The whole room was moving at a very slow pace, everyone and everything in it. Jan’s disappointment would have known no bounds had it been Toby never showed up. Toby wouldn’t miss out. It was very clear to other co-workers that he loved Jan. If the bonding time had nothing to do with Jan, he wouldn’t have bared his face at all.
Jan have always been a secret admirer of Toby’s but she wouldn’t allow it show. She was quite the pretender. One would have bet the bonding time she organized had a second motive to it. Jan was nonetheless very good at her job. Should she decide to call it over, it would definitely be a massive loss to the organization. Everyone loved Jan, who wouldn’t?
Who would see an amazing figure and not fall in like if not love?
Several minutes have passed on the dance floor. Jan and Toby couldn’t help but stare intermittently in the opposite direction, it was like they had something going on in their respective minds. Toby wasn’t himself, he was deeply troubled inside, wondering how best to put the feelings he has for Jan in words, and not suffer rejection as he has often seen happen in the movies.
He was interrupted almost as soon as he began to speak. The atmosphere was tense for Jan, and she saw an opportunity to ease herself when she saw Susan enter. She thought she was ready to tell Toby how she felt, even if it meant being seen as cheap, but she wasn’t sure anymore. She couldn’t bring herself to utter anything meaningful. She would have sought refuge in the four walls of her profession, but the whole idea of these bonding was to forget about work and just enjoy the moment in each other’s company.
She suddenly went rigid, talking as she looked away. Her coyness was almost evident, but she was too good at hiding it. She was that good.
“I have to go welcome Susan,” Jan had said in a whisper, almost in time for Toby with strained hearing to decode what she was saying.
She thrust forward in a short but quick stride leaving Toby on the dance floor with a bruised ego. She never meant to cause him hurt but she couldn’t have it the other way. It was a decision she had to make in haste as she almost fell apart. The music from the loudspeaker blared on, everyone except Jan and Toby, and maybe Susan no longer felt like dancing.
Jan waved from a reasonable distance
She made few signs with her hand that suggested that she would be with him in a short while.
“No worries, take your time…”
“I might even be needing medicine for my headache,” Toby mouthed, though inaudibly.
He allowed his sudden thirst for more strong wine lead him to where he was starting to have his fill. To him, nothing matters any longer as he found solace in the fellowship of drinks till he got drunk.
Time passed real quick and Jan was still not done with Susan. Susan had a swollen face that was barely noticeable from a far distance. Jan had gotten too close to have noticed and she wouldn’t miss out on any details as long as it involves feminine empowerment.
“Did Rob do this…?”
Susan seemed reluctant, however Jan was very persuasive.
She was caught up in the whole drama that she totally forgot about Toby who was in the corner of the club totally jinxed in a state of drunkenness.
Suddenly the dance floor cleared as they all provided a safe passage for Toby to reach the microphone stand.
Ill breath filled the air.
“I love you” echoed.
Jan was taken by surprise, she wasn’t expecting it, at least not at that moment. She was desperate a while ago, but she somehow felt a little different. Exposure determines mood all right.
“I love you Jan!”
“He’s clearly drunk,” Susan added.
Jan was embarrassed but at the same time bubbling within her expectant self. She stood transfixed and wouldn’t move an inch forward. The weight on her shoulders is lighter now, she figured she won’t have to go through much to make her intent known when the time is right.
“When the time is right,” she assured herself.
Toby was starting to become a complete nuisance. His vomits were all over the stage, all thanks to kelvin who suddenly walked in. The moment was right.
“You’ve done enough for the night buddy, time to go.”
He stopped short of making a meaningful sentence. He seemed to have passed out.
Kelvin persisted, “get up buddy, time to go!”
Seeing he wouldn’t achieve anything by talking, he took the bold step and carried Toby’s whole weight on his shoulders. Jan simply watched them disappear from amidst the crowd. She smiled to herself, she knew she’s got the whole love thing on a full swing.
“Tomorrow is another day,” she reassured herself.