Title: Man In Black
“Gabriel” Joy said silently as She stood up from the floor and ran to me. ” You again? Why do you like putting yourself in danger?” Mbe asked angrily. ” Behold a man that beats women” I said
mockingly, pointing my left hand at him. ” You could have Just remained on the top of that tree, have your face not learnt anything from the previous beaten I had given you? Behold,there is no Alvana to save you today” He said staring angrily at me. ” I didn’t come all the way down from that tree to exchange words with you, I have wasted my time in jumping down just to inform ,you to provide another water pot for Adanna” I said staring at me. ” Gabriel, the son of Omiyi, you make me laugh. Who are you to address me on what to do?” He asked, surely he was now very angered. ” Like you have rightly said, I am Gabriel the Son of Omiyi” I replied holding tight to Adanna who was watching our drama with tears on her cheeks. ” Mbe, the son of whom I dont know, do yourself a good by ..” I wasn’t done talking when I noticed him advancing towards me, I pushed joy slightly away from my side and also advanced towards him. ” Gabriel please stop” Adanna said trying to hold me but I pushed her again. Mbe made to jump on me like the local wrestlers, he had barely taken himself up off the ground when I delivered a punch to his face, he staggered back in surprise and smiled. ” Oh, I see you have gone to learn some moves, you really came prepared” He said as he rushed towards me again, I was fast enough to quickly roll myself on the ground and passing him, the only regret I had in this was that I was putting on a white shirt. He wanted to turn back to face me but unfortunately for him, I delivered another punch to his face. Like the previous time, he staggered back again but this time, he didn’t smile. He was now looking confused and probably a bit scared, he didn’t advance towards me again. ” Mbe the cat, the one whose back has never touched the ground in a fight, are you now scared to fight? ” I asked smiling, surely I knew my words were going to anger him. He rushed towards me again, this time I didn’t deliver any punch or roll pass him, I was very fast enough to carry him sideways across my chest. He tried
struggling to be freed but he wasn’t strong enough. ” Adanna, where should I drop him?” I asked Adanna smiling, she was also smiling and obviously surprised seeing me lift Mbe. ” Drop him on the pieces of my water pot” Adanna said while I nodded and walked towards the broken pot. ” Please Gabriel, dont do this to me, I will get her another pot” Mbe begged shamelessly. ” Of course you will get another pot, but this will only be a warning to you.” I said as I landed his back on the pieces of the broken water
pot. ” Arrgggh” he screamed and rolled himself on the ground. ” That will teach you not to lay hands on a maiden again, especially the most beautiful maiden of Atata” I said to him as he rolled on the ground. ” Now go get her a new water pot ” I shouted and immediately, he got up and ran off.
• ” I never believed you could beat that beast in a fight” Joy said as we headed back home, I was carrying her water pot, it is actually Mbe’s mother water pot, the one he had brought to replace the broken one of Adanna. ” I told you I could do anything for the most beautiful maiden of Atata” I replied holding her hand. ” Thanks, maybe from now, he won’t pester me anymore ” She said . ” If he does, then he should be ready to receive more beatings from me” I replied smiling broadly. ” what about if he does when you have gone back to the city?” She asked. ” Then I would deal with him when I return, tell him I said so ” I replied her. ” Now I have caught you red handed, why did you later decide to come to the stream? you said you weren’t coming today. You have now left me with no other impression that you do come because of me” Adanna said twisting her mouth and staring at me. ” I actually came to tap” I told her. ” Who taps wine from a Mango Tree?” She asked again. ” I didn’t say I came to tap wine, I came to tap mangoes. ” I said while she bursted into laughter. “Tap mangoes?” she asked as she held my hand, it felt warm. ” how were
you able to beat mbe?” She asked smiling suspiciously. ” The powers came from above” I replied her.” I will miss you” I said trying to change the topic, she nodded and held my hand more tight. ” I will miss you also ” She said while I also nodded., we were now in her house, her parents weren’t around, her mother had gone to the market while her father has gone to the farm. I dropped the pot where it should be dropped, I then turned back to leave. ” Goodbye Adanna, take good care of yourself for me and make sure you always remain beautiful.” I said as I dipped my hand into my pocket and brought a bundle of a thousand naira notes, it was actually fifty thousand Naira. ” Manage this till I come back” I said as I stretched the money to her. ” No, I won’t take that from you, I think you need it more” Joy said as she closed her legs together and twisted her mouth again. ” Adanna, I am giving you this, you have no option than to take it.” I said again as I opened her hand and placed the money in it. ” Thank you” she said staring at the notes. ” Am really grateful” She said again while I smiled. ” Enough of the thanks, its alright” I told her as I walked towards the exit of their compound. ” Gabriel!!!” She called thereby stopping me. ” Yes” I answered and turned to face her as she walked towards me. ” please, take you eyes away from the city girls, always focus on your business ” She said again I nodded as I turned back to leave again ” Gabriel!” She called again” Adanna!” I called back to face her, she walked slowly towards me and unexpectedly, she hugged me. It wasn’t my first time hugging a girl but hugging Adanna seem very different, her body was cool and her scent was nice, I was just getting to start enjoying the hug when she broke it . ” Bye” she said and hurriedly walked inside. ” Bye Adanna” I said back even if I knew she won’t hear me. I also turned and went home.
•The night was rough as I couldn’t sleep throughout the night, I was thinking about the journey back to Lagos and how stressful it was gonna be. I stood up from the bed around 4:00am, my parents were surely still sleeping, I had told them the previous day that I would leave very early. I dropped a note telling them that I have gone before departing the house. I headed for the Atata local park which wasn’t untrekable( the word doesn’t exist, Just a common Nigerian English) . I was walking on the lonely path to the market which wasn’t far from the park , the path was a middle path whose side was surrounded with bushes. I was still walking forward with my briefcase on my right hand and my bag, a school bag on my back when I noticed someone in black run from the left side of the bush , he stopped briefly when he saw me,he stared at me for some minutes, I stopped and also stared at me though I was scared. I had this feeling that he smiled before running to the right side. He was a tall muscular guy with a mask. He was all in black.
I looked outside the window of the big slow and steady bus which was heading to Lagos, it is the only bus that heads to Lagos from Atata,so if you miss it in the morning, you have no choice but to come back the next morning. This was the reason why I hadn’t stopped to go after that man in black I had seen in the bush path, I didn’t want to miss my bus. As I sat staring outside, a lot of things ran through my mind. ” who was the man in black? And what was he doing outside by that time of the day?” I asked myself, ” Why did he run into the bush from the bush?” I asked myself again but there was no to answer to the questions. ” Oga, your money” A lady said as she stood in front of me, she was the one in charge of collecting passengers money before the departure of the bus. I brought out three thousand five hundred naira and handed it to her while she left happily . ” Please, put on you seats belts and relax, we are set to move in about 10 minutes time” The driver to the slow and steady bus shouted as he sat on the driver’s seat, his voice alone was enough for us to hear, loud and clear” I would like to inform you that there will be some points in this Journey where slow and Steady might stop to take water” The driver said again, I didn’t know why he was informing us, we all know slow and steady, it stops almost every two hours to take water. I brought out my phone and checked the time, it was 5:15am. I took a deep breath as I relaxed my back on the seat on which I was sitting, though the seat was made of iron, I had to manage it that way. At exactly 5:30am, the bus started moving, just like the name had said, Slowly and Steadyily. I adjusted myself as I couldn’t bear the discomfort I got from the iron chair again. I rested my head on my right palm and then I remembered Adanna. ” Hmm, I will sure miss her” I said to myself not minding who heard me. ” In love right?” The guy sitting just by my left asked. ” Yeah” I replied without looking at him. ” That’s how it is. Is there any interesting story behind your love life?” The guy asked me again. This time I rose my head and stared at him, he was putting on a white long sleeve shirt and also a white trouser. Taking a closer look at him, you will conclude that he should be in his thirties or so.” Not the kind of love story you do hear” I replied him. ” Let’s just hear it” He insisted while I smiled. ” I had left Atata for about six years now, I came back about five days ago and I met this girl who I had always wanted from the days of my childhood, just as things were about to get good, work calls. ” I said while he smiled and patted my shoulder. ” There is always challenges behind every love story, the sweetest part is overcoming them. Make sure you come back to your love” he said calmly to me while I nodded and smiled. ” I will surely come back” I assured him or more likely myself. ” I am Daniel, a researcher, I came to Atata some few days back, my research work actually brought me here” He told me. ” Oh, that’s nice, I am Gabriel, not also an indigene of Atata but spent most of my life there” I said. ” Nice meeting you Gabriel” Daniel said stretching fort his right hand which I took willingly. We talked for some hours, actually we were talking about irrelevant stuffs, it was mostly on love and relationship, Daniel was fun to be with and he also happen to be very clever and smart.
• No one ever in history has ever travelled through the slow and steady bus without falling asleep, its like a curse associated with the bus. At a point in the journey, you must surely have to sleep, even if you dont want to, the sight of others sleeping will encourage you to. I choose the call that point ” The sleeping point”. Daniel had slept off so was every other person in the slow and steady bus except the driver. At this point, I got no other option than to also join the league of sleepers. I relaxed my back on the thick iron handle of my seat and closed my eyes, I wandered off to dream land. I didn’t know how long I slept but I knew I woke up when I noticed the slow and steady bus had stopped, I arranged my baggage and made to go down the bus but a hand drew me back, it was Daniel’s hand. ” Calm down bro, the slow and steady has just stopped to take water ” he said smiling. ” So you mean we aren’t in Lagos yet?” I asked angrily. ” Nope, not even half of Lagos” he said smiling while I relaxed my back on the seat again.
• It was 10:15pm when the slow and steady bus finally stopped, not to take water this time but a final stop. We were now in the beautiful city of Lagos, a city of the rich and poor, a city of like and unlike minds, a city which flows with milk and honey,the city of Lagos is indeed a wonderful city. I backed my bag and carried my briefcase as I alighted the bus. ” So where are you heading from here?” Daniel asked me, he was behind me and was backing only a bag, he wasn’t with a briefcase. ” Hmm, probably Ikeja ” I told him while he stared at me with a confused expression on his face. ” Aren’t you sure of where you are going?” He asked . ” I have different places in mind, my relatives are scattered all around this city” I said smiling. ” okay then, nice meeting you Gabriel” He said stretching his hand for a handshake again which I took willingly and turned to leave. I was also putting on a long sleeve but not a white one as Daniel’s own, a black long sleeve. ” Oga where?” A bike man asked as he pulled over in front of me. ” Matt, You haven’t changed” I said to the bike man, he isn’t actually a bike man, he happens to be a spy and he is the one assigned to pick me that night. ” Your bus took so long” he said as I climbed his bike, ” I have been waiting here since 5pm” he said again. ” Please let go off, I need to sleep” I said to him. Taking a look at Matt will leave you with no their conclusion that he is actually a bike man. He was putting on a red tattered cloth on a black trouser with a bathroom slippers, to crown it all, he was wearing a face cap like most Bike men does. Matt was good with bikes which explains why he drove rough overtaking thrillers and big cars, in no time we were alone on a long time isolated road located somewhere in one of the villages in Lagos. ” Hold on tight boy, we are about entering the Jungle” Matt said after about an hour of rough riding, only the light from the bike was the source of light for us that night. ” Here we go!!!” Matt shouted as he took a sharp turn and soon the bike started moving on its own like it was descending down a hill.. ” Matt, control this bike to slow down” I shouted as the bike continued to go down in speed. ” Enjoy the ride baby” Matt yelled at me. ” Matt, watch out!!!!” I shouted as the bike was approaching a tall tree. ” Wuuuuu” Matt shouted happily as he dodged the tree. ” Sweet” He shouted again as he dodged another tree, I simply closed my eye until the bike came to an halt, we were at Newriton. ” That was a sweet ride ” Matt said as he pulled off his tattered clothing, he was putting on a black thick short and a black thick singlet underneath. ” All I need now is sleep” I said lazily as I yawned and stretched myself. ” Yeah, go sleep bro. You must be really tired from the long journey” Matt said walking pass me and patting my shoulders. ” He couldn’t even help me carry my bag” I said to myself as I followed him behind. ” I heard that” He shouted without turning to face me, he continued to walk.
• Welcome to Newriton, an institute specialized to train spies and crime fighters. Newriton is located in the heart of an Isolated Jungle, inside one of the villages in Lagos State. Record has it that it was established in 1884, and so you would agree with me that some many spies and crime fighters must have been trained here. Newriton comprises about 50 different building which are meant to serve different purposes. Some buildings, I dont know why they existed. In the centre of all these buildings stood a sculptured Mark, a unique Mark, the Mark of Newriton. All trained and confirmed students has that mark being drawn on their wrist, all confirmed students got the Mark.
I walked slowly into one of the buildings, that was the building which serve as our lodge. It isn’t in any way different from an University hostel, only that it is much neater and comfortable. I climbed up to the third storey before finally stopping on a door with a tag ” Room 101″ . I unlocked my briefcase and brought out a card, I slipped the card into some kind of a machine on the wall beside the door. ” Please enter your code” Came the written reply from the machine. I put in my code and almost immediately the door opened slowly. I walked into the room and just like it had opened, the door closed. There wasn’t light in the room which got me surprised, there was light in the entire building. I tried locating the switch on the wall so as to put on the light but I slowly felt a hand round my neck, I felt a sharp object touch me, it was a knife placed directly to my neck.
Title: welcome Back
The light suddenly came on to reveal my room mate, Israel. ” Oh My God you scared the hell out of me” I said as he jumped onto his bed. ” Secret service code 009, be alert at all times. ” Israel said laughing to reveal his white set of teeth. ” Sir Ajan called you back also?” He asked as I sat on my bed located on the right side of the room, his was on the left side.” Yeah” I simply replied . ” Hmm” He said as I looked up at him, he also stared at me and suddenly we smiled at ourselves. He got up from his bed and i also stood up and we hugged each other. ” I miss you bro” He said happily. ” I miss you also” I replied him and we broke the hug. ” How is Atata?” He asked me . ” Atata is fine, what of Ekiti?” I asked back. ” Ekiti is peaceful” He replied while I nodded. Israel Olufemi, another confirmed spy and my best friend in Newriton is a Yoruba guy who hails from Ekiti. I came to the institute before him, he actually resumed a week after me. The welfare units had actually paired us together when they noticed I had no room mate . He is a dark average height guy with small brown eyes, he isn’t slim nor fat, he is just Normal. He happens to be one of those lazy students when he first resumed, he only got blended when Sir Ajan had punished him severely for not able to handle and throw a knife. He is the most skillful fighter we got, most skillful fighter I said, not the best, I still remain the best. What? You guys dont believe me again? Like seriously, I am the best fighter, take it or leave it. ” So any idea what this mission is gonna look like?” I asked as I walked into our kitchen, yes our kitchen, it was actually a self contain like room. ” Nope, Sir Ajan has said nothing of it ” Israel replied. ” who cooked this?” I asked as I brought the watery rice I knew only israel would have prepared it, he can’t cook. ” I did, see I cooked it that way because that is how I like cooking my rice” He said trying to defend himself. ” Oh my Jesus, you mean, just forget, there is no other option than to eat it this way, am so hungry” I said as I dished a spoonful of rice into my mouth. ” Taar” I shouted as I spat it on the floor. ” Did you use the whole salt to cook this?” I asked him but he just hissed and laid on his bed.
• I woke up early that Saturday morning, Israel had already woken up and gone to the field probably to exercise. I stood up and peeped through the window which allowed the reflection of the morning sun. I was right, he was on the field with Morgana and Christiana, Just the three of them. I quickly dressed up in my thick black singlet and Short before rushing down to them. ” Oh my goodness, Gabriel!!!!!” Morgana shouted as she rushed towards me and Jumped on me, she was the first to see me approaching them. Christiana stood where she was, she was standing arm akimbo and twisting her mouth like the way Adanna does twist hers, but she wasn’t as beautiful as Adanna. ” Hey, my Christiana” I said as I dropped Morgana and went towards where Christiana was. ” Dont touch me” She said as she frowned her face. ” Why?” I asked. ” You promised to come yesterday morning, why am I just seeing you now?” She asked still frowning her face. ” Come off it my dear, You of all people should know how far Atata is” I said patting her shoulder. ” Then you should have taken a night bus the day before yesterday” she said again. ” Which bus? There is only one bus coming to Lagos from Atata, the slow and Steady” I said smiling. ” Okay dear, come here” She said as she hugged me tightly. ” It isn’t even up to a week, you already miss me this much” I said as she still held me tight, trust me, I held her more tight. ” Gabi, you didn’t hug me this long” Morgana said and broke the hug. ” Sorry dear” I said as I hugged Morgana again while Christiana broke the hug. ” Enough of the hugging” she said . The institute was scanty, the reason behind this was the fact that new students haven’t been admitted yet and the old sets are done with their programs, old students like me. The few students in Newriton are either those who had come to take their certificates or those who are to be given assignments like I, Morgana, Matt, Christiana and Israel. ” Gabriel, I got gist for you” Christiana said as we did our normal morning push ups. ” You always have gist” I replied her, to her that was a go ahead. ” I came into your lodge yesterday afternoon, israel was the only one there, I didn’t know what sent me to taste the Unfortunate rice he cooked” Christiana said while I and Morgana laughed, Israel didn’t laugh. ” At least am better than the both of you who doesn’t even know how to boil water” Israel countered them, Christiana and Morgana, truly they can’t cook, I won’t lie, they can’t cook.
• ” This Mission is your very first and it shouldn’t be toyed with . It isn’t a tough case like I have rightly said to you all over the phone. It is just an investigative mission, just need you guys to help me check mate someone” Sir Ajan said as he walked around the small hall in which we all stood wearing our black thick singlet and Shorts. I, Israel and Christiana stood together while Morgana and Matt stood together on the other side. ” A investigative mission might look simple as it sound but need a lot of care than other missions. A simple mistake or wrong information due to wrong investigations might be so crucial and hence put an end to you being a spy” Sir Ajan said again moving his eyes around the hall, for a moment, I felt his eyes dropped on me. ” You should all take a observatory and careful background study, a very investigatory and clean background study before jumping into conclusion. Note that none of this should make you reveal your identity. Never reveal your identity in the quest to make your mission fast, a simple mission of a day might end up taking a year. Now I told you guys it might take weeks, you should all know how that it might develop into years. The longer the time spent on a mission, the more accurate the result. I am not in a hurry for you to bring the results, all I need Is a good result” Sir Ajan said again as he sat down and began operating his small laptop. ” Since it is you guys very first mission, I would like somebody with experience to guide you, that’s why I had taken my time to bring back one of my students who finished a long time ago.” Sir Ajan said and almost immediately the door to the hall creaked opened. ” Daniel!!!” I shouted as the new guy walked into the hall.
Title: Who Is He?
“Wow, Gabriel, what are you doing here?” Daniel asked me innocently, he was also putting on a black short and Singlet just like the rest of us, the only difference between we and him was that he was hanging a sword on his back, the sword happens to be in its s—t. I walked hurriedly towards him and brought out his left hand, there, on his wrist was the mark of Newriton. ” So you are a spy?” I asked him while he nodded. ” You are also a spy” He said laughing and we hugged each other. ” Hey, I see some kind of reunion here, Daniel, have you guys meant before?” Sir Ajan asked him while Daniel nodded. ” We actually took the same bus from Atata to Lagos” Daniel said while sir Ajan adjusted his glasses. ” What took you to Atata?” Sir Ajan asked not expecting the reply. ” My research work” Daniel said again but sir Ajan wasn’t listening. ” So this is Daniel, he completed his program about some years back and he had successfully accomplished 6 investigatory missions just like the one you are about to Embark on” Sir Ajan said standing beside Daniel. ” Now to the mission proper” Sir Ajan said as he walked to the front of the hall, there was a big screen there which was normally controlled by a remote lying on the small table in front of the hall. ” Here is Sir Jude Ike, a primary school teacher” Sir Ajan started as the screen displayed a clear picture of the so called Sir Jude Ike, an elderly man probably in his fifties. ” Sir Jude Ike is a primary school teacher” Sir Ajan said and we all bursted into laughter, even Daniel himself laughed. ” Why on earth should we investigate a primary school teacher?” I asked Sir Ajan still laughing. ” Because a primary School teacher shouldn’t be living in this kind of house” Sir Ajan said as the picture on the Screen changed to that of a beautiful mansion, a mansion only affordable to big business men. ” But sir, this is an elderly man, he might have involved himself in some other businesses from which he might have been able to raise money to build this, this house might be a project from his life savings” Christiana said looking serious. ” Nice point Christiana, Nice.” Sir Ajan complemented as the picture on the screen returned to Sir Jude Ike. ” This shouldn’t have brought about any form of suspicion, the only thing amiss here is the rate at which young teenagers go missing in this same area where Jude Ike lives. No one is saying that he is responsible for the kidnaps or so, all I am saying Is that he is the only one living a strange lifestyle, why should he teach in a primary school a long distance from where he lives? I want you all to do a background search on him, research on any kind of business he might have involved himself in at one time or the other. Remember, he is not guilty of any offence yet. ” Sir Ajan staring intensely at us. ” Not just the six of you are going for this mission, someone for the I.C.T unit might Join you soon ” Sir Ajan said moving about, only the sound from his high heeled shoe could be heard. ” Remember, I am not expecting disaster” He finally said and walked out.
• ” There is no room for weakness here, we all have to be strong” Daniel shouted as he rose up his right hand to show he was serious and lively, we all looked at him like a fool. ” Okay, we just have to be strong” he said more calmly this time. A new guy has joined us, he was from the I.C.T units, he isn’t a trained fighter and so its our duty to protect and guide him, his name is young Carl. ” So, this isn’t something we should rush, it might end up becoming a mission to be accomplished in Years, Gabriel, dont worry or think about Adanna” Daniel said staring at me. ” who is Adanna?” Christiana asked me. ” Ask him” I said calmly pointing to Daniel. ” You don’t know who Adanna is?” Christiana asked me again but I didn’t reply her as I pretended to be paying rapt attention to Daniel.
• ” I am just nervous, I dont want this mission to be a screw” Israel said as I laid on the bed that evening, he was doing his one hand push ups. ” Dont think so, people have been doing this, so we can” I assured him, this time I wasn’t lying on the bed, I was opening my small drawer to get an A4 paper. ” What are you gonna use that for?” Israel asked still on his push ups. ” Write a letter” I replied. “Letter to who?” He asked again. ” Adanna” I replied while he got up swiftly and sat beside me. ” Who is this Adanna?” He asked. ” My future girlfriend” I replied searching for a pen. ” What about Christiana, who are you leaving her for?” He asked again. ” I am not dating Christiana” I said with a serious look on my face. ” Then stop leading Christiana on” Israel said again also looking serious. ” If you have nothing for her, let her know now, it might be disastrous in future” Israel said again, that was the only good thing about him, at times he speaks sense. ” Okay bro, I will try stop all kind of stuff with her” I assured Israel. ” Now tell me about this Adanna of a girl” Israel said happily while I also smiled. ” You see ehen , Adanna is the most beautiful maiden in Atata, she is of average height, chocolate and endowed ” I said. ” I know you bro, you can’t differentiate between beautiful and Ugly, am sure this so called girl might not be as beautiful as you have painted her” Israel replied me while I smiled on. ” Just wait” I said and brought out my phone, I went into the gallery and brought out a picture if Adanna, it was actually a picture I took from the top of the mango tree the day I had a fight with mbe the cat. ” Take a look at this” I said passing the phone to Israel. ” This is whoa, Gabi, this girl is Whoa” Israel said again. ” I told you now ” I replied him grinning happily. ” But who is this guy with her?” He asked again. ” Another guy who wants her” I said again. ” I think she will prefer him to you, he is more handsome” Israel said while I dragged my phone from him. ” She is really endowed as you had said, why dont you just ask her out?” He asked again. ” In Atata where I come from, you dont ask the girl out, you go straight to her parents after you have studied the girl for a period of time. ” I said. ” You and your Atata are too local ” He replied. ” Can I see that picture again?” Israel asked but got no reply.
• It was still in the evening of the same day, Daniel had asked me to come meet him in his lodge, he was actually staying in a special lodge meant only for workers in Newriton. He wanted to see me not because we had an encounter in the slow and Steady bus but because I was the main man for the mission. I located room “278” and stood in front of the face scanning machine, only those who stay in the room have a card to gain access into it, any intruder must pass through a face scan from the same machine. The Machine Scanned my fave and within some seconds, the door opened. I entered into the beautifully decorated large room, Daniel was on his bed, he was sitting on his bed while his sword was lying beside him. ” Hold on a minute” he said as he rushed to his bathroom. I sat on the bed and brought out the sword from its s—t, I did just for fun. The sword came out slowly until all part of the sword was revealed, I opened my mouth in shock as I saw the edge of the sword. I flashed back to that morning I went to the igwe palace, that mark made on that dead guy could only be made with a sword with the type of edge like Daniel’s own, wait, Daniel was coming back from Atata the day I saw him, and he also had the killer sword, no doubt he is the serial killer. ” Yes Gabriel, now to business” Daniel said as he came out of the bathroom towelling his face. ” Who are you?” I asked as I pointed the sword directly to his neck.
Title: I Have a Dream
” Gabriel, calm down, what do you mean who am i?” He asked calmly raising his both hands up into the air. ” What was your mission in Atata?” I asked again, the sword was now directly to his Adam’s Apple. ” Gabriel I dont get you, what are you talking about?” He asked looking confident but careful. ” So you are a serial killer? You go about killing people?” I asked again while he spread his hands out in a confused manner. ” Am ain’t a serial killer, I dont kill people except the bad guys, and I only kill the bad guys when on a mission” He said again. ” Shut up! What were you doing in Atata?” I asked again. ” I only went there to know the place, just like a tour” he said again. ” ” Why are you asking me all these?” He asked again looking impatient. ” Hey, remember am the guy with the sword here, so be careful” I said pushing the sword closer to his neck. ” You know, we can actually settle this amicably without the sword” he said again. ” Just tell me why you choose to kill the people of Atata” I said. ” Believe me, I have never killed anyone from Atata, I only stayed there for five days, I didn’t kill anyone. What gives you the impression that am the killer?” He asked again. ” Your sword, it has the same edge mark with the marks on the body of those victims of the killer” I said while he stared at me in shock. ” You mean to tell me that there is a serial killer in Atata?” He asked. ” Dont pretend like you aren’t the one” I countered. ” Am not gonna pretend like I am not the one, because I am not the one” he said calmly. ” Why don’t you take this sword away” he said pushing the sword slightly away. ” I am not a serial killer, and you have no right to accuse me of that, you got nothing against me ” he said as he sat on the bed while I turned to him. ” See, I am not the only person with this kind of sword, the real killer is still there in Atata and you are here accusing me” he said again. ” The only thing is that, the killer is likely to be from Newriton or maybe a common individual happens to get hold of the sword by chance, this sword was the trained weapon for my sets just like you guys are trained with knives now” he said again. ” Then that means the killer should be someone you know, since heshe is someone in your set” I said while he shook his head. ” You dont expect me to know every individual in over 10,000 fighters.” He said, he was right, I myself dont know all the fighters in my sets. ” If truly the mark you talk is real, then someone from Newriton is behind this or maybe somebody not from Newriton has by chance gotten hands on the weapon ” He said again. ” Then, let’s tell sir Ajan about it. ” I suggested. ” Sir Ajan wouldn’t listen without an evidence” he said again while I dropped the sword, something inside me kept telling me it was him Daniel, but I got no evidence against him, maybe I need to do a background check. ” Now back to business” he said keeping his Sword in it’s s—t.
• ” Okay , israel how do I start this? Should I go, Dear Adanna” I asked israel as I made to start the letter. ” Can’t you make it more romantic?” Israel asked taking a disgusting look at me. ” Okay, Dear love?” I asked again. ” Nope , can’t you go like, My lovely baby?” He asked while I nodded my head. ” My lovely baby” I wrote down but tore the paper immediately. ” Adanna is a village girl, she isn’t use to all this baby stuff” I said while Israel bursted into laughter. ” Just write as you can” He said as he went to the small fridge to get a cup of milk. ” What if she tears up the letter when she sees it?” Israel asked. ” Dont say such things here, she can’t tear it” I said not confident in myself, ” What if she truly tears it?” I asked myself. ” Then I will kill her” I shouted not realizing it that I had spoken too loud. ” Kill who?” Israel asked. ” Am just rehearsing one of the characters in a movie I watched a long time ago” I said while Israel shook in pity for me. I started the letter body, I made sure I didn’t use strong words, although israel was encouraging me to. ” I hope to see your reply soon” I wrote and concluded the letter. ” I will post this tomorrow” I said to no one as I laid on the bed. ” Goodnight bro” I said to israel who was lying on his own bed and playing some sort of games. ” Goodnight” he simply replied.
• The entire room was dark, I opened my eyes while still on the bed , I couldn’t see a thing because of the darkness of the night. I heard footsteps in the room and jumped up immediately but silently. I crawled to the switch of the light and put it on. I fell down as I saw israel lying dead in his own pool of blood, the same sword mark was on his waist region, the mark is actually a zig zag mark made by the edge of the sword which was Zig Zag. ” Israel ” I said in fear as I moved silently to his body. ” You are next” I heard a voice say behind me, I turned back and met Daniel dressed in black and was holding the sword, I remembered the man in black I had seen that morning of my coming back to Lagos. ” So its really you?” I asked in anger and fear. ” No time for familiarities” he said and advance towards me with the sword, I quickly brought out my small knife from my waist side to defend myself. ” What can your knife do?” He asked laughing almost immediately swung the sword to my neck side, I was fast enough to dodge. I gave him a back leg kick which pushed him backwards, he came towards me again, I jumped up with the knife to stab his chest but right there in the air, he cut me across my waist with the sword. Slowly I fell to the ground. ” Greet my forefathers for me” he said as he bent beside me and made to cut my abdominal region with the edge of the sword. I quickly curl my leg across his neck and tightened it, the sword fell to the ground and we started rolling on the floor. Soon, he started bringing out blood from his mouth, I curl my legs tighter to his neck. To my surprise, he suddenly smiled with blood in his mouth and looked up at me. ” Wake up boy” he said and immediately I felt a sweet slap across my face. ” Idiot, wake up” I heard israel voice. ” Every night, you must act war firm in your dream” He said and he landed me another slap, I opened my eyes slowly and steadily like the slow and steady bus.
“But please sir, I am good at teaching, I have taught up to five primary schools before” I said as I sat in front of the principal of Royalty primary School. Yes, the mission has begun. It started this beautiful Monday morning, all those involved in this mission had actually packed out of Newriton yesterday except Young Carl. I now stay in my bungalow located somewhere in Lagos state, Iyana Ipaja to be precise and luckily, the primary school sir Jude teaches in is located in Iyana Ipaja but his house a bit far from there. Christiana and Morgana stay together in a rented apartment in the same Iyana Ipaja. Israel, Matt and Daniel also stay in rented apartments, not together, they live separately. The reason for choosing rented apartments was just the simple fact that their houses weren’t nearby. Young Carl isn’t needed yet, so he still stays in Newriton. Sir Ajan had talked to us the previous day being Sunday, he gave us some tips on how to go on this assignment. ” As much as I hate to say this, I wish you guys good luck ” he had said at the end of his class.
” Mr Gabriel Omiyi, Royalty is different from other primary schools you might know, we dont employ those with just Secondary school cert. We can’t take you” he said again, he was impatient this time. ” But sir, am..” He interrupted me. ” Mr man, you aren’t qualified to teach in Royalty primary school. ” he said again as he knotted his tie. ” why dont you just test me?” I asked him. ” Even if I test you and you are qualified for the job, I won’t still employ you because of your certificate.” He replied. ” Now if you dont mind, you may leave my office” He said pointing towards the door. I stared at him for some minutes before standing up and walking out slowly towards the door of his office, the time was just 7:30am, the day was just starting. I walked out of his office and went towards the gate, I was about stepping out of it when I noticed a small beetle car pull over in front of the gate, in the driver’s seat was Sir Jude Ike, what a wise man. I walked pass his car like I had no business with him, I then headed for my bicycle chained in a corner of the street. I climbed on it and rode home. My house isn’t that type which depicts am a spy, as a matter of fact , it looks like any other house. There isn’t any security face scan or card activating door, not even security cameras. There is only a big black gate in front of the house. In the compound is a small farm, a tomato farm, I actually love farming. There isn’t any car in the compound, I haven’t bought a car yet but there is a power bike, a power bike and two bicycles. I parked the third bicycle beside the two which have been chained to an iron in the compound, I then went into the main building. The inside of the bungalow is well furnished like that of a Bachelor, the sitting room has a glass centre table surrounded with chairs, cushion chairs. In a top corner of the sitting room is a big screen television, and below it is a decoder and a music player. The dinning is like any other dinning, a big glass table surrounded with glass chairs and a small refrigerator. There are just three rooms in the house, each room with their own toilet and bathroom, the rooms are also well furnished. There is a general kitchen just beside the dinning. ” This is the beginning of failure” I said to myself as I fell into one of the cushion chairs. I took a look at the foolish application letter I have drafted and out of anger, I tore it into piece. ” Foolish principal” I shouted as I got up and approached my small fridge in the dining. I took out a can of malt from it and took a little sip. ” This is just a waste if time” I said to myself as I looked at the white long sleeve shirt I was wearing, I remembered it had took me hours to straighten this shirt. I pulled off the shirt angrily and went into my room to change into something light, I then laid on the bed to cover up for the short sleep I had last night.
Title: Trouble cont’
•I changed into a white short and black top, took my small camera and dipped into the pocket of the white short, I then went into the compound. I looked at my three bicycles critically before deciding to use the black one, I loosed it from its chain and out of the compound into the lonely street I rode humming an old love song by Dr Victor Olaiya. It was the evening of the same day, a cold and peaceful evening. I rode my bicycle down the lonely street, I had no where in mind, I just wanted to feel like the bachelor I am. I had finished rounding the street for about three times when I decided to at least have some fun. I changed the direction of the bicycle which prevented me from making my street tour the fourth one. I actually happen to be a bit familiar with the area, the reason wasn’t far fetched, I always do come stay in my bungalow house whenever we were given day off or holidays at Newriton. With that, I have been able to get a bit use to the area. At times, the holidays get more interesting when Israel and Matt decide to spend theirs in my house, we do go chill at a bar towards where my bicycle was heading now. I parked my bicycle outside the noisy bar, guys could be seen smoking at every corner of the bar, where two or three smokers are gathered, a girl must be in their mist. At most corners, girls could be seen occupying the laps of some of these smokers, while at other corners, the girls could be seen dancing for the guys, I just can’t understand what gives them pleasure in this kind of life.
I bounced off into the bar where the music was in its loudest, I then sat in the normal corner where I do sit whenever I was together with Matt and Israel. ” Give me a bottle of fayrouz” I said to the bar man closest to me. The man took a quick glance at me like he had expected me to order for beer or something alcoholic. ” Just Fayrouz?” He asked while I nodded. ” you can add a plate of meat to it” I said after him. He came back about 10 minutes later with a plate filled with meat and a bottle of Fayrouz, he opened the drink for me and dropped the plate on the table. ” Enjoy” he said and left. I stared at the plate of meat and for some moments wondered why I had ordered for it, I didn’t actually have the appetite for it. ” The night is cold” I heard a female voice say beside me, I turned my neck in the direction of the voice and it was one of these club girls. She was sitting just beside me and staring at me. ” I am Tobi” She said when I didn’t reply to what she said earlier. ” I am not interested” I replied. ” Not interested, that’s a nice name” she replied while I coughed out as the pepper from the meat almost choked me as I tried to laugh, her reply was actually funny. ” That isn’t my name, I mean am ain’t interested in knowing you” I replied after I had gulped down some appreciable content from the once filled bottle of Fayrouz. ” Come off it, am ain’t a club girl” She said. ” I didn’t say you were” I replied as I shifted my plate of meat to her, she passed it back to me. ” You thought I was” she said again. ” No I didn’t think you were, i-” she interrupted me. ” I only came to share your table with you, am ain’t a club girl” she said again. ” is that why you dont wanna share from my meat?” I asked. ” I an allergic to meats” she said and almost immediately the same bar man brought a plate of meat for her. ” But you said you were alle-” she interrupted again, ” Allergic to meat from strangers” She said as she picked up a piece of her meat. ” So na because of this one you no wan answer me abi?” A thick voice asked from behind us, I turned and behold three club touts were standing behind us. ” Who are they?” I asked her. ” As you can see, touts” She said staring at them. ” You no dey fear?” The same tout guy who had spoken earlier asked pushing me off my seat, I fell down flat to the ground. The club scattered immediately as people started to run away to avoid getting involved in the fight that was likely to happen, its always normal for the club to scatter all the time, the scattering of the club was mostly cursed by boys fighting for the girls, not mostly caused by that, always caused by that. As much as the scattering of the club could be of disadvantages sometimes, it was also a big advantage to those who dont have money to pay for what they had eaten. Once upon a time, i , israel and Matt had also used that avenue to escape when I couldn’t find my wallet to pay the bills. ” Guy, calm down, I have n-” I was saying but a thunderous slap from one of the tout shut my mouth. Did I tell you this about me? I have a phobia for slaps. ” You dey craze ” I said angrily in pidgin as I pushed back the tout who had slapped me, the remaining two must have been angered by the pushing as one threw a blow towards me. I caught his hands in the air lifted him up, I threw him at the other who was standing and thinking of what to do, they both fell to the ground. Out of nowhere, another tout came out with a broken bottle, he raised the bottle and made to stab my chest but I also held his hand and twisted it thereby making the bottle fall to the floor. I bent his hand to his back and with a little force, dragged it up towards his neck. I heard the cracking of his bone which was what I wanted to hear. I didn’t leave him as I straightened the broken hand and kicked him thrice on his chest, I then released him. He had no option as he fell down to the floor helplessly. The guy who had slapped me earlier advanced toward me with a loud shout, I also approached him with a flying kick and before he knew it, he was on the ground. Another one got up and took his stance, he then approached me slowly. From the way he took his stance and walked towards me, I knew he was a Yoruba guy. He came closer enough to me and threw a punch, I weaved it by moving to the right side. He threw another punch again and I weaved it by moving to the left side. He made to throw an uppercut which I simply weaved by bending my back to the ground. I went so low to the extent that I was in the same level with his knee. I looked between his legs and to my amusement, the trouser he was wearing was torn underneath, he was wearing no boxer or pant. ” Sweet” I said to myself as I gave him a hard kick between his leg, he screamed in pain as he fell down slowly to the ground, I did he Chinese get up and stood on my feet.” Your hands in the air” I heard the normal police anthem from behind, I didn’t wait to think twice before dashing out of the bar. They came after me pointing their guns but didn’t shoot, I hoped on my bicycle and rode off, they chased me with their vans. With the bicycle, I was able to pass through tight corners which their van couldn’t pass through and in no time I got to my house. Thank God I dont lock my gate when going out, I pushed the gate opened and drove my bicycle in. I parked it in a corner and headed inside the house. I was just closing the door when my eyes caught something at the back part of the door, it was boldly written with a reddish substance, probably blood. ” YOU ARE NEXT” It read, the time was 10:29pm.
I stood staring at the written words on the door, the door actually happens to be very refractive and thus enabling me see myself in it , likewise every other part of the sitting room. I was still staring at the words when I saw the reflection of someone in pure black move from the right side to the left side of the sitting room, he entered the door leading to my guest room, that movement flashed me back to the man in black I had seen on the day I was coming back to Lagos. ” who are you?” I Shouted knowing well I could be heard. I knew it was Daniel. Suddenly the whole light went off and darkness filled the house. ” I rather die like a man” I said to myself as I brought a knife from my waist side, I actually do go out with knives. I stood sideways by the door ready to jump on anything and immediately the light came on again. I heard the sound of a high heeled shoe from the visitor room, the sound signified that the person was approaching the sitting room. I had the door creak open and I saw the right leg of the person in black. ” I got you there” Israel shouted as he jumped out of the visitor room, from the right side of the sitting room also came Matt laughing as tears filled his eyes, he was holding a can of red paint. ” What is the meaning of this?” I asked a bit angry, they didn’t answer me as they continued to laugh. They were dressed in our black uniform. ” We got him at the right spot” Matt said turning to israel and they bursted into another round of laughter. ” This isn’t funny” I said jumping into a cushion. ” That was fun” Matt said as he started cleaning the door with a sort of liquid and a towel. ” Why are you this dirty?” Israel asked noticing my stained clothes. ” I was involved in a club fight” I answered him lazily. ” A club fight? Why?” Matt asked still cleaning the door. ” Because of a girl” I said while they bursted into another round of laughter. ” For all I know, you dont have a girlfriend” Israel said as he tried stopping his laughter. ” She isn’t my girlfriend, just a random girl” I replied. ” So what brought about the fight?” Matt asked dropping his cleaning equipment on the tile floor. ” Those tout thought I was the reason she snubbed them”I replied. ” why did they think so?” Israel asked. ” She was sharing my table with me” I replied him. ” So what are you guys doing here by this time of the night?” I suddenly asked sitting upright. ” We had actually been here since around 7:00pm” Matt answered. ” So what brought you guys here?” I asked again. ” We came to spend the night here” Israel replied. ” How was today? Were you employed?” Matt asked while I shook my head. ” The principal made it clear that he cant employ a secondary school cert” I told them . ” oh that’s bad, what will you do now?” Matt asked. ” I will apply for the post of a cleaner” I said. ” A what??” They both asked in shock and amusement. ” A cleaner” I said not minding what they might think of it. ” So tell me, why are you guys dressed in uniform?” I asked them, I was now feeling sleepy due to the day’s stress. ” We wanted to scare you now. ” Matt replied. ” Daniel told us everything, he says you think he is a serial killer and that there is a serial killer in Atata. So we used that advantage on you” Israel said. ” But why on earth will you think Daniel is a killer?” Matt asked. ” Because there are so much about him to be suspicious about” I replied wiping my face with my hand to prevent me from sleeping. ” Guy this isn’t a Movie, all you are thinking might not be real” Israel said again. ” See guys, I am a well trained spy, I know when my thoughts are wrong or right ” I said . ” so you mean we aren’t also well trained spy?” Matt asked. ” Not that, you can’t have the instincts because you guys aren’t connected to this” I replied. ” Anyhow, that guy Daniel doesn’t look like a serial killer” Matt said again. ” Serial killers dont look like it ” I said . ” Let’s drop this, Gabriel, gist us about that club girl” Israel said feeling excited. ” She is quite different from other club girls, she only came to share my table with me” I said as I stood up. “Not that kind of gist, I meant is she pretty, endowed, curvy and the likes” Israel said again. ” I couldn’t notice all that in the short time she spent with me” I said yawning. ” Goodnight guys” I said again walking lazily to my room. ” Goodnight, I and israel still wanna play some games” Matt said.
AS NARRATED BY ADANNA.
• Call me Adanna or Joy, I answer both. I grew up in the small village of Atata located in the eastern part of Nigeria. The state , I won’t disclose. My mom is a trader and my dad a Farmer, that’s the normal occupation for all couples in Atata. I am the only child of my parent, that makes me of course a special child. All my life, I haven’t really been interested in the male folks although most have showed attraction towards me. I rather use this to my advantage. I will make some help me carry my father farm produce from the farm while some help me carry my water pot from the village stream home. But there is this one guy I dreaded giving my water pot ever since he broke one when we were teenagers, Gabriel Omiyi. We had been like family friends when we were much younger although I dont visit him, he only comes to visit me. He was the only male friend I had until one day, I didn’t see him again. His parents told me he had left for the city, he didn’t even tell me he was leaving, anyways I had no business with him. It was on one fine morning approximately about 6 or 7 years that Gabriel had left for the city that I had went to the stream and met a fine built man locally dressed like the men of Atata. His face seem familiar but I couldn’t place my hand on where I knew him from. The surprising point was when he called me by my native name, I then looked closer at him and remembered my long time friend. I was tempted to jump into his hand, but I held myself, I was still angry with him for not informing me before leaving for the city. I hissed and walked pass him hoping he would follow me and sure he did, I would have jumped into the stream and drown myself if he had left. This was not the Gabriel I knew back then , the one I knew back then was a troublesome idiot, forgive me for that. He use to be rough and tattered, he enjoyed playing with sand like babies do even if he was about 16 then. But the guy I saw by the stream that morning is a tall, muscular and handsome guy. A lot had changed about him, truly the city is a place flowing with milk and honey. Though a lot changed about him, he was still as troublesome as he was some years back. He came to me and pleaded to help me carry my pot, I declined not because he had broken the pot once but because I felt it will seem like I was using him like I used other guys. He wasn’t ready to give up as he insisted on carrying the water pot, I had no choice than to give in. That was about a week ago, now he has gone back to the city, he didn’t even stay up to a month, I wanted him to stay forever in the village, because of him, I had started going to the stream every morning, I dont go every morning before, I go at least once in two days. He said he had to go back to manage his business, he owns a big chemist in the city. I fell sick when I heard from his parent that he had gone, although I was expecting him to go but I had prayed he would change his mind over night and come back to me shouting ” I ain’t leaving anymore” but no, Gabriel had left. He said he would come in some weeks time but something kept on telling me he might stay for another six years like he had stayed the first time he left.
I had woken up one morning to see a strange man standing in front of my compound, he said he was looking for Adanna which I told him I was, he then brought out a piece of paper and handed it over to me, he told me it was a letter from Gabriel, I opened it in a hurry and was shocked by the content.
1, Madu street.
How are you, I hope your parents are doing great, and how is Atata. I only want to use this medium to clear your mind from all tiles you might think is between us, i would be a sinner if i continue to lead you on. I have a fiance in the city, so please dont think there is anything between us, i love my fiance and wont want to leave her for any girl, not even a village girl. I have nothing for you, I only played along with the moment. Go get married, remember, you are growing older by the day.
I read the letter again and again as tears dropped freely from my eyes, I couldn’t believe it was the same Gabriel who I saw as being so loving wrote this letter. I looked up at the post man and wiped my tears. ” Please do you know how I can contact the sender ?” I asked him as I noticed his address wasn’t in the letter, he had placed my address where his should be.
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