‘Help us, please.’ Lola shouted, panic and frustration lending power to her limbs as the gate virtually shook with the force of the repeated knocks. Bade was slumped against the gate, holding himself up, but Lola could see the strain on his face. Whether it was from the pain and blood loss, or the fact that the very thing they were fleeing from was now on their heels, Lola didn’t know. It was probably both. She renewed her efforts on the gate, and finally, she heard a voice behind it.
‘Stop making that noise.’ A deep cranky voice growled from inside. ‘Who are you?’ The voice continued.
‘We are Corpers, we were attacked and my friend here is injured and needs a doctor. Please we need you to help us.’
They heard the whir of chains and gears and the gate slid smoothly open. As Lola helped Bade inside, they both turned looked up to see their host as the gate shut itself behind them.
She was a little woman not over five feet tall, looked to be in her forties, still slender, with a matured beauty about her. She was dressed in a nightgown, looked rumpled and weary, but she still managed a smile for them.
‘But that voice, I thought you were a man.’ Lola said.
‘Not at all, my husband is away at the moment. But I don’t want people to know that of course. It’s amazing how intimidating a deep voice can be. I perfected my growl a long time ago. Not that it stopped my husband.’ She said with a wistful look on her face, in a definitely feminine voice. She turned her focus on Bade. ‘Oh, your friend doesn’t look so good does he? Come inside, let me see what I can do. I am a nurse.’ She concluded.
Bade and Lola looked at each other, neither of them moving. ‘The people that attacked us would be at your gates within the next few seconds. It would be best they don’t meet us here.’
‘And you are just mentioning that now?’ The woman’s voice had returned to its growl. ‘Come on, get out of here. Whoever they are, they have no quarrel with me. Get out, I said.’ The woman shouted, ushering them towards the gate.
‘Madam, please. It is the fanatics that have been terrorising this area for months now. They killed almost all the Corpers at our camp, if you send us out there, they will surely kill us. Please, I beg you, help us.’ Lola said with tears on her face.
But the woman had paused. ‘The fanatics you say? Those gutter scum? They are the ones my husband is fighting at the moment. He is a Colonel in the Nigerian Army.’ She clarified. She paused for a few moments, thinking.
‘Oh, all right, I guess he wouldn’t mind me helping you even if it puts my life at risk. Come, tell me everything as she led them towards the back of the house.
Lola helped Bade along as she summarised their ordeal for their host, but her voiced went quiet as she saw that they were now at the garage of the house and the woman was opening the door of one of the cars, a black Mercedes Benz.
‘What are you doing?’ Lola forced her voice to work again.
‘You said earlier that the fanatics shouldn’t meet us here. Well I don’t intend them to. Help your friend into the back seat and let’s get out of here.’ The woman concluded.
But as she pulled brought the car out of the garage and headed towards the gate. Lights lit up from the other side, and they heard the roar of engines.
‘Oh shit.’ Lola croaked out. ‘They are here already.’
Lola turned sharply to the woman as she started the engine. ‘But they are right outside. What are you going to do?’
The woman smiled grimly. ‘The last thing they expect.’ As she clicked on the remote control and they gate started to open.
The fanatics were indeed surprised as the gates opened. The Colonel had just been thinking of the best way to get into the compound. That moment of hesitation, that moment of surprised inaction was enough as the Mercedes sped out of the compound, past the stagnant vehicles and out into the night.