Fadeke heard footsteps in the veranda and gently peeped through the narrow space she made between the curtains, a midsized man in hood was already standing before the entrance to the parlour. She rushed to her parent’s room and muttered, while beating her father gently “dad! dad!”, chief Kofoworola opened his eyes and saw her daughter covered in fright “..come! come! ” she whispered to his ear.
“whatizit?” He mumbled trying to gain consciousness.
“There’s a man at the entrance of the sitting room… I don’t know “
Kofoworola Fadekemi, the only child of the Kofos, is a final year student of Medicine and Surgery in a private University outside the town. She arrived a day before for Easter celebration and her parents had been enquiring on her courtship. Her mother ignited the discussion Fadeke never prayed to start while taking their dinner.
“Mum… try to understand. I can’t keep a relationship while in school..” she replied with her mouth partly filled with noodles, after several questions from her mother.
“No problem…you know you’re not getting any younger, that’s what I will tell you” Mrs kofo replied her nonchalantly.
Fadeke was reading Wọlé Soyinka’s Ake the years of childhood that night when she felt a shadow passed by her room. She was a bibliophile and stayed up till 2AM most times, reading. It was already past one that night. She tiptoed to the sitting room and checked through the window only to saw a black hoodie standing before the door.
“I have a burglar in my house now, please send your men..” Chief, in the lowest voice he could ever assumed, talked to his area DPO without waiting for a reply. He’s a well-known philanthropist in the area and has contacts of high officials in the city; ranging from commissioners, advisers, perm. secretaries and even few Ministers. He hung up the phone and woke her wife. He hadn’t spent a minute after the call that they heard the hulky voice knocking.
“It’s of your best interest to open the door quietly or I jam in… I will count five!”
The voice had counted four and chief Kofo couldn’t hold it anymore. He ran staggeringly to the door and made it opened.
“Where are the other two?” The man asked with a fierce voice as Kofo placed his head on the ground. He pledged to give the villain all he wanted but shouldn’t hurt his small clan, all that seemed to be leaving through the left ear after entering the right of the nocturnal visitor.
“Where are the other two, I said?” He queried him again ferociously. Kofo lend him gently to the room and they all practiced the prostration custom.
The hoodie lighted a cigar and placed his right leg on the mattress as he exhaled the white smoke through his nostrils.
“Who should I kill first?” He asked the rhetorical question in a smirk way while rolling the small pistol with his index finger. He suddenly pointed the gun at mama Fadeke’s head. The terrified quinquagenarian started chanting all the prayers she could remember. Kofo and their daughter weren’t left behind in the prayer session under duress.
“Po! ” Kofo and Fadeke raised their heads and rushed towards Mama Fadeke as the villain fired the bullet. Mama Fadeke was already lying on the floor bleeding profusely from the head. The two bursted into tears carrying the moribund woman while the hoodie kept simpering. He left them to groan for minutes before aiming his next prey.
With the cold gun on her head, Fadeke started ranting.
“Dad, dad he’s going to kill me too…please spare for us God’s sake please”. But all Kofo could do was pledging to give anything he demanded.
It didn’t appear the killer was ready for negotiation, he returned the pistol on the young woman’s head and pulled back the triggers. He gave it a shot! Kofo ran to her gasping daughter covered in her own blood groaning for help. He requested for permission to take the victims to hospital but all the plead were entering his deaf ears.
He had prepared to set out after ensuring the two couldn’t breathe anymore when Kofo, from nowhere, got the bile it takes in the liver to challenge the killer.
“Why have you done this to me? Why? What’s my sin?” He asked with bead of tears rolling from her violet cornea.
The man turned back gently and uncovered his face.
“Do you remember this face?” He asked Kofo politely showing him his worn-out face clearly.
“You can’t remember. I see you can’t! You will never remember how you made my life like this just one night! You will not!” To Kofo’s utmost surprise, the killer was already weeping like a cheated, innocent child.
“You won’t remember Dr Babajide and his family! You will never remember! ” He was shouting and crying loudly when he heard voices from behind.
“Drop your gun and put your hands up!” Two cops with gun repeated twice behind him.
He dropped the pistol and raised his hands. A cop handcuffed him and carted him away while statements were collected from chief Kofoworola.
Eyes witness would feel the enigma purported on Kofo that day. He didn’t know the next line of action. He tried if he had any Babajide in his memory, but the only one he remembered was a secondary school friend he never had anything with.
He crept gently to his cupboard and brought out a sheet of paper that contains list of names from a parcel only him used. He went through the list and saw “No. 15 — Dr Babajide Oluwole – May 13, 1995” and bursted into tears rolling helplessly on the floor.
“God! God! Why again? Why?” Are the words flowing from his mouth.
He has kept the list for 20 years now and hoped he would escape the wrath of repercussion. They’re the name of souls he had been paid to execute which he did without recording an error during the days of his hooliganism. He would note everybody he killed in that sheet and used it as a portfolio for prospective customers. It was after he met with Mama Fade that her love reversed his devilish life to holy one. Babajide is one of the forty-five people that had their death, hot through his hands.
The villain, Babajide John, was later sentenced to life imprisonment.