Heels and Valleys Chapter Five

Favour and her father sat at the dining table facing each other. Favour’s burden had been lifted even though she didn’t know how to go about the new development.

“This plate,” Papa Adaeze pointed at the red flower at the centre of the porcelain he just finished eating his Jollof rice from. “I didn’t know you had it too”

Favour who was still not done with hers dropped the spoon to reply to him. “Mother gave it to me a year just before her death.”

“I also have that set at home. She knew that she was going to die. I wish I had noticed the telltale signs of cancer” he had a pained look on the face.

“Papa. Please. I assure you that she’s with Jesus. If you keep up your relationship with Jesus, I believe you’d meet your Yoruba queen in heaven. Hmmn.” She comforted her father by trying to get everything to be lively. Papa Adaeze smiled. He might know a lot about his daughter, but his daughter also knew quite a lot about him.

Papa Adaeze blessed his daughter early in the morning before leaving for his home in Abia State. Favour was also dressed up for work and received his blessings with all gladness.

Even though Papa Adaeze had only said “Make sure that the Edikaikong soup doesn’t go bad before you finish it” while he waved from his car, both father and daughter knew that Papa Adaeze’s mission was successful.

One of Favour’s funny resolutions was to wear bright dresses she loved and which would make her look more feminine. She ditched the director-like clothes that made her quite uncomfortable even though it made her look like the men.

“Wow. You look…” Aanu had shaken her head in surprise at the way Favour had looked in a simple V-neck cut vermilion red gown. Favour smiled wide even though she had to check herself to make sure that she wasn’t overdoing it. She still had to retain her poise.

“Good day everyone.” Favour said in greeting to the members of the marketing department. The surprised look on every one of them made her look down to smile. Tony looked at Boluwatife who continued to bat her fixed eyelashes in surprise. Favour’s stepping out of her cosy office was not a new practice but doing it with that vermilion-red gown… even Boluwatife the fashionista was wowed.

The two quiet ladies at the rear of the room were able to mask their surprise perfectly. Sanmi’s Adam apple bobbed up and down from constant spit swallowing sessions. From his table, he burst into silent tongues. What he was seeing wasn’t part of what he hoped to see in the third week at his new job.

“I’m sorry that I have to spend a part of your break today.” She looked at each of the three members standing before her. Her gaze lingered on the still tonguing Sanmi. Her nasty act to him the previous week flashed in her memory. She had to close her eyes to shut them off. She was that embarrassed as her dad’s voice from the previous day’s lecture rang in her head.

“It’s been long since I came here dear members. Can I just say I came to check up on you as individuals instead of subordinates?” She asked, spreading her hands in question.
Tony smiled. Favour took that as an answer and continued.

“There’s going to be a little change in the way things are done. I don’t want us to wait till next year till those plans are implemented. So, what I’m saying, in essence, is this. We need to have a meeting where I can listen to your thoughts and suggestions concerning those plans.”

“Concerning those plans, can you brief us about it?” Tony asked, being the spokesman of the rest of them.

“Let’s do it this way. You think about what my plans might be before that meeting. From the records, your progress has been unsurprisingly average in this department.”

“But ma…”Tony tried to ask but Favour’s right palm in the air stopped him midway.

“I know you’ve been trying. You can do better. Decide amongst yourself when the meeting should be and get back to me. I’d prefer it to be during a break like this. But most importantly, come with your minds prepared. That’s the most important thing. I wish to take my leave now.”

“Thank you miss” Tony bowed slightly and the others followed suit. “Miss?” Favour wondered why Tony had suddenly called her that. What happened to the usual ‘director’ title? She dismissed the thought and returned to her office with the same gusto as before.

The impression Favour made that day made Sanmi’s thoughts towards her take another turn. Maybe she was just being director-ish. But her image in his mind now was of a miss who was a director, not a director who was a miss. How his heart had flipped over when she stepped into that unattractive office he shared with four others. She had added colour and some faint cheerfulness to the room.

Friday was the meeting day and he looked forward to it. Wanting to experience the beauty and intellect of the mind of the miss directing his department, the miss wrapped in beautiful dresses, made him look forward to Friday.

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