Chapter 14 part 6&7
BREAKING NEWS – INSPECTOR GENERAL OF THE POLICE KIDNAPPED
The Vice President had just returned home and was trying to change his clothes in his room when he got the text message carrying the headline on his phone. ‘Nonsense, fake news,’ he said to himself. ‘What’s wrong with Linda Ikeji?’ he added, already blaming the blogger in his mind for giving out false and unverified news. He took off his shirt and returned to the bed in his singlet and knee-length shorts to read the text message properly.
He placed a knee at the edge of the bed and clicked on the link provided in the text message. It led him to the news website and he scrolled down to read. The first thing he saw was the vehicle which he recognized as the Inspector General’s in the bush. He hissed and scrolled to continue, thinking it was just another vehicle of the same kind.
The Inspector General Of Police has been kidnapped this morning while on his way to the hospital for his weekly routine checkup and treatment. How the kidnap happened is unverified yet but our sources say the Inspector General and his escorts were ambushed along Goodluck Road. His car was found in a bush at Ama with the dead bodies of his two escorts in the bush. Efforts to trace how the car got there is yet unproductive as most of the residents interviewed claimed not to have seen how the car got there. More details to be revealed later.
It can’t be true, the Vice President thought to himself. He located his other phone and dialed the Inspector General’s phone number. The number was switched off.
He thought of calling the man’s wife but remembered that the woman and their two daughters lived in the US and may not be able to tell the immediate whereabouts of the man. He then scrolled down, he selected and dialed the number of the Deputy Inspector General in charge of the zone. The call was answered after the first ring.
‘Good evening your excellency.’
‘Good evening DIG, there’s the rumour about someone kidnapping the Inspector General, I want you to find out who’s behind the rumour and get the person arrested.’ Chief Elvis said, getting up to his feet.
‘It is true sir…’
‘What is true?’
‘The Inspector General was kidnapped this morning…’
The Vice President lowered the phone slowly in shock and found himself seated in the bed. He stared at his phone in silence for a while before something popped up in his mind. He checked the time on the phone, it was 7:53pm. He got up and proceeded to the television. He turned on the wall socket and turned on the TV. After two minutes of looking for the remote control without seeing it, he turned off the television and hurried out of the room to the living room. He met Vivian seated there and watching a music channel.
‘Hello Vivian, you have to excuse me for some minutes please. I can’t find my TV remote control and I want to listen to the news here,’ he said as he sat beside the girl on the three seater sofa.
‘Its okay sir,’ she said as she handed the remote control to him. She looked at him for a while and noticed the tension. ‘Hope all is well Dad.’
‘Uhmn… I hope so too.’
The news began and Chief Rikau watched in silence with Vivian. The kidnap was confirmed and everything about the kidnap Chief Elvis had read online was repeated on the news.
Vivian did not need anyone to tell her what the matter was after listening to the news. She knew that the Inspector General was a close pal of the Vice President and believed that they must share a lot of secrets together.
‘Vivian, get me a bottle of Ace from the bar.’ the Vice President said to her with a huge release of breath.
‘Ace Of Spade, get me a bottle!’ he shouted at her.
She got up quickly and found her way to the bar. She returned with the bottle and a glass cup in less than a minute.
‘Here is it,’ she said.
The man opened the wine bottle and filled the glass cup with it. He dropped the bottle on the floor and got up to his feet with the cup in his hands.
‘Tell one of the maids to open the door, I want to spend sometime in the field,’ he said to Vivian.
Vivian stared at him, surprised and wondering what the man was going to do on the field. She remained on the same spot instead of doing as her father had instructed.
‘Didn’t you hear me?’ the man turned back and slammed at her after taking a sip.
‘Dad, what are you going outside to do?’ she said in a loud voice as she sprang up from the seat. ‘You’re not even dressed properly,’ she added, her eyes scrutinizing his looks from head to toe with her eyes.
‘Just get the door opened for me,’ the man replied angrily, biting his lower lip and tightening his fist.
Vivian remained on the same spot without moving. But just then, a maid was seen at the dining area and the man beckoned on her. He instructed her to get the door opened and proceeded slowly after her.
Inspector Dakolo was seated in his living room with James, both discussing about the recent news of the Inspector General’s kidnap.
‘Could the kidnapper be Samantha Osman?’ Dakolo said, more like thinking aloud to himself even though James was in the room with him.
‘I don’t know what to think,’ James replied. ‘There has been reports of her kidnapping people recently and I’m scared this might be one of them, she ends up killing them after the kidnap.’
‘Are you talking in reference to that of Senator Garuba and the former Health Minister?’
Dakolo paused and stared thinly for a moment. ‘The two victims were killed in those cases.’
‘Hmm,’ Dakolo shook his head. ‘So does that mean the Inspector General will be killed soon?’
James also pondered on the situation for a while. ‘No one can tell. But if the kidnappers of the previous two guys are the same with this, then it may have the same outcome.’
‘But this is not right,’ Dakolo said in anger and sprang up to his feet. ‘Someone is toying with the nation’s security. If the country’s Inspector General of Police can be kidnapped, then it means nobody else is safe.’
There was a brief moment of silence.
‘The man was only with two escorts that morning,’ James said, lifting his gaze to Dakolo’s face. ‘I heard that he’s been going to the hospital like they for a couple of weeks now.’
‘There’s actually no problem with that. What I’m really bothered about is the boldness of the person in plotting and executing the kidnap and the inability of the Inspector General and his escorts to foresee a possible attack.’
‘Well, it has happened already. The onus is on us now to make sure the man is recovered safe and sound and as soon as possible.’
‘Which of the agents are in charge of the case?’
‘My team should be, even though I’m yet to receive any directive concerning that. But since it’s a Samantha Osman related case, my team has to be involved. I believe I would get a call from the team leader soon, Agent Tim.’
‘So nothing has been done yet?’
‘Something should have been done.’
‘I heard that a number of the DIGs and AIGs met in the Headquarters earlier this evening.’
‘And what is the result of their meeting?’
‘I don’t know, I’m not sure they’re even done yet.’
‘What about the last two victims? Haven’t you made any investigations on them?’
‘The cases happened outside our territory, and like it should be, other officers carried out the investigations. The reports we’ve gotten so far hasn’t been too bad, Samantha did a clean murder in Eze Okafor’s case except that she made it obvious she was the killer but for Senator Garuba Ahmed’s case, we’re tracing the ID cards already and we would get a complete result after the trace.’
‘What about the other guys she works with, is there nothing that shows their real identities?’
‘Nothing for her members were found in Kwara state and Anambra.’
‘Hmm… Okay,’ Dakolo said and sat back on the chair. He relaxed for half a minute before he began to talk again. ‘So what about your sister, how is she doing now?’
James frowned a bit but tried to hide it, he didn’t like the change in the subject of discussion. ‘She’s fine now.’
‘Did she tell you what happened to her?’ Dakolo asked.
‘No, she didn’t. My Dad has convinced her to keep quiet,’ James replied.
‘But what about you? What do you think it could be?’
He shrugged in a tired manner and shook his head ‘I don’t know.’
‘But you’re the elder brother, I believe you should be able to deduce somethings without being told except you never lived with your family.’
‘I did, but these matters are complicated, you can’t make a conclusion.’
‘Well, if making a conclusion is the challenge, it means you already have some thoughts in your mind.’
‘Yes,’ James sighed uncomfortably. ‘I do think it’s something serious and connected to my father.’
‘Is that all?’ Dakolo asked, raising his brow, he didn’t expect such a vague answer.
‘Yes, I know a lot of things are still being hidden from me but I’m sure I’ll discover them soon.’
‘Yes, I believe we will discover a lot soon. It’s getting tougher and I’ve decided to put in more efforts. I’m going to get to the root of the matter and make sure I clear my name.’ Dakolo said in a determined voice.
James just stared at him in silence. His father’s name and reputation was at stake, so was his. He knew he might have to turn against Dakolo if the man goes far and takes steps that may hurt his father and the family.
James took out his gun as he got to his entrance. He was somehow ready and expecting Samantha’s visit again. He decided not to be intimidated by her threats anymore and talk back to her when she talks. He had also made up his mind to move from the apartment as soon as he could and had already began to search for another.
He pointed in his phone’s flashlight as he entered into the house. The place he always met her was empty. He turned on the switch and the lights came on. His eyes hovered around the living room, searching every corner for her.
‘I’m going crazy,’ he said to himself and hissed. He sat on one of the sofas and unbuckled his belt. His belly was full, he had stopped at a restaurant to take dinner.
He closed his eyes and rested his head on the backrest of the seat for some minutes. He was had slept up for some minutes but was woken up by the ringtone of his phone. His eyes popped open and he pulled out the phone from his pocket. Vivian was the person calling.
‘Good evening Vivy,’ he said as he answered the call.
‘Good evening brother, did you listen to the news this evening?’ Vivy asked, her voice sounding worried.
‘Yes, I did. What’s the matter?’ James replied.
‘Its Dad, since he listened to the news about the Inspector General’s kidnap, he has been acting strange.’
‘Strange in what way?’
‘He’s been drinking, and now he’s still outside the house in the garden. He’s been there for more than two hours and doesn’t want to come in.’
‘Hmm, that’s strange. Why don’t you talk to him?’
‘I have but he’s not listening. He says he’s only trying to think and says nothing is wrong with him.’
‘Well, I don’t know what we can do to him.’ James shrugged.
‘What if you come around?’
‘Its late Vivy,’ he replied and glanced at the wall clock. It was past eleven. ‘I won’t be allowed in this night. But even if I’m allowed in, Dad may not listen to me, he listens to you more.’
‘I know, just calm down. He’s an adult and he knows how to take care of himself. You just go in and take your rest, he’ll be okay.’
Chief Elvis slapped himself on the shoulder as he felt a mosquito bite there. He checked his palm and saw the freshly murdered mosquito in blood. He hissed and wiped off the stain with a leaf. He wondered how mosquitoes could be in the garden when it was supposed to be fumigated. But then he realized he was no longer in the garden. He looked around and found himself close to the small farm. He hissed. He had left the garden to avoid another reoccurring plea from Vivian to come into the house. He didn’t want a situation in which she would invite others to come and plead with him.
There was nothing wrong with him as the girl thought. He only had to stay out for a while and think. He didn’t think his thinking in the building could produce the results he needed. He had planned his life from the scratch thinking under harsh conditions and it had made him successful so far, he needed to think in that same condition to get him out of the mess.
He chuckled as another mosquito sang past his ears. He remembered the days of hustling and sleeping outside as a young man. His determination was what had brought him out of poverty.
He looked around and located a wooden long bench behind. He got up from the concrete block he was seated and changed position to the bench. He decided to lay flat on the bench for some minutes and think more.
He knew he was safe from Samantha Osman as long as he remained in the Villa. He also decided to increase the number of security officers moving around with him when he was was in public. He had gotten a call a few hours ago and was rest assured that the Inspector General would be rescued, he decided to go aggressive in his plan against Samantha Osman immediately after the Inspector General was rescued.
May 4, 2031
‘Do you know when he entered into the house last night?’ Vivian asked a maid, standing at the entrance of the kitchen.
‘He came in not too long ago,’ the maid washing plates answered. Two other maids were in the kitchen, one cleaning the floor and the other one arranging the utensils. ‘Let’s say around 5am,’ the maid added.
‘5am?’ Vivian widened her eyes in surprise. ‘That means he stayed outside for more than six hours.’
She shook her head and turned back. She proceeded back towards her father’s room and paused at the entrance for a while before walking back to her room.
Tarasha walked into the room where the Inspector General was being treated. Dr Ekwueme and Tomi were in the room by the man’s bed. The doctor had just finished inspecting the intravenous fluid passing into the man’s vein and now had the tip of his thumb placed behind the man’s wrists.
‘Good morning Doc, how is he doing now?’
‘Not doing bad,’ Dr Ekwueme replied and turned to her. ‘One major reason the beating affected him terribly because he had not had anything to eat that day.’
‘Yes, we didn’t give him food on purpose, we wanted him to feel it badly.’ Tarasha replied the doctor. She stopped beside the bed and stared at the Inspector General laying asleep in the bed. ‘He should be conscious already, isn’t he?’ she asked, staring at the doctor’s face.
‘Yes, he woke out of unconsciousness around 2am. He’s only asleep now,’ Dr Ekwueme replied.
‘When will he be fit enough to continue receiving torture?’ Tarasha asked.
‘You still want to torture him?’
‘No, I don’t want to but I may have to. The only way he’d escape another torture is if he tells us what we need willingly, and I’m not so sure he would give in so easily.’
‘But you have to allow him recover at least a bit more than this.’
‘How long will it take him to be fit?’ Tarasha asked.
‘Three to four days,’ Dr Ekwueme replied.
‘Huh?’ Tarasha widened her eyes at him. ‘I didn’t ask you how long it will take him to be fit for his usual activities. I mean how long will it take him to comfortably receive more torture without dying.’
The man sighed and stared at Tarasha with confusion in his eyes.
‘Don’t worry Doc, I’ll help you decide that.’ she said and moved her gaze away from the man’s face to the sleeping general. ‘We’d ask him the questions we have once he is awake and if he doesn’t talk, we’d torture him again tonight.’
With that, Tarasha turned and left the two others in the room. The watched her every step until she got out through the door.
‘She’s going to kill this man,’ Dr Ekwueme said, looking at Tomi’s face.
‘She doesn’t care if he’s alive or not,’ Tomi replied, bending her lips in a nonchalant way. ‘All she needs is the information from him, but he’s also refusing to speak up.’
Tarasha entered back into her room. She picked her phone and unlocked it before sitting at edge of the bed. She was going to use the drug on the man that day and extract all the necessary information. She was going to make him confess all his past deeds in front of a camera and release the video online for the world to see. And she was going to make sure he’s tortured more and drugged before being released to his death. The man had to die a terrible and shameful death, and that she was determined to make happen.
She heard a knock on her door which interrupted her thoughts. The door opened slowly before she could answer and Henry popped in his head slowly. Their eyes met and she looked away. He stepped in and closed the door.
He walked closer to her and stopped a metre away, standing at her front like a kid who was being reprimanded for doing something wrong.
‘Tara, I’m very sorry for yesterday.’ he said after a minute of staring.
She lifted her gaze to his face, ‘Sorry for what?’
‘For what I said,’ Henry replied.
‘I don’t remember,’ she said nonchalantly.
Henry released a breath, he stepped closer and placed a knee on the ground before her. He placed his elbow by the sides of her knee and held her palms on her lap. He looked into her eyes. ‘I know you’re angry with me, but you should…’
He couldn’t complete his words. She pulled his head closer and covered his mouth with hers. She wrapped her hands around his neck and their lips intertwined.
Henry rose up slowly and his knees found their way to the bed, he and Tara now moving slowly and closer to the middle. His hands located the zip at the back of her gown and he pulled it down. They broke the kiss for a moment and he began to help her in taking off the gown while she helped with his shirt.
Someone tapped the doorbell. Both of them heard but ignored it. Henry’s fingers had located the buckle of her bra and he was taking it off. The bell sounded again and a knock followed. They ignored. Henry had taken off the bra halfway when the knock sounded harsher with the doorbell and then Cole’s voice was heard, calling on Tarasha.
‘We gotta answer him,’ Tara said with a sigh and excused herself reluctantly. She got up the bed after strapping back on her bra and walked to the door. ‘What is it Cole?’ she asked before opening the door.
‘Boss, there is trouble.’ Cole said as their eyes met.
‘What trouble?’ Tara frowned at him. She noticed he looked serious and had a pistol in his hand.
‘We are under attack, about six men just got into the compound.’
‘We gotta get them this morning,’ Rex said to Stainless and they entered into the compound through the gate. ‘Give directions to your men.’
Stainless stopped at the entrance of the house and gave directions to his men while Rex proceeded straight into the building.
NIS UNDERGROUND FACILITY
‘What’s up Dave? You seem to be in a hurry this morning,’ Dan said with a questioning look as he walked to his office table beside Dave’s.
‘Nothing really, did I tell you that my girlfriend was in the hospital?’ Dave replied and continued to search for what he was looking for on his table.
‘I remember you mentioned something like that,’ Dan said, placing his hands on both sides of his waist.
‘Yea, that’s the only little problem right now. They need some money urgently to continue her treatment.’
‘So what are you planning to do?’
Dave paused for a moment and stared blankly at Dan, he had no specific answer to the question. ‘I don’t know, but I just have to get out now and do something quick.’ he finally replied, after taking some time to think.
‘How much does she need?’ Dan asked.
Dave paused again, he didn’t expect Dan to ask such a question. ‘Well, about 1.5 million naira,’ Dave inflated the amount in an attempt to scare him off.
‘Do you really like this girl?’ Dan sat and asked with a raised eyebrow. He wondered in his heart why Dave was so concerned about the girl but still visited brothels frequently.
‘Yes, of course.’ Dave replied. ‘Don’t worry about me, I’ll get the money,’ he said and got up to his feet, hoping that Dan would not offer to help.
‘Are you sure?’
‘Yes, I am.’ Dave replied. He had finished arranging his table. ‘I’ll be back as soon as I can,’ Dave said as he picked his phone and car key from the table.
‘Okay,’ Dan put his chin on his palm and watched as Dave walked out through the door. He knew something was fishy. He opened the drawer and took out his pistol. Then he got up from his seat and tucked the gun into his pocket.
Dave was on the way to his car when his phone began to ring. He stopped just after stepping into the garage and took the phone out of his pocket.
‘Steph!’ Dave mentioned under his breath before answering his call. ‘Hello.’
‘Hello Mr Dave, Good morning,’ Stephanie George replied from the other end. Dave could feel the smile in her voice.
‘Good morning Steph, it’s nice to hear from you again.’
‘Yes, it is nice to hear from you too.’
‘How have you been?’
‘I’ve been fine, how about you?’
‘I’m doing great. How is school?’
‘Fine, I’m on break now.’
‘Good. I guess you have something good to tell me this morning.’
‘Ermm… I’m actually in Abuja and I found out from your profile online that you’re also based in Abuja. I don’t know if you’re in town now, I’ll like for us to see.’
‘Yes, I’m in town. I hope there’s no problem.’
‘No, there’s no problem but it’s kind of urgent that we see.’
‘Okay, where are you right now?’
‘I’m in Maitama.’
‘Should we make it evening today?’
‘Yes, evening time is fair enough.’
Tarasha stared at Cole’s face blankly for a moment, wondering if he could be saying the truth and how the men found them if he was saying the truth.
‘Get Dr Ekwueme to safety,’ she said to Cole before turning back into her room.
Rex watched Stainless direct his men to the sides of the building. He adjusted the mask on his face before firing a shot at the lock of the entrance door. He entered into the living room slowly and carefully, holding his gun up. There was no one in the living room but the TV was on. He proceeded slowly and met no one on the way. He continued towards the passage and stepped in carefully.
‘What’s wrong?’ Henry who was already out of bed asked.
‘We have some men who have come to attack us,’ she replied him as she walked straight to her wardrobe. She opened it and her eyes scanned through for a second, then she pulled down the zip of her gown and released the gown to the floor, leaving her bra and her short tight pant on. She took out a pair of shorts and an armless Kevlar. She stripped them on in less than thirty seconds. She pulled out three pistols from under the bed. She inserted two into the pockets of her shorts as she proceeded to the door. She slipped her foot into a sneakers by the door side before opening the door.
Rex stopped and held his breath as he heard a door open. He couldn’t see the entrance well from the angle he was standing but he knew it was the door close to the exit of the corridor that was opened. He placed his gaze at the floor in front of the door to observe any shadow formed there but couldn’t notice anything except the slight movement of the door.
Tarasha stopped partially behind the opened door. She had heard the sound of steps in the corridor and waited to listen more. She became more suspicious when she noticed the sound had stopped. There was supposed to be no stop in the sound if it wasn’t an intruder who was in the corridor.
Rex held his gun pointed at the entrance, waiting for the person standing there to come out. He kept his eyes dancing to and fro, staying alert for anything coming from behind.
He remained in the same position for more than thirty seconds, then he concluded that the person who opened the door was aware that he was in the passage. He began to take slow steps forward, trying his best to remain noiseless as possible.
She could now hear very low sounds of someone walking towards the place. She raised her gun and made a count of three in her mind before stepping forward.
Rex froze immediately as he saw the shadow of a gun in someone’s hand formed on the floor. He timed her in his mind and knew the exact second she would be out with the gun. He swerved to the left side, hitting his back against the wall as he fired his gun.
Tarasha stepped out in a squatting position, contrary to Rex’s expectation and his bullets flew far over but she also missed him because of his swift movement to the wall.
They fired several off target shots at each other before Tarasha rolled out through the exit. Rex followed immediately but stopped at the wall by the exit opening.
As Tarasha headed towards the room where the doctor was being treated, she heard sounds of gunshots being exchanged at the back of the house.
‘F*** it!’ she cursed in her mind as she knew Cole must have met some of the men at the back and must be having problems with them. It meant the men had penetrated so well before her team found out.
‘Where are you?’ Dave said into the the mouthpiece of his headset, looking around as he walked forward along the side of the road.
‘At TopMost salon, my car is parked in the compound.’ Lizzy’s voice sounded in reply.
‘Okay,’ Dave replied and cut the call. TopMost Salon was just some metres in front of him.
Dave walked into the salon compound and located her car. He joined her in the front seat.
‘Lizzy, why are we here?’ Dave asked, looking at her face. ‘And why have you asked that I arrange with a doctor in a hospital around here?’
Lizzy took off the dark shades on her eyes and dropped it on the dashboard.
‘I think Victor lives here,’ she replied without looking at his face.
‘Cole? You think?’
‘Yes, I’ve traced his location to this road side on more than two occasions and recently that of the girl who called to insult me.’
‘When last did you confirm this?’
‘Yesterday, with her number and with his number.’
‘So, it means they both live on this street? Could she be his wife?’
‘I don’t think so, I think they’re colleagues and lovers. I believe Samantha Osman recently moved their operation here and the whole gang has been here since yesterday.’
‘Huh? Are you sure of what you’re saying?’
‘Yes, I am. I’ve traced both of them here several times yesterday but I wasn’t able to locate the real building they are in, their location disappears when they pass this building.’
‘Oh! That means they’re in a secure building whose force field extends to this place.’
‘Yes, and as far as I’m concerned, Samantha Osman is the only one who has been able to build such secure fields recently. And you know what that means?’
‘What does it mean?’
‘You know what happened yesterday,’ she squeezed her face at him.
‘What happened yesterday?’ he widened his eyes in confusion.
‘Stop acting like a d***, Samantha Osman kidnapped the Inspector General and they also moved their base here yesterday, does it sound like a coincidence to you?’
‘Oh!’ he squinted his eyes and then widened them again. Her words were now beginning to make sense to him. ‘So you think they brought him here?’
‘Yes, isn’t that the logical conclusion to make?’
‘Yes, you’re right, but I still don’t really trust the media reports. I told you that they’ve been telling a lot of lies about her, didn’t I?’
‘Yes, you did but you also confirmed that she visited every of the victim they reported about, you only did not believe that she killed them.’ Lizzy said, staring at him with her side eyes and her lips folded in.
‘You don’t believe what I told you? You think she killed them?’ Dave said to her with a frown.
‘That’s not my point. My point is that if they were right about their report of her kidnapping the previous victim, they should be right about her kidnapping the Inspector General too. At least, they haven’t said she killed him yet and we can stop that from happening if we save the Inspector General before he’s killed, that way we would know who has been killing the victims Samantha Osman kidnaps.’
Dave heaved a sigh. ‘So, what’s your plan?’ he asked in low tones.
‘Have you made arrangements with a hospital already?’ she asked him.
‘Yes, one that’s not too far from here.’
‘Can we drive there now?’
‘Sure, it’s just about ten minutes away.’
‘Okay,’ Lizzy replied and put back her shades on. She turned and stretched to the backseat to pick her tablet device and her phone. ‘The tracking app is running on my tab,’ she said as she gave them to Dave and then pressed the ignition button of the car. She put on her seatbelt and Dave followed suit. ‘You call Victor with my phone to report that I’m sick and in the hospital, or tell him anything that’ll pull him out of the building, then we’d use the security cameras to pick the building he comes out from. We could also make him use his debit card in the hospital for a payment.’
‘Sounds like a nice plan, but we need to plan it better.’ Dave said thoughtfully.
‘You finish up the plan, but you should know we don’t have much time.’ Lizzy replied in an angry voice. She stopped at the gate and honked to get the attention of the gateman.
Just before the gateman opened the gate. The sounds of gunshots were heard from the surroundings. Dave and Lizzy flashed quick looks at themselves.
Henry was in his room when he heard the sounds of gunshots exchange from the corridor. He knew it must be between Tara and one of the intruders. He stood behind the door of his room, holding his pistol in his right hand. After some seconds, the gunshots ceased and he heard the sound of movements towards the exit of the corridor. He stayed for some more seconds before he decided to step out of the room.
Rex turned back swiftly as he heard the sound of a door. It was the door before the one Samantha’s room. It was being opened slowly. He turned back and pointed his gun towards the place.
Henry stepped out of the room slowly with the gun in his hand raised. He looked towards the right first and just as he turned to the left, his eyes met with the eyes of the man in the mask. He tried to shoot but it was too late, a bullet was already coming his way.
February 17, 2018 at 9:01 pm #1180365 Reply
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Chapter 14 part 8&9
Henry stepped out of the room slowly with the gun in his hand raised. He looked towards the right first and just as he turned to the left, his eyes met with the eyes of the man in the mask. He tried to shoot but it was too late, a bullet was already coming his way.
The bullet narrowly missed the right side of his face and hit the frame of the door. Henry was back into the room in a second, slamming the door shut.
Rex followed after immediately, seeing that Henry was a weak prey which he could use as hostage against Tarasha. He got to the front of the door and kicked it with the back of his door but the door refused to give way. He then pointed his gun at the handle and fired two shots at it.
Tarasha turned back with her gun raised as she heard the first gunshot. She could tell it was from the corridor and she continued towards the room where the Inspector General was kept as she didn’t see Rex coming after her yet. She stopped suddenly at the entrance of the room as she heard more gunshots. The direction of the sounds was from the passage she just left. She suddenly realized that Henry must be the one Rex was shooting at. He had gone into his room after leaving hers.
She turned back and proceeded back towards the passages with speed.
The door gave way immediately after the second bullet hit it but bullets began to pierce through it from behind just as about the same time. Rex moved swiftly away and hid behind the wall of the door. Henry was trying to fight back and was now shooting at him. The gunshots ceased. Rex remained in the same position, he fastened his fingers to his gun and waited for the right time to move. But Tarasha showed up at the exit again and fired two quick shots at him. He quickly bent down to dodge the bullets and began to run towards the entrance of the place while she continued shooting at him. He fired two shots while running but was totally off target.
‘Henry!’ Tarasha called as she stepped into the passage. ‘Step out now,’ she said, still firing shots with guns in both hands towards the front entrance, spraying the bullets up and down.
‘Tara,’ Henry called in low tones as she stepped out of the room, still holding the gun in his hands.
‘Go this way,’ Tara said, directing him with a hand to leave through the exit. The bullets in her pistol finished at that moment and she dipped her hand into her pocket to bring out another gun while Henry ran towards the exit.
Rex was quick to notice the pause in her shooting and he took advantage of it to enter back into the corridor. He began to shoot at her before she could raise up her gun. She dashed into the room and hid behind the wall, raising her gun above her shoulder in readiness for him.
The gunshots from Rex continued for some more seconds, Tarasha watched the flow to see if she could come out bending but the bullets were being shot from up to down. After thirty seconds, the shots ceased. Tarasha concluded that he had run out of bullets, she positioned her finger on the trigger.
But just as she tried to take a step forward, something hit the head jamb of the door frame and fell to the floor by her side. It was a grenade.
Most of the stores and shops on the streets were already being locked up. Very few vehicles are now on the road and almost no pedestrians was seen by the roadside. The sound of police sirens could be heard from afar. Dave and Lizzy already had their car parked opposite the gate of the building but at the other side of the road. Dave had just finished calling Dan and the SSS office for reinforcement and the police officers at the nearby station were already on their way in response to the sounds of gunshots being heard.
‘You need to leave here now Liz,’ Dave said to her as he fixed in bullets into his gun.
‘Yes, I know but what do you plan to do?’
Dave finished loading his gun before looking at her face. ‘I have only six bullets in my gun, I’ll be in trouble if I go in there right now. So I’ll stick around and wait for the police officers to get here, I should be able to get more from them. You have to leave now, you’d have a lot of trouble with the Agency if you are seen around here.’
‘I’m fully aware of that. But what about you, do you have a NIS protection mask?’
‘I left it in my car.’
Lizzy pulled out a mask from her bag and handed it to him. ‘Here’s mine, it might be a little big for you but you can still manage it.’
‘Thank you,’ Dave said with a very brief smile as he received the mask. ‘I’ll call you as soon as I can,’ Dave said and stepped out of the car.
‘Stay safe,’ Lizzy said to him before driving off.
Dave stood on the same spot for almost a minute, staring at the gate of the building. He was expecting Dan to join him in nothing less than five minutes. But the police had arrived already in three different vehicles and he had to get into the place before it was too late to do anything. He put on the mask and crossed the road to meet the officers at the other side.
Henry got into the other passage and made his way straight to the room the Inspector General was kept. He got in to meet a surprise, Tomi was in a fist war with a man and he had knocked her down already. He was about to twist her neck when Henry fired a shot into the man’s shoulder. He fell off to the floor weakly and Henry hit the butt of the gun on the back of his head.
‘What do we do to him?’ Henry asked, pointing his gun at the Inspector General who was still laying on the bed. The man was now awake but still weak and unable to move his body because of the drugs given to him.
‘I don’t know,’ Tomi replied as she struggled to her feet. ‘I don’t know if the boss wants him dead now or still left alive,’ she said, still breathing heavily.
‘No, we can’t kill him.’ Henry said, shaking his head.
‘Then we have to move him out of here, the police would soon surround this building. We can take the backdoor,’ Tomi replied.
‘Where do we take him to?’
‘We’d just take him out first, hijack a car and get across to Cole.’
‘Cole just left with Dr Ekwueme. He told me that the boss asked him to find somewhere safe for us. He would call me as soon as he finds somewhere good.’
‘Okay,’ Henry kept his gun into his pocket and hurried towards the bed. ‘How do we carry him?’
‘Can you carry him on your shoulders or we lift him together?’
‘Let me see if I can have him on my shoulder, I hope he would not give me problems.’
‘No, he won’t. The drugs have made him totally weak.’
Henry bent and pulled the man up to sit upright. He placed the man’s hands on a side of his shoulder and was trying to lift when they heard a voice from behind.
‘Stop right there!’ Stainless ordered, standing at the entrance and pointing a gun at them.
Tomi eyes widened in surprise on seeing Stainless at the door. She wondered what Stainless was doing there. It had never occurred to her that he could part of the guys who had come to attack them.
‘Stainless!’ she exclaimed almost voicelessly.
Stainless ignored her and tightened his grip on the gun, ‘Both of you should go on your knees.’
They obeyed, going on their knees slowly with their hands raised in the air. Stainless proceeded slowly towards them with his gun still pointed at them. Tomi still stared at him in surprise.
‘I’m still amazed at the boldness you guys had to kidnap the Inspector General,’ Stainless said as he moved closer to them, the gun now aimed at Henry’s forehead.
He was going to kill them both. That was Rex’s instruction, to kill everyone they could to rescue the Inspector General.
Tomi finally realized what was happening as Stainless approached. It dawned on her that she was the cause for the attack.
Flashback — The day Before
Tomi paused and stared at her phone’s screen for a moment, anger boiling up in her heart. The s–t called Patricia was really proving to be a w—e. She wondered why she was calling her just few minutes after she had spoken with Cole.
The call ended without being answered and Patricia proceeded out of the house. She got into the car and drove out of the compound. The call from Patricia came in again after she drove out through the gate. She ignored for the second time. The call came the third time and it enraged Tomi. She pulled over to the side of the road and stepped out of the car with the phone.
‘Why the **** are you calling my line?’ she voiced into the mouthpiece.
‘Hey! Calm down,’ a calm voice responded from the other end. ‘Good evening.’
‘Shut the **** up and go straight to the point!’ Tomi slammed. She wasn’t going to calm down. Patricia was really a s–t who knew how to get on her nerves. Not only was she taking Cole’s attention from her but she was also doing it in a way to annoy her badly. She remembered the day before when she received the last call from the s–t’s number, she was greeted by very annoying sounds. For the whole ten minutes of the call which she listened, Cole was shouting on top of his voice how he loved Patricia for the first two minutes and then moans of sexual pleasure followed all through. The call had been a terrible one and it was the reason Tomi wasn’t willing to answer her call again.
‘I’m only trying to be nice but I’ll go straight to the point since you want me to,’ Patricia sounded pissed off from the other end. ‘I knew you listened when I called you yesterday and I’ve been feeling guilty ever since then. I knew you would be feeling so jealous as you listened to the man you claimed was your boyfriend confessing his love to me and giving it to me so hard. So I’ve come with an offer for you. With this offer, we can both enjoy him together without any party loosing. So, I want to ask if you’re interested in striking a deal with me.’
‘You’re crazy,’ Tomi slammed, feeling infuriated. ‘I’ll kill you when I see you.’
‘Hahaha,’ the voice from the other end giggled. ‘**** off b****, he is for me and me alone.’ the call ended.
Tomi got into the car feeling so annoyed. She drove in that annoyance to the pharmacy and got the drugs she needed. Then she decided to visit a joint she used to be regular at, to cool off her mind with cold beer which she knew would be odd taking at the base at that moment.
She was cooling off with beer when Stainless appeared before her. It didn’t meet her as a surprise as the joint was also regularly visited by Stainless and his men.
Stainless joined her table and they eventually began to talk. He was able to convince her to speak to him what bothered her and she told him how she met with Cole, one of late Don Dan’s boys and was now working with him. She deliberately left out the part of Cole’s relation with Samantha Osman and did not in any way hint about knowing anything concerning Samantha Osman. But she never knew Stainless was aware of who Cole worked for.
Stainless was able to calm her down by promising to help deal with Patricia, the only thing Tomi had to pay him with was a good round of sex.
Unknowingly to Tomi, she was traced to the base that afternoon.
Tears formed in Tomi’s eyes as Stainless stopped at their front. She knew she had caused something terrible for the gang.
Stainless smirked on seeing the frustration on Tomi’s face. He shook his head in mockery and then turned his gaze to Henry’s face. He stared Henry for a while. Henry had been staring at him and Tomi and wondering what was between them with the way they stared at each other. Stainless smirked at Henry. He was glad to have the opportunity to be the murderer of the famous Computer programmer and developer.
Tomi closed her eyes as she saw Stainless’ finger pushing the trigger slowly.
Bang! The gun was shot.
Henry fell to the ground.
______________________________________Tarasha dashed out of the room immediately she saw the grenade land on the floor. Thick smoke from the grenade rushed out from the opening and filled the atmosphere, blocking her from seeing as she tried to fire at Rex. A bullet hit the top of her shoulder and another hit her back as she made her way to the exit.
Rex stepped back and held the wall tight as the grenade exploded, causing the whole building to vibrate.
The bullet hit the window behind Henry and Tomi as the vibration caused by the grenade shook the whole place. Stainless landed on the floor with his butt and Tomi fell on Henry’s body.
Henry was the first to get up after the vibration ceased. He took out his gun immediately and charged towards Stainless. He held the gun with his two hands and pointed it at stainless who was just trying to get up and pick his gun that had fallen to the ground.
‘Don’t move or I’ll shoot,’ Henry threatened and Stainless stopped in his attempt to pick the gun. He placed both knees on the ground slowly and raised his hands the air.
‘**** it!’ Dave cursed, holding onto the gate for support as the ground vibrated. He was able to stand without falling because the intensity of the vibration was not felt much at that distance. He waited about ten seconds to observe before he stepped in through the gate. He stopped some steps away from the entrance and looked at the building for a while, trying to see the fire from the bomb that sounded, he could only see some smoke rising out from the ceiling of the building at a particular side. Six police officers stepped into the place with him, all holding long guns. .
‘We can’t go in like this, we’re not sure what weapons or arms they have.’ Dave suggested to the police officer who seemed to be the leader of the team.
‘Why do you say so Agent? We brought enough weapons to tackle them,’ the police officer replied.
‘Enough weapons to tackle bombs?’ Dave questioned.
‘We have a explosive detector with us, it’ll detect the explosive based on its power and alert us before we move out of its safe distance.’
‘Let’s go in together then.’
Tara managed to get up from the floor in the corridor which the vibration had thrown her. She could hear sounds of Police vehicles as she proceeded towards the room where the Inspector General was kept, limping on her right leg.
She stepped in and found Henry still pointing his gun at a man kneeling on the floor. She took out her gun and pointed at the man, she was about to shoot him in the head when her eyes met with Henry’s eyes. She uncocked the gun and hit the man’s back head with the butt of her gun.
‘Has Cole gone out yet?’ she asked as she proceeded towards the bed where the Inspector General was still laying.
‘Yes, we killed those three men,’ Tomi answered her.
‘We gotta leave here now, the security officers are around.’ Tarasha said and bent to pick something from under the bed. She rose up and walked to the window behind.
‘What do we do about him?’ Tomi asked, pointing at the Inspector General.
‘There’s no time to do anything about him, we’d just leave him to be taken back home by his men.’
‘What?’ Henry and Tomi exclaimed in unison.
Tarasha turned and stared at Henry’s face for a moment. ‘Are we not sticking to the plan of not killing? That’s the only option we have now.’
She stared for some more seconds at his face before turning back to the window. She folded and stretched her right leg twice to ease the pain in her leg from the fall. She took down a side of the window. ‘Let’s get out of here before it’s too late.’
Rex turned out of the corridor slowly and hurried back towards the living room. He was sure that two of his bullets had hit Samantha and he knew she wouldn’t be able to move fast with two bullets in her body and with the impact of the bomb. He planned to turn to the backyard and enter through the backdoor as the easiest way he could get to her which was the corridor was in fire already.
He began to hear voices as he got to the living room, he rushed to the window and checked, he saw five officers and a SSS officer already moving closer to the house. He turned back, he knew they were going to waste his time. He had no option than to pass through the corridor which he had turned back from.
He hurried back through the corridor and slowed down to carefully walk pass the exploded place. Some objects which had been displaced were burning on the floor and the fire was spreading fast to the ceiling.
He had brought that kind of grenade specially, it produced less burning and more vibration and what he really needed was the vibration and the smoke released to distract Tarasha. He began to take one step after the other as he stepped into the new corridor, looking around to see where Tarasha was hiding, he was sure she couldn’t have gone far because his bullets had hit her.
5 mins later
Tarasha, Henry and Tomi got to the road after escaping through the back gate. There was very little activity on the road compared to the usual but they could see a vehicle coming closer from behind. Tarasha stood at the centre of the road and raised her hand to stop the vehicle. The car screeched to a halt just in front of her.
She took out her gun and fired in the air to scare the driver, then she began to walk towards the backseat as she ordered the driver to get out. The man stepped out of the car and laid flat on the floor.
‘Henry, get into the driver’s side.’ Tara said as she got into the backseat. Tomi entered through the passenger’s side at the front and Henry got into the driver’s side.
Rex opened the door of the last room and entered carefully, pointing his gun everywhere. He saw Stainless lying on the floor motionlessly. He squatted beside him briefly and placed two fingers by the side of his neck to check if he was still breathing. He stood up after confirming Stainless was alive and walked straight to the bed. The IG turned am his neck at that moment and their eyes met. Rex cocked his gun and looked around suspiciously for a moment. He didn’t expect that the Inspector General would be the one in the bed, he had thought it was someone else.
‘They left already, they went through the window.’ Chief Rikau said to Rex, glancing at the window through which Tarasha left with the two others.
‘Was Samantha with them?’ Rex asked, staring at the window which was broken at a side.
‘Yes, she asked them to leave because the police officers were around.’ Chief Rikau replied.
‘Wasn’t she hurt? I shot her twice,’ Rex stared at the IG’s face with his face squeezed.
‘She didn’t look hurt, she was okay.’ Chief Rikau replied in his weak voice.
Rex frowned, wondering how she could have possibly dodged the bullets. He had seen her image through the smoke and seen her movements when the bullets hit her body.
The voices and sounds made by the security officers as they got closer woke him from his brief reverie. He took a glance at the Inspector General and glanced at the broken window again.
‘Please help me out of here quickly,’ Chief Rikau said in a low voice.
‘Police officers are coming, they’ll help you. I have to leave now.’
‘Cole, where are you?’ Tarasha spoke into the phone, still seated at the backseat of the car.
‘I’m heading towards Kurudu,’ Cole replied from the other end. ‘Looking for an uncompleted building around we can stop by at.’
‘What about Dr Ekwueme?’ Tarasha asked.
‘He’s here with me.’
‘I hope he isn’t giving you any problem.’
‘He’s not for now, but I hope he doesn’t try anything funny when I have to go in the midst of other people.’
‘Locate a hotel and stay somewhere close to it.’
‘Yes, one that we all can stay.’
‘We all? We may have problems getting the IG into the place with us.’
‘The IG is no longer with us.’
‘Oh! Okay,’ Cole released a deep breath, he believed that Tarasha must have killed the Inspector General to say he was no longer with them. ‘Should I go ahead to book for rooms?’
‘No, don’t book for rooms yet. You may not be able to handle Dr Ekwueme and get into trouble, just stay around the place and send us the address.’
Tarasha cut the call and dropped the phone by her side on the seat.
‘Has he found a place yet?’ Henry asked.
‘No, he hasn’t. But he would soon, just drive towards Kurudu.’
They continued driving in silence for some more minutes. Tarasha closed her eyes and rested back her head as she pondered on everything that happened. She knew there was something amiss and that one of them must have leaked out information to the enemy. Tomi was the person on her mind. Only Tomi had left that building since the day before, she stayed unusually long and returned home with the excuse of not getting all the drugs at one pharmacy. She wondered if it was only this incident Tomi had leaked out or if she had also leaked out her visit to Senator Garuba Ahmed and Eze Okafor. But on a second thought, she realized that only Cole could have leaked out her movement details to the enemies on the first two occasions. He was the only person who knew her every movement and was expected to keep it secret. She thought about Henry too but knew it was impossible for Henry to do something to hurt her. Tomi was still the major suspect for the enemies’ intrusion of their base. Eze Okafor and Garuba Ahmed’s cases could have been orchestrated by the Vice President.
Tarasha decided to remain quiet and act like she wasn’t suspicious of anyone until she found out more details.
‘Sir!’ Agent Tim rushed to the bed and placed a knee on the ground. ‘Are you okay sir?’
Two other men and Dave joined Agent Tim beside the bed but stood behind.
‘I’m fine,’ Chief Rikau replied weakly. He turned his face towards the window and shook his head slightly. ‘They left already, through this window.’
Dave proceeded towards the window immediately and Agent Tim signalled to two officers to follow him.
‘Don’t bother about them, they would have gone very far already.’ the IG mustered strength to say aloud.
‘Shi*t!’ Dave cursed as he heard the man’s words and turned back. He hissed as he proceeded to the door, wondering why he didn’t come straight to the last room in the corridor. They had wasted their time, checking one room after the other even that was the logical and due procedure.
‘Agent, are you leaving already?’ Agent Tim turned and asked Dave who had gotten to the door.
‘No, I still have to look around. I’m sure that my colleagues from the SSS are also around now.’
Dave met with Dan just as he stepped out of the building. Dan had come with five other SSS officials, only he was on mask.
‘Dave, how far?’ Dan approached him inquisitively.
‘They escaped,’ Dave replied with a dejected tone as he stepped down from the balcony.
‘Samantha Osman and her men.’
‘They were here?’ Dan looked at him in surprise. ‘But you told me you looking for somewhere to get your girlfriend’s hospital fee.’
‘Yes, I came to the GT Bank at the next street and that was where I heard the gunshots from.’
‘Hmm… Okay,’ Dan nodded his head. Dave had no idea that he was followed to the place by Dan and Dan saw how he parked his car somewhere and went into the salon. The only thing Dan did not see was who Dave went to meet and when he got out of the salon. ‘So what are we doing now?’
‘I’m leaving, we’re late. The police officers are gathering the report already,’ Dave replied, walking towards the gate.
‘Let’s leave in my car or did you bring yours?’ Dan asked in pretense.
‘I have my car parked at the other side of the road,’ Dave replied without turning back.
‘Okay,’ Dan stopped and turned back. He waited for Dave to step out of the place before he spoke to the other five men. ‘We’re going to check around and also get reports from the police officers around.’
11 minutes later.
Dave poured the rest of the cold water from bottle down his throat. He dropped the empty bottle on the backseat and closed his eyes as he let out a breath. Even though the troubles that day was something he could get commendation for, he wasn’t so happy because Samantha Osman got away again. The only thing he considered as his achievement that morning was being sure of the fact that Samantha Osman was being pursued by another assasin.
He was still lost in thoughts when his phone began to ring. He took it out of his pocket and checked the screen, the caller was Lizzy.
‘Hi Liz, sorry I’ve not called you yet.’ he said, remembering that he had promised to call.
‘It’s okay. How did it go?’
‘Well, nothing much achieved. But the Inspector General was rescued alive and has been taken to the hospital with over thirty police escorts.’
‘That’s something. I told you that they must have hidden the Inspector General there.’
‘Yes, you did. I’m sorry for doubting you.’
‘I take no offense.’
‘You know what Liz?’ Dave let out a breath and sat up, suddenly feeling the need to chill out a bit and ease the tension he had been facing.
‘Can we have lunch together this afternoon?’
There was silence from the other end for a moment. It sounded strange to Lizzy, they had done lunch together several times while working together and there was nothing special in it, so she wondered why he was asking that way.
‘Please don’t say no,’ Dave added in a pleading voice.
‘Oh!’ she chuckled on hearing him sound serious. ‘Is this a date, or you just want to buy me food?’ she asked in a joking tone.
‘Hmm…’ Dave thought for a while, not sure of what answer to give. ‘Well, let’s just say I want to chill out with you.’
‘Chill out with me? You have enough girlfriends to do that with, why me today?’
Dave laughed. ‘Two o’clock Liz, Fadel Cool Creamery.’
‘Okay, Dave. I’m free, so I’ll be there to eat.’ she stressed the word ‘eat’.
Dave laughed again. ‘Okay.’
The call ended and Dave dropped the phone on the seat. He was about to pull his seatbelt on when his phone began to ring again. This time, Stephanie was the caller.
‘Hi Dave, I’m sorry for disturbing but I don’t think I can make it this evening anymore, it could still work today if it’s a little bit earlier.’
‘Oops!’ Dave let out a sigh before checking his wristwatch. ‘It’s 11:57am now, how soon can you meet me at Fadel Cool Creamery at Asokoro.’
‘I don’t know the place.’
‘You can take a cab from where you are at Maitama, it won’t take more than 14 minutes to get you there if they take Shehu Shagari way.’
‘Okay, I’ll dress up right away and meet you there.’
Chapter 14 part 10&11
Different thoughts ran through Stephanie’s mind at the backseat of the cab where she sat with another passenger. She had gotten some secrets from her mum on her last visit and wanted Dave to help her verify the details.
‘Madam, this is Fadel Cool Creamery,” The cab man said to Stephanie, pointing out through the window to show her the place. He found a good place and pulled over for her to come out.
‘Thank you,’ she said as she paid him the fee. She got out of the car and walked back to Fadel Cool Creamery. She stopped for a minute at the front to admire the beauty of the building.
Dave spotted her from the table he was seated at immediate she stepped in and waved to get her attention. She walked to him all smiles and he rose up to welcome her.
‘Good afternoon,’ she greeted first as she received his handshake.
‘Good afternoon,’ he replied, smiling back at her. ‘Please be seated.’
They both settled into their seats and Dave beckoned on a waiter. ‘What would you like to take?’ he asked Stephanie.
‘Oh! Thanks, don’t bother, I had something before coming.’
‘I understand, but don’t you care for ice cream? We could take that while we’re discussing.’
‘No, thanks. Maybe a bottle of water would do.’
Dave turned his face to the waiter and said, ‘Two bottles of water and two plates of ice cream’. He paused and turned to Stephanie, ‘What kind of cream would you like?’
‘Don’t bother, I’m very much okay with water alone,’ Stephanie replied.
‘I know, I’m talking about something you’d take along with you when you’re leaving.’
‘Well, anything milk will do.’ she said to the waiter.
‘Get the same for me,’ Dave said to the waiter who nodded and mumbled a reply before turning to leave.
‘I called for this meeting, so I’ll be taking care of the bill.’ she said to Dave after the waiter walked out of earshot.
‘Hehe!’ Dave chuckled. ‘I won’t allow you to that of course.’
‘You will not, they won’t take your cash or card from you. I already paid some money while I was waiting for you.’
‘Oh! Nice of you but you shouldn’t have bothered.’
Dave shrugged, ‘I guess it’s what a gentleman should do.’
‘Thanks, so can we go to the reason we’re here?’ Stephanie asked.
‘Yes please, I have an appointment with someone by two pm.’ Dave said and glanced at his wristwatch.
‘Okay, we can’t stay up to that time here.’ Stephanie said, also glancing at her wristwatch. ‘I need a favour from you,’ she began.
‘And what could that be?’ Dave questioned, wondering why she went quiet again.
‘My mum told me some things which I’ll like to verify but I don’t know the way to go about it.’
‘Is your mum still in Nigeria?’
‘No, of course. She left a long time ago and I’m not even talking about madam Henrietta.’
Dave raised a brow, ‘Then who are you talking about?’
‘My real mother, Madam Henrietta is just my guardian.’
‘Wow!’ Dave shone his eyes in surprise. ‘Quite a revelation! So where is your real mum?’
Stephanie’s face turned sad, she inhaled and exhaled deeply. ‘She’s not feeling fine, so she’s been in a rehabilitation home.’
‘Oh! Sorry about that, I pray she gets well soon.’
‘Amen, thank you,’ Stephanie said with a brief smile. ‘I was with her three days ago and she was talking to me about how Madam Henrietta helped her, and she mentioned something about the Vice President that I need to confirm.’
‘Well, what could that be? I do hope I have the answer.’
‘I’m not sure you have the answer, I just need you to assist me in finding the answer.’
‘Okay, just tell me. I’ll do everything I can to help you.’
‘My mum told me how my father used to work with Chief Elvis Richards while he was the deputy governor of Lagos State and how my father and siblings death were arranged by him, then they made the world think that it was an accident.’
‘I don’t really understand,’ Dave said with a frown. ‘Maybe you have to first tell me more about your father and who he was.’
Henry pulled over just behind Cole’s car. He took off the seat belt and stepped out of the car without turning off the engine. He walked to the car in front and entered through the backseat. Tomi stepped out of the car after him and also joined at the backseat.
‘Cole,’ Henry called as he entered.
‘Henry, where’s the boss?’ Cole replied him without turning back but looking at his face through the rearview mirror, their eyes met there.
‘She dropped on the way, she’ll join us later.’
‘What’s her instruction?’
‘We would book three rooms, but still wait in the car for her,’ Henry replied.
‘How do we pair?’ Cole asked, now casting his gaze back. ‘And how do we handle him?’ he added, flashing a look at Dr Ekwueme who was at the front with him.
‘Do you still think I would cause any trouble for you? I would have done that when we were alone and there were better chances of getting away,’ Dr Ekwueme cut in, in a very weak voice.
The three others in the car turned their gazes on him. Cole smiled faintly and looked away for a second. ‘I would have killed you straightway and explained later to the boss,’ Cole said in his mind.
‘The problem is not really you trying to make trouble, the real problem is trouble coming because of you. Just imagine a case of someone seeing and recognizing you with us in the hotel, that’ll be dangerous. The person would report to the police silently and they’ll come for us without we expecting them.’
There was silence for about thirty seconds. The doctor closed his eyes and leaned his head on the headrest.
‘Tomi would go in now to book the rooms while you remain here with him,’ Henry said to Cole.
‘What about you?’
‘I’m going to dump the car somewhere far from here, I’ll get us food on my way back.’ Henry replied and then opened the door.
‘What’s going on here? Please slow down a bit,’ Tarasha said to the cab man driving her as they drove past the base Rex and the officers had just attacked.
The gate of the place was wide open and some police officers could still be seen inside the compound, while two of their vehicles were parked outside. Tarasha had left Cole and Tomi and turned back to the place after visiting a boutique and changing her clothes there. She was also putting on a wig to cover her low cut.
‘No Madam, I can’t slow down here. Can’t you see the police tapes?’ the cab driver replied after casting a look of surprise at her.
‘What happened here?’
‘Hmm…’ the cab man folded his lips in and shook his head slowly like someone who was getting ready to gossip. ‘If you came here about ninety minutes ago, then you would have asked me to speed up instead of asking me to wait. About twenty armed robbers attacked the place and were shooting for almost an hour, it was terrible…’
The man continued to blab on while Tarasha paid attention to observing the environment.
‘I’m stopping here,’ she finally said to the cab man after three minutes. The man continued talking as she paid him and stepped out of the car. It wasn’t until she walked away from the car that he stopped talking and drove off.
Tarasha opened her handbag and took out her sunshades. She looked around before putting it on. She was now some distance away from the base of attack and she was sure the police officers were going to take that route back to their station. She wanted to wait until they left and go back close to the base and take pictures as a journalist. She walked away from the side and the road and stepped into the verandah of a locked shop with a bench in front of it.
Dave dialed Lizzy’s number and it rang for the fourth time without being answered. He sighed and glanced at Stephanie’s face, ‘She’s still not answering.’
‘I think you should just wait a little more for her,’ Stephanie said.
‘We’d leave in the next three minutes if she doesn’t show up,’ Dave replied after confirming the time to be twenty seven minutes past two.
‘Are you sure that wouldn’t get her upset?’
‘No, it won’t. I’m sending her a text message already,’ Dave replied, typing in a message on his phone.
‘I still think you should wait, she could be on her way.’
‘Today is Sunday and the library would be closing by four pm, it’s open twenty four hours everyday except from Saturdays and Sundays. Today affords us a very good opportunity to use it with less protocols,’ Dave said.
‘Well, if you insist.’ Stephanie shrugged.
‘Let’s move,’ Dave glanced at his wristwatch again before getting up from the seat. Stephanie picked her bag and followed him.
Lizzy walked back towards her car, pondering on all he had said to her. He wasn’t telling a lie when he talked about her crushing on Dave, she knew it was true but would not admit to him. It had caused an argument between them with no side winning the debate but the part that made the argument a heated one was what he said about Dave, she would never agree with him, even though she didn’t know so much about Dave except what she knew as a colleague. She knew he was closer to Dave and should know more about him than she knew.
She opened the door to the driver’s side of her car and entered to take her phone which she had forgotten inside before entering the main facility of the creamery. Her phone’s screen was on as she picked it, a text message had just entered.
‘I just got a text from the chairman and I’m on my way to meet with him,’ the message from Dave read. She heaved a sigh after seeing the message and was already complaining inside of her when she scrolled down her notification bar and saw his missed calls. She agreed it was partly her fault; he had been calling before two pm and it was likely he had wanted to call off the lunch earlier.
She took in a deep breath and glanced back unconsciously towards the entrance of the creamery. She fixed her gaze there when she recognized someone walking out of the place. It was Dave and he was with another girl. She quickly checked through her phone again to confirm if it was him who sent the message. She turned back to look, Dave was walking towards the garage at the other side with the lady. Lizzy opened her door and tried to sit inside, so as to reduce the chances of Dave seeing her if he mistakenly turned back but stood up again as sitting inside would not allow her watch him anymore because of the other cars parked around blocking her view.
She watched as Dave opened the passenger’s side door for the lady and turned to the driver’s side. Soon, the car was moving. Lizzy entered into hers and turned it on, she waited for them to drive out through the gate before following after them.
Rex stepped out of the bathroom with his towel wrapped around his waist, he took it off on getting close to the wardrobe and began to clean his body with it. He turned back on hearing his phone ring. He walked to the bed and picked the phone, the Vice President was the caller.
‘Good afternoon Elvis Richards,’ he answered the call.
‘Hey Rex! Congrats man, I’ve just been told that the Inspector General was rescued from Samantha Osman.’ Chief Elvis’ voice came enthusiastically from the other end.
‘Yea, he was, and he’s still alive. I’m hoping nothing happens to him,’ Rex replied.
‘What do you mean Rex?’ the excitement in the VP’s voice reduced. ‘If you think she could still try to attack him, then you should tell us.’
‘Attack him for now?’ I don’t think so,’ Rex said as he turned back and proceeded to the wardrobe. ‘She would not attack him now that there are over fifty security officers guarding and monitoring the hospital he is.’
‘So, why did you suggest that something bad will happen to him?’
‘I’m only hoping that she hasn’t done any damage to him yet, she could have done all she needed to do before escaping.’
‘I spoke with the IG some minutes ago and he told me he’s fine and only needs to gain his strength back.’
‘Okay, I would need to speak to him too and find out what his encounter was like.’
‘Okay, did you go after Samantha Osman?’
‘No, that would be a bad move. She had the chance of killing the man Rikau before escaping but she left him alive, following after her would be like walking into a trap.’
‘Okay then, I guess we’d talk about that later.’
‘Yes, we would.’
Rex replied his appreciation with the sound made by clearing his throat. ‘Well, I need you to facilitate stainless’ release.’
‘Stainless, what happened to him?’
‘He passed out and was taken to the hospital by the police, I’m sure he’d be taken to their station from the hospital.’
‘Okay, Agent Tim is in charge of the case and it’ll be easy to get him released.’
Rex ended the call and flung the phone to the bed. He hung his towel in the wardrobe and picked out a new set of clothes to put on.
He remembered being confused the day before. He had gotten a text from the Inspector General to kill John Bisong and had almost fallen for it. He was suspicious of the text initially but decided to go ahead to carry out the instruction when he got another text to kidnap the man instead of killing. Stainless had called him that afternoon to tell him of having being able to trace one of Samantha Osman’s men. He had almost finalized his plans when the news about the Inspector General’s kidnap hit the airwaves. He informed the Vice President of his need to return early the next morning and the Vice President made it possible for him to get an early flight on a Sunday morning.
The journey was a straight one and it wasn’t difficult for Lizzy to follow them without being noticed. She followed until Dave’s car stopped at the front of a gate. She waited for a minute after they drove in before following after. She stopped at the gate of the place and took note of the name and function, it was a library and relaxation centre.
She let out a breath before driving off. Dave had cancelled the lunch with her to spend time with another lady. Maybe what was said about Dave was right after all. Maybe she was never going to get his attention like she wanted except for the flirtatious remarks he made at her occasionally.
She decided to watch him more carefully from that moment aand see if he was really fighting for the truth or just after his own belly and only deceiving her.
Someone tapped the glass at the left backseat to get the attention of those in the car. Cole and Tomi looked at him, it was Henry, dressed in a totally different way. Tomi opened the door for him and he passed the bag in his hands to her first before entering.
‘Hey guys!’ He said as he got into the car.
‘Hey Henry, I can smell fried rice, is that what you got for us?’ Cole replied. Tomi was already taking out the plates from the nylon bag Henry gave her.
‘Yes, fried rice. You don’t like it?’
‘Does liking it matter now? I’m very hungry, just pass me mine to me,’ he said, casting his gaze at Tomi.
Tomi passed the food with a bottle of water to him and Cole began to open it in a rush. He suddenly stopped and glanced at Dr Ekwueme who was asleep before but now yawning. He completed the opening of the food and passed it to the doctor, he also cut the seal of the bottle and passed it to the man.
‘Theother plate,’ he said, looking back at Tomi again.
She stared at him for a while before realizing that he had given the first one to the doctor, then she gave him another.
‘Has the boss called you?’ Henry asked Cole.
‘Not yet, did she call you?’ Cole replied, opening his new pack of food.
‘No, she didn’t.’
‘I think we do have to call her, staying here any longer is not a nice idea. It’s inconvenient and could also attract unnecessary attention to us,’ Cole said. He reached for the air conditioner to regulate it. That feature of the car was what had been keeping them comfortable there even with the scorching sun outside.
‘I’m calling her already,’ Henry replied
‘Who’s that?’ Agent Tim said in an irritated tone. Someone was knocking roughly at his door. ‘Come in,’ he added without waiting to hear the person’s response.
James entered into the office and closed the door. He proceeded towards the man’s table with a frown on his face.
‘James, you?’ Agent Tim stared at him in surprise. He had thought it was his lousy wife who he was expecting or another Agent of the same rank as him. ‘Why did you knock like that?’ he added, raising his brows, really wondering what gave James the audacity.
‘I’m sorry sir but I was at the hospital some minutes ago and I found out that some of the suspects we took there for treatment from the crime scene have been released,’ James voices out in anger.
‘And so what?’ Agent Tim replied in a nonchalant manner.
James stared at him in surprise and was unable to speak for some seconds. ‘Sir…’ he stammered as his eyebrows gathered together. ‘I was told that you commanded their release.’
‘Yes?’ Agent Tim shone his eyes at him. He dropped the pen in his hand and rested his back, still staring at James’ face. ‘So you came to beat me up?’
James was silent, he looked confused and wondered how the man could take such decision boldly without fear of being queried.
‘But sir… How could you have let them go? We’ve not even conducted any interrogation yet.’
‘Who are you to question my authority?’ Agent Tim replied. ‘Who do you think you are?’
‘Shut up and get out of my office!’ Agent Tim barked.
‘Get out of my office,’ Agent Tim repeated. ‘I’m going make sure I deal with you next time this repeats itself.’
AGUDA HOUSE, ASO ROCK
Elvis Richards had barely settled in his living room when he heard his phone ringing. He sank into a sofa tiredly as he waited for his assistant holding the phone to bring it to him.
‘Who’s calling?’ he asked as the assistant got closer to him.
‘Agent Tim,’ the man replied.
The Vice President collected the phone and answered the call. ‘Good afternoon Agent.’
‘Good afternoon your excellency,’ the Agent replied from the other end. ‘Sir, I think it’s time to take your son James off this case totally. He seems to be getting bolder everyday, he confronted me today asking me why I ordered for the release of the men you asked me to.’
The Vice President sighed, he placed a palm on his forehead and rested his back. ‘And did you tell him I asked for their release?’
‘No, of course, I didn’t.’
‘Just do anything you’d like to do to him, let him pay for any wrong stuff he does.’
‘Okay sir, I just wanted to inform you.’
‘Thank you Tim.’
The call ended and the Vice President returned the phone to his assistant. He then bent forward and held his head with his two hands like someone in pains.
‘Is everything okay sir?’
‘Arrggh… I’m okay, just feeling a bit feverish.’
‘Do we call the doctor?’
‘Don’t worry, I’ll walk to the clinic myself.’ the Vice President replied and managed to get on his feet.
‘I told you we would get the newspaper here, this place is ancient, ‘ Dave said to Stephanie in a relaxed tone.
‘We’ve not gotten the exact year yet,’ Stephanie replied, her tone showing she had not seen any reason to celebrate yet.
‘Didn’t you say that the article was a viral one?’
‘Yes, that particular article went viral both online and in the real world.’ Stephanie replied.
‘Well, searching online would have been a better way to find it but…’
‘The blogs and news sites were ordered by the President then to take down the article and according to my mum, they all did, so it means we can’t find it online.’
‘Where was your Dad working then?’
‘I don’t know, my mum didn’t tell me.’
They remained in silence for a while, each pulling out stacks of newspapers from the shelves and checking the date of each one.
‘I think I’ve got it here,’ Dave said after pulling out a particular newspaper and reading the headlines. Steph stopped and turned to him. ‘What’s your father’s full name again?’
1 Hour later.
ASO ROCK CLINIC.
‘Sir, here are some drugs for you to use and you also need to rest very well, you’ve been putting a lot of stress on yourself lately.’ the doctor said as he handed a small nylon of tablets to the Vice President’s assistant.
‘What exactly is the issue with me?’
‘Sir, you have symptoms of malaria.’
‘Malaria?’ the Vice President shone his eyes in surprise. He and his assistant exchanged quick glances.
‘Yes sir,’ the doctor replied.
‘But how is that possible? How can I get malaria without mosquito bite? There are no mosquitoes in the Villa.’
‘You can never tell sir, it might have been somewhere else you didn’t spend so much time at.’
‘No, I only got bitten by mosquitoes yesterday when I spent much time at the farmyard but it isn’t even up to seven days yet, twenty four hours is not enough incubation period.’
‘It can’t be yesterday’s bite sir,’ the doctor said.’
‘Then where could it have been from? I…’
‘Sir…’ the assistant joined, raising a finger slightly. ‘Ermm… Not up to two weeks ago, we travelled and visited people at the displaced peoples’ camp, we spent so much time with them on each of the three days we visited.’
‘So are you saying I got it from there?’ the Vice President shone his eyes at him.
‘Ermm… No sir but, ermm… Three other fellows who were there with us have also been treating malaria in these past few days.’
The Vice President took in a deep breath and remained silent for a while. ‘Okay, thank you doc, I’ll take the drugs, let me return to my quarters now.’
‘Henry, it’s five pm already, ‘Cole said to Henry who was busy with the phone. ‘Remember she asked us to call her by five.’
They were now at a different location, they had to move so as not to attract people’s attention.
‘She asked me to call when I’m done with clearing the NSCC records, and I’m not done yet.’ Henry replied him.
‘Why is taking you so long to do that?’
‘We’ve not just been to one location today, we’ve been to several places and I have to clear each record of everyone.’
‘Well, I’ll call her to find out what she has for us while you continue with that.’
‘You can go ahead,’ Henry shrugged.
Cole pulled out his phone and dialed Tarasha’s phone number. She answered after the first ring.
‘Hey Boss, it’s five pm.’
‘Has the NSCC records been cleared?’ Tarasha replied from the other end.
‘Ermm… Not yet, just a little bit left I believe.’
‘After the NSCC records have been cleared, you can start driving to Gwagalada, I’ll send you the exact address.’
Cole ended the call and placed the phone on his knee.
‘What did she say?’ Henry asked.
‘We would drive to Gwagalada after clearing the NSCC records,’ Cole replied.
‘What about the rooms we booked at the hotel?’
‘We have to forget about that, I believe she has somewhere safer for us.’
Just at that moment, the phone in Cole’s pocket began to ring. He took the one on his knees and kept it inside the other pocket before bringing the ringing one out. He already knew who the caller was, Patricia. He sighed as he stared at the caller ID. He didn’t feel like answering, he didn’t want to raise the tension at that moment especially for Tomi. He however answered the call on a second thought and began to speak in low tones.
‘Hi Victor, how are you doing?’ Patricia voice sounded through the phone speakers. Cole reduced the volume to the lowest he could, to ensure that Tomi or no one else heard what she was saying to him.
‘I’m fine, what about you?’
‘I’m fine too Vic. It’s strange that we’ve not spoken to each other since morning, I guess you’re so busy today.’
‘Exactly, I’ve been so busy. I’m sorry about that,’ he replied.
‘It’s okay my love, I just wanted to hear from you, we’d talk more later tonight.’
NIS UNDERGROUND FACILITY
‘You’re welcome,’ Lizzy replied before ending the call.
She dropped the phone and picked her tab. The tracking app was on and it had already located Victor’s device, it was showing the exact address in Kurudu. She wondered what Victor was doing at Kurudu. Maybe he had just gone there to buy something or get something done, she concluded in her mind. That she would confirm when they speak next on phone.
The place was deserted already, the few people who had come to work that Sunday had left already. Dave could hear his own footsteps sounding loudly as he hurried back to his office, he was surprised to meet Dan on the way. Dan was with his bag and was obviously on his way home.
‘Agent Dave, where have you been?’ Dan asked as they got closer to each other.
‘I’m sorry I left that way, I was frustrated, I just had to cool off my mind.’ Dave apologized instead of answering the question straightforward.
‘It’s okay, we’d see tomorrow morning.’ Dan said before walking away and Dave continued on his way to the office.
He met another surprise as he turned into a new passage, Lizzy was just leaving the office too.
‘Lizzy, what are you still doing here?’ Dave stared at her in surprise.
She folded her hands and stared at his face without replying. She had an angry look on and Dave recognized that she wasn’t happy with him.
‘Come on Liz, I’m sorry for today. I guess you came later to Fadel Cool Creamery,’ Dave said apologetically. Lizzy continued to stare at him without saying a word. ‘Didn’t you get my text message?’ Dave added.
Lizzy opened her hand bag to take out her phone. ‘I didn’t, please show me.’ She stretched it to him to take and show her the text message which she had already deleted.
‘Come on Liz, you don’t expect me to lie, do you? I sent a text message to inform you that I was leaving the place, I waited until two thirty pm.’ Dave replied, he didn’t take the phone from her.
‘I’ve heard you, thanks. I’ll take my leave now,’ she said and stepped aside to continue her walk.
‘Come on Liz, I’m sorry.’ Dave pleaded. ‘It was urgent I leave.’
‘It’s okay, I heard you already. I was also late, so it’s partly my fault.’
‘No, it’s my fault, I should have waited for you.’
Lizzy sighed tiredly. ‘Oh Dave! I’m not in the mood for this this evening, just allow me leave please.’
‘It’s okay,’ Dave sighed. ‘We’d see tomorrow,’ he added as he made way for her to pass. ‘Goodnight,’ he said as he watched her leave, she didn’t give him a reply.
He took in a deep breath after she walked out of sight. He couldn’t afford to lose Lizzy on his side, he knew his work would be difficult without her. He had to think of something to make her forgive him.
Samantha Osman’s team was settled in a new apartment. Not an ideal one for their job, but it was something good enough to keep them safe for a short while.
There was no preparation of meal that night, Henry had gone to get dinner for all of them just like he got lunch. They finished eating and gathered in the new living room to listen to the news as their custom was.
Like they expected, news of the attack on their base and rescue of the Inspector General made the headlines with the media giving praise to the police for being able to rescue the Inspector General. After the news, Tarasha began the important discussion that they all were waiting for.
‘Everybody’s devices would be left in this living room this night, no receiving or making of calls until we know our next step.’ she began. ‘One thing I’m very sure of is that everything ends in a few weeks but before we proceed we need to find out who sold us out.’ she stopped and fixed her gaze on Tomi’s face.
Tomi began to vibrate on her seat. The boss’ gaze was piercing through her body and sending dangerous currents all around.
Chapter 14 part 12
Happy new month fams
Tara did not need to hear Tomi speak before she knew of her guilt. Tomi was vibrating all over in fear of the judgement the boss would make. All eyes were on Tomi. Cole was surprised by her reaction but Henry was not, he had suspected foul when he saw her communication with Stainless earlier.
Tomi fell on her knees in tears, with the way everybody’s gaze was piercing her body, she knew she had been caught already.
‘How much were you paid?’ Tarasha asked in a calm tone.
The place was dead silent. Everyone listened for Tomi’s response but she had none to give yet, her eyes were closed and her head bowed.
‘How much were you paid?’ Tarasha asked again after some minutes of waiting for a reply.
Her voice sounded harsher this time and Tomi knew that Tarasha was already losing her patience. She wiped off formed around her eyes and raised her head. ‘I wasn’t paid, it happened unknowingly.’
‘You brought them to the base unknowingly?’ Tarasha raised her brow.
‘I never knew Stainless worked with the other side, I met him yesterday when I went out for drugs and told him I was now working with Cole, I believe he traced me to the base from there.’
Tarasha turned her gaze to Cole’s face and their eyes locked for a moment. She placed the gaze back on Tomi who turned her face down again. She didn’t know whether to believe Tomi’s story or not. Tarasha could see sincerity from Tomi’s body language but she didn’t want to judge from that. Judging assassin with that criteria alone could be dangerous because she has one knew how to put on a different body language for a different situation.
‘Cole,’ Tarasha called as she rose up from her seat.
‘Boss,’ Cole answered and got up to his feet also.
‘Take her away, search her and search through her devices, identify every lie she has not mentioned yet.’ Tarasha said before she began to walk out of the place. ‘Everyone’s devices should be left in the living room.’
15 minutes later
Cole placed an eye on Tomi as he worked on her phone. Both of them were in another room, one which was almost empty save for the plastic chair Cole was sitting on and the table he was using. Tomi stood by the window, holding the burglary proof and staring at Cole who she considered as the cause of everything.
‘Who is this person?’ Cole asked, turning her phone’s screen to her. He was on her call register and was checking through the recent calls she made. He noticed that the several calls from the contact named ‘B***h’ was at the same time Tomi went to get drugs the day before.
‘I can’t see what you’re showing me,’ Tomi replied, not willing to leave the window side to answer his question.
Cole got up from his seat and took the phone to her. She looked at it briefly and looked away. ‘Who is this person Tomi? You called the number before going out that afternoon.’
‘Why don’t you check the digits, don’t you recognize the phone number of the b***h you go around town with?’
Cole stared at her speechlessly for a moment, wondering what she was talking about and how she still had boldness to talk after betraying the gang.
‘That’s Patricia, the s–t you go around with.’ She slammed at him and walked away from his front, she stopped at the table he was previously seated at and sat on the chair.
Cole stared at her with his mouth left ajar in shock. ‘Patricia?’ he said as he clicked on the contact to the view the digits ‘**** you Tomi, how did you get this number?’ he charged towards her in anger.
She hissed and looked away without giving him a response.
‘I’m talking to you,’ he grabbed her by the shoulder and turned her face to himself violently.
‘Are you crazy?’ she slammed at him and hit him on the waist with her fist. ‘Shouldn’t you be asking why your b***h is calling me? You should be asking why she calls me when you people are having sex and you’re moaning like an id**t!’
‘Are you crazy? What are you talking about?’ Cole squinted at her, confused.
‘No, I’m not.’ She said and snatched the phone from his hand. ‘You really moan like an idiot while having sex, she’s turned you to a monkey.’
‘Give me the phone,’ Cole said in an angry tone but she refused and stepped back as she tried to scroll through. He stepped closer to her and tried to take the phone back from her. She struggled for the phone with him and he felt tempted to hit her on the face but he resisted the urge, he was able to take it from her after pushing her to the wall. ‘What are you trying to do?’ he shouted at her. ‘You think you can save yourself from the boss’ punishment by bringing me in?’
‘You’re crazy,’ she cursed again. ‘You’re a fool, the boss needs to know how you moan under the influence of that girl.’
Cole narrowed his gaze at her and shook his head, he was struggling not to hit her.
‘I have your voices recorded on my phone and the copy on other devices, that girl would lead you to hell soon.’
Cole was more confused now, ‘What are you talking about?’
‘I have your voice on that phone, go to the voice recorder file and play the last recording.’
Cole stared at her for some seconds before opening the file manager on her phone, he got to the voice recorder file and played as she instructed him. He was shocked beyond words when he heard his voice and Patricia’s. He was shouting loud in the recording and telling her how much he loved her while she was asking him to say it louder.
He quickly stopped the recording as he heard a knock on the room door that moment and the door opened after, Henry poked his head in and stared at both of them. They knew he must have heard them shouting at each other. He stared at their faces for a while before closing back the door.
‘We are making so much noise,’ Cole said to her in low tones after Henry left.
‘Are you just realizing that?’ Tomi questioned him, she knew he had been humbled by the recording he listened to.
Cole unlocked the phone and deleted the voice note. ‘How did you get this voice note?’
‘Your b***h called me while you guys were at it and I recorded the call.’
‘Well… It’s…’ Cole stammered as he tried to speak. His heart was greatly aggrieved and he wondered if she was saying the truth about Patricia. ‘So, you sold us out because of my relationship with Patricia? How dumb you are.’
‘I didn’t sell us out, you never told me that Stainless was working with an enemy gang now and I didn’t plan to meet him when I went out that yesterday.’
Cole stared at her thinly for a while, wondering whether to believe her or not.
‘I really do hope that you are not trying to deceive yourself, be rest assured you won’t get away if we find out that you’re on the other side.’ Cole said to her and walked out of the room.
He proceeded into another room where Tarasha was seated and working on table with three laptops on top.
‘Boss, I couldn’t find anything in her devices, I believe she has told us the truth,’ he said to her as he got beside the table.
She continued with her work as if she didn’t hear him talk, not even granting him a glance. He stood there patiently, knowing there was no need to repeat himself.
She finally replied him after five minutes, ‘So, you think we’re free to go back to Base B?’
‘Yes, since she was traced to Base C, they couldn’t have found out about B.’
‘So when should we return there?’
‘I don’t know, it depends on you.’ Cole replied.
‘I’m already setting up security for this place, we’d stay here for sometime.’
‘How long will it take for the security to be up?’ Cole asked.
‘Twenty four hours and it means all your devices would be with me till it’s up.’
‘I understand,’ Cole said and dropped Tomi’s phone on the table where he saw the other phones and tablets devices kept.
‘You’ll be on the streets with Henry very early tomorrow morning, I’m publishing a news article by four am and I need you to get the reactions of the people on the streets. I briefed Henry about it already and he knows what to do. You two should be up early to wear a perfect disguise.’
‘Yea, I think that’s all I’ve got for tomorrow, for now.’ Tarasha said in a dismissing tone. She turned back to the laptops in front of her and continued her work.
‘Goodnight boss,’ Cole said and took a slight bow before walking out of the place.
He paused for a minute outside the door and leaned against the wall. His thoughts drifted to Patricia and Tomi’s accusation against her. He didn’t remember seeing Patricia making a call on that day they had sex. He remembered it clearly, it was on the day she had called him to come celebrate her new job with her.
He would have called Patricia immediately to clarify things but his phones were with the boss. He closed his eyes briefly and heaved a sigh before walking away to his room.
He stopped on getting to the front of the room assigned to him, he had suddenly remembered that he was to share the room with Tomi. He heaved a sigh of frustration and shook his head, arguing within himself why he couldn’t stay in the same room with Tomi that night. He decided in his mind to pick a cover cloth from the bed and return to the living room.
He pushed the door open and entered.
‘Stop avoiding me, you caused it all. I hate you!’ Tomi welcomed him with harsh words.
One of the phones on the table began to ring some minutes after Cole left. Tarasha reached for it and checked the screen, the caller’s ID displayed was Patricia. She ignored the call and dropped the phone.
She continued with her work for five more minutes before completing all she needed to do about the security. She took her phone and checked her to-do list for the next thing. She heaved a sigh before exiting the list.
She opened the Bitcoin wallet app on her phone to check her balance. After that she switched to the contacts list and dialed Chief Gab’s foreign number. It took a while before it was answered.
‘Hey Chief, Good evening.’
‘Tarasha, Good evening.’ the Chief replied in a sleepy voice. ‘It’s late, hope there’s no problem tonight.’
‘Did you hear the news about Samantha Osman today?’
‘Yes, I did. I heard you kidnapped the Inspector General and he was rescued from you.’
‘Yeah, but that’s not the problem. The problem is the location they met us at.’
‘I don’t get you.’
‘They met us at the new facility you provided for us, didn’t you see it on the news?’
‘Which new facility?’ Chief Gab asked. There was silence for a while. ‘Chief Nonso’s facility which I prepared for you to stay?’
‘I don’t know who owns the facility, I’m calling to find out what we can do to protect the owner from being probed by the police.’
‘It’s for Chief Nonso, I hope he’s not in trouble already.’
‘That’s why we need to do something on it quick, send me his contact details so I can discuss with him personally.’
AGENT DAVE’S RESIDENCE
Dave sat alone quietly in the room, his hands placed on the table and his eyes scanning through the page on the laptop. He scrolled down a bit with the mouse and continued reading for some seconds before he was distracted by a beep sound on his phone. He reached for the phone and unlocked.
‘Oh!’ he exclaimed happily on seeing the WhatsApp notification. Lizzy had just replied his message after reading a long time ago. He opened the notification and clicked on the chat.
‘I already told you I’m not angry with you,’ was Lizzy’s reply.
‘I wasn’t just pleased with the way you left earlier, it’s unusual of us to part that way.’ Dave typed and sent. He waited for about two minutes to see her reply after his message was marked delivered but he got none. He dropped the phone on the table and continued with his work on the laptop.
He was on the Federal Ministry of Works And Housing website and was logged in as an administrator. He minimized the browser and copied an address in text from the notepad application running at the background. He opened the browser again and pasted the address in the box provided. He clicked on enter and waited while his request was being processed.
His phone beeped again, he picked it up and unlocked. He had received two messages from Lizzy
‘I don’t have to leave the same way everyday
I’m about to end my work on Samantha’s man Victor, I think I’ve been able to pull out enough from him.’
‘I just hope you’re truly not angry with me,’ Dave typed as an answer to the first message. ‘Yes, you’ve done so well, very well indeed, Thank you so much. But you know we’re not there yet, you can’t abandon me there now.’
‘We were there today, I led you to their base, I led you to Samantha Osman. It was your opportunity to have caught her red-handed but you missed it.’
‘But you know I tried my best, it wasn’t my fault.’
‘I don’t know whose fault it is but I did my part excellently.’
‘I know Liz, I’ll be lying if I don’t agree with you. But I beg you to stay a little more with me.’
‘I’m not backing out yet, I’m taking one more trial, not for you but just to satisfy myself, I want that Victor behind bars, he disgusts me.’
‘Hmm… Thanks Liz, I’ll try my best to make use of the next available opportunity.’
‘Yes, you have to do. I’m sure Victor would be doubting me soon if he’s not stopped, I’ve done a lot of things that’ll make him suspect me.’
‘I’ll try my best Liz,’ Dave reassured.
The message was read and Lizzy went offline without replying. Dave thought for a moment, he knew she was still angry at him. He thought of the best way to make her forgive him. After some seconds, he opened the chat again and sent her a message.
‘Lizzy, please allow me make up today’s fault to you. Can we meet by 2pm for lunch tomorrow? Please…’
Dave dropped the phone and turned his eyes to his laptop’s screen. His request had just finished processing and the details of the facility owner was displayed. The name was ‘Nonso Abel’ and his current address, his occupation and other details about him were shown below his name.
To be continued.
Chapter 15 part 1&2
May 5, 2031.
‘Could it be true?’ One of the officers seated at the traffic warden’s post said to his colleague. They were at a junction and another colleague of theirs was on the road directing traffic.
‘Hmm… We can’t tell yet,’ the other one shook his head. ‘There were pictures on those blogs to proof his involvement except he comes out to prove that the pictures are fake or were forged.’
‘I’m just wondering why he has been so aggressive against Child Traffickers, you know he was one of the ones that facilitated the new bill against them.’
‘Don’t mind him,’ the man replied with a hiss. ‘I believe all those things he did were to cover up, just to make him look innocent and for us to think he is a saint. ‘
Cole and Henry drove past the junction and soon stopped at a motor park for interstate transportation. Cole attached a beard to his chin and put on his face cap before stepping out of the car. Henry also put on his face cap and stepped outside the car, he stood by the door and leaned against the car.
‘I’ll be back in few minutes,’ Cole said to Henry as he proceeded towards the office in the park. He proceeded slowly between the cars, listening to the discussion of the drivers and the passengers in some vehicles. He stopped behind a particular bus to listen to the passengers’ conversation.
‘Have they been able to break through them?’ Agent Tim asked as he stepped into the room.
It was the control room of the Samantha Osman’s gang in their recently invaded base. The police officials had found the computer room in the place and were trying to gain access into the computer systems. Agent James was there with some police computer experts and was supervising the job.
‘No sir, I don’t think we’d be able to access these systems. They have the systems totally locked.’ James replied the Agent as he got up from his seat and proceeded to the door.
‘Are you leaving?’ Agent Tim asked James.
‘I need to do some checks in the other rooms,’ James replied, turning back after holding the knob.
‘Have you found out who the legal owner of this facility is?’ Agent Tim asked.
‘We sent messages to Ministry of Housing early this morning, they asked for an hour to get back to us.’ James replied.
‘At what time did you make the call?’
James took out his phone and opened the call dialer to confirm the time of the call. ‘I called them by two minutes past seven.’
Agent Tim took a quick glance at his wristwatch, ‘That means we have only seven minutes left to get their reply.’
‘Yes sir,’ James agreed.
Aguda House, Aso Rock.
‘Find out the owners of the blogs where the news originated from and find their location within the next one hour, I don’t want any excuses.’ Elvis Richards barked into the phone. He flung it to the bed after and began to pace around his room furiously.
That morning, the DIG had woken him up with a call. He called to inform him of the news going round the internet, and since then, Elvis Richards had lost sleep and began trying to reach the necessary authorities. Unfortunately for him the offices were not opened then and he couldn’t reach them till eight o’clock.
He was startled by a knock at the door, he had informed his assistants to stay away from him until he called for them, so he wasn’t expecting anyone to knock his door.
‘Who’s it?’ he shouted.
There was no answer. Another knock sounded.
‘Who the hell is that?’ he shouted louder.
There was silence for a while and then the door opened gently. Vivian poked her head in and her eyes met with the Vice President’s. The man heaved a sigh on seeing her and shook his head before turning to face the other side. She stepped in slowly and closed the door.
‘Good morning Dad,’ she greeted shyly.
‘Good morning Vivian, what do you want?’ Chief Elvis replied.
‘Ermmm… I actually wanted to ask how you’re doing now? I’ve not seen you since you returned from the clinic last night.’
‘Oh!’ Chief Elvis Richards exclaimed, just remembering that he was supposed to use his drugs early that morning. He closed his eyes tight and shook his head, he still had headaches and was still feeling feverish. ‘Thank you dear, I’m better now, just a little headache but I’m sure they’ll all go when I use the drugs I got from the clinic.’
‘Okay, why don’t you come out to eat now so that you can take your morning drugs early enough? Your food has been served already,’ she said.
‘I’m coming out to eat, you go first and I’ll meet you there.’
‘Okay sir… Ermm… My elder brother called this morning.’
‘Which of your brothers called? James?’
‘Yes,’ she replied, emphasizing with a nod.
‘You shouldn’t be talking to James, he’s unserious.’
‘Dad, I don’t believe you just said I shouldn’t be talking to my elder brother.’
‘Yes, I said that because I don’t want him to influence you, you wouldn’t understand what I mean now.’
‘Whatever that means Dad, I’m not really interested’ she said, shaking her head. ‘He called to find out how you are doing since I told him yesterday when you went to the hospital.’
‘Well, that’s thoughtful of him, did you tell him I’m doing fine?’
‘No, I told I’ll get back to him after seeing you.’
‘Okay, you can see that I’m doing fine now. So, go tell him that I’m better. Is that all he asked you?’
‘No, he also wanted me to find out why you are not answering his calls.’
The Vice President gave her no reply. He had been seeing James’ call but refused to answer, thinking that the boy would only talk about the news about him spreading online.
‘Well, I told him you could still be asleep and promised to check on you.’ Vivian said when he remained silent.
‘You answered him well,’ he nodded with a fake smile.
‘But from what I can see now and what your assistants told me, you’ve been awake for a long time.’ She said with a raised eyebrow.
He frowned at her, ‘What do you mean?’
‘Dad, have you been avoiding his calls because of what the blogs reported this morning?’
The man stared at her coldly for a while, he then turned back and walked to his wardrobe. ‘I think you’ve overstayed your welcome in my room Vivian, please leave now, I want to be alone.’
‘Dad, if that’s why, I advise that you answer his calls, he means well and wants to find a solution with you.’
The man turned and gave her a look, wondering if what he just heard was true. The James he knew would never support him in anything; talk more of a criminal matter. ‘Just leave my room,’ he said and turned back. He chose to believe that James was only deceiving her.
‘Dad,’ Vivian called in a calm tone, she let out a sigh. Her father turned back after picking out a different set of clothes from his wardrobe. ‘Are you really guilty of all those allegations?’
Elvis Richards narrowed his gaze at her angrily. Rage was building up inside of him but he tried his best to control himself so as not to do something bad like he had done few years ago.
‘Vivian, are you crazy?’ he shouted in a loud tone. ‘How can you join some criminals to accuse your father of crimes he knows nothing about?’
‘Dad!’ the girl shouted back. ‘I’ve not accused you of anything, I’ve only asked if you are guilty or not.’
‘And what the **** does that mean? Doesn’t it mean that you doubt my integrity?’
‘Dad, yes, I doubt you. Yes!’ she shouted. ‘Who would not doubt you with the way you treat this matter and how you act these days. You don’t react like one who knows nothing about the accusation. If you have your hands clean, why do you have to force me into hiding my encounter with Samantha Osman’s man from the police?’
‘Vivian, you’re crazy! You’ve allowed James talk nonsense into your head. But I warn you, be careful not to regret your actions now. Be careful. I’m not a criminal and would never be one, time would prove it.’
‘Exactly Dad, exactly, this is what we want you to do. If you’re innocent, it’s time to prove your innocence.’
‘No, I don’t have to prove anything, the accusers are the one making claims and they have to prove their claims.’
‘Hey! They have proof already. They sent you a file containing documents that proves your involvement in those crimes and they uploaded some of them online today, its left to you now to prove to the world that those documents are fake like you claimed.’
‘I’d prove that soon Vivian, I would.’ The man said and walked into his bathroom without giving her another chance to say anything to him.
Vivian remained in the room for some more seconds before going out. She shook her head at her father’s assistants who she met standing outside the room and walked away.
15 Minutes later.
Elvis Richards was done with his bath and had put on his clothes. He was ready to go for breakfast when he got a call from the President.
‘Good morning Mr. President,’ he said as he answered the call.
‘Good morning Vice President, hope you slept well.’ The other man replied from the other end.
‘Yes, I did. Did you also?’
‘Yes, Thanks. Are you in the Villa?’
‘I’m aware of your appointment with the Ministry Of Finance by twelve pm today, but can I meet with you by ten am before you go there?’
‘I actually planned to leave earlier sir; I made a promise to visit victims of yesterday’s car crash this morning but I’ll postpone that since you want us to meet.’
‘Oh! No need for that, we can meet when later at night when you return.’
‘Thank you sir.’
He heaved a sigh as the call ended. He knew that the meeting the President was calling for was connected to the news going round online. He wasn’t scared to meet the President, the only thing he wanted to be sure of before meeting the man was his game plan. His game had been on for some time, part of it were all the attempts he had made to present Samantha Osman as the killer of Senator Garuba and Eze Okafor. Now, he needed to change the plan a bit and also intensify his attempt.
He dialed a number on his phone and placed the phone close to his ear. ‘Good morning,’ he greeted the receiver of his call first. ‘I’m coming to visit the victims of that car crash this morning.’
He walked out of the room after the call. His two assistants were standing outside, already dressed and ready for work.
‘Who is with my drugs?’ he asked as he walked past them.
‘I have them sir,’ one of them replied as they followed after him.
‘Okay, there’s a change of plans this morning. We’d be going to the General hospital first.’
‘Sir, the Ministry of Housing has gotten back to us, they cannot find the copies of the house ownership documents online and they’ve asked us to give them some more time to find the hard copies and also rectify some things.’ James said to Agent Tim who was now seated in his car outside the building.
‘What happened to their online data store?’
‘I don’t know sir, they did not give any explanation for that.’
‘Okay James, I’d need your update on other things. I’m going back to the office now.’
‘I’m also returning to the office now, I think we’ve done all that needs to be done here.’
SM GANG’S NEW HOME
‘It’s causing a stir boss, almost everyone is discussing about it.’ Cole reported to Tarasha.
‘And what’s their reaction like? Did they accept it as true or not?’
‘Most people were undecided about it, they are expecting the Vice President to come out with a denial.’
‘That means we’ve made a little impact already,’ Tarasha said.
‘Sure, we have.’
‘Let’s watch the results for some days before intensifying.’
NIS UNDERGROUND FACILTY
Dave stared at the screen in surprise. He was amazed that the data he had seen on the website the last night had been changed so quick. The owner of the facility was no longer documented as Nonso Abel but the Ministry Of Housing. He knew that the change wasn’t ordinary and was so sure that it was orchestrated by Samantha Osman’s Gang.
He opened the notepad file where he had saved the name and details of the owner that was gotten previously from his request on the website. He copied out the name and pasted it into the Google search box on his browser. The search results displayed and the result from Wikipedia was ranked first. He clicked on the Wikipedia link and it finished loading in three seconds. After taking time to read the article, several questions and hints were formed in his mind. In the article, he read about the connection between the man and late Chief Onwuli who died as an Enemy of Elvis Richards.
A knock sounded on his door at that moment. He looked up and stared at the door but gave no reply. He could see a lady’s legs through the transparent glass door but he couldn’t see her face as that part was translucent, he wasn’t expecting anyone and the only person (Lizzy) who could visit him without informing him first had told him she wouldn’t be at the office that morning.
‘Yes,’ he answered after the second knock. He had no choice than to answer as his office mates were not on seat.
The door opened and Lizzy walked in to his surprise. He couldn’t hide his surprise as his mouth remained slightly opened.
‘Good morning Dave,’ Lizzy greeted with a smile as she proceeded to his table.
‘Good morning Lizzy,’ he greeted back. He couldn’t still believe his eyes, he expected her to still be angry at him for disappointing her the day before.
‘How was your night?’ she asked as she settled into the seat.
‘My night was dark,’ he replied cheerfully. She laughed at his response. ‘Hope you slept well.’
‘Yes, I did.’
‘I wasn’t expecting you to come here this morning, I thought you said you won’t be at the office till evening.’
‘Yes, I did tell you that, but my plans changed this morning.’
‘Okay,’ he chuckled. ‘It’s nice to see you again.’
‘Yea, same here.’ She gave a faint smile after which she wore a serious look. ‘Humn… Victor has not picked my calls since last night, I don’t know what could have happened.’
‘When last did you speak with him?’
‘We spoke in the afternoon yesterday and he promised that we’d talk better at night but he never came online and didn’t answer phone calls.’
‘What do you think could be the cause?’
‘I don’t know. The only guess I have is that his girlfriend has told him all I did and he’s mad at me for it.’
‘Who wouldn’t be mad?’ Dave shrugged and chuckled. ‘I believe he would call you soon, maybe this morning, to demand an explanation.’
‘I called him this morning already, he didn’t answer.’
‘Well, soon, his call would come.’
‘I believe too. So, have you made any progress on the case?’
‘Yes, some progress has been made,’ Dave replied enthusiastically. He turned his laptop screen to her.
‘What’s this?’ she asked after thirty seconds of scanning through the Wikipedia article.
‘I think we are getting close to knowing the sponsors of Samantha Osman,’ Dave replied.
‘Are you kidding me?’ she replied, opening her mouth wide in surprise. She turned her gaze back to the screen and scanned through the article again. ‘So, this man, is one of the sponsors or the main sponsor?’
‘He’s definitely one of them, I don’t know if he’s the main one yet.’
‘This is big. How did you find out?’
‘He owns that facility where Samantha Osman was hiding the Inspector General, I got his name yesterday from the Ministry Of Housing Portal.’
‘Wow! This would be the first time we are able to trace the owner of the facility she uses.’
‘I think she didn’t expect the attack, so she just used any facility.’
‘Who attacked her? Was it the police?’
‘No, I don’t know who that person is but I believe it’s another assassin, the same one who has been tracing her from the clash in Lagos.’
‘This is good.’ Lizzy said. She paused for a while to stare at the man’s picture in the Wikipedia article. ‘I’ve seen pictures of this man’s campaign online. I knew him when he ruled as a governor.’
‘Yea, he’s one man we would follow seriously after.’
‘How do you plan to go about it?’
‘Plan?’ Dave smiled and dropped his shoulders. ‘I don’t know,’ he shrugged. ‘Maybe I would start thinking after our lunch this afternoon.’
NIS UNDERGROUND FACILITY
Dan and the third man were now in the office with Dave. All three of them were seated quietly and working on their different tables.
‘Dave,’ Dan took a pause and looked at Dave’s face.
‘Yea?’ Dave replied.
‘Have you gotten any word from Ilorin or Anambra?’
‘No, I haven’t, I think it’s time to call them.’
‘Yea, I’m about to reach out to Agent Godwin, I wanted to find out from you if you’ve heard from him.’
‘Okay, just go ahead and do it.’ Dave replied.
The silence continued for a moment. Dave was rushing up his work; he wanted to finish before twelve pm so that he could leave the office and have time for lunch with Lizzy.
His phone rang and he reached out for it, Stephanie was the caller.
‘Hey! Good morning Steph,’ he said into the phone.
‘Good morning Dave,’ Stephanie replied from the other end.
‘Hope you slept well?’
‘Yes, I did. What about you?’
‘I did too. So, is there any update?’
‘Yes, there is. I really need you to be here as soon as possible.’
‘As soon as possible? Is there any problem?’
‘It’s not a problem yet, but it needs to be attended to urgently.’
‘Okay,’ Dave sighed and glanced at his wristwatch. ‘Where do we meet?’
‘I’m at the Maitama address I gave you yesterday.’
‘Erm… I didn’t write it down; can you tell me the address again?’
‘Hold on, let me get a pen.’ Dave got a pen and a jotter to scribble on. She called the address for him and he repeated the words for confirmation as he wrote them down. ‘Alright, I’ll be there in some minutes.’
He ended the call and placed the phone on his table. He took some minutes to save his work on the computer and shut it down. Then he picked his car keys and his phone from the table.
‘I’m done for the day, I’ll be leaving right now.’
‘Is there anything I need to know?’ Dan asked him.
‘Nothing for now,’ Dave replied.
‘Okay, Good day then.’
Lizzy heaved a sigh of frustration as she tried his number for the third time without him answering. She closed her eyes and shook her head, regretting that she had to rush up her work for the appointment with him.
She rested her head in the driver’s side of her car where she sat and took in a deep breath. The sound of her ringing phone made her open her eyes again. Dave was calling back finally.
‘Dave, where the **** are you?’ she said angrily after answering the call.
‘Lizzy, I’m very sorry,’ Dave’s reply came hurriedly and in a low voice. ‘I’m in a very tight situation right now and I can’t make it anymore today, I’ll call you back as soon as I can.’
‘Dave, what…’ she tried to talk but the line had gone off.
‘Argh!’ she exclaimed in frustration and shook her head in regret. Why was Dave leading her on when he wasn’t ready to be with her?
She dialed his number twice after that and he didn’t answer her calls. She began to imagine all sorts of things. She believed Dave must be taking her for granted because she made herself readily available to him.
Someone knocked on the glass window of the car. She looked up, it was him again wearing a devilish smile. She knew he had come to taunt her.
‘You are thinking about DJ when he’s obviously banging another girl at the moment,’ the man said with a crooked smile.
‘No, you’re wrong. He’s not with another girl, he told me he’s in a tight situation and I know he must be very busy with work,’ Lizzy replied him, still defending Dave even though she wasn’t so sure of where Dave was or what he was doing and she was angry with him, she was still not going to admit it, at least not in the presence of this man.
‘Hehe!’ he chuckled. ‘I’m sure even you do not believe what you’ve just said. Anyway, I am a hundred percent sure that Dave is somewhere with another girl right now and I can provide you proofs, if only you would promise to take my deal.’
‘I’m not ready for any deal with you,’ lizzy replied.
‘Why are you adamant? Even after I have shown you how I care so much about you.’
‘Just get lost.’
‘You’d be mine Lizzy, you’d be mine.’ he said with a evil grin.
‘Get away,’ she shouted at him.
He smiled before turning away. He took only some few steps before he stopped and turned again.
Stephanie was getting impatient where she sat on the driver’s seat of Dave’s car. He had left her there two hours ago and gone into the NDLEA headquarters building to confirm something she told him. The car was parked on the same street where the NDLEA headquarters was, only a few buildings away from there.
Dave showed up at exactly three o’clock. He was sweating profusely and his body was stained with dust all over. He opened the door to the passenger’s side and got in.
‘Where have you been?’ She stared at him in surprise.
He let out a breath and the pulled on the seatbelt. ‘I’ve working to get the documents you told me of,’ he replied and displayed a brown file which he brought along.
‘Did you really get them?’ she widened her eyes.
‘I don’t know if I got the exact documents, but I got something good enough to help us.’
‘Are you sure?’
‘Yes, I am. Just get the car started and let’s get out of here before I start to explain things to you.’
‘Okay,’ she replied and pulled her seatbelt on. She started the car engine and soon drove out of the place. ‘So, can you start the explanation?’
‘Err… Yes, I would explain to you but I need to know first the reason you are seeking for these documents.’ Dave said.
‘Huh?’ she stared at him blankly, surprised that he could ask he such a question.
‘Yes, I need to know, so I can be sure I’m working with the right person.’
Stephanie took a glance at his face. She wanted to stare at him for a longer moment but couldn’t because she had to focus on the road. ‘I thought I told you already how my father was involved in this and how my family’s life ended.’
‘Yes, you told me that but you didn’t tell me the reason you want the case reopened.’
‘The reason? I don’t get what you’re driving at,’ Stephanie gasped.
‘Okay, I actually know why you’re doing this but I’m not comfortable with it.’
‘I don’t understand you.’
‘Steph, you’re doing this to revenge your father and siblings’ death, isn’t it?’
‘No, I don’t see any reason for that. Revenging would not bring them back to life.’
‘Then what’s your purpose for wanting to dig up the case again?’
Stephanie remained silent for a while. They got closer to a traffic light point on the road and stopped as the color displayed at that moment was red. She used the opportunity to look at his face. ‘To be honest, maybe avenging their death is one of the reasons but I actually left Lagos and came down here to find answers when I thought of the dangers of leaving them unpunished. It would mean injustice to several other people who might be under their wickedness at the moment, it would be injustice to the souls of the dead men and women who stood their grounds for the right thing.’
Dave stared at her face for a while and then looked away, he let out a deep breath. The traffic light turned green and Stephanie drove on.
‘These file documents the case of one Mr. George who I believe to be your father against the NDLEA. And there are some pictures that I don’t understand there.’
‘Wow! That’s exactly what I need, we’d compare them with what I have at home and I’m sure we’d be able to come up with something reasonable.’
‘I believe so too.’
‘But… I didn’t ask you how you were able to get the documents,’ Stephanie said.
Dave chuckled. ‘I’m a journalist remember, I have my ways of seeking for information.’
‘But this is extreme, you didn’t just get someone to tell you, you brought the documents which I believe no staff of the NDLEA would allow you have access to.’
‘I’d explain all these to you later. Now, we have to draw up something sensible from the documents we have now.’
They got back to Stephanie’s residence at Maitama ten minutes later. They parked Dave’s car outside in the unfenced compound and went in together.
Lizzy watched from her car as they walked in together. Her heart was bitter against Dave. She had hoped that the address and all what was said about Dave was false and was almost turning back away from the place until she saw his car approaching the house which address she was given. She took out her phone and unlocked it for use. She needed to keep herself busy while she waited to see how long Dave would be in the house with the girl.
‘Whose house is this?’ Dave asked as he settled on the rug with Stephanie where she spread some documents and pictures on.
‘It’s owned by Madam Henrietta.’ Stephanie answered.
‘But she uses here less often?’
‘Well,’ Stephanie shrugged. ‘I really do not know how often she uses this place but I never knew of it until I asked her about some of my mum’s properties which my mum mentioned to be with her, then she told me they were in this house, apart from the other official reason I’m in Abuja, they’re what I actually came to get here.’
‘Hmmm… The house is a nice one.’
‘Yea, truly nice.’
For almost thirty minutes, they continued to check the pictures and documents on the floor and make comments on them, both putting down notes on jotters which they kept aside.
‘So, these proves that your father didn’t go to the place they said he went to in their accusation.’ Dave said, showing her two documents.
‘Yes,’ Stephanie squinted as she scanned through the documents. She collected them from Dave and looked closely for a minute. ‘My mum told me before that he wasn’t there, he was framed. They did it because he would not agree to work with them.’
‘But what I don’t really understand is why my Dad was never able to prove the case in court.’
‘From what I can deduce here,’ Dave said and cleared his throat. ‘I believe that these proofs were not available when the case started, Mr. George couldn’t present the proofs before he died. I think they murdered him when they saw that he was likely to win the case. They had to kill him quickly so that he could die with the blame on him and they executed it in a very intelligent way, covering it up with an accident.’
‘Hmm…’ Stephanie inhaled deeply and closed her eyes. She rested her back on the door for a moment pondering on all Dave had said.
They were done with their work thirty minutes later and Dave got up to leave immediately.
‘Oh!’ Stephanie exclaimed with her eyes wide open. She covered her mouth with her palms and stared at Dave’s face. ‘I’m sorry I didn’t offer you anything.’
‘Oh!’ Dave smiled. ‘I wasn’t even thinking about taking anything too.’
‘I’m really really sorry,’ Stephanie apologized again, feeling embarrassed.
‘It’s okay,’ Dave smiled again. ‘I’ll take anything you offer me when next I come here.’
Stephanie followed him out of the house and walked him to the car.
‘I’m really grateful for sparing time for me, I’m very grateful.’ Stephanie said as they got to the car with Dave standing beside the door to the driver’s side.
‘I’m just doing my job,’ he replied her with a smile.
‘No, it’s not your job, you’re not going to get paid for this, at least, I don’t know how to pay you.’
‘Well, I’m still pleased to work with you,’ Dave replied. They smiled at each other. He stretched out his hand to give her a handshake but she stared at his face with a smile. She moved closer to him and hugged him tightly for almost a minute, almost forcing breath out of him. She finally released him but still held his hands.
Dave stared into her eyes thinly. He could feel a strange connection between them, something he had never felt with any other lady. He admired her beauty and elegant shape again. Her face glowed under the faint evening sunlight and it made him remember someone he had seen some weeks before – the lady on low cut who he had seen weeks in Anambra State.
She finally released her fingers from his but he still held tightly to her wishing he could have her embrace him again. She stared at his for a while, he seemed to be far away in his mind. She squeezed his fingers to bring him back to reality.
‘Hello, are you going to remain here staring at me all day?’
‘Oh sorry,’ Dave laughed and quickly turned to open the car door. He wished he could answer yes to her question. ‘I’ll see you again tomorrow,’ he said before entering the car.
Stephanie waited outside and watched until he drove out of sight. She drew in the cool breeze through her nostrils as she turned back towards the house.
Thoughts of Lizzy ran through Dave’s mind as he drove back home. He knew she would be terribly angry with him and it would be difficult for him to get her to forgive him this time. He began to think of what to say to her on phone when he got home. He discarded the thought on realizing that she would likely ignore his calls. He still needed to try his best to appease her, she had done so much for him and deserved more than to be paid in the way which he was paying her.
Lizzy stepped out of the restroom with a handtowel. She sat by the edge of her bed and picked her phone. She had returned home more than thirty minutes ago after waiting at the place for fifteen minutes without seeing Dave come out. She assigned a junior officer in her team to stay and watch Dave.
She opened her WhatsApp messenger after unlocking her phone, she had received new messages from the guy she kept to watch Dave. She had three pictures and a video in it. She downloaded and viewed the pictures first. The first two showed Dave hugging the girl and the third showed them holding hands. She opened the video, it showed the same thing the pictures showed but she was able to tell how long the hug lasted and how long they held each other.
‘Delete this video and the pictures from your device ASAP, don’t ever keep history of what I asked you to do today,’ she typed into the chat box and sent to the guy.
Just as she wanted to drop her phone, Dave’s call came in. She answered at once.
‘Hello Dave,’ she said into the phone calmly.
‘He…Hi Lizzy,’ Dave answered from the other end. Lizzy could tell from his response that he wasn’t expecting her to answer his calls
chapter 15 part 3&4
‘I’m sorry Lizzy,’ Dave said, scratching his head as he thought of what else to say. He hadn’t thought she would answer the call and was only calling for him to be able to claim later on that he was trying to explain when he called.
‘Sorry for what?’Lizzy answered him coldly from the other end.
Dave heaved a sigh, he got up from the plastic chair and proceeded to his bed. ‘I know you must be very angry with me but I couldn’t…’
‘It’s okay Dave,’ Lizzy cut in. ‘It’s okay, you don’t have to explain. Let’s just keep our relationship formal, taking it informal wouldn’t work. I’ll help you as much as I can as a colleague and nothing more.’
‘Lizzy, you’re mad at me,’ Dave sighed again. ‘We’ve gone past ordinary colleagues to friends already and…’
‘No, we haven’t. I don’t know anything about you apart from the ones I know from the agency and you also do not know anything about me too, we aren’t friends yet.’
Dave heaved a sigh. ‘That’s exactly what I’m trying to make happen. We can get to know each other better if we spend more time out.’
‘But can’t you see it’s not working?’
‘But we can make it work, I promise to…’
‘Oh no, don’t make any promise Dave. I won’t accept any of your invitations anymore.’
Dave let out a deep breath and remained quiet for a while.
‘So, where did you go this afternoon?’ Lizzy broke the silence.
‘Ermm… Well, I got an important information about the Vice President and I had to go verify.’
‘Hmm… It’s okay. I’ve not tried Victor’s number again, I’ll wait till night to see if he’d answer me.’
‘Alright, thank you so much Liz.’
‘It’s okay, take care.’
Dave sank into the bed after ending the call. He laid back flat with his hands and legs spread widely. He shut his eyes for a while and pondered deeply on his recent activities. Maybe Lizzy was right when she suggested that they should keep their relationship as colleagues. He had thought he liked her and hoped that spending sometime with her will help reduce his stress and develop his feelings for her but Stephanie George’s appearance wasn’t making it work.
Was it because of the import of Stephanie’s case or was it because of the girl herself that he had to forgo his lunch with Lizzy? He asked himself. It happened a second time even after promising himself that he wasn’t going to let her down again.
The stress and struggles he went through to get the documents from the NDLEA office flashed back through his mind. He could have suspended his visit to the place to have the lunch with Lizzy. Night time would have even been the best time for him to get the documents without any stress or danger, but he still chose to go through the danger. He wondered why he made that choice. After some minutes of rigorous thinking, he discovered that he had changed his mind and decided to go for the documents that afternoon only because Stephanie had stated that she wished to have them immediately. He was beginning to like her unconsciously and was already making sacrifices for her. He now realized why her hug felt so important to himself.
Her beautiful face popped up in his mind again. He hadn’t been able to stop thinking about her since he met her the day before at the creamery, only that he was just realizing that she occupied his thoughts so much.
His phone beeped and distracted his thoughts for a moment. He opened his eyes and reached out for the phone. A new email had just entered, it was a newsletter from the Ministry Of Housing info website which he had subscribed to. He ignored the message and returned the phone. He remembered Nonso Abel as he laid back in his bed. He needed to do something quick with his investigation of the man.
May 6, 2031
‘Boss,’ Cole called as he knocked the door of the room twice. He waited to hear a response and after some seconds he heard Henry’s voice. ‘Henry, I’d like to see the boss.’
The door opened and Henry stood at the entrance looking down with sleepy eyes.’Yes?’ he glanced at Cole’s face, he seemed not to have heard what Cole said.
‘Good morning, I want to speak with Tarasha,’ Cole replied.
‘Good morning,’ Henry yawned and then turned, he looked at the empty bed for some seconds as if he was looking for Tara. He turned back to Cole, ‘she came in very late last night and I guess she has left already,’ he paused and looked in again before concluding, ‘she’s not here.’
‘Okay, thanks.’ Cole nodded and stepped back. He heard the door slammed shut as he proceeded to the computer room which he had to pass through the living room to get to.
He found Tarasha at the center of the living room performing some exercises. She sat on the floor and turned to him immediately he halted.
‘You were looking for me,’ she said.
‘Yes, Good morning boss. Have you listened to or read the news this morning?’
‘No,’Tarasha took a glance at the wall clock. ‘It’s not eight o’clock yet, what happened?’
‘There was a robbery at a grocery store in Asokoro last night, about six million naira worth of goods were stolen.’ Cole said.
Tarasha stared at his face, wondering how the news he reported was her business.
‘Three people were killed and four others left injured. One of the female staffs was reportedly raped by the leader of the armed robbers who was a lady,’ Cole continued.
‘And what’s the significance of that to me?’
‘The armed robbers left a signature at two points, at the back of the rape victim and at the front wall of the store,’ Cole said. Tarasha raised her brow. ‘The signature was the same found on the ID cards credited to you in the car Senator Garuba’s dead body was found.’
Tarasha squinted as she took out some seconds to ponder on his words. She realized that she had just been framed for armed robbery by the same person who framed her up for the death of Senator Garuba.
‘Where did you read the news?’
‘It was reported by the punch online, desert reporters and several other notable blogs,’ Cole replied.
Tarasha sprang up from the floor immediately and proceeded towards the room area. Cole gave way for her to pass before following behind. She entered into her room (the same one Cole found Henry) and came out a minute later with her device, then she proceeded back to the living room.
‘We have to remain very careful,’ Tarasha said to Cole as they walked together back to the living room. ‘Have you made or received any call since I returned your phone last night?’
‘No, I only turned on my phones this morning, the text message carrying the news headlines was the first thing I saw.’
Tarasha settled on one of the sofas and turned on her tablet device. Five minutes later, she was surfing the Internet and had confirmed everything Cole reported to her.
‘Elvis Richards is playing an interesting game with us and we have to find a way to defeat him in his own game,’ Tarasha said aloud after some minutes of thinking. She rose up and went to turn on the television, she waited for it to finish loading before switching to a news station with the remote control. ‘It’s four minutes to eight, let’s see if the authorities have something different to say.’
Cole switched on his second phone while waiting for the news to begin. As he expected, he had received several messages from Patricia asking him if he was okay and expressing her worry about her inability to reach him.
The news began by eight and the expected item was read out as one of the major headlines. Giving the details of the news, the newscaster read how the grocery store was invaded by the culprits around eight pm the day before and how some staffs were killed and a lady molested by another lady who was part of the robbery gang. It was explained that the police didn’t catch wind of the robbery quick and arrived at the scene some few minutes to nine pm when the deed was already done and the robbers had fled. One of the Deputies of the Inspector General was interviewed by the press men and the interview was aired.
‘It is no longer news that Samantha Osman and her gang are now doing more than assassinations but are now involved in robbery, both petty and big ones. There are so many other cases of Samantha Osman’s robbery that has gone unreported. We can connect this robbery to the recent invasion of Samantha Osman’s base by the Police where we rescued the Inspector General. We believe she carried out this robbery to meet her need of a new apartment. We therefore advise the general public to report any suspicious thing they find immediately and remain careful and alert always,’ the DIG said before the newscaster continued with the news:
‘Vice President Elvis Richards has also reacted to the robbery this morning and the news in circulation about him. He connected both situations together and accused Samantha Osman of trying to divert the public’s attention by making false accusations against him. This statement was released by the spokesman for the presidency. The Vice President further urged the public to be careful of believing such news and accusations against him and other honest public officers as they hold no water and were mere fabrications.’ the newscaster completed that part of the news and moved to another.
Tarasha chuckled and rested her back. She understood what the Vice President was trying to do and needed to learn the rules of his game first before trying to defeat him.
Cole stepped out through the backdoor to the backyard. He took out his phone and unlocked it, there were new missed calls from Patricia. He had put his phone on silence while listening to the news with Tarasha not to cause any distraction. He dialed back Patricia’s number and raised the phone to his ear.
The call was answered after a beep. Cole’s let out a deep breath as he heard her cool and calm voice.
NIS UNDERGROUND FACILITY
‘Victor,’ Lizzy spoke softly into the phone. She glanced at her office partners to see if they were listening to her conversation. Where have you been for Gods sake, Ive been so worried about you.’
Im sorry dear, I had some emergencies and Ive been so busy. Victor replied from the other end.
But you should have called me or at least answered my calls, you knew I would be worried you.’ She said as she pulled out her tablet device from her bag.
Im sorry, I wanted to but I couldnt gain access to my phone until this morning.
Well, how are you doing? Are you sure theres no problem?
Yes, Im fine, Victor replied with a chuckle. We need to see.
Yes sure, we really need to see.’
Lizzy opened the tracking app on her device.
So, are you free this evening, can we meet at my apartment?
Ermm What time?
Six pm should be okay, Victor replied.
No, six pm is too late. She complained. You know I started my new job already and I close by four pm, so it will mean Id have to wait till six after closing.
Oh thats true, sorry it skipped my mind. Lets make it quarter past four then. Send me the address of your new place of work, Id be there to pick you.’
Okay, Lizzy said before ending the call. She dropped the phone and focused on the processing app on her tab. It processed for one more minute before giving the message: location not found.
Lizzy locked the device and returned it into her bag, she took out her second android phone and opened her whatsapp messenger. She scrolled down and clicked on a previous conversation and began to type. I just reached Victor now, I tried to locate him but I couldnt. They are in a new protected place. We arranged a meeting at his apartment this afternoon. She clicked send after she finished typing.
This way sir, one of the doctors said to the Vice President and his crew as they walked the passage between the hospital wards. They turned into another passage where two police officers were seen at both sides of a particular door. The doctor led them to the door the officers were standing and opened it, he allowed for the Vice President and his three escorts to go in before following.
The Inspector General was seen on the bed, the ward was a large and neat one. His head was well rested on a pillow, his whole body except his head was covered with a white cloth. The Vice Presidents assistant signaled for two of the other escorts to step out before proceeding to the bed with Chief Elvis and the doctor.
The Inspector General opened his eyes as the men came closer to him. He seemed surprise to see the Vice President; a faint smile appeared on his face and he managed to seat up.
Chief Rikau, the Vice President hailed as he got to the bed, his assistant pulled a chair closer for him to seat. How are you feeling now?
Im feeling much better, Chief Rikau answered. The doctors says that Ill be out of here sooner than I expect.’
Yea, I heard from reports too that youre doing fine, Chief Elvis said and took a quick glance at the Doctors face before turning back to the Inspector General. Im sorry Ive not been able to visit, I had several assignments to carry out.
Yea, I was told yesterday. President Emeka mentioned that you had so much to do yesterday.’
Oh! He visited yesterday?
Yes, he did.
So what has happened in my absence? Chief Rikau asked.
So much, all orchestrated by Samantha Osman as usual. Shes more desperate than ever. Chief Elvis answered.
That lady is crazy and has to be stopped. I received a call from the DIG of this zone, and hes coming here to brief me this afternoon.
Yea, he should. I also came with a briefing. The vice president said and rested his back in the chair. He took a glance at the Doctor and his assistants faces. Can you guys excuse us for a moment, we need to discuss some secret matters of the state.’
The two guys bowed and left quietly.
Samantha Osman is a b****, you cant believe that she has released those documents. Chief Elvis said after the men were gone.
How did she do that? What medium?
She released them online, she took shots of the documents and uploaded them online on several blogs telling the world a lot of details about the business with NOTD. I cant still imagine how she got to know those things she wrote about me.’
Thats serious, Im just hearing this too. So what are we supposed to do before things get out of hand?
Ive started a lot of things already, we did another yesterday. All we need to do is to keep distracting peoples attention and painting her bad until we are able to produce similar documents that can counter the original ones she has. Once we get those documents, we make sure the world sees it too.
But how possible is that? The court would definitely find out that our documents are fake and its not even easy to deceive the world.
Theres no way theyre going to find out that our documents are not the original ones since they are going to be presented by the concerned agencies themselves. The court would definitely accept what the agencies present and ask Samantha where she got theirs from. The idiots she got the sealed documents from are dead already and the world already believes that she killed them.
Hmm, it sounds like a nice plan. The inspector General said, staring thinly at the ground.
Its perfectly planned, Samantha cant win against us.’
But sir the inspector general suddenly realized something. What if theres an eyewitness to those cases who is still alive?
An eyewitness? Chief Elvis asked with a frown. I dont understand what you mean.
Yes, what if someone who took part in the signing of these documents is alive and what the judges that preceded over those cases in those years, they would be able to identify the original documents.
Well Chief Elvis sighed. He had never thought about the point the Inspector General was making. He pondered on the matter for a minute before coming up with a solution. I think we can draw up a list of all these people who may arise as eye witnesses and make Rex handle them for us.’
Handle them? Rikau frowned. The Vice president nodded a yes. If we start killing all those witnesses, havent we turned ourselves to assassins like her?’
The Vice President squinted at him for a moment, and then he chuckled and sat up. Are you the one talking about being an assassin like Samantha Osman? Is it because we are now in government offices? Have you forgotten what you do before? Have you forgotten who I was? Dont you remember how many people that had to for us to get to these positions we are today? Chief Elvis bombarded him with questions and then paused for a little while. Why should we now have to bother about the little more that will die for us to retain our positions?’
Youve said the truth sir, Chief Rikau heaved a sigh. But the utmost thing on my mind now is getting better.
Thats important, Chief Elvis commented and rested his back again. I suggest that you leave the country for a while after being discharged from here.’
NIS UNDERGROUND FACILITY
Dave, have you read the latest news? Dan said with excitement as he walked into the office.
Dave stopped his work and looked at him. Whats the latest?
Those blogs that accused the Vice President of drugs trafficking have just made updates to the news.
‘What update did they make?’ Dave asked anxiously, his eyes following Dan as the latter walked to his office seat.
‘They released more documents and challenged the Vice President to deny the proofs, ‘ Dan said and paused to take his seat. ‘Why don’t you check it yourself?’ Dan suggested on seeing Dave still staring inquisitively at him.
‘Oh true,’ Dave realized he could check online instead of relying on what Dan would tell him. He brought out his phone and in no time visited one of the news blogs. He saw the update and found it just as Dan had said, he also discovered that the a new blog had been opened with the domain name ‘samanthaosman.com’. The blog claimed to be the official information site for the Samantha Osman blog and was the first to release the new news update. The Vice President was also given seventy two hours ultimatum to prove the claims as false after which he’d be served court papers.
‘Hehe,’ Dave laughed. ‘ This is really serious,’ he said, looking at Dan.
‘It’s serious bro,’ Dan joined in.
‘The hilarious part is that she threatened to take him to court,’ Dave said and laughed again.
‘Yea, it is hilarious when a criminal is threatening to take someone to court, how would she appear?’
‘I believe she has a sponsor,’ Dave said.
‘Sponsor? Who do you think is her sponsor?’ Dan suddenly looked more interested.
‘I don’t know,’ Dave replied with a shrug.
Dan sighed, disappointed at Dave’s reply.
They remained in silence for a while before Dan returned to his work. Dave remained in the same position with his jaw on his palm and the elbow on the armrest of his swivel. The new documents that had just been uploaded on the Samantha Osman’s blogs were consistent with some of the documents and pictures Stephanie George had.
Dave’s heart skipped a beat as the possibility of a connection between Samantha Osman and Stephanie George popped up in his mind. He began to wonder who Stephanie George really was and he hoped he hadn’t been working with the enemy. And what if Stephanie George was even the same person as Samantha Osman? Fear surged through his body as the question came to his mind. But he remembered immediately that Samantha Osman was the one who took Stephanie and other kidnap victims to the hospital when Stephanie was kidnapped.
The sound of his ringing phone distracted his thoughts and he picked it up to check the caller, it was Stephanie George.
‘You would do what?’ Dave asked in a surprised tone, still holding the phone close to his ear.
‘Yes, I am ready.’ Stephanie replied confidently from the other end.
‘No, you are not ready for this yet?’ Dave disagreed. He wanted to keep talking freely but realized that Dan and their third office partner were in the room with him, he quickly changed the subject of discussion. ‘You are not ready to have a baby yet, I’m sure you aren’t.’ Dave said in low tones.
‘What are you talking about Dave?’ Stephanie asked, surprised at his deviation.
‘Oh! If you insist that you’re ready, you’re on your own. I’m not ready to be a father yet, so you would have to bear the responsibility alone.’ Dave replied.
‘Hey! Mr. Dave, this is Stephanie George.’
‘That’s your problem. Anyway you can call me back whenever you’re ready to do away with it.’ Dave snapped and ended the call.
He met the mocking faces of his partners as he dropped the call. Dan could not hold it any longer and burst into laughter. ‘Agent Dave, don’t tell me you’re asking a lady to get an abortion.
Dave hissed and looked away, ignoring Dan’s question. He tapped his computer keyboard and focused on the keys with a serious look.
‘But you’re always moving around with packs of golden circle, how come you missed this one?’ Dan asked mockingly.
‘Just leave me for now Dan,’ Dave said, acting pissed off.
‘Hahaha,’ Dan and the other partner jeered at him.
Dave forced himself to hold the smile that was trying to escape his lips. He picked up his phone again and turned on the data connection, he clicked on the whatsapp messenger to see if he received any update from Lizzy on her work with Victor. There was none yet, he turned off his data connection and switched back on his WiFi connection to the NIS hotspot.
He let out a breath and relaxed his back. He needed to find a way to excuse himself from the office and talk with Stephanie. She had just told him that she was ready to charge the Vice President to court. He wondered if she knew how dangerous the part she was about to tread was. It would be impossible for her to remain alive if she started the case without getting enough protection for herself. But was it even possible for her to get any protection? The police or other security officers who should be the ones to protect her would take orders from the Vice President instead as the heads of all the security officers were loyal to the Vice President just like Inspector General Rikau. The Vice President seemed to wield more power than the President himself in terms of security of matters of the law, the president had given him (his vice) the free hand because he was once in the force too.
Another thought came to his mind. Was it a coincidence that Stephanie George was taking the Vice President to court at the same time Samantha Osman threatened to also do? Or was it a plan by the assassin gang? Could it be a further proof of the connection between Stephanie George and Samantha Osman?
‘I need to take some fresh air outside,’ Dave said as he picked up his phone and got up from his seat.
‘Hmm, I guess the air conditioner in this room isn’t working fine anymore.’ Dan mocked.
‘Whatever,’ Dave said and walked out without saying any other thing.
Dave found himself a convenient place where he could make the call to Stephanie without being heard by anyone. He dialed her number and it connected immediately.
‘Hello Steph, I’m sorry for what happened earlier on’ He quickly apologized first. ‘I was with the wrong folks then and I had to talk that way not to make them suspicious of anything.’
‘It’s okay, hope you heard all I told you.’ Stephanie replied.
‘Yes, I did. But do you really think you’re ready to face the Vice President? Do you think you can ever win him?’
‘Yes, I can. I have the necessary evidence to prove his guilt.’
‘Have you gotten a lawyer?’
‘I plan on calling my lawyer this afternoon. I told him already that I had a serious case coming up.’
‘Okay,’ Dave released a breath. ‘And do you think you’d live to see the case won?’
There was silence for a moment.
‘I don’t understand what you mean.’
‘Do you think it’ll be difficult for the man that carried out the murder of your father and several other people to murder you without a trace?’
‘God forbid!’ Stephanie exclaimed. ‘Come on, why are you talking like this?’
‘I’m saying the truth to you as an experienced journalist, no one else is going to warn you if I don’t.’
Stephanie remained silent.
‘Steph,’ Dave called calmly. ‘We need to make sure you are protected before we make any move.’
‘But once the report is made, the police would offer protection.’ Stephanie argued.
‘Have you forgotten that the person you’re against controls these forces or do you have something else that protects you which I don’t know of?’ Dave said, trying to see if she would make any hint about her connection to Samantha Osman.
‘No, I don’t.’
‘Then, you have to be very careful. Let’s meet this afternoon by two o’clock, hope you’d be free by then.’
‘Yes, I would. Where should I meet you?’
‘I’ll be coming to meet you at your place.’
SAMANTHA OSMAN’S GANG NEW BASE
‘You did a great job with the news articles,’ Tara praised Henry as she walked into the computer room.
‘Thanks,’ Henry replied and glanced back at her. ‘But I didn’t do it alone, I got help from Dr Ekwueme.’
‘Oh! Talking about that man, do you think he’s doing healthy enough for him to keep working with us?’
‘Well, he doesn’t sound to me like someone who’s willing to leave us yet. I guess the man is enjoying the little bit of adventure he’s experiencing with us and doesn’t want to go back yet to his normal doctor routine.’
Tara chuckled; she pulled a seat closer beside Henry and sat on it. ‘And has he been able to adjust to this new place?’
‘I think he’s doing well, Cole shared the room with him last night.’
‘I know and I’m still wondering why that happened.’
‘You shouldn’t be wondering, its obvious Cole doesn’t want to have anything to do with Tomi anymore, that’s why he left her in the room.’
‘That’s their business anyway, I don’t get into people’s personal lives.’
‘Do you think so? Don’t you think you could help as the boss if you step in and hear what the problem is from the two parties?’
‘Help to do what?’ Tara asked in a surprised tone. ‘As the boss, I don’t think I should get into their personal affairs, anyone that messes up between them would face the consequences.’
Henry shrugged. ‘It’s okay if that is your choice.’
‘Are you fully monitoring the movements of the Vice President and the Inspector General?’ Tara asked after two minutes of silence.
‘Yes, as much as I can, I am.’
The door to the computer room opened gently and Cole entered. He stopped halfway and bowed slightly to the boss. ‘Tarasha, I want to take some time out from three thirty pm, I’ll be back before night.’
Tarasha glanced at the time, it was five minutes to two. ‘It’s okay; make sure you watch your back.’
‘Of course boss,’ Cole smiled faintly and bowed again before walking out.
MADAM HENRIETTA’S RESIDENCE, ABUJA.
Dave sat quietly, admiring the design of the living room. He wondered why Madam Henrietta spent so much on decorating a place she barely used. He had wanted to ask Stephanie what kind of job the woman did but it wasn’t the right time to do that yet.
Stephanie walked into the living room some seconds later with a pack of juice and a glass cup in a tray. She served Dave and sat beside him.
‘Thanks,’ Dave said after taking a sip from the cup.
She smiled at him. ‘I’ve prepared lunch for us, I don’t know if you’re ready to eat now.’
Dave widened his mouth in surprise and then smiled. ‘I hope you’re not trying to make up for yesterday.’
‘Uhmn…It’s afternoon already and even if nothing happened yesterday, it’s the right time for lunch today.’
Fifteen minutes later, both of them were seated at the table eating lunch. Stephanie had made spaghetti with fried plantains and chicken, garnished with green capsicums with tomatoes. The whole place was silent as they ate, only sounds of the cutleries against the plates could be heard.
Dave continued stealing glances at Stephanie’s face as he ate, it had been a long time he ate such a food in his home or in someone else’s. He wondered if she cooked the food herself or if she got it from an eatery, the latter seemed to be the most possible one.
‘Hope you like the food?’ Stephanie looked up and asked, both of them were almost done with their rations.
‘Oh yea, I do.’ Dave answered her with a smile. She had opened the opportunity for him to ask where she got the food from. ‘The food is excellent, which of the eateries did you get it from?’
She looked at his face in surprise, her mouth left ajar for a moment. ‘You can’t be serious with that question right? How can you expect a lady to get food from an eatery when she’s in her home? Or you think I don’t know how to cook?’
‘Erm, not that, I know you’d be a good cook.’ Dave said, forcing out laughter to make her feel he was only joking. He tried to make up a reason to give for asking her the question. ‘I was just wondering how you got to prepare the meal so quick considering the time we spoke on phone and when I arrived here.’
‘Well, the duration is enough time to prepare spaghetti, I only added enough quantities for both of us when I learnt you were coming.’
‘Nice, you’re such a good cook.’ Dave complimented.
‘Thanks,’ she smiled.
They ate the rest of the meal in silence and finished at almost the same time.
‘So,’ Dave began after the meal, both of them still at the dining with the plates unpacked. He relaxed his back and folded his arms as he stared into her eyes. He was lost for a moment. He wanted to begin the discussion which he came to the place for but something in her eyes had made him speechless. He took in another deep breath as he stared unconsciously, wondering if the person seating before him was human or a goddess. He couldn’t explain why he was just finding her attractive even though he had seen her beauty a long time ago.
Dave jerked back to reality to find Stephanie staring at him with her eyes widened. She appeared to have been trying to get his attention for some time.
‘So what? And why are you staring at me like that?’ Stephanie asked with a raised eyebrow.
Dave forced out a smile. ‘I’m sorry, so…’ He gasped. He had forgotten what he initially wanted to say.
Dave smiled again. He didn’t know what to say and how to explain himself.
‘Why were you staring like that?’ Stephanie asked, seeing that he had forgotten what he wanted to say initially.
‘I was just amazed at how beautiful you are,’ Dave wanted to say but the words only sounded in his head. Stephanie was still staring at him and waiting for a response. ‘I just remembered something,’ Dave lied.
‘Hmmm, it must really be something nice.’ Stephanie said and picked her glass cup to take a sip of water.
‘Why do you say so?’ Dave asked.
‘I know from the way you were smiling absent mindedly.’
‘Hehe,’ Dave chuckled mildly. ‘Let us proceed please,’ he readjusted his seating position. ‘So you plan on taking the Vice President to court?’
‘Yes, I told you on phone already and you stated your concerns about my security.’
‘And so, have you made up your mind?’
‘I thought that’s why you’re here, to help me make up my mind.’
‘Well, at the end the decision is all yours.’
‘What do you think I should do?’
‘I think we should gather more facts first, and then we make public accusations before involving the police. If we go the other way, they could silence us before even before the case starts.’
‘Okay… Ermm, since you’re a journalist, I believe making the accusations public won’t be a problem for us right?’ She asked and Dave nodded in response. ‘You also mentioned getting more facts, I do think that what we’ve gotten is enough for us to prove that my father was framed up and accused wrongly and also that his death was a murder and not an accident.’
‘Yes, we have so enough to prove your father’s case but if we could get facts to prove another victim’s plight, it would make us stronger and help us gain more attention from the outside world.’
‘I really do not need attention from the outside world, what I want is to stop the man so that others would not become victims of his wickedness,’ she paused and raised her shoulders a bit. ‘Haven’t you seen the accusations Samantha Osman made against the same Chief Elvis?’
Dave’s heart skipped a bit as she mentioned the assassin’s name. The thought of the connection between them came back to his mind. He decided it was the first time to find out if they were really connected. ‘What about Samantha Osman’s accusations, what do you know about those things she said?’
‘What do I know?’ Stephanie squinted, surprised at his question. ‘I know what I read online. She accused him of drugs trafficking and made several instances and periods where he did the transactions, she also made mention of some cases similar to my Dad’s case where several people had to be judged unjustly even though Chief Elvis was the culprit.’
‘Is that all you know?’ Dave narrowed his gaze at her, he folded his arms again.
‘What do you mean?’ Stephanie asked, her tone showed that she was surprised at his type of questions.
‘Hey! Sorry, don’t be offended,’ Dave apologized with a chuckle. ‘I was just exercising my journalistic instincts.’
Stephanie gave a wry smile and then relaxed her shoulders.
‘But since the last time we met, have you had seen or heard from Samantha Osman?’
‘No, I haven’t.’
‘Okay,’ Dave paused for some seconds to think. From Stephanie’s response and body language, it was obvious that her investigation wasn’t connected in any way to Samantha Osman’s accusations. ‘I’m thinking that your kidnap then wasn’t just for supremacy or cult reasons,’ Dave said in a thinking tone.
‘Why? Because this is coming at the same time Samantha Osman’s accusation is coming?’
Dave didn’t answer immediately. He stared at her face for a while, trying to understand her state of mind. He realized she was already thinking that he was accusing her of working with Samantha Osman. ‘No, it’s not the timing but the fact that the same person who kidnapped you had something to do with Samantha Osman.’
‘I don’t get you,’ Stephanie said with a frown.
Dave readjusted his seating position again. ‘Look at it this way; you and Samantha Osman have one common enemy, the Vice President. You were kidnapped at a time she had something to do with your kidnappers. She did not kill you or harm you when you met, rather she helped you and the other kidnapped people. Now, don’t you think someone was trying to stop you from doing what you’re doing today?’
Stephanie squinted at him. She looked confused and lost. Dave sat back properly and rested his back, waiting for her to ponder on his words and make out the meanings.
‘So you think someone was trying to stop me from reopening this case like I’m trying to do today?’ Stephanie asked after thinking for almost one minute.
‘Exactly, and they were trying to stop Samantha Osman also because of something she knows.’ Dave paused and took in a very deep breath. ‘Look here, the same way you are seeking for information is the same way Samantha Osman does. She got those documents she uploaded from her recent trips to Kwara, and Anambra State.’
‘But did she really kill the Senator and Sir Eze Okafor?’
Dave stared thinly at her face for some seconds without answering. He was considering if it was wise for him to tell her the truth he knew. He felt a strange feeling of safety with her but still didn’t want to risk it.
‘Well, I can’t say for sure but I think she didn’t. I think,’ he stressed the syllable ‘think’ to emphasize his uncertainty.
‘So who killed those men?’
‘I don’t know and I’ve not said she didn’t kill them yet,’ Dave replied, reemphasizing his point.
‘I believe she didn’t kill them,’ Stephanie said slowly and then fixed her gaze on his face. ‘And I do agree with your point now, I’m fighting the same person with Samantha Osman, she probably was another victim of the man’s wickedness.’
‘Hmm,’ Dave sighed, her words made sense to him.
They remained in silence for the following two minutes before Dave spoke again.
‘I think I know how we would go about it,’ Dave said, taking out his pen to make a notepad.
‘How?’ Stephanie asked and adjusted herself to a serious seating position to listen. She had already the plates from Dave’s front and hers to a side of the table.
‘Have you told anybody else about this? I mean your plan for the Vice President.’
‘No, I only told my lawyer that I had a case I wanted her to handle for me but I haven’t told her details yet.’
‘So, nobody else knows about this except the both of us?’ Dave asked, Stephanie nodded a Yes in response. ‘And even Madam Henrietta?’
‘Madam Henrietta knows nothing, I only asked her for the photo album and some files and she told me to come get them here when I continued pestering her.’
‘Good. So, you have to make sure nobody else knows about it or the plans we are about to make. Hope you can do this.’
‘Yes, I will.’
‘Okay, we’re going to make some news articles this week, accusing the Vice President of the crimes against your father, even though we aren’t going to upload proofs yet.’
‘Just like what Samantha Osman did?’ Stephanie asked. Dave nodded and mentioned a silent Yes. ‘Won’t people think she’s the one?’
‘No, I’ll be posting this on a popular blog of mine and not a fresh one like she did.’
‘Won’t that get you into trouble?’ Stephanie asked, her eyes filled with concern for him.
‘Yes, it will. The police will come looking for me for defamation of character but I would schedule more posts for evening and the next morning. We would have to keep the documents safe before then and also get your lawyer ready. You would wait till a day after I’ve been picked by the police before you speak up for me.’
‘What would I say?’
Dave chuckled. ‘I’ll tell you later.’
Stephanie let out a deep breath.
‘But we have to travel to Lagos tomorrow,’ Dave quickly added.
‘We?’ She raised her brow. ‘Why?’
‘To find out something related to Samantha Osman’s accusations so we can make ours.’ Dave replied with a lie. He actually wanted to take her along to help him in his job of finding facts about Chief Nonso Abel.
He looked at her face, she was staring blankly at the wall, already lost in thoughts.
‘Stephanie, you have to trust me.’ Dave said, thinking she was considering rejecting his request to travel with him.
‘No, I trust you, that’s why I came to you. I was only thinking about Samantha Osman,’ she replied and stared thinly again.
‘What are you thinking about her?’
‘I feel like meeting her right now and asking some questions. She gave me a device that day to easily contact her. I wish I still had it with me.’
‘Hmm,’ Dave heaved a sigh. He also had the same wish as her. It was the first time he wished to see Samantha Osman, not to arrest her or fight her for her crimes but to talk to her as a friend and listen to her explain some of her actions
Chapter 15 part 5
Lizzy began to dress up for her meeting with Victor after lunch. She had a feeling of relief whenever she remembered that her days with him were numbered and that his gang was close to their waterloo.
After dressing up, she stood in front of the mirror and stared at her reflection for a while. She smiled to herself as she admired her beautiful figure and the curves of her body which made her irresistible to men whenever flaunted. The smile disappeared from her face as she remembered that she had had to subject her beautiful body to fulfill the lusts of criminals like Victor. That truth made her feel sick for a moment.
A thought came to her mind. She turned back to her bed and reached for her phone. She searched out Tomi’s number and dialed.
‘Hello,’ the call was answered from the other end with a muffled voice, it sounded like Tomi was chewing something and she seemed not to have checked who the caller was before answering.
‘Hello dear,’ Lizzy replied in a playful tone. ‘Hope you’re doing fine today. I called to confirm if you have agreed to the deal I offered you two days ago.’
The chewing sound from Tomi’s end stopped and there was silence for some seconds.
‘Hey you b****!’ Tomi cursed, it appeared she had just realized who the caller was. ‘You’re not going to get tired of ******g with my boyfriend right?’
‘Baby Doll, he never told me about you, I guess you don’t exist in his mind. But I also think he may be trying to deceive me and that’s why I’m trying to offer a deal to you…’
‘Shut the **** up, you can keep ******* with the dog for all I care,’ Tomi slammed. Lizzy giggled. ‘He knows what kind of a b**** you are already, I allowed him hear how he was barking like a dog while having sex with you and how you were mewing like the screwed ****y that you are.’
‘Ermm… What do you mean?’ Lizzy seemed tensed for a moment.
‘You heard me right b****. I recorded that phone call and played everything to him,’ Tomi replied. ‘Now, **** off the line.’
The call ended but it left Lizzy dazzled. She tried to process in her head all that Tomi had told her, then it made sense to her why Victor sounded pained while asking to see her that evening. She never imagined that the call could have been recorded. The only effect she expected from the call was to leave Tomi brokenhearted and angry with Victor. She began to imagine several reasons the call was recorded for. Maybe it wasn’t only Victor who listened to the recording, their boss could have listened to it too.
She got up from the bed and reached for her bag, she put the phone into the bag before getting her shoes. She knew Victor was going to be throwing her questions and she needed to get ready answers to all his possible questions.
Victor glanced at the giant wall clock again, it was exactly four o’clock. It had taken so long to come and the fifteen minutes for which he had been waiting for seemed like eternity. He picked up his phone and opened his call dialer, he selected Patricia’s number and wanted to dial but stopped on a second thought. He glanced at the wall clock again, it was a minute past four, it was still too early to call and ask her where she was. He closed his eyes and rested his head on the backrest of the sofa.
He was about sleeping off nine minutes later when he heard a sound of the door opening. He sat up immediately and stared intently at the door until she entered.
The scent of her perfume filled the whole place as she entered. She stopped at the door and stared straight at Victor’s face. Their eyes connected deeply at that moment. For Victor, the connection was deeper than just the eyes, it was their hearts connecting. It felt like he was just seeing again her after so many years. She looked more beautiful and radiant to him. On the other hand, Patricia stared at him with so much hatred for him in her eyes, her desire to see him being executed for being a murderer seemed to grow stronger at that moment.
‘Pat,’ Victor called with a soft voice as he rose to his feet. She walked closer to him and they engaged each other in a tight hug for some seconds. Patricia continued to twitch her body uncomfortably until he released her.
‘I missed you dear,’ Victor said in happy tone.
‘I missed you too,’ she replied with less enthusiasm.
They both settled beside each other in the three seater sofa.
Patricia held his hands in hers and looked into his eyes as she began to speak. ‘Please Victor, I want you to tell me the whole truth.’ she said and Victor stared into her eyes more intently. ‘Do you have another girlfriend?’
Victor’s muscles relaxed a bit, his shoulders dropped and his eyes closed for a second. ‘Why do you ask? I thought I told you I never had a relationship before I met you.’
She let out a breath and released his hands from her grip. Her facial expression changed and turned angry all of a sudden, tears could be seen in her eyes. ‘If you’re not in a relationship, then who is Tomi?’
Victor froze for a second, wondering what was happening. He had thought he would be the first to bring up the matter but here she was talking about it before him and even very angry about it.
‘Tomi is not my girlfriend,’ he answered. He sat up and raised his gaze to her face.
‘Then who is she?’
Victor was confused for a moment. He didn’t have the right words to describe Tomi’s relationship with him and was trying his best to be careful so as not to complicate the issues.
‘She works with Evelyn Alexandra and I got to know her in the house, we had sex twice before I met you, but I swear, there’s nothing serious between the both of us.’ Victor explained with his voice and his facial expression depicting seriousness.
Patricia shook her head gently in disbelief, squinting at his face as she folded her arms. ‘I don’t believe any single word of yours, why didn’t you tell me about her before.’
‘Why do you think I would lie to you?’ Victor asked, spreading his palms wide as he stood up to his feet. ‘I had nothing serious going on with her, so there was no reason to tell you.’
He tried to move closer to her but she stepped back farther.
‘This is what all guys say when they’re caught, they always make an explanation.’
‘Believe me Pat, I’m telling you the whole truth. She’s nothing to me.’
‘Why then did you record our voices four days ago and how did she get it on her device?’
‘Record our voices?’ Victor halted and frowned. ‘What are you talking about?’
‘I’m sure you must have a camera somewhere here,’ Patricia said and began to look around the ceiling and it’s edges.
‘What camera?’ Victor asked, following her as she looked everywhere. He stepped closer to her and tried to hold her but she resisted.
‘Don’t touch me until you tell me why you recorded our voices and how she got it.’
Victor halted again. He was confused, wondering if she was talking about the same recording Tomi played for him to listen to or a different one. ‘What did you intend to achieve by that? You planned to humiliate me?’
‘No, why would I want to humiliate you? I don’t even understand what you’re talking about,’ Victor said helplessly.
‘You shameless liar, I hate you.’ she shouted at him and turned. She picked her bag from the center table where it was dropped and proceeded angrily to the door.
‘Hey Pat, please listen to me,’ Victor pleaded and ran after her. He stopped her from opening the door and gripped her wrists. ‘Listen, I don’t know what you’re talking about. Why don’t you allow me listen to the audio you’re talking about?’
‘Please let me be,’ she hissed and tried to wriggle her self free from his grip but he held her firmly. ‘Let me be,’ she screamed in a loud voice and he had no choice than to release her hands but still blocked her from touching the door. ‘Why should I allow you listen to anything. You’re a liar, the audio had the voices of both of us and we were the only ones in this house that day except you have someone else living here that I don’t know about.’
‘No Pat, there’s no one else that comes here apart from the both of us and there was no one in the house with us that day. But why would I make any recording? What do I have to gain from it?’
‘I don’t know, please can you just let me leave here now?’ she screamed.
‘No Pat, please let’s settle this.’ Victor pleaded and reached for her hands again. ‘I think Tomi played that same audio for me to listen, I swear, I don’t know how it was recorded.’
Patricia remained mute for a moment, staring into his eyes angrily and breathing loudly. She had been able to make him confirm that there was really a recording and that Tomi played it for him to listen. ‘I don’t believe you, we were the only ones here that evening, who else could have done it?’
‘You have to believe because I’m saying the truth,’ Victor said and let out a deep breath. ‘Okay, let’s look at it this way, let’s say one of us mistakenly recorded that day…’
‘No, I didn’t record anything. You did. You own this house and you must have set everything up before that evening.’
Victor heaved a sigh. He had never begged a lady for anything this way and he was getting tired of trying to convince her but he just couldn’t stop himself, the last thing he wanted was for Patricia to hate him.
ASO ROCK CLINIC
‘I’m not feeling any better Doctor, it seems to have gotten worse than it was two days ago.’ Chief Elvis Richards complained to the doctor, his eyes closed as he held his forehead with his palm.
‘I’m sorry about that sir,’ the doctor replied, staring at the man with a pity face. ‘But sir, did you follow the prescription carefully?’
‘Yes, I did. Even when I almost forget, I always have people to remind me.’
‘Hmm,’ the doctor opened the case file again and read through for some seconds. ‘The symptoms you complained of are still symptoms of Malaria fever but you’d have to go through another blood test for us to ascertain what’s wrong,’ he said before closing the file. He picked up his phone and dialed a number. He instructed a nurse to come get the Vice President’s blood sample.
Fifteen minutes later, the result of the test was out and the doctor had gone through it.
‘Sir, it’s still malaria but it’s severe malaria. We have to prescribe stronger drugs for you.’ the doctor said after drawing out a conclusion from the test results.
SAMANTHA OSMAN’S NEW BASE
Tomi was in the kitchen, washing used plates and pots when she heard someone’s footsteps entering the kitchen. She looked back and was surprised to see Cole charging towards her. But there was no time for her to express her surprise as Cole grabbed her suddenly by the neck and put a gun on her forehead.
‘Tell me, where did you get Patricia’s number?’ he barked at her.
Tomi was shocked and unable to look at his face. She stood there fidgeting and struggling to breathe as Cole’s grip on her neck was tight. ‘Cole, put that gun down and let me go.’ she managed to say.
‘I won’t allow you go until you answer my questions,’ Cole barked at her, still holding the gun to her head and pushing her body against the kitchen slab.
‘Cole, you’re crazy, please let me go.’ Tomi pleaded in a terrified voice. With the look on Cole’s face, he wasn’t going to let her go until she gives out her last breath.
‘Tell me how you got Patricia’s number and why you started sending her messages,’ Cole insisted.
‘I got it from your phone,’ Tomi muffled. Her eyes were becoming hot and her body vibrating more. ‘You’re hurting me, please let me go.’
‘Cole!’ Someone shouted authoritatively with a loud voice from behind and Cole looked back briefly. It was Henry. ‘Are you crazy?’ Henry asked.
Cole eventually released her neck from his grip but still pointed his gun at her for some few more seconds. ‘I’m going to kill you next time I get reports that you speak to her again,’ he said before turning back and walking to the door angrily. He stopped at the entrance for a second and flashed a look at Henry’s face before walking out.
‘My Goodness, are you okay?’ Henry entered into the kitchen to meet Tomi who was now on her knees and was coughing out. ‘Do you need water?’ he asked and she raised up her hand to signify a No. ‘The boss has to do something about it this time,’ Henry said to himself.
Cole bolted the door from behind after entering into the room. He sank into the bed heavily and dropped the pistol in his hand beside him before covering his face with a pillow. He let out a deep breath. He knew it was inevitable for him and Tomi to be summoned by the boss for an explanation. He had made some noise this time but he didn’t consider it as going too far. Tomi was the one who had gone too far by threatening to hurt Patricia and also sending the horrible record to her – at least, that was what he was made to believe by Patricia. He still wondered how the recording came to be that day. Was it possible that Tomi had attached something to his cloth that day without him realizing it? He asked himself. Henry’s intervention was what had stopped him from asking and getting the answer to all his questions. He didn’t know what to think. His thinking faculties weren’t working properly anymore and he wasn’t able to think of anyway that the fault could have come from Patricia. Tomi’s admission to have taken the number from his phone made him surer that Tomi was the one who initiated the first call to Patricia and began the whole madness. Now Patricia was angry at him and he wasn’t able to stop her from leaving the house angrily when he couldn’t explain how the recording came about.
He forced himself out of bed and began to take off his clothes. He needed to change into another set of clothes and leave the room before Tomi comes knocking at the door.
May 7, 2031
Stephanie and Dave walked side by side into the airport with their backpacks strapped to their backs.
‘We still have thirteen minutes more,’ Stephanie said to Dave as they walked into the waiting lounge.
‘That’s if the flight would not be at least ten minutes late,’ Dave replied her.
They located some empty seats and sat side by side, waiting for the announcement for their flight.
‘Hope you remember all I taught you,’ Dave asked as he took out a phone from the backpack.
‘Yes, I do but I do not really understand why we are doing it that way, isn’t it supposed to be the job of the police?’
‘It is, but the police are not doing their jobs and so journalists have to come in.’
‘But won’t this cause problems for us if we’re discovered?’
‘Relax dear,’ Dave smiled and reached for her palm. He squeezed it in his and looked into her eyes. ‘I’ve been investigating top criminal cases as a journalist for years and I’ve never had problems, all you have to do is follow the instructions and guidelines I gave to you.’
They sat in silence for the rest of the waiting period, both left to their individual thoughts. It felt like a dangerous adventure for Stephanie. She and Dave had spent several hours together in her house the day before, planning and preparing for the journey. It took so long for them to finish that Dave had to leave the house ten pm at night after having dinner with her. Dave had instructed her to act like his partner working with him in the Desert Reporters firm and lectured her on the ethics of the job. He had also given her an ID card that morning. He also lectured her on asking questions and how to make the interviewee release answers they didn’t plan to. They had fixed a session with the man already that day and the man asked them to visit his residence by evening.
Dave had a positive mindset about the journey. He saw Stephanie that was determined and would not take no for an answer but at the same time also applies common sense to her dealings. It had been easy for him to take an excuse from work, he had told the agency that he needed to visit a sick family member and explained to Dan that he was going to see his hospitalized girlfriend.
SAMANTHA OSMAN’S NEW BASE
‘Good morning Tara,’ Henry greeted as he walked into the computer room.
She flashed a look at him and replied, ‘Good morning Henry.’
‘You returned to the house past three am this morning, I hope there is no problem.’ Henry asked.
Tarasha smiled chiefly, ‘There is no problem.’
‘So where exactly did you go?’ Henry asked as he took a seat beside her.
She stopped what she was doing on the computer and turned to him. She folded her arms and looked into his eyes for a moment. ‘I went to Base B to get some important documents.’
‘Why didn’t you ask for help when you knew it would take you so long?’
‘It didn’t take me so long. I got there by one a.m. and left past two.’
‘Hmmm and where were you the whole evening?’
‘Going around town to check people’s reaction to our last post before I make the post about the Inspector General by twelve o’clock.’
‘Okay, that reminds me of something I discovered last night while waiting for you,’ Henry said with a serious look and readjusted his seating position. ‘The Inspector General plans to leave the country this Saturday.’
‘Oh!’ Tarasha widened her gaze and let out a wry smile. ‘The allegations would be out today, he wouldn’t be able to travel.’ she said and shrugged. ‘For now, I’ve got some work for you,’ she paused and turned back to the computer.
ASO ROCK CLINIC
‘Are you sure I’ll be okay soon or do we need to go to a specialist hospital?’ Elvis Richards asked the doctor.
‘No, it hasn’t gotten to that stage yet, we can handle it here,’ the doctor replied, holding the man’s hand and checking for the right vein he could put a syringe.
‘How many injections do I have to take?’ Chief Elvis asked again.
‘After this, you have one tonight and another tomorrow morning, I’ll suggest that you stay at home today and rest, you need a lot of rest. Right now, we’re treating you for low PCV and we hope that it rises soon.’
‘What’s low PCV?’
‘Low PCV is an effect of the severe malaria, PCV is the percentage of red blood cells in circulating blood.’
‘Oh well, whatever that means, all I need is to get better.’
The doctor was through administering the injections in ten minutes time and the Vice President’s phone was brought to him by one of his assistants, the Inspector General was calling.
‘Good morning Inspector General,’ Chief Elvis greeted.
‘Good morning sir, I hope you’re feeling better now.’
Yes, I am. What about you?’
‘I’m fine too, it’s just the leg that has gone worse.’
‘Sorry about that,’ Chief Elvis sympathized. ‘Just get ready for Saturday so that you can receive specialist treatment.’
‘Yes, I’m ready, I’ll be leaving here this evening.’
There was a brief moment of silence.
‘Sir, did Rex call you too?’ Chief Rikau asked.
‘Yes, he did.’
‘We’re finally making some progress; I told you there would be a difference if we involve the chairman.’
‘Yes, you did. Let’s talk later, I’m at the clinic now and its not a good place to discuss deep matters with you.’
In the next episode, Dave meets a shocking surprise in Lagos that turns everything around.
Chapter 15 part 7
Tarasha walked into her room to hear the sound of her phone’s ringing tone. She wiped her wet hands with a napkin and picked the phone on the table, Chief Gab was the one calling her.
‘Hi Chief,’ she answered the call.
‘Hello Tarasha, it’s me Chief Gabriel.’ The man’s voice sounded from the other end.
‘Yea, I know,’ Tarasha replied, wondering why the man was introducing himself again.
‘I called to tell you that I’ve transferred all the outstanding payments to your bank account including the salaries of your workers for this month.’
‘I’ve not checked my messages yet, so I don’t know if I’ve received an alert.’ She said as she sat at the edge of her bed. ‘I hope you sent the accurate numbers.’
‘Yes, I did.’
‘Okay, I’ll get back to you once I confirm.’
Tarasha ended the call and checked the time before putting down the phone. It was twenty minutes left for the news about the Inspector General which she had scheduled for posting. She fell back into the bed with her hands spread wide.
She closed her eyes and took in a deep breath. She began to think of the steps she needed to take next. Things were moving too slowly and she didn’t like the way they were going but wanted to stick to the plan because of her promise to Henry not to go the killing way. She was monitoring the Inspector General now and could tell his location at any point in time with the fingerprint tracking machine.
Her thoughts were distracted as someone opened the door. She paused to listen even though she knew it was only Henry who could open the door without knocking as they shared the room together. She counted every of his step from the moment he closed the door till he got to the side of the bed where she was laying. He also sat and laid beside her.
They both remained in silence for a long while, both busy with their imaginations even though they could feel in their hearts that their thoughts were connecting to each other’s.
‘Are you thinking about me?’ someone asked.
Tara froze for a moment, wondering whose mouth the question had come out from. She turned her face to his side and met him already looking at her.
‘Why do you think I should be thinking of you?’ Henry asked back and Tara realized that the question had come from her.
‘I don’t know.’ She replied and turned her face back to the ceiling. She could still feel his eyes focused intently on her face.
‘Is it because you’re also thinking about me?’ Henry asked.
She turned back to him. ‘I don’t know.’
‘You were not thinking about me?’
‘I was,’ she answered and looked up again.
‘You just said you don’t know.’
‘Yes, I don’t know why I think you also should be thinking about me.’
Henry took in a breath and swallowed in. He turned his face to the ceiling, ‘I was thinking about how happy we could be together once this is all over.’
‘Would that day really come?’ Tara asked with a sad look on her face.
Henry turned his face back to her immediately, wondering why she sounded like she was so full of doubts. ‘Of course, it would come. Don’t you want it?’ Henry asked, staring straight into her eyes. He could see something he had never seen before in her eyes, fear – fear of the future.
‘I do want it,’ she answered and turned her face back up. ‘But it seems to be coming too slow.’
‘Patience Tara, we need patience to fight the rest of this battle and win.’
‘I hope we win with patience soon, because I’m already running out of it.’
‘Please don’t, lets hold on till the end.’ Henry said in a pleading tone.
Tara was about to reply him but an alarm sounded on her phone. She reached for it and checked the screen before rising up. ‘It a minute to the publishing time of the new post, we have to go create discussion topics for it on social forums.’
Henry rose hesitatingly with her. ‘How I wish someone else could do that right now.’
‘Every other person has his responsibilities,’ Tara replied. She stripped off her shirt and opened her wardrobe to take out another.
‘Yea, Tara!’ Henry called out loud. He seemed to have just remembered something.
She turned back and gazed at his face.
‘I got a credit alert from Chief Gabriel; he just paid the outstanding salary debts and this month’s salaries.’ Henry said.
‘Yea, is it complete? He called to tell me.’
‘Yes, it’s complete.’ Henry replied. He followed behind Tara who had finished putting on the new top and was proceeding to the door. ‘How have you being paying everyone if you’ve not been receiving payments from him?’
‘I pay from my money,’ she replied him. ‘I have and can get enough to pay triple of the salaries for a whole year.’
Henry’s mouth was left agape. He knew she was speaking the truth and was amazed at the level of her wealth.
‘Sh*t!’ Dave cursed as he landed on the ground to dodge the bullet. He rolled to the back of the sofa close to him and pulled out his gun. He peeped carefully to check Chief Nonso and found the man already lying on the floor and trembling. He dashed out from his hiding place and took two three shots towards the place where the gunshot came from. He hid behind another sofa where he could see Chief Nonso, the man had gotten up and was trying to leave the place with his head bowed in fear.
‘Hey! Come here,’ Dave called him in whispers. The man looked back in fright and his eyes met with Dave’s, he quickly turned and journeyed towards Dave.
Dave sprung up from his hiding place and shot twice towards the passage where the bullet came from again, directing the Chief with his left hand to hide in the spot he just stood from. He hid again at the initial place and turned to talk to the Chief who was hiding behind the other sofa.
‘How many entrances and exits do you have in this house?’ Dave asked the chief.
‘One at the back, and two others at the left and right sides of the house.’ the man replied.
‘Who is that person shooting and what does he want?’ Dave asked again, really hoping to get an answer from the man.
The man stared back at him with a pity look on his face. ‘I don’t have an idea who it is or what the person wants, the only person that was in the house with us was your partner.’ Chief Nonso replied.
Dave hissed gently. He knew the man was trying to insinuate that Stephanie was the shooter but Dave didn’t think it was possible, of course except his suspicions about Stephanie working with Samantha Osman was true. He however was it couldn’t be true. It made no sense. If Stephanie had wanted to kill him or the man, she had gotten enough chance to do so without any problem, her phone which he found on the floor also further proved that she had been captured by whosever the shooter was.
He didn’t waste much time on thinking. He needed to act fast before the enemy.
‘Sir is there any other place we can leave this house apart from the front gate?’ he asked the Chief again in whispers as he refixed his gun.
‘No, the whole place is fenced, the gate is the only way to get out of this compound.
‘Okay,’ Dave paused and looked around the place for thirty seconds. ‘You go out through this door at the count of three, wait for me at the corridor, I’ll meet you in a second. Do you get me?’
Chief Nonso nodded in reply. He watched as Dave handled the gun, wondering how a journalist was handling the machine so perfectly and what made him come to the interview with a gun. He remembered the SSS officer’s words and began to suspect that Dave and his partner were not real journalists.
‘Okay,’ Dave looked up and stared at the man’s face. He was ready with his gun in his right hand and his phone in the left hand. He was dialing a number. ‘1…2…3,’ he counted and the man sprang up to his feet immediately and headed for the door. Dave also got up at the same time and began to shoot sporadically at the opposite side as he also moved to the front door walking backwardly. ‘Wait,’ Dave stopped the man from steppingdown the balcony. He jammed the front door of the house and pulled the chief to hide behind his body. He moved closer to the rear of the balcony leaning against the wall and tried to peep to see if anyone was coming. He raised his gun and almost shot but his fingers could not pull the trigger. He saw a man dragging Stephanie by the neck and holding a gun to her head.
‘Hey Mister!’ the man dragging Stephanie said with a crooked smile. He stopped about six metres directly opposite the corridor where Dave was standing and pointing the gun from. He held Stephanie close to his body with his arm tightened around her neck and his positioned at the side of her head.
Dave was still pointing his gun at the man but he didn’t dare to shoot. He noticed a black spot on Stephanie’s face and he clenched his teeth in anger, he knew the man must have punched her in the face. Stephanie was looking directly into his face and shivering in the man’s hands. Dave knew that her life depended on any step he would take at that moment and he was feared making any mistake that would cause her to be killed.
He placed his gaze on the face of the man behind Stephanie for a moment. The face looked familiar but Dave couldn’t place where he had seen it before. He thought it could be one of Samantha Osman’s boys whom he had seen during his investigations on her.
‘Let’s strike a deal,’ Stainless finally began to talk. He tightened his grip on Stephanie’s neck harder and looked directly into Dave’s face. ‘You release the man to me and I release her to you,’ he said, talking about Chief Nonso who was behind Dave.
Davewas careful not to turn back to look at the Chief but he was sure that the man was hiding his face behind his.
‘What do you want him for?’ Dave asked.
‘The same thing you want him for,’ Stainless replied with a smirk.
Dave looked at Stephanie’s face again. He couldn’t bear to see her in pains like she was in at that moment. He took a quick glance at the face of the man behind him. He knew it wouldn’t make sense to release the man to get Stephanie but he was willing to do it to ensure the pain stops for her.
‘I came here for an interview,’ Dave replied. ‘I don’t know what you’re talking about.’
‘Shut up! You *****ng lying b—–d.’
‘Hey, take it easy,’ Dave said and tried to take some steps forward but stopped on seeing Stainless threatening look with his fingers close to the trigger. ‘Hey! Be careful, don’t touch the trigger,’ Dave said in a frightened voice.
‘Step back and release the man to me, I know you’re here because you know his connection to Samantha Osman, you know he sponsors her.’ Stainless shouted at him.
Dave heart skipped a beat, he tried to speak again in defence but no words came out from his mouth. He stayed quiet, staring into Stainless’ eyes. He tried positioning his gun well as he studied Stainless’ body and hands movement with his eyes to see whether he could get a clean shot into his forehead. Suddenly, he heard the door open from behind. He turned thinking that Chief Nonso was the one trying to run back inside the house out of fright but he didn’t have the opportunity to see who it really was. Something hit his head and he fell to the floor and blacked out.
AGUDA HOUSE, ASO ROCK.
‘Inspector General Rikau,’ Vice President Elvis shouted into the phone as he walked into his room. He was previously seated at the living room and watching a TV program where the speakers were analyzing political issues when his daughter Vivian joined him in the living room and showed him a news headline on the youngicee website stating that Samantha Osman had released new allegations against the Inspector General of the nation.
‘But youngicee website isn’t a news website but a fiction story site, how are you sure this news isn’t fiction?’ He had asked his daughter with doubt in his eyes. She clicked on the topic to read the full post and the father joined her in reading. Samantha Osman had accused the Inspector General of being a leader of a section of the BokoHaram group which troubled the nation over fifteen years ago.
The Vice President took the phone from her and typed in a news website address into the navigation bar. The top item on the newly loaded website had a similar heading to the news on the youngicee website. He opened the post and read the article; it contained almost the same content, only written in other words. It was then he picked his phone and proceeded to his bedroom.
‘Hello sir,’ the Inspector General replied from the other end. His voice was cool and calm, he seemed not to have heard about the news.
‘Have you heard all the things Samantha Osman said about you?’
‘About me?’ the Inspector General asked with a doubting tone, he seemed not to believe that she could have said something about him.
‘Yes, she just published an article about you and I’m afraid all the things she alleged in the post are true just like mine.’
‘I don’t understand you sir, what did she say I did?’
‘She talked about your involvement in Boko Haram and Child trafficking, and she also mentioned every detail on how you progressed to being a police officer and Inspector General.’
‘Oh! Yarosullulahi!’ the Inspector General exclaimed in Arabic language, calling to God for help in trouble. ‘Let me confirm this please.’
The Vice President dialed another number immediately the call ended. ‘Hello,’ he said in an impatient tone immediately the call was answered. ‘Carry out another one tonight, and increase the fatality,’ he said to the receiver without replying to the person’s greetings.
He sat on a stool beside the bed and placed his forehead on his knees, letting out a deep breath. Samantha Osman was frustrating his plans and threatening his existence and he was running out of ideas already. There was one more person to call, he raised his head slowly and took in a very deep breath before dialing the number.
‘Move man, move,’ Rex said to Chief Nonso who was now without help. The man raised his hands in the air and climbed down the balcony shakily, he took a brief look at Dave who was now laying motionlessly on the floor.
‘Boss, what do we do to her?’ Stainless asked about Stephanie as Rex stepped down the balcony after the Chief.
Rex stared at Stephanie’s face for a moment. ‘Just let her be, the only person we have a business with here is this man.’
‘What about the SSS officer?’ Stainless asked again, pointing to Dave on the balcony.
‘We still need that dude alive, he’s been very helpful to us.’
Stainless pushed Stephanie violently away and ordered her to stay on her knees before turning back. He walked quickly into the gateman’s office where the frightened gateman was hiding, thinking he hadn’t been seen. Stainless came out few seconds later after a gunshot was heard.
Rex was already standing by Chief Nonso’s car side, still pointing a gun at the man. Stainless quickly opened the gate and hurried to join his boss. Rex got into the backseat with the man while Stainless drove the car.
They drove out of the compound leaving Stephanie on her knees and the gate wide opened.
Stephanie got up to her feet immediately after the car was driven out of sight and rushed to the gate to check their distance. She rushed back into the compound to meet Dave, Dave was already trying to get up from the floor.
‘Dave, are you okay?’ she asked in a frightened voice as she knelt beside him and tried to help him to sit up.
‘Arrgh, what happened to me?’ Dave groaned with his eyes closed tightly and his hands on his head.
‘Hey! Are you okay?’ Stephanie asked, supporting his back with her arm.
‘Steph, what happened here?’ Dave asked. He managed to open his eyes and turned back to look at Stephanie.
‘They hit you with something on your head and you fell to the ground,’ Stephanie replied to him.
‘Arrgh! Dave groaned in pain and he closed his eyes as he held his head with his hands again. He let out a deep breath and shook his head briefly before opening the eyes. He placed his two hands on the ground and began to look around the place, his eyes searching for something which seemed important.
‘They took him,’ Stephanie said, realizing he was looking for Chief Nonso.
Dave suddenly remembered all that happened, he remembered the sound of the door opening and he turning back to see what the Chief was up to only for him to see an iron rod wave across his face and hit his head. He didn’t see the face of the person who hit him but he was sure it wasn’t the Chief.
He hadn’t prepared for it, he had thought that there was only one intruder in the house and wasn’t expecting anyone else to surface from elsewhere.
‘Let’s get out of here,’ he said to Stephanie as he managed to get on his feet. Stephanie held his hand to help him maintain balance as she followed behind. ‘We need to leave immediately, before the police shows up.’ Dave said as they walked out through the opened gate.
‘They killed the gateman also,’ Stephanie informed Dave. Dave seemed not to have heard, he was managing to walk in pains.
‘Arrgh!’ Dave closed his eyes and winced in pain again. His vision was blurry and his legs still shaky, he leaned on Stephanie for support. They both stood by the road side and waited for the road to clear before crossing to the other side. They crossed to the other end and proceeded straight to the car. Stephanie got into the driver’s side while Dave entered into the passenger’s side. She started the engine and drove off in few minutes, they began to hear police sirens approaching from the return lane as they drove on.
‘Where are we driving to?’ Stephanie asked Dave.
‘Back to the hotel,’ Dave replied. He had taken out his phone and was trying to dial a number.
‘Why? I think you need quick medical attention now,’ Stephanie suggested.
‘No, back to the hotel,’ Dave replied in a strong tone. ‘We can’t go to the hospital now.’ His phone call was answered and he began to speak to the receiver. ‘Hello sir,’ he said into the phone.
‘Agent Dave, we heard some gunshots, hope all is well.’ The receiver replied.
‘Yea, thanks for your help but things have gone wrong, I didn’t plan for what we met in there. It happened we had enemies in the house waiting to kidnap the man. They have him now and I don’t know where they’ve taken him to.’
‘That’s serious, what do you intend to do now?’
‘I need another favor from you guys.’
‘Please do not mention anything about my involvement or yours in this to anyone, not even trusted NIS officers, please.’ Dave pleaded.
Dave gasped and closed his eyes after the call ended. He rested his head and took in a deep breath. He stayed in the position for two minutes before opening his eyes again.
‘Steph, I think we need to make contact with Samantha Osman.’ He said to Stephanie, placing his gaze on her face.
‘How do we do that?’ Stephanie asked and took a brief glance at him.
‘I was thinking of contacting her through the forms available on the websites but that may not really be effective,’ he said and took in a breath. ‘We would make our allegations public tomorrow. With that she might try to contact us and find us herself.’
‘Are you sure that would work?’
‘I think it would work better than the first idea.’
‘But what reason do we need her to contact us?’ Stephanie asked, staring at her face with a doubtful look. ‘And is it true that Chief Nonso sponsors Samantha Osman? Is that why we held the interview?’
Dave was shocked by her questions and turned away sharply. ‘Where did you get that from?’ He had asked already before remembering that the man who held her hostage accused him of knowing what she mentioned. He bowed his head slightly and closed his eyes for some seconds.
‘So it’s true?’ Stephanie continued. ‘You knew that Chief Nonso sponsors Samantha Osman and you brought me here to help you get information from a criminal associate?’ She asked him, looking disappointed at him. ‘What if they killed me?’ she added in a sad tone.
‘I’m sorry Steph,’ he raised his head and looked at her. ‘I’m sorry I lied to you, I’d explain better when we get back to the hotel.’
Stephanie sighed and shook her head.
‘For now, we can’t take this car back to the hotel, we have to discard it somewhere.’
Stephanie turned to him sharply again, her eyebrow gathered together and her lips twitched, demanding for an explanation on why they had to discard the car.
‘Trust me Steph,’ Dave said calmly, looking into her eyes. ‘I’ll explain everything to you.’
SAMANTHA OSMAN’S BASE
All the members of the gang were seated in the usual fashion in the living room, listening to the news and making comments. The news headlines were read out by the Newscaster and one of the items read stated that Samantha Osman and her gang had attacked another store in Lagos State and got away with goods not less than five million naira, leaving three people dead and five others injured.
‘These guys are desperate,’ Henry voiced out. The rest of them continued to watch in silence.
Fifteen minutes into the news, Tarasha received a message alert on her phone. An email had entered. She opened the mail app to read and was shocked at the pictures she saw. Chief Nonso had been captured and was tied to a chair in the pictures. There was a male figure standing beside him which looked familiar. She realized that it was Rex.
Another mail entered and she opened quickly. It contained only few texts. ‘Your godfather is in our custody, you have twenty four hours to drop the allegation against Chief Elvis Richards or you get his dead body sent to you.’
Tarasha gaped out loud and sprung to her feet in a manner which alarmed the others. They all fixed their gazes on her while she stared blankly at the wall.
‘Our current strategy is failing,’ she began, not looking at anyone in particular. Cole reduced the volume of the television to hear her well. ‘Chief Nonso Abel has been captured by the Vice President and they’re threatening us to drop all allegations we have against him. We have to change our strategy; the new plan is to kill anyone at the slightest opportunity we have.’
Tarasha is about to employ more desperate and dangerous measures. The story gets more exciting as the end gets nearer.
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