Immediately Victoria drove off Mike gave some instructions to his partners in the barbing business.
“Lets go after her.” Mike said.
“But why? You know she might not be one of them.” One of the two detectives asked.
“I quite agree with you but, you know she might lead us to these guys.” Mike explained.
“That doesn’t lead us anywhere.” Detective two replied.
“Lets go.” He said hurriedly walking out of the shop, closely followed by detective one while detective two stayed behind in case anyone wants to barb their hair. Luckily for them, Victoria was a gentle driver, maybe because the road was bad and full of pot holes. She was carefully manoeuvering her way avoiding the port holes. They ran after her car and just before she swung unto the main road, they got to the junction where their car was parked. The two men hopped in and followed her closely but unsuspiciously.
Janet was beginning to get impatient while Frank was trying to buy more time. He had sent messages to both Sandra and Victoria with Janet suspecting nothing, while Janet was giving him all manners of attitudes telling him he had overstayed his welcome. And Frank who knew this is his only chance to redeem himself before his cousin was trying all he could to buy more time. He had tried everything he could and he seemed to be running out of ideas. Then he remembered their last conversation a few days ago. He smiled as he stood up and walked towards her on the three seater couch where she was seated.
“Janet.” He called. She raised her head from the phone she was pressing and frowned at him. “I love you.” He said. She was taken aback by what he just said but hide her surprise and eyed him angrily. Frank on his part had already spoken before he realised the gravity of what he just said. It was true that he loved her, and he had already told her about it on phone, which was why she sent her address to him so that they can talk about it, even though she knew it will never work. She was travelling to Ukraine and cannot keep a relationship here in Nigeria, because she was unsure of when her next visit would be.
Frank gave her some of his student-fling punchlines and he could see her eyes turning in their sockets while he made sure there was no slip up. He knew he had captured her heart when she opened her mouth to speak and nothing came out.
“I love you too.” She said and just like a magnetic pull, he was on top of her and kissing and caressing her like his life depended on it. He knew he had bought enough time for a late coming Victoria, but while she was yet to come, he made a vow to savour the feeling and pleasure that came with the romance.
She moaned as he worked his magic on her small framed body, he tried to take things slow, a lesson he had learnt when he was much younger. He only worked on her lips and caressed her small br.e.a.st through the cloth. After roughly five minutes of kissing, they broke free and gasped for breathe.
“I love you.” She said happily.
“I love you too.” He replied sincerly. He felt the urge to tell her about Sandra’s plan for her, but he knew he’d loose his life. He concluded that he’ll talk to Sandra later to let her go while they seize her properties and the money in her account. She now felt safe in his arms and decided to tell him about her intended travel.
“Baby, I am travelling out of the country this evening.” She said. She couldn’t place the look on his face, maybe he was surprised, sad, happy about the news.
“When is your flight?”
“8pm.” She replied.
“You just got your flight cancelled.” A voice said from outside. He knew it, Victoria was around afterall. The knob turned and the door creaked open. A beautiful lady of about twenty four strolled in casually, she was fair in complexion, 5′ 6″ in height. She shut the door behind her and faced Janet.
“Who are you?” Janet asked.
“You duped your boss of eight million naira and you want to know who I am.” She looked from the lady before her to Frank who kept a straightface like he was not in the room with them. “Now move.” Victoria said removing a 9mm revolver from the small bag hunged on her shoulder.
“Frank do you know about this?” Janet asked crying.
“Don’t make me use this thing on you.” Victoria warned as she tucked the weapon in her bag and followed her out of the house. They both hopped into Victoria’s car which was parked outside the gate, and drove off.
“Did you see that?” Mike asked his partner. Just then Frank drove out of the compound taking the opposite route to the one Victoria took. What surprised him the most was Victoria’s attitude, she ignored him while they were in there, but anyways, he had succeeded in cleaning his name.
“Follow her.” The detective said to Mike who ignited the car and followed Victoria.
Victoria was driving at a very top speed with Janet seated beside her weeping.
“Please let me go.” Janet pleaded. She ignored her and concentrated on the road, just then her phone rang. Checking the name of the caller and the picture, it displayed Madam Alice, her mother.
“Hello Mum.” She said.
“For the past three days, you’ve not shown up at home. Where the hell are you?” Her mother asked angrily.
“Mummy, I am just with my friends.” She replied.
“You are with your friend with my car! Anyways, I know you are on the road right now. I expect you to be home before 7pm.” Madam Alice said and hung up. She already had plans of going home today, but didn’t bargain a seven o’clock homecoming.
“Does your mother know you do this kind of job?” Janet asked. Without looking at her, Victoria used the back of her hand to slap her.
“You don’t talk to me like that. The instruction given to me was to lock you up in the trunk. But I allowed you to sit here with me, know what you say to me. Okay?” Janet held her cheeks, at the verge of crying. She nodded her head slowly. She gently swung the car off the main road and slowly manouvered her way through the untarred road that connects with Don’s house.
“Where are you taking me?” Janet asked.
“Just wait till we get there.” She removed her phone and dialled a number, telling whoever it is that was on the other end of the line to come and open the gate for her. Surprisingly, the gate has been opened by the time she drove in and immediately the gate was shut.
“Vickylicious vicky.” The guy who opened the gate said.
“Get Don for me.” Victoria said frowning. The guy rushed into the house and returned a few seconds later with Don and one other guy.
“Welcome dear.” Don said. She ignored his greeting and opened the car door.
“Here is she. Sandra will see her here.” She said. Don nodded her head affirmatively, it was the initial plan for Sandra to come and see her in Don’s residence where her final punishment will be served to her.
“Take her in boys.” Don instructed. One of the guys stepped forward, grabbed her by the br.e.a.st, as small as it is and dragged her out of the car. She screamed in pain. “And tell them. They must not touch her, you can see she has no bruise, let Sandra meet her in whole.” Victoria said.
“I thought the boys will have fun with her till death. Why the change in plan?” Don asked. He was beginning to get irritated by her new found attitude, she now acts like she owned the world. You want to opt out of the gang, why not do it in a gentle way? And to say he had given her the freedom to leave without any hassle, he was beginning to have a rethink about the whole issue.
“Sandra wants her complete. When she comes, she’ll tell you what to do.” She replied as she shut the passenger door and rounded the car to the driver’s side.
“Somebody, open the gate.” She said as she hopped into the car and turned on the ignition. Don nudged one of his boys to open the gate for her. She sped out of the compound like she was being followed.
“Where is the other girl?” The detective asked.
“I should ask you. It seemed like she has dropped her with those guys.” Mike replied watching her drive past them and taking the turn onto the main road.
“Are we to follow her?” The detective asked.
“No, we’ll end up loosing at both ends. Lets see what these guys are up to.” Mike said getting out of the car.
“We sneak into their compound.” He replied. The two men walked the remaining distance to their shop while strategising how best to handle the case at hand.
Rachel couldn’t look at Dolapo in the face, she felt ashamed of all her actions over the past month and her secret affair with Doctor Rapheal. She has been weighing up her chances, maybe to beg her so that she won’t report to her husband or pretend like nothing was wrong. Dolapo was busy taking pictures of the baby with her phone and showing it to the mother.
“How about this?” Dolapo asked showing her the latest picture she took.
“Its cute.” Rachel replied.
“I’ll use it as my display picture.” Dolapo said smiling like she just won a jackpot.
“Send it to my phone.” Rachel said.
“Where is it?”
“Its somewhere over there.” Rachel replied pointing to the trolley that stood beside the baby cot. Dolapo picked the phone and unlocked it, she mistakenly touched the screen and a messaged popped up.
“Oh! You have a message.” Dolapo said handing her phone to her. She already caught a few words from the message content, no doubt, it was sent from Doctor Rapheal. When Rachel was done reading the message she dropped the phone beside her.
“I am yet to send the picture.” Dolapo reminded her.
“Don’t worry.” She snapped.
For the past one week that she has been living with Clement and his wife, she hasn’t for a minute felt bad or sad except when the thoughts of her friend came flashing, and Rachel was always quick to console her, same with Clement. They are the best family she could ever pray for, even though she knew it was only for a limited time. People will start talking about her, most especially friends and relatives of Rachel, and she’ll be sent out so that she doesn’t snatch her husband. The way Rachel replied her shocked her and her countenance changed. Rachel herself knew she took it hard on her but it wasn’t her fault. She left the baby’s cot.
“I’ll be back.” Dolapo said and walked out of the ward.
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For the first time in three weeks, Barrister Benson spent the whole day at home with his wife. He promised her a romance filled day and he has almost fufilled his promises. From the moment he woke up in the morning after a se.x filled night, he proceeded to the kitchen and made her breakfast, he fed her after which they both went to the bathroom to take their bath, something they haven’t done in months, the last time they took their baths together was the day their honeymoon ended.
After their baths, Benson cleaned the house like he promised, cleaned the electronics, cleaned their room and even the kitchen while his wife inspected his works. After which they both went into the kitchen to prepare his own breakfast, it was fun spending the whole day with his wife while she today realised that in her husband’s aggressive body, there lies a gentleman who could win the heart of a lady. She felt loved that minute and just like they just got married.
They were both in the kitchen again this evening getting prepared for their dinner when Benson excused himself to use the restroom. His two phones laid on the kitchen cabinet. Its been months since she touched his phone, not even to listen to songs. She didn’t know he had two phones, she knew he uses one, but didn’t know when he bought the second one that now serves the business purpose.
She picked up his personal line, it was passworded, she tried unlocking it but it proved abortive, she picked the business line, even though it was passworded, she guessed and she unlocked it with the name of his law firm. When she was about giving up on checking the phone, she saw them. A picture that looked uncountable to her, a picture that broke into bits and looked a million pictures before her, a picture that shattered her heart, a picture that destabilize her breathe. There was her husband lying half unclad with popular model, Sandra Oselu on a bed, covered with a duvet which was almost slipping off Sandra’s body, her boobs were visible. She never thought her husband could cheat on her. She knew he had the tendency to keep relationship outside their marriage but never thought he could cheat on her with Sandra. He was her lawyer for crying out loud. And that was how a day which began with happiness ended with sadness. How she wished she didn’t even check his phone at all. How he wished he didn’t listen to his wife’s plea to spend the day with her.
They had closed for the day and Clement was heading for the parking lot, everyone was greeting him and congratulating him on his newest success.
“Drop me off at the bank.” Ngozi said catching up with him. The two officers walked to his own car and hopped in. Three minutes into their journey, Ngozi broke the silence.
“Clement.” She called. Without looking at her, he replied.
“Have I ever told you the stroy of my life? I mean my childhood story, how I grew up.” She asked.
“No, you haven’t.” He replied. Ngozi took her time to summarise the story of her life, how she was born into a well to do family back then, the family problems, the extended family interference, how love withered away within the family, how her father started drinking, how she was raped at twelve, how her brother following in their father’s footstep, how he started drinking too. But despite all these, they are still the number one member of the church, but it seemed God was not interested in their family.
“So, you mean you have a brother? Where is he?” Clement asked. If there was one thing, he loved about Ngozi, it was her openess. They met two months ago when she was transferred from the Area F-police command to assist them curb insurgency. And within those two months, they had established a great friendship that some other colleagues thought they were going out.
“Yes, I have a brother. Nwankwo.” She said sadly.
“Where is he? Is he…?” He asked. Knowing what he wanted to say, she quickly replied.
“He is not dead o. I even saw him today.”
“So he lives in Lagos too.” Ngozi explained how it all happened on the night her brother ran away from home seventeen years ago. She told him about her father’s ailing state.
“Maybe your father will be okay now that you have found his son. You can have the weekend off, I’ll cover for you and go home with your brother.” Clement said.
“I have thought about it, but my brother can’t go with me unless you consent to it.” She replied.
“I have no business with your brother, I don’t even know him. It is you I know, go home with him. I have consented to it.” He said laughing.
“Am serious, without your consent my brother can’t go with me.” She emphasized.
“Tell me you are joking. I don’t know your brother.” He was starting to get angry. A thing that started as joke was gradually graduating into something else.
“Jay, the guy in the hospital is my brother.” She said. He need not to ask her any question if she was sure about it, because she looked serious and ready to cry.
“Am sorry, there is nothing I can do about it.” He said.
“Clement, you can do something about it.” She said. He knew where the conversation was heading to. She will end up requesting him to do something unlawful.
“Your brother is a suspect currently in custody, there is no way I can help you.”
“I know he is in custody but no one else knows about it. He hasn’t been filed as one of the criminals in custody. I can still go with him and under five hours we’ll be back.”
“Sylvester knows about it, he wants him locked up tomorrow.” Clement replied.
“We can still do it, just under five hours and we’ll be back.” She pleaded. Clement wanted to help her, but he couldn’t.
“Clement, its my brother we are talking about here.” She screamed. He matched the break and brought the car to a halt, traffic light just turned red.
“Its the lives of millions of Nigerians that we are talking about here. The best I can do is to allow your parents come and see him in the hospital. He won’t be cuffed to the bed, so they’ll think he was just being sick.” Clement replied.
“My regards to Rachel.” She said opening the car door and running out of the car. Even though they were close to Access bank where her fiancee, Tobiloba worked, he wasn’t expecting her to alight from the car in the middle of the road. The moment the traffice light turned red, he sped off and could see her standing in front of the bank building looking as his car passed. –
to be continued–
Immediately Victoria drove off Mike gave some instructions to his partners in the barbing business.