eyes in surprise. ‘And what makes you think that I’ll accept your invitation.’
‘You will,’ he said briefly and paused to see her reaction. ‘I can already see it in your eyes that you need something like that.’ Henry added and moved closer to her.
‘Come on, stop this trash. You see nothing in my eyes.’ She said and moved back.
‘Don’t let us argue, you’ll go with me this afternoon.’ Henry said, raising up his hands as a sign of surrendering. ‘Why don’t you dress up now and let’s go to church together?’
‘Never would I go to waste time with you in such a place again.’
‘You call it wasting time?’ Henry moved closer to her again.
‘Please, I don’t have time for this religious bullshi*t this morning,’ she said and turned to make her bed.
He drew nearer to her and placed his hands on her shoulder, she turned back sharply and gave him a warning look. He was a bit scared but he refused to be moved. They looked into each other’s eyes for close to two minutes before the frown on Tarasha’s eyes began to vanish. She tried to move away but he placed his hands on her shoulder again and stopped her from moving, she felt intimidated by his boldness.
‘Henry, what do you want?’ she asked softly.
‘I told you what I want already,’ he replied.
‘And I said I’m not interested in going anywhere with you, what else do you want?’
He looked into her eyes for some seconds before replying, she tried to move away again but he pulled her back. ‘I want you,’ he finally replied.
She gave him a questioning look, he smiled and rubbed his palm on her cheek. He touched her lips, it was soft and inviting. His head moved closer and hers, until their lips met.
___
** Mayo Clinic, Rochester, New York **
‘D–n Matvei, he’s not as efficient as you said he is,’ Chief Elvis cursed loudly into his phone. His right leg was bandaged from the top to the knee and hung on a suspender. The bullets had been removed but reports from the doctors suggested that he may never be able to use the leg anymore. The first bullet had entered into upper region of his thigh while the second one into his knee.
‘Elvis, he only arrived in Nigeria few days before you were shot, so there was no way he was going to know about that attack.’ Matvei replied in his thick Russian accent.
‘He came into Nigeria on the same day I returned from my medical leave, so that is already enough time to study the environment.’ Chief Elvis said. ‘I even gave him two people to work with.’
‘Is it up to two weeks already?’
‘Yes, it is.’
‘Okay, what instructions did you give to Rex?’ Matvei asked.
‘What kind of question is that? I asked him to go after Samantha Osman.’ Chief Elvis replied.
‘That’s all you did?’
‘Yes, isn’t that’s why I requested for him to come to Nigeria?’
Matvei gave a short laugh, ‘ I’m very sure he’s doing his job well. Rex is one of the best assasins in the world now.’
‘What do you mean by that? If he really good as you say and he is going after her, then she couldn’t have still tried to kill me.’
Matvei laughed again, ‘You fool, you asked him to go after her and he’s doing that. He does only what he’s asked to do, I’m sure he’ll get and kill her soon. Nothing concerns him with you.’
‘Nothing concerns him with me?’ Chief Elvis asked in surprise.
‘Stop being a dummy man,’ Matvei said mockingly. ‘You didn’t ask him to protect you, so he has no business whether you’re dead or alive, all he’s going to be doing is going after that Samantha.’
‘What? So you mean I have to ask him to protect me specially.’
‘That’s another job entirely, he can do that if you ask him to. But remember, Rex is an assasin, a killing machine and not a bodyguard.’
Chief Elvis heaved a sigh of frustration, he was tired of the pain and torment. He had returned to Nigeria after his medical leave when boldness and confidence because of Rex’s arrival into the country on that same day. And his boldness had increased after he also spoke to Rex and gave him the vision, he had been inspired by Rex’s firmness and fearful look.
_____
‘I hope Chief Elvis is safe,’ Stainless commented as they drove in the Hyundai sonata. He was driving and was seated at the front with Don while Rex who had been working as their boss for more than a week was seated at the back.
Rex was a man of very few words, that was if he could even be qualified as a man; he talked like a robot with calculated words and made them brief always.
However, he had a very handsome and innocent face when he smiled but it becomes scary whenever he was giving an instruction or communicating something serious. He had a fairly dark skin like that of a black American, coiling hair and neatly carved moustache, only his Russian-like accent would make one know he wasn’t an American or he didn’t live in America, one couldn’t really tell where he was from. He was way younger than both Don and Stainless but he seemed not to consider that as he ordered both of them around like small boys.
For him, Don and Stainless had been almost useless for his mission since the Chief introduced them to him. He was supposed to be given a month to learn about his new environment and strategize, but with them, he told the Chief two weeks would be enough. But contrary to his expectations which had been raised by Chief Elvis when they were being introduced to him as leaders of two of the top most assassins gang in the nation, he found them ineffective. Most of the technical things he needed to know about the environment were discovered by himself, the only things they were able to provide him with were the names of the places and the routes to take in and out of them which he considered useless as the electronic maps on his devices could provide him the same information. The only thing that made them useful to him was their hostage, Benny. Rex was the one who mixed the solution they injected into Benny’s body before he revealed Tarasha’s locations to them.
‘Boss, have you gotten any other information from the Chief since he left?’ Don asked, turning to Rex at the back seat.
‘No,’ Rex replied briefly. To him, the welfare of the Chief didn’t matter, all he wanted to do was finish off the lady assassin whose real name he had been said to be Tarasha but was popularly known as Samantha Osman.
‘We are few metres close to the place,’ Stainless announced and pulled over to a space at the left hand side which was supposed to be for vehicles returning.
‘So, here is Gwagalada?’ Rex asked in his thick bass voice.
‘Yes,’ Stainless replied. ‘That’s the gate,’ he added, pointing to a gate some distance away at the other side.
‘Keep driving,’ Rex ordered. He picked out a device and held the both sides in his two hands.
Stainless returned to the other lane and kept driving towards the gate, they drove past few metres away without any instruction from Rex.
After they drove close to a bush was when Rex instructed for them to drive back. Stainless reversed the car.
‘There are no cameras watching outside that house,’ Rex said. ‘But we need to find out how the place looks behind the gate. We’ll wait around till night time.’
______
2pm
Tara and Henry ate silently, stealing glances at each other’s faces. For Tara, it was the first time she was on a date with someone she wasn’t planning to extract any information from or kill, it was the first date she agreed to without having any plan. This was different from the first time she had lunch with Henry at Elymax hotel, then she did it to extract information about the NSCC from him. This time, she didn’t know why she did it exactly, she just knew she couldn’t reject.
The kiss she had shared with him earlier that day was the worst she ever had, it was short and unexciting but it still kept her longing for more. Henry was a bad kisser, she concluded. The first time she kissed him, she was trying to cover up her act in her attempt to extract an information from his laptop and get him to follow her Chief Jubril’s party, this time, she couldn’t tell the reason for it, all she knew was that Henry was bad in the act.
Henry ate in silence but his heart was filled with thoughts and questions. He wasn’t of the school of thought which proposed love as blind but he began to consider the thought to be accurate now. This was he in love with an assassin, he who believed in the sanctity of human lives was madly in love with one who killed without thinking.
His kiss with her in the morning had been the worst kiss he ever had, even the first one at the NSCC’s house was better, he considered her a very bad kisser. He didn’t mean for the kiss to happen but it did anyway, he wasn’t even planning to touch her or have any romantic activity with her. All he wanted was to see her change and see her express real happiness which he hoped he could help her find.
He had gone to church with Jefa after Tarasha had refused to come with them but he ensured she didn’t refuse to go out for lunch with him.
They finished the meal eventually and there was no excuse for the silence anymore, Henry had to take the bull by the horns.
‘Omotara,’ he called softly, looking into her eyes. She stared back at him expressionlessly. ‘What are you thinking about?’ he asked.
‘Nothing,’ she replied briefly.
‘Nothing? You mean there’s nothing on your mind right now?’
‘Yes, what is supposed to be on my mind?’
‘I am,’ Henry said.
‘You?’
‘We should be on your mind, I mean.’
‘We? You and who?’
‘Both of us,’ Henry said.
‘There is no ‘us’, huh?’
‘There is.’
‘Hehe,’ she chuckled, ‘look here. I could…’ she paused to look around and then placed her hands on the table and poked her head forward. She lowered her voice so that only Henry could hear. ‘I can kill you at anytime,’ she said in a tone which suggested she was serious about it.
Henry was disappointed at her answer, he wondered why she had to bring killing into every of their discussion.
‘Why don’t we forget about who’s killing who right now and focus on us,’ he said.
‘There’s no us, but there’s always going to be death.’ She replied stubbornly. She knew what he was going with the conversation and was trying to avoid it.
‘Okay,’ Henry said with a smile, understanding her plot to avoid the discussion. ‘Let’s talk about us before you kill me.’
‘What do you mean?’
‘I love you Tara,’ he said and paused to see her reaction, she didn’t make any facially. ‘I want to know if you feel the same way about me. I need to know that before you kill me as you say.’
‘I don’t know what is love, so I don’t love you.’ she replied coldly.
‘So I mean nothing to you?’ he asked. ‘And what happened in the morning, you don’t see it as anything?’
‘What happened?’ she asked and paused to see his reaction. She knew what he was talking about and the truth was that it meant something to her and she was longing for more but she couldn’t bring herself to admit it.
‘IIf you’re talking about the kiss, it was horrible and it meant nothing. I’ve kissed several other men and I ended up killing them, most of them claimed that they love me just like you are doing now.’Episode 86
**8pm**
‘But could it mean that he still lied about the location to us?’ Stainless asked as he drove them in the car, away from Gwagalada.
‘I don’t think he lied, the effects of the drug could be seen all over him that day.’ Don replied him.
‘But how come we found nothing in that house?’ Stainless pressed on.
‘Because they left the place already, they could be in the other location.’ Don said.
‘You talk to much,’ Rex said sharply with a warning tone to the both of them. ‘Think more instead.’
There was quietness for the next fifteen minutes of driving until Rex spoke again. ‘We’ll visit the location in A-s-O-ko,’ Rex said, trying try pronounce Asokoro. ‘If we can’t find them there, we won’t leave without getting a trace or link.’
_____
‘How was your outing?’ Jefa asked Henry who he had not spoken with since he returned with Omotara.
‘Not bad,’ Henry replied. ‘But Omotara is as stubborn as usual.’
‘Stubborn?’
‘Yes, but don’t worry.’ Henry said with a smile. ‘With time, she’ll be broken.’
‘Are you sure of that?’ Jefa asked, his tone revealed his doubts. ‘The way she acts and talks is as if she is afraid of love, and afraid of you.’
Henry smiled again, he got up from the bed and took off his shirt. ‘Don’t worry sir, I think you should just take a rest.’
‘How can I take a rest? I’m scared to see her like that,’ Jefa said.
‘Okay,’ Henry said sharply and turned to him. ‘There are two things likely to happen, it’s either she becomes worse than she is now or get better. And I believe she’ll get better.’
‘You believe so?’
‘I’m sure,’ Henry said and turned back to change his shirt. He returned to the bed and sat in it, resting his back against the headboard. Jefa was still standing, there were questions written all over his face as he placed his hands on his waist.
‘There’s something else I want to ask,’ Jefa said in a tone which caught Henry’s interest.
‘What’s that sir?’
‘It’s about you,’ Jefa had a frustrated look on. ‘You, what the police and the media says about you recently and why you’ve been walking around like a fugitive everytime. You always wear sweaters that keeps your face hidden.’ Jefa paused to look at Henry’s face.
There was guilt written all over Henry’s face, this was something he had been avoiding, he didn’t want to talk about it with Jefa.
‘No, don’t get me wrong,’ Jefa said with an apologetic expression as he saw the look on Henry’s face. ‘I believe that you are innocent of all the charges but I’m wondering why you are not making any move to clear your name.’
There was a deafening silence for almost two minutes, Jefa had his eyes placed on Henry’s face while Henry was looking away, guiltily.
Henry finally heaved a deep sigh and began to talk softly. ‘I’m sorry I hid it from you, I was scared that of I told you about it, you’ll hate me just like Tara. I don’t want that; You’re my only connection with her and I don’t want it broken.’
‘What are you talking about?’ Jefa cut in, placing a suspicious narrow look on Henry’s face. ‘Is that part of the reason Tara seems afraid to love you?’
‘No, she isn’t afraid of me because of that but it’s true,’ Henry said in low voice.
‘It’s true… What do…you mean?’ Jefa stuttered, deeply afraid. ‘What is true?’
‘All what you’ve heard about me is true,’ Henry said.
‘No, it can’t be.’ Jefa tried to look into Henry’s eyes for confirmation but Henry looked away, the tears in his eyes confirmed him pleading guilty. ‘You mean you work with the assassins truly?’
Henry rose up from the bed and stared at Jefa’s face with a pleading look, ‘I don’t work with the assassins but I know about them.’
‘Then why don’t you tell everything you know about them to the police?’ Jefa said in a scolding manner.
‘No, I can’t.’ Henry said with tears in his eyes, motioning his head to signify disagreement. ‘I can’t tell the police anything.’
‘Why? Are you scared of the assassins?’
‘No, I’m not. But I don’t want them to get caught.’
‘What do you mean?’ Jefa asked sharply.
‘I’m sorry, I can’t say more than I’ve said already.’ Henry said and began to walk out of the room.
‘Henry, Henry,’ Jefa called in a commanding tone but Henry refused to stop. They walked past the dining room and then the living room.
Henry walked out of the house and out of the compound without listening to Jefa’s call. Jefa had to walk back into the house, disappointed and frustrated.
‘I guess you and your friend must have had a terrible argument,’ Tara said in a taunting tone. She was now seated in the living room, with the legs on a footstool and the television remote control in her right hand.
Jefa refused to reply her and walked straight into his room.
He returned to the living room thirty minutes later. He met Omotara already sleeping on the three seater sofa, he tapped her gently.
Omotara opened her eyes slowly and sat up, looking into her brother’s eyes and wondering why he woke her up.
‘I served your food already,’ she said to him.
‘I’m not eating, I want to talk to you.’ Jefa said and took his seat beside her.
‘What is it brother?’ she asked in a lively tone.
‘I want to return to my house tomorrow,’ he said.
Omotara felt heartbroken at the sound of his words, she stared at him for a moment without reply. Blood began to pump through her body at a faster rate, tears formed in her eyes almost immediately.
‘I want to go back to my normal life, I believe that my presence here has not done any good to you’ Jefa continued. ‘I want you and Henry to reunite but I’m scared because I don’t think that would ever happen with my presence. I want you to be happy. My few days with you have been the happiest days of my life. All these while I’ve been living alone, I’ve been living in pains that bad memories bring to me, you’re the only one that brings back memories of good times to me.’
‘Then why do you want to leave if you’re happy with me?’ Omotara said in a pleading tone, she herself couldn’t even believe that the words were coming out of her mouth.
‘I’m scared,’ Jefa said and stood up. ‘My bad dreams seems to be manifesting already. I’m on my way trying to reunite you and Henry together but I’ve dreamt severally that it’ll cause a disaster, especially if I’m with you.’ he paused and turned to look at her face. ‘I don’t want to be the cause of your sorrow.’
‘Brother, dreams are meaningless, they are products of our imagination and activities during the day, they shouldn’t form your actions. You dream that we being together will bring disaster but still you say that the happiest moments of your life has been when we are together. Why don’t you let us work it out, so that you can be happier. Why do you want to return to the pains that the bad memories cause you? Why not stay in this happiness?’
‘I don’t think this happiness would continue,’ Jefa said briefly.
‘It will continue, we can it continue. We can leave this country if you want, I believe it will help erase the bad memories and dreams from you.’ she said and got up, desperately trying to stop him from leaving. There was a brief silence, she closed her eyes and sniffed back in the tears.
Jefa sat back on the chair, thinking about the option of traveling out of the country, it sounded like a good idea to him. Maybe they could avert the disaster coming if they were in another country, besides, in all the dreams he had, the locations were places in Nigeria.
Tara sat back on the chair with him and placed a hand on his shoulder. ‘Would you stay with me?’ she asked.
‘Would you be happy without Henry?’ Jefa asked another question which got her confused.
‘I don’t know,’ she said, looking narrowly away.
‘I want you to be happy…’
‘I will be happy,’ she cut in, deciding to not consider herself, all she wanted was his own happiness. ‘I will be happy when I’m with you.’
‘Are you sure?’
‘Yes.’
‘I don’t think so,’ Jefa retorted.
‘I will be happy brother. You’re getting it all wrong, I’ve never been in any relationship with Henry and I’m not planning to start one.’
Jefa looked into her eyes for some seconds. ‘But you love him?’
‘I don’t know.’she replied and looked away again.
‘How can you not know?’ Jefa said, turning her face back to him. ‘Stop denying, it’s obvious that you love him.’
‘I don’t know if I do, that’s the truth.’
‘Henry has a challenge, I think we should try and help him fix it instead of leaving him.’
‘I don’t know about his challenge and we don’t need him. I’m okay with you, let’s travel to another country and forget about him.’ she said.
‘No,’ Jefa said in an adamant tone and got up to his feet. ‘I won’t let you trade your happiness for mine, if I can’t see you happy, then I’ll return to my former self.’ he said and stormed back to his room.
++++
**At Inspector General Rikau’s place **
Rikau was in a seat facing Rex with two non uniformed officers standing behind him while Don and Stainless standing behind Rex. Chief Rikau was relaying Chief Elvis’ message to them.
‘The Vice President wants her dead but he also wants you to find and kill the sponsor, anyone you find first would be okay.’ Chief Rikau concluded with a summary after a long message of about ten minutes.
‘We are close to getting her Chief, it won’t be long before we bring her and her sponsors down.’
_________________________
**Next Morning**
__7.30am__
Tarasha was dressed in a black suit and trouser with her hand bag hung in readiness to go out.
‘Good morning Tara,’ Jefa greeted her as she approached the exit door.
She quickly turned back and flipped her hair backwards. ‘Good morning brother,’ she greeted with a smile. ‘I served your breakfast already,’ she said and continued towards the door.
‘I’m leaving today,’ Jefa said, making her stop abruptly.
She turned back slowly with a frown, ‘you’re leaving where?’
‘I explained to you yesterday already,’ Jefa replied.
‘But I said we’ll leave this country soon.’
‘Not without your happiness.’
She took in a deep breath and stared thoughtfully, ‘Okay, I’ll talk to Henry today and see if we can help him.’ she said and paused to see his reaction.
‘Okay,’ Jefa nodded. ‘But I still need to go to that house today, I need to pick somethings.’
‘Promise me that you’re not trying to escape,’ she said.
‘I won’t leave you if you promise that you’ll make yourself happy.’
_____
**8.45am**
Henry was jerked off from sleep as his phone vibrated in his pocket. He opened his eyes to find himself in the boot of the caravan, then he remembered what happened the last night.. He quickly peeped out through the window to see if the owners of the vehicle were around. After seeing no one, he walked out of the vehicle and jumped over the fence of the warehouse.
The sun rays reflected into his eyes as he begun to walk down the road. That was when he realized that he was without cover that morning, he had left Tarasha’s house without any suitable cloth to disguise himself.
He moved to a corner and took out his phone. ‘I think I love you. Let’s meet today by 5pm.’ that was the first pop-up message his eyes saw as he unlocked the screen. It was from Omotara.
++++
7.45am
‘Hello madam,’ Stainless greeted a man coming out from a black gate.
‘Hello, may I help you?’ Henry Paul replied politely.
‘Yes, please,’ Stainless said, then he motioned Henry Paul to step forward. ‘I’m from the police headquarters,’ he said, displaying an ID card.
‘Okay sir,’ Henry Paul adjusted his NSCC ID card hung around his neck.
‘Who stays in this building?’ Stainless asked, pointing to the Tarasha’s gate.
‘Hmm… A young lady and three friends.’ Henry Paul answered.
‘Do you know her and her friends?’
‘Yes, I know a little about her but I don’t know about her friends, I’ve not even been seeing them recently. I only see her occasionally with another young man whose face I never see properly.’
‘Okay, do you know if she’s in the house now?’
‘No,’ Henry Paul said, shaking his head to emphasize. ‘She should have gone to work already, I recently found out that she also works at the NSCC where I’m a regional staff.’
‘Hmm… So she works at the NSCC?’
‘Yes, she does. Hope there’s no problem.’
‘No, there’s none.’ Stainless said with an assuring look. ‘Do you know her name?’
‘I know her to be Evelyn but I found out at the office that her full name is Kimberly E. Alexander.’ Henry Paul answered. ‘Are you sure there’s no problem?’
‘Yes, there’s none. I think she’s not the person I’m looking for,’ Stainless said with an harmless smile.
‘Okay then, I have to be on my way now. I’m running late already.’ Henry Paul said and waved the presumed officer goodbye.
Stainless quietly returned to where their car was parked, several distance away from their main target location. He entered into the front seat of the car, Don was sitting at the driver’s side while Rex was at the back.
‘Boss, more than just one person stays in the house. But I think the owner herself is a lady, her name is Kimberly E. Alexander, she works at the NSCC.’ Stainless said, looking at his boss’ face through the rearview mirror.
‘I think we’ve got the correct location, there are cameras all around the house. We only need to confirm by bringing your hostage here.’
‘So, how do we strike boss?’ Don asked impatiently. He clenched his teeth and fists, excited about the fact that he was a part of the team that was thing to bring down Tarasha.
‘We’ll strike gently, remember she’s a machine too.’
‘Good morning sir,’ Kimberly greeted as she walked into Mr Sylvester’s office.
‘Good morning miss, how are you doing today?’ Mr Sylvester replied.
‘Fine, how about you, your wife and kids?’
‘I’m fine and my family is fine too,’ he replied with a broad smile.
‘Okay sir, here’s the flash drive containing the embedded files.’ Tarasha said, handing him the drive.
‘Thanks Kim,’ Mr Sylvester collected it and quickly inserted it into his laptop. Kimberly curtsied and turned to leave.
‘Ermm… Please Kim, could you help me check Frank and monitor what he’s done so far,’ he said.
‘What did you ask him to do sir?’ Kimberly said, turning back to him.
‘Okay, sorry I didn’t tell you; I just didn’t want to disturb your weekend. Agent Dakolo called on Saturday and asked that we should optimize the system to identify Henry E.G.’ Mr Sylvester said.
‘What?’ Kimberly exclaimed, ‘but why?’
Mr Sylvester paused and narrowed his look at her, surprised at her outburst. ‘Why? Because he’s missing and the police are in search of him. The last time he was caught on camera was the day there was an assassination attack on the Vice President and since then, he has not been captured again. Agent Dakolo had since asked us to keep tabs on him since that day.’
‘But…’ she looked baffled. ‘Why wasn’t I told?’
‘You weren’t in the office that day and even throughout the week, remember that you were being questioned all day by the police officers as an eyewitness at the scene of the attack.’ Mr Sylvester replied, still surprised at her reaction towards the news. ‘I just thought that I shouldn’t bother you about it, since you have other tasks at hand and you already taught us how to integrate new images and facial structures into the process.’
Tarasha heaved a sigh of frustration, ‘so what’s Frank doing on it now?’ she asked.
‘Henry E.G was caught on cameras yesterday night…’
‘Huh?’ Kimberly’s interrupted.
‘He was caught on camera,’ Mr Sylvester repeated and then paused. He gave her a suspicious look, ‘why are you acting strange?’
‘Nothing, nothing,’ she answered sharply and tried to compose herself. ‘So where was he seen?’
‘He was captured in front of a warehouse, we couldn’t find where he was coming from or where he entered because of the darkness. It was the security lights at the gate of the warehouse that revealed his face. But this morning, he was captured flying over the fence of the warehouse and he’s been monitored already. His location and the live streaming link has been sent to the police headquarters by Frank. The only thing I want you to do is to see his progress in monitoring Henry’s activities and transferring to the police headquarters.’ Mr Sylvester said.
‘Okay sir,’ she replied, still acting calm. ‘I’ll get to him.’ she said and turned to walk out.
‘Thank you,’ Mr Sylvester replied, still surprised about her earlier reaction.
Instead of going to check Frank as she was asked to do, Tarasha walked straight to her office. She entered and slammed the door, then she fell back on the door and ran her fingers through her hair. She didn’t know why she was bothered so much about Henry but she just knew she was scared that he shouldn’t be caught, not because he would implicate her but for his own safety.
She quickly walked to her table and picked up her phone, dialing his number immediately.
____
“Has he been seen moving?” Dakolo asked, staring into the laptop on the computer operator’s lap. Both of them were seated at the back seat of the car while Clem was driving and another officer was with him at the front, a police van was following behind them.
“No, he has not come out from the restaurant.”
“Good, just one more minute drive and we’re there.”
____
Henry was seating alone at the table meant for three in the local restaurant. He had long finished the food he ordered for, that he was still seated there without questions from the sales women was because it wasn’t their sales rush hour which were always very early in the mornin and during break hours of workers.
He had his bowed, his forehead touching the table; his phone was in his hand and he was staring at the text message which Tara sent him earlier. He knew it could only be because of Jefa she had sent it, Jefa may have told her to make she he returns to the house and that would have forced her to send the text message. He wondered if it was advisable to return back to Tara’s house even if they wanted him back, he was sure that with his presence there, Jefa would soon come to find out that her sister is the dreaded assassin. He didn’t want to be the one through whom Jefa would receive the heartbreaking information and through whom Tara and her brother’s relationship would be destroyed.
A tear dropped off his eyes as he wondered if she could ever change and live the life she was supposed to live, she had said to him that she wouldn’t until she was shown what love or God meant, he didn’t know how to do that and he didn’t know if he would ever be able to do it.
His phone suddenly began to ring, it was Tara calling. His heart skipped a beat, he silenced the phone, more tears dropped from his eyes, he didn’t know what she wanted to say and wasn’t ready to speak with her yet, maybe he would have summoned courage before the evening time when she asked them to meet.
The call ended and the phone began to ring again immediately, he silenced it again. He thought of his mum, how he had neglected them and instead go for Tara first, he had only sent a text message to her saying he was fine and was going to see her when everything was settled, whether she had gotten the text message or not, he didn’t know. He decided in his heart that it was time he paid a short visit home and put his parent’s mind at rest, at least, they’ll be rest assured that he was alive.
The phone began to ring the third time, he mistakenly answered as he wanted to silence it. He hesitated for some seconds before raising up his head to place the phone on his ears.
‘Henry, can you hear me…’ he was hearing her speak when he saw two uniformed police officers enter through the door of the restaurant and began to spread tactically, then Dakolo entered after them with his eyes fixed straight to where Henry was seated. ‘You need to move to somewhere the street cameras can’t reach, I’ll help stop the streaming for an hour so that you can go far before the police officers gets to you.’ Omotara continued speaking but Henry wasn’t listening anymore.
Henry dropped the phone quietly, he rose up to face Dakolo who was already close to him.
‘The game is over Henry, don’t make any stupid move, this place is surrounded already.’ Dakolo said.
_______
Tarasha felt cold surg through her body as she heard the agent’s voice over the phone, the game was over truly. She quickly dropped the phone and took out the micro sim. She picked another phone with which she dialled Jefa’s number.
‘Hello brother, where are you?’ she said hurriedly.
‘Where else? I’m at home,’ Jefa replied. ‘Preparing to go to my former apartment.’
‘Please, can you leave now? I mean immediately, this moment.’
‘Why?’ Jefa asked in a surprised tone.
Tarasha sighed and immediately thought of a good excuse to give her brother. ‘From the footages we have at work now, it looks like there’s something like a bomb in that area. It would explode anytime from now, so I think you should leave now and stay at your place till I call.’
‘Hmm… Okay.’
____________
*** One hour later***
Henry was alone in the dark room, his hands rested on the table and his head bowed. The room was an interrogation room but different from the one he was put in the first time the police arrested him. By the hardness and harshness of the metal table on his hands and chairs on his butt, plus the stuffiness and hotness in the room; he could tell that this interrogation room was one prepared not for ordinary suspects but for hardened criminals.
Someone walked in fifteen minutes after he was put there. The person turned on a bulb which provided a faint light which focused more on the table and the chairs at each end, rather than the whole room. The officer turned on another light which brightened up the whole place.
A quick glance around the place sent shivers down Henry’s spine; he saw metals of different types, whips of different sizes, pressing iron of different kinds, electrocuting chairs and other items used in torturing criminals. His head began to ache at once. He didn’t know if he would be able survive the treatment that would be melted out to him by the police, neither did he think he was strong enough to keep in information about Omotara after the police uses all the torture instruments on him. He hoped that she would have left for somewhere far before the police would torture him into confessing.
He fixed his eyes on the person whom he later found out to be officer Clem, officer Clem had an evil smile on his lips, he seemed content with the terrified look on Henry’s face. He turned off the bright light again, the only reason he had turned it on at first was for Henry to be conscious of his environment and that he had achieved.
Two other officers walked in ,they were in uniforms. Officer Clem spoke in low tones to them and one of the younger officers walked out, Officer Clem and the other one proceeded towards Henry.
Officer Clem took his seat in front of the table, he folded his arms and rested his back, giving Henry a stern look.
‘It’s time to tell us the truth,’ he finally began in low tones. ‘We’re the only ones who can help you, you’ve been a great help to the nation and we don’t want to lose you. I’ll personally ensure you’re set free if you open up and give us all details about the rest of your assassin group.’ He was still talking when the officer who had gone out returned, he walked towards Clem and whispered something to him.
‘So the IG wants to do the interrogation by himself?’ Clem had asked back in low tones and the younger officer nodded, that gave Henry an idea of their conversation.
Officer Clem rose up from the seat and began to pace the room slowly, making noise with his shoes. Soon the door opened and a voice ushered another person in.
‘Here sir,’ Henry couldn’t see the face but he recognize the voice as Dakolo’s.
The two new entrants proceeded straight towards the table, their face became clearer to Henry as they got closer.
Inspector General Rikau had an evil grin on his face as he stood before the table, then he slowly unbuttoned his suit jacket and sat on the chair Clem stood from.
‘So you’re the evil genius who has been working with the assassins and pretending to be with the Nigerian government,’ Chief Rikau began. ‘Well, there’s no time to talk too much, all we want to know is where the rest of your gang is.’ the man said and paused to get a reply.
Henry stared blankly without moving his lips, about five people’s eyes were on him and he felt they were biting him. He wasn’t part of the assassin gang and didn’t know where they were, so he wasn’t going to reply the question. As far as he was concerned, he didn’t know Samantha Osman or her gang, who he knew was Omotara Danjuma, Jefa’s sister.
‘I see that you don’t want to talk, do you think we’re not aware that your memory is back?’ Chief Rikau barked at him. ‘It’ll be good for you if you start talking to us now. Where are the other members of your gang?’
‘I’m not in any gang, so I don’t know what you’re talking about.’ Henry replied.
Chief Rikau began to laugh softly, then he increased the loudness. Before Henry knew it, a heavy blow that made him begin to see stars landed on his face. That was the beginning of his torture.
________
**Two hours later**
Tarasha had kept her eyes glued to the laptop for the past three hours, she was expecting the police already, she believed they’ll soon be able to force out the truth from Henry, that was even if he didn’t tell them willingly.
She began to regret again not being able to kill Henry, now it would destroy a lot of her plans while Henry would likely be sentenced to death or a long term imprisonment if he was able to prove that he didn’t work with her group. Killing him herself would have even been a better option, for him and for her as it would have prevented Henry’s suffering.
Her eyes drifted away from the laptop’s screen as her phone vibrated on the table. She picked it up and answered the call. ‘Hello brother.’
‘Tara, it’s three hours now and you’ve not called me. There has been no news of bomb blast anywhere, do you want me to go back to your house or just remain in mine?’ Jefa asked impatiently.
‘I’m sorry for lying to you, there’s no bomb anywhere. But there’s a problem; Henry has just been arrested for his alleged connection with the assassin group…’
‘What?’ Jefa exclaimed loudly but in a soft tone.
‘Yes, he was arrested this morning.’ Tarasha reiterated. ‘Now since he has been staying in that house with us, the police may come there soon, that’s why I asked you to leave the place, I don’t want them to harass you.’
‘Hmm… So what are we going to do about Henry now?’ Jefa asked, sounding less concerned about himself.
‘Don’t worry, just stay there. I’ll come and get you soon.’ she said to him.
‘Okay.’
She heard a soft tap on the door immediately the call ended, she checked who was at the door before unlocking it with the control. ‘You may come in,’ she said.
Mr Sylvester opened the door and walked in recklessly, he looked tired and frustrated. He stopped midway and stared at Kimberly.
‘Please, I need you to work on something very fast for me,’ he said after heaving a sigh.
‘And what could that be sir?’ Kimberly asked, standing up from her seat.
‘The police has been calling for two hours now, they’ve asked us to trace Henry’s movement by all means. They say he’s not cooperating with them and they need to know where his movement for the past few days.’
‘But how can we do that sir? We won’t be able to do it since the cameras didn’t capture his face,’ she replied.
‘But you once mentioned optimizing the system to identity targets with their clothes,’ he paused to see her reaction. She was without defence. ‘ Henry has been on the road since last night, if the cameras couldn’t identify his face, it could identify the clothes he had on.’
‘The probability of identifying him with his clothes is very low, light changes the colour of clothes too.’ she replied, unwilling to take the task.
‘Why are you talking like this? You don’t feel like working today?’
‘I don’t understand what you mean sir,’ she feigned ignorance.
‘Have you forgotten that you already stated that one could identify targets if we know their clothes colour even in darkness?’
‘I said so?’ she asked, heaving a sigh of frustration. Mr Sylvester stared at her and shook his head in disbelief.
‘Ermm… I don’t know what the matter is with me today,’ she said, trying to come up with an excuse. She held her forehead and winced in pain, ‘I have a throbbing headache,’ she said, picking up her phone and closing the laptop. ‘Please, I have to take a break from work today. I’ll be back tomorrow,’ she said and picked up her bag.
Without waiting for the man to permit her, she walked out of her office, leaving him to stand there alone and dumbfounded.
*
Tarasha was still in the compound of the NSCC office and was just about entering into her car when her phone rang. The call was from an unknown caller, a landline number.
‘Tara,’ a weak voice called as she answered.
‘Henry,’ she shouted in surprise and closed back the door. ‘I tried…’
‘Shh…’ Henry hushed her quickly, not wanting her to let out an information that would implicate her. ‘I have very limited time to speak with you and this call is being recorded,’ he said with a weak giggle, she knew he was trying to warn her. ‘Please, I need you to come and meet me here, I’m at the maximum security prison,Kuje. I need you to arrange for my lawyer, please come quickly so I can tell you everything you need to know. Also tell my mother that I’m fine and I’ll be coming to see her soon. I love you dear niece.’
Tarasha felt hot tears in her eyes as the call ended, Henry sounded desperate to protect her. He even had to go as far as pretending that she was his cousin
…to be continued# season 1 finale #
Within a couple of hours Jefa spent in his apartment, he was able to rearrange and clean up the place. it was during this process that he remembered his mother’s diary and the picture in it, he tried to get it from where it was kept but then he remembered seeing it with his sister when she had come to get it at the hospital. He thought it was time to know more about those who sent his family packing from Lagos to Borno, he decided he was going to ask Tara about it when he saw her.
A soft knock on the door startled Jefa who had dozed off on the sofa, he rubbed his eyes with the back of his palm and got up immediately. The knock came again.
‘Who’s that?’ he asked, the only person he was expecting was Omotara but he still needed to be sure it was her and not any of his neighbours who would like to check if it was an intruder that entered into the house.
‘It’s me, Omotara.’ the reply came.
‘Okay, hold on.’ Jefa walked to the door and opened it. Tarasha walked in quietly and stood by the left side of the door.
Jefa closed the door and turned back, ‘I thought you were not going to come,’ he said, staring into her eyes.
‘Of course, you know I would come. What reason do you have doubt my words?’
Jefa sighed, ‘truly, I have no reason. I’m sorry,’ he said and proceeded to sit on one of the sofas.
‘You can go home now, it’s safe.’ she said. ‘I’ll be joining you later.’
‘Safe? Are you sure?’
‘Yes, I am. I’ll come and meet you later at home.’ she said and moved closer to him with a white nylon bag in her hands. ‘I bought you lunch on the way.’
‘Hmm… Thanks,’ Jefa said peeping into the nylon as he collected it from her.
‘You’re welcome,’ she replied.
‘Today, I thought Henry would be coming back home, I was planning to make dinner for all of us, a special treat.
‘Well, you can still go ahead and make dinner,’ Tarasha urged. ‘Henry would be fine.’
‘How would he be fine in the prison?’ Jefa asked in a pained tone. ‘I know what it is like to be a prisoner, so he must be as suffering greatly.’
‘Well, I’m going to see him now and I’ll make sure he’s granted bail, I’ll be coming home with him hopefully.’ she said.
‘Are you sure?’ Jefa asked with his face brightened up a bit..
‘Once everything works out well,’ she said. ‘So please go ahead and make your special treat for us tonight. Okay?’
‘Okay.’
Tarasha smiled and then turned, ‘I have to go now.’
”Ermm, I need something from you.’
‘What’s that?’ he turned back, thinking he wanted to request for money.
‘That diary you took from this table, I need to use it today.’
‘Oh! She widened her eyes.’ It’s okay, you’ll find it in between under your mattress, I’ve always kept it there for you.’ she said with a smile.
__________
‘Hmm…’ Chief Rikau had his chin in his hands as he stared at the pictures shown to him on the screen by Rex. ‘I know him, he must be the one behind Samantha.’ he added.
Don and Stainless continued to stare at the pictures without talking, even though they knew they got the wrong person but whoever the wrong person was; he was still their enemy since he lived in the same house as Tarasha. They had seen him come out from the gate and had taken several pictures of him.
‘What do we do with him?’ Rex asked Chief Rikau.
‘I don’t know yet, I’ll call the Vice President and we’ll decide together.’ Chief Rikau said as he got up from the seat and took out his phone. He walked out of the room and entered into another room where he was alone.
‘Hello Sir,’ Rikau spoke into the phone after his call was answered.
‘Chief Rikau,’ the Vice President replied from the other end in a gruff voice.
‘We’ve found out the person supporting Samantha Osman,’ he said.
‘Who is the person?’ Chief Elvis replied excitedly.
‘Danjuma Jeffrey, the son of Late Doctors Danjuma and Lydia.’
‘Oh!’ Chief Elvis exclaimed. ‘I thought you guys finished the whole family,’ he added in a tensed tone.
‘No, we only took the parents out that day and a little boy. The initial plan was for us to only take drop the parents.’
‘True, I remember! But which of the kids is now grown up enough to have the boldness to come for all of us?’
‘It’s their first son, he was one of those that were taken in for training into the then Haram group, he graduated and did his first two mission but only for him to come one day ,I think after he listened to some dumb preaching and tell us that all we’ve been saying are lies, that he was no more interested.’
‘Hmm, so you guys caused this problem.’
‘No, we caused it together.’ Rikau argued. ‘You financed us then.’
‘I never believed in your course, we only used you for political reasons.’
Rikau paused, it was hard to swallow the bitter truth, Chief Elvis had hit him hard with it.
‘But you still owe me your life,’ Chief Elvis continued after sensing that Rikau was hurt by his last words. ‘If I didn’t intervene, you won’t be alive today. You would have been sentenced to death.’
‘No, you didn’t do it for me, you did it for yourself.’
‘Shut up and don’t argue with me, I did it for you. I was in authority then and I could have killed you silently in prison but I chose not to, but I decided to reward you for your faithfulness to us.’
Chief Rikau was quiet.
‘I think we should have just wiped out the whole family that day, you know that was the main reason I called off the officers securing the town, their family was the main target of the day, we just gave you the opportunity to also use it for your course.’
‘No Chief, I agree it was also an opportunity for us that day but if we had attacked that family alone, it would have raised suspicions…’
‘But how come he’s still alive?’ Chief Elvis cut in.
‘He was one of the guys we set up for the soldiers to arrest, I think he was granted pardon after some years.’
‘And how did he know about all the Chiefs who sponsored you?’
‘He’s the eldest son and he could have known that his parents were running from you guys?’
‘Hmm… We have to do something quick about him and make sure he knows why we do it, make sure he dies a painful death. I don’t want to return and find him alive.’
**15 minutes later**
‘I want to go with you guys,’ Chief Rikau said to his assassins.
‘You may not need to, we could bring him here.’ Rex said.
‘I want to go and kill him in his house with my hands,’ he insisted.
‘If you insist,’ Rex said, putting on his hood to cover his face. ‘Do you want to come in with a covered face?’
‘No, I have a message for him, he has to see my face.’
‘Okay, we will deactivate all the cameras outside before you come in,’ Rex added. ‘But the cameras in will still be on, because they are made with high security. We’ll take out everyone we find in there.’
______
**Forty five minutes later**
The officers led Henry out of the cell, he had handcuffs in his hands and legs. His face was swollen and badly bruised, his white singlet had turned to a cloth of three different colours; brown, black and bloody red.
‘That’s her, your niece Tara.’ the officer said, pointing at the lady where she was seated. Henry could not see well with his eyes from afar, he felt tipsy as he tried to look. The officer motioned him forward and they got to the table were she was seated. There were several other tables in the same place with prisoners and their visitors.
‘You have only six minutes,’ the officer said and left them alone.
For the first few seconds, Henry refused to sit, he kept staring at the face. This wasn’t Tara, it was an impostor, so he thought until she spoke.
‘Please Henry, sit ‘ she said to him in a teary voice.
Henry was baffled, this was her voice he heard but it was a different face.
‘Sit down, my face is disguised.’ she said and wiped the tears in her eyes with an handkerchief, careful not to clean the makeup.
Henry then took his seat and continued to stare into her eyes. It was the same eyeballs as Tara, he was now convinced it was her.
‘I want to get you out of here,’ Tara continued in low tones. ‘You have to cooperate with me.’
‘No, I don’t want to get out of here.’he replied confidently.
She stared at him in shock and disbelief, how could he say he didn’t want to leave the place with his body battered and his face deformed, almost unrecognizable again.
‘What are you saying?’ she asked in a shocked tone. ‘I could help you get out by tomorrow and leave to another country.’
‘No, I don’t want to get out of here, it won’t stop the police from coming after you. I want you to get out of here and go to somewhere far with your brother.’
‘What do you mean?’ she asked, baffled, she couldn’t understand his kind of mentality.
‘I’m already labeled a criminal, it’s of no use for me to escape. But I want you to leave before the police tortures me enough to get out information about you.’
‘I don’t understand you.’
Henry stretched his hand on the table and held her palms, he squeezed it and felt the warmth. ‘You need to leave this country with your brother, leave to a place you can start a new life of positive impact, where you can live your real life, that’s all I want now, I don’t need my freedom.’
‘But I can’t leave you suffering here,’ she argued.
‘You have to,’ Henry insisted. ‘You have a bright future and for that bright future to come, there has to be a sacrifice.’
‘You don’t have to make the sacrifice, I did all I did myself and I have to take responsibility for my actions.’
‘No Tara, I can’t let you do that. It’s going to bring an end to what I see that you can become, you have the qualities in you to make the world better, and that is where you’ll find your real happiness. I don’t want freedom in expense of your happiness, I’ll be free in my heart once I see that you’re doing good.’
‘No, Henry,’ Tara shook her head in tears. ‘I can’t let you do this.’
‘Please let me do it,’ Henry said, using his hand to turn her face back to himself.
‘No, I can’t.’
‘Yes, you can. Look at me Tara,’ he held her face with his two hands. ‘I don’t have any other life to live if I get out of this place, my joy is to see you happy and alive.’
‘No, I need you to get out of here.’ Tara said stubbornly with tears now dropping from her eyes.
‘You don’t need me Tara, you need to be happy and I’ve told you what to do already.’
‘I need you Henry, I can’t be happy without you.’ the words dropped off her mouth like a bomb of so much impact, both to her and Henry. ‘You’ve showed me how to be happy and I want to do it with you.’
Henry stared at her face in silence for some seconds, how he wished she had said that a long time ago, maybe a solution would have been found and things wouldn’t have deteriorated to this level. Maybe they could have left the city and go to somewhere else where they could be happy together but things had gone worse already, he had to make this sacrifice for her to continue living happily.
‘The people of the world are cruel and they’ve made me like they are,’ she continued. ‘If I want to be happy and live a life of impact like you’ve taught me, then I have to live it with you, I have to learn by watching you live it.’
Tears flowed down from the eyes of the both of them, their foreheads touched each other’s with Henry both hands on her ears.
Tara moved her head backwards a little but Henry’s hands was still on her ears. ‘Please, let me help you leave here and we can go somewhere else afterwards.’
Both of them spotted the officer who had brought Henry coming back with another officer, they knew the time he had given them was up.
‘It’s too late Tara, it’s late; I don’t want both of us to be hunted for life, we won’t still be happy that way. I’ve taught you all you need to know about a happy life already, you have to live it without me and You CAN’
‘No Henry,’ Tarasha said with tears rushing down her face.
‘Time’s up, please get up!’ The officer pulled Henry away from Tara.
‘Please do what I’ve said,’ Henry pleaded as the officer pulled him up.
‘No Henry, No,’ she screamed in tears and watched Henry as he was being dragged away.
‘Please, do what I said.’ she could hear Henry’s voice echo in her head as they dragged him out of sight.
*
**About an Hour later**
Tarasha was still in tears as she drove back home, the tears had almost washed away the makeup on her face but she was still well disguised with it. She continued to ponder on all Henry had said. She wished that he would agree for her to help him get out of the place but he had refused and said that the only way he could be happy was if she did what he suggested; and that was she and Jefa leaving the city to go and live somewhere else happily.
The thought was too much for her to bear, she pulled over to the side of the road and broke out in tears. After a minute of crying, she cleaned her face and picked up her phone. Then she dialed Cole’s number.
‘Hello Boss,’ Cole’s voice sounded eager. He had been on a long break and was already expecting the boss’ call.
‘Hello Cole, how are you doing and how is Aisha?’
Cole’s reply was delayed for some seconds, he was surprised at his boss’ tone. ‘What’s the matter boss?’ he asked instead of replying her greeting.
‘Cole, I’ll send twenty million naira each to you and Aisha’s account after I’m done with this call, I’m paying you off, I won’t be assassinating again, so I don’t need your services anymore. I advice that you live a good life with the money and stay away from killing people.’
‘Boss…’ Cole had lost his voice, he couldn’t believe what he just heard.
‘Goodbye Cole,’ she said and ended the call. She closed her eyes for a second and took in some air, she opened them back and started her car engine. It was time to go and meet her brother, get him to leave the country with her and live that fulfilling life that Henry had taught her and sacrificed himself for.
She had just driven further for only five minutes and was few metres close to the house. She met with two cars approaching from the return lane, she recognized the driver of the first car, it was Don Daniel, Cole’s former boss. She was staring at him but he couldn’t recognize her because of the disguise. Then she saw in the second car, seated at the back seat, the man who defiled her at eight, Inspector General Rikau.
Fear gripped her heart, the worse came to her mind, she could only think about Jeffrey. She increased her speed and got to the house in three minutes. In a matter of seconds, she had parked her car and was rushing into the house.
There was nothing suspicious around, the door was firmly locked. She took out her key and entered into the house quietly. Then she saw in the living room, something that would change her life forever. Jefa.
Jefa was lying in his pool of blood, two bullets hole were in his forehead and chest.
That was it, the only reason she could live a happy life gone. Her whole body vibrated as she knelt beside the dead body, the diary was on the floor stained with a drop of blood.
She saw a note written with her brother’s blood as the ink. It read, ‘The Danjuma’s family must all be wiped out, we are coming for you, Omotara.’
She tried to hold in herself but it was impossible, she let out a scream that reverberated throughout the whole city.
‘Cole, start preparing Aisha’s heart. The killing is just about to begin, I’ll pay you triple of what you earn already.’ Tara said into the phone.
END OF SEASON ONE
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Tarasha 71-80
Updated: December 1, 2018 — 8:24 am

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