Choices...

Choices… Episode #4

“Hold it.” a voice called out just as the elevator doors started to close.

Nife held the elevator doors open willing the owner of the voice to make it snappy. There was a pile of documents on her desk that desperately required her editing attention and they were all due at 4p.m. Mr. “hold it” strode in, punched in the floor he was going to and set the elevator in motion without so much as a good morning nor thank you.  He gave her a quick once over, sizing her up and dismissing her just as quickly. 

Nife returned the favor, letting her gaze slide over his face, down to his abdomen, which she noted was flat and fitted to a white shirt that was tucked into brown slacks. Her eyes lowered to his crotch, noting the slight bulge and then down to his feet which were encased in black polished shoes. She briefly wondered if it was really true that a guy’s equipment is proportional to the size of his feet. She glanced away after her perusal, dismissing him just as quickly as he had her. 

“Like what you see?” He asked. 

“There’s not very much to see.” She snickered. 

He laughed out loud and said, “I’m Dotun.” just as the elevator doors opened at her floor. 

“Okay.” She stepped out without as much as a glance backward. 

“You haven’t told me your name.” He called out. 

“But you didn’t ask.” came her sassy reply. 

Not a bad way to start the day, she smiled to herself, and dug into the day’s job. She was deeply engrossed in editing the documents in front of her, she almost didn’t hear the message bip of her phone. She ignored it, thinking it was probably MTN with their numerous, unsolicited, every hour text message offering her a free one week trial of business or relationship advice; or Airtel informing her for the umpteenth time that she was qualified to borrow 500 naira. 

Two hours passed before she picked up her phone, to make a quick call to her boss. Apparently, the message that had entered earlier was not from MTN nor Airtel, but from Chief. Frowning, she unlocked her phone to view the message. It had been two weeks since that first time he picked her up from work and she consented to their so called friendship. And since then, he had been sticking to her like glue. If he wasn’t picking her up from work, he was calling her to meet him somewhere – a restaurant or bar joint – during the weekend.  He also had the habit of calling and chatting her up on BBM every spare time he gets, which was plenty, in her opinion. On the days they meet, he’ll sometimes get her a gift, a wrist watch or shoe and always give her money, supposedly for her upkeep. 

“Ladoja just called me. Go check for your name on the school’s website.” Chief’s message read. 

Nife’s heart skipped a beat. She hurriedly launched the browser on her computer system and logged on to the school’s website. She typed in her details with shaky hands and hit the ‘Check’ button. 

“Congratulations. You have been offered a provisional admission.” Read the message on the screen. 

“Thank you God. Thank you.” She chanted. 

She quickly picked up her phone to dial Chief.

“I got it Sir. I got the admission.”

“That’s great. Congratulations dear. You deserve it.” Chief said. 

“Thanks Sir. Thank you for all your help. God bless you.”

“You don’t have to thank me. I’ll do anything for you, you just don’t know it.” 

“We should celebrate.” He suggested. 

“Ehm. I suppose we should.”

“One of these days. In the meantime, if you need anything, don’t hesitate to ask me, okay?”

“Okay Sir. Thank you.”

Nife could hardly contain her excitement. She updated all of her social media accounts with the news immediately, then called her father and Ayo too. Finally, she’d be in the university like all of her mates. 

***

Later that evening when Nife got home from work, she sat with her father to discuss the money she’d be needing for registration. 

“How much do you need now?” He asked. 

“I really don’t know yet. I have to submit all of my credential first for clearance.” Nife replied. 

“Then, if I’m cleared, they’ll take me to the payment section.” 

 “Okay. That’s good, because I really don’t have much money right now.”

Of course, he wouldn’t have much money right now. Not after paying the exorbitant private school fees for her step-siblings her step-mum had insisted her kids had to attend. She had a love-hate relationship with the old man. Sometimes, he acted like he would do anything for her, and other times, he simply just danced to the tune of his wife. 

 “So, how much do you have saved?” He asked her. 

She wasn’t the least bit surprised by his question. He always never had enough to spare her, which was why she was working in the first place. 

“I don’t have much myself.” Nife replied. 

She had just close to 40k in her account and she intended to use that for her upkeep. 

“Hmmn. Okay. Just do the clearance, and let me know how much you need.” 

Nife stood up and left for her room. She needed a backup plan. Had chief not said she should tell him if she needed anything, she thought. Perhaps she would have to play along with him a little while longer…at least until she settled down in school. Oh well, she would just wait and see what’s on ground first. 

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