By Peju Amadi
If you missed the first episode click Episode 1 to read!
Lucky shook her head vehemently, not happy that her friend had gone back to her old ways “Okemute!”
Kite rolled her eyes, she hated her full name but Ovo loved calling her that whenever she was in disagreement with her, like the name would drive her point home into Kite’s head.“Ovo,” Kite tried again “ This guy had the money, he wont miss it.”
“That doesn’t make it right!” Di, her other friend seated across from her added “ Kite, you promised you’d left that life behind.”
“Oh please guys, just because I played a fast one on a rich guy who I’m sure wouldn’t mind, doesn’t mean I’m reverting back to what I was before. Trust me, I’m done with the old me.”
“Kite, theres no one who wouldn’t mind being stolen from, so stop saying that to make yourself feel better. What you did was very wrong.” Di told her matter of factly “You have to return it to the store.”
“What? Are you crazy? I’ll get arrested for attempted fraud or something. No good deed goes unpurnished girls, theres no way in hell I’m returning it besides I need the money badly. I just sent the very last of my savings to my brother today. I owe you guys so much for rent and feeding and was hoping to chip in for next months rent. I need the money.”
“We are not complaining about the rent, Kite!” Lucky told her “We don’t mind paying your share, what we don’t like is you stealing. You are going to get yourself in trouble with this.”
“Oh please, I got away, didn’t I? you guys should please relax and order whatever you want on me.” She told them relaxing in her chair. They were seated at Jevinik, a top restaurant that made very good Nigeran dishes. She was in the mood for semovita with correct Afang soup.
“Noway,” Lucky said “I’m not partaking of stolen money” She turned to Diamond “You?”
Diamond always went along with whatever Lucky decided and this was no different.
“Same here.” Di said crossing her hands over her chest.
“Comeon guys!” Kite sat up “You’re here already, just….”
Lucky shook her head, she seemed to be doing that a lot tonight. “We’re not happy with you, Okemute. I would advice you to start thinking of how you’ll do the right thing. Till then we aren’t talking to you, we expected better of you.” She got up and Di followed.
“Come on guys, its not as bad as you’re making it.” Kite could see the girls were really not happy with her.
Without another word, they left.
“Shit!” She’d really messed up but somehow she wasn’t remorseful. She was good at what she did, she had a talent and she had used it and now she had money which she needed really badly. She wasn’t the type that liked depending on others for hand me downs and charity, not when she could easily make money off people who had a lot of it, it was wasting. The girls might be angry now, but she was sure they would come around eventually, they had no choice anyway!
She would go ahead and order jare! She was hungry for good food that evening.
Ise had been seated for about fifteen minutes now, waiting for his friend Kenny to show up. He was hungry, all he wanted to do was eat pounded yam and Egusi soup, his favourite meal. He was known for it at the restaurant, so much that they didn’t even take his order anymore. He was the ‘pounded yam’ guy. He’d had to instruct them to hold off on the order because he had been waiting for his best pal so they could eat together but knowing Kenny, the guy could have been distracted by something else and wouldn’t bother with calling.
He decided to call him. “Ol’ boy, how far nao? I dey wait for Jevinik, you no know sey I dey H badly? Where you dey?”
“Guy, sorry abeg. Something just came up.”
“What? You still dey office?” Ise asked with a frown.
“No o, na one chic I pick for road, mehn, the chic fine die! She stop use ATM for Wuse 2, I wan go drop am for Area 8. Guy abeg, I’m so sorry, rain check abeg.”
“Guy, you ehn! Why you no call me nao, you wan make hunger kill your guy, abi wetin?”
“Sorry abeg abeg, I forget, you suppose see this chic then you go understand.”
“Abeg jor, no be you!” Ise told his friend knowing Kenny was such a womaniser “Na woman go kill you!”
Kenny laughed “Guy free me abeg, I’m just enjoying myself.”
“Na you sabi, you better repent. Abeg, commot for my phone Jare! Make I chop food.” Ise said hanging up.
Kenny had a problem, the way he followed girls wasn’t normal but that was not his business since he did his job well. Kenny was the finance director for the conglomerate and for the past three years he’d held the position, he’d been doing a really good job.
He called for a waiter and called for his meal which he hurriedly went about preparing. No one kept Ise Williams waiting! Except for Kenny perhaps.
Ise was the first and only son of Multibillionaire businessman, Chief Oyewole Stephen Williams, now retired and really enjoying retirement. The mandate had fallen upon Ise four years back when he’d hit thirty one years and his father had been forced to retire due to work stress affecting his health. Ise had taken over the entire corporation and it was doing extremely well, they were recording large profits in an economy where other big corporations like his had gone under. He’d been well trained, right from his elementary education, he’d attended the best schools in the world and luckily he’d been blessed with an intelligent brain, that didn’t want to rest. He was always looking for the next big thing, he’d taken after his father who had taken his father’s thriving construction business and built it into a mega construction company, delving into other sectors like manufacturing, telecoms and now Ise was moving them into the Oil sector, it was about time they got into it, the time was right.
Ise was a hardworker, he wasn’t the type to sit by idly, even when he managed to, his brain was still constantly working, it never rested. Back in college, he’d once been adviced to go on a two week compulsory break because his brain had been over working itself, He’d adhered to the doctors advice but still the brain hadn’t wanted to cool off, he’d still been seeing calculations and management theories in his head. He’d managed to overcome it all and had graduated top of his class from Cambridge and then went on to Harvard business School where he’d again been top. He’d come back to Nigeria and had worked with his dad for five years, learning the ropes and then his dad had handed it all to him about four years back.
“Ise.” He saw the well manicured finger nails on the table first before trailing it up, already knowing who it was. He would know that voice anywhere, a man could never forget the voice of the woman he had almost married.
“Izy.” He said holding himself back from adding ‘luv’. Izyluv had been the love of his life before she’d gone and shattered his heart, blaming her actions on him for never being there for her because of his busy work schedule. She looked really good, as she usually did anyway.
“You’re having dinner?” She asked and he nodded, she smiled “Alone?”
He shrugged “Kenny was supposed to join me but cancelled a the last minute.” He replied taking in the way her lips thinned when he mentioned Kenny. She still hated the guy, he could see, he’d been the one to break the news of her infidelity to him, before that they’d been so close.
“You really should keep better company, Ise.” She told him.
He frowned “What do you mean?”
“Just friendly advice, that’s all. You know how Kenny is.”
He raised a brow “You’re one to talk.” He let out before he could stop his tongue and saw the look of pain cross her eyes. His words had cut deep.
“Right.” She said with a slight smile managing to cover up her pain “You look good anyway, I just……”
“Hey babe.” Some other guy breezed in, grabbing Izy by the waist and planting an unexpected kiss on her cheek. Izy turned to look at him and smiled, obviously knowing the guy. Ise felt his heart wrench at the smile she gave him. He’d thought he was over her but wasn’t sure anymore.
“Sweetie.” She called him “You’re here already?”
“Yeah, I didn’t want to keep you waiting.” He told her before turning his eyes to finally notice Ise. “Hi, I’m Joe.” He said extending a hand.
Ise got up and received his hand, he was always polite. “I’m Ise Williams.”
Joe nodded “Yeah, I know that. You’re a celebrity in the business world and besides I know you’ve been friends with Bella since childhood.”
“Oh, She told you that?” His eyes turning back to Izy. ‘Bella’? He wondered, she was indeed a belle, so the name did fit and seemed to dwindle his ‘Izyluv’.
“Yes, I did.” Izy replied looking pointedly at him, he guessed this one was serious then. “Joe is an investment banker……”
Her voice trailed off as Ise noticed a commotion toward the entrance of the restaurant and his eyes naturally went there. It seemed some security operatives were taking out someone. There were two operatives,
holding a lady by the arm and leading her out. He frowned, feeling a recognition of that figure, cream shirt, grey Skirt, and six inch heels, it was her! His eyes widened. It had to be, that stunning silhouette was unmistakable. As if reading his mind, she turned back briefly, their eyes meeting. It took her a second to register his face, she was indeed stunning, Ise thought as if forgetting how she’d looked when he’d seen her earlier that day.
Suddenly she smiled and Ise felt his insides go all churny inside. He was stunned at his reaction, she was beautiful but the chic was obviously a criminal.
She had turned back now, just as they were taking her out the door. This might be the one chance he had to get back his moneyfrom her, he knew he had to go after her.
“Errrr, I’m sorry guys, I just saw someone I kow being arrested, please let me see whats happening.”
“Oh, by all means, please do.” Joe spoke up.
“Can I have your card?” Ise asked. He always collected cards of people he found interesting and this ‘joe’
definitely looked like he was. Investment banking didn’t seem like a bad area to branch into sometime soon. As Joe fished for his card, he turned to Izy. “Its been good seeing you.”
She smiled “You too.”
Accepting Joe’s card, he made his way outside forgetting about his dinner.
“Hey” he called to the guards, how did one call these guys. His driver, Sal who was also his bodyguard stepped out of the SUV where he’d been waiting and joined him to approach the restaurant security.
Her eyes widened on seeing him. She’d clearly not thought he’d come after her.
“What’s happening?” Ise asked one of the guys holding.
“Do you know her?” The guard asked and he hesitated for a second, not exactly sure how to reply.
His eyes met hers and she replied “No,” before he could “I don’t know him.”
He raised an eyebrow at her “I know her.” He told them “What did she do this time?”
“She was about absconding without settling her bill and kept insisting she had paid but had no receipt.”
Ise frowned looking at her. Why was a pretty young girl like this into swindling people? She looked away, not in the least bit remorseful.
“What if I settle her bill, will you release her?” He asked.
Her head turned back to look at him. She suddenly found her voice again “No!” She screeched but the guards paid her no heed.
“I’m afraid its for the police to handle now.” One of them said.
“What if you just ban her from coming in here and if she disobeys, you get her arrested but please let me pay the bill and let this slide for now.” He negotiated.
“Gee, thanks.” She said sarcastically, rolling her eyes.
The guys exchanged glances before reaching a consensus and nodding, releasing her.
“Sal, get her into the car and don’t loose her, I’ll be right back.” He instructed his bodyguard who immediately grabbed her arm.
“Hey!” She tried to jerk her arm off with no success. “Hey, I don’t know these people.” But no one listened, Ise guessed no one took the words of a thief seriously.