Written by author Nath.
Heading: A Billion Betrayal
Like refugees, the kids knelt outside in the dark. There was nothing they couldn’t contemplate about their teacher. Cynthia believed he was a devil while some like Murphy see him as a clever man. Daniella had started thinking he was a wizard for the fact that he can control people by sitting at a spot. This simply means that they didn’t really know teacher Nwachukwu’s true intentions and modus operandi in their lives.
Judith could see Dave boiling in anger then broke the silence saying, “What’s wrong, Dave?”
He kept quiet. Others directed their eyes at him to discover the same anger.
“Dave?” Murphy called him, yet no atom of reciprocation.
Just as they contemplated, a guard called them in. Judith helped Dave up, dusting off particles from his knees. She looked into his eyes.
“Are you okay?”
Dave nodded. “Thanks” he said then walk-passed her, following others into their new secret house which they just discovered.
They stepped into the house to see it well furnished with a plasma television-set that wasn’t on. It was more like a family house than the former one, but you can’t compare it with the love garden.
“You all should sit down.” The guard commanded.
They all sat down on a long cushion except Dave.
“Dave, sit down.” The gaurd turned to him.
The young boy refused by not uttering a single word. Judith and others could only wonder what his problem was. Though, they had a glimpse that teacher was the root of his anger.
“Your boyfriend seems like someone who wants to fight teacher.” Vivian whispered to Judith who couldn’t get her eyes off him. Suddenly, teacher came out in his hugeness and might. He stopped at the sight of Dave then continued towards his own seat that stood opposite theirs. His footsteps on the tiled floor was something the kids had been familiar with. Teacher adjusted his caftan before sitting down. He looked at Dave again.
“Why are you not sitting, Dave?” he asked calmly.
“Why are you studying our lives like books?” he returned the question rhetorically and unabashedly.
Teacher crossed his legs, relaxed on the backrest of executive seat and began to touch his beards as he listened to Dave.
“We entered into the next available bus, to our greatest dismay, it was your own people. You seem to have the city more than the government. You sent Stephen to a landmine and he’s about to die with Ada. Truly you raised us but you treat us like students not children. Why can’t we live like a family? Attend normal school like normal children and stop all this hide and seek games you’re playing with our brains. I personally want to know what you take us for and what your plans are in our lives. Or are you just using us?” he concluded. Everybody’s eyes was on him even the two gaurds. When everywhere went back to ghost-mood, the kids turned to teacher to see his reaction and response coz Dave spoke their minds.
The man waited, sliding his beards and still looking at Dave. He raised his left hand up, signalled one of the gaurds with a flip of fingers. The guard walked to him from behind, while the children watched them like people in a cinema. They saw the guard handling a gun to teacher after which he aimed it at Dave.
“Teacher!” Judith stood up!!
“Sit down!” Teacher glared at her, yet aiming the gun at Dave.
Already the poor boy had been pinned like a statue, obnoxiously wondering what was going on. Also, Daniella and co. had seated up from the cushion, glaring back at teacher except Murphy.
Teacher conk the gun and stood up. The kids also stood up except Murphy. Teacher glared at them to get back to their seat. They read the sign and reluctantly sat down again. Teacher turned back to Dave and pulled the trigger but the conker jammed which shows that there was no bullet in it.
“Why did you give me a gun without bullet!?” he yelled.
“Sorry, sir!” the guard handed another gun to him to the kids greatest surprise. He conked it to pull the trigger again but saw the kids begging except Murphy.
“We’re sorry, teacher.” Judith had started shedding tears.
Dave was still standing wondering what was going on.
“Dave, do you believe I can take your life now?” Teacher asked him.
The boy didn’t respond.
“Teacher, you’ll never do that.” Murphy’s voice replied.
Teacher looked at him. “Why?”
“Because I trust you.”
Teacher became weak. He never regretted tagging his name ‘outstanding’ on the diary. He brought the gun down.
“Trust!” He began in form of a lecture. “Now i believe you don’t love me coz love comes with trust! If you had trusted me, you’ll know that I can’t harm any of you, you’ll know that you’re my children not my students.” he walked closer to Dave. “What is it that you want I’ve not given you? It’s high time you all started reasoning like me.” he touched his side head with a finger as he continued. “What big deal is there that since you didn’t enter the limo at the gate, you’d enter the next available bus just to escape from the police? And i had to make a call to make sure that the nexy available bus was mine. It’s not a magic! It’s using your common sense” he touched his head again. “To survive is to know the next step of your enemies. Always be one step ahead of them..” He told them the truth about Stephen and Ada and how it’s his plan to use them get the remaining device.
“Wow!” Vivian exclaimed. “Ada has found her family!” she added joyfully.
“She doesn’t know yet.” Teacher corrected.
“Teacher, what exactly do you want to achieve with this device?” Murphy asked.
The question generated silence. Teacher ignored it and walked back to his seat. “The thought of the father to his children is of good not of evil.” he replied in proverbs.
The kids glanced at one another. Just then, a telephone rang beside Dave. He never hesitated to take it to teacher like a servant to his master. That was Mr Yinka calling..
The man had succeeded on getting the other device by bribing the manager of the bank who opened the place for him. Now he was on call with teacher inside his car.
“I’ve gotten what you want.” he said. “Just send people to defuse the mines now!” he added.
“Take it to the beach. Give it to the people you see there. Those same people will give you the mine defusers.” Teacher replied on the phone..
Back to the secret house, teacher hung up the call then handed the telephone back to Dave.
“You all should go freshen up for dinner” he commanded.
Obi was the last to go, so teacher called on him saying, “Don’t worry, Obi, Ada will be fine but you might now see her again.”
The boy stared at his teacher, reasoning the statement. He never wanted to ask him what he meant by that coz he wanted to figure it out by himself. Therefore he walked out without saying anything.
Mr Yinka approached the beach, met two huge guys who, one of them, stretched his hand for the device. The man handed it to him.
“How much is Nwachukwu paying you guys? I’ll triple it just for you to kill him.” Mr Yinka whispered.
The men ignored him, walking out from him.
“Half a billion naira. What do you say?” he persisted.
Hearing that, the men turned. “A billion naira. Deal?” they said at the same time like robots.
“Deal.” Mr Yinka handed his card to them. “Call me when you’re done.”
The men took the card, gave him the mine defusers and left…….
TO BE CONTINUED