All In A Circle Episode 64

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Rachel carried her baby in her hands and walked into the room. She was feeling dizzy and therefore needed to take a quick nap. She was happy with the latest development she saw in her room, everywhere was neat, the dirty clothes had been taken to the backyard for washing and the bed spread has been changed. She felt grateful to whoever did this, then she remembered it was Dolapo. Could this girl be after my husband? She asked herself. Then her eyes struck something. The empty cloth basket should not be this empty, even if all the dirty clothes has been taken out for washing, there should still remain some papers among which were some bank statement, electricity bills and above all, the most important thing, Chief Obi Patrick’s secret.

“Dolapo!!!!!” She screamed her name. In twenty seconds, Dolapo was standing before her. Visibly afraid that she had committed another crime. “When you took the clothes off that basket, did you see any papers in there?” She asked.

“Yes ma.” Dolapo replied.

“So, where are they?” Rachel asked.

“They are in the waste bin.” Dolapo replied. Immediately, Rachel ran out of the room, knocking her down in the process. This time, Chidinma had left whatever she was doing and was closely on her elder sister’s heels. Rachel ransacked the waste bin but saw nothing that interest her. Every other papers from the cloth basket were present in the waste bin while only Chief Obi Patrick’s secret was missing. Everything all pointed at the possibility of her father-in-law, having already gotten the paper and left with it. It was no coincidence that the moment Dolapo was sweeping her(Rachel) room was when her father-in-law arrived. There is every possiblity that he saw the secret paper before Dolapo could pack the dirts to the waste bin outside and had already kept it.

“Rachy, what are you looking for?” Chidinma asked. This time Dolapo had joined them outside and was lost from the way she looked. She wasn’t lost in New york, neither was she lost in the jungle. But lost in Clement’s house, all thanks to Rachel’s outburst.

“Aunty, what are you looking for?” She asked innocently.

“Are you mad?” Rachel asked inching towards Dolapo who stood rooted to the spot in surprise. Even if she needed a home to rest her head every night, must she be treated like an outcast or something? Chidinma mouthed something like she(Dolapo) should run away, but it was too late, because Rachel had already closed in on her and had pushed her to the ground. But all thanks to the quick intervention of Akpan who was able to prevent any cat and dog fight between the two ladies or better still put as, before Rachel started beating and hitting Dolapo.

“Madam, please don’t beat her.” Akpan pleaded. Rachel stood up and adjusted her cloth.

“Rachy, seriously I don’t like the way you are behaving. What are you looking for that warrants you hitting Dolapo?” Chidinma asked.

“The paper I told you about last week. About my father-in-law, this stupid girl swept it out of my room and the old man had alread gotten it.” Rachel explained. Chidinma’s face fell that moment, she had planned to defend Dolapo all through, but hearing what she did wrong, she concluded that Dolapo deserved more than mere beating. But on a second thought, she realised that Dolapo knew nothing about the paper in the first place, and without checking it, she might have just swept it out.

“Did you tell her about the paper or what it represents?” Chidinma asked. Rachel shook her head weakly in negative. “You see, assuming you told her about the paper, she would have kept it for you. Maybe she just swept everything without checking them.” Chidinma explained. Rachel’s face dropped. Did she just react without thorought thinking again? Dolapo just stood a few metres away from them crying while Akpan tried consoling her. Just like it happens in films, Rachel started going down like she wanted to collapse.

“Rachy!” Chidinma screamed. Everyone’s attention was diverted unto Rachel as they all squatted beside her.

“The stitch had loosed.” Dolapo informed as she saw blood oozing out from where she was operated on in the hospital during her delivery. The screams and the struggled she had with Dolapo were too much to handle for her.

“Get the car key.” Chidinma screamed as Dolapo raced into the house in search of the car key.

******

Rachel has since woken up and was staring at the ceiling with a blank expression written on her face. Dolapo was seated by her bedside looking at her frail figure on the bed.

“Dolapo.” She said turning to face her.

“Aunty, you are awake. Thank you God.” Dolapo said.

“What happened?” She asked.

“You were bleeding from the stitches below your tommy, and after that you passed out.” Dolapo explained. Rachel heaved a sigh of relief.

“Where is my baby?” She asked.

“Chidinma is with her at home.” Just then the door into ward opened and Doctor Rapheal walked in.

“How are you feeling now dear?” He asked touching Rachel on the cheek. Dolapo hissed angrily as she eyed the randy doctor.

“So, you’ll be admitted here until you are good to go. Actually, I would have adviced you to stay back until we have the stitches removed but your husband wants you home.” Rapheal explained.

“I understand you perfectly Doctor. But I am going home today. As a matter of fact, I am going home now.” Rachel replied. Rapheal was taken a back by the reply he got. He was expecting her to grasp the opportunity of them being together all day. Another thing that surprised him was the sudden change in the tone and manner which they conversed. She just spoke to him basically on official terms by calling him Doctor and not Rapheal or Raph like she used to.

“I am afraid you can’t go home today. We need to watch over you for at least the rest of the day.” Rapheal said.

“My husband will watch over me, as well as my sisters, so I don’t need your help.” Rachel said, this time she was on her feet looking for her flip flop footwear.

“I know they can watch over you, but medically they can’t. I am afraid you’ll suffer a reoccurrence before the day runs out and by then things might get out of hand.” Rapheal said convincingly.

“Is it by force? She said she wants to go home, what’s your problem about that?” Dolapo chipped in.

“I wasn’t talking to you young lady.” Rapheal said.

“Go change the way you live. Not every patient has lost their dignity like you. Not every patient will allow you sleep with them.” Dolapo said angrily. “Aunty, lets go.” Dolapo said leading the way like the commander of a battalion while Rachel followed like the members of the troop.

Rapheal stood rooted to the spot. Who the hell is this girl? Ever since she popped up from nowhere, she has been showing up at the wrong time, when it mattered most to him.

“Akpan, lets go.” Dolapo said as she opened the door into the back seat for Rachel who hopped in.

“So quick.” Akpan snapped from his reverie. Dolapo hopped into the passenger side beside Akpan and he drove out of the hospital premises. Five minutes into their silent journey, Rachel broke the silence.

“Dolapo, I don’t like the way you spoke to Rapheal, its a slap on my face. You said not every patient has lost their dignity, and you know I am guilty of this, have I lost my dignity too?”

“Aunty please, I don’t mean it that way. I was only saying my own, I never meant to abuse you.” Dolapo said going down on her knees.

“There is no way you can kneel down there, there is not enough room, when we get home, you can kneel all you want.” Rachel said jokingly.

Seven minutes later, Akpan drove into the compound. Dolapo alighted and opened the backdoor for Rachel and at the same time, went down on her knees.

“What’s the matter?” Rachel asked. Then she remembered what she said on their way. “No, no, no. Dolapo, I was only joking. Come on stand up.” Rachel said pulling her to her feet and the two ladies walked into the house hand-in-hand.



It was late in the night when Clement drove into the house, even though he was tired, he was very happy that everything he did today, he was able to put them under control such that, he only needed to start from where he stopped it during the weekend on Monday.

He remembered he still hasn’t gone to to see Jay as he requested. What does he have to say? Maybe he wants to vindicate himself or probably brainwash him. If he intended doing either of the two, then he is in for a long ride. Then his mind flashed to Mike’s report at Doctor Rapheal’s involvement with Oloyede(Don) and his crew. But he concluded the Rapheal is not a major threat to their investigation, maybe he was only rendering home treatment to the guys, but no matter what he does, he deserves at least a few hour behind the bars before being charged to court, because its impossible for him to be called to come and treat headache when two tablets of any pain killer will suppress the ache. He has to be doing something illegal, maybe treating a gunshot wound.

From the statement written by the nightwatch man guarding Dolapo’s hostel on the night Tolani was shot, he said he personally shot one of the hoodlums who came to attack the girls, and a few days later, Doctor Rapheal was spotted in the apartment. It all points at him that he was helped the guys treat their gunshot wounds. Then he remembered its been over a week since she last visited Tolani at the hospital, that’s very bad of him, he didn’t even ask Dolapo who has made it a point of duty to visit the hospital everyday how Tolani was fairing. Maybe he would go and see her tomorrow on his way back from church. He pushed the front door opened and entered the living room.

“Good evening here.” He said shutting the door behind him and drawing the curtain back in place.

“Welcome Uncle.” Dolapo who was helping Rachel treat her foot nails thanks to the manicure kit.

“Thank you dear, where is Chidi?” Clement asked. Chidinma appeared at the doorway into the kitchen.

“Am here.” She said waving to her sister’s husband. Clement smiled and squatted beside his wife. He planted a kiss on her lips.

“Did you girls see anything?” He asked facing Chidinma.

“No we didn’t.” she replied. He turned his attention back to Dolapo who was trying conceal her giggles.

“Did you see anything?” He asked smiling.

“Not at all. The moment I saw you going down, I knew something was about to happen which is not good for a small girl like me, so I covered my eyes with my hands.” She explained laughing out loud. Everyone in the living room couldn’t help but laugh at the joke.

“Let me take over from here.” Clementt said. Dolapo dropped Rachel’s leg from her laps and placed it on Clement’s laps.

“Don’t spoil the good work I started o.” She warned playfully before darting off into the kitchen. Three minutes later, Clement hand’t done anything new except that he kept rubbing the same nail with nail cleanser.

“Clement!” Rachel called tapping him. He snapped out of his thoughts with a start and faced his wife with a blank expression on his face.

“What’s the matter? What are you thinking?” She asked. He wished he could just open up to his wife about his long lost sister who was presently in the police custody for fire arms caught in her possession and because she was also and assassin, but he just could tell a thrid party.

“Am still thinking about Sylvester’s wife.” He lied with a sad smiled. Rachel took her legs off his laps and moved closer to him.

“Thinking about her death will do you no good. Just make sure you stand by Sylvester and ensure he comes out of it and return to work, so you all can collectively achieve your long term goal.” She adviced. Just then little Amanda who was yet to be christened but Clement had started calling her by the name he intend giving her, gave a sharp cry from the bedroom.

“My baby is awake. Let me go and check on her.” Rachel said and left the living room.

******

Monday came rather too quickly for Dolapo because she wished she could enjoy her weekend even more than she has always done, but God has a different plan, which was why he fast forwarded the weekend. She had just finished her bath and was almost ready for school when Clement came around to their room.

“Yes, come in.” She said. The door was pushed open and Clement walked into the room already dressed.

“Are you set for school?” He asked.

“Yes.” She replied.

“Breakfast?” He asked.

“Not today she replied.

“Okay, meet me at the car.” He said and made to walk out of the room when Chidinma stirred in her sleep.

“Uncle Clement.” She called. Clement stopped and turned to face her. “I am going to Ibadan today, so I am thinking maybe you could drop me at the park.”

“I have an urgent assignment at work this morning, Akpan will drive you with the second car.” He said and walked out. When the two girls were alone in the room, Dolapo spoke.

“You didn’t tell me you’ll be going to Ibadan today.”

“Am sorry about that. Its just that the principal of the school where I work is beginning to get irritated as to how I skip days at work. I have been here since thursday. Let me go, I’ll be back by wednesday for the christening of the baby.” Chidinma explained.

“Alright. Give me a call once you get home.” Dolapo said.

“Definitely.” She picked up her handbag and ran accross the living room, then out of the house where Clement was waiting impatiently in his car.

“Sorry.” She said shutting the door. He shook his head, ignited the car and drove out of the house.

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Five minutes into their journey, they are about ten kilometers away from the Lagos state university main gate when Clement swerved the car off the road and parked by the roadside.

“Ngozi will pick you up from here.” He said. The two of them conversed for the next three to five minutes before a police car which has always been her means of transport to school for over a week now came to a halt in front of Clement’s car. The door opened and Ngozi alighted from the driver’s seat.

“Morning sir.” She said saluting Clement. He smiled, knowing it has been a while she greeted him while saluting.

“Yeah, Ngozi.” He eased her by a wave of hand.

“Come on girl, lets go.” Ngozi said to Dolapo who opened the door and went to join Ngozi and the two policemen who have become her sworn enemies as a result of what transpired between them the last time.

“Why didn’t you come to pick me at home?” Dolapo asked as they resumed their journey.

“Its a strategy, you are being watched and we decided to play fast games on those watching you.” Ngozi replied.

“Who is watching me and what do you mean by playing fast games on them?”

“You can’t understand, but part of the game we played was coming over to your house and driving out with a different girl who agreed to help us, those watching thought it was you and followed us. Clement used that opportunity to drive you out when the road was clear. We dropped the girl off somewhere inside the school and out of frustration, those watching you drove off, probably to Clement’s house where they won’t meet you. Which was why we’ve decided to do the exchange.” Ngozi explained.

“Does that mean I am safe now?” Dolapo asked. Ngozi smiled.

“You are always safe before. The guys just wanted to know if you are going to school today and the hall where you’ll be writing your exam. I just hope they are not planning to attack you.” Ngozi explained.

Dolapo’s heart shattered into pieces that moment. How on earth will she be able to live today with no worries when you knew some set of people will be attacking to kill you in few hours. How she wished, she could just get a bullet proof and walk freely around school. Dolapo siezed that opportunity to tell Ngozi about the paper she recieved a few days ago. Ngozi scolded her for refusing to talk about it, but later assured her of maximum security, even at the expense of their lives.

“Why will you risk your life because of me?” Dolapo asked.

“Some strong political forces have tasked us to keep you safe and make sure you graduate as planned.” Ngozi explained.

“Who are they?”

“I am not telling you.” Ngozi said giggling as she was cleared to pass at the school gate, and within minutes, she was speeding on the less busy road inside the school.



Don walked into the living room with a strong aura of elegance. About six of his boys including Deoye were already standing in the living room.

“I hope we are ready?” He asked.

“Yes boss.” They all chorused.

Now is the time for the pre operation prep talks which most of his boys find boring and uneccessary but to him, it is important he talked to them. As things were, most of his boys already knew the speech by heart and sometimes complete the speech for him.

“Today is the last day of our adventure which I am sure that by the time we return home, we’ll be victorious.” Don started. Most of his boys exchanged looks and smiled. Don had prepared a different speech.

“As we all know, this revenge mission doesn’t belong to us, but to a brother who yesterday has decided to pitch his tent with us and become a member of our gang full time. To most of you asking while these helpless girls were being killed, I will let Deoye explain things himself.” He continued. Deoye cleared his throat and began his story.

“I met Hadiza Ibrahim, a girl from Sokoto exactly five years ago when we came for out post utme exams. She was cool at first sight and became interested in her, at the end of the exam, she kinda misplaced her purse and couldn’t travel back to Sokoto, because she lodged in an hotel with some friend who were waiting for her already at the park.” He began and watched the reaction of the guys. He could read impatience and dislike at his story from their faces.

“Tell us why you are killing the girls, we don’t have all day for this.” One of the guys said.

“I helped her cash some amount from my bank account and gave it to her. Few months later when we resumed, she camed around and saw me at the admin office, she offered to pay me back but I declined. We started dating, she was a virgin, she was my life, she was..”

“Guy, won’t you summarise everithing ni?” Another of the guys asked.

“But one thing that spoilt our relationship was understanding. I was temperamental and also a cultist, she was a reserved person who naggs a lot. On various occassions, her friends have adviced her to break up with me, they even got her guys, but she’s gone through a lot with me and told me everything they said.” He paused.

“Then came a party organised by a guy in school, the guy is a major financier of the oppostion cult group and I know that if Hadiza should go, sh’d be killed. I told her against it, but her friends managed to convince her and she went. That same night she was killed and I have been killing her friends since then.” He finished. The guys all exchanged looks, their expressions unreadable, maybe they wanted to laugh at his foolishness for killing because of a dead girlfriend, because a guy whose thinking faculty is very functioning should attack those who killed his girlfriend and not his girlfriend’s friends. But who are they to judge? They enjoyed killing more than anything.

“Lets go.” And one after the other, they filed out of the house after Don had called their on ground informant inside the school who told them Dolapo had entered school and about to start her exam.

———–

“Success we pray for in the name of God.” Detective two said and his other two colleague chorused an Amen before they filed out and locked their shop. They entered their car, with Mike behind the wheel and followed, Don’s hilux bus.

“Don’t you think we should have arrested these guys before now?” Detective one who was loading his gun asked.

“It would have been nice to arrest them before now, but we needed more evidences against them” Mike replied.

“What if there are mistakes and a shootout ensued, don’t you think innocent students will be hit?” Detective two asked.

“Believe me, there will be no mistakes or shootout whatsoever. They will be caught in the act and arrested with ease.” Mike replied confidently as he matched on the break and swerved into a gas station to refill the tank in a bid to make Don and his boys believe they were not being trailed. But their foolishness gave them away because the hilux bus they hired was parked outside the compound overnight and Mike who was keeping a vigil over the activities in the house had attached a bug/tracker to the bus.

to be continued