Ifeanyi came out of a murky dream about free-falling while blindfolded and not knowing how far it was he was falling. When he finally hit the ground, he opened his eyes, and Aidee was not there.
But her phone was – on the nightstand, small vibrations causing the device to buzz this way and that on the burnished top.
“Aidee…” he groaned, his voice hoarse from sleep. “Your phone is ringing.”
She didn’t materialize into the room at his call; his voice hadn’t been loud enough to reach past the door anyway. The phone stopped ringing, and he heaved a sigh of relief, turning in the bed to return to his dream.
He was about to drift back to sleep, when the seism started again on the nightstand. Groaning with great displeasure, he turned, reached for the phone and answered the call.
“Hello,” he grunted.
“Good morning,” greeted a crisp, female voice. “Please, am I on to Ms. Aidee Agoreyo?”
“No, this is her fiancée,” he growled, irritated by the perkiness of the speaker on the other end. Wasn’t it too early on a Saturday morning for anybody to be this perky? “What is this call regarding?”
“My name is Olutayo, sir. And I’m calling from Lekki Astoria Hotel and Suites, regarding Ms. Agoreyo’s request to use our Banquet Hall as the reception venue for her wedding in the closest to February as possible. She was told that we’d get back to her. And I’m calling now to inform her that there’s an opening for March 28th.”
“March 28th?” Ifeanyi echoed, the oddments of sleep fleeing fast from his eyes with each word the woman had said.
“Yes. We’ll be sending her a text and email shortly on the requirements for the use of the Banquet Hall. Plus, she’ll need to come back in to discuss the finer details with our manager.”
“Wait, March 28th…don’t you mean March 29th? March 28th is a Friday…” Next week Friday, in fact; he knew this because he had an appraisal coming up on that day.
“No, sir,” the speaker returned, the crispness of her voice reminiscent of crunchy breakfast and starched laundry. “March 28th is Saturday. A text and email bearing more information will be sent to Ms. Agoreyo. Thank you, sir, and do have a good day.”
The call was disconnected before Ifeanyi could gather his wits enough to formulate a response. What on earth was going on?! he thought. March Twenty-eight couldn’t possibly be a Saturday, could it? He was scrambling about on the bed, to reach for his appointment book on the nightstand positioned on his own side of the bed, when Aidee sailed into the room.
She was talking, her gaze on a small, leather-bound book open in her hand, with coloured slips sticking out from the pages. “Hey, babe, about the seating arrangements, I know we agreed to mix up my relatives and yours, but would you mind terribly if I placed your Uncle Ben on a table with just your family members instead of any with mine? He’s quite the heavy drinker, and we both know how uncouth he can get when he’s had one too many stouts. I just don’t want him offending any member of my family, people who aren’t used to him.”
“What?” Ifeanyi asked, his mental gears grinding ineffectually to catch up with Aidee’s breathless prattle, from the issue of which day March Twenty-eighth was.
“I’m talking about your uncle…” Aidee’s voice trailed off when she looked up from her book, and her gaze zeroed in on her phone in Ifeanyi’s hand. Her brows dropped into a cross expression as she moved toward the bed. “Babe, I realize that we’re about to be husband and wife, but I expect us to still maintain the boundaries we set when we moved in together.”
“What are you talking about?”
She snatched her phone from his grasp, and shook it in his face. “This! This is what I’m talking about. What are you doing going through my phone? Honestly, Jerry –”
“I wasn’t going through your phone,” Ifeanyi began defensively. “It was ringing, and I answered –”
“Oh, you answered. You simply answered my call,” she berated sarcastically. “That’s much better, I guess.”
“How come you didn’t tell me we’re getting married next week?” Ifeanyi rejoined, changing tacks with a speed that made Aidee blink.
“We are not… What are you talking about?”
“You didn’t make any reservations for a venue for March 28th, next week?”
“March 28th is Friday nau,” Aidee said with a short laugh.
“That’s what I said. But the lady from Lekki Astoria Hotel seemed to think otherwise. She called to say the Banquet Hall you asked for is ready for Saturday, March 28th.” He dropped a heavy stress on the day of the week.
“Of 2015!” Aidee said, before throwing her head back in a laugh.
“What?” Ifeanyi stared, not appreciating her mirth.
“Saturday, March 28th of 2015, silly. Not next week.” Her laughter bubbled to the surface again.
“Wait, you moved our wedding even further ahead?” he said grimly.
“Well, duh! After the fixed the elections on my perfect Valentine date –”
“You could not move it backward into, I don’t know, this year, 2014?” Ifeanyi cut in, his sarcasm and annoyance running a tributary alongside each other.
“Her, don’t take that tone with me, mister!” Aidee bridled, her eyes flashing, her body straightening into a battle-ready stance, in case her fiancé was about to give her any flak.
He didn’t. he simply heaved a sigh, and dropped back into the bed, sinking his head into the pillows. “I’m still sleeping, Aidee. Go do whatever you have to do,” he said, waving a hand at her in a go-away gesture. “Just inform me on time, so I can at least have my groom’s attire ironed and ready.”
Aidee chuckled, her ire dissipating in the face of her victory. “Don’t be so dramatic, darling. Your groom’s attire will be ironed and ready for you. All you have to do is show up.”
“Of course,” he muttered, as she sauntered back out of the room, already on the phone.
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