I looked outside the window of the big slow and steady bus which was heading to Lagos, it is the only bus that heads to Lagos from Atata,so if you miss it in the morning, you have no choice but to come back the next morning. This was the reason why I hadn’t stopped to go after that man in black I had seen in the bush path, I didn’t want to miss my bus. As I sat staring outside, a lot of things ran through my mind. ” who was the man in black?
And what was he doing outside by that time of the day?”
I asked myself, ” Why did he run into the bush from the bush?” I asked myself again but there was no to answer to the questions. ” Oga, your money” A lady said as she stood in front of me, she was the one in charge of collecting passengers money before the departure of the bus. I brought out three thousand five hundred naira and handed it to her while she left happily . ” Please, put on you seats belts and relax, we are set to move in about 10 minutes time” The driver to the slow and steady bus shouted as he sat on the driver’s seat, his voice alone was enough for us to hear, loud and clear” I would like to inform you that there will be some points in this Journey where slow and Steady might stop to take water” The driver said again, I didn’t know why he was informing us, we all know slow and steady, it stops almost every two hours to take water. I brought out my phone and checked the time, it was 5:15am. I took a deep breath as I relaxed my back on the seat on which I was sitting, though the seat was made of iron, I had to manage it that way. At exactly 5:30am, the bus started moving, just like the name had said, Slowly and Steadyily. I adjusted myself as I couldn’t bear the discomfort I got from the iron chair again. I rested my head on my right palm and then I remembered Adanna. ” Hmm, I will sure miss her” I said to myself not minding who heard me. ” In love right?” The guy sitting just by my left asked. ” Yeah” I replied without looking at him. ” That’s how it is. Is there any interesting story behind your love life?” The guy asked me again. This time I rose my head and stared at him, he was putting on a white long sleeve shirt and also a white trouser. Taking a closer look at him, you will conclude that he should be in his thirties or so.” Not the kind of love story you do hear” I replied him. ” Let’s just hear it” He insisted while I smiled. ” I had left Atata for about six years now, I came back about five days ago and I met this girl who I had always wanted from the days of my childhood, just as things were about to get good, work calls. ” I said while he smiled and patted my shoulder. ” There is always challenges behind every love story, the sweetest part is overcoming them. Make sure you come back to your love” he said calmly to me while I nodded and smiled. ” I will surely come back” I assured him or more likely myself. ” I am Daniel, a researcher, I came to Atata some few days back, my research work actually brought me here” He told me. ” Oh, that’s nice, I am Gabriel, not also an indigene of Atata but spent most of my life there” I said. ” Nice meeting you Gabriel” Daniel said stretching fort his right hand which I took willingly. We talked for some hours, actually we were talking about irrelevant stuffs, it was mostly on love and relationship, Daniel was fun to be with and he also happen to be very clever and smart.
• No one ever in history has ever travelled through the slow and steady bus without falling asleep, its like a curse associated with the bus. At a point in the journey, you must surely have to sleep, even if you dont want to, the sight of others sleeping will encourage you to. I choose the call that point ” The sleeping point”. Daniel had slept off so was every other person in the slow and steady bus except the driver. At this point, I got no other option than to also join the league of sleepers. I relaxed my back on the thick iron handle of my seat and closed my eyes, I wandered off to dream land. I didn’t know how long I slept but I knew I woke up when I noticed the slow and steady bus had stopped, I arranged my baggage and made to go down the bus but a hand drew me back, it was Daniel’s hand. ” Calm down bro, the slow and steady has just stopped to take water ” he said smiling. ” So you mean we aren’t in Lagos yet?” I asked angrily. ” Nope, not even half of Lagos” he said smiling while I relaxed my back on the seat again.
• It was 10:15pm when the slow and steady bus finally stopped, not to take water this time but a final stop. We were now in the beautiful city of Lagos, a city of the rich and poor, a city of like and unlike minds, a city which flows with milk and honey,the city of Lagos is indeed a wonderful city. I backed my bag and carried my briefcase as I alighted the bus. ” So where are you heading from here?” Daniel asked me, he was behind me and was backing only a bag, he wasn’t with a briefcase. ” Hmm, probably Ikeja ” I told him while he stared at me with a confused expression on his face. ” Aren’t you sure of where you are going?” He asked . ” I have different places in mind, my relatives are scattered all around this city” I said smiling. ” okay then, nice meeting you Gabriel” He said stretching his hand for a handshake again which I took willingly and turned to leave. I was also putting on a long sleeve but not a white one as Daniel’s own, a black long sleeve. ” Oga where?” A bike man asked as he pulled over in front of me. ” Matt, You haven’t changed” I said to the bike man, he isn’t actually a bike man, he happens to be a spy and he is the one assigned to pick me that night. ” Your bus took so long” he said as I climbed his bike, ” I have been waiting here since 5pm” he said again. ” Please let go off, I need to sleep” I said to him. Taking a look at Matt will leave you with no their conclusion that he is actually a bike man. He was putting on a red tattered cloth on a black trouser with a bathroom slippers, to crown it all, he was wearing a face cap like most Bike men does. Matt was good with bikes which explains why he drove rough overtaking thrillers and big cars, in no time we were alone on a long time isolated road located somewhere in one of the villages in Lagos. ” Hold on tight boy, we are about entering the Jungle” Matt said after about an hour of rough riding, only the light from the bike was the source of light for us that night. ” Here we go!!!” Matt shouted as he took a sharp turn and soon the bike started moving on its own like it was descending down a hill.. ” Matt, control this bike to slow down” I shouted as the bike continued to go down in speed. ” Enjoy the ride baby” Matt yelled at me. ” Matt, watch out!!!!” I shouted as the bike was approaching a tall tree. ” Wuuuuu” Matt shouted happily as he dodged the tree. ” Sweet” He shouted again as he dodged another tree, I simply closed my eye until the bike came to an halt, we were at Newriton. ” That was a sweet ride ” Matt said as he pulled off his tattered clothing, he was putting on a black thick short and a black thick singlet underneath. ” All I need now is sleep” I said lazily as I yawned and stretched myself. ” Yeah, go sleep bro. You must be really tired from the long journey” Matt said walking pass me and patting my shoulders. ” He couldn’t even help me carry my bag” I said to myself as I followed him behind. ” I heard that” He shouted without turning to face me, he continued to walk.
• Welcome to Newriton, an institute specialized to train spies and crime fighters. Newriton is located in the heart of an Isolated Jungle, inside one of the villages in Lagos State. Record has it that it was established in 1884, and so you would agree with me that some many spies and crime fighters must have been trained here. Newriton comprises about 50 different building which are meant to serve different purposes. Some buildings, I dont know why they existed. In the centre of all these buildings stood a sculptured Mark, a unique Mark, the Mark of Newriton. All trained and confirmed students has that mark being drawn on their wrist, all confirmed students got the Mark.
I walked slowly into one of the buildings, that was the building which serve as our lodge. It isn’t in any way different from an University hostel, only that it is much neater and comfortable. I climbed up to the third storey before finally stopping on a door with a tag ” Room 101″ . I unlocked my briefcase and brought out a card, I slipped the card into some kind of a machine on the wall beside the door. ” Please enter your code” Came the written reply from the machine. I put in my code and almost immediately the door opened slowly. I walked into the room and just like it had opened, the door closed. There wasn’t light in the room which got me surprised, there was light in the entire building. I tried locating the switch on the wall so as to put on the light but I slowly felt a hand round my neck, I felt a sharp object touch me, it was a knife placed directly to my neck.
To be continue…….