Sean was thankful no one saw that he almost ran a little girl over, the kids were all playing and the teachers were too preoccupied, he wondered what she was doing running behind a moving car..
“What were you doing behind a car, you know kids shouldn’t be playing behind a car?’’ he tells her walking in with her
“I didn’t want to play with the other kids so when I got my ball I wanted to play in the driveway”
“Why didn’t you want to play with the other kids, aren’t they your friends?”
She shakes her head
“Why not, don’t you have any friends?”
She shakes her head, Sean frowns, they are in the hall now, Zackary was behind them, he pulls her to a seat and then sits down with her in the waiting hall.
“You want to tell me why?”’
She shakes her head again “Mummy says not to talk with strangers’’ she repeats
“I am hardly a stranger am I? Okay, if I tell you my name will I still be a stranger?”
She nods her head, Sean smiles “Well, my name is-”
“Kikina!!’’ a lady comes into the hall frowning “I am sorry do I know you?” she walks towards them, pulling Kiki up
“No!” Sean says getting up, was this the girl’s mother?
“You know what we say about talking to strangers?” she bends to Kiki
“He isn’t a stranger anymore and he was about to tell me his name” kiki says
She looks at Sean and then back at Kiki “Go outside and play” kiki turns and looks at Sean and then leaves The woman straightens up
“I think it’s highly inappropriate to sit with little girls alone especially one who doesn’t know you and whom you apparently do not know either, who are you and why do you have her seated close to you?”
Sean blinks “Whoa! It’s not what you think’’
“Then what do you think I think? I know the girl is shy and timid and I know you don’t know her, and I am wondering why you are seated with her, there are pervs and pedophiles lurking around and I would have you know we do not take such matters lightly” she says
“Hey relax ma’am, my friend here almost hit her when she was trying to pick her ball which went under his car, he brought her in here to meet her mother”
“And why do you assume her mother is here?”
“Erm lucky guess” Sean says honestly “Mother, ward, teacher, same thing” he shrugs
She eyes them “Who are you and why are you here? You didn’t tell me that. You aren’t a teacher here that I know because I am one and I know all the staffs here, it’s not a large school as you can see”
“Well I am Sean O’Conner, and I am the one to supply your school a new brand of uniforms, texts books and whatnot, I just came to confirm somethings from the proprietress, and address a few complains and-“
“Oh Mr Sean O’Conner, I am so sorry, forgive me my manners, you know how protective we are of the kids, you never can tell of the evil lurking around”
“Oh no offence taken”
“I took some” Zackary says
Sean looks at him and smiles “Well have you spoken to her and all?”
“Yes I have. I told her when we would be doing the supply“
“Okay. I am sorry again”
“It’s fine, well I will take my leave now, but one thing, where do you get those cute little balls from? I deflated that little girl’s ball and I promised to get her another one”
“Oh you don’t have to worry“
“Oh I insist!” Sean says
“Well there is a kiddies shop just round the corner,you will see”
“Good, and your name?’’
“It’s Teacher Divine”
“Good, I’ll come back and give you the ball and you give it to the little girl? I would appreciate it”
“Oh no problem Mr Sean O’Conner” she smiles
Nodding, Sean and his friend leaves.
“You really want to go get the kid a ball?”
“I deflated hers, I almost hit her, yes I could at least get her a ball. It’s no big deal though, a quick stop and we are out to continue my work”
“Fine whatever! I don’t like being around kids”
“Just know that you would be my child’s godfather when I do eventually have one, so be prepared”
“Oh Shmucks!!!’’ Zackary exclaims
Sean laughs .
It takes about thirty minutes to get to the shop and then back, he walks into the hallway finding Teacher Divine at the entrance talking to other teachers. She introduces him to them and they were smiling from ear to ear.
“Do you have a marker?” he asks her eventually
“please can I have it?”
He takes it and writes on the ball and gives it back to her “For the little girl” he says
A few minutes later he and Zachary leaves again.
“Beans Porridge hot, beans porridge cold, beans porridge in the pot five days old” the children chanted clapping
“Very good, very good” Megan claps with them, then the bell goes off
“Okay, time to go home but remember to learn to recite “Mary Has A Little Lamb’’ and “Jack And Jill”, don’t forget to do your assignments on your work book on page fifteen, and then colour the animals picking the appropriate colours for each animal, count your numbers and fill in the blank spaces for your alphabets just like we did today okay?”
“Yes Aunty Megan” they roared, they like to shout… especially when it was closing time, they were always too excited to rush home, but who wouldn’t be, when she was little she didn’t like school, she looked for excuses not to go, and Kikina was exhibiting that same traits, she smiles. Today she had to bribe her with ice-cream after school, that was only when she agreed to get down from the car after so many pleas.
“Okay, go on now file out no running, take your bags, lunch boxers now, see you all tomorrow” she waves at them and they wave back at her as they leave, stopping to high five her as they exit the classroom
“Yeah that’s it, big high fives… oh jump jump jump!!!’’ she laughs as the last girl jumps to high five her, she touches her cheeks and watches her leave
She arranges the classroom, cleans the board, picks up her bag and exited.
She walks down through the hallway as she watches kids run into the arms of their waiting parents while others waited for theirs in the waiting area, she knew kiki wouldn’t be here, but alone.
She goes further down the hallway, and stops at a door, she looks in, there sitting on the table and staring out the window was kiki… she pushes the door open.
“Hey Megan’’ Kiki’s Teacher greets her as she was making to leave
“Hi Thelma, she okay?”
“Yes, you know how she is, but she is fine, these days she likes to wait for you here, when I asked her why, she said she didn’t want to feel sad”
Megan sighs nodding, she goes over to Kiki
“Hey Kiddo, you okay” she touches her cheeks, dropping her back and perched on her desk
“yes mummy, I am. Did you see what I got in my assignment today?” she grabs her bag , takes out her book and shows it to her mother
“Oh, that’s a big 10 over 10, and in summations? Oh dear, this calls for a big bowl of ice-cream doesn’t it?” Megan beams with pride
“Yes it does, chocolate with red berry dumplings?”
“oh most definitely, why don’t we get over to the creamery and you can have whatever you want, deal?’
‘’Deal!!’’ Kiki claps her hands together, she grabs her bag jumping up… grabbing her mother’s hands she pulls her out of the class “Bye Aunty Thelma”
“Bye Kiki see you tomorrow”
“Take care Thelma”
While they walked down the hallway, most of the kids had gone, they were at the parking lot when someone calls Kiki, they turn, Divine came strolling down, with her hands in her bag, she brings out the ball
“This is for you” she hands it to her
“Oh wow, a ball! tell Aunty Divine thank you” Megan smiles
“wheeeeeeeee my ball, and this is nice, I like yellow it’s my favorite colour, how did he know?”
“He?” Megan frowns staring from Divine to her daughter and back to Divine
“Oh mummy see, he wrote Kiki on it,” she shows her mother
“Yes baby I can see that, who is He?”
“erm…he is Se-“
“Oh some stranger mummy, he smashed my ball with his car and I cried and he promised to get me another one, I was sad.. and then I left because Aunt Divine didn’t want me talking with him so I didn’t get his name, but see he kept his promise, he got me my ball and even in my favourite colour” she jumps excitedly
Megan drops to her knees and turns Kikina to her “what did mummy say about talking to strangers?”
“That I shouldn’t talk to strangers?”
“Then why Kiki, it is dangerous , its unsafe. How did he smash your ball?”
“I am sorry mummy I won’t do it again“
“Why are you sorry?”
“For talking with the stranger-man“
“Megan please –” Divine tries to step in “he did apologize, he didn’t mean no harm, he is in fact the supplier of the children’s uniforms and test books, all things school supply, he is Mr Se-“
“No Divine, she is my daughter and it’s my duty to keep her safe, we can’t be too sure who those people are, she is a chiLd and might not know who poses danger to her, I just need her to be careful”
“I will mummy, I promise, I won’t play in the driveway again I promise”
“Kiki!!!’’ Megan frowns “of course, he wouldn’t have smashed your ball on the playground because cars aren’t allowed in there, Kiki this driveway you don’t come to ever, you want to play, play inside or out on the field with your friends”
“I don’t have any friends” she sniffs
Megan opens and closes her mouth “I am sure everyone wants to be your friend, you just have to give them a chance”
“They bully me” she sniffs again
Divine bends to her “I’ll tell you what, tomorrow first thing you show me who has been bullying you and I will teach them why bully is a bad word okay?”
Kiki nods, she straightens up “Don’t be hard on the kid Megan, it was a harmless gesture”
“I don’t like strangers coming near innocent girls, much less my own, whoever he is. It’s the duty of a mother to keep her child safe”
“I know Megan, I know, look I came and was hard on him too but I realized that he was concerned and brought her inside looking for her ward and he felt bad for making a little girl cry and he got her the ball, that’s all, innocent, there is nothing to worry about”
Megan sighs “Fine, I suppose I can’t make her refuse the gift?’’
“No no no mummy please” she cries
“It’s a ball Megan, a harmless little ball with her name on it, come on!!’’
Kiki was pleading with her eyes “Pleaseee mama, pleasee “
“Fine. But I mean it Kiki, no talking to strangers and any stranger trying to talk to you or forcing you to go with him or her, scream your loudest, bite them and run”
Divine laughs, but it wasn’t funny but she laughs “Do what your mother tells you okay?”
“Yes Aunt Divine” then she looks at her mother “Do I still get an ice-cream?” she sulks
“Yes you still get an ice-scream”
Kiki jumps excitedly, holds her hands again and began to pull her away
“Take care” Divine says turning and leaving
“So to Creamery mama?””
“Yes Kiki, to Creamery”
She enters her salon car she had been using for a year now and pulls away, it wasn’t new but it was useful.
“Boss, the deliveries are ready for about 10 schools, we have started the construction for the mall at the end of Brook street and then the design for the community church is done” the man wearing a thick rimmed glasses says as he stepped into his office.
“I was going through this files on the Grove’s project and I noticed some discrepancies, who is the team lead on it?”
“Its Tony Mcclure sir, from department D”
“Okay, have him check in with me, these are inappropriate and it needs to be corrected before sending them out. “
“Are the teams for the delivery set?”
“Erm about that sir, two came down with a flu this morning, they haven’t come in”
“Its 10 am Peter, how come I am hearing about this now?”
“Sorry sir, I got the calls about an hour ago, must have slipped my mind”
“Then put others to handle it”
“Okay sir but it would be later today or tomorrow, all free hands are at the construction sites, the others are at the factory, the people available now are the desk and in-house staffs, and they are filling. I can take a few deliveries and Kenneth too, but we need one more person to do the rest because the schools are far apart before we are done, the day is over“
“And we promised to deliver today, and I hate breaking my promises” he thinks for a moment “Load two supplies into my car”
“No the Ford“
“Make sure you all deliver the rest eight supplies today, no matter how late, I hate a bad record”
The last time he was in this school was about three weeks ago when he almost ran down that little girl, he hoped she got the ball. He drove carefully this time and checked his mirrors, he didn’t want it to happen again or worse not see it before it’s too late.
The proprietress loved the deliveries and some teachers who were available gushed at the standard of Uniform and texts they received.
“This is way better than the previous, way way better… I wonder, do you do sports outfits?”
“Yes we do, how factory handles everything clothing”
“oh marvelous, we used white and blue for our sports but we want to change it to royal purple and peach, with our name embroiled on it, would that be possible?”
“Sure why not, but the price would be different from this”
“Oh that’s no problem, show me a sample soon and we would discuss further“
As he left her office after he empties his car, he puts a call to the factory giving them orders.
Walking down the halls passing one door to the other, he could see through the window teachers talking and kids either repeating what they were told or clapped or recited poems or alphabets or asked to spell, he smiles walking out, but the door to his side opens up and then he sees a little girl coming out, she was cleaning her hands and dropping the toilet paper in the bin, he smiles walking towards her
“Hey Kiki, do you remember me, did you like your ball?’’ he bends to her level
She looks up to him, then she smiles nodding
“Hope your mother wasn’t angry at you?”
She nods her head, then shakes her head
“She was, she wasn’t’?” he asks
Kiki shrugs, then he understands ”Oh! Mummy says you shouldn’t talk to strangers right?”
She nods smiling
“Okay, my name is Sean, nice to meet you” he gives her his hands to shake, she looks at it, turns to look around then she places her small hands in his, then smiles at him.
“You want me to walk you to your class?”
She nods, with her hand in his he asks her where her class was and she pointed, he walks her to her class… stopping at the door
“Have you made friends now?”
She shakes her head, her face sad, he bends down and looks at her, there was something about her eyes, too sad for a little girl “You are a little jewel Kiki, and I am sure everyone would love to be your friend, you just have to give them a chance. I want to be your friend, can we be friends?”
“But you are old”
He chuckles “She talks, yay!!!’’ he claps
Megan was pressed, she told the kids to recite the alphabets from A-z and excused herself, she came out of the classroom heading to the toilet when she saw a man bending and talking to a little girl, she turns away.
But her eyes shoots open when she remembered they didn’t have male teachers in the school, and parents usually didn’t come far down this hall way during drop offs and it was almost 11am,..
Wait!! Why did that child just laugh the way her daughter did.
OH MY GOD, KIKI!
She turns and starts to run down the hall
She rushes down to her daughter… grabbing her by her hand and pulling her away “who are you and what are you doing with my daughter” she places kiki behind her, her hand pointing at the Knee bent stranger
He straightens up, raising his head up to look at her “I am so sorry ma’am, I didn’t mean to scare you, I was just trying to make her feel better, my name is Sean, Sean O’Conner,” he stretches out his hands to her.
Megan freezes when she recognizes him.
TO BE CONT.