After they had dinner, Julie and Hannah went to their various rooms.
As soon as Julie entered her room, she took her phone in her bag and propped up on the bed. She unlocked her phone and dialed Dave’s mobile number.
Dave was watching a football match when his phone rang. He stood up from the couch and walked towards the TV stand where he was charging his phone. He checked the caller ID and unplugged his phone. He switched off the TV set and swiped the answer icon on his phone.
“Hello my love.” He placed his phone on his left ear and headed for the staircase.
“My darling,” Julie smiled as she replied him, rubbing her legs against each other.
Dave heard a rustling sound outside his apartment but waved it off.
Maybe rats. He shrugged. “How are you doing bae?” Dave asked as he climbed up stairs.
“I’m doing very well, you?” Julie asked as she turned on her back to face the ceiling.
“I’m fine too. Have you eaten?” Dave asked, opening the door to his room.
“Yeah, I ate amala with egusi soup.” Julie grinned.
“Woahhh. That’s dope. I want you get fat.” Dave licked his lips as he fell on his bed.
“Hmmmn, I know.” Julie chuckled.
“You are good.” Dave grinned.
“So, have you eaten too?” Julie asked, rubbing her finger tips on her chin.
“Yup. I ate noodles.” Dave groaned.
“Noodles? Why?” Julie furrowed her brows.
“Well, cooking meals is so tiring.” Dave groaned. “Besides,you know I like noodles a lot!” He licked his lips.
“Hmm, I know you are licking your lips right now.” Julie rolled her eyes.
“That’s right!” Dave clicked his tongue.
“Anyways, remember I told you that mum’s memorial day is this Friday.” Julie sat upright and rested her back against the headboard.
“Yeah, yeah. I won’t forget.” Dave shook his head.
“Hmm, you’re good.” Julie grinned. “Umm, Best?” Julie called out as something flashed through her mind.
“Eh?” Dave raised a brow.
“Umm, you remember Aunty Katy, right? My parents’ friend I always talk about?” Julie asked.
“Yeah.I remember her. She always comes home for mum’s remembrance, right?” Dave’s lips twitched.
“Right!” Julie replied affirmatively. “She’s coming home for mum’s remembrance tomorrow but she isn’t going back.” Julie smiled.
“Wow, that’s good,” Dave replied, trying to stiffle a yawn.
“Hmm, you wanna sleep right?” Julie asked, yawing too.
“Yeah, sorry baby.” Dave smiled rolling on his side.
“It’s okay babe, I wanna sleep too.” Julie smiled.
“You’re sure?” Dave asked.
“Yeah.” Julie nodded her head in affirmation.
“Okay then, guunight my sunshine.” Dave took a pillow and hugged it.
“Guunight my best.” Julie smiled as she scratched her hair.
“I love you,” Dave whispered sweetly.
“I love you more,” Julie whispered too, grinning ear to ear.
“Sleep tight,” Dave replied sleepily.
“You too.” Julie smiled and hung up. She dropped her phone on the bedside drawer and tucked herself in before drifting off to the dream land.
As soon as it was seven o’clock in the morning, Julie’s phone rang, bringing her out of the dreamland. She blindly searched for her phone with her eyes still shut. She got her phone and brought it to her face. She opened a eye and checked the caller ID. As soon as she saw the caller ID, she opened her other eye and picked the call.
“Morning Dad.” She scratched her hair.
“I’m fine.” She groaned as she roamed around on the bed.
“Huh?” She widened her eyes.
“Really? Oh my Gawd,” she shrieked and hastily sat upright on the bed.
“Gosh dad, you didn’t!” she yelled, kicking away her duvet.
“Argh. Okay, talk to you later.” She ruffled her hair with her right hand.
With that, Julie hung up and hastily got out of bed. She rushed to the bathroom and quickly brushed her teeth. She got in her bath and washed up.
After she was done, she rushed out of the bathroom, dabbing her body with her towel. She threw the towel on the bed and walked to her closet, she brought out the first dress she saw and threw it on the bed. She quickly wore her undies and tied her hair in a bun. She rubbed cream on her body and wore the fitted short chocolate body dress she threw on the bed. She quickly opted for a cream slip-on and wore it. She took a cream gucci bag and emptied everything that was in the bag she took to the office the day before into the cream bag.
She took her phone from the bed and her car keys from the dressing table before walking out of her room.
“Morning B!” she yelled and rapped on Hannah’s door as she walked to the living room.
“Hey! Why are you up so early?” Hannah yelled from her bathroom.
“I have to get to the airport. See you later, muah!” Julie quickly rushed out of the house.
She dropped her bag in her car and hastily unlocked the gate. She got to her car and drove out of the house, not bothering to shut the gate.
“Aunty Katy I’m sorry.” Julie bit her lip as she looked through the rearview mirror at Kate.
She’d known Katy almost all her life, Katy was her mum’s best friend and a friend of her dad too, she was a nice woman and someone who takes no nonsense from people.
When Julie’s mum died, she made sure she took proper car of Julie and even her father too. She had a son of Julie’s age who lived with her in Dubai.
Ever since her husband died, she’d remained unmarried, the reason only best known to herself.
“Aunty Katy?” Julie called again as she drove to her father’s mansion. “I’m sorry, there was traffic on way.” Julie gritted her teeth as she looked at Katy for the umpteenth time through the rearview mirror.
“There was traffic? How come there’s no traffic now?” Kate scrunched up her face as she looked out through the window.
“I’m so sorry ma.” Julie pouted.
“Better be. I waited at the airport for almost an hour before you showed up,” Kate snapped at her. “I hope it’s not that you’re still very lazy?” she sneered.
“No Aunty Katy, I’m a changed person.” Julie let out a sweet smile.
“Hmm,” Kate snickered.
Throughout the drive to Mr Adams’ mansion, Kate kept ranting unnecessarily, complaining about Julie still being very lazy. Julie drove into her father’s mansion and parked the car right in front of the doorway.
“Are you lazy to park the car where it’s supposed to be?” Kate raised a brow as she carried her handbag and reached for the door.
“No, it’s just … I parked it here so that it’ll be easier for you to get inside.” Julie bit her lower lip.
“Whatever!” Kate waved her left hand in the air. “Bring my luggages inside.” She twitched her lips and got out of the car.
Julie rolled her eyes as she watched Aunty Katy walk into the house, still ranting about how lazy she (Julie) was.
“She can complain for Africa!” Julie hit her fist on the steering wheel and sneered. Julie opened the booth and without being told, three guards carried Kate’s luggages out of the booth.
As soon as the guards were done offloading, Julie closed the booth and drove out of her father’s mansion. She had business to take care of at the office.
Since it was a friday and he wasn’t going to the company, Dave stretched on the bed like a baby. He yawned as he sat upright on the bed, resting his back on the headboard.
He quickly said a short morning prayer and headed to the bathroom for a morning pee. After peeing, he gently brushed his teeth and headed downstairs for a glass of water.
He entered the kitchen and poured himself water. He was about to drink the water when he heard a door jam. He furrowed his brows and placed the glass of water on the cabinet. He slowly walked out to the living room and looked around.
As he gently roamed around the living room, he heard a rustling sound. He walked to his door and unlocked it. He slowly stepped outside and looked around the compound, he was still looking around when the door to the flat next to his apartment slid open. He furrowed his brows, pouting his lips as he watched a skinny, dark lady step out of the flat.
“Huh … hi.” The lady waved as soon as she noticed Dave’s presence.
“Hi.” Dave waved back.
“You live in this apartment, right?” the lady asked.
“Umm, yeah.” Dave slightly nodded his head.
“Okay. Well, erm … my name is Grace, and I’m your new neighbour.” Grace grinned.
“Oh wow. Okay. You’re welcome.” Dave smiled and shook her hand.
“Thank you.” Grace smiled.
“Hmm … your face looks kinda familiar though.” Dave furrowed his brows.
“Yeah, I work at Infinity Bar.” Grace smiled.
“Oh, that’s it.” Dave smiled.
“Yeah. Do you mind joining me for a cup of tea?” Grace smiled sweetly at Dave.
This is my chance, she squealed inwardly.
“That’s if you don’t mind though.” Grace twitched her lips.
“Huh? I’m so sorry but I have to take my bath right away. I need to get to the gallery.” Dave smiled.
“Oh, you own a gallery?” Grace asked, looking a bit disappointed.
“Yeah, I do,” Dave replied, nodding his head affirmatively.
“Oh, ok.” Grace nodded her head.
“Yeah.” Dave nodded his head too. “And umm, I’m sorry I turned down your request. Some other time okay?” Dave smiled.
“Oh, it’s okay.” Grace’s face lit up instantly.
There’s no need to be in a rush anyway. She shrugged.
“See you later.” Dave smiled before walking back into his apartment.
Grace watched Dave enter his apartment and smirked before walking back to her flat.
Dave ascended the stairs and got into his room. He took his bath and dressed up, wearing a red Jordan sweater, a black Jordan pant, a black Jordan face cap and black sandal. He sprayed cologne on his body and looked at himself in the mirror.
Perfect. He smiled and winked.
He picked up his phone, wallet and car keys before heading out of his apartment. He got into his car and drove out of the house.
“So, how did this happen?” Dave asked Jude as he stared at the badly stained painting.
“Ermm … boss,it wasn’t intentional,” Jude stuttered.
“Jude, are you crazy?” Dave glared at him and got up from the stool he was sitting on.
“Boss…” Jude stuttered.
“You know what, just forget it.” Dave waved his right hand as he walked towards the sofa.
“You are going to make another painting exactly like this one!” Dave twitched his lips as he sat down on the sofa.
“Ah! Boss kukuma kiii me,” Jude cried.
“Fine. Then you’re fired!” Dave sighed.
“Ehn? Ah boss dun kiii me now” Jude cried.
“You have to choose one.” Dave shrugged, tapping his right foot on the floor.
“I’ll make the painting.” Jude broke out into cold sweat.
“Good.” Dave nodded his head. “I must see your painting next week. If not, you are fired!” Dave smirked, crossing his legs.
“Ah, boss … I … you …” Jude stuttered.
“Did anyone come here to look for me yesterday?” Dave asked.
“No sir.” Jude shook his head. “Ah, yes sir.” He hit his head with his left hand.
“Huh, who?” Dave raised his brow.
“The woman that sells fufu.” Jude smiled.
“What did she come for?” Dave asked bewilderedly.
“She came to ask if we were going to buy fufu.” Jude grinned, stretching out his hands.
“Hmph” Dave sighed. “Wait o. Is it that you lack common sense or it’s common sense that lacks you?” Dave groaned as he looked up at Jude.
“Haaa, boss that English … Hmmm, I think I lack common sense.” Jude grinned.
“I thought as much.” Dave shook his head. “Anyways, I’m leaving,” Dave stated, standing up on his feet.
“Ah boss, why so quick?” Jude frowned.
“What?!” Dave sneered.
“The studio is boring without you.” Jude pouted.
“Hmm, you better start making the painting now. I’m collecting that painting next week Friday, just so you know,” Dave scoffed.
Jude got dumbfounded. “Ah, boss I forgot to tell you that a guy came to buy two still life paintings and another one came to buy a landscape painting.” Jude nodded his head vigorously
“Hmmm, okay. ” Dave nodded his head.
“Boss …” Just raised his finger as something flashed through his mind. “A woman came to buy five different paintings too.” Jude clicked his tongue.
“Oh, so how much is with you?” Dave asked, scratching his nose.
“Ermm, twenty five thousand naira.” Jude smiled, counting his fingers. “I gave the woman five hundred naira discount,” he quickly added.
“Okay. Bye.” Dave made to walk out of the gallery. “Umm, Jude?” He turned back as something flashed through his eyes.
“Yes boss?” Jude stretched his neck.
“Umm, can you just draw any five different building designs? Any one. Five.” Dave’s lips twitched.
“Huh? Okay boss. I’ll draw the designs on the flip chart.” Jude shrugged.
“Hmmm, good.” Dave smiled to himself. “In fact, I’m not going anywhere again.” Dave turned back completely. He walked through the aluminium door and entered the studio.
“Really?” Jude’s face lit up instantly.
“Yeah. That’s if you draw those designs well,” Dave sneered.
“I will.” Jude clapped his hands excitedly.
Dave sat on the sofa while Jude quickly raced to the store to bring out the flip chart. Jude placed the flip chart beside the sofa, carried a stool and placed it before the flip chart. He took a pencil and sat down on the stool.
“Boss I’m about to start.” Jude grinned nervously.
“Okay,” Dave replied, his eyes staring intently at the flip chart.
In no time, Jude bagan to draw. Dave moved to the edge of the sofa, staring at the flip chart. At first he thought Jude was was drawing something meaningful till he saw squares on the flip chart.
Dave face-palmed himself and hit the back of Jude’s head with his left palm.
“Ouch!” Jude bent his neck.
“Dumb head,” Dave sneered. “What was I even expecting?” Dave face-palmed himself.
“Boss let me try another one,” Jude pleaded.
“Okay,” Dave sneered and sighed.
Jude flipped the flip chart and started drawing again. The second time, he drew rubbish, third time too. After yelling and complaining, Dave drifted off to sleep while Jude continued to draw rubbish.
After a while, Dave woke up. He yawned and sat upright on the sofa and looked beside him. Jude was sprawled on the sofa, his legs on the stool.
“Stupid boy, he can’t do anything, all he knows how to do is sle—” Dave had not completed his sentence when something caught his eyes
Dave looked at the flip chart and saw a very beautiful design.
“—ep,” he completed his sentence and stood up from the sofa.
He and walked towards the flip chart. He was wowed as he slowly flipped the sheets one after the other, looking at the designs.
“Oh my Gawd!” he squeaked happily. “Yes! Yes! Yes!” He threw his fist in the air as he jumped around.
His squeals woke Jude up, as Jude hastily stood up on his feet and looked around.
“Boss, did thieves break in?” he asked, staring widely at Dave who was busy jumping.
Dave heard Jude’s voice and turned around. He grinned at Jude and walked closer to him.
“Jude you are good! This is what I’m talking about.” Dave pointed at the flip chart happily, patting Jude’s shoulder. “You are good!” Dave laughed heartily.
Jude stared back and forth at Dave and the flip chart bewilderedly.
“You just saved my fucking ass!” Dave grinned. “You have COMMON SENSE!” He clicked his tongue and bit his lower lip, staring at the flip chart.