‘Mr David James,’ Dakolo called the name threateningly as he paced the floor. He was alone with Dave in a new room still in the NSCC Headquarters. Dave was seated on a plastic chair and an empty plastic chair meant for Dakolo was in front of him.
Dave fixed his eyes on the man’s face at the call of his name, but he didn’t bother to respond vocally as there was no need for it. The call was only for Dakolo to get his attention which he had now.
‘I think I respect you a lot, this our discussion is supposed to be done in the police investigation room you know?’ Dakolo said and stopped pacing, he looked directly into Dave’s eyes.
‘I do not still understand you sir,’ a frown formed on Dave’s face.
Dakolo licked his lower lip softly. ‘Don’t make things hard for both of us man, you know what I’m talking about.’
‘No, I do not.’ Dave insisted in a calm but assertive tone.
Dakolo smiled. ‘Please do not make me lose the respect I have for you, you should just stop acting innocent.’
‘Acting innocent? I do not even know what you’re talking about yet sir.’
‘I met you yesterday during the early hours and you offered your help which I declined, so where did you go after that?’
‘I went back home.’
‘You are still saying you went back home even after you told me clearly that you were going to work.’
‘No, I went home. I wanted to go to work but I received a call after you left and I had to go home immediately.’
‘You lie,’ Dakolo snapped, squinting into Dave’s eyes. Dave remained quiet. ‘What do you take me for, a kid?’
Dave shook his head and sighed tiredly. ‘Agent sir, I do not understand what you’re talking about. I met you and offered to help you, you didn’t accept but you suddenly ran off like you were chasing after something and now you show up here looking for me and asking questions about my movement.’
Dakolo chuckled and shook his head briefly after hearing what Dave had to say. He walked slowly to the seat in front of Dave and sat on it, adjusting the position so that he could face Dave straight. He placed his feet on the brace between the chair legs and placed his elbows on his knees. ‘Mr Dave, I can see you’re very intelligent and that you know how to play the mind game very well, but I’m not about to fall for it. I’m going to plead with you to tell me the truth for the last time and if you don’t, we will have to settle this in our office and that would mean you’ll be arrested.’
‘What would you arrest me for?’ Dave smiled and shook his head in mockery of the man’s words. ‘I’m a citizen of Nigeria who knows his rights and I would not allow you or anybody trample on them.’
‘I won’t trample on them, I’ll get a warrant to arrest you.’
‘For what exactly? You think you can just take me away?’ Dave asked in a very harsh tone, his eyebrows raised and his head shaking.
Dakolo let out a breath. He stared at Dave’s face silently for about fifteen seconds. It was getting more difficult than he thought it would be, Dave was proving to be a hard nut to crack.
‘Mr David, that morning, you had a bandage on your head and one on your wrists but I can’t see any right now. Do you want to tell me your wounds have healed up so quickly?’
‘That isn’t any of your business sir,’ Dave slammed.
‘Of course it is my business,’ Dakolo grit his teeth and tightened his fists. ‘It is my business especially when a man with a bandage on the head and wrist was the one who attacked the Inspector General and his men that morning.’
‘And what are you insinuating?’ Dave asked with a deep frown.
‘It’s time you stop pretending man, I know you were that man and I came ready for you.’ Dakolo said, taking out his gun and getting up to his feet.
‘Hey! Take it easy man,’ Dave pleaded, raising his hands up in the air as Dakolo pointed the gun at him.
‘Get up,’ Dakolo gestured to him with the gun. ‘You’re coming with me to the station,’ he added and removed a handcuff attached to the belt hole at his back.
‘Come on sir, we’re not done with our discussion yet.’ Dave said, getting up to his feet in response to the man’s gesture. He had a story to tell the man but didn’t want to let it out without easily without giving the man any tough time.
‘I don’t think you have anything else to say, just stretch your hands forth,’ Dakolo said firmly.
‘And why should I stretch my hands forth?’ Dave said, putting his hands down by his side, now showing defiantness contrary to his first attitude of fear at the first sight of the gun. ‘You’re not supposed to be on this case, why don’t you just face your own job?’
‘My job is to ensure justice and that’s what I’m doing,’ Dakolo replied, still pointing the gun at him.
‘Agent, I’m tired of this conversation, I have some other things to do.’ Dave sank back into his seat disregarding the Agent and the gun being pointed at him.
Dakolo cocked the gun and Dave’s eyes shone at him immediately. Dave’s hand went back up in the air and he rose slowly.
‘Hey! You not holding that well. Do not cause an accidental discharge,’ Dave warned, pointing to the gun.
‘I’m not stupid, I’m trained and can’t make such a mistake but there’ll be no difference if I kill you now or not.’
‘Okay, just put down the gun. I’ll tell you everything,’ Dave pleaded.
Dakolo lowered the gun slowly and stepped backwards a bit. ‘Start talking.’
‘Agent, I planned to tell you this before.’ he stopped and got up to his feet and began to pace the floor. ‘But I thought it would be sometime later. I was on bandage yesterday and…’ he stopped abruptly and looked around. ‘Sir, can we go somewhere else to talk? I don’t feel comfortable here.’
‘Somewhere else like the police station?’
‘Huh? No, but I maybe that’s even be safer than this is. Someone else might be listening to our conversation here,’ Dave explained.
Dakolo raised a brow at him, doubting the fact that he didn’t mind to go to the station even though he agreed that someone else could be listening to them where they were.
‘So we go to my office at the station?’
Dave shrugged in response.
Dakolo stared at him unblinking, wondering if he was trying to play a prank or being honest. ‘I have to search your body first,’ he said. Dave moved closer and Dakolo searched his shirt and trousers pockets. The only thing he found there was a phone which he took out and handed back to Dave.
‘So, let’s go to my office. At least, it will be easy to turn you into a cell from there,’ Dakolo said, gesturing for him to move first.
Dave began to walk towards the door, glancing with the side eye at Dakolo who was walking a metres behind him. He had a well developed story to tell Dakolo and needed to act well to make it look and sound really serious. He checked for the time on his phone which was still in his hand and locked it back, he was about to put it into his pocket when it vibrated. He turned the screen to himself again and unlocked it. There was a text message from Lizzy and it read;
‘I’ve got a tracker on Samantha’s man who came to get the goods from the EasyShoppers agents and we just went our different ways a couple of minutes ago, I think you need to come down now, I don’t know where to continue from here.’
Dave closed his eyes briefly and released a breath after reading the message. That was going to change his direction again. He didn’t know Lizzy would have made such quick progress. Now he had to find a way to escape Dakolo.
‘Come on, go out.’ Dakolo said in a calm but authoritative voice.
Dave opened his eyes and looked back. He realized he was standing at the door with his hand on the knob.
Lizzy continued to stare at her phone’s screen for several minutes, hoping to get a reply from Dave to her text message but none arrived as soon as she expected. She got out of her car and looked towards the EasyShoppers’ van. She could see the two EasyShoppers’ workers who she had drugged already awake in the car. The lady Patricia who she had disguised was checking the already signed receipt. Lizzy knew both of them would be so confused and will never get an explanation for what happened.
She entered back into the car and picked her phone to see if there was any reply from Dave yet, there was none. She then started the engine and drove away.
‘The car is being sprayed already and I’ve gotten the other gadgets you asked for,’ Cole said into the phone as he got up from the reception seat where he was waiting. One of the assignments Tarasha had given him was to get the colour of the car and the plate number changed. He had gotten the car with the name Kimberly Alexander and using the car for any operation without changing the plate number would expose them to danger by allowing it to be easily traced. The security officials could easily meet the authorities in charge of roads and keeping records of cars registration and trace it to them but if the necessary change was done to the car, there would be no way to link from it to the name.
‘What name did you use?’ Tarasha’s voice sounded.
‘Aj Johnson,’ he replied.
‘Nice one… But I still do not want you to leave any trace of you there. So instead of waiting there, I think you should just go out and get some new clothes, caps and accessories that would make you look totally different when you take out the car.’
‘Okay boss, I’ll do that right away.’ Cole replied and began to journey towards the door.
Dave’s mind was no longer with Dakolo as they got to the car, he kept looking around uncomfortably and searching in his mind excuses and a way to escape. Dakolo also noticed the change in his behavior and watched him more closely.
‘Get in,’ Dakolo said to him after opening the doors of the front seats.
Dave got in first and closed the door before Dakolo entered into the driver’s side. Dakolo was about to start the car engine when Dave stopped him by holding his hand.
‘Sir, you really thought I was going with you to the police station?’
Dakolo paused and stared at him suspiciously, his second hand already trying to bring out the gun from his pocket.
‘Don’t bring out the gun, Agent,’ Dave said in a pleading tone. ‘You can’t take me to the station or even anywhere else because I don’t have time to follow you right now.’
‘I’m taking you to the station?’ Dakolo asked, becoming angry.
‘You can’t, I won’t allow you take me into the investigation room without any charges against me.’
‘But we planned on using my office.’
‘And do you know I can implicate you that way?’
‘Implicate me for what?’
‘Agent Dakolo, you’re not in charge of this case anymore, so what would you say you’re investigating me for?’
‘What case are you talking about? Are you a criminal or do you have a previous case with the police?’
‘No, I’m not a criminal but I know you’ve been asked to stop work on this case for a long time now. Agent Tim is now in charge of Samantha Osman’s case, why don’t you allow him handle it,’ Dave said.
‘Samantha Osman’s case?’ Dakolo exclaimed and stared at him with suspicion in his eyes. ‘How do you know this is connected to that?’
‘Are you not investigating me for the attack on the Inspector General?’
‘Yes…’ Dakolo replied slowly. ‘Yes, I am but how is that connected to Samantha Osman? You should know since you were the one captured by the camera and you even mentioned Samantha Osman now.’
Dave stopped to stare at the man with his left eye partially closed, he took off his hand which was still holding Dakolo’s hand from touching the start button.
‘It proves that you really are involved in this,’ Dakolo accused.
‘Yes, I am but in a good way.’ Dave finally admitted to Dakolo’s surprise.
‘And then I have to get you to the station immediately.’
‘Do you think you can force me there?’ Dave asked. He began to feel a continuous vibration of the phone in his pocket.
‘I have tens of other security officials around who would enforce that I get you to the station,’ Dakolo threatened, referring to the security guards around.
‘Hehe…’ Dave chuckled, taking a look towards the security post from the car. He wondered how any of men he used to see at the gate would stop him from leaving if he wanted to. ‘And what benefit do you think it would do you if you get me to your station?’
Dakolo paused to think about the question, wondering where Dave was getting his sudden boldness from.
‘We both know it will be of no good for you even if you arrest me. This case is not supposed to be handled by you, so I am under no obligation to answer queries from you.’
‘Where did you get all these ideas from?’
‘That’s not necessary sir and I won’t answer you anymore,’ Dave said, now taking out his phone from his pocket.
‘I’m definitely going to hand you over to the man in charge.’ Dakolo said with determination in his voice. He pressed the start button and the car engine roared to life.
Dave opened the door stubbornly and put a leg out. Dakolo took out his gun.
‘Is this how to make an arrest?’ Dave put his leg back in and began to laugh out loud, making Dakolo stare at him stupefied. He reached for the start button and turned it off. ‘Look Agent, you don’t need all this. I knew you came here to look for me today and that’s why I came to present myself. I wanted to see you. And I also knew when Mr Sylvester sent the message of my presence to you. So, I’ll tell you all I can tell you in five minutes and leave right away. My partner is calling and I have to go immediately,’ he said, displaying his phone’s screen for the man to see the incoming call from Lizzy.
‘You don’t dictate what I will do,’ Dakolo said and tried to reach for the start button again. Dave stopped him.
‘Hey! Stop getting sentimental about this,’ Dave said. ‘You’re getting desperate because you feel I’m stubborn and I’m taking you for granted.’
Dave’s words hit Dakolo like cold water and he realized that it was the truth. He wriggled his hand from Dave’s hold and raised his gun with the left hand.
‘You know that Agent Tim has compromised already and that’s why you’re still on this case. So what will happen if you hand me over to him? Would anything good come out of it?’
Dakolo’s hand weakened the more as Dave’s words settled in his mind. Dave seemed to know about him and the activities in the police force more than he thought.
‘Agent, like I said before; I was the one who’s image was captured by the camera yesterday but I didn’t go there to attack the Inspector General. I followed behind you after you left yesterday because I was interested in knowing what made you leave hurriedly.’
Dakolo lowered his hand.
‘I stayed after you left at the pursuit of the vehicle that took away the Vice President and got into the building…’
‘Wait! How did you know I followed them to the Vice President’s house?’ Dakolo interrupted.
‘I don’t know where you followed them to, I only know you followed the car that took the Vice President away.’
‘Was the Vice President in the car?’ Dakolo asked, raising his brows.
‘Oh! You didn’t see him?’
‘No, Agent Tim was the one in the car and he left with a man that came out of the building. They took him to the Vice President’s house.’
‘The man Agent Tim left with was the Vice President himself and not someone else. He was disguised in a funny way.’
‘Oh shi*t! That man was Chief Elvis?’ Dakolo stared in surprise, realizing the reason why the man never came out of the Vice President’s house with Agent Tim as he had expected.
‘Yes, it was.’ Dave replied and continued. ‘The Inspector General was in that building with Samantha Osman and was attacked by Samantha’s men, that was the real cause of the gun exchange that morning.’
‘But who are you and why are you involved in this?’
‘I’m a journalist, a per time journalist working for Desert Reporters.’ Dave took out an identity card.
‘Desert reporters?’ Dakolo mumbled, collecting the ID card to look at it.
‘I’m on a project on Samantha Osman and that’s why I’ve been away from this office for some days. I left to Lagos to make a research on the clash of Samantha Osman with the Nanl Gang and I’ve told them here that I was attacked by unknown men. I was coming here with the bandage on my head to show when I met you but then I couldn’t come here again when I suspected that something was going on in that building.’ Dave stopped and turned his phone. It was ringing again. ‘I have to go now Inspector,’ Dave said as he swiped the call answering button to the message option. He quickly typed in; ‘I’ll call you back in two minutes.’
‘How do I know all these things you told me are the truth?’
‘You can google up the keywords NEWS FROM DAVID JAMES right now, you’ll find several of my articles and reported news online.’
‘I’m using the search engine right now,’ the Agent said as he took out his phone. He placed his phone on his lap but put his hand in such a way to protect it from the reach of Dave.
Dave dialed Lizzy’s number while the Inspector busied himself with the search.
‘Lizzy, where are you?’
‘I’m going after him already, I got a static location indicated on the map already.’ Lizzy’s voice sounded from the other end of the phone.
‘Lizzy,’ Dave called out the name, partially in concern for her and partially to reprimand her for making moves without his consent. ‘Did you put on makeups before meeting him?’
‘No, I did not.’
‘Then you shouldn’t go near, it would be dangerous if he sees you and finds out you’re following after him. That is suicidal,’ Dave warned.
‘I just want to know the place, I’m not going near.’
‘Lizzy, just tell me where you are. I’m coming to meet you there right away,’ Dave said.
‘Okay, let me check for the address around. I’ll call you back in a minute.’ she said and hung up.
Dakolo was through with his search by the time Dave was done with the call. ‘I’ve seen your articles,’ he began. ‘But don’t you think you’re going to far? You are already doing what is supposed to be the job of the police and that’s dangerous, you shouldn’t have gotten into the building at all. You could have called the police when you had a suspicion.’
‘I can’t trust the police, was it not the Inspector General Of Police that even led the police team for the illegal operation that night?’ Dave said, taking out his wallet from the back pocket. He took out a sheet of paper from it and a pen from his pocket. ‘Please write down your phone number here sir, I will reach you tonight or tomorrow morning,’ he said, handing the paper and book to the man.
‘No, you write yours.’ Dakolo refused to collect it.
‘Okay,’ Dave quickly scribbled his number on it and gave it to the man. ‘I’ll tell you everything when we see later,’ he said and tried to open the door but it was stuck.
Dakolo stretched forth his hand, leaning slightly on Dave’s body as he tried to help him open the door. The door finally gave way. ‘Sorry Dave, the door malfunctions sometimes.’
‘Alright, thank you sir.’ Dave said and stepped out.
‘Okay and do make sure you don’t play pranks,’ Dakolo said in a warning tone.
‘I hear you sir,’ Dave saluted and began to walk away.
He searched his body for the tracker which Dakolo had placed on him as he approached the gate and glanced at the device before flinging it away. A smile appeared on his face as he wondered what kind of world police officials were still living in. The tracker Dakolo had placed on him was too big compared to the one he was used to and could never be placed on a trained personnel like him without the person finding out, he wondered what Dakolo was still doing with that kind of ancient device. However, he praised the man in his mind for being able to bring out the tracker in the same car without him seeing it and also for the stuck door strategy.
‘Lizzy, what’s the address?’ he said into the phone as he walked out through the gate.
He hastened his steps to the road so as to find a cab and leave the place before Dakolo would discover that the tracker had been removed.
Rex sat in the passengers’ side of the car tiredly with his back and head rested and his phone close to his ear. Stainless was driving the car with full concentration.
‘Chief Elvis, I couldn’t answer your calls when you called. What did you want to tell me?’
‘Rex, I wanted to ask you how far with the job? Have you found her again?’
‘No, I’ve not.’
‘How soon would you find her? Please do not hesitate to kill her immediately you do,’ the man said.
‘Listen man, the truth is she’s nowhere to be found right now. She’s moved from her previous base and it might be difficult to locate her again.’
‘Rex, what if I increase your current pay by two hundred percent?’
‘It wouldn’t increase our chances of finding her,’ Rex replied almost immediately, like he was expecting the question.
The man sighed. ‘So what can we do?’
‘Nothing. The only thing that can increase our chances of finding things to link to her is if she increases in her efforts and attempts to kill you.’
There was a long silence from the other end after Rex’s statement and he could tell that he had caused great fear for the man.
‘Rex, you need to do everything to protect my life. I will pay you whatever you ask for,’ the man said in a shaky voice, proving the fact that he was greatly afraid.
‘I hear you man, I’ll call you later for more talks.’ Rex replied and hung up immediately.
__20 minutes later__
‘He’s been static for a long while, he just began to move again.’ Lizzy said to Dave who was now at the driver’s side of the car and driving while she sat at the right front seat holding and using her device to monitor the tracker placed on Cole.
‘Maybe he’s not gotten to their base yet,’ Dave replied her. ‘But it’s evening already, I believe he should be heading home soon, at least they should need the foodstuffs to cook by now.’
‘Yea, I think so too.’
‘So don’t you think the EasyShoppers would find out and warn Samantha about us so soon.’
‘Their delivery men may be too ashamed to say anything because they really did not know what happened. But even if they gather enough courage to talk, the tracker should have led us to Samantha’s location by then.’
‘Nice one,’ Dave smiled. ‘At least we know the type of car they’ve got and the details and you also confirmed the guy’s identity.’
There was silence for about ten minutes.
‘It has been static again for over seven minutes now,’ Lizzy said to Dave.
‘He could just have gotten home.’
‘Yea, this location looks sure like it.’
‘Read out the address, let’s go for them baby!’ Dave said as he increased the speed of the car.
To be continued