Chinedu didn’t return in two days as he promised.
His phone was even switched of.
As i tried to connect him with my phone, i wondered if he ran into trouble like the other man who went to Ghana to bring in drugs for Ken.
Drug was a business that required a lot of luck to deal. Most of the time, it was either that the dealers moved with large quantity of drugs or that they moved with large amount of money. Either way, they would be doing something illegal.
It was only a matter of being stopped by the government authorities.
The Ivorien Police and other security agencies seemed to know what they were doing more than their Nigerian counterparts.
I personally believed that the Nigerian agencies were far more educated when compared to that of Francophone Countries, however, due to high level of Corruption, the agencies were crippled.
Chinedu could have been arrested too. The way he mocked the man who was arrested at the Ghanaian-Ivorien border, one would think that he himself was above arrest but that was never the case.
My own Case in Abidjan would suddenly become more pathetic than that of Ken if Chinedu was arrested.
Ken said he has his return ticket to Europe, i had non.
Basil has deemed it fit to buy just a one-way ticket for me.
His excuse was that his contact might not be ready by the time my return ticket expired.
I didn’t even ask him questions about that decision since it was my first time.
He knew i was new in the business because as i thought about the possibility of Chinedu being apprehended, i felt that i should have pressed for a return ticket.
I also believed that the excitement of going to Africa Contributed in my inability to insist on a return ticket.
The money with me at that moment was about 300 Euros. It was nowhere near the price of the return ticket.
I didn’t know how many days rent Chinedu paid for me at the Hotel Afrique, but i was sure it wasn’t more than one week. It was just a matter of few days before it expired and then, the real panic would emerge.
I began to think that i needed Ken afteral, not for him to help me out financially, but to make me a second person in the stranded world.
I had some money hidden away in my apartment back in Italy. The problem was that i lived alone. The worst was even that i took my Keys with me to Amsterdam and left it there.
At five minutes intervals, i tried to connect with Chinedu through phone but never succeeded.
Then all of a sudden, it came to my mind. There could be a way out afterall.
How could i have forgotten that i was a street girl.
During my visit with Ken to the City Center, i was able to identify some street girls loitering around. They were Nigerians, i even heard Edo Language but i pretended not to have heard.
There were street girls in the city.
If things got worse, i would simply pick my bag and head to the city center. I would approach the girls and make them fix me into whatever business they did.
The problem was that their prices could Be cheap. It meant that i would have to spend a thousand days before i could be able to save up enough money to buy my return ticket.
I could also call Basil to send me money if things changed from bad to worse but i doubted he would comply. He was most likely going to ask me to wait for his Chinedu Contact, just to make sure the little money he already invested wouldn’t be for nothing.
The whole picture was getting clearer. I may have believed that Basil was such a nice man who loved me but the truth remained that he was an Igbo man and as such, he wasn’t different from most of his tribesmen. They were not a bad bunch, infact, they were the best in taking care of their women, but there was one secret truth about them; they loved making money.
In the process of making that money, they could do anything.
One of the things Basil could do was to simply forget about me in Abidjan.
Back in Italy, Max was the only person that could have sent me money, but he was no more in Europe.
Lilian wouldn’t listen to me at all. She had suddenly started living well in Castel Volturno. I didn’t know how it happened but i heard she managed to settle with the woman who owned her.
It was true that she lived with Madam Philo but i never believed Philo owned her. The rumour was that her Madam lived somewhere else, either in France or Northern Italy.
Melissa was gone from my life. He was gone long ago. She was the person who would have easily send me money if i wanted it but it was no longer possible. I didn’t even have her phone number anymore.
As my mind flashed through all the likely scenarios in the event that Chinedu was apprehended, i slept off.
The bang on the door woke me up.
There were only two people who knew my room; Chinedu and Ken.
Chinedu was nowhere to be seen.
I concluded that it was Ken at the door.
After three more banging, he raised his voice and asked if i was inside.
I ignored him.
That was a wrong time to sweet-talk me.
Men generally believed that sweet talks melted the hearts of women.
While i believed that it did in some occasions, especially when we were in loving mood, it also didn’t work sometimes.
Some of us who has done terrible things with a lot of men has apparently heard so many sweet talks to the extent that it didn’t mean anything to us anymore.
I wasn’t in any mood to listen to his voice, therefore i ignored him.
He eventually left.
I didn’t go down to eat anything for the rest of the day, i just slept, woke up, slept again, woke up again and continued that circle until the day break.
It was now day 3 since Chinedu left. Each passing minute came with its own pressure.
My permutations about the possible scenarios in the event that Chinedu was arrested, started to have shape in my head.
Tears rolled down my cheeks as i sat alone on my bed wondering how to go about the situation.
It was amazing how my whole comfort in Abidjan depended on an illegal business.
The entire thing began to make more sense to me.