“Probed” is a science fiction concept with a Nigerian setting about five extraordinary children trying to live ordinary lives. I hope you enjoy reading the story as much as I love writing it!
Would you believe it?
If I told you I was abducted
By prioritized responsibilities and an unbalanced schedule?
You’d forgive that-
If i told you you’re all appreciated
for your support of my writing… an indispensable life module.
Hahaha forgive my crappy poem and short chapter. I’ll do better in the future!
“Hello Richard! Are you having a party or something?” Chief Benson said, still sporting his plastic grin even after seeing Ronke before she could hide behind Muyiwa. “Ronke darling! You didn’t tell me you were going to be here today!”
“Good afternoon sir.” She said awkwardly, trying hard not to glance at Muyiwa. Her heart was thumping fast. They had not found time to discuss what she knew about her father, and only God knew what he had up his sleeves to show up at his place, especially since from their last encounter it did not seem as if he had known where they lived. A lot of thoughts were running through her head so fast it was making her dizzy. She unconsciously leaned on the nearest person for support, and it turned out to be Mustapha. He didn’t react to her action, probably assuming her nervousness was from probably coming over for the weekend without telling her dad.
“Chief Benson! I had no idea that you’re coming over today…” Richard said with a wary smile, trying to conceal his distress at the sight of the man in front of the house. “As a matter of fact I had no idea you knew where I lived.”
Chief Benson laughed heartily, but it sounded far from genuine. “Forget about that Richard… we need to talk, but I see this is not a good time. Maybe later?”
“We can talk now if you want, let’s just go into my study so we can discuss privately.” Richard offered, and the chief responded with a curt nod. “Let’s go inside everyone.”
Muyiwa turned to his brother to find Ronke groping his arm nervously. He tried to give her a reassuring smile, but she didn’t notice.
“Nneka please serve some food for Chief Benson.” Richard instructed. “Carry on with the party everyone… we’d be back soon.”
Everyone went back to the living room, but a bit of tension that couldn’t be explained was in the air, and only those who knew the truth about the Chief could understand the apprehension. Lillian could also sense Ronke was uncomfortable at seeing her father. She drew the young lady close before they could go into the living room.
“Richard never told me your father was one of his clients.” Lillian said quietly. “It seems Muyiwa was in on it too.”
Ronke nodded slowly, and gave Lillian an apologetic look.
“Why didn’t you tell him you were coming?”
Ronke smiled nervously. “My dad is remarried and I live with my mother. She knows I’m here.”
Lillian gave her a warm smile. “That’s good to know… that your mum knows you’re here, that is.”
Ronke found herself stifling back a laugh. At least she didn’t have to lie to get out of anything.
While Lillian and Ms. Olisa chatted away, Muyiwa and his siblings excused themselves from their guests as soon as Nneka was done serving chief Benson. They intended on keeping their discussions till after the party but it seemed the stories kept piling up the more they postponed.
They all filed silently into Muyiwa’s room, everyone bearing the burden of their secrets. Even Mustapha wore his guilt on his face, even though Aisha is the only one that knew what had happened. Abiye was the most impassive, even more than Aisha— Nneka envied the feeling of liberation.
“We shouldn’t be here long… we have guests.” Muyiwa said, striking the side of his hand against his palm. “So let’s get straight to it.”
Nneka let out an impassive sigh and decided to go first. “I didn’t think it was a big deal for me to mention that I was a year older. I mean, he doesn’t know I am.”
“Aisha dropped some dishes and I used super speed to get them… and Sade saw.”
Nneka’s eyes widened, but composed herself before speaking. “I’m worried Michael might get hooked on the complex real fast… that’s why I haven’t been making conversation with him.”
It was Muyiwa’s turn to widen his eyes. “Mustapha and I got ambushed while on an errand from dad and they were sent by Ronke’s dad.”
Aisha and Abiye widened their eyes, and Nneka gasped.
“Mummy doesn’t know about this.” Muyiwa said, casting a warning glance at Nneka. “So let’s leave it to dad to tell her.”
“Does Ronke know?”
Muyiwa nodded, taking the opportunity to clear any rising suspicion about his girlfriend. “She found out and told me about it, but I had already known by then. It was those series of events that prompted me telling her… our secret.”
“So what is he doing here?”
Mustapha let his shoulder slump. “Hopefully dad will find out… the chief will definitely not try anything here, but only God knows what is up that man’s sleeve.”
“We should get back.” Aisha mentioned quietly, and her siblings nodded in agreement.
Richard silently watched Chief Benson while he ate, apprehension rising with every passing second. He folded his hands and leaned against his desk as he looked on.
“Richard… it is rude to stare; I’m sure you have been told.” Chief Benson said, finally breaking the ice as he wiped his mouth with a paper napkin. “You may be my lawyer, but I’m still much older than you.”
“What did you want to see me for? I didn’t intend to work today.” Richard said curtly, ignoring Benson’s quip. The chief smiled and shook his head slowly.
“I received your letter… and the refund.” Chief Benson said through gritted teeth. “I need to know why you have decided to put your reliability in jeopardy.”
“The person I asked to get the documents you sent to me was attacked.” Richard said, his fists clenching.
Chief Benson eyes widened in mock surprise, and it took all of Richard not to punch him.
“I’m sure it was that stupid boy Ibrahim!” he said immediately, with a nod for emphasis.
“I don’t care… I’m not willing to die for some silly feud I’m not really a part of.” Richard said with the wave of a hand. “But what even motivated me more to wash my hands off your business is the fact that you never called to ask about the contract you sent… or even to enquire on the progress of the job you sent. Until I refunded your money and resigned from the job.”
Chief Benson’s eyes widened and he stumbled over his words before he could find a meaningful excuse. Richard didn’t even let him speak. He reached into his desk drawer and pulled out an envelope.
“Everything is intact, just as you sent it.” Richard said expressionlessly. Chief Benson wordlessly collected the envelope, not bothering to look through its contents.
“I’m sure Ibrahim’s men had an ordeal they’d never forget, but I’m no superman, and no amount of money is worth putting my family in jeopardy.” Richard said with a shrug. “So if you would excuse me, I’d like to spend the rest of my non-working hours with my family.”
Chief Benson rose from his seat and pointed a finger at Richard. “I’m sure you and Ibrahim have something planned… I’ll deal with you I promise!”
With those last words he stormed out, and Fredrick burst into the study shortly after, his fear heightened when he saw the horror-struck look on his boss’ face.
“Fredrick… I think it’s time we order those cameras.”