Chapter 2: The hunt.
I didn’t see Naomi at the reception hall. She had gone outside into the cold streets of Paris. I was tired and wasn’t interested in searching for anybody that morning. I just walked back upstairs and grabbed my whisky.
Damn! What if she had poisoned the drink?
Her behaviour was very strange and it would be so careless and foolish of me not to be suspicious, therefore, i poured the entire drinks into the toilet and kept the bottle on the floor.
I didn’t ask for her phone number and i felt i should have done that. I was surely going to look for her. I needed to find out why she did what she did. It was a new one to me.
I slept until 11am, before i got up and made some calls. I told Robin that i was in Paris.
He told me what has been going on in Amsterdam. The new story was that Mr Clement confided in a close friend, that it was me who attacked him. People were doubting him since he had said the people who did that wore masks.
The debate was that i wasn’t capable of doing such a thing and that none of the Igbos living in Bijlmer was even capable of doing such a thing.
According to Robin, people were asking that i come out and tell my own version of the story and when they heard that i traveled out of Holland before the incident, none of them collaborated Clement’s story.
I told him to give people my Belgium phone number since it worked in Paris.
”Don’t tell anybody i was in Paris. Give people this very phone number if they ask for it. Let them call me and ask me if i attacked Clement” i said.
I knew that something like that was coming, therefore i had loaded the Belgium number with enough airtime to last me for a week or more.
When i got down from the Hotel around mid day, i bought a new Nokia E63 at the Orange shopping mall near the Barbes train station.
The Nokia E63 was my first shot at a smartphone and Qwerty buttons.
I also subscribed to the orange network.
When i called Robin to give him the France number, he told me that a hunt for me had been initiated by Some people. He said that They already searched for me in our apartment and that they didn’t believe that i was in Belgium.
One of them eventually called me and when i answered his call, he started shouting and cursing.
I had kept quiet for minutes until he finished shouting, then i told him that i would have killed Clement if i knew where he lived.
The useless caller had continued shouting that he didn’t believe me. He asked that i come out of hiding and explain to the public that i didn’t attack Clement. He also claimed that i ran way with Ify and Samson.
”Please what is your name”? I asked him.
He switched off the phone without answering the question and when i called back, he didn’t answer too.
I had a more pressing issue that afternoon. My new girlfriend in Paris had disappeared to nowhere. It was important that i locate her and find out why she behaved mysteriously.
I took bus 31 in Barbes and stopped at the Mercadet metro station.
All the prostitutes i saw there the night before had disappeared. Non of them could be seen anywhere. I wondered what they did during the day time.
Since i had no lead on Naomi, i decided to do something else.
I called Nonso. He was a guy who lived with us in Bijlmer but had relocated to Paris to look for Resident permit. Nonso was delighted to hear that i was in Paris.
He came to a Camerounian bar where i was waiting for him in Mercadet.
”I came here for resident permit” i had told Nonso.
He told me how it was being done in France.
First, i need to apply with a copy of the data page of my international passport. I also needed a permanent address in Paris where letters would be sent to me. I would be given an interview date. Then i would wait for the interview. He explained that the Authorities would sometimes check out the address i gave them before deciding whether to give me the permit or not.
After explaining the methods, he said he could get me an address for a fee. He also said he could assemble other required documents such as a doctor’s report since the only viable excuse the French required was health related issues.
He said i will pay him €4000 for the whole work.
Since i had the money, i agreed.
Before he left, i gave him half of the money to start work.
I wanted to go out and look around the city of Paris but i didn’t know anywhere. I wasn’t prepared to do that too since i needed a camera.
I walked back to the hotel to take my bath before coming out in the evening for ‘Operation locate Naomi’.
I had bought another bottle of Johnnie Walker which i hoped to stay with until around 8pm when i will go out to check the areas where i found Naomi the night before.
”Where did you go”? The voice said behind me as i walked up the stairs to the second floor where my room was.
I suddenly looked back and saw Naomi. She was sitting at a mini bar on the left hand side of the reception.
I ignored her and continued my walk upstairs. She followed me.
I had decided to ignore her and see what she would do. I was surely going to go after her if she had suddenly decided to leave the hotel due to my attitude.
As i opened the door, she caught up with me.
”I asked where you have been, i have been sitting here for two hours” she said.
”How did you know that i have not checked out” i asked as we entered inside the room.
”You paid for one week” she said.
I sat down on the bed and opened my whisky.
”I hope you are not angry with me” Naomi said as she put her hand around my neck.
I sipped a mouthful of whisky and swallowed it before talking.
”I am not angry Naomi. Atleast you are not a thief. But i want to know what happened” i said.
According to her story, a customer who usually slept with her for an hour and paid €200 had called while i was in the bathroom. She said she knew i would not let her go if she had told me. She made me understand that if she didn’t go, the guy was going to call another girl.
Naomi didn’t want to loose him.