The following morning, i sent Ngozi to go and pick her bag while i go into the city to do some business.
I went to the Old Port where i knew there were numerous Africans.
“Excuse me Sir” I said to one Edo young man, “Do you know anybody who can use his passport to withdraw money for me from Western union?”.
“Yes, let me call my friend for you but you will pay him” He said.
I told him to make the call immediately.
The man he called sent us the names in his passport and asked us to give it to whoever was sending the money so that when he comes, he would just go and withdraw the money from western union.
I pretended to have written and sent a message to someone, then i made a fake call to no one, asking if he received the text message with the details.
When the man whose details i wanted to use arrived, three of us went to the Western Union office.
I excused myself and shifted some meters to make another fake call and when i finished, i told the two people with me that the plan has changed.
“The person who will send the money said it is not complete yet but we will still do business. I want to send out some money to other places. How much do you charge to send money to Africa and how much is Europe here?” I asked.
He said the amount he charged was the same and that it was 5% of whatever amount i sent.
“Good, we will send 10,000 Euro to Nigeria and another 10,000 to Germany” I said.
I called Johnson and asked if he could receive up to 10,000 with his documents, he said he wanted to receive only 5000. He then sent me another name that belonged to someone who will receive the remain 10,000.
I also called my Younger brother in Enugu and told him to go straight to the bank to receive the equivalent of 10,000.
Fred was also from Edo State. He lived in Marseille but like most of the Edo boys over there in France, he did nothing except going to the internet daily to send junk mails hoping that a victim would reply and be scammed. He has five years permanent resident permit in France and could have found a decent job with it but like some of us, he chose the fast lane. He did small deals such as sending or receiving money for people, just to sustain himself and wait for the big money that was supposed to come from the people he sent the junk mails.
Fred was the guy called to send the money for me but like most silly people, he made the mistake of running away with some of my money.
I had given Fred the first 9,950 Euros to send since the law prohibited funds in the excess of 9,999.
I was behind him when he processed and sent the money to Nigeria and gave me the receipt from western Union.
He sent the second 5,000 to Johnson in Berlin and gave me the receipt.
Then i made the mistake of going to urinate in the toilet while he processed the last 5,000 he was supposed to send.
When i returned to the counter, Fred and his friend were no longer there. I looked outside and they were nowhere to be found. I returned to the counter and Asked the young lady who processed the first two payments.
“Did the guy with me give you the receipt of the last transaction to give to me?” I asked her.
“He didn’t send the money, He took it and left with his friend” She said.
“What! That was my money and i don’t know them very well, i just called them to send the money for me” I said.
“Then call them back to find out why they didn’t send the money. Three of you came here together, so i thought you were friends” she said.
“Please i need the address he wrote as where he lives” I said.
“It is on those receipts you took from him” she said and asked me to go because someone else was standing there to do business.
I walked outside like someone who lost his keys or phone.
I knew that calling Fred was going to be useless because if he intended to steal the money, there was no way he would take my calls.
I decided to try anyway.
When i called, the voicemail responded in French, that the number i was calling was currently not available.
While i continued dialing Fred’s number, i considered how to go about the problem. It was obvious they knew i wasn’t from Marseille. They knew i was just on transit because i told them i was coming from Turin.
When Precious called, i told her to wait in her apartment until i called her. She started weeping on the phone because she thought i had left without her or that i decided not to take her along as i promised. I was not in the mood to make explanations to her, so i just cut the call and went to a bar.
I tried to think up a plan on how to go about Fred and his friend while i drank some whisky.
I eventually sent a message to his phone, hoping that he received it whenever he decided to put his phone on. The message read,
“Frederick Osare, i want to assume you deliberately ran away with the money. It is a pity because you have just stolen from a Ghost. I will find you wherever you hide. If you do not want to suffer, return my money before 4pm today. If after that time, i still don’t see you, you will be chasing me around Europe”.
After sending the message. I called the DHL office in Marseille and asked if they already received my parcel. After giving them the tracking number Robin sent from Amsterdam, they said the parcel has arrived but would be ready in twenty minutes.
Since i was doing nothing, i took a cab to their office and waited until it was ready.
I took another cab and went to where Ngozi lived. She looked pale like someone who has been crying for hours.
“Why is your face like this?” i asked.
She said she thought i was gone and has been crying.
“Are you ready to travel now?” I asked.
She said she was.
I carried her bigger bag and she brought the smaller one.
“What is in this heavy bag?” I asked as we left the room.
She said there were her things.
“Did you put refrigerator inside this thing?” I joked as we locked the door and went outside.
She started laughing.
We took a cab to the Bus Station since there was no direct train to Amsterdam. l didn’t want her to suffer on the road.