Joseph took the staircase two at a time and noted with dread that Rebecca was already at home.
The door wasn’t locked. He slides into the sitting room and dropped a mini-recorder in her handbag. He dropped the bag on the floor, closed to the kitchen door where he could hear their voices.
It took all his self-control to reign in his anger, not to rushed in and strangled the bastard where he stood, holding a gun to Rebecca.
He slipped out again as he made calls and went back to his car.
‘You don’t look too happy to see me, darling.’ He smiled at her but his eyes were cold and empty. She repressed a shudder.
‘How did you get in by the way? You have just behaved like the criminal that you are.’ She inclined her head regally.
‘I will advise you to watch your tongue, princess.’ His smile grew colder as he brought out a gun from his back pocket. ‘The back staircase was an easy access to your kitchen and working the lock is a child’s play.’ He added with a sinister grin.
How did I ever think this guy is attractive? I have been such a fool. She thought bitterly.
His fingers caressed the smooth sleekness of the deadly weapon he was holding and her eyes were involuntarily drawn to it. He would use it without a second thought, she knew. She noted during the time they lived together that he was capable of violence. She tried to keep out of his way most of the time and tried not to provoke him unless it was absolutely necessary. She was relieved when he disappeared from their life, even though he left them penniless and homeless.
“This weapon is made of plastic with a silencer and it has a very lightweight. It is a Glock 9 millimeter and I use it only when it is necessary.”He winked at her.
‘You won’t dare kill me, will you?’ She asked with a confidence she was not feeling. Being scared was not going to help her but she would be damned if she would allow this Criminal to end her life before she was ready.
‘I killed your father. Why should your death make a difference to me?’ His smile was malicious. She gaped at him in shock. He actually relished telling her to her face which means he had no intention of letting her go, alive!
‘Well, don’t look so shocked. I am not the only one with a grudge against your father. Emeka Daniels junior never forgave your father for cheating on his father and sending him to an early grave.’ He gave her a malicious smile.
‘My dad never cheated on Mr. Daniels! He actually assisted him financially to boost his business but unfortunately, he was duped by unknown fraudsters. My dad didn’t know how depressed he was until he committed suicide. That was why he employed E.D junior as our family lawyer before he was even out of law school. They were good friends before E.D Senior’s death.’ Rebecca denied hotly, remembering how depressed her father was when he learned of his friend’s death.
‘What a pity! It is too late to explain that to him. He got it twisted and had a burning vengeance for your father. I guess he was also driven by his own selfish interest and greediness. He teamed up with the wrong person to achieve his goal.’ He shrugged as he threw the weapon into the air playfully and caught it again.
“So you killed him too? Why? Why are you behaving this way, Ramsey?”She asked in a hoarse voice.
“Your father is a selfish man, Becky. He deserved what he got.’ Anger whipped through her.
“How can you call my father a selfish man, after all, he did for you? You are the selfish bastard! “She spat at him and held her breath but he only gave her a cold smile.
“Isn’t it obvious? He is so dumb to think I will work my butt off to satisfy all your whims.”His lips twisted cruelly. “You are all so dumb. He wanted his family to stay at home and enjoy yourselves while I slave away to make more money for him.”He glared at her.
‘Ramsey, you know deep in your heart that I wanted to work to earn my living but you supported him when he demanded I stayed at home. Obviously, you have a plan in place.’ She accused bitterly.
‘You have always been smart. You are right. I have no intention of being slaves to a couple of spoilt brats and their spineless mother.’ He gave a harsh laugh.
“So what do you want? Why are you back?”She asked with a narrowed look.
“Those are good questions. I’m here for two reasons.”He paused but she didn’t comment as she thought of how she would come out of this, alive!
“I want my son with me when I leave. That is my first request.’ His eyes narrowed dangerously when she burst into an amused laughter. ‘What is so funny?’ He barked at her.
‘You must certainly be blind to think my son belongs to you. You are not his father. His father is Joseph Coker.’ She wondered if she would live long enough to tell her son who his biological father was.
She watched him frown as he brought Michael’s face into his mind and probably realized she was right.
‘You, slut! Only God knows how many times he slept with you before we got married. Yet, you won’t allow me to see your pant. No wonder you were always on his side.’ He glared at her, his temper rapidly rising.
She refused to comment on the insult and he continued after a while.
‘That is good. I realized the bastard is doing so well for himself that he has the money and time to track me down. Obviously, you have warmed yourself back into his bed. So it shouldn’t be too hard for you to meet my other request.”He didn’t look too distressed at the fact that the son wasn’t his, she noted sadly.
‘What do you want?’ She asked in a resigned voice.
“I want you to call your account officer and ask him to transfer a sum of Ten million naira into my account. You may also call your lover boy to assist you if he values your life. After all, that little amount meant nothing to the Almighty Coker, right?”He jeered at her stated quietly and she stared at him in horror.
Joseph shed his tie into the car, locked it up and raced to the back of the building as he rolled up his shirt-sleeves. He went through the extra door in the building and found himself on the emergency staircase.
The son of a bitch has done his homework well, he thought in anger as he went up the staircase and found himself in complete darkness. He felt around him on the wall until his fingers came in contact with the cold metal of a doorknob and he tried it. The door opened, swinging heavily on its hinges and directly into a storeroom. He climbed in and heard their voices.
“What is that noise?”Ramsey jerked around sharply, feeling quite sure he heard a sound behind him.
“What noise? Where do you want me to get that kind of money?’ She screamed at him. He pointed the gun at the ceiling and pulled the trigger. No sound came out but a hole formed instantly in the ceiling and part of it dropped on the floor in pieces. Her fingers rose to her throat in horror as she gaped at the ceiling.
“Please don’t waste my time.”He held out his cell phone while his second hand pointed the gun at her head.
She had never felt so helpless or desperate in her life because she knew she doesn’t have that kind of money in her bank account but he will never believe her. Joseph, where are you? I need you now, please! She prayed fervently in her shattered mind.
Joseph appeared behind Ramsey with a finger across his lip. It took all her control not to jump up with joy. She blinked as tears filled her eyes and her heart sang a joyful song.
His arm went around Ramsey’s neck in a flash and turned his gun-hand skyward. Several shots went off, scattering the ceiling and the carefully arranged room as the two men struggled with the gun until it dropped on the floor.
Becky kicked it to the far corner of the room and stood guard over it.
Both men disengaged and eyed each other with burning hatred.
“What is your problem, lover boy? She is still my wife and I can do whatever I like with her.”Ramsey spat at him with a cold smile. Becky stared at him with a hatred she never knew she had for him.
“She won’t be your wife for long. Her heart and body have always been mine.”Joseph gave her a playful grin. She returned his smile gratefully.
“Are you sure, you yellow bastard?”Ramsey asked coldly.
“I can prove it to you.”Joseph said with a determined set of his jaw.
“Come on. Let’s see what you got, fucker.” Ramsey inclined his head challengingly.
Joseph came upon him like a prizefighter.
Becky had always suspected Joseph could be ruthless when provoked but she was surprised at the level of ruthlessness he displayed as he rammed continuously into Ramsey with his fist and head.
She heard the sickening thud of knuckles on bones and groans and watched the rippling muscles of the two men in fascination. She knew at the back of her mind she was supposed to find a way to get the police but she was scared to leave them.
They thrashed around, destroying everything they came in contact with and Ramsey disengaged abruptly as blood gushed from his nose.
He touched his nose and stared at the blood on his finger.
“I will kill you, you idiot.”Ramsey threatened darkly as he fished out a shining little knife out of his pocket and watched it with a malicious smile.
“You can’t kill me as easily as you killed your father-in-law or the lawyer. You have to do better than that.”Joseph’s gaze narrowed angrily. He saw surprise coupled with unease flickered briefly on his face. Becky stared at him in amazement.
“What is your business in this anyway? You were just a mere driver and you have nothing to show for your slave years at the Badmus’s house, have you?”Ramsey spat at him.
“I’m glad to be a slave to a gorgeous and beautiful woman like Becky Badmus. Your lose is my gain.”Joseph shared another smile with her and turned back to the gaping man. “Moreover, my wealth can buy you and your family repeatedly, you coward. You have nowhere to run because you are a wanted man. If you step out of this place, I will make sure you step right into jail. You are so dead, Ramsey Williams.”Joseph said with a cold anger that frightened her.
‘I will kill you first before you send me to jail, asshole.”Ramsey charged him furiously, blindly.
He crashed into the opposite wall when Joseph stepped out of his way, then he brought his elbow down on his back and he went flat with a groan.
Becky heard the police siren in the distance and ran out to her balcony in time to see police cars drove into her compound at a top speed. They were led by two unmarked cars. One belonged to Andrew and the second belonged to James Hogg, the head of the foreign intelligence team hired by the Coker.
She looked around in time to see Joseph dragging Ramsey forcefully to the balcony. His arms and legs were tied with Joseph’s torn shirt. He was bare-chested and had a cut on his rib. Ramsey was panting breathlessly, his eyes widened with fear when he realized he was about to be thrown over the iron banister. Joseph’s jaw was set and his eyes were flat with anger.
“What are you doing, Joe?’Becky asked with sheer terror.
“I’m going to throw him over the railings.”He answered furiously as he lifted him bodily into his arms.
“Becky….please ….beg …him” Ramsey pleaded desperately in between gasp.
“Don’t do that, Joe.The police are here already, let them do their job. Don’t turn into a murderer like him, please.”Becky pleaded quietly as she held on to his arm.
He took deep, calming breath and dropped him abruptly before he proceeded to tie him to the railings.
‘Are you alright, Joseph?’ Andrew hurried towards him as he joined them on the balcony.
‘I’m fine. They should just take that bastard away before I killed him.’ Joseph walked into the sitting room to retrieve the recorder from Becky’s bag and gave it to James Hogg as the latter walked in.
The police led Ramsey away in handcuffs after taking their statements.
The security team lingered a bit behind as they asked questions, took pictures and recorded the scene before leaving the house.
‘You are bleeding. I will treat that.’ Rebecca went on shaky feet to retrieve her medical kit.
‘Sit down, Becky. You are trembling.’ Andrew pushed her into a seat. The kit dropped with a thud.
‘He was going to kill me.’ She covered her face with her palm as tears filled her eyes.
‘It is okay. Please cry if it will make you feel better.’ Andrew drew her into his arms. She cried, deep wrenching sobs that tore into Joseph’s heart.
‘I can’t believe I was married to that monster.’ She shook her head in self-pity as she looked at him with swollen red-rimmed eyes.
‘It is alright. The storm is over.’ He patted her back.
‘Is she alright now?’ Ruth’s tentative voice reached her and she looked at her mother to see her sitting beside Joseph.
His arm was around her frail shoulder.
‘I’m fine, mum. How are you? When did you come in?’ She blew her nose on the handkerchief that Andrew gave her.
‘I got here when Andrew was driving in with the police entourage and was asked to stay downstairs. It was the longest moment of my life.’ Ruth shivered slightly.
‘It is okay, mum. He has been taken away. I am sure he won’t be bothering us for a long time now.’ Rebecca went to sit beside her mother and hugged her.
‘We should start going now.’ Joseph got to his feet. Andrew followed suit.
‘I want to look at the bleeding wound on your rib, Joseph.’ Rebecca got to her feet too.
‘It is just a scrape. I have survived worst wound.’ Joseph smiled at her, wishing he could pull her into his arms and kissed her.
‘Sit down. I will look at it.’ She insisted.
Andrew and Joseph left their house a few minutes later.
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