Two to Tango
I'm Vanessa but you can call me Nessa. " She noticed them exchanging handshakes and then felt their eyes boring through her clothes so she raised her head from her book and gave a shy smile.
He surprised her again by giving her a full blown smile, "Sorry I didn't get your name. "
Christina rolled her eyes, "That's because you never asked. "
"Well I'm asking now. "He flashed his perfect smile again
“I didn’t hear a question.” She jokingly retorted
He laughed. A beautiful sound that was like music to her ears. So beautiful. “Can I know your name miss. Please.” His eyes twinkling.
"Christina." His eye held hers, they lingered and he smiled again.
"Tina girl I'll stop by the house later for dinner with your dad.” She smiled and sauntered towards the door.
“Not again" she muttered under her breath and cupped her face in her hands. By the time removed her hands from her face, he was still standing there, amused.
“Please tell me she doesn’t do this all the time?”
She smiled, “No. Only when she thinks it’s for my greater good.”
An hour later,
She joined in the laughter, "I swear I don't know how that woman got me hooked but I've virtually read every piece of work she's written. "
"Now that's real obsession "
“No. I doubt that is what it is called.”
“ Oh my!!” He burst into laughter again. “ Are you ashamed of your lustful obsession?”
“No. Its not obsession neither is it lustful.” She tried frowning her face but was failing miserably. She had no idea how he had done it. In less than an hour they were talking like long lost friends. He was a very easygoing person with so many likeable qualities.
They talked about some other books and authors including Nora Roberts, Sandra Brown, Cynthia Eden, Chimamanda Adiche, Chinua Achebe, Buchi Emecheta, Ben Okri even Cyprian Ekwensi and many others, argued and laughed.
"Now this is becoming very suspicious how can you love all the writers I love."She said in between laughs.
“That’s because we have so much in common.” He joked.
They went on arguing about politics and Christina could see the pain in his eyes each time he talked about all the annoying reasons Sowore didn’t win the 2019 Nigeria Presidential elections.
They went on to talk about the Nigeria economy and how far behind they were from been a developed country.
"Hold on!" Do you agree with me that Nigeria is heading somewhere? She askee
"No I don't " he bluntly said
"Ahhh" Christina dramatically kept her two hands on her head. "You are saying Nigeria has no future?"
"No joor." He laughed at her display. "You know that's not what I am saying."
"So Mr man what are you saying?"
"Okay fine. Nigeria is heading somewhere but if we have a very long way to go if we keep allowing the old papa's to lead us."
This caused a long string of laughter between them.
Christina was amazed at how much she was enjoying the conversation. Each topic they spoke about he talked about it with so much passion and she could only wonder how a man built like a rock could exhibit so much passion at even the slightest discussion .
"So what do you do? "
"Huh? " She asked confused.
"I mean what do you do for a living? " he clarified.
“Oh. I'm a lawyer by profession.
"I suspected." he said laughing intensely
" Meaning? " she asked with wide eyes
"You have been arguing intensely with me like we were in the court room. "
She noticed he had a way of talking and keeping his eyes on her. He made her feel like every word she said had alot of reasoning to it. She didn’t want this moment with this aphrodisiac stranger to end but glancing at her watch she realized she had spent more than 3 hours with him which had disrupted her schedule. "Kyle I'm really sorry I have get to the salon before I meet my dad for dinner.”
"Oh I'm so sorry. I was just having such a lovely time with you.” He said apologetically.
"That's okay. You know it takes two to tango." She gave him her warmest smile. "Maybe we could meet for lunch or a cup of tea some other time and talk about more books that's if you don't.. I don't -" she stuttered trying to find the right words.
"Hey, I'd love that." he intervened ."its been so long since I had such a lovely time.” He smiled again. The same smile that seemed to melt her insides. She was wondering if he knew what he was doing. If he knew the effects he was having on her.
“can I have your phone number? "He asked politely .
Christina had this inner battle in her telling her that it could be a good thing or a bad thing or-" oh that's no big deal"
Kyle handed her his phone and she punched her number into it and handed it back to him.
"Love to hear from you Christina. "Kyle said trying to hide the smile in his voice.
“Same. "She said as they both walked out of the cafeteria. As she pulled away from the parking lot she saw him wave and she waved back with a smile.
All she could think about was Kyle. She couldn’t wait to see Nessa this evening and tell her how much of a lovely time she had with him. Her phone buzzed and it was a last minute cancellation from Nessa saying Chukwuma wasn’t feeling so well and she had to spend the night with him.
She ended up having dinner with her dad who noticed her mind was far away and kept on asking if everything was okay but she kept on waving his concern away. She was okay but she couldn’t get her mind off Kyle. She couldn’t stop thinking about him and how he made her feel. He was smart and witty and he made her laugh a lot. That was quite an achievement because no man had ever piqued her interest since her run down with Ben.
“You seem very distracted tonight dear?” Jack Osakwe mentioned for the umpteenth time, his big baritone filling the entire dining room
She sighed and reclined in her chair, “I’m sorry dad. I just had a really long day at work.” That was half the truth but knowing her father, work was her only excuse.
“Take it easy at work. You are doing so well in that aspect so why not..” his phone rang. He brought it out from his pocket, checked the caller ID, shook his head and kept it back.
Christina frowned but said nothing.
“My child.” He paused. Christina knew what was coming. Anytime he called her my child, then a thorough advice of how worried he was about her came up.
“You need to balance every area of your life before you are called a successful person. It isn’t just about work but about every other aspect of your life. You can have it all…okay?”
His phone rang again and when he was about to pocket it she stopped him, “Don’t worry about me dad. Take your calls. I’ll clean up and lock up on my way out.”
“Its my assistant. “
“It could have been important dad. I’ll lock up on my way out. Go to your study and attend to work"
He groaned. “Everything is always important with that man. He always claims to know so much when he doesn’t know anything,” he groaned. “Fine. Lock up properly, your mother will let herself in when she gets in and most importantly call me once you get home safely”
“Sure dad.” He was already hurrying to his study when she called his attention again, “Dad have you ever thought about getting a divorce and getting remarried? You know you too can have it all.”
It was a slow sad smile. A smile which didn’t seem to reach his eyes. “Tina girl, I need to take this call now. It could be important. “ and he was gone.
“Smooth move dad.” She murmured. He had lost the light from his eyes many years ago. Probably when he realized that there was no hope for his marriage. Maybe the family was cursed. That’s why her supposed marriage with Ben had failed. She thought sadly.
In about half an hour she was ready to head to the confines of her house and just rest her head from the troubles of the day. When her phone rang, startling her. She had a personal vendetta against strange numbers calling her, because in time past, people who didn’t agree with justice felt it was better to threaten a single woman than to go to jail. She threw the phone back to her bag.
Not tonight cowards.
Nor be me una wan scare this night. She spoke to herself in pidgin.
The phone began to ring again as she started the car, this person was persistent. On a second thought, she had given Kyle her number and he was supposed to call tonight. What if he wasn’t the caller though. She wasn’t in the mood to go home terrified and sleep with one eye opened tonight but what if? Damn!! She really needed to download the truecaller app Nessa had been telling her about. At least that would have saved her from this dilemma.
Giving up, she picked the call and remained silent waiting for the caller to talk first was one trick she had learnt early enough. And then she heard it.
“Hello Christina, its Kyle.” She felt her heart stop. The voice was different on phone but yes it still had same effect on her.
Damn it! She sounded like a lost cause.
“H-h-hey” She stuttered, trying to gather her nasty thoughts into one giant ball and throw them at the back of mind.
“Are you okay? You sound very tired.”
His concern pricked at something sensitive inside her but she immediately buried that thought too. “I have had a really long day and I’m just about to drive home.”
“Damn girl, this is really late. You want me to come chauffeur you home?”
She was tired. And very exhausted. So she just let the words tumble out of her mouth without thinking twice. “I would have loved that.”
She could hear the surprise in his voice when he spoke next. Surely he hadn’t been expecting that answer. Her father was trying to call her, probably wondering why her car was still in his driveway so she promised to call him back when she got home.
She took a deep sigh when she finally had the chance to lay in bed. Today was a long day and sleep called out to her but she couldn’t help but replay her conversation with Kyle again and again. She didn’t know what to make out of this new stranger that had come into her life, showing her the possibilities to things she thought were impossible. She drifted off to sleep thinking about a voice dripping with fire, melting her insides and making her whole. For the first time in a long time her sleep was a beautiful epiphany.
Looking into the mirror realizing how much of a success today was, he smiled. Watching her smile and laugh only increased his anger. He cursed has he tried to remove the contact lens from his eyes. He hated contact lenses but if he had to keep up with the plan and these contact lenses will do the job for now. He just had to eliminate the one thing that she loved most.
He smiled as the image of her in pain filled his mind. Revenge was the only thing keeping him and Christina Summers. Revenge was the only thing keeping him in Benin City. The Summer’s wont see it coming until it was right in from of them and they deserved every bit of what was coming for them and they would definitely get all they deserved.
Happiness coursed through him as he studied his perfect plans once again. He was getting away with the perfect murder once again.