Couldn’t Pretend Episode 5

Last night, I stayed up reading books on how to be a good secretary and every other material I could get my hands on which has to do with secretarial work.

So far so good, I’ve learned two important things. Number one; arrive before your boss and number two; wait for the boss to leave before you do same.

This meant leaving the house as early as possible. Oh boy!


I alighted from the taxi, settled the driver and ran straight through the small gate which was already open into the premises scanning to see if Alex’s car was parked at the usual spot under the car shade but I couldn’t find it anywhere in sight.

Good enough! I breathed a little sigh of relief and waved to the gateman who was sitting on a white plastic chair outside his post and lacing up his boots.

A few minutes after I sat down in the small cubicle, Alex arrived. He returned my ‘good morning’ with what sounded like an almost inaudible mumble.


I stood up and followed slowly into his office where I read out his schedule for the day, got some tasks to perform and returned to my position to get to work on the stuff he just gave me.


“A new secretary!” I heard someone remark and I lifted my head up from the screen to see who’s speaking. It’s the guy who was talking to Alex the second day I saw him. They somehow look alike though but not very much.

“Good morning Sir.” I greeted and he gave me a friendly smile before he replied and asked if Alex was in before walking to his office door where he knocked and went in.


If only Alex was like that, the world would be a better place to live in.

Almost immediately after the guy walked into the office, the desk phone rang startling me a bunch.

I picked up and realized that it was Alex calling. I rolled my eyes at the realization. He needed me in his office and barely spoke for eight seconds.

I dropped the phone and walked to his office door where I knocked and he ushered me in.

“Where’s the document I asked you to retype earlier on?” He demanded curtly as soon as I walked in.

“I’m working on the last page sir.” I responded nervously. What does this guy take me for? Some robot who can type a thousand words in a minute?

“I needed it like an hour ago.” He said in a bit of a yell slamming his palm on his desk while the other guy only sat there watching the entire Episode leaving me red with embarrassment.

“Okay Sir! I’m Sorry sir!” I pleaded as I made to hurry out of the office.

“I’m not done yet.” He added intimidatingly and I turned round to face him again.

“Rewrite this report. I need it on my desk before the close of work today.” He said and dropped a blue covered spiral bound document on his desk and I picked it up before finding my way out of the office.


I stole a quick glance at the other guy and I could tell clearly that he was unimpressed. But with who? I can’t tell. Infact, I cared less at that point as I made my way out of the office my heels making a considerable amount of noise.


Returning to my cubicle in annoyance, I hurriedly typed out the remaining page that I was working on, went through it for any typos and finally hit print.

I walked back to the office and presented the finished work to Alex but he motioned for me to hand it to the other guy which I did and rushed out of the office after he okayed it to finish up with the other pending tasks.

“Best of luck with your boss.” The other guy said sarcastically with a little side smile as he emerged from the office and walked away holding the papers I’d given him earlier on.

“Thanks!” I responded shyly as I was still too embarrassed to lift my head and face him.


“I need it.” I muttered under my breath as I kept busy rewriting the report.



Three Days Later…..

“Good job!” Alex commended rather dryly and my eyes widened in a mix of shock and surprise.

Are my ears malfunctioning or I’m I daydreaming?

My jaw dropped instantly and I couldn’t even bring myself to say anything.


Alex just commended me? That’s just unbelievable!


“Folake!!” Alex yelled dragging me back to reality.
So he even remembers my name?

I forced a smile as I realized that he was holding out the paper on which the report was written.

“Are you okay?” He asked slowly and I nodded in response as I struggled to regain composure as I noted a slight disdain in his tone or was I misreading it?

“Make three more copies.” He concluded bluntly and returned his attention to his laptop.

To sum it up, I left the office; made the copies and submitted them to him just before he left for the day. Whew!

I still can’t believe that Alex actually commended me today.

Making my way to the sales department to find Ama, it turns out that she’d already left for the day so I decided to call her up.

All through the drive back home in the taxi, I gisted Ama on what went down between me and Alex until I got home.

Today’s Friday and a successful first week under Alex. Thank God I’m still employed!

Tina travelled yesterday with Chief and will be back in a couple of days which means I’ll be alone all weekend.

Next morning, I decided to go and get some sanitary pads from the supermarket since I had just two left.

On my way to the counter to make my payment, I sighted someone that looked exactly like Alex.

I didn’t want to take the chance of making sure if it was really him so I slowly retreated back into the section where I’d come out from and stood at a point where I could still get a good view of what he was doing until I saw him walk out of the store before I equally got out from my ‘hiding’ place to go and make my own payment.

My heart almost jumped out of my chest as I emerged from the store and made my way out of the premises passing the many cars parked outside only to come face to face with Alex resting on the hood of his car making a phone call.

I stopped dead in my tracks as our eyes met.

Little devil! So it was him for real?

“Good morning sir.” I managed to say with the fakest smile I could manufacture on my face when he finally finished with his phone call.

“Morning. How are you doing?” He responded almost emotionlessly.

“Doing very well Sir.” I also replied flatly and he nodded before walking over to the driver’s side, opened the door and turned round to look at me as if I was some sort of clown.

“See you on Monday.” He added coolly, sat in the car and shut the door without caring to wait for a response from me. I don’t think I’ll ever understand this yeye guy ever.

I scoffed and continued on my way while looking back every now and then towards where he was in the car which still didn’t move until I turned a corner and the car was out of view.


“So he just got into his car like that. I mean, just how rude could this guy get?” Ama asked as I concluded my narration to her during lunch time on Monday.


“Babes, I instantly regretted walking up to greet him.” I said dropping my spoon back into my now empty plate.


“No, you did the right thing by greeting him. I just think that he didn’t have much to say or you made him nervous.” Promise said and Ama nodded in agreement with a bottle of Sprite pressed on her lips and I laughed at the sarcasm of being able to make Alex nervous when it’s usually the other way around.


We gossipped at length about Alex throughout lunch break before we finally parted ways and I returned to my cubicle.

On my arrival, the desk phone was ringing so I rushed to pick up.

It was Alex calling! Gee! He was already back from lunch and wanted me in his office. He sounded really upset on the phone. This isn’t good. He usually takes up to an hour or more before he returns from lunch.

I walked into the office expecting the worst as I rubbed my palms together since it was already getting sweaty- a habit whenever I’m nervous.


Alex wasn’t smiling at all. Chai! See me, see wahala!


“Good afternoon sir.” I greeted nervously. He didn’t say anything for a while as he eyed me up and down repeatedly making me feel so awkward and uncomfortable under his gaze to the point that I started adjusting my dress just in case.


“Retype that trash!” He barked angrily and slammed a file on the table making me jump in fright.


He looked really impetuous with eyes so red. Only God knows how many demons he’s battling today. He wasn’t just mad at me, he looked like he was going through something else that made him like this today.


“What are you waiting for? Leave my office!” He yelled again and I picked up the file and scurried out of the office.


Don’t get me wrong, he’s always blunt, annoying and conceited but today, since morning, he’s been nothing but plain bitter and brutal. That’s different and really scary.


I returned to my cubicle feeling really frightened by Alex’s violent behavior.

Going through the paper, I found the typos I’d made. Just two of them that he circled with blue pen and he dared to call my hard work trash just for that.

This is clearly a case of transferred aggression.

Thankfully, I hadn’t deleted the soft copy of the document from my computer so I just searched for it, edited and hit print.


In a matter of minutes, I was done and knocked on his door for about five times before he eventually told me to come in.

His back was turned towards the direction of the door. So it’s that bad and he doesn’t even want to look me in the eye?

I dropped the file on the table after informing him and turned to walk out.

“Cancel all of my appointments for today and tomorrow.” He said in a cracky and hoarse sounding voice like someone who’d been crying.

Gosh! I dared not ask him if he’s okay. He may just get up and give me a slap for what it’s worth.

Could he really be crying? I doubt it. But if he is, then he needs some serious help.

I returned to my desk and made all the necessary phone calls cancelling every single appointment he had for that day and the next.

He stayed in his office until some minutes to six before he finally came out with the straightest face ever and left for the day without even looking at me or giving me any tasks for the next day as usual.

I quickly picked up my hand bag and phone and also left for the day thanking God that I didn’t get fired.

Tina called as I was on my way down the stairs and we talked until I got home. She has enough airtime to stay on the phone forever. Mtchew!

Right now, I was confused about the whole situation with Alex. Is he going to be okay? Should I ask him what is wrong?

Nope, I shook my head as the last question came to mind. It may not be my business but I’m gonna give it time though. If he’s still like that in the next few days, I’ll take the risk and ask him.

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