Time flew. Justin Amadi learned that to the busy, time was not always enough. He remembered Archimedes’ relativity of time concept and shook his head. Ten days went by in a heartbeat.
After leaving the office that day, he had gone to his Local Government Area office to complete his documentation. Due to the large mass of corps members though, that simple exercise had taken two days to complete. He was tired and exhausted when he got his CDS card and dumped the file with the secretary.
The following days, he slept and regained his strength, then went to see Segun who had also gotten a letter from another stockbroking firm.
‘So you’re gonna be competition,’ Justin had joked.
‘Nope. We’re pals, and will stay same. Our employers can compete. Na them know.’ Segun took a sip of his drink. They were waiting for their movie to start so they could go into the cinema hall.
Justin had a faraway look. ‘Hmm,’ he managed. ‘Hope we don’t get sucked into their games o.’
‘Dude, we’re not the only stock broking houses in Nigeria. Relax. There’s a lot of money to go round.’
‘We might not be the only ones, but my company’s a major player in the capital market game o. I read up on them, and was amazed to find that the company’s arguably the best in the country. Now they’re tossing me in a think tank role, you think it’s beans? I gotta rep o.’
Both of them stared at the tapestry of the cinema house lost in their thoughts wondering what it would be like playing with other people’s wealth. If only they had any inkling that the game they were thinking of wasn’t like the ones where they could cheat and repeat the stage, they might have opted out.
They went to see their movie, and afterwards bid themselves best of luck in their respective jobs. In the days that remained, Justin did nothing other than eat, sleep and play video games. He knew once the job started, he’d be doing a lot of reading.
The day finally came, and clad in his best suit, Justin got to the office early. He was shown his cubicle and the company’s library. His heart sank when he saw the volumes of books there. His tour was just ending when she came in; the ice queen.
Justin smiled at her, he figured that since they would be working together, they might actually become friends. ‘Hi,’ it was all he could muster.
She smiled and nodded as she was shown her desk and the library too. They were partners as their cubicles had been arranged together.
‘My name’s Justin,’ he whispered as the department Head started his welcome address and gave them the history of the department.
‘Shhh,’ she hushed him and stared straight ahead listening intently to the man speak.
Justin felt stung. He also focused on the man and listened to his speech. Unlike most people, the speech was brief, and their department’s Head name they learned was Mr Emmanuel Dada.
‘My colleague here, miss Jocelyn Agu will train you on the stock trends. I will also expect that you guys will be innovative and help the company make error free predictions.’ Mr Dada turned and went into his office.
Miss Jocelyn handed them a folder each. ‘Read through those. When you’re done, we’ll convene and have a chat.’ She went to her workstation.
Justin opened his folder and began reading promptly. He had been reading for close to twenty minutes when he felt the poke. He turned to see her smiling at him.
‘By the way, my name is Ugochi Ezenmadu.’
He noticed she was done reading the entire file and was waiting for him to catch up. Oh, oh! He thought, I’ve been paired with a robot.