Written by AKOGWU JOSEPH CHINONSO…
The IG kept silent for some seconds, considering the proper words to use in answering the question. He was always careful with journalists and most often, he parried questions that compromised the police secrets. This time around, he decided to give them a hint. Smiles rested on his face as he spoke, “Actually, Sergio Bruno left a message before he shot himself. The message’s still helping us in the investigation.” He paused for a second to make sure he was using the right words; satisfied, he continued, “On what the note contains and its authenticity, I’ve no comments. We’re_”
A mild knock on the door distracted the IG’s attention and he moved his eyes to the door. He knew it was Agent Dennis. He called a servant to open the door. As Dennis stepped into the lush air-conditioned sitting room, the IG pressed the remote and the TV switched off. Apart from the white bandage which wrapped from Dennis’ shoulder to his elbow, he looked smart. He wore a blue sleeveless shirt on grey trousers. His pair of black brogues was Italian and blue goggles adorned his handsome face. He looked young and gorgeous. As he made to greet his boss, a sudden pang of guilt swept through the IG’s system and he remembered how he had once betrayed Dennis and feared if he would ever have his trust again. That notwithstanding, he agreed with the president that Dennis was the best for the job and he was determined to make judicious use of him. Whether Dennis trusted him or not, did not matter. It was a direct order from the president.
Dennis got to him, stood to attention and gave a crisp, graceful salute. The IG’s hand was already stretched forward so Dennis took it in a handshake.
“I can see the hand has almost healed.” The IG said as he released Dennis’ hand after regarding it for few seconds.
“Just a little intermittent pains. Hope to get rid of this bandage in a week.” He returned and made for a seat adjacent the IG. He lifted a scatter cushion. “How’re your wife and children?” He sat ramrod straight and placed the scatter cushion on his laps.
“They’re fine.” The IG said, “My wife travelled to Kenya last week to visit our children in the university. She’ll be back tomorrow.” He called a servant and instructed him to get wine for Dennis.
“I’m okay sir.” Dennis flashed a smile, “I don’t need anything. Moreover, no drinks until I’m fully recovered, that’s the doctor’s instruction.”
“Ok if you insist.” The IG stopped for some seconds, contemplating how to tell Dennis why he had called him. He knew Dennis was still recovering but there was no time to waste. Many things needed to be unfolded, else the nation be overthrown by terrorists and haters of peace. The president himself had specifically ordered that Dennis be called back to duty to ensure that the security morass engulfing the nation be mitigated. The previous day, the IG was in the villa discussing with President Wilfred.
“He’s your most valuable asset, call him back immediately.” The president had said.
“But he’s still recovering.” The IG said.
The president raised his gaze to him, “We all know Agent Dennis pretty well. We need him right now. He can manage.”
“Your Excellency, but_”
President Wilfred interrupted, “This is an order, call him back immediately.” And that was final. When the IG stood to leave, the president added, “I want results in two weeks. There’re no exceptions to the investigation.”
They shook hands and the IG left.
The IG cleared his throat with a mild cough and spoke, his eyes fixed on Dennis. “Thanks for coming at short notice. I’m pleased about your speedy recovery. I don’t intend to waste your time so I’ll begin immediately. Following the suicide note left behind by Sergio Bruno,” he put a finger into his Bosom pocket and took out the note, then he looked at it for some seconds but seemed to change his mind for he returned the note into his pocket, “It appears we’ve made no progress. To compound the situation, the phone call between Sergio and Philips before their death is an indication that Sergio didn’t actually kill Williams. Though some still doubt the veracity of that telephone conversation, it’s clear to you and I that Philips didn’t shoot Williams. The dying man had no reason to lie. Some other person did that before he could. The murderer of Williams is still out there and I’m afraid we’ve been brought back to square one.” He got an itch on his neck but didn’t scratch, “I’m not the only person who has interest in uncovering the mystery behind Williams’ death; the president has strong interest.” Dennis removed his goggles, dropped his eyes and raised them, his expression was mean. He replaced the goggles on his eyes. The IG understood the message he had passed across; Dennis also had interest. The IG gave him an apologetic smile to make up for the omission, “We all are interested,” he admitted with a wane smile, “and the president has indicated special interest in you. Frankly speaking, he trusts in your skills. He has instructed that I have you specifically on this and has assured us of every needed support. To show how committed the president is, he has invoked section 30, sub-section 12 of the constitution. By implication, there are no exceptions to this investigation. May I also state categorically that he has given two weeks for the culprits to be exposed. May God help us if we fail to meet his deadline.” He concluded.
To Be Continued…