Dayo, Deola’s immediate elder brother (although by twelve years), had accepted that it was his destiny to be plagued by Chimamani, his sister’s best friend and their childhood neighbor. So he wasn’t surprised when he was the first of the trio standing outside Deola’s room to spot her as she approached. He knew the exact moment she spotted him, the expression of concern on her face was replaced by defiance. He smiled as he observed her square her already erect shoulders, and put an extra swing into her gait. She looked as good as she always did in jeans and a dressy top. He shook his head, and silently acknowledged that he was and had always been hooked.
“Dayo, why are you smiling, you are not paying attention.” Kola, his eldest brother drew his attention. Kola following Dayo’s gaze turned and saw Chimamani as she got to them. “Ah! I should have known.” He smiled knowingly.
Chimamani knelt as she greeted Deola’s mom, who pulled her up and into her arms in a hug.
“My daughter, how are you?” Mrs. Lasisi, Deola’s mom asked, critically looking her over, holding her at arm’s length.
“I’m fine ma, and you? Hello Bros K.” she greeted Kola.
“Hello Chima.” He replied.
“My dear, I’m as well as can be expected, giving the circumstances your friend has put us into.”
“I came as soon as I saw the papers this morning; I called the house and was told y’all are here. How is she?”
“She’s ok; the doctor says her BP is high.” Mrs. Lasisi replied.
“Can I go in?”
“Sure, but I think she’s asleep.”
“So Yemisi you didn’t see me or you plan to ignore me?” Dayo asked as Yemisi was about to enter the room.
“I’m sorry granny, I forgot to curtsey.” She returned and knelt in front of him. “Hello granny, how are you, hope you took your sweetness and light meds today?” she said in mock sincerity. Kola and Mrs. Lasisi were amused by the whole exchange, while Dayo was slightly embarrassed, there were attracting attention.
“Why are you calling him granny?” Kola asked her.
“My late grandmother was the only one who called me Yemisi, since he insists on calling me same, he might as well replace her. Granny, may I rise?” She asked Dayo.
“You might as well stay there and learn some manners.” He retorted.
“You wish.” She got up, eyed him thoroughly, and went into Deola’s room.
“Why don’t you marry her, so both of you can end all this drama?” Kola asked Dayo.
“Abi o!’ their mom seconded. “ We’ve always known you guys are meant for each other; stop this entire cat fighting and start giving me grandchildren.”
“Yes ma.” He replied, suppressing laughter. His and Chimamani’s children? They will drive him crazy, that’s if their mother doesn’t do the deed first.
“Let’s go get a drink.” Kola said to Dayo.
“Sure.” He replied, not wanting to go into the room with Chima there just yet.
“Bring one for me; I’ll stay with the girls.” Their mom went into the hospital room, while they went to get the drinks. They returned a while later to Chimamani explaining her theory of the situation.
“Deola is being set up. Whoever had the senator kidnapped wants the blame to fall on her. I mean, they wait till he is in Lagos, and then kidnap him.”
“That might be because he has less security detail in Lagos than in Abuja.” Kola said as he and Dayo joined their mom on the threeseater in the room. Deola was propped up in bed in a sitting position, while Chima was pacing.
“Exactly, the person knew he has less security in Lagos, the person has access to his itinerary in order to know where he is. And kidnapping him instead of killing him, then staging another attack?”
“What other attack?” Deola asked, interrupting Chima’s flow.
“You haven’t heard, there was another attack last night on the kidnappers.”
“What? Tom, did he….?” Deola asked, concern written all over her.
“Congratulations Yemisi, you just might give her a heart attack with your news and conspiracy theory.” Dayo said dryly.
“Well unlike you, I believe in facing any situation headlong.” She replied him. She sat beside Deola on the bed. “Deola dear, relax, I’m here now, and together, we will figure this out.”
“How is Tom, was he rescued?” Deola persisted.
“We don’t know for now; let me call Barr Ateke to find out.” Kola replied. He excused himself to make the call outside.
“As I was saying, you fainting was a very good move, otherwise you would have been arrested. Now, to find out who is behind this whole debacle, we need to find out who has the most to gain by eliminating the senator. “
“Here we go.” Dayo muttered.
“Don’t you have somewhere to be, some computers to fiddle with or something?” Chimamani asked with mock sweetness.
“No I don’t, perhaps I could fiddle with yours.” He responded in the same vein.
“Ha! Go away, let us girls solve this.” She included Mrs. Lasisi in her indication of girls.
“This isn’t one of your stories in our blog, this is reality.” Dayo argued.
“Where do you think the stories on my blog come from? Mars?” she retorted.
“With you, that’s a possibility. “
“Can you go away and let me think in peace? Go call your fiancé or something.”
“I have a fiancé? Who is she?”
“I don’t know, who did you buy the diamond and ruby engagement ring for?”
“So you track all purchases?”
“Off course I do, besides, I love that ring. You read my review and decided to buy the only one my store had.”
“Is that a problem, it was for sale.” He replied not understanding why his purchase upset her.
“Dayo, go away. Now.” She said through gritted teeth. “Before we spike Deola’s bp.”
“As her majesty pleases.” He gave her a mock bow. “I’ll be outside.” He said to the others as he left the room.
Barr Ateke had just returned to the hospital and he felt like he hadn’t left. A phone call from Deola’s brother Kola had jolted him awake from his catnap. This was followed by another from Lady Briggs to inform him she was about to board a chartered flight to Lagos. He had called the commissioner of police for a situation report and they had agreed to meet at the hospital where the senator was hospitalized. From the number of police cars parked outside, the commissioner was here already. As he made his way to the elevators to ascend to the floor where the senator was, he noticed there seemed to be more policemen than medical staff in this hospital, the place was like a barracks. The other patients must be feeling self-conscious. He sighted the commissioner and a doctor walking towards the doctor’s office and headed in their direction. As he joined them, a nurse walked up to them.
“Doctor!” she said frantically. “He’s awake, and he’s asking for his lawyer.”