“What are you thinking about Marjorie? You have just closed your mouth on me right here. We had better finish up and head back to the office. I have some interviews to conduct at 2pm.”
“Nicole, if you talk this much around me, and we are not best of friends, I wonder, just how much do you spew around your family?”
“Family is crazy. You are born into this group of crazies and you deal with it, but with friends, ni kama buffet, you can choose what to add to your plate. So, tell me ,what are you thinking about?”
“It’s just that Martin is seated at that corner, next to the window looking at me.”
“Stop doing that! You’ll break your neck! And, wait, next to the blue pillar with those flowers on your right, act like you are picking something from the floor…Nicole!”
“What? I do not have to check him out, we are not scouting for a future husband. We don’t have to steal glances. I want him to see us talking about him. Kwanza let me wave!”
Martin meets her eyes. Nicole looks at me, smiles and turns to Martin her right hand going up, and she waves. I shake my head. My Father’s daughter.
I push my plate aside. Push the chair back, a screeching sound startles Nicole. I’m up and walking out, but I do not miss it. Martin waves back at Nicole.
His eyes are on me.
My Dad would know what to do. He would know what to say to make things better. His only fear was that he let me carry the world at a young age and I have never shrugged since then. I had expectations. The issue with Martin unsettled me because I was the only one who seemed to be aware that it was a game to him. He would apologize and do it again. He loved being punished but what did that say about him as a person? Why did his actions unsettle me? What was it about this project that made me realize how much of a jerk my colleague was? This was the sixth day after the boss assigned me that project. It was a charity event, why would Martin want it so much that he would put me down?
Nicole did not come after me. I wished she did but I would never admit it to her.