February 11th, 2015
It wasn’t until I got out of the bus did I realize what kind of a gamble I was taking. For crying out loud, it was Monday morning, for crying out loud! What if Idara had already left for work?
Luckily for me, I got to her house just in time to meet her at home. She had screamed so loudly when she opened the door, that passers by all turned to see what the commotion was all about.
“Wow, Faith!!! You’re here already?!” she exclaimed. “Where is Patrick? I thought you said you were coming with him.”
I managed a weak shrug, and set my bag down.
It was then that she noticed my travel bag. “What is that?”
“Idara, abeg I need to sit down” I muttered, and walked to her living room. This house had been my home away from home, once upon a time. In those early days of coming to London on holiday, Idara had been the only one of our group of friends whose parents had a house in London, so it had been our operating base. So, every time I had cause to be here, it was a given that I would stay here. And with her parents retired, and back in Nigeria, she had the place all to herself.
“Faith!” she said sternly, walking into the living room behind me “What is going on?”
“Won’t you be late for work?” I asked, noting that she was already dressed to leave the house.
“My friend, talk!”
With a deep sigh, I proceeded to tell her the whole story…about how my husband was back in the arms of his ex-girlfriend. Idara also went to LASU, so knew about Toun and Patrick. She listened with rap attention as I talked, not interrupting me for a minute. By the time I was done with my story, my tears had started flowing.
“And that’s it oh. That’s what my husband has decided to do to me.” I sobbed.
Idara shook her head. “This is unbelievable!”
“I know, right!” I wailed.
“It is unbelievable that a grown woman like you can be so stupid!” she said, tapping me lightly on the head.
I stared at her in disbelief. “Did you hear a word of anything I told you??!”
“So what now? You will sit here in my house until it’s time for you to go to Nigeria? You’ll divorce him? Over what? A few text messages?!” Idara retorted “Girl, is that how foolish you women are in that Naija?!”
“You are the one who is foolish!” I exploded, jumping to my feet. “How dare you belittle what I am growing through! When you, of all people, know exactly what I am talking about! You know how close Patrick and Toun were! You know what kind of a bond they had. You should be able to understand how serious this is!”
“My friend, sit down jo!” Idara said, her voice dripping with irritation. “Please sit down, and let me hear word! They were close, they were close….was she the one he married? Is she the one carrying his baby?! Abegi!”
I didn’t even know when I sat back in my chair.
Idara shook her head again. “You don’t know what you have oh, Faith. Married to a wonderful man, who loves you! Do you know how many women would kill to be in your shoes?! Yet, here you are, bursting your veins on top text messages!”
“They were not just text messages! He’s been meeting up with her…she is back in his life…”
“Okay, let’s assume that true true, she is back in his life. Let’s assume that she has seduced him back into her bed…you’ll just leave him like that?!”
I stared back at her. Okay, I hadn’t quite thought this through.
She leaned over and pulled my ear “You will fight for your man, you hear me so! I will not allow you let one of these desperate London girls spoil your home. Go back to your husband, and make sure there is no chance at all of him seeing her. Close mark him like a hawk, you hear me so?!”
She rose to her feet, with a loud hiss.
“You left because of text message. You never start!” she looked at her watch. “I will allow you let off steam here, while I go to work. As soon as I get back, I am taking you back to your man!”
I thought about this long after she had left. I wasn’t very sure if I agreed with what she said. Fight for my man? What if there was nothing to fight for? What if his heart had already left?
But losing him permanently was not something I considered. It wasn’t even an option. Apart from not wanting to go through the rest of my pregnancy alone, the thought of not having him in my life made my heart sink.
I realized there was a possibility that Idara might be right…after all, Patrick wouldn’t have been as upset as he’d been, if he didn’t care about me. Maybe there was really nothing to worry about?
I decided I owed it to myself to at least see where this would all lead…