A Heart to Mend (Chapter 2, page 1 of 10)

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Chapter 2

“So do you have any plans for Valentine‘s Day?”

“I‘ll be all alone. A day is too short to get a new lady in the picture.”

Kanayo opened the door of the pristine but sparsely furnished office and Edward walked past him into the corridor outside. The friends walked together as they approached the stairs that led down to the banking hall; two tall, well-built young men in fitting almost similar charcoal striped dark suits set off by plain white shirts and colorful patterned ties. Kanayo was seeing him off after their usual Monday lunch hour business meeting in which they talked shop and caught up with events in their lives. Most of today had been about Kanayo‘s recent promotion.

“Hasn‘t Bisi been asking to be taken back? It‘s been almost two months now.”

Bisi was his last girlfriend who had gone on to date someone else in his group on one of his long trips outside the country. She‘d known about his busy lifestyle but still cried neglect when he found out. Now she wanted him and his travelling schedule back?

“I don‘t think I still feel Bisi. She should remain as last year news.” Edward shook his head in finality.

Kanayo laughed as they got to the end of the corridor and began to descend the steps.

A quick look over the balustrade showed an almost empty banking hall. The tellers sat quietly in their cubicles, all concentration on the shiny new computers before them. Two clients sat at the front desk while the customer service lady fiddled with her mouse. As usual, the understated hum of the machines that made modern banking possible and the air conditioners that cooled them filled the space. On the first floor landing which overlooked the entrance, he stopped and his eyes blinked in quick succession.

“Are you listening to me?” Kanayo nudged him.

“No... No. I‘m not. Who is that?”

“Who are you talking about?” Kanayo scratched his head.

“Who is that girl?” Edward tipped his head in her direction.

The same girl who had taken him out of his usual route three weeks ago had just come in. He‘d tried to take thoughts of her off his mind since then but she always returned. She was very beautiful, though he thrust that out of his mind as soon as she spoke that first day. The story of being lost had sounded too suspicious. It turned out to be the truth that she was indeed expected at the address she‘d given him. Though he‘d acted a bit boorishly towards her, he couldn‘t have behaved any differently. That was the only way to ensure he didn‘t ogle her then as he was doing now.

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