® 18+ SNVL
© Oluwatosin Emmanuel Oyinloye
Three gunshots were released successively and each bullet pierced into the parts of the body it was targeted to.
“Let’s go, Evelyn,” a voice startled her, thirty seconds after she closed her eyes in anticipation for the worst.
She opened her eyes slowly to find the man and woman coming from the right direction, already dead on the floor. Her lips parted widely in disbelief. Her body was still trembling as she looked left and found the man there dead too.
She was still in so much shock that she did not realize that someone was standing right next to her. It was until he grabbed her by the arm she noticed his presence.
“We have to get out of here now,” Dave said again and pulled her along with him. She followed quickly, leaving all that she had gotten in her shopping basket.
She looked at Dave as he pulled her along and noticed she had never met him before. As he pulled her out of the aisle, she saw four more dead bodies. She noticed that only two of the dead bodies were killed with knives and the other two were shot.
Evelyn also noticed two other ladies holding guns and standing at different strategic positions in the mall. From the way they stared at her and the man holding her, she realized that they must be together.
“Where’s Max?” Dave asked Samantha in low tones as he dragged Evelyn closer to her.
“He’s trying to get the tapes from the control room,” Samantha replied him.
“Stay with her,” Dave handed Evelyn to Samantha and turned back to join Maxwell. He had just gotten halfway when Maxwell stepped out of the mall’s control room.
“I’ve got the footages and I disabled the cameras,” Maxwell said, walking towards him.
Evelyn was yet to catch her breath fully as she was still in total shock. All she knew now was that these new set of guys had saved her from being killed by the first set she saw.
“Hi, Evelyn. We’re from Henry,” Dave greeted as he got close to her. “Where are your car keys?”
Evelyn was still too shocked to say anything. She took out her car keys and handed it to him.
“I’ll drive your car with my partner here,” Dave said. “You’ll go in the same car with the ladies. We need to get to your family quickly.”
A minute later, Evelyn was seated in the backseat of a black jeep with tinted windows, Samantha and Jennifer were in front. Dave and Maxwell were following behind in her car.
She was yet to utter a word as she was still so shocked about all that had happened. Her mind flashed back to the moment she had seen the men coming towards her from both sides of the aisle. If not that the men from Henry had come, she would have been on the floor in the mall in a pool of her blood.
All through her years of being in the FOX, she had never made her enemy that had to come after her life. Besides, she worked as a secret agent except on the battlefield. No one would know she was an agent of the FOX except she told the person. It was then she realized she was indeed playing a dangerous game, a game that kept her in between the wrath of the FOX and the Red Wolves.
“How did you find me?” She finally found her voice and asked.
The ladies did not answer immediately and she thought they weren’t going to answer her. Her eyes met with Samantha’s in the rearview mirror and she was expecting her to say something but Jennifer spoke instead.
“We followed you since morning, right from the moment you stepped out of the house.”
Evelyn closed her eyes and took in a deep breath as she rested her back. She suddenly opened her eyes again and leaned forward.
“Who followed me? I didn’t notice anyone,” she objected.
“Dave followed you,” Jennifer answered her.
Evelyn knew who Dave since he told her his name already.
“Where is Carl?”
Instead of answering, Jennifer adjusted herself in the chair and turned to stare at her. Evelyn began to wonder why the lady was staring at her.
“Henry will be in Bethanna tonight,” Jennifer replied, stressing the name.
“Oh!” Evelyn took another deep breath and realized Jenny was staring at her for calling him Carl instead of Henry.
She rested her back again and closed her eyes. This time, she took a deep breath and felt some peace inside. She never knew she was going to be faced with death when her mum called her and asked her to get the birthday items. She imagined how her mother would have received the news of her death. Also, she began to imagine how the FOX will react and the agents who would have investigated the cause of her death.
She was still in thoughts when her phone began to ring. She took it out and saw Steve was the caller.
“Who’s it?” Jennifer asked.
“It’s a colleague,” she replied.
“Please, answer as if nothing happened,” Jennifer told her.
“Yeah, nothing happened,” Evelyn nodded.
She stared at the screen for a while and imagined what it would have been like if Steve had followed her to the mall to experience all that had just happened. Unknown to her, Steve was at the mall at that same time.
Five minutes earlier
Steve had left the office earlier than he wanted to, just to have a chance to meet with Evelyn at the mall. He was glad when he got to the place and spotted Evelyn’s car. He parked his car just close to hers with another vehicle in between the two. As he took off his seatbelt to step out, he noticed something was amiss. People were turning back from the entrance and he could see that there was some form of tension in the place.
He thought of waiting outside to see what was happening but he remembered that Evelyn was already inside the building. For a few more seconds, he stared at the entrance to see if he could decipher what was going on but he couldn’t. He had just picked his gun and opened the door to step out when he saw Evelyn coming out through the entrance. She had two ladies flanging her. He quickly entered into the car and closed the door. He even wound up the window glass. He watched as they walked quickly to a jeep parked on the other side.
At first, he thought that she was being kidnapped and wanted to call the office for reinforcement. But on second thought, he realized something else must have happened. It would have been impossible to kidnap someone like Evelyn in such a public place.
He was still wondering what could have happened when he saw two men walking towards her car. He placed his phone against his ear like he was receiving a call but he intended to cover his face. The men entered the car without noticing him. However, he could tell from the curves on their clothes that they had guns in their trousers.
He watched them start the car and drive after the jeep. Quickly after they got to the road, he stepped out with his gun and headed towards the entrance of the mall quickly.
“FOX official,” he announced as he raised his badge to the displaced security men who tried to stop him.
“What happened here?” He asked one of the men but did not wait for an answer as he proceeded in. “What the heck!” he cursed under his breath as he saw the first body on the floor.
He bent quickly and placed a finger on the man’s neck to confirm if he was dead.
“Who killed these men?” He asked the security man following behind him.
“They just left now,” the man answered him. “Two ladies and two men.”
“Were they armed robbers?” Steve asked, still walking forward carefully. He got to the second body on the floor and confirmed it dead.
“No, I think they were hired assassins”
Steve turned and shone his eyes widely at the men. “Those men that left were hired assassins?”
“No, these dead men,” the man corrected. “I think there are rival gangs with the ones that just left. They came in to kill a woman who came shopping but the other four came and killed them.”
Steve paused and stared at the man’s face for a while.
“How many of them are dead?”
“Have you called the police?”
“Okay,” Steve turned back quickly and placed his gun into his pocket. He took out his phone and dialed a number as he walked out of the mall. He rushed to his car and settled in.
“Hello, Steve,” the receiver’s voice sounded.
“Hello Maria, are you still on duty?”
“Yes, I’m staying overnight for a colleague who’s not around. Why do you ask?”
“I want to trail a car, so I need you to track it for me.”
“Please, give a description of the car and the last place you saw it.”
“The car just left the Etiket Mall a few minutes ago. It’s a blue Honda accord, 2014.”
“Okay, I’m on it right now.”
“I’ll be waiting on the line,” Steve said and took the phone off his ear. He put the call on loudspeakers and placed it on his lap. He then took out an earpiece and connected it.
“Steve,” Maria called just as he plugged the ear tips into his ears.
“I’m with you,” he replied.
“Can you tell me which case this is, so I can log the info and transfer it?”
“No, Maria. You can’t record any of this.”
“Huh? You saying this is unofficial?”
“Yes, that’s why I’m calling you,” Steve explained.
“Okay,” Maria replied and was silent for a few more seconds. “The car is on the way to Ruther’s roundabout.”
“Okay, thanks, Maria. I think I know where they’re going but I need you to keep an eye on it and tell me if it changes direction.”
Steve ended the call and kicked on his car immediately. He dialed Evelyn’s number as he drove to the road.
He could see police officers arriving in their vehicles as he followed the direction he got from Maria.
It took a while before Evelyn answered the call and he already thought she wasn’t going to answer.
“Hello, Evelyn. Where are you?”
“Still getting some groceries from the store,” Evelyn replied.
“Are you at Etiket?”
“No, I left there already. I’m getting it elsewhere.”
“Okay,” Steve sensed she was being careful with her responses. “Is everything fine with you?”
“Yea, why do you ask?”
“Nothing, I just want to be sure you’re fine.”
“That’s strange, tell me what’s happening, Agent.”
“Well, I was hoping I’ll meet you at Etiket since it’s the closest mall to the office but I got there now and found some policemen there. I think there was a robbery.”
“Oh! I left there already, so I can’t really tell what happened.”
“Are you sure you’re fine?”
“Yes, I am,” she insisted.
“Alright then, I’ll see you in the office tomorrow.”
“See you, Agent Steve.”
Steve ended the call with mixed feelings. He wasn’t sure if she was in immediate trouble or if she had gotten into some deeper mess. From the way she sounded, she didn’t seem to be in trouble. More questions began to rise in his heart and he wondered what kind of mess she could have gotten into. He couldn’t stop asking himself why an attempt was made on her life and who were the four people who saved her. It only meant Evelyn was into some secret and illegal activities.
30 Minutes later
Hutton was eating his meal in silence when Kahn’s call came in. He picked up the phone and checked who the caller was. On seeing it was Kahn, he did not want to answer the call but changed his mind on second thought.
“Hello, Kahn. I don’t think this is a good time for me to talk; I was about to have my dinner. Can I call you when I’m free?’
“Bleep you, Hutton.” Kahn cursed from the other end. “Carl killed all the seven men that went after her life.”
Hutton took a deep breath and did not say a word in reply.
“You bleeping allowed Carl to gain so much power over us, we could have killed him when we had the chance,” Kahn continued.
“May I remind you that we’ve tried to kill this man several times before,” Hutton replied.
“That’s because we don’t bleeping blow off his brains when we had the chance. We keep leaving inexperienced boys to do the job. A single bullet in his skull would end the whole drama.”
“The only way we would get a chance to put a bullet in Carl’s head is if we stick to the plan,” Hutton replied.
“Sticking to the plan has not gotten us anywhere,” Kahn lamented.
“We just have to be patient,” Hutton replied. “We’re dealing with two bodies; the FOX and Carl Winston. These two parties are very intelligent, we have to think carefully before taking any step.”
“I bleeping hope all these will be fast, I’m fed up already.”
“Don’t be fed up, my man. Carl Winston would soon be out of the way, this time for real and forever.”
2 hours after
“We’re going to be staying here for tonight,” Dave said after he turned off the car engine.
It was in a new car. Maxwell was sitting by his side while Mrs. Alexandra and her little daughter were at the backseat.
“Can someone tell me what’s happening?” Mrs. Alexandra asked for the umpteenth time.
She had been asking the same question since Evelyn had arrived at her house with the strangers and told her to pack some of her things. After packing, Evelyn had made her follow Dave and Maxwell in a different car to avoid answering many questions from her mother.
Dave and Maxwell stepped out of the car without answering Mrs. Alex. The woman also stepped out of the car with the little girl.
They looked around the large compound. Mrs. Alex could notice flowers and other beautiful things around but it was dark and she couldn’t see everything around clearly. She was still looking around when she saw Evelyn coming towards her with another young lady. The vehicle Evelyn followed had arrived a minute before them.
“Evelyn, why don’t you tell me what’s happening?”
“Nothing serious, Mum. I’ll explain to you,” Evelyn said to her mother and then squatted to peck the little girl beside Mrs. Alex. “I want you to go with my friend. I and Mom will be right after you,” Evelyn said to the girl, handing her over to Samantha.
The girl stared at her Mom and sister while Samantha held and walked away with it.
“Hi dear, you can call me Sam. What’s your name?” Samantha introduced herself as they walked towards the house.
“Mom,” Evelyn turned to her mother when she was sure the girl couldn’t hear them talk. “Some people tried to kill me at the grocery store today.”
Mrs. Alex widened her eyes and mouth in shock. “Oh my God! Hope they didn’t touch you?”
“Yes, they did not,” Evelyn replied. “My colleagues came in time.”
Mrs. Alex moved closer and held Evelyn’s face in her palms for a moment as if to check if everything was fine with her.
“I brought you guys here because those men may come home, looking for me,” Evelyn continued. “So, you may have to stay here for a couple of days as we get to the root of the matter.”
The woman was too dumbfounded to talk but only gave a nod. She held her daughter’s face again and then pulled her into an embrace.
“Oh my God! I’m so happy nothing happened to you,” she said as she caressed Evelyn’s hair.
After a few seconds, she broke the hug and stared Evelyn in the eyes. “But who are these people trying to kill you?”
Evelyn sighed. She knew she would have to lie to her mother as the truth would only frighten the woman more.
“Hello, Mrs. Alexandra,” a voice called in a friendly tone, saving Evelyn the stress of lying temporarily.
It was Henry walking towards them. He had a broad smile on his face as he approached.
“You, I know you,” Mrs. Alex turned to him. “You came visiting our house that day.”
“You’re right ma’am,” Henry replied. “It’s nice to meet you again today,” he said, extending a hand to her.
“Yeah, it’s a pleasure,” the woman smiled back.
“If you don’t mind, you’ll have to follow my colleague here,” Henry said, referring to Jennifer who was coming behind him. “Your dinner is served already and may get cold if you don’t go immediately.”
“Thank you,” the woman smiled at him and then glanced at Evelyn again before walking away with Jennifer.
“Evelyn,” Henry called her name with a smile.
“I thought they said you were not in town,” Evelyn said to him with a frown. She took another glance at her Mom as if to confirm if the woman wasn’t hearing anything.
“I came in less than an hour ago,” the smile disappeared from Henry’s face.
“I was almost killed,” Evelyn stared at his face like a wounded lion.
“But you weren’t,” Henry replied.
“How did you know they were going to try to kill me and why didn’t you warn me?”
“I warned you several days before, warning you again would have made you start panicking unnecessarily.”
“But I would have prepared myself if you warned me,” Evelyn gritted her teeth and clenched her fists.
“You’re fine now and that’s what matters,” Henry replied.
“I would get questioned at work tomorrow if they find out an attempt was made on my life,” Evelyn replied.
“Nothing like that, Evelyn. You’re going to return to work tomorrow as if nothing happened.”
Evelyn shone her eyes at him in disbelief. “What? Are you crazy?”
Henry shrugged. “No one is going to know anything.”
“There are CCTV cameras in the mall, it would take the police only a few hours to identify me and trace me to the FOX.”
“We took care of that already, we seized the footages from the mall, they won’t find anything.”
Evelyn took in a deep breath.
Henry moved closer and placed a hand on her shoulder.
“Relax, Evelyn. We’ve taken care of everything.”