‘You must be the famous Elena…’ One of the masked men rumbled.
Her heart missed a beat at the mention of her name. How had the robber come to know her name?
‘Please release my father. You can take anything you want. Just don’t hurt us, we are good people.’ Her voice cracked as tears began to rush from her eyes.
The man who’d spoken scoffed, ‘You insult us. Do you think we are robbers?’ He asked mockingly. Before Elena could think of the right retort, he pulled off his mask and pointed a gun at her.
‘Well…well, you are more beautiful physically than in pictures.’
‘Your brother is going to like her very much.’ The second man who stood next to him laughed.
Elena bit her lower lip, to prevent herself from screaming at these men. She could see an animalistic glint in their eyes, and it terrified her. Who was the other man they were talking about?
‘I haven’t done anything wrong. Please release my father,’ Elena begged.
‘Even the good book reminds us to take an eye for an eye. Did you think you will have peace, after smearing my brother’s name with your lies and cheap desire for fame?’ The first man asked.
Still, she was lost.
‘I don’t understand. I don’t know what you’re talking about,’ she stuttered.
‘You don’t have to. But after this, you’ll learn to confirm your sources before publishing lies.’ He turned towards the other two and snapped his fingers. It didn’t take long, before the men stepped forward and covered Elena’s face with a black bag. Her dad’s effort to stop the men was futile, as they pushed him on the floor and dragged Elena out of the house.
She fought for air. Her screams were swallowed by the darkness and thickness of the bag. She was engulfed in a kind of fear that she had never felt before. And she began to wonder where she had gone wrong. One thing was certain, she had offended someone very powerful and he had come for her.
The white bungalow was a pearl of the night. It glowed like a fine jewel in a hopeless place. The, ‘white house,’ as it was popularly called had been named one of the finest bungalows in Nigeria. It wasn’t just about the painting, but the sophistication in design.
The house had fifty rooms. The roof was erected in a pyramidal shape, which added another kind of beauty to the structure. Chandeliers dropped from the frontage of the house, and to the sides of the building; blue and yellow chandeliers. Their lights clashed sometimes, but their gleam made the house very beautiful.
A man sat on the veranda, staring at the black gate that enclosed the building. A scowl settled on his face as he looked on. He wore a cashmere sweater that was red in color. It rhymed with his chocolate complexion and his light brown eyes. The man was Aniekan Umo, and he had been sitting outside for an hour, since he learned of the news by the blogger who almost smeared his name.
‘Are you still thinking about the blogger?’ Ada Elechi, his lawyer asked. Aniekan had been home, working on a new game as usual. His lawyer’s visit had come as a surprise to him; he sensed that everything wasn’t alright. From the tight corners of her mouth, he was able to discern that there was a problem.
That was when he realized that someone had accused him of intellectual property theft and plagiarism. Ada’s visit was followed by a myriad of calls from his business partners, friends who cared and those who worked with him. It took a lot of convincing to make them believe that he hadn’t stolen someone’s idea when he’d created Luciferon.
‘No, I’m wondering where Ese is. I told him not to step out of this house. We both know he is out of control when he is angry.’ Aniekan briefly glanced down at the face of his golden watch which ticked very fast.
When the news had come, his younger brother, Ese; had been very upset and he had vowed to track the blogger and make her pay for what she had done. Aniekan was angry no doubt, how could one person try to ruin all his efforts? All his life, he had dreamt of being the biggest thing that ever happened to the game world. He was just close to taking the title on a global platform when the blogger had come up with the lies.
‘Ese would be fine. He is not our problem right now. We need to talk about the blogger’. Ada quickly powered her phone, and ran her eyes over the documents she had screen-shot. She had found the name of the blogger and everything else that she needed to know.
‘I hate this blogger for what she has done. What if my business partners and friends didn’t trust me? Her accusations can ruin my career if I wasn’t an honest person.’
Immediately he and Ada had come across the fake news, Ada had quickly gone on all social media platforms to explain what really happened between Aniekan and Kate Haley.
‘She thought she was being smart. People like her want to become rich overnight. She knows that you are a billionaire; she probably thought you were guilty…’ Ada trailed off as she stumbled on a detail that would prove useful.
Aniekan laughed, ‘Are you saying if I were guilty that she would’ve blackmailed me’? He had heard of bloggers publishing untrue stories about people. He never knew the gravity of their offence, and he never knew he would be a victim.
Ada nodded, and raised her eyes to meet him. They were filled with mischief.
‘Our darling blogger would be the King’s In-law very soon. I think she can afford to pay the damages I have in mind.’ Without wasting time, Ada fetched the brown briefcase that was next to her. She opened it, and retrieved a pen and some papers.
She was one of the smartest lawyers in town, and Aniekan hadn’t made a mistake of hiring her.
‘What are you doing’? He wondered what his lawyer was up to.
‘Making us more money’, Ada smiled and began to scribble on the white sheets.
Aniekan wasn’t satisfied with her answer, ‘Can you explain that better? And what King are you talking about’?
Ada gritted her teeth, irked by his disturbance, but he was still her boss and she had to explain things to him.
‘The blogger’s name is Elena Benjamin. She is twenty four years old and in her final year. One of her sisters is in a serious relationship with the King of Lagos. And we both know that Oba Adeyemi Lasisi is one of the most powerful kings in Africa.
I want Elena to pay for what she has done to you. If you were guilty, you would’ve lost everything tonight. I want her to pay for the damage she has caused in the amount of fifty million naira. At least, someone in her class should be able to afford that’. Ada winked and focused on what she had been writing.
Aniekan scoffed, he hadn’t thought along those lines. He didn’t even know much about the blogger except now. Well, Ada had never led him astray, so he would stand by her decision to make the blogger pay.