Vanquished Episode 6: Next Level

Vanquished Episode 6: Next Level
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Read Vanquished Episode 5: Sunny And The Gang

“Wait, what?” Ify asked, shocked.

Officer Ugwu turned to her. “You must be the girl who fought off those boys.”

“Yes officer.”

The Officer eyed her in something between unbelief and admiration. “Where did you learn to fight like that?”

“I don’t know, Officer. I didn’t learn to fight anywhere. What happened tonight, call it instinct.”

Officer Ugwu didn’t look like he believed her. But he let that pass. “Well, whatever it is, you really finished those boys. Their leader calls you an ogbanje. Says you’re possessed by a demon.’

Ify shrugged. “That’s his business.”

“Anyway, like I said before, you all should come with us to the station.”

Ify’s father stepped in. “Officer, my daughter didn’t commit any crime. What she did was self-defence.”

“Sir, I understand. But you still need to come to the station and write some statements. Standard procedure.”

“Alright.  Give us a minute.”

Officer Ugwu nodded and left. Ify’s father sighed tiredly and turned to the rest. “You’ve heard him. We need to go to the station.”

“Must we do that tonight, daddy? I’m so tired.” Ify complained and yawned.

“I know. But we have to. Looks like we’re not going to sleep anytime soon.”

“Who’s talking about sleep after all these?”

“The earlier we go and write the statements, the better. I just want this incident behind us.”

“Fine. Let’s go.” Ify said and rose to leave.

“Wait.” Tony said.

She turned to him, puzzled. “What?”

Tony bent down and picked something that fell off her night robe.

“You dropped this.” He said, showing it to her.

Ify gasped in shock. It was the seashell! The same seashell she had thrown into the trash can in her office! Ify stood rooted to the floor as she stared at it in disbelief. How did it get into her pocket?

Her parents and Tony stared at her with worried frowns on their faces.

“Babe, are you okay?” Tony asked.

Ify blinked out of her stupor and gave him a fake smile. “Yes, yes, I am. Let’s go.”

The next morning, Ebuka was declared wanted by the Police. Sunny had confessed. Ebuka was nowhere to be found when the Police invaded his home. Somehow, he had gotten news of the failed robbery and disappeared into thin air. But he didn’t go far. An anonymous person blew the whistle on him that he was trying to escape through one of the porous Nigerian borders.

Meanwhile, news traveled fast. Ify’s company gave her some weeks off with their best wishes. Her best friends, Moji and Halima often visited to keep her company. Sometimes, they would spend the night. Other times, they wouldn’t due to work and their families.

“So, I heard you’re now the Naija version of Wonder Woman.” Moji teased, the first day they visited after the robbery incident.

“Wonder Woman ke? Where did you hear that one?” Ify asked.

“The news is everywhere about how you finished those robbers.” Halima said. “Ify, you didn’t tell us you were taking some taekwando lessons.”

Ify rolled her eyes. “Why is everybody telling me that? The other night my dad was asking why I didn’t tell him I was taking Kung-Fu lessons. I don’t know any Kung-Fu or taekwando.”

Moji scoffed. “Then how did now beat those robbers like that if you didn’t take any lessons?”

“I don’t know. It just happened. I’m still trying to figure it out.”

Halima shrugged. “Toh, at least we thank God that nothing happened.”

Abi o? Those robbers didn’t succeed. That’s what matters.” Moji said.

“Is it true it was your cousin that sent them?” Halima asked, curious.

“My dear, it’s true o. You know the shocking part? This guy had lived with us since when I was very little. Up till when that Sunny guy confessed, I saw him as my elder brother. My dad did everything for him. What was his reward? He sent armed robbers just because my dad refused to give him money to settle his side chick.” Ify said bitterly.

“Can you imagine?” Halima said, surprised. “This side chick matter has put many men in trouble.”

“But that your cousin is an ungrateful fool.” Moji added. “After all your dad did for him, he still had the nerve to do this? I hope he rots in jail.”

“That one is sure. By the time he comes out, if he sees any girl smiling at him, he will run.”

Her parents weren’t left out. Her brutal attack on Sunny and his gang had somehow made them wary of her. They weren’t exactly afraid of her. It was just that they seemed to view her differently than before. She had often caught them staring at her when they thought she wasn’t looking. Ify didn’t blame them. She herself couldn’t believe she did what they said she did to those robbers.

But the one who seemed to take the robbery aftermath to the next level was Tony. He was always calling, texting and visiting just to make sure she was alright. He was always monitoring her movements. At first, she thought it was amusing. But after sometime, it was irritating the hell out of her. She wasn’t some kind of egg or those helpless damsels in distress for heaven’s sake!

“I don’t even know why you’re disturbing yourself over this.” Moji said when she complained. “It’s what happens when you’re going to the next level.”

“Which next level?” Ify scoffed. “APC next level or another next level?”

Moji grimaced in distaste. “Who’s talking about government? I’m talking about your upcoming wedding to Tony. Who government next level epp?”

“Oh, that?” Ify asked. “But it doesn’t mean he should be stalking my movements all the time.”

“You call this stalking? My dear, Tony is a man. And every man wants to protect the woman he loves. After what happened to you the other time, how did you expect him to behave?” Moji said.

Ify sighed. “You’re right, sha. It’s just that I’m tired of all this drama. I just want everything to return to normal.”

“Don’t worry. We’ll stop talking about your Jackie Chan skills and concentrate on your next level with Tony.” Halima said.

Ify chuckled. “You and next level. Elections have passed na.”

“You see, ba?  I’m going to take Moji’s advice. Once I find a man who is more serious than Ayo, na next level tinz. No time. I cannot come and carry last.” Halima said and they laughed.

Later, she went to see them off. Then she branched at a supermarket to buy some beverages. The honest truth was she didn’t need to buy beverages. But she had been indoors long enough and felt so bored. Going to the supermarket was a perfect excuse to receive fresh air outside.

She took a basket and picked some from the shelf. Then she went to the yogurt section. A heavily pregnant woman was staring at the neatly arranged yogurt. Ify gave her a greeting smile and picked a yogurt. She turned to leave.

“Excuse me, is that flavor good?” The woman asked.

Ify turned back. “Vanilla? Sure. It’s my favorite.”

The woman smiled apologetically. “Don’t mind me. I’ve been standing here staring at all the flavors. I don’t know which one to pick.”

“Me, I like vanilla. You can try strawberry. It’s also nice. Check the expiry date–”

A wail of approaching siren from outside interrupted her. Everybody in the supermarket, paused, startled.

“What’s happening?” The woman asked.

The siren became louder and louder as it kept approaching. Then, they heard the screeching of tires and suddenly, fierce looking armed men stormed into the supermarket and locked the entrance.

Watch out for Episode 7 next week. Don’t forget to drop your comments, like and share. Happy Weekend!

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