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That morning, I stepped out to pick up the newspaper from the mail box which stood in front of my house. It was now a daily routine for me since I arrived Gold city few months ago. The moment I saw the little paper which was placed within the pages of the newspapers, I perceived that something wasn’t right. For the past few months of my short stay there, I hadn’t seen such.


It was a tiny piece of paper which had inscriptions of red ink on it. Curiously, I peered closely at the inscriptions. It seemed not to be direct, but encoded in some sort of special letters and numbers. I knew the language; I could remember where and how I’d learnt it. 

It was from my former cult group, back in Silver city. It was the main reason why I relocated to such a quiet town. Well, I didn’t want to fidget, because I was new to the town, and wasn’t expecting anyone to be keeping tabs on me; talk more of addressing me via a tiny piece of paper.


“I-WILL” I decoded the incomplete words and said them to myself in a low tone.

“I will what?” I asked rhetorically, trying to understand what the words meant. It wasn’t a complete statement and it made me more curious. I moved inside with the newspaper and the tiny piece of paper; a lot of thoughts running through my head. I decided to keep calm.

“It’s just a random piece of paper with incomplete words, Philip you’re safe” I assured myself.


Two days later, there was another piece of paper; this time, it was placed at the middle page of the newspaper, and had inscriptions with similar red ink. 


“KILL-YOU” I decoded the new words, but this time I read them out with fear. No doubt, someone was trying to pass a message. I joined the inscriptions from the first day and that day, together; I-WILL-KILL-YOU. The words resounded in my head. 


I began to feel uncomfortable; I wasn’t safe as I’d hoped, I felt someone was watching; I knew someone was watching me.

“Excuse me sir!” I shouted out to the mail man, who had delivered the newspapers at my mailbox, but he was long gone; riding his old rickety bicycle and whistling loudly. I decided to ask him about the pieces of paper the next morning.


As I sat in my one-bedroom-flat that morning, I pondered on who could be doing such. My mind couldn’t grasp hold of any. I wasn’t a bad person either, and couldn’t remember when last I had a fight with anyone.The last I remembered before relocating to this town was that I told George how I’d wanted to pull out from the occult group which we belonged to. I had been initiated out of ignorance, against my wish. I didn’t want to have anything to do with people who used others for ritual. I didn’t want to live in fear; I had to leave them


That evening, he had looked at me with a scornful look. “You’re playing with your life?” He said to me and paused for a moment.

“The moment godfather hears about this, he’ll end you”


Few weeks later, I left the town to a place where I believed no one would see me. I blocked all connections with George and any of the cult members whom I’d known. Though I didn’t mean to stop communicating with him, but it was for my own safety.


“It can’t be godfather” I said, making myself feel better; godfather would not want to stress himself sending such messages on tiny pieces of papers. Though I’d never heard of him doing such, but I still believed he wasn’t the one. Maybe one of the cult members was  trying to play a prank on me. Well, I cut short the idea because none of them knew of  my whereabouts. I could remember that day when I left Silver City in the early hours of the morning, when it was still dark. 


I didn’t just want to be paranoid. Then who could it be?



The next morning when the mailman passed by, I conversed with him.

“I have no idea on this sir, my duty is to drop the newspapers in the mailboxes of those who have payed or ordered for it.” After leaving me with a copy of the daily newspaper, he left. 


I stood on the spot, flipping through the pages; praying not to see any other tiny piece of paper. Soon, a tiny piece of paper fell out from one of the pages. I bent to pick it up; this time the inscriptions were with blue ink.


“ON-SATURDAY” I decoded the new words with so much fright. I became restless. I-WILL-KILL-YOU-ON-SATURDAY” these words echoed in my head. It was becoming too much for me to handle. After, I came back to consciousness I discovered that I’d been standing for over thirty minutes, staring at the encoded phrase. It was a Thursday.


That evening, I spoke with Zaphia my elder sister; she was married and resided in the Federal Capital Territory with her husband.


“Philip why don’t you involve the police in this issue?!” She asked in a worried tone. I didn’t want to. I was scared of being interrogated; what if they found out whom I really was? A fellow cultist reporting other cultists?


“Philip, whatever reasons you’re giving me, I don’t care; I’ll inform the Police right away that your life is at stake!” She said to me and switched off the phone. She was a strong-willed lady, who would do anything just for me to be safe. With no parents, Zaphia was all I had.



The next morning, I made sure I searched through the daily newspapers to see if there was any tiny piece of paper. There wasn’t. Instead, a text message popped up, on my phone. 




“God bless you big sis” I muttered to myself. I could feel the tension building inside me. I didn’t just want the next day to come; despite the promised presence of the police. I took out my dagger from under my cloak which was hung in the closet; it was given to me by George during my birthday the previous year. I concealed it inside my pocket; I had to be on alert Incase anything happened before the police’s arrival.


With no where to run to, that night I shut my window and doors tightly. I lay quietly on my bed; my heartbeat pounding so fast. At some intervals I would check my phone to know what time it was. 

“Philip, you will not die” I reassured myself.


After few hours of quietness. It happened.



I was lying on my bed, about drifting to sleep, when I heard a tiny sound on my window. It was like a tiny pebble had been hurled to the glass plane.

“These rodents have started misbehaving again” I muttered to myself; since I arrived Gold city, the little animals always took delight in playing at my window late at night. I yawned and adjusted very well so that I could drift to sleep comfortably


The wall clock ticked clumsily. It produced a faint alarm indicating that it was 4am. It was a new day; it was Saturday.


I heard a loud noise in the kitchen. I became fully conscious. I sprang up, to see what was happening there. Before I reached the door to the room, the glass window to my room was shattered from outside, and I watched as someone attempted to jump in. Fearfully, I drifted backwards; concealing myself inside the rack of clothes which hung in the closet. I held the dagger to my chest; ready to strike. I tried to get a full view of the person. He wore a mask and held a blood thirsty riffle; pointing his torchlight round the room. It wouldn’t be long for him to locate me.


I searched my pocket for my mobile phone; I needed to ring Zaphia. The phone wasn’t in my pocket; I’d left it on the bed,hurriedly.

 “Gracious!” I muttered to myself, biting my lips in regret.

I heard a loud noise coming from the sitting room. The windows were being shattered too. I could hear the sound of people jumping in. I watched as the man with a blood thirsty riffle began to advance slowly to the closet where I hid myself.


The door to my room was flung open. I listened in terror and great fright as another person came into the room. 

“You don see am?” The one at the door asked

“No, Oga but I found this phone on his bed” 

“Ok, he must be close by” the other man said, and left.


Soon, the door to closet where I hid, was pushed open. I thrust forward my dagger, with the whole strength I had in me. I didn’t know how accurate I was, but I believed I made an impact, because he fell to floor screaming as blood gushed out from his stomach where I’d stabbed him. So brave of me.


I quickly pulled out my mobile phone from where he had placed it, in one of his baggy pockets. I picked up his riffle, landed a bullet through his skull and jumped out through the broken window just in time, before his other colleagues ran into the room.

“Tony! Tony!” I heard one of them shout. Maybe that was the name of the guy whom I had just killed. 


No time to waste; I knew they would come after me. Certainly they did. I ran past the mailbox which stood in-front of the house, and down the street into the darkness. I thought of stopping to ring Zara, but all that mattered at the moment was my life. I would ring her when I was a bit safe, because at the moment, I could hear several footsteps behind me.


I was still running when a bullet brushed past my right ear. I fell to the ground groaning. I held my right ear in pains as I felt the free flow of blood out of it. The pains were unbearable; my right ear seemed to me like it was falling off. I pushed myself up in great discomfort and kept on running.


I turned and fired into the thin air. One of the men went down. I kept running. I can’t remember how long I ran, but I can say for sure that I was given a hot chase for over thirty minutes. 


Suddenly, they stopped chasing after me, or I noticed so. I turned and stared into the darkness; the faint street lights gave it a manageable illumination. I saw no one. I went to the corner of a building to take cover. It was a temporal one; I needed to catch my breath. I raced my hand through my pockets as I searched for my mobile phone. 


“Gracious! Holy Gracious!” I said to myself.

I couldn’t find the device; it must have slipped off during the hot chase. Suddenly I felt a gun being pointed to my head.

“Don’t move, Mother sucker!” 

Amidst Death which stood before me that moment, I felt like laughing out loudly. I knew the vulgar word which the person was struggling to pronounce.


The moment I raised my hands; feigning my submission, I hit him hard in his groin. As he landed on the floor shouting, I quickly exchanged my bullet-empty riffle with his. I didn’t want to land a bullet through him; I felt it would attract his other colleagues. Well, I was wrong. The moment I left, I heard him shout “He went that way!”


As I turned to the next street on my right, I knew my end had come. I came head to head with the very ones who were after my life. I tried retracing my hasty steps, but more of them were behind me. A bullet ran through my right leg and I fell to the floor. 


A figure walked up to me in my state of despair and fatigue. I recognized his walking steps. Then he came closer and stopped. A familiar alcoholic stench grazed through my nose.


“godfather” I muttered; wondering how he was finally able to locate me. He remained silent and stood staring at me. The darkness didn’t let me see the expression on his face; 


You think you can disappear from my sight?” He asked. The silence was broken by another bullet going through my left legs. I screamed.


godfather was a no-nonsense man. If you deserved death, he would make sure you died. 

His usual words whenever he wanted to pull a bullet through someone’s brain were; 

AUF WIEDERSEHEN; it was a German word which meant; Goodbye.


“You’ve taken down three of my men” he said, and landed a bullet through my right hand. It was pure torture. Absolute torture.


The moment he said those words to me, I knew my own was finished.

“Auf Wiedersehen“ he said and corked his gun towards my forehead. 

After the bullet sounded, I closed my eyes to embrace the consciousness that would follow.


godfather fell to the floor. I opened my eyes and saw him lying beside me; blood flowing from a portion of his head. The immediate exchange of bullets, rent the air. Soon everywhere became silent as I saw figures dropping dead on the floor.


“We’ll get you treated right away” one of the uniformed men said. It was the Nigerian police.



“I rang your number more than twenty times!” Zaphia said excitedly over the phone, later that morning. She was so grateful that I was alive. 

Then I explained to her that the phone fell off during the hot chase. 

“I suspected, and that’s why I quickly alerted the police”


“God bless you Big sis” I muttered to myself. I looked at my bandaged legs and my right arm. If the police hadn’t intervened earlier, I would have been in the morgue. I smiled tiredly and looked towards the ceiling. 

“Thank you lord for a second chance”

(Thanks so much for making out time to read this piece. You can get more of my stories from MY-LIBRARY-OF-GENRES…the book which I published on OkadaBooks.com)


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