As we sat across the table; I felt the mounting tension. This woman had some kind of hold over me…I found myself wanting to flee as far as possible from her and at the same time, I wanted to sit and stare at her all day and, perhaps dash across the table, defying all odds and doing crazy crazy things to her.
Yes, those were thoughts flying through my head as I felt her leg move toward my groin. I opened my mouth to speak, to refuse her with the last of strength in me…
Then my phone rang.
The moment was instantly lost. The shrill sound of the phone sliced through the sexual tension and diffused it instantly. It was like the scales had fallen from my eyes.
I snatched up my phone, at the same time trying so hard to ignore her leg pressing against mine.
“Baby. It’s me.”
Kemi. Thank God. In my haste I had forgotten to look at the caller ID.
“Sweetheart.” I was indeed grateful to see her call.
The wife. Ruby mouthed, making a face.
“I’m sorry I couldn’t talk to you earlier. What’s up?” She sounded breezy and sweet.
“Nothing much.” I said, pushing Ruby away. “I just kinda missed you.”
I pictured her smile over the phone. “How sweet. I miss you too. What time do you get back from work?”
“Cool. Why don’t we have dinner somewhere nice? Me and you. Then maybe a little…something, something for dessert…?”
“Baby…that sounds…really good.” And it did. Anything to take my mind off Ruby’s proposition.
“Great. See you by six?”
“Love you, babe.”
My wife’s call had done a lot of good. Firstly, it had cleared my head a bit and I could appropriately refuse Ruby’s blatant invitation and also it had saved me a lot of trouble.
“Why did she have to call now?” Ruby asked, unabashed.
I took a deep breath and said: “Ruby, stop this insanity. Nothing is ever going to happen between us again.”
“Oh baby, you know you don’t mean that.”
“As a matter of fact, I do. I’m married, Ruby. This is wrong.”
“Oh my God.” She blinked at me. “Did you suddenly grow a conscience, Mo? Aren’t you the same man who…”
“Ruby!” My tone was sharp, and caught us both off-guard. “What happened that day was a huge mistake…one I don’t intend to make ever again. Got it?”
She leered at me. “I have needs, Mo. Don’t you see?”
“Then find someone single to take care of them.” I said shortly. “Now, I came here to discuss business, shall we?”
I could tell her disapproval from the look on her face, but she knew I meant business and there was nothing she could do about it, for now at least.
I watched her arrange herself in a dignifying manner and bestow me with her ‘serious’ look.
“So, what about business?” She asked finally.
I inhaled deeply and began to speak.
Dinner with Kemi was a refreshing experience. She’d actually gone shopping for a new dress which she showed off as soon as I got home.
“I decided to indulge myself. What do you think?” She whirled around for me.
It was a purple gown that hugged her body and managed to look both sexy and classy at the same time. It was a bit extravagant for her taste and she knew it, but it fitted her perfectly.
“I think…” I picked up my camera. “I need to take a picture of you in it. You look smashing.”
“I know it’s a bit…uh…too much for me, but I just felt I needed something different.”
“I think you look great.” As I spoke I took several shots of her.
“So, tell me…how was your day?” She asked.
I winced unconsciously as I thought about my day. It had gone pretty well for me since I’d managed to keep my hands off Ruby and also ascertain whether or not she knew anything about the blackmail.
The latter had been a little difficult. Even while I broke the news that our privity of contract had likely been breached, the expression on her face was unreadable. I couldn’t tell if it was dismay or triumph I saw in her eyes.
She had given me no clue whatsoever as to whether she knew about it. After chatting with her for ten more minutes, I knew all my attempts to draw information from her was futile. She was a pretty dumb broad.
What made me feel better about my day was the conversation I’d had with Pastor B. He had promised to meet me outside church to discuss my problems. I already felt a whole lot better about the situation.
“So, anything interesting happen at work today?” Kemi asked again.
If only you knew, I wanted to say.
“Not really, babe. Just the usual.”
“Well, I reconciled with Delia today.” She seemed pleased with herself.
“Yea. I went to her office and apologised. We’re cool now.”
“That’s good, hun.” I was glad they were friends again. They’d been tight pals for as long as I could remember and somehow their friendship had grown on me too.
Dinner that night was an exhilarating affair for us, something we hadn’t done in a while. I was glad that my day was going to end on a good note.
Sadly, that wasn’t to be; because thirty minutes into the dinner, someone made a stunning appearance.
As usual I sensed her before I saw her. It was like the hairs on the back of my neck stood as she entered. Suddenly I felt prickly.
Ruby Marshall. What a nightmare…