SHE HAD A WALK like water but she was fire and she was gold. Fire was strong and tough. It hardly forgave and when it did it never forgot. Unforgiving and relentless, fire was.
Gold was innocent and child-like. Gold seduced you. Sometimes, on purpose. Most times, ignorantly. She was bronze too; Indecisive and troubled. Insecure.
Fire and gold overshadowed bronze with their fierceness and charisma but as Xaver’s Teal eyes followed the six inch stilettos treading on the tiles, he saw bronze. He saw fire in her demeanor, gold in the brightness of her eyes and bronze beneath her facade.
His eyes still stalking her, he thought of water as she moved. Her steps were deliberate and smooth. Almost crystalline. Everything about her was a contrast and damn him if it wasn’t sexy as hell.
She walked swiftly through rows of desks stacked with papers and chairs occupied by employees that all stared at her like she was Athena herself. They didn’t see bronze. They only saw fire. A few observant ones saw gold but none of them saw bronze.
He almost laughed. People see what they choose to see and hear what they choose to hear. He chose to see bronze and he had. Just like he chose to see his grandmother today and here he was, looking out through the private glass constriction as she slept. She’d dozed off as he was telling her about the business deal he’d fought through the day before. He did it every time he came to see her.
He always told her how his week went or about a new contract sitting on his table. It wasn’t necessary though, considering the fact that she didn’t remember him. She had a serious case of the Alzheimer’s disease which is marked histologically by the degeneration of brain neurons especially in the cerebral cortex and by the presence of neurofibrillary tangles and plaques containing beta-amyloid . He was quite surprised she could still speak well. Smiling, he remembered when the doctor told him she asked him where she was some mornings when she woke but she was slowly beginning to acknowledge the fact that she was hospitalized.
Walking back to the bed, he watched his grandmother as she slept. Few moments passed and he pressed a soft kiss to her forehead before he left the room.
“Mr. Kirkgarde”, the doctor greeted as he rose from his desk to shake hands.
Xaver’s well polished shoes on the plush rich carpet was soundless as he crossed the short distance from the door to the desk.
To say that the office was luxurious was an understatement. Considering the orange leather seats and soft paintings on the wall, Xaver noted that Richard Ferrow was a man of colour.
A brief nod, a handshake and he was seated.
There was no known cure for Alzheimer’s but Xaver wanted the best care and treatment for his grandmother so he’d kept her at this private hospital with multiple nurses and doctors —including 24 hours therapy sessions— at her beck and call. They help with the Fever, dehydration and Pneumonia, arrange her bath and she has a special chef in charge of her food. Then fresh hygienic cucumber water, fine coffee and good tea.
Whenever he visited, the doctor always gave him a rundown on what they’d been doing since his last visit.
When the both men were comfortably seated, the doctor began, “Fortunately, Edith is doing quite well but as we both know, Alzheimer’s causes memory deficits and makes it difficult for people afflicted with it to stay in the current moment. Most times, she exhibits behaviours like restlessness and agitation in the late afternoons and early evenings and experiences mild hallucinations, delusions or paranoia. Hallucinations are sensory experiences that are imagined, in other words, it’s something a person sees, smells, hears, tastes or feels. It may involve visions of the past and the sense of relieving old experiences but it should not be mistaken as a step towards recovery. When this happens, she thinks the nurse close to her is an old friend and asks her if she’s come to take her on their usual Tuesday morning tea ritual and the nurse plays along instead of correcting her.
“Delusion, on the other hand, is a set of false beliefs. Unlike hallucination, delusions make Edith a bit —if I want to put it mildly— protective. It makes her feel like the people around are trying to trick her or steal her possessions, this unfortunately leads to a number of highly paranoid scenarios and unless the behaviour becomes dangerous or violent, we might not need to intervene”.
The doctor paused to allow Xaver take it all in. After a moment, Xaver motioned for him to continue.
“More often than not, medication side effects can masquerade as dementia. Certain anti-anxiety medications have the capability to create side effects that strongly resemble dementia, including short term memory loss and hallucinations. Putting this into consideration, we know what medicine to give her and what the side effects of the medicine in question may be. We also try to reduce hallucinations and delusions by causing distraction.
“If the hallucination is frightening, we take her to well-lit areas and show her peace inducing bodies like flowers, lakes or even beautiful paintings. Distraction is also created by turning her attention to her favourite activities like music and coin counting.”
Xaver raised an elegant eye brow, “Coin counting?”
The doctor nodded, “Coin counting”. He continued, “Also, she finds it quite hard to sleep in the evenings. This had led to the limiting of her caffeine and the use of nightlights”.
Xaver paused before nodding in understanding and asked, “What are her daily activities?”
They rotate her activities weekly or monthly to reduce boredom a bit.
“Well, in the mornings, we wait for her to wake. Afterwhich, the nurses help her have her bath and get dressed. She watches television for a while before she’s taken outings like gardening, eating out or sight seeing. It’s not necessary to eat out because she has a private chef here but keeping her indoors for too long might lead to her wandering outside the hospital walls when she’s left alone to rest and we really want to avoid that. After the outings, she then has a simple, safe exercise program at home to help keep her physically active. Her chef has been told to keep a nice cooking routine, therefore, there is high intake of fruits and vegetables so she can maintain good health and weight.
“At first, we’d tried to encourage her to take her medicine herself by keeping her drugs in a pillbox but it seemed to add more confusion which led to us dropping the approach”.
Xaver was going to ask another question when they were interrupted with a soft knock on the door. Ferrow raised an eyebrow at Kirkgarde, silently asking if he was okay with the distraction. He was Xaver Kirkgarde. He was that influential.
A slight nod from Xaver and the young doctor let out a smooth, “Come in”.
Sreya waltzed in, forehead creased in a deep frown, her eyes cast downward at a document as her lips moved in sync albeit absentmindedly, “Richard, Mrs. Braxton’s brain damage seems more complicated than we thought. I just carried out multiple X-rays—” she halted mid sentence.
Richard? How long has she known him.
Xaver felt her before his eyes saw her.
She had a walk like water but she was fire and she was gold. She was bronze too.
Up close, she was a fucking vision.
She had donned on a white long sleeve off shoulder blouse with lace overlay, a black leather knee-length pencil skirt and white pumps. Her thick black hair was pulled up in a neat bun and large hoop earrings adorned her ears. Her neck and shoulders were bare and it was okay, she didn’t need a necklace.
Her body was the predominant accessory .
Full breasts, a slim tone stomach and round hips, her features were loud without even trying.
Her deep brown skin seemed to reflect the light creeping in through the windows, glowing effortlessly.
Realising Richard was in the middle of a conversation, she quickly apologized and began to leave but Richard stopped her.
“It’s okay, Sreya. This is good timing by the way, Edith’s grandson is here”.
Sreya knew Edith quite well. She wasn’t one of those looking after Edith but Sre visits some patients from time to time. Being one of the top doctors in a hospital came with a few minor work.
“Mr. Xaver Kirkgarde, Sreya Dronian. Sreya, Xaver Kirkgarde”.
Cyan met chocolate brown and time seemed to stop. Sreya knew Xaver Kirkgarde. The Kirkgardes owned the best technology companies in the country. She’d heard of them on the radio at the grocery store where she shopped, on people’s lips and read of them once when she’d been so bored she decided to scan through a magazine. But she’d never actually seen them. They were one of the most influential people in the country, the most influential people.
As one of the richest people, Sreya expected them to look good but Xaver didn’t look good. Hell, he didn’t even look human at all. She didn’t have words to describe him. Words were barriers and they would only limit his beauty. Words would be chains.
His light cyan eyes were gorgeous but she knew they’d be beautiful in any shade. The greenish blue color was devilishly attractive, a very dark shade of green flanking the rim of his iris, beside the cortex, as though it were too shy to make an appearance. His eyelashes weren’t too long but they were long enough to seduce.
The pitch black hair he sported was dark as night and coiffed to perfection complementing his dark mohican cut scythe-shaped eyebrows. Beneath enthralling eyes sat angular, well-defined cheekbones sculpted downwards towards an oak jaw. He looked like Aphrodite had carved him for her personal carnal desires, bestowing on him the same beauty she possessed. His nose was straight. Not curved or broken. Just straight.
Her chocolate brown eyes settled on his lips... She was going to need new panties. He had a Titan’s shoulders. Broad and strong, giving him a very manly physique. Xaver Kirkgarde was dishy and Sreya fought the urge to lick her lips and moan. Dramatic? Yes but she couldn’t help it.
He had a still aura around him. It felt electrically charged...like it’d shock you if you got too close. He seemed like some sort of demi god. As though he could set you ablaze if he stared at you for a second too long or he could turn you to stone with the whisper of a touch.
His loamy scent tickled her nostrils and her panties soaked further. He reminded her of earth. The rigidity and agility of soil and rocks. Fertility. The power humming through hard pebbled stones seemed borne into him. Like he controlled it. He was a bit like air too. Air was gentle and destructive. It all depends on the mood. It all depended on Xaver’s mood and right now he watched her for a moment, a flick of curiosity dashing through his cyan eyes before being replaced with a glimmer of interest then turning to two beautiful expressionless pits. Empty.
As she shook his hand, a glint flashed, catching her attention. Eyes dropping, her pupils zeroed in on the finger of his left hand where a vein (“vena amoris” vein of love) led directly to the heart. A delicate rose gold ring circled his fourth finger.
She froze. Xaver Kirkgarde was married.
shit shit shit
“Okay. Now the introduction is out of the way, you were saying something”.
Wait, what? Was I saying something?
“Uuh, yes”, Sreya tried not to stutter, “Mrs. Braxton, her X-rays say we might have to operate on her sooner than we thought we would. I wanted us to look the tests and X-rays through then decide what we’re going to do”.
“Okay, very well then. I’ll meet you and the others shortly after this”.
It took Sreya 5 seconds to get to the door. Longest fucking 5 seconds of her life.