PULL OVER (EPISODE 6)
I know I said I would be posting Saturdays and Sundays but I couldn’t help but share this part already.
I’m chilling waiting for your comments and votes.
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I headed into the conference room with an air of positivity and prayer. We are going to flow. Exchange pleasantries. Lord please I don’t want someone bullying me. I am young I know, but you know I tried to make it on time.
In my state of optimism and monologue, I almost ran into the head cleaner with her wet floor sign and a mop. The only thing that saved me from a good fall with cleaning water splashed all over me was that she was only carrying her apparatus to go return them. Water just has it for me this morning.
“E ma binu Aunty.” I apologized in Yoruba. Don’t be angry ma’am.
“Haba Aunty Zoya, gently o.” She smiled as she adjusted her cleaning apparatus and walked away.
I know yeah, all the staffs love me. It’s like I don’t have a choice, I’m more like their baby. I don’t know who let my age out or maybe because I was the first intern to be hired with a baby face.
I had to pause, to adjust my gown, then take a deep breathe so I can calm down before I made things worse than they were. My clothing was not as damp as it was and I felt more comfortable in them. My morning had better be good with all the good mornings I have received. After my breathing exercise, I gained enough composure and calmness to completed my walk to the conference room.
There was only one person in there waiting for me, so I summoned courage, knowing that the only reason why this representative is still around is because of respect for Dr. Wole. I pushed open the glass panel and walk into the conference room, feeling professional and in control. I have to play the perfect host.
“Good morning sir,” I piped in a voiced that sounded off to me, then cleared my throat and came up with something more like myself. “Good morning sir.”
Where did all my confidence go?
The partner smirked and motioned for me to sit on one of the about twenty similar chairs surrounding the long mahogany conference table. I felt like slapping the smirk off his face but he is actually cute and I am the person who is in the wrong. This is wrong, why should he be the one telling me to sit, I’m supposed to be my boss. Dr. Wole would be so embarrassed. He didn’t even bother to return the greeting.
As I made myself comfortable, etiquette made me apologize, I did not like him one bit already. He was even younger than I had imagined, feeling all put together. I was expecting someone older not him. “I’m sorry I kept you waiting.”
“So” he continued as if we have had previous meetings. “You enjoy doing this?” I looked at him as though he had lost it and kept on staring, forgetting the documents I was supposed to hand over to him and connecting my laptop to the big screen on the wall. “Taking another person’s role, I mean.”
I smiled politely. Even though he had not responded to everything I had said, he sounded like someone with a good sense of humor. With all his cuteness, he looked familiar; I knew if I had met him before, I would likely not forget him. He was not beautiful; he was handsome, bold manly features and all.
“Yes, sir. Excuse me please, I need to set this up.” I stood up and walked towards the screen big screen on the other end of the conference room to configure the setting with my laptop. I took my time and he kept quiet. The silence in the room was loud and but I decided to hold my ground. While configuring the machines which took less than three minutes, the longest minutes of my life because I could feel eyes roving me from across the room, I noticed some staffs passing through the hall. It was weird though as I noticed one be Feyi, one of the project’s leaders who shouldn’t be on this floor at all. It was none of my business; I just need to make sure this man understands what he came for. By the time I took my sat down opposite him again, he continued as if the silence had never happened.
“That’s good. Considering the fact that some people don’t actually like living their lives you could be in lots of money.” I swear, if I understood what he just said, I would have responded. Therefore, I smirked and went straight to the point.
“I’m sorry for arriving late sir…” he wasn’t even listening, he was typing away on his phone, after doing that, he looked up at me with a childish twinkle in his eyes, like the joke was on me. My mobile phone buzzed, making a chirpy sound. Oh crap, why didn’t I silence my phone before stepping? “Sorry,” I muttered in between my speech as I ignored it and quickly set my phone to vibrate only “… and so I am to also understand the procedures in documents and proceeding before you leave. I have actually gone through them and would need only clarifications for pages seven and…twenty-five.”
I raised up my head from the document I was flipping to face him and he didn’t utter a word. That look was still pasted on his face and it was looking more like a smirk now. I wish to God this was not work related, I would have called him out for checking me out while setting up and as well making me feel like a fool after getting me to think he was cool with me.
“Check your phone.” He moved his head slightly towards where I had placed my phone on the table. His smile still on.
With a practiced professional smile, I responded. “I’ll do that later, so as not to delay you.”
He smiled. “It could be your boss.”
Oh, snap! I had not thought about that and I immediately picked up my phone from underneath the office folder. It was when I pulled the notification bar down that my brain reminded me that Dr. Wole and I only communicate via emails and the ringtone that sounded, wasn’t it? An instant message it was and as I was about to drop my phone, another message came in.
You look so hot I have been wondering to myself why we haven’t met sooner. 8:38 AM
It is I. 8:40 AM
I stared at the messages for seconds that seemed like hours, raised up my head to stare briefly at Mr. Andrews. “Some seconds sir.” And focused back on my phone. I am a very sharp girl, but sometimes, when the mind wants to play tricks on the sharpest minds, it does it so well.
“Take your sweet time.” Was his response.
I quickly tapped on my menu icon, swiped, tapped on the gallery and scrolled down to the set of stingy pictures Manir had at one time sent to me. He wasn’t much of a picture person and too busy to be changing display pictures.
I held my breath, grinned to myself, then after composing myself, faced Manir with a professional look.
“So you are Andrews M. Benedict?” He just kept smiling. “You knew all along?”
“When I saw you entering, I supposed my thoughts conjured you up until I saw the door move.” He placed one hand on his chin and looked me up with a flirty look, it looked natural on him albeit he was in a suit and should be looking professional.
I kept on soaking all of him in and next thing I know, we both burst out laughing.
The universe can be funny. After all our attempts at seeing face to face, we finally meet on my most awful day as an employee. I don’t know who would love this gist more; Zena or Chiluba. “Cute aren’t I?” he said as I was still staring at him and I broke off smiling.
“Say I give you a breakdown of all he needs without scolding you for arriving late; you’ll accept that you’ll allow me to pick you up after work today as I have a flight to catch tomorrow?”
Who could resist that?
We immediately went through both documents everything and even more than they were supposed to go through. He had left around a few minutes to 10 AM after calling the people he was to meet that he would be a little late.
“So we meet after work? I have to be out of the country for a five-day convention tomorrow morning.” With a smile like that, how could I resist?
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