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The commissioner had finally met his end of the agreement and had put forward the 75 billion naira we asked for.
“The money is ready.” I spoke over the phone to the same man I had bargained with earlier.
“Do we send it via atm or any kind of money transfer?” I continued.
“So you can track the account, me and the boys?” he laughed awkwardly. “That’s smart but not smart enough… you’ll bring the cash here to me in exchange for the lady… just you and I my friend.”
I was startled. Obviously I wasn’t set to face the devil himself but now I had the devil’s invite.
“Did you hear me? Friend!” he screamed into the phone.
“Alright. “ I sighed.
Everyone had eyes on me thinking I was insane well, I guess I was. I had accepted the challenge in an area yet to be known to me.
“Where do we meet?” I inquired. At least knowing the destination could help us plan against any eventualities as not only my life but that of Angel Daniels and her husband was at risk.
The plot of the whole issue just kept disturbing me. What if her husband was behind her kidnap and has been lying or what if we’ve been believing a lie… she was never kidnapped and just wanted to make some huge cash off the job easily and connived with her husband to bring up the well planned story? What if all these were true and these kidnappers had informed the boss and had been lying to us as well? I would end up as ransom for him against the nation as it were… it’s either I’m killed or his many national sins forgiven. Thank God for the beep.
I looked quite confused just because I was but I was the only confused one.
“Where are we headed?”
Dominic burst into an acute laugh.
“You were holding the phone receiver all the while and you’re asking me where we are going? As a matter of fact it is where you are going.”
“I know… I wasn’t listening again… my mind was pacing.”
“You scared already? You mind’s got to pace a lot more oo… we have no idea where you’re off to. He said to call at some points he’ll tell you.”
I sighed… Martins Coker is done… Boukari should have killed me.
“We can’t just leave you there in case there’s a complication… how about we send a batch of arms along with you?” Anne stated.
“Are you asleep? He said not to bring any one along… ‘… just you and me my friend’” I said the latter part trying to mimic his stern and quite extremely deep voice.
“You just might need our help… we need to be ready… I’ll dial Fikayo.” She stated still on her point.
Fikayo happened to be a relative of the house in so many ways. Anne attended the same secondary school as her and they’ve both been friends ever since. She has this thing with Dominic called a relationship bonded by love and so shocking… she happened to be the non-identical elder sister to Funke.
She worked with us during our rookie days at the 15th division precinct in Ikoyi but was transferred to Abuja as a detective 3 months earlier than we. She had gone on to be an HOU- Head of Unit like Vivian was before coming back to join us and like Vivian, her time as HOU was up. Due to her close ties with Dominic and having been away from him for more than two years, she requested transfer to Lagos to help close the distance between them both. The Abuja precinct had sent her to Lagos along with a letter of transfer that requested that she be appointed a role and recommended her for possible positions. She had just been named as the HOU for strategy and control with her jurisdiction with the ground units… Vivian happened to be the immediate past HOU.
“Hey miss Shit! We gotta meet at my lab right away.” Anne stated into the phone before dropping the call.
“What’s the plan?” Dominic asked.
“We could track his transport or even himself and maybe the call because that’s how we’ll get his destination.” Anne suggested.
“Tracking my call is gon be difficult… they might get to know.”
“Then we’ll track your ride…”
Our heads flung in the direction of the door… Fikayo had arrived and her Caucasian eyes still glowed as ever. She had her mom’s eyes… her mom was purely Caucasian and dad? Purely Nigerian… Funke had both the accent and eyes of her father and it obviously contributed to the uneasiness of affiliating both sisters as such.
“Where’s the kid that called me shit?” She asked walking in.
Anne started giggling as she stood to meet her. “Ain’t you the shit anymore?”
“Don’t say that mehn! Dominic’s here.”
They both giggled before sharing a warm embrace.
“Before you two love birds get to it would you please lets save my life?” I tried to stop the attraction between she and Dominic but to no avail as they both rendered a passionate kiss.
“Can we get to saving my life?”
“Hey dude! Slow it down. Last I checked you are still here… what’s the case?”
“Angel Daniels… we are to pay 75 billion for her release, we need to get the money to her abductors by cash and he’s been chosen to deliver it… alone. I almost forgot that part.” Anne explained.
“Are you guys insane? We are government workers, law enforcers. These sort of things shouldn’t be done. How do we pay ransoms when we can arrest who it is we are to pay the ransom to?”
“What if the government want it that way?” I cut in replying a quite furious Fikayo.
“Let’s get to it.” She announced coming close to the centre table.
“You’ll go… like I said earlier, we’ll track your ride since we don’t have an I dea of you final destination. Cameras will be watching you as well in case you need to do some walki+ng and leave the ride behind.” She stated.
Her eyes met mine in that moment and I felt the feeling rush through my spine and through every muscle and every cell in me… fear. Like that moment wasn’t enough… her next sentence had it all to say.
“But… we cannot guarantee your life.” She concluded.
I knew that already but was I ready for it… death? I didn’t think so. Having all these thoughts of what could possibly go wrong was just too much to bear. I picked up my phone and dialled the commissioner.
“Sir! We are ready.”
The helicopter hung above us as the cars sped along the Lekki- Ikoyi link bridge. The first and only cable stayed bridge in the whole of west Africa. About six patrol cars in a straight file. I was in one of them, another was carrying 75 billion. The phone rang.
“Where are you?” his voice came in immediately I picked the phone.
“Lekki- Ikoyi link bridge.”
“You need to be at the third mainland bridge in about fifteen minutes or she dies”
The line went dead. I dialled the precinct.
“Anne.” Her voice came in.
“I have no idea where you’re headed!”
“Can I reach the third mainland bridge in fifteen?”
She was silent for a while… “No… we’ve got multiple traffic clogs.”
“Clear them out! If I don’t get there in fifteen minutes, she’ll die.”
“It’ll take more than fifteen minutes to do that and we don’t have time.”
“The helicopter!” it wasn’t Anne this time it was Fikayo.
“Use the helicopter to get to the bridge. You won’t take up to fifteen minutes… it’ll buy you some time.”
“How about the cash?” I asked telling the driver to stop as some police men had dropped to create landing space for the helicopter.
“We’re dispatching another one to get it now… it should be about five minutes behind schedule.”
I jumped out of the car and moved as fast as I could away from the car and towards the helicopter. The wind from the rolling blades made it almost impossible to keep my feet on the ground.
“Strap in sir!” the pilot instructed as I sat in.
He didn’t even wait for the door to shut completely before taking off.
The serene beauty of the island of Lagos as well as its mainland was easily visible from that high.
“Detective Fikayo is on radio one.” The pilot said to me though the headset and microphone we had on.
“Both helicopters would be following you but cars are already waiting for you at the bridge.”
“Thanks…” I sighed as I looked out the window.
The University of Lagos’ senate building which I love to call the three towers painted the area ridden with wooden houses on the water in its beautiful different colours that reflected on the water in the sunny afternoon.
The copter landed on the bridge which happened to be at one time the longest in west Africa, fifth longest in Africa and sixteenth longest in the world. The police escorted me into one of the vehicle awaiting me. I picked my phone and dialled Angel Daniels’ number again.
“I’m at the bridge.”
“I see you know how to play games well.” He snuffed. “Meet me at Iwaya… Sabo Yaba in ten and have my money with you.”