THIRTY.

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The Unknown

** ** **

    Nicholas was brimmed with thoughts instantly he remembered his pair of glasses was not on him. He just looked at Henry and dropped his head down in incredulity again. “I don’t know what to do at the moment, Henry.” He said and raised his head slowly again, hitting the steering wheel.

     Henry hissed silently. He was already frustrated. If any of them would succeed the plan to bring enemies down, that means God has been behind him, he thought as he tilted his head and placed it on the right hand.

    “Alright, Henry. I guess you’ll have to go on now with this vehicle. Go and meet the lady we spoke about and try to enquire more about Vivian. You can also yearn her that you were there when the officers got Vivian again, so they can know she’s been found.” He said.
 
     “So, what are you going to do concerning officer Craig?”

     “I’ll call Doris before I get to Area F station to lodge a complaint that some people snatched a bag from me which contains money, eye glasses, my body spray and many other things. So, when I get there and any trouble wants to loom at all, Doris will cover up.” He said.

     “I pray that works out, Nick.” Henry nodded.

    Nicholas heaved a sigh. “It should, Henry.” He said and came down from the vehicle. “Please talk to the lady in a way she wouldn’t daresay anything, Henry.”

     “Alright, Nick.” Henry replied and got into the vehicle.

** ** **

    Nicholas called Doris immediately Henry left, telling her about his missing items and Craig’s request to see him. He had cleared his mind that he would go there to assert things out with Craig; if at all he has called him because of his pair of eye glasses.

    He adjusted his collar as he got to the front of Area F station and wiped his face, looking frustrated already. He greeted the security men and demanded to know Craig’s office.

     He walked briskly as soon as it was shown to him, shuffling between the grasses on the lawn until he got to the office and knocked. “Just come in.” Craig had said.

    Nicholas walked inside the office, still with a face of a frustrated man. Craig smiled as soon as he saw him and Doris also smiled with a wave of hand. “How are you doing, Nicholas?”

    “Doris, I’m not alright at all. I was on my way out with that friend of mine, Henry when some guys snatched my bag from me. Can you imagine that I have not seen the bag and the guys since then?”

     Craig was getting interested in the issue. At least, he didn’t tell Doris anything about the spectacles he had found, so, he didn’t expect Nicholas to have an idea of what he had called him for at all.

    “Who are these guys, Nick?” Craig enquired.

     “How’d I know? I was trying to get on the motorcycle since my friend who has a car couldn’t wait for me because I was dressing up. On doing that, a green jeep suddenly stopped beside me. I was even thinking all was well until one of the guys motioned near me and snatched my bag before they ran away!”

    “May I know the content of this bag, Nicholas?”

    “I don’t even know! What is paining me is the last ten thousand naira on me and my eye glasses! You know the one I showed you that day, Craig, it was given to me by a long lost lover and I cherish it a lot! I don’t know how I’ll be able to get another! I am frustrated!”

     “Ten thousand naira? Eye glasses?” Craig asked again.

     “Sure!”

     “A green Jeep?” He questioned as he began to remember he saw a green Jeep inside Jerry’s compound.

     “Yes.” He replied.

    Should it have been that these guys we just got arrested were the ones who took his eye glasses away from him? No! That’s not true… Or, has he suspected that I have called him here because of that? But it’s not written all over him, he looks dejected already. Maybe he’s saying the truth, who knows?

    “Ooh.. All.. alright, then.”

   “What did you call me for, Officer Craig?” Nicholas asked.

    “Does it even make sense again?” He chuckled. “Never mind, Nicholas.”

    “Are you sure?” Nick smiled.

    “Sure.” Craig smiled.

**_**_**

    Henry knocked at Vickie’s gate, waiting for her to come and get the door, while he started parading the front of the house. “Yes?” Vickie said as soon as she got to the front of the gate.

    Henry just showed his face by the small hole by the side of the gate. Vickie saw him and quickly flipped the gate open. Her heart started racing, think that Henry might have found Vivian already.

    “What’s happening? Any news?” She quickly asked.

    “I haven’t taken a rest too since I left this place the other time. But, may I know your own name?” He asked.

    “Sure. I’m Victoria.” She replied quickly.

    “That’s nice. Please can we just enter into the house? I don’t feel comfortable telling you about my latest discoveries outside here.” He said.

     “Come right in.” She said and shut the gate as Henry walked in.

     She led him to the living room, looking back at him every second, it was as if he had written it on his face if he had found her or not. “Just sit here.” She offered him a seat.

    Henry sat comfortably and smiled. “She’s been found.” He let out as he stroke his beard, as if he was the titlist who found her.

    “Really?” Victoria’s eyes widened. Anthony also jumped out of his seat and rushed up. “Mum?”

     “Just take it easy.” He paused and continued. “As I was parading around, looking for this woman, I got to Area F station. It was at Area F station I saw the officers who just got her.” He explained.

     “Let’s go over to Area F station, now.”

     “Take it easy, Victoria. At least she’s been found, we have to take things easy too.” He said.

     “But, time isn’t our friend. We just have to see her now!”

     “I’m not sure if she’ll still be at Area F station. Just wait, I’ll keep you connected as things keep going on.” He stroke his beard again.

    “Thanks for finding my Mother… Thank you!” Anthony screamed.

    “But, please, if I may ask, what of her husband?” Henry asked slowly.

    “Err… about that one? See, let’s leave that for another time. What’s in our minds now is to see Vivian.”

    “Alright. That means you’ll go on ahead to Area F station and request for her.” He smiled.

    “Will you take us there? Please?” Anthony hooked up with Henry quickly.

    “Alright.” Henry nodded with a smile and they all left the house.

** ** **

    Craig was confused already. He didn’t even know if he was being played or everything happening was the reality. He had buried his head in his palms since Nicholas left his office, thinking of the way out of the suspense he had gotten himself into. He really wished he could know who The Unknown really is.

    He was getting uncomfortable as he got his car key and blazer, and walked out of the office. “I have to get somewhere.” He just told Doris before he left.

** ** **

    Nicholas had made his way to Marts Kitchen as soon as Nancy called him and requested for his presence. At first, he wanted to call Henry to tell him about his whereabouts, but he felt it wasn’t needed.

     He had gotten to the eatery already and had made his way to the sit beside Nancy. Nancy was a mistress he’d always have to submit himself under, before getting hold of her at last.

     Only God knows what she has called me here for. He had thought as he rubbed his hand on the his afro hair and beamed beside her. “Nancy, how are you?”

    “Nicholas! Do you know I’m getting tired of you? You are pushing me already.”

    Nicholas was shocked. What’s wrong with her again? He wondered as he faced her squarely. “But we met and you weren’t angry then.”

    “I know you have just been making me a figurehead in this relationship. I know you have been doing this because you don’t want me to expose what the truth is, to Craig.”

    “No! Nancy, you know I love you dearly.” He said, drifting closer to her.

     “Which kind of love is that? A true one? A true one that can’t make you even know where I live!”

    “Where you reside? Alright, Nancy. For you to know how much I truly care about you, let’s go to your house.” He said.

     Just then, Craig walked into the eatery too. He had came there to refresh himself for the mean time.

    As soon as Craig saw him, he bowed his head quickly. “Let’s go, Nancy.”

    “Really?”

    “Lower your voice, that’s Craig!” He quickly tapped her.

    Craig just went on ahead to order while he dragged Nancy out of the eatery. “Now let’s go to your place.” He said.

    “Are you doing this based on love or because you don’t want me to expose your secret?” She asked again.

     “Based on love, Nancy.” Nicholas smiled. Rubbish girl! Not only love! He had thought as they went on to her house.

** ** **

     Henry dropped Vickie and Anthony at the front of the station to enquire about Vivian’s whereabouts as he drove on to make turn. He parked some distance away from the station, waiting for the two to come around so they could visit Vivian.

    Soon, they two hurried out and looked around for Henry until they saw him some distance ahead and rushed closer to him. “Love And Faith Hospital.” She informed him.

    “Okay, let’s go there.” He replied as he kicked the engine. He knew something of such but pretended as if he didn’t know she was shot or must have been rushed to the hospital.

    He marched on the accelerator and sped off.

** ** **

    Nicholas had always wanted this kind of opportunity. Since Nancy knew he was The Unknown, he had been looking forward to getting the kind of invitation which he just got that day.

    He walked to her living room and sat down. He looked around, admiring the small living room. It was nicely set up. The brown tiles were neat and shining, the reflection from the white bulbs held by a traditional chandelier added to the reflecting capacity of the  tiles.

    “This is nice.” He muttered and nodded along.

    “I’ll be back.” Nancy said as she motioned inside the house.

    How can I succeed with my mission? What can I do to this lady… Nicholas had thought as he whisked to his feet and sat down again at once.

    As he turned his head to the television set, Nancy came out of the house with a bottle of wine and a pair of wine glass cups. “Do you drink.” She asked

    At first, Nicholas narrowed his eyes at it, but suddenly, an idea dropped in his mind. “Sure, I do.” He grinned.

    Nancy handed the wine over to him as she picked a seat too. He uncorked the wine and poured in the glass cups. He just took a sip from his own and gave Nancy’s to her to drink.

   He relaxed as he watched Nancy finish the cup of wine. He poured more into her cup until he made her drunk. That was he really wanted before too, he rushed to his feet as he saw her falling asleep and laid her on the sofa well.

    He rubbed his palms and his eyes darted round the living room. He swallowed as he rushed inside the house, he wished to start an ultimate search and destroy everything Nancy might have as an evidence against him.

    He got to her room and opened the wardrobe but found no picture inside the wardrobe. He rushed to her mattress and carried it up, checking under it but found no camera nor pictures.

    Just then, his eyes came in contact with some drawers that was beside the bed. He made his way and opened the first and second ones, they were just empty.

    He wiped his sweat and swooshed out a long breath as he opened the third one. Just then, he saw a camera and some pictures. He got the camera as quick as he could and the pictures. As he unveil the pictures, he saw the pictures of himself tying Chief Sam to the tree and pictures of his car.

    He shook his head and switched on the camera to check if she had the pictures there also. He took them all and rushed out of the room. As he was coming out of the room, he saw a tall guy standing in the living room, looking around.

  “Who’s this?” He wondered as he fixed his eyes on him. Just then, the man turned around and he could see properly.

    It was Craig.

** ** **

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