First morning at home for over two months and mum had left me with a long list of chores to do. This was one of the reasons coming home never really sound exciting to me.
As expected, Ayo had made up her mind not to help me so I had to spend all morning washing dishes and bathing the dogs, I don’t even know who sent them to buy dogs, three bloody puppies for that matter! What were they freaking thinking?
By the time I was done, she had bathed and dressed up so she started trying to make me prepare faster so we could go and hook up with Tunji.
Tunji was basically poison to Ayo. He was her first true love and was the one who taught Ayo all the bad things she now happened to be a professional at. I used to preach against him when they first started but Ayo had a way of letting me talk but never listen so over the years I got tired and finally started making attempts to accept him as he was always trying to be nice to me.
Although they were mostly far away from each other and had clearly went on to date other people, they never officially broke up so they always continued from where they stopped whenever time and space gave them the opportunity to.
Due to her nagging, I was forced to use barely twenty minutes to bath, pick an outfit and make up. If you are female, you will understand that I literally just performed a miracle.
We both stormed out of the house looking like super models shortly afterwards.
Due to the fact that Tunji’s house was in the neighbourhood, we got to his place minutes later.
He was what we Nigerians called a G- Boy. He lived all alone in a rented three bedroom apartment and each time anybody asked him why he chose not to live in a smaller apartment and saved costs he laughed and answered, “what’s the point of having money if you can’t spend it?”
The house was pimped to the teeth. All the rooms had air conditioners and television sets, as well as the kitchen. He made sure he pasted the most expensive wallpaper he could get all around the house and for reasons I could not understand, he had three laptops. He was clearly rich, maybe that’s why Ayo could not leave him.
“Baby!” He exclaimed at Ayo as he opened the door for us to enter. He wore a black top and a camouflage combat short.
“Sugar pie!” She replied and threw herself at him in a warm hug.
“I’ve missed you so much,” he said as he stared deeply into her eyes, I actually believed he meant every word.
“Same here love,” Ayo replied.
“Funmi, abeg is it my eyes or is she looking hotter than before?” He turned to ask me.
“This one? Hotter? Tah!” I teased.
“Jealousy!” Ayo exclaimed in a rush and we all bursted out in laughter.
“I hope you still do White?” He asked Ayo.
“Sure na, do you have some?” She asked excitedly.
“I don’t but let me arrange for some,” he said and made a phone call quickly. “I’ll need to go and meet my dealer at the junction, you guys should help yourself with whatever you like in the freezer,” he said and made to leave.
“Let’s come with you,” Ayo said and before he could object we had joined him at the door.
Once we were out, we headed for the junction where his dealer was already waiting.
Unlike what I had I mind about how dealers should look like, this particular dealer wore a light blue corporate shirt and tucked it in a dark blue pant trousers to match. I was impressed.
They exchanged pleasantries and he handed over a pack of cigarette to Tunji which he quickly kept in his pocket. I really doubted Tunji would go through all this stress just to buy cigarettes so I assumed something else was in the pack.
The shakes hands and we turned to go back to Tunji’s house and just when we were arms length from his house two SARS men popped out from behind a truck parked by the side of the road. It was like they were hiding and waiting for us to come back. One was dark in complexion and the other was fair.
“Are you Tunji Adeleke?” They asked referring to Tunji.
“No officer,” he smartly denied.
They laughed, “E be like say you think say we dey play here abi?” The dark one asked.
“No officer, I’m not Tunji Adeleke,” He held on to his lie.
“So you no wan corporate abi?” The light skinned one asked. “Aburo, handcuff him!” He ordered.
The dark one quickly brought out his handcuffs and was about to hold Tunji but he was jabbed in one swift movement and Tunji took off in a flash.
Ayo stared at me with her mouth wide opened. The stare on her face asked the question, “what the hell is happening?”
This Amaka girl was becoming a huge pain in the ass. Having sent Skinny to deal with her, you will think she might have been properly taken cared of but that was not to be the case.
“Make I open the door for the girl ?” Maxwell asked me as he stood right at the from of the door.
I considered telling him not to so as to avoid her unnecessary problems that always came with her but curiosity got the better part of me, I needed to know why she was at my place by such ungodly hour.
Maxwell opened the door.
Something rather unexpected happened next. She stormed into the house, pushing Maxwell out of the way in the process and then walked towards me in a rush as I stood at balcony entrance.
“What are you doi…” I wanted to ask but was cut short by a resounding slap which landed on my left cheek. It immediately went red.
Now, I have a no-beating-females rule but at that moment that rule was suspended and in anger I was about to pounce on the girl when Maxwell dived at my front an held me back.
“Henry! Calm down! Focus!” He yelled at me as I glared at Amaka through red eyes. If my eyes had bullets, she would have been shot dead on the spot.
I was not going to be stopped so easily as I tried to break free from his grip but he was a lot stronger than I had expected and succeeded in keeping at bay. Lord knows that I would have killed Amaka or at the very least broken a few bones if Maxwell had not been there to hold me back.
“What was that for?” He asked her as he had noticed I was back to normal and was not trying to break free from his grip. He released me.
“You told me I should not worry, that you had everything was under control,” she screamed at me.
“What is she talking about?” Maxwell asked as he turned to me.
I had an idea of what she was talking about and was pretty sure I did not want Maxwell to know just yet.
“Come to the balcony, lets talk,” I said to her as I made way for her to pass.
“We have nothing to talk about, I’m not keeping it a secret anymore,” she yelled and turned to Maxwell who was looking extremely perplexed, “Your friend is a heartless murderer! He and his touts killed Agbaya!” She said before I could stop her.
I watched as Maxwell face turned white instantly. He looked at me keenly for some seconds which felt like hours. It was as if he was trying to see through me to confirm the accusation.
I chuckled feebly, “Don’t mind this stupid girl jhur, can’t you see she’s drunk?” I tried to deny.
“Guy don’t bullshit me!” He thundered, “is she saying the truth?” He asked ne in a lower tone.
I could have still denied and I really wanted to but I knew I could trust Maxwell so I nodded and lowered my head I response.
He was quiet for a short while, staring at me all through and then he exclaimed “What the fuck man!”
He walked to the balcony, picked up my half smoked joint and lit it.
Both I and Amaka stared at him in silence, not quite sure what to say or do next. Maxwell was always the really calculative one.
“So Amaka, how come you know this?” He finally asked, breaking the ear deafening silence in the process.
Amaka stared at me as if asking for my permission to spill but I just looked away, I still felt the urge to strangle her and looking af her face only ignited the urge.
She walked passed me and joined Maxwell at the balcony then she went on to give him an update of all that had transpired from when Agbaya asked her to come to his office to when she witnessed his murder.
I joined them at the balcony, sat down and started rolling another joint quietly.
“So what’s all this sudden drama about this night?” He asked when she was done with her story telling.
“I was approached by a secret service agent this night,” she said.
I flinched as I heard this. “What did he want?” I asked.
“He wants me to help identify the murderers.” She said calmly.
“I don’t understand, how did he know to look for you?” I asked.
“Well, shouldn’t I be asking you that? You said you had taken care of all the witnesses!”
“I did!” I confirmed.
“What exactly did he say?” Maxwell asked.
“Well, he doesn’t have his facts straight yet. All he really knows is Agbaya was hitting on me against my will and I was at the hotel the night he was murdered,” she replied.
A brief silence followed as both I and Maxwell thought about what Amaka had just said.
“What did you tell him?”
“I accepted that the man was hitting on me but denied any knowledge of his murder, but I’m not sure he believed me because he said he would get to the bottom of the case and vowed to make sure I was punished if it turns out I was lying,” she said and kept quiet afterwards.
“Madam stop this your half half story and tell us what happened next!” I yelled. She knew we needed to get all the detail and i hated that she kept make us ask for more.
“Well, he dropped me at school junction and drove of. I had to board a cab here just to slap you!” She replied. I clenched my fist in an attempt to hold myself back from rushing her on the spot.
“Where did he even see you to have such conversation with you?” Maxwell asked.
“He picked me up at a lounge just this night and we spoke in his car.”
“Mumu! So you decided to go an flex in such public place knowing fully well all was not well?” I asked.
“The tout you sent to my place assured me I have nothing to fear,” she replied, “and besides I needed to clear my head.”
“You fool! So you could not clear your head else where?” I asked.
“Henry, relax,” Maxwell instructed calmly. “Its like you don’t understand the gravity of this situation? You both can go to jail if we don’t play our cards right,” he added maintaining his calm attitude.
I was surprised at how calmly he was handling the situation but was really glad.
“Please o, I’m not the one that killed Agbaya, when I told Henry about the issue, I did not know he was a cold-blooded killer,” Amaka wailed as she sat on the floor crying. She panicked far too much if you asked me.
“Are you sure you’ve told us everything that happened?” Maxwell asked Amaka.
“Yes,” she replied in between tears.
Maxwell took a long drag from his blunt and leaned back on his chair, “I know what we should do,” he said.
TO BE CONTINUED