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 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.
‘The other 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 to 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 it 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.’
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‘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.
To be continued