SHADOWS: BOOK 1. BY TANIART. CHAPTER ZERO-PROLOGUE.

So i read through a work of my friend which was pretty good. So being the guy I am, I asked him for permission to share his work on my blog. He said yes and now here we are. Hope you like it as much as I did.

SHADOWS: BOOK 1. BY TANIART.
CHAPTER ZERO-PROLOGUE.

After making a phone call at the airport, Tunji Adebayo David and a young teenager with him were picked by the SSS and some soldiers. Four hours later after the pick-up from the airport, David was being questioned by two officers in SSS custody which was at 4:27pm on that faithful Thursday;
David: as I said earlier officers, I and the young lad found our way to a plane coming back to Nigeria.
Officer 1: so in other words now you are saying that for the three years…….
David: three years, eight months and six days…..officer.
Officer 1: thank you for the update……as I was saying, you lived in a village with Jackson’s parents for three years, eight months and six days and you did not escape the country until now?
David: I thought I had no hope after the operation, I looked around for my brothers after the explosion of all the vans and I did not stop until I saw no survivors before I passed out. Lucky for me I was picked up by Jackson’s father who was a hunter. I woke up eight days later with broken ribs, torn tissues and muscles, a fractured hand and a broken leg. His father took me as a son, healed my wounds. I could not walk for three months and he accommodated me….a stranger in his home. There was no way I would have thought of leaving not until last year when the mother died from snake poison in their farm and the father died last two months from stroke. There was nothing there anymore so I decided to return to my country, with my younger brother.
Officer 1: sorry for your loss soldier, welcome back home.
David: thank you officer.
Officer 2: you were buried soldier, but that should not be a problem….we have made arrangements for a court hearing to officially bring you back to life and as for the boy you came with, he will be acknowledged under your care and custody with you having full responsibility of him.
David: thank you sir.
Officer 2: thank you for coming back soldier. A car is here to take you home and you will also be escorted home with some men and please do not forget to come back next tomorrow for your court letter so that we know when you will be officially be alive again…..and please take it likely with the media outside, you left this country a hero.
David: I will be here on Saturday and thank you again….officer.
Finding their way to the car that came to pick them up, the noise from the media men and women made him think wisely about his future decisions to be made. As a state security service (SSS) officer opened the door to the Toyota Prada jeep, he was shocked but happy to see his best friend’s sister. Nancy Achimugu looked at her sister’s best friend with a straight face after almost four years.
Nancy: welcome back TJ and you young lad, how are you?
Jackson: am fine aunty….
Nancy: hey Jackson, you don’t need to be formal with me…you can ask David.
Jackson: ok, miss Nancy.
Nancy: hmmn!!! How did you know my name and what gave you the idea I am not married?
Jackson: I saw the name on your ID and you wear no rings, sorry if I am mistaken.
Nancy: you are not wrong Jackson, I like you already…..smart and humble.
Jackson: he thought me and thank you.
Nancy: your welcome boy. TJ, how are you?
David: coming back from the dead is not easy but am good all the same. How is my father and Clare? …..am sure am going to have a big welcome.
Nancy: errrmmmm!!! It’s a long story TJ, let’s get to the mansion and there we will talk ok.
David: what’s wrong?
Nancy: please let’s get to the mansion first.
David: tell me what is wrong right now because if you don’t…..
Nancy: ok….your father died five months ago.
David: (with his head down and with a sad voice)…and Clare?
Nancy: she died almost two years after your disappearance.
David: ok….we talk more about this when we get to the mansion.
With the jeep and three other vehicles following (almost an hour after), the two gate men were very happy to let all the vehicles into the compound of the mansion. James and Ayuba (the gate men to the Adebayo mansion) smiling happily as they close the gate after the vehicles.
James: thank God oo, oga David don land….chai!!!
Ayuba: welcome sir…..welcome home!!!
From the joy of the gate men, the gates were not properly closed which led some reporters into the mansion. As the security officers try to cover David, he decides to come out and make a statement.
David: ok people here I am. I am not taking any questions but rather I want to make a statement. I suffered so much in Gabon but now I am back, so please let me rest. I promise to set a press conference for all stations available so we talk me but for now, I need rest and time to myself to settle ok. Thank you good people of Nigeria and good night.
Getting into the house, he takes Jackson straight to an empty room that he kept for when his best friends “Clare” and “Kola” came to the house.
David: here you go boy. Am sure you are so exhausted from the long trip and questions asked!
Jackson goes straight to the bed, with his head buried in it.
Jackson: you are not wrong TJ. Will be down soon for dinner.
David: I will be waiting, brother.
As everyone excuses themselves to let Jackson freshen up, leaving David who is closing the door;
Jackson: is that you, Clare and Kola in that picture frame?
David comes into the room and closes the door;
David: yes, that is me, Clare and Kola on the wall. I met Clare late in primary school. She saved me from a group of bad boys when I ditched the driver to play street football. I met Kola in command secondary school, suleja. Then, we both were just getting into SS1. We disobeyed our seniors in SS2 and 3 (giggling). We were the two who were always punished and that was how we became very close. The picture was taken a week before we were sent to your country.
Jackson: and Kola died in Gabon. You must really miss them.
David: yeah. Over there is my father and there is me and Nancy when we were in the UK.
Jackson: did you guys go……..
Interrupting Jackson’s statement;
David: you should freshen up, I will be down stairs.
As he leaves the room, Jackson thinks to himself; “thank you David, and am very sure there is a reason why father trusted you so much to get me out of Gabon with you”.
Getting downstairs, David meets Nancy at the dinning.
Nancy: that is it for the night boys, the soldiers will take it from here.
Officer Ahmed: ok then, but do not hesitate to call if you guys need help!
David: we sure will officer……Ahmed, thank you for everything.
Officer Ahmed: no David, it is thank you to you soldier. You were not just a soldier to this country, you were also a hero.
David: (giggles) that is touching sir!
Officer Ahmed: *hahahaha….* humble as always, well good night David, see you tomorrow miss Nancy and say hello to the kid for me.
Nancy: will sure do Ahmed.
David: good night officer.
The state security service officers left with leaving soldiers on duty to protect the mansion. Shortly after, at the dinning as David returns from seeing the officer and his men off;
Nancy: really glad your back!
David: thought you were…..
Nancy: …..I missed you the most, especially now that they are all gone!
David: (faint smile) yeah. However, what happened to father?
Nancy: I don’t think this is the best time to speak about……
David: …..please, spare me the condolences. So what happened to father and Clare?
Nancy: as much as he believed you were still alive, he put most of his trust and hope in me and Clare. After Clare died he was not himself since that day, until he finally passed on himself.
David: it seems Clare did not die a natural death or rather, she did not die by accident!?
Nancy: *sigh* guess you are right. After your departure to Gabon, few weeks after, she noticed that sector 9 was fully replaced and organized before the news of the tragedy that happened with you guys in Gabon.
David: what!!?
Nancy: yes. When the news came in, she decided to investigate on her own and not even her partner in the SSS knew what she was doing.
David: but you did know?
Nancy: yes and I tried to discourage her, but I couldn’t.
David: why?
Nancy: she was very sure that the replacement was made by government, if not them at least a sector of the government known as “the order”. And she also wanted to avenge you!
David: wow!
Nancy: two years after you were gone… the night before her death, she told me she knew what sector 9 was all about and promised to tell me the whole story the next day. The next day, I was with your father when the news came in that her house was blown to the skies not up to an hour that she got in.
David: no. what about…..
Nancy: ….the husband and the baby where not in the country as at that time. Bruno decided to stay with his son in the US. He came for her funeral and went back, but he decided to come back to the country.
David: why did he come back?
Nancy: oh no, he is not yet in the country. He plans to set the main branch of his company here in Abuja. We still communicate.
David: that is cute.
Nancy: so……
David: *shhhh* someone is coming, Why don’t we talk about this tomorrow.
Nancy: sure.
As David and Nancy pretend to laugh (over nothing), the cook (Shola) comes into the dinning with a cooler and tears in her eyes.
Shola: I…I…I was (she bursts into tears).
David quickly leaves his sit and prevents Shola from falling to her knees.
David: hey aunty Shola, I am back now and I am fine.
Shola: (still with tears rolling down her cheeks) I watched the news, I saw your father loose his sanity. I wish he were here to see you and rejoice with us. He always said to us and himself “my son just lost his way, he is not dead”. (Laughing with tears all over her face) I still remember the day he slapped James outside for saying “oga sorry oo, e don tay well well oo kai….Allah has a reason for taking his own and…” POW!!! Your father did not allow him finish his statement…..
David: am here now aunty Shola (as he begins to dry her face) I will not go away again, I promise.
Shola: welcome back home TJ, we all missed you.
David: as I did, aunty (as he hugs her tightly).
At the dinning, everybody had a reason to laugh as David told some funny stories about things that took place in Gabon. Jackson who came down for dinner also told stories that he encountered with David. The dinning was full of joy and laughter. All came to an end and David suggested that everybody goes to bed. It sounded strange to everybody because it was just few minutes to 9pm. It still was a little strange when David went further to explain that he and Jackson needed rest and the next day was sure to be a very busy one. Jackson on the other hand knew the reason why David needed everybody to believe his fragmented story.
Eventually, they heeded and everybody was “good night”. Nancy always had her own room in the mansion (apart from the one they all hang out in, which is now Jackson’s room) which she shared with Clare, so she did not have to drive all the way to her own house. As such the soldiers were still awake and on alert for anything. At about 10:30pm that night, when everybody were already fast asleep, David was up and found his way to Jackson’s (new) room. Standing at the window, David did not even have to knock. Jackson, who was pretending to sleep (anytime a soldier opens the door to check on him every ten minutes) stood up immediately when he saw David’s shadow at the window (even when he was told to drop the curtains). Slowly and swiftly did Jackson open and close the windows. David was already in a hurry, but he had to make sure things go as planned. As they both whisper to each other;
David: hey lil bro!
Jackson: why are you here, we’re 2hours late.
David: yeah. Chill, I had other things planned even after our original plan *hehe*!
Jackson: that doesn’t sound funny!
David: as I said, just chill. I have everything under control. Before we parked the tank in the bush, remember I left you to speak with a taxi man!?
Jackson: yes, I do remember!
David: good. I am supposed to meet up with him by 11:30pm.
Jackson: exactly what did you tell him and didn’t he ask questions when he saw your face or something?
David: *yeeeaaaah*about that. He didn’t see my face to start with, I collected his phone number and told him my name was Ibrahim Gambo.
Jackson: very funny. So what next now?
David: I borrowed some money from Nancy…..
Jackson: borrowed or stole (staring with a weird face and smiling)?!
David: I will tell her tomorrow morning!
Jackson: wait a minute! How did you even get the money? Because I don’t remember her holding a purse.
David: I got it from her room in the mansion.
Jackson: what!!! How did you get into the (David stares back at him with a smile)…oh (as he begins to laugh). I believe whatever father taught you, it’s for a good reason?!
David: trust me, it depends on the faith of this country. I will be going now, should be back before 2:00am.
As David stands at the window ready to jump down;
Jackson: take care of you out there bro!
David: will be ok.
As he jumps from the window, Jackson rushes to his bed and covers himself quickly. Soon, a soldier enters the room;
Soldier: is everything alright boy?
Jackson: yeah, all is good. I just feel so tired even to sleep!
Soldier: do you need me to call David?
Jackson: no, not at all sir. Sure will sleep very soon, thank you.
Soldier: ok then. If that is the case, am just outside the door.
The soldier closes the door behind him as he leaves the room. As Jackson lays on his bed he thinks about a lot of things, including why Gabon was no longer home for him and how he tends to grow in Nigeria. “What is so important in that case that father told David to protect with his life”, Jackson thinks to himself as he slowly closes his light brown eyes.
David stares and smiles as he is driven into town. After four years he returns to his country with a purpose. “Whatever that case holds, it must at least be a stepping stone in making this country a better one”, David thinks to himself. The driver seems not to like quiet passengers, so he decides to start a conversation with “Ibrahim Gambo” as he knows him;
Driver: sir! It seems you have not been to Abuja for a long time?
David: what!? Oh, yes. I have stayed in Kaduna for more than half of my life.
Driver: that explains why you have been staring all night.
David: yeah. What is your name again?
Driver: I am Sam… Aguocha Sam. I am from Imo state.
David: ok. You speak good English for a cap driver you know. And not to speak of your polished attitude.
Driver: *hahahaha* thank you sir. I am a graduate of mechanical engineering from Delta state university, six years ago. I decided to start something since there are no job opportunities in the country.
David: let’s just keep praying my brother.
Driver: yes oo, but sir, for a man who spent more than half of his life in Kaduna, you also speak good English.
David: thank you. I have a question for you, Sam?
Minutes later, they get to a junction;
David: please this is where you will park, hope you can wait as long as an hour?
Driver: what! With what you offer to pay me and now giving me money to eat and drink, I can even wait till tomorrow sir. Take your time.
David: *hahahahahaha* thank you.
David drops from the car and crosses the busy road (even after mid-night). He stands by and watches Sam lock the door and walks into a bar (bubbling loud with music). David begins to run into the deep bushes (sure that nobody saw him) as fast as he can. Thinking to himself and looking at a digital map in form of a watch “yap, the tank is just 300meters from here”. Getting closer he meets what he didn’t expect. “Now this is not good, but the SSS and soldiers are not supposed to be here until morning”, he says to himself. Then he thinks again, “except if, they had gotten the info about the missing tank from sector 9 long before now, sector 9 is supposed to keep any info until after 24hours for base landing and proper analysis before the government knows about anything”. He squats into the bushes, watching and analyzing what is going on he decides to take immediate action. “I can’t let these men open the tank, I have to get that case out before any of them”, he repeats to himself as he stands up slowly. David holds just a kitchen knife as a weapon against sixteen men (six SSS officers and ten soldiers) that he counted from his spot. Standing up and hearing the voices of some officers, he gives an attentive ear to the conversation between them;
SSS officer 1: sir, we can’t open the door to this tank, at least not now.
SSS officer 2: and why is that?
SSS officer 1: the codes to the tank is encrypted on a card which is not here. I will need my full devices to get those codes.
SSS officer 2: then we come back here as early as 7am with your “kaya”. (He turns and walks to meet the others) ok listen up boys, sergeant Abu?
Abu: sir!
SSS officer 2: keep your men here to secure the area. We need more tech to open this damn tank.
Abu: sure sir!
SSS officer 2: ok then, fall out boys. Let us go and get what will open this tank.
Hearing the whole conversation, he dips his hand into his right side trouser pocket (smiling) and brings out a card with the mouth of a chip, “now I just need you guys out of the way” he says to himself. After a few minutes, he is left with ten soldiers to deal with. He waits patiently and shortly all the soldiers walked a little distance away from the tank, leaving just two. David immediately decided to strike and get things done with. He speeds out of the bush but quietly, running behind the first soldier. As the soldier turns back, he doesn’t stand a chance with David’s swift skills. Using the kitchen knife, he makes cuts behind his knees and head boots him to shut up before he even got the chance to scream. With the other soldier hearing small noises he turns back (not that he suspected anything since the location was deep in the bushes), David bangs his head on the strong-metal vehicle. The other soldiers were not alerted due to the nature of the tank. David did not border hiding the soldiers because he was in a hurry to leave. Quickly he inserted the card and typed in the codes. As soon as the door opened, he rushed in and got the case and rushing out he locked back the (by just closing it) the tank and ran into the bushes where he came through. Some minutes after, the two knocked out soldiers woke up. The soldier whose head was banged against the tank rushed to alert the others. All the soldiers ran back to the tank to see their colleague. “What happened here”, the squad captain asked. “Somebody or even a spirit was here, he or she or it was fast and swift…” the soldier was explaining before he was interrupted by the squad captain. “Wait oo, you did not even see what attacked you”? The others try to raise their injured soldier up;
Captain: the door is not open and the weapons are heavy to be carried by one man. I think an animal was what attacked you.
Soldier: sir, I don’t think so. These are not teeth or claw marks but rather I think it is a man with a knife or cutlass!
Soldier 2: he is bleeding seriously, if he does not get to a clinic fast he will bleed to death.
Captain: rush him to the van, the rest of you should stay here and do not leave that tank.
Meanwhile, (after fifteen minutes) David is driving back to town to stop at the spot the driver picked him from. The trip back wasn’t as long as the trip going, “we are here sir” said Mr. Sam. David pulls out ten thousand naira from his leather jacket’s inner pocket still seated in the non-colored taxi, “thank you” he says. “What! Sir if I am correct about this bundle, it is ten thousand naira you just gave me”, the driver speaks in shock. “Yes! I know what I gave you”, the passenger reply. “But this is not our agreement sir”, Mr. Sam still insists. “Or are you bribing me? That brief case now is looking suspicious, I can’t even see your face”, the driver speaks in a suspicious manner. Deep in the mind of David, he feels so at peace. “Thank God I did not take him to the mansion, but however he is a good man”, as David keeps thinking to himself before he hears an angry voice from the driver’s side of the car. “Please take your money and get out of my car, am sure you are a criminal”, the driver angrily spoke. In a few seconds, David was out of the car and the taxi man sped off. “well that didn’t go as plan but it’s all good, so we still have men with integrity and honesty in this country of mine…very good”, David says to himself as he finds his way to the mansion.
Meanwhile, as Mr. Sam drives through, he thinks deeply in his car. “God please forgive me, what if the case contains a bomb… why didn’t I think of this earlier? Ibrahim Gambo”, he thinks deeply. “well, he did not even attempt to kill me when I began shouting at him, I don’t even know what to think right now, let me get home and rest”, he says to himself while driving.
At the Adebayo mansion, David keeps the brief case behind Jackson’s window, enters his own room through the window then pretends to be coming out of his room. “Sergeant, I cannot sleep, let me go and stay with the young lad”, David yawns while speaking. “No problem sir”, replies the sergeant. Not up to a minute, David was in Jackson’s room with the sergeant. “Funny enough, the young man was not sleeping either”, said the sergeant. “*hehehe* you see, we think alike, ok boys, you all can rest now…and do not give me that look”, David replied. “We will be outside”, the sergeant says as he leaves the room.
Everywhere is safe now and David rushes to the window to retrieve the brief case. He opens it slowly, after locking the door and windows and dropping the curtains;
Jackson: so how was the outing?
David: good! Even when I encountered a few soldiers ‘whom were not supposed to be at the scene’.
Jackson: ok! That was not good.
David: yeah, but I escaped them and got this intact.
Jackson: that’s good, but I guess our thoughts are proving to be right. The government or at best, a part of the government is responsible for sector 9.
With the brief case opened (with the codes), Jackson was startled at what he saw in it. David on the other hand, had clues of what was expected. They both were gotten by the element of surprise;
David: wow!
Jackson: what are all these? I thought my father was just a hunter! I can see journals, diaries, specs of advanced tech, a gas mask, ten different types of arrows and a dismantled bow. Who exactly was my father and who are you?
David: Yes, your father was not just a hunter, but he died for me and you. He gave me the responsibility to protect you by all cost. Every question of yours will be answered, I promise, but you need to understand that your life can not be what it used to be.
Jackson: I have accepted that my life won’t remain the same after seeing my father being slaughtered. But why will he send you such?
David: as I said earlier, all questions will be answered. First of all you have to know that I was introduced by your father into an organization known as “THE WATCHERS”. I have a very long story to tell you about me and your father in four years, but let’s settle, get our court hearing then we put our plans in motion.
Jackson: in that case, we rest.
After a few minutes (with Jackson fast asleep in David’s arms) on the bed, David thinks to himself, “he’s young, but he is mature in mind and brave. Your wish will be done, Mr. Raru”

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