The moment was right. It had been an eventful week. Rina and I had just returned from Kampala where we had covered an important organisation of African Unity heads of state conference. We were sitting in the living room of her apartment, taking coffee, talking and completing our stories. Her son, a scout, had gone camping while her husband was on a business trip in Hong Kong. OGOVA ONDEGO writes.
Neither of us knew who made the first move. Rina, who had repeatedly complained of the cold evening breeze getting in through the open window, drew the curtain then returned to where I was sitting. She leaned as if to check what I had written and then planted a kiss on my cheek.
She kissed me more passionately on the lips. I felt a fire in her reaching towards me as my heart raced within my breast. Surprisingly I found myself responding in kind.
Passion had been provoked and it had to be satiated. It was as if we had taken drugs which had nullified our critical faculties. The only thing I could do was ‘protest’ weakly, trying to push Rina away yet clinging to her; I now wanted her badly.
It took less than fifteen minutes. Yes, fifteen minutes of pleasure had ruined my fifteen-years of faithful Christian testimony.
While I regretted ever having met Rina, she seemed quite satisfied with what had happened. What had begun like an innocent working relationship had turned out to be sexual.
I had joined the newspaper straight from university as a staff writer almost three years back. I was to work closely with Rina, the papers’ features writer and news analyst, as I was introduced to the bolts and nuts of newspaper writing. I had immediately taken to her like a fish to water.
With the passage of time, Rina had proved to be not only attractive, but very kind, sensitive and prayerful. Both married with one child each and actively involved in church, we seemed to have so much in common.
While I was a member of the Father’s Association and secretary to my church’s Communication Department, Rina was actively involved in her church’s Women’s Guild and Evangelism Committee.
Ours, therefore, was a safe and perfect working relationship. Together we churned out thought-provoking stories which made our paper all the more popular in the country. Our Managing Editor was thrilled, but that did not make our work any lighter. In fact, he assigned us more work as he had dubbed us “the unbeatable team”.
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Over night we became the envy of everyone at the newspaper office. We worked for twelve hours a day. Sometimes we worked longer hours, especially when we had to cover some events at short notice. At times, we had to work nights and weekends.
The more we worked together, the fonder we grew of each other. We became more familiar with each other and as usual, familiarity bred trust. We started sharing confidences. It became fun to be together. We therefore found reason to spend more time together even when we were off duty. Our similar interests, attitudes and values made us much more than mere workmates. We shared our dreams, fears and goals without restraint. We were regular lunch and supper partners at our small newspaper cafeteria. The stress-filled, deadline-driven hours seamed to have permanently bonded us and we were quite happy with the situation.
However, we (at least for me) didn’t realize that at the bottom of our joy and pleasure was sexual gratification. Sometimes when covering social functions for our paper, Rina would behave in what I thought was strange but I never suspected anything. I would look up to find her staring longingly at dancing or cuddling couples. She would look away sheepishly or give me a dazzling smile whenever she realized I had caught her unawares.
That, however, was only at the beginning. With time Rina became bolder. It became clear that all along she had wanted me to notice her as a beautiful professional woman but as many Christian men are wont to do, I had always viewed her as a sister in Christ and a colleague at work. In my naive attempt to please her, I had downplayed her femininity and hence disappointed her.
Granted, I had regularly complimented her on such things as a new dress, nice perfume or good work.
When attending a dinner dance in honour of some visiting women dignitaries one evening, I was shocked when Rina took my hand and led me to the dance floor. This was unlike her, a conservative evangelical Christian who believed it was wrong for unmarried couples to dance in tight embrace to “worldly” R&B. While I swayed to the music reluctantly, Rina snuggled up to me, initiated some conversation and covertly passed on the information that she was available if I wanted her.
My heart almost stopped. I didn’t know what to say. At 24, I was six years Rina’s junior. Perhaps my inability to respond to her sophisticated charm of a mature woman is what led her to be on the offensive on the evening we slept together in her apartment.
Of course neither her husband nor my wife knew. They have not known to date. But I have to live with the scar for the rest of my life.
Though we are still active in our respective churches, we are no longer a team, let alone unbeatable, in our place of work. Our relationship broke up five years ago. Rina has since been promoted to a bureau chief and subsequently transferred to another town.
I have voluntarily shared my story with you out there, not for you to point an accusing finger at me, but that you do not allow Satan to lie to you that what happened to us can never happen to you. That is what we thought. Until the flesh took the spirit captive.
This is fiction or creative writing based on real events at various modern work places as told to Ogova Ondego.