It was a brand new day. Residents of Amete community were awake and already about their activities. The sky was a clear blue as the sun rose steadily from the east and started its journey to the west.
It’s golden rays reached the earth, blessing both men, animals and plants.
Oluchi and Ajiri were early risers. They worked as secretary and marketing staffs respectively in different companies. Since it was a Monday morning, they quickly finished their chores, got dressed in their office wears and left for work together.
Hours rolled by and soon it was late evening; 5:30 pm to be precise. The rays of the setting sun gave the sky a touch of fiery gold, all in a bid to say goodnight to this part of the world. People closed from work and started their journey back home, so as to be with their family.
At Fred’s Garment, Oluchi was by her desk, putting some old records on top each other and tying them together. After she was done with them, she took her seat and began to update her record book with appointment dates and venues, the upcoming get together party and board meetings.
Her light brown, suit skirt reached her knees, while hugging her hip and thighs.
Her milk coloured blouse was a little loose but it was a perfect fit, considering her slim body. Both ends of the collar extended a little below her bosom. There, she knotted them into a butterfly shape.
Although her shoe heels were high, she had no problem feeling comfortable in them. Her swift attitude towards work and acute reasoning was what got her a job as a secretary in one of the biggest company in the garment industry.
Oluchi rushed the last part of her work.
She needed to finish in time so as to meet up with Ajiri. Earlier, they had planned to meet up at a restaurant before heading home. What other plans Ajiri had up her sleeves was unknown but Oluchi guessed that her friend wanted to introduce her to a male friend.
“I am a beautiful woman.” She had told her reflection in the mirror while dressing for work that morning. “Why then can I not get a good man without having to engage in online dating or hook-ups?”
She sighed. Not knowing the answer to her own question was even more annoying than the question itself.
Now there she was, preparing for another hook-up. In as much as she did not want to attend any hook-up nights, she did not want to stand Ajiri up either.
Let me quickly finish. She thought as she entered the last detail of the company’s upcoming investor’s get together dinner party, in her notice book.
“No need delaying the inevitable. I will simply assess whatever tweed Ajiri is bringing my way. I have to know if he is good enough, not just following blindly.”
She was still working when the door, directly opposite her table, opened and a male voice called out to her.
“Miss Ubase.” The voice called. Oluchi looked up from her work to see her boss and owner of Fred’s Garment, Mr Fredrick Ogberese, walking casually toward her.
His suit jacket was taken off, leaving only his white, long sleeve shirt and black trouser. He held a bottle of yellow wine in one hand and two wine glasses in the other. Oluchi wondered what he was up to, especially since every worker had closed for the day and gone home. Usually, her boss closed early. Whenever he closed, as long as it was day over, she closed too. But this was different. She stayed behind to do some extra work only to find that her boss was still around.
“Sir? Is there anything you want me to do?” She asked, getting to her feet.
“Yes. I want you to meet me in my office so we can talk over a glass of wine.”
“Hope everything is alright sir?” She asked, already feeling uneasy. Her sixth sense told her the man may be unto her.
“Everything is fine.” He assured her.
“Have you finished your work?”
“Almost. I’m filling in the last detail for the investors’ dinner party.”
“Ok. I’ll wait in my office.” Mr Fredrick continued to his office, leaving Oluchi to ponder on what he wanted to discuss with her.
“He is a married man, for God’s sake!” She said under her breath. “A man with a beautiful wife and lovely kids. What could he possibly gain from being with another woman?”
Trying not to allow the issue disturb her, she went back to work. About fifteen minutes later, she finished everything, carried her handbag and went straight to her boss’ office. On getting there, she tapped on the open door.
“Yes, come in and take a seat” Fredrick invited. He had been following the news update on NTA. However, with Oluchi around, he took his attention away from the news and kept it on her.
After offering her a seat, Oluchi sat down and he popped the wine bottle open. He filled both glasses with wine and gave one to her.
“Cheers to you and our discussion.” He said with his glass raised.
“I would like to say cheers too but, I don’t know what that discussion is about sir.
And besides, I have to meet up with my sister very soon. Can we be quick about it?
“Ok.” Fredrick agreed. He drank his glass of wine at one go and then dropped the empty glass on the table gently. “Let me go straight to the point. There is no need to keep you waiting. After all, its well past closing time.”
“Thank you, sir.”
“So, do you have a boyfriend?” He asked, ignoring her thank you.
His question surprised Oluchi a little. She would have asked how it was his business but she dared not be rude. “No, I don’t.”
She answered instead, and truthfully too.
“Good. So among the list of things you wish to accomplish in life, is there marriage and making a family?”
“Yes, there is,” Oluchi answered again.
“Good. So what type of man do you like?”
“Excuse me, sir, where are we going with this?” Oluchi blurted out. “You are married to a beautiful woman who has given you beautiful kids. Now you want a second wife? Don’t you think it will be unfair to your partner?…”
Mr Fredrick sat back on his chair and listened with keen interest as she probed him and tried to make him feel some guilt so as to drop whatever idea he had formed in his mind.
“Are you done?” He asked after she had finished talking.
“Yes. But it doesn’t seem to me like you listened to anything I said.” She protested.
“Believe me Miss Ubase, I did. Now it’s my turn to talk and I need you to pay attention. Let me tell you why I chose you.”