Warri Nor Dey Carry Last 22
Okiemute went straight to his room immediately they got back from the office, feigning tiredness. He could not wait to inform Bola of what had happened in the office, still wondering how guys could take what was discussed at home on Saturday to the office on Monday. How they kept such in mind all through the weekend beats his imagination. He bolted the door, dropped his bag containing his laptop on the reading table, and dialled Bola’s number. “Speak of the devil”, Bola said, as he answered the call. “I was about calling you too, to inform you of what happened in the office today”. He added. “Yours can wait”, Okiemute replied, “I am sure it is not as urgent as mine”.
“Do you know that these guys narrated at the office today, all that we talked about at home during the weekend?” He started. “Which of them and what did they talk about?” Bola asked, without showing surprise or disappointment in his voice. “I don’t know who said what, but Sandra called me ‘lover boy’ and when I asked why she was calling me such a name, she said, “do you think you can say anything to those guys and it won’t be heard in this office?” I was so disappointed but managed to handle it by not asking who told her.” He explained. “Why were you disappointed? I thought I told you to expect such in a public place like that?”, Bola asked. “Well, you said it. But I was not expecting them to go this low by taking what happened at home to the office. But I think it is better it happened this early. What if I had confided in them, with respect to my likeness for Sandra? That means I would have dug my grave with my own hands”, he said.
“Abeg forget that matter make we talk better thing”, Bola suggested, as he shared his own experience at work. “You mean that Prof really told her niece that she saw you in church?” Okiemute asked. “Did I not tell you that she will tell her?”, he replied. “I have the premonition that they are suspecting me in the school. I think she, like others, knows that I have strong feelings for Beatrice.” He added. “But do you know what?” He asked. Before Okiemute could give a reply, he continued. “She has given us an alibi. She spoke kindly of you”, he paused, waiting for Okiemute to respond. Bewildered, not knowing how that was helpful, he asked, “who spoke kindly of me and what did she say?” “Prof, of course. She said you sounded like someone that is intelligent from her assessment of you,” Bola explained.
“And how was that supposed to be an alibi?” He asked. “How many days have you stayed in Lagos that you’re already losing your Waffi smartness? So you still can’t figure what I am driving at?” Bola asked, rather surprised. This was unlike the Okiemute that he thought he knew. The one that had always been the ‘sharp guy’ that sees the ‘devil in the details’ from a mile. “Are you saying I should ask Beatrice out?” He asked bemused. “Don’t just go there!” Bola said, emphatically. “Is that why you’ve been feigning ignorance of the alibi I am talking about? The alibi is that you can come to see me in school and act as if you’re her friend. Engage her in a lengthy discussion, as someone in a cordial relationship would do. That will take eyes off me, giving me the much-needed chance to ‘shoot my shot’, without the burden of prying eyes hovering over me”, he explains further.
“And this sounded like a nice idea to you?” Okiemute asked. This time it was Bola that was confused. When he was expecting an applaud for being able to have found a way around his nightmare crush, he is getting such a disdainful remark.
“Do you have a better idea?” Bola asked, irritably. “The idea is not completely bad, but it has to be tweaked”, he replied. “Now you’re talking. So I will be expecting a grand plan from you. That’s my real guy!” He said, excitedly. “Let me find something to eat. You know I am not like you that already has someone cooking your meals”, he added, as they both said goodbye and ended the call.
Okiemute sat on the bed ruminating over what they just discussed. The idea was not a bad one, but it has to be with the consent of both parties. Bola can’t be scheming on having a secret affair with Beatrice without her consent. He was cocksure that he has not asked her out, and putting him in the picture might mess things up. For the idea to work, he has to approach Beatrice and both of them had to agree on the plan. He was very much interested in the workability of the idea as that might be his inroad into Sandra too.
He stood up to take his bath, as his priority at the moment was not about ladies but to perfect the task they have been given in the office. While in the shower, he kept thinking about what to add to the project, that would make it user-friendly and efficient. His thoughts were disrupted by the knock-on his door.
“Hello sir, dinner has been served and the others are waiting for you”, the housemaster said. “I will join them soon”, he replied. “But I wouldn’t mind if they decide to eat without me because I am still in the bathroom”. He added. That was the best way he felt he could tell them to eat their food and leave him alone, as there was no need sharing meals with talebearers.
Despite his prolong delay in joining them, Ken and Bayo waited for him to come down before they started eating. “I was beginning to wonder if you planned to go to bed without food”, said Ken, as he opened the dishes to serve himself. “If they tell you that Okiemute went to bed without food would you believe? My guy serve dis thing make we eat. Una don try to wait for me. If na me, I for don chop my own waka since with the way hunger dey catch me”, he replied, trying to cover up his annoyance with some lively remarks.
They ate the food in silence, except occasionally when they drank water, the glass cup cranks on the marble coated dining table from the picking and dropping. All the time they were on the dining table, Bayo was avoiding eye contact with Okiemute. He knew his facial expression and demeanour changed when he got back from lunch break, and as the one that told Sandra the gist, he was burning with a guilty conscience. Mustering enough courage, he tried to start a conversation. “Any fresh insight with regards the project?” He asked. “Is that question for me or for Okiemute?” Asked Ken. “Are you not also on the team?” Bayo replied. “Now that you mentioned ‘Team’, are we really a team or a collection of gossips sharing information?” Okiemute asked with a sarcastic smile. Then he pulled out his chair and went straight to his room. Dinner was over, and to him, the day has ended with that activity being the last he would have with them for that day.
Unknown to Ken that ‘gbeborun’ Bayo had gone to open his untamed mouth in the office, was asking the same person, what was wrong with Okiemute. Bayo feigning ignorance of what might have pissed Okiemute, stood up and left for his room also. Ken, in his usual mannerism then shouted with his deep baritone voice, “wetin dem say make papa nor hear, na papa go later settle am”.
As Okiemute bolted his door, he smiled hearing those words from Ken. “Ken will always be Ken, the butterfly that thinks himself a bird”. He said to himself, as he sat to do some work on the project before going to bed.
Photo credit: Internet.
IDEDE Oseyande, a graduate of the Federal University of Technology, Akure, is an unrepentant believer in the Nigeria project.
His concern for the actualisation of a prosperous nation and the continent, in general, is reflected in his written works.
He currently runs an online advocacy platform (www.socialwatchdog.ng) where he engages the government and the people.
Among his published works are ‘What is Left of What is Right?’, ‘The Portrait of a Revolutionary Leader’ and ‘Warri No Dey Carry Last’.
He is a guest writer for several blogs and his Attitudinal and Behavioral Coaching classes has transformed many lives.