The elevator was redolent of the woman’s strong, provocative vanilla perfume. It also happened to be his best fragrance flavour. As it naturally occurred these days, they had met again coincidentally at 7:15am at the bank of elevators. She usually went all the way to the top floor, while he got off at the 3rd. As usual, being a gentleman and to also show cultural deference, he had tried to carry her bag but she refused with a politeness that was almost disdainful.
While the elevator hummed happily upwards, she looked straight ahead, not paying him any mind in his discomfiture. He could not wait to get out and wondered what he had done to attract the ire of the woman.
She elaborately shook her head while in the same coquettish motion flicked her long tresses backwards. The strands of her hair glistened like a black river of gems under the low energy bulbs that lit up the cubicle. Clad in a very tight and short skirt suit that could poison the pools of the imagination, with legs reaching to the heavens and colourful stilettos, she was a picture of panache and seduction. Truth was, she was stunningly beautiful.
He got out in a hurry when he got to his floor, murmuring a very weak, “have a nice day Ma.”
An image of frigid aloofness, she barely nodded. Her outlandish, blue contact lenses decorated eyes stared in repose to places farther than the enclosing metal walls.
He tried to tune his mind to all the papers he had to bulldoze through that Monday morning. As the COO of the company, his hands were always full. This morning though he was a bit heavy within. He worked amidst a lot of adversaries who felt he was not qualified enough for the job considering the fact that he did not have as many degrees as many of them. To make matters worse, he was not from the predominant tribe that held sway in the establishment. However, he had gotten the position through sheer hard work and being creative. He was usually very early and left later than most. It was also undeniable that since he assumed the helm of his present position, the profit margins of the corporation had grown in leaps and bounds. His unwavering commitment had won him staff of the year many times. Now the Chairman’s wife was adding to the prevalent animosity that surrounded him. He put down his briefcase with a sigh and in no time was lost amongst the sheaves of papers that inundated his desk…………
Later that day, in a swanky bar off a waterfront, jazz strains romanced the night while glasses and bottles clinked. Three ladies sat swilling drinks and swapping tales. They had some things in common, they were uber rich and liked younger men. They were famously known as the cougar club.
“…you should see this dude. He looks like he came out of his mother’s womb with a suit, the way his clothing usually fits. His muscles rippling through his shirts at the slightest provocation also sends tremors that Richter Scale can’t measure through me” one of them continued.
With a knowing look, a smack of the chops and an exaggerated appreciative lick of the lips with her tongue, the third lady gave the narrator a high five and replied, “I have, he is a tasty meal.”
The narrator went on, “he seems quite naive though, I could have sworn he is still a virgin.”
“Break him in then,” the last lady offered giving her friend a lascivious grin, with a playful slap to her hind quarters.
“I certainly will!” said the narrator, smiling, a predator about to unleash havoc on a prey.
Their merry laughter exploded and for a few seconds submerged all the other sounds in the bar………
So started the assault….on February 14th that year, the COO was relaxing after a long day’s work with a book when he got a text and opened to see a full bodied bikini shot of the Chairman’s wife. The picture was captioned, how would you like to unwrap this valentine gift? He quickly deleted the image shaking like a leaf that had been hit by a gale. “It could not be or could it?” he thought. It could not be…
She waited restlessly that night without getting any reply until she finally succumbed to sleep. The bait was not working but she assured herself that the vulture was a patient bird. She just needed to put on the squeeze a bit harder. Looking at herself in the mirror, she had never being rejected before considering all the goodies she had on her platter and that would not start now.
However, all her efforts proved abortive. The young man changed his routine and they were not even meeting at the elevator banks anymore. He never replied her texts or messages on WhatsApp. He always gave a tenable excuse of why he could not go for lunch with her. His rejection was so much that her esteem was battered.
One morning, listening to Hillsong, early before the office stirred to wakefulness (he now got to the office earlier than he used to), he was rudely jarred by the phone. He quickly picked and it was the Chairman’s wife.
“Please, come quickly, your boss is travelling this morning and he forgot his medications in my office last night! You know he cannot do without them. Kindly come and deliver them to him at the airport before his flight takes off.”
The young man loved his boss and instinctively rushed up the stairs two at a time. As he knocked and rushed in out of breath after he was told to come in, she quickly locked her door. She was clad only in her lingerie and the fragrance of vanilla formed a delectable cloud around her. She grabbed him, trying to subdue him with kisses, besmirching his white shirt with red prints.
To his utter dismay, his body started betraying him, he could not understand the treachery. To continue like this for the next few minutes would land him in destructive straits. His mind kept screaming, the dream! The dream!! The dream!!!! He knew sleeping with the seductress would give his career and his finances a boost but being the COO of a one man company was absolutely nothing compared to the image of the future that had being ingrained on his spirit. The perks of being the lover to such a woman would certainly grant him loads of privileges that would cushion many things in his life and give him a leverage that would exceedingly surpass his tortured, humble beginnings but comparatively to the tomorrow he had visualised, it was dung to diamonds. Though, it went against all his gentlemanly sensibilities (there was no gentleman when destiny was at stake), he pushed her away with all his might and she fell on a leather sofa. Opening the door, he ran like a cheetah on steroids, chest heaving up and down powered by the pistons of adrenaline. In the bid of rushing out, he pulled out of his jacket and left it with her.
She screamed attempted rape after getting the help of other complicit members of staff who wanted to curry favour on one hand and wanted Joseph ousted on the other. They all knew about the immoral ways of the lady but it made sense to kill two birds with one stone.
The police got involved and as they took the tearful young man away in handcuffs, he knew the dream he was carrying was so big that no prison no matter how secure could keep it locked in…
…..Joseph was chauffeured into his Goshen on his custom built chariot inlaid of gold. Manasseh and Ephraim squabbled over a toy while their mother tried to broker peace between them. As the horses cantered down the street towards his father’s house and all and sundry paid obeisance and hailed him, he felt so fulfilled. Children ran about on the streets shouting his name while holding miniature replicas of his chariot. The true reason for the dream bubbled within him again. Holding on had preserved his whole lineage. That was worth any sacrifice in the world.
……Up in his celestial abode, the Dream Giver looked down and smiled. Joseph had actually preserved more than his lineage. Keeping faith with the dream had preserved His own dream. If the dreamer had forfeited the dream, his lineage would have perished and there would have been no carriers for the promised Seed. There would have been no Christmas and none to reverse the repercussions of Adam’s folly. Joseph was the rarest kind of man. The Dream Giver wondered how many me n on earth that he could trust with dreams that would resound through the timelines of humanity all the way to eternity…
©2017 Ekpo Ezechinyere
IMAGES FROM GOOGLE