Tag Archives: jide

It’s Another Novocaine Saturday #1


I’ve missed being here a great deal and I’m glad to be back. I was ready to resume last week but something happened and I had to postpone. I am good, but the devil wants to stop me from writing. I’ve had a wrist injury for sometime now and just two days ago, I discovered my other arm was swelling above the elbow. Please pray for me that this mumu satan will leave me the heck alone.


Now, concerning The Fourth Finger, I didn’t tell you guys I will be returning with it this June. Hian! I was surprised at seeing your messages, I had to go back and check the posts in which I mentioned when I would have the book ready. And I didn’t say I will make it blog posts either. I only mentioned that I would return with It’s Another Saturday and Novocaine Knights. So, I don’t know where you people got your info from o. Please feel free to quote me and I’ll apologize. Lol.

But the book comes out next month, so stay tuned.

For this one, I didn’t want to call it It’s Another Novocaine Saturday but seems like the name fits, so let it be so.

Lastly, if you haven’t been receiving newsletters, it’s because I disabled the plugin. I have over eight hundred subscriptions in the Mailpoet service alone and yet the click rate is about 10%, meaning people don’t open the emails. And what’s sad is that some people will unsubscribe and they’ll click on the option that I’m spamming their emails when they registered on their own. Hence, my account was flagged and I was told to go pro and start paying. But why pay when the response rate is low? I had to shut it down. My apologies.

Anyways, enough of the long tori. Here’s It’s Another Novocaine Saturday. If you haven’t read It’s Another Saturday and Novocaine Knights, then you need to catch up HERE and HERE.



It’s another Saturday…and we are the proud parents of Jiney Fumnanya Onuora. She comes to us on a cold night, exactly a week before she is due. I drive home from work after long hours of doing nothing in my office, battling with the cold that seeps into my bones like a bachelor who has been lacking the warmth of the finer sex for a long time. I stop on the way to buy roasted corn mostly because I am hungry but also, I need the heat. I had discovered a long time ago from numerous visits to movie theaters that chewing when cold keeps one warm.

I let down my window and my mouth waters at the sight of roasting cobs of corn. A man is selling them. A regular customer who grumbles about life a lot. All I ask him is how things are going with business and he launches into this long talk of how much the sack of corn he bought cost him.

“Eight thousand naira!” he exclaims, fanning the flame beneath his merchandise with a plastic fan. “And yet they gave me unripe maize!”

I feel sorry for him but it stops there. I’m not interested in his story. Everybody complains about the economy these days. It’s depressing. I’ve been affected by the crunch as well, having just made a down payment for the present house Honey and I live in, a colorful four-bedroom flat with a large compound, two mango trees and a small lawn in the backyard that threatens to turn into a swamp. Honey and I love it, anyways. Kalu had bought the house from some politician years ago but recently decided to put it up in the market after renovation.

“You should buy it, Jide,” he said to me. “You’re big enough to own your house.”

I had looked at my brother who was the business mogul amongst us and was probably richer than my dad, and asked how much the house cost. He replied with a sinister laugh when he called out the price. Adding ‘only’ to the figure as he said it slowly, knowing well that I could not buy it all at once. Take away the religious side of Kalu and you have a pompous, black ass that always subtly makes his younger brothers feel they’re not worthy to fill his shoes.

Well, in keeping to my own male pride, I tell him I am interested in the house. We haggle over the price and settle for a payment plan that will span over five years. We shake hands. A month later, I drag Honey out of bed early in the morning, blindfold her and bring her to the house. She falls in love instantly, dancing through the rooms with her bulge and filling her head with decor ideas. Over the course of two months, we fix the place and move in just as Honey gets into her ninth month. We don’t mind the quietness of the empty rooms. Our sanctuary is our bedroom and once we’re in it, the world outside ceases to exist.

I buy my corn, two cobs of what I have been told is soft. I ask him to give me ube worth a hundred bucks and the guy packages two miserly things and starts to tell me about how the price has gone up.

“Make it two hundred.”

He adds three more and lets me know he is doing it for the sake of my beautiful wife and unborn kid. I show appreciation that is not from my heart and head home. When I get in, Honey takes all the ube, leaving me with only one, and feasts on the softest corn.

For a moment, I am annoyed. This is a woman that gives me hell daily just because I knocked her up, demands the most ridiculous things at the oddest times and now, she’s eating the hot, juicy corn I bought to keep me warm from the never-ending cold spell she abandoned me to just because ‘sex is too disgusting’!

“Honey?” I call, after watching her attack my night snack like a piranha.

“What?” She throws her hands open. She is about to act oblivious to my pain, and as much as I want to let her feel my anger, I let it slide. A plastic chair before my reading table welcomes me into its stiffness as if to say, “bro, I feel your pain.”

I sit and begrudgingly begin to eat my one miserable ube and hard corn. The man deceived me about its softness. I wonder why I never learn. As I eat, I am forced to watch something on the History channel. Honey has a weird taste in television programs. I wonder what’s so intriguing about Egyptian pyramids and sphinxes at this time of the evening.

I endure the moment that seems like it will never end but only turns out to be less than thirty minutes.

“Can I watch something else now?”

“Sure, hotstuff.”

She flings the remote control at me and resumes the activity she was engaged in before I came in – picking leaves off waterleaf stalks for the afang soup she plans to make the next morning. The soup is her third trimester craving. After watching Mary prepare it once, she learned to do it herself and now falls into the habit of preparing it twice a week.

She sits on our bed, propped up on a stack of pillows, legs spread apart and the bowl of waterleaves before her. She is telling me about Yazmin being suspicious of Emeka seeing another girl. There are messages, according to Yazmin. I shake my head, no. Emeka is not cheating on his wives. Honey thinks so too. She feels Yazmin is just being insecure because Emeka spends more time with Tola who recently announced that she was pregnant.

Honey stretches out her feet and twists a little to the right. I look at her and smile, my initial anger at her unable to fight off my affection. Exhaustion claims her pregnant frame. She is burdened by that restlessness pregnant women are known to have towards the end of their term when they begin to feel they have carried their babies for nine years. Honey complains every day and I am now quite used to her whines. I always tell her to enjoy it because a time will come when she will miss it.

“Miss being pregnant?” she would reply. “Can’t you see how ugly and fat I am?”

She is neither ugly nor fat. In fact, the pregnancy has been good on her, even in this final stage. She is undoubtedly the most beautiful expectant mother I have seen. And my fans seem to agree. On my blog, monthly, I give updates on how the pregnancy progresses. Everyone is expectant as we are. Friends and family give more than the support we need. There is already a couples’ fight amongst our friends over who would be Jiney’s godparents but because none of them are catholic, we are considering asking the Ditorusins to do the honors. Honey and I have become quite close to them over the past seven months. Despite the age and status difference between Dominic Ditorusin and I, he considers me someone he can count on.

Genesis and Honey feel like they share some things in common, especially their history of being treated unfairly by family. They also like to sit over lunch and talk about the different countries they have visited. Genesis seems to be the one more invested in the friendship. Maybe it is because she is too way up the ladder of success to have any true friends. She desires to be let into the circle of my friends’ wives but Celia and the gang gave her the silent treatment on their first meet and she has since withdrawn. I believe they are intimidated by her wealth and refinement. They fail to see that she is a simple woman. Sometimes too down to earth, one would think she is pretending.

“Oh Lord,” Honey mumbles under a yawn, “I am so tired.”

“Then abandon the vegetables.”

“I’m almost through.” She yawns again, stretching out her arms. I do not listen to her. I walk to the bed and take the vegetables away to the kitchen. When I return to the bedroom I find a look of confusion on her face.

“What’s wrong?”

“I feel wet between my legs,” she tells me. “Like I’m peeing on myself.”

“Are you?”

“No, I’m not.” Her confusion switches to panic. “What if I’m bleeding, Jide? It just keeps coming out like water.”

“Then maybe it’s water. There’s only one way to find out. Lie down.”

“I’m scared.”

“Do you feel any pain?”


“Just lie down.”

She obeys me and from quick observation I can tell that her water has broken. I get a pair of latex gloves to investigate further. Interestingly, she is 5cm dilated. I pull out my fingers and look at her panicked face curiously.

“What’s wrong, hotstuff?”

“Nothing, sugams.” I smile. “The baby is on the way.”


“Get up. Let’s get you to the hospital.”

I help her up, change her clothes and just when we’re about to leave, she touches me. I look at her. She has a familiar wild look in her eyes.

“What’s that look, sugar lips?”

“Let’s do it here.”

For a second, I’m thinking she’s telling me that we should make love. But I look deeper into the eyes of the woman I have grown to understand over the course of seven months and realize she is telling me she wants to have the baby at home and not in the special birthing unit the hospital has prepared for her.

“Are you pulling my legs?”

She shakes her head, smiling wildly. “Jide, we have this new, beautiful house, everything we need to birth the baby and no noise. Think about it. No noise. If we go to the hospital, we have to deal with all your colleagues who will want in on the action. Not to talk of friends and family. But this is just us, hotstuff. You, me and Jiney. It’s a story you’ll always love to tell.”

She makes a compelling point but she’s wrong on one thing. I do not have everything I need to bring my first child into the world. I take Honey’s hands in mine.

“Are you feeling any pain yet?”

“Just a little. Nothing major.”

“Good. Let me dash off to the hospital…”

“No, no, no, no, no. Don’t leave me, Jide.” She clutches my arm.

“Hey, I’m just dashing off to pick a few things…”

“You’re the one who always says a baby can be born anywhere. All I need is to push and for you to catch her. Let’s just do it now. Please, don’t go.”

I laugh. “There’s no traffic. Nothing will delay me. I promise, I’ll be back in thirty minutes.”


“I promise.”

“You’re sure?”

“I’m sure.”

“Okay, okay.” She pulls me closer. “Kiss?”

I kiss her, lingering. I’m excited as she is but I don’t show it.

“Thirty minutes,” she reminds me.

“Thirty,” I repeat, running out.

Now, here’s where you think something goes wrong, like I get stuck in traffic or like the police arrest me because they’re so stupid or like Honey goes into quick labor or like she gets one complication or the other and the story turns gloomy.

Nope. Nothing bad happens. The twist is, I get to the hospital, pick what I need and dash back home to see Honey watching the E! channel, sitting on a towel and eating prawn crackers.


Not really. I’ve had patients like her. One woman in particular walked into my office, told me she was in labor while chatting with her husband on Whatsapp. Before I could get her a bed in the maternity ward, her baby was already bearing down. She gave birth less than five minutes later without breaking two sweats.

“Hi, baby!” Honey waves at me and I hurry towards her.

“Get up. Your water has broken. You can’t be sitting on a towel like that. You can risk infection.”


I help her up. “Let’s go to the room.”

“Don’t think I’m not feeling pain. I am. I’m just not shouting.”

“On a scale of one to ten…”

“Ten being the highest, I’d say the pain is seven.”

I stop and stare at her. She has a high threshold for pain but this is becoming strange.

“You’re sure it’s a seven?”

She nods. I don’t believe her until I check her cervix again and realize that she has progressed fast. The baby will arrive sooner than I imagine. I say nothing to her as I clear the bed and make sure everything is set for Jiney’s birth. To Honey, it’s all fun and games. She resumes watching the E! channel while I sit beside her and record her contractions. It doesn’t take long for them to become intense and for her to begin to feel real pain. Things escalate speedily in such a short while that I hardly have time to put my thoughts together. One minute she’s laughing at something someone said on TV; the next minute she’s screaming in agony; the minute after that, I’m asking her to push.

Jiney comes into this world at exactly eleven minutes to eleven pm. At the first sight of her, with her little arms thrust out, fingers clutching the air, face with an expression of what-the-fuck, my eyes moisten up. When I place her on Honey’s chest, she lets out her first scream and Honey joins her in a sob.

What follows after is a blur of happiness to me. I only come to my wits after both mother and baby are clean and comfortable. I lie beside them and take a selfie. The funniest thing happens when three of us fall asleep with the cannon camera I had kept on my reading table recording the priceless moment. To me, this is the definition of marriage and family. Last year, Honey and I walked into a lifetime contract as novices. We didn’t have a script and we just sort of took each day as it came, so I’m not surprised that Jiney’s arrival is much the same way.

At about half-past three, Jiney wakes up with a cry and parenting begins.

“Is her diaper soaked or is she hungry?” Honey asks, staring at her.

“She’s fine,” I assure Honey. “She just needs to be in her bed.”

“I want to feed her. I want to know what it feels like.”

I oblige the new mom. She sits in a special nursing chair that has a matching stool on which she can place her feet. I guide her on the process of breastfeeding. It doesn’t go smoothly and I don’t expect it to. Besides, Jiney is not hungry. We place her in her cot and stand over it, watching her until she goes back to sleep.

“She’s so pretty. Boys are going to swoon,” I say.

“Like crazy. She has my lips.”

“No, I have your lips.”

I pull Honey close for a kiss. “Finally, the sex ban will be lifted. I can’t believe you starved me throughout.”

“Sex irritated me. Even people kissing on TV had a smell that always made me nauseous.”

“Come on, let’s get to bed.”

I turn off the Cannon camera, we slip beneath the sheets and excitedly go through the amazing moment we just partook in. We had planned for an elaborate birth experience with family and friends present, video coverage and all of the pageantry one would expect from us. But in the end, I think we both wanted it to be about us and our child.  Before we drift into sleep, I go on Instagram and put up the photo we took earlier, captioning it:

When you’re both the father and the midwife. Our little princess is here! Unto us Jiney is born.

#Jiney #ProudParents #ChildbirthWithoutFear #Homebirth #HappyFamily #Grateful.

A few smileys are added and I call it a night, switching off both our phones for the sake of sanity.

But the silence doesn’t last very long. At 6am, someone is banging on our front door. Honey clutches the blanket, poking her head out.

“Who do you think it is? Nne? Tola? Celia? Mary? Yaz? Saratu?”

“All of them.”

We giggle, not wanting to wake Jiney.

“I’ll get the door,” I say, standing up. Honey also leaves the bed but only to check on Jiney.

“Jideofor!” I hear my mother’s voice outside the moment I step out of the bedroom. “I’ll break this door o!”

I also hear another voice I can’t quite pick out. When I open the door, I find the old woman in the company of her three daughters-in-law. They all don’t look pleased with me.

“What is wrong with you, Jidenna? How dare you go and have my granddaughter without me knowing?!”

“Hi, mom.” I smile. I haven’t seen her in a while. I stretch out my hands to hug her but Tola interrupts by walking past me, into the house, calling out Honey’s name.

“Congratulations, Jideofor.” Elsie smiles calmly. Her face is still swollen with sleep.

“Thanks, Elsie.”

I move aside and let her through.

“I’m so not talking to you and Honey.” Yazmin follows her in and I’m left to face my mom’s indignation alone. She immediately dishes it to me in Igbo.

“Is it the latest style now for one’s daughter-in-law to have a baby quietly and the news is first announced on the internet?”

I laugh. “No, ma.”

“Then, what is it? What did I do bad to you and Erhinyuse that you did not call me when she went into labor? You know she is a first time mother and she needs me and her sisters by her side.”

“Mom, I’m a midwife.”

“You’re a man!” she reminds me in a tone as if to tell me that men are of a lower species to women.

“Can you just come in and see your granddaughter without all this drama, Nne?”

“I’ll never forget this.” She points at me. I take the pointed finger and kiss it.


She walks in and I follow her, putting my arms around her as we walk. We enter my bedroom to find the women all surrounding Jiney. There’s cooing and ‘awwwing’. The moment my mom holds her granddaughter, she goes into prayer mode, leaving us with the job of adding ‘amen!’ at every ten seconds or so. After that, she hands her phone to Elsie, telling her to take photos of her and Jiney.

“You will put this up on that your instant something abi?” she asks me, taking a pose.

“Yes, ma.”

“And hashtag it well, biko. You can say ‘my mom already here for ‘omugwo’ things’.”

“Nne!” Elsie says good-naturedly.

“Yes o. Grandma on fleek.”

General laughter meets her humor.

“Oya snap the picture, biko.”

Elsie takes a couple of photos and the old woman christens Jiney.

“I have decided to name her Fumnanya.”

“What does it mean?” Honey asks.

“It means ‘love me’,” I reply.

“Awww. That’s such a beautiful name.”

“Now, I’m going to cry.” Tola puts her hands over her face and actually dashes off to some corner to cry. Nne instructs Elsie to go through her music playlist and pick Samsong and Chioma Jesus’ Odugwu, one of her all-time favorite gospel songs

“Mom, really?” I laugh and the ladies share my amusement. We all know what is about to go down. The moment her phone’s speakers come alive, the small woman cradles a startled Jiney who is now awake and begins to dance with her. No one dares interrupt the moment.

My mom is a worshipper. From the day I became aware of my existence as a human being, I was conscious of the fact that I had a mother who did not joke with her faith. Prayers and the bible were the foundation on which her strength rested. Underneath that was a realistic woman who believed in applying pragmatic methods when it came to life’s problems. And it has been this mixture of faith and commonsense, blind reliance on God alongside a no-bullshit way of looking at life that has made her cope with mothering four headstrong sons. She does owe all to God, looking for every occasion to worship him, and little Jiney has given her one this morning. We all watch as she dances to her heart’s content, joy on her face like she is being made a grandmother for the first time.

And she doesn’t tell me but my dad does, upon first sight of Fumnanya later on, that my little girl is my younger sister rebirthed in physical features. The one I was told that died just hours after she was born and broke Nne’s heart for months. The one we never talk about, who should have been named Fumnanya.

Watching my darling mother’s face get washed with tears and the women around me joining in the emotions, I suddenly feel clogged by all the excessive estrogen and decide to go shopping for refreshments.

The rest of the day is plagued with activity. We have guests pouring in from everywhere, and my mom in typical fashion ensures that they are well entertained. I provide the cash needed for her extravagant hospitability. By evening, Honey and I have to ask to be excused so we can take Jiney to the hospital to have her properly checked and assessed by a doctor. We leave with Nne who requests to be taken home so she can pick her omugwo bag. I tell her it’s not necessary, being that we’re in the same town. The look she gives me makes both Honey and I apologize. On our way back from the hospital, we pick her up from the family house. When we get home, we have just a couple of guests around – a neighbor whose red and constantly-blinking eyes are as much entertainment to me as his obese form that has taken most part of a two-sitter couch to consume as much refreshment as he can during his short visit, and his wife who chooses to take nothing at all but stares longingly at Jiney, yet refusing to go near or touch her. After handing us a gift of a set of pink mother and baby towels, they announce their exit.

Honey shuts the door after them and does a weird back and forth motion, telling me her center of gravity is messed up. She still feels like she’s carrying the weight of pregnancy.

I give her a surprise lift off her feet to which she responds with a shriek. We kiss all the way to our bedroom where we both collapse on our bed. The kissing stops there, both of us exhausted. Honey falls asleep first. When I am certain she won’t stir awake anytime soon, I carefully slip her push present around the middle finger of her right hand.

∞∞∞ ∞∞∞ ∞∞∞

Genesis starts the day by swearing. She doesn’t mean to but the F-word slips out of her mouth before she can swallow it back. Daylight is more than an hour away but she is wide awake. Her round, doll-like eyes which hold scanty lashes that appear oiled are left wide open in an unbroken stare at the bedroom door. She stares for so long that everything else becomes a grey distortion in keeping with the base color of the bedroom, and the door itself moves closer to her until it seems like she can just stretch out her hand and touch it – and if she does, she would walk through it into another life that is quite like hers but devoid of all the wealth and fame. In that other life, she would still have Dominic and their children and they would remain in this house with all the memories of the past when things were still right with their world. She wouldn’t have to think of responsibilities or have to worry that she is now a billionaire and is required to keep up with a façade that people of her echelon struggle with.

She thinks of how much she misses the simple life and how cruel and lonely it gets at the top. Nobody had warned her about this but she had learned a long time ago that going to sleep on a bed draped with linen that costs thousands of dollars does not give one a peaceful sleep. She still dreams of the same old monsters of her past and struggles with new ones, adversaries that feel she does not belong where she now is.

Genesis withdraws from the prison of her thoughts and swears again – and of course, she doesn’t mean to – as she remembers that she has a meeting to attend by 10am.

“Oh Lord…” she groans, just as the glass blind that separates the bedroom from the balcony slides open and Dominic steps in. He comes forward with a smile like one that has good tidings.

“See who just had a baby.”

He dumps his weight on the bed. It doesn’t creak beneath him like normal beds do. It takes his almost-110kg mass, dipping softly when he sits in with a raised a leg. Genesis shifts towards him to fit perfectly into his frame as he passes his phone to her. She taps on the dark phone screen and life comes to it, displaying Jide’s Instagram post.

“Awww, the baby is here,” she whispers. “So adorable. Precious little angel.”

Dominic pushes his body further into the bed, guiding Genesis along with him. She doesn’t seem to notice that she is being moved. Her concentration is lost in the Onuora family photo. Wistfulness settles in her eyes.

“It was a homebirth.” She sighs. “The simple pleasures of life.”

Still held by the photo, she doesn’t realize Dominic is giving her little doses of her own simple pleasures with downy kisses on her shoulder and a soft touch on her breast.

“Beautiful bliss. Happy family. This picture says it all.”

Something in her tone gives away her intimate thoughts and puts a stop to Dominic’s sexual advances. He looks into her face to find tears filling her eyes in a rush.

“Gen, what’s wrong?”

“Nothing. I’m just happy for them. They don’t have everything but they have each other and the baby. It’s a blessing.”

A solitary tear snakes down her smooth cheek and disappears to the side of her face.

“So, you have tears in your eyes because you’re happy for them? I don’t understand. Do you want another baby?”

Genesis twists her neck to bless him with a hostile stare. “Another baby? When it comes will you be here for it? Are you here for the ones you already have? When they were born were you here? I went through labor all alone while you were in Europe doing God-knows-what!”

Dominic stares at her with an expression that is devoid of surprise. Rather it carries a sigh.

“We don’t even have a picture like this!” She springs out of bed. “Or any that captures what we feel for each other and for the kids! And you know why? It’s because we don’t have that – that thing Honey and Jide have! In fact, we have nothing…but a lot of money! Money that makes me not trust anyone! Money that makes me unapproachable! Money that is driving a wedge between me and you! And I hate it! I hate all it comes with!”

Her palms assault her eyes to wipe off tears. It seems a futile effort.

“Jide comes home to Honey every night.” Genesis’ voice burns down. “They still have date nights and kiss like teenagers when they’re out in public. We lost all of that, Nick. Everything. And no, another baby can’t bring us back.”

“So, what do you want me to do, Gen? This is who I am, the man you married. You knew that before you accepted my ring. I am building a future for my children and their children. You want me to stop and take a few selfies just to show the world that I’m father and husband of the year? Is that what you want?”

His words force fresh tears down Genesis’ eyes.

He doesn’t understand. He never does.   

“You’re making the same mistakes you made with Lexus, Nick. Zach and Zoe are growing up without a father, and I’m learning to be in a marriage without a husband. I hope, when you hop on the next plane to wherever, that you enjoy how much of you we don’t get to see.”

She leaves the room to the bathroom. The door doesn’t slam at her exit but the coarse silence it brings as she stands in the emptiness of cold tiles over a marbled floor makes her feel like she had just made a big deal out of nothing. Remorse quickly takes over her mood but a voice tells her she did the right thing by letting out months of heaping sentiments and frustrations. She knows, with Dominic, there are better ways to express herself. She decides she will revisit the issue later at night after apologizing for her outburst.

She runs a foamy bath and soaks herself in. Her thoughts switch to Honey and she mentally cancels all her plans for the day as she wonders what gift would be appropriate for a newborn.


∞∞∞ ∞∞∞ ∞∞∞

Being a big boy in Lagos means many things. One, you have gotten to a level where you do not only depend on yourself for your survival but you have another person or more depending on you for their survival.

Two, you would also have to own a car. Nothing basic like the Hondas, Toyotas and Kias that gun the roads looking like they all went through the hands of the same manufacturer. No, your ride has to stand out. Or would you like to be identified as John Camry or James Honda Civic?

Three, an apartment in one of the popular estates, especially on the Island, won’t be bad. The rent has to have a price tag that you can comfortably brag about in public. It is a taboo to squat with a friend or be known to still live with one’s parents.

Four, you should look the part. Clothes and shoes off pages of fashion magazines. Slay with the trends. Have your own style. Make love to designer labels. Once in a while, wear a Mai Atafo or a Caesar Couture, flaunt the look on Instagram.


Five, have a social life. Mark your presence at parties thrown by other big boys. Throw a couple of your own. Make them exclusive. Invite your celebrity friends. You can’t be a big boy without being chummy with a few of them.

And lastly, don’t forget the girls. They are very important to elevating your big boy status. Pick them carefully and confuse them with cold, hard cash. Fuck them senseless, and then dump them when things are on a high. Never let them do the dumping. Do this three or four times and your name starts to go round. No one will talk about the brutal manner in which you move on to the next conquest. You will be remembered for your money and your bedroom skills. Be careful though, you may attract guys too.

The truth is, in Lagos, no one cares to know whose gutter you dug or whose dick and cunt you went down on to make your cash. As long as you have it, you’re good with the throng. Money is money. It’s the wheel that keeps the ever-spinning city of opportunity and dreams going. Much like other fast cities around the world, it does not run on anybody’s high-minded, moralistic lifestyle. It is unapologetically brutal and demanding as are its citizens.

Kasiobi thought he already had this figured out, having lived as a Lagosian for more than ten years. He now believed he had finally attained the status of big boy-ism, having worked his way through the school of hard-knocks and emerged successful and unbroken. But it takes just one girl to strip off his false impressions of himself, to leave him feeling small and cheated, almost in the same manner Lexus did when she moved on from their relationship to start something new with a guy whose sandy-white hair and blue eyes still gives him nightmares.

His new girl—Kira, they call her, short for Shakira and whose real name is something African and unpronounceable—is a runs girl, as he has just found out. Less than an hour ago, he was being treated to a deep-throat experience on her queen-sized bed of all things pink and soft, matching the overall décor of the roo; presently, he is hiding in her guest bathroom, listening to her have loud sex with a man she keeps calling ‘Mayor’.

Mayor had shown up without prior notice at her front door, and with wide, frightened eyes, she had dragged Kasiobi out of her bedroom to the guest bathroom, telling him blatantly that her blesser, the man who had bought her car and paid for her apartment had just come in from the UK and Kasiobi needed to make himself scarce until she could get him out of the way. Stumbling in anger and questions, Kasiobi was pushed out of sight and forced to listen to Mayor do the same things he had been doing to Kira for the valuable period of nine months.

Calming down somewhat, Kasiobi begins to laugh at his stupidity. How hadn’t he seen that a girl who called herself Shakira and was always between jobs had a sugar daddy? She had been too much of a dream and distraction when they first met, with a slim waist and full curves. But it had been her tattoos and carefreeness which reminded him of Lexus, that had drawn him to her and kept them together for nine months. He can safely say his feelings for her are from a place of authenticity. He worries when she falls ill. Frets when he doesn’t hear from her after two days. Spends precious money on her. Makes love to her with emotions or something similar. The only thing he hasn’t done is express any type of love for her verbally, and this is largely because he doesn’t feel like he loves her. At least, not in the way he had feelings for Lexus. It had been that expression of the famous four-letter word coming in a heartfelt utterance that caused the breakdown of their relationship in a foreign man’s land.

Lexus became distant all of a sudden and soon after asked for a break from him. It was springtime and to Kasiobi, New York didn’t look any different to him as it had done during winter. He still nursed the unending flu that had plagued him from the first day he arrived, and felt the same detachment that made him long for the putridness of Lagos. And when a week later, he found out that Lexus had moved on to someone else, he felt hate for the land called America. It gave him no dreams; instead, it took that which he had come with. It was hard to wait until summer to finish his short course in DJ Mastering, but he managed through, patching the broken pieces of his heart one day after another, and returned to Nigeria where he put his hustle on accelerate and faced his future with brutal determination.

His hard work paid off and he made something of a name for himself. A name not even slim-waisted Kira who could give blowjobs with her legs up the air could ruin. And so Kasiobi with the name no one can ruin, opens the bathroom door and walks past the scene before him without taking any of it in. He hears Mayor’s raised voice as he shuts the front door on his way out. The voice, although increasing in tempo in its own end faded with the background as Kasi went down a flight of stairs. He came out to a compound of six flats surrounded by small flowery shrubs and a floor that held interlocked bricks. Kasiobi’s vehicle, a metallic teal Jeep Renegade, is parked close to the gate. He had bought it off a friend of a friend, quite older than him, whose business was falling apart. The price was one-third of its original, a good bargain Kasi still smiles about, since the car is yet in its fresh stages.

As he sits in, his phone kicks off to a ring. Kasiobi sees that it is Genesis calling and he smiles. In so many ways, she is still his boss. He isn’t under Novocaine Knights anymore but he works with them more often than not. Once in a while, he would DJ at their club. Occasionally he stopped by at the house to see the twins, Zoe and Zach. The Ditorusins see him as family.

“Good morning, boss lady.”

“Hello, Kasiobi. How are you?”


Kasi let his window down, answering more questions about his wellbeing and business. He also inquires about her family. She tells him all is well.

“Kasi, I need a huge favor from you.”

“Anything, Ms. Genesis,” he says recalling how she had dumped a chunky sum of cash into his account to help kick off his career the moment he returned from the States.

“Lexus is flying in today, and she wants to give her dad a surprise. I have offered to pick her up from the airport but the thing is that my friend just had a baby and she needs me. So, please can you help me pick Lexus?”

Kasi’s face has pulled into a tight frown. Why the hell can’t Lex get a taxi home?

“You want me to pick her?”

“Yes, please. I don’t want her taking any taxis. I know you guys are no longer together but she told me you’re still friends and you communicate.”

Lies. He hadn’t spoken to Woyintonbra since the night he had asked her to dump her boyfriend and take him back and she shook her head at him, walking away.

“Yeah, we still talk.”

“So, please help me get her.”

“No problem ma. What time is the flight coming in?”

“It should be here in the next hour.”

“Fine. I’ll be there.”

“Thank you, Kasi.”

“No wahala. Anything else, madam?”


And on that note, they both hang up. Kasi entertains mixed thoughts on going to get Lexus from the airport. He is both excited and hesitant. And curious too.

What does she look like now? What surprises will she come with? Will she be happy to see him? Will she run into his arms and kiss him like the old Lexus would?

Kasi shakes his head, turning on the car.

Lagos big boy but woman still dey show you pepper.


Translation: Ube (Igbo) – Pear, the type eaten with roasted or boiled corn.

Push present -a present a father gives to the mother to mark the occasion of her giving birth to their child.

images: www.notey.com_chinesekittynoble_igwe

It’s Another Saturday…#27

What’s Love Got To Do With It

Last night, I was down in the pits. There was a trigger, a text from Harry that I ignored, and before I could stop myself, I lurched into this senseless state of melancholy that I couldn’t get out of. I went to bed and found myself feeling like the walls were closing in on me. Tola and Mary had long gone to sleep and when I checked the time, it was 1am.

I sat by my window for a while. The bed seemed to be laid with pins and needles. It took me exactly twenty-seven minutes to decide that I needed to sleep in Jide’s bed to feel better.

I got the car key, slipped out of the house and drove all the way to Jide’s. I had not expected to find him at home. When I entered his room, he was in bed, awake and reading.

He looked at me when I walked in, showing no surprise.

“I’m getting used to this,” he said. “The impulsiveness. The spontaneity.”

He turned a page in his book.

“I understand that it’s your way of fighting your snags but can you please call me next time you want to leave your house at 2am to come see me?”

“I didn’t expect to find you here.”

“Just…call me next time.”

He didn’t understand that I did not want to burden him with my problems, that at that time of the night I just wanted to get away from the four walls of my room and it didn’t matter if I put myself in danger.

“I’ll try.”

He went back to his book while I entered the bathroom for a shower. It made me feel better, the change of environment, the cool of the water. I breathed out when I turned the shower off.

These days I try not to worry about certain things even though it’s hard. I take each moment as it comes as Jide has taught me. It’s difficult to have my shortcomings and my gloom laid bare before another person but he doesn’t complain – not when I sometimes withdraw to some place to brood or when I lash out at him for no reason or even when I dive into some unexplainable mood of excitement. He’ll tell me there’s no difference between me now and the person he fell for. But I know the difference; it’s something I suffer daily. Having finally been taken off my meds, it’s hard to keep a balance.

“And that’s because you worry yourself about staying normal. Just live.”

That’s what I’m trying to do. I wish it wasn’t so darn hard. I wish my siblings would just stay out of my life for good.


I walked back into the room where it was freezing. He winched up the blanket and I stole in. He had his arms lifted to let my head rest on his chest but that wasn’t my final destination. I slid all the way down, taking his Calvin’s along. I needed something to distract me.

He didn’t protest.

And here I am this morning, tired, lazy, not willing to leave the bed for my morning out with Mary and Tola.

“Sugar lips?”

Jide taps me. I pretend not to hear.

“You should wake up.”

I moan.


“Leave me. I want to sleep.”

“Your period is here.”

Straightaway, I throw off the bedspread I’m covered in as I jump up. True to his words, I’ve stained his bed. I look at him in shame. He’s seated at the other end, eating an apple, calm.

“I’m so sorry. I’ll clean this up immediately.”

I drag the bedspread and dash into the bathroom. I’m a bit sad that my period is here. It means the baby we’ve been planning for is not coming anytime soon. This threatens to dampen my mood but Jide appears with a pack of tampons.

“Maybe history will repeat itself,” he says and kisses lips I’ve pressed together. “I’m going to work and then off to my parents’. Will you promise me that you’ll not let your menstrual cycle or whatever it is that made you drive into the night dictate your happiness today?”

I nod, determined to act upon his words but I have no idea that somewhere in town, my evil siblings are thinking of the best way to ruin my day.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

I am staggered! I simply cannot believe this.

Somebody please tell me I am not dreaming right now. Please tell me my eyes are not imagining things because I am sitting here lost, confused, shocked to my bones at the sight before me.

This is not just happening.

“Mary, you’re not saying anything.”

Of course I am not saying anything because my mouth is hanging wide open and my tongue has lost its speech. How do you expect me to speak, Ekene?!


I manage to bring my dazed eyes away from where it has been held bound and direct it to Ekene’s hand on mine. His touch is warm, yet strange on my skin.

“Please, say something. Even a ‘no’ would be a lot better than this silence.”

I take my eyes away from his hand and look into his face.

It’s a stranger’s face. I don’t know this man at all. Not his pink lips. Not his rubbery nose. Not his light-brown eyes. Not even the whole beard gang thing he has going on.

I don’t know him!


Something snaps in me and I recoil from his touch. He raises his hand, moving back a little. I pick my phone and handbag, and still maintaining my silence, I hurry to the door as if chased by a ghost.

“I need my answer in four days, Mary!” he says as I open the door. “Four days!”

I slam the darn door and half-run, half-walk my way to Honey’s house. When I get in there, I collapse into a chair in a huff and stare at Jide who is watching some TV.

“He proposed,” I say.

Jide turns down the volume of the television.

“What did you just say?”

“Ekene proposed to me.”

Jide’s reaction is one of puzzlement. He calls Honey who walks in with questioning eyes.

“What’s going on?”

“Ekene proposed to me. He got out a ring and just popped the question from nowhere.”

“For real?” She grins. “Where’s the ring?”

I blink a couple of times at her and shake the dazedness out of my head.

“What ring? You think I’d say yes to that type of proposal? First of all, he tricked me into coming to his house. There was no girlfriend there! None! Just me and him and a house that can take twenty more people. I asked him where his girlfriend was and he was like the dinner was a surprise for her and if she knew about it, the surprise would be ruined. I believed him and went ahead to cook and he stood in the kitchen the whole time, not talking, just staring at me and giving me the creeps. After I was done and served the food, he asked me to sit. He confessed that he had lied about having a girlfriend and was hoping that I’d be the one.”

Jide stopped me. “Wait, what?”

“My thoughts exactly. I now asked him, ‘Ekene, what type of creepy, by-force toasting is this that you Igbo boys like doing?’ Sorry Jide.”

“Be nice.”

“No, but seriously, have you not seen those market traders that will grab your hands and pull you, calling you stuff like ‘my wife’ ‘my color’? Ekene looked like the same thing to me! No difference! I had scarcely recovered from him calling me his girlfriend when he brought out this blinding diamond ring from nowhere, looked straight into my eyes with that his cockiness and said, ‘Mary, marry me’.”

“No way,” Jide remarked.

“I swear. He said it like that. Not ‘Mary, will you marry me?’ And he didn’t even go down on his knees!”

“And your answer?” Honey asks.

“I freaked out, Honey. In fact, I am still freaking out! See, how my heart is pounding in my chest. My tummy is even turning sef.”

Honey is laughing; Jide is equally amused.

“Why are you freaking out, though?” Honey wonders. “I’m sure you’ve met different types of men. Kene can’t be the weirdest.”

I stand up. “He is. By far, he is. I just can’t deal.”

“You like him,” Jide states. He is not asking; he sounds sure.


“Yes, boo. You. See the effect he has on you.”

“He scares me. I don’t like him, Jide. When did we meet that he’ll propose to me just like that? Abeg o! I’m sorry, Honey, I know he’s your friend but his actions today ring of all shades of ritualist behavior.”

“Haba nau.”

“Then explain why a man that rich who has been around the world and has everything going for him will go and buy an expensive diamond ring and propose to a girl he hardly knows? It makes no sense! Unless he wants to use his wealth to dazzle me into marriage and then offer me as sacrifice to prolong his life.”

Honey rips apart in laughter.

“She really likes him,” Jide tells her. They both nod.

“Can you stop saying that, Jideofor?!”

“He’s getting you all worked up.”

“He is not!”

I breathe out.

“He is not.”

Another breath.

“I am calm. Very calm. Very, very calm. And I will repeat: I do not like Ekenedilichukwu Obiecheta.”

“Wow!” Jide sits up. “You called his full names, using the correct Igbo accent and you didn’t even stutter. Abeg, husband him.”

I am mad at Jide. I hiss and pick my handbag.

“I’m going home.”

“Why?” Honey frowns.

“All of you are annoying me. You and you and Ekene…all of you. Ekene clearly doesn’t understand the concept of boundaries and feels he can just pop a proposal from nowhere and I’ll say yes. Then instead of you two to be on my side, you’re making fun! You should all enjoy yourselves. I’m going home!”

I don’t give them an opportunity to respond. I know I am being silly but I haven’t been in this mood in a really long while. I march into the guestroom and shut the door behind me. But then I remember one vital piece of information I didn’t pass to them. I poke my head out.

“Oh, and he told me right before he asked me to be his girlfriend… he said, ‘I can have anything I want. Anything, including you.’ Can you imagine?”

“You don enter,” Jide sniggers.

“No, she has not.” Honey tries to remedy things. “Kene is just being Kene. He teases a lot and he understands boundaries, Mary. Please, don’t go. I’ll talk to him and tell him to behave. Just please, don’t go, Mary boo.”

I give a vehement shake of my head. My mind is made up.

“Okay, can you allow me speak with him first?” she requests.

“Still not changing my mind.”


Honey goes for the door and she’s out in a jiffy.

“You want to know my thoughts?” Jide asks.

“No, thank you.”

I close the door, leaving him still amused.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

mary's ring

“I told you not to propose to her, didn’t I?”

“Hi Honey.”

Ekene lets me into his house. The place is grand and spotless – as usual. The only difference from the last time I was here is the aroma of food in the air.

Ekene leaves me standing in the living room and walks to the dining area. I trudge after him and find him seated at the table, having dinner. The meal and setting is something only a professional like Mary can pull off. My tongue longs to have a taste but I’d rather listen to him explain his actions.

“You had to go freak her out, Kene. Why?”

“Well you know me, I don’t have time beating about the bush. And I’m too old to be doing boyfriend and girlfriend unlike some people I know. I learned my lesson with you. Years of my life wasted in love. Look where it got me. No more time for long talk, baby.”

I pull a chair and slide into it, my eyes catching the glitter of the controversial diamond ring as it sits in its box, untouched.

“Kene, you’re probably the closest friend I have and Mary and I pretty close; she’s an amazing person. And that was why when you told me you were crazy about her, I gave my blessing. In fact, I even dreamt about you guys getting married. I wanted you two to work but the way you’re going about it is wrong, Kene. You can’t force love. You have to…”

“Who said anything about love?”

He picks a piece of watermelon from a bowl of intricately-diced fruits and throws into his mouth. He looks at me.

“Because you’re in love you think everyone else has to go your way to maintain a happy relationship?”

“No. I…”

“Honey, I am not looking for love. I am looking for a wife. A beautiful, godly, industrious, humble woman I can take home to my dear, old mother. Mary fits the bill. Simple. Abeg, don’t go mushing up things in her head and filling her with romantic ideas. Plus I really, really like her. Do you know she has a birthmark on her neck that is shaped like the one on my left ankle?”

I smile at him. “But you used to believe in love.”

“I still do but not love at first sight and all that nonsense about being struck by lightning and having butterflies in one’s tummy. I want to grow into my feelings.”

“Well, you have a point. I’m just saying the whole proposal thing…”

“Is medieval. I know, and that’s how I do my thing. Leave me be, abeg.”

“You scared her.”

“I’d be worried if she wasn’t scared, Hon. The way she bolted out of here was proof that she is the one. Do you know how many women would walk in here and see that ring and go nude for me? But she didn’t; she got scared and that’s why I want her.”

I stare at the ring.

“Is this the same one you got for me?”

“No. I returned that one the day I went over to your house and from outside I heard you moaning and screaming out your boyfriend’s name like he was the best thing you ever had.”

“He is.” I give Ekene a straight face.

“Well, I’m glad you’re happy.”

I pick a slice of apple and stand.

“I know Mary will say yes,” Ekene adds. “She just needs to figure things out. She likes me. Maybe not as much as I like her but she likes me. And that’s enough for me.”

“I really want you guys to work, so stop being cocky and try not to screw things up.”

“How are you these days sef?” He looks at me.


“He knows?”

“Yeah. And he’s so amazing, and so patient, and so…”

I stop as I think of the many, beautiful ways Jide has been there for me from the moment I shared with him the story of my bipolar disorder.

“He’s an angel, Kene. And this means you have to stop being an ass to me. I have a bodyguard now.”

Ekene smirks. I tell him I’m leaving and he waves absentmindedly as he concentrates on his meal. I stroll back home with plans to talk with Mary but when I get in, Jide Informs me that she is gone.

“She says to tell you that she is sorry but she misses her home.”

I dump my sad self on Jide’s laps. His arms enfold me. I’m going to miss Mary. Tola is gone already. I have come to love both women in the short time they spent with me. Jide is right about having friends who will stand by you in dark moments. They both know about my depression and have been beside me, patient and supportive. I have had a couple of blue moments which they helped me through. The house is going to be quiet without them.

“You can come bunk with me if you need a roomie.”

Jide’s breath on my earlobe gives me goosebumps and other ideas. Too bad it’s that bloody time of the month.

Jide stares at his watch at the exact moment my phone starts to ring. I groan. I decide to let it ring out.

“You won’t pick the call?”


“Okay. Um…I have to pop back to my parents’.”


“Family meeting.”

“Is everything alright? I don’t understand these family meetings you guys have been having all day.”

“Everything is fine, baby.”

“Can I come along?”


I try to read his eyes which seem kind of evasive at the moment. Jide is always open with me about everything. What is he hiding?

“Are you coming back?”


He kisses me before he leaves. Worrying about him, I stand by the window and watch until he’s out of sight. The moment he’s gone, my phone rings again. The Caller ID tells me Jane is calling for the millionth time. I know she wants to scold me for not honoring our cousin’s wedding, an occasion had no intention attending.

“Good evening, sis.”

Jane huffs on the phone. “Erhinyuse, why are you treating me like this? Fifteen times I called. Fifteen!”

“I’m sorry, sister.”

“This is not fair at all.”

“I know. And I’m sorry. I was busy.”

“Too busy for me?”

I stroll to the kitchen. I am so not in the mood to be scolded. I’m having cramps and the last thing I need is someone breathing down my neck.

“I’m sorry,” I say for the last time.

“Why didn’t you come for Sabina’s wedding?”

I open my fridge. “Well, you know… everyone else will be there and I don’t want drama. Brother already sent a text, telling me I was acting irresponsibly for not attending the wedding even though Sab and I are in the same town.”

“And what did you reply?”

I am staring at a fridge stocked with fresh fruits and salads. “Nothing.”

“That’s good. Ignore. Anyway, I want to see you.”

Immediately, red flags go up.

“You want to see me?”

“Yeah. Are you at home?”

I quickly recall a casual conversation I had with Jide two days ago about my family and how he warned me not to let any of them near me. His warning had sounded odd and when I asked why he came up with it from nowhere, he simply repeated himself and added, “If they want to visit, don’t take them to my place or yours. Bring them to my family house.”

I asked no more questions after that, finding it uncanny that at that moment we spoke, my cousin Sabina was having her traditional wedding and no doubt my siblings were present. I did not want to share that information with Jide. I felt my family issues were mine alone to handle. Just being with me was enough burden on him, although he must never hear me speak this way of myself.

“Can I come over?” Jane requests.

“Erm…I’m not at home right now…”

“I just want to drop your aso-ebi with you.”

I frown. “I don’t recall contributing for it. Or is Sab giving it out for free?”

“I paid for it to save face, okay? So tell me where you are let me hand it over to you with some other food ingredients I brought from Asaba since you have now started cooking.”

“You know what? Tell me where you are and I’ll drive over.”

“Even better. I’ll send a text.”

She goes offline and I remain standing, the light of the refrigerator in my face. I settle for a bowl of chicken salad. While I await the text, I dive in with a fork.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

Jane is at some fast food restaurant as her message says. I drive there, still with no intention of informing Jide. It isn’t until I park the car in the parking lot and realize that Jane is not alone that I decide to dial his number. Annoyed, I speak to him on the phone.

“You were right about not trusting any of them,” I tell him.

“What’s going on?”

“Jane is in town. Everyone else is here as well for my cousin’s wedding. Jane told me she wanted to see me and asked me to meet her at this fast food joint. I drive here, thinking I’m meeting with her alone and you won’t believe who she’s here with!”

“Your other siblings.”

“I have a very good mind to turn this car around and go home right now, Jide! I am so pissed! She tricked me into coming here!”

“Calm down, sugar lips.”

“I trusted her.”

“I know. Just calm down and listen to me. Go and meet them. It’s safe. It’s a public place. Just go there and tell them you’d rather host them at yours–”


“Listen to me. Remember what I told you the other night?”


“Do it. Tell them you’re taking them to yours but bring them to the family house.”

“Jide, I don’t want them near your family. It will be a disaster…”

“Let me worry about that, sweetheart. Just bring them over.”


Bring them.”

I concede, but not wholeheartedly. Imagine the shame if Harry or Jessica decide to act up in the presence of Jide’s parents.

“And take it easy on Jane.”

“She betrayed me. I’m so done with her.”

He laughs. “See you soon, sugams.”

I leave the car. Jessica is the first to spot me. The huge glass windows that act as walls do not hide what’s going on in the restaurant. I see them all looking at me. Jane is the only one with a lowered head. I grip my wallet tightly to still my nerves as I walk in. They keep their eyes on me and there is not one smile to go with their offensive stares.

I, however, maintain a poised exterior as I amble towards them.

“Good evening,” I throw in a general greeting. For a moment it seems my show of respect would be ignored by them as they used to do years ago but Harry breaks into a scary grin that halts my steps.

“Erhinyuse, my darling sister! Come and give me a hug.”

I stand frozen. Something evil crawls up my spine and fills my throat as I glare back at the same hands that abused me throughout my childhood now spread open to me in a show of love.

What on earth has this old devil up his sleeves this time around?

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset

I am not sleeping. I’m sprawled on my floor, eyes to the ceiling, hands on my chest.

To watch the video or not to watch the video.

This is a rerunning dilemma in my head. I have one good reason to watch the video and an equally damning reason why I shouldn’t. Following my hysterics earlier at Honey’s house, I have decided to handle the situation with commonsense. One would think I’d toss Ekene’s proposal aside but I can’t. This video holds the reason why.

I turn around. My laptop is asleep. I tap it awake. It takes me another ten minutes or so of fighting the urge to go on YouTube. In the end, I do. I search for the video and with a palpitating heart I play it.

It’s a recording that stretches for an hour and twenty-one minutes. I should forward to the frame that mostly concerns me but I decide to watch from the beginning to calm my nerves. I sip cup after cup of green tea while I watch. I’m into my fifth cup when the video gets to the moment of truth. I sit up and clasp the cup with both hands.

“There’s a sister at the back row there!”

The voice of Peace’s pastor fills my ear, bringing nostalgia and a host of other feelings into me. My eyes stay glued on my laptop screen and I am transported back to the day the video was recorded.

Peace had invited me to her church for some program they were having at the beginning of the year. It was something they did annually. Seven days of fasting and prayers. I had begrudgingly attended; the end of last year had seen me in a terrible relationship that left me somewhat depressed. Church was the last thing I wanted but Peace assured me that I’d feel better when the program ended, and so I decided to attend just to get her off my back.

It ran for one week and finally we came to the last day, which was a Sunday. The church was packed to the rafters that morning and I had found myself somewhere at the back because I came late. The service was one of those power-charged affairs and when finally Peace’s pastor took the stage, people’s hearts were open to hear God’s word with a lot of expectations. I wasn’t one of those people. I was a tad disappointed that a whole week was wasted and I didn’t feel any better about my state. Years of failed relationships had left me bitter and resentful of the male species.

Somewhere in the middle of his sermon, the pastor stops, turns and directs his eyes straight into mine. But he says nothing and continues preaching. I tell myself I imagined the occurrence. However, towards the end of his sermon, he repeats his action and this time, he calls out.

“The sister at the back row there!”

He points. Heads turn left and right, including mine.

“The one with the green and yellow Ankara!”

Now, all eyes focus on me. There’s no one else wearing a green and yellow Ankara outfit except me. Slowly, I put my hand to my beating heart to confirm if it’s me as I rise to my feet.

“Yes, you. You have a surprise coming for you this year.”

Yeah right, my inner skeptic remarks. I have always had a strong dislike for pastors who did things like this. In my church we do not entertain such. We are more orthodox in our way of worship.

“Your husband will come this year,” the pastor continues. My inner skeptic snorts. It’s clear that I am not married because I am not wearing a ring. Please, man of God tell me something else.

And he does.

“God says to give you two signs so that you will know this message is from him because the man will come into your life and without these signs, you will throw him off.”

Okay, this is getting interesting.

“First sign: he will propose to you without any relationship going on between you two. Second sign: when he proposes, he will give you a short time to return with an answer.”

I remain a doubting Thomas.

“And God says you should say yes to him because that is your husband. He said he has made events and situations in your life align to that man. Your years of searching and frustration are not wasted years. The time was not yet set but before this year ends, you will wear a ring on your finger.”

The congregation choruses out a loud ‘amen!’ that terrifies me. I slump back into the chair, annoyed at Peace. Clearly, she told her pastor things about me.

“I did not,” she says in sincerity after the church service.

“You’re sure?”

“Why would I even do such a thing, Mary?”

“Maybe out of concern.”

“Please believe me, I did not. And you know what’s even scary about what happened here today?”


“Our pastor hardly ever does what he did. He is more of a teacher than a prophet. If he prophesies in a year, it might be two or at most three times. What happened today was rare, so please take it as a message from God.”

Indeed. And that’s how I go through the year, a disbeliever, even though deep inside I know the message wasn’t a hoax. For fear of wanting it to come true, I refuse to entertain the presence of any guy. I dedicate my year chasing my career.

And then Jide returns home after five years and the feelings I once had for him are re-ignited, especially after the kiss we share. I tell myself he is the one. I speak to Peace first but she dissuades me, reminding me of her pastor’s prophecy. Ignoring her words, I share my feelings with Celia and the rest and they are only too happy to pair us up. Peace is not in support but she keeps mum and goes with the flow. When Jide brings Honey to the get-together at Celia’s and throws all of us off, only Peace shows support for their relationship. Well we all know how that story ends and how the next day, I debase myself by stripping for Jide and he gives me the tongue-lashing that I rightly deserve.

Peace’s reaction to the incidence is an ‘I told you so’.

“Shebi you will listen to God now?”

Listen to fire. I tell myself that the chances of that prophesy coming true is one in a million. I am more likely to get a yes if I propose to any random man out there than find Peace’s pastor’s dream husband for me.

I carry on with this state of mind as the months go by, oblivious of what waits for me around the corner.

Ekene is a blow to my face I don’t see coming. His proposal knocks me off balance and the after-effect still leaves me swooning. I am fighting him with everything in me and even after watching this video as a confirmation of where my life is supposedly ought to be heading, I insist on rejecting him.

“I do not like Ekene,” I say out loud. I need to believe this. I need God to hear me. “I don’t like him.”

I finish my cup of tea.

“I will not marry him.”


Images credits: www.virgosandkisses.com, mystictalia.com



It’s Another Saturday…#25

Good morning!

For those of you who haven’t read the Fish Brain series, it is out for download on Okadabooks. Follow the Facebook link below to download them (Like my page in the process :)). The first book is free while the other two cost just N375 each. Really cheap for the length and the experience. 😉

Please leave a review and tell your friends and family.


As for Boys With Toys, I’ll give you some info on Saturday.

This episode is dedicated to people like me who suffer from depression. Nobody really wants to talk about it but a lot of people go through it. You will find your healing and all the love you need. If you want to talk to someone, you know how to reach me. Hang in there!


“So I have a toaster,” Peace whispers into my ear.

My eyes pop out. “Already?”

“What do you mean by already? In fact I have like three toasters.”

She swipes chicken bones off a dish into a garbage bag and places the dish in the kitchen sink. I wash the dish while listening to her tell me about the guy in her church who has the hots for her.

“He’s a widower, no kids, not so rich but very dapper. However…”  She stands beside me, backing the sink. “I’m not ready to go into any relationship now. I need to get a job, rebuild my life from scratch and concentrate on Sammy before I start thinking about men again.”

“But you like this guy?” I turn off the tap.

“Naa. Not really. I’m just basking in my newly-found spinsterhood. It feels great to be wanted again.”

I wipe my hands on a kitchen napkin. “But you know you can actually date someone, right? God will not punish you for it.”

“I know but…I don’t think I’m ready yet. I’ll give myself at least a year…”

“A year? P, cobwebs will grow on you o.”

“What will people say if I start seeing somebody so soon?”

“Who cares what people will say? You owe no one nothing.”

“Mary, it’s not as if anyone is saying anything at church but they judge me with their eyes. You know how we Christians can be sometimes. Nobody wants to know what happened in the marriage, the woman is always to blame.”

“Abeg, ignore them jor. Where were they when you were suffering?”


“Do what makes you happy, my dear.”

“I will.” She hooks an arm around my neck. “But only when you also decide to start dating again.”

“Me keh.”

“If I recall, you were very open to meeting someone new until that Reno incident occurred.”

“Abeg, P leave that thing.”

She faces me. “No, Mary. We can’t let one idiot ruin our chances of happiness.”

Her fingers pick something off my face.

“I’ll find love when you do,” she adds.

“You go old be dat.”

“But seriously, how are you coping?”

I lean back a bit. “It’s hard sometimes. My room still gives me nightmares. I’ve changed my perfume, thrown away my pillows and the sheets that were on the bed that day and basically everything that reminds me of what happened but I still have moments. Therapy helps sha, thanks to Jide who paid for it because God knows I can’t afford that doctor. But I basically find my solace in the Bible. Verdict is, I’ll be fine. I have since moved on.”

I pick out the guilt on Peace’s face and I spare her the unease of having to say something appropriate.

“I think you should dump these garbage bags outside.”


She picks two huge bags and hurries out.

I check the time. It’s past eleven and all our friends are gone. Peace thinks I’m spending the night but I feel it would be rude to Honey if I sleep elsewhere. I wonder if I’ll find a cab in this neighborhood at this odd hour.

A jug of freezing apple juice resting on the kitchen counter beckons to me and I go for a glass as I mentally plan for an event I’m catering to next week. I am almost down to my last gulp when Peace returns to the kitchen.

“Mary, there’s a fair guy outside asking after you and Honey. He said he’s been calling Honey’s line and it’s been ringing with no answer.”

“Oh, that’s Ekene. Her ex…em, I mean her neighbor.”

“Ex? Neighbor? Which one?”


Peace places a pot of some nice-smelling stuff on the cooker for her usual night cap concoction. Only Lord knows what’s inside.

“I do hope the guy is not a threat to Jide o,” she says.

“Threat keh? How now? You didn’t ask where Jide carried Honey off to?”

“They left together?”

I laugh. “Lastma! They’re probably in cloud twenty by now. The way his eyes were on her the whole time ehn. And the yeye girl didn’t even notice.”

“Ehya. I’m glad they’re back together.”

“Let me be going, P.”

“Going? But I’m making something for us to eat. All we did was drink all night.”

“Eat what this night, Peace? Abeg, I dey go. Eat your concoction alone.”

She laughs. “Okay, luv. Thank you.”

“Kiss Sammy for me.”

We hug and she walks me to the front door. It’s a bit chilly when I stroll out to the gate. I’m hoping that by some miracle Ekene would be gone by now but I catch him waiting outside his car. I grunt. It’s best to pretend I don’t see him.

I take the opposite route and stick close to the shadows.

“Mary!” he calls out. I frown. He’s so anyhow! “Mary!”

I stop out of annoyance and turn.

“Where are you going?”


“Where is Honey?”

“With her boyfriend.”

He pulls back. “Boyfriend?”

“Yes, her boyfriend. Jideofor. They left together. To his place.”

“You’re sure?”

I roll my eyes.

“I saw that.”

“You saw what?”

“The eye-rolling. I saw it.”

“Well, goodnight.”

“Where are you going?”


“Your house or…?”

“Why do you always ask questions? That was how you were bombarding me all the way here until you missed road.”

“Okay. So, your house or Honey’s?”

“I said I’m going home. That’s all you need to know.”

“Come and enter the car let me drop you.”

“No, thanks.”

I continue walking. I have vowed not to be alone in the same space with any man. Cars are as unsafe as bedrooms and not even a luxurious beast on wheels can make me change my mind. If I am lucky I might get a cab. This part of town is notorious for bad transportation once it gets dark.

I hear a car honk at me. I don’t turn. I know it is Ekene.

“So you’d rather walk in those ridiculously-high stilettos than let me take you home?”

I stride on. He drives beside me.

“It’s unsafe for you to walk all alone by this time of the night.”

I keep walking. He keeps driving.

“Am I irritating or something? Or…you just don’t like Igbo guys? Or is my accent that bad? Or is it my complexion? I know women go for tall, dark and handsome but come on, I’m not that bad. Even Honey thinks I’m cute.”

I snort.

“You think so too.”

My annoyance starts to wane.

“I’ll be fine, Ekene. Just go home.”

“So that Honey will come and skin me alive for not dropping you at her doorstep safe and sound? Biko, just spare both of us the drama and enter the blasted car.”

“Goodnight, Ekene.”

I hasten my steps, leaving him behind. I don’t move three or four feet ahead when his car speeds up beside me and screeches right in front of me, almost making me bump into it.

“Jesus!” I put my hand to my chest and try to catch a racing heart.

He comes out of the car.

“What is wrong with you?!” I scream at him. “Are you crazy?! You almost hit me!”

“I’m sorry. Please, enter the car. I am asking like a gentleman. Please.”


I hurriedly cross the street and luckily for me an empty cab slows beside me. Before I get into it, I catch Ekene’s eyes on me. He seems pissed. Like I care.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

It’s daylight.

I open my eyes and find I am alone. The sun is fiercely making a statement in the sky. I wonder why it’s so hot these days. The weather is just screwed up this year. I pick a remote control from the bedside and change the temperature of the room.

I sit up. Hanging off a chair beside the bed is a jersey with the inscription #Jiney at the back.

I smile.

Jide plays football with his friends on certain weekends. They always compete against each other – the married guys versus the bachelors. On his blog he had asked his followers what they thought the best combo name of he and I would be to inscribe on his jersey. People gave numerous suggestions, a vote was made and the name ‘Jiney’ won.

The week we broke up, there was a huge game planned. Jide did badly and the bachelors lost for the first time.

I pick the jersey and inhale. The scent of fresh laundry cannot mask Jide’s fragrance. I slip into the jersey as my feet touch the floor. I wonder where Jide is.

I can hear my phone ringing from the sitting room. I go for it. Dele’s wife is calling.

“Honey, na wa o!” She shouts into my ear once I take the call.

I dump my weight into the couch Jide and I violated last night.

“How can you just go off radar like this nau? What is going on with you?”

“I’m fine, babe. I was just having some issues, is all.”

“Ha! You made me fear o!”

“But didn’t Saratu pass across my message? I told her to tell you that I needed to be alone for a while.”

“So that’s why you didn’t want to see me abi? Honey, we live in the same town…”

“That can be debated, madam. It’s almost a day’s travel to your side.”

“Shut up, abeg. I was talking. We live in the same town and you didn’t want me to come see you. Why am I your friend, though?”

I play with the tacked edges of the jersey as I listen to her scold me.

“And I feel slighted that Sara has access to you and I don’t.”

“I’m sorry.”

“O ga o! Me I’ve just decided to forgive you ni; if not, we won’t be speaking to each other now.”

“I’m sorry nau.”

“I’ve heard. Anyways, I was calling concerning our business. Everything is set. Sara and I have done our own part. In fact, the running around we did these past weeks ehn, even Dele is complaining. To set up business for Naija no be beans.”

“You girls, well done.”

“Anyway, sha. We’re waiting for your go-ahead. You are our oga at the top.”

I shake my head. Ever since the Oga at the Top incidence occurred, Dele’s wife has not let it be.

“Just do and let’s start before the spirit dies, abeg.”

I sigh. I had literally stopped my whole life for an entire month. Now, it’s hard to get back. I still don’t have the desire to begin again.

“We’ll have to sit and talk about a grand opening,” she adds. I smile. Dele’s wife can’t do without partying.

“Okay, ma.”

“How are you doing? Are you and Jide back together?”


“Honey, why nau? That guy loves you. He called me like up to five times this past month. How can you just break a grown man’s heart like that? It’s not fair. Whatever is worrying you, please do away with it and let him back in, abeg.”

“I’ve heard.”

She tells me she loves me and hangs up.

I let my phone down for a second and take in the sitting room as it brings back beautiful memories of Jide and I. I stretch out on the couch, lazy to get up and have a shower. After a while, I go online. I have some Facebook and Instagram notifications waiting which I respond to. Done with them, I go through a couple of fresh emails and discover I have one from my doctor in South Africa which I don’t recall opening. I hiss before I proceed. He’s an unserious man, going off grid when I needed him direly.

I start to read the email and every word I take in stabs me in the heart. Tears veil my sight. I put my phone away and pull my knees together. It is at this moment that Jide comes in.

The front door slams and I hurriedly try to wipe my tears but Jide spots me in the act. He cocks his head to get a good look. I plant a fake smile on my lips.



He walks to me, looking sexy in scrubs. Despite my tears, I notice.

“Are you crying?”

With my hands still trying to wipe my tears, I shake my head in a lie. He stoops before me and pulls my legs down.

“I can’t let you keep killing yourself like this, Honey. I’m here, my ears wide open and my heart ready to accept whatever it is you have to tell me. Please, talk.”

“I shouldn’t have had an abortion,” I utter, the words stumbling over each other really fast.

“I shouldn’t have. I was scared that my meds would cause some birth defect for the baby and since I had been on medication way before I got pregnant, I was worried that the damage was already done. But that was no excuse. I should have gone for a scan first or waited to hear from my doctor but I was just so mad at you that day. And now, my doctor is saying I shouldn’t abort the baby, that the pregnancy would be fine even with the meds. But it’s too late, Jide. And it’s all my fault.”

Jide holds my hands to comfort me even though he doesn’t understand half of what I have just spilled. He lets me cry for a while.

“Sit down,” I say to him eventually. He takes the space beside me.

My fingers go into a nervous twisting contest with each other until he places a warm hand over them.

“I have bipolar disorder,” I confess to him. I can’t look into his eyes.

“I was diagnosed six years ago. I remember my doctor breaking the news and me staring back at him in total confusion. I was like, ‘isn’t that a mental illness?’ and he said, ‘yes. You can also call it manic depression.’ I remember not being able to process anything in the days that followed. The diagnosis was way worse than what I was feeling. I had always known, from my teenage years, that my level of depression was not normal. And when the doctor listed out the symptoms for me, a lot of stuff started to make sense. He said it could likely be linked to family history; maybe someone in my family had suffered or was suffering from it.”

“Was there anyone?” Jide asks, lifting a leg to rest on the couch so he can face me better. His sudden question and movement jarred me out of my narrative, making me realize I was sharing for the first time, my darkest secret. Before this, only Ekene knew. And I didn’t have to tell him. After a terrible spell of depression six years ago, he had dragged me to the psychiatrist who studied and pronounced me mentally disabled.

I had felt like dying that day. Questions that had no answers plied my mind for weeks and even today, I am still left in the dark. For this reason, I have kept this part of me hidden, hoping that somehow I would wake up one morning and it would disappear. Being with Jide freed me for a while. In fact, I believed I had been cured until the abortion, which plunged me into darkness, my worst ever. Since I left Jide, I have been locked in, shades drawn, eating myself to stupor and not being able to find my way out.

“I wouldn’t have known then if someone in my family had it. Bipolar is hard to diagnose because apart from the depression, it comes with highs. You have moments when you feel really happy and have lots of energy. But when I think of it now, I think my mom suffered from it. The pain I felt the day Jane shared with us the details of my mom’s death still lingers. It opened up a can of worms that explained a whole lot about what my mom suffered while she was alive. She did not only have to deal with enemies on the outside, she had her own mind working against her just as I do. And I believe that was the reason she readily accepted death when it came. I do not want to end up like her.”

“Are you taking your meds right now?”

“No. I stopped after the abortion and I’ve been on a terrible low.”

“You think medication is bad for you?”

“I think it’s good but too much of a good thing can turn bad too. I don’t know who I am anymore without the meds.”

“Is this why you broke up with me, Hon? You thought I would leave you if I knew?”

“You don’t know me, Jide. The real me. Before I was diagnosed, I could go for months on a constant high with little sleep, always up and running. Sometimes when I’d get off flights, I’d go clubbing and because we were not allowed to drink, I’d compensate with sex. I was in a constantly-spinning wheel. That was how I was able to manage my job competently. My bosses loved my efficiency but I was dying inside. And then I had my lows too. I remember locking myself in the lavatory during flights and just crying for no reason until a colleague would knock and tell me a passenger was waiting to use the place.

“Or at stopovers, I’d do the exact opposite of clubbing and stay locked in my hotel room until the next flight. And this had basically been the story of my life before the meds. I suffered it in the university and also in secondary school but I hid it really well then. Imagine you feeling like just dying but you have to wake up every day, smile, hang with friends and just live a life you don’t really want to live.”

“Do you think the way your siblings treated you could also be a contributing factor?”

“My doctor believes so.”

“Me too. It was painful to watch your elder brother abuse you the way he did.”

“My doctor says the abuse made me isolated and since I didn’t share it with my parents, it became part of my existence and left roots deep inside me. He thinks I should speak to my siblings, tell them how much they hurt me. He says it would help heal me. But I don’t want to.”

“Maybe you need someone to be there beside you. Can you do it if I’m there?”

His request baffles me.

“Why would you want to be there, Jide?”

“What sort of question is that, Honey? I am your friend.”

“You don’t know me, Jide. I am not the Honey you fell in love with. That one you love behaves herself, she is nice, polite, well-mannered, acts moderately…”

“And this one sitting here with me is who?”

“You don’t know me. And it would be best if we stayed away from each other.”

“Honey, you met me and fell in love, and your whole world stopped and you created space for me. You did that. Not the medication. You. And just like that you want to erase everything?”

“Jide, smashing your phone was me just playing with you. I can get worse. You don’t know me.”

“You keep saying that. Give me a chance to know you!”

“It would be a disaster, Jide! I know! I stopped my meds because I want to start my life afresh…”

“Start it with me.”

“No, Jide! I need to be able to, on my own, build myself, and learn how to manage my emotions and my moods before…”

Jide dashes up. “You can’t, Honey! You can’t do it alone! That’s what I’m trying to tell you! I have been there! When I lost Ezinne, I fell into depression and had mindless sex with strangers. I couldn’t sleep alone at night because I’d have nightmares; there must be a girl in my bed every damn night! And yet I couldn’t commit. I went for the ones that were already in committed relationships because I didn’t want strings attached or any type of drama. But in the end, I was lonely, angry and depressed. I’m not saying I’ve felt exactly how you feel but I have been there in the pits and I thought I could heal myself on my own but I couldn’t. And that was when I decided to come back home, to family, to friends…”

He bends his tall frame over me, resting his hands on the couch.

“And then I found you and my life found light. Being with you is my healing process, Erhinyuse. If you go, Honey…you’ll take me back into the dark. Please, allow me be the same for you. The one place you can go whenever you feel too weak to face your day. And of course, we’ll both be taking it one day at a time. Mmh?”

I bury my face in my hands. God! I love this man insanely and he sounds so convincing and I just want to throw my hands in the air and say take me but he doesn’t know the half of it.

“I do. I know more than the half of it,” he says and I look up into his eyes, baffled. “Yes, sugar lips, you just spoke out loud.”

I cover my face in embarrassment. He pushes my hands down.

“And it’s something you have done several times in the past. And I love it. You do other weird things too but I never complained because I have my own crazy.”

He shifts my weave off my face and lets it rest on my shoulder. He does so with so much concentration and tenderness that gets me smiling.

“You have a loving family, you know? And I don’t mean those assholes in Warri. I mean, Nne and her husband. And you have brothers and sisters too.”

He kisses my nose.

“You want to talk about the baby?”


“You want to have another baby?”

I giggle but I see he’s serious.

“Be honest, Honey.”

“Funny enough,” I reply reservedly, “I want to be given another chance. I know it’s not a cure but yeah, I want to be a mom.”

“That can be arranged, starting from…last night.”

We both laugh.

“So, I think you’re reeeally beautiful and I think you have an awesome mind that I would want to know. So, you think you could maybe be my girlfriend – again?”

I put my arms around his neck and he lifts me up. I wrap my legs around him.

“Is this a yes?”


He knots his eyebrows. “Have we tried this style before?”


“Just checking.”

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

I’m apprehensive about speaking to Yazmin about this claudia thing. How do I go to her and say ‘hey, Yaz you could have claudia’? She would just flip.

I should have paid more attention in my biology classes because I vaguely recall my sexy biology teacher saying something about the penis being the host of certain infections. I wasn’t concentrating, of course. I was staring at her boobs and thinking of the many things I could do with it.

Now, this claudia stuff, I’m wondering for how long I’ve had it and went about not knowing it was there. I dare not Google it, not after Tola’s scary questions about my balls. Yeah, that’s one of the perks of marrying a doctor. They scare you with medical stuff. Maybe the infection is not even that bad; I suspect it’s one of those things women have that comes and goes.

“Papi, what’s wrong?”

I stare at my son and look up at Yazmin.

“Does he have big ears?”

Yazmin gazes at Tobe like he’s a hunk. “No. He’s just so cute.”

“Well, for a baby he has big ears.”

“Papi, you want some syrup with your waffles?”

“Waffles kwa?” I frown at Yazmin. “Bia, when will you learn how to start cooking ogbono and egusi or learn how to say ‘Emeka’?”

She hisses, Nigerian style, and walks back into the kitchen where she emerged from.

“At least, you learnt something.”

“Syrup or plain?” She shouts from the kitchen.

“Plain, abeg. Which one is syrup?” I stare at my son. “Toby, your mother wants to turn us to white men and give us jedi-jedi and we say no to that. You are full-blooded Igbo. Your name is Tobechi Onuora. You’ll speak Igbo before you speak Spanish and when you see me, you say ndewo or I’ll daze your jaw.”

The tot bursts into a cry.

“You don’t like what I’m saying? Screw you.”

Yazmin returns with a breakfast tray and wrinkled brows. “Why do you always make the boy cry?”

“Because I can.”

She carries Tobe with one hand and sets the tray on my lap with the other. She picks a chair facing me to nurse Tobe. wafflesI stare at the breakfast. I want to scold her for the joke of a meal but I don’t want a fight this morning. This is basically all she knows how to cook.

“Thank you, mi vida.”

“De nada.” She smiles.

“So um… Tola has claudia and she thinks we might all be infected. It would be good if we run tests and…”

“Wait, back up. Tola’s got what?”



“Yeah. It’s an infection.”

Yazmin blasts into laughter and gets Tobe terrified. He shrieks out in an annoying voice.

“I’m so sorry, baby.” She places him back on her nipple. “Your daddy just cracks me up. What the hell is claudia?”

I ignore her and dig into my waffles.

“I’m guessing you mean Chlamydia.”

“Whatever. Tola has it. She swears it’s not from a dirty swimming pool in Mauritius and God knows I’ve been faithful to you girls, so I don’t know where else it came from. My best bet would be a public toilet.”

“So you want us to get tested?”

“Yeah. And also get treated.”


I pause. “Okay? That’s your answer to all I just told you?”


“You’re not worried that you have a nasty claudia infection? That it is going to affect our sex life? You’re not upset about it?”

“No. I guess shit like this happens in polygamous families.”

“Oh. I see.”

“You see what?”

I slant my head in the direction of the kitchen.

“Erm…what’s the name of this girl again?”


“It’s Bose, Yaz. Bo-se.”

“Whatever. I don’t like her.”

“Bose!” I call the housemaid.  She answers and appears before me in seconds.

“Take my son from his mother.”

She stares at Yazmin and back at me.


“Take the boy and give him formula.”

“Why?” Yazmin questions.

“Take the boy, my friend!”

Bose approaches Yazmin hesitantly and Yazmin, slightly scared by my sudden change of mood, passes the baby to her. I wait until we’re out of earshot before I speak.

“Who did you fuck, Yaz?”


“Who did you fucking fuck to give me and Tola claudia?!”

“Nobody, papi.”

“Yaz, it’s nine in the morning and I have to be at the office before ten. I ain’t got time. You better start talking before I walk out that door.”

She does a silent and slightly insolent sigh. “Some guy I met at a party back home.”

I am instantly traumatized. I zap into a coma for a few and come back to life. I’m not sure how long I stayed in oblivion but clearly it wasn’t long enough because I return to find the two-timing bitch’s face glaring back at me with a do-your-worst look.

I mentally take a drink of icy water to cool me down. She must not see my heart cracking.

“Details, Yazmin.”

“My cousin, not the fat one, the one with the big boobs…”

I recall the cousin in question.

“It was her birthday and she threw a party at her house and I was there. I got drunk, met some guy from my high school and stuff happened. It meant nothing, really. Just sex.”

Ah! I don die! Wetin I go marry?

“Just sex,” I mumble.


“And this happened when?”

“I think a week before I came here.”

“Just sex,” I repeat.

“Papi, you’re mad?”

At this point, I can’t form again. My mouth hangs open and I glare at her as she continues speaking out of turn.

“I mean, I didn’t know our marriage is supposed to be that serious. We said we were only doing it to get my dad off our backs and so that I can have my life, away from him. Not like I’m Tola that you’re openly crazy over. I’m just the baby mama.”

“And that’s why you feel you can fuck around like a cheap ass puta.”

“Don’t call me that.”

“That is what you are!” My rage comes full force as I spring up. “How can a married woman, a mother who is breastfeeding go partying, get drunk and fuck around?!”

“It was just the one guy.”

“And without a condom?!”

“It was a mistake.”

“Mistake?! Bitch, his dick accidentally fell into your pussy?!”

“Don’t shout on me!” She starts to cry as my phone decides it is the best time to ring. I check the Caller ID; it’s a call from work. I reject it and face her.

“I don’t know how you do it in Mexico but here, a married woman who does what you did is sent packing. And that’s what’s gonna happen to you.”

It’s her turn to be shocked.

“Yes, I’ll call your dad and your mom and tell them what a slut you are after I send you back home!”

I grab my car key and head for the door.

“And yes, Tobe is not going with you,” I add.

She hurries to me before I leave.

“I’m sorry, papi. It meant nothing. I was just horny.”

“I bought you a fucking vibrator last Christmas! You even have those huge ass candles in your room you could have used! Why fuck a stinking dick that is infected with Mexican claudia and pass it to me and my wife?! Why would you do me like this, Yaz?! I defended you before Tola!”

“I’m sorry.”

“And you weren’t going to tell me?”

She blurts out series of excuses and apologies that make no sense and sends me into a rage again. To keep my lid on, I storm out. Once in the car, I dial her number and tell her to get dressed. We have to run tests at the hospital. I swear to God, if there is one more STD apart from this claudia, she is going back home. I won’t kill myself because of woman.


 Image credits: huffingtonpost.com, www.lepainquotidien.nl

It’s Another Saturday…#24

Honey’s Secret

So the other day Oba asks me how I cope with two wives and I give him a pretty straight answer. I tell him what he wants to hear – that I’m having a ball, basically. Double the pleasure, double the fun. It’s not beans to wear two wedding rings. I think I deserve some respect.


You’re never going to hear me complain about my marital status. I love both women and they love me back. Case closed. We have bumps like every normal family. Jide tells me I’m living in a fool’s paradise. He calls my situation, in quotes, “a fucking freak show.”

I take no offence. He’s my brother and he means no harm. Besides, he’s been cynical since Honey dumped him. I honestly like her as a person but the moment their breakup clocks two months, I’m hooking him up with one of my friends. I don’t believe a man should hunger for a woman, no matter how fantastic she is. There are lots of women out there who would drop on their knees if someone like Jide as much as looks their way, so why lose sleep over one random chick?

I’m not your regular douchebag; I’m just always realistic. I didn’t write the rules and I’m not about to change them. I have a heart beneath it all, mind you. I honestly do love my wives and I’m faithful to them because they both keep me on my toes. Man, do I love the drama and double loving they bring.

Take for example, Yazmin. She’s cray. On a whole different level. She has plans to screw my life with her demands. I have literally spent the last week attending to her, hand and foot. Still, she wants an extra limb, the one I have been reserving for Tola. And she knows this but she doesn’t care. Yazmin must get what Yazmin wants or Emeka will hang.

Presently I’m watching as she weakens me with her tongue skills. I have always been meaning to ask her who tutored her in oral sex. I should ask her now but I can’t even speak. That’s how good she is.

I swear out loud as she goes deep-throat. I don’t think I can take it any longer, so I grab a fistful of her hair and push her away from me.

“Biko, it’s enough.”

The look on her face is not a good one, hence I hurl myself up on my knees, and still holding her hair, I kiss her.

“Baby, I gotta run,” I tell her.

“Just one more.” Her hand dives below my waistline. “Five minutes, I promise.”

Five minutes sounds harmless but I should know better what Yazmin can accomplish with it.


I move away but she holds on to me, her hand working the length of me.

“Just lay back and let me do my thing, papi.”

She pushes me and my back hits the bed. Before I can blink, she is on me and I am in her. When I feel her warmth, my lips sputter out something nasty that gets her laughing.

“Why are you doing this, mi vida?”

“Because you like it and I’m the only one who can do it the way you like it.”

And that’s no lie there. Yazmin gets me sexually. Tola holds me emotionally and sometimes, it makes for great sex but when it comes to consistent, mind-blowing mayhem in bed, Yazmin has no equal. And she’ll swear that she’s had only two other men in her life before me.

My phone is ringing. Tola is calling but I can’t stop now, not when I have flipped Yazmin over and her butt cheeks are squeezed in my hands as I give her a taste of her own medicine.

I bury her head in a pillow. If I don’t, she’ll kill me with all that loud moaning. And to worsen it, she’s mouthing off nastily in Spanish. I try my best to hold on but I can’t. I withdraw from her before I risk giving her a second child. She takes me in her mouth once again to finish the job.

The instant she enters the bathroom to wash up, I dash out of the house.

In my car, both phones are ringing. Tola is on one line and of course, Yaz is on the other. I glance at the house and I see her standing by one of the windows with Tobe in her arms.

“I love you,” I say into the phone.

“Pinche pendejo,” she replies.

I laugh and drive off. Forty minutes later, I am home. Tola is in the kitchen, sitting before a huge mortar she got from God-knows-where. She is pounding something that looks like a mixture of pepper and crayfish. The housemaid stands nearby, watching. I’m sure she has pissed her madam off and has been ordered to do nothing. I look at the madam in question. She has a malicious look on her face that has me wondering what I have done this time.

But she looks beautiful. Sexy, even – with her legs spread apart and her little baby bump beneath her t-shirt and shorts. I haven’t seen her in a week. Staring into her troublesome face, I realize how much I have missed her and her constant hassle.

“I have chlamydia,” she spurts out as she stops pounding.

“Chlamydia?” I go for a drink of water.

She orders the housemaid out with a quick gesture.

“Isn’t that like yeast infection or something?” I ask.

“It’s worse. And I got it from you because it is sexually transmitted.”


“Have you had any discharge from your penis lately?”

“For real?” I pick a bottle of freezing water and shut the fridge. “No.”

“Burning pain while urinating?”


“Swollen or tender balls?”

“Jeez, doc! I don’t have Claudia or Carissa…”

“It is called chlamydia and you freaking gave it to me and I’m sure you got it from your wife!”


“Well unless you got some other sidechick out there…!”

“Kilode?! What is your problem this early morning, madam?”

“I have a really bad sexually transmitted infection that can cause serious damage to my reproductive system or hurt our baby and I got it from you and you’re asking me what my problem is?!”

“Calm down, doc. Maybe you got it from your trip. You like swimming, so maybe you used the pool and…”

“Don’t be very stupid, Mex. You gave it to me! And now, I have to go on antibiotics which could cause me yeast infection and generally screw up my entire pregnancy! I hate you!”

She abandons the pestle and leaves the kitchen. I follow her.

“Let’s talk about this…”

“There is nothing to talk about, Chukwuemeka!” She swings at me. I break my steps.

“I did not sign up for this! It was supposed to be just me and you but now I’m sharing you and sharing STDs?!”

She walks to the bed, drops on it and begins to sob. I hurry to her and take her in my arms. I assure her of my love. I kiss away the tears too.

She stops for a bit and looks at me. “We can make this work, Mex. Three of us can but not with STDs flying about.”

“I’m sorry about what you’re going through, baby.”

I lie back on the bed and pull her to sit on me.

“Is there another girl out there, Mex?”

“I already told you there isn’t.”

“Then it came from Yazmin…”

“Yaz is not cheating on me.”

“How then did I get chlamydia?”

“I don’t know.”

“Well, you figure it out and get yourself tested for chlamydia. You and Yazmin. And also get yourselves treated while I take a break from this ménage-a-trois before I lose my mind. I can’t keep crying like this. It’s not good for me and the baby. And it’s so hard because I need you. You used to be my best friend.”

“I still am,” I assure her.


She lowers to give me a kiss. It’s deep and passionate and for a moment, I brace myself for a long session of lovemaking but she breaks contact and rises to her feet. I suddenly realize she has not unpacked her things from her travel suitcase.

I sit up. “I hope you’re not planning to go away again.”

“I am.” She takes in a long sniffle. “I’m beginning to hate you.”


She stops me, picks her handbag and points at the suitcase. “Help me with that.”

“Where are you going?”

“Just get yourself treated. And I want you and Yaz to run complete tests of every other STD out there…”

“Come on…”

“I have freaking chlamydia!”

“Fine. We’ll run tests. Anything else?”

“My box!” She points and I go for her suitcase.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

Someone is ringing my doorbell like a maniac. I listen to the sound while staring at my television screen without interest. Ekene and Saratu are too deep into the movie they’re watching and the box of fries and chicken they have wedged between them that they ignore the doorbell. Who gets so engrossed in a movie at 10am anyways?

I get off my seat and head towards the door, praying that it is not Jide I’ll find outside. It’s been a month since we broke up but seventeen days since we last saw. I still love him, even more than I did before but I just can’t be the Honey he used to know. I don’t even know who I really am. I have lost my mind, my emotions and generally my will to be the person I used to be or do the things I loved. The pain is intense and I can’t really explain it. I feel I have hurt Jide so much that there’s nothing I can do to make up for the pain I have caused. I am literally burying my head in the sand and it’s the darkest place I have been yet.

I’ve told him to move on and since I haven’t heard from him in a while, I guess he has.

I open my front door and the last person I expect to see is standing under the blazing sun, decked up in Casual Couture and frowning at me like I am responsible for making her break out in perspiration.

I lower my eyes to her feet and see a suitcase resting on the floor beside her.

Her frown disappears, replaced with a smile. “Hi Honey!”

“Hey, Tola.”

She gives a curious expression, her head tilted to an angle to study my face.

“Are you okay? Heard you and Jide broke up. How are you coping?”

“I’m good.”

“Is it me or have you added a little weight?”

Her statement cuts. I have added more than a little bit of fat. I can’t comfortably look into the mirror these days.

“But I understand. When Emeka started cheating on me back then I did a lot of comfort eating and added some weight. So, don’t worry. You’ll get over it.”

“Are you coming in?”

“Bless! I thought you were going to leave me burning outside.”

She drags in her suitcase and stops when she sees Ekene and Saratu staring at her inquiringly.

“Hi.” She waves.

Ekene waves back. Saratu merely stares.

“I’m greeting o,” Tola pronounces.

“Hello,” Saratu mouths.

“Honey, can we talk?”

Before I can answer, she takes my hand and drags me into the kitchen.

“How are you, darling?” She holds my face tenderly; and if I am in the right frame of mind I would be trying to decipher how I became her darling overnight.

“You miss Jide, don’t you?”

I stay silent.

“Aww, I understand how you feel. I also suffered from Jide withdrawal for like twenty-four hours after we had sex.”

Is she kidding me?

“But I trust that you’ll get your shit together. Unlike me and Mex.” She sighs. “I don’t know if we’ll ever get back to the way we used to be. Like right now, I am so mad at him. Yazmin has given me some STI through him! And he’s denying it, claiming that I got it from my trip to Mauritius. I’m like how?! How on earth does one catch an infection like chlamydia from a swimming pool?! So I said to him, go and get you and your wife tested for STDs and treat yourselves before we continue our threesome! I have a baby coming on the way and God knows I cannot risk him getting an infection!”


Her shoulders slouch. “Honey, you look really down. Are you sure you’re okay?”

She touches my forehead.

“Temperature fine.”

She pulls at my lower eyelids. “Eyes normal. Stick out your tongue for me. Say aaah.”

“I’m fine, Tola.”

“You’re sure?”

She takes my hand and tries to forcefully read my pulse but I pull away.

“Okay. Since you’re fine, can I stay with you for a while? Like let’s say two weeks. Until I’m no longer angry at Mex?”

“You want to stay here?”

“I know I should have told you before coming but the truth is I didn’t plan to bug you initially. I was actually going to stay at my aunt’s place but my cousin said there was nobody in the house, that they all traveled. Then I thought of my friends but I changed my mind immediately. If I went to any of them, they would start spreading gossip that my marriage is on the rocks, so I thought of that one person that would neither judge me nor spread gossip about me and we could have mad fun together…”

“And you thought of me.”

She nods with a grin. “I even bought you something from Mauritius.”

She pulls out a nightshirt from her handbag that has ‘sisters-in-lawv’ written on it.

“I have a matching pair in my box. You like?”

“Yeah. Thanks.”

“We’ll have fun, right? I could have gone to a hotel but I don’t want to be alone. And you’re such a cool chick and well-traveled as I am. We have a lot more in common than we know, asides the Onuora boys. Plus we’re both heartbroken.”

I simply smile.

“So, tell me your spare room is free.”

“It is not,” Saratu answers, walking in.

Tola instantly puts up the condescending air she is known for but I step in before things turn nauseating.

“You can stay in my room, Tola.”

“That’s better.”

“This way.”

I lead her to my bedroom and let her in.

“Jesus Lord!” She gasps at the state of mess that is a result of four weeks of neglect.

“I’ll try to fix things this afternoon. I’ve been very busy.”

I part open the curtains to let in air.

“Honey…” Tola walks to me and touches my hand. “What’s really going on?”

I look at her. I desperately want to talk to someone but my tongue feels too heavy right now.

“Like you said,” I reply, “heartbreak.”

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

 “And I’m done!”

Tola takes a pose and flings a wet wipe into a trashcan resting under my dressing mirror. The room is now spotless but not as good as I’d normally do it. Jide used to tease me of having traces of OCD. I wonder what he’ll think of me now.

The doorbell goes off again and I feel my tummy churn. Without a second thought, I shut my bedroom door. Tola doesn’t notice. She is busy undressing for a shower.

“I actually wanted to make catfish peppersoup this morning but when I saw Mex, I just lost my mood. The guy is just an annoying ass, I swear. But I love him like that.”

She takes off her bra using that skillful manner women use in taking off their bras. I remember I once had a roommate that could not only take off her bra while dressed but also her jeans with her panty still on.

Saratu barges in.

“That your friend is here again o!” she announces.

“What friend?”

“The curvy one. She insists on seeing you and she even brought her luggage as well. I wonder when this house became a refugee camp.”

“Erm…let me see her.”

I leave the room with Saratu.

“Are you doing a sleepover I know nothing about?” Ekene jokes. “Fine chicks are just dropping in from the sky like rain.”

I open the front door and there is Mary standing outside. She is not smiling and I’m guessing Saratu must have been rude to her.

“Hi Honey.”

She reaches forward and gives me a hug.

“I’ve missed you,” she tells me, letting go. She doesn’t comment about my weight. Bless her!

“I’m staying for the weekend. Just to keep you company and to make sure everything is copacetic. Hope you don’t mind?”

“We do – actually,” Saratu answers. Mary puts on a scowl. “And what is copacetic?”

“Ignore her,” I say. “Come in.”

Mary walks in. Ekene says hello, she mumbles in reply.

“We’ve met?” he asks, recognition hitting his face.

“No,” Mary responds.

I make introductions.

“Nice to meet you again, Mary,” Ekene mutters.

I direct Mary to my room. Saratu follows us in.

“So, Mary the thing is the house is packed full. Tola just came in…”


“Yeah. She’s in the bathroom.”

“Why is she here?”

I don’t answer the question. “She’ll be sharing my room. Saratu is in the other room…”

“And there’s nowhere for me to stay. I understand, Hon. Not that I could have called you to inform you, though. Your phone has been switched off for ages. How are you?”

“I’m good.”

“No, she’s not,” Saratu butts in. “But wetin concern me? You know what, Mary? You can stay. I’ll bunk with Kene. I just have a few days left in this damned country anyways, so enjoy your weekend.”

“No, it’s okay,” Mary protests.

“You’re not displacing me, seriously. I’m only too glad to be out of this house because sisi here has been acting really weird.”

Mary puts an arm over my shoulder. “She’ll be fine.”

“Me, I don try.” Saratu walks out and we’re left alone.

“Tonight we’re going for Peace’s divorce party,” Mary says. “I know she invited you.”

“I’m not going anywhere.”

Mary faces me and rests her hands on my shoulders. “You will. I’ll dress you in a beautiful dress, do your makeup, fix up your hair and we’ll go and support a friend. I know you’re going through a hard time too and that is why I’m here to uplift your spirit. But I promise you that after this evening, you’ll feel a whole lot better.”

“Will Jide be there?”


“I don’t want to see him.”

“I’m sorry, I can’t do anything about that. You just have to manage.”

I exhale. “Okay. I’ll go. I actually got Peace a gift but I was planning to have it delivered tomorrow morning.”

“You will hand it to her yourself. Come here.”

She draws me into a hug.

“I don’t know what is going on with you, Honey but you’ll be fine, dear.”

There’s something about Mary that gives me instant peace. I hold her tightly. That’s the only thing I can do to stop the tears from coming.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

“Awww, you look absolutely gorgeous, Honey!” Tola exclaims when I step out of my room with Mary behind me. “I’m officially jealous.”

“Me too.”

Saratu is busy with a chicken bone. She is yet to move to Ekene’s house. Right now, she’s in a pair of boxers and a strapless bra. Her hair is held up in Brazilian rollers while Tola helps paint her toenails. I have no idea how they bonded in the few hours Mary and I left them alone.

“Yellow looks good on you, Honey,” Tola compliments. I try to smile but I can’t. I agree that the dress I have on is lovely. Jide would love it, especially the length. He likes me wearing short things because he thinks I have amazing legs. But I feel fat.

“Don’t I look fat?”

“No.” The answer is a chorus from the ladies.

“You’re sure?”

“Yeah,” Tola reiterates. “I would have told you if you looked fat. Go and kill them, bae! Honey for the boys them!”

I smile.

“I particularly adore the heels,” Saratu comments. “When you come back, I’ll just claim them.”

“And your makeup is sublime,” Tola adds. “Please, Mary, let no man steal her from us at that party o. She will marry my dede whether she likes it or not. All this one her and Jide are doing is just yanga.”

Mary links her arm in mine. “She’s in safe hands. See you girls.”

We turn to the door and Mary drags me along. It’s dark outside and the weather a little cool after a long, hot day. I feel weird the moment my heels dig into the lawn. My skin tingles and the air invades my nostrils. I immediately have the urge to turn back. Mary senses it and she holds me tighter as we head outside the gate.

“Hey ladies!” Ekene’s car stops across the street. “Need a ride?”

“How does he always pop up from nowhere?” Mary whispers.

“It’s his talent.”

“You’re both looking great, by the way,” Ekene mentions. “It would be my pleasure to drop you off wherever you’re going.”

“Let’s go.” I tug Mary’s hand. We cross over and I take the backseat of the car, leaving her with a puzzled face and Ekene’s ogling eyes. He doesn’t seem to notice that she’s properly covered because her curves are in full display from underneath her outfit.

He is going to have a hard time concentrating on the road.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

Peace welcomes me with a smile that is new to her features. She looks radiant in white. Her cheeks are full and ruddy. There’s a contagious glow about her.

“Where is Honey?” she asks me, looking over my shoulder. I smile apologetically in response.

“You guys should stop this rough play jor. I will not take that breakup nonsense I’m hearing. You belong together.”

“Please help me tell her when you see her.”

“So she’s not coming?”

“I don’t think so.”

“That’s heartbreaking. Come in jare.”

I step into the house and realize I am a late. Everyone else is present, except Mary, and they’re already having drinks. I throw in a general greeting and take the seat Peace offers after leaving a gift bag on the dining table where others are placed.

“How are you?” Celia leans towards me and whispers.

“I’m good.”

She’s stirring a cocktail. “You miss her?”


“We miss her too…”

“I have something to say, everyone!” Peace stands, interrupting Celia.

“First of all, thank you for coming. When Celia came up with the idea of this get-together I totally kicked against it because of my beliefs. Divorce is not a tag a Christian wants to carry, let alone party over. But when I deeply thought about it and remembered all I went through with Reno, I was like, why not? I am basically celebrating my life here today. Eight years ago, I walked down the aisle to stand before a man I barely knew. I gave my body, my heart and my future to him instead of giving them to God and I paid dearly. I never imagined I’d be here today, doing this, but I am and I’m grateful to God and to you, my friends. I don’t know why Mary is not here. She was the catalyst that woke me up and I owe her a lot. In her absence, I want to make a toast to life, to love and to broken hearts being mended.”

Celia passes her a glass of wine. She declines.

“Just for tonight, Peace.”

She takes the glass and lifts it in the air. As we are about to cheer, the door opens and Mary waltzes in.

“I’m sorry we’re late! So, so sorry! Our dumb driver took us through one corner-corner road and dumped us in traffic! We had to use a keke here. Hope we didn’t miss much?”

I am about to ask her who her companion is when Honey makes a grand entrance in the most beautiful dress I have ever seen on her. My tummy literally makes a loud grumble that gets Celia’s attention. She snorts. I ignore. My eyes won’t leave the door. Honey stands by it as if she is uncertain about joining us.

“Look who the cat dragged in!” Celia exclaims. “Hi Honey! We missed you, babes! Come give us a hug.”

Honey walks in with slow steps and hugs everyone, leaving me for last. I don’t intend to give a show when my arms wrap around her, so I make it quick but ensure that I hold her hand afterwards. Celia conspiratorially vacates her space on the couch but Honey decides to go for another empty space right opposite me. I don’t complain. It’s perfect. This way I can stare at her as much as I want.

“Honey, what would you like to drink?” Bobby asks.


“Water? Nobody except Kate is doing water here today. We have spirits, wine, champagne, beer, even palm wine! Pick any.”


“I know exactly what she wants,” I offer, getting off my seat.

I dash into the kitchen to mix the perfect cocktail. I want her to loosen up. It’s been seventeen days since we last saw. I have been counting because that is the most I can do. She has shut me and everyone else out and I don’t understand why. From what I have gathered, Saratu and that Ekene guy are the only persons that have access to her.

Fam, that just makes me plain mad. The guy literally lives in her house. The couple of times I went there to see her, it was he who answered the door. He didn’t let me in at both occasions and he held this smile on his face that made me just want to punch the yellowness out of his DNA.

I don’t want to believe that something is going on between them. I have been trying my best to shut out that irksome voice that keeps telling me that the Bridemaker curse has returned.

I’m worried. Something feels out of place and I might have plans to swallow my pride and speak to Ekene. Maybe he knows something I don’t. I won’t accept that she has stopped loving me as she told me the last time we met.

Her eyes had been wearing a veil of blankness. She was sitting across the table from me in this dim, bland restaurant she had chosen for us to have dinner. I held her hand. I caressed her palm with my finger but she merely stared back and told me she had lost every feeling she used to have for me.

“What changed?” I asked, my heart bleeding.

“Nothing,” she replied and pulled her hand away. “Nothing changed.”

“So you’re sleeping with Ekene again?”


“Then what is it?”

“I’m sorry, Jide. I can’t do this.”

She picked her phone and purse and began out before I could stop her. I sat there, broken, angry and confused. She left me with questions that still need answers and I would have them tonight at all cost. This cocktail I’m mixing has always been her kryptonite.

I split the mix into two glasses, place one in the fridge and take the other to her. After serving it to her, I reclaim my earlier position and resume gazing at her.

“Before you ladies joined us, we were about to make a toast to life, love and broken hearts being mended.” Peace raises her glass once more as do we.


We salute to her toast. When I let my bottle of beer down, I catch Honey’s eyes on me which she averts straightaway. I also notice she has had a good gulp of her drink.

The evening goes by rather slowly, jokes are told, stories are shared and Honey loses her subdued temperament. She is into her second cocktail now, being entertained by Bobby’s hilarious tale about a client who pretended to go mad in court by stripping nude because she felt she was losing the case. I am not that into the story; I’m simply observing Honey. She has no idea my eyes are on her. She laughs out loud every now and then and I remember how much she loved doing that, especially when I strap her down and tickle her pitilessly. I miss that uncontained hilarity. And her lip-syncing skills and weird addiction for Choco Milo, or how she loved to be part of my morning shower just to hear me sing a Michael Jackson song. I haven’t sang since she left, though. Nothing is the same without her.

It’s almost 10pm and we’re having an argument about love and relationships. Everyone has something to say, including Honey. Her tongue is completely loose now and she has some interesting opinions about relationships and I’m amused.

Out of the blue, while speaking, her gaze drops to her phone and she lifts it off her laps.

“Excuse me,” she mutters as she hurries outside.

I go after her. I find her at Peace’s front steps and stop behind her. I’m just a hair’s breath away but I keep my space. The smooth arrangement of fine hairs on her neck gives me goosebumps. It is with self-control I keep my hands to myself.

“Come and get us in an hour,” she tells the person on the phone with her. “We’ll be done by then.”

I wonder if it’s Ekene.

“See ya.”

The call ends and she does a swivel into my waiting arms. There is initial surprise and then a twinkling of silence as we both remain immobile.

Then she makes to pull back but I tug closer, smelling her hair, feeling the lushness of her breasts on my chest.

“Why did you take all of this away from me, sugar lips?”

I’m not looking for an immediate answer. I’d rather have a kiss, so I take one without asking. She only lets me taste her lips for a second before she moves away.

I see the defenselessness in her eyes. The cocktail has done its job; it’s time to do mine. I take her hand and cart her away from the front entrance of Peace’s home. We end up outside the gate where I have the car parked.

“Jide, Mary will look for me,” Honey protests weakly.

“She won’t.”

I open the passenger door, she slips into the car on her own accord. When I fire up the engine, she turns on the Mp3 player and makes a selection of her favorite party songs. I see that she’s in a hyper mood and I’m a little worried that I went too far on the cocktail mix.

“I don’t want to go home yet,” she tells me.

“My place, then?”

She nods, and does so to the rhythm of the song presently playing. Then she goes ahead to lip-sync to it, dancing at the same time. It’s Sia’s Free the Animal playing, a song I have heard so many times. But I am just realizing the song is talking about sex. I don’t even know what the lyrics are exactly; I’m more interested in the way Honey’s body pulses to it. Naturally, I am on my way to being turned on but I’ll control it. We need to talk first. If all goes well, anything else can happen.

It’s a short drive to my house. Honey is still pumped; there’s a party going on in her head, I guess. Once inside the house, she livens it up with the home theater, now playing some Jimmy Jatt party mix.

This is not what I had in mind. I enter the kitchen for a drink of water and when I return, I find Honey stripped and left in nothing but her underwear.

I balk.

“Isn’t this why you brought me here?” she asks, sauntering towards me. “Why you got me drunk in the first place?”

“No, Honey.”

I switch off the home theater system.

“I didn’t get you drunk. I just wanted to loosen you up a bit so we can talk about why we broke up. I feel there’s something you’re hiding from me.”

“I’m hiding nothing, Jideofor.” She keeps her eyes on my lips. “Except this.”

Her bra falls to the floor. I look straight into her eyes.

“Erhinyuse, behave.”

I hold her hands together. “I need answers. Just a few answers. I know you still love me. I know the breakup was hard on you too and it still is. I can tell by just looking at you. But what I don’t know is why you let go of something really good. What did I do that is so unforgiveable? Why was it so easy for you to dump me just like that?”

She loses her seductive air as her eyes grow dim. “It wasn’t easy, Jide. It was the hardest thing. And I don’t want to talk about it.”


“Because it’s best that you don’t know.”

“Okay, what if I give you time and you eventually tell me what is going on, will that fix things between us?”

“Jide, we’re done. There’s no fixing things. You won’t even want to be with me once I open up to you.”

“Let me be the judge of that, Honey. Let me stop loving you on my own terms.”

Tears instantly fill her eyes. She stoops down and picks her bra.

“I have to go.”

I catch her hand as she turns away. “Don’t go.”

She steps closer and shawls her arms around my neck, going for a weak spot underneath my ear.

“I’ve missed you,” she whispers.

I have never had reason to resist her advances before and I don’t think this time will be different. We kiss like we have been sex-starved for years. We grope and fondle like wildlings. We crash into the nearest couch. When I thrust into her, she explodes, and I have to break for a while to let her have her moment. She laughs as the orgasm takes her. All I can do is entertain myself while I wait.

But she won’t let me. She drags me by the collar and forces me in deeper.

The feeling is bliss! That’s the only way I can explain it. I have held this want for a long time and it’s more than I can bear. The deeper I go, the wilder we both get, the more certain I am that I want to be doing this to Honey all my life. I don’t care what her story is, I am not letting her out of my sight again.

She has a second orgasm that makes me lose control. I try to pull away but she straps me in. History could repeat itself but at the moment, neither of us cares. The absolute ecstasy we’re both feeling and the elation of being together trumps everything else, thus I get lost in pleasure and spend myself within her.

Total stillness takes over. I kiss her while trying to catch my breath. Tired eyes stare back at me and I caress her lips until her eyelids close. It doesn’t take long for her to drift into deep sleep. I lift her up and take her into the bedroom, and then return to the sitting room to accomplish what has been tugging on my mind.

I pick her phone from the floor where she has left it. I make a ‘G’ with my finger to unlock the code and surprisingly, the picture I see on the wallpaper is of both of us.

I stare at the phone for a while, not knowing what exactly I’m looking for.

I begin with her call log. The last call she received was from a contact she saved as ‘Eks’, obviously Ekene. The call before that was from me, seventeen days ago. This explains why I haven’t been able to reach her since then; her phone has been off.

Nothing else of interest arrests my attention. I move on to her text messages and find a blank wall as well. What am I expecting to see?

I check her email messages next. I still find nothing. I put the phone down, more curious than ever. I guess I have to wait until she wakes up before we can have that talk.

I turn on the television to get distracted and it is at that exact moment she receives an email. I know I shouldn’t read it but my curiosity won’t let me act politely. I tap open to read. It’s from some doctor with a Dutch-like name and he is responding to an email she sent at an earlier time before we broke up with the header, “I am pregnant”. His reply comes in five lines.

Hi Honey,

I am sorry to reply you this late. I was off connection for quite some time.

Please, don’t abort the baby or stop taking your meds. The baby will be fine. I hope this is not too late.

Attached is a new prescription and recommended dosage, assuming you’re still pregnant.

Can you fly in for your routine checkup?

I feel my heart beating fast as I scroll down and discover the email sender is a psychiatrist. I tap on the attached prescription. It reveals that she is on a drug called Lithium. The name rings familiar but I can’t recall anything about it. I quickly go to Google search on her phone and type in the word. Google lists out some suggestions and top amongst them are lithium for mania and lithium for bipolar disorder.

I stop right there, afraid to go any further as a cold sensation washes over me. I know I said I needed answers but I’m not so sure this is what I wanted to discover.

I walk back to my bedroom and stand by the door. She opens her eyes.

“I’m cold.”

I turn off the air conditioner.

“No, I want you here.”

I slide in beside her and she snuggles into my arms. The words mania and bipolar disorder won’t leave my head and I’m scared but I love this woman and I’m willing to bear her burden.

“Do you still want to talk?” she asks.

“No, sugams.” I kiss her forehead. “I just want you back.”




mi vida – my life (Spanish)

pinche pendejo – fucking asshole

sisi – young girl

yanga – to front

keke – tricycle


Image credits:pinterest.com, favim.com, tofo.me





It’s Another Saturday…#23

It Must Have Been Love

Shit has hit the fan at last. We have been called to a family meeting by my parents on this humid Monday morning to settle issues between Emeka and Tola. As told to me by my mom, Tola had threatened to kill Emeka with a knife last night, literally holding his penis hostage for nine hours until the sun came up and Kalu drove over to rescue him. They say she is still in bad shape but Nne has been able to calm her down. Now, she wants to have a word with everyone.

I really don’t know why I have to be there. I wish they would just cut me off from anything that has Emeka’s name on it. I have my own issues to deal with, the biggest being how I am going to convince the woman I love that I am not a colossal ass.

God will not easily forgive me for what I did to Honey. I think yesterday I got to the lowest point of my life with my words to her. I didn’t sleep through the night. I spent the entire time whipping myself psychologically and emotionally. And when I wasn’t doing that, I was trying to get through to her line but was unable to.

“I don’t know what to tell her, boo,” I say to Mary over the phone.

“Just apologize, Jide. And assure her that you didn’t mean those words.”

“I didn’t but truth is I freaked out.”

“You are a grown ass man, Jide.”

“Boo, I needed time to think it through and let it all sink in. A baby is not a new gadget or a new car you just acquire. A baby is a life, an entire human being. If I don’t welcome him or her mentally and emotionally, then accepting them physically would be a farce. I had to prepare myself!”

“Well, see what your preparation has caused you.”

“She was inconsolable. My God! She cried like she was losing her dad all over again. I felt so terrible and I still do.”

“Abeg, don’t waste time. Go and tell her sorry before I take it personal.” Mary hisses. “Na dis kind story dey vex me. You just fall my hand big time, Olajideofor.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Don’t tell me sorry! Go and tell her. And get an engagement ring while you’re at it for heaven’s sake!”

“Okay ma.”

Mary hangs up. I look outside the window of the cab I’m in. There’s Monday rush traffic building up ahead of us. I brace myself for wasted time and use the opportunity to cancel appointments with my patients, reassigning them to junior midwives. I intend to take the entire day off to be with Honey. She needs to know how much I love her and that I do not plan to bail on her or the baby, even though I am yet be excited that she is pregnant.

I arrive at the family house really late, hoping they had carried on their meeting without me. Unfortunately, I meet them in good time. The old man is about to speak when I enter the sitting room.

“Sorry I’m late,” I apologize. “Traffic.”

“Sit down.” My mom points to an empty space on a sofa beside Oba. When I get myself comfortable, I take in my environment.

Tola is seated in-between my parents on one of the three-sitters. Emeka and Kalu are put together while Yazmin occupies a single couch. My mom appears more exhausted than saddened. She holds Tola’s hand in both of hers. Yazmin seems uneasy and she draws no comfort when her eyes briefly catch mine.

“I was about sharing a true story before you walked in Jideofor,” my dad speaks. “You remember your late Uncle, Festus, my eldest brother?”


“He fell into a similar situation with Chukwuemeka when he recently got married to your aunty. Festus played away match with one small girl in a neighboring village and she gave birth to twin girls for him. Meanwhile your aunty had a son for him already. So, it was that he wanted to secretly settle the mother of his twins and send her on her way but our father said, ‘No. We do not do such in our place. The woman has given birth to your child and by doing that, you have completely killed her market. Who do you now want to leave her and the twins for? What man will even take secondhand cargo?’

“So, your grandfather refused. And thus, Festus and all the males in the family went over to the girl’s village and paid her dowry and brought her home. She was given her own room in the compound and they all lived in peace with your aunty even after your uncle’s death. What is the essence of my long story?”

“I wonder,” Oba murmurs. My mom eyes him.

“My daughter, Omotola,” my dad continues, “we cannot drive the mother of one of our sons away, especially since he is a first son. It is not in our culture to do so. It is better that the mother on her own accord, chooses to leave. We will bless her and send her on her way in peace but she will not take our son along. I have already told this to Yazmin. She says she has no desire to leave. You were here when she said it. Your husband who is also her husband wants her to stay. We too, we want her to stay. Omotola, I know it is painful but my daughter, what has happened cannot be reversed. And that is why, as a family, we plead with you in God’s name to forgive two of them and accept Yazmin as your sister.”

Tola looks away from him.

“Forgive your husband for his foolishness.”

“But daddy, if the table was turned and I did what Emeka did, won’t you be throwing me out of the house now?”

“Good question,” Oba comments.

“My dear, I am not a hypocrite. I will not throw you out of my son’s house if you did what he did. It is his right to do as he wishes, not mine. I may suggest it to him but I’ll leave him with his decision. The same way I am letting you know right now that it is your choice to stay with him or to go. But we are hoping you stay because you are now part of us and you’re carrying an Onuora. It will hurt us immensely if you go away but we will understand. Nevertheless, we beg you to forgive, to accept Yazmin as your sister and to manage this misbehaving Igbo family as part of yours.

“As for Chukwuemeka, your chapter is not closed in my book. There will be consequence for this grave wickedness you have displayed. May God deal with me severely if I see your face in this house after today. From now on you are banned from coming here.”

Emeka gulps. “What?”


My dad raises his hand and stops my mom. “I’ve said what I’ve said.”

“You’re disowning me?”

“I have no right to. You’re still my son and that’s never going to change but you are not welcome here any longer.”

“Daddy, please.” Tola pleads.

I stare at my mom, expecting her to speak on her son’s behalf but she doesn’t. Her eyes hold tears that may take twenty years to spill. Her mercy has reached its limit and so has everyone else’s except Tola’s.

“Daddy, please forgive him.”

My father’s face is set in stone as he looks at Emeka who has gone on his knees. He dare not approach him.

“I’m sorry, dad. I screwed up big time. I’ll fix it–”

“How?” My dad probes. “You mess yourself up and the women who love you and you say you will fix it? How? What legacy do you want to leave your children with? When Tobe grows up to be a man tomorrow, what would he have learned from you? Or do you think women are rags you use to mop the very floor you walk on? When did you become this useless person? Where did we go wrong?”

The weight of my father’s pain falls on me and I am reminded of my own responsibility waiting. How do I present my case to them without them concluding they have failed as parents? I don’t feel any different from Emeka. We are both fuckboys. Our dicks have spoken for us and chosen the paths of our destinies. While Emeka seeks to ‘fix’ his issues, I intend to make things right with my woman.

I watch as Tola leaves her seat and plants her knees on the floor before my parents.

“Get up,” my mom commands. “Don’t kneel on his behalf.”

“Please mom, I want to speak. This is the reason why I called everyone together.”

“You’re pregnant…”

“I am fine. Please Nne, let me speak.”

“Go ahead.”

“Daddy, mommy, you’re the only parents I have. You have been kind and loving to me even with my flaws and mistakes. I owe you more than I can ever repay you. Right now, all I have to give back is my love and respect and this child I am carrying and that is why I have no intention of leaving Emeka. I have vowed for better or for worse and if this is the worse I’ll have to live with, then I’m ready for it. Oyibo woman no fit enter my domot come kolombi my husband. All of us go die on the line.”

Oba sniggers and I smile.

“Mommy, daddy, I just want to say thank you for stepping into this messy situation.”

Nice one, Tola. You just scored high on the scale of best daughter-in-law. Yazmin, your storytelling skills won’t cut it in this round.

Tola dabs her eyes with the back of her hand and returns to her seat.

“Emeka,” she confronts her husband. “I don’t know if love you the way I used to. It will take God’s grace to get us back to that place of love. Last night when I held your… When I held you, I had a lot of time to think things through. And I have come to the following conclusion if we want this marriage triangle to work. One: this baby I’m carrying, whether boy or girl will be considered your first child. Two: Yazmin is not entitled to anything you own. You will take care of Tobe and her but if anything happens to you or she decides to leave, she goes with nothing. Three: Yazmin must live in this same town with me. Not far away from me. I don’t trust her; I want my eyes on her. Four: I am the official Mrs. Chukwuemeka Onuora, the one you take for public functions. Five: If you do not accept my terms, you are free to leave but I will make sure I drain you of every last kobo you have. These are my terms.”

There is a hush that allows everyone present mull over her words.

“Thank you, darling,” Nne says. “Chukwuemeka? Yazmin? What have you both to say to all that Tola has just laid down?”

Emeka nods and looks at Yazmin.

“I’m fine with it,” she replies.

“It’s not just to say you are fine with it,” my dad drops in. “You are to say, ‘thank you,’ because no woman of this generation is this generous to share her husband with another woman, so don’t sit there and act like it’s your right to take what rightfully belongs to her.”

“I’m not trying to…”

“In short, you have no mouth or claim over Emeka as long as Tola exists in his life. She has become your madam. You’ll call her aunty. You will respect her the same way you respect us. If Emeka does anything to hurt you, you will not come to us but go straight to her to report him. She is your mommy as well. I will not hear that you were rude to her or you try to rub shoulders with her. Do you hear me?”

“Yes, dad.”

“That is our culture here. In the olden days in some parts of Igboland, the first wife was responsible for searching for and initiating marriage procedures to bring in a new wife for her husband. And once that wife has been brought in, she must accord the older wife all the respect she deserves. That is how it is done. If you cannot cope with the terms, Yazmin, feel free to find your way back to your father’s house but you must drop our son for us. Do you understand?”

“I do, dad,” a tearful Yazmin answers. She seems harassed by the old man who before now has been a cool dad to her.

“Oya, say thank you to Omotola.”

Yazmin faces Tola. “Thanks.”

“Which one be thanks? No, my dear. Do things properly. Yorubas love respect. You saw how she went on her knees before us? Do the same.”

“Dad?” Emeka protests.

“Shut your mouth,” my mom fires back.

With tears streaming down her face, Yazmin lowers to her knees before Tola. “Thank you, Tola.”

“Get up, abeg. After you’ll go and give him head behind my back.”

I try hard not to laugh but I can’t help it. I have a feeling there’s going to be a lot of drama between both women. Yazmin looks like she has some trouble in her as well.

“Dad,” Emeka speaks up, “please take back your words about me not showing up here again. I’m really sorry for everything. I would do anything…”

“You have done enough.” The old man stands up. “You need to start undoing now. Until I see a man in you, a true husband and a responsible father, you are not welcome here. Have a nice day, everyone else. I have things to do.”

As he walks up the stairs, I see our perfect family falling apart. I wonder if things will go back to the way they used to be.

I hang around a bit to add some comfort to my mom’s life but she assures me that she is fine.

“I’ll spend the rest of the year praying, Jidenna. Everything is so confusing right now and I don’t know which way to turn but I know God will heal this family and set things right. The devil will not succeed.”

“Amen,” I say sincerely. Holding her frail form in a hug, I tell her I love her. She pats my cheek and I step into the kitchen for a drink of water. I see Yazmin sitting before the kitchen table, her phone is placed before her and she is on a video call to a woman I’m guessing is her mother. I don’t understand Spanish but I gather that the woman is mad at her for some reason, going by the way she is screaming. I feel somewhat sorry for Yazmin. Honey has told me she is also having a hard time on her own.


I take my drink of water and rinse the glass cup.

Yazmin looks at me briefly. She is on her way to a smile but I step out of the house through the backdoor.


I turn to see Emeka trudging after me.

“I was thinking…” He walks up to me. “I’m trying to get Yaz her own place because I don’t think she’ll be comfortable here again. So I was thinking that since she’s in good terms with Honey, she could bunk up with her until…”


“You didn’t even let me finish.”

“My girlfriend’s house will not be a hotel where you drop by to shag your wife whenever you’re horny. Besides, Honey is going through a lot right now. She doesn’t need stress.”

“Okay. No wahala.”

I start to walk away but he stops me again.

“I don’t want this thing to tear us apart, JD.”

“It won’t. I just have my own ish to deal with. As for Yazmin, I’ll come round. Just give me time.”

My answer seems to please him. He goes back to the house while I head out the gate. There are usually no cabs cruising by at this time of the day, so I decide to take a walk and while I do, I try Honey’s number. It rings, much to my nervousness. I have not prepared a speech for her yet.


Hearing her voice takes the edge away.

“Hello?” I repeat. I can’t work up the words to express how sorry I am.

“Um…are you home?”


“Can I come over?”

She sniffles. “Alright.”

“Honey, are you okay…?”

She disconnects the line and I’m left staring at my phone. I hear the horn of a car, cock my head to see a cab and I flag it down.

The driver takes me to Honey’s house. Saratu lets me in and I head straight to Honey’s bedroom. I find her crouched on the floor and her head on the bed. Her face is to the wall, she is not crying.


At the sound of my voice, she blinks but says nothing. I pull her up from the floor and try to look into her eyes but she wouldn’t let me. She dives into the bed and burrows her head in a sea of pillows.

“Honey, talk to me.”

“She won’t.”

I turn to the door where Saratu is standing.

“She’s been like that since last night.”

“What happened?”

Saratu’s expression shows that my question is ridiculous.

“Let’s talk.”

I do not want to speak with her but it seems she has something to tell me. I follow her to the sitting room and take a seat. She sits facing me.

“She had an abortion,” Saratu reveals and my chest constricts.

“Yesterday when you left, she went to some pharmacy in God-knows-where and bought a pill. In the evening she was tossing and crying in pain and bleeding as well. So I took her to the hospital where it was discovered that the pregnancy was threatened. A D&C had to be carried out immediately. We came back home around ten and she has since been like this.”

“Has she eaten?”


I stand up and turn towards Honey’s bedroom.

“I think maybe you should go,” Saratu says to me, arms crossed. “You have done enough damage already.”

“Excuse me?”

“My friend loves you to death. The pregnancy was a mistake. She didn’t plan to trap you or whatever rubbish you told her yesterday. She nearly killed herself with that pill. All because of you! So you don’t deserve her. She has a full life ahead of her and she doesn’t need you in it.”

“Erm…Saratu, I understand your concern for your friend but it does not give you the right to be rude to me.”

I walk back into Honey’s bedroom.

“Close the door,” she says.

I do not only close the door, I turn the key in the lock and face Honey. She is now seated with her back to the wall, a pillow on her laps.

“I killed our baby, Jide. And I’m scarred.”

I walk to the bed in a slow pace.

“I wasn’t thinking when I drove out to buy the pill. I was just so mad at you and I wanted to get even. If I had just waited until the morning…”

She sniffles.

“My dad used to tell me to wait until the morning whenever I’m angry because daylight makes a person see better. I should have waited. Now, she’s gone.”


“Our baby. She’s gone.”

I sit beside Honey and take her hand.

“I slept briefly this morning and had a dream about her. She had very weird hair like an albino. And then she had this really cute pink dress with tiny butterflies on it. She was on a swing chair and I was pushing her gently but she wanted me to push harder and higher and she was saying, ‘mommy, up! Up!’ And so I pushed harder and harder until she disappeared and the chair came back empty. And then I woke up.”

“How are you feeling?”

“Guilty. Depressed. Angry.”

“Physically, how are you doing?”

She laughs drily. “Fine. And that’s what’s weird. I take a life and I feel fine. My womb should be killing me right now or something.”

“It doesn’t work like that, Honey.”

“God will punish me. I know that. This is the second time, so God is on my case. Maybe when I eventually get married I won’t be able to have babies again.”

“Don’t talk like that.”

“I shouldn’t? Jide, I committed murder! I killed an innocent life!”

“Calm down.”

“You’re not angry at me? You’re not mad that I killed your baby?”

I scratch my head. I don’t want to answer her question. Of course, I am upset that she did what she did but what right do I have to scold her? It was me who told her that I wanted nothing to do with the baby. I stood and watched her cry her heart out and still accused her of wanting to trap me. In my opinion, I am equally culpable, if not worse. It’s like the case of Adam and Eve and I will not make that mortal mistake of putting the blame on her.

“I am not mad at you, sugar lips. Rather I am mad that I made you do such a terrible thing.”

“I am sorry, Jide.”

“Me too. For what I said and how I acted yesterday. Can you forgive me?”

She runs her hand over my beard. Her smile is broken. I want to take her in my arms and heal her but I feel this rift between us. It’s in the way her eyes look at me. There’s something missing in her stare. But maybe it’s just the psychological trauma that she’s passing through. It’s not something new to us in the medical field. Whether through careless mistakes, deliberate attempts or medical conditions, we get mothers like Honey, who after losing their pregnancies or babies, temporarily lose their mind to guilt. Abortion can be devastating and I have heard of cases where women immediately regretted their actions after the deed is done and plunge into deep psychological trauma. Oftentimes, they do not want to be consoled as they feel the guilt is the best punishment for what they have done.

“I shouldn’t have,” Honey whispers. I squeeze her hand. She pulls it away from me.

“We need to talk,” she says.

“I’m listening.”

“I think we should break up.”

I crease my brows. “What’s the meaning of that?”

She looks at me. “I’m not in a good place right now. I can’t be the person I used to be. I need to go through this alone.”

“No, we’ll go through it together, Honey. Your pain is my pain. Your loss, my loss. We will weather this storm together.”

She shakes her head. “No.”

“I’m not listening to you.”

“Jide, we are not good for each other. We are not ready to love. It was all about the sex and good times but when we both faced reality, both of us thought only about our selfish interests and in the process, lost a life. Do we need a prophet to tell us that we are not meant to be?”

“Honey, we will heal and learn and grow from our mistakes; not run from them.”

“I’m sorry I just can’t continue. All I felt before, the warm emotions, the feelings of desire, the sheer joy of just being around you, they’re all gone. I don’t see you the same, Jide.”

“You’ve fallen out of love?”

“What is love, Jideofor? Butterflies in the tummy? Passionate sex? Dinner date and trips to the cinema? Breakfast in bed? What is it exactly?”

“It’s when two people care for each other the way we do.”

“It’s a lot more than that, Jide, and sadly, we don’t have it. We’re just two selfish people infatuated with each other and it’s time we went our separate ways.”

The look in her eyes I saw earlier is now full bloom. The Honey I used to know is no longer there. Dear Lord, what have I done to a good woman?

“Honey, you’re just going through a phase right now and you’ll overcome it. I am here to hold your hand through it. That is what true love does…”

“No, Jide.”


“No,” she emphasizes and rises up from the bed. I watch her in dazed silence as she walks to the door and holds it open. It is not until I spot tears in her eyes that I realize I am actually being dumped.

“You’re not thinking clearly, sugar lips.”

She says nothing. And I think she’s sparing me the indignity of a nasty breakup. I stand up and take slow steps to her in the hopes that she’ll change her mind but she looks at me with a blank stare that is alien to her features.

“Honey, I love you.”

“Me too. But I need to understand what that all means.”

“Do I give you time?”

“Don’t wait for me, Jide. I don’t know what is happening to me right now and I don’t want to keep you waiting. If you find someone else, please move on.”

“I will not move on. I’ll wait for as long as you keep me waiting, Hon. You are my wife and what happened yesterday only solidifies what we have. We have just experienced our first and probably only loss…”

“Just stop, please. And go. I need to be alone.”

“I respect that.”

She avoids my eyes but I pull her close and hide my face in her neck. I breathe in her smell and my hand feels the smoothness of her skin as my arm goes round her waist. I can’t believe she wants to take all of this away from me. What do I do with myself in her absence? How do I cope without her sugar lips?

I plant soft pecks on her neck and chin until I find her soft lips. Just one taste of her and my mind takes me back to that first kiss at Celia’s home party.

“We’ve come such a long way, sugams. Why do you want to throw everything away?”

“Go, Jide.”

I kiss her some more and her body naturally settles into mine.

“Go.” Her voice is weak and so are the hands that try to push me away. I know I can easily take advantage of her but I choose not to. I step back and catch a glimpse of how much she loves me through eyes veiled with tears.

“Keep the car, keep your key to my house,” I tell her. “Like I said, I’ll be waiting.”

“Go, please…”

I kiss her forehead and walk out. It’s the longest trip I have taken from her bedroom to the front door and each step is agonizing. She is not the only one who will go through the pangs of guilt. Mine awaits me in the dark places of my heart.

I step out to the sun and for some reason it burns hotter than normal. A lizard scurries past me as I step on the trimmed lawn beneath me. I look down and the grass doesn’t seem so green, the same way little blooming flowers in a flowerbed nearby have lost their color.

Must be my eyes or the blinding sun or maybe this is what heartbreak really feels like.

Mixed race couple holding hands


Image Credit: www.revistapredicciones.clwww.veooz.com


Na dis kind story dey vex me – It’s this type of story that gets me angry

Oyibo woman no fit my domot come colombi my husband – a white woman cannot just show up in my territory and snatch my husband

No wahala – no problem

It’s Another Saturday…#22

Eid Mubarak, guys!

This one is for the holidays just because I love you. Another comes on Saturday.

Have an awesome night, fam!

Baby Daddy 

“Love without complications? Honey, that’s like asking for a rose without thorns.”

I look at the bunch of roses in mommy’s hands. She is wearing gardening gloves but she remains careful not to touch the thorny stems of the flowers.

“Tola, please pass me that vase I gave you.”

A sulky Tola picks a green vase at her feet that contains clean water and hands it to me and I pass it over to mommy who smiles into my eyes.

I love her garden. The flowers, the way they are meticulously arranged, their different fragrances all coming to one intoxicating fragrance make me want to forget that I’m having a not-so-good day. Jide and I had this nasty fight this morning and I miss him like crazy already. I wish he would just answer my calls.

“So back to your question, Honey. Love is never free of complications. When you step out of the honeymoon phase, you begin to experience the nastiness that comes with it.”

“As for me, my honeymoon phase ended when she showed up,” Tola mouths acidly.

Mommy looks at her with a lighthearted frown. “Oya, lay you complaint, darling. I know you’ve been itching to talk.”

“I’ve been having dreams,” Tola almost cuts in. “Really bad dreams…”


“Emeka and Yazmin.”

“And what do you see in the dreams?”

“That they have another baby together. Or the other night, it was that Mex followed her to Mexico and told me he wasn’t coming back.”

“And this somehow means what?”

“Mommy, I feel like something is going on between them.”

I look at Tola’s distressed face and marvel at the power of female intuition. Jide already revealed to me that Emeka married Yazmin and asked me not to tell anyone. So far, there has been nothing in the way Emeka relates with Yazmin that throws suspicion in anyone’s direction but Tola strongly holds that something is going on.

Abandoning her snooty attitude a few days ago, she invited me to their home for lunch and shared her fears with me. Although she didn’t mention it, I knew she wanted to know if there was something going on in the background that Jide was aware of and had mentioned to me. Luckily at that moment, I was oblivious of what was happening. Later that night, Jide exposed Emeka’s secret to me. I didn’t know what to make of it because I like Yazmin a lot and we have bonded.

On the one hand, I don’t blame Emeka; the marriage was forced on him. But on the flip side, no one got him into the mess but himself. Jide feels he should divorce Yazmin but I doubt that it would be the best solution.

“What is wrong with him having two wives?” I had asked. And I wished I hadn’t spoken because Jide gave me such a lecture on fidelity and the sanctity of marriage that I ended up apologizing for my careless statement.

“Nothing is going on between them, Tola baby,” Nne assures her daughter-in-law with a smile and a gentle rub of her back.

“I hope so.”

“You know you’re pregnant and pregnant women always have vivid dreams. It’s because of all the hormones running wild in your body. You’re a gynecologist; you should know better.”

“Mommy, this is beyond pregnancy. My instincts are telling me something is off. I feel this disconnect from Emeka.”

“Wait, I hope he’s behaving himself.”

“He is… but…”

“But what?”

“He is suddenly too loving and generous.”

“And you said your honeymoon stage is over?”


Mommy laughs. “This girl ehn!” She pulls her cheek. “Don’t worry, your husband is faithful to you.”

“If you say so.”

Mommy flicks off a little, green worm off a rose stem and her eyes passes over me briefly.

“Are you alright, Honey?” she asks. “You look pale.”

She is not wrong about her observation. I haven’t been feeling right all day. At present, I have this nauseous sensation building in me.

“I’m fine, mommy. Just tired.”

I dare not tell her how I’m feeling or she’ll jump into the easy conclusion that I’m pregnant.

“Maybe you need to go in and stretch out on the couch.”

“Sorry,” Tola mutters to me.

I nod and head into the house. Yazmin is watching a Nollywood movie. She is obsessed with Nonso Diobi and has gotten an entire collection of his movies after forcing Emeka into using his connections in the entertainment industry to arrange a lunch date for her with him. Now, she won’t stop going on about how handsome he is.

How do I describe Yazmin? Physically, she’s smallish and shapely. She is beautiful; I can’t overemphasize that. Character-wise, she is fun, friendly and bubbly, everything Tola is not. She charms everyone around her effortlessly and has chosen to make me her Nigerian bestie.

I genuinely like her despite her husband-snatching ways, and it was what got Jide and I into a fight this morning. Hurtful words were uttered on both sides. It didn’t start with me, though. He woke up in a mood and felt like laying down the law on my friendship with Yazmin. I defended my right to befriend whomever I wished but he insisted that she is not all she presents herself to be and is simply out to destroy his brother’s marriage.

So I said to him, “What if it was me that got pregnant for you? Would you abandon me and the baby like that?”

And he went, “First, I’ll never make the mistake of getting you pregnant until we’re married. Secondly, I don’t think you’re that irresponsible not to know how to handle your reproductive organs after unsafe sex. Only stupid women and those with bad motives get pregnant out of wedlock.”

I was dazed at the manner in which he had spoken because here was a man that clearly slept with more women than there were days in a year, yet he was going all straitlace on me. So I called him a hypocrite and in response, he told me he questioned my values if I found in Yazmin someone I could call a friend.

I was livid because his statement struck a chord somewhere. I knew he was dredging up my past affair with my pilot ex, Nonso (which I had shared with him). Hence, to hit back where I knew would hurt him, I told him the only reason he was defending Tola was because he had slept with her.

At that point, the air went dead silent and cold. Jide had a look in his eyes I had never seen before. Without telling me anything, he picked his phone and left my house.

He has refused to answer my calls since.

“Did I go too far?” I asked Mary over the phone.

“Probably,” she answered. “Here’s something you don’t know about Jide. He was a really good guy before the whole Ezinne disaster. Not that he was religious or perfect but he was one of the good ones. He didn’t sleep around, only drank socially with his friends, went to Mass every Sunday and held strong family values. His Bridemaker days are over and he’s back to being that old person. You didn’t have to dredge up Tola. He feels really bad about it.”

“But he hurt me too.”

“I know but bringing up Tola was way below the belt.”

Well, what did I expect? That Mary would take my side? She and Jide have this bond not even I can break and I have come to respect it. All the same, I have taken her words to heart and I plan to apologize to him later on. Right now, Yaz wants to accompany me to the mall where I intend to make a second installment of cash for office supplies.

The travel agency is coming up nicely, thanks to Kalu and concerted effort from Dele’s wife and Saratu. We hope to launch in a couple of months or even earlier if all goes according to plan. Sadly, the bulk of the work falls on my shoulder and I wouldn’t have bothered if my health was in order. I still feel nauseous and a little dizzy but I think I can manage to the mall and back. By tomorrow, Saratu will be in town and take over the running-around while I rest.

Yazmin dashes upstairs to change into fresh clothes while I am forced to watch Nonso Diobi do some slobbery kissing act with an Igbo-looking actress who has a budding moustache and fake grey eyes.

Out of nowhere, as it is with Nigerian movies, a horror tune takes over the bluesy song that is playing and Yazmin’s adorable baby is disturbed from his slumber. He cries out and I rush to his crib to check on him. His eyes are open but I don’t think his concentration is on me. I rock the crib gently and his eyes shut again. I smile at his cuteness. From the moment I laid eyes on him I fell in love. He is that type of baby that makes you think of having babies but just like Jide, I am not ready right now.

© Copyright 2010 CorbisCorporation

I feel a presence in the room and turn. Yazmin’s maid, Maria Lena is standing by the door that leads to the kitchen and she’s giving me that look, which I’m quite used to now, that spells her dislike for me.

I head back to my seat and settle in.

Cabrona,” I hear her say. I turn to her with a frown and she smiles.

I turn back. Maybe I misheard. She did not just call me a bitch.

A couple of minutes fly by and I hear, “Puta.”

I turn again. She retains the evil smile, having just called me a slut.

“Did you just call me Puta?” I ask.

“Me?” she responds innocently. “Noh.”

I eye her real good. I understand Spanish a lot more than anyone knows. Working as an international flight attendant affords you the privilege to learn the basics of the world’s most popular languages. I have French, Russian, Chinese, Latin, Dutch and Spanish in my repertoire. Spanish, in particular, came easy for me because of a colleague who was Mexican.

Yazmin and her maid assume I know only the ABCs but I have enjoyed playing the fool just to listen up on all their gossip. I have learned from eavesdropping, that Yazmin’s mother is not in support of the marriage and wants her home immediately. I have also learned that Yazmin sometimes cries when no one is around because she feels she is going to lose Emeka to Tola. And of course, I gathered that Maria Lena hates all of us, especially Emeka, and wishes the marriage will come to a disaster soon.

Yazmin generally pays her no mind. They are more like sisters, Maria Lena having been born into their household to a mother who is still a maid to them. Both ladies grew up together.

“You should stop calling me names, Lena,” I tell the annoying fatso plainly. “I have been nothing but nice to you, although you have been a nasty bitch to me. So, stop it.”

I know she can’t translate my sentence word for word but she pretty much gets the message.

Si senora,” she replies sarcastically.

“Leave the door and sit down.”

She hesitates for a moment and then she decides to take the space beside me, which makes me rather uncomfortable.

“Don’t sit too close, Lena.”

Maria Lena,” she corrects me.


I shift away but she moves closer, nudging me with her thick arm.

“What’s your problem?”

She looks up the stairs and towards the kitchen door. I observe her cagey behavior.

“I tell you something,” she whispers. I lower my head.

“You hear Spanish.”

It’s not a question. It’s an outright assertion.

“No, I don’t.”

“You hear.”

“No, I don’t.”

Next, she grumbles in this long sentence that she knows I understand Spanish but she doesn’t comprehend why I pretend that I don’t, and it is the reason she hates us Nigerians because we’re always trying to fool someone.

“I don’t know what you just said.” I laugh, enjoying the annoyance I am building up in her.

Escúchenme!” She grabs my skater skirt, hiking it up my laps and exposing my nakedness.

I slap her hand away in embarrassment.

“Oh! No panty!” she sniggers.

“Don’t do that again, Lena.”

I straighten out my skirt.


Her face switches on to a serious manner and she moves yet another inch closer.

“You hear me?” She takes my hand now. Her grip is scarily strong but I extract my hand from it.

“Okay. I’ll listen to you. Just don’t strip me or break my hand or come near me. Okay?”

Stubbornly, she shifts closer one more time!

Okay, I’m officially freaking out here.

She begins to make certain gestures with her hands that I cannot comprehend. She links her fingers together and slams the heels of her palms into each other in a continuous motion that leaves me confused. I know she is talking about Emeka and Yazmin but I’d rather have her say the words in Spanish than this charade thing she’s doing.

Yazmin y Emeka …”

She does the hand motions again. I sigh.

It’s time to give up my pretense and expose that I understand her language. But she beats me to it as she grabs me forcefully and whispers really fast into my ear.

“Sabes porque anoche Yazmin y Emeka se desaparecieron? Estaban singando en su carro.”


Okay, give me a minute and I will explain what she just said but WHAT?!!!

“No, Lena. You’re lying. It’s not…”

She slaps her hand over my mouth and I pick the sound of Yazmin coming down the stairs.


Maria Lena disappears just as Yazmin appears.

“I’m ready!” Yazmin announces with a bright smile. I take a good look at her from top to bottom and her smile dies away.

“Is everything okay?” she asks in her Mexican-American accent. “You don’t like what I’m wearing?”

I absolutely love what she has on. It’s a little black dress with teal floral prints and on her feet are purple sneakers. She looks casual, yet fab. I should tell her that but I am still reeling from what Maria Lena just shared with me.

“No, your dress is fine, Yaz. My mind was somewhere else.”


She leaves a peck on her son’s cheek and we head out, she leading the way. I give the sitting room one last look before I leave and I see Maria Lena with a finger over her lips, instructing me to keep my mouth shut.

Like hell I will!

It’s drizzling when we drive out to the road. Yazmin stays in character, filling my ears with fascinating stories from her privileged life. She is quite the storyteller. She knows how to weave a tale with suspense and anecdotes that would leave you begging for more. Daddy, in particular, makes her entertain him every chance he gets.

“So last night, did you and Emeka have sex in his car after dinner?” I ask unexpectedly, repeating word for word what Maria Lena told me.

Yazmin slowly turns her head in my direction.

“Last night?”

Yesterday, I was at the family house to pick Aso-ebi for Jide and I. One of their cousins is getting married soon and Nne insists we should all pay for the ridiculously expensive Aso-ebi material. After picking it up and dropping the money, daddy had insisted I stayed for dinner. Emeka was also present, and of course, acted distant towards Yazmin. It’s still hard to believe he shagged her in his car after dinner. I hope Maria Lena was lying.

“Yes, last night. Did you screw Emeka in his car, Yaz?”

“No,” she replies.

I stare at her squarely. I wait for her to say something further but she doesn’t.

“Look, I know you’re married to Emeka. I was told the whole story.”


“Okay? That is all you’ll say?”

“Yeah. And that I don’t have to lie about last night. We had sex, okay? It’s called conjugal rights.”

I hold back words that are about to say something nasty in response.

“Yaz…I think marrying Emeka was a stupid move because you’ll always be Emeka’s sidechick, wife or not.”

She chuckles and says silently. “I know.”

“And then, Tola is an Adeniyi. The name is pretty important around here. I doubt that Emeka would want to dump it for a Ramiros.”

“I’m fine with the arrangement, Honey. I’m not fighting for Tola’s place. I don’t want to tear them apart. I just want my son to grow up with his father. It’s a gazillion times better than life as a Ramiros, trust me. And it’s my escape from hell too.”

Her tone silences me. I realize her shoe pinches where no one sees or feels. I shut down my argument and promise to keep my opinion and nosiness to myself from now on. Love triangles are complicated things. I just hope no one gets hurt when the truth eventually blows out.

I slow towards a traffic stop and fight the nausea that is coming on me full force now.

“Are you okay?” Yazmin touches my shoulder.


∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

“You’re pregnant,” Ekene says the moment I stoop down, bend over my toilet seat and barf up my lunch.

“Get out.”

I point the way out of my bathroom. My head is still crouched over as another upsurge of puke comes to the surface.

I feel terrible; I don’t need his unsolicited diagnoses about my health. Come to think of it, who even asked him into my house?

“How did you get in here?” I ask, wiping my mouth. I don’t get an answer.

I briefly recall parking my car outside my house and he showing up with his dog. I remember being really dizzy…

The toilet flushes and it startles me. I look up to see Ekene standing over me.

“Go away.”

“So after the last time, you didn’t learn shit. You still stupidly got yourself pregnant again?”

“I am not pregnant.”

“You are! And you’re showing the same symptoms like the last time! Night sickness, nonsense vomiting and faintness!”

I look at Ekene again. Why the hell does he think he has a right to shout on me?

I rise up.

“Please, go home. Whoever annoyed you outside, go and meet the person and stop shouting on me inside my own house, abeg.”

His face is a deep red shade of anger and seriously, I can’t understand why he should even care.

“You have your life ahead of you and you ruin it with a dick?! Learn to close your legs, Erhinyuse!”

“Okay, leave!” I scream back and instantly feel a burning sensation in my throat.

Ekene stomps out and seconds later, I hear the front door slam. I walk to the sitting room, lock the door, turn on classical music and walk back to my bathroom. I am too tired for a shower but I strip down to my underwear, rinse my mouth and lie in bed.

I pray Jide slips in later at night as he usually does. The weather is too cold; I can’t sleep in my bed all alone. I miss him.


Ekene’s words return with a sting. I ponder on them.

No. Impossible.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

This priest, I don’t like him. He is boring and his homilies are as long as I used to know. One would think he would have changed after five years but it’s like I went away, returned and met him right where I left him. I prefer the older priest. He is more engaging.

I yawn loudly and get a disapproving stare from my darling mother who is seated with her husband two rows ahead of us. I smile at her.

Scolding after Mass, loading…

“Christ admonishes us to forgive one another just as he forgave us our sins on the cross,” the priest says and I catch some people nodding in seriousness like they had just heard breaking news. Isn’t the whole message of Christianity centered on God’s forgiveness through his son, Jesus? Why pretend like you’re just hearing it for the first time? God is not impressed by anyone’s falseness. I tire for these church folks sef.

“No matter what is done to you or what has been said, Christ wants us to forgive.”

I think about Honey. I have forgiven her but it feels good to punish her some more. I wonder if that counts as malice and if God would hold it against me.

“You didn’t have to tell Kalu,” Emeka, seated beside me, comments.

“Shh!” replies Kalu, seated on his right.

I’m in no mood to revive the conversation we were having before the homily began. It was about Emeka’s unfortunate marriage to Yazmin. I hadn’t planned to tell Kalu but coming to church and seeing Yazmin with the family, all happy and feeling at home with herself, I let my dislike for her get the best of me and blurted out to Kalu what was going on. Emeka hadn’t been pleased; a hushed argument between him and I ensued and we flagrantly kept on until Kalu stopped us just at the commencement of the homily.

“You are in God’s house, for God’s sake!” he had said with clenched teeth and we both conducted ourselves. Now, Emeka is pushing my buttons again.

“I will not divorce her,” he makes clear. “Deal with it. That is her, sitting two rows before you. Get used to her back view, her side view, her front view and every other view because she is your sister-in-law and will call you Dede from now on.”

I feel like elbowing his face. And why on earth did Tola decide to worship in her own church today? Why is she not here to put an end to Yazmin’s madness?

The homily ends and we all rise to recite the Nicene Creed.

“We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is seen and unseen…”

“You shouldn’t have married her,” Kalu speaks.

“I didn’t ask your opinion,” Emeka squelches.

“In God’s eyes, Tola is your only wife.”

“Don’t speak for God.”

We bow our heads as we recite more lines from the creed.

“But what has been done has been done,” Kalu continues. “Live with the consequences.”

“Meaning?” I question.

“Divorce is totally out of the question.”

“He should keep two wives?” I ask, aghast.

Kalu looks from me to Emeka. “It’s called consequences. Let Yazmin choose to leave you on her own. But you have to love and respect her and the vows you made to her.”

I don’t miss Emeka’s smile as the Nicene Creed comes to an end.

“We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.”

The lector then launches us into general intercessions and I go through the routine like a zombie. We sit and I carry on my zombie mode. I feel annoyed over Kalu’s opinion and the way he uttered it.

I do get where he is coming from. I also feel it would be heartless to displace Yazmin, and that Emeka ought to face up to his responsibilities as a husband and father but at what cost?

I honestly do not see a happy ending for those involved. But as it stands, I officially withdraw myself from the saga.

∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

I am staring at the blue line on the pregnancy test strip like it is an alien color to me. I have broken into a sweat and my heart races twice over.

How did this happen?

“I am so disappointed, Hon.”

Ekene’s words are a million miles away, coming to me only in an echo.

“I am not pregnant,” I whisper, wishing the blue line away.

Why did I agree to the test when Ekene showed up at my door with Saratu and the test kit some minutes ago? Why didn’t I kill that proud voice that was telling me to go ahead with the test just to prove that I was not pregnant? Why did I do this to myself?

“This result is false,” I say.

“The pee is still there and so is another strip,” Saratu tells me. “Do a second test.”

I eagerly take out the second pregnancy home test kit from its pack and dash into my bathroom. I still want to prove to them that there is just no way I am pregnant.

I dip the strip into the urine and wait, my heart thumping.

After a while I pull it out and sadly, get the same result.


Tears invade my eyes.

“No,” I repeat.

I walk back to my sitting room, dazed. Saratu is irked when she sees the result.

“I told you not to do this to yourself, Hon. I told you.”

“Does she listen to anyone?” Ekene lashes.

I slip into a chair and sob. Neither of them consoles me. Not that I want them to, though. My mind is on Jide and how he would react to the news.

“You don’t need this baby now, Hon,” Saratu states. “It will just ruin your life.”

“The worst part is that she doesn’t even know this guy well and she’s already carrying his child. If this is not the highest order of irresponsibility, I don’t know what is.”

I’m too devastated to reply their harsh words. What in heavens will I do with a baby in my life right now? Erhinyuse, what type of mess have you gotten into?

“And I will not support you in any abortion like I did the last time,” Ekene states. “For that one, I followed you because it had been a one-night stand. For this one, I remove myself kpata-kpata! In short, I wash my hands off you, Honey. Disappointment is an understatement for what I feel. I am heartbroken that you’ll do this to yourself and to us.”


“Yes, us! You knew I still wanted us back together. Your ring is waiting in my closet! You were supposed to be the one but you go and do this-this irresponsible thing to yourself?!”

That’s the word Jide used yesterday– irresponsible. Am I?

“I don’t have feelings for you again, Kene.”

“I didn’t tell you I was looking for your feelings!” He eyes me up and down. “Have a nice life, Iya Ibeji!”

He breezes out the front door. I am a little baffled at his behavior but it is the least of my problems.

“Well, there goes a good man,” Saratu murmurs.

I ignore her.

“So what are you going to do now?” she asks.


“With the pregnancy. What will you do?”

“Sara, I don’t want to talk about it now, please.”

“You know you have to get rid of it, right?”

“Get rid of it,” I echo.

“Yes. Go for an abortion.”


“Abeg, spare me any religious crap you want to spit out now. That baby needs to go. We have a company to build and you are the face of that company. We already have a baby mama onboard; we don’t need another. So, chin up and wipe those tears. It has already happened. Tomorrow, I’ll take you to a doctor in town and he’ll handle it like this.” She snaps her fingers.

I can’t say anything to her. I am still wondering how it all happened. Jide and I had that one night of unprotected sex and my period came in the morning. In fact the rush was so heavy I went through a tampon in just two hours. How on earth did anything survive that flood? Or does semen take a different route to the same uterus that releases the egg? And how can fertilization and menstruation occur at the same time? What the hell happened in there?

I hear the sound of a car outside. I peep out the window and see that it’s Emeka dropping Jide off.

“Jide is home.”

Saratu stands. “I’ll say hi to him later. Let me go in and unpack and rest.”

She kisses my forehead and wipes away the tears on my cheek. “You’ll be fine, luv.”

I watch as she gathers all evidence of the pregnancy tests I conducted.

“Don’t tell him anything yet.”

She vanishes into the guestroom while I enter my bedroom. Seconds after, Jide walks into the house. I’m standing at my bathroom door when he makes an appearance.

“Hi,” I say.

He doesn’t respond. I’m about to launch into an apology over our fight when he walks to me and kisses me really slowly and sensually. I bury myself in his embrace and struggle to keep my emotions in check.

“I’m sorry for all I said, hotstuff. I didn’t mean them.”

“I know. I’m sorry too. I love you so much, Honey.”

My emotions can’t be held back any longer. I break down in his arms. He doesn’t ask me why I’m crying; he thinks it’s because of our fight. I squeeze him tightly and get consoled by the affectionate words he uses to assure me of his love.

Somehow emotions transform to desire and before I can stop myself, we are peeling off each other’s clothes. Sex comes in a slow but passionate way and afterwards, we lie back in bed, both staring up the ceiling.

“Is there a reason why you were crying so much while we were having sex?” Jide questions.

I don’t know if I am to smile or be scared that he can read me so well.

“What’s wrong, sugar lips?”

He has his weight resting on his elbow and he’s staring at me in concern.

“I’m fine.”

“No, you’re not. If it’s something my dick didn’t cure, then it’s serious. Come on, talk to me.”

He lightly runs a finger from my earlobe down to my shoulder and then to my nipple.

“I’m pregnant.”

His finger stops moving and he lifts it off my body. Slowly, he withdraws from me and shifts away as if I have a contagious skin disease.

“Can you repeat yourself?”

“I am pregnant.”

His eyes rest on my tummy for almost a minute.

“Honey…” His voice is hushed.


He stops me with a raised hand. I can’t bear to look into his face and see something that might break me further. I gaze away and the moment I turn, I hear him leave the bed.

“I hope you’re happy,” he says, putting on his briefs. “You accomplished what you set out for.”

“What I set out for?”

“This was what you wanted all along, wasn’t it?”


“Well, congratulations, Hon. Regrettably, I won’t be a part of it.”

I bury my head in shame and weep.



Images: blog.daum.net, v0gue-en-soiree.tumblr.com


Cabrona – bitch

Puta – slut, bitch

Si senora – Yes, madam

Escúchenme – Just listen for a moment!

Sabes porque anoche Yazmin y Emeka se desaparecieron? Estaban singando en su carro – You know why Yazmin and Emeka disappeared last night? They were fucking in his car.

kpata-kpata – totally, completely

Iya Ibeji – pregnant woman


It’s Another Saturday…#21

Hi guys!

I apologize for not posting Family Secrets. You know how busy I can get. I’ll make it up to you guys.

It’s a Very Complicated Something

One of the simple pleasures of my life is watching Honey’s morning beauty routine. She doesn’t do much makeup but her skincare regimen is a different matter entirely. She has this array of herbal creams and lotions which she obsessively applies every morning. I think that is why she has a perfectly-even skin tone. My job is to just lie back in bed and watch her exfoliate, cleanse and moisturize; and then I pull her back into my arms just to feel her skin and er…do other things.

This morning, she has that look on her face that tells me to basically keep my hands to myself. She hasn’t got time for any extracurricular activity. Peace had sent text messages to all the wives last night, informing them that she urgently needed to see them, Honey inclusive.

“When I leave Peace’s home, I’ll go look for someone to clear the grass in front of my house,” Honey informs me. “Kene thinks there might be snakes. Same thing one of the guards at the gates said.”

Her back is to me and she’s bending forward to pick a granny panty that has fallen to the floor. I am not distracted by the sight of her bent over because the mention of Kene has put me ill at ease.

“Why does Kene care about your lawn?”

She slips into her underwear and turns around. “Sorry I mentioned his name.”

“Answer my question.”

“Well, he stopped by and suggested I cleared the grasses because of snakes.”

I sit up and place a pillow between my legs. “Can you tell me the story of how you guys broke up again?”

Honey, on her way to strapping on her bra, drops her hands.

“I’m listening, sugar lips.”

“We didn’t exactly breakup.”


“We… I… called things off because of the distance between us.”

“And did you still love him?”

She hesitates. “Yes.”

“And did it end with the breakup?”

Her eyes shift upwards. “No. We still saw each other every now and then.”

“So, let me understand the situation here. You never broke up officially and never stopped shagging?”

“Basically, yeah.”

“Do you still love him?”


“But he feels he has a right to tell you what to do with your lawn.”

She dismisses my unease with a careless wave of her hand. “He’s not an issue, hotstuff. I feel nothing for him.”

I decide I’ll stop badgering. My suspicions are uncalled for but I promise myself to keep an eye on Kene. I can’t get over the conceited look he had in his eyes that day when we met.

I feel my phone vibrate on the bed and I toss pillows and bed covers around to find it. I finally see it wedged between the mattress and the bed frame. I check my call log; I have just missed Emeka’s call. I dial back and he answers immediately.

He informs me that Yazmin’ flight was delayed last night and she was coming in this morning. He is picking her from the airport but would love to see me first.

I ask why.

“When I come we’ll yarn.”

I disconnect the call. Honey is dressed in a pair of Ankara shorts and a plain tee, looking absolutely gorgeous, and because I can’t help myself, I walk over to her and wrap my arms around her from behind. Don’t blame me; the woman is too beautiful to be left untouched. And what I feel for her these days makes me always want to possess her entirely. I have reached that stage where I love things about her that are less appealing, things no one else may find adorable. I have only felt that way once – with Ezinne. But it was short-lived.

“Hi,” Honey says, applying a light shade of pink gloss over her soft lips. Our eyes hold each other’s in the mirror. She smiles at me.

I kiss the nape of her neck.

“Don’t stop,” she hums.

I kiss her again, brushing my lips over her sensitive earlobe. I watch how goosebumps spread over her neck.

“Okay, you should stop now.”

I peel away from her, slip into a pair of jeans and a shirt and wait for Emeka. Some minutes later, Honey tells me she’s leaving.

“Take the car,” I say to her.

“I’m still learning how to drive, Jide.”

“Peace’s house is not far from here and the roads are free. Take the car.”

“Two more driving lessons and I’ll start using the car,” she promises and we both chuckle when we remember the last driving lesson and how we parked in some abandoned place and tried our first car sex, which was totally mind-blowing.

“See ya!”

She blows me a kiss and leaves.

Emeka arrives shortly after but won’t sit in. He requests that I follow him to the airport to get Yazmin. I tell him I don’t want to. He pleads, saying he has something important to discuss.

You see, there was a time I knew Emeka like I knew my own soul but after the recent mess with Tola and Yazmin, I’m not sure I know him again. Hence, it’s only natural for me to freak out when he says we have something important to discuss.

As we hit the road, he doesn’t tell me what’s bothering him straightaway. He gives me this unnecessary speech about how deeply he loves Tola and how she means the world to him and so forth.

“Can you just hit me with whatever shit you’re trying so hard to sugarcoat?” I demand.

He sighs. “Hmm… Jide… what I’m about to tell you ehn… Hmm…”

“Talk abeg.”

“I’m married to Yazmin.”

Time stops for a second or two as I bless him with a harsh stare. He is not looking back at me. His eyes are on the road ahead.

“What did I just hear?”

“Yazmin is my second wife. Legally married.”

“Dude, what the fuck!”

“I kid you not.”

Well, didn’t I just mention that I don’t know this boy?

“Mex, abeg tell me you’re kidding.”

“No. And it gets worse. She is actually coming to Naija to stay.”

I glare at my brother a second time. I am shocked at the blasé manner in which he speaks, the way he laughs with no care in the world and I’m wondering if it’s the same parents that raised us. I still don’t want to believe what I just heard.

“For real?”

“I’m not joking.”

“When did this happen?”

“When I went to see Tobe.”

“I don’t believe this.”

“Seriously, we’re married.”

“Mex, why? Why are you doing this to your wife? What type of nonsense is this?”

“It’s not my fault, Jide.”

“How is it not your fault? Did anyone force you into marrying a second wife?”

“Yes! Literally! I had no choice at all!”


“Long story.”

“Shebi it’s the reason I entered car with you? You better explain yourself.”

Emeka first swivels the car in a U-turn to take a shorter route leading to our destination.

“I told you Yaz’s father is a warlord, right?”


“Well, that was just a mild way of me saying he is a drug lord.”

Drug lord?”

I cackle. At this point I am beyond shocked.

“Chukwuemeka, you went to mess with a Mexican drug lord’s daughter? You have a death wish or something?”

“If I knew Yaz was from that type of family, Jide you know me, I would never have touched her. Babe never told me anything. And I never asked. Biggest mistake of my life, bros.”

Well… I can’t judge him on that one. There were girls (like Tola) that I wouldn’t have been involved with if I bothered to find out more about them.

“What type of drugs?”

“I don’t know. Nobody really knows, not even Yazmin. His operations are tight, covered by legit businesses. But we all know he is a drug lord and one of the most feared men in Mexico, with strong connections to the government. He is basically untouchable, so you can imagine the type of shit I got myself into. First, he was mad when he heard I got married to Tola. He personally called me on my wedding night and threatened to end my life if I didn’t show for Tobe’s circumcision and christening. And man, I was scared, I won’t lie to you.”

“It’s not like he can do anything to you from there.”

Emeka gives me a look that carries the weight of what he’s about to say.

“Ivan Ramiros?” He laughs. “Even devil no dey try himself where Ivan Ramiros dey, Jide. Once he get you for mind, your own don finish.”

“Abeg, continue your story.”

“So I got into Mexico City and his chauffeur picked me from the airport and carted me off to their hacienda. I’ve never been there before. The last time I met the man was at his office in New York. We drove into the estate and I was like holy shit! There were guards with guns everywhere, hefty bulldogs, a high electric fence and a house the size of our family house like twenty times over. I kid you not! JD, if you see this house, you go weak! A shitload of money was used to build it!”

“Drug money, you mean.” I am not charmed by our new in-law. In fact, I despise him already.

“I didn’t get to see the old man immediately. And mind you, he’s not old like popsi old. He’s old like George Clooney old; dude is posh and knows what’s up, which makes him scarier.

“So, they gave me a room, I dropped my bag and the driver took me to Ivan’s night club.”

“Wait, you call him Ivan?”

“Dem born me well make I try? Anyways, he was waiting there. I was ushered into his office. He asked everyone out and it was just me and him and a gun that was on the table between us. Jide, I was sweating in my balls because the man was staring straight into my eyes for like almost ten minutes. I could not move, could not talk; I just dey there dey sweat.

“Finally, he went ‘Nigga, no me jodas’. Which literally means don’t fuck with me. Then he added, ‘you fuck my daughter, get her pregnant and you go and marry some Nigerian puta! You’re a fucking idiot. Your mama gave birth to a fag.’ Jide, I had nothing to say but apologize and explain that Tola was who my parents chose for me. The guy laughed for a long time but his fingers were toying with the conk of his gun and he was looking at me with eyes that weren’t laughing. I no fit breathe; I just dey there dey look am. He now said, very slowly, ‘Pinche pendejo, you will marry my daughter tomorrow. You will put a ring on Yazmin’s finger, look into her eyes and tell her you love her and will be with her until the world ends or shit like that.’”

“And what did you tell him?”

Emeka laughs. It’s a washed up laugh. That type a person gives off when they want to turn an intolerable situation into a manageable one. I actually feel sorry for him.

“Jide, wetin I wan tell that kind man?”

A car behind us honks and Emeka cusses back at the driver in Igbo.

“Anyways, the man did not threaten any further. He simply passed me a drink, lit me a Cuban, made a toast to family, endearing ties, and cheered to the happiness I will share with his daughter. Two days later, in his home office, with a few family members and a city official present, Yaz and I signed a marriage certificate. In the evening, a big party was thrown which lasted till the next day. My brother, na so I take acquire second wife o.”

I am unable to say a word after Emeka’s sorry tale. I want to blame him, scold him, judge him, but he is already suffering for his sins. It’s ironic that I slept with way more women than he did but he ended up with all the drama.

“I think we can find a way out of this,” I mumble.


“I don’t know anything about Mexican marriage laws but is it legal to marry there if you’re already married?”

“It is not,” Emeka replies, “but I already told you the influence that man pulls. All the papers, including the ones I was supposed to process by myself if I wanted to marry Yazmin, were already taken care of before my flight even touched down in Mexico City. It was either I married her or ended up in a hole six feet under.”

“And what of Yazmin? She just sat there and let all of this happen?”

“She didn’t have any choice. She begged the man, used her momsi and family members to beg him but he refused.”

“Does she still have feelings for you?”


“So which kind dirty beg she beg?”

Emeka shrugs.

“And now, she’s come to stay. Jide, I don’t know what to do. I can’t lose Tola over her. I love Tola to death but she cannot know what is on ground now. I have begged Yaz to take off her ring and not mention anything about the marriage until I sort out the mess.”

“How do you want to sort it out?”

The careless laugh comes again. “I no know o! I swear, I no know.”

“The only option is just to annul the wedding with Yazmin, Mex. That’s the only way out. If you two can sneak into Mexico and meet some city official or a judge and explain the whole screw-up to them, they can annul the wedding.”

“That is if they don’t contact Ivan first.”

I roll my eyes.

“The moment they see Yaz’s full name, that’s it. They’ll call him and I’m screwed. Jide, I saw what he did to her younger brother in my front just because the guy scratched his car. I don’t want to sign my death warrant, biko. I will manage two wives for now. Besides, Tobe is still too young for any stress at this point. I’ll figure out something soon. And erm… by the way, she’s coming with her maid.”


“Yes. Yaz is a pampered girl…”

“Spoilt, you mean?”

“Yeah…you could say that.”

“And the maid wants to live in Naija too?”

“No. That one is staying for just a month or so.”

I shake my head. We close the chapter and talk about something else as we head up to the airport. Actually, Emeka does all the talking because my mind is circling around the different ugly scenarios that will arise when the truth finally blows out. I am mostly worried about my mom. I don’t think the old woman can handle another stretch of humiliation. And then there’s Tola. The scandal will just break her.

I am highly disappointed in Emeka but because I haven’t exactly been a role model to him and Oba, I can’t reprimand him. I can only think up a plan to get his head above water for the meantime.

He senses my state of mind and breaks off mid-speech.

“I know I screwed up, Jide. It was just a phase I was going through. I didn’t know it would lead to this.”

I keep mute to his admission.

“Say something. Your opinion is important.”

“Just park the car, Mex. We’ll talk later.”

He does as I instruct. We get into the airport and wait. Yazmin’s flight is taxing the runway at the moment. I choose to pass the time on Twitter, just to get my mind off Emeka’s drama. Nothing of interest scores with me on Twitterville, so I move to Facebook and see that Honey has uploaded selfies she and I took a while ago. I skim past, neither commenting nor liking, although my face holds a smile. I don’t really like my private life in public but I have no qualms with Honey showing me off. It’s a woman thing, I guess.

I continue with the status updates and posts of other friends on Facebook. I haven’t been online in a while due to my busy schedule. I try to catch up on latest happenings.


I look up from my phone and search for the face behind the voice that has just called out above the noise rapidly filling the arrival area. I had been so engrossed in my phone that I totally missed the sudden influx of people.


I see a feminine hand waving in the distance. Emeka bustles through a family of four and heads up in the direction of the waving hand. A couple deep in embrace has blocked my view. I shift to the left to see better and catch the striking face of a Mexican woman whom I believe is Yazmin. Standing beside her is another Hispanic-looking woman of fuller figure, frowning and cradling a baby in her arms.

Tola wasn’t lying about Yazmin’s looks. Even after a thirteen-hour flight from LAX and donned in a sweater, she looks stunning.

For a moment, I am hypnotized by her beauty but snap out of it when I see Emeka, on his own accord, give her a French kiss that makes me take back the pity I have for him.

In fact, I am annoyed and I pray that thunder fires him. The guy is a shameless polygamist.


∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞            ∞

“Ray, I’ll just pop in real quick and shower. Will you come in and wait?”

He looked like he might decline my invitation but he turned off the engine and followed me in. I dashed into the bathroom and in less than five minutes I was done. I came out in my towel to pick a change of clothes but Reno stopped me with a careless statement.

“You know I still find you sexy, right?”

I hissed as I rummaged through my clothes for something fresh.

“Abeg, carry that your nonsense talk that you use on all those cheap girls out there and shove it.”

He laughed. “It’s nonsense talk now, abi? You’ve forgotten when my words were all you wanted to hear.”

“Yeah, a century ago.”

“Let it be a millennium sef, what I feel for you is still strong, Mary.”

I faced him. “Reno, what’s wrong with you? You have a good wife, for heaven’s sake! Why are you treating her this way? Peace has literally given up her life and happiness for you, to make you happy. Why can’t you respect her, even if you feel nothing for her?”

“How did Peace pop into this conversation now?”

Clearly, he was annoyed but I just had to say it to him the way I felt he needed to hear it.

“This useless sleeping around you’re doing will ruin you and I don’t want Peace and Sammy to be caught up in the mess.”

“Peace and Sammy.” He laughed. “You think your friend is a saint? Have you asked her who Sammy’s father is?”

“I don’t need to ask her. I know he’s your son…”

“He is not!”

I released a heavy breath. “Reno, please let’s not do this now. Our friends are waiting, so I’ll forgive you and ignore the pass you just made at me. Meanwhile, try and get a life.”

“I should get a life.” He scoffed. “Everyone goes on and on about how much of a dog I am but no one puts a microscope on Peace because she carries the Bible on her head.”

“She is good wife and a good mother,” I stress.

“She is not! Peace is a drunk and as much a cheat as I am!”


“I am not lying! Peace cheated on me with someone else to have Sammy!”

“Okay, stop shouting! We are not fighting.”

“I’m sorry.”

“Let’s forget this whole thing abeg.”

“I am sorry.”

He got to his feet and moved towards me. “You know I hate upsetting you, baby.”

“Reno, seriously stop. Just stop it. We were over a long time ago and even in my wildest madness, I will never have anything to do with you.”

“Calm down.”

He moved closer and made to touch me but I slapped his hand away. When I tried to move, he blocked me, and that was when I had enough. I pushed him off.

“You’re a wicked man, Reno! You don’t deserve the type of wife you have at all! Peace gave up her faith to cover your shame when she decided to be inseminated by a complete stranger just to have the child your impotent dick could not produce!”

He stared back at me in shock.

“Yes, I know the story! She did it all for you! She covered your shameless ass and instead of being grateful, you humiliate her further by screwing around! You are just useless! Abeg, leave. Just go. I’ll find my way to Jide’s house by myself. I can’t stand you right now!”

I marched to the door and opened it but Reno stood there, watching me.

“Reno, leave!”

He took a slow walk to the door with this cocky smile on his face. Next thing, he grabbed my hand and placed it on his dick and went, “Does this feel like impotence to you?”

I tried to pull away but he pressed my hand harder. I was more irritated than anything. I didn’t feel threatened because this was a man I knew intimately once and he was my friend’s husband. Rape never crossed my mind, not for a second.

“I don’t know what Peace told you but I am not impotent, Mary. I might not be able to have a child but trust me baby, this device is in perfect working condition, better than you used to know. You want to test it now?”

“I’d rather die!”

And that was when his eyes changed.

He slammed the door, locked it and then shoved me to the bed. I screamed and tried to fight him off but I was not strong enough. I guess I was weakened by shock because I could not believe what was happening. I just lay there, staring back into his eyes. He couldn’t stand my stare, so he took one of my pillows and covered my face. I could hardly breathe but I still didn’t fight him. I just…wanted my heart to give out or something.

“And… that’s the story of how Reno raped me.”



The room is plunged into silence following Mary’s story. I look at the faces of the women around me. I see shame mixed with shock and sadness. Not even mouthy Celia speaks.

And then I look at Peace; she is fiddling with the edges of the handkerchief in her hands that are soaked with her tears.

“Me, I have questions,” I speak up. “For Mary and Peace.”

Both women give me their attention.

“Go ahead, Honey,” Peace says.

“You slept with someone else to have your son?”

“Sammy is not Reno’s son,” Peace acknowledges.

And as if sensing he is the topic of discussion, Sammy who is asleep beside Peace, wakes up with a loud cry. She pats him to get him back to sleep but the seven-month old cries louder. Peace picks him up and heads straight to the kitchen with him.

“Who would have thought,” Noka whispers after Peace disappears.

“But Mary you can keep a secret o,” Celia says with a tinge of jealousy. “How did I not know all this?”

“You’re not supposed to know everything,” Mary replies.

I take my ears off their conversation. Photo frames of Peace and Reno have caught my attention. At first glance you see a happy couple but on closer inspection, it’s easy to pick the farce.

Peace is an intriguing woman. She comes off as the cliché church type who dresses modestly, has not a hair strand out of place and keeps her home shipshape. I love her décor taste. The way she combines green and blue with traces of gold is stimulating. The white of her marbled floor, the fluff of her throw-pillows, the serenity and flawlessness of her home, all of it push you to want to become the perfect wife. How did she end up with someone like Reno?


I turn to Bimpe who has been saying something to me.


“Your phone is ringing.”


My ears tune to the sound of my ringing phone with a bit of annoyance. One of my siblings is calling. I know it’s not Jane because I have taken her name out of that group, so I know it’s either Harry or Jessie. My other brother, Abel, will never call me.

I dump the phone in my handbag just as Peace returns to the sitting room with Sammy.

“Sorry, he’s teething, so he’s really fussy.”

Peace has lost a lot of weight. She isn’t on the big side to begin with but over these past few weeks, she has shed some good fat that has left her with bones sticking out. I know her friends are as concerned as I am. I’m pleased they didn’t give up on her; Mary especially, who persisted and who has the biggest heart out of all of us present. I now understand why Jide has a soft spot for her.

“What I’m about to share with you girls, no one else knows, except for Mary,” Peace speaks. “And even then, she knows only part of it. I was willing to take the secrets to the grave but what Reno did is making me think otherwise.”

“Peace, at this point, if you take a gun and shoot him, the world will understand,” I say to her. “Exposing his dirty laundry is nothing.”

The wives agree with me.

“I blame myself for how my life turned out. I met Reno through Mary. It was at a business seminar that she invited him for of which I was the organizer. I fell in love with him that day and straightaway started praying to God to make him my husband. We went out a couple of times and on the third date, he proposed. I believed it was an answer to my prayers because I didn’t want to get to the age of twenty-six and I was still unmarried. When I think of it now, it was all really stupid.”

She places her sleeping son back in his former position.

“Mary begged me not to marry him, my pastor told me I was rushing but I didn’t listen. Reno was perfect. He was romantic, sweet, playful, charmed my family…”

She reminisces with a smile.

“He never asked for sex and didn’t go beyond a kiss. I believed he was sent from heaven. And that was how, just after three months, we got married.”

She stops as her smile disappears.

“On our wedding night, I got the shocker of my life. We were both naked and about to have sex and he goes, ‘Peace, I am sterile. An STD rendered me infertile and I can never give you a child. But you know what you will do? You will find some sperm donor out there and get pregnant by him and we’ll call the child mine.’

“I was stunned. Speechless! He went on to threaten that if I ever revealed to anyone what he told me, he would tell them I’m an adulteress and they would believe him because there was already proof that he could get a woman pregnant. He told me about his teenage years when he got some girl pregnant and everyone knew about it but she later aborted it because they were both too young to be parents.”

“Yeah, Shady told me that story,” Celia comments.

“Well, that was how my wedding night went. I was being disvirgined by my husband in the worst possible way. I lay there in tears the entire time. That night scarred me and I hated sex from then on. The marriage plunged downwards even though it was just beginning. It’s like you’re at the foot of a mountain, about to climb, only that you find yourself already tumbling down.”


“I was stubborn the first three years, refusing to do what Reno asked of me. I held on to my faith and prayed for a miracle. I was at church every weekend for fasting and prayers. I was working then, so I spent all my salary on seed offerings and donations to motherless babies’ homes all for the sake of Reno. I endured the insults and taunting from his family, especially his mother.”

“I remember,” Bimpe says. “And Reno never spoke up for you. In fact, the guys were all mad at him at some point and begged him to adopt but he refused.”

“I took all the blame but it started becoming difficult after the fifth year. That was when I confided in Mary and begged her to find me a sperm donor. I told her the type of man I wanted and how much I would pay. I then backed it up with prayers. After two months or so, she found a guy but I didn’t like him. A month later, she found another guy but it was the same feeling. And that was how we went on and on—she would find somebody and I would disapprove—until we both gave up. I never liked any of them because none of them matched up to Reno in my eyes.”

“But P, he is not even fine!” laments Celia.

“I know but I loved him and I believed God could do it for us but Reno just kept pushing me to get pregnant.”

“Why didn’t he help you find a donor?” Noka asks.

“When he was busy sleeping around?” Celia hisses.

“He said it was unethical and humiliating for him to find a man who would father his son.”

“Can you imagine?”

“I became so stressed, got fired from work, and that was when the drinking began. I would take a glass of red wine or two each time I was depressed. It would calm me and I would sleep off. From a glass or two, I started finishing a whole bottle. After a while, I realized wine wasn’t strong enough. I moved to beer and later on, to spirits.”

“And were you having sex with Reno during all of this?” Bimpe asks.

Peace laughs. “Sex? My dear, I didn’t want to but I had to. He called me a dry wood and said he wasn’t attracted to me anymore, so I would always beg for sex. I irritated him. Somehow, he saw me as a reminder of children he couldn’t have. And the more I prolonged getting pregnant by another man, the more he slept around.”

“Humph!” Celia grunted.

“Finally, last year, Mary got me this guy that I liked.”

Peace’s eyes twinkle beneath a hidden smile.

“After checking his profile out, we arranged a meeting and I told him what I wanted. He named a price, we drove to my doctor and tests were carried out. When the results were released, he checked out healthy, passed all the tests. The doctor fixed an insemination date based on my cycle. The day came and it was carried out but feelings had already developed between me and him…”

“Are you serious?” Mary asks. “I didn’t know.”

“What’s his name?” Noka enquires.

“I can’t tell you, Noka,” Peace replies.

“Abeg, continue,” Celia remarks. “Ignore this gbegborun.”

“Just call him X.”

“So you and X were…?”

“In love. We had lunch that day and ended up in a hotel and that was how I started cheating on my husband,” she said sadly.

“What is good for the goose is good for the gander,” Celia comments.

“I fell in love with him and fell out of love with Reno. He made me enjoy sex because it was good. So, so good. I knew what I was doing was wrong but I couldn’t stop. For the short time I was with him, life had meaning. I stopped drinking, I was happy, I laughed a lot… But then I fell pregnant and I knew I had to end it there. Useless or not, Reno was still my husband and what I was doing was a sin in God’s eyes.”

“But God would have understood if you continued with X and divorced Reno’s cheating, rapist ass!”

“Celia?!” Noka scolds.

“I am saying the truth here. She fell in love with a good man who is a million times better than Reno and was able to knock her up! How was she going to burn in hell for that? Honey, abi I’m lying?”

I agree with Celia. Peace should have divorced Reno a long time ago.

“Peace, go on,” Bimpe urges with a wave of her hand.

“So I cut off all communication with X,” Peace continues, “and told Reno I am pregnant with our baby and he goes, ‘how many times did he screw you to get you pregnant?’ I was shocked at the question but I said nothing. He insulted me, called me a whore and said the moment he found my replacement, he would kick me out.”

“Na wa o!” Bimpe exclaims. “The same Reno I know?”

“Bims, believe me, you don’t know Reno,” Mary states. “I don’t even think the guys know him. Maybe Jide does.”

“You should have seen the way he announced the pregnancy to his family,” Peace goes on with her tale. “You should have been there. He was in tears. He kissed me, hugged me, sang for me and promised all manner of gifts because I had finally made him happy. And the heartless souls were even congratulating him for being loving and patient with me all these years. We became the talk of the town.”

“Ibro even threw you guys a party,” Noka recalls. “But none of us knew what was happening. How did you survive all this, P?”

“I don’t know. Seriously, I don’t.”

“And Mr. X?”

Peace’s eyes twinkle once more. “He was heartbroken but understood my reasons and stayed away. I sent him a picture when Sammy was born. He never replied and I went back to loving my husband.”

“You don’t love Reno, Peace,” Bimpe tells her. “You are being manipulated by him and enslaved by your vows to him. Take it from someone who has been there, you are an abused woman and you need to get out and find your happiness.”

“By the way, X is married,” Mary reveals. “Sorry, Peace. I don’t want you hoping against hope. He married earlier this year in Abakiliki. I attended. He asked of you and Sammy. I gave him pictures.”

“Okay.” Peace sucks in her lips briefly to hide her disappointment. Mary reads her emotions and goes to sit beside her. She puts an arm around her.

“It wasn’t meant to be.”

“I know. It was… wrong. And yet…”

“I don’t think you loved him,” I say plainly.

They all stare at me.

“He was just a picture of all you wanted in Reno, the man you truly loved. So, if you had left Reno and hooked up with him, it might have been a disaster.”

Noka raises a hand. “I think so too.”

“But what we shared was strong.”

“It was just sex,” I stress.

“Then let her have her sex, Honey,” Celia says defensively. “It was good. She enjoyed it, the man is taken and all she has is memories, so let her enjoy it. Is it your sex?”

We all laugh, easing the heavy mood.

“It was adultery,” Peace sniffles. “Good as it was, it was wrong. I’m heartbroken that he’s moved on but it’s a good thing too. I guess it’s time I find my own way as well.”

“Your own way, as in…?”

We all look at her in dreaded anticipation, praying she says the words we want her to say.

“As in…divorcing Reno.”

Everyone sighs loudly. Celia slips to her knees and throws her hands in the air in gratitude to God.

“And you’ll go to rehab?” Bimpe tosses in.

“Don’t push it, Bims,” Noka cautions.

“I will. I’ll go to rehab.”

Celia leaves her place on the floor and hugs Peace, leaving kisses on her face and neck that plunge her into a tearful outburst.

Celia pulls back and we all watch Peace, afraid that she is about to have a Reno relapse.

“I don’t want to leave him,” she cries. “Where do I start from?”

They surround her immediately, offering words of encouragement while I simply observe. How does a woman get to a point where her man becomes her god and she fears the very ground he walks on? And she cannot walk away from him even in the face of an unbearable situation? Is it what marriage is about? Will I have to give up myself to ensure that the ring on my finger actually means something?

I love Jide, and what I feel grows every day but what if he hurts me in the future? How much can I take before I say it’s enough and walk out the door? As it stands, I am yet to be in a relationship where I don’t have a part of my heart packed in a bag and waiting by the door. It takes very little to see me walk out on a man, and I doubt that it would be different with Jide. Does marriage mean I have to unpack all of my heart and commonsense and sacrifice them on the altar of marriage vows to my husband as Peace has done?

I am yet to comprehend all of this. All I know is that I still want my happily ever after.




pinche pendejo – fucking asshole

gbegborun – gossip

LAX – Los Angeles International Airport


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