Restless – Episode 18
The Slum: Gege
® 18+ SNVL
© Oyinloye Oluwatosin Emmanuel
Thirty Minutes After
“Quick Dennis, get the driver to start the car. We’re heading for Gege,” Sheila said as she walked back into the living room with her partially closed laptop in one hand and her phone in the other. She had taken off the black skirt suit she wore to the office and was now on a tshirt and trousers with sneakers on her feet.
She stopped at the centre of the living room and placed her table on it after Dennis had hurried out to deliver her message to the driver. She squatted beside the table and opened the laptop properly. She played the footage from the security camera again and watched how Henry drove the car to the point it was parked and how he stepped out of the car with his crutch and walked into the streets. She tried to follow his movement in the street but he soon got out of the cameras reach when he entered the midst of some storey buildings.
Gege was one of the most known and populous slum in the capital El Deols and in the whole country. It had the highest number of thugs and riffraffs. An hideout for drugs addicts and hoodlums. It also had the highest number of unkempt buildings. The buildings were rigid and strong, being built of good materials but the walls were so dirty for most of them had not been painted within the past ten years. The roads and streets were not well kept too, especially the drainage system and the roadside bins. There was also a large number of illegal dumpsites and polluted areas in the slum.
She skipped the video to an hour after and still saw the car still being parked there. She swtiched the footage stream to real time and saw that the car was still where it was parked.
“Miss, the car is ready!” Dennis announced as he walked back into the living room.
Sheila quickly hibernated the laptop and closed it up. She handed it to Dennis and walked out of the living room with Dennis following behind.
Gege was ninety minutes drive from their present location and could be up to three hours drive when there was heavy traffic.
The Lovers House,
Gege, El Deols, Anthanna.
Iyke could hear the afropop music playing softly in the nightclub as he got to the entrance. From the look of things, he was sure that the population of the clubbers would be low that night. He remembered it was a monday and the night was still quite early, the clubs usually got busier as the night thickens and was busiest during weekends.
He opened the gate and stepped in. He was right, the place was no as busy as it usually was but there were still a couple of people there. His eyesd wandered around the place as if he was looking for something.
He turned his neck to see one of the club girls catwalking towards him from.
He licked his lips as he got a perfect view of her. She was looking sexy as usual. The armless top she wore left the abdomen area uncovered and still exposed her cleavage. Her skirt was so short, it barely covered her buttocks and her underwear could be seen as she swung her waists as she walked.
“Babe,” he pulled her close and drew in a breath, the scent of her perfume filled his nostrils.
He had his right hand around her waist while she had both hands on both side of his shoulder.
She was of a slender figure unlike him who was broadchested and well built, but she had good heights for a lady and the high heels on her feet helped her measure up to his height.
“I’m surprised to see you this night darling,” she said in a soft voice which sounded enchanting in Iyke’s ears. She also rolled her eyes and kept a seducing smile on her face.
“Yes,” he smiled sheepishly, already forgetting the reason he was there. “I only come here on friday nights.”
“So what brings you here tonight?”
“Well…It’s not bad to catch some fun on monday night too, is it?”
“Hmm… Catch some fun?” she sang in her seductive tone as she disengaged from him. “It’s no crime baby, let’s go catch it,” she said as she placed a finger on his lips and dragged it down to his chest slowly. She fixed the finger under one of the buttons of his shirt and turned. He followed by her side into the club house as she pulled him along.
She was already pulling him away from the night club to another section of the facility when his phone beeped. He took out the phone and unlocked to check the notification.
“Oh! Damn it,” he cursed and halted immediately. “It’s eight thirty already.”
“Hun, what’s happening by eight thirty?” the lady asked.
“I gotta meet someone,” he replied.
“C’mon, can’t you do that after we catch some fun?” she asked, clinging to his body to pull him with her.
“No, I have to go now babe. I’ll see you later.” he replied quickly and pecked her before turning.
He hurried back and went into the night club. He had almost forgotten his reason for being there. He had received a message from one of his acquittances in the club, a rich guy promising telling him to meet him there by eight thirty that night for a deal which will bring in so much money.
His eyes searched through every wear in the night club. He checked the bar, the sitting areas, the dance floor, the music area and stage, yet he could not spot the person who had asked him to come. He became uncertain as to whether he could still recognize the face of the person who had asked him to come. he began to scan the face of everyone in the club, including those on the dance floor. After looking around for five minutes without any success, he walked to the bar.
“Hey Noah,” he rested his hands on the counter as he called unto the attendant.
“Hey! My man,” the attendant hailed him in response. “You want some Tequilla,” the barman asked, already reaching for the bottle of wine.
“No, please come closer.” Iyke beckoned, his eyes still wandering around the hall.
“Yes, how can I help you?” The barman.
“I’m looking for someone, he’s waiting here for me.” He relayed to the barman with uncertainty in his voice.
The barman stared at him silently for a couple of seconds.
“So you want me to arrange two bottles of wine for you and your friend?”
“No, I mean have you seen anyone like that? Has anyone come to ask of me?”
“No man, I haven’t seen anyone here who’s asked of you.” The barman replied. He stared at Iyke’s face for some seconds before returning to his work.
Iyke turned and looked around the hall again, everyone else seemed busy and no one seemed to be the one he came for.
He heaved a sigh as he took out his phone. He was already feeling foolish. He had received the call from an unknown person three hours ago, asking him to meet at the Lovers House Night Club. The person claimed that they had met a month ago at the club on a Friday night and that he (Iyke) had given him the phone number.
Iyke dialed the number which called him earlier and looked around to see who would answer a call as he placed his phone close to his ear.
He spotted a man taking out his phone and the far left end of the hall. The man was dressed in suit, sitting on a long sofa. He had two half naked girls flanging him and dipping their hands into his shirt. There were bottles of beer on the table in front. The sofa at the opposite side of the table was empty. That section of the club had about six points set up in the same manner.
He dropped from his stool and advanced towards the place, keeping his phone close to his ear and his eyes on his destination.
He watched as the man dropped his phone on the table after glancing briefly at the screen, he seemed to be very busy with the girls. The phone soon ended connection and stopped ringing. He dialed the number again and continued on his way to the man.
As soon as the call began to connect again, he also noticed the backlight on the screen of the man’s phone come up. He concluded in his mind that he has found his man. It stopped ringing and he didn’t bother dialing again, he was already close to them.
“Hey man, why aren’t you answering your calls?” He asked as he got to them.
The trio did not seem to notice him as they were so busy with themselves. One of the ladies was already on his lap and the other one was covering his mouth with hers.
“Damn you man! I’m talking to you,” Iyke shouted angrily.
The trio finally noticed and looked at him. They stared at his face, wondering what he was there for.
“Are you gonna talk to me or not?” Iyke asked again.
“Hey! Who are you man?” The man fired at him angrily. “Man get the hell out of here!”
Iyke would have fired back at him but for the fact that he was dialing the number again and the man’s phone wasn’t ringing this time.
“Hey man! Stay cool,” he gently turned and walked away.
He navigated to his messaging app to check the message he received earlier when he got into the Lovers House facility and was distracted by the girl. He read it again and was baffled that he was yet to find the sender. The message read:
I’m waiting for you in the club house
He was boiling inside with anger and his lips moved as he cursed whoever the person was under his breath. He tapped on the message space and already began to type in a message when a call from the number entered.
He swiped the green button immediately and placed the phone close to his ear.
“Where the hell are you man?” He asked angrily.
“Right behind you,” the man replied.
Iyke turned sharply to see the seat where he had just met the man and the ladies now empty. His eyes scanned around and he couldn’t still locate who was on call with him.
“Damn you man! You’re wasting my precious time. Step out right now or else…”
“I’m close to you already, now in front of you.”
Iyke’s eyes scanned around quickly again but he could see no one. He turned sharply again and still looked around without spotting anyone.
“Who the hell are you? Stop playing this bleeping game!”
“No games, you just turn around and you’d find me.” The caller replied again.
Iyke turned again, he saw no one holding a phone. He was now sure that whoever it was was playing a game. He was mad at himself for being a fool. It wasn’t the first time a meeting like this at the club house would be organized with someone he did not recognize or remember but it always held on Fridays and on his terms. What had made him so eager about this one and not to ask questions to verify the caller was the huge some of money the caller offered for the job he claimed he would propose.
“Haven’t you seen him?” The caller asked after a few seconds of silence from his end. He did not reply but his gaze still hovered around. “I’m right in front of you holding a phone.”
To say Iyke was angry was an understatement. He was enraged to the point that he would commit murder without thinking twice when he saw the man.
“Look man, I’m going to get you and make you pay for this trash…” He began to threaten.
“Shhh… You don’t have to look around to get me, I’m always with you, I’m right there with you holding a phone.”
Iyke scanned around with his eyes again but not for too long this time.
“Look down man, I’m right there.”
It took sometime before Iyke could grab the instruction. He looked down slowly and what he could see what his formed shadow. He clenched his fist and teeth in anger.
“I’m your shadow man, I’m your nemesis, I go everywhere with you until the day you die which is coming soon.”
“Damn you idiot!” Iyke cursed. He knew for sure that whoever was playing such a game was around, watching him.
“Enough of that dude! Now, once you drop this call, you’d find my instructions for you.” The voice said. “Follow every instruction and don’t try to play smart.”
“Miss, it’s obvious that he’s left here already.” Dennis said to Sheila for the umpteenth time but she kept repeating that the footage did not show when he left the place. The car was no longer there, another car was now parked there.
“I’m sure he’s somewhere around this area and he’d be returning soon.” Sheila replied.
“This place is dangerous Miss, we can’t stay here any longer.” Dennis warned.
“Exactly, we can’t leave Henry here. I’m sure he’d be out soon.” She insisted.
After thirty minutes, there was still no signs of Henry. Sheila felt more than disappointment. She felt heartbroken. She wondered what Henry had come to do at the slum and also wondered how he planned to keep himself after leaving her without requesting or taking enough money.
“Ma’am, we’ve got to leave now.” Dennis said to her again.
She was also convinced that they had to leave at that moment. She could see the preying eyes of some thugs around and she has sure they were already planning to rob them.
Silently and sadly, she stepped into the backseat of the car. Dennis also entered and the driver entered. The driver had just kicked on the engine when Sheila’s phone rang, Lesedi was the caller.
“Hello Miss,” Lesedi’s voice rang in as she answered.
“Mr Henry arrived the house about five minutes ago.”
To be continued