Story: The Queens Of Tomato Island Season 2


    Episode One

    ‘Excuse me, Bilkisu is calling, let me take this’ Feyi fetched the phone from her bag and pressed it against her ears.
    ‘Feyi, something bad has happened’ her voice was broken.
    ‘What is it dear? Are you crying’? Feyi asked.
    ‘I arrived Barnie’s house not too long ago, I met your husband, Tom, and Maggie. Timi found a dead body stuffed in a trash bin’ Bilki cried.
    ‘Holy mother of God, this isn’t happening, she’s more dangerous than we thought’ Feyi replied.
    ‘Ifeoma is dead and I strongly believe Barnie must have killed her’ Bilki cried.
    ‘Hold on dear, I am coming’ Feyi cut the call and rushed towards her car, she’d forgotten Emeka her old friend had been waiting for her all along.
    ‘Feyi! Why the rush? You don’t look too good’ he ran towards her.
    ‘I am sorry Emeka, can I have your number? Now is not a good time, something bad just happens’ she requested.
    ‘What happened? Talk to me, maybe I could help’ he saw fear in her eyes.
    ‘It’s complicated, don’t bother. A lunatic is on the loose’ Feyi replied and forced her car door shut.
    ‘I am a detective, I came here for a reason since I have nothing doing let me go with you’ he pressed on.
    ‘Suit yourself’ she couldn’t argue with him any longer.
    ‘What about me sir’? Bridget yelled from where she stood.
    ‘Take the car back to Uyo, I’ll communicate with you guys via phone. Stay safe and be smart’ he waved at her before Feyi drove off.
    She had managed to bribe her way past all the police and military check points; Ekaette was safely tucked in her boot. She had no plan yet, this isn’t the way she had envisaged her sister’s revenge. She had planned to delete them off the earth’s surface all at the same time.
    ‘Barnie Ross’ she scoffed at the sound of the name she’d concocted just to convince the people of Tomato Island.
    No matter how much they searched, they’d never find anyone like her, they didn’t have any pictures of her and she had been careful about that. All the documents of the house were in Barnie Ross’ name and signature and there was nobody like that.
    She consoled herself that she had captured at least one of the girls, the others could relax for now, but Ekaette would taste the full dose of her wrath.
    Her name was Rose Ross Etim, she’d dropped the last name and made use of her first two names, she preferred it that way.  It suited her like all the white names she’d seen and her colleagues used it to tease her.
    ‘Dr. Ross’ they’d laugh.
    Her lips curled into a smile as she approached the hospital’s gate. Sunshine psychiatry was a private clinic solely for mental health related issues. She was a psychologist and had worked here for just two years.
    Lagos was a very large city, not many people knew about Sunshine Psychiatry; it was meant for the La crème who wanted their mental illnesses to be kept a secret.
    ‘Good morning Doctor Ross, how was your trip’ the gateman was happy to see her after a period of one month.
    ‘I enjoyed my stay in the States, I’ll drop you a gift later this week’ Barnie smiled. She had taken a one month leave and as far as the management was concerned, she had gone to America for a vacation break.
    ‘All clear Madam’ he bowed and she drove into the hospital.
    First, she needed to report to the management that she had returned, then, she’d leave her house.
    It was fun going to the famous Tomato island, the only island city in Port Harcourt; she had not planned to leave suddenly, but she had no choice. If she had lingered, they would’ve uncovered her true identity and that would’ve been disastrous.
    She had stalked them for a year after seeing Ekaette on fashion T.v. She had hired a private detective to find out more about Ekaette Anderson; soon after their deal was off a year ago, she had deleted his phone number, they had never met in person though.
    ‘Welcome, Doctor, how was your trip? You look swell’ her boss was surprised to see her.
    ‘Morning sir, I enjoyed my stay in America’ she smiled politely as she stepped into his office.
    ‘Good. Good. Which of the states did you stay’? he asked.
    ‘Hmmm, Lafayette’ she stammered, she had not expected his question.
    Professor Adamu Martins was the Chief Psychiatrist of Sunshine Psychiatry, a short man who wore nerdy looking glasses; she had never liked the man. Like her colleagues would say, ‘he is a very difficult person’. Why would he even ask such a question?
    ‘Lafayette? Oh, you mean Louisiana’? he raised a brow, she seemed confused.
    ‘Yes, Louisiana’ she nodded and rose to her feet. It was time to leave.
    ‘I have to go now sir, I’ll resume officially next week’ she rose to her feet.
    ‘Okay, go ahead Dr. Ross’ he smiled.
    ‘Phew,’ she sighed. She decided to drive straight home, she would speak to her colleagues later, now she needed to take a bath, rest and think about what to do to Ekaette Anderson.
    ‘I heard you talking to someone’ another doctor stepped into Professor Martins’ office.
    ‘Yes, Rose’ the old man replied.
    ‘Dr. Ross? Is she back’? he asked.
    ‘Sure, she looks different though’ the man drummed his fingers on the table.
    ‘Why? You think you’re a mind reader huh’? the younger doctor scoffed.
    ‘Not really, she just looks different. There’s this strange energy emanating from her, her eyes are dancing and she couldn’t answer me correctly’ he said.
    ‘What did you ask’?
    ‘I asked her which of the American states she holidayed, she seemed unsure. Her voice was shaky and she stammered, then mumbled  ‘Lafayette’ the man replied.
    ‘Oh God, Lafayette? Surely someone as learned as Rose should know Lafayette is a city and not a state’? the young man sniggered.
    ‘I felt so too. Do you think she could be having mental health issues? Maybe she takes alcohol? I even smelt it on her’ the man replied.
    ‘Oh come on dad, just because we’re shrinks doesn’t mean we have to be crazy too. Stop being paranoid, I’ll pay her a visit later’ Nasiru laughed.
    Bilkisu had been the one that had tiptoed into the house, she’d given Maggie the creeps, but she had done that deliberately. She had arrived Barnie’s house and met another car in the drive way.
    Then she walked into the house, gingerly, like a cat, before she heard the loud screaming and she followed the direction and found Timi standing next to her lover’s corpse.
    ‘How could this happen? What did Ifeoma ever do to her’? she cried as she stared down at the corpse stuffed in a trash bin.
    ‘What do we do? Oh my God, do you think Barnie would do something like this?’ Maggie was terrified by the gruesome murder scene.
    ‘Of course, she did, if she didn’t, where the hell is she? You confirmed it, her car isn’t in the driveway. I have a bad feeling about this’ Tom snapped at her, this wasn’t the time to ask irrelevant questions, it was the time to act right.
    ‘I think we should call the police’ Timi said calmly.
    ‘I can’t believe she is gone, I loved her so much. I put her up to this and now she is gone’ Bilkisu cried; the trio turned and faced her.
    ‘What do you mean you put her up to this? Do you know any shady thing about Barnie’? Maggie asked.

    Episode Two

    ‘What do you mean you put her up to this? Do you know any shady thing about Barnie’? Maggie asked.
    ‘I am not sure, but Ifeoma found a diary and an old picture of I and the girls….’Bilkisu paused. She realized she wasn’t making sense, these people wouldn’t even understand her; she couldn’t tell them her deepest secret. Now wasn’t the time.
    ‘I wonder where Ekaette is, I’ve been trying her lines and her car is outside’ Bilkisu wiped her face.
    ‘That’s another mystery we’re yet to solve’ Tom murmured.
    ‘We have to tell the police, this Barnie woman lied to us all, I don’t even know why she came here. Her real name is Rose Ross, she works at a psychiatry hospital in Lagos, that’s if that isn’t a lie too’ Timi said.
    ‘Rose Ross’? Bilki repeated the name.
    She tried to link it to Elizabeth’s, then her heart sank as she realized they both shared the same middle name. This was confirmation enough, she didn’t need a soothsayer to tell her Barnie was related to Elizabeth, she must have come to Tomato Island for one purpose: revenge.
    ‘I have to go, I have to warn Feyi’ Bilki rushed out of the house.
    ‘Wait, warn her about what’? Timi tried to hold her back, but she brushed him and ran outside.
    ‘Women and secrets’ Tom looked at him with intent.
    ‘I am starting to believe that all women keep secrets’ Timi replied.
    ‘What are we waiting for? Let’s go to the police station and report this before it’s too late’ Maggie reminded them of the plan.
    Bilkisu was about to slide into her car when Feyi halted right before her and she sighed with relief.
    ‘What happened? What happened to Ifeoma’? Feyi asked in a rush.
    ‘We found her, in the trash bin, Barnie must have done it’ Bilki uttered in a weak voice. She noticed the man that stood beside
    ‘Hey, calm down Feyi, tell me everything, I am a detective remember?’ Emeka wondered what was happening.
    ‘Who is he’? Bilki regarded the stranger.
    ‘Uhmm, don’t you remember Ekaette’s boyfriend? Emeka, back in school’? Feyi turned to Bilki.
    ‘Oh, you looked familiar, welcome’ Bilki’s smile was faint. How could she smile when Ifeoma had just been found dead?
    ‘Thanks, Bilkisu, pleasure meeting you’ Emeka shook hands with her, for some reason, she looked tense.
    He decided to whirl away the time before searching town for his clients, but he needed to see Ekaette first.
    ‘Where’s Ekaette’ he blurted out.
    ‘That’s the problem, we can’t find her, she just disappeared but her car is parked over there’ Bilki replied.
    ‘Just disappeared? Damn’ he cursed. That was the only shot he had in finding an opening to the case of the human bones.
    ‘Are you okay’? Feyi noticed he wore a frown.
    ‘Not really, do you guys remember Elizabeth’? he asked.
    The girls quickly exchanged glances, why was he asking after her.
    ‘Uhmmm, yes, why’? Feyi stammered.
    ‘Do you know where she is now? I searched everywhere for her’ he replied.
    ‘We don’t know, I think we should see what’s going on inside of the house’ Feyi avoided his eyes.
    ‘Your husband, Tom, and Maggi are in there’ Bilkisu informed her.
    ‘Timi? What’s Timi doing here?’ Feyi paused.
    ‘I don’t know, but Maggi said something about Barnie being fake, her real name is Rose Ross and she works at Sunshine Psychiatry’ Bilki explained.
    ‘How had they come to that fact’? Feyi asked.
    ‘I don’t know’ Bilki replied.
    ‘Oh, they’re here too’? Emeka called their attention to the two men that stepped outside of the large bungalow, what were they doing here? a woman followed closely behind.
    ‘That’s my husband and Tomato Island’s realtor, Mr. Tom, why’? Feyi was getting nervous, he seemed to know everything.
    ‘Really?’ Emeka pursed his lips, he wondered if Feyi knew about the case of the human bones.
    ‘Detective, what are you doing here’? Timi was as surprised to see him.
    ‘Coincidence, I met your wife, Feyi. She’s an old friend, I met her while trying to find Kate Anders’ Emeka replied flatly.
    ‘Kate Anders? That’s Ekaette’ Feyi said absent mindedly, she wondered how Timi was involved in all of this. It hurt her deeply, that he had been sleeping with her friend’s husband. She decided to push that aside, she would handle that later.
    ‘Oh, sorry we couldn’t help, we were busy with something’ Timi smiled tightly.
    Tom had been quiet all this while, this was the best time to tell the detective about the murder of Ifeoma; he whispered into Timi’s ears but Timi shook his head in dissonance.
    ‘Someone has been murdered’ Tom ignored him.
    ‘Tom’! Timi tried to stop him.
    ‘Excuse me’? Emeka arched a brow.
    ‘We found the corpse of Bilkisu’s friend, Ifeoma in there’ Tom said.
    ‘Is that true’? Emeka was shocked, he now understood the reason for the screams.
    ‘Yes, she is gone’ Bilkisu nodded with tear filled eyes.
    ‘What do you think happened to her? is she your relative? Who do you think killed her’? Emeka had immersed himself into another puzzle.
    ‘I think this woman did, she lied to us, came here with a fake name, I don’t even know what she wanted but I think she is dangerous’ Maggie showed him the picture of Barbie in a doctor’s regalia.
    He accepted the phone and glued his eyes to the screen. It couldn’t be, this was the exact woman that he’d found close to Hall Forever, the one that was looking for her sister, the drunk woman.
    ‘You know her’? Maggie read his face.
    ‘Yes I do and I have been looking for her’ Emeka replied. He smiled confidently and focused his eyes on her, it was always good to trust someone’s gut when it came to investigations. Right from the moment he’d found her weeping, he had a feeling, she would play an important part in all of this.
    ‘I found her the night I went to check the land, she was drunk and she said a lot of things which I’ll discuss later but I need to see the body first, then we would inform the police, I could work with them’ Emeka explained.
    ‘What land is he talking about’? Feyi whispered to her friend once Emeka had left for inside with Tom and Timi.
    ‘I don’t know’ Bilki shrugged.
    ‘Your husband never told you?’ Maggi moved closer to them, she had never been close to the three slay queens, but this wasn’t the time to stand alone. They all needed to work together, so Barnie would be found and prosecuted.
    ‘Told me what? I don’t understand’ Feyi replied.
    ‘Tom bought a land, an abandoned campus in Uyo; they found human bones close to hall forever and they couldn’t continue with their job; so they met this detective who promised to do some investigation before they would resume work on the land’Maggie explained to Feyi’s utter amazement.
    ‘Timi never told me anything like this…’ she felt angry and hurt, he always blocked her out.
    ‘Oh my God, we should’ve listened to her’ Bilikisu bit her lip.
    ‘Listened to who’? Maggie asked.
    ‘Ekaette of course, the last I saw her, she seemed, greatly distressed. I have a feeling Timi had told her about the land’ fear gripped her. What if the Bones discovered were Elizabeth’s? they had buried her close to Hall Forever, they had lived around there.
    ‘No, that’s not possible’ Feyi swallowed the lump that rose in her throat.
    ‘What is going on? What’s with you two’? Maggi moved away, she felt lost. She decided to join her husband indoor.
     ‘Feyi, I am scared, what if they found her remains? They could trace it back to us’ Bilki cried.

    Episode Three

    ‘Feyi, I am scared, what if they found her remains? They could trace it back to us’ Bilki cried.
    ‘I don’t know Bilkisu, what should we do? If Emeka Is the detective that was hired, he could easily find out what we did especially if he knew the bones belonged to Elizabeth’ Feyi wondered.
    ‘I think we should tell him, that’s better. He could find a way to protect us if the Police were invited. Let’s tell him Feyi’ Bilkisu suggested.
    ‘No, we aren’t going down for anything. Telling him what we did to Elizabeth is like walking into a trap, I think we should just forget this happened and move on with our lives’ Feyi replied.
    ‘Move on with our lives? You’re kidding, right? I just confirmed it, Barnie, is Rose Ross in real life, remember Elizabeth had Ross in her name, they’re sisters and she has come back for revenge’ Bilkisu said.
    ‘Well, if that’s what you want to believe, the picture Ifeoma sent to us doesn’t prove anything, besides, what we did was secret, no one can ever know how much more Barnie or whatever you call her’ Feyi was more afraid than Bilki, but she needed to stay strong for her friend.
    Bilki was a soft hearted person, she had cried throughout the night after they’d buried Elizabeth.
    Feyi needed to find a way to convince her, else she may go running to the Police or Emeka, especially now Ifeoma was dead.
    ‘We need to stick together now, more than before, no one can know what happened that night’ Feyi rubbed her shoulder lightly.
    ‘But we aren’t guilty, Elizabeth had threatened Ekaette, we all know this’ Bilkisu replied.
    ‘Who would believe us now’? Feyi rolled her eyes, she wished her friend could see the bigger picture.
    Emela followed the two men closely till they reached the trash bin where Ifeoma’s body had been stuffed.
    ‘This is where I found her’ Timi pointed at the trash bin.
    ‘Oh my God, this is gruesome and cruel’ Emeka held his breath, he felt nauseous.
    ‘I’ll call the police myself, they need to know about this’ he regained composure.
    ‘And what about you? You could equally do some investigation’ Tom suggested.
    ‘Of course, I have a feeling this is related to the human bones you found on your land’ Emeka rubbed his chin thoughtfully.
    He tried to create a theory, a logical one with meaning and something he could work with.
    ‘Why do you think that’? Timi asked.
    ‘I asked you to find information on Kate Anderson, I had my reasons. This woman here, Barnie or whatever you call her, I found her on the land and she claimed her sister was missing or killed and she mentioned Kate Anderson. So I thought I could find something’ he explained.
    ‘Why would you jump to that conclusion that Ekaette would be involved in the human bones case’? Timi scoffed.
    ‘Well, before I met the drunk girl, there was an old man who made reference to three young women, they’d lived close to hall forever and moved out in a hurry. Months later, mysterious things began to happen, these three young women are my friends. Your wife is one of them and Elizabeth, the lady I am looking for right now, suffered a kind of mental illness. If I could find her, It could end this mystery’ he replied.
    ‘From the way you speak you don’t have any evidence to connect the dots, you’re working on assumptions. How would this help us’? Timi asked.
    ‘I have evidence, all I need is Ekaette, she may be the key to everything’ he fingered the dagger that was in his pocket.
    ‘Maybe Barnie kidnapped her’ Maggi trudged towards them.
    ‘Barnie? Why? What would be her motive’? Emeka faced the woman.
    ‘Barnie hatred for her was quite strong, I couldn’t put my finger on it. She made me do things that I regret’ Maggi sighed.
    ‘Things like’? Emeka asked.
    ‘Maybe we should talk later, I am ready to provide you with all the information you need’ Maggie replied, she didn’t want to talk about the obscene photo Barnie had given her.
    ‘Good’ Emeka nodded, then an idea came to him, what if he questioned Bilkisu and Feyi instead?
    He recalled how evasive they had been with him as he questioned them about Elizabeth, it seemed they were hiding something. He had been in this profession too long to know when someone was telling a lie, Bilki and her friend weren’t being honest, but he wouldn’t force them to talk. He would work on his own.
    ‘I need to take a good look around the house, once I am done, you can call the police’ he instructed them carefully and toured round the house.
    ‘Telling him about this wasn’t a good idea, he should have just faced what we took to him’ Timi voiced his discomfort.
    ‘What are you so upset about Timi? This man knows what he is doing, I can feel it. Only people that have something to hide are afraid’ Maggie fired at him.
    ‘I don’t have anything to hide, I just don’t trust his skills’ Timi replied.
    ‘Maybe, I can’t say the same about your wife’ Maggie muttered to herself.
    ‘What do you mean by that’? Timi narrowed his eyes.
    ‘I feel she knows something about Barnie, her and Bilkisu, you should talk to her, whoever had information should say it now. This Barnie is a crazy person, I feel bad that she used me, she fed on my hatred for Ekaette, we don’t know her motive and who would be next’ Maggi sighed.
    ‘It’s okay honey, we’ll all be safe’Tom reassured her with his kind words.
    There were three rooms after the living room; two were closed but the one he faced was slightly open, so he pushed it and left for inside.
    There was a huge bed, yellow curtains, a yellow bed sheet and pillow case.
    ‘Now that’s a lot of yellow’ he shrugged.
    There were no bags, no personal belongings, everything looked cleaned out; only the predominance of yellow gave the room meaning.
    He knew what he was doing was unprofessional but that was the only way to solve this puzzle; before other detectives were allowed to work on a case, the police were usually the first to work on the evidence. Sadly, the Nigerian Police given all the evidence found it difficult to proffer an ending solution to a crime; that’s why he needed to take something concrete he could work with.
    He was slightly disappointed that he couldn’t find anything, there had to be something, he decided to keep the search for a few more minutes.
    He saw a dollar note on the bed, wasn’t that weird? He thought to himself, then moved to the bed. He remembered Bridget had complained about the drunken woman taking money from them.
    ‘What do we have here’? he fetched a pair of gloves from his pocket and slipped it on.
    He lifted the paper money upwards and felt something hard underneath.
    ‘A wallet…’ he frowned and took it up. If this contained more information about her, it would lead to a breakthrough.
    ‘Nothing’ he sighed dejectedly and sat on the floor. He had wanted to leave so badly, but something held him back. There was still something he needed to find.
    He forced his eyes shut and opened them once again, then he saw it very clearly this time.
    There was a brown carton at the middle of the room, this cartoon didn’t stand alone. There was a brown paper at its edge, it looked ruffled. Emeka rose to his feet and rushed towards it.

    Episode Four

    There was a brown carton at the middle of the room, this cartoon didn’t stand alone. There was a brown paper at its edge, it looked ruffled. Emeka rose to his feet and rushed towards it.
    ‘There you are, Miss Perfect’ a smile came to his lips as he read the word. The puzzle would soon come to an end.
    He folded the paper neatly into his pocket, took off the gloves and returned to his clients.
    ‘You are free to call the police now’ he announced.
    ‘Could you find anything’? Feyi asked she had joined the rest with Bilki.
    ‘Yes, and I need all of you in my office tomorrow, a question and answer session before I hand the case to the police. See you then’ he waved at them and swaggered out of the house.
    ‘What do you think he found’? Bilki whispered fearfully to Feyi.
    ‘I don’t know’ Feyi replied and tore her eyes away from Timi’s penetrating gaze.
    ‘Well, I am in, I have nothing to hide’ Maggie sighed.
    Her head throbbed and the pain spread to the base of her neck; she felt stiff, like all the bones in her body had been broken.
    How long had she slept? She wondered and tore open her eyes, the harshness of the sunlight bit her eyeballs and she forced them close once again.
    Where was she?
    ‘I see you are awake’ a voice dampened with familiarity spoke.
    ‘Where am I’? Ekaette whispered. She tried to move, she tried to rise to her feet but she couldn’t, her hands and legs were handcuffed to the edge of the table which she lay upon.
    ‘Good question, welcome to Lagos Kate Anders’ Barnie closed the curtains and the room became dim.
    ‘Barnie? What did you do? Why am I here like this? What’s happening’? Ekaette struggled with the chains that held her.
    ‘You ask too many questions, don’t worry, you have enough time before you join my sister, I’ll answer them. For now, go back to sleep’ Barnie peered outside the window, someone was at her gate and she needed to see to the person.
    ‘You psycho, you were the one that attacked me when I came to your house’ Ekaette yelled at her. Her memories had returned, she remembered paying Barnie a visit, then she had met the door wide opened. She had hesitated, immediately she stepped into it, something crashed into her skull and plunged her into darkness.
    ‘Stay put, I’ll be back’ Barnie winked and closed the door gently behind her. The sight of her sister’s killer feeling caged brought her much joy, she couldn’t wait to dissect her into tiny pieces.
    By now, her friends would notice her absence and they would begin a search, but that would be too late; she had cleaned her house at Tomato Island neatly, nobody could ever trace her to Lagos. The hospital she worked for was very private and had no records on the internet, she was safe here and it would take an eternity for them to locate her.
    She knew Haruna would call, he was her closest friend and colleague, they were the youngest at the hospital. She decided she would dismiss him hurriedly, she needs to torture her captive till her mind was broken and her spirit bent.
    ‘Haruna! Welcome!’ she opened her gate and he drove in.
    ‘Rose, how have you been? You look beautiful, America looks good on you’ he stepped out of the car and gave her a warm hug.
    ‘I am fine Haruna, you too, it’s been so long a time’ she replied.
    ‘Yea, what did you bring back for me’? Haruna hung his arm round her as they both stepped into the house.
    He had been friends with Rose for about two years now, she was a beautiful and kind hearted person and her clients adored her. He had picked an amorous interest in her, but he was scared she wouldn’t feel same for him; Rose was an independent, strong and intelligent woman and a secretive one at that. He knew nothing much about her, it seemed she had put up walls and barricaded herself within it, his desire was to tear down the walls she had enclosed herself.
    ‘Wait here for me’ she winked and left for her bedroom.
    She knew Haruna desired her, but she couldn’t return his feelings. She was an intelligent girl, one of the reasons she knew her sister had been killed without being told. She worked hard and lived off scholarships, that was what helped her get an education. She had put everything in her life on hold, a promise she made to herself. Once Elizabeth was avenged, she would move on.
    He wondered what took Rose so long to return, so he decided to feed his eyes. He never understood her love for yellow, her curtains and furniture were all yellow in colour and it amused him.
    ‘Psycho’ he laughed and caressed her table, the wood was fine and the carver did an excellent job. Once he was done admiring it, his eyes fell on the magazine that lay on it.
    ‘Tomato Island Fundraising dinner’ he read the words on it.
    ‘Interesting’ he muttered. Tomato Island was one of the most famous cities in Nigeria, it wasn’t just the name, but the caliber of people that inhabited it.
    ‘What are you doing’? Barnie resurfaced with a box of chocolates, she had searched her house for the perfect gift. Her heart stopped as she found him going through the bulletin she had read from, the night she had hosted the fund raising dinner.
    ‘This? Have you been to Tomato Island before’ he turned around.
    ‘Yes…No’ she quickly corrected herself.
    ‘Okay, I plan to vacation there next’ she lied.
    ‘Oh, good. We could go together’ he winked and took the box from her.
    ‘Sure, I hear it’s filled with beautiful people’ she smiled.
    ‘Same, excuse me, I have to take this, it’s my dad’ he reached out for his phone.
    ‘He wants me to come home, says it’s urgent’ Haruna drawled.
    ‘Fathers’ Barnie laughed, she thought of the best way to dismiss him.
    ‘I guess it’s the change in Sunshine psychiatry that is working him up’ Haruna sighed. Against his wishes, his father planned to go public, the government offered to buy the hospital and he was willing to sell.
    ‘What change is that’? Barnie asked disinterestedly.
    ‘Well, we are going public; as we speak, the data of all doctors and information on the hospital have been published online. Dad wants to give it to the government’ Haruna explained.
    ‘Are you saying if someone were to find me, they could easily do that on the internet’? her faced paled.
    ‘Yes, see for yourself’ he typed in her name and pressed the search button; seconds later, a picture of her appeared and information about sunshine hospital stood by it.
    ‘No, this can’t happen. This is not good for the hospital, we’ll lose clients’ Barnie was terrified. This meant only one thing, she could easily be found.
    ‘Yes I told him same but he brushed my opinion aside, according to him, mental issues are on the rise, so we need expansion’ Haruna replied.
    ‘It’s still not good, doesn’t justify it at all’ Barnie bit her lip. She felt like screaming, this meant just one thing, she needed to carry out her plans of revenge before she was discovered.
    ‘I have to go now, let me see the old man’ Haruna rose to his feet.
    ‘Send my greetings to him’ Barnie smiled and waved him off.
    ‘I will be sure of that’ he waved back.

    Episode Five

    ‘I will, be sure of that’ he waved back.
    ‘Shit!’ Barnie cursed. There was no time to waste, though she had not used her real name in Tomato island, they could still trace her out, and what about the night she had played hostess? They could get her picture from there.
    ‘Dammit,’ she pounded her fist on the wall as she saw all the failure and cracks in her plan.
    ‘What am I going to do now? I can’t just let her go, they’d find me anyway’ she panicked.
    Then she thought of Elizabeth, she thought of the pain she felt while reading her sister’s diary; she was hurt and rejected by Emeka all because of Ekaette.
    ‘No, I have to finish what I started. I am ready to bear the consequences’ she trudged courageously towards the room where Ekaette was captive.
    He had returned to Uyo successfully and safely; he had uncovered the truth and he would work more on it once he stepped out of the shower.
    The water’s cooling effect helped him to relax; to think and go back in time. He remembered Elizabeth clearly, he wasn’t so sure that the human bones were her but he was sure something bad had occurred and his ex-girlfriend and her two friends knew about it.
    He wrapped a towel round his waist and stepped out of the shower. His television had been turned on the whole time.
    ‘Typical, how sad’ he clicked his tongue. The Police had stormed Barnie Ross’ house and took the dead body away. They had invited the media and declared Barnie Ross a wanted person.
    ‘This isn’t good’ Emeka sighed. It would make the case harder, this Barnie was somewhere with Ekaette, he could bet his life on that and she would be watching this right now.
    He turned the television off and slipped on his clothes. It wasn’t a night of relaxation, he needed to work. He needed to find Barnie before she harmed Ekaette.
    He dropped the dagger and the ruffled papers into a bag and left for his office; it wasn’t too late, he would surely meet with Pete and Bridget. They needed to work very fast.
    ‘Good evening sir, I think the Police are already working on our mystery woman, see her there’ Bridget welcomed him with the latest news.
    ‘In other words, she means we should drop this case since the Police are on it’ Pete murmured.
    ‘No, can’t you see? This is all related to the human bones case?’ He fetched the ruffled papers from the bag and presented it to them.
    ‘What are these’? Bridget stared at the brown faced paper.
    ‘Read it, Barnie killed a woman, I found this in her bedroom’ Emeka explained.
    I FELL IN LOVE WITH EMEKA, KATTIE TOOK HIM AWAY FROM ME. SHE’LL PAY, THOSE THREE WILL PAY. Eliza’s diary, …..
    ‘It doesn’t make sense to me, I think we should forget all of this’ Bridget said.
    ‘It does make sense, can’t you see our boss’ name’? Pete asked.
    ‘Good you took note of that Pete. I have a feeling Elizabeth had done something stupid, Pete, do you mind searching the name, Elizabeth Ross Etim for me’? Emeka requested.
    ‘Sure’ Pete rushed to his system.
    ‘So what’s your theory?’ Bridget asked.
    ‘I found the drunk lady, she is Barnie Ross, but turns out that isn’t her real name. She works with Sunshine Psychiatry and I feel she kidnapped Ekaette Anderson’ Emeka replied.
    ‘I found nothing sir, but there’s a Rose Ross Etim’ Pete stuttered.
    ‘Well, that’s enough for me’ Emeka decided to check Barnie out. She dressed in a doctor’s robe, this showed that she wasn’t a patient, he’d hoped she was a psycho, but she was a doctor.
    ‘I think you’re right Bridget, now the Police have included the media, it’s right for me to bring them in’ Emeka sighed, the puzzle was coming to an end.
    ‘When will you do that’? she asked hopefully.
    ‘Tomorrow, I’ll be questioning Ekaette’s friends, after I am done, I’ll hand over everything to the Police’ he replied.
    A feeling of satisfaction and fulfillment crept up his spine and he pulled a chair and relaxed.
    Bilki had decided to stay with her friend Feyi for the night, she couldn’t stay in her house, she was so terrified; images of a dead Ifeoma replayed in her mind and she found it had to concentrate on other things.
    ‘Here’s a glass of vintage wine, it would help you sleep well’ Feyi dropped a brown bottle and a wine glass before her.
    ‘It would make me sleep but it wouldn’t take the pain I feel away’ Bilkisu sighed and pushed the bottle away.
    ‘What do you want me to do Bilkisu? Since we returned from Barnie’s accursed house, I have been trying to get you in a better mood’ Feyi exhaled briefly.
    ‘The right thing’ Bilkisu said, she had thought deeply and the right thing to do was to confess.
    ‘What exactly is the right thing’? Feyi arched a brow.
    ‘Let’s tell Emeka the truth, there’s no point of denying it anymore, Barnie is Elizabeth’s sister and she came back for revenge; we don’t even know what she has done with Kattie, let’s tell Emeka everything now before it’s too late’ Bilkisu replied.
    ‘I can’t. Don’t you understand Bilki? We stand to lose everything if we tell Emeka what we did that night’ Feyi rose to her feet.
    ‘Lose everything? I have already lost my peace, my sanity, what’s more, to lose? I need to have a clear conscience, I have carried this burden for too long, if you are not ready to walk this walk with me, then I would tell Emeka everything’ Bilkisu replied.
    ‘How about me? I know Timi cheated on me and has not been the best husband but how would he see me? He thinks I am an angel, now I have secrets, I can’t let him or anyone else see me that way’ Feyi scoffed.
    ‘I thought Ekaette was the only selfish person but you’re just like her, this information we’re holding could be her saving grace, please Feyi let us speak to someone’ Bilkisu begged.
    ‘No, I can’t’ Feyi replied.
    ‘What exactly are you guys hiding’? Timi stepped into the room, he’d been eavesdropping. Maggie had told him his wife and Bilki may be hiding something, he had hoped to stumble on Feyi’s secret.
    She had not bothered preparing dinner as they had both lost their appetite after such a tiring day.
    ‘I brought this upon myself’ Tom felt the weight of everything that had happened.
    ‘How is this your fault’? Maggie shifted closer to his side of the bed.
    ‘Maybe I should have waited for Timi like we planned, but I ran off and bought the land myself. Now a can of numerous worms has been opened, I doubt if I’ll ever work on that land, even if I succeed, how many Nigerians would like to buy a property where human bones were discovered’? Tom said.
    ‘Honey, you’re being too hard on yourself; once this case is over, everything would return to normal’ Maggie kissed him on the head.
    Her husband had returned to her, maybe it was a good thing Ekaette Anderson was out of the way; what was the point of helping the detective when her arch enemy was out?
    ‘Honestly Maggie, I have lost hope in that land, maybe we should go somewhere far from here, take a rest and return after a month when all these die off’ Tom suggested. They had watched T.V that night and the news of Ifeoma’s death was all over the place.
    ‘Wait, are you proposing a vacation’? Maggie asked filled with surprise, when had her husband turned this romantic?

    Episode Six

    ‘Wait, are you proposing a vacation’? Maggie asked filled with surprise, when had her husband turned this romantic?
    ‘Yes, we should go away for a while’ Tom nodded.
    ‘And what about the case? The detective asked us to meet with him.
    ‘Well, we can provide all the information he needs on phone, let’s do this Maggie’ he kissed her lips.
    ‘Okay, Okay, this is so exciting, how about Timi, should we tell them? Won’t it seem like we’re running away’? Maggie asked.
    ‘We’ll text him, it’s our business’ Tom was glad to see her excited.
    ‘I love you honey’ she smiled and gazed into his eyes.
    ‘I am very sorry I slept with Ekaette and all those women, I did it to get back at you for keeping such a huge secret from me’ he replied.
    ‘I didn’t mean to, I was so scared you’d leave me’ Maggie was touched that he showed remorse for his past actions.
    ‘It’s alright, we’ll get a surrogate’ Tom nodded and put his arms round her.
    ‘Thanks, baby’ Maggie wept on his shoulder.
    ‘Timi’! Feyi gasped and swirled round to see her husband.
    ‘Go on, tell me everything, what are you hiding’? he asked coolly.
    ‘Nothing’ Feyi forced a smile then focused her eyes on Bilkisu, warning her to stay quiet.
    ‘I know I hurt you deeply and I am very sorry, seeing that dead woman today propelled me into thinking about so many things. I myself isn’t innocent, I hit you and that led to the loss of our babies; I buried myself in work and ambition and forgot about you, I even slept with your friend Ekaette, please forgive me but I need you to let me in Feyi. Maggie told me you guys shared something secret and I have been standing outside that door and I know it is deadly. Please tell me Feyi, I see the fear in your eyes’ he begged.
    ‘I can’t believe this, you only want to hear it because Ekaette’s life is involved’ Feyi felt more hurt than ever.
    ‘No darling, I want to save you, save us all. I am sorry I slept with her in the first place, I don’t know what came over me but I promise I wouldn’t do it again’ he knelt on the cold marble floor begging for forgiveness.
    ‘Let’s tell him Feyi, let’s tell him before it’s too late’ Bilki whispered into her ears.
    ‘I can’t, how do I begin’? Feyi cried.
    ‘Don’t cry my love, please talk to me’ Timi rose to her comfort.
    ‘It all happened about ten years ago, we were three friends and there was a fourth person, she squatted with us and something terrible happened….’ Bilkisu took time and explained in details what had transpired that night.
    ‘Ekaette killed her? I can’t believe you guys kept such a secret for so long’ Timi was shocked to his marrow. Tom had been right, all women had secrets.
    ‘Yes, she had no choice, it would’ve been her if she didn’t kill Elizabeth’ Feyi chipped in weakly.
    ‘Why didn’t you report to the authorities when she threatened Ekaette’? Timi asked.
    ‘We thought she was bluffing’ Feyi replied.
    ‘You’re sure this Barnie Ross is related to Elizabeth’? he held his breath for the answer.
    ‘Yes and she must have kidnapped Ekaette, we need to tell the detective the truth, he needs to know before that crazy bitch does something to hurt our friend’ Bilkisu replied.
    ‘I can’t do this Timi, I cannot be involved like this’ Feyi took her stand.
    ‘But we need to help your friend, this Barnie lady is as crazy as her sister and if she isn’t handled right, she’ll still return to hurt you. You’d never live a peaceful life, you’d always be looking over your shoulder’ he replied.
    ‘I am scared Timi, I am so scared’ tears welled up in her eyes.
    ‘It’s okay baby, I got you’ he drew her gently into him and kissed her head.
    ‘He is right Feyi, we have no choice but to tell Emeka the truth’ Bilkisu replied.
    ‘And what of jail? What we did was criminal’ Feyi pulled her head from Timi’s chest, had they considered that part?
    Timi was quiet for a while as he remembered the terms the contract with Emeka had stated.

    He had carefully explained that he would turn all the culprits over to the police, without fear nor favor. What then would happen to his wife?
    ‘I would tell him, take all the blame and exempt you, if that’s what you want’ Bilkisu said.
    ‘How can you do that Bilkisu? We are all guilty, maybe we should run out of here, till all this is over’ she gestured with her hand.
    ‘You are right Feyi, we could go to jail for this, that’s why I think you should listen to me. I’ll go to Emeka and explain everything to him, even if it means going to jail. I have already lost everything but look at you, you still have Timi and you could have more kids. Let me do this Feyi, I am glad you finally confessed’ Bilkisu was ready to do anything for her friends and for Ifeoma, she yearned for vengeance.
    ‘Are you sure about this Bilki’? Timi pressed her petite frame with his large hands on her shoulder blade.
    ‘Yes, just travel somewhere with her, I’ll explain everything to Emeka’ she nodded.
    ‘Thanks very much, thanks for doing this’ Timi hugged her.
    ‘Thank you Bilki’ Feyi joined.
    ‘You’re welcome’ a tear slid from her eyes, all she wanted was peace; even if the cost of getting it meant going to jail.
    He had just finished taking dinner and decided to relax by watching television. His eyes strayed to the wall clock and he wondered what kept his son out so late.
     He stretched out his full length on the sofa and turned on the television; working on the expansion of Sunshine Psychiatry was weighing heavily on him; it was an exhilarating procedure.
    ‘What have we…’ he passed through many channels till he settled on one which had “Breaking News” written all over it.
    His eyes went to the young woman in the picture, wasn’t that Dr. Rose Ross or was it some striking resemblance?
    ‘Barnie Ross’ he muttered the name beside the photograph. He struggled to his feet and moved nearer to the television screen; he needed to be sure his eyes weren’t deceiving him.
    ‘What’s going on dad? Having a bad eye day’? Haruna strolled into the room. He wondered why his father was so near the television.
    ‘Come here son, come over here, maybe my eyes are deceiving me’ the old man beckoned to his son.
    ‘What’s that dad’? Haruna obeyed.
    ‘Read this, loud and clear’ he pointed at the screen.
    ‘Isn’t this Rose, what is she doing here’? Haruna quickly bent and read the words aloud.
    ‘I knew it! from the first day I set my eyes on that young woman, I knew there was something off about her. She is a murderer’ the man hissed.
    ‘This isn’t happening’ Haruna felt weak.
    The police had declared her a “wanted’ person, she had disappeared mysteriously and a dead woman was found in her house in Tomato Island.
    ‘Why would she go by another name? if the public somehow stumbles on the fact that this “Barnie Ross” is a doctor at Sunshine Psychiatry, it would be a bad dent on us, an unfixable one’ the man paced the room nervously. How could this happen?
    ‘I find this very hard to believe, but something strange happened while I paid her a visit’ Haruna paused, he remembered the Magazine he’d read in her house.
    ‘What son’?
    ‘I found a magazine of Tomato Island, she seemed evasive about it but I discarded it as nothing’ he explained.

    Episode Seven

    ‘I found a magazine of Tomato Island, she seemed evasive about it but I discarded it as nothing’ he explained.
    ‘Why do I have a feeling Rose has not been overseas this past one month? What if she had been in Tomato Island all these while’? the man wondered.
    ‘What if she’s being framed? Surely she has no reason to kill, she is a doctor, young and successful woman, why would she murder someone in cold blood’? Haruna was still shocked.
    ‘This isn’t time for questions; we need to offer the Police a deal. If we find a way to deliver Rose into their hands because it seems they don’t have a clue she is a doctor. If we can do that, maybe they’ll hide the fact that she was working with us. I hope you understand why we must do this’ he asked his son.
    ‘Yes. If the public gets to know that one of our doctors did something like that, then they would lose faith in the whole lot of us’ Haruna replied.
    What he’d just read on the T.V screen had refused to sink down, how could Rose be a murderer? She looked so angelic and innocent; she could harm no one, what was happening?
    ‘I would call the Police and offer them a deal myself’ his father said.
    ‘But how about Barnie or Rose? What if she discovers she is a wanted person and runs off’? Haruna asked.
    ‘That’s why we must hurry’ the old man replied.
     ‘I just hope we know what we’re doing’ Haruna muttered and left for his room.
    She was hungry and was growing weaker by the moment, what reason did Barnie have to kidnap her? to humiliate her like this?
    She struggled with the chains, groaned in impatience ‘God have mercy on me’ ears filled her eyes.
    She had no fight left in her, she thought about Tomato island, all the people she’d left behind; she thought about her fashion line, what would become of all her years of hard work?
    ‘Maybe God is punishing me’ she cried.
    ‘I’m sure of it, I slept with Tom and Timi, I was selfish and inconsiderate, maybe this is my judgment’ she muttered weakly.
    ‘I see, you’re awake now’ Barnie sauntered into the room where she had kept her captive.
    ‘What the hell do you want from me, Barnie’? Ekaette asked.
    ‘It seems you don’t recognize me at all, how ironic when you were the one to give me her diary and belongings. Such a short memory eh’?
    ‘What are you talking about? Who are you’? Ekaette stared intently at her face.
    ‘Think again. Does the name “Miss Koi-Koi” mean anything to you’? Barnie caressed the gun in her pocket. She was losing interest in this question and answer session, maybe she could just put a bullet straight into her head.
    ‘Miss Koi Koi’? fear gripped Ekaette as memories of Elizabeth came alive in her mind. Slowly, each veil of non-recognition faded and she realized just how striking the resemblance was between Barnie and Elizabeth.
    ‘Rose’? Ekaette shivered, she remembered the little girl that came looking for her sister, shortly after that they’d packed out of the house.
    ‘Yes, it is I. You remember now don’t you’? Barnie chuckled mischievously.
    ‘Please don’t do anything stupid, don’t kill me, I didn’t hurt your sister, she started it, she threatened my life’ words rushed out of her mouth.
    ‘Hey, chill okay? I know you very well, I’ve studied you for years and I know for sure that you’re a pathological liar so keep quiet. You killed my sister and your friends helped you cover it up, then you all went on living happy and I suffered the pain’ her voice broke as she recalled living without her sister.
    ‘Please Barnie listen to me, Elizabeth had a crush on my boyfriend Emeka, I warned her against it and she got pissed and accused me of stealing him from her. She attacked me one night with a dagger, what was I supposed to do? Your sister was a crazy person, I swear Barnie, I didn’t kill her on purpose. She came at me first’ Ekaette explained hoping she’d listen.
    “Your sister was a crazy person, you still have nerves” Barnie stared at her with disgust.
    ‘I am sorry but you need to believe me. I swear Barnie’ Ekaette replied.
    ‘Just shut up, I am glad you have said it all, you killed Elizabeth, you and your little friends always felt better than her. You made her feel low, unloved and unworthy of any goodness life had to offer. But I am here to change that now, I am here for vengeance and it starts with you’ Barnie pulled the gun she’d been harboring in her pocket.
    ‘Please Barnie, don’t hurt me. Forgive me please’ Ekaette cried.
    ‘Unfortunately, “Forgiveness” is a word I don’t quite understand. I am doing this for Elizabeth, now my sister can rest in peace’ she pointed the gun at Ekaette ready to shoot.
    Her phone rung loudly and she took a break.
    ‘I’ll be back for you’ she muttered as she read the caller identity, it was her colleague Haruna, what did he want this time?
    ‘Good evening Haruna’ she whispered patiently.
    ‘Evening Rose’ Haruna replied.
    Something was definitely wrong, she could feel it in his voice; had something bad happened to his dad?
    ‘Are you okay Haruna? You sound troubled’ she said.
    ‘Barnie…please tell me you didn’t do it, please tell me you’re not a murderer, give me something to believe in’ Haruna whispered through the phone. He just couldn’t come in terms with the fact that she was a murderer.
    That did it, that was enough to scare her, why would he address her as ‘Barnie’?
    ‘What did you just call me’? she whispered in a shaky voice. Had the police found her? how was that possible? She had covered her tracks pretty well.
    ‘Haven’t, you seen the news? You’re all over it. Please say something’ he begged.
    ‘Excuse me Haruna, I really have to go now’ she broke the call and rushed towards her Plasma screen.
    ‘No, no, no’ she swallowed hard as she remembered the night she had played hostess. That had been the biggest flaw in her plan and now she would pay for it.
    The Police would be on the lookout for her, it meant only one thing. This was the end of the road for her, but she was happy, at least she’d avenge her sister too.
    ‘It’s a good thing we’re leaving, Tom and Maggie are leaving too’ Timi helped her pack their things.
    ‘Why? How?’ Feyi was startled.
    ‘He texted me’ Timi replied and moved their things to the car. He was happy his wife had forgiven him, but he wasn’t okay with them leaving Bilki behind.
    ‘Are you sure about this’? Timi turned and faced her.
    ‘I am, just go, I’ll keep in touch’ Bilkisu replied.
    ‘Alright dear, take care of you’ Feyi warmed her body with a hug; they said their goodbyes, kissed and parted ways.
    ‘I can do this, all for you Ifeoma’ Bilkisu slid into her car, she had to tell Emeka everything.
    Emeka had invited the Police, he would surrender his findings as they agreed to let him work with them; they had a common enemy now and she was hidden somewhere, they needed to find her.
    ‘You said the D.P.O would be here, what’s taking him that long’? Bridget asked as she arranged his office.
    ‘I don’t know, but I invited him, I told him I could help, maybe he doesn’t trust me enough’ Emeka replied.
    ‘I still can’t believe Tom and Timi would bail out on me, what if they are hiding something’? Emeka was still shocked at the text messages he’d received from his clients.

    Episode Eight

    ‘I still can’t believe Tom and Timi would bail out on me, what if they are hiding something’? Emeka was still shocked at the text messages he’d received from his clients.
    People didn’t just wake up and give up on a case, there had to be a reason; maybe they knew something about Barnie, something he was yet to discover. He decided to await the arrival of the Police Chief, only then would he know the right decision to take.
    ‘Seems not all of them disappeared’ Bridget muttered as she sighted Bilkisu from outside.
    ‘What’s that’? Emeka followed her gaze. He was surprised to see her here, what was she doing here?
    Bilkisu took a deep breath, preparing herself for whatever awaited her once she spilled her guts to Emeka; she was doing it for her friend Ekaette too; they didn’t need some magician to tell them Barnie had nothing to do with her disappearance. Barnie was related to Elizabeth and she had returned to avenge her sister by hurting them.
    ‘I am here to see Mr. Emeka Peters’ she pursed her lips as she perused her environment.
    ‘Bilkisu? Please come on in’ Emeka rose to receive her.
    ‘Nice place you got here’ she tried to calm her nerves.
    ‘Thanks, where’s Feyi?’ he asked.
    ‘Well, something came up and she needed to travel urgently’ Bilkisu licked her lips nervously; she wasn’t a very good liar.
    ‘Okay, so are you ready to help me? Are you ready to provide meaningful data that could help me find your friend’? Emeka fetched his jotter from the drawer close to him.
    He had already established a theory, all he needed was confirmation.
    ‘Yes, I am ready to do this’ Bilkisu nodded an answer.
    ‘Let’s start with this, have you seen this before’? he rose to his feet and reached for the dagger that came with the human remains.
    He unwrapped the blade slowly and dropped it before her.
    Bilkisu stared at the object in terror, how had he come by it? it had been ten years but many things tied to that night was still fresh in her memory.
    ‘How did you get this’? she stuttered in shock.
    ‘Found it along human bones close to hall forever, if your memory is still as sharp as mine, I believe you and your friends lived there’ he said.
    This was all he needed, he sensed her fear and tied it to the dagger he held. She knew something.
    ‘Talk to me Bilki, answer my question. You said you could do this’ he cut in impatiently.
    ‘Yes, I have seen it. I was so scared, I wished we had reported it to the police but we were confused and scared’ a tear slipped on her cheeks.
    ‘Report what to the police’? Emeka asked.
    ‘Elizabeth’s death’ she retorted and he paled.
    ‘Elizabeth claimed you were her boyfriend and began to threaten Ekaette, we ignored her at first, then one night, she attacked her with the dagger in your hand, but Ekaette defended herself and stabbed her in the belly; she must have punctured a major organ as Elizabeth bled profusely. She gave up the ghost and we cleaned the mess and buried her close to hall forever’ Bilkisu explained.
    ‘Oh my God, you guys committed a crime, you should’ve reported to the school authorities or the police, now you’ve soiled yourselves’ Emeka was disappointed. So Ekaette and her two friends had conspired against Elizabeth? Now he had his facts, it all made sense now.
    Elizabeth was the dead girl; Barnie was her sister who had come for revenge.
    ‘I am sorry Emeka, we had no choice, can’t you see? This was all Elizabeth’s fault. We had to defend our friend’ Bilki cried.
    ‘Do you realize you could go to jail for this? You kept this for ten years, it doesn’t matter if Elizabeth had been the one to threaten you or attack you; what matters is that you killed her and you buried her. That is a crime’ Emeka explained.
    ‘I am ready to pay for our sins, just do anything to get Ekaette away from that crazy woman. I would pay the price’ Bilkisu replied. She knew it would come to this and she had come prepared.
    Her father was a wealthy man and could afford the best lawyers the world could ever have, she wasn’t terrified of court proceedings; she only cared for her friend.
    ‘Pay? What about Feyi who abandoned you’? Emeka scoffed.
    ‘She didn’t abandon me,  I chose this for myself’ Bilkisu replied adamantly.
    ‘Well then, once I hand my findings to the police, anything could happen Bilki; but I don’t want you to hate me for it, I am only doing my job’ he reached out and touched her hands.
    ‘I understand Emeka and I bear no grudge against you, just get Ekaette out of Barnie’s grip alive’ she replied.
    ‘Excuse me sir, the Director of Police is here with his boys, they say there’s a twist and need to see you urgently’ Bridget leaned by the door announcing the presence of another guest.
    ‘I’ll see you later Bilki, you can wait outside for me, thanks for your time’ he offered her a smile.
    ‘Welcome’ Bilkisu nodded and trotted out of his office. Only when she had confessed to Emeka, did she realize how burdensome it was to harbor a dark and dirty secret.
    She felt lighter and free, she prayed within her that Ekaette would be safe.
    ‘Good morning sir, welcome’ Emeka rose to receive the police chief.
    ‘Morning detective, I hear you have something that may help us but I have something even better’ the man wore a confident smile.
    ‘Well then, let’s hear yours first’ Emeka returned the smile.
    ‘A man called the station, he’s offering us a deal. It turns out that our mystery murderer, Miss Barnie is actually a medical doctor practicing in a private firm. Her boss, one professor Adams has ratted her out but in exchange for something,’ the man paused as if he sought Emeka’s approval.
    ‘What could that be’? Emeka arched his brow; he had not expected them to have such a breakthrough.
    ‘We’ll keep his hospital name out of it, meaning, when we finally catch this woman, we’ll hide the fact that she is a medical doctor from the public; I myself understand  where this man is coming from; if the public gets to know that hospital employed a lunatic doctor, it would affect Clientele patronage’
    ‘It’s a good deal, maybe we should take it’ Emeka was happy, at least they would get to see Ekaette.
    ‘Yes, I have mobilized my boys already; you can go with them, on a helicopter to Lagos. We need to act fast before this woman escapes’ the D.P.O advised.
    ‘Alright then sir, I believe my side of the story can wait, this is more important’ Emeka rose to his feet.
    He had a reason for keeping his findings to himself, thankfully, someone had sold Barnie out, that would spare him the agony of turning Bilkisu and her friends over to the Police.
    ‘Good, see you later then’ they shook hands.
    ‘Where are you off to’? Bridget noticed he was in a rush.
    ‘To find Barnie of course, she has been spotted’ he replied.
    ‘Emeka are you sure about this? She killed Ifeoma, she could be very dangerous’ Bilkisu was worried.
    ‘I’ll be fine, just stay cool and pray for us’ he patted her shoulder and trotted out.
    Episode 9 (Final)
    ‘I’ll be fine, just stay cool and pray for us’ he patted her shoulder and trotted out.
    Her eyes were glued to the television screen; she had stared at it for hours now; lost and confused.
    She was declared “wanted” and the moment she stepped out of the house, she was quite sure someone would recognize her; she decided to do what the little voice in her head was whispering to her.
    ‘What do you think you’re doing Barnie? Please release me, I didn’t kill your sister deliberately’ Ekaette cried.
    ‘Shut up bitch, one more word from you, I’d smash your lips open with this’ she pointed the gun at her.
    She needed to end this once and for all, after all, what was life without a family? No happiness, no one to love or care about; it was just empty and void. She needed to join her sister.
    She decorated the room with yellow shoes, yellow fabrics and lit two candles; one for her sister and one for her.
    A feeling of happiness and satisfaction crept up her neck, even if she couldn’t get to the other girls, she was confident that her sister would be happy she had gotten the main culprit.
    ‘Barnie…’ tears trickled down Ekaette’s cheeks. There was this cold and distant look in Barnie’s eyes and it scared her. Would she kill her? she wished she could scream for help? She wished help would come. But even if it did, no one could find her here; she wondered if she’ll be missed in Tomato Island.
    ‘Now, let us play a little game’ Barnie dropped a box on the table and pulled two revolvers from it.
    ‘What game’? Ekaette asked.
    ‘Survival of the fittest, I want the last part of our lives to be interesting, here’s your gun’ Barnie offered her one and loosened her chains.
    ‘I’ll turn off the lights here and we’ll shoot at each other in the darkness, whoever kills first is the winner and may walk out alive’ Barnie explained the rules.
    ‘You don’t have to do this Barnie, just let me go’ Ekaette begged.
    ‘I will not yet’ she picked her gun and fired it into Ekaette’s knee cap.
    ‘No!’ Ekaette screamed, the pain was excruciating, it was too much for her to bear.
    ‘Your time starts now’ Barnie rushed and blew out the candles, leaving them in a thick black maze of confusion.
    ‘Help me Lord’ Ekaette tried to steady herself.
    She scanned the darkness and searched frantically for Barnie, but she seemed invisible. This was her only chance to escape and she wouldn’t make a mess out of it.
    She closed her eyes, steadied her breath and crouched on the floor; that’s when she sensed it. The fragrance of Barnie’s perfume, without warning, without holding back, she pulled the trigger and Barnie screamed.
    ‘Yes, yes, I did it’ she groaned as she crawled. She needed to find the door; blood rushed in her veins and poured out in her knee, the place Barnie had shot her.
    If only she could step outside, she’d see someone that would help her.
    ‘Yes, Yes’ she whispered excitedly as her face crashed into the wooden door. It was time for her to return home. Freedom had paid her a visit and had come to take her home.
    She fingered the door knob and the door parted slightly. She inhaled deeply as a flash of sunlight stung her eyes and she quickly lowered her gaze to the ground; she smiled and crawled harder. She spotted a phone on Barnie’s center table, if she could get to it, she’d call her friends to help her. She still had their numbers.
    She stretched her left hand and reached for the phone; blood trailed behind her. As she was about to dial Feyi’s number, a bullet crossed her brain and she lay dead.
    ‘Goodbye to all of us’ Barnie groaned. Ekaette had shot her belly, blood gushed out profusely and she knew deep down she wouldn’t survive it; so what was the point of bleeding to death? That was a long process.
    She lifted the gun to her head and pulled the trigger. She was dead.
    Blood trickled on the marble floor, a big and empty house with blood as the only occupant.
    Emeka rushed into the compound as was described by the Professor who’d given information on Barnie Ross.
    ‘Are you sure it’s the house’? Emeka asked one of the police men that came along with him.
    ‘Yes, as was described’ the man nodded.
    ‘Good. Here’s what we’ll do, we go In there, spring a surprise attack on her, but our major aim is to take her and her captive alive, is that clear’? he instructed.
    ‘Yes sir’ they all replied and rushed into Barnie’s apartment.
    A weight of uncertainty hung in the atmosphere as Emeka approached the door, the police were scattered all over the premises. He prayed this worked out, he prayed Ekaette would remain safe.
    ‘Sir! Over here, something is off’ one of the men called out to him.
    ‘What’s that’? he fetched his gun.
      ‘ The Door’s open, seems she’s gone already, maybe she knew we were looking for her’ the man pointed at the door.
    ‘Well, we’ll have to find out’ Emeka pushed past him and ran inside the house.
    Everything seemed in order, the chairs were well arranged, floors sparkled; nothing was left out of place but he still felt that darkness; something eerie drawing to him, calling out his name.
    ‘Dr. Rose or whatever you call yourself, you need to come out now, it’s too late for you’ he announced as he searched deeper.
    There was no response, just dead silence.
    Maybe the police man was right, maybe Barnie had escaped, but wouldn’t that be foolhardy? She was a wanted person.
    It was blurry at first, like a figment of his imagination, then the wave of uncertainty cleared and he was left with a river of blood rushing down towards him.
    ‘Sweet lord, what the hell’? he swallowed hard and followed the trail of red liquid.
    ‘No….Ekaette, No, Barnie…’ he rushed and stared at the corpses of the two women he’d been looking for.
    ‘We found something’ one of the police men yelled to the others.
    ‘Oops, this doesn’t look good’ the man paused as he stared at the grotesque scene.
    ‘Call your D.P.O and tell him about this, this case is over’ Emeka inhaled deeply, what else could he possibly pursue after this?
    Barnie had carried out her revenge on Ekaette, she was gone and so was anything related to her.
    It would be useless to resurrect Elizabeth’s case; it was all over for them.
    ‘Yes sir’ he fetched his walkie -talkie.
    ‘I can’t believe a year is gone since Kattie died’ Feyi whispered softly as they took a stroll.
    ‘Me too, I wish that never happened, I miss her too’ Bilkisu replied in a shaky voice. It was like a dream that she could lose her friend in a twinkle of an eye, but who could blame Barnie? She was doing what she thought was right.
    ‘Emeka really saved our asses, we would’ve been rotting in jail by now, we owe him one’ Feyi said.
    She had returned to Tomato island with Timi after the case had been resolved; the same couldn’t be said for Tom and Maggie; their vacation was still ongoing and he had abandoned the land he’d bought totally.
    ‘Yes we do, but I am happy we’re no longer carrying a secret, we’re living our lives now’ Bilkisu smiled as a little girl who sold flowers offered her one.
    ‘Thanks, honey, your roses smell beautiful’ she offered the girl a naira note in exchange for a rose.
    ‘Yes, I just wished Ekaette didn’t lose her life, I forgave her for sleeping with Timi’ Feyi retorted.
    ‘Well, I guess it’s time for us to move on, she would’ve wanted us to’ Bilkisu replied.
    ‘Yes, we have to move on, Just like they say:  “when life leaves you with only lemons, make a lemonade”.
    They held each other’s hands and continued their stroll round the city of Tomato Island.
    The End

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