TWO WEEKS ON.
It has been two weeks gone and she hasn’t heard from him. The past week had her always glued to her phone waiting for his call or message but none came.
Just like she’d anticipated, Bob had brought in some security guards the day after the attack. She knew it was going to happen and didn’t fight it. After the first week, she’d dismissed them without informing Bob.
She had talked less to her uncle since, the incident despite every effort he’d made to get her to talk. She’d scraped the incident without going deep into what happened when he’d asked her. Some things remained unclear to her. What happened to their plan? Why did Bob show up after it all happened and why did they leave before the authorities arrived. Why had he not contacted the SCD?
She had confronted Bob with the questions but the answers he gave her weren’t a bit convincing. She had allowed it to slip and kept her reservations.
After the incident, she’d grown suspicious of everybody around her. The only person she could trust was the one that took the bullet for her and Lizzy who’d sat beside her ever since it happened. She had found concentrating at work hard as her mind always drifted back to the scene. His image as he limped away in pain had kept coming back to her. She didn’t know if it haunted her, but her dreams and days were just about him.
She went through the whole week praying that he will contact her, which never happened, she had picked up her life and moved on. Frustrating as it was, she’d tried to block off his face and concentrate, which had seemed the most difficult. She’d resigned to fate and took each day as it came still longing for his call in the deepest part of her heart.
He had left Nelly’s house after one week back to his own, much to her disapproval. He knew that she wasn’t happy but it wasn’t about what made her happy; he’d involved her enough, much more than he should have. Her safety still mattered a lot to him. To cap it all, it wasn’t rocket science knowing that she was seeing someone which seemed serious. And he didn’t need her to tell him that it was the young Doctor that treated him, who had also visited twice in the week. He’d seen the connection between them, the stares and the whispers behind the door. It was just safe to leave them be.
He’d recovered enough and was on the trial of his new lead. He had deliberately stayed away from contacting Claire till he had something substantial.
For one week he’d followed the new lead trailing his movement. Everything had seemed normal till he followed him to a particular location which seemed to ring a bell in his head.
He thought hard as he sat at the café which overlooked where the suspect parked with his pocket camera at hand. As his mind worked, he saw him through the glass as he fixed a scrambler to his phone and made a call.
Buuummm!! It struck him. That particular location had been where Kunle traced the origination of a call to. Placing the camera on point, he took some shot before putting it away and taking a sip from the can of energy drink before him.
Not long after he took the first shoot that another car pulled up behind that of the suspect. A man in his early forties stepped out from the vehicle and headed toward the suspect’s car looking around suspiciously. He took some quick shots before the man got into the car. As he got into the car, the glasses suddenly went blur making it difficult for him to see what was going on inside the vehicle.
Suspicious as it seemed, as the glasses became blur, the driver stepped out from the vehicle leaving the two men inside. That gave him all he needed to know that something was definitely fishy.
Thirty minutes later, the second man stepped out from the car as the driver went back in and drove off. Walking out from the café, he walked as fast as he could to his car and waited for the new guy to drive off before trailing him. He wanted to know more about him.
He followed him to his house and surveyed around before heading home. On his way, he stopped by a photo studio owned by a friend of his and printed the pictures. He also made extra copies before heading home to rest.
In the comfort of his sitting room with the pictures spread on the table before him, he thought of his next line of action. To make things clear enough, he needed to talk to Claire and see if there is something she knows.
He has been worried sick about Claire. Since after the incident, she has been withdrawn and talked less. He suspects that she knows something but was keeping it away from him. She had asked him some questions which only suggested that she suspects something and that her trust in him was waning, and that trust, he needed back.
He has hired someone to keep an eye on her but, the reports he got haven’t been convincing enough; he still suspect something from her cold behavior. Could she be talking to him? He thought. Picking up his phone from the table, he dialed a number.
“I want you to tap on a number and connect me to every call that goes in and out of it.” He said as the line connected.
“Ok, this is it, 0814…….. I need to be part of every call that enters or leaves that line.” He said authoritatively.
“Ok, I will have it wired to your account.” He concluded before dropping the call.
He can’t afford anything to go out of plan at that crucial moment.
She has moved on and going about her normal business not waiting for a call from him anymore. Though he still occupied the greater part of her mind, but of what use is it if he is never going to call again. She doesn’t even know if he was still alive or probably if something had gone wrong with him. She’d stopped beating herself up and took the day as it came.
On the other hand, there seemed to be a developing cold rift between her and Bob. She knows she can be difficult sometimes but would that help her? Bob is like her backbone, though, after the last incident, she’d started having doubts but she still needed him so much to go silent on him.
That morning as she woke up, she’d decided to breach the developing gap between them. Picking her phone, she’d put a call through to him. After they talked for a while, they scheduled lunch before she hung up; that had given her so much relief.
As they sat over lunch that afternoon, she’d apologized for her cold attitude since the incident. He’d waved it off, taking responsibility for everything that happened that day, she saw reasons after he explained and blamed herself for keeping her distance from him; if only she knew what was behind the apologies.
She had perfectly avoided bringing anything that had happened between herself and the guy. She’d denied being told anything or even been able to recognize him again. She went ahead to suggest that he might have died from the bullet wound as he hasn’t contacted her again.
It was like they reconnected as they exited lunch. Claire wanted to make some personal shopping so she headed off to the mall while Bob drove out, heading to another direction.
Sly watched as they exited from the eatery driving off to different directions. He decided that it was a perfect opportunity he needed to talk to Claire, though he didn’t know the direction she was headed. As Claire drove off, he waited to know if he could notice any stalker and truly, to his thought there was one. As the guy drove by, he waited for some seconds before following them both keeping an unsuspecting distance.
They drove for a distance before Claire took a turn heading towards the popular shopping mall. Expecting the supposed stalker to also make a turning, he switched his pointer to the same turning but was surprised when the he drove ahead. As he took the turn, he cleared off the road and stepped down walking back to see if the guy had picked him and decided to play with his mind. He waited for some minutes before going back to the car and driving off to the mall.
He watched as she picked items and dropping them into the cart which she rolled freely. He had waited outside the mall expecting the stalker to make an entry or for any suspicious movement but everything seemed normal as everybody walked about their business. He’d walked into the mall picking a cart on his way.
He picked some personal toiletries before heading towards the wine section where Claire stood checking out some wine collections. He picked some bottles of red wine edging closer to the girl who shopped unconcerned. Closer enough he said to her,
“Hi, don’t look back and don’t look at me just listen.”
From the corner of his eyes, he saw as she froze before comporting herself. As he watched her reaction, he scanned through the drinks waiting to have her attention. Not looking back was achieved but looking at him wasn’t. She’d held out a bottle of wine as if making an enquiry from him and asked’
“What happened to you, are you ok?”
Ignoring her question he retorted asking the same question,
“How are you?” How it came out from his mouth he couldn’t tell. He’d wanted to shun everything personal but seeing that look as she asked after his wellbeing had got him resettled. He recovered himself before she could give an answer and continued.
“Whoever wants you dead is deep into you and knows so much, so, I need you to keep whatever I tell you to yourself. Do you understand?” he looked as she nodded with her eyes still at the counter.
“I will drop a parcel on your cart and we will see tomorrow at St Agnes Church, 4pm.” He said. Walking around her, he dropped an envelope containing the pictures before walking off. As he walked, he heard her call behind him but kept walking away without turning.