It was half past nine o’clock in the morning. The Professor’s first class for the day was supposed to begin at nine, but here he was, still finishing his final preparations before going out.
He had his laptop bag and files ready. Professor was looking for his keys and spectacles and he had done several rounds in the kitchen and in the living room.
He wondered where he could have placed these two things all this time. He could have gone without them if it were possible because time was running out to keep moving around in the house. First, he couldn’t go without locking the house, and second, he couldn’t go out without his glasses because how would he drive with blurry vision?
He continued going around and lifting things. Maybe the keys were under the trays that lay on the tables. Then he heard a jingle of some metallic material as he moved. He moved, and the jingle went on. Then he figured out that the keys were in his pockets. He made a grin of disappointment, and while looking at his keys, he noticed his glasses were comfortably positioned in the front pocket of his shirt.
Waking up late was so weird. It was a peculiar morning for Professor Mark because he was an organized man. Professor was never late for school, and even when he was, late, it was for a practical reason. Not reasons such as losing keys and glasses, because he knew where he had placed his every item.
As he walked out of the door, he thought of how the morning had been and how it was supposed to have been. Like always, he had planned to wake up early and plan his day so that 15 minutes to nine o’clock, he was already in his office. 9:00 was supposed to find him in the class.
He had established a culture where he arrived on time so that his students could learn from this, and it was working because every time Professor had a class, he would find all his students seated, only for one or two who always came late.
Waking Up At An Unusual Time
Though the Professor had plans to be punctual, he still could not tell what happened that he woke up some ten minutes before 9:00. This was the first time he woke up late. Never in his 20 years of teaching had he woken up this late. As he walked out the door, he thought about it and failed to believe this was really happening.
One thing that made the whole ordeal weird was the way he found his house. He was woken up by a strong, pungent smell, which made him think he had woken up in a dumpsite somewhere. On opening his eyes, he was in his home. He tried to look for what this smell could be because he was a clean man. He was so neat that he never goes to bed with dirty dishes or even a dirty floor.
As he put his feet down, he felt some soft substances like flour. He peaked to see what it was, only to get the shock of his life. On the floor was some white substance—sprinkles of this flour-like substance that went toward the living room.
He was shocked because, first of all, he had cleaned his floor before sleeping. Secondly, he lived alone and did not remember waking up and doing something that could have led to the pouring of flour on the floor. Thirdly, this was not wheat or maize flour. It was cocaine. Something that he only handled at a faraway apartment he had rented for the business. Fourthly, he had woken up too late, something he had never done since starting his teaching career. Something was very off.
He followed the sprinkles of cocaine, and it led him to his kitchen. In the kitchen, he found sachets on the kitchen surface. These sachets were around five. These sachets were very familiar; they were the ones he used to pack the cocaine for distribution to different campus locations.
A New Entrant?
He could not believe his eyes. He failed to understand who could have done this. Professor had already known what this was. Someone was trying to set him up for the cops. This set-up happened when there was a strong entrant into the market. New entrants wanted to dominate the market and get all the profits for themselves, and to achieve that they eliminated the current dominant dealer.
Something like this had not happened in his ten years of the dealership. After he set up the previous dealer, he had dominated the campus market for all those years keeping away anyone who wanted to come and take his space. He had used all sorts of means to ensure that the market was only his, from bribing to threats.
How It All Started
As he started his teaching career, he lived in a certain rental a walking distance from school. He had neighbour students who had fun every day like it was Friday. Music used to be loud that it was uncomfortable to even sleep. His attempts to talk to the caretaker to ask them to consider their behaviour had fallen on deaf ears. He had also considered moving to a new place, but the whole residential area was fully occupied. He had to find a way to live in this place until the semester ended.
One day, he was curious about what actually goes on at this neighbour’s house which lead to loud music every day. He went over to the door and knocked, no one answered, but upon continuing to knock, he realized the door was open. He entered, and in the room he found people sleeping all over. Others on the bed and others on the floor. As he was still looking, the door was flung open and a young man, presumably a student, entered.
“What are you doing?”, he asked authoritatively.
“I am the neighbour next door, the music has been too loud I had come to ask them to reduce the volume, but I found them this way?”
“I will put it down for you, you should get going”
However, as the professor was walking out, he could not help but see the sachets of white powder on the floor. This marked the beginning of his curiosity, research and deliberations.
After years of teaching and seeing the rich market the campus population provided for cocaine, he had given in to the urge and started dealing. He had studied how the whole dealership happened and realized that for his goal as a dealer to be successful, he would need to do away with the current dealer. He framed him, and after that ordeal, nothing like that had happened to him because he has been keeping tabs on the ground.
Money had come in well, and he had a better life. He lived in a posh neighbourhood, he drove a reasonably big car. He also ensured that the lifestyle he lived could not be questionable.
This new place had security at the gate. How could an intruder come in without the guard noticing? He knew that asking himself such questions was the last thing he should be doing. At 8:55 a.m, he thought the best thing to do was to do away with the sachets, and ensure that there were no others to be found later.
He dissolved the three sachets and disposed of the papers. He went ahead to prepare to leave for school. By the time he was done, it was 9:15 a.m. Professor mopped the floor using strong-smelling detergent to remove any smell that could bring on any suspicion. He had done the same thing to a rival dealer ten years ago, and he knew that before noon, the police would be searching his house, so the best he could do was to ensure that nothing illegal remained.
The professor dressed up so fast, and by the time he was ready, he was so confused he did not know where the keys and his glasses were, and that is where we are right now.
He closed the door and hurriedly walked towards his car. Despite everything that had happened, the best thing to do was to maintain a typical front. The professor needed to ensure that he was at school for his class as soon as possible. He could say he had a severe headache that made it impossible to arrive on time rather than missing the whole class and making it seem weirder.
He drove to a nearby pharmacy, bought some painkillers, and drove to school. The good thing was that the journey to school was a ten-minute drive. At 9:40, he was at school. He went direct to the class. He wanted to look Kido in the eye to see if there was any suspicion. Kido was his distributor at school. Apart from payments, Professor gave him a boost in his grades to compensate for his time in the distribution process.
Kido was nowhere to be seen. Everyone was seated and ready for the class, and Kido was not there. The absence of Kido in class was weird. Kido never missed the professor’s class, because it was after class that the professor handed him the sachets he would go distribute. There was nothing unusual with the friendship between a teacher and a student. After class, meet-ups were normal for inquiries, or whatever such people could speak about.
Every year, the professor got into the mission of hunting for a new distributor in each faculty. In his moves within the campus clubs, he had met Kido. He could see how sharp Kido was and Kido would not mind making thousands over the simple task of distributing sachets.
A year down the line, Kido started using cocaine and other tablets that the professor also supplied. The professor noticed this and was not happy about it. “Kido, I picked you because you were smart and not using it. It never ends well when a distributor uses the goods. You have them all the time, chances are high that you get addicted.”
“I will be careful, I won’t be addicted.”
But the professor was right, in his third year, Kido had started using the drug more often than normal. All his pay from the distribution went into paying for the drug. Of late, things did not look good on his side. Professor was thinking of getting another student dealer.
Today In School
The students complained about the long waiting, and the Professor apologized. “But this is the first time I have kept you waiting, I apologize, and it won’t happen again.”
Though noticing the absence of Kido made the Professor anxious, he decided to continue with the class and maintain like nothing was wrong. The one hour of teaching felt like forever. His mind kept on moving from one thought to another.
“Who could have done this? Where is Kido? How would the day end?”
As the class ended, he walked into the faculty offices as expected at the course’s end. As he walks into his office, he found a woman seated on his chair, which was very peculiar. The woman was busy looking at some documents.
The Professor has never seen this woman before. This woman is middle-aged and decently dressed. She ignored the door opening and acted like the Professor was not there. Everything kept growing weirder after what had happened in the morning at his home, the absence of Kido at class, and then this strange woman sitting at his office.
A Strange Woman
The Professor drew closer and says, “Hello.”
To which the woman replied, “Hello, Professor Mark.”
Perhaps she had read his name on the door of his office, he thought.
“Who are you, and what are you doing in my office.”
“Have a seat, professor.”
“I asked who you are and what you are doing in my office.”
“Did you dispose of the cocaine?” she asks.
This statement gets the Professor’s attention, who then decides to sit.
He sits and asked again quietly, “who are you?”
“I am Kido’s mother.”
The Professor goes mute.
“I thought the Professor would have so many things to ask and say. It seems I was wrong. How does it feel to know that you are responsible for a 21-year-old’s addiction? How does it feel to know that Kido’s future is now bleak courtesy of your dealings?”
The Professor said nothing. Now, everything made sense. he had been drugged at night, probably through spray drugs. His guard was nowhere to be seen; he might have disappeared at night. When he had passed out, cocaine had been planted in his house to implicate him. Thank God he cleaned the place out and the only thing to worry about were the boxes at the ceiling, which do not have any labels and which were so well hidden in the pipes they would not be found.
“I do not know what you are talking about. Who is Kido?” the Professor asks.
“Don’t worry, you will know in a few.”
Kido’s mother said this while standing to leave and then she added, “I hope you saw the other sachets below your dining table, and the ones in your car because there is no way you will get out of this”
This statement gets him shaking and sweating. He stands and sprints past the woman, thinking to remove the evidence in his car.
Kido’s mother said, “Too late.”
When he looked in front of him, the police were walking towards his office.
As he was teaching hours ago, the police had been tipped and were on their way to the campus compound.
They escorted him to open his car. On the car shelf, there were sachets of cocaine.
“Professor Mark, you have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and may be used against you in a court of law.”
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