I pride myself as confident and articulate but Rick constantly left me in a tongue tied, confused state. My teenage years’ is a good while back so I don’t understand why I act like this around him sometimes. One look and I am flustered. 

It’s a good thing I am dark, I will not have been able to hide my blush. “Hey shrinking violet, are you going to get out of the car anytime soon? We have a plane to catch,” Rick said sardonically, giving me a critical thorough look over as I stepped out of the car, probably trying to decide if I was properly dressed. “Do not worry, we’ll pick up a dress in Abuja,” he said casually, like he was talking about going across the road. “Abuja?” I echoed in shock at the sheer effrontery and impunity of this man. “If you need a minute to vent and rant (he checked his time) I think I can manage that,” Rick said arrogantly. 

I felt like screaming and stumping my feet on the ground like a recalcitrant child (believe me in my mind, I actually did that!) out of frustration. 

I’ll be damned if I am going to give him the satisfaction of seeing how his presence disturbed me. I took a deep breath and dived in, the deep end. “You wish, obviously you have a lot of time on your hands, if wishes were horses beggars will ride. Unfortunately I don’t have time for this. I am due in court in 45 minutes and I still have one or two things to tidy up before leaving the office. So if you are done jesting, you will have to excuse me,” I said breathlessly my eyes flashing fire. 

He looked at me through narrowed eyes and made a call, asking if everything was in place and the necessary clearance and permissions obtained for take-off. I was only half listening and then my phone rang. It was Rick’s Grandmother; I should have guessed she will be in cahoots with her grandson, I thought disparagingly. “Hello dear, I hope I am not calling at a bad time?” She asked innocently. “No ma, to what do I owe the pleasure of your call ma’am?” 

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I asked injecting enthusiasm into my voice. “Oh don’t be so formal dear, I asked Rick to inform you of my desire to have you represent me at a very important Meeting with one of our Clients in Abuja today,” she said sounding like someone that is used to having her way. Rightfully so I guess, she was one of my most important Clients and refusing her was not even an option except it was a life and death situation. 

I immediately assured her of my availability and after giving Rick a dirty look I went into the office to brief my colleague about taking my place in Court that morning and requesting for an adjournment. I gave my Mother a quick call to inform her of my trip to Abuja and called Jasmine to cancel my hangout date with her later that day. I promised to explain everything later when I have privacy. After my call, I looked up and found Rick studying me. “How is your Mother? (I stiffened, why was he asking of Mom, I wondered) You know one of the things I respect about you is the fact that you still live with your Parents. 

In this day and age when most beautiful girls who have not accomplished half of what you have will get an Apartment at the drop of a hat,” he said appearing to genuinely look impressed. Why didn’t you just tell me about the Client in Abuja?” I asked changing the subject abruptly. I know you are eager to know what happened in Abuja, hold that thought. I need to tell you what happened some time ago, I believe I skipped this particular gist. We had our usual girls’ hangout, Kaycee hosted. 

Yes you got that right; no alcohol, strippers or boys that night. I was down with that but as you might have guessed there was a lot of hissing and dissing from the diva Queen herself; Zara! She always complains whenever it is Kaycee’s turn to host the girls but we have a golden rule; no one is exempted from girls’ night out. 

If someone does not show up, she will serve a punishment that can only be given by the last person that hosted. The last time Zara excused herself, Kaycee made her attend a 3 day crusade in her Church and distribute flyers during Evangelism.  Zara was not amused but had no choice.