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“So Caroline, what do you suggest?” Funke asked over the phone. “It seems the person who registered this number did so with a fictitiou...

“So Caroline, what do you suggest?” Funke asked over the phone. “It seems the person who registered this number did so with a fictitious name. I that case, what I would suggest is that we bait him or her.” “How are we supposed to do that?” I will need your friend to text the number back…engage with this person and get them texting back to him. While this goes on, my colleague that works in the engineering section will try to pin-point the location of this person. That way, we can make a deduction as to where he is and take it from there,” Caroline proffered her solution to the problem. “We don’t have any alternative. I will be back in Abuja this weekend. I will talk to Bola and relay your suggestion to him.” “Let’s start by Monday. My friend will be free enough to monitor that from Monday.” “Great. That is very helpful of you.” Funke called Bola and Amarachi and discussed the plan with them. They both embraced the plan. Amarachi was keen to end this. She wanted the culprit caught by all means.

Amarachi walked into her boss’ office that morning to discuss her proposed transfer to Abuja. “So Amarachi, you want me to approve your transfer to Abuja?” Her boss asked. “Yes ma. This is very important to me. Of course, I would understand if it is not possible, but I really need this.” “You have not told me the actual reason why you want to leave a city that you love so much for Abuja,” her boss probed further. “This is personal ma, but given the sort of relationship I have with you, I hope you will understand. I…I am…I am in love with someone who happens to live in Abuja. He means a lot to me. I would like to be closer to him” “Why can’t he move to Kaduna?” “He has tried with his bank ma, but they would not grant his request for transfer. This is our last chance. He is a wonderful guy,” Amarachi pressed further. Her boss eyed her for a moment. “Love….it is such a wonderful thing isn’t it?” “Yes ma, it is.” “You are such a brilliant young girl. I hope you are doing the right thing. Of course you can always work your way back here if things don’t work out, but I am more worried about a possible heart break. If things go sour, you will be so broken after having to leave your family here to move closer to him.” “He is a great guy ma. I can assure you that. Things will work out between us.” “I will approve you transfer on one condition. I would like to talk to this guy now.” “Now?” “Yes, now.”

“Okay, let me call him and hand the phone over to you.” “You do that.” Amarachi rang Bola up. “Honey, my boss would like to talk to you before she approves my transfer,” she said. Bola was surprised. “Okay, put me through to her.” “Mr. Bola,” Amarachi’s boss called to him on the phone. “Yes ma.” “Amarachi is one of my best staff. I hate to let her go, but I like her far too much to stand in her way. She is a wonderful girl…a brilliant one too. I hope she is doing the right thing.” “I can assure you that she is, ma,” Bola persuaded her. “If you hurt her feelings…If you break her heart, I will come after you. I promise you that!!!” She said emphatically.” “I will never hurt her ma. I love her very much.” “Is that a promise?” “Yes ma.” Are you a man of your words?” “Yes ma.” “I will be watching you. Her transfer is approved.” “Thank you very much ma.” Bola was very relived, and so was Amarachi.

“I will talk to you later honey,” Amarachi said to him as she hung up. “I will send you the paper work in a few days Amarachi. He sounds like a good guy,” her boss said. “It is not easy for me to approve this now because Elochukwu is going on maternity soon.” “Maternity? Amarachi asked. “You haven’t heard? She is pregnant. I am not sure the father of the child is standing by her though,” her boss pointed out. “I see,” Amarachi said pondering the situation. “Amyy, have you heard?” Helen and Biola asked as Amarachi entered the office. “What?” “Elohukwu is pregnant for Badmus,” Helen said excitedly. “And he says the child is not his,” Biola added. “Amarachi felt a pang of pity for Elochukwu who had called in sick. “Poor Elochukwu,” she said sympathetically. “She brought that upon herself,” Helen retorted. “When she was enjoying Badmus’ money, what was she expecting?” Biola asked. “We all make mistakes, girls. We don’t have to judge her too harshly,” Amarachi cautioned them.

Monday 1:00PM – Bola texted to the anonymous number;
Hi please, I now have a lot of doubts about Amarachi. Were you sure when you said she cheated on her ex?

 Anonymous number: 1:12PM
Yes!!! She has slept with a lot of men in the past. That is the reason the boyfriend broke up with her. You cannot trust her.

Bola: 1:15PM
That comes to me as shock. I have been thinking of this. What of her father. You said he is a cultist?

Anonymous number: 1:17PM
He is an evil man. You do not want to be mixed with their family. They are claiming that her mother’s illness was as a result of post-partum stress. That is a lie. It is more of a genetic issue. It runs in their family. You will be having a mad woman for a wife in the future. Run now!!!

As the exchange of texts continued, Funke called Caroline who furnished her with some information. By evening when she walked up to Bola, she had a look on her face as though she had seen a ghost. “What did your friend say?” Bola asked; keen to find out where the texts were coming from, at least. “I am confused,” said Funke. “Why? What did your friend say?” Confusion stood tall on Funke’s face. She moved closer to Bola and lowered her voice as she spoke. “The texts were coming from Abuja and not Kaduna. They came from within this building to be precise.” Utter confusion appeared on Bola’s face. “What? This building? How can that be?” “That is the same question I am asking myself. They cannot say exactly who, but they know for sure that the number…the phone it is operating from is within this building right now.” “I don’t have any enemies in the building, Funke!!!’ Bola exclaimed. “No, you do my friend. You thought you did not, but someone in this building hates you with a passion.” “That is scary.” “Yes it is. We have been under the impression that someone in Kaduna was after Amarachi. It appears someone from here wanted to ruin your happiness.” “My goodness, how do we find out who?” Bola asked. Frustration and anger were written all over his face.

“I can’t believe this honey,” Amarachi said over the phone. “All along I thought it was Badmus.” “I really thought it was from your end. It happens to be from here.” “How are we going to fish the culprit out then?” Amarachi asked. “That is going to be hard,” Funke answered. Bola’s phone was on speaker as the three of them conversed. “I think we should treat everyone as a potential culprit right now, starting with the immediate people I work with; Chinonso, Abdul, Rosaline, Isdor and Ekwutosi,” Bola suggested. “You seem to be in good terms with all of them, but I think we have to look beyond the surface,” Funke suggested. “I am inclined to suspect the ladies, Rosaline and Ekwutosi,” she continued. “I did not know you had secret admirers my love,” Amarachi teased. “I am just finding that out.” “Rosaline tries to play with you. She is chatty and very friendly. I have a feeling she may have fallen in love with you but she could not express it more glaringly beyond her flirtatious jokes and games. Maybe she heard us talking about your girlfriend and decided to swing into action. Ekwutosi is far too quiet to be involved in a thing like that.” “But how did she acquire all that information about Amarachi?” Bola asked. “I have no idea. That is what we need to find out.” They worked out a strategy and swung into action the next morning.

Bola walked to Rosaline and flirted with her. “You look smashing this morning. I can’t help but notice…or shall I say admire your awesome, sexy appearance this morning,” he said. “Thank you very much,” replied the chatty Rosaline. “Look at that necklace. You mind if I have a look at it?” Bola requested. Rosaline positioned herself well so that Bola could lift the necklace off her neck and take a good look at it. He brushed his hand along her neck and then placed his hand on her shoulder. “You are tapping quite some current you know,” Rosaline said jokingly. “I have to say that the current you are producing this morning is shocking,” Bola answered, still holding onto her shoulder. “Do you want to meet up after work?” She asked Bola matter-of-factly. “I think we should do that Rosa.” “I will text you my address. I thought you’d never notice my advances at you.” “I was not sure how to make my move,” Bola answered. “I am glad you finally did,” she replied, smiling broadly. 

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Victor Chinoo

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