‘Welcome Sir, Welcome ma.’ The waitress, dressed in a navy blue and white gown greeted with a smile.

‘Thank you.’ Katherine replied not picking the menu list.

‘Thanks Helen.’ He returned smiling.

‘Sir, what will you like to order? ‘

‘You’ve heard of ladies first, haven’t you? ‘ Kelvin returned with a question.

Helen directed her attention back to Katherine. ‘Ma, what will your order be? ‘

Katherine glanced up at the smiling face before looking at her companion. ‘I’ll rather you order first. ‘

He knew that tone well and especially knew that it was pointless to argue. ‘Dear, I will have my usual.’

‘I’ll have same with him, thank you.’ She chirped in with a smile, afterwhich she picked the menu list.

He waited till Helen left. ‘Kathy, you shouldn’t have done that, you don’t even know my usual is and if you would like it. ‘

‘That should be least of worries, you should be praying that you don’t have to spoon feed me.’ She said with eyes focused on the list.

Kelvin burst into laughter. Though it was calmly said, it was so tight that he considered it a retort.

Even when the meal was served, he was still amused that he had to express his gratitude with a wave of hand while Katherine mouthed hers.

‘I’m sorry.’ He eventually halt as her eyes were now boring into him. ‘Let’s bless our meal.’

‘Yea, bless the meal.’ She shut her eyes.

He smiled at her promptness before following her cue. ‘Father we thank you for another privilege to feast. We asked that you provide for those looking up to you for what to eat. Jehovah Jireh bless this meal and bless the hands that prepared it in Jesus name.’

‘Amen.’ They both chorused.

The aroma and the presentation made her mouth to water. Before them was Chinese fried rice and egg with baked fish to be downed with a bottles of  Schweppes, she knew thawed peas, garlic, sesame oil were special ingredients added among others.
She loved the cube sized liver that littered the meal, she knew the meal was going to be tasty.
It took her down memory lane for few seconds.

He watched and saw her blinked severally, exhaled before picking her fork.

‘You do have a sweet way of payback. ‘ He was referring to their exchange. He looked at his meal and noticed its content looked a bit different.

‘I haven’t considered payback yet and you’re already complaining. ‘ She shot him a warning glance

‘Oh… goodie goodie Lord in heaven!’ He exclaimed and they both laughed.

‘Hmmmm…this is delicious.’ She couldn’t help but say in between chewing.

‘Yea… kind of tastily different from my usual.’ He scooped the meal into his mouth.

Silence prevailed as they both ate, savored their meal and sipped their drink.

‘You amaze me Katherine, how you could give such speech with little time to prepare.’ He lifted the bottle to his lips. ‘I like to ask you a question I’ve asked before, why did you stop schooling and do your family members know the turn your life has taken?’

‘I am afraid I can’t answer that. ‘ She said simply but her countenance changed.

A couple of minutes passed between them.

‘Kathy, you’re picking your meals.’

‘I’m sorry Kel, I lost my appetite.’ She told him eyes still on the meal. She couldn’t look at him, She couldn’t tell him he was digging up memories that She had tried so hard to bury.

‘That should be expected, it is hard for the body to break free from a routine it is used to and that’s the case with you,you are so used to spending every day at work without lunch, so no appetite at all is expected but not to worry for I’m ready to reprogram you whatever the cost.’ He smiled at her.

His words and smile drew out a smile from her overshadowing the sadness that had engulfed her.

She shrugged. ‘You are right, even a lay man knows that but you sound more like a professional, at some point in time did you do something related to medicine or psychology? ‘

‘Naw…’ He drawled,’Not my kind of stuff but the tone might be because I have a medical doctor in my family.’

‘Hmmm…little wonder.’ She concluded and sipped water.

‘Go ahead Kathy, pick your meal I would’t mind waiting and cheering you.’ He told her gleefully.

She rolled her eyes and chuckled.

When it was time to eat her fish, She struggled in dividing her fish and he helped her and took three pieces from hers which he called his compensation.

On clearing the plates, Helen complimented on her speech which is partly attributed to the upgraded meal they had ate.

They walked back to their various offices, Katherine happier and Kelvin more determined to know the reason behind her veil.
With both palms underneath her chin, Shakirat studied the opened brochure. She was seated in the armed chair with both elbows on the reading desk.

Tobi walked in from the gym having done his evening work out, He was compelled to halt pass the door and take in his wife posture and the four brochures that were opened on the desk.

His brows narrowed. ‘Sweetie, what’s going on?’ He continued in his strides and on a lighter note added. ‘Are you preparing for an exam? ‘

She glanced at him and her gaze returned to the brochure. ‘I want the twins to come back to Nigeria and complete their secondary education.’

‘What! Why?’ He went wide eyed.

‘I… I am not comfortable anymore with the distance.’ She muttered audible enough for him to hear.

‘Baaby… ‘ He drawled and then heaved to keep his emotions in check. ‘You’re the one that wanted my girls abroad in the first place and don’t tell me you intend withdrawing them in their final year.’

Shakirat inhaled and exhaled deeply. She stood as tears rolled down her cheeks and faced her husband who was taken aback by her tears. ‘ Sweetie… ‘ Since it was like a muffled sound, She cleared her voice. ‘I know what I said my love but… Prince has been appearing in dream… ‘ She sniffed.’ He was crying and every time I reach for him, he vanishes.’ She sobbed.

Tobi took her into his arms.

‘I am afraid… I want Rosemary and Rosamund back home. Please… ‘ She burst into tears.

His arms around her tightened and he fought back his tears. ‘It’s okay Babe. If that is you what, we will work on convincing them? ‘

She nodded.
The driver opened the door and She looked back on impulse just to see Abbey, the security officer running to catch up with her.

She waited.

‘Hello Katherine, Oh no…Good evening ma.’ He corrected himself.

‘Good evening Abbey.’ She beamed. ‘Skip the ma, we are pals.’

He looked left and right before whispering. ‘Please don’t let someone else hear that.’

The driver had already gone into the car.

Katherine chuckled. ‘How’re you doing jare? ‘

‘I am fine.
It was a beautiful talk you gave us yesterday.’

‘Thank you for always believing in me.’

‘Thank you for never proving me wrong.’ He returned. ‘I don’t know if you’re aware but I resigned and I will be leaving SIC by next week. I got an employment in Abuja that I’m passionate about. ‘

‘Eeya, congratulations Abbey. I am going to miss you and SIC would lose one of its efficient security staff.’

Abbey chuckled. ‘I’m optimistic SIC will get a better replacement.’

‘I’m happy for you and please on Friday, come and see me. You can’t leave SIC without a parting gift from me.’

‘Thank you very much. ‘

Katherine entered the car, he closed the door after her and waved.



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