CHEF 26 by Ojeiwa Ojeabu Omo- Episode 9

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Damilare and Lola were having a great time, she assisted him with his inventory which surprised him. Their conversation had leaped from an exchange of pleasantries to more personal conversation. Lola had delivered her story in a quick, witty and adventurous manner. Her early education had been in Nigeria, while her tertiary education had been in England and was currently working with a reputable firm in Banana Island. She was a bit of social butterfly too which bothered Damilare a little.

‘Your turn!’ Lola said with a mischievous glint in her eyes.

Damilare scratched his head a couple of times as he was clueless on where to start. His background and hers seemed to be polar opposites. It was worth the shot; secretly praying that she wasn’t hugely disappointed by his lack of exposure from the personal details he was about to divulge.

‘Schooled in Nigeria all my life. I have a B.sc in biology education and I work as a Sous Chef in a contemporary restaurant called MagicMenu Restuarant.’ Damilare said.

‘A Sous Chef? Now that must be exciting’, Lola chipped in with a surprisingly fascinated tone. (Damilare was stunned.)

‘I would love to hear more about your job at Magic Menu, Mr Sous Chef’, Lola purred.

Still stunned and very aware of her flirtation, Damilare replied, ‘There’s no story there, it’s where I work. Like I said, it’s a restaurant, people come in there to eat like all other restaurants,’ he added.

What makes the magic menu restaurant special?’ Lola asked.

‘Special!’ Damilare blurted the word out like it was a curse. ‘Special’ he repeated, avoiding her gaze. ‘Well I guess it’s one of our services that makes it special, where customers customize their menus. They call, text or email the food details and we take care of the actual preparation and delivery.

‘That sounds ingenious’, Lola said while leaning forward and exposing a generous amount of cleavage.

Damilare was tongue-tied. He was at loss for words. ‘This is embarrassing’ he said to himself but finally found his voice.

‘Yea, seems kinda nice when you put it that way’, Damilare said.

She sighed, ‘Suppose I want to order a meal from You for instance, how do I go about doing that?’ She asked.

‘There are 26 chefs at the restaurant; If you would like to order a meal from the restaurant, and have me prepare it, all you have to do is state it when calling, texting or emailing.’ Damilare said.

‘Are you the best chef there?’ She asked with a flirtatious look.

‘I don’t think so,’ he said. ‘Most of the chefs are very good, I am just fortunate To have got a job there.’

She looked him in the eye, then said ‘I’ll try this menu on Monday,’ her right hand travelled a short distance across the table and landed on Damilare’s folded arms, she caressed his bicep with her finger, ‘I’ll love you to prepare the meal, how would I identify you?’ she asked smacking her lips.

‘Number 26 or chef 26,’ he replied.

‘Chef 26’ Lola repeated as her hands retreated back to base, ‘hmmm.’ ‘Sounds good, last of the pack’ she pointed out.

‘Yeah I was the last chef they hired, was fortunate to get the job like I said earlier. Just place your order and I’ll be more than happy to respond to it,’ Damilare stated.

‘Looking forward to it,’ she said as she dipped her hand into her bag, retrieving her cell phone. ‘Can I have your number?’ She asked.

‘Sure.’ They exchanged numbers, and discussed some more.

Cynthia was the first to spot that the Chef was in good hands; she leaned in and whispered into Kaima’s ear. Kaima looked over her shoulder to where Damilare was seated and there he was enjoying the company of a beautiful, young woman in her mid-twenties who was showing way too much skin for Damilare’s good. She was infuriated at the scene.

‘Who is she? ’ Kaima asked Cynthia in a barelyp controlled tone. She was obviously upset, Cynthia noticed.

‘I have no idea’ Cynthia replied, though she knew exactly who Lola was. She was definitely staying out of this one, she told herself.

‘A storm is brewing and I can’t do anything to stop it’, Kaima replied, almost in tears.

‘How can you tell from here? You don’t even know what they are saying,’ Cynthia added.

‘I just know, I can feel it,’ Kaima replied.

Cynthia didn’t say a word.

…....to be continued

Genre: Nigerian Romance/ Fiction

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