Amara browsed through her collection of clothes looking for something nice to wear to the office. It was a Monday and a rather unusual Monday it seemed because Amara, who did not always care about how she appeared, was really searching for something to wear. She discarded one gown after another, wondering if she would ever find a ‘fitted’ cloth. ‘It must be the aftermath of enjoying Nadia’s company’ Amara thought. She had been in a good mood since she had hosted that child in her house even though she had been gravely disappointed when she had been taken away. Another thought though, suggested something different. She was probably not dressing up because of happiness. It probably had to do with anticipation. She shook her head, discarding the thought as foul.
It had been a week now and yet, she hadn’t heard anything from Kelvin. It was almost as if he hadn’t appeared at all; but how could she even believe that when he had stood so close to her; so close that she had perceived the scent of the same perfume he used years back. He had been so close, yet so far. She had literarily pushed him away, yet he had promised not to let her go, but then, why wasn’t he coming back? She had expected him to come and try to get her on her feet again like he always did, but he hadn’t shown up. Every day, she had expected the next client coming to her office in Ara P to turn out to be Kelvin but time and time again, she had been sorely disappointed. Although, of course, she would never admit it; not even to herself.
She lifted a gown before her eyes. It was a dark shade of purple and looked perfect. She had abandoned it when she bought it because it fitted her body perfectly but weirdly, that was what she wanted today. The thought that Kelvin hadn’t returned because he found her appearance lacking had plagued her mind over and over again. Amara drew the material over her head until it came to a final stop, slightly above her knees. She took out a white smart suit jacket and pushed her two hands into it. Her heart beat steadily as she walked to the mirror. She could not believe the beauty that stared back at her. For the first time, she wasn’t wearing the slightly oversized clothes she always wore to keep men off, even if they still came nonetheless. Right now, she actually felt beautiful.
“My staff would think I contacted an incurable disease” she said to herself, wondering if she really hadn’t. But the desire to remove the clothes never came up. She wondered if she should let down her hair and let it fall past her shoulders, but she instantly quenched that thought. Her staff would really think something was wrong if she did that. She packed her hair very neatly and put a very scanty gloss on her usually dry lips. She turned away from the mirror in order to get her beautiful form out of her eyes, but the image stayed locked in her head. No matter how much she tried to deny it, she still had her old self in her – the Amara who craved to be desired and loved. She lifted her bag and left the room.
As she walked to her car, she wondered if she had started growing soft. She had never been found thinking of her own personal beauty and appeal, until now. I cannot be thinking of having a man in my life now, am I? She swallowed and pushed that thought away as ‘completely ridiculous’. There is nothing wrong in wanting to look beautiful once in a while, she thought firmly as she pulled out of the compound.
Reliance was bubbling with life as usual as Kelvin walked confidently into the company. The busy staff paused immediately they saw him, murmuring their greetings, which he answered coolly with a small moderate smile. He had never been one to fancy ties so the top of his shirt had a few loose buttons beneath his dark grey suit, showing off a bit of his muscled chest. The ladies had on their brightest smiles as he walked on, not really noticing them as he moved to his office.
“You are welcome Sir” Shalom said standing up to greet her boss.
Kelvin turned a firm smile to his secretary. “Hope you enjoyed your weekend?” he asked.
“Yes, I did sir; I am sure you did also sir” Shalom said, looking at her boss who looked just too handsome. She wondered why most men squeezed their necks to breaking point with their ties when another man looked simply delicious without it. She had never seen her boss with a tie, and Shalom could not imagine him with it even though she knew that he would still look perfect with it.
“Of course” Kelvin answered as started into his office. “Come in for a minute Shalom” he said and she hastily followed him in. as always, Kelvin shrugged out of his suit the very second he got to his chair, making it look as if he really would rather not put it on. His thick muscled body became more pronounced without the suit as he dropped into his chair, moving it closer to the wide sparkling brown table. Shalom stood with her hands playing nervously at her sides. Her boss had always been so handsome and breathtaking but she wondered when she would finally get used to it. It is no wonder that all the female staff always dressed to perfection. They all wanted to impress their boss – whenever he was around to even notice them. But he never noticed; the woman who would get his attention had to be the luckiest woman alive, Shalom thought.
“I need you to pass a memo across to my assistant and heads of departments.” Kelvin said as he turned on his laptop. There would be a meeting today so we can effect some changes in order to improve our standard. The meeting would last for one hour and it would commence immediately after lunch break. Apart from those I mentioned, two other people would join us; you and John”
Shalom blinked, startled. “Me sir?” she asked, bewildered.
Kelvin smiled. “Yes, there is a reason why you should be there” he said simply. “That should be all” he said, dismissing her gently.
Shalom nodded and scuffled out of the office. Kelvin watched her leave with a vague smile on his face. He had been monitoring his secretary and had decided that she would do better in a more dignified position.
Reliance, just as the name implies, is the most reliable Estate Management Firm you can find. They boast of impeccable services, helping house and estate owners to manage their properties, seeing to running of these properties on behalf of their respective owners. They had grown steadily over the years, buying up the minds of people with their exceptional performance and reliability. Kelvin had used his continuous Abuja trips to set up another branch there in Abuja, expanding the coast of ‘Reliance’ beyond the confines of Lagos and gaining national popularity. Because of the nature of his job and the quality of his staff, he could afford to move from one state to the other, without worrying about the state of his company in his absence.
Kelvin went through the information on his laptop carefully although his mind was a bit unfocused and sluggish. Something that hadn’t happened for years. How easily a woman could cloud a man’s senses and prevent him from doing what he usually did with ease. He needed to see Amara. It had been days without seeing Amara and it had seemed even longer than the six years of long unbearable wait. But Kelvin knew the wait was necessary. She needed to make her desire his presence; awaken the feminine feeling in her that he knew she had locked up so firmly. Kelvin had never been in the habit of imposing himself where he wasn’t welcome and he definitely would not start now.
Alex walked down the stairs, deciding that his body would fully alive with the little effort of taking the stairs instead of the comfort the elevator provided. He pressed his IPhone as he went, not paying full attention to his progress down the stairs. He collided with something, or someone and stumbled slightly, raising his eyes from the phone which nearly slipped off his fingers to glare at the frail looking woman which stood before him. She let out a startled gasp, staring at him as if he were a ghost. The mop he saw in the woman’s firm grip and the flimsy cloth she had on told Alex exactly what the slightly elderly woman was. “Are you blind woman?” Alex asked angrily.
The woman did not seem to even hear him as she gaped continuously at him. The mopping stick in her arms shook slightly as she gazed at him, upsetting him the more. “Alex” she gasped.
Alex wasn’t the least bit surprised. He was after all the son of Senator Bello. “Mr. Alex Bello.” Alex corrected sternly. “You have no right to call me by my first name woman if you want to keep your meagre job in this hotel, I don’t care how old you are.” He continued down the stairs without looking back while the woman continued to gawk breathlessly at his departing back.
“Oh God” she breathed.
Amara sat in her office with a smile on her face. She had been smiling too much, she thought weirdly, like it was a sin to do so. She could not believe the stares she had received from her staff. They had openly gawked at her like some famous Nollywood actress, almost forgetting to greet her. She had made sure Tega was terribly occupied with office works and the ladies being tested but trust the damned woman, she would soon come and run her tongue nonetheless. Her eyes had grown round as sausage as she gazed at her when she arrived.
The door to her office opened, and sure as sunrise, Tega entered with a huge grin on her round face.
Amara rolled her eyes. “Not now Tega” she growled.
“I knew the entrance of Mr Kelvin Thompson would leave its required marks” she said, grinning. Amara glared at her gently, hiding a small smile. “It seems you are blessed with handsome men because one is here to see you. The very one that I said looks too good to be true” she said with a raise of her brow. “But I am sure he won’t look as good to you as the hunk of a man occupying your head”
Amara hissed. “Tega, would you stop your silly insinuations and stop keeping the person waiting. I don’t know when it became a sin to dress up for a Monday at work. Who is waiting to see me?”
Tega smiled. “Mr Maxwell Babs” she breathed.
Amara blanched. The day could not be spoiled by the entrance of that proud spoiled brat, could it? Tega went out and without her formal permission, the door to her office opened seconds later and there stood Maxwell Babs, smiling down at her like she hadn’t just insulted him few evenings ago.
…to be continued