John Bull sat in his favourite sofa, his legs crossed like a lady; not on purpose but only because of how skinny there were. He shook his wrist gently to turn the face of his wristwatch to face him and Rebecca noticed “I am sorry for taking your time but this is just routine procedure” she was there to question him about Bishop Chukwu’s death.
Rebecca’s suspension was put on indefinite hold because of the looming scandal Isaac’s hearing was about to bring on the Port Harcourt police force. So, she was brought back in to continue the investigation and either find the knife that was used to stab Bishop or produce another possible suspect.
“I was here with my wife, we were both asleep” John Bull replied to the question of his where about on the night Bishop died “yes we went to bed very early that night, we had a very long day” his wife Madam Lucy added.
John Bull was a very gentle and patient man; he answered all Rebecca’s questions to her satisfaction. Madam Lucy chipped in when she was supposed to, all in all Rebecca was content with all their answers until she caught a glimpse of a semi-healed knife wound on his palm.
“How did you get this injury?” she asked, her eyes fixed at him not ready to miss a mini signal of a lie
“The metal of the gate sliced me when I was opening the gate” he answered looking at his hand
“Do you mind if I take a picture of it?”
“No” he replied stretching the injured palm towards her as she quickly took a picture
“Anything?” Inspector Dele asked Rebecca as she entered his office “not yet but I have something that you may be interested in” she proceeded to tell him about her meeting with John Bull and Madam Lucy and every answer the couple gave her
“They have an alibi why are they important?” Inspector Dele was losing interest; then Rebecca showed him the picture she took “he has a knife injury on his left palm… he says it is from his gate but this is definitely a knife injury” she explained.
Inspector Dele looked at the picture closely then at Rebecca “please sit” he instructed and she obeyed
“I appreciate all the work you have been doing; searching non-stop for another suspect but we have our suspect all we need is a way to connect him to the stab wounds that killed the Bishop” Rebecca didn’t like his words but she was not surprised to hear them either.
“Sir, that is impossible” she replied calmly
“Why?” “Because he is not the one who killed Bishop” “Don’t give me that again” he was on his feet and she followed. He was very impatient and everything that reminded him of how badly Isaac’s hearing went for him was a no-no. Isaac’s defence kept hounding on the fact that Isaac had a gun but Bishop was killed with a knife and even though witnesses placed him at the venue; he was identified as a man peeping into the house and not going into the house.
Inspector Dele could see himself losing the case and that was never going to happen, not on his watch. “Find me the murder weapon, find me another witness that can place Isaac inside the house around that time… and drop this nonsense of another suspect out there” he commanded
Rebecca was frustrated; she didn’t understand why Inspector Dele was bent on convicting Isaac. She wondered if he had a personal vendetta against him or if he was just too egotistic to accept when he was wrong. She had no more lead on the case and the only person who could help her move the case forward was Nkechi, who was in a comma.
“John Bull was a very loving and caring man”
Then she thought about John Bull, his calm demeanour and his patience. She remembered the injury on his palm and took out the picture again. She wanted to search John Bull and Madam Lucy’s house to see if she could find anything implicating but she knew that Inspector Dele was never going to give her the permission to do so because they already had an alibi. “Find me the murder weapon or another witness that can place Isaac in that house” his voice rang in her head all night
“My love, where are you going to?” Madam Lucy asked John Bull who was already by the door. “Let me go and buy bulb, the one in our bathroom is dead” he answered as he walked back to her and planted a kiss on her forehead before leaving.
John Bull was a very caring and loving man, who cherished his wife consistently in all the twenty-four years that they have been married. Even though they had no children; they were happy to be together and never allowed relatives to come in between them. Madam Lucy knew how lucky she was and appreciated him daily
“Till you come” she bared him farewell as he walked out of the door.
John Bull entered his car and drove off to an area not too far from Mali Drive; he parked in front of a small bungalow and inspected the lawn as he knocked on the door. A woman answered “oh it is you, where is your key?” she asked letting him in “I forgot it” he replied just before three boys all from age five to ten ran to hug him.
“Daddy daddy …you came” said the eldest one
“Of course I did, I was not going to miss your birthday” he replied as they pulled him by his arm towards the dining table; where a big birthday cake was waiting. They were his second family, a secret family he gained eleven years ago.