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Nigeria's Leading Story Blog: Killer, Shoot, Restaurant, Unearth, Street, Shoot, Jaguar, Driver, DVD, Balcony, He flickered through his brain

Lazidi restaurant, Azonto
“I am glad you could come,” Jariye said to her. “What are you talking about? I should be the one expressing my gratitude to you. You are putting your life on the line to find my father’s killer…and Dilingo’s. Thanks!!!” Isabell replied. “You are welcome, Isabell. I am doing my job as an investigative attorney,” replied Jariye. “I still can’t stop worrying about you, all the same,” Isabell remarked. She took his hand in hers and rubbed it gently. Then she looked in his eyes and said, “Thanks!” “You are welcome. Let’s go inside. I made a reservation for the two of us,” Jariye answered.

The killer puffed a spurt of smoke in the air as he watched them enter the restaurant. There has to be another one, he thought as his eyes scanned the vicinity. “Do you have a reservation?” The waiter asked Jariye and Isabell. “Yes we do. It is under the name, Maxwell Ilemba,” Jariye answered. The waiter squinted at the computer for a moment and then glanced back at them with a smile. “Come with me,” he said, waiving in the direction of a table at the back of the restaurant. “Thank you,” they echoed. 
“Maxwell Ilemba?” Asked Isabell as soon as they were seated.
“I did not want to use my real name. The entire city appears to be crawling with people looking to gun me down.”

“I understand. I am sorry about that. You can walk away from this case you know.”
“Yes, I can but I won’t. I am not a quitter. I have not discussed this with you before…”
“Discuss what?” 
“The person who killed your father and Dilingo also killed my sister, Grace; the girl that was killed in the bomb blast following your father’s death at the police headquarters.” 
“I am very sorry to hear that,” Isabell replied in tone that conveyed her sympathy.
“Thanks,” Jariye said calmly.

Again, she placed her hand on his, staring into his eyes. It had been long since he felt such warmth. His work barely allowed him to keep relationships. It felt good though to feel her warmth and tenderness. Soon, they ordered and went down to business. They talked in low tones to make sure no one overheard them. Jariye was carefull to peep under the table and around in search of any listening device. He found none. He told Isabell that he felt her mother was involved in her father’s death somehow. 

“I feel the same way too. Here is the video recording I mentioned to you.” She carefully handed him the DVD. Jariye shoved it into the inner pocket of his suit. They ate quietly afterwards. Isabell would not take her hand away from his. “So, what is your next line of action?” She asked him. “I have to find concrete evidence as to whether or how far your mother is involved.” 

“I don’t think there is any doubt as to whether she is involved. I know she will never admit it, but from that recording, you will come to the same conclusion that she is perhaps, the architect behind the whole thing.” 
“Well, you said it yourself…she will never admit it. What we think mean nothing in the court of law. I have to find evidence…concrete evidence that implicates her directly.”
“Abugu Mabali has to be involved if my mother is involved.”
“I agree with you. I am thinking along the same line too. I have to ask you this, how do you feel towards your mother? Would you want to see her go to jail?”

Isabell took a deep breath. “Don’t get me wrong,” she answered. “I love my mother…a part of me wants her to be innocent, and at the same time, a part of me is mad that she may have killed my beloved father. I was very close to him. I just want to know the truth. If she is innocent, that will help my relationship with her a lot, but if she is not, it will hurt a lot, but at least, I would live with the truth.”

“I will do my best. I have to go and see Ozama’s mother tomorrow. I have not seen her since Ozama went missing. I know her disappearance is tied to this case, and it makes me feel guilty. She may have been abducted or even killed because of her ties to me. By the way, did she mention anything to you before she went missing?” 
“No…except that she was going to a Nightclub the night she went missing.” 
“What nightclub?”
“She did not mention which one.”
“Which one does she normally go to?” 
“Ozama is a free spirit. She went to all of them. She never really had any favorites.”

Jariye made a note in his notepad, which he placed back in his inner coat pocket. “I have to leave now. I will call you soon.”
“You can’t leave now. Please Jariye, come with me tonight. You look disheveled. You need a good night’s sleep. I will help you shave. Tomorrow you can start again.”
“No, I have to leave. I want to See Ozama’s mother and then find out what Abugu is up to.” 
“One night, Jariye. Rest for a night,” Isabell pleaded with him.

He looked at her and she tilted her neck to the left. Her lips hung open and her bold bright eyes peered back at him, pleadingly. She stroked his hand gently. Her gloss-coated lips were invitingly luscious. “Okay, I will get some rest tonight. We are not going to your place though. I don’t think it is safe there. I will take you somewhere else.”
“I will go anywhere with you,” Isabell answered excitedly. She could hardly hide her joy. 

Cool evening breeze wafted into their faces as they exited the restaurant. “I am packed over there, do you mind if I walk to my car to pick up a few personal effects. You know…ladies stuff. I will be right back. Besides, I have to tell my driver to leave.” “Okay, I will be over there,” Jariye pointed. He stepped into a shaded area, away from the glow of street lights. His eyes were perusing everything that moved on Erialor Street. He made sure to watch Isabell in case someone followed her. “I will be seeing a friend for the night. You can ride home now,” Isabell told her driver after picking up a few items from the back seat. 

She stood there and watched the driver pull away. Jariye saw the driver pull away in Isabell’s official Jaguar. Isabell looked around. She needed to drop off the second DVD quickly, but there was no sign of the man she had arranged with to pick it up. She walked towards the exit of the massive stadium car park. Then, he appeared. “What took you so long, Emerugha?” She asked. “I wanted to make sure you were not being followed. A lot of people are getting gunned down in Azonto these days,” he explained. “Here it is,” Isabell said, handing him the DVD. “Make sure it is on air by tomorrow,” she said with a hint of insistence. “It will,” Emerugha answered. 

Emerugha was an investigative journalist who worked for Katakata Television Station, one of the privately owned television stations in Agudugba. He had been investigating Maxwell Iningo’s death as well as the killing of several other people in Azonto over the past year. Isabell had rung him up on his way to meet with Jariye. She walked briskly towards Jariye. Emerugha took a different exit – a window. He leapt onto a lush-green lawn behind the main car park and walked casually towards his car. His eyes were working overtime, looking for anything out of the ordinary. Before he got to his car, a figure appeared from behind the flowers. Emerugha squatted anticipating a gunshot. He was right. The man, who wore a black overall, fired several shots at him. He tried to crawl under his car, reaching for his gun at the same time, but it was too late. 

A bullet tore through his collar bone and another one pierced his chest, severely damaging his heart. More gunshots rang out and then, darkness ensued. Emerugha, the vocal investigative journalists lay dead on the grass. A pool of blood surrounded his flaccid body. The killer hunkered down and searched his pocket. He found what he was looking for – the DVD. He placed it in his pocket and ran towards Jariye. He had seen him position himself away from the glow of street lights. He knew Jariye was a seasoned shooter with military training, so that was the reason he went after Emerugha first. 

“I heard gun shots,” said Jariye. Isabell was just arriving at the spot where he was standing. “Me too,” she answered. Her hands began to shake and so did her legs. She could not help but think that Emerugha had been killed. By who? She pondered frantically. “Come with me,” said Jariye. He bent over, removed Isabell’s high-heeled shoes and quickly broke off the heels. He tossed them away and placed Isabell’s feet back into a flatter version of the shoes. “We have some running to do tonight,” he announced. They quickly ran around the building, crossed the street and joined a stream of people moving in all directions. The killer had seen them dart across the street. He followed them as fast as he could. His hand was firmly placed on his gun inside his pocket, ready to shoot at any time. His heart was beating feverishly. He too feared that Jariye could gun him down. 

He spotted them meandering through the crowd. He ran as fast as he could. Jariye looked behind and saw him dashing towards them. He made a sharp right turn onto Izumbe Street, dragging Isabell with him. As soon as they entered the street, they ran. Without warning, Jariye dragged her into a building that was bustling with humanity. It was an old 3 storey building with numerous apartments. The paint on the building was rapidly peeling off. Most of the balconies were devoid of any protective railings; completely open. Clothes dangled and waved from balconies whose railings were yet to fall off. A large group of children were playing in front of the building while men and women chatted away nearby, laughing raucously to jokes as they unwound from the day’s stress. The stairs creaked as Jariye and Isabell climbed to the third floor. 

The killer stopped in the middle of Izumbe Street. There was no sign of them. Where have they gone to? He thought. He flickered through his brain for answers. He quickly decided to ask the happy crowd in front of the old, battered building. “Did you see a man and woman walk by?” He asked a woman who was carrying a baby girl on her back. “I did not see any one. I had my back to the road,” she answered.” “What about you,” he asked the man standing next to her. He shook his head. Then the killer pulled his gun and aimed it at the woman carrying a baby. If no one answers my question correctly now, I will shoot her and the baby,” he warned. He waived his gun menacingly. A chill swept through the crowd. He definitely got their attention. The woman began to shake. She clutched her baby firmly and closed her eyes as fear ravaged her body and mind. 

No one seemed to have seen Jariye and Isabell walk hurriedly into the building. Jariye and Isabell could see the killer waiving a gun at the woman and her child. They were hiding on an unlit balcony on the third floor. “I can’t let him shoot her,” Jariye said. “What are you going to do?” Isabel asked. 
“Shoot him.” 
“What if you hit the woman or her baby?” 
“That is the reason I have not shot him yet. I don’t have a clear shot yet.”
“I hope he does not kill that woman.”
“I don’t think he will. I think he is trying to squeeze the answer out of them, but they did not notice us enter the building.” 
“Who is he?”
“I don’t know, but I have a feeling he is after the DVD you gave me. Did you give another one to someone else back at the car park?” 

Isabell kept quiet. She did not know how to answer his question. “I am sure you heard my question,” Jariye remarked with a hint of insistence. He stared down at the events below as he talked to her. 
“Yes, I did. I gave another copy to a journalist who is looking into the case as well.”
“You don’t trust me to solve the case?”
“I do, Jariye. I really do. I just wanted to expose the governor, and perhaps apply some pressure on him to do something that would allow you to nail him.” 
“What makes you think he would do something irrational?” 
“I don’t know. I was…I was just thinking of a way to help unearth the truth.”
“I like it when people trust me to do my job. If I feel that I can’t solve this case, I’d tell you so. Don’t go trying to do things behind my back. I don’t like it.”
“I am sorry.” 
“Who was the guy you gave the other DVD?”
“Emerugha Oshoyeda.” 
“The investigative journalist?” 
“He used to work with my sister. I know him well. I hope he is not dead.”

“I saw a man and a woman walk into the building,” a little boy shouted. The children had frozen in fear on seeing the killer brandish a gun pointed at a helpless woman and her child. “Are you sure?” The killer asked. “Yes,” the boy replied. The killer ran into the building, climbing the stairs quickly. The crowd began to run away from the building, shouting fearfully as they ran for their lives.  Jariye’s phone beeped. He quickly glanced at the screen. He had a text message from a number he did not know. He swiped the screen of his Samsung Galaxy and read the message, which read;

Mrs. Juliet Iningo is definitely evil, but she did not kill her husband. Someone else did. I have unearthed vital information that points at someone you have not even looked at. I will call you tomorrow. Don’t worry, I will tell you who I am at the right time. This is beyond what you think!

Written by:
Victor Chinoo

www.moofyme.com: for breathtaking stories and exciting articles, every day!!!

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Nigeria's Leading Story Blog: Killer, Shoot, Restaurant, Unearth, Street, Shoot, Jaguar, Driver, DVD, Balcony, He flickered through his brain
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