M.O.T.I.V.E.S – Series Finale

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Like they say, all things come to an end. M.O.T.I.V.E.S by Unen Ameji’s is finally at its end.
We would like to thank our readers, new audience and fans for reaching out, liking our pages and helping out in sharing the story as it unfolded. Thank you.

M.O.T.I.V.E.S, a story set in old and modern day Nigeria, is a riveting, stimulating, suspense-filled tale of a myriad of absorbing characters with Unen Ameji’s fluid style of delivering engaging stories of greed, love, lust and power that leaves her audience on the edge of their seats, guessing and usually clamoring for more.

The story features Nigerian Tycoon and powerhouse Bello Badmus. A man who gave power as he willed, a man who controlled Presidents, a man who put men and monsters in seats of power; Florence Ohiemi aka Naomi Mambutu and her identical evil twin Josephine Ohiemi aka KudiraT Sadika Bello who are ever in battle of wills – good and evil, where evil prevails.

In a thrilling twist, the events likened to a classic game of chess sees each piece on the board take power and lose it and take it all over again. An illusion of power, an illusion of control.

The last episode will be posted next week! until then, enjoy the preview.

Read all Episodes here

*****

30th August, 2011 – Eid el Fitr Day

The man in sparkling black suit from Bello Badmus bomb blast stood anonymously in the large excited crowd. He smiled at the thought of how much his life had changed over the years. From an innocent Almajiri boy begging for his next meal to international eye for the underworld. Of course he was not just an eye to the highest bidder but one did not take pleasure in referring to oneself as a hired killer. No. One left such dark titles to those who thrived on giving unnecessary titles.
He smiled again as a young boy in his white kaftan and brown embroidered cap ran past him, shouting to his friends in a small group to wait for him. Ganbo found the brightly colored women, heavily made-up girls in kohl and animated boys running around the large mosque interesting and for a second remembered what it felt like to be part of the community.
Standing, he watched the scene play out before him. The crowd flooding into the mosque for prayers, the market filled with morning activities as big trucks offloaded clothing and fresh tomatoes to stalls along the street and vehicles entering the petrol station slowly, attendants fighting and shouting at a man who had parked his car strategically to shunt the moment the low metal gate of the petrol station opens. It was a familiar sight, the long queues during scarcity; the day being Sallah regardless.
If anyone was paying attention, they would have noticed the awkwardly tall man with the bad shoulder blade trudge past them. They would have noticed he walked briskly, stopping momentarily to ask for directions before continuing on his way, making haste as he moved from street to street, store to store asking for Gyaran Kashi, the town’s renowned bone setter; his Hausa language since failing him.
He had less than two hours to find the man he knew too well to be resourceful enough to connect him to who he needed to contact.
He had to find his father and time was ticking.
But even Ganbo, a hired eye, did not notice as men and women with extra clothing took positions in various spots, whispering into a local radio.

*****
Mubi – Adamawa State: 30th August 2011 – Eid el Fitr Day

The blazing stores, the burning human flesh, the exploding sounds of gas cylinders and stored petrol and the suffocating smell of burning petrol tanker. The thick black smoke hovering over the community moved heavily and slowly, lazily going up into the clouds, the only place it knew it could find redemption.
The roads and streets around the old large community mosque, new Pentecostal church few meters away, the busy car park adjacent to the church, the old fruit market and petrol station opposite the mosque had a new layer. Littered with dead and burning flesh; human flesh mangled with animal flesh almost in artistic depravity. A headless man had the head of a goat nestled on the severed throat in measured precision as if it were aligned. A disemboweled woman had a tuber of yam for large intestines with mashed red tomatoes for color and an amputated large bird with two right-legged limbs and male organ sprawled across the burning animal in a comical fashion.
Sounds of helicopter could be heard faintly approaching the burning community from the North and the fearless group in black hoods stood over the destruction, chanting loudly as they fired into already dead bodies, waiting for the helicopter with mounted PT-91 Twardy Battle Tank and a RPG-32 anti-tank grenade launcher. It was a fight to the finish and nothing was going to stop them.
The approaching military air vessels met their Waterloo the moment they became visible. Launch after launch, the men and vessels were blown apart. Hot dark flames falling from the skies as roar of jubilation filled the air in flagrant triumph. It was after all the fight for supremacy and the shredded bodies that lay on the streets and hanging on shrubs was evident that the end for the Nigeria State had come. The terrorists jumped into their trucks afterwards and drove away on human flesh flying their flags high while their cameraman filmed on.

*****

It was a black Tuesday as Nigerians sat across the country in front of their Televisions and watched as their country fell under siege. The live feeds coming from Adamawa and Borno states was nothing like they had seen as they saw lifeless bodies of men, women, children and animals littered callously in different communities so much that the citizens lost count of communities that had been captured, frightened and irked at the ruthlessly of the group. The live feeds looked the same in Gombi, Hong, Maiha and Demsa communities in Adamawa state. They watched as the terrorists butchered and beheaded, as the men in hoods summarily executed persons by shooting them straight in the head; they watched as the group destroyed abandoned military stations and took over their weapons and combat tanks, they watched as these men gunned down men who slept on walls, men who vowed to keep Nigeria safe, men in uniforms.
In what was the biggest terrorist attack in history of the country, the Boko Haram had staged series of suicidal bombings in different states in North East while engaging in full combat with foot soldiers and blowing up helicopters in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe States as soon as they were sighted.
It was a show of barbaric dominance and it was clear what needed to be done.
The need to show force, a change in Government.

*****

Jafal swirled the cold drink in his glass, the ice cubes connecting with the glass to give a faint clinking sound. He held the remote control in his hand and raised it to increase the volume the moment the face of his puppet filled his large screen.
“We have taken over your country, your community, your government and your military. Yes, you said we could not, I say to you, you underestimated the power of Allah. Allah gives victory and He has given us victory because we fight, we fight a just cause to free our land from sin, the sin of the West. Today we tell you there is no hiding place for you. We shall fight and we shall win. We have taken over Gwoza, Biu, Chibok….we are winning. It is just the beginning. President Obama, you underestimated us. Come and stop us. We are coming for you. Yes, we shall come for your daughters, your wives and your sons. We are coming to you now. Allahu Akbar! Allahu Akbar!! It was a hooded Yakubu who was known as Abu Bakr al-Shafik to the populace. The country had woken up to celebrate the end of the 30 days fasting but now it lay burning.
Jafal changed the channel and the flood of headlines and calls for resignation of the President took over international and local airways.
Nigeria terror: Boko Haram takes over government – CNN
Over 10,000 persons massacred in Nigeria, Boko Haram is the new government – Al Jazeera
War declared in Nigeria, Nigeria state falls to Boko Haram, casualty rising – BBC
Resignation call: President Jang to resign – NNTA
“I would say this was our biggest victory yet” Jafal said dropping the remote control and smiling wickedly to the man who sat beside him anxiously biting on a cigar.
“I would say” Bello answered, distracted. He knew something was wrong but for the first time, he had no idea what possibly could go wrong. He casually picked up his phone and sent a text. A reply came in almost immediately. Lazily, he nodded to himself and relaxed. He was Bello Badmus after all, nothing could go wrong.
But it was all coming to an end, even for Bello Badmus.

*****
M.O.T.I.V.E.S is written by;
Uneñ Ameji
Author of Memoirs of a Justified Gold Digger on Amazon.com
See new book Love on the 25th on Okadabooks http://goo.gl/hmsKnv
W: http://bit.ly/1Il23U3
T: https://twitter.com/UnenAmeji

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M.O.T.I.V.E.S Episode 7 – @UnenAmeji

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And this week’s episode is here! If you have not been following the story, you should.

M.O.T.I.V.E.S, a story set in old and modern day Nigeria, is a riveting, stimulating, suspense-filled tale of a myriad of absorbing characters with Unen Ameji’s fluid style of delivering engaging stories of greed, love, lust and power that leaves her audience on the edge of their seats, guessing and usually clamoring for more.

The story features Nigerian Tycoon and powerhouse Bello Badmus. A man who gave power as he willed, a man who controlled Presidents, a man who put men and monsters in seats of power; Florence Ohiemi aka Naomi Mambutu and her identical evil twin Josephine Ohiemi aka KudiraT Sadika Bello who are ever in battle of wills – good and evil, where evil prevails.

In a thrilling twist, the events likened to a classic game of chess sees each piece on the board take power and lose it and take it all over again. An illusion of power, an illusion of control.

It’s dark, it’s unpredictable, it’s M.O.T.I.V.E.S

Read all Episodes here

****
Uneñ Ameji’s Note
This is purely a work of fiction. Names, Characters, Places and Incidents are the product of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business and government establishments, events and locales is entirely coincidental. While the State Security Service and Boko Haram insurgency is mentioned, all event are mere imaginations and projections of the author.

Episode 7

Peter Osagie – Acting Director General DDSS, June – 2011
“Please” a silent plea for release, quivering and breathless from an orgasm long overdue. An orgasm that was fast becoming molten heat traveling the length of her body before settling on her swollen sensitive pink nipples, in between her wet pulsating vaginal lips and on the tips of her impeccably painted red toes. Her mouth opened in breathless rapture, her hands firmly gripping the white bedsheets as she rode the storm that was coming.
“Not.. yet, not……yet” it was a slow murmur spoken in between wet gasps of pleasure from the man underneath. Warm, regulated and yet soft, the air around their torso interpreting the fucking motion that was threatening a crescendo, none was ready to experience, but simply could not put off any further. He felt his resolve dissolve at the same time she let out a wail of pleasure, melting into uncontrollable orgasm that left her juddering like a lone leaf in December harmattan. Her explosive cry of release triggered the pent up orgasm in his spine as he wildly let go of the hot molten essence in his sacs into her.

It had always been like this between them from the moment they had set eyes on each other. They had decided it was just physical but after eight months of intense relationship and animalistic coupling in the strangest of places, Peter popped the big question. He had never met a kinkier, flexible, sexier woman and he’d be damned if he didn’t make her his.
Peter Osagie, acting Director General of the DDSS, now cuddling his 6 months pregnant wife of 8 years remembered the first time he had seen her. Bold golden brown eyes, generous heart-shaped lips and impossibly firm tipped breasts in white T-shirt and Khaki shorts that exposed her incredibly long legs.
His blood had grown unbearably hot when he had entered the Assessment room where the new recruits were standing for formal introduction to all the senior officers before their posting to various states. The 12 months intensive training program had come to an end and as the Regional Supervisor in charge of the recruitment of discreet and diligent Nigerian citizens for the DDSS, he had gone to appraise the final 50 who proved themselves diligent and fearless for integration and he had found her, Omoni O.Omoni, the only girl in the group of 50.
When his eyes had found hers, his nose flared at her scent as he came to stand in front of her. She looked back at him passively but without fear or interest; and while her colleagues bowed their heads after few seconds of eye contact with the tall domineering man with grey airs and ungroomed dark beards against what she referred to as Mulatto skin, she boldly stared at him until he was forced to move away from her. A small smile that refused to make it to her lips appeared in her eyes.
He left Kaduna with the lusty thoughts of her set mouth, delicately slim nose and remarkable golden brown piercing eyes kept him up that night and for the first time in over 8 years in the DDSS, he effected her posting to North Central, to the Capital City and to his command without regards to experience. He simply wanted her where he could monitor her, where he was closer to her.
Omoni knew the tall Mulatto carried a touch for her and she found it amusing mostly because of his reputation of being a hard ass and slave driver. She, however wasn’t interested in his subtle advances because she knew exactly what it took for her to get into the DDSS without leg. She simply couldn’t be involved and completely ignored him. This irritated Peter to no end. Her smiles were for everyone except him. Omoni secretly admired the man for getting job done despite the rumor that he was a bastard, ruthless and distrusting. Her last and only relationship had ended when her childhood love had been gunned down in her street in Port Harcourt, caught in between gang war. He was coming straight from the airport to see her after 10 years in the States. Peter turned from subtle to blatant wooing not caring for the smack remarks about him from his subordinates. Notwithstanding she kept a firm stance.
He was everywhere she looked and soon her China walls began to crack. His stares made her hot all over and whenever she caught his eyes wandering down her body – which was often, she felt like he had undressed her and tickled her all over. She would go home to human-operated fingers for good old relief. It soon became a daily occurrence and as sickening as that was, she barely could contain the excitement of going to work – just to be undressed with piercing grey eyes.
The first raid however would seal their fate.

*****

It was like every other raid but this time something went wrong. A mole in their unit leaked the raid to the group of criminals on the Interpol watch who were wanted for war crimes in Sudan. The ambush that awaited them took the lives of eight of his best men and he was shot on his shoulders. Omoni and the group of six assigned outside had an uncanny feeling and had climbed the broken down fence at the back of the house adjacent to the building where the criminals were. The incapacious bungalow in the extremely quiet Government Reserve Area in Benin City was undoubtedly the perfect hideout. After a few yards, at a bend, she saw a truck parked and a suspicious hooded man at the wheels. She plugged her earpiece and started on a careless jog like a resident. She slowed down to tie her boots and started again, taking the turn before removing her shoe and sneaking up on the truck when she heard gone shots and was torn between going to the house as back up or wait to pursue. The man at the same time started the truck engine. She climbed into the back of the truck covered in trampoline and buried herself in the pile of dirty linen stained with human blood and discarded carton of white foam as the driver moved the car. Footsteps alerted her of people approaching and she stilled as persons jumped into the truck and the truck sped off.
“Why did you carry him?” it was one of the persons at the back of the truck struggling to drop a body, breathing hard and fast.
“Because we need him” it was a quiet answer from another.
“I hope they don’t come for him” it was the same voice.
The truck drove for hours before entering untarred road that had them galloping for several meters before stopping at the foot of a blasted rock. They were at a Quarry in Lokoja. She remained in the truck until dead in the night. New persons arrived at the camp and carried four men along, leaving two guards to keep watch of the hostage.
With hands and legs cuffed, Peter looked at the site and noticed a power bike belonging to one the guards.
Later, Peter would remember the faint sounds of foots approaching, a gun exchange and seeing her face in the moonlight. Hurried but swift, she shot the cuffs off his feet and hands before pulling him up to where they mounted the power bike and drove all night to Abaji, stopping at gas station to top the tank until his strength failed him and she had found a roadside motel along the expressway. Both of them had slept off the moment their heads touched the bed. Eight hours later, he woke up just at dusk to see her eyes looking into his. He gave a faint smile and for the first time, she smiled back.
“You had me worried there” she said quietly, watching him. She had redressed the gun wound at his shoulder while she waited for him to wake up. The wound was deep but thankfully the bullet had a clean pass.
“I am sorry” he croaked, returning a smile. He tried to sit up and failed. The kick one of the criminals delivered to his midsection was raw and the pain made him doubled over.
“Where are we?” he asked after he lay down back.
“Some lodge. The receptionist was pretty much helpful” she laughed at his question and he laughed back.
“Female?” he teased and she blessed him with another of her dazzling smiles, standing up.
“Naturally” she answered as she made to get up with her back to him. Without knowing when he moved, his good hand circled her waist and she slapped them away playfully.
“Stay. Stay with me” he asked softly with longing in his eyes and she stayed and fucked him.
The next bust of the same criminals was successful after Peter and his squad met gave wrong information to the footmen and staged pseudo operation that led to identifying the mole – Garba. Garba after he was caught led the team to make an easy arrest of the criminals frolicking with local women in their new hideout in Ajaokuta. It was the perfect mission and they returned to the capital city with criminals to parade before handing them to the police and Interpol as was customary.
That was the beginning of the hot affair that quickly escalated to a relationship that had Peter intimidating other male colleagues that found her attractive. He couldn’t stand the attention, the eyes that settled on her like his did nor did he find it remotely funny that she made him purposely jealous by refusing to be tagged as his woman. She would go out with different men to taunt him and he would fume and parade his house like a caged tiger, throwing things and smashing glass cups on the wall. When he saw her again, he would let loose his anger, jealous and possessiveness on her hot spot but it was not enough. There was only one way to make her his and he had married her after 8 months. For a man who vowed to live a single life, Peter had failed.
That was 8 years ago.
Eight years since she refused a normal life until he finally got her pregnant. He smiled at the thought.
“I love you” he murmured into her neck, sniffing her scent and withdrawing from her. Trailing kisses down her neck to her shoulders, gently biting her neck and spooning her. She was quiet.
“I have to leave for Mubi tomorrow” he said gravely as he held her for several minutes wondering how to explain his promotion all over again.
His boss – Mr. Igwe Mbaka sacked by the President who was erstwhile passive in the bomb blast and security challenges in the North East had appointed him the acting Director General and had requested a private meeting with only him few days later. A meeting that would change the face of the DDSS and their jurisdiction. What the President was asking of the Agency has never been done but as the President has gravely revealed, the country was on the verge of a coup and not even the service chiefs were to be trusted.
“I have heard you have a trusted man in the Boko Haram camp” it was the President, heavy and sad. Peter was momentarily tempted to deny it but simply nodded.
“Good. Our people are in trouble. The unity of Nigeria lies in your hands Mr. Osagie. You must do all you can to get those behind the boys or Nigeria as we all know it is over” the President had told him with a tired look in his chambers.
The next day, in a surprising move the President ordered the relocation of the command center to Gwoza, the hotbed of the terrorists activities but had called him on a secure line to ask for help. He said he was placing all he had in him.
Peter couldn’t refuse a national call. Now more than ever, he had to serve but Omoni was not impressed.
As far as she was concerned, the President was sending her husband into the vipers den. The arguments had turned from hot to tears and back to hot again until both had given up on changing each others mind. If he wanted to go, Omoni decided she’d let him.
“Be careful” was all she said after he got up butt naked and walked over to the bathroom. His decision to go undercover with only three of his trusted men to Gwoza left her feeling afraid. How easy was it for him to go and die in the name of serving his country instead of staying with her and their son? In a desperate attempt to change his mind, she had gotten an ultrasound to derail him but knowing he had a son didn’t stop the plans he made all day and all night. If anything, it fueled his zeal to get his boys underway.
Peter’s thoughts several days up to the moment were solely of one man, Bello Badmus. He knew in his gut that the unrest in the region lay with the man and if ghost could be found, he wanted to.
To Peter, it all didn’t add up.
Dying mysteriously.
Getting blown up.
Disinheriting his family.
It simply was too easy to swallow.
The Presidential order to move the command center that was untimely and with the President calling for help, Peter’s gut itched some more. It reeked of Bello Badmus’s military style of overthrowing men in power but even he knew that dead men have no bite. Voicing the suspicion to his already distressed wife and trusted men would only make him sound desperate and disillusioned.
“Who would want to kill a dead man? Who would want to use a dead man to kill more birds? Who would benefit from a dead man? His new heir?” he asked himself again and again, in writing and when staring at the ceiling in his study. The boy had not even existed until the last couple of weeks and after investigation, he was squeaky clean. If anything, it looked like a perfect stage and a puppet to distract the country from what was really going on behind the curtain.
Peter knew if he sniffed some more or connected the dots properly, he would find the pattern that would reveal who or least a clue to who or what was behind the insurgency in the North East and the call to move the command center. He was absolutely sure it had everything to do with the bombing but for the first time in 15 years in service, he had nothing sitting in his study or office. The answer was in Gwoza and he was going to get it.
When Farah’s note had reached him a day after his secret meeting with the President, it was all he needed to put the team together. The note as usual was sown into wraps of multicolored turbans. It was the only way to communicate and Farah, his mole in the Boko Haram camp hinted how he fared by how squeezed the dirty piece of brown carbon paper was and this time, the piece of note was wrung out.
Farah – Mohammed Abdirahman a freshly recruited DDSS officer had volunteered way early in the start of the uprising to get information about the group but had gotten stuck. The group grew fiercely and when the first proxy of unnamed sponsor had shown up in their camp at night 4 years ago Farah, who by now was a trusted pioneering and senior member knew he had to stay to get the faces of the men behind the group exposed. He could only leave the camp in pretense of scouting for local recruits and gathering intelligence for their next hit. He would then smuggle reports in turbans through his old Uncle to Peter.
Once he was caught with Turbans and when he was questioned rather bloodily, he said it was his ritualistic symbol in recruiting and inviting sympathizers to join the brotherhood. Yakubu – the head of the group was particularly proud of Farah’s innovation because he sent more turbans than other fighters. He was truly a worker of Allah and Farah was once again promoted to be his right hand man. However, things were getting tensed and Farah knew his time was near.
Peter was going to Gwoza to get Farah back. He owed him.

*****

The scalding hot water from the newly installed shower left Peter partly burnt and relaxed but it did nothing to stop the uneasiness and nagging feeling of sabotage.
Kole Bello had since been found dead with his throat slashed open in an apartment in the U.K. That also made headlines but it was one less maze to go through.
The Intel that the youngest of the Bellos recruited fighters from countries in the North especially Libya, Sudan and Egypt to train fighters from Nigeria and neighboring countries was the reason he had requested for Kole’s intial arrest and subsequent tailing at his father’s funeral only to be smuggled out by his mother few hours after the blast.
Farah in the last one year had steadily reported the activity of the young man and the fallout between Kole and Yakubu because Kole had started demanding some form of payment and the head was not going to pay because he was a medium. This Intel coincided with the information that Bello Badmus had tightened funds to his children for over six months. At the time Peter was optimistic that Bello may have found out his son was funding the group and was doing all he could to stop it. In fact Peter praised him quietly but when Kole’s drug smuggling activities reached its zenith with law enforcement agencies releasing Kole and his boys on Bello’s order, Peter took back his goodwill and started on the best way to cut Kole’s funding of the group.
Peter had suspected Kole was responsible for his father’s mysterious death and the bomb blast as soon as the news broke. The autopsy that had been boycotted by the family on religious ground and the eventual blow up was to Peter a perfect cover up of the murder. That had been 4 months ago. Now Peter knew for sure that Kole, like the new puppet at The Castle was a distraction and that the blow up was indeed a way to kill the dignitaries for a specific purpose than just a random terrorist attack.
The Boko boys took responsibility for the bomb blast as was expected but Farah had reported differently. Farah reported that on the day of the attack, they were raiding a community for new girls for breeding of holy warriors to continue in the fight. He reported that Yakubu had received a call and staged a recording to take responsible for the attack before spewing out other rubbish and once again warning other government officials of their continuance to serve a godless country, a country that Allah was going to redeem by spilling their blood.
Now as he dressed in his favorite clean Jeans and black sweater, he watched his wife stare at him the whole time he moved about to get ready.
“I will be back soon” he said when he finally drew her up to hug her and kiss her eyes brimming with unshed tears.
“Make sure you do or I’d be forced to come get you” she teased painfully before succumbing to his kisses once more. The sound of the horn separated them as he picked his bag pack and walked to join his three-man team.
Watching him go was one of the hardest thing she had ever done in her life. But she had to. She knew he was like a dog with a bone and until he got to the end, he would not rest.
The tears finally found their way down in lone streams as she prayed that he come back to her and their baby alive and whole. And when she blinked after the Hilux disappeared from sight, it poured.

*****
7-Man: Meeting at The Elephant, June 2011.

The calm in the room was the best they had since the new faction of seven greedy, powerful and dangerous men decided to take laws into their hands and execute their former members who went out of line. To them, actions to bring the cabal to order was betrayal and former members had paid with their lives. Each man seated in the large airy white room had one agenda and it was on who was going to be the next person to take the seat of government. The head of the faction with the deep voice searched their eager faces and refrained from laughing at their gullibility. It excited him and amused him tirelessly at how they thought they stood a chance against him. He was destined to be the next President of the country. Greedy they were but they all served his purpose – but not for long. He knew first hand what fall-out factions were capable of. They were all seated and relaxed. Some had been served drinks by his aide and the light conversation in the room soon turned serious.
“The new order of the Executive must be watched at every step. We cannot afford the mission to succeed. We have gone too far now to get a simple order forestall our plan to get the President out” it was Jafal Kartar Asiedu to the men and woman who faced him the moment he opened his mouth.
Mostly referred to as J.K Asiedu in the media, Jafal was former general and war veteran. He had served on the Nigerian side in the civil war and later headed the ECOMOG mission in Liberia rumored to have populated the region with over thousands of children from the Nigerian and Ghanian troops and had committed war crimes from summary executions to bribery, extortions and abusing women and children. He had the ambition to govern the country but luck or chance never came to his door. Now he had gone to the door of the Executive Mansion to hijack the seat. His Pastor told him to take it by force because God’s kingdom suffered violent. It was a case of who was strong enough to take it and by God, he was.
He was not a man of the people and the populace knew him for the war crimes also attributed to his Command during the Civil war. J.K was singlehandedly responsible for over 50, 000 Biafrans lives at the Gulf and when he was called to answer for his crimes, he had simply thrown his commanding officers under the ICC bus. They were found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment until a new Attorney General of the International Criminal Court had been appointed and made a deal with the prisoners. They were to get full immunity in turn for their cooperation to name the men who had massacred and committed war crimes during the civil war.
The warden on duty found them shot in the head the next day in Dutch prison in Scheveningen where they had been temporarily transferred and detained. Where there was no evidence or witness, there was no justice. That was the problem with justice, it almost always never has no witness when it mattered the most.
He had called the emergency meeting after the President ordered the relocation of the command center to Gwoza and receiving a $140 million fund from supporting countries in the fight against terrorism. While the populace celebrated the new show of force by the Aso man – as he called the lizard in the Executive mansion, they had no idea that the directive came from the men that be, the men that owned the country and they were only two of them.
“We have that covered. The Service Chiefs are well aware of what is at stake. They are in line with the plan” it was Benedict Onwuka Njoku, the Vice president who wanted power by all means necessary and had since joined forces with the new faction members to remove the Aso man, the lizard. Jafal nodded at his enthusiasm and took a drink.
“I understand your husband disinherited you?” the question was directed at the only woman in the group of seven. The meeting had also been called in honor of her. She was perceived by the rest of the group as the hero that had made their plans easier to execute but like vipers, they waited patiently for the day they would toss her out like the garbage that she was. It was only a matter of time before it was her turn to be sacrificed.
“I find it rather unworthy of attention. The boy is nothing but an old mistake and I have it under control” the woman who sat in place of Mrs. Kudirat Bello said confidently, answering his question of being disinherited by her late husband, Bello Badmus.
“You mean like you had Bello and his repentant snakes under control” it was the lily-livered member smiling like a stranded kangaroo in Parque Zoológico Caricuao.

The plan to take over the seat of government was simple.
1. Increase the spate of killings by funding the terrorists.
2. Deploy ineffective troops.
3. Embezzlement of the $140million.
4. Stage a war breakout.
5. Overthrow the Government
6. Vanquish Boko Haram.
With the plan, it wouldn’t be long before the people called for the impeachment of the President and when that happened, the Chiefs would declare a state of emergency and take over government while the Senior Adviser to the President, the old goat Nurudeen Soyemi would silently execute the President and his backstabbing Vice. J.K was not sure Nurudeen could carry out a simple drugging of their drinks but sometimes even old goats had their uses.
The simplicity of the plan and foolish ignorant faces of the men sitting before almost caused Jafal to laugh out loud. It was all set and with the recent move of the command center, the stakes were raised higher and the blood bath that was coming was one that was going to leave the country in national mourning for a long time. He wondered who ICC was going to witch-hunt next.

“We don’t mean to pry but we must make sure there are no issues on that front. The contracts awarded to your late husband by the present government will well serve our purposes of recruiting more local and international fighters and need I remind everyone of the black market prices of these weapons? The French are bastards” it was Jafal playing the advocate.
Florence Ohiemi sat in that meeting with so much confidence that she frightened herself at the length she was willing to go to get her revenge. She knew the faces of the men in the room and it pained her dearly that these were the man responsible for senseless blood bath and unrest in the country.
It was the night after she returned from where she held Kudirat. Bello had left her to her devices but he had suggested she find more clues to help with her mission at Kudirat’s private residence. It was more than a welcomed suggestion and Florence had gone to the simple 2 bedroom bungalow surrounded by exotic plants in the heart of town. The Gardener who greeted her profusely said she had a message and she had found a note neatly attached to the letter of consolation from the Major General J.K Asiedu on her sister’s large mahogany desk in her study.
On opening the letter, a note fell out and on it was a call for an emergency meeting stating the time, date and venue on a plain sheet of paper. The address of the venue was clearly stated. That was enough to raise her curiosity and alertness. Florence knew a set up when she saw one. If indeed Josephine was involved with the high and dangerous, the address of what she suspected was a meeting of the infamous cabal would not be clearly stated on a plain sheet of paper. It would be coded.
Florence knew the smell of a fish and the letter was a stinking fish.
Perhaps they knew she had Josephine in hiding? Where her friends in high places monitoring her or Josephine in her usual fashion had more enemies than one could possibly have.
There was only one way to find out.
Arriving at the meeting at the ungodly hour stated was expected but the brief look of triumph across the Major General’s face gave Florence cause for concern. It looked like he was in on something that the rest of the group wasn’t aware and she was set to find out.
The faces of two notorious Ex-governors, Vice president, Deputy Senate president and well-respected Cleric shocked her but she had quickly feigned a cough as they all gathered round to toast to her success. Success in killing people was toasted here and Florence joined in drinking to hundreds of lives blown apart.
She smiled as she thought of Bello and slightly shuddered with pleasure at the thought of going back to his hide out in his estate.
“We will feel better once the boy is taken out of the picture” it was the well-respected Cleric interrupting her thoughts.
“I have it under control” Florence reiterated dangerously – as Josephine would and she saw them smile in satisfaction. She had no idea that she said the same thing Josephine said before Bello had been killed and the bomb had gone off few months after. Of course, she was the only one in the group to know that Bello was alive and well. She smiled at the thought.
“I am sure. This time, we don’t have three months. We need him to go quietly. Perhaps an accident? Random shootings is my favorite. Let us know if there are problems” Jafal said with good humor and they laughed as his treacherous eyes settled on her bosoms.
“If I could take care of Bello, I am utterly upset at doubting my stance on the boy” she hissed playfully after the laugh ended as if she was insulted and they all nodded their agreement.
“You all will have news in the next days about his untimely demise. However, we must contact the sellers immediately to have more guns for the boys. I’d also like to propose negotiating new arrangements. Extortion by way of high price of weaponry is not going to work for me. Should the French bastards refuse our terms, I have contacts in Syria that can get sophisticated guns for the boys. I for one think the tipping point for the new government is just a matter of force and more blood” Florence was getting into character and she found it exhilarating. It was surprising how easily one got into the role but she wasn’t amazed at her performance. She knew to get the information, she have to play the part. Impersonating Kudirat was a walk in the park.
“You will be coming with me to Dubai next week to meet them. We don’t want to stress a newly widowed and disinherited member but what must be done must be done” Jafal stated with dry humor as he declared the meeting closed and the group filed out after small talks in pairs of two while Jafal’s eyes kept resting on hers as the group cleared out of the room.
If Florence wasn’t getting ahead of herself, she noticed he was smiling unnecessarily, readily agreeing to her suggestions and making plans to taking her with him on couple of meetings. Akin Jolojolo, one of the ex-Vice Presidents obviously his right hand stewed on his foot and when he was dismissed for a private meeting with Florence, he all but stormed out as gracefully as he could.
“I should get to work. Some accidents need to happen” she said in a smile, declining his invitation as he raised his hand to her chin.
“It is not appropriate” Florence held his hand and dropped it firmly.
“I would have found you weak if you agreed. We need your new step-boy gone and soon. Daba!” he barked loudly as if he wasn’t ogling her moments prior. Immediately the door opened to reveal the man called Daba and she was ushered out of the hall, leaving a little chip behind.

*****
Bello Badmus: The Elephant, June 2011

He watched as she left his 15 room mansion with enough grounds to develop a couple of structures if he wanted but he didn’t. He liked to walk from his helipad to the house. It was one of such properties one owned just for pleasures like this. He had chaired their meeting from his study. He watched the vultures try to get favors from Jafal and watched Florence impersonate her sister to perfection. How classic. He felt like a god in handling of affairs of the State and as he came downstairs, he saw his best friend, Jafal sitting with a glass of brandy, in deep thoughts.
“Easy on the thoughts” he laughed easily coming to take the seat Florence was sitting just for a feel of her scent and the thought of dominance. The grand master and ace game player, he felt invincible.
“So how did you see her performance?” it was Bello taking a mouthful of his glass of brandy.
“If you had not told me it was your wife’s twin sister, I would have fallen for her acting” it was Jafal in his usual deep voice.
“She is good. Very good” he said almost in admiration.
“Spare me master player. You faked your own death, blew up your old friends and set Kudirat take fall for it. You killed your son to keep him from talking after using his identity to import arms and he found out he was fronting for his own father….and to top it all got this new piece fine woman to go into retirement with” he said in a low laugh generating from his throat wickedly.
“Point of correction, he wasn’t my son. After all the monies him and the others enjoyed, I had to get something from him. I have you to thank for my wife’s brilliant idea to kill me. I must say it was the right kind of creativity we needed to pull it off” he chuckled enjoying the rare praise for his bosom friend.
“And the other two from George?” Jafal asked
“Oh well, remind me to send Daba to trail my new retirement piece. I need get rid of them before they squeal and for some reasons she likes to think she has things under control” he drank heavily and chuckled again. The thought that Florence would think herself smart was admirable and stupid. Of course he knew who Naomi Mambutu was. He wasn’t Bello Badmus for nothing. Investing in his company was so sweet and innocent that he had staged an accident meet in a beach she favored in Seychelles. Oh the poor woman. He really loved her innocence and sighs of pleasure. It was not like the first time but she was the purest he could find. She would do for retirement. She seems to like beaches.
“So what is next?” Jafal asked as Bello got up to refill his glass. Jafal stretched his frame and brought out a cut cigar from his pocket and lighting it expertly before dragging it to his fill.
“Well, making you the President is not as easy as I thought. I had to kill myself” Bello all but grunted.
“You owe me” Jafal smiled referring to saving Bello’s life when he had been hired to assassinate over a decade ago. It had been the first time the two would meet and become good friends.
“I don’t think so. I have paid my dues and you on your own now” Bello smiled as he took his seat, Florence’s seat.
“Not when my boy is still after me” Jafal said almost sadly.
“I can’t help that your illegitimate son has decided to become a torn in your flesh” Bello drank from his glass.
Jafal, a prominent philanderer in his days had fathered his bastard son with an Irish maiden who had taken to a black man as moth to flame. It was invariable she got burnt with black seed. Nathaniel Asiedu now Peter Osagie was indeed a torn and now more than ever, he had everything to lose if his son, now the acting Director General got his nose in the grind.
Peter had taken up the name of his great grandparents and dissociated himself from his father the moment he was old enough to know who his father was. He was everything Peter didn’t want to be and from the moment he left the house at 12 years of age to stay with his maternal grandparent, he began a career that would bring men like his father to justice. Men like his father didn’t deserve to be left to their devices but put behind bars.
Father and son knew there was no lost love but Jafal had a soft spot for his son and he hated being put in the position to eliminate because he would. He made sure his dealings with the underworld were kept away from his son but Peter liked the dark side.
“You do realize if I go down, you go down” Jafal warned as he dragged his cigar and blew the smoke in rings watching his friend.
“You forget that I am already dead. You, my friend must be firm and extremely careful. All fingers point to you now” Bello said
“Not if I pointed them to your new squeeze. Tell me, how do you get these women to trust you implicitly?” Jafal asked brightly after a while, suddenly forgetting his distrust and cautiousness when it came to Bello. They were friends but one could never be sure with Bello Badmus.
“She thinks her sister is the new devil. She has been practically in love with me forever. Not that hard if you are lovable” Bello laughed a boyishly.
“And the boy she is supposed to kill? Is he not your son, her son?” Jafal took a lazy drag.
“Her son. I am still new to the fathering table. I am sure she is going to hide him again but this time, not from me, not for long”
“You intend to kill your son?” Jafal was shocked at the evil look that came over Bello’s clouded eyes and for the first time saw the monster that sat before him.
“How else am I going to get the control of my company back?” Bello emptied his glass.
“But when you get rid of him, Florence takes over” Jafal contended
“No” it was emphatic.
“Who then takes over?”
“You” Bello answered with a sly.
“And what happens to Florence?”
“Every good thing comes to an end, sadly” he added as an afterthought and as soon as he said it, the two men looked at themselves and broke out in loud shattering laughter that rang across the empty mansion obliviously to the chip planted in between the sofa of the chair where Florence had sat down and straight into the ears of the woman who sat in her car few streets away from the house.
The cold pimples that sprouted on her arms as she listened and the wet tears that threatened to drop was stopped just in time as she joined them in the loud shattering belly-filling laughter.
There was no end of betrayal and her suspicious had proved right.
Bello Badmus, how sweet his fall would be.
“Why is the fall of great men orchestrated by women always the sweetest?” she asked herself sweetly still coming down from the laugh as she drove to Kudirat, the recorded discussion in her possession.
After 30 days in Avianwu-replica, Kudirat was ready to play ball.
And somehow, Florence was sure Josephine was really going to enjoy playing this ball.
They say the best revenge was served cold, Florence thought the best revenge was served in painful small chops.

*****
*****

M.O.T.I.V.E.S is written by;
Uneñ Ameji
Author of Memoirs of a Justified Gold Digger on Amazon.com
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M.O.T.I.V.E.S Episode 6 – @UnenAmeji

Featured

Morning People!

Finally! we have got Episode 6 of M.O.T.I.V.E.S after a loooooooooonng abrupt break. We hope you enjoy it.

Read all previous Episodes here

*****
Note from Unen Ameji
Hey guys, I must apologize for the two weeks break. Hopefully that never happens until the end of the series. The first week was the inauguration week and working in a *Buhari-oriented enviroment – whatever that means, it was a marathon. It was inevitable that I miss sending in the post. And last week Tuesday, I had an accident on my way to work – I was driving. While the facial injuries (Yup, different places) is/are healing, I sincerely hope there are no ugly scars – sexy scars I can deal. *winks
Seriously though, I am thankful and so grateful to be alive. I really am. Wasn’t the best of experience and never ever will I have a repeat.
Back to Motives – You may have to brush through the story to get flowing again, sorry about that. I promise to convert episodes into chapters and format into downloadable*s.
Soooooooo, enjoy this episode and let me know what you think – here or wherever is most convenient. I don’t mind. I love to hear/read your comments.
To Ridwan, Joesph, Ginika, Timayin, Sleekdami and her wonderful friend, Mariam, Zarah, Eve, Sim, Prince, Soulkey, Bisi, Shagkor, Temi T, ephortunate and those I have not mentioned here but have reached out…..thank you. I write most times because of your inspiring comments.
I’d love to know what you guys think – about the story; not asking me “How did it happen?” I am past telling the narrative, seriously guys.

Cheers.
https://twitter.com/UnenAmeji

*****

Episode 6

Avianwu – Auchi, March, 1982

Florence woke up to the cracked dirty walls, the soggy brown asbestos ceiling with irregular water marks from rusted leaking aluminum roof covering half of the building and large cobwebs dangling merrily in the eerily lit room. The warm air was humid as it was suffocating, with stench of decaying human waste, concentrated urine and a little of what Florence would come to know as weed. The putrid smell originated from the farther corner of the room where the en-suite toilet had no door nor roof.
Florence, faint and disoriented, tried to rise up from the sack which served as her bedding and felt her legs give away. She felt sick and the strong urge to vomit was overwhelming. Struggling to support her weak frame by holding the wall, she moved albeit shakingly, taking steady breaths. Reaching the middle of the room to where the only window was, she struggled with the metal locks momentarily and forced it opened just in time to throw up the heavy greenish slime that troubled her being.
Retching loudly and hoping to turn her insides out, she noticed movement from afar in the bushes and soon heard voices approach the building. Suddenly afraid for her safety, she looked around for the door and walked over to it, prying it open. She found it locked from the outside. As the voices neared, she hurried back to the sack and lay down, feigning to be asleep while she waited for the voices to fade.
The voices faded eventually but the thin man with extremely long limbs that entered the room several minutes later reminded Florence of the story of the giant praying mantis only that his countenance belied his fragility. His unusually black face looked like it was cast in precolonial bronze and the gun he hung loosely around his neck and pistol he held carelessly had Florence nodding when he asked if she was sleeping. Fear indeed improved Florence’s hearing ability, even when she was supposed to be fast asleep. She opened her eyes afterwards and slowly sat up after she noticed the thin man go about his business of removing his black overall.
“Where am I? How long have you had me here?” she braved as he settled at the other corner of the large room that looked like an emptied abandoned classroom.
“You are in Avianwu. You have been sleeping for 3 days or more, not sure. Found you lying in the bushes. You can remember taking a nap in the bushes?” he asked wickedly in surprisingly good English and walking over to the open en-suite toilet to take a piss. She had no answer but watched as the yellow liquid splashed on his trousers before turning to face the wall in disgust. Her stomach was rumbling again.
“Here” he said when he returned, throwing her a black leather bag. The wet biscuits in the bag would last Florence for the next couple of days and it would be the beginning of their routine that would last 24 days, three weeks and three days, Florence kept count.
24 days after her escape from the spiritualists that Josephine had staged, 24 days after she found herself in the dungeon with the thin dragon, she started experiencing headaches, cough, sore throat and high fever. Constantly throwing up and feeling cold all night, all day. Her dungeon-mate who came only in the mornings became overly worried and watched her for hours when she was sleeping and mumbling nonsensically. She would wake up at intervals to see him watching her, like the vulture – the haggard scavenger that doesn’t pay the barber visits.
Waking from one of those numerous nap, Florence, dehydrated and hungry, found a tin of clean water, a bowl of sparklingly fufu and what looked like badly cooked Egusi soup plastered on the fermented cassava dough. What was supposed to be cooked meat stared at Florence with flagrant boldness until she was tempted to throw the piece of meat away. She dared not for she felt his eyes on her from his corner.
Nke ahụ bụ ewu nwa anya, n’ihi na protein” he said in Igbo, noticing her hesitation at eating the food he had placed before her. Florence simply nodded as her stomach growled to announce her hunger despite the goat eyeball he served her as protein. Swallowing small balls of the cassava dough, the thin man with the fierce countenance fixed a direct stare at her, challenging her to eat, to throw up. Surprisingly, she didn’t. Her system seemed to like the smell of the fufu and hot green peppered Egusi soup. She was feeling better after she finished the large plate with running nose and weak limbs.
“Lock the door after me and stay in. Wandering around here gets you killed” he said almost in a murmur as he stood to get ready to go out. He had since stopped locking her from the outside. If she wanted to go, she could – so he told her after her seventh day. She had taken a step out of the dilapidated building and found herself rushing back. It was literally a jungle out there. Lighting a rolled up leaf that Florence knew was marijuana and taking a deep drag, he offered her humorously.
“Please” she croaked as the smell enveloped the room. The smell always gave her headaches and coughs and he knew it. He fixed her another stare before leaving to join the group of strange looking men who always waited for him outside the deserted building every afternoon.
The broken-down building was located at what appeared to be in a valley surrounded by tall palm trees and well-rounded large trees that Florence decided were either mahogany or Iroko. The insects that stung her, night animals wailings and the cold air that made her young bones shiver every night told her she was nowhere near civilization.
She had also joined the thin man in taking dumps in the toilet by placing newspapers or fresh plantain leaves he provided on top of the cemented floor and when there wasn’t space, she simply placed the newspapers or leaves on drying excreta and took new dump. Life was unbearable and she was certain she was going to lose the baby and die, and Josephine would be happy.
The thought however strengthened her resolve to live. She decided she wasn’t going to die, she wasn’t going to give her sister the satisfaction of disappearing from the face of the earth forever. From her kidnap to her scape and her apparent rescue after she fainted in a cassava farm, she vowed she would survive and pay her sister back in kind and in coin.
He rarely spoke to her that fateful morning, the 25th day in the forest. He simply ignored her and sharpened his knives and polished his guns the day before, smoking his marijuana without caring if she was going to vomit or faint. She stayed quiet and watched him getting ready for what she knew was going to be a raid or possibility another kidnap. Her morning sickness had reduced but the urge to throw up and weakness still woke her up every morning. Somehow her rush to the window amused him and at such times, she would see twinkles in hie eyes.
“We will be leaving tonight” he said quietly as he ate what would be his last meal, a plate of white rice and palm oil stew with dried fish he brought from who Florence came know was Mama Edo, the woman who the healing fufu and Egusi soup came from. Mama Edo was supposedly the the forest’s herbalist and food vendor.
“Tonight? To where” she asked alarmed, wondering why they will be leaving in the night, in the thick scary darkness. He was surely going to give her to another spiritualist since he had figured out she was pregnant, she thought.
“Leaving to the city. What is your name?” he asked, ignoring her eyes filled with fear. His eyes dropped to her stomach and instinctively she covered her stomach with her thinning hands.
“Florence” she answered going back to her corner when he gave her the remaining food in a blue plastic plate.
“Florence who?” he asked, his voice a little tighter than usual as he stood up and took the last drag of his stem. The thin man almost always smoked marijuana after his meals.
“Florence Ohiemi” she said taking a spoon of the already mixed red rice.
“Florence Ohiemi, from where?” he continued his questioning as he started dressing, hanging his gun and wearing his black leather overall that needed washing.
“From Ibienafe” Florence answered, dropping the spoon and pushing away the plate from her.
“Eat, you will need your strength” he admonished and she picked up the plate again.
“If I come back, we will be leaving this place. Do not sleep, be ready to go immediately I get back” he said sternly to a fearful Florence.
“Why at night? Can’t we go in the morning?” she asked as he stood up to go.
“You are the pregnant one. Do you want to leave this place? he barked and she dropped her head.
“Yes” she answered meekly.
“You don’t know where you are. How do you expect to walk into this forest and get to civilization without guidance?” he asked, looking at her like a petulant child.
“Sorry” was all she could say.
“What’s his name?” he asked after few minutes of silence.
“Who?”
“Your child. A male child” he tried a pitiful smile that made him look like a hungry wild cat, the kind that chewed red kolanut.
“I…, I don’t know. I have not thought about it” she replied with a smile herself. Her mouth felt like an algae pond, slimy and green, her breath stinking like rat died in her bowels and her body was so filthy one could use the dirt to plaster the cracks on the wall.
“Inale” he told her and looked at her thinning frame with pity before disappearing into the forest.
“Inale” she murmured under her breath as she watched him go.
He returned at midnight. When the sun had since forgotten it rose and when the moon took over the skies. However, that particular night, the moon was taking a well deserved break and refused to give night light. The stars took their cue from the moon and they too refused to entertain the dark skies. She had been waiting for him all day. A little sleep, a little murmuring of prayers. She prayed for life, her own, the thin man’s own. God knew her dungeon-mate as the thin man.
“Florence” he called in a whisper from the window and she was soon out, following him. He was with a large bag and a pistol. His appearance disheveled and dried blood on his clothes and forehead. Using flashlight to indicate his position and walking briskly into the unknown, Florence could only follow.
She ran to meet up, wet grasses rubbing her exposed legs as they took uncharted path up the uneven hills and down the meandering plains. Once, she tripped and almost fell into a hole.
“Watch where I step and be quiet” he admonished tiredly, backing the large bag and turning to lead the way.
They walked for what seemed like hours to Florence. Night birds howling, insects biting her exposed limbs, neck and face, wild animals grunting and making strange noises as they walked the lonely bushy path. From a distance, Florence could here chanting of human beings and it sounded evil. Florence jogged to keep up.
After an hour, he stopped abruptly and pointed.
“That’s the highway. When we get there, know where you want to go or follow me. I don’t want to waste time” he all but grunted and forged on.
Florence had no idea where to go to. Until that moment, she thought he was going to kill her or sell her.
“Where are you going to?” she asked, making a conversation and at the same time trying to decide where she would run to. She couldn’t go back home just yet and going back to Zaria was out of the question. With the pregnancy and her evil sister, she knew she had to stay away for a while or else Josephine would find a way to get rid of her, this time for good. And if she wanted an abortion or to give birth to the baby, she had to find out how that worked.
“Cotonou, then Senegal” he answered as they walked hastily, the thin man holding the gun and looking around as they matched on.
“That’s out of Nigeria” she said mostly to herself.
“Yes”
“What’s your name?” she finally braved up to ask as he vied off another bushy path and entered thick bush obviously an attempt to get to the highway faster. She followed, albeit cautiously.
“Friends call me Inale” he answered.
“And enemies?” she tried a joke, wiping sweat from her brows.
“I don’t have enemies” he countered.
“Everyone has enemies. You wanted me to name my child after you, why?” she asked merrily.
“Not me. Yes I wanted your son named after me” he grunted.
“How is that possible? I know for sure everyone has enemies. My own is my sister” she said continued, a smile playing on her lips. They were having a conversation and he was leading her to safety. She decided that instant to follow him. Somehow she knew he would protect her and her baby.
“Because I don’t let them live. You shouldn’t let your sister live either” he said dangerously and she felt shivers go down her spine. The conversation was over.
The next thing that happened changed Florence life forever.
Few minutes after she had stopped questioning him, Inale gave a loud scream and instinctively fired his legs, falling down in a heap. He threw the large bag away and shot at his legs some more. Florence, confused, ran back and waited at a safe distance.
Inale unfortunately had stepped in a pool of poisonous king cobras and they had fastened their fangs on his legs and thighs. They bite him randomly on his long limbs as he shot into the night, killing them, shooting himself. He was bleeding profusely by the time she went back to help him up.
“Please don’t give up. We’ll soon reach” she comforted him as she placed his arms over her shoulders.
“I won’t” he grunted as they moved.
Florence dragged him from the dead snakes, tying his legs and thighs in attempt to prevent circulation of the poison and carried the bag before they started on the path he had vied from. The mixture of pain and poison soon slowed him down and he gave up after 10 minutes to lay down on the wet grasses.
“I am not going to make it. Make sure you do. And whatever you do, don’t abort that child. Take the money in the bag and invest it. Don’t spend me like a fool” he said in between pain and cough as he tried a brave smile.
“Please, please” she was crying now, sweat rolling down her face, afraid for her life, for his. She heard the first cock crow and this time she prayed, using Inale instead of the thin man. But it was too late. There were a million and one thin men in the world and God must have saved the wrong one.
“Let me bleed your legs or at least tie it again” but Inale was long gone after she opened her eyes from the prayer.
He died at the third crow.
Florence, with the bag sat with his body until dawn, crying for her lost friend, for a man she would never know, her rescuer. She waited for help but none came.
Later, Florence would bury him in a ditch beside where he slept peacefully, a beautiful smile now on his lips. She put wet branches over him, carried the bag on her head, walked to the highway before boarding a pickup carrying fresh meat heading to Lagos.
The bag contained new crispy notes in different denomination just as Inale said. The decision to go to Cotonou in the motel room two days later came naturally. Senegal was her next stop.
And Florence did right by the bag.

*****
Lagos, December, 1999

The trip from Dakar to Lagos 18 years later with a teenager looking like his father, Florence was convinced Bello was going to be shocked and proud to have a son, Inale – a hot headed, smooth and savvy young man – carry his last name. Florence, now Naomi Mambety, was the owner of chains of hotels and fast food eateries across the capital – Dakar, Grand Dakar and Pikine and she had since understood Bello for been confused that night and forgiven Josephine after several counseling sessions for her wicked plot. She was a wealthy woman in her own right, married and divorced and was ready to return home, investment wise as well as be reunited with her sister, if ever possible. Pastor Faye Cisse seemed to believe so. Of course there was no question about her love for Bello. She still loved him deeply and she would return to find out if he still loved her. Perhaps he was married, just maybe he was unmarried or divorced like her. It was a chance she had to take, and take it she did.
The search for Bello’s whereabout wasn’t hard. The 9 o’clock night news on their third day in the country told her what she needed to know.
Bello Badmus, Nigeria’s finest entrepreneur was breaking grounds for his estate, The Castle. Slated to be the number one tourist destination in Africa, several investors were scrambling for a piece of the prime development. As the newscaster would later end, Bello Badmus was the man of the moment. Indeed he was but the woman beside Bello with a plastered smile was the beginning of another chapter in Florence’s life. The covetous smile beaming at the camera while Bello pecked her was enough to turn Florence into a burning furnace and it burnt all the teachings of the church and of her dear Pastor Faye. She knew the smile because she saw it every morning when she looked into her mirror; a smile that she shared, a smile of complete triumph.
What she feared the most, her evil twin was married to Bello and here she was, weak and a forgiving fool.
The next weeks and months, Florence would read interviews and features of the Bellos in business and lifestyle magazines. She came to know that they were married the morning of Inale’s death. She wept quietly as she thought of the months she spent leaving one boarding house to the next, trying to survive in a new country with no communication skills, no identity, a protruding stomach and a bag of money. She remembered Mama Annerose and how she had taken her in. There was no measure for the pain that went through her. Over and over, she cried and she swore. Forgiveness wasn’t the way. Inale was right, enemies were not allowed to live. They had no right to live. It was time to end it all.
Florence hired private eyes to find out more information on the Bellos as she came to regard them. The kind of dirt she needed was not available in daytime prints. She hired Eesha, an efficient Togolese to deal with these hired hands and did not go out without wearing a veil and dark glasses.
She found out soon enough that Josephine was now known as Alhaja Kudirat Bello, an architect and a nurse who supposedly carried on an affair with a prominent figure in the country. She was a Founder of a non-profit organization and friend of several ministers and politicians at the Assembly. She discovered that she, Florence Ohiemi had graduated from the Ahmadu Bello University in 1986 with a second class lower. It was the ultimate revelation – Josephine was living her life or what it would have been.
Bello Badmus also was a formidable name in the country and while everyone knew him as the ruthless man and shrewd businessman, others knew he was a silent killer and was behind many groups helped that the government to take major political decisions. No one knew what he had on the politicians but he lacked nothing and when he wanted some of them gone, the military Head of State made it happen. She found out that Bello Badmus, father to her son, was in fact a man to be feared and envied, a man rumored to have blood on his hands, facilitating executions of persons that ran out of luck with the then military government. He was no longer the Bello she had fallen in love or was he? She needed to take back her life. The greatest revenge she realized was taking her life back and getting rid of the enemy.
However, Florence would come to learn that to get things done, one did not find and trust complete strangers with semblance of honesty and dignity. One had to do it personally or at least had a great amount of control. She would learn this lesson at great cost, another twelve hard years.
As fate always have it, she saw the advert of George Ajero’s internationally-recognized law firm on the glossy pages of a legal journal in early 2000 and consulted the firm. She was told by private eyes that the firm was topnotch in handling high profile cases and after several correspondences without meeting the man in charge, the man everyone and media houses sang his praise, the man George Ajero, she decided to pay him a visit; The man she thought was going to help her bring her sister down.
George Ajero, foremost activist and SAN was a friend of the Bellos and helplessly in love with Josephine from Zaria days and Josephine loved him as much as she could but her obsession to take whatever Florence left behind had married Bello but still continued her rendezvous with him. George Ajero was the face of the man who Alhaja Kudirat Bello had her illicit sessions.
The moment Florence entered the office and he had taken a double look at her, Florence knew there was going to be a problem, but she had no idea how much.
She left the meeting hours later without telling him who her defendants were but she had a disturbing feeling he knew. She had mixed feelings of great apprehension and euphoria. George had simply waived away the resemblance of her to a friend he knew a long time ago while vowing to bring justice and making sure the father of her son acknowledge his son and the woman who had committed such atrocities be brought to justice. They concluded when she was ready, he would directly take the case and make sure the defendants rotted in jail.
It was the perfect pitch.
By the time Florence got to her rented apartment in Ikeja G.R.A after taking a drive to Bar Beach to clear her head and re-strategize, her assistant Eesha who liked to play dress up in her clothes lay lifeless in her bed, her throat slit open, her mouth opened in a muffled scream. Inale, who had gone out to play football was picked up by her driver and taken to a new apartment in Ogba. That night, she sent him out with enough money just as her friend, Inale had done and sent Ganbo, her trusted bodyguard to monitor his activities without interfering while she escaped to Seychelles, coming into the country under disguise every six months to see her son, albeit from afar and to continue her revenge plot. This time, she had to get it right and it took time.
She remembered the tears in his eyes and confusion that night. No explanation, no father, he had walked into the night just as she had 18 years ago, with a large bag of money on his back. However, with no wise words, he had squandered it in months and struggled to keep alive. Florence in years that followed invested in companies Bello Badmus owned. Naomi Mambety was vicious and on a mission and she bought shares blindly until she came to own part of his business, by proxy.
When the opportunity came to rope in the SAN, George Ajero – her new enemy, in a mining deal that failed and costed Bello billions of Naira, Florence made sure Bello walked in on his long time George and his good wife Alhaja Kudirat who was pretending to be her in similar position as she had found them over 18 years ago. Bello in turn would have George humiliated, single-handedly closing down his internationally firm while destroying years of life’s work by discrediting him in the media and releasing his black files. By the time Bello was through, an aggrieved member of Bello’s group found it worthwhile to kill the betrayer while Kudirat watched from a safe distance as they fed his wigged head some hot bullets. She had wept bitterly and mourned her lover, the father of her children for years, in dark silence. She promised George she would avenge his death and that began her quest to be in control in affairs of the State. Bello, naturally was her first target and his group of murderers followed her list; and it would take her twelve years.
*****

March, 2011 – The Castle – Reading of the Will

“Florence?” it was Josephine, breathless and moving back steadily. She looked around to confirm that she wasn’t the only one seeing her twin sister. The other room occupants looked from one woman to the other, befuddled and sitting at on the edge of their seats, except one.
“It’s Naomi now, I take you are Alhaja Kudirat Sadika” Florence laughed halfheartedly and shook her head.
“Why in God’s name would you choose that ugly name Josephine…rather unlike you I’d say” Florence continued, slowly walking to where her twin sister,a smile of triumph on her radiant face.
“What, what is this?” Josephine finally let out, flustered and looking around the room to see eyes on them. Josephine knew that for Bello to have discovered he was not father of her three children and summarily disinheriting them, there was a reason. However, to see Florence standing before her was totally unbelievable. All these years, she made sure George had the last laugh and it echoed from the grave but now the reading of the Will had silenced it and Josephine knew that the woman standing before, the one person who she hated above everyone else was the reason for it.
“What is this? I came to see you. Or rather, came to help Bello with his Will. You don’t object to the Will now, do you?” Florence said dangerously, her words lined with meaning as she fixed Josephine a stare that meant more, Inale’s stare.
“I don’t, I mean I do” Josephine swallowed nervously.
“I thought so. We don’t want to implicate you in murder and other minor crimes. We want to be reasonable, do we not?” Florence asked lightly with a small smile as she looked across the room to her son and Charity who watched without words.
“I thought you were dead” Josephine said, trying to sound firm but her voice that was strong and commanding few minutes ago was now flat and without timbre.
“You thought you had me down where Bello is lying?” Florence insinuated cheaply.
“I did no such thing!” Josephine denied vehemently.
“Of course, what was I expecting? You need proof course. I have more surprises but at the moment, I think it’s time to answer some questions” she said immediately three men in police uniforms entered the conference room.
“Mrs. Kudirat Sadika Bello, you are under arrest” the man who suspiciously looked too stocky for a police officer said as they approached the head of the conference table.
“For what?” Josephine spat, a little too forcefully.
“Oh let’s see, for the murder of your husband Chief Badmus Bello, kidnap and murder of Florence Ohiemi, forgery and impersonation – for starters. I am sure as we sweep, we’d more dead rats, like your George. You killed him, you know” Florence said as two other officers came to stand behind Josephine.
“I didn’t kill George. Bello and his blasted goons did. If there was any justice in the world it is their death” she retorted hotly at Florence.
“You talk about justice in the world. I guess this is you getting justice. Take her to the station” Florence directed the officers.
“Get your hands off me! Do you know who I am? You will lose your useless jobs for this. Jimi, get these clowns out of here” Josephine said in a loud voice as one of the officers forcefully cuffed her.
“I am afraid you have to follow these men to the station. We are representatives of the deceased and your earlier utterances are implicating. However we will arrange for your bail. This probably is a misunderstanding and it will be sorted out soon” Jimi said with a blank expression.
“You fool! You will regret this” she threatened as she felt hands at her elbow shove her to move.
“You can’t take my mother anywhere” it was Debola finally recovering from the shock of being disinherited and the exchange that was taking place.
“I suggest you two follow us” Florence said signaling the other two police officers to take Debola and Laide into custody.
“We have not done anything to warrant an arrest. I demand you impostor leave here immediately or you will regret the outcome of this pathetic ambush” Debola declared loudly, standing up and trying fierce look while Laide sat watching the scene with amusement.
“I wouldn’t be too quick to start calling names. You have been an impostor all your life, didn’t you hear your father is George Ajero and not Bello? One would rightly assume you are more deluded than your congregation. I think perhaps it’s time the world knows of your mistress and your baby. Men of God like you should be known for what you really are, don’t you agree?” Florence said returned hotly without mincing words as she turned to face Laide who was already being escorted out of the room while Debola who looked like he had electricity pass through him was ushered out.
“Move” it was one of the police officers.
“I wonder if there is any law for women who sexually abuse underage boys” Florence added with sly smile as she stood in front of Laide. The look in Laide’s eyes went from passive to dangerous.
“It is none of your business how I seek my pleasure” she hissed back.
“Of course. Pedophiles always have entitlement mentality. You abuse those poor boys because you can and because it makes you feel good. That’s the problem we have in the society these days, everyone doing things that make them happy. No one gives a thought to how such misguided happiness affects other people’s lives” she said to no one in particular as she stopped to return the stare from Josephine.
Josephine who was trying hard to be unaffected by the turn of events was thinking of possible line of action. She knew she would get freed at the station the moment she called Yakubu, the Inspector General of Police. She gave a knowing smile and Florence returned hers. There was no need to trade words; she always won at the end, always.
The officers matched them out as Florence walked to Victor who was now standing, watching the police officers take the trio out. Charity was confused. How could her father be involved with another woman and to have fathered three children with a married woman all these years? How did that happen? She was older than the first of three children with just a two years. That meant the affair was roughly the same time her mother and father got married, if not earlier. Moreover, the inexplicable way her mother had drowned in the swimming pool when she was just 8 years old still raised questions in Charity’s mind. Could her father have been in love and killed her mother to be with his mistress? Or perhaps Mr. Bello’s wife had killed her mother to be with her father? or simply out of jealously? What happened after? Why didn’t they get married or be together? Why all the disconnection and more questions instead of answers. The woman Naomi seemed to have it all and she knew she had to have them. The three-man team that sat with Jimi, looked at themselves with unvoiced questions; only Jimi had a knowing smile on his lips.
Florence stopped in front of Victor and gave a sad smile.
“I am sorry I couldn’t be physically there for you twelve years ago. There is so much you don’t know but I promise you, you will soon. Yes I sent you away but it was for a purpose and I never left you. I knew where you where every single hour, every minute and when this is all over, we will have that talk. I promise. I hope it is not too late Inale” She said with a sad smile and held his gaze.
Victor, confused and angry, nodded his head slowly as he saw his mother’s eyes water right before she turned and followed the back stairs where the men she hired to camouflage as police officers were told to follow.
The fake police officers instead of taking the front door bundled Kudirat and her children through the exit on the second floor with stairs leading to the basement. Kudirat knew the moment they pushed them down the stairs with guns urging them down stairs that Florence was no longer the clueless sister she knew and for the first time in her life felt real fear.
Just before entering the car park, they bagged their heads and Debola fought in vain to get the bag thrown over his head, removed. Florence’s footsteps approaching instinctively brought the struggle to a still.
“Florence, what do you think you will achieve with this?” Josephine asked, starting a struggle as they held her still.
“Take her to the house and take them to the other location. That dark room should do for now” Florence said to the fake police officers as she lifted the bag and smiled evilly at Josephine who had a panicked look on her face.
“Where are you taking me? Don’t hurt them. Take only me” she shouted as Florence dropped the black bag and walked the BMW 5 Series Sedan car parked few meters from where the van was.
“Where are you taking me? What are your plans? Leave my children alone!” Florence could hear Josephine’s shouts from the van as she headed to the car.
“Florence! Florence!! You can’t do this! Florence” It was Josephine shouting as the van drove off.
“Naomi. Florence is dead. You killed her” she corrected in a murmur as she closed her eyes in relish.
After twelve years of delicate planning, nothing could go amiss now. Florence glowed at the thought of Josephine having 30 days of dirt, no food, cold and smell. It was time for the coin payment and she had enough reserve.
The driver came around to open the door for her and she entered. Silence followed briefly before the other occupant of the car spoke.
“How did it go?” the familiar voice asked as she settled into the cozy leather and took the cold glass of red wine he was holding out to her. The voice that still brought shivers to her being, the voice that had accosted her in front of her hostel over three decades, the voice she had forgiven.
“Pretty much low-key for what I had in mind” she answered simply, taking a sip of her drink.
“I like when you are bad” the voice continued in a tease.
“Glad you approve Mr. Mausoleum” she said in a giggle as he found her hand and brought it to his lips as they drove out of the basement.
“So Mrs. Kudirat Bello, what’s your next line of action?”
“Dead men don’t ask questions. They know” she said evilly, smiling into his eyes just before he took her lips in a warm kiss as the sun filtered lazily into the dark car.

*****

Till Next week!

M.O.T.I.V.E.S is written by Uneñ Ameji
Author of Memoirs of a Justified Gold Digger on Amazon.com
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M.O.T.I.V.E.S – Episode 3

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Hey guys,
Sorry for delay in posting….internet providers messed us up…we back online though…Apologies.

We got you Episode 3 of *spanking new online series from @UnenAmeji

Read Previous Episode Here

Enjoy…..remember to comment!!!

Episode 3
*****
Faction Meeting – Seven meet at undisclosed location in the Federal Capital Territory
Agenda – Termination
Date – 8th December, 2010
Time – 2: 00 am

The quiet hum of the cold room registered the entrance of the last member of the deadly group with firm clicks of wooden heels on the shiny marble tiles. The bunker, located underneath the perpetually sealed off property, was eerily lit and one could feel the evil in the air as they sat still, not talking to each other. These people decided affairs of the State and they had gathered to decide the fate of some old weathered thorns, thorns who wanted them exposed and dealt with.
The fallout had come right after the nomination of the next President of the Republic. The disagreement over the candidate and the policies to be implemented caused some of the Elders- as they called themselves – to leave the coven and force the hand of the group by inciting the public in demanding for a change in governance and administration of their monies. It was the submission of the repentant Elders that the looting and bleeding of the treasury had gone on for too long, that it was time to develop the country and focus on rejuvenating dead sectors. The seven meeting in this room did not think so.
They were of the opinion that those that called for a readdress probably had more reserves than they claimed and as such was simply a farce and a case of hypocrisy.
The scheduled meeting had been called to find lasting solution to recent overturns of policies that served that interest and most recently the sentencing of two of their members to 25 years imprisonment over money laundering and embezzlement charges. It was time to put an end to the witch hunting and they were ready to do what was needed.
The meeting was set to start and the room stilled as the leader spoke.
“I see we are all unanimous in our decision” the leader, a tall domineering figure with thick voice spoke, confirming the thoughts of the seven people in the bunker. They knew why they were here.
“It must not fail. It must not be traced back to us” another said carefully, the unsure but dissatisfied element in the group was not particularly comfortable with the killing of former members but his greed knew no bounds. He simply did not want to get caught.
“You have nothing to worry about” the thick voice belonging to the mastermind of the group said with live cigar in his hands. He had no idea why he need these lily-livered fools, he thought. He knew he could do this by himself but he also knew that there was always need for scapegoats.
“A good scapegoat is nearly as welcome as a solution to the problem” his father always told him. But as he looked at the woman sitting quietly, carelessly thumbing her phone, he doubted briefly if she was working against them. Wife to a member who had decided to ‘repent’, he wondered what she was doing here. His curiosity had been the reason for admitting her into the group after several correspondence..
“We do” it was the woman.
Six pair of eyes were turned to her. She continued thumbing her phone as she spoke.
“I think the method proposed in eliminating the bottlenecks is greatly flawed, very common. Forgive my objection but if this was to come back to us, we would have a lot of amendments to make. We may lose more than what we intend to gain” she said as one who had rehearsed her speech.
“What is your submission then?” the thick voice asked, eyeing her with caution and watching as other members of the group listened to her with rapt attention.
“Why don’t you leave it to me to deal with this?” she asked, finally meeting their eyes.
“We cannot just let you handle it. If you fail, it comes back to all of us” the man who was already panicked said.
“I am ready to take the fall for it” she said, fixing her eyes on the leader of the group. A silent staring match that lasted several minutes ended as the men nodded their heads in the affirmative.
“I suppose you will keep me updated on your next course of action” the leader of the group said at last, trying to maintain his authority.
“Watch the news” she answered with confidence as she smiled.
“If I can be excused, I have a little event to plan. Gentlemen?” she smiled charmingly as she stood up and left the bunker through the secret passage to her car.
Out of the seven cars parked, she unlocked the car she had rented from the airport and headed back. She believed in working alone because she knew aides had a way of leaking secrets, leakages she could not afford.
She arrived at the private wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International airport at 4:30 am and casually waited for her husband as airport officials greeted her as they went about their business. He was flying into Abuja on his private jet and she intended to take it back home.
“My darling wife! I am sorry to have kept you waiting” it was Chief Badmus Bello in his usual style, wearing his starched crispy white Agbada and black Suede cap with Italian brown leather shoes to match.
“It is no problem. I just got here” she lied as she stood up to a kiss. A peck on the mouth. The time was 7:45am.
“I know, I should get you your own private bus too” he teased, holding her hand as he escorted her aboard while his female assistant, Ribina followed dutifully. He was overly jovial because he had come to Abuja to conclude on the privatization deal with the President on power.
“You should” she playfully admonished him.
“See you at home” she said as he gave her another light peck before getting into the plane
“Don’t hold your breath” he muttered under his breath as he walked back to the reception with his female assistant trying to catch up with the rest of the escort in her impossibly high heels.
Badmus knew his wife of 29 years was up to something and not the smoke screen of attending women empowerment seminars she had put up in the last months. He had hired a private eye to look into her affairs but after three months on her trail, there was nothing out of the ordinary except the uneasy way in which she regarded him. Her proper sanctimonious smiles she threw at him when she knew he was cheating on her drove him up the wall. Reports were that she was busy with the Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development but he knew in his gut that his darling wife was up to no good.
But what?
He had no idea.

*****
23rd February, 2011 – Day of Burial – Peter Osagie Jnr. Residence

“Honey! Stop! I am serious! I am so pregnant!” it was Omoni giggling like the pregnant woman that she was as she tried to fend off her horny husband who was trying to get her to bed for the umpteenth time.
“I know you are but Sade said we could still have sex…until” he crowed, grinding behind her and dropping his head to lick her ears as she stood in front of the gas cooker making Nkwobi. The steaming goat meat peppersoup stirred Peter’s appetite but nothing could quench the hunger he had for his 8 months pregnant wife. It would seem that the more she grew, the more he wanted to have sex with her. The raw need was almost too much to bear.
“Make love, not have sex. There is a difference” she corrected as she felt his hot breath fanning her ears and his restless hands palming her stomach, breasts and thighs.
“You are so soft” he whispered teasing her sensitive nipples as she gasped, mauling her full breasts and pinching her nipples the way he knew drove her insane.
“Stop it Peter” she said, twisting from his arms.
“Say you like it, I am turning you on, am I not? Uhhmm, say it, admit you like it” he continued as he unbutton the multicolored sleeveless cotton blouse she was wearing.
“Peter! God, Yes, Yes! you are turning me on, you big devil” she cursed in a laugh as she turned in his hands and got her lips enveloped in a wet searing kiss. He feasted on her hot lips, kissing and probing as she returned the kiss fervently.
He had just exposed her firm pink tits and dropped his head to suck on the full breast when his phone rang. He groaned loudly.
“Saved by the phone” she laughed as he palmed her buttocks.
“Go and answer your call” she laughed pushing him away from her.
“Okay! I will go. But be warned, I am coming back in full force” he teased spanking her round buttocks before answering his call.
It was work. He had just gotten his one month annual leave to spend with his wife. The last he needed were work calls.
“Sir, there has been a bomb blast” it was Sani, his subordinate without preamble.
“Where?” he asked, already saying goodbye to his leave and his hot wife.
“At the Castle. The burial ground” Sani supplied with finesse, waiting for the next instruction. Peter didn’t have any. He hated the Bellos and he had chosen Sani to head the extraction of Kole Bello immediately after his father’s burial. This was a complication he wasn’t ready for.
“Who would want to kill a dead man?” he asked, not expecting an answer.
“Who would want to use a dead man to kill more birds?” he asked himself again, still not expecting an answer.
“Sani” he called
“Yes Sir”
“Get a team set up. I want to know the number of casualties, how many were dignitaries and who is taking responsibility for the act. Also, get me information from the Presidency. We need to know if they intend making a statement and what it would be”
“Yes sir”
“And Sani”
“Yes Sir”
“If Kole Bello is dead, I want to see his body or parts of it”
“Yes Sir”
“Good” he said forcefully as he ended the call.
As head of the newly formed CID special squad in handling criminal activities of the uber-rich and persons who thought themselves above the law, it was his duty to investigate and prosecute these elements in conjunction with appropriate authorities.
“What is wrong?” it was Omoni coming out of the hot kitchen with sweat sprouting on her forehead. She had buttoned her blouse.
“Apparently, there had been a bomb blast at the burial of Badmus Bello” he said going over to get a drink.
“Oh my God! That’s awful. Who would want to kill a dead man?” she said rushing to change the channel that had been on a movie channel. It was breaking news on FTV and a couple of stations she surfed.
“At least this is the first bomb blast that has a different undertone” Peter said carelessly as he watched the report live from the scene of the blast. The bald reporter was putting the casualty figure at 226 persons and commending the quick response of the Emergency Units. Although the names and identity of persons were yet to be released, the bald reporter said that it was likely several powered executives and statesmen were feared dead.
“What undertone?” Omoni asked as the report finished and she changed it to another channel reporting the attack.
“I think this was targeted at the dignitaries and not a terrorist attack. I will be surprised if the boys took responsibility for this” he said sadly as he watched the repeat report.
“I will not be surprised. Didn’t you tell me they issued some threats months back? This attack will boost their portfolio and up the stakes especially with the new demands they are making” Omoni said as she took a seat to rest her legs.
“I am certain they won’t” he said confidently as he helped her to seat on the long couch.
“Why?” she asked, signalling that he switch on the Air Conditioner.
“Because Farah has not contacted me yet” he finally revealed
“You are still in touch with Mohamed Abdirahman?” she asked sitting up in alarm.
“I am sweets” he said with caution as he watched the emotions play out on her face.
“Why?” she asked, angry.
“I need Intel and he provides really accurate from time to time” he defended weakly coming to sit beside her.
“You promised to….” he did not allow her to finish. It was always the same argument. Farah was bad news and they both knew it. It was only a matter of time before he would be found out as a spy. If they were lucky, he would not reveal the squad and the man behind it. Omoni was scared and she had every right to be.
“I know I promised. It is just hard right now but I am careful, I promise I am” he begged as she looked at him, slowly releasing her pent up breath.
“When are you leaving?” she asked, looking at the Television but not seeing anything.
“In a bit” he said as he looked away from her. She pushed herself up and made to walk past him as he stood up and caught her hand.
“Don’t be like this” he coerced.
“I can’t help it. We discussed this…remember?” she said, biting her lips from saying more.
He nodded.
“I am just using him to get inside information”
“Until they find out and come for you. I just……have a safe flight” she said as she walked into their room and locked him out.
Peter stood in the big sitting room before following her to beg.
It was going be a long afternoon

*****
23rd February, 2011 – Day of burial – The Presidency

“Mr. President, there has been a tragedy” it was Nurudeen Soyemi, Special adviser to the President on Media matters.
“There is always a tragedy in this moronic country” the man who was voted into the highest office in the land said distastefully as he watched a rerun of the football match, paying no attention to his Special Adviser. He had missed the UEFA Championship match between his club Manchester United and Chelsea because of a late night meeting with some old men who wanted him to pay striking workers. Why should he pay when they had collected the allocated funds? He had wanted to ask them in presence of some of the overzealous pressmen but decided to let them waste his time and requested for his little Nina, his pleasure for the rest of the night.
“Yes Sir. It is the Chief’s burial” Nuru continued, a little sardonic smile breaking on the old man’s face.
“I told you to send a representative Nuru!” the President spat impatiently as he briefly looked the old man who had been forced on him.
“See our boys doing well ehn?” the President continued, pointing to the Newspaper beside him that had headlines of the National football team qualifying for the African Cup of Nations.
“Sir, there has been a bomb blast” the tired Special Adviser said grinding his teeth that had few missing from his last appointment with his dentist.
Oooooooh! Ehn! Wich kain tin be dis? When was this?” he complained loudly finally looking at his Special Adviser.
“Just a few minutes ago, Your excellency. They blew up Chief Badmus’s burial. It is breaking news on NNTA” he said pointing to the remote that the President was gripping hard.
“Are you serious? They wanted to blow me up? Who is they?” President Jang Wuyaku asked rapidly, turning back to his large screen and changing the channel.
“I don’t think that was the plan” Nuru said and bit his tongue at his blab. He should be more careful, he thought shifting on his legs.
“So they would have killed me now” the President continued, oblivious to the statement that Nuru had just made.
“No Sir, God will not allow it”
“He will o! Thank God I sent that yeye Minister” he continued as he watched the report and wreckage, shaking his head.
“I think we should make a statement to condemn the act and call the I.G of Police to get to the root of this fast” he continued
“Yes, Yes of course. That’s your job naw. Go do what Nigeria pays you for” he said with a belittling smile and waved him away.
“Old mumu” he muttered under his breath, hating the fact that he could not fire him without another old man scolding him.
“Fool” Nuru muttered as he went to his office to make a private call.
The phone rang twice as he walked over to his door and locked it.
“Good day Sir” Nuru said into the phone.
“We are secured?” it was the thick voice.
“Yes Sir, we are. It is done” Nuru continued, eagerly waiting for some kind of commendation.
“Has this been confirmed?” it was the voice.
“Yes, it has been confirmed. There are all gone. Yes, we can continue with the program”
“Good” and the line went dead.
Nuru sat for a moment, reeling in the news before calling his assistant.
He was too old to write press releases.

*****
23rd February, 2011 – Charity Ajero’s Maitama Residence

The breaking news on the screen jotted Charity from her bed as she rushed for the remote control in her lingerie. She was preparing for the trip to the Castle with Victor and had instructed her temporary driver, Bantu to get ready to drive them to Ondo State.
“There has been a bomb explosion at the mausoleum of late Chief Badmus Bello in the Castle. While the total number of casualties is yet to be determined by the police, report say 226 people are dead and several others injured. In a new list, Mr. Tamiyu Samson, Minister of Information representing the President, ex-leaders and President Abdulrasak Abubakar, Gana Itunu Konamu and Shola Ige Adebowale, business man Wole Jim, Governors of Bauchi, Taraba, Kogi, Nassarawa and Oyo state were said to have been among the dignitaries in attendance. Others include Minister of Power, Transport, Water Resources, Agriculture, Aviation and the chief Imam. There has been no confirmation that they are indeed causalities but they are indications that they were at the site at the of the attack. The terrorist group, the Boko Haram are yet to make any claim however. We await word from the Presidency on this barbaric attack and updates on the identity of the casualties from the police. The question on the minds of many is “what is the implication of an attack on this magnitude on the country?” Stay tuned as we bring more on this development. My name is Kingsely Maduike for FTV News” the reporter said, ending the update.
Goose pimples ran up her limbs as she stood fixated, eyes glued to the television. How possible was this? She wondered, a little shaken at the names. Her phone rang just as she picked it up to make a call.
“I suppose you have seen the news” it was a female voice.
“You did not tell me this was going to happen” she accused, not raising her voice.
“I had nothing to do with this” the female voice clarified.
“Then who would do something like this?” she asked, getting agitated.
“My sister”
“Do I thank her for killing those responsible for my father’s death? How would she feel with your demand for Victor, should we still go ahead with the plan?” she asked, temporarily confused. She had taken up the case because she had wanted to shame the memory of the man who, with his friends, had killed her father. Now that those people had been killed, what was the need in continuing to represent her reluctant client?
“You may have gotten your pound of flesh, but I have not gotten mine. You will be wise to continue as planned” the female voice who had introduced herself simply as Naomi and mother to her client threatened.
“But at this time? I suggest this blows over” she said, thinking fast.
“You will do as I say. Check your email. You are to follow the instructions” the voice directed firmly.
“And if I don’t?” she managed to challenge the female voice.
“Let’s say you won’t be alive to find out” the line went dead.
Rushing over to her office downstairs, she accessed her mail.
Downloading the attachment, she closed her eyes and whispered a silent prayer.
Scanning through the document, she nearly bit her tongue as she stopped herself in time from crying out.
She was to organize a press release to expose illegitimate offspring of the late Badmus and demand that his net worth be published and shared equally between his legal heirs.
There were two issues – Calling for the published net worth of the man who expose the Government in dirty dealings. And she had been blessed with three more claimants. More update soon, the email ended.
She was caught in her web of revenge

******
23rd February, 2011 – Alhaja Residence, several buildings from bomb blast

The moment she heard the bomb explosion go off far in the distance, she smiled underneath her veil as she lay on her bed, about a thousand meters away from the blast. She had cried herself to exhaustion and got hysterical when they had suggested that the burial ceremony start. Her doctor had given her tranquilizers and recommended bed rest after she had staged a major breakdown.
Josephine Ohiemi rubbed her red nose and took a deep satisfying breath. The deed was done.
After 29 years of marriage to Chief Badmus Bello, she had successfully killed him and his cohorts. Now, all she had to do was inherit the empire, the legacy that she had killed her sister for.
It would only be a matter of days before that silly lawyer will dance to her tune and change the Will.
She smiled.
If only her good for nothing sister was alive to see her victory.
Yes, she had killed Florence. She had destroyed her sister and married Badmus, the lowly worm.
There was nothing she, Josephine Ohiemi, now Alhaja Kudirat Sadika Bello could not accomplish if she put her mind to it. Her phone rang then. She picked it.
“I suppose congratulations are in order” it was the thick voice.
“I suppose so” she said proudly, sniffing.
“We are not crying, are we?” the voice teased.
“Only because we are happy” she replied proudly.
“Yes, one should cry for joy. Abubakar and Ige were beginning to get really personal” the thick voice said slowly referring to the ex -Presidents Abdulrasak Abubakar and Shola Ige Adebowale who were taking a strong stand against their former colleagues.
“They were. Flies that refuse heed follows the corpse to the grave, literally” she said in a little chuckle.
“They certainly do Madam Badmus, I fear you” it was a tease but the owner of the voice knew better. A woman who single-handedly kill her husband in order to achieve the feat she had achieved wasn’t a woman to be toyed with.
“Good. In the next few weeks, I expect some sort of power shuffle”
“Yes”
“Good. Now I shall continue to play the widow”
“My condolences” he joked and she laughed lightly.
“Thank you” she said as she slipped into deep sleep.
It was time to get rid of the mastermind.

*****
23rd February, 2011 – Praslin, Seychelles

Florence Ohiemi sat watching the screen quietly and sipping on her homemade pineapple juice.
The news of his death and bomb blast did not come as a surprise to Florence. She knew what her twin sister was capable of and had since waited for this day.
Josephine had reached her zenith but it would be her destiny to bring her down.
There was no forgiveness.
There would be no mercy.
It was time to play a game of the dead.
“Now we play” she said over the rim of her glass.
“Now is my time”

*****
M.O.T.I.V.E.S is written by;
Uneñ Ameji
Author of Memoirs of a Justified Gold Digger on Amazon.com
See new book Love on the 25th on Okadabooks http://goo.gl/hmsKnv
W: http://bit.ly/1Il23U3
T: https://twitter.com/UnenAmeji

*****

Next week!

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M.O.T.I.V.E.S – Episode 2

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Hey guys,
Good week?
Looking forward to 1st May? We are…
Read Episode Two of M.O.T.I.V.E.S by Unen Ameji

Didn’t catch Episode One? Yup, Read Here
COVER-page0001
Episode Two – M.O.T.I.V.E.S

*****
“Gala, Gala, Gala, Gala, Ptttff! La’Casera” it was Victor Dakar shouting like the determined hustler that he was on the Nyanya-Maraba Expressway, hawking. Victor Dakar – a name he had given himself 11 years ago – was a name without roots. He was a man with no identity but a man who instinctively knew his worth, even if it came by hawking to meet his needs. He was a man who would find himself, a man who would be a victor. He knew he had been born in Dakar, Senegal – that much, his mother had told him before tossing him out on that cold rainy night with nothing but his backpack filled with crispy notes amounting to a million Naira. The unwanted was cast out.
A loud blare of car horns brought him back to the present as he narrowly missed been hit by a bus. He couldn’t afford memories now and consciously replaced irking thought with the thought of the car he was going to buy as soon as he made the last deposit. Skillfully, he watched for forlorn faces in cars stuck in the heavy traffic waiting for a facial expression that looked like hunger, boredom or a mixture of both. Most often than not, these expressions made sales and he had packaged his dynamic duo – Gala and La’Casera in light green almost transparent leather bags. It was easier to sell and made profit for two products with just a single sale.
“Gala! Gala” he bellowed as he held the last two leather bags for the day walking in the direction of his shack nested beneath the footpath leading to his Kubgo residence, as he fondly called it.
Just then, a white Lincoln Navigator parked across the road and a lady came out.
“Gala!” it was a single call but a ton of eager young boys flew across the Expressway to answer the call. He looked at the owner of the voice and turned back to continue his search for buyers of his last two leather bags.
He had just sold the last of his bags when he felt a sweaty hand on his bare back.
Na you she dey call” it was a cashew nut seller.
Victor looked across the road to the woman in a body clinging black gown that stopped at her knees, standing in impossibly high pink pumps. She didn’t look like she was interested in gala or his La’casera, moreover he had just sold the last of it. He obliged her all the same and crossed over.
“Good evening Ma” he greeted, holding his empty bag.
“Good evening. I saw you hawking your gala in leather bags and must say I am impressed. You see, I have a new product and I think you will do great with the marketing” she said airily.
“I can give you my number and I come see it tomorrow” he replied watching her face intensely. Something told him she wasn’t about selling anything.
“I would rather you see it now” she insisted.
“Madam, it is late and have to make report at my supplier after selling” he lied. He had no supplier. He bought outright and sold for his pockets.
“Alright Inale, I have a message for you from your mother” she finally volunteered laughing at a private joke.
“My mother is dead” he said painfully, his jaw twitching. This woman knew who he was.
“No, she is not. You know it. Now do we continue this discussion here or are you coming in?” she asked indicating that he enter her car.
“I would rather you tell me who you are and how in heaven’s name did you find me?” he asked getting angry.
“I am Charity, Charity Ajero, your mother’s lawyer. Your mother has, well, I’d say interesting network. I would not say it was an easy find but she did” she said coolly regarding him with sharp eyes.
“What does she want from her dead son?” he spat dispassionately, refusing to acknowledge the fact that the woman who had thrown him out was suddenly looking for him after 11 years.
“Your father is dead” the lawyer said waiting for his reaction.
“I do not have a mother and I most certainly do not have a father ” he declared, turning his back and making to cross the road.
“You will be inheriting roughly about ten million dollars” she said in a raised voice. She caught his attention.
He stopped and turned to look at the woman. Clearly, she was serious and without meaning to, broke into a loud heartfelt laughter that echoed and had passersby look at them.
“What is in it for her?” he finally asked, coughing and rubbing his eyes clean of the tears that had formed as a result of the belly-filling laughter.
“Revenge” she said after a while. She didn’t find his amusement a tad bit funny.
“That sounds like her, a lot like her” he said looking past her and into the green hills, remembering the last time he set eyes on the woman who had bore him.
“You should come in” she made for the car again.
“Look emmm, ….” He called trying to remember her name.
“Charity” she supplied graciously.
“Charity, I don’t want to have anything to do with that woman” he continued stubbornly.
“She wants you to get what is rightly yours” Charity maintained coldly, she needed him to get with the program and not waste her time. Patience was not her virtue and she didn’t care for it.
“Wait, let me get this straight. She disowns me, throws me out and refuses to tell me who my father is for 29 years and then suddenly, she wants to take revenge and give me the right to inherit a million dollars?” he asked as he wiped the last of the tears from his eyes.
“Ten million” she corrected as her phone rang. She ignored it.
“What?”
“You get ten million dollars, not a million dollars” she corrected impatiently as her phone buzzed.
“What is in for you?” he asked noticing as she expertly typed a message.
“Minus my legal fees?” she asked jokingly breaking into a smile. He was coming around.
“I suppose everyone is on board with this”
“Just you” she flashed her best smile.
“Right” he answered watching her.
“Well, here is my card…just in case you change your mind. Come by my office tomorrow”
“Will she be there?” he asked, apprehensive.
“No. she won’t be dealing with you directly” she said sweetly getting into her car.
“Of course” he swallowed bitterly.
“I will be expecting you though” she said as she closed her door and keyed her car.
“Uhmmm” he nodded. She watched emotions play on his face. He would come, she concluded.
“How does one get loathed just because you reminded one of your father? A man you have never met or chose?” he asked, his eyes grave.
“You will have your answers soon enough Inale. I will be waiting for you” she said kindly.
“It’s Victor now” he corrected, feeling a little triumphant at his new alias.
“I know, Victor Dakar” she said in wink before driving away.
“And that my friend is how I got to the hawking profession” he said to no one in particular, walking slowly to his house and tearing open a gala wrap he had reserved for himself.

*****

Her office, located in a Residential Estate in Maitama extension, was not an ‘office’. It was a modern terrace duplex, completely detached and heavily guarded. He wanted to turn back but his curiosity at finally meeting a dead father had him knocking on the intimidating steel gate with a security camera.
“Do you have an appointment?” it was the security guard in yellow and red uniform. His green wool cap made Victor cringe visibly at the ridiculous outfit. The getup looked like a deliberate attempt at belittling the guard and everything he stood for, and it was working. This was the reason why he stuck to hawking. He decided what to wear, sell and what time to close.
“Yes” he answered after a moment, handing over the nicely crested business card.
“Please fill this form” the guard handed over a form and collected it once Victor had filled it satisfactorily.
“Please wait here” he instructed with authority.
“Will do” he mouthed.
Few minutes later, he was ushered into the house and left in an empty room with white walls and huge Plasma TV on the wall. The empty room which looked like a reception, had no chairs. He stood waiting for the next instruction. He smiled at the thought.
“I see you decided to show up” he turned at her voice to see a scantily-clad woman in black bikini, furiously rubbing her wet hair with a white towel. She had curves that threatened to spill from her bra and firm rounded hips that could make a man want to be a dog for a long time.
“Yes” he answered thickly, his eyes stopping at her tight nipples. Her navel captured his attention as he traced the tattoo carefully with the writings leading directly to her crotch.
“Like it?” she asked as she watched him force his eyes back to her face.
“It is an interesting tattoo. I should study it sometime” he flirted with a serious face.
“I would like that. Thank you” she flirted back.
“So here I am” he said lightly, looking at her with desire curling in places he didn’t want noticing her.
“I can see that. Please follow me to my office” she said taking the lead as she wrapped the towel around her waist.
Her office was surprisingly professional, furnished with an impressive library and dark brown mahogany shelves carrying law books and extremely large blue bonded book collections. The cold office had a Yanni’s First Touch playing softly in the background and News on Al Jazeera on her TV playing noiselessly. It was the news on the late tycoon’s death on repeat.
She walked over to the wardrobe and eased a wrap gown from the hanger over her shoulders, letting the towel fall and walking over to her desk. He was tempted to ask her to pick up the towel, he hated littered room.
“You can pick it up if it bothers you” she said simply, catching the disapproval in his eyes.
“So, who is my father?” he asked as he took a seat across from her.
“Was, he is dead”
“Right. Who was my father?” he asked watching her power her laptop and reach for a file simultaneously.
“You may know him, you may not” she said handing him the heavy file.
“This is one hell of a file” he commented dryly but felt a little heart kick.
“I decided not to print all of it. Enjoy. What do you want for lunch?” she asked picking up her intercom.
“Pounded yam, Vegetable soup and assorted meat. Pineapple juice, freshly squeezed would do. Thanks” he smiled.
“You know, for one who hawks for a living, I am surprised you know what pounded yam and assorted meat is” she said sarcastically dialing her kitchen.
“I am going to be roughly ten million dollars richer, I think it is about time I started ordering like a millionaire” he threw her words at her with a piercing look and a twitch in his lips, stopping a grin from coming out.
“I see” she smiled repeating his order and asking for spinach sauce and samosa for herself. Victor made a face before standing up with the file and going over to the comfortable sofas across the office. He sat down and took a deep breath and then he opened the file.
The moment Victor opened the file, his eyes popped at the identity of the man who was said to be his father. Chief Badmus Bello, the dead Tycoon and political Godfather. The one man who he had tried to meet severally and had had the honor of driving in his convoy for a day before he was accused of stealing and picked up by the police only to be warned off after an anonymous bail was posted.
He could not believe and closed it to look at Charity. She nodded, the seriousness and intensity told him this was not made up. He took a deep breath before opening it again. And he read. The exact dates, early pictures, his present net worth, investments, his family, rumors and alliances, the double-shady dealings and the women – it was a complete biography, only that he probably had the only copy. All doubts on the genuineness of the file and motive behind his mother finally revealing his father dawned upon him. There was not enough truck to take the filth and atrocities.
It took 3 hours of carefully studying the file to finally reach the last photograph.
“He was on the news yesterday” he croaked, stunned and disbelieving. Chief Bello could not be his father.
“He died yesterday” she supplied watching him.
“He has been buried?” he asked. He was clueless as to the emotion that was appropriate. Anger? Joy? Gratitude? Pain?
He had all of those and more.
“Not yet. I suppose today? Informants tell me his son, the Pastor your brother that is, is making the arrangements and won’t allow him be buried immediately”
“Is he requesting for autopsy?” he asked, his throat filling up.
Victor was overwhelmed with the revelation and the last piece of information in the file had been a young picture of Chief Badmus. Victor was a perfect copy of his father at that age.
“That’s the premise” she supplied pitying his predicament.
“Why now?” he asked her after five minutes of reflection and squeezing his eyes shut.
“You would have to ask your mother that”
“You should ask her on my behalf. That’s part of your job, is it not?” he spat hotly.
He couldn’t believe it. Victor Dakar, son of Chief Badmus Bello, late Chief Badmus Bello, he corrected himself as he stood up and walked around her office. He pressed his eyes with his hand to stop the tears coming to his eyes and the anger at his mother. He didn’t deserve any of it, all of this.
“Where is their history?” he asked, hands in pocket, turning to face her.
“What?” Charity was a little confused at the question.
“How did the two meet? How did I get here?” he asked, his eyes blood shot.
“Again, you would have to ask her” she stated calmly.
“Hmmm, I wondered what she is paying you for. One would think she was paying you to tell me all I need to know” he said with a tight smile.
“She is paying me to represent you. I am going to get you your inheritance” she retorted, confident of her abilities.
“It is all about the ten million dollars” he said darkly.
“What if I don’t want any of it?” he continued walking over to painting at the end of her office. He wanted to cry but he couldn’t show his weakness.
“I am assuming you are still shocked. I suppose there may be more of you”
“And how many of us will be coming out of the hiding to claim our settlement package?” he asked disgustingly.
“As many as he fathered but none who has me as their legal representative” she smiled smugly at his look of disgust.
“I sense you have an axe to grind too. What did he do to you?” he asked staring at her. She looked at him back from her seat, a minute later, she stood up and went to him.
“This is my father. George Ajero” she said simply as they looked at the painting on the wall in front of them.
“A SAN too” he noticed.
“Yes” she said simply with a pained smile.
“Where is he?” he asked.
“He is dead. Your father killed him”

*****

“These were your father’s wishes. He said categorically that on his death, he was to be buried without any autopsy carried out” it was SAN Dele Adewole, Chief Badmus Bello best friend and lawyer in an emergency meeting called by the late Chief’s brother, Abdullahi because Debola wouldn’t bulge on committing his father to earth without an autopsy and basically delaying the rites to be performed according to the Islamic faith.
“What else were his wishes? Did the wish include not finding out if he was killed?” Debola barked at the old dignified man in black suit and grey shirt.
“My son, I am telling you what the provisions are for his burial. If it pleases you, the documents can be presented. Your mother is aware of this” he said steadily, not flinching as he watched Alhaja with clouded desire. He wanted her so much it hurt but he had kept his feelings away all these years, now that the Chief was dead, he wanted nothing more than to hold her and tell her everything would be alright. He had never seen a more devoted mother and supporting wife. He would convince her to marry him, he thought unashamed that his coveted his best friend’s wife.
“Mom, is that true?” Debola asked watching helplessly as his mother blew her nose into her handkerchief.
“Yes” she whispered and blew her nose again, nodding and drying her red eyes.
Laide was seated beside her beautiful mother because she felt obligated. She had shed tears the moment she had arrived but had since stopped, trying to keep a strong face as she had been told by many to. The truth was that she couldn’t wait to have the old man committed to earth. She wanted to get out of here. She looked around for Kasimu, their eyes met and she lowered her eyes to his crotch. He froze and moved away from her view. She hid a smile.
Kole had been bailed out but the presence of policemen on the premises reinforced the fact that they were not going to let him walk away just yet. He wore dark shades and no one knew whether he was high or crying. He simply sat, watching as the conversation flew over his head and waiting for the ceremony to start before slipping away.
“I am not convinced but if that was his wish…, I have to respect it” Debola said finally defeated.
“Thank you” his mother whispered as he came close and held her.
“All will be fine. You will be fine” he hugged her and watched as his Uncle Abdullahi, the family Alfa began coordinating the burial arrangements. He had tried his best but if the old man wanted to be buried immediately, who was he to stop it. He didn’t have the spiritual capacity or faith to raise him from the dead and even if he did, he would rather let sleeping dogs lie.
The truth was that Debola was relieved and had staged the delay just to make a show. The autopsy episode was sown out of the need to object to something to prove that he, Debola Bello was in charge and wanted to be sure there was no foul play. At his arrival at the airport, they were so many reporters; his team had had to block the myriad of microphones that were pushed into his face. Now, he was sure the man was really dead. He could use the money to settle a lot of things, like his new family and the new baby he had just fathered with his former choir mistress. He saw Martha approach and the thought died a natural death.
It was going to be harder than he thought. He was a desperate sinking man who couldn’t divorce his wife because he was a pastor to one of the biggest new generation churches. He had a responsibility to his members all over the world but could ten million dollars liberate him? The answer was not comforting

*****
The man watched from a distance as they came. Each in a convoy, each one of them a rogue, cheat and killer. He watched them come out of their exotic cars and watched others drop from their private chopper. It was the perfect setting.

*****
The dark grey skies thickened furiously as family and friends of the Late Chief arrived at The Castle in convoys that flooded the grounds. Former Heads of State, past and present Governors, Ministers, Spiritual heads and Executive Officers of international and indigenous companies came in troves to pay their final respect to the icon, the big heart who was now lying in state. The condolence register had since been opened and the dignitaries flooding the exquisite large room already prepared for guests overwhelmed Sekinat. Thankfully, his body would finally be buried and everyone could leave. The sooner the ceremony was over, the sooner she could leave The Castle with the baby growing inside her. She watched Alhaja Kadirat cry from afar and took a deep breath. What did they say about widows who grieve the most?
The mausoleum stood poignant and imposing like the man who was going to be lying it. Painted in crisp white with tall Victorian columns located on manicured lawn few meters away from his favorite wild mahogany tree, the Alfa, Badmus’s step-brother, read out words from the Quran and delivered a message with Debola itching to say few words. This was his father’s funeral and here he was standing on the sidelines. He felt like shit. He smiled at the profanity and looked at his wife who looked like she would laugh out any minute now.
The official pressmen had set up cameras from the moment Chief Badmus’s body had arrived at The Castle on his private plane and the live streaming as event unfolded had taken over several stations across the country. Martha had been impressed with the turnout and with the level of dedication the political vultures came to pay their last respect. Of course he was one of them and it was only normal that they would troop out enmasse to be at his burial. She imagined his Will and smiled. She knew just what Debola had planned and she would simply ask for more than half of whatever he gets. What would one do with $5 million dollars? She fantasied. Just then, Martha noticed movement behind her and felt a piece of paper being pressed into her hand.
She turned around quickly to catch a man in black suit leave and disappear into the crowd. Looking around, she noticed the rapt attention of everyone, staring at the Alfa and reciting the last recital before they committed the body to the mausoleum.
Secretly opening the piece of paper underneath her phone, it simply read – Leave Now.
Her head jerked up and looked around again for a clue. There was no one looking at her or acting suspicious. She stood for few minutes, her heart racing when her phone vibrated. It was a text message – Leave Now!. There was no sender number.
She watched Debola focus on his Uncle. Should she take him along? Perhaps she should, just in case it was a kidnap attempt, she thought looking around again.
She found his hand and pulled at it. He looked at her with impatience.
“What is it?” he muttered under his breath.
“Come with me now” she replied in a mutter before dragging him along, eyes following them. Debola nodded courteously at the onlookers and followed Martha who was obviously in a hurry to reach the main house 500 meters. She was standing by their car when he reached her.
“What is it now Nomso? You do realize that my father will be laid to rest any minute and as the first son, I must be there” he said, heaving.
“Get in” she ordered.
“Bola, get in” she said entrusting the piece of paper in his hand. He entered the car reluctantly.
“What is this?” he asked throwing the piece of paper on her.
Just then, the loud thundering sound of an explosion filled the car that reverberated and shook so hard, the glasses shattered. The heart wrenching sound traveled the distance and they felt the impact as it flung their car against other parked cars.
He fell sideways, pushing his wife to the ground as he opened the car door, feeling pieces of glass on his body. He felt her move and then watched in horror as blood flowed from the back of her neck. The windscreen had shattered and large chunk of sharp glass was lodged at the nape of her neck.
“Nomso, Nomso” he called weakly, the ringing bell in his ears was beginning to clear as he looked around littered bodies everywhere. Shouts emanating from persons he could not see filled air but a look at the direction of the mausoleum confirmed what he thought it was.
A bomb blast at the mausoleum.

*****
M.O.T.I.V.E.S is written by;
Uneñ Ameji
Author of Memoirs of a Justified Gold Digger on Amazon.com
See new book Love on the 25th on Okadabooks http://goo.gl/hmsKnv
W: http://bit.ly/1Il23U3
T: https://twitter.com/UnenAmeji

*****

Next week!

Comment, Share….support!

Love on the 25th. Episode 16

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Love on the 25th. Episode 16
Read Previous Episodes of Love on the 25th by Uneñ Ameji Here

****
Debbie
It was a dark. It was raining. It was midnight. The quaint white bungalow sitting heavily like an obese woman in our large compound was quiet as usual and as I lay my head on my soft feathery pillow, I waited for their voices to create the ruckus I knew would start very soon…that was the norm. They waited for the world to sleep before they woke them up with shouts so loud, the echoes stayed within the walls throughout the day until they made new ones the very next day. I counted in confusion as I stared at my ceiling; I didn’t need to wait long.
“I am the man of the house and you and your dead father cannot tell me what to do” it was his voice, loud and authoritative as ever.
“Nobody is contesting that you are a man and so cannot keep his pants up! I want you out of my house and out of the company. It was my father’s and I won’t stand by and watch you cheat with your indigenous breed and work in an honest man’s office. God knew my father warned me! You silly goat” it was mother in her usual abusive fashion. I didn’t understand the word indigenous and breed at the time and I made the mental note to check the big Oxford dictionary in the library when they had both gone to work. I was learning new words these days and they weren’t good words. Perhaps I was too smart, perhaps too pampered but as an only child, I had all I wanted – until the day mother discovered daddy was a “lying bastard frolicking with a whore who he spent all her father’s money on”.
“I have worked in that company for ten years! Ten good years and you think you can command me to leave my life’s work just because it was your father’s? I am the managing director for a good reason, and nothing is going to stop me from sitting on that chair till I say otherwise. Get that? And you better get used to having an indigenous breed as your mate. I won’t give her up. Never!” and the door to their bedroom was slammed shut; the vibrations reaching the earth core.
It was not over yet. I waited for mother to follow and follow she did.
“Ben! Ben! Come back here. You won’t have the last word and for your information, the board is ready to vote me back in. You will lose everything and you will go back to the dishonest hole you vermin crawled out from. I swear Ben, I will destroy you and take my daughter from you” she said as she followed him past the hallway and down to the guest room where he always slept after their nightly ritual. But that night, something happened that changed our lives forever.
A loud slap, a high-pitched shout and the sound of crashing glasses, I was out of my bed and was running out of my room in complete shock and fear. The sight before me had me rooted in the hallway, afraid to move. The shelf with glass decor and plates had fallen and there were shattered glass particles all over the floor. Then I saw him, holding her up against the wall in strong grip as he snuffed the life out of her, her toes barely touching the floor and her hands reaching to unclasp his hands from her neck, struggling.
There was a little tear at her mouth and a spill of blood running down her mouth. I inched closer and felt a piece of glass sink into my right foot. I saw finger marks across her cheeks, light-skinned, mother bore the evidence of his slap and her eyes red with blood clot. He was determined to shut up her, I could see that.
“Daddy!” I shouted as I stood, too scared to move, afraid of him, afraid for her. This was the first time I had witnessed anything like this and I knew our lives had changed forever. He looked at me intensely for few seconds before relaxing his hold on her neck. She coughed loudly as his hands left her neck that bore more red welts from his grip. She slumped, rapidly feeding her starved lungs with fresh oxygen as she stretched out her hands for me.
“You will not take my life from me. You won’t take Alama from me” he said quietly as he dragged me back to my room despite the shout of mother to let me be.
“Daddy, please leave mummy alone’’ I said as he lifted me up with one hand.
“Shut up your mouth and don’t ever leave your room when adults are fighting. Like mother, like daughter” he said as he yanked my door and flung me inside. I landed on the bed with my hand hitting my wooden bedside locker.
That was my first fracture. That was the beginning of my hatred for the man whose DNA runs in my blood. That was the end of my family.
The clicks, flashes and steadily increasing looks from the crowded hotel lobby as they pointed and confirmed their suspicion about who I was brought me back to the present. The tears ran up my tear duct and I pasted a wide happy smile as I hugged my long-lost mother some more. She seemed to take the cue knowing we were in a delicate position. She smiled and gave me a princess perk on the forehead as we took our hands and tried walking away from the crowd that was beginning to irritate me. Thanks to the security at the hotel, we were ushered to the closest elevator but a persistent busybody followed in determined pursuit.
“Is this your mother? Why are you both crying? When is the wedding? Is the public invited or just Invites only?” all these questions spilling from the lips of the thin girl who I was sure was uploading the pictures to some sorry gossip site or her instagram. A word was not said as we walked into the elevator holding our hands, not letting go.
“My God! You are so beautiful” mother whispered as we got off the elevator with the security man and a manager escorting us to her room.
“Thank you” I said to the duo who looked like they wanted to wait around. I waited for the door to close before flying into my mother’s arms in relief and tears.
“I thought you were dead, I thought you left me….”I cried, as I hiccuped, trying to keep it all in but I couldn’t. The last time I had seen her was at Christmas. I had just turned 7 and several months after the night father broke my hand and nearly suffocated mum. I was little but I remembered the commotion that followed afterward; the fights were rough and deadly from then on. I heard of schemes and abuses. Mother took over the company and father nearly had her head for it – until Inspector Sunday, a friend of father’s had mother detained for few hours to “maintain the peace”. That was all father needed to put his plan into action.
He ran away with me and from what I heard years later, I wasn’t the only thing he took from mother. He had already sold properties left to mother by her father and taken a huge chunk from the joint account after he forged her signature.
Mother came just as the truck loaded with some boxes pulled out of the driveway. I remember her chasing the truck as I struggled with my hands and head out of the window….tears flowing down our faces as he sped on, her distraught image was reduced to nothingness after few meters but I could never forget as she collapsed on the tarred road right before I lost her.
I cried for weeks refusing to say a word, barely leaving the room I occupied alone in where I came to know as Benin – Nigeria and in few years, I became an object of abuse. Dad was never around, his wife slapped me around any chance she got, John the old guard found a way to sexually abuse me on the pretext of consoling me and the little devil of a bastard, Oman raped me repeatedly much to the amusement of my father’s wife….she knew, Dad knew but I was all alone. I was without a mother. He had his ultimate revenge against ‘the woman’, his sole enemy, who he repeatedly said was responsible for his downfall. I hated him and waited patiently for my mother to come rescue me. She was in Ghana and I hoped for the day she’d find out we were now in Nigeria but the day couldn’t come fast enough and that was when I decided I was going to look for her. I was 16 years.
“Your mother is dead” he had said without looking up from his Sunday newspaper after I announced boldly I was leaving to go find my mother. Oman had forced his little snake into me the night before and when I had beaten off a huge chunk of flesh from his shoulders, his wife had flogged me and called me a witch like my mother. I was ready to leave and I was not going back on the decision.
“I know you are lying. You are lying. When? When?” I shouted as tears formed in my eyes. He continued reading without as much as a look in my direction.
“She died five years ago on her way to America, you were too young and I decided to spare you the grief” he announced without lifting his eyes from the newspaper he was reading. When I demanded to know how, he stood up and left the sitting room. I felt myself go weak, the hope of rescue turning into smoke and heated pain traveled up my chest.
“See this fly” it was the devilish woman laughing at my predicament.
I ran away that night without a thought to where I was going. That night I met Caleb. My first husband. My heart lurched at the name; the last conversation with Vince and follow-up picture made me hold her more, sniffing in her scent.
“I am here….I am so sorry” she said as we sat on the bed as I cried and she did too. We stayed there for hours. Looking up to her and we’d stare, a sad smile and we’d cry again.
“We have to stop crying baby” she said, patting my hair as I blew my nose.
“I can’t ….” I struggled to speak, sniffing thick gobs of mucus in. I was a mess and I didn’t care. I just wanted to curl inside her arms and never get up. I remembered the smell, the pecks and little gifts she gave me every day.
“I know…I know” she said planting a thick kiss on my head.
“I thought you were dead, he told me you were dead and I believed him, I stopped searching, I was lost mum, I was lost……” I cried some more and she joined.
“I killed him” she said in strange voice and I turned to look at her.
“When?” was all I could say.
“I finally found you, him in Benin and when I asked of you, he said you ran away. I searched everywhere, the street boys helped with your poster. The police wasn’t any good. I got so mad I emptied bullets on him and his wretched wife and I left Nigeria. I was heartbroken and I had failed you. If only I had searched hard enough…” she was saying ashamed of what she had done. I knew the guilt she was feeling. It was the guilt of taking a life, of keeping secrets buried and the wish that things were different.
“Did you kill the guard and the boy?” I asked in hope, relishing in the knowledge that I had been avenged. I took her hands as she tried to get up. I was dried eyed now and she looked at me strangely.
“I must have…..I didn’t leave a witness” she said with an evil grin and we smiled for the first time since we hugged at the reception.
“Thank you” I said and hugged her as I contemplated telling her that I had also murdered a man in cold blood. That was my secret I decided and until it absolutely had to come out, I wasn’t going to ruin the evening any more than necessary.
“My baby is getting married” she gushed as she planted a loud kiss at the center of my head and I giggled, forgetting the schemes and lies involved. The thought of having her at my wedding made the lie inconsequential. I was going ahead with the wedding – even if it was for just three months.
“I missed you” she said and hugged me.
“Let me show you my pictures” I said for a lack of a better thing to say. I switched on my phone just in time to have flood of messages and calls fighting over themselves to reach me. A call came in.
It was Kole.
“Where are you?” he sounded miffed.
“Ikeja” I answered.
“You didn’t take my driver” he accused. I knew what he was thinking – that I was with Vince.
“I didn’t”
“You do realize that we are getting married in two weeks” he sounded terse.
“I know”
“Goddamit Debbie! I can’t have your affairs making headlines before the wedding. You know what is at stake here” he sounded desperate and for a moment I wanted to believe he liked women and wanted me. A happy part of me wanted the lies to be real but then Vince ….
“I am not with him”
“Are you sure?” he said releasing his pent up lungs.
“Yes”
“Please Debbie, just come back home let’s talk about all these” he said with a touch of a British accent and I could see imagine him running his hand through his head.
“I am with my mother Kole, can we do this tomorrow?” I said as I noticed her eyes now smiling.
“Your mother? You have a mother?” he asked, shock lacing his doubtful voice. I handed over the phone to mother.
“He doubts you exist” I said as I gave her the phone and went to get myself a bottle of water. The knowledge that she had killed the people who tormented me brought me strength and joy. I felt vindicated but I wondered how she must be handling the guilt knowing she murdered them in cold blood. What else was she capable of? I didn’t dwell on it.
“I take you think me non-existent” she started and I watched her with awe. My mother as I remembered her…smiling and nodding her head to whatever Kole was saying.
“Yes, I know. She just told me about it and I flew in last night.” She answered the questions that followed.
“Yes, we have a lot to catch up on, she is staying the night. But of course. I need to meet my son-in-law soon” she said as she looked at me and I smiled. She gave back the phone after few lines.
“So I hear mummy loud and clear. I will see you tomorrow. We should talk Deb…and I am sorry about Alex. I do want you. You should know that” and he dragged the last line and was gone.
“Trouble before the vows not a good sign baby. I am sure you know that” was all she said and I nodded. She already knew.
“We are working out few details” I braved.
“He doesn’t trust you before marriage, he won’t trust you after either and from what I think, it seems there is another young man in the picture… huhmm?” she said coming to take my hands and I laughed, shy and shaking my head in the affirmative. If only she knew there were two young men in the picture.
“Come tell me all about him, we have all night” she said as we headed out to the balcony but not before I rang for a plate of fruit salad.
I had 25 years to make up for.
****
Vince
I waited for her. I knew she was going to come. There was no alternative. The apartment was on a short lease, felt empty and impersonal. Two weeks after I had sent her Caleb’s picture and she was yet to get back to me. My calls were rejected, text messages went ignored. I was out of my wit and tomorrow was the wedding. I had to stop it. I had to.
I took the first flight to Lagos on Friday morning against father’s directive to host a government official. Over the weeks past, I had barely functioned at work and planned tirelessly on how to stop the wedding without making it headline news. There was only one way and I was going to need Caleb.
At 9:15am I was in Lagos, at 11:15 am, I had showered and shaved, brushed twice and changed my shirt thrice. I was excited because it was more than four weeks since the last time I saw her and was in her bed. In that time, I thought about her constantly, wished she would just stop the madness and call off the wedding. I had dreamt about her with my baby, I had thrown cups at my wall and was constantly moody and snappy. She had to call it off or I was going to disrupt the wedding publicly I had threatened in a message – that too had gone unanswered. With the arrival of her mother on scene, the wedding fever had gone higher and it was the constant rave everywhere. It was time to put my plan in motion.
‘I have your husband with me.
Doesn’t look good.
Tomorrow could be your big day, ….or not
We need to see.
C21, Block F, Boston Apartments, Alvan Ikoku, V.I’

I sent the message. Barely two minutes later, she replied.
‘See you in one hour’
Now I waited. Half expectant and half-tensed. What if she was truly married to him, what was their history? Who was she? Debbie or Alama?…..I heard a small knock on the door and knew instinctively she was the one. A deep breath, I went to open the door.
She stood there, a little frazzled, a little bold, her eyes already darting past my shoulders and licking her lips as she held her dark glasses.
“Where is he?” she asked as I stood aside to let her pass.
“He couldn’t make it today” I answered as she turned to face me.
“You said…”
“I know what I said”
“Why did you bring me here?” she asked, getting angry.
“Because I wanted to meet Alama” I said piercing her with a heated look.
“You don’t need to know her. I am getting married in less than 24 hours Vince. I can’t afford this kind of meetings” she said almost in a plea. I frowned.
“You can’t get married when you are already married to another” I said almost in a thought.
“Vince, I was married but we are no longer together”
“But not divorced” I pressed.
“It was a long time ago, I was under aged. I was 16 years. That is contestable”
“That is not what he said. I am pretty sure he said you were 20” I said looking at her mouth, tracing it to her chest and back to her face. All I could see was her naked underneath me and I found her avoiding my gaze as she swallowed self-consciously.
“He lied, we lied in court” she said suddenly looking at her hands and finding a seat. I walked over to her.
“I had a feeling he wasn’t telling the real story but he will, soon enough” I said taking the opposite sofa.
“What did he tell you?” she asked looking at me, tensed.
“You were supposedly in a fire and he thought you were dead”
“That is true”
“Why didn’t you find him after the fire?”
“I didn’t want to be married to him anymore. I had enough of men”
“But you are getting married to Kole”
“Yes. I am. It has been a long time”
“Why?” I pressed.
“Because it is the right thing to do. Career-wise, and we are compatible”
“Do you love him?” I asked jealous, unable to remain objective and unattached. Here she was and the only thing I could think of was making love to her till her wedding day was over.
“I am comfortable with him” she answered licking her lips.
“What happens to us?”
“There was no Us” she corrected.
“I don’t think so”
“Vince, don’t make this about you…” she shook her head.
“You could be with my child. Are you?” I asked, serious.
“Vince! I am not with a child”
“It has been over a month. Have you seen….”
“My God Vince! I can’t believe you called me here to talk of a nonexistent baby” she said standing up and pacing the space.
“What if you were with my baby, would you still marry Kole?”
“Well, I am not with your child” she defended, her hands going over her stomach in a possessive stance.
“That doesn’t answer my question”
“What question?”
“Will you go ahead with the wedding?”
“Vince…”
“Will you?” I shouted as I stood facing her.
“No!”
“Good” I said firmly as we stared at ourselves.
“You have a lot to answer for” I said, my head and all the questions I wanted answers too forgotten.
“I know”
“God! How I have missed you” I said tracing her lips with my fingers
“Vince….” She didn’t move.
“I want you, I don’t care if you are Alama or Debbie, I don’t care if you were married…to Caleb, to Kole, I really don’t care what your past is Debbie. I am not letting you go, I’m in love with you” I said as I placed strands of hair behind the back of her ear.
“Vince, we can’t” she said, her breath fanning my hand, she was aroused. I could tell.
“I know” and with that I hooked my hand to her waist, pulling her close. All thoughts of finding out who she was, why she changed her name and what led to marrying a misfit like Caleb was lost as I found her lips. She gasped as I teased her open.
“Vince…” she called, trying to resist.
“Don’t fight it love” and I pressed. She responded slowly as I found her willing tongue and sucked on it. She moaned, her hands finding their way to my neck. Pressing closer, I found her aching nipples underneath the silk blouse she was wearing. She arched her back and without second thoughts swept her up her feet and was soon carrying her to the bedroom without a protest. If she wasn’t pregnant before, I was going to make sure she left with me inside her, the thought tightening my already stiffened groin and my heart leaping with joy.
I couldn’t wait for tomorrow.
There was no way I was letting her get married.
Not on my watch.
****
Love on the 25th is written by Uneñ Ameji; Author of Memoirs of a Justified Gold Digger. Get a copy. She is @UnenAmeji

Love on the 25th. Episode 5

Episode 5
Debbie
The thick smell of burning human flesh infiltrated my subconscious as the searing heat travelled the length of my Being. Fast asleep, I saw myself standing before the slow roast of a pig and watched gradually as I became the pig, roasting on the large sized grill. Slowly gaining consciousness, I opened my swollen eyes to a dense cloud of smoke suffocating me and immediately erupted in loud cough, scrambling to my feet when I realized I was the source of the smell, and that the tiny shack I lived in was on fire. The thin mattress which was padded by extra clothing had melted on my back, the candle I used for lighting was nowhere in sight. I was literally on fire.
The burning pain registered instantly as I ran out, temporarily forgetting about the fresh pains in the lower part of my abdomen with the fastest speed my legs could produce; one destination in mind – the pond down the gentle hill. With little visibility and increasing burning sensation on my back, I ran blindly to the small body of water servicing the littered shacks up the hill; the little mattress still glued to my back continued to burn.
Throwing myself in the clear water, the fire was put out instantly but the burning sensation stung me the moment my burnt back was exposed to air as I crawled out of the river weakly. My legs barely able to carry my weight now that the pain in my abdomen resurfaced like Legion after he had gone out of the possessed man in the holy book. Still sore from the forced stillbirth earlier in the day, I wept – for my loss, the pains all over my body, for been abandoned, for been abused. Resting my hands on wet earth, I cried for a long time, total darkness surrounding me save the moon that appeared from the dark clouds as I turned to face the heavens. Fearless and scarred, I sniffed in the hiccups and swore to survive. To be more. I was at my end and I knew that I was ready to rewrite my history at all cost. The night was long gone and my burnt skin was raw and prickly as I struggled to stand and take steady steps up the gentle slope. Seeing my shack burn in a distance, I wondered where I’d go to from here.
Just as I walked past a tree, I perceived the distinct smell of burning tobacco. My heart froze and I hastened my leaf-like legs but not before a deep voice commanding me to stop sounded from the dark. The moon had gone under the thick clouds again and soon the owner of the voice materialized right before me. I stepped back, the red butt of his tobacco glaring at me in the face.
“Wia you dey go?” he asked, a deep drawl in pidgin. His voice thicker than sh*t. He reeked of concentrated tobacco and dry gin – a combination I was sure he used to bath.
“Home” I answered holding my breath.
“Wia you from come?” he asked going around me in circles. The long green cardigan I wore felt heavy to my calves but I was exposed where the fire had feasted on my back.
“Waterside” I replied not flinching as the shadow came to stand before me, feeding me the smoke from his mouth. I refused to cough.
“To do what?” he fed my nose directly knowing that I was holding my breath.
“I was on fire”. I said innocently and he gave a growl.
Suddenly, he dropped the lit stub in his hand and yanked on my breasts painfully. I broke out in a whimper as he twisted my sensitive nubs; tears running down my eyes involuntarily as the receding pain came back.
“Ssssshhhh. Lie down” he commanded as he released me slowly but continued twisting my nipples in circles. I stood defying his command. My back was sore, I had just given birth to my premature baby as a stillborn in less than 10 hours and I was sore down my tubes.There was no way I was going to allow this abuse.
It would seem as if this was a test I had to pass and I could feel eyes of the unknown watching my every move as if waiting for me to take the freedom I had sworn I would.
“Lie down” he barked and then attacked me in a sudden move, my raw back touching the hurting sand in a blink of an eye. The pain caused me to cry out as I struggled to get him off me but he was fumbling with my long cardigan, trying to pull on my pant. My body screamed out in excruciating pain as his weight pinned me down, my lower abodmen ached like my insides where being pulled from my stomach walls, my back like I was lying down on a thousand needles and I could feel blood sipping out of my young womb. Death was staring at me in the face and I knew that this was not the end of the road, it was the breakthrough I needed. I snapped, strength surging into me as the moon came out of its hiding and my eyes opened in the thick darkness to see a big stone within reach. My teeth opened and with so much hatred I bit his ear off in one clean bite. He screamed as I tasted blood gushing out of the faceless rapist, rolling off me. I moved swiftly carrying the stone and as he knelt there holding his right ear, I raised the large stone to the heavens in blessing and pummeled him with all the strength at the centre of my Being. He screamed thickly and slumped. I went down on my knees and blindly began pounding the figure laid out before me. This was victory and I annihilated the enemy with much relish. God had indeed delivered the enemy into my hands. I released the hurt and anguish – pounding him into the earth until my limbs were weak and the involuntary jerks from the mass of flesh stopped. I took a deep breath expecting to feel fear, regret or happiness. I felt nothing as I stared at the mashed flesh before me.
Standing up covered in a splatter of warm blood, I could see blood flow from my attacker, wetting the earth and almost as if I was being controlled, I dragged the body down the short distance back to the pool of water and dropped it by the mouth of the cold water. Discarded what remained of my cloth and took a bath; washing away the blood that had splashed on my face, my raw back stinging faintly on contact with the cold water, unafraid of the night. The moon which before hid behind the dark pregnant clouds had moved overhead witnessing the event and shone brightly as a night bird hooted in rhythm, perhaps a song of victory.
Dragging the body after I had washed off his blood, I deposited it in the water and silently walked uphill to my shack in the nude – this time uninterrupted. A surge of confidence and strength guided my legs as I watched what remained of my shack fall to the ground as I approached. Few neighbors standing with arms folded, no one making an attempt to put out the fire or rescue me. I moved noiselessly and grabbed a pair of trousers and shirt dangling from a makeshift clothing line. Wearing the male getup, I took confident steps and headed to the Highway determined to survive and ready to take on anyone who tried to stop me. Fearless of what the night may hold, I walked back into life, an abused woman and a murderer.
****
Sandra
I knew the moment she twisted beside me that she was having the nightmare again and I sat up, watching her as she struggled, cried, kicked her legs and sobbed quietly before the tears flowing from her eyes dried up. The first night I had witnessed it, I had woken her up and we stayed up all night talking about our nightmares and fears. She had lost a child and I had been abused. Of course I knew her story was far from the complete version likewise mine but we understood that people like us held on to the darkest of secrets. I knew she was going to wake up soon and smiled as she opened her eyes, scanning the ceiling as if trying to determine where she was before finding my eyes and smiling painfully.
“Are you okay?” I asked through sad smiles.
“I want a baby. Let’s get a baby” she croaked, her voice belonging to someone else.
“A baby?” I questioned, a surprise laugh escaping me as I made to switch on my bedside lamp. I wanted to be sure she was really awake and was not talking in her sleep.
“Yes, I will get one” she continued, eyes wide staring at me as if daring me to deny her a request I had a hard time understanding. I had never seen Debbie with a man. She didn’t discuss them. She didn’t bring them home. She never slept out. She had no male friends and now she wanted what they had to offer? It was impossible.
“Debbie, Debbie wake up” I tapped her. She smiled as she sat up and switched on the lamp on her own side of the bed.
“I am awake. I think a baby girl will be nice” she said, looking at me with strewn hair.
“I don’t know what happened in your dreams but I don’t think getting a baby girl is a good idea, not now that you will be busy at work and moving to the new house, a new city. The process of adoption is not what I want to do at the moment and I don’t see you getting pregnant anytime soon” I said covering plausible avenues for getting a baby girl knowing she would bribe me to get the adoption process started. But most importantly, I didn’t want a baby. Not now, not ever.
“You are right. I don’t have the time and it will be selfish of me getting you involved” she said looking at me sadly.
“I miss her you know. She would have been 16 today” she continued and her strong eyes watered as she closed them.
Today was the birthday of the baby lost and I knew she was pained.
“I am sorry Debbie” I said as I pulled her close and stroked her hair. She cried quietly, sniffing in the tears and cleaning them off.
“I have cried enough for one night. So are you going to stay with me?” she asked, managing a smile. I couldn’t leave her now and Abuja seemed like fun. Art business could work here. Who was I kidding? With Debbie here, it was going to work.
“Are you kidding me? With my furniture coming in this morning, it would take the military to send me back. All my shoes can finally have a place called home” I said trying humor. She gave a small laugh as she sniffed again, getting out of bed.
“Thank you” she said checking her emails on her ipad.
“We should have PDG at the address before noon” I said referring to the moving company and she nodded.
It was a Saturday and we have been staying at the Hilton for two weeks. The move was today and we were checking out before noon.
The past week was busy for everyone. The new house was perfect but Debbie had refused it because she had a colleague for a neighbor. It had taken the Oshodi story to get her to have a rethink, not Mr. Fatasho’s soft directive to either have that house or pay out of her pocket.
I had gone back to Port Harcourt to send personal effects and favorite piece of furniture and art from both our flats. The girls were ‘handy’ in grabbing clothes off Debbie’s hanger and picking my shoes but helped with supervision as the workmen packed and moved the boxes. I was stiff from the marathon move and taking the last flight last night to Abuja after lunch with the girls. Debbie was not in by the time I got in and I saw my brush in the position I had left it. I knew Debbie. She was overworking herself again. A call to Debbie confirmed she had not come back to the Hotel since I left on Tuesday but was on her way. She came in 11:45pm.
“Can’t believe I am going to leave here today” I said and she laughed, going to the toilet with her ipad, already working.
“I need to pee and try to sleep in a little more” she said.
“Highly recommended” I said following her to the toilet, collecting her ipad. She laughed.
“So how are the girls?” she asked taking a piss. We had not talked since she got in last night in a bad mood and was now catching up on the gist.
“They miss you” I said
“They miss the lunch” she eyed me and I laughed as I filled her in on the latest man in Uloma’s life. Eva was going to Lagos to be with a new musician she didn’t disclose and Tina was all about inheriting items.
“Eva says she will be coming to see our mansion next week and Uloma is still having the Ex slashing her tyre. Tina is good but angry that she had to give back a refund” I reported as I was now taking a piss and Debbie washed her tear stained flawless face.
“I am going to miss them” she voiced and I knew she was. They were her social life and now she was going to be buried in work for a long time.
“You may want to hold on with the missing. They looted some dinner gowns and bowls. Tina took your gold-studded purse” I said, as she simply shook her head.
“She always had her eyes on it” she said as I flushed and followed her back to bed.
Silently remaking the bed, we got in.
“It will be fine” I reassured as I saw her face fall again.
“I know” and with that she backed me, the thin straps of the free yellow night gown revealing the long slant of ugly scar running from her left shoulder to the lower end of her spinal cord She had never told me how she got it and I waited patiently for the day. My eyes closed and a surprising yawn followed as the first drop of rains sounded outside.
****

Vince
The wet morning had me patiently waiting for my new neighbors. Rolling over in my large bed, I replayed yesterday’s evening. I had been so closed to kissing her. So close but the look in her eyes had stopped me. She looked as if she was going to hurl me at the wall and I had stopped the downward move to her inviting rosy lips. Sandra had convinced her take the house and I was surprisingly anxious to get them settled in.
The past two weeks had revealed an impressive side of the woman Debbie Black really was. The hate was slowly turning to admiration as she worked tirelessly to possibly prove her worth but she didn’t need to. I was over the Passover by the third day and was now preoccupied with getting her in my bed – one fit that was proving to be more difficult than getting my office.
She had been sleeping the office the past week and brought everyone down to the meeting room, allowing the team brings ideas to the table and brilliantly cutting out ideas that were dead without hurting her feelings. Never before have I seen the staff respond to these sessions but all were quick to proffer solutions, take on extra assignments and go out of their way to make sure the projections were almost absolute. Holding mini presentations she presided over, they flocked in to do their best. The number of office sleepers had increased and soon the entire mornings were dedicated to fine tuning ideas and getting the best ads pass through to final presentation.
She was all smiles but I knew she was out of it. Her eyes showed fatigue and as I watched her make an impressive presentation to top management in the same meeting room that she was hired just two weeks ago, I knew I wanted her. I wanted her. I wanted her for me. Nods of approval trailed the presentation and as she sat down, Dad beamed proudly.
“Well done Debbie. I think we are going to have a busy month” he said as he looked at everyone. This meant her presentation was a go and we all had the collective responsibility of making sure it happened.
“It was a collective effort Sir” she said acknowledging the work of her team and smiling at Jacob who was all smiles too. She didn’t know but this was the first time Dad approved on first presentations.
“Let’s tidy it up” he said meaning we all had work to do and soon called the meeting to a close. She was with Jacob the moment Dad left and we went down the floor to the new meeting room they had dedicated to the marathon. Everyone eager for the verdict as she and Jacob who had long established a good rapport with her announced that the presentation was given a go. They erupted in applause and some gave shouts. Filani, an eager project manager in real estate was first to demand ‘popping champagne’ and soon they had drinks and chops flooding the meeting room. Debbie sneaked out and was headed to her office when I caught up with her.
“That wasn’t bad” I said as I arrived at her side.
“I am glad you approve” she said with a tired smile, nodding at greetings thrown at her from staff at the corridor.
“Let’s bury the hatchet. I don’t seem to see a need for it now that we going to be neighbors” she gave a little laugh and looked at me.
“Well?” I pressed and she shook her head, leaving me standing there.
I followed her.
“So now that we are friends, what do I cook for house warming?” I asked, playing the cute card as she matched briskly in high heels to the elevator.
“What?” she asked, then it came to her.
“Oh! The move is tomorrow. I totally forgot. Have to call Sandra” she continued as she dialed.
“Join me for dinner tonight” I blurted as she entered the elevator carrying her to her office.
“Not hungry” and with that the door closed. I stared at the elevator for a while.
Why in God’s name was I bent on getting her approval? Her smile? Her attention? Her insanely curvy self?
I wanted her and it was beginning to annoy me. On a whim, I decided to follow her.
Her door had just closed when I stepped out of the elevator and Idris acknowledged that she was in, waving him off the intercom. I opened the door unannounced.
“Vincent?!” she called as she turned to see me standing in her doorway, losing her footing and tumbling on her settee. I moved quickly to help her up as she found her bearing, frantically looking around for her jacket that I saw on her desk and shoes kicked to different corners. Our eyes met as I knelt down above her, exchanging breath as I slowly traced her mouth, the tip of her nose and tired but beautiful eyes. I longed to plant a light kiss on her well defined lips. Her eyebrows were arched in high fashion with real hair and long lashes blinking in annoyance. She looked dangerously closed to kicking me in my groin as she puffed. It wasn’t time for a kiss yet.
“You should rest” I said as I offered her my hand to stand but she refused to take it.
“Please pass my jacket and next time could you knock?” she said as I made to get her the purple jacket.
“Noted” I said enjoying myself as I watched her struggle into her jacket and jotting her firm chest forward. God! I wanted her.
“What do you want?” she said trying to mask her anger as she stood up, going to her seat. Her question conjured images she wouldn’t approve off – not yet anyways.
“Are we going to have an impressive presentation on how to get back Ele anytime soon?” I teased and she smiled. I had been on Ele’s case for past days at every opportunity.
“A phone call should put that to rest” she answered as her phone rang and she picked.
“Yes. Yes na! I will send him. Hahahhahaa….I know o!!! Okay dear, till you come” she finished.
“Sandra”
“Yes”
“I am guessing you will need a driver. I will be back in 40 minutes to take you to the hotel and have dinner on your account” and with that I left her office wondering why she was so wound up when I entered the office.
Could it be the tattoo-like scar on her back? How did she come about the beautiful scar that looked like a tattoo? She intrigued me some more but the image of her backless white camisole had me imagining how firm her breasts must be to have no bras supporting it – a lurid smile breaking out on my face. Having her as my neighbor was definitely going to be interesting and I had all intentions of seducing the almighty Miss Black, a tent forming in my boxers as the rains increased in intensity.

Love on the 25th is written by Uneñ Ameji. Follow @UnenAmeji on twitter.