Yinka didn’t see Kiki or hear anything that related to her for six months, yet the memories of his encounter with her tormented his mind day and night. The fear of the unknown plagued his daily activities that his clubbing and promiscuity reduced drastically. His friends already noticed the change in him, but no matter how much they tried, he didn’t tell them what was on his mind. Indeed, they have suffered with him in the past and enjoyed his recent riches with him, but how could he involve them in a suicidal assignment from a representative of one voodoo business he wasn’t even sure was real? One Friday afternoon, at about 4:00pm, the worry got worse. He sat in his office with his eyes opened wide; though his gaze was on the TV his mind was not on what was showing on the news... until Cyprian bumped in.
“Elechi! Oh Elechi!”
He was sweating heavily and Yinka could tell he has never seen him like that before. Yinka jumped up on impulse. “Calm down.”
But he refused to calm. He was crying. It was then that he knew... The TV! The bomb blast!
“Didn’t you see the news?”
“Elechi was in the blast?”
Yinka sank back into the chair. Someone had called a day before to ask for some specific art designs he saw in their art gallery. Elechi was to deliver them to him at Lagos state government house in Abuja. That was where they just showed in the breaking news. The Lagos state government house was bombed by Nigeria’s most dreaded terrorist group, Boko Mallams.
“Why? Why Elechi? Why?” Yinka cried.
“The bomb blasted just when he called to tell me they have gone to issue our cheques; that they wanted us to do more art works for them. The News said there was no survivor.” Cyprian was deeply pained. Though they were both Yinka’s friends, Cyprian was closer to Elechi.
Yinka could not help him. This incidence only made his worries worse. He tried to get up; maybe a can of beer would do the magic. After all that was what he has been taking in his agony. But before he could go further near the fridge, his phone rang. Sluggishly, he walked back and picked it.
“Meet me at the restaurant where we first met in five minutes.”
It was like a spell was casted on him. He recognised the voice. And he knew the only girl he met at a restaurant was Kiki. He reached for his car key instantly and dashed out. Cyprian tried to follow him, but he didn’t wait or say a word. The car zoomed out of the gate before he could ponder further on what was going on.
He got to the restaurant in less than five minutes. Kiki was there, sited in a corner. He walked to her like a perfect gentleman, pretending perfectly well that everything was well. Who would have thought he just lost a very dear friend? He sat down opposite Kiki. Just staring at her face. She looked more beautiful than the first time he met her. Dressed corporately this time; he still lusted after her body. His eyes pieced through her skin, stripping her off her clothes in his imagination, and he felt like being in bed with her again. For a moment, he forgot his worries.
“It shows on your face Yinka.”
Her statement jerked him off his thought.
“What?” Yinka asked looking irritated.
“It shows that you have been stressed up lately.”
“What do you want from me Kiki?” Yinka got down to business.
She glanced away. Surveyed the environment for a while. And she returned her gaze to him. “You need my help Yinka” She whispered. She saw the skeptic look on his face. But she continued, “Though I’d better say we need the help of each other. Our governments need us both.”
“What are you talking about?”
“I knew Elechi was going to die.”
An alarm rang in Yinka’s head this time. But he couldn’t place what it’s meant for him to do. His legs shook with fury, fear, and confusion at the same time. “There was a part of my mission that I omitted when I was speaking with you the other time.”
Yinka just stared bewilderment. Looking at her, but not seeing anything. Lost in different worlds and not wishing to exist anymore. The pain in his head was just unbearable.
“I work with the British intelligence. I’m in a highly secretive department; only few people in my government know about me. My bosses also knew my father runs a voodoo business in Haiti.”
“So how does this relate to me?”
“My father took a charm box made of pure gold when he came to Nigeria just after Aro’s presumed death. At first he didn’t know it was a charm. Proper use of that charm could bring a dead man back to life: and with it you can still be in Nigeria and travel out in your spirit to as far as Ghana to carry out any mission you want.”
“So I guess your father must be using this for your government.”
“Yes, in a way; though we use it only for the latter use. We knew Aro was going to find the location of the charm when he was resurrected. But his mission has gone beyond that now. Aro is presently serving as a political god father to a sect in your country. This sect is behind the activities of your dreaded Boko Mallams. If Aro gets that power back, he would be able to make dead militants come back to life. If that is the case, Nigeria may not be able to fight this sect successfully in the event of any civil war. Our prediction was that once Aro gets this power back, he would raise a campaign that may lead to war and Nigeria will fall.”
“It’s only getting worse...” Yinka said unconsciously as he sank back into his chair. Kiki leaned closer.
“The federal government didn’t listen to us when we told them of this development. Their intelligence unit couldn’t even trace anybody like Aro, though they knew major master minds behind the dreaded Boko Mallams. We also approached the Lagos state government, much because Aro’s charm was first buried in Lagos and Aro frequents here to visit the site. I guess there are still some virtues buried there. Lagos state listened, but they were sceptical. We also warned them that their state house in Abuja was going to be bombed.”
“So how come they didn’t prevent it.”
“They told us they’ve never had any issue with the Boko Mallams; that they could not be attacked. Though they fortified security, the militants were able to get in. My fear is that they already knew we were talking to the Lagos state government and they wanted to create some fear.”
“So how did you know Elechi was going there? And why didn’t you alert me?”
“You didn’t believe me the first time I spoke with you. You would not believe if I told you either... Truth is that I have been monitoring you even before we met. I knew your help would be needed to put Aro down someday.”
There was a short silence, enough to make Yinka think deep. He adjusted himself on the sit and looked straight at Kiki’s eyes, “Now tell me what exactly you want me to do to put Aro down.”