Love Quest Ep 9

Threats flying, Relationship building, friendship straining, hearts breaking, odds meeting! Catch all the drama on Love Quest episode 9. Get into Nimi and Laye’s world. Don’t forget to share this episode with your friend.

Episode Nine

Nimi sat behind her desk putting finishing touches to the work she wanted to submit to her team’s creative director. Although it was break period, she decided to stay back to work. Her reason for wanting to complete her work while the others left for the cafeteria was just a cover-up. Her main reason was to avoid Laye who had made it a routine to pressure her to go see Ken even when he had not invited her. The pressure was getting to her, and it was causing a strain on their friendship.

Nimi was near snapping at Laye to let her be, but her fear of her growing feelings for Ken would not allow her act. She wasn’t sure if Laye was getting on her nerves because she had a thing for Ken too, or if truly Laye’s obsession was irritating her.

She clicked the send button on her mail and leaned back in her chair. She received a notification in the following seconds that her mail had been sent. She wished what was becoming her life and her friendship with Laye could easily be sorted out. She didn’t want to get in the way of Laye and yet she didn’t want to stay away from Ken. How was it possible that she would handle that? Could she have her cake and still eat it?

Laye seemed not have noticed the ache her continuous enquiry about Ken was causing her. All she wanted was to have Ken, and Nimi must help her. She turned deaf ears to her explanation that Ken had not summoned again to his office on personal grounds –that was even giving her concern. But she would never go to him. She would never yield to Laye’s pressure and go to Ken.

No way! She shook her head vehemently. I am not a desperado. My feelings notwithstanding, I will never seek him out on my own until everything is clear to me. If Laye is so desperate then let her go to him herself. Yes, that’s better. She would tell her that when next she asked her when she was visiting Ken.

Someone touched her shoulder, drawing her out of her inner musing. She looked up into the eyes of Miss Binaebi. Her eyes grew wide in surprise.

A lovely face smiled at her. Nimi forced a smile through her lips too.

“Hi.” She greeted.

“Hi,” Elaebi replied cheerfully. She took the seat beside Nimi.

Nimi watched her every move. Close up, Nimi could see why Laye felt insecure. Elaebi was indeed beautiful. Her face seemed to glow as she looked at her. Her eyes seemed to fill her whole face and her lips wore a natural pout that drew Nimi’s eyes to her like metal to a magnet. Her pencil-thin eyebrows eased down gently to her sweeping eyelashes as she looked at Nimi.

“You had such intense look on your face a while ago and I couldn’t resist coming to ask what put such look on your face.” She said.

Nimi winced. Elaebi laughed a little. “Hope you don’t mind my intrusion.” She said.

“Oh no.” Nimi quickly reassured her. She sat upright and minimized her mail page on the system. She could use that as an excuse. “I just have a lot of work to do.” She told her.

Elaebi nodded her understanding. “My former place of work was the same. The stress was terrible. I was the only art director.” She said.

Nimi lifted her brows in disbelief. “Really?” She asked. “You’ve been in the advertising world?”

“Of course,” Elaebi replied. “For two years actually.”

Nimi gaped at her. This was definitely a case of beauty and brains. Where was Laye, who thought Elaebi was there to seduce her precious Mr. Ken? “That’s good. I have only been here for eight months now,” she said.

“I guess I can welcome you as a senior colleague.” Elaebi teased.

Nimi laughed. Elaebi joined her. “Okay, my senior colleague.” Nimi replied, with a bow.

Elaebi got up. “I just wanted to create a connection between us. Your face gave me my opening.” She winked at Nimi.

Nimi smiled. “Thanks, Miss Binaebi.”

“The name is Elaebi. Call me Ela.” She told her.

Nimi nodded. “Ela then. I’m Nimitein. Everyone calls me Nimi.”

They spent a few more minutes acquainting before Elaebi went back to her desk. Nimi watched her walk away and knew that she had just made another friend.

That knowledge proved to be true in the days that followed as they got closer to each other. She saw little of Laye. No more did they carry out their morning ritual. Nimi took her tea all by herself on her desk. There was no need going to share precious moments with someone who had become obsessed with a man and could care less about her friendship.  Each time they met, Laye nagged her about Ken. The more she nagged, the more Nimi avoided her.

When they gathered for briefing days after Elaebi came to her, Nimi sat away from Laye. She found herself beside Ela while Laye sat with Karibo.  She felt strange that morning and she really wanted to go to Laye, but the moment Laye sighted Ela beside her, she turned away and sat with Karibo who flashed a happy smile at her.

Laye’s eyes kept drifting to the entrance waiting for Ken to appear as usual. Whatsoever Karibo was telling her was going through one ear and out through the other.

When she heard Ken’s voice at the entrance, the first place her eyes went to was to Laye. Just as she thought, Laye was beaming with smiles. She shook her head sadly. Ken didn’t come close as he would have done in the past. He walked straight to the back and took a seat while the MD addressed them that morning. Laye kept stealing peeks at him.

Beside Nimi, Ela kept humming as she took notes of the MD’s address. Nimi marvelled at her. Her face radiated with so much joy as the humming gave way to words. The lyrics of the song she was humming left her lips in sweet melody. Her serenity intrigued Nimi. What was about this beautiful but simple girl, she wondered.  She looked her over. Spending time with her these past days had made her yearn for the kind of personality Ela had. She charmed everyone around with her easy smiles and caring attitude. She seemed not to notice the effect she had on people. There must be something special about her, Nimi concluded within her.

She made a note to ask her about the song and try to learn it too. She couldn’t remember the last time she sang any song on her own, talk less of a gospel song. The gospel songs she knew were from a time long ago when attending church had been part of her family’s activities; when her sister had not made them the laughing stock of the community and the rejected of the church. Each time she heard people sing gospel songs, she had her mind elsewhere. She would prefer to plug in her earphones and keep herself from singing along or learning the song.

But something about the way Ela was singing touched her. She would learn Ela’s song even if she might not believe in the lyrics. And she wouldn’t sing the song at home of course because her father would only get angry with her. He was done singing, church songs, praying and reading God’s word. It was only her mother that still took the side of God after the damages her sister caused. Even her younger ones were indifferent. Who would blame them when the head of the house had sunk under the weight of the rejection and condemnation he received from those who should have understood and encouraged him through God’s words and prayers.

Nimi sighed as the address came to an end and they left the room in groups. She would not think of her sister or her family, for now, she would focus on what she could control –learning Ela’s song.

She pulled her aside before she would go with the others. “You have a beautiful voice, Ela.” Nimi commented.

Ela brimmed with smiles. “Thank you, Nimi.”  She replied.

“I’ll like to learn the song.” She told her.

Ela clapped her hands in excitement. “Oh, great! I’ll teach you during the break, or we could visit the ladies before we get tied up with work and apply ‘powder’ to our voices.” She winked at Nimi.

Nimi threw her head back in laughter. Her laughter stopped abruptly when Ken joined them, causing her to cough.

He smiled at them. “Hello, ladies.” He said.

“Good morning, sir.” They both greeted.

“How are you enjoying DAA, Miss Binaebi?” he asked.

“Fine, sir. I’m adapting to the work schedule here.” Ela replied, twisting a strayed curl that escaped her hairpin.

Ken gave an approving nod. “That’s good. Just do your best.” He encouraged.

“I will, sir.”

Ken turned to Nimi. “It’s been a while, Miss Tombiri. Let’s meet today during lunch break.”

As usual, his invitation made her happy. A big smile spread across her face. “Okay, sir. I’ll be there.”

“Alright then, enjoy your day.” He walked away with purposeful strides.

They watched him go. When Nimi took her eyes off his departing back, she locked glances with Laye. She excused herself from Ela and went to meet her.

Laye’s mouth was drawn in disapproval, arms folded across her chest. “She’s so quick.” She stated, staring daggers at Ela, who was talking to another art director.

“Come off it, Laye. Ela is a very nice person. I like her.” Nimi countered.

Laye shook her head. “Don’t be carried away, Nimi. She’s just pretending.”

Nimi looked at Ela. She was open from what Nimi could see. “I doubt it, Laye.”

“Keep doubting. Don’t be surprised when she’ll be the one going to Ken’s office.” Laye sounded firm. “By the way, I saw Ken talking to you. What’s it about?” her voice was soft, losing the acidic tone form moments ago.

“He invited me to his office,” Nimi told her without the happiness she felt earlier when Ken invited her.

“Oh good!” Laye crowed in delight. “We’re back on track. Now, I feel good again.” She placed her hands on her waist and twisted stylishly.

Nimi said nothing. She would do nothing to increase Laye’s obsession with Ken. She only looked forward to the time in his office.


She met Ken in front of the file cabinet shuffling through some files when she got to his office. He turned when he heard the door open. He smiled at her.

“Welcome, Miss Tombiri.” He said, moving away from the cabinet with a folder.

“Thank you, sir.” She answered, standing at the same spot.

He pointed her to a seat. She took her seat. “How has the day been?” He enquired.

Nimi blew air out of her mouth. “Hectic.” She said simply, placing a hand on her jaw.

He raised his eyebrows. “That bad huh?”

She nodded. “I have been in meetings all morning setting dates for our presentations, and I have a very long document to work on. I think you should consider having four copywriters on my team.” She told him.

Ken laughed. He set the folder on the desk. “Negotiating for your team, right?” he replied, eyes twinkling.

Nimi raised her hands in mock innocence. “I just want the best for the agency.”

He chuckled lightly. “Alright, we’ll look into it.” He drew out some papers from the folder and passed them to her. “I hope you’re done with your work now,” he said. She nodded in return. “And even if you were still busy I would have talked to your Creative director to excuse you.” His eyes held hers in an intense look.

Nimi felt heat move up her neck all the way to her hairline. Her heart did a double take at his words. A tingling sensation started up in the pit of her stomach, spreading up to her heart. A happy feeling settled on her. “That would be nice.” She replied in a calm voice, despite her runaway pulse.

“I hope you won’t mind me having you to myself all through.” He said. Nimi raised alarmed eyes at that. He rubbed the back of his neck, a guilty smile on his face. “That came out wrong. I meant… well… we’ll work together.” He explained with a stutter.

“I don’t mind, sir,” Nimi responded, enjoying his discomfort. She didn’t mind him having her in the other way he thought she had understood his statement, but she couldn’t tell him that.


He gave her the file he had pulled out from the cabinet when she came in and told her to look through the final presentation for the Seasoning Company Account which they had submitted earlier. They looked over it together and finally agreed it was ready for presentation.

“Well, since you’re going to be here for a while, I made arrangement for lunch.” He moved away from the desk. He picked a basket beside the refrigerator. He came back to the desk and dropped two food flasks on it. Nimi looked at him for an explanation. “I wanted to show you I’m not just a snack lover. I love good food too, so I prepared this meal.”

Nimi couldn’t resist the happy laughter that bubbled within her. It came out with all the excitement she felt. “Wow, sir, you actually cooked.” She said in disbelief.

A worried look creased his brow. “Maybe you should taste it first before getting excited.” He pushed one of the flasks to her.

She opened it and was hit by the aroma of curry seasoning. He had prepared white rice and stew. The chicken that garnished the rice was mouth-watering. She felt herself salivating. “This is good, sir.” She commented. “It’s inviting.”

“Then you should eat.” He said. He took two spoons from the basket and passed one to her. “You can get water from the fridge.”

Nimi left the flask on the table and went to the fridge to get sachet water. While she went right to eating, he closed his eyes for a few seconds with his lips uttering words she couldn’t hear. She studied him as she chewed her food.

Who exactly was Ken? She pondered. Laye had finally told her what happened between them when she returned the bottle. She had related the way she met him that day.  Hmm… she thought deeply, there is something about this man. There must be something or else my heart will not be hopelessly falling for him even when I know my friend wanted him so much.

He ended his prayer and started eating. She looked away then. “How is it?” He asked her. His eyes were anxious.

He had done a good job for someone who hardly cooked. It didn’t matter that the curry was too much and the salt was a lit bit much. She wouldn’t tell him that. “Good, sir. I’m quite impressed. If you continue like this, you’ll soon become an expert.” She enthused.

A pleased look filled his eyes. “Thank you. I know you only said that to make me feel good. I can taste the salt now.” his eyes twinkled.

Nimi almost dropped the food flask as her body shook with laughter. He joined in her laughter. “But just like you said, I’ll definitely improve if I continue.” He commented when his laughter subsided.

“Alright, sir.”

After the meal, they got back to talking about work and outlining strategies for the new accounts they just got. Nimi was pleased that he thought to include her in his planning. Her respect for him increased.

While he worked on his system, she read through his ideas for the new accounts, making corrections were necessary and noting relevant points. The rhythmic movement of his fingers on the keyboard broke the silence in the room. Nimi didn’t like it initially but after a while, it became monotonous and she didn’t notice anymore. It was the reason why she didn’t know he had stopped typing and was looking at her. The hair on her neck stood, making her self-conscious. She looked up to see him watching her.

Nimi’s hands flew to her mouth to be sure she had not left some food on her cheek. She rubbed both corners of her mouth. After that, she looked down at her shirt. No stain, she sighed with relief. Then why the serious look, she wondered? He answered the question her lips hadn’t formed but her eyes had asked.

“You were humming a hymn I like so much,” he told her.

Her eyes widened ever so slightly. She didn’t even know that she had been humming. She had gone to the Ladies with Ela and spent the first ten minutes of the day powdering their faces and learning the song. It was then Ela had told her it was a hymn she had sung that morning with her younger sister during their devotion. Nimi had hummed it to herself most part of the morning as she moved through her work. She stopped to concentrate and didn’t know she was doing it unconsciously in front of Ken. His rhythmic fingers must have matched the tone of the hymn and she just flowed with it. “I didn’t know.” She replied.

“That song always touched me each time I sing it. Do you feel that way?” His tone was soft.

Nimi considered it. Had the hymn touched her? When last had she been touched? She recalled the lyrics of the hymn and wondered what would minister to her in it.

My faith had found a resting place,

Not in device nor creed;

I trust the Ever-living One

His wounds for me shall plead.

I need no other argument,

I need no other plea,

It is enough that Jesus died,

And that he died for me.

She pondered on the words from the first stanza and the chorus. Ken interrupted her mind’s activity.

“That hymn has me down on my knees each time.” He said. “It brings to my mind what is written in the book of Psalms. Psalm 112:7 ‘He will not be afraid of evil tidings; his heart is steadfast, trusting the Lord’”. He quoted in a melodic voice.

Nimi felt a warm glow within her as he quoted the scripture. It was right in her heart where she had never felt such. What was this all about? Why did she feel so good listening to Ken? His eyes seem to glow too. She shook her head. She must have worked too much and it was affecting her.

“You know the Bible?” she quizzed, studying him.

His lips turned up in a smile. “Yes, I do.” He answered with utmost pleasure. “What about you?”

Nimi looked away. Reading the Bible was not part of her daily routine. That was done on the rare occasions she attended Sunday service –and that happens when her mother had nagged her consistently on it. “Not like you.” She answered evasively.

He looked thoughtful. “Why is that?”

Nimi shuffled papers. She didn’t look at him. She took out one and feigned deep concentration. Anything was better than answering his question.

“Nimi,” he called softly, placing a warm hand over hers that had suddenly gone cold, causing it to tingle. Her eyes jerked to him. “Feel free to talk to me.” He urged gently.

She was too shocked to speak. They were moving too fast. Ken was opening places she didn’t want to be opened just yet. Yes, she was deeply attracted to him and wanted to spend time with him, that much she would admit, but still, she couldn’t just open up to him like that. The last time she opened up to someone, he had used it against her. Raymond had shattered her heart with the weapon she gave him. This time, she’d take her time.

He must have sensed her withdrawal because his grip on her hand became firm. “Listen, Nimi, you can talk to me.” Despite his firm grip, his voice remained gentle. He wasn’t going to force her to talk. He would only encourage her as a friend. A friend right? His heart thought her more than a friend already but he could not do anything until he was certain just as he had prayed days back.

Unbidden tears pooled in her eyes to her embarrassment. She raised her head to prevent them from dropping. She inhaled and exhaled for a few seconds, trying to get her emotions under control. When she felt relieved, she spoke up. “Maybe some other time, sir.” She told him.

A sad smile played on his lips. The pain of disappointment sliced through him but he shook it off. His time with Nimi would come. He was certain of it. “I’ll be waiting to listen, Nimi.” He replied, looking straight at her. “Just consider me as your friend and call me Ken.” He added.

Her eyes flew to him. Did he just say ‘friend’? He wanted them to be friends. Not inviting her to his office under work pretence anymore, right? Friend, and to call him Ken? Wow!

“Yes, Nimi. Take me as your friend.” he leaned forward so that their faces were just inches apart. “I want to be your friend. Will you accept me?” He asked.

Her heart screamed yes, yes, yes; but she hesitated. What about Laye? Would she not feel bad about it? What would happen now? Questions flew about in her head, while Ken awaited her answer. She looked into his eyes and he looked back at her with an intense gaze, scanning her face. The walls melted around her heart then. There was no harm in being his friend. She could even tell him about Laye’s feelings for him as a friend. She refused to acknowledge the small voice that told her she was not telling herself the truth.

She gave a small nod. “Yes, sir.” He shook her head at her use of ‘sir’. She cleared her throat and spoke again. “Yes, Ken.” She said in a small voice. She didn’t look at him.

He placed a hand under her chin and turned her face to him. “Thank you, Nimi. You are my friend too.”

Her heart thudded against her ribcage. For what reason, she couldn’t tell. Maybe for fear of what Laye would think and how she would react when she told her, or for the great excitement she felt that Ken asked to be her friend.

Whatever the reason, her heart kept thudding.


Nimi met Laye seated behind her desk when she got back to her booth. She jerked back in shock. She placed a hand over her racing heart and wondered what she would tell Laye.

“Laye.” She called.

Laye looked up from the magazine she was perusing. Her eyes twinkled with anticipation. “You’re back.” She said, dropping the magazine on the desk.

Nimi picked up the magazine and placed it on the stack of magazines on her desk. “What are you doing here?” She asked.

Laye gave a shrug. “Waiting for you of course. I need the gist na so I can plan my next move.” She blew air into her neatly polished nails.

Nimi looked around. A few of their colleagues were in the adjoining booths, working. Discussion flowed in low tones. “Not right here, Laye.” She replied in a whisper.

Laye stood up. “Then let’s go to my work area.” She suggested.

Nimi shook her head. “No, I have something to do now.” She powered her system and click on Microsoft Word. “We’ll talk later,” she said, not looking at her.

“You can do this later,” Laye replied, pressing the power off button. “We can still talk for a few minutes.” She stated, flashing a wry grin.

“Those few minutes are precious, Laye.” She told her through tight lips. “I know you when it comes to this particular matter.” She crossed her arms across her chest.

Laye swirled in her chair. “Then, let me stay here and listen to you while you work.” She insisted, raising expectant eyes to Nimi.

Anger built within Nimi. She glared at Laye. “Laye, please let’s talk later.” She told her coolly, fighting for control over her emotions.

Laye’s knitted eyebrows came up in surprise. Suspicion filled her eyes. Just as she was about to fire back at Nimi, Ela joined them.

“Hello, ladies.” She called pleasantly, flashing a bright smile.

Nimi let out a relieved sigh. She smiled at her in return. “Hi, Ela.”

Laye stood up. She fixed Ela with angry eyes. “You’re interrupting.” She told her bluntly.

Ela moved back. “Oh, I’m so sorry.” she apologized, the smile still on her face.

Nimi touched her arm. “It’s no problem, Ela. We’ll talk later.”

“Okay then.” She walked away from them.

“Laye, you shouldn’t have talked to her like that, Laye.”

“Whatever it is you are doing, Nimi, don’t betray our friendship,” she warned with all venom and walked out of the booth.

Laye’s warning caused her knees to tremble. She placed her hands on her desk to support herself. What would she do? Had she betrayed Laye by accepting Ken’s offer of friendship? Would Laye understand when she explained to her?

She drew her seat close to her and sat on it, then she placed her head on her desk. Her eyes went to a piece of paper on the floor. She bent and picked it up. It was folded into. She opened it. Her eyes widened at the content.

‘Let’s meet this evening at Bliss Taste and Bites after work. I have something to tell you. Karibo.’

Laye and Karibo? Nimi was confused. She had no time to analyse that when she heard her name.

“Nimi.” Someone called her from another booth and pointed to the office behind the booth.

She drew herself up. The creative director’s call put an end to the questions that plagued her, but Laye’s warning kept ringing in her head all through.

So, did Nimi do wrong in accepting Ken’s offer of friendship? If you were Laye, would you get angry when you find out?


Love Quest Ep 8

‘You can be the moon and still be jealous of the stars’ -Gary Allan.

Find out why in Episode 8 of Love Quest

Episode Eight

Nimi walked slowly down to Ken’s office, adjusting her suit skirt and pulling her jacket properly around her shoulders. She had come to enjoy being around him, she admitted to herself shyly. A smile touched her lips when she thought of each time she waited for his call to visit his office. Even though it hadn’t been frequent enough to raise eyebrows, it had been enough to be charmed by Ken’s personality.

In the last week he had called out the team for the Seasoning Company Account, she had seen more of him, but on a formal level. They had worked as a team, developing the right advert for one of their biggest clients. There had been no time to explore their new found friendship. The team broke off the previous day to create individual ideas before they resume again in a couple of days. She had waited with bated breath for Ken’s invite. She found herself watching the corridor. Each time a door opened, her eyes strayed to the corridor of their own volition. After what seemed like an eternity to her, his call had come –can we meet? His message had read. It had her heart beating fast against her ribcage. Her blood fired up with excitement. These feelings within her towards Ken were strange to her. She had no explanation whatsoever. She couldn’t be falling for Ken, could she? She stopped in her tracts and clutched her chest at this line of thought. Her eyes widened. No, she couldn’t be falling for Ken. It was still too soon after her breakup.

And if she was falling for Ken, what about Laye, her friend? She couldn’t betray her. Laye already felt like she was dating Ken. She was totally obsessed. Laye had been as enthusiastic as her when she told her Ken had invited her over to his office while they were together. She wanted information about Ken that would support her interest in him. Nimi was to provide that for a friend who had a miserable love life. She had to supply information that was vital to her friend. Top of her friend’s information list was Ken’s marital status. Everything rested on that. Laye was in her office waiting with bated breath for that information and here she was fantasizing about the same man. She gave a shudder. Her feelings or Laye’s? Whatever be the case, she looked forward to this meeting.

At Ken’s office, she informed the secretary of her meeting with him. The secretary called to inform him of her presence. When she dropped the phone, she asked Nimi to go in. Nimi straightened her shoulders as she went in.

He looked up at her away from the laptop before him, flashing a smile. She returned his smile too. “Thanks for coming, Miss Tombiri. Please sit down.” He said.

Nimi looked around the office as she took her seat, noting all the changes Ken had made since he became the ED. Everything was in order and labelled. The shelf that had many files scattered from one corner to the other now had all files in file jacket. His table was also properly arranged. She turned back her eyes to him and found him watching her with questioning eyes. She smiled appreciatively. “I was just admiring your office, sir.” She told him, gesturing at the office.

He did the same thing, chuckling lightly. “Thanks. My effort in arranging this place paid off. My aunt would be so proud.” He said, his cheek in his tongue.

“That doesn’t sound good.” She noted.

Ken shrugged. It wasn’t time to bore her with the story of his “tough” aunt. There would be time enough for that, especially now that he had discovered he always wanted to be around Nimi. With time, it would all become clearer.

He got up from the chair and went to the refrigerator. He brought out two bottles of diet coke and placed them on a tray with a pack of strolls, then he took a nylon bag from the top of the fridge. He walked back to the desk and placed them on the table.

“The last time you were here, you rejected my offer of biscuits.” He said, unwrapping the content of the nylon bag.

Nimi’s eyes raised in defence. “Oh, no, sir. I don’t just like biscuits.” She told him.

He smiled. “You don’t have to explain. I was just setting you up for my offer this afternoon. I hope you won’t reject it.” He raised hopefully eyes to her.

“What is it, sir?” She asked, staring at the bag.

He finally unwrapped the snack in the bag. He placed two pieces of meat-pie and two pieces of doughnuts on the tray. “Viola! This is my offer to you for lunch. Please enjoy it.” He stretched his hand over the tray and bowed his head.

Nimi laughed at that. Ken was not just good with his work, he had a charming side too. The same person that had been all business while they worked on their new account was teasing her. “Thank you.” She replied with a slight bow of her head.

“Bon appetit. Thanks for the work you put in these past days working all day to get the first part of the account ready. This is just my small treat for you to say you have done well.”

She blinked. The feelings she couldn’t explain from earlier tingled her toes and warmed her up at his words. Her lips parted slowly as she basked in the euphoria of his compliment. Laye’s list of questions forgotten; all that rang within her was her heart’s response to Ken. She inched forward in her chair and said her thanks in a sotto voice, and then picked up a piece of doughnut. She took a small bite and chewed slowly. He opened the bottles of coke and dropped strolls in them. Nimi looked at his ring finger more closely this time. Other times she had been satisfied with seeing no ring on his finger, but Laye hadn’t been satisfied. She insisted on knowing if he didn’t like jewellery or if he pulled it out each time he was around women. Her reasoning had seemed real, and so Nimi had promised herself that she would have a closer look at his ring finger.

Now as she chewed she studied his fingers. No ring indeed and no mark at all. It was clear that Ken was as single as the word single went. It made her smile. It made her breathe easier in his company. Although it was Laye’s love request, she felt like she had also been waiting for that clarity. She could now move on to the next request: find out if he had a fiancée or girlfriend.

“You like taking snacks, sir. Don’t you cook?” she asked, sipping her coke.

Ken finished chewing before answering her. “I cook once in a while. I’m not so good in the kitchen.” He told her.

Nimi watched the movement of his throat as he gulped down the drink. She shook herself. What was attractive about a man’s throat movement while drinking? She must be falling hard for him, or totally nuts. Something told her the first reason was why she was irresistibly charmed by her charming boss. She moved her head to one side and then the other in denial. She was here for her friend, not for herself. She went back to her question list again. Oh yes, fiancée or girlfriend.

“You could invite your fiancée or girlfriend over to cook for you.” She suggested, raising an eyebrow.

The deep laughter that erupted from his throat took her by surprise. She found herself noticing the thick lines of his brows and the startling radiance of his brown eyes. She smiled when his laughter subsided and he wiped tears off his eyes. “I don’t have any.” He said.

Oh, this is good, so good, she exclaimed within her. Her eyes danced with excitement. “Wow! Such an attractive and a hardworking man like you should have ladies at his beck and call.” She pushed on, not stopping to think of how her words would sound to him.

Ken’s eyes closed off. The mirth left his eyes. He was suddenly the boss again and not a charming young man enjoying the company of a beautiful young woman. Nimi straightened in her chair. Worried lines marked her forehead. I have definitely crossed the line, she cried silently. What got into me? Why did I say that? oh no, I have spoilt everything even before it started.

“I’m sorry, sir. I got carried away for a while.” She said in a sober tone.

He smiled at her, but without mirth. “It’s okay.” He didn’t say anything else about her statement. He changed the subject of discussion instead and started talking about their project.

Nimi’s stomach dropped in disappointment. Ken had closed the door against her and she didn’t know how to get back in, and she was desperate to get in. She couldn’t leave it all like that. She would allow him to ease off the tension of the moment by talking about their project and then she would try to get back in again.

The next minutes flew by as he spoke about the project. His tone became animated and the air around them became relaxed. They were soon back to personal grounds. He laughed at her made up stories and didn’t question the truth behind them. Her heart felt light when his eyes crinkled in laughter. It gladdened her heart. She didn’t bring up Laye’s request list anymore.

“Thank you for sharing your lunch with me, sir.” She said making to leave.

His eyes fell on the tray. “You didn’t finish your coke and you didn’t touch your meat-pie.” He observed. “Take them with you.” He told her. He wrapped the meat-pie with a serviette and placed it in the nylon, then he corked the bottle of coke. He stretched the items to her.

She collected them. “Thank you, sir.”

He leaned back in his chair and studied her. She felt like a wet kitten. She shifted her weight from one foot to the other.

“Is there anything else, sir?” she asked when she couldn’t take his stare anymore.

He seemed to come back to himself. His eyes refocused. “Never mind. We’ll talk later. Enjoy the rest of your day.” He gave a slight nod and smiled at her.

She stepped out of the office, her heart filled with questions.  What was it he wanted to say? It was the second time he had told her not to mind. Maybe she would mind soon.


Laye munched on the meat-pie with all glee. It was meat-pie from Mr. Ken after all. She gulped down the coke.

“You mean he shared his lunch with you?” She asked amazed. She wiped off crumbs from the corners of her mouth.

“Yes.” Nimi answered, rolling her eyes. It was the third time Laye was asking her since she got back from Ken’s office and placed the items before her.

“Nimi, this guy is cool. I really need to go with you the next time he invites you.” She said, folding the nylon carefully.

Nimi scratched her nose. “What do you want to do with the nylon?” she asked when Laye pulled out a drawer.

Laye’s expression told her she should know. “I am keeping it of course. This is from my everyday crush.” She sniffed the nylon before dropping it in the drawer.

Nimi shook her head. “You’re losing it, Laye. Stop it. Mr. Ken is not like that.” She got up from the stool, away from Laye. “Fine, he doesn’t have a fiancée or a girlfriend, but that does not mean he is available. I mean he totally shut down when I said ladies swoon around men like him. He didn’t say anything about it again.”

Laye took her hand in both palms. Her eyes were dreamy. “You mean he has no fiancée?”

Nimi pulled her hand but Laye’s grasp was firm. “Laye.” She called her gently like she had gone mad.

Laye gave a yelp of delight. “Yes! He is single! He is single!” she danced around the office. Nimi gaped at her. When she was done with her dance, she came to stand in front of Nimi. “He hasn’t noticed me, but I tell you, Nimi, he will. By the time I visit his office with you regularly.” She stated, a faraway look in her eyes.

Nimi regarded her with concern. The pressure from Laye’s mother was starting to affect her. Why else would she mooning over her boss, who might never see her as anything other than his staff? It would also be wrong to take Laye with her each time Mr. Ken invited her. She cherished her time with Ken and didn’t want Laye in hand intruding on their privacy. She wasn’t even sure Ken would like her visiting his office with Laye. But she couldn’t tell these to her friend. If she was deeply concerned about Laye, then she would allow her to have her way with Ken notwithstanding what she felt for him. If she couldn’t take Laye, what would she do then?

If her friend wanted Ken to notice her badly then she would help her out. But how? She rubbed her forehead. Just then her eyes landed on the empty coke bottle on the table. A smile spread across her cheek. She just got her answer.

She touched Laye’s arm. “You could meet Mr. Ken today if you want.” She said.

Laye’s eyes widened at that. “Really?” she asked, then her brows drew together in suspicion. “How?”

Nimi picked up the bottle of coke. “This is your ticket. Just take it to his office. Tell him I sent you to return it because I have a meeting with my team.”

Understanding dawned on Laye and with it came a conspiratorial grin. She rushed forward and hugged Nimi. “You are the best. Thanks.”

“Aww… I’m touched.” She returned the hug.

Laye picked the bottle of coke and gave it a big kiss. “My ticket, my ticket.” She said in a sing-song voice.

Nimi prayed that everything would go well. She couldn’t imagine what would happen if Mr. Ken rejected Laye.


Ken turned away from his desk minutes after Nimi left his office. He faced the wall. He couldn’t concentrate on his work for now. His heart was filled with confusing thoughts. He couldn’t understand why he was so drawn to Nimi. He could not tell if it was the passion in her eyes or her open-mindedness. Something just kept him fixed on Nimi. Although, her statement had put him on guard earlier. For a moment, he had wondered if she was flirting with him. His mind had gone to Tenisha who was still causing him sleepless nights with her phone calls. He had still not had the mind to pick up her call or return them. Fear held him bound and he couldn’t free himself from its torment. He had tried confiding in Peter but still hadn’t. Yet in this midst of this turbulence that was his life, he felt himself getting more and more attracted to Nimi.

Why can’t I get you off my mind, Nimi? He wondered aloud, scratching his head. He closed his eyes and leaned against the headrest of the chair. Oh Lord, what is Nimi’s part in my being here?

He waited for the still small voice that had been his companion since he accepted Jesus as his Lord and saviour. The voice spoke reassurances to his heart and gave directions to his path. The voice that he should have sought after because of Tenisha and hadn’t done it yet. Now he called on the Lord to speak to his heart concerning Nimi.

Words that he had read in his Bible and meditated on started dancing around his head. At the thought of his Bible, he turned around and picked it up from his desk. He also picked his notepad and pen. He flipped the Bible opened to the passage he had read that morning during his quiet time.

Psalm 31: 3: “For You are my rock and my fortress; therefore, for Your name’s sake, lead me and guide me.”

He read it again before closing his Bible. He turned the passages of his notepad until he got to the entry he made for that day. His note was the lyrics of a hymn:

Guide me, O thou Great Jehovah!

Pilgrim thro’ this barren land;

I am weak, but Thou art mighty,

Hold me with thy powerful hand:

Bread of heaven!

Feed me now and evermore.

He closed his eyes as his lips moved in prayer. He sang the hymn over and over. He felt a strong release in his spirit and joy filled his heart. He soon lifted his hands. Tears rolled down his cheeks but he didn’t wipe them off. He would rather shed tears of victory in Christ Jesus than to shed tears for his mistakes. Mistakes that had marked his being for too long. Mistakes that Jesus had taken away through His death on the cross. Tenisha would not hold him bound, he would be free from her. And he would know God’s mind for him concerning Nimi.

Another verse of the Bible popped into his head from the same book of Psalm. This time it was from the 86th Psalm, the 11th verse. It read: ‘Teach me Your way, O Lord; I will walk in Your truth; unite my heart to fear your name’.

He was so lost in his meditation that he didn’t hear the phone ringing, nor the door opening. He suddenly felt self-conscious. Someone was in his office. Slowly, he turned around to see the intruder. His secretary stood with Miss Iteimo.

“I’m so sorry, sir.” The secretary apologized quickly when she saw his face. “I called but you didn’t pick up the phone, and Miss Iteimo said it was important she talked to you.” She explained.

He waved off her apology. “It’s okay.” He pinned his eyes on Miss Iteimo. “Yes?”

She cast a wary look at his secretary and then back to him. Her message was clear to him. “You can go back to your office now.” He told his secretary. He picked up his face towel from the desk and wiped his face. Miss Iteimo came to sit before him, beaming with smiles as usual.

“Wow, sir, you are a good singer.” She praised him. “Despite just standing here for a few seconds, I was totally enthralled by your voice.”

He acknowledged her compliment with a nod. “You wanted to talk to me? About what?” He quizzed.

She cleared her throat. “Er… you see, sir, I volunteered to return the coke bottle since Nimi had to attend a meeting.” She raised the empty bottle.

A hardness came over him, filling his chest with steely resolve. He would send her out of his office. He fixed angry eyes at her, but something within him stopped him before he could order her out. It would do no good to react anyway; not when she had seen him in the mood he was earlier. He rubbed his forehead. “Drop it with the secretary.” He told her with a calm he was far from feeling. At that stage, the urge to throw her out filled him strong. He waited for her to leave, but she didn’t. She started smiling again.

“I’ll like to learn how to sing, sir. How about you teach me? I could come for my lessons after office hours.” She suggested.

Ken’s expression remained bland. “I have no time, Miss Iteimo.” He replied, emphasizing his point by looking at his wristwatch. The clue was either lost on her or she didn’t just want to leave. He sat back, feeling his patience waning.

“How about weekends, sir?” she asked. “Just tell me where you live and I’ll gladly meet you there for the lessons.” She said with enthusiasm.

Ken drummed on his desk with his fingers. “Miss Iteimo, I have no time. You could join your church choir and learn one or two things.” Each word he spoke was deliberate and controlled.

Her mouth formed an ‘oh’. She pinned a stray curl of hair behind her ear. “Maybe some other time, sir.” A momentary sadness filled her eyes. Ken didn’t know why.

He forced a smile through his tight lips. “Thanks for helping Miss Tombiri. I bet she’ll appreciate it.” He tried to keep the acid from his voice.

She got up. “I did it so you wouldn’t be worried about it,” she told him in a small voice, holding the bottle close to her chest.

He remained motionless. “Thank you once again.” He moved his chair forward and touched the power button on his laptop. Light flashed on the screen. He went back to what he was doing before his time with God. He didn’t look up at her again until he heard the door opened and closed. He released a deep sigh of relief.


The week went by in a blur as Laye moved around with a long face. Ken had embarrassed her. He had done it so that she had no story to tell Nimi when she got back from his office that awful afternoon. She winced at the mere thought of it.

During the week she had found it difficult to keep her head high when he was around. She kept her eyes away from him and ensured they had no direct contact. She had it so badly that Karibo noticed. She denied his suspicions and kept him shut when he kept insisting she was avoiding the boss. But how could she really? Ken didn’t make it easy for her. He made sure she was included in team activities. He picked her out for explanations of designs. In all, he acted like a boss. It should have relieved her but her shame was deep. The only thing that took the edge off her hurt pride was the fact that Ken had not invited Nimi to his office all week. They were even. Nimi had a nice time with him and didn’t get another invite.  She had an embarrassing time with him and didn’t also get another invite.

All hope was not lost. She smiled as her eyes went over Nimi who was seated beside her that morning waiting for the ED’s briefing. She was sure to get Ken. All she had to do was to allow the incident between them die down and pick up from where she stopped.

Yes, it was a good plan and she would see it to the end. Her esteem that had taken a nosedive skyrocketed. She adjusted in her seat when the door opened to reveal Ken. He came in looking as breath-taking as usual, flashing his Oscar-award winning smile. Laye found herself smiling from ear to ear. The smile remained on her face until she saw the young lady beside Ken. Immediately, the smile froze on her face. Her eyes bulged out. Heads turned towards the two as they made their way to the front of the room.

The lady looked like she had been taken out of a beauty magazine. Her ebony black hair flowed over her shoulders. The tip bounced as she moved her twine-thin figure graciously. She had a bubbly outlook. She moved with elegance, her yellow jacket swaying slightly behind her back. A set of dazzling white teeth gleamed as she smiled.

Laye swallowed. She nudged Nimi beside her. She was satisfied to see that Nimi was also taken by the lady’s appearance. She was however sad to note that Nimi was not the only one drawn to the newcomer’s look. Most of the men in the room had their eyes on her, including Karibo. It annoyed her greatly to think that he was admiring the lady. She glared at him with fiery eyes. He met her gaze briefly, raised his eyes and gave a shrug, and turned back to the object of everyone’s attention.

Ken pointed an empty seat to her at the front and she took it, smiling at those around. Laye, who was just behind her, sat stiffly in her chair. She waited for Ken’s address.

He started with the usual: appreciation and encouragement. He told them of the work the administrative teams were putting to tackle the challenges facing each team and department, and the agency as a whole. His eyes rested on the lady. Laye grabbed the arm of the chair she sat on tightly, waiting.

“To deal with the shortage of art directors, we have employed Miss Elaebi Binaebi as an art director, and she will be working on Miss Tombiri’s team. We are still conducting interviews. More hands would be employed to lighten the burden some of us are bearing and make us effective in discharging our duties. For now, we have Miss Binaebi with us.” He informed them.

Those around Miss Binaebi shook hands with her, smiling as if they had just received salary increment. It pissed Laye off greatly. She was among the first to leave the conference room. What would she be doing welcoming Miss Binaebi when she was not on her team? Nimi, however, lingered briefly to welcome her and make the necessary introduction. She followed afterwards.

Just around the corner, she turned to Nimi. “Can you just imagine?” She said. “That one wants to work here. She should be in a fashion school. DAA is not for people like her. Maybe she is here to seduce the male staff. She won’t get Ken. I won’t allow it.” She told Nimi with so much intensity.

Nimi laughed. “I agree that she is very beautiful, Laye, but that does not mean she came here for seduction. If Ken finds her qualified to be employed, then her beauty must go with her brain.” She argued lightly.

Laye pursed her lips, her eyes flashing daggers. “What if Ken falls for her?” She asked.

Nimi shook her head. “I don’t see why that should concern you, Laye. They are both single. They won’t be doing anything wrong if they fall for each other,” she commented.

Someone walked past them, stalling Laye’s response. She waited until he was out of earshot before speaking again. “You seem to forget that I like Ken and want him for myself.” She said in a whispery tone.

Nimi placed her hand over Laye’s mouth, her eyes darting left and right. “Don’t put yourself in trouble, Laye. You haven’t gotten a job with Shell, have you?”

Laye took her hands off her mouth. Her eyes were sad. “I just feel Ken is the one for me. My spirit accepts him, Nimi. Please understand. I’m also counting on you to help me.” She took her friend’s hand. “Don’t forget to get him for me.”

Nimi sighed. It was useless reasoning with Laye. She seemed bent on getting Ken, even when the poor man had not noticed her. “It’s okay, Laye.” She said in a soothing voice. “Whenever I have the opportunity to see him, I’ll get you all the info you need to pursue him.”

Laye gave a quick hug. “That’s why you’re my best friend. Thank you so much. I’m happy we’re together here.”

“We won’t be anymore if we don’t get busy right now.” Nimi joked.

“Oops! Let’s go.”

They hurried down to the corridor to their work areas.





Love Quest Ep 7

The bond of love is strong even a mother can’t break it. Or can she? Let’s continue with Ken, Nimi and Laye. Happy Reading!


Episode Seven

Raymond sat in his parked car a few houses from his parents’ house and pondered over what had become his love life. His mother had taken over in the few days since his separation with Nimi. She and her prophet had prayed and counselled him. They had finally found someone among the choristers in the church that would be the perfect partner for him.

Raymond shook his head. He couldn’t believe that he had actually driven down the few kilometres from his house to meet a stranger in his parents’ house who would be his wife. His mother had seemed rather pleased with the lady whom he had not even seen. She had sung her praises over the phone and assured him she was the best of all. He had to meet her that very day, and so he had gotten into his car and driven down there. He had, however, slowed down when the house came into view. He never imagined he would be meeting another lady.

Where was his Nimi? Where was the one that had his heart? Could this lady fire up his blood as Nimi had done? Could she excite him as much as Nimi?

These questions kept him right in his car with worried lines across his face. He looked to the street ahead through his windscreen. Activities on the street were just picking up after the monthly cleaning on the last Saturday of every month.

A mixed crowd gathered around a tap to fetch water; women with wrappers around their chests and waist, some with babies strapped to their backs, young boys and girls were also in this group. They formed groups and discussed among themselves while the tap filled bucket after bucket in a trickle. Just opposite the place where the tap was, a woman stood over a grinding engine working vigorously as she filled the engine with tomatoes and pepper. A girl and a boy stood away from her chatting while they waited for the tomato paste from the engine.

Raymond released a slow sigh as these played out before him. Life would not be stilled because his heart was breaking. People would go on with their lives. If he wanted to be as free as the boy and girl laughing heartily, then he had to take his state of heart into his own hands and correct what had gone wrong. To do that, he had to call Nimi.

He detached his phone from his car charger and quickly scrolled through his contact. He clicked on Nimi’s number and dialled it.

The call went unanswered the first time. His heart raced in his chest when the phone started ringing again. Nimi picked it up after three rings.

“He… he… hello,” He called, stuttering.

“Yes? What do you want?” She asked in a chilled tone.

He winced at her chilly tone. He swallowed to calm his alarming heart rate. “How are you?” He inquired instead without giving an answer to her question.

She scoffed. “You have no right to know about that anymore. Get to the point, Raymond. Why did you call me?”

“Nimi,” he whispered. His heart thudded so heavily that he was not sure he could think of a single appropriate thing to say. “I am… I am very sorry.” The words came out slowly.  He heard nothing in response. If not for her soft breathing across the line, he would have thought she had hung up the phone. The fact that she had picked up was a good sign, and to think that she had not dropped the call was yet another good sign. He pushed on with as much emotion as he could muster.

“You’re all I have. You’re all my heart wants, Nimi. I can never love anyone like you.” He confessed. Was that a sniff he heard? Whatever he had heard, he would win his love again. “Forgive my error, Nimi. I can’t have the one my mother has chosen for me. I want to have you. I’m right here thinking about you while my mother awaits me with the lady she has chosen for me. Nimi, how can I have that lady when all my heart wants is you?” His eyes glistened with unshed tears.

Nimi laughed. A harsh sound that caused his ears to ring out loud with a funny rhythm like a worn-out church bell.

“Yeah right, you will have that lady, Raymond, because your mother says so. Forgive me, but I am not interested in a cry baby’s story. Go and tell this to your mother, and not me. When you win that battle, come back and talk to me. I’m not even sure I’ll be waiting. Goodbye.”

He heard the click of the phone. He moved it away from his ears and stared at it. Nimi! Nimi! His heart cried. Her words struck him then. How would he confront his mother? How would he break her heart and tell her he wanted no one but Nimi? He could still hear her joy as she told him of the lady she and the prophet had chosen. How would he cause her such sorrow to insist on being with Nimi?

He shook his head. No, he would not do that to his mother. He would meet the lady and learn to love again. If only his heart would respond. With this resolution, he turned the key in the ignition and drove down to his parents’ house to meet the one that would create new memories with him and shape his future.


Nimi banged her fist on her desk causing her files to jump. She didn’t bother as they flew about the table and landed on the floor. Her cheeks coloured in anger as she replayed the phone conversation she just had with Raymond.

“The sheer nerve of him!” she muttered. “Nonsense! Let him confront his mother.”

The click sound from the keyboard next to her booth seized, causing her to raise her eyes. She looked into the concerned eyes of the copywriter that was beside her. She forced her lips to smile and nodded at him like nothing happened. She pushed her seat forward and picked the files on the ground, all the while fuming at Raymond’s call.

How could he claim to love and couldn’t do without her, and yet he was going to meet with another lady? Why did he not tell his mother off from the instant she suggested he break up with her? It was a waste of time now crying over spilt milk.

She arranged the files she had disturbed and wished she was not on duty. It would have done her much good to receive Raymond’s call at home. It would have given her enough time to rant and rave without anyone thinking she was loco. Her eyes went to the copywriter beside her. He seemed engrossed with the work they had been assigned to do that morning. The work she was doing when Raymond’s call interrupted her. It annoyed her a great deal that she had even received his call.

But she couldn’t help it.

She had spent years with him, creating memories. Those feelings would not go suddenly. But she would not indulge them. If she would move on from the heartbreak Raymond had caused her, then she would be strong and not entertain any memories that would sadden her now.

She picked up her phone and scrolled to his number. Deleting it would change nothing for his number was stored in her brain. But she couldn’t bear seeing his name on her phone and so she pressed the delete button. It was the same feeling she had that had led her to delete all of his pictures from her phone. Not even a text message had been left on her phone. Raymond was her past, and she would treat him so.

Fresh pain gripped her heart all over. She fought back tears. No! She would be strong. She looked towards the corridor to Laye’s working area. She wished with all her heart that her friend was on duty. She would have given her a shoulder to cry on and encouraged her. While her eyes were strained at the corridor, she didn’t see Ken standing before her until he snapped his fingers in her face. She jerked back in the chair and lifted shocked eyes to him.

“Sir!” She called out in surprise.

He gave a rueful smile. “Hi, Miss Tombiri.” He pulled out one hand from his pocket and waved at her.

Others around raised their voices in greeting and he nodded in acknowledgement.

“I didn’t know you were here.” She told him.

He leaned against the glass frame that marked out her working area, looking very handsome in a red and white striped polo on a navy-blue chinos trouser. His eyes twinkled behind plain fashionable glasses.

Nimi swallowed, amazed at the friendliness radiating in his eyes. She listened to his voice like soft music to her ears.

“I have some work to finish up, so I decided to work on them instead of staying back home to do nothing.” He explained.

“Oh, I see. We’re also here to work on the Diaper Account.” She replied, gesturing to the open computer in front of her.

Ken nodded. “That’s nice. I trust your work.”

For reason she couldn’t explain, his compliment sent a warmth through her down to her toes. She smiled up at him. “Thank you, sir.”

“Er… Miss Tombiri, I’ll like you to join me in my office.” He informed, pointing towards the corridor. “If you’re almost done with your work.” He added quickly.

“I’m done,” she answered immediately, getting up. Her face coloured with embarrassment when he smiled at her quick response. “Hmm… I mean, I’ll be done in another ten minutes.” She adjusted.

Ken gave a short laugh. “Alright, I’ll be expecting you then.”

He waved bye to the other members of her team and walked away to his office.


Ken waited for Nimi in his office. He powered his system and tried working but found it difficult to concentrate. All he kept thinking was the time he would have with Nimi. After his last conversation with her, he had not stopped wondering about her.

Beyond her beauty –and she was beautiful, he kept picturing her close to his heart. What was it about her that wanted to break through his carefully built wall? He was certain he wasn’t falling for her beauty. Beauty was what got him entangled with Tenisha.

At the thought of Tenisha, cold sweat broke from his forehead. She had called severally in the last couple of days, and it had gotten him so worried. Each time she called he had ignored her call. He had no courage to answer her for he dreaded what message she might pass across to him. He was scared also for himself. How strong was he to resist the beautiful and sensuous Tenisha?

No, he would not risk his newfound relationship with God. He would not gamble away his peace of mind. He would keep praying for God to take Tenisha away. Even as he thought of that, something deep within told him he hadn’t seen the last of her.

He had no time to dwell on this new feeling as Nimi knocked on the door.

He stood up when she walked in. While she sat in her booth working, he had not seen her fully. But as she worked towards him now he admired God’s handiwork in her creation. The straight, blue gown she wore suited her perfectly. Much as he hated to admit it, he noticed her beautiful figure. She smiled at him.

“You’re welcome.” He said, replying her smile with one of his own. “Please, have your seat.” He pointed to one of the two chairs before him.

She sat down gracefully. “Thank you, sir.” She replied.

He noticed she looked more relaxed than she had been the last time she was in his office, and happier too. Whatever was bothering her then must have left her or she had hidden it properly. Whatever the case may be, he liked that she was better than the last time she was in his office.

“You look more relaxed today.” He said before he could stop himself. He leaned back in his chair and regarded her.

She laughed a little. “I’m pushing out what wanted to take away my happiness.” She replied.

“I hope you succeed.”

She nodded. “I hope I do.”

Ken pushed his chair forward. “It’s important we don’t allow anything take our happiness away. I don’t believe we should give anyone or anything that power.”

“I agree, but sometimes, one can’t help it.” Her tone lost its lustre. A faraway look crept into her eyes.

Ken realized he had jolted a sad memory. He tried to liven up the conversation again. “Well, we just have to fight down anything that wants to steal away our happiness.” He winked.

She smiled. “We’ll try.” She gave a conspiratorial response.

He talked to her then about the Seasoning Company Account and his intention to include her in the team that would work on the account. She expressed her delight at this and promised to give her best. He went on to share some ideas with her and she responded with her own ideas. By the time the conversation was unwinding, they had become very comfortable in each other’s company, sharing laughter and smiles.

He was sharing one of the funny incidents that occurred in his former employment where he mistakenly sent a love message to his boss instead of his girlfriend, and how he couldn’t look the man in the eyes after that day when his phone chimed loudly. He allowed it ring for a while just so he could enjoy the joyful laughter of Nimi. When the phone kept ringing, she drew his attention to it.

Immediately he picked up the phone and saw the caller ID, his expression became clouded. His laughter got stuck in his throat. Nimi noticed this instantly.

“Is all well, sir?” She asked with utmost concern, seeing his sour expression.

He dropped the phone back on the table without answering the call. He gave no immediate response as he waited for the phone to ring again.

And it did.

It was the way it had been for days. Tenisha would call for five to six times at a time before she would rest. He shook his head in self-pity. Tenisha had called at a time when he was free from all the baggage of his past. Her call had, however, caused those baggage to return with vengeance.

“I just feel bad when I think about some things in my past.” He told her in a sad tone.

Nimi leaned forward in her chair, understanding filling her eyes. “I feel the same too.” She replied in a whisper.

“A lot of things I did should never have been done.” He looked thoughtful for some seconds, then he shook off the sad memories. He took his phone and placed it on silent mode. He smiled up at Nimi. “It doesn’t matter anymore. I have found peace in God. I hope you have too. Though I wonder what you could have done wrong.”

Nimi’s eyes became guarded. They shifted from him and stared at the laptop on his desk. “It’s… er… it’s nothing bad.” She responded in an off-hand tone.

He knew it was more than that, but he would not push. Time would come when her heart would be opened to him. The time wasn’t now. He had to gain her trust and that was what he would do. He leaned across the table and took her hands in his own, enfolding and clasping them warmly. “Miss Tombiri, all will be fine. Don’t fret over anything. God is in control.”

A soft gasp escaped her lips. She looked down at their intertwined hands on the table. She said nothing. When he was sure his message had sunk into her, he removed his hands from hers. She pressed one hand to her cheek.

“I’m truly grateful for this time, sir. I truly needed a friend today especially and you fitted properly.” A set of dazzling white teeth gleamed in appreciation.

Feelings of triumph seeped through his veins and excited him like nothing had since he started receiving Tenisha’s calls again. Somehow he felt like he had just conquered the first stage of a difficult challenge. When Nimi left his office that day, he was filled with a certainty that there was more to the two of them and he was ready to unravel what was there.



Love Quest Ep 6

Karibo? Ken? someone is getting confused. Happy Reading!

Episode Six

Nimi shoulders quivered as tears spilled to her face. She recounted what had happened between her and Raymond to Laye. She felt the crush of her break up with him.

“It’s like a dream, Laye. To think the reason for our break up is something so insignificant; a storm in a teacup. How could he break up with me over my sister’s action?” She lamented. “Was it my fault that my sister preferred her husband’s friend to her husband? I also wish to know the hungry prophet that told him that such character trait was in our blood. Imagine the nonsense! Did God tell him that?” Her words blazed with anger.

Laye placed a comforting hand on her shoulder. “Don’t trouble yourself over this, Nimi. It wasn’t meant to be. The right man will come. Raymond is tied to his mother’s wrapper. Thank God it ended now, or your life with him would have been horrible. Don’t waste any more tears on him.” She said soothingly.

“All I was worth to him was a text message, Laye; just a text message.” Her face contorted in pain. “He sent a message to me last night, telling me he was sorry. What would his sorry do for me? I don’t need his pity.” She cried out in anguish. A few heads turned towards them.

Laye offered a smile to them and wave them back to what they were doing. “Just talking.” She muttered to them. “Nothing to worry about, or gossip about.” She added to the two copywriters opposite Nimi’s booth with a sly wink. They turned away. “Nimi, it’s okay.”

Nimi sniffed. “I wish I had kept quiet about my family affairs. I wish I hadn’t told him anything about my family, especially my sister’s case. He would have had nothing to use against me.” She said in a voice laden with regret.

“This milk has been spilled, Nimi. Stop crying over it, please. You’re beautiful and kind. It is Raymond’s lost. Forget him.” She bent over her and gave her a hug. They were interrupted by a knock on the glass divider around the booth. “Yes?” Laye raised her eyes to the helper standing on the other side of the glass.

The helper came around and stood in front of them. “Mr. Ken wants to see Miss Tombiri.” She told them.

Laye pulled back from Nimi and stared straight at the helper. “What did you say?” She asked.

“Mr. Ken said I should call Miss Tombiri.” She repeated; her eyes on Nimi.

Nimi looked up then and exchanged glances with Laye. She saw the confusion in Laye’s eyes and gave a shrug in response. “Thanks.” She told the helper. “I’ll be there”. The helper strode off. “I wonder what he wants.” She said, worry creasing her brow. Her tears from moments ago forgotten.

Laye folded her arms. “Maybe it’s a mistake. Maybe he wanted to send for me.” She said in a small voice.

Nimi gave a small laugh. “That would be good. I bet both of you would soon connect.” She picked her hankie from the desk and blew her nose into it. She pulled out her drawer and took her powder brush. She touched it to her face lightly. “Don’t worry, when I go there, I’ll tell him about you.” She teased, rubbing Laye’s cheeks.

Laye laughed too. “I am Josephine and you are Mr. Ken’s butler. Pass in a good word for me, will you?”

“Oh, I will, my friend.” Nimi curtsied. She drew a deep breath.  “I’m grateful for this distraction. “She said. “I can’t imagine moaning over Raymond all day.” She smiled then. “Thank God for Mr. Ken. Let me go and hear what he has to say.”

“Okay,” Laye answered, waving her off.


Nimi stood in front of Ken and tried to look anywhere but at him. “You sent for me, sir.” She said, her fingers clasped behind her back. Her eyes fixed on the shelf to his left.

Ken nibbled on his biscuit. He offered her a seat. “Sit down, Miss Tombiri.” He said, mouthful. She did. He smiled. “Come and join me. I’m just having snacks since I missed lunch because of work.” He stretched the packet of biscuit to her.

Nimi shook her head at his offer. “Thank you, sir, but I’m not a fan of biscuit.” She told him.

His eyes widened at that. “Oh, really? You’re the first girl saying that, Miss Tombiri.” He replied. He shook off the crumbs of biscuit from his palms.

Nimi allowed a small smile. “Well, I just don’t like biscuits.”

“Good for you then,” Ken said. He took a swig from his bottle of coke. “Would you like a drink?” He asked, his eyes going to the refrigerator standing at his right hand.

Nimi declined. She looked down at her intertwined fingers on her laps. She didn’t want him to see the question in her eyes. She also didn’t want to scream at him that she was not in the mood for small talks. Who cared about biscuits and a drink when her heart was shattered? She sighed. He must have sensed her impatience and so went on to why he called her.

“I noticed you are the only female copywriter on your team.” He started. She said nothing. “I must say I’m highly impressed by your works. I’ve gone through your team’s previous presentations and I’m quite impressed. From what I’ve heard, you do your work very well.” He gave her an admiring smile.

His compliment did not get to her. She was used to comments like that about her ability as a Copywriter. Raymond had loved her for her attention to details. Well, that was history now.

She shoved down thoughts of Raymond and forced a smile for Mr. Ken. “Thank you, sir.” She responded.

He leaned forward. “I’ll like to hear from you the challenges you have in your team.”

Nimi gazed at him like he wasn’t serious. He had spent some time with the MD discussing exactly that with him. Why was he was asking her the same question? She smelled a rat.

He looked expectantly at her. She had no choice than to repeat the same things he had already been told. While she talked, he picked up a pen and wrote in a notepad on his desk. Her eyes fastened to his head while he wrote. She swallowed. While she stared, she stopped talking.

He looked up. “Miss Tombiri?” He called, questioning.

She covered her embarrassment with a cough. “I’m sorry, sir. I had something in my throat.” She rushed to explain. She pressed a hand to her throat and coughed again.

Ken rolled the pen between his fingers. “Your throat or your mind?”

She didn’t expect that.  She looked up at him with wide eyes. “Sir?”

He looked thoughtful for a while, then he shook his head. “Never mind.” He told her. “I have noted your points. I’ll do something about them.”

“Thank you, sir.”

“That will be all for now. If I need further help, I’ll call on you. I trust you will give your best when it’s time to work. I hope you will be available.”

She nodded. “Of course, sir.” She pushed the chair back and got up.

Ken leaned back in his chair. “Miss Tombiri, please take good care of yourself. Tough times never last but tough people do.” He smiled and waved her off.

Outside the office, Nimi placed a hand on her racing heart. Was it my imagination, or had Mr. Ken’s voice soften when he made the last statement, she wondered. No, Nimi, don’t think about that. She walked quickly back to her booth.


Layefa paced back and forth in Nimi’s booth. She waited for Nimi to get back. Severally she peeped down the corridor awaiting Nimi’s arrival. It took all she had not to go down to Ken’s office to eavesdrop. She was sure Didi wouldn’t mind. She, who was already married, would understand a lady’s yearning for her own man. She counted each minute Nimi spent in there. She wondered what they were discussing. Maybe she should just go there and pretend to need something from Nimi. That could work.

She adjusted her skirt. If she would appear before Ken again then she would appear better than he had seen her earlier. She powdered her face with Nimi’s powder left in her drawer. She splashed her lip gloss across her lips. She gave a satisfied smile when she looked in the mirror attached to Nimi’s powder.

Just as she stepped out of the booth, she saw Karibo striding towards her. She straightened her back and made to walk past him, but he put a restraining hand on her arm. She looked up at him with questioning eyes.

“How did it go with Mr. Ken?” He asked.

“Very well.” She replied, looking towards the corridor.

“You didn’t come back to give us feedback,” Karibo stated.

“I had to attend to something important.” She told him. She looked at her wrist that was still held in his arm and lightly pulled it. His grip tightened around her wrist. The more she pulled, the more he tightened his grip. She met his eyes, anger flashing in hers.

“What is the meaning of this, Karibo?” She quizzed.

He said nothing but kept staring into her eyes. Then he looked down at their clasped hands after a while –his large and hard, hers much softer. An ache started up in her chest. She couldn’t speak. She swallowed the lump that had formed in her throat suddenly. Why was she reacting this way to Karibo? Why was she even standing with him in the middle of a work area, hands clasped?

“Karibo,” she said softly, “Let me go.”

He dropped her hand suddenly as if he had just been informed that she had a plague. His expression became clouded as the sky before a storm. “I’m sorry.” He whispered. “I’ll see you later.” He turned around swiftly and left in large strides. He couldn’t have gone any faster.

Laye stood where she was watching his retreating back until he disappeared around the corner leading to the staircase. Her beating did not stop, and it wasn’t Ken’s name that came to her heart. Her mind at that time was filled with Karibo and the strange encounter they just had. While she stood thinking about that, Nimi arrived and placed a hand on her shoulder.

“What are you looking at?” She asked, peeping over Laye’s shoulder.

Laye turned to her and immediately remembered what she was going to do before Karibo’s arrival. Her eyes lit up then when she thought of hearing about Ken. Karibo was pushed to the back of her mind.

“How did it go with him? What did he say?” She rushed on with her questions, pulling Nimi to the safety of the booth.

“Yes?” She said.

Nimi smiled. “Calm down, my dear desperate friend,” she teased.

Laye huffed. “Desperate you say; I am not.” She replied. “I just like to get things over with. You know how many “miss” we have flying around here, and you know how many are available.  I can’t have them trying their luck with Mr. Ken and hitting jackpot. It has to be me.” She said passionately, looking herself over. “I am sure I fit him.”

Nimi’s lips formed an ‘oh’ as laughter rippled through her. “Yes, you fit him.” She picked some files on her desk and arranged them in order.

Laye waited with bated breath while Nimi tortured her doing one thing or the other. When she couldn’t take it again, she grasped the last set of files Nimi was arranging and dropped them on the table with a whoosh.

“Just tell me for crying out loud.” She shrieked, a vein popping in her neck.

The corners of Nimi’s mouth quirked up in a sly grin. “Alright. We didn’t say anything of importance. He just wanted to know about the challenges we have in my team and if I would be available to work on any account he wants me to work on.”

Laye screwed up her face. “That’s all?” She asked, disbelief clouding her features.

“Yes.” Nimi shrugged.

Laye’s shoulders drooped down like Nimi’s had been earlier when she had been crying over Raymond.

“Okay then.” She pouted.

Nimi touched her, comforting her as she had done to her earlier. “Hey, Ken is not the only man you know. There are so many of them, even right here.”

At Nimi’s words, Karibo’s face flashed across her heart. It jolted her out of her dejection. Why would Karibo’s face filled her mind’s eyes when Nimi was talking about other men?

He had never really appealed to her; not his squared-shaped face or balding head. She didn’t find his bushy beard appealing or the folds of fat on his belly that his average height had not hidden properly. She never even seen him more than a colleague. He was serious-minded and she liked him just like that. It kept her fantasies at bay while working with him and reserved it for people who deserved it; people like Ken.

Yes, Ken. The one she yearned for with every fibre of her being. She liked Nimi, but she couldn’t agree with her on the existence of “other men”. There was only one man for her –Ken.


Love Quest Ep 5

Laye is becoming bold… Ken is thinking of someone else… Nimi is in between. All in Episode 5 of Love Quest. Happy Reading!

Episode Five

Ken shuffled through the files on his desk. His meeting with the staff had gone well, and he had been informed of an abandoned proposal for a major seasoning company. He would take that up and make sure that account was secured.

He had selected his team already during the staff introduction. He could feel the peace within at those he had picked out. He was certain they would deliver.

One thing bothered him though. The female copywriter he had included in the team had not really been herself during the meeting. Something had been wrong with her because her beautiful face was masked in deep sorrow. Her huge eyes were sad.

While he addressed the staff, his eyes kept straying to her. He focused more on her than on any other lady in the room despite the fact that there were nineteen of them. Eleven, including her, were unmarried; yet his eyes only sought her out. He neither bothered with the lady beside her, smiling and winking at him.

Truth is he had no time for distractions. He knew what each ‘miss’ attached to the female staff could do to him and he was not ready to go that way. God had brought him out of the mess that had been his life few months back through a colleague who became a close friend.

Peter had shared the same working area with him and done most of their office assignments together. This had brought them close. It didn’t take long for Peter to know the kind of person he was and the kind of rotten life he was living. Gradually, Peter had suggested a better life in Christ to him and started talking to him about it.

He listened.

Realization followed his attentiveness to the good news Peter shared with him. Things started changing and the mess started clearing after he confessed his sins and acknowledged the Lordship of Christ Jesus.

Those days hadn’t been easy. The first week after his conversion had been so difficult that he had found his way back to the arms of one of his numerous girlfriends.

It had only taken a few hours to get back to where he had started from. When the day broke and what he had done registered on him, he jumped out of her bed in shame and disgust, and ran away from her without a backward glance like one who had fire in his brain.

How he wept when he got home that day. He couldn’t look Peter in the eye when he came visiting that evening for Bible study. Peter had been sad, but he had not condemned him. He prayed with him for grace to overcome sin while he confessed what he had done.

It’d been three months and God had helped him. He was still a work in progress, but he was certain of God’s love and grace working things out for him. He would therefore not go back to his vomit again. No, never, he told himself firmly.

He pulled out the file he was looking for from the heap on his table. Excitement coursed through his veins like water on a rock. A wide grin spread across his face. He loved challenges, and this challenge would be one he would surmount.

He fingered the file and turned it open, going through the proposal that was attached to it. He took out a plain paper from the pack of A4 paper resting on his printer and penned down the names of those he had chosen for the account. His hand hovered over the female copywriter’s name. Her face filled his heart next. He dropped his pen and allowed himself wonder about the sadness in her eyes, the pain that contoured her beautiful face.

What could he do to help her?

The ringing of his phone drew him out of his thoughts. He picked it up from where he dropped it beside his computer. He looked at the screen. A fine sheen of sweat broke out of his forehead when he saw the number. Although he had deleted the contact from his phone, he would know the number anywhere. His hands shook as he kept glaring at his phone. He dropped it on the table as if it was on fire.

He got up from his desk and moved to the window, rubbing his head. The short hair he kept scraped his palm.

Calm down, Ken, it’s probably nothing, he assured himself. He drew a deep breath and let it out slowly. His heart beat dropped and he quickly mouthed words of prayer. Just as he rounded off the prayer, his phone started ringing again. He moved close to the desk and peeked at the phone.

It was the same number. It was Tenisha.


Layefa stood against her desk with three other art directors in their working area. They had come up with some wonderful designs for the Seasoning Company account. Although the designs had been on ground before the ED brought it up again, they had fine-tuned it and added more life to it. She had contributed her best in the short time they had come together to work on it. As they passed comments on it and quickly corrected mistakes, Layefa was sure the ED would be impressed.

The thought of impressing Ken made her giddy with excitement. Her face came alive in a bright smile. How could anyone be so handsome? She wondered. No one had the right to be so good looking. Her smile deepened as she pictured him the way he had been that morning: all manly in a well-tailored grey suit.

Energy burst within her and she felt more alive than ever. The reason was not far-fetched: Ken was causing a lot of tingling sensation in places she thought had died when Pere left her years ago. What she felt now was a sparkling of electricity. It zinged her each time she caught a glimpse of Ken or heard his name mentioned.

He was her man. She was sure of it. His innocent look endeared him to her. She would explore everything Ken was and she would be his woman.

She jumped at the cold fingers that circled her arm. She turned around with a frown and stared at the intruder with belligerent eyes.

“What?” She demanded in anger.

Three pairs of amused eyes looked back at her. Their lips quivered in amusement. It was obvious they were trying not to laugh out loud. Before she could make another harsh remark, Karibo, one of them, spoke up.

“I will give a thousand dollars to know what you were thinking about, Laye.” He said in a teasing tone, his eyes crinkling as he smiled.

Laye eased off. “A thousand dollars is not even enough. My thoughts are worth millions of dollars.” She replied, pushing off the desk and clapping her hands.

“What if I’m willing to pay?” Karibo persisted, fixing her with serious eyes.

Laye regarded him with wary eyes. Something seemed off with him, she thought. He was the most serious of the bunch, but for a while now he seemed to joke a lot with her.

What gives? She pondered. She picked a pencil from the desk close to her and tapped the top with it.

Karibo took the pencil from her and held her hand. He looked straight into her eyes with intensity. “I will pay anything just to get into your thoughts.”

“Huuu…” the others echoed, slapping each other a high five.

Laye pulled her hand from his. “Quit fooling around.” She told him firmly, creating space between them. She picked the printed designs and examined them closely. She totally avoided Karibo who kept on watching her.

“What next?” She asked the team.

Adike, the most senior Art Director in the room, cleared his throat. “We’ll present it to Mr Ken.”

Laye’s heart flipped at that. She straightened quickly. “All of us?”

Adike shook his head. “No.”

Disappointment washed over her like rainwater on a plain surface.

“I suggest Karibo represent us.” Adike added.

Hope surged within Laye. She moved back to Karibo with a smiling face. “What were you saying about paying for my thoughts?”

“Er…” Karibo stuttered.

Laye placed a finger over his lips. Karibo’s eyes widened and he looked at the two other art directors for help. They simply gave him a shrug.

“Don’t worry about paying. You could be a part of my thoughts right now if you would allow me go to Mr Ken’s office in your stead.” She pleaded in a sweet tone, batting her eyes.

Karibo coughed a little. “Why?” He inquired.

Laye gave a slight shrug. “Oh nothing really; just that ladies get desired results all the time in DAA. “ She came forward and placed her hands on his chest.

A gasp of surprise escaped Karibo’s lips. He stared back into Laye’s eyes. A small smile of victory tugged at the corners of her lips when she felt Karibo’s eyes softening. She was sure he would hand over the design to her any minute now. Adike’s sharp interruption ended the moment to Laye’s displeasure.

“That doesn’t sound like something to be proud of Laye.” He said, turning his head to one side as he weighed her words.

Laye flinched, stepping away from Karibo who was still staring at her mouth opened. “Whatever.” She bit out the retort. “I will be the one to give our design to Mr Ken.” She stated in a matter-of-fact tone.

Adike raised his hands in mock surrender. “Let Karibo decides. It’s out of my hands. Karibo!” He called.

Karibo turned his head slowly to Adike and back to Laye. He flashed a bright smile. “Anything for the lady.” He took the design and handed it over to her with a bow.

Laye suppressed a yelp of delight forcing its way to her throat. The men would wonder about her true motives, especially when the design hadn’t even been accepted. She flashed a small smile for each man, nodding her thanks to Karibo.

“Thank you, kind sir.” She said, bending one knee and raising her skirt a little. “I won’t let you down.” She took the designs and stalked out of the door, down the corridor before Karibo would change his mind.

Someone called to her from an open office but she kept right on. Nothing would distract her from her goal.

She breezed through protocols with Ken’s secretary with flatteries. She complimented Didi’s blue dress and the secretary fell straight for her. It took only few minutes for her to be admitted into his office.


Ken stood close to the shelf, a serious look on his face. He had one hand across his chest and the other held his lower jaw. He stared at the creamy curtains on the window as if they were the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. He didn’t look up when she entered, and yet it was he who had answered the secretary’s buzz through the intercom, informing him of her presence. He seemed lost in thought. Laye took advantage of the few seconds to really study him.

A breath caught in her throat as she drank in his features. His sharp angular face was defined and boasted of a slightly pointed chin and a sturdy jawline. His chocolate body was covered with a grey suit, hanging perfectly on his athletic body. His long fingers cradled the phone he held in the arm around his chest like a baby. He stood a few feet above her five five. Her eyes moved quickly to his clean-shaven face and immediately gasped in shock when a pair of eyes look back at her disapprovingly.

Her cheeks grew hot with embarrassment under his unfriendly stare. She was grateful for her slightly light skin or else her embarrassment would have been boldly written on her face with patches of red across her cheeks.

“Do you like what you see?” He asked. His mouth was set in a hard line.

Laye drew her lower lip between her teeth. The hand that held the design shook as he kept staring down at her like an annoying insect. She drew her hands behind her and cleared her throat. “I’m Miss Layefa Iteimo, one of the art directors here.” She said. He said nothing. She swallowed a lump that had formed in her throat. “I’m here to give you a design we created for the Seasoning Company account.” She explained.

He looked away from her when her explanation sunk in. The hard lines around his mouth softened just a bit. “Drop it on the desk.”

Layefa moved close to the desk and dropped it there. She waited. When he said nothing, she turned to leave. Almost at the door, she made a turn back to him. She couldn’t waste the opportunity and just leave like that. Even if he was in a foul mood she would get something out of the meeting with him.

“Mr. Ken,” She started.

He looked at her, surprise crossing his eyes like he couldn’t believe she was still there. “Yes?”

Laye pulled her biggest grin and met his eyes. “You seemed bothered.” She said, inching closer to him. “What is on your mind? I hope it’s not the Seasoning Company account.”

His expression closed up. “It’s nothing. Thank you, Miss Iteimo.” He left his position and moved to his chair. He pulled it out and sat down. “I’ll look over your design. Thank you once again.”

Feeling dismissed, Laye swallowed her disappointment and left his office. She walked briskly back to the office with a straight face, but just before she turned to her working area, she sighted Nimi in her booth, shoulders slumped and head bowed. She switched directions and moved straight to her friend who seemed in need of a friend at that moment.









The Shock

I wanted a ring, he gave me a baby…

Yes, I have found the one my heart loved. I have found the one I could call my own. No more would I be subjected to the suspicious counsel of mother. No more would father wonder when a man would come for me. I have my own man. 

I bragged and walked with my shoulders high. Why shouldn’t I when my heart was occupied? I had the courage to wave off too nice guys. When I needed them, they were nowhere to be found, now I need them no more.

The months rolled by and I started wondering about my man. The doubts marked my face like tribal marks on the face of a Yoruba man. When will he popped the question? Oh, when will he ask me?

I have liked several pictures of friends displaying their engagement rings and when the question was popped. When will mine happen?

Sleep left my eyes in the months I waited for my man to speak. When my heart could wait no longer, I approached my man.

My question shocked him. He wondered why I was in a hurry, and I told him I wanted to know where we were heading.

And he told me.

My man said he loved me and wanted to spend forever with me. It filled my heart with joy, but I couldn’t rejoice.  My man had shown no ring, neither had he expressed any joy at his admission. He looked as serious as a student sitting for his final examination. I had to know why.

And he told me.

I was the third girl he was with. The two before me couldn’t understand and had to go. What should I understand?

My man’s mother wanted a grandchild first before the ring. Hmmm…  How do I give a baby without a ring? What would I tell my mother? What about my friends? What about the picture on Facebook? Should I show a tummy instead of a finger?

My man went on his knees and pleaded. He confessed his undying love over and over again. How could I resist even though I wanted a ring while his knees were bent and not a plea to accept his semen?

But I accepted it.

I couldn’t bear the thought of another search; another waiting for another man. I would have my ring immediately after my tummy became habited. I could pay the prize.

And I fell for it.

The months went by again, and I was almost at the delivery room. My man said nothing.

Nothing. Zilch


The Man

Love they say is blind. I was totally blind when I fell for him…


He whispered to me just around the corner as I walked down the street. He motioned for me to stop and I did. The butterflies flew in the pit of my stomach as I waited for the one whose attention I have drawn.

He was like no one I have attracted in the past. This man was different. His average height appealed to me because I wouldn’t have to tiptoe to return his kiss or give one of mine. He was just lean enough for my slender arms to wrap around his body.

Oh, his face! It struck me hard like lightning in a cloudy sky. He was handsome as handsome can be. Think of what you love best about your own man and I’ll tell you my man had it.

I didn’t wait long for his strong legs took him to me in few strides. His smile twinkled in his eyes like the stars on a beautiful sky. I enjoyed his perusal and I couldn’t wait to hear what he had to say.

He told me of love. He told me of intimacy. He told me of oneness. He told me of longing. He waited for my response.

I didn’t need to wait any day to give my ears to my man. He was all I wanted. Even his voice was like melody to my ears. I told him to come right again and sweep me off my feet.

And he did.

He coloured my day with the best of all: We smiled, laughed, held hands and I even had my first kiss. It was all bliss.

And I said Yes to my man.

He became my man, and I was his woman.

Our hearts became one and started beating in the right direction.

I was sure we had the perfect future ahead of us. I wanted it all.

But something was waiting for me…