Please note that this series contains some sexually explicit content, violence and offensive language. It is not appropriate for children nor an immature and sensitive audience.
A SMALL WORLD - SEASON THREE
Copyright © Ufuomaee
Victoria woke up to find that the other side of the bed was empty and made. Typical. So, Femi had snuck off in the night. She sighed. It’s okay. It’s not as if she had great expectations for them.
She got out of bed and went into the bathroom. She fetched a bucket of mixed water, while she brushed her teeth. When the bucket was full, Victoria went to check on Tomi, to make sure she was up and getting ready for school too.
In the hallway, she heard some clattering sounds from the kitchen. She was about to go and see what Tomi was doing there, when Tomi stepped out of her room, fully dressed in her uniform. Victoria tilted her head in surprise. So, who was downstairs?!
No… It couldn’t be. Was Femi really trying to make breakfast?!
“Good morning, mom,” Tomi jolted Victoria from her state of confusion.
“Hurry up, so you can join us for pancakes…” Tomi said, excitedly.
“Pancakes…?” Victoria swallowed and slipped back in her room. Really, Femi?! When in the hell did you start making pancakes? Or even breakfast, for that matter?!
Her bedside clock showed that it was past 7 am already. She had better hurry up with her bath, so she could be ready in time to take Tomi to school, before heading to the office.
“Hello, gorgeous!” Femi greeted when Victoria finally made an appearance downstairs. The wall clock confirmed that it was twenty minutes to 8 am. He grinned in response to the suspicious look she gave him. “I see you slept well.”
Victoria swallowed. What was Femi thinking?! He should have left since. He shouldn’t have stayed and made breakfast! Was he trying to confuse their daughter?
“Yes, thanks,” she finally did the polite thing and responded. “What are you doing here?”
“Making breakfast for my family,” Femi said, walking towards her to give her a kiss that ended up on her cheeks, as she turned her lips away.
Victoria sighed. “We need to talk about what happened last night…” she whispered.
“No, you need to taste some of these pancakes!” he corrected. “Don’t worry… I’ll take Tomi to school today. And we can meet at lunch to…talk.”
“Yeah!!! Is it okay, mom? I want to ride with daddy today!” Tomi chimed in.
Victoria just nodded. Whatever games Femi was playing, he was on dangerous territory. Playing with her heart and emotions was one thing, but stringing their daughter along was something else entirely. This could not go on.
“Yeah!!! I’ve just got one more pancake, dad.”
“No problem, baby,” Femi replied, looking at Victoria. He hadn’t known what to expect from his efforts to make breakfast, but he had been hopeful for a more excited woman this morning. Maybe he needed to take it slow. Victoria looked up at him, and he smiled. “How are the pancakes, dear?”
Kemi was at her office desk and was supposed to be working on a campaign for one of her clients. But she was browsing social media. She was very much distracted by the fact that she hadn’t heard a word from Oyinda since the text message he’d sent her on Sunday night.
For the umpteenth time, she checked her phone for a message from him. There was no new message, except for a picture invitation to attend a singles event, which one of her girlfriends had just sent to her that morning. She hadn’t taken any time at all to look at the IV, as she was sure of one thing; she didn’t have time for church anymore.
Her friend was online now and started typing something. Kemi decided to wait for the message to drop.
Kemi hesitated. She was supposed to be busy, but she really wasn’t. She knew if it was Oyinda, it was a no brainer. She would even leave the office sef. But this was a good friend from back in the day. They had just lost their connection last year after Fisayo got engaged. Now everything out of her mouth was “my wedding this”, “my fiancé that”, “my hubby this…” Maybe it was even the wedding that was prompting her to reconnect, Kemi speculated.
Okay, maybe Fisayo wasn’t so bad, but she was like the last single friend Kemi had, and it was just upsetting to be the only one left. And now, she had Oyinda, and her situation was complicated, and she knew Fisayo and none of her married friends would understand. So, that’s how they’d drifted. And now, Kemi was tempted to ignore her attempt to reconnect.
“Hey babe. Long time!” she said at last.
“Yes, oh… How are you, babe?”
“I dey, oh… And you?”
“Good, dear. I hope you can make it for the singles event tonight…”
“What singles event?” Kemi feigned ignorance.
“This one.” Fisayo resent the invitation she’d sent earlier. “I really hope you can make it this time. A special guest speaker from the States is coming! She’s a great woman that I follow on Instagram.”
“Hmmm… I don’t know, dear. I’ll try.”
“Please, oh. I haven’t seen you in ages, and I think this will be good for both of us… I’ll remind you later, sha.”
“Okay, dear! Have a good day x”
Kemi sighed and clicked on the IV. It went to full-screen display mode and she was able to see the guest minister. It was a lady who had visited the church before. She remembered that the woman spoke with much wisdom. She knew she would like to learn from her again, even though she was aware that the woman’s teaching would likely challenge her current lifestyle. Still, she felt the pull and the longing to attend.
She sighed and checked her messages again. Still nothing from Oyinda. Oh, well.
Ifeanyi knocked on his father’s office door and opened it when the security buzzer announced that he could enter. He strolled over to his dad’s executive desk, greeted and waited for him to turn around and permit him to sit down.
Chief Chukwueke turned around and smiled at his son. “Good morning, Ifeanyi. Everything alright?”
“Father, that woman… Ms Florence Nkosi is a…problem…” Ifeanyi managed to get out. “She keeps insisting on dining with me and NEVER discussing our business! I can’t sit through another one of these dinners!”
“Ifeanyi… You lack patience!” Chief Chukwueke said. “How long has it been?”
“Two weeks! She’s leaving on Monday for South Africa, and we’ve made no progress. Zilch! I don’t think she’s interested…and if she’s expecting more from me, then I think we should forget about their bank.”
“Hmmm…” the Chief muttered. “I’ll see if I can talk to her or anyone else on their board. But you have to exercise more patience. You know, we are lucky that she was in town, otherwise, you might have had to travel to campaign for this partnership.”
“Dad, we have people for this job. That’s not my job.”
“It is, when they ask for you personally. Look,” he sighed. “I know you’re not into loose women anymore… But you’ve still got some charm on you, haven’t you? Find a way to secure this deal. We’re counting on you.”
Ifeanyi let out a sigh. He rubbed his hand down his face as he took in another breath. This was an ugly side of his business, and it was getting harder and harder to keep it from Mary.
“Okay… I’ll try,” he said, finally. “Thanks.”
Bolu was returning from a conference meeting with Dele and a couple other colleagues, who were working on a case together, when he noticed her. She was seated on one of the waiting chairs outside his office, next to his secretary, and she’d already seen him. Dele, who was with him, had also seen her and, as expected, was awestruck by the beautiful woman waiting to be attended to by Bolu.
“Later, man,” Dele said, making his departure, but not without casting another look back at the beauty. He wondered what her case was about.
Bolu forced his legs to keep on moving upon sighting Amaka. God, she was as beautiful as he remembered. What was she doing there?
Amaka stood up when Bolu came close. She smiled and wanted to say something smart, but all that she could muster was a breathy, “Hey…”
“Hey…” Bolu parroted. “Wow… What are you doing here?”
“I need a lawyer,” Amaka replied, simply.
“Okay, step into my office,” he said, opening the door for her to enter first and then following her in. He noticed that his heart rate had since doubled and wondered if she could hear it. He swallowed as he got behind his desk.
He tried to calm himself down and wondered if it would have been better to ask her to wait outside until he was more composed to see her. As it was, his palms had grown sweaty, and he was even beginning to sweat under his shirt, a very unusual occurrence for him. He fidgeted with a few things on his desk, carefully placing the picture of his wife and new born baby in plain view, as a reminder to himself and a deterrent to the mysterious lady who seemed to have unholy powers over him.
He took in a deep breath and then let it out. “So, how can I help you?”
Amaka looked about Bolu’s office as he settled in his seat. She could tell that he was nervous. She too was trembling. What was she doing in his office, in his law firm?! There were so many others she could have reached out to. But the thrill she got from seeing him again was far too good to pass up. Their connection was magical, and she was very afraid of what that meant.
His question finally registered with her consciousness, and she looked back at him dazed, trying to think how she would answer that. It seemed he was trying to avoid asking the obvious…
“I’m sorry I left the way I did that day,” she suddenly blurted out, remembering how she had run home during his sister’s wedding to avoid getting to know him and potentially destroying his marriage.
Bolu was taken aback by her frankness. He wanted to act like it was all forgotten, but it was a scene that continually replayed in his memory. “Who are you?” he finally asked the obvious.
“My name is Amaka Nkechi. I am divorced. No kids. Used to be a model.”
“I see…” Bolu said, swallowing. The last piece made a lot of sense. “I can’t believe you’re here. How did you find me?”
“Google. I saw your profile on LinkedIn. I…I…was looking for a lawyer. I have a sexual harassment case.”
“Hmmm…” Bolu muttered. “And you thought I’d be the perfect attorney…? Why?”
Amaka took in a deep breath. “Well… I don’t know about perfect attorney. I just thought it was significant that I found you when I needed a lawyer. I didn’t know you were a lawyer… And if you could help me, it would be…perfect.”
“Oh, okay…” Bolu said. His hand instinctively moved to reposition the photograph of his family. Amaka’s gaze followed his movement. He sighed. “I think we both know that there’s something more going on here… I don’t know what it is. I’ve never felt this way before…for anyone. Not even my wife.”
Amaka fought back a smile. She shouldn’t be happy about that… She couldn’t do anything with that. But the smile won, as her face glowed.
“I think I know what you mean. I think we might be soul-mates…” Amaka said, nervously biting her lower lip. It sounded so stupid coming out of her mouth.
Bolu laughed. “Oh, wow… If that’s true, how did we miss each other all this time?”
“I don’t know how this thing works… But I’ve never been drawn to someone the way I am with you… I dream of you. I long for you. And I don’t even know you.”
Bolu raised his hands to cover his face. Those were his words…and she’d just recited them from his mind. Could it be true that they were soul mates? What did that mean for him and Lola? He looked at her picture and smiling face, and he knew what he felt for his wife was real. But he also knew something was missing…
“Amaka… Nothing can happen between us,” he forced himself to say.
“I can’t be your lawyer. I can’t trust myself around you. I don’t know if we’re soulmates, but I know that I’m married. And I love my wife… And I love my God. I can’t do it.”
It was what he said about loving God that hit home with Amaka. Where was her love for God? Why had she put them in this situation because of mere curiosity? And he was such a good man!
Amaka felt the greatest loss and pain as she rose up from her seat. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have come to you.”
Bolu just looked at Amaka, pained by his decision. If he gave her an inch, he wouldn’t ever want to come back from that high. He knew it. Because of his dreams, he knew she was dangerous to him. He even wondered how he would cope not seeing her again, after being so reminded of the chemistry they shared.
He watched her as she opened the door and walked out of his life, a third time. He laid his head back on his executive chair and let the trembles take over him. He felt like something in him just died.
To be continued...
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