‘So what do you want to do next?” he asks me as we are done having breakfast and he was praising my food. We were in his living room.
”I do not know, movie? But hey, your drugs I almost forgot” I say getting up, rushing into his room to get it. ”Be right back” I disappear.
He watches her leave then smiles, turning he grabs his phone, wondering if she would be at church already. He gets her voicemail. After trying a couple of times he gives up, he places the phone to his temple as he thinks for a bit, after a hard thought he dials another number, it takes a while before the owner on the other line picks.
”Hello?” the deep voice vibrates through the phone or that was just his mind
”Hello!” Brian repeats.
”I just want to say I am sorry for being an ass all this while, and thank you, I understand why now…” he says
”If you are calling so I can unfreeze your accounts just because you apologize and see the error in your ways and-”
”No, no. You keep doing what you want to do. I really don’t want you to un-freeze anything, infact I thank you for taking that action because if you hadn’t I wouldn’t have learnt and be kept in a difficult situation that hits me up to be responsible, and truth be told, I am liking this difference, this new Brian, and …I just want to say thank you for everything and that I appreciate all you tolerated and to still accommodate my short comings, I know I was rebellious and all and I am sorry. I promise to be better, act better and be the better man, No I no longer want hand-me-downs, I no longer want to be treated as though it is only because of my name or right of birth that I get what I want. I like the fact that I can do something on my own by my hands and be recognized for it and paid for because of it…. The joy it brings is unexplainable. I just want to tell you thank you and that I am okay , I am fine, don’t worry too much. I will be fine, you can keep it locked as much as you want it is fine, I know now it was for my own good and I have taken the path to better myself and..it’s how it feels. So, that is all I want to say”
”Father, are you there?”
”Yes Son..i heard every word you said, if this is for real truly, I applaud you, if it isn’t I would be highly disappointed but nevertheless, only time would tell.”
”’You make it hard to hate you and love you at the same time old man”
”’Heh!!” he laughs
”I am still angry at you but for now…. Maybe I can be something or someone whom you might be proud off, no more problems”
”I pray so”
”Okay, and mum?”
”No wonder I couldn’t reach her” he says squeezing up his face
”By the way, good stuff on the live feeds, amazing stuff”
”Thank you father, and I have another –” he stops himself, maybe he would see it himself when he is done. Hopefully if all works out. Fingers crossed.
”You have another what?”
He smiles, ”Er, nothing. Tell mum I love her, and tell the man when you look into the mirror he should stop being Mr Grumpy and I love him too…sometimes”
Kenekan laughs loudly ”Sure!! Love you too son”
He cuts the call and turns to see me there, he smiles at me.
He nods ”Yes”
I came back from the room with his drugs to hear his last statement. I wonder what his family is like. He seems to love his parents a lot. Does he have any sibling? Is he the first, last? Only child. Where are they based, he doesn’t exactly talk about them.
”What does your father do?” I hand him his drugs and give him water as i sit down, he does so too, taking a minute to drink water and then swallow his drugs, frowning his face.
Yes!! Everyone hates drugs.
He thinks for a moment ”He is a business man” that was true, his father is an astute business man first before he is a husband and a father amongst other things.
”And your mother?”
”Er..business woman too” he smiles, I feel his answers are invasive
”They work in the same business?”
He shakes his head ”Not really, he does his own thing and so does she. She travels a lot though, he is usually not around a lot.”
”How many siblings have you got?”
He looks at me sadly, I didn’t miss the shadow of sadness that crossed his eyes ” I didn’t have the chance to have one, shit happened”
”What kinda shit” I wanted to know all about him
”Er” he scratches his head ”Well, from what I was told, mum had an accident , after she gave birth to me, she is unable to bear another child. Like ever”
I reach for him ”I am sorry, must have been devastating for your family.”’
”Mum has her sad moments, but I try to be 5 kids in one, giving her and pops the headache of ten children ” he says it jokingly, but the smile didn’t reach his eyes.
”It sort of sounds like that wasn’t exactly a good thing”
He nods his head ”My intuitive Miss Adora” he touches my hand and raises it to his lips ”No, it wasn’t. I was one hell of a case, not bad-bad but….gave them cause to worry a lot, and I was just a stupid kid who didn’t realize I had to grow up at some point, it’s embarrassing when I think about it though” he shakes his head
I cock my head to the side ”And now, are you still that immature kid that don’t want to grow up?”
”What do you think, from when we met and now?” he turns to face me well, being careful with his tummy, I notice he doesn’t wince as much and I smile at the fact that despite the cute to his lips, it didn’t stop him from kissing me passionately, I reach out to touch his head, the swelling had gone done, I trail my finger at the curve of his jaw
”I think you grow up pretty good, I hope you grow up even better”
He grabs my fingers and kiss them, ”And you, tell me about yours?”
”’ My father was a legal practitioner and worked for the state government in Lagos before he passed about ten years ago, my mother is a lecturer, and she is in the states, got a job there about five years ago, and I am an only child. ” I thin my lip. ” She was always the stay at home woman, taking care of the child and the house and the husband when he gets home, I think it was because of the life my parents lived that made me aspire to be better, especially because I was a woman”
”I am sorry about your father ” he says
”But why do you say that though, about the way they lived?”
”Well ” I blow thin air ”The environment I grew up in then, most people frowned at a woman who had dreams and aspirations to be anything other than a house wife, child bearer and cook. So I watched my mother at an early age toss away the dream of being a fashion designer, work in an office and do other things because the man she married believed he was a man and he should be able to cater for his family. She accepted it but she was sad about it, and mum is a very intelligent woman, but what use was smart and intelligence when you can’t use it. I mean I wanted to be a female pilot when I was ten, by fifteen I wanted to become a mechanical engineer, or some even touch thing only men would opt for. But papa wanted me to settle for being a girl and grow up, learn how to cook and take care chores with mum and all that. It was a struggle, to watch mum pretend that she was happy when all she wanted was to spread her wings and fly and to make matters worse, the men made sure to always tell women that their places were in the kitchen , the bedroom and that is all. It was disheartening. Oh I was stubborn too, and rebellious too but for a good course, by the time I get into the university, papa wanted me to study some lame ass course like that, I opted for economics. When I was done I upgrade to accounting for my MSc, then the jobs I got after then was mindblowing and I was soon competing with men for same spots. Ofcourse i got talked down, trashed and told that as a woman I am supposed to be in the background and God I hated it so much when men think that women are lesser beings, lesser values and they have no usefulness other than sex and childbearing and cooking. I knew I wanted to be more than that, more than the life my mother lived so what I did was fight my father to make sure that he didn’t let his mediocre thinking come near me. And I knew I had to work twice as hard because a girl, everyone don’t wants to literally see you succeed so that they can hang that thing over your head and say ”Aha, I knew she was meant for nothing other than domestic chores and whatnot” . what did I do? I worked four times as hard, let go of distractions, social gatherings, friends; anything at all that would make me lose focus or make me fail exams, I let go of it. I needed to make good grades, and I did. I wanted to come out with honours , and I did, literally the only girl that came top in my departments amongst men. And by the time jobs came, I was writing tests and getting interviews where I am the only one who got breast. I mean it was hilarious to see the suprises in their faces when I walk in, they are impressed and when I get the job, ofcourse they are angry and jealous but what to do…I am boss and they got no choice than to call me madam” I laugh out loud, he smiles ”But it is worth it though, everything. Eventually my father got around to appreciating my worth and by the time he realized that he had done my mother wrong, he was already nearing his death, but he quickly enrolled her in a part time because she loved to teach too, and by the time he died, he saw her graduate…” I smile sadly ”But he is in a good place I hope, and mum, I encouraged her to apply, widen her scope, I mean she is really good. She began lecturing in University of Lagos, and then later moved to Abuja, and when the foreign delegates came into the country one time and she joined their bandwagon as a translator for the French consulates, yeah” I nod ”She did part time courses for that. So one day she comes home to tell me she applied for a teaching job in the states and she got accepted, the French embassy moved for her relocation and within a month she was gone.. five years now”
”You miss her?”
”Alot!” I smile, I miss her so much
”Why don’t you go visiting or she does come visit?”
”Eh she needs to make citizen, you get green card after like what ten years so? she can’t leave right now else she wouldn’t be able to go back and I wouldn’t want her to lose it all on my account, I am a big girl, I can take care of myself. In five years I have become this young independent woman and I love it,. We talk, often, Skype and all so we talk. And I can’t go see her now because well, it’s a lot of money first of all to do that movement and I haven’t become rich and famous just yet, but soon, Hopefully soon”
He smiles at her, maybe one day; I can make that dream of yours come true Adora, one day.
”We all are hoping for that thing that would give us joy, for you, your mother, for me…personal growth and development and betterment ”
I laugh ”I don’t even know what you mean; sometimes it feels as though you are speaking in undertones ”
Yeah, I am.
He is smiling sheepishly ”You know that you have practically been wearing my shirt with nothing else underneath?”
I close my legs and pull his shirt tighter around me as I blush ”I think my cloths would be dried now …” I get up, he pulls me back down to him and pulls me close as he laughs out ”I swear I love it when you turn pick and squirm” he laughs again as I punch him
”Ps ; my shirt looks way better on you with your fine self ”he kiss me loudly on the lips ”Relax babe, lets watch a movie, talk as much as we want…eat what is left of the food, sleep if we want and do whatever we want before the vultures of Mondays morning come with it’s shooting us back to reality, yes?”
”Yes, Monday” I groan
”Wish this weekend was longer?”
I nod smiling
”well, I could get mugged again and you just tell them you have suddenly taken up nurse duties at the office”
”Hey don’t joke like that, but how do you feel now though?”
He stretches and then bends to look at his tummy, I noticed he had removed the plaster, I could see the thin line of the cut, they had used laser stitch to stitch him up at the hospital… he taps the wound ”Well, doesn’t hurt like a monkey’s balls anymore, just tiny pull here and there, I will survive” he raises up his head and smiles at me as he rests back on the chair, pulling me to rest on him, he grabs my leg and begins to massage them ”Pick a movie let’s see babe, ”
”can we do the notebook again?” I blink like a thousand times in one second, he laughs
”For you? Anything!!”
”Yay!!” I clap in excitement as I fish for the remote, and turn on the Tv, he laughs again throwing his head back like a little boy’s
You are really something Adora. He thinks to himself, you are really something . Something beautiful, something mine..
Cupid, I swear don’t let me catch you, he smiles.
”What?” I turn after playing the note book to catch him staring at me…
He shakes his head ”Nothing, nothing at all, other than you are beautiful” he places a kiss on my forehead; I lean back towards him and rest on his chest as we watch the movie.
Hell!! I was loving this.
Dear Lord, I think I like her more than I stated. I think – I think I am falling for her.
Brain rubs his chest mentally as his heart closes. He had never liked any woman like this before, what the hell is he supposed to do with this feeling that feels so electrifying good and overwhelming at the same time.
He wishes he could talk to his father, but he might just laugh and tease him.
Ikena! He would talk to Ikena, maybe he can have some wise things to say. He wouldn’t want to fxxk this up…not with her.
He pulls her closer to him, wrapping his arms around her..
If someone asked him what he thinks heaven feels like, it would be this moment, holding her in his arms like this. Who would have thought both of them would end up like this? He shakes his head. But whatever fate brought them together, he was thankful for it..
Maybe for once in his life, he can do right by a girl.. he places another kiss on her forehead.
God I wish this weekend was a day longer, what do I do when she goes home.
”Are you okay?” I turn to him and ask
”Yes babe, I am” he hugs me tighter. I love the warmth of his arms. Snuggling felt a hundred times better.
I smile…”Oh this is my favorite part of the movie ” I smile pointing , he laughs
”You girls are just hopeless romantic”
”Bite me!!” I stuck out my tongue to him
”Oh? Gladly!!” he reaches for my neck, I begin to laugh and beg him, squirming away from him but he holds me back, I scream out in laughter, he begins to tickle me, I scream out more.
”I surrender I surrender!!” I give up laughing pushing his head away from my neck, almost falling of the chair; he pulls me back up with his strong arms, seeking my neck
”Good girl!!” he laughs in my face, and when he gets to my neck, he places a kiss there, then my nose and then my lips, he lingers,
Kissing Adora is the next best thing to chocolate ice-cream, damn!
When I felt him smile against my lips, I smile back.
My heart begins to go dum-dum-dum in my chest. I try to calm it down mentally, breathing in and out..i feel my knees go weak.
Dear Lord, I think I am falling hard for him. And I like it, I like it a lot.
”Yes Father, I will come for blessings ” he says removing Juliet’s hand from his , he hears her gasp and see her shake her head from side to side and he moves away, he could faintly hear her breathe ”Oh God!!”
Father Cosmos smiles as Ikena approaches him, ”welcome child of God, as it is our custom, anyone leaving before the mass is over should take the bread of Christ and eat and drink his blood for protection while I pray and bless your head and your chest to keep you safe from the evils that lurk around ” he beckons to him to kneel as he steps forward to lay his hand on his head, when he nears him, he stares at him..
”Oh it is you, the father of the little girl who was sick?”
Ikena nods ”Yes, it is me, I came to worship with you, my daughter, she is better now” he turns around. ”This good man of God helped me when I needed help the most. He prayed for my daughter here while I stood in her stead and then gave me money to rush her to the hospital, and she is well now, glory halleluiah!! Brethren, help me bless this man of God for his kind heart, God uses him mightily, I now have my miracle” he says smiling
”Oh praise the Lord!!” Father Cosmos exclaims smiling
”Praise the Lord!!! The God is good!!” the few people in church chorus clapping, some come forward to shake him, he claps too turning around to Cosmos,
”I just got the call, I want to go outside I call them more so I can speak to my daughter, I am not leaving church, I will be back father, Jesus is God, Amen!!” he jumps up
”Go Go, go speak to her, Jesus is wonderful!!”
”Yes yes, thank you, I will come back to tell you the good news” he says turning and leaving the small room, passing by Juliet who lets out her breath she had been holding..
As he leaves, he could hear the hymn come on again as they begin to sing.
He brings out the files when he gets into his car, he sees the phone, he presses it, it doesn’t come on. He grabs a bag from the back seat, attached it to his radio compartment where the radio battery is. Then he turns on a red light, cutting wire and peeling the ends with his teeth. Looking for a screw he loses the phone and attaches the wires to the mother board of the phone and it the phone’s memory, he turns on his phone’s wire and sends out a signal..then he presses the radio on button.
He waits for a few minutes as he watches it scan the data for extraction knowing that it would be encrypted,. That would be Teka’s job to un-crypt it.
He lets that run, and then he grabs the files, placing each on his lap, taking out a small camera he had in the bag, he begins to snap it, back and front and sends it to his phone.. as it is done scanning. Done, he begins to peruse through the files, looking at the picture and other documents.
”Damn!!! Vampire has been busy..” he says shaking his head. ”No wonder it was hard for the police to track him down. He was hiding in the open and doing his business in broad day light; in churches, schools, health centres, the least places the police would suspect of fraud.. this is enough evidence to show that he is very operational ” he looks through the list ”I’ll be damned”. He dials Teka’s number.
”I am sending you some documents via mail, check them out”
”okay, should be getting it about now, and the phone details?”
”Would take a bit”
”Okay, let me know as soon as that is done”
Ikena checks his time, this would take about two hours tops to extract, he hopes the service isn’t about to finish soon.
Else Juliet would be fxxked, and he can’t let that happen.
Juliet watches the door more than she should, it’s been over two hours, and the service would be over in thirty minutes.
”And the Lord says that he would heal us of our infirmities, and grant us all our heart desires as long as we worship him and worship him alone. He says I will never leave you nor forsake you and I will go before you and after you to make your ways straight. Say Amen somebody?”
”Amen!! Jesus!!” they chorus
” Jesus is the only way one can get to heaven, you need to surrender your soul and heart to him and not give in to the devil because the devil comes to kill and destroy but Jesus, my father comes to give us life and give us more abundantly. Praise Jesus, let us rise up as we sing the last congregational hymn so that we can take the holy communion while I bless your heads and chests.” He raises up his hands as he closes his bible and opens his hymn book. They all do the same as they rise up.
”Amazing grace, how sweet thou sound-” he began as they all join him
His eyes catches Juliet, she is watching the door, distracted, nervous, very nervous. He frowns as he follows her eyes..watching the door too, wondering what she is looking at or what she is waiting for. Or is it who?
”Who saved a wretched like me. I once was lost, but now I am found, was blind but now I see..” he continues as they chorus with him. Juliet doesn’t join in.
Something is wrong, why is she looking at the door as if waiting for something to happen.
Did she do something she isn’t supposed to do?
DID SHE DO SOMETHING THAT SHE ISN’T SUPPOSED TO DO? SOMETHING THAT WOULD GET HER KILLED LIKE A CHICKEN?
He concentrates on the door as he continues the hymn, done, he shares the grace with them, while their eyes are closed, he open his hands stretched to the heavens…his eyes to the door.
”Our father, who art in heaven, hallowed be their name-”
”Thy kingdom come” they continued.
Juliet should be beside him now, opening the trays to share the bread and the wine for the Holy Communion.
But she is still there, watching the door.
Something was definitely wrong. His eyes darts to the door again, waiting for it to open and someone to walk in…or people. Did she get across to the police, did she? Is she waiting for someone to walk through that door. Or she is expecting a showdown, a showdown that involves him? He is thinking fast. Looking a way briefly to the pulpit stand, he checks to make sure the loaded gun he kept there hasn’t been moved by her. He has five other places he hid guns just incase someone wants to ambush him; they would be in for a surprise. And in his safe room, he has hundreds more..
But if it was the police that is coming, he would burn this place to the ground, with him, with Juliet and them too. He is not going back to jail. He rather dies. Yes, he would be going to hell, but he would be taking them along with him and for Juliet. They would share a room and her torment would be forever.
”This is the body of Christ that he commanded that we eat in remembrance of him. Take it, one for each and eat” he lays his hand over the cut breads into cubes. ”And this is the blood of Christ that we must drink to be in one spirit of him” he tells them not taking his eyes off Juliet or from the door..
”Come forward, drop your offerings in the bag close to my feet and come have the communion of the Lord so that you may also be holy and be like Christ”
As they all flock towards him, standing in a queue, their hands in a cup put forward as they get closer to him, he lays a hand on their head, another on their chest and say ”In the name of Jesus, you are covered in Jesus Name, be free, I command you money, riches, happiness. Amen”
The person who had just been blessed shouts a loud amen as he does the sign of the cross, moves to the side and drops his offering into the basket, takes a piece of lumped bread and eat, then take a cup of wine to wash it down, doing the sign of the cross again, he goes back to sit and is seen shaking his head from side to side and praying.
The next person does the same, and the next and the next, soon almost everyone is done..
He keeps watching the door with Juliet, one hand moving under the pulpit, caressing the gun…
Waiting… For what he thinks is about to happen.
Juliet is watching the door, fear gripping her.
”Where are you, where are you?” she whispers as she watches the door, she glances to the clock at the wall. Five more minutes to the close of service, soon everyone would leave..and if he comes back then, she wouldn’t be able to let him in when the door is closed and that means she wouldn’t be able to return the items back into Father’s inner room and that also means that when Vampire gets in there, he would know for certain he had gone in there,..He would kill her and ask questions later. She fidgets as she bites her lips watching the door…
”please please please, come back please…”She spares Vampire a glance as he gives them the holy communion. She should be there, helping him..But if she leaves where she is seated, when he comes, she wouldn’t be able to take it from him while he is busy and rush back to his room while he is still attending to the brethrens..She can’t leave, she can’t.
She turns back to stare at the door…
If he doesn’t come back now, it would be too late. She would be dead.
”And God bless you children, see you again next Sunday, and remember that week day services is for Thursdays. God bless you, go in peace” he ends the service with the sign of the cross.
Everyone get up to leave. Greeting Juliet at the door, she barely answers them, resigning herself to fate.
”Today, today is the day I die” she mutters to herself as the last person leaves. She stands at the door, unmoving, staring at the back of the last person’s recinding back.
She didn’t see another person coming..
”He lied; he said he was going to help me. He said he was going to safe me from him, he lied. No one can safe me, no one can safe me from the monster. He lied, he was never going to come back ” She whispers as her eyes pools. She blinks it back, she turns away from the door, resigning to her fate only to find him behind her, staring at her. She gasps when she felt the barrel of the gun to her tummy, he cocks it.
”What have you done Juliet?” he sneers, his eyes turns to slits..
He heard her. He heard what she said. That means he knows, he knows.
Yes, Today is the day she dies.
” Teka? Tell me you got something off that phone?”
”Gimme a minute”
”You said that over forty-five minutes ago, I see people leaving the service, come on”
”You do know that decrypting ruined devices with damaged memory takes time, and I am trying to be fast but I am only mortal, give me a fxxking minute” Teka says over the phone, Ikena could hear him typing, he also could hear a beep every five seconds.
”Come on!!!” he urges as he stares out the window, more people are leaving.. soon the crowd thins out. He opens the door and walks up to one of the church members as he nears the street he is parked.
”Sorry Goodafternoon Sir, has the service ended?”Ikena enquired sounding anxious, he cleans the sweat from his forehead as he pretended to breath heavily as one who was running.
”Oh you are the one who left to check on your daughter, how is she?” the man says smiling ,Ikena nods.
”Yes, she is well. We bless God”
”Yes we do.”
”Service, has it closed?” Ikena presses
”Yes;” He nods ”About ten minutes ago or so, ”
”And the Reverend? And the service girl, I mean the usher at the door?”
”Still inside, why, you want to see the reverend?”
”Yes, I want to thank him more for his good deed with gift” he pats his pocket.
”Oh bless you, he is still there, if you hurry you will meet them before they lock. They usually lock up as soon as ”
”Thank you” he bade the man farewell and watch him leave, staring back at the church…he frowns as no one else leaves the building.
”Fxxk!!” he rushes to his car, grabbing his phone he get on hold
”Tell, I gatto go. Anything?”
”Yes!! Finally who is your daughter mudafxxker!!” he laughs
”’Good, now I have to go. ”
”Relax man, why are you edgy?”
Ikena says at the church from the distance, something didn’t feel right.
He was supposed to be there before the service ended, but this took ages to extract. And if he couldn’t get this files and the phone back to her, that means Vampire would realize it’s missing and then he would know Juliet took it because she is the only one who had access into his room..
That’s if by now he hadn’t found out.
He opens his compartment and takes a short gun, checking to make sure he still had bullets, he did, five more to go.
”Ikena?” Teca calls his name again
”I think Juliet has been made” Ikena replies as he has a bad feeling as his gut kicks him
”But you said she was careful getting you these things and you are to return them before the service is over, correct?”
‘It ended like 20 minutes ago, and it is quiet, too quiet. Something is wrong, I think she has been made, I think she is in trouble” Ikena is really anxious for real, he stares at the church-house, his gut pulling him.
”Fxxk!! Go go go!!! I will handle things from here and give you the information you need for the client ”
Ikena gathers everything she gave him, puts it under his shirt and gets out of his car, slipping the gun inside his back jeans, he begins to make his way back to the church when he heard it…
The gun shot!!
TO BE CONTINUED