Jesse was sleeping one night when he heard a mosquito buzzing. Oh, man. He waited till he could feel it hovering above his ear. He readied his hand and slapped his ear. That should do it.
30 seconds later he could still hear a mosquito buzzing in his net. There must be more than one. He waved his hand over his head then turned and continued sleeping.
An hour later, a buzz rang over his ear. He got out and switched on the light, then sat inside the net tucked over the bed. He searched the net and saw the mosquito flying in no particular direction on the roof of the net. He stood and clapped it with both hands. His hands got stained with blood.
He went to the sink and washed them.
Jesse walked into a lecture room at Makerere University College of Computing and Information Sciences and passed two men who were in his class, Timothy and Allan.
They were speaking in hushed voices, thinking Jesse couldn’t hear them. Jesse had a talent for overhearing people’s conversations. Even when they thought he couldn’t possibly hear what they were saying, he would listen to every word. He could make out what the voice on the other side of people’s phone conversations was saying.
He stopped two meters ahead of them and pulled out his phone pretending to check something on it.
“I made a copy of his office key,” said Allan.
“Great,” said Timothy.
Allan handed it to Timothy, “So when do we trash his office?”
I wonder whom they are trying to steal from. Jesse had a friend who stayed in a room next to Allan’s. I wonder whom I should warn. Jesse took a sit in the middle of the lecture room and texted his friend, Okello. Please let me know when Allan returns to his room.
How I’m I supposed to do that? You want me to stand outside my door for I don’t know how long?
Jesse dialed Okello’s number.
You’re not serious man, said Okello, what’s this all about?
I’ve heard Allan and Timothy talk about breaking into some office tonight. I think it’s going to happen on campus. I want to find out whose office it’s going to be. Give your phone to the security guard.
Okello walked to the ground floor and spoke to the guard, “There’s someone on the phone who wants to speak to you.”
“About what?” said the guard.
Okello handed him the phone, “Find out.”
Hello, the guard said.
Hello. Allan is going to commit a crime tonight. I want you to let me know when he arrives at the hostel.
“He’s the light-skinned dude who’s always playing loud music,” said Okello.
Oh, I know him now. Nuisance of a person.
Please let me know when he arrives. Actually, let Okello know when he arrives.
I will, the guard said and handed the phone back to Okello.
I hope it’s nothing serious.
Me too. Jesse ended the call.
Mr. Mugabi, the lecturer for the day entered.
Allan and Timothy met Ruhindi, the security officer at the ICT building.
They were all standing outside his office.
Timothy handed Ruhindi an A4-sized envelope with two million shillings.
“Are you sure it’s all there?”
“Yes,” said Allan.
Ruhindi looked left and right, “I need to be sure. Let’s enter my office.” He went behind his desk and sat and started counting the money.
Allan and Timothy remained standing.
“This is only two million,” Ruhindi threw the envelope at Timothy, “Pay me in full or I won’t help you.”
Allan took out his smartphone showed Ruhindi an image. It was a picture of Ruhindi smoking weed with four bottles of Uganda Waragi whiskey in front of him. Allan moved closer to Ruhindi’s desk, “I wonder if your bosses would be impressed with what you do on your off days.”
“We’re going to pay you. Don’t worry. We have moral standards,” said Timothy, “We just needed to make sure you will do your job.” He placed the envelope on the desk.
“Meet us outside the YMCA building tomorrow and we’ll give you the money,” said Allan.
Mr. Ruhindi logged onto the surveillance footage for the building, “Which camera’s do you want me to disable again?”
“The ones on the floor where Mr. Mugabi’s office is located.”
Makerere CIT BUILDING — 2:00 AM:
Timothy checked his watch, Where’s Allan? I hope he didn’t get cold feet. He sat on the pavement. It was very quiet and a cold breeze was blowing, tempting Timothy to shut his eyes.
He could tell by the way the person was walking it was Allan.
“What took you so long?” Timothy said as Allan came to stand next to him.
“I was sleeping. There was a sibling wrangle at home I was trying to sort out on phone.” Allan dialed Ruhindi’s number.
Ruhindi came and opened the gate.
Allan and Timothy went in.
On reaching the door to Mr. Mugabi’s office, Timothy reached into his pocket and opened it.
“Should we turn on the light?” asked Allan.
Timothy removed a bottle filled with paraffin from a bag pack he was carrying and spilled it on Mr. Mugabi’s desktop computer.
Using a torch, Allan removed as many files from the shelves as we could and placed them on the table.
Timothy baptized the papers in paraffin as best as he could.
Allan got a matchbox from his sweatpants pocket and lit it, dropping it on the desk which went up in flames.
The color orange filled the room. The fumes from the burning computer made them feel suffocated.
Timothy headed for the door and tried the handle. What? It wasn’t opening.
“Something’s wrong,” said Allan.
They tried their best to pull the handle loose but it wasn’t opening.
Jesse and Okello had tied a rope to the round handle on the outside and were pulling with all their might keeping the door closed.
Allan and Timothy tried again but ended up snapping off the handle on the inside.
“WE SURRENDER. PLEASE OPEN FOR US,” said Timothy.
“Okello,” start recording, said Jesse.
The security guard from Okello’s hostel and Jesse moved to the door and turned the handle.
Timothy and Allan burst out of the door but the security guard grabbed Allan.
Timothy was able to shake himself free of Jesse’s grip.
Jesse tried running after him but Timothy was just too fast. Jesse came back, “Okello, move the camera closer to Allan’s face.”
“We need to get a fire extinguisher or a way of putting out the fire,” the security guard said.
“Okello pocketed his phone.”
“But we still need more footage,” said Jesse.
Okello ran to the stairs of the building and got the fire extinguisher, it’s heavier than it looks. He ran with it to the door of the burning office.
“Do you know how to use that thing?” said Jesse.
“Yes.” Okello pulled the pin and entered the office blasting carbon dioxide in all directions until there were no visible signs of flames. He stepped out of the room coughing.
“Nice job,” said the security guard.
“Give me the fire extinguisher,” Jesse said, “I want to make sure the fire doesn’t start again.”
Timothy ran towards the main entrance of Makerere University.
On reaching, the security guard told him, “I can’t let you out.”
Timothy reached into his pocket and handed the guard a 50,000 shs note.
The guard opened the gate.
Timothy walked out. There were very few cars moving on the main road. A single car would pass his line of vision every 15 seconds. He reached the main road and flagged down a Boda Boda.
“Where would you like to go?” the rider said.
“Take me to Kalmax.”
“Why don’t you just walk there?”
“Look at the time. I don’t want to get robbed.”
“Fine. It will cost you 2,000 shs.”
“No way. For a distance, I can walk. You’re cheating.”
The rider revved the engine, “Then find someone else to take you.”
“Okay. Let’s go.”
Why did Timothy and Allan want to get at Mr. Mugabi? Mr. Mugabi had a reputation for harassing female students. No one had ever come out publicly to say Mr. Mugabi had harassed them, until one time Timothy received a call from his older sister four years ago.
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