Hello those who follow this series. Hi. So I’d like to thank the four women who made Chapter 7 visually beautiful with their heels. @Crazzy_Dita, @ThatGirlMwazy, @finn_lucy and mademoiselle unknown. You are awesome. I hope you all enjoy the story.
Why the hell do we always say good morning. Even when the morning is hell we always say good morning. Even worse why do we say good afternoon? What if the morning was bad and it’s bad luck trickled down to the afternoon? Why am I even thinking about this?
I’m so nervous I can’t think about work. Why am I nervous? I’m scared of what will happen at fourteen hours today. I think I will blow up soon because fourteen hours is two hours away. The day so far has been a mess. Positivity surely needs to take hold of my life. I tried being positive earlier. I really did. I prayed when I woke up, I said good morning to everyone. Gosh I even smiled at a random man, okay he was the guard. And that all changed when something rather someone threw me off my “positivity is the key to happiness path.” His name, Patrick. One would think that even after so many years of dealing with crazy demanding clients that I would be able to just meet Patrick and give him a piece of my mind without losing it. But no. He has my mind in a daze. The man called me in the morning. Too early in the morning for me, and I must admit it was shocking and enjoyable, the latter being to a lesser extent. Though thinking about his voice gives me chills. Even after so many years of being apart, I find it hard to believe that the moment he said hello my heart beat so fast I thought I would lose my breath. It had been a while since I had last heard his voice; but Patrick didn’t need to tell me who he was because I remembered the voice that whispered sweet nothings to me when we were together. The same voice that spoke to me for hours every night discussing random stuff or assignment plans. The same voice he used when I was on his bed every day I spent time with him in his room at UNZA. It was the same voice that denied me and our baby. So I knew it was him. The conversation had been civil. Or maybe I was too nervous to notice anything else. Maybe I should have screamed at him. He would have probably cut the call. He noticed I was nervous. Or he probably noticed it when I told him to call me another day.
“Calm down Chibwe. ” He said when I blurted out I didn’t want to see him. “It’s a short meeting. Just a simple chat.”
“I’m busy. You know I work right? ”
“Too busy to meet a friend?”
“You mean ex boyfriend. Ex bed mate. Ex everything. We are not friends.”
“I’m a current something in your life Chibwe. Don’t be mean.”
“Meet me. Please. Don’t make me beg.”
I won’t lie but I wanted to see him beg. Hear him beg for me to see him. I wanted to know if he would beg the same way he used to then. Or maybe he had upgraded the technique.
“I don’t have time Patrick. Tell your mother to meet my mother and discuss whatever concerns you have.” I responded. “Simple. ”
“No. It doesn’t involve them. I have to see you.”
“What is this about? Just tell me now. And I’ll think about it.” I said slowly.
“No. Meet me or I’ll be coming to see you at work.” He said calmly.
Knowing Patrick he probably meant it. And it scared me more to know he would do just that to get what he wanted. A part of me wanted to see if he would do it. And another wanted to keep my drama away from the office and talking walls. I gave in.
“Where?” I asked.
“How does Meraki sound. Fourteen hours?”
“Fine. I’ll be there.”
“See. That’s all I ever wanted to hear. I can’t wait to see you. ”
I didn’t know how to respond to his stupid answer. I simply said my goodbye and hung up. I didn’t want to keep talking when I felt a mixture of feelings. Anger, hatred, disgust and another that I think was love. Why I would feel love after everything I had been through was beyond me. But now all I want is to go home and not meet him. Maybe even hide Samuel till Patrick leaves. But I know that won’t happen. I will have to meet the man and get it all over and done with.
I just hope it all goes well.
I also hope he’s blind.
Maybe ugly too.
Maybe I should have worn the the boring boots. Why did I have to wear the boots he loves? I think as I stare at my animal print boots. I surely love to complicate my life.
Why the hell isn’t he…..
I hear his sleepy voice on the phone. I look at my watch and frown. The time is twelve hours and he’s still in bed? Is he okay? Maybe I shouldn’t have called him. What if he hangs up on me? Well he’s already picked up I might as well deal with it. Though what time did he sleep if he’s still in bed at this time? Look at me, I barely slept last night and yet I woke up on time and made it to work. Then again it’s all because of Tawanda. Tawanda and his cuddling/snoring made sure I couldn’t get a good night’s rest. Tawanda woke me up early in the morning just as I was finally enjoying my sleep. I can’t believe he woke me up to see if maybe I would be in the mood for that which I can’t do with him. But I wasn’t -I swear I felt bad again – and I left him in bed claiming if I didn’t bath early I would be late for work. Tawanda made sure I got to work on time. I do feel tired and I wish I had never gone to Tawanda’s place last night because I have a stiff neck as a result. Never doing that any time soon I think to myself. Mukuka coughs through the phone and I block all thoughts of last night away.
” You okay? ” I ask
I’m curious. I’m worried. Mukuka calls me most mornings, especially if I don’t wake up in his bed. And when I got to work, I found no missed calls or unread messages. I won’t lie I was hurt but he was probably more hurt than I after all didn’t I make my choice.
“Yep. Hangover. ” He responds. “What time is it?”
When I left the party last night he looked sober. Did he go out to drink after the engagement party? Did he go out with another woman? Did he have another woman at his house last night? Or did he sleep alone? Did he miss me? Now I’m being paranoid.
“Shit. I need to get up. Shit.. Shit.. Shit.” He says aloud.
“What’s up.” I ask curiously waiting to hear if he will give me a hint of what happened last night.
“I have…. had a meeting I had to attend. And I missed it. Shit. What do I do?”
“Simple. Call the client. Apologise. Reschedule.”
“Yeah. Shit. Thanks. For waking me up literally.”
“And take a painkiller.” I add. “Lots of water too.”
I hear him banging stuff around and curse at whatever he is looking at. He’s angry. Men. I smile to myself as I imagine him walking around the flat naked looking for something. The man loves to walk around naked. And he looks good too. The chest and those strong legs. Gosh he’s hot indeed. Did he show another woman what I have been enjoying for months? Why isn’t he telling me anything.
“Calm down.” I tell him. “What the hell are you looking for?”
“Uhhh vests. White.” He responds. “And socks.”
I smile to myself. Of course he forgot where the maid put them.
“Closet. Second bottom drawer. For vests. For socks check the drawer below the vests drawer.”
I hear him open the drawer and he grunts. I know I’m right. I know where everything is in his house. Best friends forever.
“Anything? ” I ask curiously.
Just in case.
“Thank you! ” He says happily. “Salome thank you. Shit. I swear drinking is toxic.”
“What happened last night?”
“Uhhh babe. Where are the boxers?”
Oh my. He’s trying to avoid the subject. That just won’t do. He obviously won’t tell me what happened to him last night so I have to make him talk about it.
“One of the top drawers.” I start. “Hmmm so I swear I thought we left you sober last night. What happened after we left.”
“Lots of drinking. Friends. Anyway I’ll be fine. As always. So what’s up? Everything ok?”
He just changed the subject so easily. Oh wow. He obviously has a girl at his house. Why am I being jealous? Isn’t this what I wanted?
“Yep. I wanted to check up on you that’s all.” I say nervously. “But are you sure you’re okay?”
“Salome, thank you for calling. Very grateful, I am alright. A hangover never killed anyone. Quit stressing. I gotta call the client and start my day. I will see you in the evening for the rehearsals okay? ”
“Okay. See you later. ”
He hangs up. Okaaaay. He’s in a cranky mood. As to be expected if he had a night of heavy drinking. Or if he had a lady over. I know the man and his bedroom skills and how they drain him. I shouldn’t be thinking about his bedroom… Oh fuxk but I want him. But damn it I made a choice. But I went against my own plan of staying away from him and called him. So many buts. Excuses. I had to call him to find out if he was okay right? That’s the right thing to do. He is my friend after all, so I should call him and check up on him. Often. The excuses I tell myself just to be close to him. Maybe I should have gone to see him. Then again how would I have done that with Tawanda on my back. Tawanda The Boyfriend. What to do about my predicament. Waking up next to Tawanda was something I had been avoiding for months. There is a saying that if want to know if the man you are with is worth it all then wake up next to him. How far does your future last in that moment. With Tawanda well it’s pretty short. I’m horrible. But I’m trying. Now that I found myself in his bed again I finally realized that if I wanted to make it work I’d have to really put in all my effort because at this moment all I want to do is run away. Why am I like this?
Where the hell are my jogging shoes.
Shit. I’m a mess.
No but really where the hell are my jogging shoes.
Either she’s in her office or not. It’s that simple.
Don’t make my day harder than necessary. Don’t make yours any more longer than it already is. Why should this be difficult. How rude some people are. She deserves to be fired. I hate people like her.
The receptionist gives me the eye as I walk away from her desk. What ugly eyes. Is it because she is wearing a dress from that common boutique and she thinks she’s a star. Stupid. I resist the urge to turn around, be petty and stick my tongue at her. What’s wrong with some receptionists? It’s like they forget we see them first when we walk into a company. But no, they carry their moods with them everywhere they go, like it’s everyone’s fault your day is so horrible. Fix it or smile everyday. Which ever one she picks I don’t care. I walk in the hallway ignoring the open doors because I know where I’m heading. I knock on the door and I hear her voice say come in. I slowly open the door and walk in.
“Your receptionist or Secretary whatever you call her is a piece of work. However do you manage with such rude humans.” I say as I close the door. “Please fire her or one day someone will slap her.”
Monde looks up from her desk, smiles and quickly stands up to hug me. If she is miserable then I don’t see it. Dressed in a red top, checkered pants with her signature black heels, her hair all tangled up in curls around her face, Monde is the definition of radiant. She hides misery well and I’m proud of her. On the hand, me? When look at me now, I’m sad and I’m in all black. I should seriously master the skill of hiding pain. Monde gives me a warm hug and in that moment I know I made the right choice in coming to see her. That was the plan right? I had nothing else to do but see Monde; okay thats a lie. I have wedding things to finish dealing with but I needed a time out and I knew Monde would be the best person to talk to. Besides I am worried about her too. I didn’t take time to call her yesterday, so I made time today to see her in person. The effort counts. And after the drama I had last night I needed her advice on how to move forward. I wish I could go to the other girls but I know Salome has her issues with Mukuka so she wouldn’t be the best person to ask; and neither would Chibwe, with her baby daddy drama resurrection happening in her life. And out of the four of us Monde is the rational one; she tends to think things through before she acts; and I try to be like her but most cases I fail because well I tend to panic and react too quickly.
Take for example today; I woke up in a panic mode today. And it was all because of Kachiza. Of course I woke up next to him and it was like we never had a “Samantha problem” last night. Everything was ok. We talked and laughed and even when he tried to convince me we should break our abstinence vow we joked about it and went about our day. Nothing was amiss. We kissed. We had breakfast together. We were us, but Samantha was still at the back of my mind. I was scared that I was missing signs that my relationship was failing. So I watched him till he left. He acted okay. But that didn’t stop me from worrying. I know men who cancelled weddings because their exes came back in the picture. Not that Kachiza would leave me and go back to Samantha. No. But knowing Samantha she was here to prove a point and whatever it was I had to be ready for it. And that scares me the most. Preparing for the unknown. And that’s why I need Monde.
She lets go of me and I sit down and as usual we immediately branch out into the topic of wedding planning but I know she is dying to ask me about what happened with the Samantha chaos. Monde does not push, she always wants for the other to open up. I do not disappoint her for long, I tell her the main details of what happened with Kachiza last night when we got home. And after I’m done she looks at me with a sad smile on he face. She knows even if I’m saying I’m fine I’m panicking within.
“My issue is not that Kachiza invited her. No. Maybe he was being nice. It’s wrong yes but I’m not shocked. Your man is a nice man. My issue is the fact that Samantha saw it fit to show up and be happy about it.” She says finally. “Who does that and acts happy her ex is marrying another person especially in her circumstances.”
Monde gets it. She sees things from a different perspective and that always reassures me that I’ll get the best advice.
“My thoughts exactly.” I say.
“I understand you have to be happy for your ex but not like that. They have bad history.”
“See. You get it. Thank God. I thought I was crazy.”
“Awwww love. I’m so sorry she showed up.”
“How long have they been chatting is the question. What so they chat about?What’s been going on? We all know Samantha loved him psycho mode.” I ask.
“Samantha is weird if not crazy and we know how far she can go. Maybe Kachiza was being nice and she took it as more? I hope she sticks to being a guest with no issues and opinions.”
“That scares me Monde. Her taking it as more. What if she still loves him. What if he still loves her?”
“Oh come on. I don’t think so. All Samantha has to do is stay away and keep quiet.”
“She has no choice but to be silent. She made me so angry last night.” I say.
“I hope so. I noticed how her and Kachiza looked like old friends.”
“I noticed that too. But you don’t think Kachiza will act up and get close to her now that she’s back right?” I ask her
“Samantha is an ex who lost a good man and the good man found a good woman.” Monde says
“Good men walk away too.” I say
“Not men like Kachiza. He loves you. Very much. He shows it. He’s proud of it. He wouldn’t cheat on you.” She says.
“You seem so sure Monde. We shouldn’t take these men at face value. Men are weird.”
Monde nods her head and offers me a weak smile.
“Well at least he’s not like my husband.” She starts. “Who doesn’t know how to hide his deeds. Marriage sucks sometimes. Are you sure you want to get married? You’re very sure you want the stress I’m going through?”
“Yes I am sure. It’s not all bad. Don’t discourage me.”
“Now tell me, I’m worried about you. How is it going between you and Noah. Did you ask him about the phone?”
“Gemima I’m pregnant.”
She sighs and looks at me waiting for my answer.
“Congratulations!!!” I say aloud clapping. “Oh my gosh. I didn’t not expect that today.”
“Well I wasn’t expecting it either. But here we are. Pregnant.”
Count on Monde to create the best surprises. She’s pregnant and she’s going through cheating problems. Gosh she is so strong. I would be in tears I think. I would move out too. How does she do it? Handle all that pressure?
“Does Noah know?” I ask.
She nods. “I told him yesterday.”
“Wow. How far along?” I ask
“Months. Two. almost.I wanted to ask him about the phone yesterday. I really did but I couldn’t. Instead I revealed tbe pregnancy news to him. He was so excited. So happy.”
“Gosh Monde.” I say
“I tried.” She cries. “But he’s my husband. I just can’t ask him. Like boom hey hubby I found your phone. Read your message. Who is plumber? Besides the man never acknowledged he left his phone at home so why bother?”
“Wait.. He named her plumber? So unoriginal.” I say. “I mean Noah is smarter than that.”
We laugh at that. Yes naming her plumber was unoriginal of him. And what’s with men not knowing what to call their mistresses? Call Pablo, or Jack D. Something sensible.
“Besides, he hid the phone when he came home to change yesterday. So where do I even start from. I cried myself to sleep last night and he’s none the wiser about it.” Monde says
“Why did he think your eyes were swollen in the morning?” I ask curiously
“Too much or lack of sleep. Hormones. He’s too excited to see such things.”
And to think she looks perfect now. No traces of swollen eyes right now. Her makeup is great.
“I would be in tears ah.” I tell her. “You’re strong. I’m so not.”
She smiles and shakes her head.
“You are. All women are strong in marriage.”
“Hmm. Not like you. Look at you Monde. You look beautiful. Ahh. Are you sure you have problems?”
She smiles and shakes her head in disagreement.
“You will see for yourself that some battles are not worth fighting.” She says. “I am pregnant. We have another child together already. Let’s assume he’s actually cheating on me then what? Do I call a family meeting? Do I beat him up? Do I divorce the man? What impact will it have on my children?”
“But what if you lose the baby due to stress?” I ask her. “This is stress for you.”
“I won’t.” She says confidently. “I’ll be fine.”
“So you won’t ask him about it?” I ask
“I don’t know. I am still deciding the way forward. I don’t want to argue with him at all. He’s my husband. He comes home to me either way. I haven’t noticed him disappearing or answering calls elsewhere. He’s the same man.”
You haven’t seen anything yet. Yet. Because you didn’t pay attention I think. That’s why partners are always the last to know their partners are cheating on them. That blind faith looking for clues that point out if you were stupid for ignoring them in the first place.
“I love him.” She says “But I’ll be fine. No matter what happens. This baby in here and I will be okay.”
“I hope so. But I also believe Noah is not cheating. He’s too good to cheat on you. He loves you too much.”
“Isn’t that their job? To lie to us and make us think they love us yet they have mistresses.”
“Noah loves you Monde. That’s why I’m finding it hard to believe he’s actually cheating on you.”
“Maybe I did something. Maybe I wasn’t enough for him.”
“My gosh Monde. You’re an awesome wife. An awesome mother. Monde you have it all. What could you have not done.” I tell her.
She keeps silent and looks at me. I can tell she’s thinking of an answer. To be honest, I understand her point of view, a cheating man makes one think the fault is with the woman, but sometimes what a woman does is not enough for him and he strays. And in Monde’s case she keeps forgetting she is pregnant and that anything can happen that might hurt her baby. Yes, as wives we should be tolerant and learn when to start wars or battles but what happens if the battle within hurts an innocent person? Monde is different and her marriage is one of a kind and so will mine but, I will not tolerate a cheating husband. Never. I won’t allow it. I wonder how women can keep their feelings inside and accept their cheating husband easily. No one thinks of HIV/AIDS anymore. It’s like it’s okay to cheat and pray you don’t get sick. I’ll never be that strong.
So long as HIV/AIDS and STIS are still rampant I will not stay with a cheating man.
But then let’s be realistic, how many Zambian men don’t cheat on their wives or girlfriends? Too few actually and if you find one of them then hold onto him for dear life. I’ve learnt my lessons. My previous relationships before I met Kachiza taught me to protects myself from actions of uncaring men. But Kachiza proved to be different and I love him more for that.
I just pray Monde and Noah manage to fix their relationship in time and not too late because they have a baby on the way. I also hope Samantha stays away from Kachiza and I. Seeing her once was enough for me.
Why are relationships not on an easy path?
I just hope it all works out.
In the end.
It’s one thing to see an ex but it’s quite another to see an ex after so many years even when that ex just happens to be the father of your child. I walk through the archway into Meraki and I immediately see him sitting at a table under the shade near the main doors. He sits facing the open area obviously trying to see who walks in though he has his eyes glued to his phone; but I know it’s him. It’s his face, his hands on the table and his build that tells me he’s the one. I slept with the man. I carried his child too so I guess I know him very well. Too well. I wonder if he will recognise me. Gosh. I hope I look good. Though does it matter? Who cares what he thinks? We’ve been over for years anyway.
I don’t move towards the table immediately instead I stand watching him, deciding the way forward for me. Maybe I should leave and head home. Why talk to him? I see him smile, probably his bimbo lady telling him how much she loves him. I shouldn’t be here. But a part of me wants to hear what he has to say. I am still deciding when he lifts his head and looks in my direction. My heart stops, of course not literally cause then I’d be dead. The man looks amazing. He’s aged like fine wine. From the boy I knew to a man I see right now, he’s changed and it suits him. From his English cut hair, to his white shirt and specs, he looks amazing. My heart beats faster and I find myself walking to his table, all thoughts of leaving fading away with each step. I could have been married to this right now if he had acted right. He stands up as I approach the table and he smiles at me. There is the reason I fell in love with him – that killer smile of his with the dimples so deep I just want to touch them to see if they are still real. He’s grown I notice as I see his arms are all muscle. Sexy if I may add. The man hugs me – hands touching my back – and gives me a kiss on my cheek. Hmmm. I have not had his lips on me for so long it feels weird. I sit down across him and look at him.
“I thought you wouldn’t make it.” He says
“Sorry I’m late.” I respond. “Work.”
Lies. It was a deliberate move. I didn’t want to wait for him alone. No. I wanted him to see me walk in. Petty? Who cares?
“You look beautiful.” He says. “So different. You look amazing Chibwe.”
I give him a smile that does not reach my eyes. Trying to sweet talk me already? What an ass. After so many years of ignoring me, literally being a jerk he now wants to sweet talk me?
“What do you want Patrick?”
He smiles at me. Like old times. The same smile he gave me when he claimed he loved me. I’m wiser now.
“Too soon don’t you think. You just got here. I’d love to know how you are. Are you okay? Are you thirsty? Hungry? Want some cake?” He says
“You quit caring about my wellbeing years ago. We are here to discuss whatever it is you called me here for. You and I don’t chat. Or eat together. What do you want?”
“I want us to get along. We can start today. How are you? How’s work? How’s home? How’s everything?”
I laugh. Not some silly girl’s laugh but really laughing at him. Us get along? Hahahaha what a joke of a man. And he believes asking about me will what? Help us get along.
“The answer to all your questions is fine. All of them” I respond. “And Patrick we get along just fine. You in Swaziland and me here with Samuel linking us.”
A waiter makes his way to our table and Patrick orders two pieces of black forest cake and two cups of coffee. I think I need a glass of wine. I’m too nervous. I watch him talk to the waiter and to be honest watching makes my heart feel weird things in my chest. I look away from him, paying attention to everything else except him. The waiter walks away with our orders and I look back at Patrick. He groans and shakes his head.
“You look beautiful.” He says. “Samuel showed me pictures when he came to Swaziland, I must say you look better in person.”
Sweet talk? Wow. It’s not going to work i think. No.
“So? What next? ” I ask.
Why beat around the bush? He caused this. Let him feel my anger now.
“I always knew you would be more beautiful older.” He responds.
“Patrick Kamanga if you do not tell me why I’m here I swear I’m leaving. And I swear you will meet my mother next.”
That shuts him up. He looks at me and nods. What is it about him that has me messed up right now. We did everything together then. Everything. He knows me. He knew me. My body knew his. I’m so lost. Why is he here? What does he want from me?
“I’m moving back to Zambia.” He says slowly.
I look at him and shrug. That’s it? But then that means he will be closer to Samuel and I. It also means he will bring his girlfriend here too. Wow. I need to think this through. But not now. I need to know what he really wants first. He must want something.
“How does that affect me?” I ask
“Well for starters you are the mother of my only child. I see my son when he is on holiday. But now that I’m moving back here that should change.”
I knew it. The stupid man wants my child. A child I kept in my womb for months. Even when his father was done with me. No. I won’t allow it. No. But I won’t show my disappointment. No. I’ll wait. I’ll stay calm.
“You could have told your mum this to tell my mother you know. So simple to be honest.” I tell him. “It’s how we have been doing this. ”
“You complicate things.” He says
“You are the one complicating this.”
“I wanted to see you and talk to you. Baby daddy to baby mama.”
“Oh please Patrick. Is that supposed to be funny? Please don’t crack foolish jokes. Don’t complicate the system we have had for over five years.”
“You’re Samuel’s mother so I had to meet you and talk to you. At the end of the day you will be dealing with me and not my mother.”
“I prefer the channels to remain the same.” I argue. “Let our families discuss this.”
“That has to change Chibwe. We are parents to a son. We should be close at least. It’s only right we grow up and face this together.”
Grow up? I grew up years ago!!! I take a deep breath and shrug.
“So you wanna change what exactly?” I ask
“The visits have to change if I’m here full time.”
“Be specific Patrick. I’m lost. Aren’t you happy with him during the holiday period.”
“I am. But I was thinking we should change the whole thing. We should be fair.”
“What is fair? More time for you?”
“Well holiday period is kinda short to be honest.”
“Oh my gosh. You want him to stay with you full time?” I ask shocked.
“Calm down Chibwe.” He says.
“No. What about your girlfriend? Will she approve of this? I’m not gonna let another woman raise my son. What if she doesn’t know how to take care of him.”
“So has your girlfriend approved of all this? ” I ask
I see him raise his eyebrow at me and he laughs. Realization dawns on me. Oh my. I’ve put myself in an awkward place. I wasn’t supposed to ask that question. I wasn’t supposed to know about his relationship. But my son is in the middle. And he told me everything about her and how nice she was to him. Oh. Patrick will think I’m a jealous woman. What do I do? He keeps laughing and shakes his head.
“Chibwe. Uhhh. Okay. So you know about my relationship?”
“Well we have a son. He tells me everything. What did you expect? That he would keep stuff from me? ” I respond.
I see him smile, his white even teeth on display and so are his dimples.
“Okay. I don’t mind that he told you to be honest.” He starts. “Well, now the issue is you haven’t received the update.”
“What update? What are you talking about?” I ask
“I’m single Chibwe. Nomthuzi and I broke up if that’s what’s stressing you. Don’t worry she won’t keep our child at all. It’s done for good.”
Oh okay. Okaaaaay. This is embarrassing for me. I’m so behind on the news about his life. I quit listening after Samuel told me about her. How long have they been over? Days? Is that why he’s coming back to Zambia. To get over his Swazi heart break.
“And no. I don’t want to take Samuel full time. You’ve done an amazing job raising him so I will keep it that way.” He adds.
Thank goodness. The breath I had been holding is released. I’m so happy he thinks that way.
“Are you playing me?” I ask
“Uhhh firstly no one uses that phrase anymore. Secondly I’m telling you the truth. I just need some more added time with him.”
“So if you think I’m a great mother and you don’t want Samuel to stay with you full time then why am I here?”
He smiles at me. Why is he smiling? Who the hell is happy?
“Well…” he starts. “I was thinking about something.”
Spit it out I think.
“We should raise Samuel together.” He says
“We already do that Patrick. Even in different countries we did that.”
“Well that was different.” He says. “I actually mean something else.”
“What do you mean Patrick?” I ask.
“As a couple. As a family.”
Huh? What the hell?
Is he out of his mind? I agree we need to raise Samuel together but as a couple? What? As a family? Is he sick? This is the man that left me alone when I was pregnant and now he wants to make us work. Wow. How the mighty fall. I look at his face and I do not know if he’s serious or not. But I will never fall for this bull crap. I dont say a word, because I do have any words left. If he had told me this five years ago or even six years ago, even better eight years I would have gladly gone back after all it took me years to get over the pain and heartbreak. Now he wants it all back and he thinks I will easily give him everything he wants. And why did his bimbo leave him anyway?
“Patrick . . . . ” I start.
The waiter returns carrying a tray with our cakes and coffee. As he puts our plates on our table I take this time to really look at Patrick again. This time I don’t look away. He looks like Samuel; the same eyes, the same lips and nose. A mini him to remind me of my choices and blessings. While he enjoyed fourth year at UNZA I had to deal with maternity clothes, hospital check ups and family meetings that never failed to point out I opened my legs to the wrong man. I blamed myself for months, I cried for months and when I saw my little guy for the first time it was love at first sight. Even what Patrick had done to me was insignificant. I was happy.
The waiter walks away and I look at the cake on my plate. I don’t want to eat. I’m no longer interested in eating. What Patrick wants is too much.
“Why?” I ask him before I stop myself
He takes a sip of his coffee and looks at me.
“Because you and I are parents to an amazing child. Do you know what Samuel asked me last I saw him? Why I wasn’t living with you and him like a normal family should.” He says
So? Just because a child asks you a question doesnt mean you have to take it so seriously. He’s a child with a curious mind. All kids are like that.
“And you think that because he asked you that question then we should just become a couple and be happy?” I ask him. “We should smile and be merry.”
“I know it will take effort. But I’m willing to try.” He says
I laugh then. I put my hand over my mouth and laugh. He looks at me like I’m crazy and I think I’m crazy. This man is crazy. I open my mouth to talk but I laugh again.
“You’re willing to try and do what? Be a couple? Please stop. We tried that. Remember.”
“Chibwe we can be a family. Like you always wanted. Plus I’m coming back to Zambia so it could work.”
“So wait. You think you can move back to Zambia and boom I’ll fall at your feet and take you back?” I ask him. “You think it’s that easy.”
I shake my head.
“It doesn’t work like that Patrick. You left me remember? You didn’t want the baby remember? You told me I cheated. You literally shamed me and ignored me. And what you have a heart now? You feel pity for me? Please don’t. I’m fine.”
“All those things happened. Yes. It was bad. I get it. But I’m here trying to make amends.”
“Keep your amends. They don’t change what you put me through.”
“I messed up. I loved you once.”
“So? So what? Did that love make you stay with me? No.”
“Chibwe. Look I agree I messed up. But what I’m saying is maybe we can fix this. What we had.”
“With what. There is no love here anymore Patrick.” I say aloud pointing at him then myself.
He doesn’t get it. He’s still so stubborn. I hate him.
“I think I still love you.” He says. “No. I still love you.”
Silence. Wow. So unexpected. Now I’m confused. What the hell is going on? Is he playing with me?
“We have a son together. Our child is our link. And love can be rekindled.” He adds.
“I loved you once. That’s it. Done.”
“So you are cool with us marrying other people and raising our child like that? Four parents. Confusing to a child.”
“Wow. Coming from the man who refused to raise the child with me. Eight years later you want me now?”
“It’s for Samuel.”
“You want me to be with you for my son’s sake? What if we are miserable? Then what? We get divorced? Go on separation. What’s more damaging to a child then?”
“We are good for each other. Samuel can have the childhood he so deserves.” He says slowly.
“You selfish idiot. Don’t you dare use my son in your pathetic attempt to get me back. You wake up and change your mind everyday.”
“I’m not, but im showing you what will happen if we don’t make this family thing work. You are an awesome mother. I realise I had something good and I threw it away. And maybe we can try and become a family for our son.… ”
“No.” I say cutting him off.
“I haven’t finished talking.”
“I don’t care.” I respond.
“I know you do. I know you Chibwe.”
“How long have you been thinking about this?” I ask
“Long enough. I’ve thought about this for a while now. I’m sorry Chibwe. I’m sorry I hurt you. I’m sorry I wasn’t man enough to be there for you. But I can be now. I know this won’t make up for the years but can you please forgive me?”
“Listen Chibwe……” He starts.
I stand up from my seat, carry my bag and walk away from him.
He’s a jerk. Why did I even agree to see him. How quickly he forgets the damage he caused. Now he wants forgiveness.
I will never forgive him. Never.
Nothing and no one will change my mind about that.
I hate him, his smile and his dimples.
Maybe I should have carried the cake.
To be continued…