‘Henry, what the hell is wrong with you? This is no time for jokes you know,’ Henry heard Tara talking to him as he arranged his devices and his gun into the backpack he left at the security stand. He flashed a look back and saw her walking towards him. She stopped before the pavement and placed her hands on her waist.
He finished in some seconds and hung the bag. He turned to look at Tarasha’s face, ‘Sorry I can’t come with you, I have to go get my mother now.’
‘Your mother? I thought we’ve talked about that before,’ Tarasha replied. ‘We need to get everything settled first before the environment can be safe for your mother.’
‘Damn you Tara, stop acting like you care and you’re going to help me when we’re done with your mission, all you know how to do is use people, ‘ Henry replied, sounding angry.
Tarasha stared at him speechless, wondering what had come over Henry and where he had gotten his idea from. She could see the fury on his face and sense the anger in the voice. She watched as he stepped down from the security stand and proceeded to the gate.
‘Henry,’ she called as he touched the handle. He stopped but did not look back. ‘What’s this about?’
He turned his face sideway and caught a glimpse of her. His anger grew as he wondered how she could be asking him what it was about when she knew it all. It made him now convinced in his heart that the man who contacted him was right about his claim that Tara knew all about his mother’s plights and was only hiding it from him to make sure he remains in the right condition for her to keep using him as part of her team.
He had felt something more hurtful than disappointment when he found out that Tarasha and Cole had deceived and continually lied to him. The hurtful part was that he had asked Tarasha more than once but she kept on with her deceit. He discovered all about the lies and deceits on the same day he introduced his newly designed app to her
Flashback ~~ Few days ago
Henry closed the running process on the application and returned to the dashboard. He saw a new notification, the app had been able to fetch some of the NSCC footages he requested for. He downloaded the footages into a folder.
He heaved a sigh of relief and rested his back while he waited for the footages he requested for to be completely downloaded. He had an inner feeling of joy knowing that he had created an app which will go a long way in helping the team succeed. He never knew that the same app will make him regret being a part of the team.
The footages downloaded completely after a minute and he opened a random one. The look on his face slowly changed into a confused look as he saw himself on a road in Abuja which he recognized well, with two other unknown men. He blinked his eyes and released a breath. Then he picked his phone and quickly opened his inbox. He paused the video as he began to check through the past messages. He located the text conversation with one of the several numbers he had blocked. He scrolled to the middle of the conversation and located the message he was looking for. In the message, the sender claimed that he and a partner had once met with Henry in a particular location in Abuja but Henry remembered nothing as at the time of first reading the message.
He scrolled down to read his reply to the message.
‘Nothing of such ever happened, I never met someone like you and I wasn’t in Abuja at that time,’ he had replied.
He scrolled again to see the sender’s reply.
‘Would you just answer my call and allow me remind you properly, I’m sure Samantha Osman has done something to make you forget totally. I can help you remember if you want.’
Henry gave no more reply. Two other messages followed after that in the conversation until he blocked the number and the sender began to contact him with another number. The cycle continued with the numbers until Henry finally made up his mind to find out what happened during the few days he was in coma.
Now, Henry was standing fully aware of Tarasha’s deception. Even though he planned not to take a drastic step that’ll make her fight against him, he also wasn’t ready to miss the opportunity to get his mother back to safety. He had confirmed with the information sent to him from the unknown person that she was no longer in the hands of the security officials but some individuals who had taken her after her release.
He still saw her standing behind him and he knew she could become dangerous to him from that moment, his mind was however made up to damn whatever consequence could result from his action.
‘I wish you success Tara,’ Henry said before he opened the gate and stepped out.
Tarasha was perplexed. She didn’t know whether to go after him or just return to the car and continue the mission without him.
‘Boss, what’s wrong with him?’ she could hear Cole’s voice behind.
She turned and proceeded back to the car. ‘I don’t know what’s wrong with him but we have to go anyway.’
‘Go without him?’ Cole questioned. ‘Leaving him roaming about by himself could cause troubles for us.’
Tarasha stopped as she got to the passenger’s side entrance and turned her head slowly to Cole. Cole was right, apart from reducing the strength of the team, Henry going in a different way from them also posed serious risks to them.
‘I think he found out something we don’t know or he’s been deceived by some of those men who reached him secretly, I told him to cut them off totally,’ she said, staring blankly into thin air. She gave him a quick look as she opened the door, ‘Let’s get out of here.’
Cole turned to the driver’s side and entered into the vehicle.
They got out of the compound and soon located Henry by the side of the road still trying to get a cab. He stopped a cab and bent over to talk to the driver but the driver zoomed off, it appeared he wasn’t interested in going towards Henry’s destination.
Cole drove towards him and stopped by his side. ‘Henry, get into the car and let’s talk about this.’ Tarasha said to him.
Henry stepped back from the road pavement, increasing the distance between his body and the car. ‘It’s no longer time to talk Tara, you lied to me when we had the time to talk.’
Tarasha was quiet for a moment. She felt anger building inside her but she tried as much as she could to resist it. She could have done something else if it was someone else giving her such problems and not Henry.
She opened the door and stepped out of the car. ‘Henry, we already agreed to go for your mother after we get things settled, why are you impatient?’
‘Damn you Tara, why should we leave my mother’s safety until the end of your mission?’ Henry replied. ‘It shows who you really are, selfish, only concerned about your mission.’
Tarasha looked around briefly to check if they weren’t already attracting the attention of other road users.
She tried to step closer to him but stopped as he pulled out a gun and pointed at her.
‘Hey! Relax, it has not gotten up to this, we’re on the road you know.’
‘To hell with you, I won’t let you come so close to me anymore. You’re not going to have the opportunity to drug me like you did the other time.’
Tarasha was confused by his words but she couldn’t ask any questions yet as she didn’t want to cause more attention from passersby. She got back into the car and ordered Cole to drive on.
Henry stepped back to the road pavement, hiding his gun behind him. He waved down the next cab and got into the front seat without first negotiating with the driver.
‘Where are you going to?’ the cab driver asked.
‘Get out of the car,’ Henry replied with his gun pointed at the man.
The terrified man quickly took off his seatbelt and stepped out of the car.
‘I think he’s gone crazy again,’ Cole who didn’t hear the conversation between Henry and Tarasha commented as he drove on. He had only seen Henry point the gun at her and made his conclusion.
‘I’ve never seen him like that,’ Tarasha said as she pulled out a device from the bag at the backseat. Henry’s words troubled her greatly and she wasn’t sure that she could leave him to continue with her mission. The rage she saw in his eyes was one that would lead him into trouble and probably his death if left alone.
She opened the NSCC application on the device.
‘I have seen him gone mad like that once, when we went to Abuja together.’ Cole spoke again.
Tarasha flashed a quick look at Cole, she now perfectly understood why Henry was acting the way he was. She pulled out another phone and dialed Tomi’s number. ‘Hey Tomi! You’ve got to hold on for a while, wait till I give further instructions before you come.
‘Boss?’ Cole glanced quickly at her. ‘You said we have to execute this immediately, are we holding on because of Henry?’
Tarasha did not reply him immediately. The NSCC application had completed the command issued. She could see Henry ok the footage as he got into the cab and sent the driver out. She glanced out at the side mirror to see if she could locate the cab behind but there were other taxis and she couldn’t spot his.
‘It’s dangerous to leave Henry to himself, I think he found out already what happened in Abuja and how he was drugged to lose his memory. He feels betrayed that I lied to him,’ Tarasha said to Cole. She remembered how Henry had asked her several times what really lead to his coma and she kept on repeating the same lie to stop him from probing further. She had however made the mistake of thinking he’d not discover the truth and not planning for when he would, not considering the fact that Henry had a brain for technology and that it was possible for him to pull out the already deleted footages.
‘Boss, don’t you think we should just do something to make him silent like we did the last time?’ Cole suggested.
‘We can’t do that now because we don’t know how long he’s known the truth for and what data he has given to the enemy. He’s lost his trust in us and we would only make things worst if we go the forceful way.’
‘So what do we do?’ Cole asked, he had reduced the speed of his driving and was moving to the slow lane.
‘Maybe we have to split, you’d keep tracking and following them,’ Tarasha replied.
‘How do I track them?’ Cole asked.
She picked up the backpack from the backseat of the car and took out another device. She placed her former device on top and navigated to the tracking app.
‘There’s a chip attached to Chief Gab’s handcuff, I’m tracking with this app and it shows they’re still on motion.’ she explained.
‘I think I got to pull over to get the instructions perfectly,’ Cole said as he put on the traffic indicator. ‘But I really don’t think you should allow Henry disturb this.’
Tarasha took in breath. Cole was right and was talking like an assassin. Henry’s stubbornness should have got him dead instead of sympathy.
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‘Henry E.G is coming to us,’ Carl said as he walked into the dark room.
‘Great move,’ Eric replied him as he sipped from his glass of wine. He was standing behind the NIS Chairman who was sitting behind a large screen desktop, running a NIS secret software and seeing the locations of his men. ‘We just got the locations of the NIS men, they’re still in motion but we have a clue of where they’re headed for.’
‘When is Henry E.G coming here?’ the NIS chairman spoke.
‘He should be here in a matter of minutes, he agreed to come here by two o’clock.’ Carl replied. He picked a pen from a pocket hung on the wall and proceeded further in, Victoria walked in after him through the entrance.
‘I would not like him to see me here,’ the NIS chairman added.
‘You have nothing to worry about sir, he’s not getting out here alive, so he wouldn’t have the opportunity to talk about whatever he sees here.’ Eric said to him.
‘Is he coming alone?’ the NIS chairman asked.
‘We don’t know yet, but we have enough men in this facility to take care of him,’ Carl replied.
‘How many men do you have here?’
‘About fifteen of them, Victoria would be here to lead them while we go after Samantha and Elvis Richards.’
‘And what if he comes here with Samantha Osman?’ the NIS chairman looked doubtful.
‘She wouldn’t come here, she has Elvis Richards to attend to. No assassin leaves a serious work to attend to a team mate’s personal matter,’ Carl replied him and then turned to Eric. ‘Henry has his location open now, we can track him.’
Eric flashed a look at Carl, then pulled a chair close to the Chairman. He minimized the software running on the screen and opened a tracking app.
‘Where did you get such number of men from?’ the NIS chairman asked as he shifted away to give Eric enough space to use the computer.
‘We have a supply of about thirty men in total, we made contact with severals gangs in the country and they supplied us with men.’ Carl replied.
‘So if we have fifteen men staying back, where would the others be?’
‘The rest of them are coming with us to get Samantha Osman and Rex,’ Carl replied. ‘We want to use them as distractions for the two assassins.’
‘I think you guys got a good plan, just make sure you keep secret things secret. And keep your communicators on, so that you keep getting my data from me.’
There was silence for over five minutes.
‘I got Henry E.G’s location, he’s still stuck in traffic somewhere but he should make it here by two o’clock.’ Eric broke the silence.
‘And we should be out of here in five minutes time, the boys would arrive in two minutes.’ Carl said to Eric.
Eric got up and turned to Carl. ‘Can Victoria handle Henry E.G?’ he said before flashing a glance at her. She was sitting at the corner of the room and working with her device.
‘I explained all that she needs to know already, we’ve planned for this before today, so she would have no problem handling him.’ Carl replied with boldness, staring at her face. Eric also stared at her face and she stared back at him confidently.
There was a beep on Carl’s phone, he turned the screen up to check and then flashed a look at Eric. ‘We gotta go.’
Henry picked up his phone again and checked the address in the message sent to him. The map confirmed that he was in the right street and the number at the gate of the building also confirmed he had seen the right building.
He picked his backpack from the passenger’s seat and poured out some of the content to the chair. He had a couple of instruments he had brought with him. On the seat was a wristwatch, two electronic wristbands, two collar chips; a metal detector and the other a camera. He also had two pistols and five cartridges, a tablet device and a waist pouch.
He took off his seatbelt and turned off the car engine. He unzipped his jacket and put the two guns into the inner pockets. He put the cartridges into the waist pouch and fastened it across his shoulder. He then put on the wristbands on his right hand and the wristwatch on the left. He also arranged the chips at the appropriate places.
He returned the remaining tools into the backpack and placed it orderly on the passenger’s seat before he stepped out of the car.
The gate opened just as he raised his fist to knock.
‘Henry E.G?’ a dark tall man with dreadlocks asked him with a crooked smile.
‘Yes, Henry E.G.’ he replied.
‘Please come in,’ the man replied and gave him space to walk in.
Henry stepped in gently, he heard the gate being locked behind him. He looked around the building quickly. Then he took out his phone and dialed the number which had been giving him directions.
‘Please come in Henry E.G,’ the voice said from the other end before he could say anything.
‘Where’s my mother?’ he asked softly, scrutinizing the front view of the building with his eyes. He tried locating all the doors and windows and tried to observe the materials they were made of. He took notice of about five men apart from the one who opened the gate, hanging at different spots around the compound.
‘She’s in here, I have a deal for you. I told you I can’t let her go until you agree to my terms.’ the voice at the other end of the call replied.
‘What are your terms?’
‘We can’t discuss on phone, you should come in for a proper discussion.’
‘I can’t trust you,’ Henry replied.
‘You can trust me if you’re in my premises already without being hurt, what more will it take you to come in for a deal discussion?’
Henry was quiet.
‘We could have hurt you a long time ago if we wanted to, you were powerless with us in Abuja, remember now?’
Henry did not remember anything but he had seen in the fetched videos that he truly met them. ‘I’m coming in, what way do I take?’
‘Come in straight, the main entrance.’
The room was a dark and cool one. The bulb at the center of the ceiling produced several lights of different colours which only produced aesthetics in the room without brightness. Henry could spot the form of two people in the room at the both sides, a man seated on the left while a lady sitting at the right. He stood at a spot after walking three steps from the entrance.
‘Welcome, Henry E.G.’ the lady began as she got up from her seat. She touched a switch on the wall beside her and a white bulb turned on, brightening up the whole place. Henry looked around the place and noticed immediately that it was designed with sophisticated technology. Fear gripped his heart immediately as he doubted the ability of his devices to work in such an environment, their inbuilt system could be one which makes every other electrical device useless in the building.
He was still wondering when she tapped another switch. The white covering over the left wall split open slowly, revealing a transparent glass wall.
He opened his eyes in shock as the walls opened up completely and revealed another room at the other side. He saw his mother sitting on a chair alone in the room, her wrists at both sides fastened to the chair arms by a strap and her feet fastened the same way. She didn’t look asleep, neither did she look conscious of her environment.
‘Don’t worry, she’s safe and she can’t see anything happening with us here.’ Victoria began to speak, trying to take his attention from his mother back to her. She took a pause and a deep breath, ‘But if it happens that you do not cooperate with us,’ she stopped and cleared her throat, then she turned her face slowly to the left side. Henry also looked in the same direction and this time, he saw a man in the same room with his mother, he had two knives in his hands, both with very sharp blades.
His heart skipped a beat but he maintained his composure, trying not to give the enemy the notion that he was weak.
‘What’s your deal?’
‘Well, before we go to that, I’ll like to show you how foolish you are.’ Victoria said.
Henry stared at her thinly, unmoved by her insult. He watched as she took out a small remote control device and turned back. She clicked a button on it and a screen appeared on the wall behind. Henry saw the man sitting at the left side also turn to watch the screen. Soon, a portrait view of messages appeared on the screen and she began to scroll with the control in her hand.
‘Before we met you, we started a conversation with Samantha Osman about the safety of your mother. We had a deal for her but she never cared to listen to us and made it clear that she doesn’t give a damn about you and your mother.’
‘Can you get the hell straight to your deal?’ Henry slammed. He was tired of them showing him how Tara cares for no one else.
‘Hey! Stay cool man, I’m just trying to show you how foolish you have been to stay loyal to Samantha Osman,’ Victoria answered him in a harsh tone. She clicked a button and the screen turned off. The man sitting down behind got up from his seat.
‘Just go straight to your damn deal,’ Henry replied angrily.
Victoria bit her lower lip gently and then narrowed her gaze at him, she seemed not to be in a hurry and was purposely trying to get him angry with her sluggishness. ‘We’ve got our men already following Samantha Osman and we know she’s going after Elvis Richards, but even though our men are after her, we’re quite sure she is not easy to kill.’ She paused and let out an evil smile. ‘We need you to help us kill Samantha Osman.’
There was a long silence. Henry heart was beating so fast. He knew he was impossible for him to help them kill Tarasha even though he was angry with her for knowing about the danger surrounding his mother without making a move.
‘I can’t do that,’ he said.
Victoria cleared her throat and looked leftwards. Henry also looked leftwards and saw the man with the knives approaching his mother. At that moment his mother looked up and he could see the terror and fear of death on her face as she shivered all over.
He took out his gun immediately and fired two quick shots towards the man with the knives but the bullets only hit the glass walls and bounced back. The man with the knives seemed to have felt the impact of the bullets and he looked back, but it was only brief, he turned back towards Henry’s mother.
Henry turned to see Victoria and the man already holding their guns up and pointing at him. He looked left again and saw the man with the knife holding his mother’s head and tilting it backwards to allow him access her neck well.
‘I would help you,’ Henry finally voiced out with a deep release of breath. He closed his eyes as tears formed in them. He had to make a choice now, a choice between Tara who never cared and his mother who cared for him from babyhood.
‘Stop,’ Victoria said and the man with the knife stopped immediately. It was then Henry noticed the mouthpiece attached to one of the buttons on her shirt.
‘You would not just help us, you would help us kill her.’ Victoria said, stressing the word ‘kill’.
‘Yes, I would help you kill her but I have to make sure that my mother is safe and would be safe after.’
To be continued