“Reina, what are you doing here?” Dare asked.
She smiled as she approached us. “Attending the dinner,” She touched my cheeks. “I was wowed by your speech. You speak as though you have been in this firm for years.” I stepped back a little. “Come on honey. Don’t run away from me.”
Dare held my hands and stepped forward. “Why are you here Reina?” he asked.
“You can’t ban me from coming to the firm, can you?” she asked with a smile, and turned back towards me. “I am Reina. Dare still has horrible manners, so he won’t introduce us. Let me.”
I immediately cut her short. “If Dare won’t introduce us, I don’t think I like to meet you.”
She grinned. “I like her attitude, Dare. Was I tougher than this? I think you’ll have a hard time with pretty little Miss here.” She said, addressing Dare.
Dare stared at her and then swallowed. “Darlene, I will like you to meet Reina Martins. She used to work with us here.”
“Don’t forget to tell her that I was your ex-girlfriend.” She added, with a smile.
I swallowed. “Yes, Reina is also my ex.” He cleared his throat nervously. “Reina, meet Darlene Williams.”
“You didn’t add that she is your girlfriend.” She interrupted with a smile.
I cursed softly. “That’s because I am not.” I replied, with a grimace. I couldn’t help but eyeball her coldly.
“That’s good to know.” She laughed. I couldn’t help but wonder what sort of a lady Reina Martins was. She cleared her throat and stared at Dare lovingly. “I have missed you, Dare.”
Dare didn’t reply. “Make yourself comfortable, Reina. I will see you later.” He turned towards me. “Please let meet the other guests.”
“Oh no, we can’t just abandon your guest here,” I replied, looking at Reina. “You stay here, you can find me later.” I added and disappeared. I knew better than to go with Dare.
I watched Dare and Reina leave for the elevator. “Omg! You finally got to meet Reina Martins.” Toni said, nudging me in the waist. “Horrible experience, I know right.”
“Not really.” I replied. “It was weird though.” I added, quickly.
“When I saw her approach yourself and Dare, I got scared. Did Dare go with her?”
I nodded. “I excused him. He was going to abandon her there for me.”
“Wow! That’s not Dare-like. Reina used to be his life; she meant everything to him.”
I picked up a glass of wine from the table. “Could we sit over there? I like to sit for a while.” I said, gesturing to a table.
“Bola already left. She said I should wish you the best of the night.”
I smiled. “I will thank her later.” Toni sighed deeply. “How often does Mr. Ade-Cole come here?” I asked.
“Not very much. However, his brother, Femi does. Expect to see much of him in the coming weeks, there’s a huge case around and I expect the old dogs back in the ring, maybe your Dad too.”
I laughed. “Like getting the Old robbers back for one last bank job?”
“It’s going to be war. When those men battle out, it’s a clash of the best. You don’t want to be the loser.”
I could only imagine Sir Williams losing that case. Dad would bury his head in Dubai for a month. The first time he lost a case, he disappeared to Australia. He said, “I can’t bear to have the press corner me in every street with questions.”
Dad has always been a winner. “Who is going against whom?” I asked.
“Rumour has it that it is Ade-Cole versus Williams”
I smiled. “That will be fun. It will be more like battle of supremacy.”
“Yeah, I am looking forward to it. The ring gets ugly sometimes.” She stared at the elevator door as it opened. “Dare and Reina are back.”
I glanced at them, as they approached us. “What could she want?” Toni swallowed. “Don’t let her shake you.” I said.
“Hi ladies, Is that you Toni? How many pounds have you lost since we last met?” she asked with a smile.
Toni blinked. “How many pounds have you gained since we last met?”
It had turned into a battle of words. “Enough ladies” Dare interrupted, before Reina could say another word. “I’ll say we all go and get a drink.”
“I won’t be on the same table with Reina.” Toni said.
Reina grinned. “Have it your way honey, the floor is ever welcoming.”
Toni clenched her fists. “Bad idea to bring this lady here.” She said, looking at Reina.
“Can you stop this Dare?” I asked.
He wiped some perspiration off his brow. “Reina, please be nice.” Dare was acting like a puppet, I cannot deny that it is quite fun to see him like this. He slid into a chair and Reina took her seat.
“I’ll just leave. It’s getting late anyways, and I have a family.” Toni said and grabbed her purse.
I shot a quick glance at my watch. ‘11:45PM’ “Are you driving?”
“Yes, I am. Want a ride? The bus to Ikoyi leaves by midnight, we’ll get to the station in ten minutes.”
Reina widened her eyes. “Doesn’t Darlene drive?”
“I’ll take you home Darlene,” Dare interrupted.
Reina smiled. “That makes two of us.”
“You?” Dare shot a glance at her.
Toni pulled me aside. “Are you sure you want to share a ride with Reina? She’s a witch!”
“Not so sure.” I replied.
Dare stood up. “I came here with you D, no way am I letting you go with Toni.”
“Let her. She’s not 18.” Reina said
I grabbed my purse. “Let’s leave, Toni.”
“That’s not right.” Dare said, grabbing my hands.
Reina hissed. “You don’t want the press thinking you are holding her against her wish.” She said.
“She’s right, Dare. Let’s not create a scene here. We have made a good impression so far, won’t want it ruined.”
Dare held his forehead. “Why are you doing this Reina?”
“What have I done?” she asked.
He groaned. “Showing up in my life.”
“She’s a menace. Deal with it.” Toni said.
Reina smiled. “Balloon, did you just say something?”
“Let’s leave.” I said, leading Toni to the elevator.
Toni grumbled as we strolled to the Parking space. “She’s a devil. Why did she have to show up and ruin everything for us?”
“I think you are just exaggerating Reina’s presence. She’s not the most interesting person to deal with, but she really doesn’t disgust me.”
Toni hissed. “You think? Wait until you have a proper encounter with her. The fact that she’s shown up can only mean that she’s back to ruin everything here.”
“Toni, we’ll have to wait and see.”
Toni opened the doors and started the engine. “Here we go.”
“Wait!” Dare shouted as he raced into the Parking space.
I peered through the side mirror. “Keep driving Toni.”
“Yeah!” she said and zoomed off. I watched through the mirror as Dare gave up the chase.
We drove out of the building and Toni turned the stereo down. “Why did you say that I keep driving?”
“Why didn’t you stop?”
She smiled. “I was in no mood to listen to Dare.”
“Same here.” I replied.