Oladeji Michael Kajero was a brilliant man. He was married and expecting his first child. Even though all his friends thought he married early, as a Yourba man, 30 was a late age to get married. His dad was married at 26 and always told him about the many benefits of getting married early. His mom, however, was Hausa, but that never for once caused an issue in their family; except that he had never heard from any of her siblings.
Deji, as he was popularly called, woke up and did not feel like going to work. He had spent the weekend going through the five stages of death, and on this Monday morning, he was ready to enter into the fifth stage – Acceptance.
Last Friday, Deji had planned to hit Koko Lounge in Yaba, after meeting with a mysterious fine lady who called herself Leona. He looked her up on Facebook and, even though most of the content on her timeline was vague, he could tell she was pretty; and since she said it was urgent, he obliged.
Deji worked for a telecoms service provider as a tech support staff. He loved his job until he was given shocking information by this Leona. His mind had been replaying her words all weekend:
“Gentlemen, our bosses are planning something very bad. I don’t have all the details but I know it will happen in Abuja, and a lot of people will die.”
Deji listened with disbelief. He remembered thinking Se Ere leleyii? Wetin dis babe dey talk sef?
“I know some phones will be involved in whatever it is they are planning,” Leona’s attention had turned to Deji as she spoke, “and since your MD has been in a lot of communication with mine recently, I think it is your network that will be used”. She spoke with such seriousness which could not be doubted.
“I can’t believe this,” Deji blurted out. “E no make sense abeg. Are we in a movie? Dis kind tin no dey happen for naija Joor. Fimilé.”
“Deji, I know this is shocking to hear, but please let me tell you how I know,” Leona begged. She was on the verge of tears as she spoke. “The few people I have told think I am crazy and I don’t blame them. But this is serious.”
“I know say dat my MD no pure”, came Emeka’s voice, obviously tipsy. “I know this is the kind of thing he likes to be involved in. He keeps saying that one must do whatever it takes to achieve. Wetin him wan achieve again me I no know o”
Malaud stayed silent. He was as shocked as everyone else to hear what Leona was saying, but he was a naturally calm person. Islam had taught him patience and calmness. Now it was his second nature. He wanted to hear the full gist so he could act sensibly and weigh Leona’s words to know if they were true, false, or mere speculation.
“This is what I need you to do, Deji,” Leona had said. “Just take note of things around the office. Since you are in tech support, you should be the first to know if anything fishy is happening.
I don’t have all the details but I know it will happen in Abuja, and a lot of people will die.”
Deji sat on his bed, fully dressed. He was glad his wife was at his parents’ for the weekend and she didn’t have to see him like this. He got up and decided that Leona was way in over her head, and he drifted back to that first stage of death – Denial.
Deji had not seen his boss that morning but he heard that his boss had resumed work way earlier, and had been in his office with a guest. This happened often so Deji took no note. It was about Lunch time and Deji was heading to the lunch room when he was met by Bola, the boss’ secretary.
“Deji Darling… sup you na? You’ve not been talking today o,” she said in her usual “runs babe” tone. “You didn’t even tell me my dress was hot today. Something must be wrong”
“Bola free me o,” Deji smirked.
“Something definitely is wrong,” Bola said. “Anyway, before I forget,” Bola continued quickly as she passed him heading back upstairs to her office, “Oga said once I see you, I should call you.” She had a coy tone to her voice “Maybe you’re about to be promoted… Deji Deji”
Deji stood for a second. Why would he be calling me? Has his phone malfunctioned again? You know what? “Bola!” Deji hollered. “Let me follow you now sef.” Together they went upstairs and find the MD’s door ajar. Hearing footsteps, the MD called out, “Bola”, his voice authoritative as usual.
“Yes Sir” Bola responded quickly
“Kilonshele? Where is Deji I asked you to call since last week”
Deji and Bola exchanged looks as she spoke back, “He is here with me, sir”
“Doing what? He is a married man o.”
Deji hurried to the door. “Sir I’m here.”
“Come in, Deji.” He responded.
Deji walked into the huge office to see that his MD was not alone.
“Ah Yes Deji how are you?” But before Deji could respond, the boss pushed right into the reason why he needed to see the young man. “This is my friend Alhaji Abdullahi.”
Deji knew he heard that right but didn’t want to believe it. The boss continued talking.
“There is something we need you to do for us.”
***TO BE CONTINUED NEXT WEEK***