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Monday, November 7, 2016

Receptionist Episode 9



I was standing there speechless, my tongue was caught in my throat. Right before me was a picture I knew no one else had asides Adesuwa, I have never felt so exposed and embarrassed. How did this picture get here? Who sabotaged my presentation? I was disconcerted, I almost forgot I had eyes feasting on my next move, tears filled my eyes and I knew I couldn’t continue with the presentation. I knew Mr John was disappointed and I couldn’t look him in the eyes.

I buried my head in shame, I started packing my belongings on the table when I saw Adesuwa walking towards me with a smile plastered on her face, she held her laptop in one hand.
‘Babe, don’t even try it, don’t give the bitter person who did this the pleasure of seeing you fail. Use the presentation you sent to me, just freestyle’ She whispered to me, patting my back.

Turning to everyone, she said ‘Now let’s get back to business, Mr John please help her connect the laptop’ She said in a tone that dared him to protest.

I started the presentation in a shaky voice, but Adesuwa kept urging me to continue. Minutes into the presentation, I found my voice, when I stole a glance at Mr Ifeanyi, I couldn’t read his reaction, probably he would have to let me go after this humiliation. Maybe I actually wronged Madam Vera, and this was my karma, I was having a series of thoughts while trying my best to put on a smile and give this my best maybe Mr John would overlook the slight mishap, or should I say major mishap.

I kept talking on the different advertising ideas we had for their brand, the representatives of the lingerie brand had their eyes fixed on me with interest, couldn’t decide if it was pretence or they were actually listening. Looking towards Mr Ifeanyi, he had taken a laid back position on his seat, Mr John was visibly upset, when my eyes met with Adesuwa she gave me the sign to round up my presentation.
I gave my concluding remarks, ‘Do you have any questions?’ I asked but praying they don’t.

They looked at each other, and all said no questions.

‘Thanks for your time’ I said walking back to my seat. I was still shaky from the ordeal.

‘It was nice meeting you all, it was an interesting experience’ The lady said, I knew she was referring to my pictures ‘I gathered a lot from this presentation, it was just a few minutes but I saw a lot. I would send a mail to Mr Ifeanyi before close of business tomorrow. It was nice meeting you all, Miss Yvette, Miss Adesuwa and Mr John and every other person in this room’

Mr John stood up, escorting them out of room, Mr Ifeanyi had his laptop in hand as he followed behind. I waited till they had all left, Gloria was fast behind Mr John speaking to our prospective clients in her usual notice me manner. Once the room was empty, I buried my head in my hands and finally let out the sob I was holding.

‘Yvette, don’t do this’ Adesuwa said rubbing my back, ‘You did well, it wasn’t that bad and they haven’t given any response yet’

‘I know..’ I said trying to speak ‘But who did this and why?’

‘Welcome to the competitive world, Mr Ifeanyi bypassed a lot of people who wanted this position and gave it to you, some people are still bitter’

‘I think I should quit, I can’t cope here, it has been one week, one week of trouble for me here.’

‘Don’t even try it, God blessed you with this job. Don’t be an ungrateful person, Mr Ifeanyi hasn’t said anything yet.’

My stomach did a tumble as she said his name as I wondered if he would still keep me after I had given it all up to him.

‘He has gotten sex from me, what makes you think he would keep me’ I asked, my voice still shaky as I held back a sob.

‘He isn’t that type of person Yvette, how many times would I tell you this. Except you are that terrible in bedroom matters’ She said laughing, trying to cheer me up.

‘Adesuwa, I am not in the mood’ I said frowning.

‘You still owe me some gist’ She said ignoring my protest.

I was about to answer her, when the door opened and I saw Mr John standing at the entrance

‘Come to my office Yvette’ He said in a furious tone.

11: 15 A.M

‘What was the meaning of that show of shame’ Mr John asked not taking his eyes away from me

‘I am sorry sir’ I said in a shaky voice. I knew I looked a mess, after crying out my eyeliner and mascara.

‘That is not my question Yvette’

‘I can’t explain it also’ I said

‘You think this job is a joke right? Just because Mr Ifeanyi decided to favor you doesn’t mean you make a fool of all of us.
Do you know what it takes for these guys in marketing to finally get a company to agree to listen to our ideas? You just stood there and made a mess of their effort’

I buried my head, as I couldn’t look him in the eyes.

‘If it was left to me, you are leaving this place today’

The tears I was holding back, started flowing again as I cried silently, all I could think of was how disappointed my mum would be.  Maybe Michael was right afterall, I got this job thanks to my looks and curves, but I couldn’t still keep it.

‘I am sorry, someone edited my presentation but I don’t know who’ I explained, as I held back a sob.

Mr John was surprisingly quiet for a few seconds as he watched more tears travel down my face. He surprised me even more as he stood up and walk towards me and handed me his handkerchief.

‘I don’t like seeing crying ladies, go to Mr Ifeanyi’s office and tell him what you just told me. But Yvette if we loose this contract,  I am giving you a memo and will start working towards your exit from this building. I know Mr Ifeanyi is the boss, but we have rules here and he is not going to openly defend you and put his integrity at stake for you, people have lost their jobs here for less. Why would you be different, I am still the H.R boss.’

I knew he was threatening me, but there was no point fighting a lost battle, he never wanted me here and this was his opportunity to get me kicked out.

‘Come in’ I heard Mr Ifeanyi’s say.

I stepped in, afraid of what will happen next. I didn’t even know how to approach the topic, it’s funny how just last night I was moaning in his arms, naked and uninhibited but now I knew this was my boss.

‘Sit down,’ he said ‘You have been crying’ He said looking at me intensely

I wiped my cheeks with the back of my palm. ‘Someone tampered with my presentation’ That was the only words I could say to avoid more tears.
He was silent, concentrating more on a file on his table.

‘I know’ he answered finally

‘And?’ I asked getting frustrated with his silence.

‘Yvette, stop bothering your head, I am not stupid. I know, and I have my solution already. Mr John must have given you a scare, I am still everyone’s boss here and I made most of the rules here’

‘I still don’t understand’ I asked bewildered.

‘We loose the contract or we don’t loose it, you are not going anywhere. You get it now?’ He said looking at me

‘Why?’ I asked, I just needed to understand

‘Figure it out’ He answered standing up and walking towards me. I instinctively took a step back, the closer he got the farther I went till my back touched the door and I knew I was trapped.

‘I can’t figure it out, Mr Ifeanyi’ I said almost breathless.

‘OK, I will have to keep giving you clues, till you gather the puzzles and get the answer which is glaring at you’ He said with all seriousness.

He held my face and covered his lips with mine, tasting the saltiness of my tears. It was a slow comforting kiss, almost an assurance that everything is fine. When I was getting accustomed to it, his lips began searching, coaxing. Finally when his tongue started  searching and stroking, I felt a jolt of pleasure spreading through me as my knees almost gave way if not for his hands on my waist holding me tightly. How does he do this? One minute in his arms and I forget all my planned protests and worries. His left hand left my waist and began tracing circles under my breasts, the moment he reached the tip and flicked it between his thumb and middle finger, I knew this had to stop so I stepped back.

‘We are in your office’ I protested weakly

He sighed, also realising how far he had gone. ‘Only you can get me this worked up, I can’t work like this.’

‘What do you want with me, you are getting me confused’ I asked

He was quiet for awhile, walked back to his seat, like he needed to keep a distance to answer the question

‘I can’t date you’ He said finally

‘So am I your sex toy, or am I paying for the job offer in Kind’ I finally asked the questions bothering me

‘I won’t answer that question, but I didn’t give you this job for sex. I can get that in abundance, neither was I lacking it before I met you’ He replied arrogantly, this was another side of him I haven’t seen yet.

‘I would make my own conclusions then’

‘I would let you know if you got the contract for us tomorrow and also tell Mr John to inform the head of security I want to see him. I need a footage of all that went down in the conference room today’ I knew I was being dismissed but I was shocked at his revelation.

‘We have cameras in this building?’ I asked shocked

‘Well, newly installed but it has not been officially announced yet. Still a work in progress, thankfully the conference room has been installed already. I guess we have reason to finish up the project now after what happened to you’ He explained with a cocky smile.

My heart leapt with joy, now I knew why he was so unbothered, I couldn’t wait to see the culprit and also shame Mr John. I left Mr Ifeanyi’s office with a little ray of hope in my heart.

8:30PM

Michael was still speechless after I narrated my ordeal at the office.
‘So you mean a picture of you in bikini popped up on the screen? He asked again

‘Yes’ I answered a second time

‘That office is really something else, what is your boss saying’

‘Mr John wants me sacked, Mr Ifeanyi just said he will watch the footage first. He is calling a meeting tomorrow’

‘So the person was so stupid to do that in an office with cameras’

‘No one knows yet, the cameras are hidden and newly installed, I guess a company sold the idea to Mr Ifeanyi and he is test running it’

‘Oh, I see, but you are a likeable person. How did you make quick enemies?’ He asked suspiciously.

‘How would I know? Probably Madam Vera’s jazz man is powerful’ I said chuckling, finally able to laugh about my predicament.

‘Madam Vera is old story, she can’t be that vindictive, what does she have to gain?’

‘How would I know?’ I answered.

‘Mr John has no say in the matter once the culprit is caught, he can shove his memo into his ass’ Michael stated

‘Your choice of words sometimes eh’ I laughed. Remembering the shock in his eyes when I revealed we would discover the culprit tomorrow

‘Maybe he did it’ Michael said thoughtfully

‘Nah, he might be strict but he is too principled for that’ I defended him surprisingly

‘You are too trusting’ Michael argued

‘You are too suspicious of people’ I responded.

We laughed, and held each other’s gaze smiling.

‘I want to quit’ I revealed what has been on my mind all day.

‘Why!, don’t give the idiot who did this the satisfaction of quitting, or do you have other reasons?’ He looked at me knowingly, and I looked away

‘No, I just need to quit, the drama is too much and I might not survive the next prank’

‘I don’t see the need to, toughen up girl. This world is not for the weak, you have a point to prove to everyone in that office. There is more to you than your looks, and seductive body, if you quit you only prove them right, your body got you this job. Use your brains to keep it Yvette’

‘My body didn’t’ I protested even though I heard a voice of guilt in my head reminding me of Mr Ifeanyi’s lips on me.

‘Have you told mama’ He asked obviously trying to change the topic.

‘No, she worries too much and how would I explain a picture of me in bikini to her?’ I said

‘The more reasons you shouldn’t quit, you have a lot to lose, your mum needs the money if you don’t’

‘I have to head inside, before she comes outside to find me’

‘Mummy’s girl’ He said playfully

‘I have never denied the title’ I laughed

‘But I wouldn’t mind being your sugar daddy’ He said winking at me

‘Pervert, go home’ I said hitting him on the chest playfully.

‘Not before I get a kiss’ He pleaded with a puckered lips

‘We are outside my house’ I said glancing around, seeing my neighbors watching us keenly

‘OK, I would let it go this time’

‘Goodnight’ Smiling, I walked back inside

10:32 P.M

‘Hello babe, I didn’t see you in the office again, been so busy to call and know how far’ Adesuwa asked, I could hear the worry in her voice

‘Mr John asked me to go home and come back tomorrow’

‘That man sef, like you committed murder, I am sure he enjoyed the attractive show you gave them and probably keep having wet dreams over it’

‘Adesuwa!!’ I shouted

‘It’s the truth, men like him do the worst behind close doors, anyways that’s not why I called, what’s the latest. The office was buzzing with your gist today, some people dey happy sef’

I gave her the details of what I told Michael

‘Ewo, so cameras dey that office?, I can’t wait for the drama tomorrow let’s know who invaded my phone, your job is secured baby and come to think of it, it’s a lingerie company you did the presentation for, a picture of you in bikini wasn’t so out of place and offensive’

‘Emmmmmm, Adesuwa only you think towards this kain angle’

‘Because I am smart’ She stated proudly
‘Anyways, till tomorrow’

‘It’s fine jare. It’s not that serious, Mr John is the one blowing this out of proportion to me’

‘Maybe’ I said not too sure

‘What of Mr Ifeanyi, give me gist’
I told her all he said in his office today except leaving out full details of the kiss.

‘Hmmmmmmmmm, why did you ask him?’

‘Why won’t I ask?’ I defended myself

‘Mr Ifeanyi likes you, it’s as simple and glaring as that. He is a strict person, he doesn’t give favours like he gave you, he allows H.R do all the required screening even if you are related to him, he skipped that for you’

‘He didn’t, I was interviewed’ I argued

‘Is that an interview or a chat?, did you write test or face a panel, babe that was just formality and Mr John knew it that’s why he is still pained, especially as you were made his assistant a job function he felt was not necessary.’

‘OK’ I said getting weary of the discussion

‘He can’t date you probably cos you work for him’

‘Or maybe he just wants a sex toy or a repayment for the job’ I stated

‘Na you know Yvette, I have told you my opinion. That’s not the way to go about it. You should have gradually told him what you expect from him, ask him to take you out sometimes, gradually turn it from an affair to a relationship’

‘I don’t have that kind of skill and patience’

‘You are ranting like you would date him if he asks you to, you that can fear for Africa, can you even handle dating someone like him?’

‘I want to quit’ I said knowing she was stating facts

‘Yvette, why are you being stubborn. Quit for what? Do you know you are paid well? Do you know how many people want your job, you are paid 6 figures with little or no experience, Mr Ifeanyi won’t even sack you whether or not you guys keep playing this una hide and seek’

‘Adesuwa, I know but I am still considering leaving the job’

‘Madam good night, see you tomorrow’ She said hanging up

2:15 A.M

I was still tossing and turning in the bed I shared with my mum as I made a mental note to add a new bed to my budget next month. I was in a dilemma and I just didn’t know if I was making a right decision. I couldn’t wait to see the person behind my pains today, I couldn’t wait for the mail from Fancy N’ Fantasy lingerie.

I knew this was a test for me, it was like a cake has been baked for me and I was given the free will to decorate, would it be buttercream, royal icing, fluffy frosting…….. The ball is in my court or should I say the cake was in my hands to design or to destroy.

But I knew I had to wait till tomorrow, tomorrow was always the answer to an ardent procrastinator

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