Tarasha Episode 77

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**2.30pm** ‘

Good afternoon sir,’ Evelyn greeted Mr Sylvester as she entered into his office with a laptop in her hands.

‘Finally Evelyn, we have you here.’ He said smiling, he got up to his feet to turn on the air conditioner. He motioned for her to sit down on the visitor’s seat before he returned to his own seat and settled into it. ‘All the other guys have been working on this project too but you’re the only one sounding with much hope about the matter. But first, how about your mother?’ Mr Sylvester asked, sounding really concerned.

‘She’s better and would be going back home this week,’ Evelyn answered him without paying much attention, her focus was on the laptop which she was working on.

‘Thank God,’ Sylvester said and heaved a sigh of relief.

‘Thank you so much sir for your care, I also got the money you sent for the hospital bill.’

‘It’s nothing,’ Sylvester replied, smiling sheepishly. Evelyn worked on the laptop for a few more seconds before turning the screen to Sylvester.

‘Inaccessible!’ He exclaimed after staring at the screen for some minutes. ‘Yes inaccessible,’ Evelyn replied him and turned back the screen to herself. She paused to stare at his confused looking face for some seconds. ‘We could push further to break through their security,’ she began again, Sylvester’s anxiously waiting eyes and ears widened at the news.

‘Then let’s push further immediately, so that we can provide their location to the police as soon as possible. You know that the success of this project could cause a great lift in your career, in our careers.’ Sylvester replied back excitedly.

‘But there’s a problem,’ Evelyn positive tone suddenly changed to negative.

‘Problem?’ He let out a deep frustration at the change in her tone.

‘Yes, it could lead us to a trap. Like what happened to Robin Kahn.’ Sylvester swallowed hard as if something was really in his throat.

‘Then what can we do to avoid this trap?’ He asked slowly, but there was a bit of impatience in his voice.

‘We can only be very sure of the location if we track during the phone call, that means we should keep tabs on the receiving number and hope that we get another call from the same location soon.’

‘Then I have to speak with the Agent immediately,’ Sylvester rolled back his swivel a little and opened the drawer to take out his phone.

~~~

Cole was sitting in the bed with his laptop placed on his laps and earphone stuck into his ears. He had two Android phones placed by his both sides. He just finished editing the video of the Senate President that was recorded and it was perfect for all that they would require to do with it. Now he understood the reason for the Boss’ change in plan. Killing their next target, the Vice President would not be too difficult for them if all of the new plans worked well. One of his phones rang, he saw ‘Benny’ displayed as the caller ID at a quick glance.

‘Hello Benny, you may go in now. All is settled. Remember the position of your trackers and all recording equipments.’ He said into the phone without waiting for the caller to talk first.

‘Okay,’ Benny replied and cut the call. Cole returned to his job on the laptop. Few minutes later, he noticed his door opening slowly, Aisha walked in from behind.

‘What’s up babe?’ He said as she walked closer to the left side of his bed, looking bored and lonely. ‘How long do we have to keep that man alive?’ She asked and sank into the bed, sitting close to him. Cole chuckled and stared at her for a little while before returning his gaze to the laptop’s screen.

‘Why do you ask me? Don’t you think the boss should know better?’

‘But you should know too, we all know you’re closer to her and she seems to always reveal most of her plans to you before letting us know.’ Aisha answered.

‘No Aisha, your insinuation is wrong.’ He said, staring back at her. ‘She doesn’t reveal her plans to me before you people. I only get to know more because she works closer with me on technical issues.’

‘That’s not the issue now jor,’ Aisha seemed not to agree. ‘Just tell me where we are on this job, are we dropping the man or not?’

‘Definitely, we are dropping him but when it would be is what I don’t know, I can only make a guess.’

‘And what’s the guess?’

‘We’ll kill him after Henry EG’s death is announced and maybe after we upload the video we recorded today or send it to the Vice President to threaten him.’

‘I thought they said on the news that Henry EG was slowly recuperating from his sickness, so how come we’re expecting the news of his death?’

‘Yes he’s slowly recuperating, that’s the lie the police and Doctors told the media but Doctor Benny is going there to end his life, today or tomorrow.’ Cole said with a mischievous smile.

‘Huh?’ Aisha was surprised.

‘Yeah,’ Cole said and turned back to his laptop, ‘I guess you were in the kitchen while we devised that plan.’

‘Benny? How is he planning to do that when Henry EG is heavily secured by police officers in the hospital?’

‘Benny is disguising as a Doctor from Capetown and we’ve just edited the hospital’s contacts on their directory.’

‘Oh!’

‘Yeah.’

‘Well, I wish him the best.’ Aisha shrugged. She seemed not to understand most of Cole’s explanation but decided to refrain from asking more questions.

~~~

‘Sir, I was told you came looking for me,’ Doctor Tobi said to the Pathologist.

‘Yes, I came looking for you because he called about twenty minutes ago and he’ll be here very soon.’ Mr Albert said in reply.

‘Wow! How soon would that be?’ Doctor Tobi asked, searching the pockets of his coat for his phone.

‘I don’t…’ Mr Albert paused as a call entered his phone. ‘In fact, he’s the one calling right now, that means he’s here already.’

‘Ehen, I’m coming back now. I have to get my phone from my office,’ Doctor Tobi said and walked away hurriedly. The visitor was already in Mr Albert’s office before Doctor Tobi returned. He was sitting comfortably in the visitor’s seat while the Pathologist was on his feet discussing something with him.

‘Oh! Here comes the Doctor who has the similar sample.’ Mr Albert introduced. The young lab scientist turned to greet.

‘Good morning Doc,’ he got up and said with a smile, offering an handshake.

‘Good morning sir,’ Dr Tobi replied back with a smile, taking the handshake. ‘I’m Dr David,’ the lab scientist said.

‘I’m Dr Tobi,’ the Doctor replied, glad that the person he was going to be working with was also a young man.

‘Nice to meet you sir.’

‘Oh! My pleasure.’ Dr Tobi’s phone rang and he quickly took it out from his pocket.

‘Please excuse me,’ he said politely and stepped back to answer the call. David returned to his seat and faced the Pathologist who was now seated too.

‘Sir, you said they got the other sample from the premises of a poisoned patient.’

‘Yes, a poisoned patient. Henry E.G actually.’

‘Henry EG?’ David sounded as if the name was familiar.

‘Yes, Henry EG. He’s popular for his computer science and camera operation works.’

‘Oh! I think I’ve heard the name before.’

‘Surely, you must have heard of him.’ The Pathologist smiled.

‘Yeah… But I thought that it was announced that he was only sick.’

‘Ermm… Yes but that was based on the Police’s instruction. They didn’t want the public aggression as they were sure the real truth would stir up public sympathy.’

‘Hmm…’

‘Dr David,’ Dr Tobi called, he had just finished with his phone call. David turned to answer. ‘I think you need to come with me now,’ he said courteously.

‘Okay then,’ David replied, then turned back to the Pathologist and smiled.

‘It’s okay Dr David, nice to meet you.’ Mr Albert said and offered him a handshake.

‘Thank you sir,’ David got up and took the handshake. He walked out from the seat and followed the young Doctor. Doctor Tobi led Dr David all the way from Mr Albert’s office to the hospital laboratory. Benny walked in and took in a deep breath, he first paused at the doorstep. Everything looked strange to him, the lab was a more complex one than the mini lab his boss had used to teach him what to do. He silently prayed in his heart that he made no mistakes.

‘Dr David,’ Dr Tobi who was already walking to a section of the lab turned back to David who still at the door. For some seconds, Benny totally forgot that he was now Dr David, he even forgot where he was and was asking himself what he was doing there. ‘Dr David,’ Dr Tobi began to walk to the lab scientist who seemed lost in the environment. Benny regained his memory before Dr Tobi got to him, he rubbed his face and proceeded forward. ‘What happened?’ Dr Tobi asked.

‘I was just remembering my friend who had an accident, he is my senior lab scientist, I was making a silent prayer for him.’

‘Oh! Hope his condition is not that bad.’

‘Bad but everything is under control.’ Dr Tobi’s phone rang. He hurriedly dipped his hand into his pocket to bring out the phone, he was not supposed to be with a phone as they were restricted from bringing phones into the lab but the police matter he was involved in necessitated his bringing it in. It was too late before he could take out the phone and silence it. All eyes were on him already. He stylishly stopped Dr David and turned back, avoiding the gazes of all others in the lab.

‘This person calling needs to see both of us, please we’ll come back here.’ Dr Tobi said and began to lead the way back out.

‘Who is that?’

‘The person responsible for the patient whom I got the sample from.’ Dr Tobi replied, trying to hide the fact that it was a police officer they were going to meet. He turned to another direction after they got out of the lab and they climbed up a stairs before getting to their new destination. Dr David looked at the faces of the mean police officers outside the ward, they all stared at him with the same scrutinizing look on their faces. He stared back at them like a less concerned person. Dr Tobi opened the ward and ushered Dr David in before entering and closing the door behind.

Officer Dakolo was waiting inside for them, sitting on a stool, another officer of the same rank with Ken was with him. Both officers were not putting on uniforms.

‘I didn’t know you were so close to this place already, ‘ Dr Tobi said as he walked towards the Agent.

‘I was close already and there was no traffic jam on the way, so the journey was smooth.’ Dakolo replied. The officer who was standing beside him moved away immediately Dakolo began to talk; like a preplanned action, he walked close to the door and stood there. Benny took a glance back and smiled at the movement, he knew they were suspicious of him and were blocking the way in case their suspicion was true. Benny recognized Agent Dakolo, who would not recognize the man whose face had been shown severally on TV for solving top notch cases and nabbing the most dangerous criminals in the country. On a normal day, he would have been afraid to be in the officer’s presence but he wasn’t today. He had not come by himself or in his own name, he had come in the name of Tarasha after she had prepared and trained him well and also informed him of the importance of displaying confidence at all times.

‘Meet Dr David, the lab scientist from Capetown who has a similar sample to ours.’ Dr Tobi did the introduction.

‘Dr David,’ Agent Dakolo smiled, extending an handshake to David. ‘I’m Dakolo,’ he introduced himself, consciously omitting the Agent or officer title.

‘Nice to meet you sir,’ Dr David replied back with smiles.

‘I’m the patient’s brother,’ Dakolo continued, we found the sample beside him after he had been poisoned through the drip, the culprit must have forgotten it.’

‘Oh!’ Dr David exclaimed, he laughed in his heart about Dakolo’s lie of being Henry’s brother. ‘The case must really be a serious one considering the number of policemen outside there,’ Dr David commented loudly.

‘It’s serious,’ Dakolo shrugged and formed a pity face.

‘I’ve been briefed about his case and I believe that with God on our side, something can still be done about the matter.’ Dr David said.

‘Amen,’ Dakolo answered and readjusted his sitting position. ‘So what hospital are you from?’

‘Government City Hospital, Capetown.’ Dr David answered.

‘Hmm,’ Dakolo took in a deep breath and made an eye signal to the officer standing by the door.

‘So you work as a lab scientist there?’

‘Yes, I work as one of the lab scientists.’

‘And what are you doing in Nigeria?’

‘I’m…’ Dr David paused as his eyes met with someone else’s. All these while, Benny didn’t look at the face of the patient laying on the bed. Although he knew that he was in the ward where Henry was, he was a little bit tensed as the Henry he saw was different. To make matters worse, Henry had just opened his eyes at that time and was staring at him as if he was recognized but Benny remembered that the Boss already said that Henry had been turned into a dummy and couldn’t recognized anybody or even himself. ‘I’m on holiday,’ Benny finally said, turning his face back to the Agent. Benny could see from the agent’s expression that he was being suspected, so he decided to act a little more drama. He moved closer to the patient and placed his hand on the patient’s forehead with pity in his eyes. ‘So this is Henry EG, the African computer guru?’ He asked in a rhetorical manner and stared at the faces of the Agent and Doctor Tobi. ‘I’ve read so much about him,’ he said and then used his fingers to widen Henry’s eyes, he looked into it as if he was observing something. ‘Pale right?’ Dr David asked and moved closer, already deceived by Benny’s good acting skills. ‘Yes,’ Dr David replied and stepped back. He turned to Dakolo.

Dakolo too was almost convinced by Benny’s act but his detective side still needed more to convince him further. ‘I think we’ve got to go now Mr Dakolo, I don’t have much time here.’ David took a glance at his wristwatch. ‘Do watch over your brother while we try to come up with a solution to this situation.’ He said and turned to Dr Tobi. Dr Tobi turned to Dakolo and moved his shoulders in a questioning manner, as if to ask whether they could leave or not.

‘Thank you Dr David,’ Dakolo finally spoke with a smile. ‘Dr Tobi, we’ll see later.’ With that Dr Tobi led Dr David out of the ward and they made their way back to the laboratory.

‘Quick!’ Dakolo said to the officer in the ward with him as he got up from his stool. ‘Call the office and tell them to contact Government City Hospital in Capetown to confirm if Dr David is really a lab scientist there and also if it’s the right one we have here.’

~~

Benny smiled to himself as Dr Tobi led him back to the laboratory. He had passed a stage of the police trouble, he knew now that they would try to confirm if he was really from where he claimed to be from but he was confident that Cole had settled that already. There would be no problem for him, he would succeed in contaminating all the samples and would personally inject it into Henry’s body. He was already proud of himself, he had never done a job like this that’ll require him to kill the victim even with the police heavily guarding. It would turn out to be the best one man task he had ever embarked on.

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******

‘Tara, you’ve not still stopped to rest since. What’s the matter?’ Jefa asked his sister, staring into her face with that same look that a father who is deeply worried about his daughter keeps. Both of them were in the living room, Jefa was sitting in the armchair while Tarasha was moving around the house and working. She was just passing through the living room when Jefa decided to question her. She stopped and took a quick glance at his face and then folded her arms. She couldn’t keep her eyes on his face because she didn’t want the feeling it was giving her. It was a strange kind of feeling, one which she wasn’t supposed to have.

‘I’ll rest when I’m done with what I’m doing,’ she said, staring at somewhere else with her arms folded like a sulking wife.

‘What are you doing?’ Jefa questioned with a note of authority. The authority in Jefa’s tone sounded funny to Tara, she took another quick glance at him and faced somewhere else again. ‘I’m only asking to know if I could do some things for you while you go and rest,’ Jefa continued, offering to help this time.

‘Don’t worry, I’ll be done in few minutes time.’

‘Please hurry up,’ Jefa said in a pleading tone.

‘Thank you,’ she said and started to walk away.

‘Ermm… Sorry,’ Jefa began to talk again, just remembering something. ‘Did you come home with someone around 12 noon?’

‘No, I didn’t,’ she replied. ‘Why?’

‘Nothing, I thought I heard your voice and a guy’s own.’ Jefa said.

‘No, I didn’t come home at all.’ She said.

‘Okay, I was hoping you had come home with Henry.’ Jefa said. Tara heaved a sigh at the mention of Henry’s name, she wished that her brother would stop mentioning him in every discussion. All she could hope for was that Benny should quickly execute his mission and end Henry’s life finally, then the only thing that would be talked about was his funeral.

‘No,’ she refuted. ‘I didn’t come home at all,’ she reiterated. Tara took a glance at his face before walking away. He didn’t look like he was convinced that she spoke the truth but she wasn’t bothered, the most important thing she needed was that he stopped disturbing her with questions.

Jefa was partly correct, she had come home with a man but certainly not Henry. She had come with Benny to use the laboratory in the house. Tarasha walked into the room and straight to the bed. She fell tiredly into it with her face buried in the pillow. She wasn’t tired physically, she had physical strength but what she didn’t understand was her weakness in dealing with herself when she faced her brother. With the same determination and mindset which she changed to and spoke to the Senate President, she had come home to speak to her brother, so that they could plan his departure sooner than they earlier agreed. Though she had been the one who forced him to stay in her house, pleading with him to only go after he is declared fit enough by the nurse, she didn’t want him to wait any further because she realized and had begun to see the signs of the effects which his presence could have around her. The problem now was to face him and speak to him, there was an overwhelming influence he always had whenever she saw his face.

Sometimes, it brings pictures of their father back to her, sometimes the whole family and sometimes, pictures of her loving brother. But she needed none of that now, all she required was a mind free of unnecessary emotions or attachment to fulfill her mission.

She turned to face the ceiling and then raised her knee, she took in another long deep breath and closed her eyes briefly. She needed to get Jefa out of her life quickly, else she would become a weakling. Questions began to rise in her hearts and she began to wonder why she was even sent to her country of descent. Why wasn’t she sent to somewhere else in the world? Why didn’t they send her to another country knowing quite well that she could meet something in Nigeria which could make her get distracted? Oh! Possibly it was purposefully. Vlasdislav had done it purposefully, she thought. To punish her, that would be the reason.

She remembered that she had offended her masters on several occasions and previous projects. She had even gone against the Nefary Clan’s rules once and when she was accosted by her bosses for it, she gave them a stubborn and nonchalant attitude and did not apologize (a skill which they impacted into her). Twice did Vlasdislav and Ristoslav tried to kill her by sending her to kill two of the most senior assassins but she surprised them on the two occasions when she returned with the heads of the two senior assassins. Since then, she became a threat to themselves and they began to class her as a senior assassin too even though she hadn’t used up to the number of years required to be classified as that.

Ristoslav and Vlasdislav were also ‘veteran’ assassins but their old ages and too much use of drugs had weakened their bodies. That’s why they reduced the use of drugs for their own trained assassins. Both of them were the second and third persons in command in the Nefary Clan. Vlasdislav was the assassin who had betrayed the Villary Gang and joined Nefary. He was one of the major men in the Villary Gang and was the most sent Agent to Africa during the nineties. That was when he got connected to a Nigerian politician who was a godfather to Chief Elvis. He gradually rose in rank in the gang and began to control some of their international activities especially their relations with the African continent.

In the early 2000s, Matvei took over from him in controlling their relations with Africa as Vlasdislav had risen in rank and also aged more. The year 2011 was when the Villary Gang’s deal with the Nigerian young politicians was strengthened, they began to receive supply of “goods” from Nigeria, their major dealers were the Heavy Seven Group of which young Elvis was the major leader and Gabriel his assistant. The Villary Gang’s operation with the Heavy Seven began to decline in 2015 when the coming elections procedure in Nigeria toughened, then it came to an abrupt end when the new Government came into power in May 2016.

Vlasdislav who was a major assassin and trainer in the Villary Gang began to have disagreements with some other major men in the gang that same year. Early 2017, he finally broke away, taking a hundred of young trainees with him to a rival organization called the Nefary Clan, Omotara was one of the trainees which was taken away by Vlasdislav. That was how she became a citizen and part of the Nefary Clan family.

She learnt so fast, excelling in all her tests and her promotion to the next level was always rapid. Her fast learning ability made Vlasdislav take more interest in her out of all her age mates and those trainees he brought along with him. On a certain day after some thing happened, just in few years of her training, he changed her name from Omotara to Tarasha, a story to be told later.

Tarasha turned and faced the ceiling, raising one of her knees up as she took in a long deep breath. She just needed to do all that she could to move Jefa far away from herself. She got up swiftly and walked towards the table near the wall, she dragged the chair closer and took the laptop bag from under the table. She took out the laptop from her bag and turned it on, then she sat and relaxed her back, waiting for the computer to boot.

++++

Dr Tobi and Dr David busied themselves with experimenting the samples for several hours in the laboratory. Dr David seemed to be the one leading the tests, he took care of the mixing and heating while Dr Tobi joined only in most of the observations.

‘Seems like you’ve been working on this sample for a long time,’ Dr Tobi said.

‘Not really, but I’ve made quite some progress on it.’ Dr David replied.

‘Hmm…’

‘Yeah…’ Dr David lifted up a test tube and squinted as he stared at the blue coloured liquid.

‘I think we’re done with the drug now.’ Dr Tobi stopped to stare at the test tube too,

‘but I don’t think we can administer it to the patient, mixing it has made it contaminated.’

‘Why not? We can administer it,’ Dr David said defensively. ‘The foreign matter isn’t harmful to the body.’

‘Are you sure? We’ve not verified what substance it is.’

‘Yeah… But we’ve verified that it isn’t harmful.’

‘It’s not harmful to the normal body but it could be harmful to the patient in his condition.’

‘Hmm…’ Dr David stopped to think. ‘Well, you may be right there. Since you’ve been the one treating the patient all these while.’

‘Yes… I think it’ll be dangerous to him.’

‘So what do we do now? Do you have some quantity of the samples left?’

‘I don’t know, I’ll have to find out from the officer… Ermm…his brother I mean.’ He said and took off his hand gloves, preparing to go out of the lab.

‘Okay,’ Dr David smiled, ‘but make sure you get all the remaining quantity.’

‘I will,’ Dr Tobi said and excused himself. Dr David watched him leave, another stage of his mission has been done, he had contaminated the first sample of the cure. Now his next plan was to contaminate the remaining quantity of the liquid, that’s why he urged Dr Tobi to get all that was left. He had succeeded in wasting the sample of the liquid and wasting time also. To fulfill the mission, he had two options; contaminate the remaining liquid and encourage Dr Tobi to administer it that way or find a way to be left alone with Henry and he’ll infuse a poison into his blood cells. …

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to be continued