Tarasha had remained motionless since the call from Aisha had ended. Her left hand was glued to the steering wheel while she still held the phone in her right hand. She was confused as to what to do next, whether to turn back to Abuja or continue on her journey to Lagos. It was obvious that Aisha would soon start releasing information to the enemy when she couldn’t bear the pressure anymore and even though Aisha had told her she drank the mixture that was supposed to harden her and help her lessen pain, she couldn’t really trust Aisha’s words. And with the just concluded call, Tarasha could tell that Aisha’s heart wasn’t hardened at all.
Now, if Aisha should release information about their control base to the enemy, it would mean Henry’s life was in danger. This was the real reason she was confused, she didn’t want to make the same mistake she had made with her brother.
She looked down as her phone vibrated in her hand, she turned the screen to herself and heaved a sigh as she identified the number as Henry’s. She answered the call and placed the phone to her ear quietly.
‘Omotara, where are you now?’ Henry’s voice sounded with so much concern.
‘I don’t the know the name of this place but I believe I’m not far from Lagos anymore, I have to check the map first to know the name of the location,’ she replied.
‘Are you driving now?’ Henry asked.
‘No, I’m on a brief pause. I just received a call from Aisha and I think there’s a little problem.’
‘Problem? What’s the problem?’
‘Aisha and Cole have been captured and I presume Aisha could not endure the torture and she’s now dancing to their tune. Aisha may be forced to let out sensitive information and that would be dangerous to us,’ Tarasha explained.
‘Oh no! I hope you’re saying the whole truth to me, hope you’re not in need of help already?’
‘No Henry, it’s actually you who is in danger and in need of help. If Aisha is to let out the address of that place, some people may come visiting soon and I’m sure you can’t handle them.’
‘But there’s no way they can penetrate easily, this place is heavily secured, they would cause a lot of attention from the public if they try to break in forcefully.’ Henry tried to sound bold but his voice was still shaky.
There was a very brief silence, then Tarasha cleared her throat and began to speak again. ‘Henry, you need to remember that the people were fighting against can easily gain the support of police. Once they do that, they would invade the place and can pull down the walls just to get in.’
‘Hmm… So what do we do now?’ Henry asked, he could be heard heaving a sigh of frustration, finally letting out his fright.
‘Listen carefully to me. First, turn on another computer system with which you’ll be able to fully monitor any one or group trying to gain access into our building. Then, we’ve got sets of…’ Tarasha stopped as she remembered something. ‘Have you ever heard of laser scopes?’
‘Laser scopes? I though they only existed in sci-fi movies,’ Henry replied.
‘Maybe several years ago, they existed only in movies but we have them working in reality now.’ Tarasha answered. ‘We have some sets installed at the passage from the main door, I wanted to ask you to switch it on but if you do without knowing how to pass through, you’ll be the first to be killed by the lasers.’
‘Oh!’ a note of great fear sounded in Henry’s voice. ‘What do we do then?’
‘Go into my room, the code for the locker in the room is 6798. There are three access cards in the locker, pick all the cards you see and proceed to the study. Behind the wall clock at the left side of the study, you’ll find where to insert the access card labeled 1, unlock with the code 9867…’ Tarasha suddenly stopped and hissed, there was a pause for eight seconds. ‘Wow! There are many codes I’ll be giving you, you need to write them down.’
‘Yeah, sure.’ Henry said with a sigh. ‘My brain is quite overloaded and I can’t even remember the codes you mentioned already. I’m getting a jotter and pen right away.’
‘Wait! Before you get a jotter and pen, turn on the system to monitor the environment first.’
‘Okay…’ Henry was silent for over a minute before he spoke again, ‘Done.’
‘Okay, you can get your jotter and pen now.’
‘Write down these codes; 6798, 9857, 7698, 6789…’ she called a total of seven codes for him.
‘You said there are three access cards, how come I have seven codes?’ Henry inquired.
‘The first code is for the locker, the next three codes are to be used with access card 1,2 and 3 and on the first three locks you’ll find respectively. While the rest four should be used with card 1 on the remaining four locks.’
‘I don’t understand…’
‘The access card labeled 1 would be used for the lock behind the wall clock with the second code, it would open to you a weaponry…’Tarasha paused and heaved a sigh. ‘You know what?’
‘Just be on guard for the meantime, tell me once there’s any problem and I’ll get across to you the steps then.’
‘But… What if you’re busy when next I try to call you?’
‘Before I proceed now, I’ll make arrangements for your missed to call to be replied with the steps well explained in a voice message. But if you’re not calling to get the steps, you should send a voice message first.’
‘She plans to get the killers of her brother, together with the Vice President. I don’t know about her other plans for now and I’m not sure if she has any.’
The questioning had began after Aisha had been allowed and agreed to take a meal. They had also moved in another room with better ventilation and lightening but only a little bit wider than the previous.
‘How does she intend to get the killers of brother?’ Don asked, resting his hand on the back rest of a chair which had been brought in, Stone was sitting on it while Stainless stood at the other side. They all had bony and hard faces on, to put fear into Aisha as she spoke with them.
‘She knows all of you already,’ Aisha replied and paused to glance at each one of her listeners- Don, Stainless and Stone. ‘She saw your faces, and recognized you especially’ Aisha said, referring to Don.
She could see Don cringe in fear at her revelation and she tried to conceal a smile. Don’s response has betrayed his words and previous display of confidence. He had claimed not to be afraid of Tarasha and went further to say she was just a stubborn girl who needs to be put in her place but his shakiness when he heard about her recognition of his face had showed that all he voiced out were mere empty words. Aisha thought of reconsidering her decision to work with Don at this point. Don himself seemed to be afraid of Tarasha but she could tell that there was still something or someone who Don was relying on, who or what it was was what she couldn’t tell. She had to maintain her decision after thinking of her parents again. She had to keep revealing the truth to Don and couldn’t afford to play any dangerous game as she knew Don would not hesitate to take out another body part from any of her parents just to make her give in and that she didn’t want, her parents should not suffer because of her anymore, they had suffered so much already.
‘And how is she planning to go about that? Does she know where we operate from?’ Don asked after few seconds of losing his voice.
‘I don’t know but she has her way of finding what she wants everytime.’
Don heaved a sigh, he glanced at Stainless and Stone briefly. ‘Where is your new operation base?’
The question seemed to hit Aisha in a bad way as she swallowed hard. It had been one she had been avoiding and praying for Don not to ask. She knew how much money and efforts Tarasha had put in to organize the new structure. Even though she was sure that the place was well secured and Don could not penetrate, she knew that some level of havoc could still be done to the place.
‘Where’s your new operation base?’ Don asked again, noticing the uneasiness that came over her with the question.
‘That’s quite complicated,’ Aisha answered in a low shaky voice, avoiding Don’s gaze.
‘What makes it complicated?’
‘It’s not in the main city but after Maitama.’
Don squeezed his face, ‘What kind of location is that?’
‘Hey,’ Stainless called Don’s attention. Don turned to him. ‘Rex is calling already,’ Stainless whispered, showing Don the incoming call from the screen of the phone. ‘I think you should ask the questions which he needs direct answers to first.’ The incoming call ended without being answered.
Don nodded slowly in agreement and turned back to Aisha. ‘Does Tarasha have other people working for her apart from you and Cole?’
‘No,’ she answered, heaving a sigh, quite relieved that Don had changed the direction of his questions. Don glanced back briefly as he heard the door open, it was Stainless going out to attend to a phone call. ‘We were three working with her and became two when we lost Benny,’ Aisha quickly added.
‘But has she at any point worked with any external agency? I mean another assassin somewhere else or a security officer,’ Don asked his question in a different style.
‘No, I don’t think so. If she ever did, she must have done it hidden from us.’
‘Oh!’ Don stared thoughtfully for a moment. ‘Who works closer with her? You or Cole?’
‘Cole used to, but recently we’ve all been working together.’
‘Do you think Cole could give us some information you don’t have?’
Aisha frowned, ‘I really don’t think he has any except the one he could have gotten while coming to Lagos or before you guys got him and I don’t think Cole is ever going to work with you or give any information.’
‘Forget about that, if he doesn’t work with us, we’ll make him vomit any information that he has to.’ There was a pause of about one minute before Don spoke again. ‘Is there anyone living with her now like her brother did then?’
Aisha did not give a reply but there was a twitch on her face which gave Don a positive signal.
‘Come on, speak to me.’ Don urged.
‘Yes, Henry stays with us now.’
‘Henry? Who is Henry?’
‘Henry E.G, the hacker we recently broke out of prison.’
‘Oh! What the hell was I even thinking about!’ Don exclaimed with a loud voice and brief chuckle. ‘He works with you now, right?’
‘No, he doesn’t. He doesn’t seem to be in good terms with Tarasha.’
‘He’s not in good terms with Tarasha?’ Don chuckled again, it sounded ridiculous to him. ‘I thought he was just one of the tools she uses, how can a tool not be in good terms with the master? Does he have a choice to work for her or not?’ Don asked, the questions were more like to himself as Aisha remained quiet, staring at his face. ‘Why is she keeping him then? Why has she not killed him if he’s useless and refuses to work for her?’
‘I don’t have the answers to that,’ Aisha replied.
‘What then does he do in the house everyday?’
‘Nothing, he sleeps and wakes up. Most time works with his PC but what he never does anything related to our work.’
‘Maybe you don’t know the work he does for her, but I’m very sure he does something.’
‘He does nothing, absolutely nothing.’ Aisha insisted.
‘Then what’s the relationship between them?’ Don asked, widening his eyes. Aisha answered with silence. ‘Or are they lovers as rumour has it?’ Aisha still maintained silence. ‘Come on, answer me, what’s the relationship between them?’
Aisha’s reply was slow, ‘I’m not really sure of what it is now, but it seems somehow romantic.’
‘Hmm…’ Don eyes brightened up with a smile, he folded his lips in as he stared away blankly.
The door opened and Stainless walked back in, moving towards Don with the phone in his hands. ‘Dan, you need to talk to him now,’ he said in a low voice as he handed the phone to him.
Don took the phone and looked at the screen, the call was still on and reading. ‘Hello boss,’ he said as he proceeded out through the opened door and closed it after getting out.
**Asokoro area, Abuja**
‘You once said you know who Tarasha’s sponsor is right?’ Rex asked. He was seated in a motionless car with his left hand on the steering wheel and the seatbelt well fastened.
‘Yes, I worked with him before she came.’ Don replied from the other end.
‘Do you know his location?’ Rex asked.
‘Yes, I know where he stays. He stays somewhere hidden from town in Lagos.’
‘Good, I just wanted to be sure of that. We might work with that information in case I can’t get Tarasha today or tomorrow. I’m not sure of her plans yet and I don’t know if I’ll be able to take her down when she makes her next attack, I’m only sure I’ll be able to prevent her from succeeding…’
‘But boss… There’s a new information now,’ Don cut in.
‘The person who showed up to help her yesterday, I think we’ve found out who it is.’
‘Henry E.G, he’s a software engineer and developer. He’s the one who was recently rescued from prison by the Tarasha gang,’ Don explained.
‘Is he a trained assassin too?’
‘No, he’s not.’
‘Okay, gather more information about him and mail me everything you’re able to gather as soon as possible.’ Rex ordered.
‘Okay Boss, but there’s one more thing. The girl mentioned that there’s a romantic relationship between Tarasha and that Henry,’ Don sounded excited about the additional information.
‘Of course, a female assassin can bleep anyone she wants to, just to get her job done.’ Rex replied, his tone showed he had considered the information not relevant contrary to Don’s expectation.
Tarasha arrives Lagos and identifies Don’s location in the next episode, don’t miss out.