She woke up to a loud sound, reaching blindly across the bedside table, she turned off her alarm. It was 5:45am in the morning. Grudgingly, she got out of bed and walked to her bathroom.

She switched on the lights and turned on the tap, she got out of her night dress and walked under the shower. Few minutes later, she was struggling to find something to fit the order of the day. Meetings, meetings and meetings.

Sade spotted a blush dress right in the corner of her wardrobe, it was just right!. The dress was mid-length and had a ruched detailing, it fitted just perfectly. She paid a dime for that dress anyways, it might as well do the job today.

She walked to her vanity table, and applied light makeup, topping her lips with her favorite lipgloss, she bought it on one of her work trips to London. She looked at herself in the mirror and winked.

She got into her Car and drove off to her first appointment of the day, the early traffic had started, slowly maneuvering through the freedom way traffic, she joined the Lekki Epe express way, drove past the toll gate, in 15 minutes she should be at the clients office which was right on Sanusi fafunwa.

Her phone rang, she took a glance at it to see the caller, it was her best friend, smiling she pressed the receive button on the steering. Hey baby, how you dey?. Sade, I am alright oh, how was your night?, what are you doing tonight?. Sade replied, I have meetings all day, I really don’t have plans, what’s up?.

I want you to meet a friend of mine. Sade smirked,friend? Me I don’t know o. Babes, he is cute, rich and single. Hmm hmm, Look Tonia, I don’t know, I’m not really ready to date. I’m all about my career at the moment. I know, Tonia said, but babes your lady parts will be gathering cobwebs by now, you need some TLC babygirl.

Sade laughed hard, Tonia was something else, all the girl thinks about is getting laid,she has strings of boyfriends, one for different things, Sade could barely keep up with her. The girl just came back from Mauritius and she was there for two weeks with one of her baby boys as she fondly calls them.

Sade wished Tonia would just settle and pick one of them, they all loved her, but the girl is still young,wild and free. At 27, Tonia is still living her best life as she says.

Okay you know what, why don’t you just come for a bit, Folarin is having a little house party to celebrate the successful takeover of one of the companies he just acquired. Which one is Folarin again?. Ahn ahn now, Folarin my real estate boo now, the one I met in South Africa two months ago.

Oh! You are still seeing him?. Yes now, that boy makes me happy in bed oh, plus he treats me real good too. Sade! E be like say I don find my husband o. Laughing, Sade replied, Tonia you also said that about George, then you left him because you found Out he doesn’t like to floss.

Ah please o, cleanliness is next to Godliness! How can you eat all day and not floss at night!. Nonsense, see ehn Folarin is a perfect gentleman, he might just be the one. Anyways please come to this party and meet Lucas, he is a dear and I think he will be the one for you.

Okay, I will come but just because I don’t want you to talk my ears off. Yayy!, please wear something sexy. Ehn ehn have I ever disappointed you?. No oh, but i know you.

Babes I gotta go, I’m at my meeting point. Okay, love you Sade, you will kill it as always, see you later. Xx. Sade got out of her car and walked into the hotel lobby, hello I have an appointment today with Mr Craig.

The stunning receptionist looked up and proceeded to check the details Sade provided. Okay, right this way please. Mr Craig has been waiting for you. Sade followed the lady into a large office, there was a man standing by the large windows, and three other people in the room.

Good morning and thank you for meeting me, my name is Sade Adetona, the people seated greeted her and introduced themselves, the man by the window, kept looking out. Sade sat down and addressed him. Mr Craig, good morning sir, he turned then and looked her over. She felt so small,his face was blank and showed no way emotions but his eyes gave him away, they sparkled, like he was intrigued.

Lucas looked across the room to the pretty young woman that was seated, she looked confident, she looked about 26 or thereabout, he had his personal assistant do a research about her earlier on. She got her MBA from Stanford, she was an only daughter to one of the most successful investment bankers in Nigeria.

The girl started her own PR company when she was just 22, the girl had an impressive CV, she has represented companies in Nigeria and abroad, he was amazed by her accomplishments but he wasn’t about to show that.

Looking at her again, I believe this meeting was set for 8am miss?. Sade, she replied. It’s 8:02, I’m a very busy man Sandra or whatever your name is And my time is precious. I don’t think you want this contract young lady, you walked in here, all high and mighty. Do you think we don’t have better things to do?.

Sade was shocked!. She composed herself and apologized, I am sorry Mr Craig. The look on his face was of contempt, what had she done to this man. She can’t afford to lose this contract, it was going to take her company to the next level.

Summoning her courage, she looked him directly in the eye and said, Mr Craig I know how important your time is, and I appreciate you and your team waiting for me, I sincerely apologize for keeping you waiting, please give me a chance to show you why this contract is beneficial to both of us. That seemed to calm him as he said, talk,I am listening.

The meeting ended well, The Churchill group of companies was now part of her clients,both parties shook hands and walked out of the meeting room. She was heading to the lobby when she heard her name. Sade. She turned to see Mr Craig walking towards her.

She smiled at him, Hello Mr Craig. That was a good presentation, I must say I was impressed, I look forward to see what magic you can create with my companies. You know who my competitors are and I look forward to keeping them on their toes.

Yes I do sir. Please it’s Adebowale, you can call me Debo. She smiled, okay Debo. He walked with her to the door while the porter opened the door. Good afternoon Sir, the concierge said. Her car was driven up front by one of the porters. Smiling her thanks. She walked up to the open door.

Enjoy the rest of your day, Sade. Debo walked off to his audi. It was a sleek shiny sports car. Sade got into her car and drove off to her next meeting for the day. It was 11am and she was hungry.

She decided to stop by Craft Gourmet for some pancakes and sausages. The rest of the day went by fast and by 6pm, She was done with all her clients. Driving by admiralty, she spotted the newly opened Regalia store, she drove into the compound , parked her car. A little shopping would not hurt.

Sade struggled to walk up the stairs to her apartment with all the bags in her hands. She had stopped to buy one dress but ended up buying four dresses and two shoes from the lastest baba’s collection. That was picked out for her Dad.

Regalia apparently had some ongoing sales and Sade could not resist, settling the shopping bags on her bed, she stripped off her clothes and walked into the shower. Twenty minutes later, she walked out feeling refreshed. Her phone rang out, she walked to her bag and looking at the screen, she smiled.

Hey Mom. Sade Oko mi, how are you?. I’m fine mom, your brother told me you scored a huge contract today. Sade rolled her eyes, of course, she trusted Tele to have shared the “great” news with the family, he was proud of her. She is the last of four, she has three big brothers who are super protective of her.

Responding to her mother’s question, she answered, yes mom but it’s not a big deal really. No oh, don’t say that!. It’s a thing of joy, our prayers as your parents is to see you succeed and supersede us. We are so proud of you. Be a dear and stop by the house this weekend.

Your father and I would like to see you. Is everything alright?. Yes my dear, we just miss you. But mom, I saw you guys some days ago. Gbe enu e da ke. If you see us everyday, is it a bad thing?. I don’t know why you even moved out, you left a whole mansion to go and live in a tiny two bedroom. Mom!. All in the name of independence. You children of nowadays!. E o mo anything. Okay mom, I will be there to see you and Dad. Happy now?. Yes I am, love you my darling. Love you too mom, bye.

The call ended on a click and she proceeded to get dress for Folawe’s house party. She opted for a flowery wrap dress, it was short and really pretty, she put on some earrings that her brother Bioye had gifted her for Christmas, spraying her favorite perfume on her earlobes and wrists, she looked for the perfect shoes to complement the outfit. She opted for the Ego shoes she bought while she was in france for the holiday.

Stepping out of her closet to her bedroom, she stared at herself in the full length mirror. Damn! She looked good. Tonia would be happy. She walked out of the room to the sitting room and picked up car keys from the center table, she turned off all her lights.

Her gateman was waiting by the gate as she drove out. Good evening madam. Hello Shehu, how are you?. I’m fine ma. Okay have a goodnight she said she drove off.

The house was off Ruxton road in ikoyi, it was a sprawling five bedroom mansion, with an enviable garden right in the center of the property. Sade parked her car and got out. She walked up the porch. She was about to knock when the door opened.

I thought you wouldn’t make it!. Tonia was dressed in a red slip dress, she looked hot as always. The girls hugged and you look stunning as always darling. Ose ore mi. You look sexy, love the dress, Tonia said. Linking her arms with Sade’s, Tonia said Now let’s go introduce you to your future husband.

They walked into a large parlor, it was tastefully furnished, a lot of people had arrived. Tonia walked them to a group of men standing by the bar, their backs were turned to Sade. Someone said something and the men erupted into laughter, Fola darling, I want you to meet my best friend Sade.

The men all turned at the same time to look at Tonia and Sade, a man in a charcoal sweater turned too and Sade was shocked into silence. Unbelievable, what was he doing here?. This was someone she hoped to never see again.

Chapter two

Sade looked as pale as a ghost. She wished the ground would open up and swallow her. She felt hot, cold and dizzy all at once. She stared at that face again and the memories rushed back. She met him freshmen year in uni. They met at the library.

It was finals week and Sade was out reading at the library till late. She looked at her phone and realized it was ten pm. It’s so late!. Rushing out of the library, she did not look up to see the young man who was pressing his phone. They collided into each other and all of Sade’s books fell to the ground. Oh! I’m sorry, they said simultaneously.

No it’s my fault, I should have looked up. No, I shouldn’t be pressing my phone and walking at the same time. Smiling at her. Are you hurt?. No I’m fine, Sade replied.

Why are you at the library so late?. I was studying. I have my finals tomorrow.

Oh! Wow, all the best with that.

My name is Ahmad, what’s yours?.

I’m sorry ,I really have to go. Wow a weird name for a stunner like you. Your parents actually named you, I’m sorry?.

She looked at him, he had an incredulous look on his face but he was smiling. She could see that he was trying so hard to contain himself.

Funny, no my name is Sade. And it’s late, I have to go. Okay Sade, can I walk you to your dorm at least. My mom didn’t raise me to leave a damsel in distress.

Lol!, do you always help all the damsels you meet?. He shrugged, I’m a gentleman. Mi lady. He completed the sentence with a wink.

Sade gave him a once over, thinking to herself. Hmmm, he is a beauty for sure. He was Tall, handsome, skin as dark as chocolate, big brown eyes. he could easily pass for Idris Elba and Those eyes looked like something you could get lost in.

He looked at her expectantly while waiting for a reply. He was supposed to meet up with Amaya here, at least that was the last chat between them.

But this little lady had his attention. She was a stunner for sure! Whew! Those tits!. He was surely going to hell for the picture in his mind. Did they taste as good as they looked. He doesn’t usually date fair girls but this one might be an exception. She looked lost, like she was trying to make up her mind about him following her to her dorm. He’s not one for convincing girls.

Ahmad has never had a problem getting girls and this shouldn’t be one. He made up his mind instantly to try and get her comfortable. Who knows, she might even let him spend the night. Down boy!

She could have a room mate. They could go to his.

Look Sade, I get your reservations about letting a complete stranger follow you to your dorm but I promise, I mean no harm.

Crossing his heart, he smiled at her, revealing straight white teeth. Ooh! Sade felt flutters in her belly. He can’t kill me abi?, this is not an episode of one of her favorite Crime channels series.

Okay, let’s go.

They walked side by side and by the time they got to Sade’s dorm, she already knew that Ahmad was studying architecture, has a brother and a sister, he prays five times a day, loves comic flicks, hates fish and a hopeless romantic. Although he denied that fact vehemently.

Okay. Thanks for walking me to my dorm, Sade said as she stopped in front of her room. You are welcome beautiful. Cocking his head to the side, he said, So.. are you gonna invite me in?. I’m scared of walking alone to my dorm, don’t wanna get kidnapped.

Nice try, no I’m sorry I cannot do that.

Okay fair enough, can I get a hug then?. Lol goodnight Ahmad, thank you again for walking me home. Okay, can I have your number?. Ah are you sure you don’t have someone somewhere who wouldn’t want you to be out getting another chick’s number?.

Laughing, Ahmad replied, I’m single baby. Single, I am hoping you will be The one to change that status. Sade rolled her eyes, and called out her number to him. I really have to go to bed Ahmad. See you around.

She moved to open her door. Hold on, can I see you tomorrow after your exams?. Please say yes, I really want to spend some time with you. I am not sure, I might be busy tomorrow.

Common Sade!, don’t leave a brother hanging o, Look I know this really cool African restaurant. The jollof is heavenly, please allow me to take you there.

She made a show of thinking hard about it. Okay, four pm tomorrow?.

Perfect!. Pick you up tomorrow. He took her right hand and dropped a kiss on it. Goodnight beautiful.

Sade walked down the hallway to her room, finals are done and dusted. She walked into her room and found her roommate sitting at the edge of her bed, engrossed in a book. Cassie, lover of books, all hail the book collector, first of her name, protector or hard covers.

Cassie has being her roommate from year one,she was funny , outgoing and super protective. Whenever she is not out planning some activities on campus, you can find her nose buried in a book.

Hey Cass, what are you reading?.

Hey Sade, i didn’t hear you come in. Of course you didn’t , you are with your boo na. Lol, I just got this book, and I can’t drop it, super captivating. How was your exams?. It was smooth. Now I can have fun!, the weight is off my shoulders.

Hmmm, any specific plans for this “fun”?

Well, I met a boy, beaming Sade explained her chance encounter with Ahmad to Cassie.

Ooh, he sounds dreamy girl, is he Yoruba?. Nah he is Hausa and he is not a demon.

Girl time will tell, just have fun and take care of yourself, I will be sure to break his head if he messes with you.

Thanks girl, I know you always have my back.

Ahmad showed up at her door at exactly 3:58 dressed in a vintage shirt and blue jeans. This time he had a face cap on, he looked even better in daylight.

They walked outside to where he parked his car, it was a shiny black BMW.

The drive to the restaurant was quiet, Burna’s soke played in the background.

Twenty minutes later they were at the restaurant. He parked the car and turned to her, Wait till you taste the Asun and jollof combo here. You sure gonna feel like you are back in naija.

Smiling, Sade looked at him, oh so you are a foodie. They walked into The dimly lit restaurant, soft jazz music played in the background ,it had a formal setting with a view overlooking the city. The flooring, ceiling and all the wall surfaces of the interior had black painting, whilst the furniture as well as light fittings were white. the settings was like a jazz clubbed infused into a restaurant, with beautiful artsy pieces here and there.

A waitress walked up to their table to take their orders. Ahmad ordered for Jambalaya rice with Beef and snail whilst she opted for Jollof, plantain and fried chicken. They ate their meals in silence. By the end of the meal, Sade was sure she had added five more pounds. The meal was delicious and it was followed up with ice cream as desert.

They walked to her dorm. Both of them in deep thoughts. So I guess it’s good night?.

Yeah. Sade, Ahmad turned, took her hands and stared intently into her eyes.

I really wanna see again. Tomorrow if possible. Please say yes, I mean I have known you for barely two days but I feel like it’s being forever. I like the way you smile and I feel easy when I’m with you.

I know that this is too early but I don’t want this feeling to stop.

Sade smiled and looked at him. I mean, Ahmad, what exactly is this?. Wanna be friends or you want a summer fling?.

I’m not down for that and I’m not exactly looking for a relationship. I intend to relocate back to Nigeria in the next few months.

Okay, let’s do this Sade, let’s enjoy the little time we have together, how about that?.

Sade smiled wistfully at him. There was a twinkle in her eye. Ahmad? Spend little time together?, sounds familiar. Do you use that line a lot?. I think I just wanna be friends, no benefits, no commitments. How about that?.

Friends?. He smiled mischievously. If that’s what you want, then it’s fine with me. I gotta let you know though, you would be missing out on a lot.

Sade threw her head back and erupted into peaks of laughter. With a big smile on her face. She rolled her eyes. Of course I am.

Goodnight Ahmad.

See you tomorrow mi lady?. Yea sure.

She turned to go into her room but he stopped her short by holding her hands and kissing them. Sleep tight beautiful.

Sade walked into the restaurant. It was 8pm and she was here for a dinner date with Ahmad. They have been actively seeing each other for the past three months as friends. Though time and time, Ahmad made it clear, he wanted to be more than that.

She walked towards the table, he stood to hug her and give her a peck. You look stunning as usual. Smiling, she answered him. Thank you Ahmad.

So how was your day?. It was stressful but it just got better with you here now. He had the biggest smile on his face and Sade couldn’t help but notice how nice his teeth was.

So what are we having tonight?.

Oh! Will you let me recommend for you?.

Sure. He showed her the menu and they decided on mashed potatoes, topped with lamb shank served with parsley and some sautéed vegetables.

Ahmad signaled for the waiter and ordered a bottle of wine.

Their meal came and they ate in silence.

That was wonderful Ahmad. I don’t even need to read reviews online when I need a restaurant with great food options. I have you, she winked.

Ha! So you only need me as your yellow pages for food abi.

No now, I’m sure I need you for other things.

Oh really. Tread carefully, Sade heard a voice inside her head.

Ahmad looked at the bubbly face across the table. She looked exceptional tonight, she apparently put more effort into looking good for him tonight.

He has been pursuing her for weeks now, but she keeps saying she just wants them to keep it causal. He smirked to himself. Friends! Never! Tonight he plans to completely make her swoon. He surely has big plans for her.

Smiling he loooked at her and asked, so what other things do you need me for? He winked and laughed at her coyness.

Now don’t get all shy. Talk to me. So fun mi (tell me) Sade.

Laughing loudly, Sade looked at Ahmad. Now where did you learn that?.

Winking; Well, I wanted to impress you, so I took the liberty to learn a little Yoruba.

Oh interesting, so what other English words can you tell me in Yoruba?.

Ooh! Girl you are not ready. Sade mo fe fe e, wa se te mi (I want to date you, come and be mine).

Ahmad, I mean I like you a lot but I love our friendship more. If we do this, we might not be able to get back our friendship and I don’t want that.

Sade, trust me, I won’t hurt you. I just wanna take care of you. Taking her hands, he looked at her and said, Give me a chance baby.

I promise to think about it but can we please go home now Ahmad.

The look on his face broke Sade’s heart, he will come to understand. She told herself.

The drive home was silent, Ahmad barely said a word on the trip home. He parked his car in front of her dormitory, got out of the car, walked to her side of the car and opened the door.

Sade got out of the car, bade him goodnight and walked towards her dormitory, then All of a sudden she turned back, and flung herself into Ahmad’s arms.

Ahmad was taken aback by the sudden change, but he didn’t have the time to think, as Sade placed her lips tentatively on his lips.

It was an innocent almost shy kiss, he looked at her, her eyes were closed and she looked so beautiful, her lips looked so moist,inviting and ready for him.

Are you sure about this Sade? Because if I kiss you now, I’m afraid I will never stop.

So I’m giving you a chance to change your mind now.

She opened her eyes and looked at him pleadingly. Kiss me Ahmad, please kiss me.

The abrupt change of mind stunned Ahmad but notwithstanding, he looked down at her lips, and then he bent his head ,placing his hands on each side of her face. he started slowly, his lips touched hers — soft, still, hesitant. When she didn’t pull away, he tilted his head to one side and pressed more firmly. Again and again his lips collided with hers in brief, light kisses, soft pecks.

She groaned in response to the kiss.

“He cupped her face with both palms and laid his mouth, lips open this time, firmly over hers. She felt the moistness of his tongue just a breath away from her lips, then on them, flicking lightly.

He moaned softly before he pressed his tongue against her lips. Sade’s eyes went wide with shock. She froze. Then the pleasure of what he was doing to her erase resistance and her lips parted. His tongue slid between them.

“Touching the tip of hers, rubbed, stroked, pushed deeper.”

Sade felt something come alive in her, she had never been kissed like that before, she moved into him and rubbed her body against him while their tongue played a slow dance, thrusting he deepened the kiss, and pushed deeper into the corners of her mouth.

Oh the clothes felt like too much barrier, she wanted to feel more; she ran her hands over his shoulders, And body.

He moaned in response to her touch and that encouraged her more, she felt a budge in between his legs, she moved in closer, unconsciously rubbing herself into him.

Get a room!! A car drove past them and horned loudly.

Sade realized where she was and moved backwards in shame. She stuttered, I should go in now. Goodnight Ahmad. She ran into the dorm and down the hallway.

Wait Sade!, she heard Ahmad call out to her, but she didn’t stop till she got to her room, locking the door securely. She ran into her bathroom and stared at the reflection in the mirror.

Her lips were swollen, the new weave she had gotten installed earlier that day from Platinum hair Ltd was tousled, she also had a radiant glow about her.

How long did they kiss for?.

She touched her lips and felt a tremor. She had been kissed before, but this was surely different, Ahmad made love to her tongue with his.

He awoke feelings that she never knew was possible. Her body felt alive. She did something to him too, she was certain, he responded when she touched him.

It was bad! But she wanted to do it again, damn those students for interrupting them.

Her phone rang from the room. She walked out of the bathroom into the room and picked her phone out of her purse.

It was Ahmad, she picked up the call.

Hello. Sade, I’m sorry, I’m so sorry, I feel so terrible, I shouldn’t have kissed you. I crossed the line, please I still want us to be friends, I promise to never do that again.

I’m still outside, please tell me you won’t stay away from me or I won’t leave here tonight.

Ahmad, I want you tonight, please come to my door.

The line disconnected on the other side, few minutes later, Sade heard a knock on her door.

What was she thinking! Oh my God, he is at the door! What is she going to do.

He called out to her. Sade. Sade, and as if in a trance, she walked to the door, unlocked it and moved aside to let him in, they locked eyes and he slowly locked the door.

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Damilola Ogunnowo

One thing that I love more than reading is writing, it is an expression of self. The ability to connect with the reader is what I also strive for.