The first thing Demi noticed was that he needed a shave, badly. The stubble on his chin could not be less than three days old.
He stood in line with the others in the banking hall, a rucksack slung over his shoulder. Like any other customer, he looked impatient, almost angry. The queue moved slowly and intermittently, her eyes went back to him. He was clean, and neat, and so handsome by her standards.
Thirtyish, strong jaw covered with overgrown stubble, penetrating eyes and a rich cream complexion complimented what could not be less than a six-foot stature.
That was the first time she saw him.
Demi had worked in the banking system for more than eight years. She was fulfilled in her career, had a small apartment, and enough comfort for a single lady. She wasn’t social but maintained a small circle of friends. Men and women alike had told her she was beautiful too. A dark and lovely, average height and well-endowed woman, with a beautiful smile further enhanced by white, even teeth and a set of dimples on a heart-shaped face.
The second time she saw him was at a fast food restaurant. She’d come to pick a birthday cake for her colleague when he walked in. He still had the rucksack, and now, probably five days stubble on his face. He ordered a plate of food and promptly went to a seat to gobble it down.
The third time, Demi could not resist it. Or him. On her way from work, three days after the first time, he stood at an intersection before her house. He hadn’t changed, and looked even worse.
She had never done this before but she parked right in front of him. She couldn’t remember the conversation, but within a few minutes, he was in her small Nissan heading to her house.
He was new in town. In fact, the first day at the bank was his first day. He was a builder who had come in to execute a job and had not yet settled. His roaming around was basically to search for workers for his contract.
Demi liked him and they spoke at length. She gave him names and contacts of people who could be of help. He spoke like a knowledgeable person, though his greatest challenge in town was language. Even the Nigerian lingua franca, pidgin, eluded many in the remote town of Owena.
His name was Idem, from South-South. He was about one thousand kilometres away from home. Demi made him her friend.
And then her lover.
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Sinmisola Ogúnyinka is a pastor’s wife, mother, writer and movie producer. She has a university degree in Economics, and is a Craftsman of Christian Writers’ Guild. She lives with her family in Pretoria, South Africa.
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