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[February 21, 2014]
Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde [Nation (Kenya)]
(Nation (Kenya) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) When I walk into the office and switch on my computer in the morning, the first message I see in my email is a letter that Chris has written to all staff, forwarded to us from the Human Resources department.
"I hereby announce my resignation from the position of Managing Director of this company, effective in five months' time after my successor has been appointed. It has been an honour and a pleasure to lead a hardworking team of people such us yourselves, and to ensure that the needs of our customers are met consistently and to such high standards…" I close the message before bothering to read the rest; it's all too bittersweet for me. Bitter because this email is a symbol of the fact that my time in Chris' proximity is coming to an end, and that another chapter in my life is about to begin, and sweet because it now makes the conversation we had last night at my house a reality.
"Why do you think we can't progress this?" Chris asked me after we shared our first kiss. "After all, you have to know that I am in love with you." PLEASANT SURPRISE I was so shocked and pleasantly surprised that my mouth stayed open, my eyebrows raised and my skin a-tingle for many minutes – so long that Chris started to look worried.
"I mean, if you don't feel the same way…" he frowned.
"No, no! That's not it!" I exclaimed, rushing to grip his hands in my own in a sign of reassurance. "It's just… You have no idea how long I have waited to hear those words," I sighed, looking into his eyes. And even those words were not enough to explain the depth of what I felt.
"Well, for obvious reasons this was never something I could confess," he had said ruefully while I nodded in agreement.
The rest of the evening had been spent discussing exactly what we felt for each other in great detail deep into the night – until we could no longer stop our eyelids from drooping and Chris left for his house.
When I woke up this morning last night's conversation felt like a big dream to me; did it really happen? Did we have THE conversation? Was Chris even really here, at all? It is only when I am in the kitchen fixing my packed breakfast after I shower and get dressed that I look in the sink and notice the empty wine glass that he was drinking from that I am sure that it really did happen.
And now here I am, looking at Chris' announcement, and now there is no denying the chain of events that have taken place. I look at my watch: it's a few minutes past 8am, and it is highly unlikely that Chris is in the office yet, and when I take peek through my door to see if his office is open, Louise pops her head round and interrupts my view.
"You're in early," she says. "And you're glowing, too!" She sits down in my office chair. "Are you seriously that happy to see me go to Chris' desk?" her face falls.
PUMPING WITH PASSION And then I remember this morning's crisis: I will have to figure out a way to work with Ciru, Chris' old personal assistant who I cannot stand. "Oh no, Louise," I say, sounding alarmed. "That's not what's making me happy…" My eyes drift back towards Chris' office and Louise's eyes follow me.
"You know, Liz," she points out conspiratorially, "you might be able to find a way to hide it from the rest of the office, but you can't fool me. I know you have feelings for that man." She indicates with a movement of her head towards Chris' office.
"Shh!" I hiss. "We must never mention these things around here. These walls have ears." Then we both giggle and Louise stands up to go to her desk.
"Oh, and he's already in, by the way, since I noticed you were looking for him," Louise says. "You two were unusually early today." My heart skips a beat. I start to feel very excited at the thought of seeing Chris this morning.
I wonder if I should pop over just to say good morning? No, I think to myself. This is the office and he is still the MD, and I still need to respect that. But then after a few minutes of feeling like my heart will explode if I don't at least clap eyes on him and read his face to see if he actually meant what he said last night, I give in to my urge and walk over.
"Good morning," I say as I walk into his office; Chris is bent over his lap top, typing furiously. He looks up distractedly.
"Good morning Liz," he says, looking distracted. "How can I help you today? Are there some documents you want me to look over?" Gosh. It's like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
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