Not So Happily Married ……. Episode Twelve

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I could almost hear my heart beat in my chest. How long had he been standing there? He couldn’t have seen anything, could he? If he had seen us, he wouldn’t stand here with that needy look on his face.

Oh God, what is wrong with me? Why am I not rushing into his arms, kissing him and telling him how much I wanted us to settle our issues?

“Boye, please be rational.” I heard him say.  My vision blurred at his words, my eyes clouded with unshed tears.

What have I become? I thought, leaning against a door. Why am I so confused, so disoriented?

“Boye”. I heard him call. He was close to me now,  the scent of his body spray teasing my nostrils.

“Things are not the way you think they are, that’s why I am here, to end this anguish for us both.”

“Did you have to come? You didn’t have to.”

“Errrm”  Someone cleared his throat. It was Femi. I had forgotten he was there. Jite and I glanced at him.

“Boye, I will be going downstairs to join the others. I think you should talk to your husband but if you are bent on throwing him out, I will be here. That’s a joke.” he added at Jite’s startled look.

I watched him leave, his words echoing in my head. “If you are bent on throwing him out, I will be here”

Is that what I have been doing? Throwing him out? Does Femi now say such things to me?

“Let’s find somewhere to sit Boye.”

I led the way to my room and he followed.

*****

I am not a saint. Omoboye’s behavior was infuriating me and I wanted to do what my head was telling me. Turn back and look for an ATM machine to withdraw money from.

But I felt I had to do the best that I can to salvage our marriage. Heck! We hadn’t even done six months and we already looked and sounded like a marriage counselor’s nightmare.

I followed her to her room thinking of Femi’s remark. What did he mean by he was there for her? Was he planning to take advantage of Boye? I felt my fists clench at the thought. Would he dare? They were friends, they work together. That was all I knew, so what was that comment about? I didn’t want to dwell on such unpleasant things and decided to focus on Boye and the things we need to discuss.

I took in the room, “great place.” I said just to break the silence.

“Yeah.”

“The whole place is so peaceful and quiet.”

“Yeah.”

Okay, this is going nowhere. I thought.

“Omoboye, let’s talk.”

“Okay”.

“First thing, I am sorry for not telling you about Skipper. I will like to do that now.”

“Not yet Jite.” She said.

“I am going to faint if I don’t say what’s on my mind now. I feel so guilty and dirty. I just have to say it.”

My heart constricted at her words. I swallowed the saliva that instantly pooled in my mouth, my hands shook in dread. She feels guilty and dirty, she feels guilty and dirty…….why would she feel guilty and dirty? I felt a faint headache starting as I said the words over and over in my head

****

If we were going to talk, we might as well bare it all. I had made up my mind I was going to open up to him only that the decision was easier to make when he wasn’t there, seeing him face to face , it was hard to talk.

But still, things had to change and there was never going to be a good time. He needed to hear everything and then he could decide if he still wanted me.

“Jite” I began pausing as I saw the fear on his face.

Oh my God, he knows already and it scares him. But I felt compelled to say it.

“Jite, Femi touched me.”

“Oh Lord”. He whimpered burying his head in his palms.

“It wasn’t a touch touch like that. It’s not what you think.”

****

“So what kind of touch was it?” I asked raising my head up.

“I was upset, I was crying and then he was trying to comfort me.”

“In the room?”

“No, Jite, we were outside, just by the door. I didn’t even plan to cry, the tears just started flowing when he asked why I was without make up and if I was having problems with my husband.”

“He was hugging me, consoling me and then he placed his hands on my bum.”

She paused.

“And….”?

“And nothing Jite, nothing. I stood there, I didn’t flinch, I didn’t remove his hands, I didn’t say he should remove it, I did nothing, not for several minutes and that’s why I hate myself so much right now. How could I stand there and do nothing? I have always imagined myself as the kind of girl that took no nonsense, as the type nobody except my husband could touch. But Jite, I let Femi touch me. I don’t know who I am again. I find it hard to recognize me.”

I said nothing. I just stared into space for several seconds.

“So where were you going ?” I asked

“He said there was this sightseeing organized by some of the guests. He wanted us to go too.”

“I see.”

“What else were you going to just stand there and let him do?”

“Nothing. I swear. He offered to take me back inside the room so we can talk but I said no.”

“The bastard.” I said through clenched teeth.

So Femi is one of those people I have heard about all my life. The Lizards who stand around waiting for cracks in a marriage’s walls so they can sneak in, and to think my wife just stood there and allowed another man touch her backside. My own property, the one I was supposed to be the only one that ever touched.

Easy Jite, don’t be too hard on her, remember why you are really here and be grateful that it didn’t get worse than that and above all be thankful that she told you.

“Anyway, I am grateful that you told me this Boye”. I said placing a hand on her exposed knee.

“I know you very well or at least I think I do. I know you are not the wayward type and I will like to believe that you won’t cheat on me. So I am not going to dwell on what happened between you and Femi. All I will say is you won’t be working with him ever again. I think as your husband. I can still say that right? I am still your husband or aren’t I?”

****

“Yes Jite. You are my husband.” I said warmth filling me and removing some of the guilt that I felt.

I don’t know if it was the hand that he placed on my knee or hearing myself call him husband but I was suddenly so aware of him. I smiled at him, my heart open and ready to make peace as my mind visualized a night of passion.

“Alright then Boye, so we are done with that. Now to the Skipper issue, I am sorry I didn’t tell you about her.”

“Did you read the note I gave you in your Mum’s house?”

“I don’t think I did. I didn’t. I hope I have not misplaced it though because I can’t even remember where I placed it.”

“Don’t sweat it. What I wrote there was that Bisade is not pregnant for me and that I am sorry once again about what happened with her. Right now, I am hoping you would forgive me totally. I know you still harbor hurt in your heart and that’s why you can’t trust me. I can’t blame you too much. It’s only human but Boye, we need trust if this is going to work. We can’t keep doing this or we would have to dissolve this marriage.”

“God forbid. Anyway, God will only forbid if Skipper’s pregnancy is not yours.” I added searching his face.

“No baby. I dated Skipper years ago. I am sorry I didn’t tell you about her, she was someone I wanted to forget. It was a turbulent relationship, she was not only a sex addict, she also had Borderline personality disorder, she was clingy, controlling too. It was more than I could handle. I just wanted to forget that one year of my life.

“Yet, you kept her pictures…”.

“I know it’s crazy to keep them, but I am the kind of person who finds it hard to trash pictures, messages or any other thing that connects me to someone. Even if I have forgotten that they exist.”

“So where did you meet her? School?”

“During NYSC.”

“Oh!….so she is the weirdo you once mentioned that you dated during service. The one you said got a nick name that had to do with a skipping rope just because she had an uncanny ability to skip classes and still pass.”

“The very one.”

“Oh! Oh my God!” I covered my mouth as the pieces fell into place.

“So that was why I thought the name was familiar.”

“You know she called the morning after we made love all night. That was back in Zanzibar. You were sleeping and you asked me to check who was calling you. I did and I saw Skipper and felt the name sounded familiar. Somehow I saw a text she sent to you where she said she loved you and had something to discuss with you, something that was very urgent. I decided to assume that it was Bisade’s name that you stored as Skipper.”

“Are you serious? So that’s why your behavior changed; I kept worrying about what it could be. Why didn’t you just ask me?”

“I don’t know. I just couldn’t. I also deleted the message and the call record and I felt ashamed afterwards and couldn’t tell you because of that.”

“You see why we need to talk to each other. To think you were obsessing over someone that means nothing to me.”

“Jite, you know this is so funny.” I said putting a hand to my mouth to suppress laughter.

“What’s funny?”

“As in I am a joke. I kept looking for flaws in her; a pimple, darkened knees or something and yet she had all of these issues and looking at her you wouldn’t know.”

“Yes, you wouldn’t. At least not until she opens her mouth.”

****

She was smiling. I felt all the tension in me ebb away. I stood up from the couch, pulled her up and embraced her.

“Jite, hold on.” She said sighing.

“We are not done”.

“Okay. What else is on your mind?”

“I think I may never be able to conceive.”

“And why would you think that?”

“It’s just a gut feeling that I have. Besides I have had enough time to take in since we got married.”

“Relax Omoboye. No need to worry. I want children, I am not going to pretend that I don’t but the fact remains that I want you more than I want children so not having them won’t change what I feel for you. It was part of the things I wrote in that note. Children or not, I will still love you. Worst case scenario, we will adopt children. I keep thinking that there are several children out there praying to God for a mummy and daddy, we could be the answer to their prayers especially if we can’t have ours.”

“Jite….hmmmm….are you sure? Because all these things are easier said than done ooo especially since we both know this is my fault. ”

“Shhh, Boye. Don’t go into that”

“You see. It still hurts you to think about it, so you are pushing the thoughts away.”

“No Boye. You are not entirely right. True, it hurts that we might have been parents by now but I am willing to let go of all of that and see what the future holds.”

“Jite, I just hope that future holds something positive because Mum promised to make my life a living hell if I don’t have a protruding stomach or a baby by our anniversary.”

I laughed out at her words.

“Are you for real?”.                                                                                                                             

“Yes , she said plenty things o about how she will make sure the whole world knows what I did and how my life will be miserable. Really scary things o”

“There is no problem baby. Your mum can’t cry more than the bereaved. Besides who says anything is wrong with you. It’s still early days Boye. We haven’t even been married six months yet. I need you to get over the paranoia and just relax or we could go for a test just to know if everything is okay.”

“Why does that sound so scary Jite?”

“Don’t be scared. Like I said earlier, I will still love you, Children or no Children”.

“Oh Jite, I don’t deserve you.” She said sitting on my laps and wrapping her arms around my neck.

“No, baby. I think we deserve each other. We are both crazy”.

*****

“I think I am the crazier one here Jite.” I said pressing against him.

“Well, since you insist, I  have to agree that you are the crazier one.”

“Something about us is odd, Jite. I feel like we always do this and then we go back to our quarrels.”

“You mean we always make up somewhere out of our own house and then not long after something else happens that takes us back to where we started.”

“Exactly!”

“So what do you suggest? That we stop making up?”

“I don’t know Jite. I am just tired of our wahala.” She said frowning.

I laughed at her words and tickled her ribs till she joined in the laughter.

“I have a suggestion.” I said when we stopped laughing.

“I think we should do a vow renewal.”

“No. Jite. That’s a no no. Vow renewal when our marriage is not even up to a year?”

“It doesn’t matter; even if it’s two days into marriage. What matters is we know why we want to do it. You and I know our wedding day vows weren’t exactly heartfelt. We know our wedding was just a show for our guests.”

“You are right though. So the vow renewal will be like the one where we say our heartfelt vows right? I think I like the idea.”

“I knew you would. We will organize something small, invite some of our friends and do it. No priests, no dressing up, just two souls baring their hearts to one another.”

“Won’t our friends suspect that something is wrong with our marriage?”

“Do you care if they do? Boye, we need to start paying less attention to what people think. Let them think what they will so long as we are happy.”

“Okay then. But I don’t agree with the no dressing up thing oo. Whatever is worth doing at all is worth doing well and so we are going to make it a grand party”.

“Seriously, Omoboye, I want  a small party.”

“Leave story jare husband and kiss me. Kiss me like your very life depends on it, then I want you to make love to me, do it like I am this bad girl that you want to set straight, like you want to punish me for all the stress I have been putting you through.”

“You have been watching porn?” I asked before shutting her up with my mouth.

*****

Sometimes you think you know what your husband can or can’t do and then he shocks you by doing the unexpected.

The time for Dinner came and we went down. We were all over each other, basking in the afterglow of great sex. I made sure we sat at a table far apart from everyone else. I wanted to avoid Femi as much as I could and hoped that he would do the same.

For a long time, we ate our dinner in relative seclusion. We were undisturbed save for the occasional one or two people who came around to chat with us. Femi was the last person I wanted to see, I still felt some shame for allowing him to touch me the way he did  and so I was very uncomfortable when he walked up to our table.

“Hello Mr&Mrs, you guys seem cozy; everything cool in conjugal land now?”

And then Jite spoke through clenched teeth.

“Femi, excuse us please.”

“Sorry to bother you. I was only being nice.”

Femi looked sincere as he spoke and I could have been fooled if I hadn’t recognized the mischievous glint in his eyes. Jite wasn’t impressed either.

“Thank you Femi, we appreciate your niceness. Now excuse us.”

“What’s with the attitude? Is it my fault that you guys are having problems?”

He said that aloud and my eyes darted around the room desperate to see if anyone was taking notice. They were; several pairs of eyes were trained on our table.

“No, it’s not your fault.” Jite replied. “But let me warn you, the next time you as much as lay a finger on my wife, you would wish you were never born.”

I fixed my eyes on Jite, my heart doing flip flops. I had never seen him that angry. His fists were clenched, there was saliva hanging at the far end corners of his mouth.

“Jite, please ignore him.” I pleaded. “Let’s not cause a scene.”

“Baby, stay out of this.”

“Wow, wow! Such honesty amongst couples. This is so cute.” Femi said.

“But Omoboye seriously? I can’t believe you told him about our small adventure this afternoon. Makes me wonder if you also told him about how I use to ram you so hard, you farted for …….”

He didn’t finish the sentence before Jite’s fist shut him up.

I was mortified. I wanted the ground to open and swallow me up. I still don’t know the one that affected me most; the shocked look on the faces of the other diners, the damage that Jite’s fist did to Femi’s mouth, the clicks of cameras as  pictures were taken or the look of excruciating pain on Jite’s face as he turned towards me.

P S: Ladies, do you think Boye should have told Jite about the bom bom incident? Do you think she would have been better off not talking?

 I find it hard to make up my mind on whether it’s better to hold back some things or spill all .

Not So Happily Married ….. Episode Eleven

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PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR PREVIOUS EPISODES

I never speed while driving, it’s a personal decision. I had vowed to myself after my father lost his life in a motor accident that nothing will make me speed or drive rough. But that afternoon, I ignored my vows and drove like someone who was being chased. I wanted to meet my wife at home if that was where she went to.

I would have been on time if not because I had decided to obey the traffic light on the highway just before my estate. I was driving in through one gate when I saw Femi’s car drive out of the other.

I parked, ran out and started yelling my wife’s name. There was no way she would hear but yelling made me feel better.

So she is going to Calabar. I thought. She had told me about the event earlier but had said she wasn’t interested in going.  I didn’t need to wonder what made her change her mind; I just didn’t understand how she could be so irrational.

Another woman would stay to ask questions, get angry or throw tantrums. Why do you always abandon me instead Boye? I muttered.

I decided to try her number again. I waited for it to ring, I willed it to ring, I begged it to not give the same not reachable message I had been getting while driving down but it wasn’t my lucky day.

“I have to go to Calabar too.” I decided

“Okay, relax first Jite.” I told myself. “Why on earth will you want to go to Calabar? For what na?”

“What will I be doing here? My life is going to be empty without Omoboye. The fact that we might not even talk throughout her stay there will only make me more miserable.”

“Oh my God, you sound pathetic.” I chided myself

“Is this what marriage does to people. Does marriage make an adult male so dependent, so wimpish or is it just that I have a problem?”

“Why did I get married, why did I marry Omoboye? Is this what the rest of my life will be like?

“Things do not have to remain this way” I said continuing my soliloquy.  “You are the man here. You can take charge. You need to make her know she can’t just walk out on you whenever she feels like it. Go to your house, take a bath, go out with your friends, go clubbing, do whatever. Just have fun. When she comes back, don’t allow her in until she begs. In fact pack her bags for her, let her meet them in the hallway.”

I laughed at my own words thinking one of my ancestors must have taken over my mind for a minute. Throw her bags out? Who does that these days?

Here is what you will do. I will swallow my pride and take the next available flight to Calabar. I will go to my wife, sit her down and force her to say everything on her mind.

With that, I started the car.

 

*****

I saw his car when we were driving out, I could have told Femi to stop the car. I think I wanted to only I didn’t. I knew I could quit the drama and demand explanations but I was growing fond of taking time apart when we have issues. It seemed like an easier way. 

Femi and I got to Tinapa late in the afternoon. Our flight which should have been for 12 P.M was delayed for an extra two hours for reasons we were left to imagine.

It wasn’t my first time in Tinapa but still I mouthed a “wow” upon entering the resort. My room overlooked the Sea and I thought of how much more beautiful it would be if Jite were around. Funny how I always think of him when I am having a good time. I thought.IMG-20120215-00573

The event slated for that day was over by the time we got there but we were still able to meet up with some key people in the industry. I couldn’t concentrate on anything, I just kept thinking of my husband. Why did I even leave Lagos? I wondered. Why didn’t I just talk to Jite?

It’s still Jite ooo, the guy that forgave me for killing his baby. Why didn’t I just hear him out? Who knows, maybe Skipper’s baby is not even his after all.

That would be nice to know wouldn’t it? I didn’t want to think of Skipper’s pregnancy because it only reminded me of my own failure to take in. Several thoughts had been running at the back of my mind; thoughts that perhaps I had damaged my womb. It even crossed my mind that perhaps, I was destined to have one child and I had wasted my only chance. I had Nollywood and the movies where they try to make us believe there was one place where you choose the number of children you would have to thank for that. But I kept pushing the negative thoughts back.

I think I should call him. I decided switching on my phone.

 

*****

There are days when it would seem like everything on earth conspired to make your life miserable. That day was one of such. I needed cash; I had more than I needed in my account only I couldn’t access my money. Every ATM that I checked had the same story to tell. “Issuer or switch inoperative” From the little I know, I understood it could only mean there was a problem with my bank’s network. I also knew things could remain that way for the rest of the day but still I had to go to Calabar. I had 5000 naira on me and I was sure there was no way I could get to Calabar with that. I thought of driving to my Mum’s place for help but decided I had to solve the problem on my own.

I drove back to the house confident that there would be some money lying around. Omoboye is a cash person, she doesn’t believe in using her ATM card although she has one. She believes that having cash at hand was still the most reliable way.

I checked the places where I knew she kept money and was glad to find an envelope which contained 15000 naira. It wasn’t much but at least I was sure of having enough to take a flight down. I told myself it was risky to depend on the fact that Omoboye would be there and I could share her hotel room.

Her phone has been switched off for a long time now, what if she intends to leave it that way? What if you can’t get through, where will you sleep?

The University of Calabar’s campus, the hotel lobby, the airport….anywhere. I replied myself with false confidence.

 

******

 

The text message from Boladale came in while I was trying to call Jite. She said something about how she finally found the courage to tell the father of her baby (my ex) that she was pregnant and that she had given him an ultimatum of seven days to tell his wife or she would. She ended the text message with “wish me luck babe”.

I did wish her luck only it was the negative type. Who is this new Boladale? I thought wondering how I didn’t know what she was capable of. Why would she want him to tell her? What does she hope to achieve?

But isn’t it better that she knows? A tiny voice whispered in my head

Is it? I replied myself wondering if I would want to know. It was easy to put myself in the shoes of my ex’s wife. I believed I was going through something similar too.

Do I really want to know If Skipper’s pregnancy is for Jite? I knew the answer was NO, a part of me would rather not hear the truth and I knew that was why I ran. I was afraid of hearing that he was responsible after all.

But you can’t run forever Boye; sooner or later you will have to face these issues.

I knew that and some part of me was ready to talk to Jite but his phone stayed unavailable.

 

****

I thought of Skipper all through the flight. What game is she playing? She is pregnant but still won’t leave me alone. What on earth does she want? I kept sighing. I was restless and uncomfortable despite the fact that the flight was a smooth one.

I thought of sending her a text message that read

 “Samantha Nkiruka Ofure Ismail, what do you want from me?”

 She was a contradiction just like her name. Born to an Edo/Igbo mother and a Fulani father, she had also been exposed to all three cultures. As with her physical beauty, that should have meant a beautiful character and mind but for the fact that something had twisted her. Sometimes I would wonder if it was because she had been raped by their house help when she was Eleven, other times I would think that perhaps it was because she had once been in an abusive relationship that lasted several years but most of the time I would conclude that it was most likely a combination of the two. Her parents had refused to prosecute the boy claiming their decision was to protect her; she had never forgiven them or herself for it. The boyfriend, a cultist did not only abuse her body and mind, he also made her participate in their initiation orgies.

After hearing about all she went through, it had been easy to understand why she was so addicted to sex and why despite having a gorgeous body, she had no respect for it. I did feel sorry for her and on some level wanted to help her heal but I knew I wasn’t that man. I didn’t have the patience and neither did I love her enough

I ruminated on her pregnancy thinking perhaps if the father of the baby decides to accept her she would leave me alone. I had not been too surprised when she had told me on her third call that she was pregnant and who she was pregnant for. She claimed the baby’s father wasn’t ready to accept her pregnancy and she didn’t care if he did or did not. I knew that was a lie, she had always been searching for acceptance and love. I could sense that not getting it was the reason she was bent in making my own life miserable.

Perhaps she thinks if she couldn’t be happy, I shouldn’t be also. But that was strange too. I thought of another text message I could send her but I knew I wouldn’t dare. I thought of saying. “Skipper, why don’t you just hunt the guys that messed up your life and ruin theirs? Why don’t you just leave me and my wife the hell alone?”

 

******

Femi called at 5pm that day that dinner was at 8.00pm and that he had arranged with some other guys for us to go sightseeing by 5.30pm. I wasn’t interested in anything and had even started contemplating leaving for Lagos early the next morning.  I asked him where we would be going and he mentioned the Calabar slave museum, the sea port and that we were also going to take a boat ride.  They all sounded exciting especially the slave museum part. I had once been told that it would blow my mind. Although I didn’t feel like doing anything at all; I told him I would be ready.

All I wanted to do was put the lights off and bury my head in a pillow. The room was perfect for such, with the lush furniture and the magnificent ambience; I could enjoy being depressed there only I was sure it was designed for happy things. I could imagine it as a love nest and that made me miss Jite more. Tomorrow morning I will be out of here. I decided. I need to talk to my husband about everything; my fears that I couldn’t trust him ever, my fears that I might be infertile.

 

****

I got to Tinapa around 5.15pm, I was scared for myself. I had just 5000 naira left on me. I knew there was no way I would get a hotel that cheap in the resort. Omoboye’s line was still not going. I didn’t know the name of the program she came for but I trudged on hoping that there won’t be so many things going on in the resort. It was deserted in a way that I liked. I had expected it to be busy and was pleased that it wasn’t, not only because it would make it easier to find Omoboye but also because it made it my ideal place for a vacation. Refreshing view of nature, clean fresh air just what I believe every Lagosian needed from time to time.

I asked for directions and was pointed in the way of the hotel where the participants of the beauty products exhibition were lodged. I summoned courage and walked up to the front desk.

“Hello madam.” I said ensuring that I sounded confident.

“Hello, you are welcome.” She said smiling. Good customer service. I filed that away as another reason to come on vacation later.

“Thank you lady. Errrm, my wife is here and I can’t get through to her right now. Her number is not reachable. We came to Calabar together but I had to take care of some business in town first. You see she is part of the beauty products exhibition thing and I decided to accompany her thinking we should make this a weekend getaway of some sort. The thing now is I need to know the room where she is.”

“I am sorry I can’t give you that information. It’s against our regulations. I would love to help in any other way. You could sit at the reception and keep trying her number.

I murmured thanks and proceeded to the reception. I made myself busy with the magazines there and also kept looking out for anybody who might know Omoboye.

“Hello there, aren’t you Omoboye’s husband? She didn’t say you were around. I also came in with my hubby. It’s our first time being in Calabar.”

Excited, I stood up to greet the speaker. I couldn’t remember her but was sure I must have met her somewhere. All that was unimportant, what mattered was someone knew who I was and had seen Omoboye.

“Quite a long time.” I replied smiling and giving her a warm hand shake.

“We didn’t actually come in together; I took another flight because I had to take care of some things before leaving Lagos.”

“Oh okay.”

“I am so happy to see you. I am in a fix here. My wife’s phone line is not going through and I don’t know what room she is in.”

“Oh, that is not a problem at all.  I can get that for you. I am in charge of logistics so I have a schedule of where everybody is. Let’s see.” She added opening the folder in her hands. “Your wife is on the fourth floor. Room 40B. “

“Thank you so very much ma. I am grateful.”

“It’s Sholape. I guess you’ve forgotten the name. You came along with Boye to our anniversary party last December and I was at your wedding too.”

“Oh, I am so sorry. I am very poor at remembering names and faces.”

“It’s no problem sir.”

“Thank you very much.” I said taking brisk steps towards the elevator.

 

****

It was 5.25pm. I was ready, I expected Femi to knock any minute. I sat in the darkened room running my palms over my dress. The dress I wore was something I wouldn’t have worn to an outing back home not to talk of an outing with the top shots in the beauty industry. Do I have to go? I wondered. Yes you have to. You have to leave this darkness and have some fun.

I opened the door immediately Femi knocked.

“No makeup?” He asked the moment he saw me walk out.

“Yes, Femi no makeup. Woman shall not live by makeup alone.”

“Hmmmm….. That’s strange coming from someone who makes up when going for a swim.”

“I’ve wanted to ask you this; what’s wrong with you? Are you and your husband having problems? There has been something about you all day, something dark and melancholy.”

“Femi, leave the poetry. Let’s go.”

“No, Boye talk to me. We are friends right?” He asked tilting my chin upwards.

“I can’t.” I whimpered feeling tears spring to my eyes before I could stop them.

“Its okay.” he said drawing me close.

I snuggled up to him and allowed him to comfort me.

“Stop crying Omoboye. We could go in and talk about it.”

“No.”

“Stop crying please”, he said rubbing my back and laying a hand on my buttocks.

I paused wanting to slap it off but I didn’t; at least not for several seconds. For some strange reason it felt good lying there.

“Let’s go.” I said breaking the contact after several seconds.

“We don’t have to go. “

“Femi, we either leave now or I go back into my room and lock myself in.”

 

*****

Omoboye’s dress was the first thing I saw as I entered the fourth floor. She said she hated this dress, why is she wearing it? I thought. It warmed my heart to see her in the dress. It was my gift to her for her last birthday before we got married and she had said it wasn’t good enough for her taste.

I stood at the elevator entrance and watched her walk down the lobby.

Femi saw me first.

He tapped her and pointed at me.

I smiled rushing towards her to give her a hug.

“Jite, what are you doing here?” She asked stepping aside to avoid my hug.

“Omoboye, I wanted to see you, I wanted us to talk.”

“And who said we can’t do that when I get back? I think you should leave.” She added.

 

 photo credit: Toyinfabs’ Album

 

Not So Happily Married ……. Episode Ten

Hi All,

We have done Ten episodes so far. I can hardly believe this. That means TEN WEEKS. Wow! Thank you for being here every week. I love you. Mwaaaah.

This Episode is dedicated to my brand new Nephew. Mobolaji Oluwadamisi Omoikudu Daniel-Bello. Aunty Toyin loves you so very much. May God always be your strength and shield. Amen.

black-couple-laying-on-bed-460x276

        PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR PREVIOUS EPISODES

She walked towards me with her arms outstretched and combined with the smile on her face; you would think I was her long lost sister.

So this calls for a hug? I asked myself as she wrapped her hands around me. Still smiling she drew back and inspected me from head to toe.

She turned to Jite when she was done. He was still looking angry but she acted like she didn’t notice.

“Jite, you picked a very pretty one this time.” She said giving him what looked to me like an intimate smile.

That is it. I am done. I thought clenching my teeth. Who told her she could date my man behind my back and still act patronizing?

“Jite, I am leaving, I will see you later.” I said walking away.

I didn’t look back to see his expression but if he had called my name I would have heard.

******

You would think I was dumb. I didn’t say a word throughout the encounter, not even when Omoboye walked away. Skipper left right after Omoboye did giving me a jubilant look before she entered her car.

Is our marriage jinxed? I thought as I sat back inside the car. Why is it that every time we make some progress something happens that reverses it all? The weekend was supposed to be spent in relaxation. We were supposed to talk and sort all our issues but then Skipper decided to show up. How did she even know where we were? I wondered. Was she tailing me? It wasn’t something that was beyond her. She was psychotic enough to do worse.

Skipper! She was someone I had hoped Omoboye would never meet. She was someone I never wanted to have anything to do with. Again.

We met during my one year National Youth Service. I was determined to marry her and have three kids with her all in the first five minutes that we met. It was a classic case of Infatuation at first sight even though at that time I thought it was Love. I had been standing under the sun for hours waiting to be registered for the orientation camp and there were just about ten more people before it would be my turn when this lady walked up to me pleading with her eyes that she would like to enter the space in front of me. It wasn’t like she needed to plead, I was taken already just by looking into her eyes. Who wouldn’t? Not with her kind of looks. She had the kind of face, frame, skin and body that you get when you mix Edo, Igbo and Fulani genes.

I didn’t even think it through; I just motioned for her to get in. It didn’t matter that I had to contend with the other people on the queue especially the females. I made feeble attempts to make up a story about how she had been there before but the looks they shot me said they understood why I couldn’t say no.

I stayed glued to her even after registration. I was the dude who took her bags to the female hostel, the one who ensured that she got two buckets of clean water every day. I also took her feeding as my responsibility. She didn’t like the food served in the dining hall. She said it wasn’t up to standard, I agreed with her. She was too beautiful to eat the kind of food they served and so I took care of breakfast, lunch, dinner and the snacks and drinks she took whenever we were on the parade ground. She rewarded me with her attention; we spent almost every free time together. We wouldn’t go to our respective hostels even after the bells for lights out had been rung. We would remain entwined in one of the numerous dark corners until a Soldier chanced upon us or sleep became too hard to hold.

She wanted me to make love to her the first day we met. I declined. I believed she was too beautiful for that. I told her she was a delicious dish that one was meant to savor. She didn’t seem too happy about that and by the third day she threatened to give her attention to other guys who needed it. And so I obliged her even though I would have preferred that we do it on a regular bed. We had to make do with the parade ground and concrete floors. That first day and on subsequent days she brought a wrapper along from her hostel room which we spread on the floor or field whenever we wanted to make love. I told her how I felt, but she laughed it off saying we weren’t the only ones after all. I felt she was more beautiful and classier than all those other girls and I told her so but still it made no difference. That was when I started hearing the alarm bell that must have been ringing the moment she started pestering me for sex. What kind of girl does not mind being slept with on a parade ground? But I ignored my fears and we continued our escapades.

It wasn’t until we got posted to the same ministry and we started living together that I realized she was a sex addict. Skipper just had to have sex; nothing could stand in her way. Not menstrual periods, not fasting, not Malaria or Typhoid, not even having an audience. Nothing. I couldn’t keep up and wanted to break the relationship but I couldn’t not after she told me she had borderline personality disorder and could commit suicide if I left her. So I was stuck with her for the rest of the service year. I was ecstatic as NYSC drew to an end especially after she told me her parents wanted her to go for her Masters programme in Cyprus.

We parted on the passing out parade ground. She made me promise I was going to call her every day. I made the promise and a host of others that I had no intention of keeping. I liked her a lot, she was and is still very beautiful but she was much more than I could handle. She however wouldn’t let me be. She became my official stalker, I had to close my Facebook account and even change my email address because of her but still she always had a way to get in touch. She would use my Mom, friends and anyone else that could give her access to me. That went on for two years and then there was silence. Three years of silence. No calls, no mails. Nothing, until the day Omoboye and I got back from Zanzibar.

My heart had skipped a beat when I saw “Incoming call from Skipper” on my phone. I was never going to delete her number; I wanted to always know it was her calling so I could ignore the call. But that day I picked it and then she screamed my name saying how glad she was to have found me again. I didn’t ask why she had to call after I had given thanks to God that she was gone forever. She apologized for not keeping in touch for so long saying that after her Masters programme she took up a humanitarian job in Asia, something that had to do with educating children in remote villages. So why did you leave the needy children of Asia or did you just wake up one morning and realized there were children with greater needs in Africa? I wanted to ask her that but I didn’t instead I asked why she was calling.

“Jite that hurts me; you shouldn’t be asking me that. You are the only man I have ever loved and you know that. It wasn’t like I ever forgot you, I thought of you all the time and when I got back I wanted to call but I decided it wasn’t time yet. But then a few days ago, I was quite bored and I decided to check a blog that a friend told me about. Going through the blog, I saw a link about some popular make up artist’s wedding and when I opened the link I saw you Jite.”

She said the last few words in a pained voice. I knew what was coming even before it started.

“Why Jite? Why would you marry another woman? That should have been me you were holding Jite. We had so much promise. But anyway let’s leave all that. I think I am over it now, although I cried for hours after seeing your wedding pictures, but I am fine really. I will just like you to do me a favor. Can I meet her? I will like us to be friends.”

“Friends ke? I wouldn’t even allow you guys to meet.” I replied ending the call. But Skipper kept calling every day and her request was the same every time. She wanted to meet my wife.

I started the car deciding it was better to go look for Omoboye. I decided to go the house praying I would meet her there. I could imagine what was going through her mind. She probably thought the pregnancy Skipper was carrying was mine.

Why is it so easy for my wife to believe the worst of me? I am so not trusted. I sighed driving away from the Supermarket.

*******

Getting a cab wasn’t hard, there was a taxi park few yards from the Supermarket and I hopped into the first one I saw.

“Where?” He asked.

“Just keep driving towards Ajah.”

“Where in Ajah?”

“Just keep moving.”

“We charge 2,000 naira for anywhere in Ajah oo.”

“You talk too much o jare. Just move the car.”

I was calm. It was strange. My typical reaction would have been to cry or tear my hair out. But I was calm. I knew what I had to do. It was to get out of Lagos for a few days. I needed to be out of Jite’s reach at least for a few days and I knew just where to go. Calabar. I should have been there that weekend. There was a fashion and beauty exhibition organized by an international clothing line that was being held in Tinapa and I had been invited together with the photographer I work with. Femi.

He had been excited about us going together but I had declined thinking it would be better to spend the weekend with Jite.

Calabar is where I need to be. I decided. I gave the cab driver the directions to our house praying I would be able to pack my things before Jite would get home. I placed a call to Femi and was glad he hadn’t left. He was about leaving for the airport and I told him to get me a ticket and come pick me up on his way to the airport.

However, there was something else I needed to do before I leave. A pregnancy test. It was time to know I decided. If Skipper was pregnant then it was only fair that I should be pregnant too. Let’s see who Jite will pick between his wife and mistress. I thought.

I was glad to see Jite wasn’t around when I got home. I had a short time for everything I wanted to do. Jite could come home any minute. I had bought some Pregnancy test strips on my way to the house and grabbing three, I rushed into our bathroom.

Fifteen minutes and three used strips later, I had what had to be the result in my hand. It was negative. There is nothing in this stomach after all. I murmured. I had no idea how much I wanted to be pregnant until that moment.

“Three months and you are not pregnant. You are barren Boye.” I wailed images of several childless women that I knew flashing across my vision.

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