Four years had passed since she left school. And she’d thought that anything she had with him was over. But as she stared at the WhatsApp message from the unknown number, she knew that her past has come back to haunt her. But she knew what she had to do. She wasn’t going to allow him to harm her again. Not after… everything.
The message had told her to pick a location and bring the sum of five million naira in five hundreds to the place. This was the second time he was blackmailing her. The first time had been a two years after she had graduated, when she was about to get married to Obiora. They’d met then and he had requested for two million naira and a slice of her body again. She had agreed to his terms because she had seen the video footage he had; he had had the nerve to record one of their sex encounters in his office.
“That man is a disease!” Angela spat out. “He is like cancer. And there’s only one way to treat such a disease.”
She immediately dialed the number and he picked up on the third ring. “Come to the abandoned warehouse by the outskirts of the city by 6.30pm. Your money will be ready by then,” she told the man at the other end of the line.
“Good, good,” he gushed, “maybe we could also… eh… catch some fun. You know you wouldn’t want your husband to know what we know. It won’t—”
“See you at six.” She ended the call. The man was as disgusting as they came. She seriously felt like strangling him. But she couldn’t; he had such a power over her that she—
“Who was that?” the voice of her husband cut through her thoughts like a hot knife through butter. He was standing at the door of their room, his huge arms folded across his massive chest. As he looked at her, she couldn’t read his expression to know what he knew and what he’d heard.
“Who was that, Angela?” he asked again. This time, his voice was softer, it caressed her skin and she was tempted to tell him everything. But she couldn’t. She knew he would find her disgusting immediately he knew what dark secrets she kept in her heart.
Instead she said, “Uhm… it’s nothing honey. It’s just… an old friend of mine. She’s always asking me to help her with money. But she would waste the money few months later.”
She turned to look at him, hoping he would believe her lie. She loved him very much and it would kill her to lose him. That was why she had to do what she planned.
Obiora knew that she was lying. He had been with her for long enough to know that she blinked faster when she was lying and wouldn’t look you in the eye. He wondered what could make her lie, he sure hoped it wasn’t what he was thinking. Because if it was…
“I understand, honey,” he said instead. “Do you want me to accompany you to go see her?” The last statement was to know how she would react.
Angela stuttered, “Oh… no, no, no. It’s… it’s totally unnecessary. I won’t even take long.”
Bingo. She was lying about something.
She knew that her stuttering could make him not to believe her, but she couldn’t help it. He was staring intently at her and it took all her will not squirm. That was what you got when you were married to someone who owned a security agency.
Then he said it was okay and left. She heaved a sigh and went to work. She had a perfect plan that didn’t need any flaw. She took the revolver Obiora had given her for her safety, dressed up and left. She had to go to the bank first to get the money before it was time to meet the beast from her past.
Obiora knew that he had to know what she was up to. And there was only one way to find out. She’d told him that she was heading to the bank first, so he waited for thirty seconds after he heard her car drive off before springing up to go after her.
He spotted her Lexus fifteen seconds after he hit the road. He decided keep three cars between them so as not to allow her notice him. He trailed her to the bank, where he had to wait for an hour and half before she came out carrying a suitcase. That must be the money, he thought. He checked the time—6pm. She knew what she was doing.
As she drove off, he continued following her, albeit more slowly as there were few cars on the road. Fifteen minutes later, she stopped in front of the abandoned warehouse, which was formerly owned by a shoe manufacturer. She got out, scanned her surroundings and crept inside the building. Shortly, another car arrived and parked beside hers. A short, squat man with a drum of a belly ambled out and hurried into the building.
“I knew it!” Obiora cursed. “But why would she cheat on me with that… frog?”
He couldn’t make out the man’s features but he seemed strangely familiar. After waiting for a minute, he left his car and went towards the building.
Immediately Angela saw him, all the hate she’d harboured for him rose to the surface. She was filled with blinding rage and regret over what both of them had done in the past. He came to the centre of the building and brought out his phone to call her. She’d hidden in one of small rooms in the building to wait for him.
When she knew that his attention was fixed on his phone, she quickly and quietly ran up to him and hit him with the butt of the gun, just as Obiora had taught her. He slumped like a sack of cloth on the floor.
Obiora decided to stay in the shadows. He couldn’t see anything, but he knew that he would hear anything that went on inside the building. As he squatted and listened, he heard the dull thud of something hitting the floor.
She’d tied him up very well, with his hands behind him and his legs tied together. She’d put a gag on his mouth and as she wore the gloves she’d taken from Obiora’s room, she knew that this was where it would end. With him dead.
She splashed the canned water she bought on his face and he slowly stirred. He opened his eyes and the fear in his eyes as he saw his condition made her smirk.
“Good evening, sir,” she said, making a mock bow. “How are you feeling?”
He made muffled sounds that made him look like a grunting pig. She removed the gag and he took lungfuls of breaths before he started pleading with her to have mercy on him.
“Mercy, you say? Have you forgotten how I pleaded with you many years ago?” As she said that, she was transported back to how it all started.
She had failed a particular course she was confident that she would pass. She had gone to his office to know what could be done about it, but he had told her without mincing words that she had to sleep with him there and then if she wanted to pass his course. He had further told her that that was how she would be passing his subsequent courses. She was repulsed and annoyed. She went home and taking the advice of her roommate, she wrote a petition against him. Three days later, he called her to his office and had flung the petition letter at her. He was incensed that she could do such a thing. He’d boasted that he was untouchable in the school and had increased his sexual demands to two times for one course. In the end, she’d given in. He took her on his desk so many times that she lost count. It was during one of the times he was having sex with her that he recorded the footage that he used to blackmail her years later.
“But not anymore,” Angela added. “Today I’ll be rid of you and your torments.”
Then she cocked the gun.
Obiora had heard his wife recount her story with the man he’d thought was her lover. He was ashamed that he thought such a thing about his wife. Then he heard his wife cock the gun. Without thinking, he barged into the building, and the shock on Angela’s face was nothing compared to that on his face when he saw who she’d tied up.
“Dr. Azuka?” he blurted out. His shock sapped all his energy as he moped at the man who had taken everything from him before he met Angela.
“Obi… Obiora. You know him?” his wife asked.
“I can never forget the face of this particular demon.” He then told his wife everything.
His former girlfriend, Ndidi, had issues with her courses. And had met the lecturer in charge of the course, Dr. Azuka. He had made his usual demands, and after much pressure, she’d given in. After their first encounter, she got pregnant. The man denied the pregnancy and she had no money to take care of it; and she never told Obiora. She’d gone to a local place where the child was removed, but she lost her womb in the process. She was so filled with guilt that she took her life.
“I had watched her that day as she jumped off the bridge,” Obiora concluded. “And ever since then, I have been praying for the man who caused me so much pain to be delivered into my hands.”
Angela smiled slowly. There is God after all. Who would have thought it possible that her husband would want to kill the same man she wanted dead? She raised her gun, wanting to blast the man into hell.
But Obiora beat her to it. His silenced pistol coughed twice and the man twitched a bit before giving up the ghost.
Angela pouted her lips in sadness. “I wanted to end him myself,” she complained.
“I’m sorry, love,” he replied, “I had to do it. Ndidi needed the closure.”
She understood perfectly. “What should we do about the body?”
“We leave it here. Let the police find it if they can. We would not leave more evidence for them.”
“Then let’s go home and celebrate,” she purred.
“Right away milady. I think I know how we can do that.”
Then they left in their separate cars, racing with each other to know who would get home first.
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