When I got out of the haze of delirium, I guessed it was the effect of the drugs; I was on a hospital bed. I was feeling nauseated and as though I had been rewired, or formatted like a computer, like a phone restored to default settings.
The scene had changed from a dimly lit room with a bank of vaults as though it was a bank. The room I was now was brightly lit, snow white dazzling and with overhead circular machines akin to those in an OR. A plasma screen showed images I deduced were CNN news from the opposite wall.
I remembered everything about the fire and everything about Dr Kong looming over me and me asking him questions he definitely wasn’t going to answer, and then him injecting me with a drug that took effect immediately and plunged me into a dungeon of delirium.
Dr Kong came to the room and asked me what I remembered. I told him I had no idea of what had happened after the fire and the whole building collapsed on us. His questions did not stop coming though.
I regained consciousness slowly. I stayed on the bed for what I thought was two days. I had lost count of the days, and I did not know even when the night came.
A week later, I returned to the dimly lit room and was operated on. I did not know why I was being operated on until later. When I was wheeled out of the OR and taken to the brightly lit, ever dazzling room the screen showed images of a mass burial; victims of the Kenyatta National Hospital fire tragedy, the worst since the Sachangwan tanker tragedy of 2009. But I had changed. I was no longer the inquisitive one. I smiled and asked mature questions.
A month later the training began. Dr Kong said that we were ready for the next phase. We were trained to be assassins – the 22 of us – government assassins….
As I stepped out the Aeroflot I spotted the unmistakable unmarked Squad car. Squad agents had been sent to pick Tatyana and me at the airport. That’s how it had been after every mission.
The people from the Squad said that it was for our protection. They said that we were high value targets if state enemies knew who we were. But that was not the truth. They were afraid of us, that we might go rogue and turn against the Squad.
And yes, the Squad does not exist. None of us exist. We all died in that KNH fire, but the Squad gave us a new life, new identity and career. Perhaps we might say we were given another chance at life because we were already doomed to drugs. But it was not another chance really. It was banishment.
The mind control, the threats, the assignments we were given, our non-existence was the ultimate pain. It is very hard living while the people who are dear and close to you mourn you, take flowers to your grave and cry cold silent tears of sorrow to an empty grave.
The Squad is the solution to all diplomatically and politically sensitive problems of the government. Whether we die or not is not anyone’s concern so long as we are not known who we are.
It feels as though we are dignitaries, or rank high up there with state officials for the receptions we receive at JKIA.
Two of the deadliest Squad killers and instructors/trainers are waiting for us. In another life they were Special Forces soldiers of the Kenya Defence Forces. They supposedly died in the Westgate Mall attack on 21st September, 2013 by the terrorists’ bullet.
We know them by their codenames – Gor and Leo. I’ve never seen stone-cold people in my life. Stone Cold Steve Austin, the wrestler, is a distant cousin.
When Gor and Leo saw us their voice crackled on the earphone of my wireless transmitter implanted in my right hear simultaneously. The same message was transmitted to Tatyana and we headed their direction.
We entered the heavily armoured, 3600cc Land Cruiser Evoque without going through the arrivals checking. Leo, who was behind the wheel, gunned the machine and drove to the Squad headquarters, Nyayo House torture chambers.