My greatest challenge has been to change the mindset of people. Mindsets play strange tricks on us. We see things the way our minds have instructed our eyes to see.
“Victoria Hotel” I said to the cab man.
He named his price before opening the door for me.
There was no need beating the price down, it was his luck that evening because i would pay five times what he told me just to get away from those guys.
It seemed that the running wasn’t over yet. It had only stopped in Europe but the same people had hunted me down to Nigeria to continue their chase.
As we drove back to the hotel, i wondered what i would do next. One thing was clear, i wasn’t going to leave Nigeria for anybody. Despite the country being backward in every aspect of life, it was still my country.
I didn’t wait to find out what Efosa and his thug friend did next because i didn’t want anything to delay me in Lagos. I needed to go down to Enugu as fast as possible. I wouldn’t have been in Lagos in the first place if not for Queen’s travel back to the UK. I would do anything possible to get myself down to Enugu even if it meant abandoning the car there in Lagos. Enugu was my home State and i knew every corner of it. If the thugs ever ventured into the coal city looking for me, that would be the end of Efosa’s ability to do anything.
“Oga, why 1500 Naira, the Hotel is not far” I said to the driver who had gone up to a kilometer.
He turned quickly and looked at me.
“I will stop you here if you will not pay that amount” He said.
I smiled inside my heart before saying the next words.
“I will pay 1000 Naira. That’s what i have”.
The driver quickly swerved right and packed. “Go down” he shouted.
I slowly opened the door and walked down from the vehicle. He had already helped me to escape from Efosa without his knowledge. The hotel was even closer now and if he was clever enough, he would have bargained rather than getting upset.
Standing along the road, i waved another cab down and gave him the name of the hotel. He said i would pay 700 Naira and i agreed. I had just saved 300 naira from the first deal.
Back in the hotel, i knocked at the door and when Queen opened it, she was crying. She had jumped at me and while cleaning her eyes, she asked what happened.
“Nothing, i just settled with them and they left. Give me the car key” I said.
She walked to the table and brought the key.
“I am going back to get the car now. I will be with you in a short while” I said.
As soon as i stepped down from the hotel, i located a Police checkpoint not far from there. I had crossed the place twice with my car and in one of those crossings, they had inspected my papers and eventually took 500 from me. I had created a small scene before giving them the money and for that reason, they knew me already. It wasn’t a deliberate action then but it made them recognize me when i walked up to them.
“This trouble man. You no carry your car?” One of the Police Asked.
I smiled before saying anything. I wanted them to feel that i wasn’t there for trouble.
“I forgot it at the Beach” I said.
“Hahaha, how can you forget your car, you are not serious” He said.
“I didn’t actually forget it, my girl got angry and left me at the beach. The key was inside her bag. I returned to pick up the key and i am going back to pick it up. I need one escort to go with me” I said.
My face was still beaming with smiles.
While one was asking why i needed an escort, another was asking how much i would pay.
I concentrated on the one who was asking for money. He was what i wanted.
“Me and you people are friends now. We should not be talking about money. But i will do something for the officers” I said as i brought out my wallet and counted 2000 Naira out.
Their eyes light up as one of them grabbed the money. The most senior ranking officer among them asked one of them to follow me.
We waited at the checkpoint until they flagged a cab down for me.
Back at the Beach, i stopped along the road where my car was parked. I didn’t know if Efosa was still there or not but i didn’t want to take chances.
My car was still right where it was parked.
We crossed the road and opened it, started the engine and drove back to the checkpoint where i picked the officer up.
I had given him another 1000 for himself before we got there. I offered them to come to the hotel bar for some beer when their duty was over but they declined. Rather they asked that i give them the money to drink elsewhere. They eventually took another 1000 from me before i left.
Back in the hotel room, i sat and talked with Queen. She wasn’t excited about leaving me but i made her understand that going back to the UK was good for her future. I told her that if she ever wanted to succeed as a Model, something she dreamed of, she must leave Nigeria.
“Queen, the truth is that most of the people in the entertainment industry who realized their dreams and made big impact had to leave this place. Think about the footnallers and singers, they all left, made their names and returned. The Dbanjs, Okochas and Mikel Obis of this country all had ties outside this country. UK is such a good place if you are able to fix yourself in the system. It is about this system that i even agreed to return to Nigeria with you. You have to be excited about returning to school in a powerfully recognized nation like England. If you allow this great opportunity to pass you, you may not be able to recover from the blames. Like i told you, i will come to the UK but if i tell you the date now, i would be lying to you. Relax and lets go take our bath, i want us to go to the bar and have our last drink together for now. I know you are concerned about my security down here but trust me, i know how to take care of my security situations. Anything that didn’t kill me instantly only gave me a chance to live again” I had said to her.
After convincing her, we took our bath and walked down to the hotel bar.
We were going to gulp down some spirits to enable us have a good last sex before she leaves.
“You think you can run away like in Paris” The Voice said from a dark corner inside the bar.
Written For http://www.globalruns.com