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Chapter 7

Like the stifling heat that comes with rainfall and disappears on dark cold nights. Some people can not be counted on when they are needed the most.

Nife's brain was double timing. He kept thinking of how he could extricate himself from the mess that he had been smeared with. Why always me? He lamented. "Why not Skodo; the culprit. "That lucky bastard" he spat. They were making conversation around him, he tried focusing on the voice. "...won't... kill you on one condition. But first, tell me who you're working for". Nife tried opening his mouth to talk but, the words wouldn't just form. It felt like someone scrubbed his throat with sandpaper. He licked his lips feverishly.

"Get him some water. Zuko how hard did you hit this boy? I gave you specific instructions to bring him to me in one piece" Nife heard the cold voice retort. "But Lord this boy mod our..." Bang! The Israeli-made handun; The Dessert Eagle barked and shut Zuko up forever.

Nife flinched; that was the second time he looked death straight in the eyes in a week. This should better be a long dream he thought. He didn't think he could take anymore of it. "How many times do I have to tell your people to not call me that, clean up that mess. Make it seem like he packed up and left" Ghost said to the leader as he wiped Zuko's Blood and brain matter from his face. Nife couldn't see the face that kept issuing the orders. As if the mind behind the voice could read his voice, the man made to step into the light. But he only took a few steps forward bringing his huge frame into play and showing the big handgun he was gripping. Nife's eyes were bulging, that must be the biggest handgun he had seen in his entire life.

Ghost had a lot of plans for the young boy that sat helplessly before him. Shooting Zuko was just to make a point, he was dumber than a ram anyways and he hated it when they used the word "Lord" whenever they liked. It made him feel like those potbellied old men that call the shots. He will never let himself become one of them. "Oluwanifemi is it? Now as I was saying before this little incident, I won't kill you on one condition..."

Paula woke to the sound of her phone ringing. When she checked it was an unknown user ID. That might be FM, the thought of him melted her heart like jelly. He is so mature and old fashioned. She was starting to wonder how old he would be. Maybe 26? She hoped he wouldn't be any older than that. She was so engrossed in her thoughts that she forgot to pick up the phone before she could answer the call, it ended. She hoped he would call right back.

He called back but it wasn't until a few hours later. "Good morning beautiful" her heart did the jiggy dance. "Hello, are you there?" FM asked. "Oh yes! Good morning and who am I speaking to?" She feigned ignorance. "Oh yeah? It's Femi, I'm speaking to Paula right?" She just loved hearing him talk. Class and Masculinity; double package. "FM? Ohhh how are you doing? I was sleeping, you woke me up" she pretended to be offended. "I didn't mean to, I just wanted to ask something of you before you made plans for the day" he replied. "Yeah? What would that be?" She asked. "I was wondering if you would go out with me and show me around town of you have the time. I just moved here and I really don't know any place in particular" FM asked. Paula froze, he was asking her out already and she was going to pick the place? "Paula, are you still there?" His voice brought her back to earth. "Errr yeah sure its no biggie. I'll think of something" she tired so hard to make sure that she doesn't sound too eager. "5pm is cool yeah? I'll pick you up" He ended the call. Shame Tutu wasn't here to share in the initial excitement. She couldn't wait to spill her guts when they meet on campus.

The Lexus GS 350 was made for two things; speed and luxury. As Egbon cruised in his car of choice for the day, he couldn't help but admire how the vehicle responded to his demands. He was doing about 180km per hour on the Lagos to Ibadan expressway. The road had just been completed by the federal government and is still in its optimum condition. Besides, he had kept Skodo and his friends waiting for too long already. He had to get to them as fast as possible so he could get a grip on things before it went too far out of hand. He mused at the amount of police checkpoints that existed on the expressway. They didn't bother him anyways. The diplomatic plates on his car ensured that they let him through at every one of those checkpoints.

Egbon was in Ile-Ife before dark. As he cruised into town, he powered down the GS 350 to an acceptable speed. He didn't want attention yet. He wasn't here to make trouble except trouble absolutely had to be made. He checked into Cameron Hotels situated on the Ife to Ibadan Expressway, got a room then settled down to call Lanre(Skodo) it had been a while since he was back in Ile-Ife.

"...I won't kill you on one condition" Ghost continued. "What would that be? I don't work for anybody and I didn't kill your guy" Nife replied. Ghost saw that the boy was visibly shaken. He definitely couldn't maintain his cool after the little incident he had just witnessed. "I believe you didn't kill my guy. You don't look like you have what it takes to kill someone anyways" Ghost said. "I'll spare you this once and you will owe me forever. I'll keep collecting on that debt till you're dead in the grave. Your payment goes thus..." Ghost gave Nife some certain instructions and then assigned the Leader to keep a close watch over him. Nife understood the severity of the task before him but before anything else, Egbon would be coming into town today. He had to clean up and explain his absence and appearance to the boys.

"Heyy Kiddo, I'm checked into Cameron Hotels room 55. You should come with your friends as soon as you can". That was last night. Egbon had called Skodo telling him that he was town. He slept well and could breathe easier already. He tried reaching the whole squad but wasn't able to reach Nife till morning. "Heyy bruh, how did you sleep? Egbon is in town let's meet at Cameron Hotels by 10". All Nife could say was Okay. Nife laid back on his bed after the call. If only they knew, they wouldn't come 10 feet close to him.

Nife got to Cameron Hotels some minutes after 10. They were all sitting in the lobby at the bar. "Jeez bruh, what happened to your face?" Nonso asked as he got closer to the group. "Nothing bruh, just some scuffle over Paula, you know how these things are" Nife replied. "Have your sit, what would you like to drink?" Egbon asked and eyed Nife warily. Nife took his seat next to Tope "I'll take coke, I would like to stay sane" he joked without getting any reaction from anyone in the group. As Egbon started talking Tope leaned back in his seat and whispered so only Nife could hear him "I know you're lying bruh, what are you hiding this time?". Nife shrugged and whispered back "Nothing! Now keep your mouth shut and listen".

Egbon didn't waste time beating around the bush. He had already made some calls before reaching out to Skodo. "The boy you guys killed is a member of the Black Axe confraternity. The only way to protect you from harm is to assimilate you into the De Supreme Viking Confraternity". The boys were shocked beyond comprehension. Nife looked and everyone's faces. Tope seemed bewildered, Nonso was expressionless, Skodo had a smirk on his face. Only after this revelation was he able to fully understand the events of the last 24hrs hours and his debt had just gotten a lot harder to pay. "That's all for now, I'll be taking you guys on a short trip. Take a day, go pack your bags. We will be moving out tomorrow". Egbon told them as he retreated from the table.

Nife made it to his room in one piece. It didn't seem like anyone was following him he didn't know how long the trip would last. He would have loved to decline the request but Egbon didn't make it seem like he was asking. He had now become the proverbial fish that had jumped from frying pan to fire. As he made to catch some sleep since he had been up all night. His smart phone pinged. He lunged for it desperately hoping it was Paula. God knows he needed all the comfortbhe could get right now. It was a text from an unknown number. It read "I see you're making some new friends, I expect news in the next 48hrs. Don't die until I tell you to". It was signed Ghost. He immediately tried searching the number with Truecaller in other to get some information about the Ghost persona. But he came up with nothing. He was in a big mess, he wasn't getting out of this one too easily.

Author: Mr Jiggy✨(NifeWrites)

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