Book Excerpt: Wine and Water by Hannah Onoguwe


It was many minutes later that Yewande sensed she wasn’t alone. She flicked a glance towards the doorway and stilled when her gaze encountered that of the man regarding her. Was this Ose? She ignored the annoying flip her heart gave and studied him for all of one second. He was lean and well-built and dressed in a slate-coloured suit with the jacket left unbuttoned. Yewande noticed nothing extraordinary about his face until he smiled…and this time, it was her stomach that flipped. When he spoke, she was certain it was him; his voice was even more devastating in reality.

“Hello, Yewande.”

Ose had watched her for a minute as she concentrated on icing the cakes. Even with his inexperienced eye, he could tell that she was very good; he guessed she had a right to be confident in her ability. The cakes were massive— four of them? What had his sister been thinking? Did she want to feed the whole street? But his main focus was Yewande: she was in a khaki-coloured skirt and lime-green blouse, her braided hair tied back with a flimsy dark green scrap of cloth. Then she glanced up at him and he had to catch his breath: with that smooth, dark complexion and those kissable lips she was as lovely as he’d imagined, but he suspected he would have thought so regardless of what she looked like. He forced himself to speak and as she gave a tentative smile, he was brutally honest with himself. Purely platonic interest, his foot. He hadn’t had a platonic thought towards her since the middle of their second conversation.

“Hello,” Yewande replied, struggling not to show the self-consciousness his intent gaze was producing. With a rueful glance at her hands, she added, “I guess we can’t shake hands. It’s nice meeting you.” As he advanced into the room, she took a steadying breath.

“Same here,” he murmured.


[End of Excerpt]