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 2

​Welcome back, enjoy this episode.

Episode Two

The conference hall was packed on Tuesday morning as people awaited the arrival of the Chief Executive Officer. Gradually DAA staff members filed into the hall in groups, whispering. The hall soon filled up in no time. Since no one knew the reason for the meeting, they all drew their own conclusions. The Managing Director didn’t give any reason for the meeting when he announced it that morning during team briefing. Guilty eyes roamed the hall. Team members shifted in their chairs.  It was a known fact that the CEO didn’t visit without coming to address an omission or a commission. They all wondered what it was that day.

Nimi and Layefa sat close to each other. They, like others, were anxious about the CEO’s visit. Layefa drew close to Nimi. “Why is he coming?” she asked in a whispery tone. Nimi gave a shrug in response. “I thought he addressed all issues when he visited a few weeks back when we lost the Blue Sea Account.”

“I really don’t know why he is coming, Laye. I just wish he’ll address the issue of shortage of staff in certain departments. I’m tired of working like a ‘Jackie’” Nimi replied. She smiled as she replied her messages on WhatsApp.

“You’re so relaxed.” Layefa accused, eyes going from her face to her phone. “What if he’s coming to deal with us for something we have done?”

Nimi raised her eyes from her phone. She turned to Laye. “We didn’t do anything. Just relax. I don’t know why you’re so worried.” She looked over her shoulder at the person to her right. Her tone dropped to a conspiratorial whisper. “If anyone should be worried, it should be Mr. Uwem.” She smiled.

Layefa smiled too. “Ah, that’s true.” She agreed. “He hasn’t been punished for failing to submit the final design for the Blue Sea Account before we lost it”

The tension left Laye’s body. They had figured out who would be punished when the CEO came that morning. The Blue Sea Account was a major account that would have given the Agency global recognition, but they had allowed it slip out of their hands. The CEO came down hard on all teams and threatened a salary cut for their lost. It took several appeal letters before he reconsidered and launched an investigation into those responsible for the lost. That conclusion pleased Laye as she was not on the Blue Sea team. Nimi, was however on the team; even though Mr. Uwem had a larger part of the blame. 

Laye watched Nimi now who kept chatting on her phone, completely lost to the events in the hall. Her narrow oblong face with angular cheekbones and a pointed chin was beautiful. Her pencil-thin eyebrows rose slightly as a smile spread across her face while her hands flew over her phone’s keypad. The smile lightened up her already glowing, dark skin. It was no surprise that Nimi had the best of all; she was beautiful through and through. She had the love of her life, even if they were having problems. She still had others showing interest in her, and it would definitely be Raymond’s lost to let go of her. 

Laye heaved a deep sigh, fighting the envy rising within her. Nimi was her best friend. It was wrong to be envious of her, but she couldn’t help it. She didn’t have Nimi’s face, neither did she have her figure. The men wouldn’t even notice her. Beside Nimi, she felt like an ugly duckling. Forget the fact that she had an abundance of natural curls while Nimi couldn’t even uncover her short hair. Nimi outshone her in all. If Nimi had been an Art Director in the Agency, she would have been better than Laye. Being an Art Director was her only strong point, and yet she couldn’t judge by that. Nimi was one of the best Copywriters in her team, while she was just struggling to be recognized. She allowed the cold arms of self-pity envelope her as she thought more of her disadvantages. Her mother’s words danced in her head with heavy steps. Her head started aching as she thought of the last argument they had. Her mother had accused her of being an ingrate. She had told her in no simple terms that she was deliberately staying away from men so that she, her mother, would continue in sadness. This conclusion had been based on the number of men she interacted with every day and her refusal to date anyone of them. Her mother couldn’t believe that she was yet to attract any of her male co-workers. What would she do? She rubbed her aching forehead. Her eyes went over the men in the room, from copywriters to art directors, from designers to production artists, name it; DAA had them in shapes and sizes. Who was the one for her? Who would love her as much as she had loved Pere, and not break her heart like he did when it was almost time for them to discuss walking down the aisle?

These questions plagued her mind, sending a resounding headache across her head. Pere had such effect on her. The mere thought of him could cause a panic attack. She could already feel one coming as her heart started beating fast. She clutched her chest and placed a hand on Nimi’s shoulder. Nimi turned to her. Her eyes widened when she saw Laye breathing fast. Before she could react, The MD walked in to inform them of the arrival of the CEO. They all stood up. Nimi kept looking at Laye with concerned eyes. Laye fought for control of her emotions. She repeated the mantra she had recited over and over since her breakup with Pere two years ago and his wedding last year after dating for seven years. Just as she drew a steadying breath, the CEO walked into the hall with a young man. Immediately, Laye’s eyes settled on him, her breathlessness from moments ago was forgotten as her eyes followed the man to the front of the hall. His confident strides struck her and caused a stirring within her. Her mind went to Pere. A stirring course through her body and made her shiver a little. She turned sharply when she felt a hand on her shoulder.

“Hello, handsome,” Nimi whispered her eyes on the young man. “Is he the new Art Director?” She quizzed but continued without waiting for an answer. “I hope he’ll be on someone’s team.” She gave a knowing smile. 

Laye cracked a smile despite her mood. “I know.” She replied in a conspiratorial tone, just as the MD welcomed the CEO. 

The CEO adjusted the mic in front of him, cleared his throat and started speaking. “Good morning to you all.” He greeted. The staff chorused their greeting too. He continued, “Let me start by appreciating you all for the effort you put into making this Agency a great one. It is my prayer that God will reward you accordingly.” A chorus of amen followed his prayer. He expressed his thanks for a few minutes and encouraged them to work harder before moving to the crux of the matter. “I don’t want to dwell on the accounts we have lost, I’m believing that we would do more and get more accounts. To achieve this, I came here today with someone I trust so much and rely on.” He turned to the young man who bowed slightly in acknowledgment of the commendation. “Let me introduce to you the one who will manage the affairs of the Agency in my absence. He is my nephew, but I see him as a son. I introduce to you this morning, the Executive Director of DPassion Advertising Agency, Mr. Ken Timinipre.” He smiled at Ken and drew him closer to him.

The staff applauded the CEO’s announcement. Some faces beamed with smiles while others, in confusion. Laye belonged to the former. She kept grinning from tooth to tooth as Mr. Ken acknowledge their applause with a smile and a nod of the head. When the applause died down, the CEO urged them to work with him and give him all the needed support to make his work easy. He ended by asking Ken to speak to the staff. Laye moved forward in her chair as the ED took the mic.

“I’m glad to be here, and I know we’ll work together for the good of the Agency. Please, feel free to communicate with me if you have any problems. I look forward to a wonderful time with you all. Thank you.” He said.

The staff applauded again. The meeting came to an end, and they all got up to return to their different work areas. Laye pulled Nimi to the Art Office. She quickly shut the door behind her. “Oh, my God! Nimi, what do you think of our new ED” She asked, eyes dancing with delight like a child who found a pack of sweet.

Nimi gave a small smile and shrugged. “Well, he seems cool, but I can’t draw any conclusions yet. It’s his first day after all; in fact, his first hour. Let’s wait and see.” She reasoned.

“There’s something striking about him. Did you notice?” She asked.

Nimi shrugged. “I did.” She admitted. “But I’m not drooling over him like you.” She told her.

Laye opened the door slightly and peeked out. “Working in DAA just got better, Nimi. Everything has changed.” She closed the door and faced Nimi. “We have a young, handsome, hot…hmmm” She closed her eyes.

Nimi came to stand in front of her and snapped her fingers at her. Laye’s eyes flew open. “Snap out of it, Laye. For all you know, he could have a wife and children.”

Laye’s smile wobbled. “That’s true o. I’ll check his hand whenever I’m close to him.” She commented. “Just imagine me taking that ‘hottie’ home to meet my mother; she’ll be off my case forever.” A dreamy look came into her eyes. She turned back to the door.

Nimi laughed. “Dream on, girl. It cost nothing after all.” She teased. Just then, her phone beeped, notifying her of a text message. She drew her lock pattern and read the text. It was from Raymond.

‘Hey, Nimi. How is your day going? Can we meet after work? We need to talk.’

The mirth disappeared from her eyes when she read the text message. She suddenly felt afraid. Her heart pounded in her chest. Is this the solution I’ve been praying for, or the end I’ve been expecting? She pondered. No, she shook her head. The text sounded ominous to be a solution. For crying out loud, he even addressed her as Nimi. Whatever happened to ‘my honey bunch’, ‘sweetie’? Hmmm… what really is behind Raymond’s change? When all should be going well, he suddenly grew distant and cold. For two years, they had it good. He took her to see his mother a few months back, and that was the beginning of his new attitude.

Nimi shook her head in confusion. If the woman didn’t want me, she would have shown it. But she was all smiles and love. 

Laye, sensing the sudden silence, moved away from the door and turned to her friend. Sad lines drew lines on where smiles had brightened just moments ago. “Hey, where did you travel to?” She asked, pushing her lightly.

Nimi drew a deep breath. “Raymond sent a text.” She said simply.

Laye studied her for a while. “What is it about?” she asked, carefully. From Nimi’s look, she surmised it wasn’t a good one.

Nimi gave a light shrug. “Nothing much. He just said we need to talk.” She moved into the office and rested against the window frame. She closed her eyes, trying not to show her fear.

 Laye could read her of course. They have been friends for years, and she has had her own share of heartbreak. She could read the signs, but she would say nothing. She came to stand beside Nimi. “Everything will be fine, Nimi. You and Raymond will work things out. Don’t assume the worst until you meet him.” she placed a comforting arm on Nimi’s shoulder.

Nimi tried to smile, but her lips would not cooperate. They grew tight with anxiety. “I really hope so, Laye. From the depth of my heart, I hope so.” 

The loud knock on the door, followed by a booming voice stalled further discussions. “Laye, open the door! I have things to tidy up.” 

Their eyes went to the clock at the same time. Nimi gasped. “Oh, my God! I have a something to show my Creative Director. See you later, Laye.” She hurried out of the office, almost running into the other Art directors sharing the office with Laye. At the door, she turned to Laye. “Don’t spend your entire day mooning over the Executive Director.” She teased.

Laye’s laughter rang after her as she made her way to her work area. It was time for serious business. She needed it to keep her mind from drifting to Raymond.


Ken sat behind his uncle’s large oak desk. The office was twice the size of that of the manager of the company he worked for in Lagos. It wasn’t his first time being in his uncle’s office, but it was the first time he was there as the boss. He swirled around in the leather chair. His eyes moved from the shelf to the file cabinet; to the television and DVD sets on a small table and to the refrigerator beside the table. Everything was spic and span. He closed his eyes and sent a prayer of thanks to heaven. He didn’t deserve this, but God had made it possible. 

He turned back to the table. He frowned when he saw the piles of files on it. He picked a pile and looked through them. There were application letters and proposal letters. He dropped them. There would be time for all that, he told himself. Now, he had to familiarize himself with the running of the Agency. He pressed the intercom and asked the MD to see him. 

The MD arrived in a matter of minutes. Ken pointed him to a seat in front of him. “Thanks for coming.” He said. The MD nodded. He was a few years older than Ken, but he was a hard worker. Uncle Doutimi had told him that much and had encouraged him to work with him. “I just want an update on the Agency’s activities.” He told him.

“No problem, sir. I’ll get all information across to you.” He replied.

Ken shook his head. “I prefer you call me Ken.” He stated.

The MD laughed. “I’ll think about it.” He winked at Ken. 

Ken smiled. “Alright then. I’ll like to meet with members of the staff after closing tomorrow. Please inform them.”

“Okay. Is that all?” 

“Yes. For now.”

The MD got up and left. Ken looked through more files. God had given him the opportunity, and he was going to make the most of it.

Thanks for reading!  Don’t forget to drop your comment and share.


Old Flame Ep 20

Hey, guys! Thanks for your patience. This is the first part of the final episode of Old flame. The concluding part will be on the blog on Thursday. Happy reading!

Episode Twenty

His phone was ringing again. Tolu raised his eyes and noticed the Permanent Secretary looking at him. His hands were on the table and he must have felt the phone’s vibration. It was the fourth time it was ringing in ten minutes. That did not include the previous times it rang before the meeting commenced formally. He pressed the end button, but not before he checked the caller ID. He sighed when he saw it. Ebika was making him uncomfortable. All the calls he had received in the last hour had been from her. It annoyed him more to think that he told her he had an important meeting to attend with some stakeholders that would boost his business connections. He didn’t expect her to be calling so much. He picked the phone from the table and dropped it in his pocket. He smiled at the Perm Sec and nodded a few times to one of the businessmen giving analysis on economic growth.

Five minutes passed. He sighed with relief. Oh, sweet peace! He muttered within. His phone hadn’t vibrated. Ebika must have gotten the message that he couldn’t take her call. His mind was more focused on the deliberations now. Just when he was all set to contribute, his phone started vibrating in his pocket. Almost as a reflex action, he quickly looked at his pocket as he stood up. His hand held the offending phone in his trouser pocket. He heard a loud sigh, and didn’t have to look up to know who had sighed. He couldn’t mistake his voice even when they had spoken to each other for the first time couple of months ago. The voice could break through the strongest heart and leave you shivering. If he hadn’t created a gap between Chris and him, he would have invited him to come with him. Now, he waited for that voice to tell him off.

“Mr Smooth, why don’t you go outside to answer your call?” He said gently.

The undertone was apparent.

Tolu gave a polite nod. “Thank you, sir.” He replied.

He took long strides and walked out of the hall. He was grateful for the venue of the meeting. Unique Hotel could handle the mood he was in. He was very furious with Ebika, and he needed to cool off.

He walked down the stairs and straight out of the doors, waiting for her to call again. He drew a deep breath when he stepped outside. He lifted his palm and used it as a fan to cool his burning face. It wasn’t like the weather was hot. In fact, the meeting hall had good air conditions, but he couldn’t stop the heat that crept up his body each time he saw Ebika’s call. It was almost like he had a choking chain around his neck. He ran a hand over his neck as if to be sure he didn’t truly have a chain around it.

He sighed when his hand fell to his side. Ebika was becoming too tenacious. She suddenly felt all clingy to him. The same Ebika that was playing hard to get sometimes back. What had changed? Was a ring that powerful? He shut his eyes tightly and imagined himself having no worries at all. He tried a smile to back up the imagination, but it didn’t work. He ended up with a deep frown when he opened his eyes. Just then, a couple walked past him hand-in-hand, smiling into each other’s eyes. Before he could pronounce doom on their love, two boys of about ten rolled two boxes past him. They wore identical Tees and Shorts. One ran ahead and called to the couple. They stopped and called back to him, then both boys ran to meet up with them at the entrance.

Tolu shook his head sadly. He wanted a family just like theirs. Truth was he had that few months back but he threw away what he had for what he was beginning to doubt. Eladebi’s patience, kind-and-loving heart could never be matched. It was why he hadn’t found it difficult to marry her back when she became pregnant for him. At the face of threats and challenges, she had stood her ground against forcing anything on him, and when he had agreed to marry her, she hadn’t become overtly possessive or vengeful. She had seen it all as a partnership. He had offered her his shoulders for tears and his strength for her weakness when she felt she couldn’t go on, especially when the mockery became worse. Those days had been filled with more tears than laughter, but they had grown through it and built a loving relationship. What drew his heart closer to Eladebi back then was her kindness. Not once did she accuse him for ruining her life. She loved him with the whole of her heart. How he could now pay her with such cruelty was beyond him. Tolu tried to imagine Ebika in similar situation and doing the same thing, but he couldn’t. Ebika would not have taken things as Eladebi had taken them. While she had her own good sides, Tolu doubted patience to be one of her virtues. Eladebi on her part had all he wanted. Just as that line of thought flittered into his heart, his eyes grew big in realization. The realization of what Eladebi meant to him and what he felt for her filled his darkened heart with light.

He staggered. “What am I doing?” He asked aloud.

Making a fool of yourself, a small voice responded within him.

He placed both palms on either side of his cheeks. His phone rang just then. He guessed the caller again. It was Ebika. He stared at her image but made no attempt to answer the call. Few seconds after the call ended, he received a message notification. He hesitated for a few heartbeats before checking it.

“I hope you’re not ignoring my calls because of another lady right there. You promised to love me alone and that is what I expect. Don’t you dare break my heart after all I gave up for you. Let’s finalize the plans for our wedding. The sooner the better. Love you.”

While he was used to the first statement in the text message, the others laid a heavy burden on his heart. He had made a big mess and he had no way of getting out of it. There was no way he would repair all he had done without hurting Ebika. She would hate him for life. He could just go on with her. But that would mean cutting off from his children forever. He couldn’t bear that. He scratched his head vigorously. I need help. Oh, Lord, help me. He muttered within.

“Tolu.” Someone called from behind.

The voice sounded familiar. He turned around slowly and saw Christopher, hands in his pocket standing a few feet from him. Tolu’s eyes widened in surprise.







Old Flame Ep 19

Welcome back, friends. Did I take too long before posting this episode? Yes! I’m sorry about that. Enjoy this episode. The end is near.

Episode Nineteen

 From the moment Ebika saw Bina and Doubara together she knew she would approach them. She couldn’t imagine letting them go without showing off her engagement ring. It would surely put them in their places after all the bad things they have said about her. She had been the object of ridicule since her breakup with Bina became an open secret. People had taken Bina’s side. None had considered that she had a right to her own choice of man. Some have even declared doom. How they got to know that she was involved with another man did not surprise her at all. Doubara had told them all. It was her turn for payback. The rejected stone has become the chief cornerstone. She smiled as she looked down on her ring finger. Bina had not even given her a wrist bangle not to mention a ring. Now she had a gold engagement ring.

Her smile grew wider as she approached them. She swayed her hips as she took step after step. She shook her left fingers as she moved past rows of seats to cover the distance between her and Bina and Doubara. From the corner of her eyes, she saw one girl tap the other and pointed to her as she walked past them. It made her giggle. She was on top of her game, and she would shine like they have never seen.

Bina saw her first because he was facing her. Doubara didn’t see her immediately. She had her back to her. Bina abrupt silence caused her to turn back. She followed Bina’s gaze and trailed it to Ebika. Doubara’s face reflected her displeasure. It matched Bina’s face too.

Their cool stares didn’t deter her. She was on a mission, and she would carry it out successfully. No one would put her down. She had what she had always wanted: the love of the man she adored, financial security, a good house and wonderful companionship. Bina could never meet up with that in years if she had to wait for him. She was grateful she didn’t have to.

When she finally got to them, she put up a very bright smile and spoke in a musical voice, “Hello, guys,” she greeted.

“Hi, Ebika,” Doubara replied. Her voice wasn’t welcoming.

Bina kept silent. He just kept staring at her coolly.

Ebika didn’t mind his reaction. It made her happy instead that she could bring such emotion in him.  She regretted that she had a short weave-on. A long weave-on would have given her the opportunity to toss her hair over her shoulder and show off all Bina was missing. She tried her best to charm them both.

“I saw you standing together and I decided to come and give you a wonderful news.” She said in a cherry tone.

Bina and Doubara waited for the news. She smiled. Their lack of interest would not stop her.

“The big news is…” She met their eyes one after the other and then continued, “I got engaged!” She shrieked in delight, shoving her left hand in their faces.

Bina drew back. He regarded her for a few seconds, shook his head and walked away without saying a word.

Ebika’s smile slipped.

Doubara shook her head too and turned to take her leave too. Ebika’s hand shot out and held her in place.

“Won’t you say anything?” She questioned Doubara, sounding desperate.

Doubara unwrapped her fingers around her wrist and looked her straight in the eyes. “You’re engaged, good for you.” She said with a sly smile, then she walked away.

Ebika watched her departing back and felt the first slash of shame wash over her. It wasn’t payback; it was pay off. Bina and Doubara had brought her low. She hadn’t seen any pain in Bina’s eyes when he looked at her engagement ring. She had seen pity instead. Did he pity her? Worried lines creased her forehead. Why should he pity her? He should be sad that he had lost her. He should be ashamed that he wasn’t man enough to keep her.

And what about Doubara?

Her friend had neither been jealous nor pained as she had expected her to be. Instead, she had made her feel like she just signed a wrong deal.

Ebika shook herself. Why couldn’t Doubara see that she had taken the best decision? She pondered on this as she walked back to where she left her bag with less grace.

She picked up her bag and slugged it over her shoulder. She walked slowly out of the church auditorium. She took no notice of the youths who stood in groups at the entrance discussing. Her mind was filled with Bina and Doubara.

Her thoughts didn’t ease as she prepared her dinner when she got home. She placed her hand on the counter in the kitchen and thought some more about it. Why she couldn’t push it off her mind she couldn’t tell. She closed her eyes and tried to conjure all the qualities she loved in Tolu that Bina didn’t have. They seemed inconsequential as she thought about it. She thought of her motive for accepting Tolu next. She tried to assure herself that it was because of the deep love she had for him and how he made her feel, but something in her wouldn’t agree with that.

Her forehead puckered. She turned her engagement ring in her finger. She forgot about the rice she had on the fire as thoughts after thoughts unfolded in her heart. She didn’t know how long she stayed that way until she started coughing. She turned around and noticed the fumes from the pot of rice was filling the kitchen. She turned off the cooker in quickly, coughing profusely. Douye came running in.

“What happened?” Douye asked, coughing too.

Ebika coughed some more and pointed towards the door. They left the kitchen in a dash. When they got to the living room, they both gulped fresh air.

“What happened?” Douye asked again.

“I don’t know. I guess I turned off from the kitchen for a while and that was the result.” Ebika explained, remembering where her mind had been before the rice started burning.

Douye eyed her suspiciously. “What are you thinking about?” She quizzed.

Ebika let out a long sigh. She plopped into a couch and fixed her eyes on the door. “I saw Bina and Doubara together.” She said simply.

Douye raised an eyebrow in a what-about-it fashion. “So?”

Ebika turned to her slowly. “They seem to be dating now.” She told her, screwing up her face in displeasure.

Douye smiled. “Good for them. They fit each other.” She took the seat opposite Ebika. “But, why do you look bothered?”

Ebika got up, crossed her arms over her chest and started pacing. “I should be happy for them. I should be relieved that Bina has found someone, but I’m not. I’m filled with jealousy, anger, that Doubara took my place so quickly. It simply means she was eyeing Bina while we were together. She wanted him for herself. She was just waiting for me to get out of the way.” She stated, her face twisting with anger.

Douye gaped at her. She could not say anything.

“Don’t look at me like that, Douye,” Ebika said, looking down at her where she sat. “I know what I feel right here.” She touched her chest. “How could they have gotten together so fast after our breakup?”

Douye blinked. “Did they tell you they are dating now?”

Ebika huffed. “They didn’t tell me, but it is quite obvious they are. I could read in between the lines. Even when I announced my engagement, they were not even moved by it.”

“But you have Tolu now. He is far better than Bina.” Douye reminded her.

“I know, but Bina seems so loving with Doubara. He was never like that with me. Why didn’t he do that with me? Maybe I wouldn’t have broken up with him. I don’t want him showing the kind of love he didn’t show to me to another lady.” Ebika pouted.

Douye let out a breath. “Ebika, I know I advised you to go for the best and you chose Tolu, but you have to let Bina go. If his happiness is with Doubara, then don’t fight it. What he does with his life shouldn’t concern you anymore. Tolu is the one for you, and he loves and adores you. Bina has nothing to offer you.”

Ebika dropped back into her seat. “You’re right again, Douye. I shouldn’t concern myself with Bina. It doesn’t matter if my heart feels jealous that he is with my ex-best friend. I have the best, and that is Tolu. He is all I want. I will love and cherish him forever.” A smile lit up her face. She sat up straight. “Thanks, Douye.” She touched her leg slightly. “You just got me back on track. For a while, I was doubting my decision to be with Tolu, but you made me see everything clearly. Who will have Tolu and choose Bina?” She laughed a little.

Douye shrugged. “I wonder.” She replied. “Enjoy your life, dearest Coz.”

Ebika nodded and settled back in her chair. Her eyes drifted closed as loving thoughts of Tolu filled her heart.

Photo Credit: Google images


Old Flame Ep 17

And their love blossomed… hehehe


Episode Seventeen

 It was time for a major clean-up. Tolu stood in the middle of his living room with his hands on his waist, looking around. Things had changed for him in the two days Eladebi and the children had been absent from the house. He was enjoying his freedom with the knowledge that he could have the love of his life to spend it with.

Ah, yes, Ebika. He sighed with deep pleasure. Ebika, the one for him, had accepted him back into her life. She was ready to create more memories with him. He made up his mind to please her. He would go extra length just to keep her by his side. The extra length he was willing to start with was to remove all of Eladebi’s pictures from around the house.

His eyes went to the first frame on the wall, just above the television. The picture had been taken on their wedding day. He took the frame off the wall and stared at the picture. Despite Eladebi’s stress that day, she had managed to smile and look good. It was he who went about looking like a lost soul.  He did feel like a lost soul then, and even now. He couldn’t understand how he went from Ebika to Eladebi back then, and how he would soon be a father. Each smile had been strained, and yet, he had kept smiling to keep up appearances. He had to be happy. He stood at the altar with Eladebi and told himself over and over again to be happy.

That happiness eluded him initially when he had to go through the awkwardness of life with Eladebi. They related almost as strangers during the early stage of their marriage, but things took a turn for good. Eladebi proved to be a wonderful woman indeed, and his heart eventually accommodated her. Too bad now that the owner of the heart had come back for what was rightfully hers. He couldn’t deprive Ebika of what truly belonged to her, even if it meant letting go of the woman he had spent years with, and the children God had blessed them with.

“Let’s hope it’s worth it after all.” He said aloud and took down the frame. He dropped it carefully on the side stool he had placed beside him.

Each frame he took down told a story of his life with Eladebi. There were pictures of both of them in the church during the children’s christening. Pictures of the boys at three and six months. He also looked at pictures of their children’s first birthday. He kept dropping them one after the other swallowing the emotions threatening to choke him. He didn’t know it would be so difficult to clean out Eladebi and his children’s presence in the living room.

The last frame he took down was a family picture of all of them together. It was taken at the New Year party organised by his in-laws a year ago. He took in their happy faces and thought again how that happiness had been there without Ebika. How had he been so happy with Eladebi? When did he stop feeling that way towards her? Was it just because their minor disagreements which Eladebi would always apologize for and do his bidding, or something else?

His heart thumped wildly against his chest in guilt. It was foolish to dwell on the issue when he knew his heart had rejected Eladebi already. He dropped the frame with the others on the stool like it was burning his hand. He had to forget Eladebi. She was his past now. His past as at two days ago.

He carried as many frames as he could and dropped them in a big carton in his study. When he was through, he dusted his hand and examined the living room. The walls only held pictures of him in various outings, meetings and all. No one would ever know he had a wife if they stepped into his living room now. That should make him happy but all he felt was a gnawing in his heart. He tried to smile but his lips won’t cooperate. His heart refused to warm to the prospect of a smile. He had to fight the sadness in his heart. He had what he always wanted. There was one way to keep reminding him of what he has now.

He ran to his bedroom and returned with Ebika’s picture. He attached it to one of his own already on the wall. He stepped back to look at it.

“Yes!” He exclaimed with smiles. “Now this is how it ought to be. This will definitely impress Ebika when she visits tomorrow.”

He left the living room and went to the guest bedroom. He picked out every incriminating item; incriminating items like his children’s toys that Eladebi didn’t go with. Hair brush, Hair shampoo and conditioner, shower cap and an empty bottle of ‘Romantic Women Perfume’ that Eladebi left in the bathroom when she stayed in the guest room.

When he left the guest room, he found himself in the children’s room. A frustrated look entered his eyes as he took in all that was in the room. He shook his head. He couldn’t clean out the children’s room. It would have to be an out-of-bound room for Ebika. He would ensure she didn’t go there.

The master bedroom was already cleaned out. It was just unfortunate that his kitchen was too organise to be in a bachelor’s pad. Then again, Ebika could stay away from the kitchen. He would be the perfect host, and if he was going to put up a good show for Ebika, then he had better do it all; all included cooking Ebika a meal.

That thought didn’t excite him at all. He left the master’s bedroom and wandered to the kitchen to start his catering practical.




Four years was such a long time to have forgone cooking, but for Ebika’s sake, Tolu was in the kitchen wiping up what he hoped to be his best. He had spent the entire day after the clean-up cooking.

Standing in the kitchen felt so odd. For a long time his place had been at the dining table and not the kitchen. He had never been disappointed before when he waited for Eladebi’s food at the dining. It was always right on time and very delicious. Saliva filled his mouth and he swallowed nosily. He hoped his food would also make Ebika salivate.

He checked his pot of Jollof rice one last time, then he turned off the cooker. He rubbed his palms together in excitement. Time to get set for the arrival of the queen of his heart.

His bath took few minutes, but he spent more time dressing up. Ebika liked his looks. He would ensure he satisfied her. He ran a hand across his neatly trimmed beard.

“Nice.” He said, smiling broadly at his reflection.

He pushed his comb through his afro and styled it properly, then he looked over his blue polo and combat short. It was casual enough but also stylish. He wanted Ebika to be comfortable around him. By the time the doorbell rang, he was all dressed up and ready to entertain her.

“Hi, love.” He greeted, pressing his lips to her cheek. “You’re welcome.”

“Thanks, dear.” She answered with a smile.

His eyes swept over her, and he liked what he saw. She looked gorgeous in a well-cut pencil gown that revealed curves that made her more appealing to him. He swallowed. His guilt over his treatment of Eladebi flew out of his head as he drank all of Ebika. She seemed to enjoy the attention because she flipped her shoulder-length weave-on over one shoulder and batted her eyes at him. A burning desire rose within him, such as he had never felt for Eladebi in a long while. He quickly stepped aside before the thoughts in his heart were put into action.

“You look so beautiful, my love. Come in.” He invited.

She gave a deliberate sway of her hips as she walked past him. He liked it all. He liked what she was doing to him. If she continued keeping him interested the way she was doing at that moment, then marriage should not be too far off.

He led her to a couch and he sat beside her. He gave her time to enjoy the beauty of his living room. She nodded severally in approval. Seeing the admiration in her eyes reassured him of the good work he did while he was preparing for her visit. Nothing was out of place.

Ebika’s eyes finally stopped their roaming and came back to him. “Wow, Tolu! This place is so lovely.” She stated in an admiration-filled voice.

He grinned from ear to ear. “Thanks, my love. This will soon be our place.”

She fixed him a dreamy look as she considered what he just said. Her eyes went round the room again. She jumped up abruptly startling Tolu. She moved to where he had arranged the frames and included her picture. He joined her in front of the television. She had her back to him. His eyes rested on her waist. He imagined his arms encircling it. He thought of her reaction if he did. He hesitated. It lasted only for a few seconds. He moved to her and placed his hands on her waist. She leaned into his body, rubbing her face against it.

“I can’t believe you kept this picture, dear.” She said in a near whisper, caressing his ear.

He kissed the ear. “I can never throw away the memories I have with you.” His voice matched hers. Her eyes drifted close as he spoke of his love for her.  “You’re the best thing in my life, Ebika. Time could not separate us because we were meant for each other. I have always loved you and still love, and I will continue loving you.”

She turned to face him then. He drew her into a bear hug.

Emotions built within him. This was what it meant to love. He thanked his lucky stars for granting him another chance with Ebika, and for giving him the courage to kick Eladebi out of his heart and life. Sending Eladebi and his children away for the love of Ebika was worth it. He dropped a light kiss on her lips as he led her back to the couch.

Their love was the topic for the day. They both pledged underlying love for each other while they ate. He kept stealing kisses every now and then during the meal. It made Ebika bat her eyes more at him and even return his kisses. He was excited beyond words. This was the kind of life he wanted.

After the meal, they lingered over the wine he had poured to celebrate the moment. He held her hand.

“I believe you enjoyed your meal. I made it specially for you.” He told her.

She smiled. “I’m impressed. If you keep doing this each time I come around, I promise to love you till infinity.” She tapped his nose with her finger.

His smile wobbled a little. Cook each time she was around? Did she mean it or was she just joking? It must be a joke. He concluded within him.

“I’ll like to eat your food too. Maybe you should invite me to your place.” He suggested.

She pulled her hand free from his. “I would love to, but I prefer you entertaining me here.” She answered with a small shrug.

The magic was slipping. He took her hand again and changed the subject. “I’ll do anything for you.”

“Oh, that’s…”
The bleeping of his phone cut her short. He picked it up and dropped immediately when he saw the caller ID. “You were saying…?” He urged her to continue.

“I wanted to tell you…”

His phone started ringing again.

He ignored it and got her to continue. When the phone rang the third time, a suspicious look came into Ebika’s eyes.

“Why don’t you just answer the call?” She said stiffly. The smile had disappeared from her face.

“It’s not important. It’s just a client I dealt with some days back. He needs some goods but couldn’t meet up with the payment.” He explained. She didn’t look like she believed him. “I’ll just turn off the phone.” He picked up the phone, but she stopped him.

“Don’t turn it off.”

“But… it’s making you uncomfortable.” He tried to reason with her.

She shook her head. “Don’t worry.” The smile that accompanied the statement made him worry instead.

Things got bad after that: two more phone calls that he couldn’t take and two messages that he was not ready to read. Ebika picked up her purse soon after.

“Let me drop you at home.” He offered when he couldn’t convince her to stay back.

Her arms crossed her chest as she waited for him to pick up his car keys. When he came back to her, he pulled her into a hug.

“I’m sorry, my love. I didn’t mean to ruin your first visit to my place. You mean so much to me, and no one is worth my attention when I am with you. Don’t leave like this.” He pleaded. He felt her body melting against his. He released a sigh of relief.

“It’s okay.” She replied, playing with the button on his shirt. “Just promise me this won’t happen next time.”

Tolu crossed his heart. “I swear it won’t.”

The moment felt like the time she just arrived. He led her out whispering words of love to her. He surprised her with the cash gift he had kept aside before her arrival. She accepted it with all smiles. He felt good that he could make her happy.

All through his drive home the feeling remained with him until he got home and found out he had to clear the table and wash all they used. He didn’t feel so good again. He pulled out a chair and dropped down heavily, then he cursed Eladebi for almost ruining his date with her calls. He still didn’t understand while she kept calling even when he had

refused to answer any of her calls. One of the messages he received was from her and the other was from Christopher. He opened her message and expected to read an apology like the ones she sent their first day apart. Instead, it was a prayer for him. She went on and on praying for him, and telling him she and the children were missing him. What baffled him was her belief that everything would soon pass and they would be back together as a family. She was putting up with a friend so that her family members would not know what was happening. What made her so confident was beyond him because as far as his heart was concerned he was done with her.

Christopher told him he understood what was happening but encouraged him to do what was right which was to get back with his wife and children.

Tolu scratched his head. His eyes back to the dishes on the table. Whatever was going on at the moment, the reality for him was that he had just finished sharing a meal he cooked for his woman and was about to wash the dishes himself. There was nothing appealing in that.





Old Flame Ep 14

Welcome, friends! Happy reading!

Episode Fourteen

All hell was breaking loose. She should have known better than telling Bina her intention concerning their introduction in church. Now he was very angry with her. But what could she have done? She had tried calling him, but he couldn’t meet with her because of his work. Well, meeting him in church was the alternative since she couldn’t wait till he had his off day. She just hadn’t planned for his volatile reaction. He had given her a look that could kill her and then stormed off to tell Doubara.

Doubara stood before her now regarding her with eyes spitting fire.

“Did you really call off the introduction?” She inquired, lips turned up in disapproval.

“For crying out loud, I did not call off the introduction.” Ebika replied, throwing her hands up in exasperation. “Why can’t Bina understand the difference between ‘postpone’ and ‘call off’?”

“I doubt you know the difference, Ebika.” Doubara said coolly, crossing her arms across her chest.

Ebika glowered at her. “Don’t start, Doubara.”

Doubara let out a tired sigh. “What exactly is going on, Ebika? Please, tell me.” She urged.

Ebika looked away from her. “Nothing.” She said.

Doubara drew close to her. “There is something, Ebika.” She responded, her voice strong with conviction.

Ebika threw her hands up again, stepping away from Doubara. “I just feel we should hold on a bit. What is wrong with that, Doubie?” She faced her with challenging eyes. Doubara stared back.

A minute passed.

Ebika started squirming under her persistent stare. She shifted from one foot to the other. “What exactly do you want me to say, Doubie?”

“Ebika,” Doubara started in a softer tone. “I don’t want you to make a mistake. Whether you tell me or not, I know this has to do with that friend of yours from the past.”

Ebika looked away.

“Bull’s eye! I knew it.” Doubara pointed a finger at her. “But why, Ebika?”

“But nothing, Doubara.” Ebika’s lower lip quivered. “I haven’t broken up with Bina. We just need time. I still… well… like Bina.”

“Like? Like you say, Ebika.”

Ebika shrugged. “Well, I mean… I lo… love Bina.”

Doubara shook a finger at her. “Tsk, you can’t even convince me, how much more Bina.”

“Where is he?” Ebika asked, changing the subject.

“He stormed off after he told me you called off the introduction. He went that way.” Doubara nodded towards the exit beside the pastor’s office.

Ebika touched Doubara’s arm. “Trust me, Doubie, I know what I am doing.”

“If you say so.” Doubara replied in a cheerless tone.

“Let me go and look for Bina. I need to explain things to him. I didn’t call off the introduction. I only postponed it.”

Doubara gave a nod. Ebika patted her arm and went off.


She met Bina at the back of the church auditorium. He stood against a pillar with a faraway look in his eyes, arms akimbo. She walked quietly to him and touched his arm. He turned slowly and looked at her.

“Bina, you got it all wrong. I didn’t call off our introduction. I only postponed it.” She said, injecting what love she had left for him into her words.

A sad smile curved his lips. “Ebika, I can feel what you are not telling me. I can see it in your eyes. I can hear it in your words.”

It was her turn to look into the distance. “I don’t know what you are talking about, Bina.” She answered in a whispery tone.

“You know, Ebika, all I want to know is where I got it wrong. What did I do exactly?”

“Why are you asking me that? Why do you sound like I’m the bad person here? You sound like I’ve done something wrong.” Her voice thinned with veiled anger.

“I didn’t call you a bad person. I just want to know why you suddenly have cold feet.”

“Cold feet huh? Isn’t it enough for me to have cold feet? You don’t even know what I want. You don’t listen to me. You don’t do fun things with me. We struggle to keep money flowing between us. How do we cope when we get married?” The words flew out of her mouth in anger. “Oh yes, I’m postponing our introduction until I’m sure you are man enough.”

Bina’s jaw went slack. “I’m suddenly not man enough after two years.” His heart thumped within his chest. Things were going from bad to worse.

“What does it matter how long we’ve been together? Thank God I didn’t rush into anything, Bina. I still want us to take our time.”

Bina’s eyes grew very cold as he regarded her. “For how long, Ebika?” He inquired.

Ebika pulled her right ear lightly. “Huh, I don’t know. Sometime soon, but not now.”

“I can see that you don’t take us seriously, Ebika. You can’t just decide without me. We should have talked about it. Well, since you started it, I’m also going to take my stand. If truly you want to be with me, then we will have the introduction as we originally planned. If this relationship ever mattered to you, then you will do the right thing. I’m giving you tonight to think over it and give me an answer. If by tomorrow, I don’t hear from you, I’ll take it our relationship is over.” His words dripped with icy chill. His tone reflected his seriousness.

The look in Bina’s eyes sent a tremor down her back. Ebika didn’t doubt him for once. “Bina, you don’t understand.” She tried to reason with him.

“I have tried to understand, Ebika, but it has been difficult. It’s time we decide. We either move forward or we stop. The ball is in your court. Let me know tomorrow.” He ended his statement and walked away from her without a backward glance.

Ebika watched his departing back and felt the fire burning within her. Her plan had turned against her. It was time for drastic measures. She quickly pulled out her phone. Her hands moved swiftly over the keyboard as she typed a message to Tolu. She couldn’t lose.




Eladebi’s voice was grating his nerves. Tolu picked up his pillow and placed it over his head, but still her voice floated to him through the closed door. He got up, gritting his teeth. Why couldn’t she just observe her night devotion quietly? Oh no, she must sing. It was amazing that she still had such joy after what he did to her. He placed his right elbow on the pillow and settled his jaw on the opened palm. His brow drew together in deep thought. Why hadn’t Eladebi reported him? Why did she relate with him as if all was well with them?

His eyes went to the wardrobe. The same wardrobe where his ironed clothes had been put away by his wife some minutes before she called the children for devotion. He had gone through them to find fault, but found none. As usual, Eladebi proved to be the efficient wife she was. Even her food seemed to taste better than before. He drummed his fingers against his jaw. Something has to be done or else he would be caught in between. If Ebika found out his secret, he would pay dearly with his heart shattered completely. Better to deal with Eladebi soon.

But how?

That was the million dollar question on his mind even as his wife prayed for him in the living room. Ebika had given him the green light. He had to do something too. He stood up and started pacing the room, trying to lay hands on the numerous ideas flying through his mind. While this was on, his phone announced a text message.

He picked up the phone from the bed and read the message from Ebika quickly.

‘The coast is clear for us.

Things moved faster than I expected.

Am all yours now, my love.

 Everything now lies with you.

Let’s chat later and discuss what we’ll do next.

Love you.’

Tolu punched the air. “Yes!” he exclaimed, a wide smile spreading across his lips. “Finally, I can have Ebika all to myself.” He raised his shoulders and moved about the room with arms widespread by his side. “I have gotten what I want. Ebika belongs to me.” He burst into happy laughter.

Eladebi walked into the room at that moment, singing. She stopped abruptly when she met him in a happy mood. “What is going on here?” She asked.

Tolu turned suddenly, causing Eladebi to jump. “It’s none of your business.” He told her.

Eladebi regarded him for a few beats before she turned away from him and pulled out her night dress from the wardrobe. Tolu snatched the dress from her. He marched to the door, threw it open and flung out the dress. Eladebi ran to him.

“Why did you do that?” Eladebi cried.

Tolu fixed her with menacing eyes. “From now on, you will sleep in the guest room. I have no need of you here, and I wish not to see your face every of my waking hour.” He told her, nose flaring.

Aside a brief flicker that appeared in Eladebi’s face, she showed no emotion. She picked up her night dress and faced him.

“Good night, my love.” She said with a smile.

Tolu watched her, totally speechless. He stood in the same spot even after she closed the door behind her. Guilt twisted his inside. Eladebi didn’t deserve the treatment he was meting to her. A line appeared between his brows. It was getting difficult to bend Eladebi and get on with Ebika.

He went back into the room, slowly this time. He plopped down on the bed, eyes lifted up. “Being with Ebika is much more pleasant than spending the rest of my life in a loveless marriage.” His expression hardened. He drew himself up. “I won’t give up. Eladebi must leave. My life is with Ebika and not her, especially now that nothing is stopping Ebika.”