“Hey!! Where is the supposed intruder?” Lizzy said yawning and stretching on the bed.
“Good morning sweetheart.” Claire greeted ignoring her remark.
Just like Lizzy promised, she’d dropped over for lunch the previous day and had insisted on passing the night at her place. She had objected but knowing who Lizzy is, she doesn’t take no for an answer especially when coming from her.
“I’ve told you that you need a man around you; in your life, maybe this whole hallucination will stop, miss workaholic.” She said making a face at Claire.
Claire crumpled a piece of paper from her dressing table where she sat working with her laptop and threw it at her. “Are you starting on me this morning?”
“I’m not starting on you just stating the obvious.” Lizzy replied through yawning.
“Ok, I will put that into consideration.” Claire played her usual reply whenever Lizzy starts up her get a man gospel.
“Perfect Claire sweeping important issues under the carpet since 19BC.” Lizzy said sitting up from the bed.
Claire couldn’t hold back the laughter as Lizzy said that.
“Perfect Lizzy bugging someone’s life since 19AD.” She replied laughing.
“I’m not bugging your life just being a good friend. I don’t want you to die a miserable virgin carrying all those things to the world beyond while some guys will actually give heaven and earth just to have them.”
“Yea! Yea!! Thanks so much good friend,” Claire said sarcastically. “I will put that into consideration.”
“If you think you are going to put me off with that just know that you haven’t seen the least coming. I’m not giving up on you just like Jesus didn’t give up on sinners.”
“Oh!! Dear,” Claire said hands on her chest. “I’m so touched sister Lizzy.”
“You are just what I don’t know.” Lizzy said laughing at Claire’s reaction.
Standing from the bed, she walked to where Claire was sitting with her laptop and closed it.
“No home culture at all. Don’t you know that you are supposed to make coffee for your visitor first thing in the morning?” Lizzy slammed
“Oh!! Please,” Claire started, “who is the visitor?” she asked looking around laughing.
“So I’m not a visitor ba? I no reach to be called a visitor, issorite. Brother intruder please come this night o, she is going to be alone.” Lizzy shouted walking out of the room throwing Claire into another fist of laughter.
“Please help me with a cup too hun. No sugar o.” Claire shouted behind her.
“Take your pea.” Lizzy fired back.
*** *** ***
Some one hour thirty minutes later saw them dressed and ready to leave for work. Lizzy had opted for Claire’s car leaving hers behind since she was still going to pass the night again there.
“So what’s your schedule like today?” Claire asked as they settled in the car before she turned the ignition.
“Nothing much, have a date at lunchtime after that I’m gon be in the shop throughout.”
“Ok seems like a free day for you.”
“Yea Yea, what about you?”
“Have a couple of meetings to attend and that’s all.” She replied reversing to the gate.
The gate keeper was handy to open the gate as she drove out. Driving out, she saw a paper attached to the gate outside. She horned drawing the gateman’s attention. She signaled him to get the paper to her.
Unfolding the paper, she saw the exact pattern of writing in block letters again but this time with a different message. ‘THE ENEMY IS WITHIN; TRUST NO ONE’. Shocked, she stretched out the note to Lizzy who had her attention buried in her phone.
“What is that?” she asked collecting the note from her.
“What’s this? Who sent it?” she asked looking around after reading the words.
“ I don’t know.” she replied driving quickly looking through the rear view and the side glasses.
“I’m calling the police.” Claire said with a frightened look as they connected to the main road off her street.
‘And tell them what?” Lizzy started looking around frantically. “That someone dropped a note at your gate? I don’t think that’s the best action to take.” She concluded looking back to know if they were being followed.
“What do you suggest I do? I’m tired of all this.” She cried. “I’m leaving this country for good.”
“Hey pull over.” Lizzy said tapping her on the shoulder.
Pulling up on the side walk, Claire parked as Lizzy stepped down and walked around to the driver’s side and told her to move over to the passenger side. She couldn’t watch and allow her drive in that condition. She was frightened too but had a better control over herself than Claire, who was already crying. Getting the car back into the road, Lizzy constantly checked her side and rear mirror to know if she could pick out a stalker but she couldn’t.
“Claire,” she started. “This needs to be handled discretely. Whoever dropped that note must have been following you. I don’t know, but, I think he must be up to something which is making him send the warnings. Any attempt to go to the police might make him disappear.”
“What then am I supposed to do? Who have I offended? Should I just keep quiet till this dude puts a slug into my head, is that?” Claire said amidst tears.
“Hey babe calm down. Come to think of it, if this guy wanted you dead you would have been dead, I am sorry to say it.”
“Why then is he hiding in the shadows? If he has something why can’t he just come and talk to me instead of making my life miserable.”
“Calm down hun. I think I have an idea.”
“What is it?” Claire asked inquisitively.
“I think you need to pretend like nothing happened and go about your normal life. I have a feeling that he will try to reach out to you.” Lizzy said slowing down before the traffic light turned red.
“No way in hell that I’m doing that. I can’t pretend like everything is normal when my life is at stake. I’m definitely getting the SCD involved.” Claire said dead serious.
“What if this guy is right that the enemy is actually within; maybe amongst your friends, family people at work? What if he is right?” Lizzy asked pressing down on the accelerator as the traffic light turned green.
“Then he should be bold enough to present whatever information he has to the police so that all this can end. Do I have to live in fear all my life?”
“Nobody said you should live in fear all your life but, instead of involving the police, why don’t we get a private investigator.” Lizzy suggested.
“No way. I ain’t going to live that life again. I don’t want to be followed around anymore. I’d rather get the police involved.”
“Claire listen to me. This is the second time you are getting a tip off from this guy. I suggest we handle it discretely without letting anybody know about it. It’s obvious we don’t know who to trust. I know of a private investigator. We can have him follow you from a distance while also looking for information on who might be after your life. This way we will be killing two birds with a stone. Going to the police might also give the enemy who we don’t know the heads up to be smarter.”
Claire kept quiet for a moment thinking about what Lizzy said as she eased the car into her parking space. Deep in thought, she knew that Lizzy made some valid points but, what if these tip offs is a decoy. Who knows, the guy might just be looking for a clear part to carry out his plans. How will she be able to keep it all to herself and not get her uncle involved? She knows that getting Bob involved was going to change everything as that is going to give him all the excuses he needs to have private security guards swimming around her. But on the contrary could she just pretend and live her life normally knowing that someone must possibly be following her?
As he got his car parked at a different position away from Claire’s vicinity he contemplated on whether he was making the right decision. He’d never in his career question his own decision or second guessed himself but recently he was doing that a lot.
Stepping out from the vehicle he walked briskly down to Claire’s gate. As he walked his hood covering his head, he looked around to know if he could pick out any unusual movement which he didn’t. Dropping the note on the gate handle, he walked back to his car and waited for Claire.
He’d made up his mind to meet her and know if there was any information she could offer that would help him. He hoped she wouldn’t panic and get the authorities involved as that would further hinder his operation.
It wasn’t long before Claire drove out from her compound and had seen the note. From where he parked he couldn’t see through the vehicle to actually know what was going on there; in the car.
They had parked for a moment before driving off. In his normal routine he waited for two minutes before turning to follow her. Unknown to him, he was also followed from a distance.
Parked at a distance away from where Sly parked was a guy on binocular viewing Claire’s compound through it. He’d been parked for almost three hours since dawn viewing the compound intermittently. Since he parked, he’d been unable to find something tangible. Just when he was about to put down the binoculars and drive off something caught his sight.
A guy just stepped out from his vehicle and was walking towards the gate he’d been monitoring. He couldn’t see his face as it was covered by the hood of his sweat shirt.
Pulling out his phone, he pressed down on a number and the phone went into speed dial.
“Sir there is a situation.” He said as the line connected.
“Somebody just dropped a note at her gate.”
“No sir, I can’t make out his face.”
“Ok sir, on it.” He concluded and dropped the call.
After the call he waited as his curiosity has been aroused he’d been ordered to eliminate the guy before proceeding to follow the girl. Not long after the guy dropped the note that the gate opened and the girl drove out. He saw from his binoculars as the gate man took the note to her.
When the girl finally drove off after waiting for a while, the guy turned and followed her. He waited before trailing them as well.
As he followed them, he made sure to keep his distance in other not to arouse their suspicion. Pulling out a pistol from his glove compartment, he readied it for action.
He was two cars behind his target when he noticed him pulling over. Slowing down, he allowed more vehicles to move ahead of him before pulling over. Viewing through the binoculars, he noticed that ahead of the guy was the young lady’s car parked. He saw another girl move around to the driver’s side before the car pulled back into the road. The guy followed suit while he also turned his ignition and entered the road.
His perfect opportunity to drive by and take him out came when the traffic ahead turned red. He had overtaken some vehicles before him in other to close the gap between him and the guy. He was close behind him when another vehicle suddenly made a quick turn blocking him off. Cursing under his breath, he tried to make a reverse but had seemed trapped as cars behind closed in on him.
Swearing at the car before him which the driver didn’t seem to care, he honk severally, frustrated. Not even the loud sound of his horn seemed to get to the old man who would rather keep looking straight than sparing him a glance.
He had given up in annoyance when the blaring of his horn started attracting undue attention to him waiting for the traffic light to turn back green.
To Be Continued