Mike hadn’t come home in the past weeks, I kept calling him but he won’t pick my calls.
I got a blue tick every time I sent a WhatsApp message – he was reading them, he just wasn’t replying.
I moved through the motions with everyday that went by, I was besides myself with pain and then, Monday morning happened.
That day started off like any other day, I prepared my girls for school and they hopped on the school bus and waved me goodbye. I stepped into the shower and took a bath.
I had just come out of the shower when I heard a knock on my door,
It must be a neighbor I thought, I wore a shirt and pulled my jeans on then hopped down the stairs and opened the door, a young man stood there instead, looking back at my confused face.
He handed a binded document to me.
“Good morning Ma. You’ve been served” He said and turned around and walked away.
The events of the last few weeks had been crazy, every day held something more horrifying than the day before, not expecting anything good from this particular day, I flipped open the document and another heartbreak stared me in the face.
My life was over, I was completely finished!
I trudged back into the house and shut the door after myself. I dropped into the couch and read aimlessly through the A4 sized papers.
I had hoped it won’t come to this, I didn’t even think he would do this.
I climbed back into the chair and let my mind travel back to the day it all began….
MAY 5th 2017.
I rushed to the ATM to make some withdrawals, the queue was particularly long that day and I didn’t have the time to wait, the school bus would be dropping the kids off at any moment and I needed to be there to unlock the door for them.
I had spent the past hours at the market and decided to do a quick stop at the Bank for some cash before heading home.
I stood on the line, constantly glancing at my wrist watch and shaking my leg impatiently.
The bearded tall dark man at the fore front must have noticed because he gestured to me to come get in his front. Feeling pleasantly surprised, I moved out of the line and walked forward to his front, ignoring the snide complains and angry hisses of the other people who were on the queue.
“Thank you so much, I’m so grateful” I said looking over my shoulders at the stranger.
His nose was small and pointed, his face so beautifully crafted, God must have taken his time on this one, I thought.
“You’re welcome” he responded, flashing a set of well arranged white teeth. “You must be in such a haste, I noticed your demeanor minutes ago, you didn’t even park properly ” he said, jerking his head towards my wrongly parked car.
“Oh!” I chuckled, embarrassed. “Don’t mind me, my kids would be home any moment and I have to be there to welcome them”
He nodded understandably. “I have two boys myself, my wife is always trying to keep up. You women are trying”.
“What can we do” I agreed, smiling back at him.
The line moved forward as two persons stepped out to make their withdrawal, leaving just one person in front of me.
I glanced at my watch, I would be out of here in less than three minutes and it was all because of this stranger.
“Thanks so much” I said again, honestly very grateful.
He smiled. “It’s nothing, but you’re welcome”
My turn came and I stepped forward while he got to the other machine. We finished making our withdrawal and walked away simultaneously.
He stopped me before I could get to my car.
“Can I have your number? I’m Dapo by the way” he introduced.
“I’m Funke, but why do you want my…”
“Oh!” He shrugged “I don’t know, friends I guess? It won’t hurt to have one more friend would it?”
I accessed this man from head to toe, he was statuesque, oozing of money and prestige.
Mike was barely home, with his job that kept him away from town, I was left feeling lonely most of the time, it really won’t hurt having someone to talk to besides the kids.
“07063567891” I recited, and he punched each number into his iOS device.
“I’m calling you now” he declared.
My phone buzzed in my hand. “Got it!” I confirmed.
He nodded, shot me a two finger salute then walked towards his car.
I unlocked mine, got in and drove out of the premises.
He called a day after and asked me out to lunch, I obliged.
We met at a restaurant called Royal China. I wore a gold metal fitted dress that stopped at my knees, with strappy sandals to match, and I was glad I did because his well tailored black suit looked so good on him, and expensive too.
He rose to his feet as I approached the table, then walked around to hold out the chair for me.
I sat on it, smiling up at him. “Thank you” I said.
He smiled back, nodded and walked to his seat.
I carefully placed my purse on the round table top and relaxed my back into the chair.
I couldn’t believe I was here, with him. The only men I had hung out with since I married Mike four years ago were my brothers.
It’s just a harmless lunch, I reminded myself.
“You look beautiful” He said, breaking into my thoughts. His eyes stared intensely at me.
“Thank you” I smiled. “You look good too”
What I really wanted to say was, you look incredibleeeeeeeeee!!! because dang! he was dashing. How did someone like him even like me?.
“So, how are you?” his eyes never shifting.
“I’m good. How are you?” I asked back.
“It’s been a crazy day but I’m fine, now” he added with a broad smile and I laughed back with him.
“We should order” he said, picking up the menu. I picked up mine too and we went through it quietly.
“You’re ready?” He asked, lifting his eyes from the menu.
He clicked his fingers at the waiters and a young man in Uniform walked to our table.
“Good afternoon Sir, good afternoon Ma”
“Afternoon. I’ll have the Pineapple rice with some beef ribs and a bottle of red wine ” He said, pointing at the Menu.
I decided on fried rice with salad”. The waiter bowed and walked away.
“So, who is Funke? Let me know her”
What is going on? Is this a date?
I shrugged. “There’s nothing much to say, my life is really boring”
“Let me be the Judge of that” He said, looking steadily into my eyes.
Why did he have to maintain such a strong eye contact though? He was making me really shy.
I chuckled. “Okay. I have two girls, I’m a housewife, my life is basically revolved around the kids. My husband works at a rig in Port Harcourt and visits occasionally, so it’s just me and the girls most of the time. It’s boring”.
“Hmn” He nodded, taking a sip of water from the glass that sat on the table. “You don’t want to work?”
“I do, but my husband thinks we should be done with having kids first”
The waiter returned and placed our dishes before us. “Thank you” He nodded in acknowledgement. The waiter bowed then walked away.
“So,” he continued. “It’s not what you really want is it?” He asked in all seriousness. “To be a stay home mom?”
I shook my head then laughed, the conversation was getting too personal.
“Enough about me! how about you? what’s your story” I fetched a fork full of rice and put it into my mouth.
“Two kids too, boys. Married for three Years, based in Abuja, my company only posted me here to see to the finishing of a project”
I had only just met him and he was going to leave. I tried to hide my disappointment.
“So, you’re not staying for long?”
He shook his head and put some food into his mouth, smiling at me as he chewed.
He swallowed. “You’re very beautiful you know that?”
I dropped my head and blushed. The last time I felt this nervous was when I was sixteen.
“I’m sure you hear that a lot” he added.
I rolled my eyes up at him, smiling.
By the time lunch was over, he had given me enough to reminisce and smile about.
We talked everyday after that.
Mike was fond of not replying my messages on time, he did more of calling but Dapo was a texter just like I was, we messaged each other back and forth all day, everyday, I liked it.
He would send me photos of himself at work, at a meeting, at the gym, doing different things.
Before I met him, my life had been boring, mundane. The only excitement I had were the girls but they were just kids. With Dapo, I had an adult whom I could have real conversations with and the best part was, he tickled my fancy.
We would meet up when my kids had gone to school. Because of my status and because it was my town, we tried to keep our meetings as discreet as possible, so we narrowed it down to a particular restaurant in a quiet part of Benin.
As much as I wanted to take him up on his offer of going to see The Avengers when the movie got released, I couldn’t, the best time to go would have been at night but I couldn’t leave my kids home alone and I couldn’t risk being seen in the public with him either.
Mike came home for a week and I had to inform Dapo so that we didn’t talk during that time, it was pure torture. I missed him so much.
I was happy that Mike was home but I couldn’t wait for when I would see Dapo again.
At the end of that week, Mike left on an early morning flight, almost at the same time the school bus picked up the kids. As soon as I waved the girls goodbye, I dashed back into the house and eagerly called Dapo.
He picked on the second ring. “God I missed you!” he breathed into the phone.
“Where are you?” I couldn’t wait to see him.
“In my hotel, I’m staying in today”
“I’ll be headed to the restaurant immediately, you’ll meet me there won’t you?”
“Ehnnm, why don’t you come here instead?” he suggested and my heart skipped a bit. “You’ve never been here before” he added.
I knew what going to his hotel room meant and I wasn’t sure I was ready for that, but I missed him too much to turn him down.
“Hello? are you there?”
“Yes, Okay, send a description, I’ll be there soon”
“Can’t wait” I could hear the joy in his voice.
“See you soon” I said and hung up.
I dashed into the bathroom for a shower, I had missed him so much, going a week without speaking to him had been so hard, and now I couldn’t wait to see him again. I was like a child who was about to visit Disneyland.
He made me feel like a child again.
I stepped out of the shower and took my time on my makeup. I put on a white jeans with a red T shirt and some red sneakers. I let my silky straight weave fall down to my back, grabbed my car keys and walked out of the house, locking it securely behind me.
I got into the car, typed the hotel address into google maps and began to drive following the voice prompter.
Twenty five minutes later, I was driving into the hotel. I pulled up under a shade, walked into the reception and waited as the Receptionist called his room to confirm my visit.
“You can go in Ma” she smiled politely.
I climbed up the stairs and knocked at his room number. The door flung open almost immediately and I rushed into his arms. I couldn’t even hide how much I had missed him. He hugged me back all so tightly and we just stood there in each others arms.
He smelled of fresh soap and cologne, I could have stood there with my head pressed to his chest forever. I was falling for this man.
He pulled me into the room and used his leg to kick the door close. He leaned backwards just enough to look down at my face. I smiled up at him, nervous. He looked so handsome, he always did.
He pushed a strand of hair away from my face and tucked it behind my ear. “I should have met you first” he said. “It should have been you”
With that, he took my lips into his and kissed me tenderly. I didn’t object, it had been long coming. I wrapped my arms around his neck and tipped upwards, pressing further into him.
His kisses were warm and precise, passionate too. His lips felt so soft and his breath so fresh. It was exciting, I kissed him with reckless abandon.
When he edged me towards the large bed, I stepped backwards willingly. I lowered myself into the bed and allowed him to undress me.
It all felt so exhilarating, I almost could not wait.
Stark naked, I lay before him.
He ruffled eagerly out of his shorts and impatiently plunged deep into me, my toes curled downwards and my fingers grabbed the sheets.
He felt so full inside of me, so sweet.
The more he dug, the wetter I became. We were both moaning, swimming in an ocean of pleasure.
I didn’t think of Mike, I didn’t think of anything or anyone, I was present in the moment, crying with my eyes shut as he thrust me to orgasm.
I was sure now, I was in love with him!
His project completed and he went back to Abuja.
Our relationship became online, we texted and shared photos. Our photos were more of nudes now. He brought out a sexiness I hadn’t felt with Mike.
The way he had kissed and complimented my imperfections made me forget that I even had any.
I was no longer ashamed of my Stretch marks, I found myself posing seductively in photos and there even looked nice.
I felt like a whole new person because of him. I no longer minded when Mike couldn’t come home for some weekends, we were fighting a lot anyway, and I would always turn to Dapo when things got too heated.
Dapo did all the right things, he didn’t spare his money on me either, he bought me anything I wanted, including the things I didn’t ask for. He was constantly showering me with gifts, introducing me to new things. I was happy.
Night had fallen, I sat in the living room watching television with my girls when my phone started to ring.
It was Dapo. I gladly picked it up and went to the dining table, out of the girl’s hearing.
“Hey..” I said, smiling as if he could see me.
“Hiya, how are you?”
“I’m fine, watching Tv with the girls”
“What are you girls watching?”
“Cartoon, but I swear I would rather be watching something else”
He laughed. “My sons are watching the same thing, left the parlor for them and their mother few minutes ago, I’m in my room now”
“I miss you” I confessed.
“I miss you more. I booked a flight to come see you. I’ll be in Benin before 10.am tomorrow morning”
I cupped a hand over my mouth excitedly. “Are you serious?”
“Yeah, I can’t spend another day away from you”
“Awwwwwh babe! I’m so delighted!!”
“Me too. So, I’ll see you soon?”.
“Yes! can’t wait”
He chuckled. “Me too”.
As soon as he arrived Benin the next day, I went to see him.
We laid panting, having had an exhaustive round of sex.
Minutes passed before he sat up and placed a kiss to my forehead. “I have some work to do” He said, rubbing my arm. “Do you mind?”
“No” I responded.
He reached out for his laptop and placed it on his thighs. I snuggled next to him.
He turned it on and the screen came alive with a picture of his wife and their sons, it was the first time I was seeing her, she was a beautiful woman with a flattering figure. It made me wonder why he was with me when he had all of her.
“Your wife is fine” That didn’t come from the heart, what I really felt was jealousy.
He smiled, kissed my hair then returned his focus to the screen.
“What is she like?”
“She’s not you” He replied, typing away.
I felt bad, I wished he was all mine, I could see us living happily together.
He sensed my quiet demeanor and glanced sideways at my sad face.
He pushed his laptop to the bed and turned to me, propping his head up with his elbow.
“I feel more alive when I’m with you. You make me feel important. With her, it’s all about her work, she is a loving mother no doubt but I don’t feel connected to her, it is you I’m happy with”
He lifted my chin with his finger and kissed my lips. I didn’t argue any further, how could I when it felt so good? I relaxed my mind and kissed him back.
I went back to the hotel the next day after my kids had gone off to school. We went downstairs to the restaurant to have breakfast, I hadn’t eaten anything because he had asked me to come on an empty stomach, he said he wanted us to have breakfast together. I thought it was very romantic.
We sat enjoying our food when his phone started to ring. He looked over at it and ignored. It rang again, and again. I grew concerned and looked at him questionably.
“It’s my wife, she’s been questioning me about money leaving the account, I don’t want to deal with that right now”
“Does she know about us?”
He shrugged dismissively. His phone rang again and he switched it off this time, continuing with his meal. I felt like I had him to myself, it was a good feeling.
We went back to his room and he got into the bathroom for a shower. His laptop was sitting on the bed. I decided to play with it a little. I turned it on and a mail popped in almost immediately.
I hesitated, then opened it anyway, it was his wife, warning him: “Whatever you are doing, you better end it because if I find out that you are cheating, I would destroy your life“. I shut the laptop and relaxed into the bed, pretending like I hadn’t just read that.
He came out of the shower and took me downstairs to the hotel’s boutique for some shopping, when I was done picking out the things I wanted, he offered his ATM to the cashier but the POS machine declined it.
He tried a different card and that too got rejected. Feeling frantic at this point, he tried all four of his cards and there were still rejected.
He turned to me. “I think she’s cancelled all my cards!”
I shrugged in an effort to maintain my cool. “It’s okay, I’ll pick up the bill”
He took a step backwards, I could see how embarrassed he was. As the cashier took my card and inserted it into the machine, he stepped aside and dialed his wife’s number, his voice was raised as he spoke with her.
I didn’t hear the whole conversation but when he got back to me, he looked like a hypnotized man. Whatever it is she had said must have gotten to him.
I suggested to go home and he didn’t object. He asked me to return the following day to which I did.
“I’ve been trying to call her but she keeps forwarding me to voicemail” he announced, the moment I walked into the hotel room.
I could tell he was genuinely worried. It felt weird and uncomfortable seeing him pace the floor like that. How come he felt so worried over what she did? I thought I was what mattered to him. Why then did he care whether she picked his calls or not?.
I lowered myself into the chair and he continued to pace the room, redialing her for the umpteenth time.
“She could leave and I’ll never know where she goes, she could take my kids and I’ll not be able to do anything about it” He lifted his gaze from his phone to my face. “I can’t let that happen”
I just sat there watching him, I didn’t know what to say. It felt really uncomfortable but I let him keep trying her line, maybe if she picked and they talked, things would go back to being normal between us.
He finally stopped pacing and dropped into the bed, clenching his hands together.
He looked up at me. “I have to go back home tonight, my wife is smart, there is no telling what she would do next”
I swallowed hard. It stung that he cared this much. I had ignored Mike’s feelings for his, put him on hold so many times, not giving much care about our constant arguments all for his sake, yet here he was, loosing his cool over his wife. As much as I hated to admit it, she appeared to be his priority.
I nodded and stood up with my handbag which never left my shoulders. I hadn’t said a word since I got into that room and he didn’t even notice. He got up and pulled the door open for me.
I wanted to burst into tears but I was going to hold it in until I got to the car. I embraced him, turned around and began walking downstairs, the tears flowed freely with every step I took.
Dapo sent me a text the next day from Abuja informing me that his wife had read our chats and that it was best if we didn’t speak to each other anymore, I was appalled.
What happened to the love he had so freely professed to me? Could it be that I had wasted my time? As I sat there in my kitchen, shedding regretful tears and reflecting on it all, he called me.
Thinking he had changed his mind, I quickly answered but it was a female voice at the other end.
“Ashewo! idiot!! You don’t have shame! And to think you are a mother, I will deal with you, ode!!” she lashed and hung up immediately.
I wanted to die.
The chair suddenly felt uncomfortable, I slid down to the tiled floor, feeling utterly dismayed.
Mike came home two days after. I was watching TV in a bid to distract myself from the pain that was cutting through my chest when he walked into the house.
“Babe!” He called angrily as he marched to where I was seated.
I faked a smile and rose up to greet him when he held out his phone to my face “What the hell is this!” he spat.
I almost passed out as I saw my nude photos staring me back in the face. I collected the phone from him and scrolled through, there were photos I had shared with Dapo and some of our chats.
She must have found my husband’s Facebook account and sent all that to him.
I dropped to my knees and began pleading.
“I gave you everything! I loved you!!” Mike was saying.
“I don’t know what got into me, babe I am so sorry” I rubbed my palms together pleadingly.
“I can’t even look at you right now. Let go of me!” He yanked my hands off his leg and sprouted past me.
I wiped the tears off my face and flipped through the papers once more, Mike was divorcing me and he was asking for custody of our girls claiming that I was incapable of taking care of them.
My heart felt so broken. I was loosing my marriage yet Dapo was over there still with his wife who was dealing with me and he was allowing her do these horrible things to me. It all seemed so unbelievable.
My phone was ringing, I wondered who the strange number could belong to.
“Hello?” I spoke into the handset.
“Good morning. We are calling you from Sage hotels, we have some men here that just came in from the UK, they need your services”
“Are you not Funke?”
“We have your pictures and contact address here for escort work, that’s why we are calling”
“Ehn?! What sort of rubbish talk is that?! Do I look like a prostitute to you?”
Then it hit me, Dapo’s wife, again! That woman was not normal!
“Please I am not an Escort” I said and hung up the phone.
I called Dapo several times, I needed him to stop his wife, she had destroyed me enough. He didn’t pick up, I redialled him several times and my call eventually went into voicemail.
My phone rang but it wasn’t him calling me back, it was another strange number.
“Hello Funke, this is Uyi grand hotel. we have some men here that…”
“I am not a prostitute!!!” I yelled in frustration and flung my phone against the wall.
Written for: www.mumsaloud.com