ECHOES OF THE PAST
WRITTEN BY NOBLEQUEEN NYONG
No matter what you do in life, always know that life itself isn’t a bed of roses and doesn’t always go as planned. Sometimes we don’t deserve what life throws at us but we either learn to accept it or to change it…
It was a beautiful monday morning. The sun had risen and it’s ultraviolet rays made the window panes shine brightly in it’s reflection. The curtains opened and behind it was a well furnished sitting room. Everything inside looked spick and span ranging from the tiled floor to the glass centre table, etc.
Mrs Laura Scott sat on the couch looking very beautiful in her pink long sleeve gown. Her hair was covered with a black hair net and in her palm was the television remote she constantly used in changing the channel on the flat screen plasma television that hungg at the far right end of the room.
For the umpteenth time, Beryl kept running in and out of the sitting room, looking very restless.
“Always running around every morning,” Mrs Laura intoned and bent forward slightly to drop the remote on the centre table. “You and Cheryl wake up late only to start running around like helpless chickens.”
“Mom!” Beryl smiled and moved to sit beside her, then bent to buckle the strap of her blue stilleto heel. She wore a light makeup which made her face look radiant and calm. “It isn’t my fault you know?”
The mother smiled amusingly. “I see, it’s my fault, right?”
Beryl’s smile turned into a grin as she stood up and picked her handbag from the side stool. She was dressed in a blue short sleeve shirt and black skirt.
“Gotta go mom,” She said and glanced at her gold wristwatch.
“Breakfast?” the mother asked.
“I’ll get some from the office cafeteria,” Beryl smiled and bent to kiss her lightly on the cheek. “Byee.”
“Beryl?” mrs Laura called in a low voice just as Beryl was about opening the door.
“Please make sure you have breakfast.”
“Alright ma,” She replied and opened the door,stepped on the porch then shut the door behind her. She removed her car key and walked towards the black SUV that was parked beside a blue camry. Soon she was speeding out of the compound towards the high way to the office…
“Good morning mom,” Cheryl greeted as she descended the stairs in her pink nightie.
“Beryl just left, it’s now your turn to run around,” Mrs Laura said.
“She did? Oh no,” Cheryl frowned and ran back upstairs.
“Any problem?” the mother asked.
“I’ll call her,” Cheryl shouted from the corridor.
Mrs Laura shook her head negatively and focused on the television…
Beryl got to the office but just as she was about entering, her phone rang but as she dipped her hand into the bag to remove it, she bumped into someone.
“Excuse me,” the person started to say.
“Excuse you,” she interrupted. “Are you blind or something??” she asked angrily but the person just starred…
Beryl stood and glared at the handsome young man in front of her, who had removed his specs to have a clearer view of her. ‘’Are you just gonna stand there and stare at me?’’ She asked.
‘’What do you expect?’’ He asked with a smile.
‘’An apology of coz,’’ Beryl snapped with a raised voice.
The smile on the young man’s face widened thus really showing his dimples. ‘’I’m Gavin,’’ He introduced and stretched forth his right hand for a shake.
Beryl stared at the stretched hands and hissed loudly, ‘’Nonsense and introduction,’’ She eyed him angrily and walked past him into the office.
Gavin stood speechless as he watched her walk and disappear into the inner room. He couldn’t believe his eyes and so in order to avoid more trouble, he quietly wore back his specs, put his hands into his trouser pocket and walked out of the office…
‘What’s up with the odd look on your face?,’’ Rex asked as Gavin opened the car door and entered.
‘’Mehn! the manager is d--n rude,’’ Gavin spat out and sat, then leaned on the driver’s seat.
‘’You met with her?’’
‘’Yes. And I regret it.’’
‘’I smell something fishy.’’
Gavin turned to look at him in a confused manner, ‘’What?’’
‘’Never mind, What about the business deal?’’ Rex asked, still smiling in a funny way.
‘’I’m no longer interested,’’ Gavin said with a deep frown.
‘’Come on guy, you’ve worked with so many other rude girls. Why is the manager of SCOTRYL COMPANY an exception?’’ Rex asked, watching Gavin very closely like he could read his mind.
Gavin knew exactly where this was heading, so he simply ignored him and ignited the car engine…
INSIDE THE OFFICE
Beryl walked into her office looking really pissed off. she felt insulted and resolved within her that no matter what, that Gavin of a guy must apologise to her. She dropped her handbag on her desk and sat on the swivel chair behind it, then began tapping her fingers on the desk top.
‘’Good morning ma,’’ Rose, her secretary greeted.
Beryl looked up and without thinking twice started pouring out her anger on the poor girl. ‘’Are you crazy? Couldn’t you knock before entering?’’
‘’I did ma, I knocked,’’ Rose said with quivered lips.
‘’You must be a…’’ Beryl started to say but the sound of her ringing phone stopped her. ‘’Get out!’’ She ordered the secretary while picking up her bag to remove the phone.’
‘’Cheryl?’’ She said immediately she placed the phone on her ear after accepting the call.
Cheryl on the other hand quickly knew something was amiss coz Beryl had called her name coldly. ‘’Any problem sis?’’ She inquired.
‘’Say whatsoever you have to and get off my phone line,’’ Beryl fused.
Cheryl refused to say a word but instead ended the call on her while Beryl hissed and threw the phone on the table.
MR SCOTT’S RESIDENCE
Mrs Laura was still sitting on the couch by the time Cheryl descended the stairs the second time, looking like one who was about to fight a war.
‘’Why the angry look?’’ the mother asked as she sat on the couch beside her.
‘’Senior is at it again?’’ Cheryl spat out, picking up the TV remote.
The mother perfectly understood what she was talking about, so she quietly stood up and began walking upstairs. She hated it anytime she had to discuss about Beryl’s attitude.
‘’Mom!’’ Cheryl called out but the mother ignored her and disappeared into the corridor.
‘’I dislike this, how will I pay my way to school now?’’ Cheryl soliloquized and stood up. ‘’Mom!’’ She called again and ran up the stairs with the TV remote…
MR LEWIS RESIDENCE
Mr Lewis sat on the couch with a newspaper in his hand. He wore a white native and had his reading glasses on. The sitting room was well furnished and looked more beautiful and modern than the Scott’s. A mere looking at around the house, one didn’t need to be told that Mr Lewis was very rich, powerful and famous.
Suddenly, the front door opened and Gavin walked in with Rex who was smiling amusingly. They both moved and sat opposite him.
Mr Lewis adjusted his glasses and looked up while Gavin removed his specs and stared into the space. ‘’How did it go?’’ He asked, his eyes flashing with excitement.
‘’Bad Sir,’’ Rex answered and glanced at Gavin.
‘’I have decided to partner with another company, dad.’’ Gavin added.
‘’You dare not do that son. What happened?’’ Mr Lewis asked as his jaw dropped.
‘’She is too rude dad, I can’t imagine myself working with someone like her,’’ Gavin complained.
Mr Lewis smiled and stood up with the newspaper. ‘’SOTRYL COMPANY or forget about the deal,’’ he concluded and walked out on them.
‘’But dad…’’ Gavin began and raised his hand but the father ignored him and climbed upstairs.
‘’Wow!’’ Rex exclaimed and leaned forward. ‘’What’s next now?’’
‘’I’m not going back there.’’
‘’Then you loose the deal?’’
Gavin sighed deeply. ‘’I’m confused. That girl is over rude but d--n it, she’s beautiful too, an angel,’’ he said with a slight smile as Beryl’s face glowed in his mind.
‘’I knew it!’’ Rex chuckled. ‘’Love at first sight.’’
‘’I doubt, dad is taking this partnership of a thing too far as if that’s the only existing company,’’ Gavin said and dropped the specs on the centre table.
‘’Are you gonna go back there?’’ Rex asked instead.
‘’What do you think?’’ Gavin questioned in reply but Rex just stared at him without saying a word…
MR LEWIS RESIDENCE
The way Rex stared at Gavin made him feel very uncomfortable.
‘’Aren’t you gonna say something?’’ Gavin asked.
‘’What do you want me to say?’’ Rex questioned and sat erect.
‘’Tell me if I should go back there or not nah?’’
Rex chuckled a bit and stood up, ‘’You must be crazy, honestly. So you want me to tell you if it’s right for you to go back there to see your love or crush, abi?’’ He added, looking very serious.
Gavin stood up as well, ‘’I don’t understand you anymore. How can I love someone I just met, a rude b---h at that, non…’’
‘’Enough now, son,’’ Mr Lewis, Gavin’s father interrupted as he descended down the stairs while Gavin and Rex glanced at each other.
‘’People act rude for a reason,’’ Mr Lewis continued as he now stood in front of the two young men.
‘’Dad,’’ Gavin called in a surprised tone. ‘’Are you in anyway supporting her?’’
‘’Do I look or sound like one who supports nonsense?’’
‘’Not at all sir, Just curious as to why you…’’
‘’Enough now,’’ the father interrupted again. ‘’You should be on your way back there.’’
‘’But dad…’’ Gavin started to say.
‘’You have nothing to say young man,’’ the father cuts in. ‘’Go back there and finalize the deal.’’
‘’Dad please listen to me,’’ Gavin began again but the father dismissed him with a wave of hand and walked out of the house through the dining room door that led to another door which led outside, behind the house.
‘’Gosh!’’ Gavin cursed under his breath as he hit his forehead in anger and sat back on the couch with a loud thud. ‘’I am beginning to suspect something fishy about dad’s attitude. I think this isn’t only about partnering.’’
‘’I think so too,’’ Rex said thoughtfully and added ‘’Meet me in the car, outside,’’ Before walking out of the house through the front door.
‘’This is strange but I’ll sure find what this is all about out sooner or later,’’ Gavin muttered to himself, picked up his specs, stood up and joined Rex outside…
MR SCOTT’S RESIDENCE
Cheryl walked into her mom’s room through the open door to find the mother who sat on the edge of the bed, crying helplessly. She quickly rushed to her side, threw the TV remote on the bed and sat beside her, then placed a hand across her shoulder. ‘’It’s alright mom, I believe she’ll change once she’s married,’’ She said soothingly and tried wiping her tears.
‘’When will she get married?’’ Mrs Laura asked rhetorically in despair amidst sobs. ‘’No boyfriend yet and you’re talking about getting married.’’
‘’Soon mom, I believe God will make a way,’’ Cheryl tried sounding a bit cheerful though deep inside her, she felt deeply hurt.
‘’Faith without work is dead, Cheryl. God will not come down from heaven to find a husband for your sister,’’ the mother intoned and wiped her face with the hem of her gown.
‘’What do you now suggest, mom?’’
‘’We should do something really quick.’’
The mother refused to answer but instead started crying again. ‘’Oh God! Please help my daughter,’’ She prayed and raised both hands in the air. By now she was weeping profusely which made Cheryl more upset. She hated it each time her mother started her crying drama because calming her down was always a heavy load on her neck, so she just sat quietly and watched her cry her eyes out… long dresses for girls
Beryl was still sitting on the swivel chair behind her desk, thinking about the morning encounter with the so called Gavin when suddenly, a knock sounded on her door.
‘’Come in,’’ She said casually and sat erect. She thought it was Rose, her secretary and was ever ready to attack her verbally but to her utmost dismay, Gavin walked in with an unfamiliar face. There was no trace of smile on his(Gavin’s) face.
‘’You again?’’ She said sharply and stood up.
‘’Good morning ma’am,’’ Gavin greeted while Rex just smiled and excused himself, then walked out, making sure to shut the door tight behind him.
‘’Who allowed you into my office? I thought I…’’ Beryl started to say but paused and glared at Gavin, then picked up the receiver and dialled a number but Gavin rushed forward and held her hand across the desk.
‘’What’s the meaning of this?’’ She fused but Gavin’s eyes looked fierce and struck panic into her, so she swallowed hard and pulled out her hand from his hold, then placed back the receiver quietly.
‘’Toughness has its limits,’’ Gavin said with a frowned face. He had put his specs into his trouser pocket even before he entered the office.
Beryl felt stiff and sore by his daring attitude and so decided to act a bit calm. ‘’You came in against my orders, right?’’
‘’Nice guts,’’ She nodded and sat down. ‘’Now state your mission!’’
‘’Not so fast angel. At least offer me a seat,’’ Gavin smiled for the first time since he had entered the office and moistened his pink lips romantically.
‘’Wow! He’s cute,’’ She thought wordlessly, then eyed him angrily to cover up the smile that was about forming on her lips. ‘’Sit!’’ She ordered in a calm voice.
‘’Better.’’ Gavin nodded and sat down, though he felt insulted with the way she told him to sit.
‘’Now state your mission!’’
‘’Toughness has its limits, young lady,’’ Gavin repeated. ‘’Won’t you at least offer me a something to quench my thirst?’’ he asked and placed his hands on top of the desk.
‘’Why are you so full of yourself?’’ Beryl questioned with a frown.
‘’Some situations and persons demand fullness of self,’’ he stood up and brought out his complementary card from his suit pocket. ‘’Here! Call me when you’ve learnt how to talk to people with respect,’’ he said, dropped the card on the desk, then turned and walked out of the office without caring to close the door behind him.
Beryl hissed loudly. After few minutes, she reluctantly picked up the card. ‘’Oh my goodness!’’ She exclaimed and stood up. ‘’The famous Gavin Lewis. Gosh! My company really this kind of business partners, why didn’t I think twice before acting?’’
She quickly rushed out of her office to the reception, only to be told by the receptionist that the men were gone. In anger and disappointment, she quietly turned and walked back to her office…
To be continued…