“Kizito!” I gasped, at the same time that my heart did a small leap in my chest.

“Good morning!” he greeted in a bright voice as he came abreast of me standing close to the gateway of the workplace compound.

“Good morning…” I swallowed hard as I sized him up with a hunger I thought didn’t exist anymore. It had been a long while since I saw him, and an enquiry from those I knew who worked with him had revealed to me that he’d been on a leave of absence. I stared at him, feeling a reminiscent rush of pleasure at the sight of him. I’d seen silly words in novels that read ‘her eyes swallowed him whole’, and I’d giggled at them. The words weren’t nearly as funny now that I suddenly found my eyes devouring the man standing before me. If my eyes could inhale, that was what mine would have been doing with him, with his husky build, the warm, dark-champagne colours of his eyes and those full lips that curved, the dark upper lip over the fuller, red lower lips, into a small smile.

“This one you’re staring at me, do I have something on my face?” he said with a chuckle.

“No…” I said, blinking my focus back from my brief entrancement. “No, your face is perfect.” Oh-so-perfect… I thought.

“So are you,” he murmured.

A moment fleeted past, during which time I suddenly realized I hadn’t been the only one staring. He’d been looking at me too, up and down, slow and lingering, making me feel it along my skin like one long caress.

I cleared my throat, even as I felt heat suffusing my face, shouldered my overnight bag and began walking into the premises. He walked beside me.

“I heard you were on leave,” I said, speaking the words with a voice that struggled to be cool and bland, unshaken or unaffected by the riotous surge of emotions inside me. You have a boyfriend now, Declan. Remember you have a boyfriend! “Hope you had a good vacation…”

“Yes, I did.”

“Did you travel or you spent it in Lagos?”

“I traveled, to Asaba. I hadn’t seen my parents in a while, plus my older sister was getting married. Part the reason I took the leave was so I could attend her wedding. I was one of the groom’s men.”

Unbidden, an image of him looking dapper in a black suit, tailored to mould his strapping frame, leaped into my mind. You have a boyfriend! I blinked the image away. “That’s nice –” I began as we walked into the lobby of the building.

“Speaking of travels, you look like one who had quite the weekend away from home.” He nodded at the overnight bag hanging from my shoulder.

“Yea, well, I was at a friend’s for the night,” I answered, without looking at him. There was a cluster of people waiting before the elevators. Not wanting to share both the elevator space and my personal space with people, I veered toward the stairwell. Kizito kept walking beside me.

“The guy driving the car that dropped you?” he queried.


“That wasn’t Jonathan, was it? I didn’t catch a good glimpse of the guy, but I didn’t recognize the car as Jonathan’s.”

Due to the proximity of our workplaces and his frequent visits to FitPlus to see me, Jonathan had become the one member of the gang who most of my co-workers knew.

“No,” I replied. “That wasn’t Jonathan.”

“I noticed you were standing and watching him drive away, like some movie wife watching her husband going off to work.” He chuckled at his levity. “As though he’s your boyfriend –”

“Why would you say that?” I cut in, my voice raspy. “Why would you think he’s my boyfriend? Does every guy who drops me off at work have to be my boyfriend?”

“Well, I was joking when I said that. But with your reaction, I think perhaps I am right. He is your boyfriend, isn’t he?”

Something in his voice, a strange urgency in his words, made me stop walking, and my gaze slid sideways to meet his. His eyebrows were lifted enquiringly over an expression that was studiously neutral.

“Well, is he?”

“Yes,” I breathed out.

There was no change in his expression, no slip in the shutters over his eyes, no outward reaction to my admission. His impassivity stung me.

Oh get over yourself, Declan, chided the familiar small voice.

“What’s his name?”


“What does he do?”

“He’s a model.”

He chuckled with a touch of derision as he said, “Only? That’s an actual profession?”

“Yes. What is your point?” I bristled.

“Easy, I meant no insult. I just…” He hedged. “I had no idea you were dating. How long has it being going on?”

“Well, we started seeing each other casually three weeks ago, and a week later, it became official.”

“And he’s good to you?”

“Good to me?” I echoed.

“You know…” And his eyes dropped from mine to my mouth. Suddenly, the awareness that the surrounding of the landing in the stairwell where we stood was empty of all other human presence but ours welled inside me. The silence around us throbbed. He took a step toward me.

“Kizito…” I gasped in a low tone.

“I just… It’s been so long…”

“I have a boyfriend…” I squeaked, my protest feeble over the sudden loud racing of my heart.

“And I just want to kiss you again.”

I did not fight him. I could not fight him. I stood there as he took the second step that brought him close to me, before bending his head to capture my mouth. His kiss was electrifying. My response wasn’t even an option. I couldn’t help but respond. With my eyes closed, my hands fluttered upward to hang on to his shoulder blades. And I pressed closer, refusing to think about how complicated this was going to make everything. Later, there would be questions. Later, answers would be needed.

But for now…

I’d never been kissed like this, never been held like this, never felt such strength in the surge of emotions, and moments later, when he gently, almost reluctantly, lifted his mouth from mine, I opened dazed eyes to stare at him. His breathing was slightly accelerated. Mine was erratic.

Moving my hands to his chest, his shirt collar, I grasped it as though it was a lifeline, and he slid his own arms to my back. We stared at each other for a brief moment of silence, before I broke the embrace and stepped back.

I licked my lips before saying huskily, “That wasn’t supposed to happen…”

“Says who?”

“Says me,” I returned, my voice strengthening with each word. “It’s not only wrong because I’m obviously not unattached. But we work together. I should have learned my lesson now that getting intimate with a co-worker is a no-no.”

“You think I’d somehow use this thing we share against you someday?” He sounded offended.

“The last guy who attempted to get me fired probably didn’t think he would have to do what he did in the beginning as well,” I rejoined.

“Wow,” he said simply, taking a step back from me.

“And we don’t share anything,” I continued.

“You kissed me, Declan.”

“No, you kissed me.”

“And you kissed me back.” He waited a beat before adding, “Twice.”

“This cannot happen again,” I said firmly. “This will not happen again.”

He chuckled then, his lips twisting over the mirthful sound in an expression that revealed his confidence in their appeal. “We’ll just have to see, won’t we?”

A door banged open somewhere on the upper floor, and a loud chatter preceded the thump-thump of feet as a number of people began walking down the stairs. Our moment was gone. Kizito took another step away from me, turned and started up the stairs on his own.


My day was gratefully hectic, a circumstance which didn’t afford me enough time to dwell on the complication to my life that was Kizito. FitPlus was hiring, and last week, a series of aptitude tests had been conducted. Today, there was a lot of paper-pushing as the results of the tests were coordinated to determine the crop of hopefuls out there that would be called back for the first set of interviews. The HR offices were astir with activity, with our immediate superiors, Dotun and Estelle at the helm.

The highlights of my day were when I got a phone call from Bryson; he’d arrived in Accra, but didn’t have a number yet that I could reach him on. He’d had to roam his Nigerian number to make a few calls from the airport.

And then, there was the time when I managed some time to chat with Dotun in his office. I asked about Veronica (he’d told me several days ago that they’d gone on a couple of dates since that afternoon after lunch that I introduced them to each other). He told me she was fine, and that they were seeing more of each other. We smiled at each other as this bit of information was imparted. He seemed happy to finally have a lady friend. I was just happy Veronica was well on her way to getting what she deserved.

Ride on, Karma, ride on, I cheered silently. And make sure there’s a twist at the end of this love story. I am evil, I know. But it’s not every day you get life slowly playing out like a Nollywood movie.

Five pm finally ticked by, and I welcomed the closing hour with an exaggerated sigh of relief. I just wanted to get home, take a bath, have dinner, and then sign off the night with an episode of The Good Wife. I took the short trip home, clinging to those needs.

Then I got home, walked past the driveway with the cars parked on it that belonged to my parents, through the porch and into the living room. The TV was on. I could hear the faint bustle coming from the kitchen, with the telltale aroma of dinner being prepared wafting into the parlour. Fabian had just walked into the living room from upstairs, the same time I did from outside. Dad was seated in his favourite seat at one end of the parlour, and on the sofa beside him was seated one of my older cousins. His name is Chigozie, and he is the middle child of my father’s immediate younger brother, Uncle Elijah, who passed away some eight years ago. Dad had, upon the demise of his brother, assumed the role of the father to his three children. Not that the responsibility had been a huge one to take on; their mother shouldered the task of single parenting with admirable ease.

“Daddy, good evening,” I greeted.

He grunted an answer from behind the newspaper he was reading.

“Gozie, how far?” I hailed at my cousin.

He returned a stiff smile at me, a response which surprised me. In spite of the disparity in our ages (he is four years older) and the distance in our places of upbringing (his family stays in Owerri), we get along well.

“Is everything alright?” I maintained, unruffled by his reserve. “How’s aunty – hope you people are not giving her too much trouble…”

The smile became a small laugh. He was clearly ill at ease. My brows furrowed with passing bewilderment, before I shrugged and started for the staircase. Dad’s newspaper rustled behind me moments before he spoke up, “Declan, when you finish changing from your work clothes, come back down.”

I turned to face him as he finished gravely, “I want to talk to you – the three of you.” He gestured with a pointed finger that included Chigozie and Fabian, who had taken a seat closest to the television.

“Uh, you want to talk to us?” I said, feeling some unease begin to creep up my spine. My gaze flew surreptitiously in Fabian’s direction. His eyes were on the TV.

“That’s what I said,” Dad replied with some impatience. “Now, go, hurry up upstairs and get back down here.”

Written by Pink Panther

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  1. Dennis Macaulay
    March 02, 06:46 Reply

    After they will say Dennis is a manwhore! Declan is just a ho! Tueh!

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 02, 06:48 Reply

      Hahahahahaa. You wanna say that again to him, this time in Biola’s presence?

    • Mercury
      March 02, 07:49 Reply

      I swear, puck one cock and stick to it.

  2. KryxxX
    March 02, 07:02 Reply

    Dee is such a confused Akwuna nwoke(man whore!)!
    See me hoping that someone would catch them kissing on that landing! Such risk! Werey shildren! Hehehe!

    Fabian?! Fabian?!
    Duo onwe gi odu oh!

  3. daniel
    March 02, 07:14 Reply

    Dear Declan pls kindly overcome this temptation…
    what’s Declan’s father going to talk about? I hope Biola isn’t going to be a bitch…

      • chestnut
        March 02, 07:22 Reply

        Maybe some ppl ARE seeing biola in d sitting room;Lol…it’s like the blue and black dress all over again.

        • pinkpanthertb
          March 02, 07:24 Reply

          Hahahahahahahaa chestnut! You’re such a mess! And on a Monday morning? Chai.

      • Mercury
        March 02, 07:51 Reply

        Chestnut you’re you messy lil fucker. Lol.

  4. Queen Blue Fox
    March 02, 07:14 Reply

    *tired sigh*Don’t we all have that man who is not our man that makes you doubt your resolve to fight and be faithful. *dreamy stare while making a kissy face*

    • chestnut
      March 02, 07:19 Reply

      Bryson is not anybody’s man biko; he’s just a space-filler, until the real man(kizito) comes to claim his property!

      • Mercury
        March 02, 07:53 Reply

        No no no, I’m not even rooting for that relationship anymore,( Dezito) I want Kizito to find someone new.

  5. chestnut
    March 02, 07:14 Reply

    Chimooooo! Gozie don koba Declan o! Chai! (Dennis,do u see d future cousin-inspired-family-meeting that awaits u? Muahahahaha!)

    I’m glad that Declan is finally coming back to his senses…#TeamKizitoForever!

    • Dennis Macaulay
      March 02, 07:23 Reply

      Chestnut lol you tried! I shall waltz into my family meeting with champagne and my dogs in tow and just like Beyonce I shall ask


  6. Queen Blue Fox
    March 02, 07:17 Reply

    And now would be a great time for Declan to begin unlocking his inner Cookie just to be ready if eventually those two busy bodies of a cousin and brother did tell their father

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 02, 07:23 Reply

      His inner Cookie? Lmao. Someone’s being watching too much Empire…

  7. Mitch
    March 02, 07:19 Reply

    Is something wrong with Declan? Why would he risk what he had with Bryson for that confused Kizito?

    And apparently, that diarrhoea-mouth Fabian has spilled the beans on Dee!

    Pinky, all these twists ya sharing eh……………………………….Shaa, wonderful read.
    Now lemme return to my books. I have a German exam by 9

    • chestnut
      March 02, 07:25 Reply

      What he has with Bryson keh? That thing he thinks he has with bryson is not anything biko; he’s just practising for Kizito.

      • JArch
        March 02, 07:35 Reply

        All these Team Kizito people…. Byrson is going to elope with Dee and they will live happily ever after in a house on the beach with 2.5 kids and Labrador dog

      • JArch
        March 02, 08:11 Reply

        Lateef’s role is to simply spoil this thing Kizito has for Dee. Then maybe tow the no marriage (gay or straight) and the no kids allowed territories with some hot guy elsewhere probably long distance. They can even have an open relationship sef. I still need to plot a proper coup for Lateef

      • JArch
        March 02, 15:08 Reply

        Mitch please send a contact info to pinky, so he can send it to me please. We obviously have to talk asap

  8. JArch
    March 02, 07:28 Reply

    Where’s Lateef when you need him biko…. I’ve never ever been a team Kizito person/member so please Lateef should come and put sand in Kizito’s garri *picks LV bag and storm off to waiting airport cabbie*

      • JArch
        March 02, 07:33 Reply

        Lateef- Mr hot and sexy harmattan lips. The deliciousness from his cameo appearance in that one episode leaves me wanting more. He should become a guest star abeg no?

        • pinkpanthertb
          March 02, 07:39 Reply

          I know who Lateef is. My wonder is this fascination you have for such a fleeting cameo appearance. But hey, you now have me intrigued. lol

    • chestnut
      March 02, 07:44 Reply

      Lateef bawo? Jarch are u just trying to provoke me dis morning? Pls just carry ur witch-craft go one side biko, I beg u!

      • JArch
        March 02, 08:04 Reply

        Team Kizito campaign manager aka Chestnut… why are you like this eh?

        The same Kizito that’s able to talk trash with Mahmoud about gay people but love to eat cakes on the DL is the same one you pray for Dee to have his happily ever after eh?

        Atleast Bryson was (and maybe is) struggling with his sexuality, but he’s making an effort. We all have been Bryson at one point in our lives even if its just for a few minutes where we question our sexuality, even though its obvious we like cakes and sausage. He’s trying to fit into the boyfriend role while navigating murky self acceptance waters. A FOR EFFORT ABEG!!!

        Kizito is someone who knows what he wants and he just want to “hit that first” and run

        Don’t allow to release my Brazilian here ooo. Took me a while to pack it into a bun like those hot virgin atlantic girls biko.

      • chestnut
        March 02, 08:17 Reply

        @jarch: kizito never talked trash about anyone o! It was that Mahmoud or whatever his name is…Kizito was clearly uncomfortable with the trash-talking, but he’s also struggling with his sexuality and as such,is not yet evolved enuff to put up a bold fight against homophobic bashers.
        And for the record,kizito has never been with a guy b4 o;he’s truly naïve abt that. But bryson…no one can convince me that he hasn’t been doin this b4; I know his type; they can lie for the whole sub-Saharan region!

    • Peak
      March 02, 09:03 Reply

      Chestnut! Hmmmm
      This one way bryson matter de pump ur blood yanfu yanfu this early mormor like say na ur turn to feed all the winch we dey benin this month, wetin omo boy do u? U know his type? Enyim is there something you would like to share? Did a certain Bryson burn ur toast beyond recorgnition.
      *borrows Mrs M’s Dusty tea table, (an antique table such as this shouldn’t be left to go to waste! No?) pouring a bottle of whisky into her well refrigerated jug of lemonade while waiting for chestnut to make an appearance*

    • Peak
      March 02, 10:14 Reply

      @ Dennis I wasn’t trying to kick up some dust, I’m allowed to miss some ppl here u know? But out of respect 4 ur emotional state, I will oblige u.

      Sorry if I unsettled ur water.

  9. Mercury
    March 02, 07:47 Reply

    Oh my Kizito, my one and only Kizito, Declan doesn’t deserve you jhor, he a hoebag. Come to think of it, this one that popsy wants to discuss, I smell dramaaaaa!!!

  10. trystham
    March 02, 08:16 Reply

    He IS a bloody fool on a two-count chage
    – He HAS bin kissed like that before. By Bryson. Its just comvenient to blame amnesia when hormones are raging
    -What tha fuck happened to saying No to ‘workplace’ Romance??

    I give up on this one. *goes back to reading*

    • chestnut
      March 02, 08:22 Reply

      Hian! Are u d one that will tell Declan how a kiss affects him? You #teamBryson ppl do the most, but I’m ready for all of u this morning!

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 02, 09:33 Reply

      Hahahahahahahaa!!! Trystham, calm down. Remember your blood pressure.

      • trystham
        March 02, 10:17 Reply

        Imagine. I was so upset I wasn’t coherent. My ppl have a saying – The “don’t kill me” cries of a parent eventually becomes “beta don’t kill urself”. I have washed my hands off the matter.

        Ebube-Chestnut, he will still eat his cake and have it, so u better not kill urself. Where are all those #TeamJacob and #TeamEdward of yesterday?

    • Chris
      March 02, 15:25 Reply

      I said it already, Dee is gonna lose out, any how he plays this. Am not sure he is a principled dude though. More like the unfaithful type….hmm. oh well , i hope he doesnt turn bitter when it finally dawns on him that he has been chasing the shadow. Dee’s character is not worth paying attention, well am speaking subjectively.

  11. Peak
    March 02, 08:31 Reply

    Why are ppl calling declan a hoe-bag bikonu?
    The dude is only human! Its not like he flung himself on kizito without a second thought to brian! These things do happen u know? There is always this dude u swear u love and adore, makes u feel special and safe! Then boom another dude who just keeps tempting ur entire existence! Matters of the heart is not that easy ooooo. The way all of una de talk here at times one begins to wonder if u guys are emotionally invested in what u are involved in or ever been sef! He is conflicted.
    This una Kizito sound like he knows his way around the poor boy’s heart and is just gonna lay back and play the game. For that reason he aint getting my vote.

    • MacArdry
      March 02, 09:48 Reply

      Ori e pe,jare.
      Was a fence sitter before,but playboy just lost my vote.

      • chestnut
        March 02, 10:23 Reply

        Wait, what? Pinky,I hope u’re not encouraging this…this…this flagrant violation of Kizito’s good name? (Think very carefully b4 u answer me…)

      • Mitch
        March 02, 12:39 Reply

        Chestie, yes! Kizito is the definition of player. Geddit?

  12. Gad
    March 02, 09:11 Reply

    Beautiful. nice ending like a good soap opera

  13. MacArdry
    March 02, 09:54 Reply

    If I’m not mistaken,said Declan had a fight over Bryson with a close friend.Now,just a week later,he’s in another guy’s embrace,being swept away by a kiss?.Commentatum reservatorum.

  14. Dennis Macaulay
    March 02, 10:03 Reply

    At the end of the day Bryson and kizito will crush Pink Panther sorry Declan’s heart.
    I know the right man for him, he shall swoop in very soon!
    I am talking about Declan

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 02, 10:05 Reply

      Keep feeling like a soothsayer, you hear? Kontinu. #NonsenseAndCondiments

    • chestnut
      March 02, 10:28 Reply

      Lol…I thought I was the only one that always imagined pinky’s face when I think of Declan…but ama sleep tho. *creeping out stealthily*

  15. Oluwadamilare Okoro
    March 02, 13:00 Reply


    So these cliff hangers are not disappearing anytime soon eh?

    Great read and I have to say this; DECLAN is just a big SLUT.

    • Chris
      March 02, 15:39 Reply

      I dont want to call Declan a tart, am trying to modify my words; i have always dread character such a Declan even in real world, kind of unprinciple, ‘unloyal’ and unfaithful. Am sorry, kissing somebody just dont happen, we not animals, what about self will…….just saying though, ok , yes we are animals with choice .

  16. olima
    March 02, 13:03 Reply

    I dunno wat Declan ‘s problem is! *hissing* Dear pinky, biko lemme replace dis character and claim Kizito. I solemnly swear to be nice to him and play d part ur readers r so dying to read abt.

    *whispering* does dis Kizito guy really exist? I wanna meet him.

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 02, 13:26 Reply

      Hahahahahahahaa. For you to wonder and for me to keep mum about.

  17. hisroyalsexiness
    March 05, 21:50 Reply

    And to think the narrative technique is first person narrative style with Dee as the narrator. My dear, fogerit!!! He’s so winning!!!

  18. papasmurf
    August 10, 17:48 Reply

    “Declan when you finish changing from your work clothes, come back down, I want to talk to you three”…..
    Ghen ghen…..*Playing haunted tunes like Nollywood movies*

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