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Lopound Virus 2

I entered my compound and banged the gate behind me. I walked to my door and inserted the key into the door hole then I caught a glimpse of a dark shadow that ducked. Could it have been my imagination? I turned the key to unlock the door and felt a pair of palms cup my eyes.
There had been no supply of electricity. The black out just gained extra momentum.

 I felt the palms then the softness of the palms and familiar cologne gave her away.

"Abike!"

She giggled as she released my tired eyes that she had held captive.

"Why did you refuse picking my calls all through the day?", I feigned annoyance.

She wore a mischievious smile, "Uncle police! So I am now to blame for a malice you started... eeehhh??"

The thought of the title 'uncle police' was hilarious.

"Oya, am sorry. I was only joking. How can I tell you not to talk to me again and you believed. I will die without you"

"Hmmmm! You and your sugar-coated tongue", she smiled, drew me closer in an embrace and kissed me. I looked into her eyes despite the darkness and was nearly lost in them.

"So are we going to sleep outside?", she teased.

I grinned and kissed her forehead. "If my lady wishes so", I whispered playfully.

I pushed the door and we ambled in. "How's mama doing?" , she asked as she disengaged from my hold.

"Same way and she asked of you", I said blankly.

She moved closer and caressed my jaw with her slender fingers. "She will be fine", she assured me.

I sank my long frame into the settee and turned the television on. More victims were springing up and there was no proper diagnosis or cure yet. Had Lucifer decided to give this deadly disease to Nigeria as a gift? I dragged myself up, picked the remote and turned the tv off.

"Let me grab a shower", I heard my worn-out  self say.

"I will fix us something to eat", she yelled as she strolled to the kitchen.

Moments later, I walked into the living room feeling fresh. She emerged from the kitchen carrying two covered dishes and her eyes glued to my six feet figure in a boxer  short . My work out sessions were paying their accrued dividend.

"Shebi, you don see fine boy?", I teased her

 "Fine boy ni, fine boy ko" She hissed.

I pecked her on the cheek and dragged out one of the dinning chairs.

"My boys are playing tonight", I quipped.

I watched her broad smile narrow into a feigned frown.

"Football? Tonight? Never", she retorted as she pouted her full lips in mock annoyance.

"Just tonight!", I pleaded

"No! I said no, you know what am capable of", she warned.

"What will you do sef?", I teased.

That was the limit.

"Watch me do it!", she sneered and snatched the remote control.

Abike had her way of turning a calm fellow into a lunatic. I chased her round the sitting room as we jumped all over the sofa and just as I stretched to catch her, she leaped over the settee and dashed into the room. The sound of the door being bolted spat defeat into my face.

"Give it back to me", I yelled from outside.

**************************************

Combining work and caring for mum had been hectic for the past two weeks. Abike! Being away from her had been sickening. It left me feeling like a drug addict who needed the next hit or else he 'd go beserk. I had to see her.

The cab pulled over at her gate. I walked into the compound then sprinted up the stairs and knocked on her door. A sick-looking Abike opened the door. I never expected the illness to be that serious. She collapsed her light frame into my embrace. I allowed her lean in for a while then dropped the bag of groceries on the dinning table. I scooped her off the floor and headed for the settee.

"You have shed a lot of weight, I should cook something for you", I whispered into her ears.

Her weak face wore a frail smile, "Don't bother, just stay with me"

Worry pulled on the strings of my heart. "What kind of malaria is this nah?", I lamented.

"Its not malaria", she blurted as I watched her feigned smile disappear.

"HIV?", I asked

She scoffed. "The test revealed Lopound virus", she spilled.

I felt my heart sink. Doom's day was staring right back at me. I was on the brink of losing the two women who made my life worthwhile.

I looked into her eyes and saw tears well up in them.

"I got you,baby. We will be alright", I cooed into her ears and cuddled her like I was going to lose her that minute.

The previous night was cold and scary. I spent it having nightmares about losing mum or Abike.  The next day's task was overbearing due to my lack of sleep last night.
Some delegates had come for inspection at the office from the European assembly (EA). Pale white looking men, trust the ladies, they were doing everything possible to get the white beings attention. The Director had instructed that we clean the stairs and toilets more often than usual throughout their period of visitation. Nigerians are exceptional at kissing asses. Bloody white-men pleasers!
I was dog tired. My next destination was the toilet, my secret place of rest.

Would I be giving one
a hint to do same? Not at all but that was my work-time hide out. No one would query you for leaving the building during official hours because you never signed out, they just didn't see you.

I covered the lid of the water closet and had my butt balanced on it. Soon,I heard footsteps and loud laughter. The door knob creaked and the door swung open. My eyes caught glimpse of pairs of brown and black oxford brogues.

"Dem gossip fags again", I muttered. It would definitely have to be Efe and his partner.

The fellow in the  brown shoe went over to the wash hand basin and I heard water splash across it as he washed his hands. I wondered where the other was till I heard the plopping sound of his urine in the toilet bowl.

"Are you sure they know what they just signed up for?, a french accent asked.

The other guy sounded more like a russian. "What do you care? All of them blacks are animals mauling themselves to get their desires. With the impending food black out, their corrupt leaders will buy into it, old money bags who don't want to taste death", he chuckled.

"I heard its a chinese technology?", the french guy asked.
I tried to peep from the door hole but I saw nothing. All I could hear was voices.

"Yea, Chinese. Its telepathy and dermaloglyphics- influenced. Its designed like a virus that attacks social media accounts. Targets are sent messages that reads 'I dropped 10pounds in a couple weeks thanks to these berry-drops I got it here and all that shit", he inhaled.

"Then what happens?", the curious french man asked.

"Then any attempt by you to delete the crappy-looking message signs you up to unknowingly donate your fat-soluble vitamins which will serve as food supplement for the rich who have bought everlasting life", he burst out in a cruel laughter.

"Mon Dieu! Are you sure its not going to join the queue of one of those failed projects?", the curious man whispered.

"Did you ever think the Lopound virus was a coincidence? Work is in progress,my friend",he informed him.

The other guy sighed. "Who says the devil didn't originate from China?"

The russsian chuckled. "Its called technology".

The eavesdropped conversation left me frozen and dazed. So it wasn't black magic? It wasn't a huge sort of naturally occuring epidemic. A mass slaughter of sacrificial lambs was going on and nobody had the slightest idea. I felt my head spin like a centrifuge. I needed to talk to someone, I needed to see Professor Mbakwe.

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