I was good at my job, almost perfect. Numbers. I loved how they danced around on paper and excel sheets, I gave them nothing but respect. Not having had the most comfortable childhood, sometimes a little rough, but the love that surrounded me was enough.
Tall, dark and handsome they described me, of all the cliché combination of compliments. I occasionally second guess this unlike most gents. Selective confidence I call it, masked with humour and wit. Raised by my Aunt M, a Wonder woman, it’s an almost unfair advantage, an ace up my sleeve. To be raised by her, taught to respect every kind of woman, natural hair or with a long ass weave.
Honest enough to draw them in, but tell them just the right lie to keep them at the right kinda distance. It’s an almost intimate, dark, beautiful dance. No, it’s the guilt I feel. The inability to help them see a… no, see THE line. So, yes I agree to wine and dine and it all seems fine. Then they fall for me or I let them. No, I shouldn’t be the one to blame. No, I drew them in, they drew me in… It’s all a blur. Loved by those who didn’t mind a dirty one room and those that rocked expensive Boots and fur. The truth stares them in the face, yet their eyes are wide shut. Love/Lust/Guilt does this thing, like falling in love with a slut. Wanting someone you can’t have…. simply masked with “I`m in Love”
So this is what getting caught looks like. Believe me I think I can explain this. Gosh. Where to start. Wezi looked mad. After all was she the first one I had. My discarded one.
I still laugh when I have flash backs, guys called her crazy Wezi, She was very insecure but she was mine so I couldn’t give two fucks. She had this fire in her, ironic how she now had red hair like the marvel character Phoenix. I was just starting out on the journey that was an adult life. I was in love (I think), promises were made, ‘my future wife’. “I work hard every day so that I can finally put a black titanium and diamond ring on your finger.” It echoed in my head the other day, as I watched The Wedding Ringer.
Life always has other plans of putting your words and promises to the test. Boy did I swallow my words, which I obviously failed to digest. From the fights even she knew, a son wouldn’t make me stay. The self-righteous would probably smack their lips & say “no way.” But I’ll never forget, from the day she said ‘she was late’. That sentence changed everything, period!
Someone to ride and die for on a new road. He was born from the firing, passionate love of two young lovers. I day dreamed of stories of sons and their fathers. Love in a human form; Lukundo was a fitting name. Though the relationship with his mother would never be the same, I had one goal, to play my role until the end of the 90th minute game.
She was perfect on the outside, an average man’s perfect wife. Skills in the kitchen/ kitchen counter and bedroom. How had so much changed when I was to be her groom. The crazy Wezi almost disappeared whenever I visited my son, there was so much laughter and love. From the outside we were a perfect fit. Almost like a glove worn on a chilly night. But somehow we`d always fight.
If we didn’t let the almost perfect family scene take over and leave us in bed together, it was threats to scratch my car and tear up the white leather. Wezi loved and hated our family get together, deep down she knew. I’d always tell her, my son comes first what can I do? Deep down I knew this was Wezi`s way of trying to get back to us, fix us. Public outings seemed fine, her house? That was a different ball game. I was like a clumsy kid walking into a house made of glass. She could never use our son, not like this. Love does things, Judas’ love for money was confirmed with a simple kiss.
“So Ntazana. Let’s talk. Now. We are not leaving till we do.” Flash backs disappear… Shit. They are all still here.
There is no getting past this. This is real. I turn and look at Mukandi, My number two. The one who made me forget the crazy relationship I had with Wezi. I did not cheat on any of them. I met her after Wezi and I were done. No hope there really. I needed stability and some sort of serenity.
“Aunt M was saying hi, asking how you are.” It was an automated truth, my Aunt always asked about her. “She’s an opposite copy of Wezi” Aunt M would say every other day. I hate the honest comparison; Wezi was once more than just the mother of my son.
My little Kandi, her calm, silent, soft nature wanted me to be with her, be more than a memory, an ex or an emotional scar. Quick to apologize and try to find a solution without verbal altercations. A fan of walks on the beach and romantic vacations. Slightly young and naïve, but with a passion to learn and grow. Almost submissive yet oozed something that repelled notions to take advantage of her or cause her any pain. Would she challenge me? Keep me on my toes. What would she say if she heard I was out partying in a room full of hoes. Say she trusts me or go crazy like Wezi?
I’d work hard and she would be home waiting for me. Her beauty was clearly visible but not like Jasmine, the type to get unnecessary attention from men. She allowed a certain aspect of my youth to slowly walk behind. An almost, blind love. A hopeless romantic’s dream. Two true believers of love, what a team.
When I overworked myself and let my mood swings get the best of me, she was like a little innocent puppy that just stared. She had the look of a mother hen, or a mother when asking her son on death row to be spared. Kandi was worth it all. For her I would give up my singlehood and settle. She was it.
I ignore Jasmine because I know she will break down any second soon. Inonge catches my eye. The crush I never let go of. The workmate I always wanted something from. The one who showed me what fun should really be like. And I fell into it head on forgetting I had a woman back at home waiting.
Ms Inonge Imata… The things office passionate fantasies are made of. She oozed confidence and always seemed in control. Office assistants would place tea and confectionary treats on the table and pick up men’s jaws off the floor. She intimidated men and broke down the very loud, very flamboyant twenty year old something women. I was drawn to her like a black moth/black Knight to the light/an ice queen in white. I asked questions in meetings when I already knew the answer, she knew this but humoured me. The growing lust was like a cancer. Cliché compliments of how she was aging like wine would be laughed at. Pursuit of her would be an art. She’d catch me day dreaming and ask questions like a hot teacher in class, but my quick wit and background checks always saved my ass.
“I know that when we started this we agreed to keep it strictly ‘business’ and it had turned to a beautiful mess.” “Let’s go, you know want to, picture all the things we’ll get to do, without looking over our shoulder” … We were equally matched mentally, her body was the reminder
that she was older. But that did not take anything away from the beautiful curves on her, irony is she reminded me of the A5. My…Our Car?
Her thighs teased me as I gave her every detail of our pending get away, she suppressed a smirk and shook her head at everything I’d say, but her eyes told no lies. I kissed her thighs as I spoke, soft moans escaped her lips with every stroke. She worked hard for this big office so her soft moans would not escape the room. She had climbed the male dominated cooperate ladder with no groom. My liberal mind took her places. My character was beyond her law degree and cases. She leaned back on the chair as her tasted her youth like ripe plum. It was just office antics, strictly business, there was no harm.
She was the type of woman CEOs and MDs married yet here she was. An iron lady, having survived uncountable wars. No morning school runs, tying her little daughters’ hair in buns. Just a lust fuelled relationship, to pass the time. Time she didn’t seem to have after the little grey hair I noticed the other day. Rubbers in her bag, glove compartment. Most men (who she avoided) would not understand what this meant.
I kiss her…then randomly kiss her hips. “I love you Inonge Imata. See you in Lusaka!” The words involuntarily left my lips. The lust now masked as a strong emotional connection, what happened to the actions and thoughts driven merely by an erection.
How would I even introduce to her the family, age is nothing but a digit. My Aunt and family would slap me and tell me to take a seat. This was “strictly business”, was I lost in her pie? Her mind? Checks and balances weren’t adding up, crap.
Why was she here? She of all people knew better than to be part of such drama. This could only mean one thing; she had fallen for me. Her, Inonge Imata, in love with me, Ntazana.
“Ntazana. Should we tell her? Besides she’s here too so she has a right to know.” The Flash Backs disappear…
Maybe I needed the feeling of being trapped to stop. Maybe I needed one more girl. Just a fling to make it all worthwhile. I knew who would be my wife. I had her face in my sights but just one more. One more short play and I would be done.
“Can you calm down… do you want me dead or late” I cut the line as I approached a familiar gate. It was my close friend’s birthday and I had miscalculated the time it would take for me to leave the office, change and be there. I entered the room, but the tipsy birthday girl didn’t even seem to care. I kissed one cheek, handed her a little bag and barely kissed the other, “what’s in the baaag?!” We both screamed. Memories of university days and How I Met Your Mother marathons.
A few waves at familiar faces and I noticed a free seat. Jasmine, another cliché line plays in my head as I sit. Her beauty is as exotic as her name. Fate playing some silly game, placing us so close together? A hint? Never! She took care of herself, put in all the extra effort. Could almost see her in nothing but a white shirt, my white shirt, staring through the window of a loft. Laughs, high fives and shots of tequila later and I made conversation, she seemed broken. A beauty that lived in a house with no mirror. Her beauty did not match her confidence, she seemed easy to talk to. It almost didn’t make any sense. I was simply being social, ensured there was no flirting and all. I was drawn in, unable to explain this comfort, lost in thought rubbing my chin.
I told her the most complicated aspect of my life, about my beautiful son and his strong willed, no time for bullshit mother. Oh, how I bragged about my little man, yes. I was a proud father. A part of me didn’t want this to go any further, but her exotic beauty, her demeanour, her voice; light and soft as a feather. A date was set, one I looked forward to with little regret.
She had paid attention to my attraction towards white, wearing a tight little number that almost didn’t feel right. I was amused yet disappointed that she played such a cliché card.
She was extremely attractive, yet it seemed like she was trying a little too hard. Eyes escorted us as we made our way to our table. The attention, she was like a trophy, a label. I shook the thoughts from my head, hoping she’d repeat what she had just said. A lovely lunch with uncontrolled laughter, and traces of her in my car after… Jazz as I called her. The name was set, we were officially together.
She could be with anyone else and she decided to be with me, but most were usually after her beauty. Some ego fuelled game of acquisition while I seem to calculate every single thing like I did with every decision. I lied about who I stayed with, if she knew I lived alone, this would get beyond my control fast. I promised myself this wouldn’t last. I`d come clean and take every punch and kick, every stone and every stick.
“Ntazana the fool has been caught. He has been dating all of us. All of us.” Flash backs stop…
It hit me, she knew something was up, she seemed different but I couldn’t put my finger on it, she was so easy to read. How did I not see this coming, Shit. Flash backs stop.
I deserve this.
To be continued…..