“Cos tonight’s the night the world begins again”– Goo Goo Dolls, Better Days.
“And we would be bringing you hot juice about the Fowlers very soon, remember if its hot dirt then you can count on us to dig it out. See you next week”
Nene regarded Tolu with disdain as the latter’s phony smile faded into a frown as soon she was done wrapping the show for the following week. Why was she promising the audience, dirt on the Fowlers when they had nothing concrete about the supposed secret those ones were keeping? What if she didn’t have news when it was time to shoot the next episode?
“Please I need to eat before we continue shoot, I am too hungry and tired to continue like this” Tolu grumbled and pulled out her mic. The producer tried to convince her to take another shot, but she was having none of it.
“Nene,you don become news o! No be you be dis for 360nobs?”
That jolted Nene back to reality, she crossed all the wires staying in her way and the equipment. being used during production and was by her colleague’s side in a minute, so was Tolu and every other gbeborun crew member on set.
Tolu read the content on the blog out as if the others had lost their sight “…and this might just be the huge secret the Fowlers have been hiding for months, who hides a baby as cute as this though? And that hot baby mama? We’d keep our fingers on this” Tolu looked up and faced Nene, “wow. You really are news. But you told me nothing happened at the event?”
“That’s because nothing happened” Nene responded icily and made to leave the studio, Tolu wasn’t letting go easily, she followed her immediately.
“But that’s you being talked about alongside Jaiye Fowler! That my friend, is news.” Tolu continued as she caught up with Nene.
“E get video sef! Nene wetin happen for dis event? Una sabi Jaiye Fowler before?”
Nene looked at her colleagues who were now staring hard at her, Tolu gazed at her, arms akimbo, waiting for a response.
Nene sighed, okay maybe they deserved a tiny explanation.
“That was all?” Tolu asked, her face filled with disbelief.
“That was all! I grabbed the baby from him, headed out of the venue and went home straight. That was all” Nene replied, hoping Tolu would back off now that she’d spilled everything that went down at the fundraising event. Tolu had dragged her into her own office, hoping to squeeze out gist for herself and of course the show.
“This could help us you know? We could put it on The Diggerz” Tolu suggested.
Nene sneered, “Help us? Tolu you fucked my boss, took over my show and stole the name on my show while I become your housegirl digging news for you, you think I want to become a part of team tolu? Sorry but I’m not interested” she spat, she didn’t know she was that bitter against Tolu, the things words could bring out.
“How dare you? You think I’m a ho like you?” Tolu asked, she was pissed and Nene could see it.
“You’re the ho here bitch, stealing…”
She didn’t finish her statement, Tolu slapped her hard across the face. She’d always dreamt of slapping Tolu, but she never thought the latter would beat her to it. Now she owed her two slaps, she made a mental note of that.
“Your stupid show was dying and your boss asked me to revive it when I said I wanted him to sponsor my own show, he asked me to step in and revive what you were killing bitch! You should be happy I allowed you to be a producer on it!”
Nene knew if she stood there a second longer, she’d beat Tolu up and so she stormed out.
She headed straight to her boss’ office, she wanted to be rid of Tolu and she wanted it badly she could do anything.
“Can I at least get my show back if I prove to you that I can bring back high ratings?” Nene asked as soon as she stepped into his office, she was desperate and she hated Tolu’s guts.
Her boss regarded her cautiously.
“I want the whole show back to myself not as a co presenter” she continued.
“And how do you plan to do better than Tolu?” He asked her and she realised she hadn’t thought much about that.
“Yes?” Her boss asked, he was getting impatient with her and she knew it was a matter of seconds before he threw her out of the office angrily.
“Ehn ehn…what about them?”
“I would get all the gist on them. Everything” an idea occurred to her and she decided to use it as a tool, “you can assign it to us both, anybody that brings news from there faster can stay”
Her boss nodded, he liked the idea. “Your time starts now”
She didn’t know where to start but she knew she’d dig so hard and find anything that only her would know and only her would tell the public. Her show was her life.
The press and the media followed her everywhere because of news they thought she had.
She liked the attention, she had to be honest with herself about that. Never in her life had the whole country been interested in who she was, she knew in no time they would appear at her doorstep and ask questions. However, as much as it was fun for her to watch the whole media world bug her, she needed desperately to find a way into the Fowler clan. But hard as she tried to dig using her usual technique, she didn’t even scratch the surface. She knew she had to try other means, get close to Jaiye maybe? But where in the world would she find him? She wasn’t sure she would be allowed past the security in his office.
After two weeks though, her chance came.
He had been waiting for her in his sleek car when she finished for the day that friday and once she stepped out of the office compound, he parked in front of her.
“Get in” was all he said. She wanted to argue, wanted to ask him if he was crazy barking orders at her like that but she knew less appealing&less successful men had barked worse orders at her in the past, plus her career depended on his secrets, so she got into the car.
He drove her out of the premises and said nothing to her, she’d been tempted to ask where they were headed or why he had come for her at work but she just kept mute instead while she enjoyed a Drake song playing in his car, the car was neat, beautiful and classy just like the owner who sat behind the wheels. He kept his hair short and neat and he looked breathtakingly gorgeous, his shirt was rolled up his sleeves, a few buttons were loose and his pants clung to his body. She wondered how many minutes he spent in the gym because he looked very athletic, like he worked out everyday. His broad shoulders and fit body was a proof of that. She stopped staring at him and wondered who he dated, who he screwed, what his life was like, if his bathtub was made of gold and if he cleaned his ass with dollar bills. He was fresh like a baby, smelled so good she wanted to sniff him and looked every inch like a movie star…like an Idris Elba or a Michael Ealy. Life was really beautiful for people like Jaiye Fowler, they had no worries but they had secrets, secrets poor people like her didn’t keep, secrets she was willing to feed on and make money through.
She drifted into sleep as she thought of just how she would dig out everything she needed.
Mercy signed in the register, under the part that indicated she was signing out for the day. Her shift had just ended and she was in a hurry to go to the person taking her shift and watching her baby to pick her up.
She had to admit, it wasn’t easy working as a mom, she worried about her kid every second and was usually distracted. Aisha, the girl who usually took over after her had been nice to come over earlier and watch over the baby for her but she knew she had to find a way to deal with her issues soon.
She fed the baby after she had thanked Aisha and when she was done, she grabbed her bag and carried her baby, ready to go home.
Her phone rang and she checked who it was, it was her husband and the father of her child, Umoru. She contemplated picking it and after two more calls from him, she decided to leave it.
She knew what he wanted to say and she knew her guilt would almost kill her if she picked up to hear him say it.
She wasn’t going back, never going back.
She threw the phone into her bag and walked towards the bus stop, Umoru loved her and had never hurt her but she didn’t want life with him anymore.
She wanted the life her sister Nene had.
When Nene woke up from her sleep, they were parked in front of her house. She was startled, turned to face Jaiye and realised he was gazing down at her.
“I didn’t know we were here, why didn’t you wake me” she asked, slightly embarrassed that he’d watched her sleep.
“I don’t like to wake people when they sleep and I was thinking if you didn’t wake up in five minutes after we got here, I’d have to wake you. Its been just three minutes” he said simply.
Nene nodded. But how did he know her house and when were they going to talk about why he suddenly showed up at her office?
As if he could hear her thoughts, he produced his samsung tab and handed it over to her.
Nene read the headline shouting at her, the blog claimed she’d granted an interview with them regarding her and Jaiye’s love child. She hadn’t and she didn’t know why they’d claimed she did, maybe looking for news as usual.
“Who is paying you to do this?” He asked her.
Jaiye watched her as she continued to stare at the content on his tab, she was beautiful he noted. Beautiful and sexy, the type his brother Jire would steadily screw and keep as a secret mistress, the type he’d spend large amounts of money on while she toured the world with him.
But why was she trying to get him into trouble? Why was she telling the world that little child was his? What was she up to? To get the secret the whole country had been trying to dig for months now?
“I swear to you Mr Fowler, I know nothing about this.”
“I don’t believe you” he said gently. “Listen Miss Francis, if this lies don’t stop, I’m going to take drastic measures you won’t like and I mean it. I have my people watching you, where you work, where you live, what you eat and who you fuck…”
Nene swallowed hard at the last statement, he certainly wasn’t serious with that part, was he?
“I would forgive this one but make it go away, do you understand me?”
She found herself nodding.
“Now have a good night and give my regards to your daughter” he said gently as if he didn’t just threaten her.
Jaiye watched her nod, he hated to do this but he also needed her to back off. What was she thinking lying against him anyway? A woman this beautiful?
Nene didn’t like the words he spoke to her, but he spoke them so gently they didn’t sound like a threat.
His phone rang and he picked it, Nene watched his brows crease and his teeth clenched as he tried to keep his temper under control. He was upset about something, Nene could see that.
“What do you mean he’s got a knife? Threatening mom…” He stopped as he remembered he had company, facing Nene he added “let me call you back Jo”. Then he hung up.
“Have a good night Miss. I hope I never have to discuss that which I discussed with you ever again.” He said, dismissing her in a subtle manner. Everything about him was calm but they spoke volumes.
Nene nodded, undid her seatbelt and made to get out of the car.
“Remember, we are watching you” he said and she got out and closed the door.
Nene wondered as he drove out of the neighbourhood, who he meant by “we”. His phone call had hinted that something was going on with the Fowlers and she knew she wasn’t going to go away like he asked her to.
She was going to dig everything and get that Tolu girl out of her hair by breaking the news exclusively to the rest of the world.