The following day after the bus was brought to my house, Maria came. She followed me to a panel beater where we used electric to force the boot of the bus open. Then we drove back to the compound and opened the boot.
Like I had asked Johnson to do, he loaded many bottles of wine and whiskey for me, some used car spare parts, a used freezer, some few tyres and juice.
I called Baba to come.
He came with another one of their members whom I had never seen. They both offload the drinks and other items I wanted to keep in the house, then three of us drove to Ladipo.
Since there was no clear way to get my revenge on them, I decided to be using them for the time being. It would convince them that we were on the same side of the fence.
We sold the Vehicle spare parts instantly but there was no immediate buyers for the freezer. Therefore, we took it to a small park inside Promiseland, a section of Ladipo, and loaded it into a truck going down to Onitsha. I called my brother to take the freezer when it arrived.
Izuu, who used to sell my buses back when I was in Germany was still at Ladipo. I called him to take charge of the bus and sell it for me. Fortunately, there were people whose business was to buy imported vehicles and resell them. We found one of those and sold the bus N580,000. Izuu had wanted me to leave the bus for him so that he could sell it at a higher prize later but I refused. I wanted to close the business at once.
Baba followed me to the bank where I made sure that he saw me deposited the money into the bank. I wanted to make sure he knew that the cash did not follow me to my house.
When we returned, I asked him to call Kola and the other guys.
We met at Good day hotel and as usual, drank and they smoked.
Our bill was close to N10,000 by the time we finished. I also called Baba and his first friend out and gave them N5000 and N3000 cash respectively. Everybody was happy.
When I got home that evening, I was drunk. My Edo girlfriend had cleaned the house properly and re-arranged the chairs. Some women were very good at creating impressions.
Maria was doing much to impress me but I didn’t know why I didn’t trust her a bit.
When I was younger, I used to swear that nothing would ever make me marry a prostitute but at that stage of my life, I found out that the same things that made me date Jennifer and Maria could have easily made me marry any of them.
Life is not a straight road. It had curves, dangerous curves that would break you if you were not careful. As a result, I learnt not to say what I would do and what I would not do is situations that had not presented itself.
She had cooked rice too. We ate together like we had done severally.
”I am going to Edo state to see my parents tomorrow, would you lend me small money” Maria said out of nowhere again while we were eating.
I kept quiet. She said she would return on the following Sunday.
I grabbed a large chunk of meat and stuffed it inside my mouth, then I started chewing slowly. It gave me time to think of how to respond to what she had just said.
We were told not to talk while eating, therefore I observed that rule to its fullest while thinking over what to say.
”Where in Edo State do you come from” I suddenly swallowed my meat and asked.
”Ekpoma” she said and kept quiet.
”You told me that you traveled there when you returned, What are you going to do there again Maria” I asked.
”My father had a stroke, I need to see him again before I travel” she said calmly.
”I will go with you”. I said
She was extremely happy. She even forgot the money She had asked for. As a result, I decided to go there with Atleast N100,000. If she asked for loan, I would give her but not more than N50,000.
We finished our food and talked. I made some calls too before it was time to go to bed.
I was happy that I was able to salvage some money from Chukwudi. Despite the fact that I was determined to get my money from him, I knew all along that I may not succeed.
I also knew that if I didn’t wish to spend more money, I may not have recovered the money.
First things first, I needed to think about my journey to Edo State the next day. Apparently we were going with a car. Obviously I was going to drive.
Unbelievably it was going to be on that dreaded Lagos-Benin road.
I would have loved to travel on Maria’s Rav4 but since I was going to drive, I preferred a car that I had already mastered.
We were traveling with the BMW. When I told Maria that we were going with my car, she was even happier.
Throughout the night, I monitored Maria. If she left the room with her phone, I would follow her. I was actually monitoring her phone. I wanted to make sure that she didn’t make any call down To Edo State to alert them to prepare for anything silly.
Yes, anything silly such as organising local boys or telling her people to prepare one charm or the other.
I sent a message to my cousin, telling him that I would be going to Edo State the next day. I sent him Maria’s vehicle number and the data in her passport.
”If I don’t return in two days or if my phone stopped going for two days, take this message to the DPO at the Sanya Police station” I had written.
”There is always a part of my mind that is preparing for the worst and another part of my mind that believes that if I prepare enough for it, the worst won’t happen”