Ndubisi took a right turn at Marib Junction and headed East. Along the Royal Street, a stone throw away from the Palace, his phone began to ring.
He stopped the car by the side of the road and picked his phone. He could hear his mother’s voice in the background but she wasn’t audible enough for him to make out what she was saying.
“Honey!” Ndubisi began but a cold voice came through.
“Your attention is needed at your residence.” Ndubisi’s brows arched prior to a frown. ” You have five minutes to reach here or we do what we need to do!”
“Who are you?”
“Be warned, I don’t have the forbearance for your questions. Running out of patience at a rocket speed!”
“I want to speak to my wi…” The line went dead before the last word.
He thought of what to do.
Should he go home immediately as was ordered or should he continue to the Palace to show His Royal Highness the wristwatch planted in his son’s bag after school by an unknown man? After few seconds he decided to hurry home.
On reaching his main gate, he saw it wide open. Two cars were blocking the entrance. He drove past his compound and packed his car by the roadside. As he was walking back, he saw two policemen coming out of his house. They were holding his wife, one on either side of her. Fury swept through his spine and he trotted to them.
“What’s this? Why are you taking my wife?” Chinwe struggled within their grip and they let her go.
“Stand back and do not move!” A frenzied policeman aimed his rifle at Ndubisi. Ndubisi backed away, hands in the air.
“Search him.” The frenzied policeman ordered and another policeman ran his palm along Ndubisi’s sides, slapping his pockets and the length of his trousers. As he made to empty his pockets, Ndubisi recalled he still had the wristwatch in his pocket. He withdrew himself but the policeman rushed at him. The wristwatch fell at his feet. Eyes glared at the watch.
The man Ndubisi suspected to be the man behind it all rushed to it. He stooped and picked it up.
“My goodness! This is the wristwatch I’ve been looking for!” He looked up at him and Ndubisi dug out mockery from his smile.
Chinwe’s eyes glared. How? She didn’t know her husband got the watch all this while.
Ndubisi’s head dropped. Chinwe saw it move from side to side and blinked off the tears that clouding her view. She moved towards her husband but the policeman ordered her not to move any closer. She stood back.
“Mr, Ndubisi, you will be coming with us to the police station. You reserve the right to remain quiet for whatever you say from now on may be used against you in the court of law.”
“Officer, my husband is not a thief. This is a mistake!” Chinwe was frantic and Ndubisi was sorry. He dropped the car key for her and she picked it. They took him away.
Ndubisi’s mother broke down in tears. Had Ndubisi shown her the wristwatch, she would have told him what to hide it. She had warned him about being too secretive to his family. Now see where it had landed him.
“Take me to His Royal Highness Chinwe. This is not the time for tears and blames. It’s time to take action.” She took her hand and went towards the main gate. Eket locked the gate. She had heard everything. Who owned the wristwatch and who took it.