Eva squinted as her eyes opened to the nearly blinding light from the fluorescent above her which illuminated every part of the room. Her head ached. She managed to sit up. She tried to remember where she was and how she got to this room. She looked around the large bedroom. Every single item had an accent of pink. The sheets, the walls, the furniture and the blinds. She remembered the room. It was Sophia’s. How did she get to the mansion? She had not been here in two years. She recollected the only time she had been in the room. She had explored her deepest fantasies and satisfied her lust with Sophia. It seemed like only yesterday. She got up slowly, putting her feet in the ready sleek slip on that was waiting on the floor.
She opened the door that led into the living room and walked in. What she saw almost made her jump out of her skin.
Sitting in the living room on the single couch was Sophia. She turned to look at Eva as the door opened. But Sophia was not alone. Sitting on the long three-seater couch opposite Sophia was Bruno, Shina and Ambrose.
The last person she saw was the source of her discomfort. Seated adjacent Ambrose on a small reclining chair was Sean.
“Frank? You!” She shouted, pointing at Sean and walking towards him.
Sean got up, buttoning the only button on his tux.
“Nice to meet you again, Eva.” Sean replied, a grin on his face.
Eva stopped dead in her tracks.
“How? Who? What?” She began to say obviously confused.
She looked around the room for some sort of explanation.
“Sit down Eva. It’s time for you to officially meet Sean, your anchor.” Sophia said motioning for her to take the empty seat to her left.
Eva just looked dazed and confused. She tried to piece the pieces together but her brain was just refusing to cooperate. Shina got up, holding Eva by the waist and supporting her frame on his body, led her to an empty settee.
“Relax dear. You will get the whole picture soon” Shina said patting her back and touching the hair on her face.
Shina had been her mentor for three years and had developed a soft spot for her over the years. Watching her metamorphose from a good homely girl to the ultimate weapon had made him fall in love with her. He hid his feelings from her, always acting like the big brother.
Sophia cleared her throat.
“We have gotten to the final stage of this operation. This final mission is the most difficult and tasking this Corporation has ever dared to embark on. However, as long as we stick together and act as a body, a family, a unit which is close knit and compact, we will achieve a code green. You my friends, will never need to do anything anymore. And with the General at the helm of affairs, nothing can go wrong. For the first time ever, the Deadly Quartet will be involved in the same mission including Bruno, Eva and Sean.” Sophia said and paused.
She looked at the faces of the agents in the room. They all looked indifferent. She knew they wanted details. She smiled.
“I wish I could tell you more, but I can’t. But I can tell you this much: Eva and Sean are the pole archers. An encrypted email will be sent to your individual accounts at 14:00hrs. It would self-delete fifteen minutes after delivery. In your own interests, be with your various devices. We reconvene tomorrow at mission time.” Sophia finished.
Sean was the first to get up.
“I guess my business here is done then. I am leaving.” He said, moving to where Sophia sat.
He got behind Sophia, bent low and kissed both cheeks gently. He picked the half-filled glass of vodka on the drinking table besides her, finishing the contents in one gulp.
“I’ll see you soon S.” Sean said walking away towards the door.
He shut the door behind him without looking back.
Tawo got down from the commercial plane looking very angry. He hated flying, especially within the Nigerian Airspace. He had had two near death experiences flying locally. He avoided it if he could. He had not travelled by air in seven years. If it were possible, he would send Ope to do his bidding. But this was a case he had to tackle head on. There was no time for delay. Speed was of the essence. So, twenty minutes after he had deciphered the location of the intruding transmission, he was on the next available flight to Akure.
He got a taxi from the airport heading straight to Hawk Eye’s residence. He paid the cab driver when they arrived and knocked on the gate.
“Who be that wey wan break my gate? U no get respect?” The Gateman screamed, opening a small rectangular space on the gate wide enough for only his face.
“Please I have a delivery for your Oga. Can I drop it here?” Tawo asked, shoving a paper bag in the man’s face
“Wetin dey inside the envelope?” The gateman asked.
“Would you like me to drop it? Or you want me to go with it? I don’t have time for your nonsense this man.” Tawo said, sounding impatient.
The gateman scrutinized Tawo again, assessing him carefully. Satisfied, he opened the gate to allow Tawo walk in.
That was his mistake.
As Tawo entered the compound, the gate man turned his back at him to lock the gate. Tawo brought out a handkerchief he had prepared specially for this purpose from the pocket inside his jacket. He moved quickly, covering the man’s nose with the treated handkerchief. The struggle was very minimal. The gateman passed out. He dragged him into the small room beside the gate Tawo knew served as his room.
He shut the door and went inside the house.
The Colonel sat in a chair in the living room of the hotel, his right leg crossed over his left knee, arms folded across his chest and a grim look on his face. He checked his wristwatch for the umpteenth time. It was now 6:45pm. He had been waiting for Ahmed for fifteen minutes now. He hated working behind time. Now he was beginning to boil. He just could not afford to leave his nephew behind. Otherwise, he would have checked out long before then.
Ahmed walked slowly to the sitting room, holding his stomach. He sat heavily in the long couch and sighed. He breathed like a woman in labour.
“Uncle, I think you have to go without me. My stomach really hurts. And very little poo comes out when I go to the toilet. I think I have diarrhoea.”
The Colonel looked at Ahmed with scorn.
“Can you make it at least outside Akure? We can lodge at Ore, then continue the trip to Lagos tomorrow.” The Colonel said.
“I can try. Let’s go” Ahmed replied.
As he picked his bag and got to the door behind the Colonel, he immediately dropped them and ran to the toilet. The Colonel could hear his grunts from where he stood.
After a few minutes, he walked to the toilet holding his nose.
“I warned you not to eat that whatever you saw on the menu, Bumper means boiled octopus. Now, you are shitting your intestines out. How do you feel?” The Colonel inquired.
“Not good Uncle, Not…hmmmphhh..arrrrggghhhhh… hhmpphh….not..good… at… all ooooo” Ahmed replied.
“Alright then, we leave in the morning.” The Colonel replied.
He dropped the bags in the living room and went into the bed room to rest his head.
Tawo opened the door and walked into the house. As he moved into the waiting area, he brought out a silenced .45 semi-automatic from a holster strapped to his back. He saw movement in the brightly lit study ahead of him. Hawk Eyes was deeply engrossed in whatever he was reading, his back to Tawo. Gun in one hand and the parcel in another, Tawo sneaked into the study tapping Hawk Eyes on the shoulder.
Upon seeing the gun, Hawk Eye shrieked in fear. He made to move to the table to his right but Tawo pointed the gun at his head.
“Tsk tsk tsk tsk. I would not do that if I were you. I have limited time on my hands. I am going to ask you this question only once. The life of your wife on holiday in Port-Harrcourt and that of your three children in Ghana depend on what comes out of your mouth. What is the location of Colonel Giwa Haruna?” Tawo said.
Upon disclosure of the location of his family, Hawk Eyes spilled everything he knew, including the hotel where the Colonel now stayed.
“Thank you Abel. You are Hawk Eyes but you never saw this coming did you?” Tawo asked.
Before Hawk Eyes could plead for dear life, Tawo pulled the trigger. Two bullets lodged themselves precisely in the eyes of Abel. He fell backwards, scattering chairs as he screamed. Tawo waited till he lost consciousness.
As Tawo left the compound he hoped that the gateman would come to quickly enough to save his master’s life. If not for anything, for Hawk Eyes’ own good.
Tawo got to the hotel the Colonel lodged in dressed in a flowing white Agbada. He smelled good and looked important. He went straight to the reception. There was a pretty petite lady on duty.
“Good Evening Dear. Did anyone lodge here recently? Two men? They are my brothers and I want to pay them a surprise visit.” He spoke confidently.
“What are their names please?” The receptionist asked.
“We are the Harunas. But I am sure they did not use Haruna to register.” Tawo replied.
“Are they expecting you sir?” The girl asked.
“No, I said it’s a surprise my dear.” Tawo replied.
“Sorry sir, the hotel policy does not allow us reveal the identity of our guests unless they request it. I am sorry sir, but I cannot help you.” She replied.
“But are they here?” Tawo asked.
“Maybe, maybe not.” The girl replied.
He reached into his agbada and pulled out a bundle of 5000 naira notes. He threw it to her and she quickly grabbed it put inside her bra.
“I have two men here that came in two days ago. They are the only ones that have been here a while. All our other guests are married couples. They are in room 013 but are checking out tomorrow morning. Would you like me to take you there?” The girl asked.
“You have done enough my dear. Thank you.” Tawo said and left the hotel.
He went to the car he hired for the night and took off his agbada. He repositioned the car to face the hotel exit and waited.
Finally, the time had come.
* * * * *
At the instructed time, Shina was in his home waiting for his email. He played Solitaire on his computer while he waited. He was yawning when he heard the email alert sound.
He quickly opened the email, eager to see its contents.
“Agent Shina. You are required to pick up Eva at noon tomorrow and drop her off at a location she would disclose to you. Thereafter, she will give you the destination you should head to next. That would be all. Thank you.”
Below the email content were two buttons. REJECT. ACCEPT.
He clicked on the ACCEPT button. Seconds after, the email vanished from his inbox. He did not panic. He was already used to it. He put on his jacket and went outside. He needed a drink.
Ambrose was pounding away on his new chick, her legs on his shoulders. They had taken a lot of alcohol and were now supercharged and over excited. The bed croaked under their weight as they unleashed pent up desires in pure unadulterated lust. The girl was moaning softly, urging him to go deeper and faster. He felt himself reaching the peak. An alarm rang somewhere in the sitting area of the house. He looked up at the wall clock while he satisfied himself. The alarm was to let him know that the email had arrived. He poured his essence into the girl and withdrew, from her.
He walked nak3d into his sitting room and picked his tablet. He had an email. He opened it.
“Agent Ambrose. You are to infiltrate the presidential security detail. Your ultimate target is to stall any move by the presidency on his travel plans to the United Arab Emirates. We will send you the full plans later.”
Ambrose clicked on the ACCEPT button and went back to the bedroom to continue his business.
Bruno was making orders online from the newest online mega store. He had bought a new 5D Tv, a 38mega pixel camera and was ordering for a pair of gold cufflinks when he got the email.
He opened it.
“Agent Bruno. You have been assigned as the Personal Assistant and guard of Agent Bravo. You are to do whatever he tells you. He will contact you.”
Tawo opened the car and got out. He sat on the bonnet, smoking a white London. Smoking cigarettes had a way of clearing his mind and making him think deeply. He had discarded the flowing Agbada he wore a few hours earlier, now wearing a short sleeved shirt and jean trousers on top of a pair of white sneakers. He looked very simple and inconspicuous. He felt uneasy.
He had received an email from Corporation earlier asking him to be at the Mansion at noon the next day. He was not bothered about what the corporation had to say. He was on his own mission and settling this vendetta with the colonel superseded anything the Corporation wanted him for. He was so close to having the colonel now, he could not go back.
For the first time since he graduated from the Spy Academy, Tawo was nervous. He was so close to having the Colonel in his grasp. The Colonel had killed Francis and Marshal, very fine agents whom he had personally recruited. Although the death of the men did not directly affect him, that was enough reason for him to want a pound of flesh. The Colonel was a threat to his intelligence and to the Corporation. His father had promised to deal with the situation. Three years and counting, nothing was yet to be done.
“What has he done? What?” Tawo said to himself, blowing smoke from his nostrils. He hissed.
“If I had not tracked the Colonel now and even taken drastic steps, I would not have gotten this far. For three years, he has done nothing. Nothing is going stop me. Nothing!” Tawo soliloquized.
He threw the butt of the finished cigarette on the asphalt, stepping on it.
It was dark now. He opened the back seat of the car, got in and closed the door. He put on the Air Conditioner and closed his eyes as the cold air cooled his skin.
He put his arms behind his head and relaxed. Nothing was going to go wrong.
He had barely closed his eyes for twenty minutes when he heard a gentle tap on the window glass. He ignored the intrusion into his quiet time. Whoever it was would leave when he was tired. The knocking on the glass continued. This was beginning to get irritating.
He opened his eyes. There was a man standing outside the car, smiling. It was pitch black and Tawo could not see the man’s face. He had a feeling this was a familiar person. He pushed a button by the door handle and the window wound down slowly. As the glass went in, he could not believe his eyes.
“Hello son. Warm night don’t you say?” the man greeted.
It was his father, The General.
Eva was listening to music on her Iphone X when she got her own email. She clicked on it.
“Agent Eva. Agent Shina would pick you up at noon tomorrow. You are expected to be at Hotel Paradise at 15:00 hours. A suite on the west wing has been prepared for you. You are to lodge in the hotel and await further instructions.”
Eva accepted the mission. She walked to the bathroom and posed in front of the huge mirror on the wall. She needed a makeover.
Going back into the sitting room, she called her stylist.
“Afternoon jare. I need a new hairdo. Can you be here in two hours? Thank you.” She said and hung up.
She plugged the earphones back into her ears and resumed listening to the music on her phone.
Sean was reading the latest edition of Style magazine. He had a bad taste when it came to mixing colours. If not for Austin, he would look terrible each time he was at a ball, a dinner or any event. Now, Austin had been redeployed and until he got another handyman, he was on his own. He had a date in the evening with Brenda, the pretty nurse he met when recovering. He had not seen or spoken to her in months. She had been in an operation in the Northern part of the country and just arrived in Lagos. They had quickly arranged to meet at the movies. He frowned as he could not make up his mind as to what he would wear. He was still flipping the pages of the magazine when his Ipad beep and announced:
“Email from Corporation.”
“Message content please.” Sean said.
The Ipad recognized his voice command and read out the message.
“Agent Bravo. Agent Shina has been compromised. Take him out. Leave no trace. He would be at Hotel Paradise. Arrive at noon and wait for him. Leave no trace. When mission is accomplished, return to the Hotel and ask for a room key in the name of Alexander Bashorun. It is a suite in the west wing of the hotel. Further instructions will be given to you later. Good luck.”
Sean was not the least surprised. His time with the Ghosts had prepared him for anything. He only wondered what Shina had done to deserve death. It was not in his place to ask questions.
He picked his Ipad and accepted the mission. Shina was a member of the Deadly Quartet. Taking him out was not going to be an easy job. But Sean relished the challenge. This was the ultimate test of his capabilities.
He dropped the Ipad and climbed the stairs to the roof of his one story duplex.
He lay on his stomach watching the flowing water in the lagoon below him. He needed a plan. A very good plan.
Tawo was shocked to the bones. How in the world did the General get here? The General interrupted his thoughts.
“Tawo, come. We have a little catching up to do.” The General said, pointing to his car. There was a black shiny BMW XIV jeep behind him and two armed fierce looking thugs on guard. Tawo did not argue. He came down from his rented car, shut the door and walked past the General heading for the car.
“Tawo, you will not be coming back here. Is there nothing you want to take from that thing?” The General said, pointing to the rented car.
Tawo stopped walking and turned.
“Nothing General.” He replied angrily.
“Perhaps the white agbada you wore earlier? What about the parcel you have with you? Are you forgetting the treated handkerchief and the syringe in the car?” The General called after him.
Tawo was pissed. He was angry that his father knew everything. He had not spoken to anyone. He had done everything himself. The General was denting his ego and he knew it. There was nothing he could do now. He just had to obey. Sometimes, you could not afford to disobey the General, even if you are his son.
Tawo picked every exhibit from his car, put them in a small knapsack and sat with his father at the back of the car. The driver started the ignition but did not move the car. The Air Conditioning blew mildly.
“Tawo, you are my son. However, you are also a Super-Agent accountable to me, The General. I will forgive this indiscretion of yours one final time. I have been tracking the Colonel. I know everything he has been up to. I monitor all my Super-Agents, you inclusive. I do not want you to do something silly like you have already done today. Are you listening to me?” The General barked.
“Yes sir.” Tawo replied meekly.
“Good. I intend to go into that hotel. I do not trust you enough to go back to base and be a good boy. And I don’t want you guarded. You will come with me. I want no incidence. I want no trigger happy actions from you. Understand me?” The General warned.
“Yes sir.” Tawo replied, with his head bent. He could not afford to look at his father in the eye.
“If you disobey me, I will kill you myself. Follow me” The General said.
They got out of the car.
The General nodded at one of his thugs. He understood the sign and immediately entered the jeep with his partner and drove off.
Tawo and his father entered the hotel. There was a middle aged man at the reception, behind a long desk. Immediately he saw the General he got up and saluted.
“Welcome sir!” he said.
“Easy Lukman. Are they still there?” The General asked.
“Yes sir.” Lukman replied.
“Good. Thank you.” The General replied.
He went into the elevator with Tawo closely behind.
“What just happened there?” Tawo asked as the elevator passed the second floor.
“I am the General.” His father replied.
TO BE CONTINUED.
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