A Tchaikovsky number complemented the mellow aura that parcelled the burgundy Lexus LS600h parked at Lot B in the Phoenix Luxury Resort; the country’s first and sole resort ranked amongst the world’s 100 most luxurious holiday spots.
Bolu appreciated the splendour of the resort but wasn’t awed by it. The music emanating from the vehicle’s media player dock went past the second minute and half mark. “Seven minutes” he muttered before closing his eyes and reclining the seat slightly to a rest position.
Toba made it to the elevator same time with an employee on his way to the presidential suite atop the 16 storey building. “For me?” he jovially asked, his face looking down with his right hand in the pocket. The employee replied smiling, “then you’re lodged in the suite.”
Just the confirmation he needed. A glance at his wristwatch in countdown mode told Toba he had exactly seven minutes. “Okay man” he began, revealing a gun from his suit, which was now pointed to the employee’s trepidated face, “you’ll live only if you perch beneath the cloth and stay quiet… ” Toba waited two seconds… “well?? Get under!”
The terrified hostage became a zombie, ‘surely he can’t be thinking of robbing us’ he thought as the elevator went up. “Hold that for me” Toba said, disrupting the employee’s thoughts by dropping his suit beneath. Then he put the gun on the trolley, got a second gun from a special zipper pocket of his pants and placed both beneath a branded face towel of the resort.
Forty seconds gone and Toba, now looking like an employee, emerged at the top floor with just a door there 10 feet from the elevator. A dark, mid-thirties man with a fairly athletic physique stood at the door and Toba was with him after 13 seconds. “White wine for the ambassador.” he uttered.
The door opened after a five second visual evaluation from the bodyguard. On another day, the floor would have at least four of him doing their best imitation of Mr. Anderson but today, a Thursday usually of low activity at the resort, only one wanna-be was enough.
Toba thought of this in the three seconds he entered the suite and the door was closed behind him. ‘Just under six minutes left’ Toba registered mentally. “White wine for you sir” he spoke to the plush, lavender scented suite. A feminine voice replied “In here”. Unexpected. A slight complication.
He released the safety a gun and followed where his instinct said the voice came from. Six seconds went by and on the seventh he came upon the voice’s source, a not so fair woman… Toba looked again, ‘must be 20 at most’ he thought.
She’d just worn a robe when he put two wine glasses on a stool at the foot of the kingsize bed. That’s when he spotted the ambassador’s left foot with a glance, resting awkwardly.
At twenty-five seconds to five more minutes, a sharp white pain ripped through his left shoulder and stopped his right hand’s motion with the silencer gun, ‘no way’ he thought, staggering down to the plush Arab rug thus, a cushioned fall.
Toba hadn’t recovered himself when the gun was kicked out of his right hand. She was on him now and let more pain rip through his shoulder and get to his chest this time with a heartless turn of the knife in the wound.
‘And he’s about to climax listening to crap music?!’ thought Toba as he heaved her off him with both knees. He got his second gun from the trolley and shot for her heart.
Toba missed his shot and only injured the young woman in the left arm as she’d swung a knife at him the moment he shot at her. The knife made a thud on hitting the bathroom door behind Toba.
Out of knives; he was an unexpected guest, she made for the door to the suite. He smiled at her bit of inexperience as he shot her in the back. It was her though that smiled as she fell onto the glass table, shattering through it to her death and attracting the bodyguard’s attention.
Toba felt stupid as he made for his first gun laying where she’d thrown her last knife from. A bullet whizzed over his bent back, ‘this won’t be painful’ he thought, sarcastic, as he stood and shot the bodyguard in the head in one motion before stumbling to the rug in the next motion. A second bullet had grazed his hurting left shoulder and made a hole in the window behind him.
A minute and forty-nine seconds, “thank God for elevators” he muttered as he lifted the trolley’s cover slightly to pick his suit, then got a mobile phone from his right pocket and dialled the only number on the dialled numbers’ list. Bolu checked his countdown and pushed a button to bring the Lexus’ engine to life, not that one would notice the ‘life’ under the hood.
Toba made it to the lobby with twenty-seven seconds left. He’d worn his suit, left the resort employee still shivering in fear under the trolley and wiped his hands and moist face with the face towel on his way down. Both guns were now placed in their respective special zipper pockets.
With much effort at calming himself, he walked through the lobby, past the unassuming the receptionists before smiling at the doorman and getting to the vehicle waiting for him with door ajar.
They killed the countdown at four seconds. “Dead or alive when you got there?” Bolu asked. “Dead… ” Toba replied before rephrasing ” …knived actually. Pretty agile girl!” Bolu chuckled, “just like the fourth k… ” but Toba cut him short, “let’s just go already” to which Bolu obliged, albeit with another chuckle.
A timed message expired on Bolu’s phone mounted on a stand two minutes after they left the resort, “Ambassador’s killers assasinated”. A reply came half a minute later, “Great work Jade. Will be in touch”.
“Unless HR thinks you’re Jade, this message isn’t right.” said Bolu. Toba picked the phone from the stand and read the message, his countenance became that of slight concern. “Jump out now!” he exclaimed before jumping onto the road. Bolu followed suit without thinking, just in time to watch the Lexus blow up.
Bolu looked behind and saw Toba lying lifeless by the pavement. Withstanding the pain from shards of glass lodged on his back, Bolu made it to Toba’s side and placed a detective’s badge on the road before making his way into the night…