Just like a miracle, the traffic actually began moving. I let out a whoop of excitement as I moved forward. In less than fifteen minutes, I was in Victoria Island. The annoying thing however, was that I didn’t see the cause of the un-moving hold-up.
“I am in the building!” I called Kiki as I entered the elevator. “Thank God!the Tolu girl is not picking her phone again oh” “I’m on my way up”.
“So are you free now?” Ik asked as I picked up his call. I glanced at my watch. It was 1:30. I had just concluded the meeting with Tolu Adams. She was only thirty-two and had survived cancer twice. She was going to be the centre-spread of our October issue.
“Uh…I just got out of a meeting. I could meet you at The Tea Room in like thirty minutes.” I said shooting a glance at Kiki who was across the reception talking with Tolu and her husband.
“Aite. I’ll see you then. Thanks Delores.” He sounded desperate. I quickly e-mailed Mrs. Obie a summary of the meeting with Tolu, grabbed my stuff then headed out to meet Ik. I told Bola to tell Kiki that I was meeting Layefa for lunch though. As I drove down the road, I tried to envisage what IK wanted to talk about. I knew it definitely had to do with Kiki’s strange attitude. What would I say? Did I even really know what was going through her mind?
I turned into the parking lot of The Tea Room. I spotted a familiar figure walking towards my car as I parked. I got out of the car and took off my shades. “Delores! Hey! How have you been?” It was Tunde. “Tunde! Hey yourself!!” I hugged him. “Lunch?” he asked. “Yup” I nodded. As we stood talking, the bright sunny weather suddenly turned grey again. “Rain? Ah. I guess I better leave you to your lunch then.” Tunde said. I waved him goodbye and walked briskly towards the entrance.
Ik was at the door waiting for me. “Delores” he called. I turned and saw him. “Ik! hi!!” I pulled him into a hug. I hadn’t seen him for quite a while. And if I could say so myself, he looked gooood! “Thanks alot for meeting me mehn. I swear, you cannot know how much this means.” He held me as he led me to our table. “Oh stop it! You’re my friend too noww” I replied. We had small talk for a bit. He asked about Layefa. I asked about work. He talked about the unbecoming traffic. I talked about MTN’s bad behaviour. Then we got down to real business.
“Wassup with your friend naww?” he asked. He was staring at the table and playing with his spoon. “You know what IK, I wish I could tell you I knew” I said gently. “She’s hurt, I know that for sure. But then I also know she’s forgiven you.” I continued. “Are you sure she has? Cuz it doesn’t seem that way at all, Delores” he looked up. “I think she’s just going through a rather immature phase where she makes you pay for placing her love on hold”, I stuttered. “I mean, I don’t know. I’m just guessing.” I quickly added. Ik shook his head, “Kiki doesn’t play like that naww. She obviously doesn’t miss me, does she?” “She does! That’s the thing! She’s up to some kinda game I really cant explain”. I tried my best to sound convincing. IK just shook his head like he didn’t want to believe there wasn’t more to Kiki’s behaviour.
“But you know you messed up now. You really didn’t expect things to fall back in place just cuz you realised your mistakes, did you?” I told him. He started to say something but I wasn’t done yet. In fact, I had a whole lot to tell him.
“You cant ‘just for the fun of it’ play with another human being’s emotions, say sorry and think everything’ll go back to normal. You have no idea the pain and rejection Kiki went through while you were clearing your head or doing whatever the hell you thought you were doing! You should consider yourself lucky she’s even still civil with you” my voice got a little louder. “Ah ahn! IK you no try ohh.” I said a little calmer.
He stared at the table. I guess he was shocked to hear me give it to him hot and spicy like that. He buried his face in his hands and heaved a sigh of regret.