TITLE: Accidental Victim – EPISODE: 15
He had just began eating when two of Zaw’s lieutenants
walked up to the table and stood before him. ‘Zaw want to
see you now’, one of them said. ‘I’ll go to him when I’m
through’, Mustapha replied. ‘He said now!, the second
lieutenant said. Mustapha looked up at them and was
shocked. He washed his hands, got up, and went with
On the way to the command center, Mustapha tried looking
at the faces of the men sent to him, to decipher if anything
was amiss. He knew Zaw never requested for anyone’s
presence in that manner except something was wrong. ‘Or
was something wrong? Have I been discovered?’, he
The men walking beside him had stern looking faces. None
of them had facial expressions that betrayed their
emotions. Mustapha had already began thinking of lies he
would tell, question evasion tactics he learnt while at the
police academy and ways he was going to endure torture.
He knew his mission was a very dangerous one. He was
right in the camp of the Taliban group, the deadliest
terrorist group in the country, and he had not yet been
detected. ‘Or have I been detected?’, he thought. He
touched the tip of his collar and confirmed that his cyanide
pill was still in place.He thrived on danger. The adrenaline rush was always
there, and he was glad that all he was doing was for the
good of the country. But one thing he knew he shouldn’t
have to endure was torture. He knew it was useless.
Al-Zawari was well known for torturing his captives till they
had no choice but to divulge vital information to him, after
which he still killed them. Mustapha was determined not to
let it get to that point, hence the cyanide pill he kept hidden
in a hole in the tip of his collar for easy accessibility.
After walking for some minutes, Mustapha and the two
lieutenants got to the entrance of the command center. The
two men stayed outside, while Mustapha walked in.
The command center of the Talibans was powered by solar
energy. Mustapha walked in and saw different clusters of
men. Some of the men were banging on keyboards of
laptops with complicated looking connections, some were
receiving training on creating home made explosives
devices, while some just hung around talking amongst
‘As-salamu alaykum’, he said as he looked around trying to
scan the faces of the men close to the door. ‘Wa Alaikum
Salaam’, some of the men replied. Their faces didn’t betray
any emotion. They all just continued what they were doing.
Mustapha walked towards the door that led to Al-Zawari’s
office. He was stopped by two guards. One of them went in
and informed Al-Zawari of his presence. Some seconds
later, he came back and gestured Mustapha in with his rifle.
‘As-salamu alaykum’, Mustapha said as he walked into the
office. ‘Wa Alaikum Salaam’, Al-Zawari replied from behind
Mustapha looked around the well lit office and saw things
he had seen several times since he got into the Taliban
camp. There was a laptop on the metallic desk in front of
Al-Zawari. He saw many books on a shelf at the corner of
the office beside which there was a large map of the
country. On other parts of the wall were dotted maps of
some Northern states in the country. Mustapha knew that
the maps represented places prone to attack by the Taliban
group or places already attacked and captured.
‘You sent for me sir’, Mustapha spoke up as he realized
Zaw was staring into his eyes. ‘Where have you been?’,
Zaw asked while still staring into his eyes. ‘Is he suspecting
anything?’, Mustapha thought.’I was around in the camp. They found me in the kitchen
eating’, he replied. Zaw continued staring into Mustapha’s
eyes and when he noticed he didn’t blink, Zaw looked
towards the laptop in front of him.
‘I have a task for you’, Zaw said after several seconds.
‘What is it, sir?’, Mustapha asked.
‘Take two boys from the computer unit. Go and set up the
video transmission unit. Tomorrow morning In-sha Allah,
we are making a video broadcast’, Zaw replied.
Mustapha was stunned. ‘What would the video be about
sir?’, he asked.
‘Tomorrow, you will find out. You may go’, Zaw replied.
Mustapha walked out of the office and was scared. The
Video Transmission Unit, ‘VTU’ as was well known in the
camp was obtained by Al-Zawiri recently. Mustapha had
been among the three persons who were trained to use it.
Two of those persons had been killed in the recent attacks,
and Mustapha was the only one in the camp who knew
how to set it up.
Al-Zawari had often boasted that the first time he would
use the VTU would be for an execution, and now that he
had requested for it’s use, execution was definitely on his
‘But who was he going to execute?’, Mustapha thought as
he walked out of the office. He had no idea.
He walked to walked to the computer unit and asked two
boys out of the men there to follow him. They got up and
followed Mustapha out of the command unit. Mustapha
explained what they were to do and said he would meet
them in thirty minutes.
As he walked back to the kitchen to finish his meal, one
thing was on Mustapha’s mind: To find out what Al-Zawari
was up to….
Funmi sat on the mat in the middle of the dark room
where she was placed. She was thinking of everything and
nothing in particular. She was so tired as the ordeal had
taken a toll on her. She wondered when rescue would
come, if it would ever come.
She turned her face towards the iron door, trying to look
through the spaces in the door. She realized that
everywhere was still dark, so it wasn’t morning yet. She
tried to think of Damien when she suddenly heard some
footsteps creeping silently towards the door. The footsteps
stopped outside the door and two voices began
whispering in a language she didn’t understand.
Her heart was thumping. She shifted to the end of the wall
and shut her legs tightly together as she sat up. She then
placed her arms around her leg.
The men continued whispering and it sounded like they
were arguing among themselves. Funmi just continued
staring at the door, hoping and praying that no one would
come through it.
After what seemed like eternity, Funmi heard keys jingling
in the keyhole and the door was pushed open.
Two men walked in. She couldn’t see their faces clearly,
but they didn’t look like the men that had brought them to
the prison or even the man that had brought her food.
Both of them wore ragged looking kaftans and oddly
They stood towering over her, and she just continued
staring at them. Scared as hell. Both of them exchanged
glances and began speaking their language, which she
One of them nodded at the other and went in front of
Funmi and dragged her legs forward. The second went
behind her and pinned her to the ground.
She tried screaming, but she realized that she couldn’t
hear her voice.
She was stamping her feet at the one at the front, but he
pegged her legs with his huge legs and was struggling
with the zip of her jean. He had difficulties unzipping it, so
he tried pulling off the jean without unzipping. That was
more difficult. He went back to struggling with the zip and
his accomplice was getting frustrated holding down
Funmi. He began shouting abuses at the other one.
Funmi still continued screaming, but she couldn’t still hear
herself. She sounded like she was in a void.
The two men began exchanging words, and it appeared
they agreed on swapping positions, because immediately
they finished talking, the one struggling with the zip
quickly got up and replaced the one who was holding her
down.The one who was holding her down came to her front and
was about going down to try her unzipping her when she
gave him a kick on his balls. He screamed and staggered
back. She bent her neck and bit the one that was holding
her down on the back of his right palm.
He screamed and tried dragging his palm away from her
teeth, but she didn’t let go. He continued dragging, but
she still wouldn’t let go. He was screaming in pain.
His left hand fumbled around in his pocket and he brought
out a dagger. He raised it and stabbed Funmi in her chest.
She screamed and her teeth immediately let go of his
palm. This time around, she heard her scream….
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