The Author (Episode 10)

There was an awkward silence between Tom and Jerry as the latter drove them back to the Police Station. None of them said anything until they had entered Tom’s office.
‘We really screwed up. I just hope that she doesn’t press charges as she said’, Tom said. ‘I hope so too. If she sues us, we’ll be in soup. I think we should keep this to ourselves. No point in letting Chigozie know’, Jerry said. ‘I think so too. Our lead has turned out to be a dead end’, Tom said. ‘There’s one more lead for us to follow up on. Professor Stan’s wife may give us an additional information that could prove helpful’, Jerry said. ‘Her statement is already in the reports. They don’t tell us anything that we don’t already know’, Tom said. ‘She was given his personal effects. We can trace the email sent to Professor Stan from his phone’, Jerry said. ‘Let’s move. We may be able to make progress despite our screw up today’, Tom said. Both men entered Tom’s car and they drove off to the Senior Staff quarters of the University of Nigeria.

Every member of the sixteen-man team sent by David had a look of disappointment on their faces as they were driven back to their hotel. They had all been psyched for a face off with a dangerous terrorist only for them to discover that they had been given a wrong address. Mike’s disappointment was very profound. He had jumped at the opportunity to lead a covert mission after a year of being inactive because of severe injuries he sustained on his previous mission. ‘David should better have a good explanation for this’, he thought as they approached La Pavilion hotel.
When they got to the hotel, the men changed into normal clothes before leaving the ice-cream van. They all went to their rooms but Mike went to the bar to meet David and Senator Franklin.
They were seated at a table on the west end of the room. David had insisted that they meet at the bar because he knew that Mike would be forced to control his tantrum if they were somewhere public.
‘What the hell!! You’ve made us to look like fools today’, Mike said as soon as he got to the table. ‘Calm down Mike. Sit down and have a beer’, David said and Mike sat down. ‘I thought we were going to a terrorist’s lair; how did we manage to end up at a cybercafe?’ Mike asked. ‘I’m sorry. It’s my fault. I wanted to keep the mission a secret so I didn’t inform the Enugu State Police Command. If I had looped them in, they would have sent some men to scout the place and those men would have warned us that it was a cybercafe’, David said. ‘If the place was really a cybercafe, why didn’t reflect on the map we had?’ Frank asked. ‘I think it’s because, the business has not been registered. It is very common in this country for people to run a business for up to four years without registering it’, David said. ‘Mike, you can go ahead to your room. David will brief you on the next line of action’, Frank said and Mike finished his beer and left the table.

‘What are you going to do next? I want the Author apprehended and dealt with’, Frank said. ‘Firstly, I’ll inform the Enugu State Police about this. They’ll help us to continue searching for the Author. I doubt that they’ll find anything though’, David said. ‘Why do you say so?’ Frank asked. ‘I think the Author is a member of your constituency, disgruntled by the current state of the economy and blames you for all his misfortunes’, David said. ‘A random citizen protests; he doesn’t bomb the Car park of the National Assembly Staff’, Frank argued. ‘About that. I just got a report from the bomb squad investigating the bombing. The explosives used at the car park is the same as that used by the Vipers in other countries. It is unique to them because they make their bombs themselves’, David said. ‘So you’re saying that the bombing was done by the Vipers?’ Frank asked. David nodded. ‘We’ve not finished with Boko Haram yet and a more powerful terrorist group attacks us. It’s only God that’ll save us’, Frank said. ‘Yes. I’ll have your security beefed up all the same. We won’t take any chances so we’re not caught unawares if the Author decides to attack you’, David said.

The Author watched Frank and David from his table at the center of the bar. He had followed the ice-cream van to the hotel. He had not expected to find Senator Franklin at the bar.

‘Frank is just a lucky man. I would have killed him here but there are sixteen other highly trained men apart from David that would ensure that I don’t escape. I would bid my time though. My patience will pay off and I’ll surely make no mistake when the opportunity presents itself again’, he thought.


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