Location: International Airport, Lagos.
‘Over here,’ Dave waved to Lizzy who was pulling a box along with her. She had just arrived from Abuja after Dave pleaded for her help in Lagos.
Dave stepped out of the car to help her with her box. He opened the door to the backseat for her to enter and then put the box in the boot before getting back into the car.
‘Lizzy, thanks so much for coming.’ he appreciated as he got back into the driver’s side.
‘Okay Dave, you’ve still not told me where you’ve been all this while.’ Lizzy replied.
‘I’ll tell you Lizzy,’ Dave replied as he pulled on his seatbelt, he took a glance back at her with a smiling face.
‘I’ve asked you that question several times also, you never answered me.’ Dakolo who was sitting beside him at the front put in.
‘Oh! Pardon my manners, I’m yet to introduce you two to each other. Lizzy, this is Inspector Dakolo, popular police agent. Inspector, please meet Lizzy my favorite partner. We’d all be working together for this assignment.’
Dakolo turned to look at Lizzy, he forced on a smile. ‘Nice to meet you Agent Lizzy,’ he said and stretched out his palm for a handshake.
‘My pleasure sir, ‘ she took his hand without smiling.
There was silence for half a minute.
‘You’re yet to answer my question Dave,’ Lizzy spoke up.
‘I would,’ Dave replied, still having a broad smile on. He looked into the rearview mirror and his eyes met with Lizzy’s. ‘First, I got to apologise to you for disappearing for so long without any word and not contacting you immediately I got back. Inspector Dakolo, you were the first person I contacted after getting back myself after I was changed to another person.’
Lizzy was quiet. Dave stopped talking as they got close to the gate. He got cleared by the airport gate officials and then drove out.
‘I was captured by Samantha Osman,’ Dave continued. He paused to see the expression on their faces. ‘But she did not kill me, I don’t know if she was just nice or if I was lucky to have someone working in her team which I knew.’
‘She let you go just like that?’ Inspector Dakolo cut in.
‘Yeah,’ he replied and giggled as he saw the shocked look on Dakolo’s face.
‘That’s doesn’t make sense, it’s unbelievable. I don’t believe she can leave you alive after having the chance to kill you talk more of releasing without hurting you.’
‘Yeah, she’s not that stupid. She tried to wipe off my memory but somebody else helped me.’
Dakolo released a deep breath with an exclamation, he seemed thoroughly confused. ‘So she knew you were an agent after her life and she still kept you alive? Sounds unlike Samantha Osman, she doesn’t leave any trace.’
‘Yeah, true. She doesn’t leave any trace but she’s not that cruel as we all think she is, she doesn’t kill when she has an option to show mercy.’
Dakolo looked more confused. Dave’s words seemed to be making it more difficult to comprehend.
‘So who’s that person who helped you?’ Lizzy asked.
Dave glanced at her with a smile. ‘Well, I don’t need to answer that, she’d join us soon. She has some work to do with us.’
There was a minute silence.
‘Have you checked again if their location have changed?’ Lizzy asked.
‘The NIS men? No, I haven’t checked again but I believe they would still remain in Solace Hotel.’
‘Then what’s your plan?’
‘We are going there but I don’t think we have to be patient because we don’t have the manpower to handle her,’ Dave said.
‘We can get the police to do it, we don’t have to spearhead it ourselves.’ Dakolo put in.
‘The police would fail woefully like they’ve always done,’ Dave replied him blankly. ‘Samantha Osman is a crazy assassin with a crazy team but there’s just more than Samantha Osman there, we have about ten trained SSS men working against Samantha Osman, so any other team either us or the police will be going against the two teams.’
Dakolo heaved a sigh of frustration. The case was more complicated that he was seeing it. He understood why it was really a job for the SSS.
‘What’s your plan Dave? Just being patient?’ Lizzy questioned.
‘Yes, we’d be patient and watch them to against each other. Let Samantha Osman’s team go against Elvis Richards team while we watch, ‘ he explained. He stopped and glanced as he heard sounds of disagreement grunts from Dakolo, the Inspector seemed not to agree with him. ‘We don’t have a choice, we can’t stop them even if we try to.’ he said in a strong tone.’
He remained silent for about thirty seconds before he spoke again.
‘We have to watch them fight, we’d come in when their strengths have reduced, but if Samantha Osman team dominates the fight, we’d watch for a possible escape of the Elvis Richards team members. If any of their key members tries to escape after defeat and escapes successfully, that key member will lead us straight to Elvis Richards, that would make things easier for us. However, any team who wins gives us an advantage.’
Dakolo heaved another sigh. ‘I really do hope you’re right.’
‘I believe it will,’ Dave replied with smiles. He seemed to be confident that his plan was going to work. He took a glance at Lizzy. ‘Thanks again Lizzy for coming, I really can’t trust anyone else in the agency.’
Lizzy let out a forced smile. She felt guilty knowing that she had betrayed his trust. She wondered how he would feel when he finds out that she had once worked with the enemy because she was mad at him.
Dave moved to the slow lane on the road as he continued to drive slowly. He took out his phone and dialed a number.
‘Move to the restroom for ladies, stay at the first toilet, I’m sending someone to meet you there now.’ he said into the phone and thereafter glanced at Lizzy. He put the phone down. ‘Lizzy, please we’d stop at a shopping mall. Stephanie George would be waiting for you in the first toilet at the ladies restroom. There are policemen monitoring her, we need to get her disguised to take her with us without being followed.’
‘Okay,’ she responded calmly. A little bit of anger rose in her heart but she resisted it. Dave was asking her to go pick the same person who was the reason for which she worked with the enemy. Before she knew it, he had picked a makeup kit bag from Dakolo and handed it to her. She stared at the kit bag and let out a breath, The only reason she was going to honour that request was the weight of the mission and the knowledge of Dave having fall into the hands of Samantha before.
Soon Dave stopped the car in front of the restaurant and Lizzy went into the place.
For the first two minutes, the men sat in the motionless car silently until Dakolo voiced out question in his heart.
‘Agent Dave, apart from being a top undercover agent, what other things do I need to know about you?’
Dave squinted at him. ‘Other things like?’
‘Your real name? Real mission? Whatever. I believe I’m yet to meet the real you but since you’ve revealed your identity to me and made me your friend, I can ask for more about you.’
Dave smiled. ‘You’d know me well enough,’ he said and then licked his lips gently. His smile slowly diminished and a sad look dominated his face, he rested his back slowly and closed his eyes. ‘I’m yet to know the real me.’
‘Is there any problem?’ Dakolo asked.
Dave didn’t respond, he was lost in thoughts already.
‘Agent Dave,’ Dakolo called again.
‘Yeah, sorry,’ he jerked up. ‘I was thinking already.’
‘What are you thinking about?’
‘Elvis Richards, I’m wondering how and why he chose to use the Solace Hotel. It’s a well secured hotel and the management would willingly give him out to the police if contacted.’
Dakolo’s eyes shone widely, he had never thought about that. ‘Then we should do that right away, I mean contact the police and the management of the hotel.’
‘We’d mess things up that way,’ Dave warned. ‘Remember that Elvis Richards gets information from the police and then, there must be something which makes him think Solace Hotel is a safe Haven for him which we don’t know, we have to stick to our plan.’
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Location: Solace Hotel, Lagos.
‘Are you sure you ain’t playing any stupid games with us, it’s past an hour you got here and you still haven’t been able to reach Samantha,’ Eric let out his impatience finally. He had his eyes looking straight at Carl even though he was talking to Henry.
Taking directions from the NIS chairman, they had tracked the Elvis Richards team up to the Solace Hotel but were unable to get to the exact point in the hotel where they were. The NIS chairman through the same medium with which he sent directions had told them he was unable to locate the men inside the walls of the hotel. The hotel had forty floors and it would cause some confusion if Carl and Eric’s team decided to check each floor. So they booked an apartment with three bedrooms and a big living room. Sixteen of them in total had gotten into the apartment before Victoria joined them with Henry and two other men while the rest of the team were around the area.
Henry was sitting on a couch in the living room, directly facing Carl on the opposite seat while Victoria was sitting on the sofa beside his. Eric was sitting at the dining area working on his laptop while the other men were around, in the different rooms waiting for further instructions. Instead of searching through every floor, rooms and apartments, Eric and Carl had decided it’ll be a better option to wait until Henry got in touch with Samantha Osman who would possibly know the specific part of the hotel where the embattled Vice President was.
‘She’s not answering her calls,’ Henry replied Eric after dialing Tarasha’s number again. He had placed it on loud speaker to make the call response clear to all of them. ‘She might be busy and when she is, she only communicates with Talkon devices which I don’t have with me here.’
‘F*** you! Is there no other way you can reach her?’ Eric asked angrily as he got up from his seat and approached the sitting area.
‘You told me not to call anyone else,’ Henry replied her. He seemed confident and unruffled by Eric’s harsh manner of talking.
‘I think you should call someone else now,’ Carl spoke up. He adjusted himself on his seat and placed his pistol on his knee.
Henry dialed Cole’s phone number. He placed it on loud speaker and the call was answered after the first ring. He removed from loud speaker before placing it close to his ear.
‘Hello Cole,’ Henry spoke first.
‘Henry, where are you? Have you come back to your senses?’
‘Where’s the boss? I need to speak with her, I need her help to get my mother back,’ Henry replied, ignoring his remarks.
‘She isn’t here, I believe she’s quite busy.’ Cole replied.
‘Where are you?’
‘Why do you ask?’
‘I need to join you guys,’ Henry replied. ‘I can’t help my mother on my own, I’ll wait until we finish our work together.’
‘Oh! What brought you back to your senses?’
‘Just answer my question Cole,’ Henry slammed.
‘We’re at Sam Hub.’
‘Sam Hub? Doing what?’
‘Trying to locate the others through Chief Gab, Tarasha’s finding it difficult as they’re in a secure environment.’
‘Okay, is the boss there with you?.’ Henry replied.
‘Yes, she is around here.’
‘Okay, I’m coming to meet you there.’
‘Where exactly are you now?’ Cole asked.
‘You don’t need to know,’ Henry replied.
‘Well, don’t try anything stupid and make sure no one follows you.’ Cole warned.
‘Send me the exact address of where you are or turn on your location so that I can find you.’
‘I’ll send you the address.’
‘Do it quick.’
Henry ended the call and took the phone off his ear. He was looking straight at Carl’s eyes while being sure that every other person’s eyes were on him.
‘Henry wants to join us back,’ Cole announced to Tomi and Mr Matthew who were in the car with him. Tomi was sitting beside him at the front while Mr Matthew was sitting at the back.
‘Where did he go before? I thought he was with the boss,’ Tomi asked.
‘No, he left us when we left the base, he went for his own task without her permission.’
‘And he’s coming back now?’
‘Why did you tell him the location? You don’t know if the boss wants him back or if he’s gotten into trouble,’ Tomi protested.
‘The boss wants him back, she would have told him the address herself if she was able to answer his calls.’
‘I just hope you did the right thing,’ Tomi said, sounding doubtful.
‘Rest your mind Tomi, I know what Tarasha wants.’
Five minutes later, someone tapped the right side backseat glass gently. They all looked and saw the shape of a lady but didn’t see her face. Cole knew instantly that it was Tarasha, he unlocked the door from his place and she opened and entered after dropping in her backpack first.
‘Welcome boss,’ Tomi greeted on seeing her enter. Mr Matthew also followed her example and mumbled some words of greeting.
Tarasha’s mind was too busy that she did not pay attention to their greeting. She went straight to business, ‘I hope you briefed them both on their duties.’
‘Yes boss,’ Cole answered.
Tarasha took out a small chip and attached to the collar of Mr Matthew. ‘We would leave you in this car, don’t open up for anyone else but Henry.’
The man nodded in reply.
‘I’m increasing the receiving signal for your chip, so I’ll get to hear whatever conversation you have with Henry, but you don’t try to tell me anything while he’s listening.’ she continued. She took out an earpiece and gave it to him, ‘You’ve learnt how to use this as part of your training in the last few days, I’ll give you instructions with it.’
The man nodded again. He already knew what to do.
‘We have available three different cars,’ she said, now talking to Tomi and Cole. She passed a bag to Tomi, ‘The device ID is there and the apps are running, you’d feed Cole and I with necessary data as we proceed.’
Tomi nodded in approval.
Tarasha handed the car key to her. ‘Check your text message, you’d find the exact location where your car is. It’s five minutes walk from here. We’d start the task by seven o’clock.’
‘Okay boss,’ Tomi took the key and then stepped out of the car with the bag.
Tarasha watched as she walked away. Cole had already briefed her on what she needed to do and was sure she would be able to accomplish it. Tarasha had gone into the solace hotel control room and hacked into their system, getting the API codes for all their security cameras. Tomi’s job was to act as their eyes and direct their movement in the building, especially for the purpose of locating entrances and escape exits. Tarasha had during the days they stayed in the base all day trained all her employees to have basic knowledge in every area of her job, both in the use of guns, technology and maneuvering of roads and routes for escape and that was why it was possible for Tomi to carry out the task.
‘Are we going in different cars too?’ Cole asked.
‘No, the both of us goes together in the third car, that’s where our weapons are.’
‘I have the codes to their control room already, so your primary mission with me is to work and fight the control room. You’d watch me from there and also make sure Tomi keep getting feeds. You’ll also serve as a backup for her. But majorly, you’d unlock and open doors for me, open escapes for me and close against the enemies. Tomi’s job is to find these access centres while you give me access.’
‘Sounds great boss, but…’Cole voice faded off as he stared at her with some concern.
‘I think you may need me to be with you instead, boss you’ve worked so much today. You’ve engaged in a fight on the train and another few hours and I know you might have sustained some little injuries. Rex and his men on the other hand are well prepared for today, they must have had some time to rest well and are expecting you. I should be with you to help physically.’
Tarasha knew he was saying the truth but she believed she needed more technological help than physical. Cole was meant to assist her physically from the onset while Henry was supposed to take on the task in the control room but Henry’s absence had caused a big space in the team.
‘I need you more in the control room,’ Tarasha replied him. ‘I discovered that Solace Hotels is owned by Elvis Richards himself and that’s why he’s comfortable there, he would have planned a way of escape in case I come but with you in the control room, you’d be able to lock him in totally and prevent him from leaving.’
Cole heaved a sigh. Her explanation made him understood the importance of his task at the control room and he decided to give it his best.
‘You’d have to be careful boss.’
Tarasha let out a brief smile, ‘I was born and trained for this!’
Rex released the content of the third syringe into his arm finally and flung the syringe away. He walked close to table where there was a mirror behind. He picked up the pistol on the table and held it to as he stared at his reflection in the mirror. He could see the reflection of the other men behind him, they were alert and ready for his instructions. Through the mirror reflection, he also noticed a red light blinking from the camera at the left corner of the room. It was a sign that the source of power was either low or something was wrong with the camera.’
‘She’s here,’ he announced aloud.
To be continued