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Ighayo (2)

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{INT. SAFE HOUSE, NIGERIAN ARMY MILITARY CANTONMENT, LAGOS – DAY}

A table is between Captain Obong and Leela, who sit and face each other.

CAPTAIN OBONG
(looking into a paperback file)
Leela Gberesuu, from Bodo community, Gokana Local Government Area, Rivers State. A final year student of the University of Lagos.
(to Leela)
Can I ask you a few questions?

LEELA
Yeah.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Where are your parents?

LEELA
They’re in the grave. I huh… loss them a few years ago. However, due to my brilliance, my former secondary school decided to sponsor me until graduation.

CAPTAIN OBONG
A scholarship, huh?

LEELA
Yeah, officer.

CAPTAIN OBONG
And, what were you doing in Antarctica?

LEELA
We were…

CAPTAIN OBONG
(interrupts)
We?

LEELA
Yeah, my colleagues and I, were performing research. However, I’m an archaeologist by nature.

CAPTAIN OBONG
How old are you?

LEELA
I’m twenty-two.

CAPTAIN OBONG
(exhales)
Kid, the Doctor said you’re strange but I don’t see any strange thing about you at all. But can you tell me about your trip to Antarctica?

LEELA
Yeah, I found a box, called my colleagues and showed them the box, but they claimed it was my illusion. So, I opened the box and found a fruit, a pen and a piece of paper, all have the colour of gold. I thought they were joking and noticed that they seemed serious. So, in order to prove my point, I ate the fruit and found myself here. That’s all I can remember.

CAPTAIN OBONG
The Doctor later told me to take you home because you’re fine.

LEELA
(nods)
He asked you to take me away because he was afraid that I may be a threat to the patients in the hospital. He believed I have a disease that could drove me mad or could probably kill me soon.

CAPTAIN OBONG
How did you know all of these?

LEELA
I don’t know.
(Captain Obong looks at him suspiciously)
I just know.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Seriously?

LEELA
Yeah. But, can I go back to school?

CAPTAIN OBONG
Yeah, but I don’t think you should.

LEELA
Why.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Right now, to the rest of the world, you’re a dead man.

LEELA
What are you going to do with me?

CAPTAIN OBONG
I just want to know more about you. For now, you’ll be under my custody until I figure out what has happened to you.

LEELA
Then keeping me under your custody is not how to do that, you start by asking me questions. I’m going back to school, it’s not your decision to make anyway.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Questions are for those who need answers, not for those who want to observe.

LEELA
Observe.
(nods)
I’ll prefer questions.

A SOLDIER opens the door, walks in and gives a paper to Captain Obong.

CAPTAIN OBONG
When last did you eat, kid?

LEELA
Don’t worry, I’m good.
(Captain Obong looks amazed)
Not hungry, sir.

CAPTAIN OBONG
How about water?

LEELA
I’m not tasty. Please, I want to go back to my school, roommates and friends.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Do you care about living people?

LEELA
I do, in fact, my priority.

CAPTAIN OBONG
When did you start making that a priority?

LEELA
I don’t know. I just know.

CAPTAIN OBONG
See, if you care so much about people’s lives, you’d rather remain a ghost.

LEELA
Do you think destroying me would make any difference? Sooner or later, you’ll be trampled upon by foreigners who hate you.

CAPTAIN OBONG
The thing is, we’ve already denied your existence with us and if it is discovered that it was false, millions of people would suffer from its repercussion.

LEELA
Do you fear sanctions?

CAPTAIN OBONG
And foreign terrorism.

LEELA
Is that why you’re afraid to read what’s in the paper to me?

CAPTAIN OBONG
(gasps)
Well, according to this paper here, you’re normal and have nothing to worry about.

LEELA
(smiles)
No, we both know that sentence can’t be found on any side of the papers.

CAPTAIN OBONG
(a surprised look comes over his face)
Hmm?

LEELA
I know when you’re lying.

CAPTAIN OBONG
How?

LEELA
I don’t know, I just know. However, whatever it is, I like it.

CAPTAIN OBONG
You like that you should be destroyed.

LEELA
Yeah. I voluntarily submit myself to be destroyed.

CAPTAIN OBONG
(a concerned look comes over him)
Well, kid, news got to the president that Nigeria is harbouring a…

LEELA
(interrupts)
Big threat and alien disease. And, are ordered to end the mission or face sanctions.

CAPTAIN OBONG
What?
(gasps)
How?

LEELA
I don’t know, I just know.

CAPTAIN OBONG
I’ll be back. Please, stay here.
(stands and walks to the door)
What’s the name of my first daughter?

LEELA
Gloria, you said it so many times in your heart, sir.

CAPTAIN OBONG
(stops and turns his direction towards Leela)
I’ll be back.

{INT. SHRINE TEMPLE, FOREST, KADUNA}

A PRIESTESS is looking into a reddish glowing mirror. Suddenly, her eyes glow.

PRIESTESS
I will destroy Lagos and Nigeria!

{INT. MAJOR EVANS’ OFFICE, NIGERIAN ARMY MILITARY CANTONMENT, IKEJA, LAGOS}

Captain Obong is sitting before MAJOR EVANS.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Sir, with all due respect, sir, he’s just a kid and has a human mind.

MAJOR EVANS
The Doctor said his condition is rapidly changing. Didn’t you read the papers?

CAPTAIN OBONG
We can talk to him and make him a weapon.

MAJOR EVANS
Yes! That’s exactly what the International Community accused the president for.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Please, let’s give him a little chance.

MAJOR EVANS
The order came from the president himself. And, it will take effect in one hour from now, Captain.

CAPTAIN OBONG
But…

MAJOR EVANS
(interrupts)
But what!
(nods)
I hope there was anything I could do.

CAPTAIN OBONG
(exhales)
I’d like you to watch me run a test on him before the execution.

{SAFE HOUSE}

Major Evans guarded by TWO SOLDIERS is standing behind a glass frame, looking inside through. Captain Obong is sitting beside Leela while MUHAMMAD is sitting opposite them.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Sitting before us is…

LEELA
(interrupts)
Ibrahim Muhammad.

CAPTAIN OBONG
A terrorist gang member.
(to Muhammad)
What is the name of your leader?

MUHAMMAD
Go to hell!

CAPTAIN OBONG
(to Leela)
What is it, kid?

LEELA
Salim Abdul.

MUHAMMAD
(furiously looks at Leela)
Fool! You betray the brotherhood!

LEELA
No, I am no part of such thing.

Muhammad folds his fist and flings it towards Leela.

Leela holds Muhammad’s fist and pushes it away. The energy from Leela carries Muhammad and hits him against the wall of the room.
Captain Obong stands.

MAJOR EVANS
Bind him!

THREE SOLDIERS enter into the safe house. One soldier touches Muhammad. While the other two soldiers and Captain Obong points their guns against Leela.

SOLDIER ONE
He’s dead.

LEELA
O my God! He’s dead?

CAPTAIN OBONG
Of course, he can’t survive such hit.

LEELA
He sure deserves it.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Why.

LEELA
He’s killed so many people
(puts forward his two hands)
cuff me.

CAPTAIN OBONG
(removes a cuff from his waist and cuffs Leela)
What are you becoming?

LEELA
I am not your enemy.

CAPTAIN OBONG
Trust me, this isn’t from my mind.

LEELA
The government is afraid, I have to make them see me as a friend.

CAPTAIN OBONG
I hope that was possible.

LEELA
Me too.

CONTINUE…