The sound hissed through the night. The dusk expands its silence, and the crickets respond to the call of nature.
It’s a great night! And Anna being here tonight makes it more beautiful and overwhelming.
John had said a quick welcome party would break the ice. Who is he kidding?
Meeting Anna in his office wasn’t our first contact.
I should have said something when he offered that we break the ice before the next board meeting.
Gazing at the dark sky outside Ms.Young’s house brought a great rush of anxiety and love-lorn to my skin. I need to be in Anna’s good graces; I need to score some points.
I walked the distance to the front door. At my second knock the door opened.
“Hi,” the lady said
“Hello” came my response. I looked around d my environs, still wasn’t sure if I was in the right house because everyone seemed strange.
“Come in; you’re in the right house,” said the lady.
” thank you. I am Philip San, and you’re ?” I asked as I took a glass of wine from the front table.
” I see John hasn’t introduced us. Ms Young. Call me Shaun, and I am your host, Mr San.” Ms young replied
Her voice was soothing. And her smile was well relaxed on her face. She must be very accommodating. I hope she’s friends with Anna.
” Thanks for having me over. I appreciate” I continued to engage in conversations with her.
” It is my pleasure. Let me introduce you to the rest of the firm. I mean our colleagues” she smiled at me. Then led me into the open space. Which I figured was the living room.
Suddenly, the whole crowd leapt up in a loud voice as Shaun introduced me.
For a minute, I was flustered. I tried to stare at everyone with a grin on my face; this is awkward — still no sign of Anna in the building.
In my attempt to ask Shaun about Anna, two ladies approached me with wine in hand.
This isn’t what I imagined!
Where is Anna? There she is, my gaze went from the ladies to Anna’s reflection on the wine glass, that one of the ladies held out to me.
I kept my grin plastered without fringing at the sight of her gazing right down the stairs with Ayo.
Shaun came back to stand beside me while the ladies excused themselves. I breathe in and out, that was close. I smiled at her when she asked if I was doing okay on my own.
“Are you kidding me, everyone is swamping me like a celebrity.”
Then John and one other person joined us. I couldn’t let my gaze leave Anna before she runs off again. Technically that what she has been doing since she found out I would be joining the firm.
John tried to interest me in their conversation, but all the time I saw Shaun giving him a nudge to stop so they could have alone time.
No kidding! They must be dating!
At least that is the vibe they are giving out here. I excuse myself to use the Men’s room.
Few minutes in the bathroom unleashed laughter from the outside. I heard her rich laughter fill the air. “It must be a pretty good joke.” I grimaced looking at myself in the mirror.
I finished off my business in the bathroom and walked out.
Barely a few feet away I heard her ramble about some relationship talk with Shaun and Ayo.
“She looks amazing,” I thought. The sudden quiet within the small space was momentum. She must have felt my presence else why would the conversation and rich laughter come to an end.
While Ayo excused himself to pick up a call, I went from standing to sitting on the couch which was two feet away. I grinned at the thought of being the “causal effect of the moment.” This sure adventure looks excellent. I am going to have it to its fullest.
“Quite an audience you have here, Ms Young,” I said to break off the ice.
“Yes it is ” she replied. “This is a first for me. I had never thought that I would host a party with these crowd. And considering it is a weekday too” she expressed her excitement in a way that it was different from Anna’s. Who am kidding? I have never seen her excited around me.
“So many sides of her to explore. But first, need to win her confidence. ”
“Thanks for having me over,” I responded.
“You’re welcome” Shaun answered “please excuse me for a minute,” Shaun said leaving us to mind her other guests.
Now, Anna ‘s gaze was down at her cup trying to hide her face. I scoffed and smiled at the display before me.
” Anna” I softly whispered her name. She answered.
But she wouldn’t budge to look at me.
I swiftly moved towards Anna. I was squatting right in her front, while I used my thumb finger to raise her head to look at me.
The sight right before my eyes was disheartening. My damsel was in tears.
“Anna, are you okay” I frantically asked.
Why is she crying? Did I do something wrong?
With less thought, I carried her racing towards the stairs “I need to find a room. She’s too distressed.”
Shaun, on the other end of the room, raced towards me.
“Is she okay?” She asked
“No, she is not okay. Dammit, she won’t talk to me.” I replied “any room? How many glasses of wine did she drink today?” I continued
“I wasn’t counting ” Shaun responded in defence. ” besides Anna can hold her liquor .” Shaun points me to a room on the right.
” well, it doesn’t seem like it,” I replied with arrogance. ” Shit! She’s burning up.” With care, I laid Anna on the bed.
“What do you think you’re doing?” Shaun held my hands.
“What does it look like I am doing? She’s freaking burning up. I need to get her out of these clothes.” I replied.
” let me do that” she swerved me to a side.” And get me towels drenched in cold water.” Shaun starts to undress Anna while I went into the bathroom to get her order.
These two women are feisty!
“So much for scoring points in her book. I muttered in silence.
Phewwwww! Something is not right!
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