Tarasha kept on checking her wristwatch from time to time, she looked around again carefully to see if the Vice President was seated somewhere and she had missed him while surveying the place when she entered. It had been almost one hour of waiting for his arrival and there was no sign of him showing up. She had been very positive of his attendance of the event as his close friendship with the Inspector General was an open secret to her.
She took out a smaller phone from her bag, she searched out the Vice President’s phone number from the device in her hands and typed into the dial pad of the smaller phone. She navigated to the menu of the android device and opened the call tracking application. She scrolled down the app’s dashboard and clicked on ‘Survey & Track Contacts‘, it displayed a list of stored contacts on her phone. She scrolled down and selected the Vice President’s number. After some seconds of initializing, it showed a blank page and loaded for another five seconds before displaying the map of Abuja, then it automatically zoomed in and displayed only the Asokoro area. She then clicked on a link at the top of the map, ‘Specify Location’ , a list of more options dropped down from the link; ‘Call from this device’, ‘Call from another device’, ‘Spoof‘… She clicked on ‘call from another device’, two more options dropped down; ‘Already connected device’ and ‘Connect a new device’. She selected ‘Already connected device’ and choose from another list that appeared. Then she dialed the Vice President’s phone number with the second phone and put it to her ear, the Asokoro map reappeared on the android screen and a large faded blue dot appeared, the size of the blue dot began to reduce and the thickness of the colour increased.
‘Hi,’ she said into the phone as her call was answered.
‘Hello, who am I speaking with?’ the Vice President replied with a baffled tone.
Tarasha replied him with silence and fixed her eyes on the android device screen. She got the exact location the Vice President was answering the call from, she memorized the street address and building number before putting off the call.
Rex had turned to the left side of the canopy and was taking photos when his phone vibrated in his pocket. He took a quick shot and carefully released the camera which hung around his neck. He took out the phone and unlocked the screen, then he swiped down the notification car.
‘Incoming Call for +2346071245778,’ the notification read. He clicked on the notification and quietly walked away to the back of the canopy.
The app displayed fully and outlined several options, Rex selected the first one, ‘Track Caller’s Location‘. A map displayed, then a loading icon appeared. It began from five percent and continued to increase at a geometric progression, then it stopped at eighty percent and stopped, the map closed after a popup message which read ‘Call ended‘.
Rex fixed his gaze to his device, patiently waiting for the call to come again. He would have gotten the location of the caller immediately if the call had lasted two more seconds. After waiting for one more minute without the call coming again, he tapped the back button and selected one of the various options which read ‘Locate missed caller‘. That was the other option he could use to find the location of the device used in calling the Vice President, the only disadvantage was that it’ll take a longer time to get the result.
He took a second to stare around the party place, he saw a young lady standing up from her table, she carried her bag as she rose and it looked like she was leaving the place. He had seen her earlier when she walked into the venue but noticed nothing special, she didn’t look like the Tarasha he was expecting. But he was also aware Tarasha could play tricks with her outlook, so he watched her as she walked away.
Tarasha headed straight out of the venue and waited some few metres away from the gate for a taxi. Soon, one came driving by and she hopped in after communicating her destination to the taxi man.
Five minutes into their journey, she began a conversation with the driver. ‘Good afternoon,’ she said with a smile.
‘Good afternoon ma’am,’ the cab man replied, he adjusted his rearview mirror to enable him see her face. He smiled back as his eyes met with her smiling eyes in the mirror.
‘My name is Samantha,’ she said.
‘Nice to meet you ma’am,’ the cab man replied with another pleasant smile. He was already thinking his passenger had developed a crush on him. He was used to believing himself to be a handsome and irresistible man even though several of his friends and even ladies have told him how his oblong head and pimples stricken face made him far from being handsome. ‘My name is Jonah,’ he added, trying to put on a sexy smile.
‘Oh! Did the big fish swallow you in Israel and vomit you in Nigeria?’ Tarasha joked.
‘Hehe,’ he laughed loud, staring at her face through the mirror. ‘My Jonah was never swallowed by a fish, I swallowed the fish.’ he replied.
‘Haha!’ Tarasha joined in the laughter. They both laughed together for few more seconds before Tarasha’s laughter seized and her smiling face gradually turned serious. The cab man stopped laughing too and stared at her image in the mirror wondering what went wrong.
‘Is anything the matter?’ he finally asked.
‘Nothing,’ she replied coldly. ‘It’s just that I want no other passenger to join us.’
‘Oh! Is that the issue?’ a smile appeared back on the man’s face. ‘I’m comfortable with only you as my passenger.’
‘And I want you to cooperate too,’ she quickly added.
‘Cooperate? How?’ he questioned her.
‘I told you my name is Samantha and I believe you know me already,’ she replied.
‘Yes, I just met you here. You introduced yourself.’
‘Okay, I didn’t tell you my full name. I’m Samantha Osman,’ she said, she opened her bag and brought out a pistol. She could see him shake visibly at the sight of gun. ‘Don’t be scared man, Samantha is not evil like the Nigerian government wants you all to believe.’ she continued. ‘I want you to continue driving now, after which you’ll have to rent out your car to me. I’ll pay you very well for it.’ she paused to hear his response.
He was still in shock, so she continued. ‘I’ll drop your car and your money at the spot you picked me from today. Just cooperate with me and you’ll be free, others like you who don’t cooperate end up dead or disabled.’ she threatened. She stared at his eyes through the rearview mirror, ‘Would you cooperate?’ she asked in a strict tone. The cab man nodded like agama lizard and mumbled a yes shakily.
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‘Good boy!’ Tarasha smiled as she returned the gun into the bag. ‘Now keep on driving with a smile, the same way you started.’ she ordered. The cabman forced a smile on and continued driving shakily.
She took out her Android device and adjusted comfortably on the seat like nothing had happened. She also took out the smaller phone and dialed the Vice President’s number again, this time it rang only once before it was answered.
‘Hello,’ the Vice President answered in a frustrated tone.
‘Hi Vice President,’ she replied in mocking tone.
‘Ermm… Who…who’s this please?’ Chief Elvis finally replied after few seconds of stuttering.
‘It’s your friend Samantha, Samantha Osman.’ she replied in a cold tone. She could hear the sound of his breathing increase as she paused. ‘I want to have a discussion with you, a peaceful one, I don’t want you to involve the authorities.’ she paused to listen to his response.
There was a brief silence, Tarasha knew the Vice President was trying to make a decision or was taking his time to summon courage and reject her request.
‘Who the hell do you think you are and what makes you think I will want to meet and have any kind of discussion with you?’ the Vice President replied.
Tarasha chuckled at his response, she could hear the fear in his voice even though he tried to sound bold. ‘You should be more careful man, you’re the Vice President of the nation and you shouldn’t talk the way you just did…’
‘Don’t tell me how to talk,’ Chief Elvis cut in angrily. ‘Be rest assured that the Law Enforcement Agencies are on your trail and would make sure you end up behind bars after which you’ll be executed like you deserve.’
There was another brief silence, Tarasha took in a short breath before speaking again. ‘Are you done ranting already?’ she asked and waited for his response. She continued when she got none, ‘Whether you like it or not, we’ll have to meet soon. I’m only giving you the opportunity for us to meet and do it peacefully before the final day of your death.’
‘I’m never going to have a discussion with you, you can’t kill me.’ the Vice President replied. ‘Your end is coming soon.’
‘We shall see, your excellency,” she said and ended the call. She turned on the android device screen, the app which she had used at the party was still on. The map still indicated the same location like it did the first time, that meant the Vice President had not moved from where he was. Now Tarasha was making progress with her plans, or so she thought. She had succeeded in creating panic for the Vice President and she was sure he was going to inform the security operatives immediately and the security around him would be beefed up. This would ultimately distract the Inspector General from his ceremony, distract other security officials and make them focus their energies on protecting the Vice President, thereby leaving the Inspector General himself exposed. Then she would go for the Inspector General first.
‘Pull over there,’ Tarasha said to the driver, pointing to an empty space off the road. The driver obeyed and stared at her face through the mirror, waiting for another instruction. ‘Now come down and hand me the keys,’ she ordered.
He obeyed at once, as if he had been expecting her to ask him get down. She also stepped out from the seat behind, she took the keys from him. ‘Are you sure I can drive your car without problems?’ she asked with a threatening tone.
‘Yes…ma,’ he replied, the rest of his body frozen as she stood right before him.
‘Good,’ she said and entered into the car. ‘Your car and the money would be at the place you picked me,’ she reminded him before driving off with the car.
He watched the car as she drove away, he felt a sudden cool breeze blow over him. He closed his eyes and took in a deep breath. Then he moved his hand and turned after a minute of being frozen. A thought flashed through his mind, ‘What if she wasn’t Samantha Osman like she claimed?’ he asked himself. He shrugged as he waved off the thought, even if she wasn’t Samantha Osman, he was sure that the pistol she had shown him was loaded, that was enough reason for him to let her have the car.
The process was still loading on Rex’s device when the call came in again, he quickly stopped the ongoing process and began to track the caller. This time, it processed up to hundred percent but instead of displaying the caller’s location, it displayed the word ‘ENCRYPTED’ in large fronts and red colour, signifying danger. At once, Rex knew who the caller was. He quickly minimized the result and returned to the previous options, he selected ‘Listen to call’. There was no result displayed, so he clicked on it three more times. After twenty seconds of seemingly inactivity, a popup message displayed four times at the same frequency at which he clicked. ‘Call cannot be listened to; high security encryption.’
He minimized the app at once and threw the phone into his pocket, he took the camera off his neck as he hurried his way out of the venue.
To be continued