Please note that this series contains some sexually explicit content, violence and offensive language. It is not appropriate for children nor an immature and sensitive audience.
A SMALL WORLD - SEASON TWO
Copyright © Ufuomaee
It had been two weeks since Keisha had bombarded Ifeanyi’s phone with her scandalous pictures and messages. She’d really been expectant of an explosion or some feedback at least, but up till now, she’d heard nothing from him. It was time she made her next move. But what will it be?
She really had to be careful with her strategy, because she just had one chance to pull off a convincing performance. She’d thought of taking her campaign on Facebook, but later reasoned that that would be jumping the gun. They’d have their defences up in no time, and she would lose the opportunity to inflict the maximum amount of pain. No, she couldn’t afford to be hasty.
Now she thought of it…maybe sending those pictures wasn’t the way to put her best foot forward. Maybe you should apologise… Hey, that’s not a bad idea! He won’t even see it coming… She could blame it on the alcohol, she thought, with a smile.
Keisha picked up her phone, and was about to call, when she remembered the time. At 11am on a Sunday morning, he would probably be in Church. She’d make the call later.
Mary and Ifeanyi were on their way home from Church. It had been a lovely service, as usual. A female guest Preacher had visited the Church, and she’d taught on raising children in the 21st Century with the fear and admonition of the Lord. It was a much needed inspiration for Mary, who was beginning to love parenting, and looking to learn from as many as were willing and able to impart wisdom to her. She’d gone forward to meet the woman afterwards, and express her gratitude for the sermon.
Mary looked back at her children who were asleep in the back-seat and smiled. The journey home always made them doze off, which was nice for her. When they got home, they usually continued to nap for one good hour, giving Mary time to relax and do other things. Sandra, their nanny, was looking out the window, while Ifeanyi drove quietly. She admired him as he drove.
Ifeanyi took the turn into the road that led to their home at Victoria Garden City. He could feel Mary’s eyes on him. He turned to her and smiled, his hand instinctively going to her thigh. He rubbed it gently as he asked, “You okay?”
Mary smiled and nodded. “Yeah, thanks.” She sighed. There was something weighing on her heart, but she couldn’t remember what it was. Maybe it wasn’t that important, but she prayed that she would remember it later.
At that moment, Ifeanyi’s phone began to ring. They were just getting to their house, so he let it ring until he had parked. By then, the person had cut the call. Ifeanyi carried Chukwudi, while Mary and Sandra carried Abigail and Uche inside the house.
Ifeanyi’s phone rang again. He placed Chukwudi down to sleep, before withdrawing the phone from his back pocket. He was surprised to see who it was. He’d intended to call her over the last two weeks, but just kept procrastinating, until he completely forgot about her. He should pick her call now.
“So, how was Church?” Keisha asked. Somehow, she didn’t know how to get to the “I’m sorry” part.
“It was fine, Keisha. Did you go to Church?”
“Okay. So, what’s this call about?” Ifeanyi sat down in his lounge. He’d kicked off his shoes, and was preparing to watch some television on the sofa with Mary.
“I’m sorry,” Keisha said, awkwardly. “About the pictures and message I sent on Valentine’s Day…”
Ifeanyi swallowed. He was the one who owed her an apology, and up till now, he hadn’t been able to find the words to say sorry. And here she was, apologising. “Thanks, Keisha. I appreciate that. And I’m sorry too.”
Keisha was taken aback. “You are? What for?”
Mary had been quiet, listening to Ifeanyi’s side of the conversation. She now remembered what had been bothering her. She knew the call was important and prayed that Ifeanyi would handle it with wisdom.
Ifeanyi sat up straight and swallowed. “I feel bad for how I treated you, and all that’s happened between us. I really wish I could fix all I did… I know you’re hurt, and I just want you to know that that guy is dead. The guy that did that to you is no more.” Mary petted his back, and sighed.
Keisha swallowed. Was he really apologising? After all this time? What difference should that make now? She realised she’d been quiet for too long. “Thanks. I guess.”
Ifeanyi thought he’d done enough, and was tempted to leave it at that. But his spirit wouldn’t let him off the hook. “I was wondering if you’d be free for dinner some time. So we can talk…”
“I’d like that,” Keisha heard herself say with a bit too much enthusiasm.
“Cool… How about next weekend?”
Keisha thought for a while. She had plans with Gbenga. Plus, she didn’t want to be over eager. She wanted to be in control. Since he was feeling apologetic, she wanted to know much she could milk him for. “Let me get back to you…”
“Okay… No problem. Thanks for the call and apology,” Ifeanyi replied, with a smile. He felt lighter. This was good. He was optimistic.
On this Sunday afternoon, Gbenga had gone over to his elder brother’s place to watch a football match. He brought along a cold six pack of beer and some cigars, as was his custom. Femi’s friend, Andrew, was also there.
Femi had a neat condo, which would not have been bad for a bachelor, if he was still a youth. But he was almost 40 years old, and he was seriously considering moving into a proper house, more befitting a man of his statue. However, he had been waiting to find the right woman first, before he made the move. Someone who could turn a house into a home.
He had been dating someone last year, who he had been thinking of settling down with. That was before he bumped into his ex-girlfriend, Tolu, at the New Year Eve’s Service. His girlfriend, Angela, had invited him to her Church. On New Year’s Day, he had broken up with her, saying he didn’t want to waste her time, and he didn’t see a future for them. He was ready for marriage, and he wanted to do so this year. And to top it off, he had found the one.
Surprisingly, she’d taken the break up well. What could she have done, anyway? He’d broken up with her over the phone. He was cowardly like that. He’d expected some anger, but she had simply hung up on him.
Now, February was at an end, and the woman he had chosen had refused to give him another chance. He thought of what Victoria had said to him, when he’d picked up Tomi for their Valentine’s outing. You don’t fight for what you love… What more could he do?
It was true that he easily ran away, when it seemed things were not working out. He had run from Tolu when he knew he had messed up, before she could find out. Then he had left his marriage to Victoria, after years of living in misery and discontent. And now, he had one last chance to win Tolu back, and he was about to give up because he couldn’t face the heat of her anger… Maybe Victoria was right. Maybe it was time to fight for love.
“Yeaaahh!!!” Femi’s thoughts were interrupted by Gbenga and Andrew’s shouts of jubilation, as their favoured team scored a goal. Gbenga had pulled Femi into his arms excitedly.
“Mehn! Did you see that? That was a mad kick,” Gbenga rejoiced, taking a swig of his beer.
Femi just nodded, trying to get out of his head, and appreciate the company of his brother and friend.
“Mehn, you’re dull today,” Andrew said. “What is it…? Women, Business or Money?”
Gbenga giggled at the options Andrew presented, in his bid to help Femi resolve his problem.
Femi smiled. “I was just thinking about something Victoria said…”
“Oh yeah… What did she say?” Andrew asked.
“That I never fight for love.”
The men were quiet. Gbenga spoke eventually. “Ummm… She does have a point.”
Femi just nodded.
“Are you thinking about getting back with her?” Andrew asked. Femi turned to him and raised his brow, with a frown on his face. “Well, I was going to say I saw her with Dwaine Reynolds last weekend. They looked serious.”
“Dwaine Reynolds? The Footballer?” Gbenga gasped.
“Yup! I was surprised. You never see Dwaine with just one woman…”
For some reason, Femi was uncomfortable about the news of his ex-wife with a celebrated Footballer. He didn’t think he was jealous. Like, he’d lived with her for seven years, and every day, he hated that he had been too cowardly to concede to marriage because of a baby. He knew her inside out. She was as annoying as she was beautiful. So why did he suddenly feel like punching something?
It’s because she was moving on before him. That must be it. He really thought he would have settled down by now, and things just weren’t going according to plan. But what plan? He didn’t have any. It was time to change that, he decided.
God, I can’t do this. I can’t. I’ve tried. I’ve tried to love him unconditionally… I really have.
But he doesn’t care. God, he is so wicked! He lies right to my face. He thinks he’s so smart. God, what kind of a man did I marry?
Please forgive me, Lord. Please forgive me…but I can’t continue like this. I can’t believe that You would ask me to. I don’t understand You, if you would have me stay, pretending that I don’t know and acting like I don’t care that my husband is a cheating bastard!
Temi cried hot tears in her bedroom. Her eight weeks pregnancy bump was beginning to show, and she still hadn’t told Oyinda that she was pregnant. She was still brooding over whether to keep it or not. She was fighting with her Faith about the right thing to do, as a pregnant wife, who knew her husband was carrying on affairs with other women.
She’d received the message he had mistakenly sent on Valentine’s Day. At first, she didn’t understand it. The background noise was much and his voice was distant. But being already suspicious of him, she was determined to hear what he had said. It had been hard, but after several attempts at listening, she’d been able to decipher what he had said. And she’d been heartbroken.
She’d heard him tell his girlfriend that he was divorced, and she had been the one to cheat on him. She’d been so mad she’d thought she would kill him when he returned home. But by the time he did, she knew that her only strength was in being as clueless as he thought she was…until she knew what to do about her situation. Until she knew how she would deal with him for cheating her out of a happy marriage.
So, she’d pretended when he came home, that she hadn’t heard his conversation, and that she didn’t know what a scumbag he was. She’d been pretending ever since, and now she was going crazy with the game of pretence. She was going crazy thinking of him in bed with other women, while she was powerless and pregnant for him, and obligated by culture and religion to forgive him and fight for her marriage and her children.
What about her? What about what she wanted? What about justice?!
Oh, God, help me! She cried. Tell me what to do… Show me what to do. God, please! I can’t keep this pregnancy. I can’t live this lie…
In that moment, she felt it. It started as a small trickle. She was shocked when she touched her private part and felt the thick liquid. She ran to the bathroom, where she continued to bleed out what had been her child. And Temi cried.
To be continued…
Photo credit: www.pixabay.com
REGISTER FREE to catch up with my Members and Patrons, who are eight episodes ahead.