Murder In Room 16. Episode Two

Officer Rose Bamidele was led to the manager’s office by the cleaner, a woman in her sixties. She sat down to wait for him in his small office with a table and two chairs. A clock on his green painted wall. The tall and dark-skinned manager, Mr. Osaro walked in after two minutes and apologized for keeping her waiting. He sat on his chair opposite her.

“Nkechi said you wanted to speak with me,” Osaro said.

“Yes,” she said. “If I may ask, where were you?”

“I went out for a smoke. I’m stressed, Officer. I can’t believe someone died here. It’s bad for business.”

Rose had promised to keep Nkechi out of her conversation with him. “Where were you between 3 pm to 6 pm today.

His jaw dropped. “What do you mean by that?”

“Please answer my question.”

His eyes turned wild. “Are you suspecting I killed that man? He was one of my regular customers, it’s good for business!”

Officer Rose remained calm. “Are you having a guilty conscience because I never accused you of murder?”

He sighed heavily. “How could I have gone to Room 16 to commit such an abhorrent crime. I was in my office throughout that time.”

“Is there anyone that can prove it’s true?”

“I have an alibi,” he said in an angry tone. “I had a visitor, a friend of mine.” He opened his drawer, tore a piece of paper, and wrote the number of the person that visited him. Mr. Osaro gave it to her.

She dialed the number on her phone to call his friend, his alibi checked out.

Osaro shrugged. “There’s something I should let you know,” he said. “With the little I know, Mr. Kelechi had issues with two people. First, one of my barmen,Dele. They were always having issues with each other. In fact, they quarreled almost all the time. I heard they used to be course-mates back in the past.”

“I need to talk to him.”

“You will, but he took permission from me to go home briefly. He will be back soon.”

“What about the second person?” she asked.

“His wife.”

Rose widened her eyes. “He was married? I didn’t see a wedding ring. Nkechi never mentioned that to me.”

“I don’t think Nkechi knew he was married because when his wife came last week to threaten to kill him, she wasn’t the one at the reception that day. I have two other receptionists.”

“But how do I get his wife’s contact? I only have the address to his place of work. His phone was not in Room 16.”

“Dele should have it.”

Rose rose on her feet. She showed Mr. Osaro the necklace and asked him if he had seen it before. He stared at it closely and shook his head. As she turned to leave, he spoke.

“But Officer, why would you have suspected me? Mr. Kelechi never wronged me.”

“That’s irrelevant but don’t leave town until the case is solved.”

He stood up. “I’m not going anywhere, Officer. I’ve nothing to hide.”

She took his phone number and gave the manager her card. Rose had it in mind to summon his wife for questioning the following day and whatever she says would determine whether to let the cat out of the bag.

Rose went to question Dele, a lanky-looking guy with small eyes. The color of his lips was black as charcoal. She questioned him, at the bar section.

“I’m innocent!” he barked. “I would never have killed Kelechi, he was my friend!”

“But you were not at the bar throughout today.”

“I strolled out!”

“But you two were always fighting?”

He cleared his throat. “That’s because he owned me money.”

“Money?” she asked him surprised.

“Yes,” he answered saucily. “I borrowed him my life savings because he was in debt with the loan he borrowed from the bank. His car business wasn’t booming any longer. He refused to pay me back after everything got settled.”

“So when you saw him lavishing money and alcohol on women, you snapped and killed him.”

He smiled faintly and shook his head pitifully. His eyes shot at her. “If I was the one who killed him, how am I going to get my money back?”

A question with no answer.

At 9:30 pm, Rose arrived at the station to write a report before heading home. She called the victim’s wife, and she didn’t sound remorseful on the phone. She promised to see Rose at the station the following day. Rose walked to her car to leave when her phone ranged. She glanced at it to pick. It was the manager calling.

“Office Rose!” he called out her name crying. “I’m finished!”

“What is it Mr. Osaro?” she asked curiously and worried.

“My wife!” he blurted out. “I just got home to find my wife stabbed! I can’t find a pulse. She’s dead!”

To be continued……

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