THE AGONY OF LOVE-Episode 11
Tina paced the kitchen nervously. Her brain was in overdrive and she did not have the slightest idea about what to do. It has been three days since the abominable Miss Precious entered the house and the house was practically on fire, but that was not what was getting on Tina’s nerves. Ever since Amara moved into another room, Tina hadn’t set her eyes on her. She had practically locked herself inside the room without opening the door. No single sound came out of the room and it was beginning to scare Tina to death. Since she hadn’t even opened the door, it was obvious that she hadn’t eaten anything for the past three days.
The frustration was too much for Tina to handle and she paraded Amara’s door endlessly, knocking loud and hard enough to rouse the dead and speaking both softly and sharply through the door, but she hadn’t received even a sound in response. She had repeatedly left meals by the door, hoping that Amara would at least eat, even if she did not want to see anyone but she always ended up retrieving the cold meals untouched until Precious yelled her brains out, threatening to get her fired if she continued to waste her ‘husband’s resources on a hopeless village dropout’.
Fear gripped Tina as she wondered what had happened to Amara. Three days! Yet Amara was not opening the door. She had pushed aside negative thoughts at first but since yesterday, she couldn’t but think about evil things. ‘What if she slipped and fell in the bathroom?’… ‘She might be terribly sick’… All her attempts to stop her fears proved abortive. She had tried to bring the matter up before Mr. Alfred but she never got to meet him alone and every time she got to mention Amara’s name Miss Precious would shut her up instantly, saying that she and her hussy were not interested in spoiling their mood with the ‘village tramp’ and that she should mind her business and do what she was employed to do instead of carrying gossips. Mr. Alfred had also seemed to be in perfect sync with Miss Precious. Tina did not believe that a man could be so cold and heartless.
“Hey” Tina jerked and saw Tola looking at her with a frown. “Do you want to drill holes into the expensive kitchen tiles? What is eating you up?” Tola asked.
Tina did not need to be told that Tola disliked Amara, it had been obvious since day one, but still, Tina felt obliged to share her worry, hoping beyond hope that Tola would put aside her hatred and help her find a solution to this issue. “I am worried Tola” Tina responded.
Tola hissed. “I can see that clearly. My question is why?”
Tina hesitated then threw caution to the wind as anxiety took over. “It is our madam, Amara. She has not opened the door to her room for the past three days. I am getting scared.
Tola frowned deeply, looking terribly worried to the surprise and relief of Tina. “Oh my God! And you are just telling me now? You always spend time with her and since she was always used to staying in her room, I did not notice anything weird” she seemed startled now.
This made Tina more worried. “I know. I should have told you but I thought she just wanted to be left alone and was sulking because of Miss Precious’s arrival, but this is the third day Tola. She has been in there without eating for three days. I am so scared.”
“Jesus” she breathed. “Let’s go there again” she started out of the kitchen instantly and Tina hastily followed.
When they got to Amara’s room, the knocked and banged endlessly and called out but there was no response. They tried to open the door but it was firmly locked. Sweat gathered on Tina’s forehead and she wiped it away, feeling cold all over. Her heart raced in fear.
“Jesus! What are we going to do Tina?” Tola asked getting equally agitated.
“I don’t know” Tina almost screamed. “That is why I told you. Miss Precious knows but she does not give a damn. She hasn’t allowed me to tell Mr. Alfred either” she swallowed. “What if… what if something happened to her? What if…”
“Oh Tina, shut up. You are beginning to scare me” Tola mouthed nervously. “Come, let’s see if we can find a spare key to open the door” Tina nodded, even though she had already done that before, searching again was a very good idea.
I raised my hand weakly and rubbed my hot face. I heard knocks on the door but totally ignored it and the voices that came afterwards. Even if I wanted to answer, there was no strength left in me to talk. I mustered enough strength to push myself off the bed and almost fell back down.
I had stayed in the room ever since I received the bomb shell from Alfred and even now, the words still made me double over in pain. During my three days of ‘room arrest’, I have cried more than I have ever cried in my life. The tears just kept pouring and pouring until there was no strength left in me to cry. The water from the tap in the toilet’s washing-hand basin was the only thing sustaining me.
The three days have been terribly hard, filled with pain and intense hunger which was almost maddening, probably because I am pregnant and my baby was demanding food. I whispered to my baby every now and then, telling myself that I am not alone. I continued to comfort my child, begging him to bear with me. The isolation was necessary.
After staying alone, the reality of loneliness dawned on me. I finally reached a resolve. I have reached my terminal where crying is concerned. I have finally realized that crying over Alfred was a hopeless cause and a waste of time and energy. All I have in this world is my child, whom I would continue to cherish, no matter what I am up against.
I managed to drag my dehydrated self to the bathroom and relieved my full bladder before quenching my killing thirst by drinking from the tap in the toilet. My eyes seemed to have sunk into their sockets as I looked at myself in the mirror. I was a shadow of myself and I knew I would have to change that. Despite my starvation, my breasts were much fuller than they were months back, giving me a more shapely body than I originally possessed and I knew it was due to the pregnancy. After drinking my fill, I washed my face and left the bathroom slowly. There was no strength left in me due to lack of food and the water I just drank woke up a hunger that could not be ignored. It was disheartening that I had to treat Tina the way I did but I just could not see anyone. If I had seen her earlier, I was pretty sure I would take my anger out on her and that would be terrible since she did not deserve it.
I opened the door of my room and walked out weakly, grabbing the walls for support whenever my legs shook. I was on the verge of a new beginning and the first step would be to quench this abominable hunger. I held the railings of the stairs in a viselike grip as I went down. Immediately I got to the landing of the stairs, Tina and Tola stopped the search they involved in and turned, nearly jumping out of their skins when they saw me.
“Amara” Tina gasped.
This was the first time she called me by my name since she discovered that I was Alfred’s wife and I was pleased by the timing. Now, I could confidently call her my friend. “Christ! You have almost killed me with worry” she jumped to my side instantly. “This is terrible! How can you be so inconsiderate in your condition?”
“Thanks Tina” I managed weakly as I bent from extreme hunger. “And you too Tola” I whispered, remembering that I heard her worried voice, minutes ago. “Thanks for your concern” I swallowed. “I am terribly hungry though” I smiled weakly at Tina.
She jumped to action right away, going into the kitchen and working with lightning speed, condemning my actions like a mother as she worked. I sat in the kitchen with her, contented to hear her angry words. Tola hung around, not saying anything. I smiled softly at her and relaxed against the backrest of the chair with my eyes closed.
A plate of indomie was placed at my front faster than I imagined and I attacked it like a hungry lion. As I ate, she took a large piece of chicken from the microwave and put it on my plate. I ate like I have never eaten before and the rich aroma of piping hot tea drifted to my nostrils and my desire to eat increased several degrees. She placed the steaming cup before me and stood back to watch me eat. I grabbed the cup instantly, taking a careful sip before continuing my meal, muffling my thanks between mouthfuls.
After draining the last drop of tea minutes later, I could confidently say that my hunger had been quenched.
“Why did you lock yourself in?” Tina asked with a disapproving frown.
“I was charting a new course”. I smiled at her confusion and stood up, walking out of the kitchen with Tina at my heels. “By the way, where is Alfred’s mistress?” I asked unconcerned as I made for my room. Tina followed me, probably to make sure I did not lock myself in again.
“She went shopping” she responded.
I nodded with my smile still intact. “I would take my bath and get dressed. I need you to follow me somewhere. Are you free” I asked.
“Of course. Where are we going?” she asked as we entered my room.
“We are going shopping”. Her eyes widened.
Tina and I left the house and returned hours later with several heavy nylon bags. She had insisted we take a driver but I was not interested, the idea of walking around was more appealing to me and we later got a taxi to bring us home, due to the weight of the bags. The bags were filled with clothes, and definitely, more than half were baby clothes and toys. I hadn’t been able to leave behind a single baby thing. Precious assured me that there was more than enough money in the credit card and I asked her to teach me how to use it which she did eagerly. We bought the clothes from a cheap store and I found myself smiling genuinely with thoughts of my child floating around my head.
Apart from buying baby things, I had decided to harken to the words of my parents by buying some suitable clothes for myself. I bought mostly gowns which were free from just beneath my bust because this would conceal my tummy effectively. The clothes were so beautiful and I could not wait to try them on. My three days indoors made me come to the conclusion that my parents had been right after all. I couldn’t stick with Alfred. Despite my dislike for the word ‘divorce’, I was forced to see the reality of the fact that there is no future for Alfred and me, because even if through some sheer miracle, I forgive him for all he has done, I would never forget, and the pain would hunt our relationship till the end of my days. Right from the time that Alfred told me I was nothing more than a betting competition to him, everything called love that I felt for him died instantly, replaced by hatred which grew with each passing minute. I only have my child, my parents and myself; the earlier I accept that, the better. There is one other person who loves me though; I smiled at Tina, grateful to God that she is with me.
“Why do I have the nagging feeling that these clothes look more than what we actually bought?” she asked with a frown.
I smiled and changed the subject. “I am happy you finally call me Amara. At least, something good came out of locking myself up in the room” I said as we entered the house.
She scoffed “The only thing you achieved with that is putting your child at risk. We need to go to the hospital to have you properly checked-up”
I laughed. “It is not that serious. My little baby boy also agrees that the fast was necessary” I replied confidently.
She snorted as we entered the house.
“Where are you coming from?” Alfred’s voice rang out silently. I glanced over at the couch and saw him looking at me. Precious was lying on the chair with her head on his laps, feeding him crackers. My glance did not take more than a second and I continued up with stairs without a word, pulling the bags of clothes along.
“Are you deaf? I said where are you coming from?” he repeated with more authority.
“Are you blind? You have eyes, use them” I returned as I paused.
“Are you talking to me?” he boomed with surprise showing in his voice. I turned to look at him squarely and Tina quickly got out of the way.
“Are you daft as well as blind? Of course, I am talking to you. I see no reason why I should owe you any explanation for my movements. Need I remind you of the words of the very same agreement we signed? I am allowed to do whatsoever I feel like in this house. After serious thinking, I have decided that the agreement is probably the only sensible thing that has happened to me ever since I met you. Secondly, I greatly hope you keep the credit card you gave me loaded with money because I am a pregnant woman who would need a lot of cash to keep up with the demands of motherhood. That should not be a problem since you seem to possess more money than brain. The former Amara is gone. She died three days ago. You better not mess with the woman standing here, because if you do, you would taste the wrath of a woman’s scorn.” I paused to catch my breath and continued calmly. “I am the woman of the house here and I expect my demands to be met. If you find that you would not be able to cope with me and want to grant me the divorce I asked for earlier, I would be more than happy to sign the divorce papers, but be rest assured Alfred…” I smiled “… that I would destroy your life just as you destroyed mine before I leave you alone”
“You threaten me?” I asked with a softly deceptive voice which made him sound terribly dangerous.
I smiled sweetly. “No sweetheart, it is not a threat; it is a promise”
I turned and marched up to my bedroom, leaving them stunned and speechless. When I finally sat on my bed, I realized that Tina was looking at me like I had grown four heads. I smiled.
“Mr. Alfred does not take threats lightly” she said, looking agitated.
I nodded. “I am not expecting him to” I said. “Thanks for your help today Tina, I am totally exhausted” I sighed. “Yes! I have something for you” I declared and she frowned.
I checked the nylon bags and saw the one I was looking for. It was a nylon filled with clothes. I gave it to her and her eyes widened. “This is for you” I grinned happily.
“No” she gasped. “It can’t be for me.” She gasped more when she checked the clothes. While we shopped, I had noticed her eyes hovering dreamily over some clothes and I had taken note. In order to pick out the clothes and some more without her notice, I had sent her to get me something, picking the clothes behind her back. “I can’t possibly wear these” she seemed close to tears. “And they are really expensive”
I smiled affectionately at her. “Oh Tina, come on. Do you know the magnitude of what you have been doing for me? A truck load of clothes would not be able fully appreciate your help. When I needed a friend, you were there”
“But I did not ask for anything in return”
“I know. I just noticed that you loved these clothes and bought them, besides, you deserve more for putting up with my insatiable choices today without complaining. Here” I gave her another nylon which was just halfway full. “For Tola. I don’t want her getting jealous. She was also worried about me earlier, so she deserves it” I smiled.
She thanked me profusely and the excitement of having clothes took over her. I saw sadness flash in her eyes and became curious. “It is just a shame that I won’t be able to wear them anytime soon since I have to always be in my uniform” she explained.
I had totally forgotten about that little piece of detail. An idea popped into my head and I grinned. “We would salvage that situation now. Follow me” I stood and charged out of the room with Tina following in confusion and agitation. I could hear Precious’s angry voice screaming at a silent Alfred and I smiled, knowing that I was the subject of discussion. I got to the sitting room and Precious fell silent as she glared at me.
“Yes” I began. “Remember, I told you I would be taking charge of some things as the madam of the house? Well, I am about to change something. I just bought some clothes for my dear friend here but noticed that the uniform she is mandated to wear would restrict her from putting on the clothes and I won’t have that. From today, I put an end to the uniform. The girls would put on anything they feel like, but for moderacy, they would be restricted to putting on gowns. I just decided to let you know” I said with an air of indifference, ignoring Tina’s gasp.
“You must be joking. Who do you think you are to enforce laws in this house?” Precious yelled with her hands furiously jammed to her waist as she tapped her feet, standing pensively.
I glanced at her like a piece of pest. “Last time I checked, I wasn’t a comedian. And whenever I talk in this house, you keep your filthy mouth shut because I am the only one with the legal rights in this house, not you. You are nothing more than a concubine or a mistress who is enjoying the privilege of being in this house. Now, shut your mouth because I am talking to my husband, not you and I won’t have you interrupt my speech” I shifted my eyes to Alfred. “The issue of this uniform is not up for discussion and has been settled because I have given my approval” I faced a pale-faced Tina. “You can go Tina, inform Tola about this and I wish to see you both changed with immediate effect. The three of us would go shopping tomorrow to select more gowns for you both” I said finally and walked up the stairs with my head held high.
To be Continued
THE AGONY OF LOVE-Episode12
I stared at myself in the mirror in disbelief. I could not quite believe I was the one in the mirror. Tina had helped relax my hair and now, it fell freely and softly around my shoulders, with a gentle glow. The gown though was a sight to behold.
Though simple, it hugged my upper body perfectly and the flare which began beneath the bust was more than enough to hide my growing tummy, making me look like the sexiest pregnant woman alive.
I laughed at the vague thought and wondered why on earth I hadn’t agreed to this in the first place. Having good clothes was effectively driving away my sadness, making me forget my pain and regrets; I only hoped the feeling would last long because if not, I would continue to buy clothes to keep this feeling in place. I smiled in remembrance of my cheeky behaviors yesterday with Alfred and Precious.
The stunned expressions which had taken over the two had been a sight to behold. Even after a hundred years, I don’t think I would be able to erase their shocked faces from my memory. It was still a surprise that I had actually pulled it off but I guess you never know what you are capable of until you are faced with challenges.
I gave myself one last glance and turned away from the mirror. I knew that Alfred hadn’t left for the office, and if my calculations are right, he would be eating breakfast right now with his beloved mistress by his side. I opened the door of my room and stepped out. As I walked down the stairs, I met Tina, bringing my breakfast, obviously to my room.
“Good morning Tina” I greeted.
She opened her mouth, unable to close it for a few seconds. I instinctively knew what she was gaping at. “Wow” she gasped. “This gown was definitely made with you in mind” she breathed. “You look divine”.
I grinned. “I know, I was also gaping when I stared at myself in the mirror”
“And it is just a simple gown. What would you look like when you put on those outing dresses? I always knew you were a spectacular beauty.”
I grinned. “Now you are flattering me. If you were a man, ladies would fall for your sweet tongue”. Just like I fell for Alfred. That thought was inevitable and it deflated my high spirit like a punctured balloon. Tina noticed this and her smile vanished. Mentally shaking myself, I looked at her. “Thanks Tina, from today, I would have my breakfasts on the dinning, along with everyone. I should stop adding to your work load. Besides, it would be fun to sit on the same table with my husband’s mistress” I smiled.
She frowned. “Are you sure you know what you are doing Amara? This new tactic might backfire and I am scared you might get hurt” she said softly, looking worried.
“I am already hurt Tina, what more can anyone do? No one can do more than what has been done already, and as long as that does not happen, I can handle anything that comes my way” I murmured.
“For your sake, I hope you are right”
“I am, stop worrying Tina. By the way, I am not the only one looking pretty, you look absolutely stunning today dear friend” I said with a wink as I walked down the stairs.
“All thanks to you” she returned. I held myself from responding as I drew closer to the dining and tried to gather momentum. I saw Alfred sitting at the head of the chair with Precious beside him looking angry. She looked just as angry as she looked the previous day and I smiled brightly as I got to the table. Alfred and Precious looked up and seemed to freeze on their seats. Alfred held his cup of tea in the air, and the cup nearly dropped from his fingers in shock. I felt it as their eyes traced my body and my smile deepened. This should be an interesting morning!
“Well well” Precious squeaked softly. “I guess the village tramp is now trying to fit into society” she murmured angrily.
I inhaled deeply, completely ignoring her cos I really did not have time for her today. “Uhmmmmm…” I sighed. “Something smells nice” I said with a dreamy look on my face. I walked to Alfred and was terribly irritated when his eyes roamed my body, lingering on my chest, but I hid my irritation behind a fake smile. I got to Alfred and suddenly bent to plant a firm kiss on his cheek, stunning him and drawing a sharp angry look from Precious.
“Good morning dear husband” I said with excitement ringing in my voice. I glanced at Precious. “Good morning mistress”. None of them answered and I frowned dramatically. “Awww… didn’t you both enjoy a good night’s sleep?” They looked at me impassively and I shook my head and looked pitifully at them. “That is a shame.
I actually had a very nice sleep, the best I have had in a long time by the way, and a wonderful dream to go with it” I smiled gaily. I sank onto the chair on Alfred’s left and picked a plate and served myself. Eating fried eggs did not seem like a good idea because I have noticed since I got pregnant, that I always ended up throwing up afterwards, so I opted for taking bread and tea only. I moaned softly in appreciation when the rich beverage slid down my throat and Alfred looked up instantly.
Precious cleared her throat and sat as straight as a stick on her chair and murmured something under her breath then faced Alfred. “Sweetheart?” she called.
“Yes baby” Alfred answered distractedly. I continued my meal as though there were not there.
“I had a talk with the wedding planner last night” she began.
“You did?” Alfred seemed tense.
“Yes. All the decorations are in order and the baker is working on the cakes. The wedding gown I chose has been purchased and would be delivered soon. I think everything is in place. I want the wedding to be grand and not look like a shabby sitting room wedding” she declared.
“No one would dare wed you in a sitting room baby” Alfred responded. “You are way too precious for that”.
She laughed. “Thanks baby… Obviously. Only village dropouts get married in such manner” she said triumphantly.
“At least, the village dropout gets a wedding. You won’t be getting any” I said calmly as I chewed on the bread.
Tina faced me angrily. She had obviously been trying to get me angry with her comment and my calm statement got her infuriated. “Oh? Is your imagination playing tricks on you? We are getting married next week, if you are nice, i might invite you so you can see what a real wedding should look like” she said sharply with a cynical smile.
“Oh sweetheart, sorry to burst your bubble, there won’t be a wedding, not next week, not next year, not in the next life, do you understand?” I returned, focusing fully on my meal.
“There won’t? And what would you do to stop the wedding uhn?” I could hear her tapping her feet angrily under the table.
“Yes. How do you plan on stopping it?” Alfred added and I noted his increasing anger in the taut lines of veins in his strong hands.
“Oh me? I won’t do anything; in fact, Alfred would definitely stop the wedding by himself” I murmured with a deepening smile.
“What the hell are you talking about Amara?” Alfred asked.
“Never mind” I dismissed and stood up. “Well, I have to go now”
“Sit down. You would explain the meaning of this nonsense right now tramp” Precious yelled.
I raised my brows. “The next time you call me that, I would personally show you how villagers deal with people like you. Nonsense”
I stood up from the chair and walked into the kitchen. Tina and Tola were in the middle of a discussion when I entered the kitchen. “Hey ladies” I greeted with a smile.
“Good morning Miss Amara. Thanks again for the clothes” Tola said hastily.
“It’s nothing, besides, we are going to get more today” they both grinned and I had the feeling that I had won Tola over. She looked freer with me than she has ever been and I liked it. The less enemies I had, the better.“OK, are you both ready?” they nodded frantically and we set out.
Alfred placed his head on his office desk as thoughts ran through his mind, throwing him in a state of confusion, and everything was centered on Amara. She had changed and he could tell that the woman was not the same villager she used to be. She had challenged him; something that only a few people could do, but she had done it effectively. This annoyed him more than anything. He could not even begin to believe that Amara had stood up to him. Where had she found the courage to do that?
And this morning… she had looked… spectacular. Not for once looking like the same Amara he used to know. She had looked totally outstanding, even without make-up. He almost hadn’t been able to take his eyes off her bosom and the cleavage that was visible for all to see. She had always been beautiful but he never imagined that she could be that beautiful. This worried him also. He did not want her looking beautiful, he wanted her to look pathetic because that would give him the avenue to maltreat her freely. When he had offered her the opportunity to own beautiful clothes, he hadn’t thought that she would look completely outstanding in them. It was probably not even the cloth that made her look outstandingly gorgeous; it can as well be the way she carried herself confidently, a trait that only just surfaced the previous day.
Now she feels he won’t go through with marrying Precious. What on earth would give her that thought? Precious is not only beautiful but sophisticated and rich; the ideal woman for him. He knew that he could take Precious out to dinner parties and not be scared that she would disgrace him with bad village attitudes and poor table manners. Despite the fact that Precious was a spoilt brat, she was perfectly mind blowing in bed and that was all he always looked for in a woman. Amara is a total novice where sex is concerned, she was nothing more than a ‘use and dump material’ to him, he never imagined that she would end up getting herself pregnant. He banged his fist on the table. Now, he would end up marrying two wives. He murmured a curse under his breath. Leaving Precious was not an option and leaving Amara was even worse. He could not afford to lose this company. It was all he lived for.
The door to his office opened unceremoniously and Toba walked in with a grin. “Hey man” he cooed.
Alfred raised his head wearily from the table and looked at his friend. Toba was smiling down at him but he could not even muster enough strength to return the smile. His face seemed to continuously hold a frown ever since Amara came into his life. He hadn’t seen Toba ever since they finished service and instead of him welcoming his friend with a beaming smile, all he had was a deep frown and sweaty palms. “Hey buddy” he murmured.
Toba frowned and accepted his friend’s handshake before sinking into the opposite chair. “This is not the kind of reception I expected to get after weeks apart” he said.
Alfred exhaled. “I am sorry Toba, my thoughts just seem to be scattered all over west Africa”
Toba smiled. “If that is the case, I guess it would take years to fully gather your thoughts”
Alfred’s frown deepened. “I am sure you are right”
Toba whistled and frowned deeply. “OK. I really need to know what is responsible for shaking the confidence of the almighty Alfred Benson” he said. “Only a woman can do that”
“Very true. A lowlife village local champion for that matter” Alfred returned.
“What the hell are you talking about?” Toba’s interest was already pricked.
“I am talking about Amara”
“Who is Amara?”
Alfred hissed. He could not blame his friend for not remembering the name of their betting contest. He would not have remembered her name too if she hadn’t shown up on his doorstep with pregnancy claims. “Amara. The girl I deflowered during service”
Toba’s eyes widened. “Yes! What about her? I thought you were done with her when you won the bet”
“I was” Alfred exhaled. “Until she showed up in my father’s house claiming that I impregnated her”
“What?” He almost jumped out of the chair. “You see? I told you those village girls are witches, you can never touch them and go scot free. I warned you. Did you never hear of the word condom? How could you have been so careless?”
“Well, it is too late for me to answer that. I am already married to her”
Toba bolted up. “You are what?” He yelled. “Are you sure you are alright Alfred? You seem to be saying rubbish”
“I got married to her about two months ago man”
“Are you sick?” He roared. “Did you never hear about abortion?”
“Shut up man, you are pissing me off. Did you listen to me at all? She showed up on my father’s doorstep, not mine. Her blasted father threatened to truncate my dad’s election by spreading the news if I don’t marry his daughter. My father made me marry the bitch and there was nothing I could do about it.”
Toba hissed. “Nothing? How did things get this far? Why didn’t you tell me anything?”
Alfred exhaled. He knee that everything was a huge mess. “Sit down bro, you have not heard the full gist”
“There is more” he sounded bewildered as he sat back down.
“I made Amara a maid in the house but she flared up when she found me with Precious and asked for a divorce”
“Good for you” Toba said instantly.
“Yeah. It would have been but dad threatened to take the company away from me if I let her go away with his grandchild.”
“Oh brother, your life is really messed up”
Alfred frowned angrily. “Thanks. And it gets more messy because it also turns out that Precious is also pregnant”
Toba stared at him, totally dumbfounded for some minutes then started to laugh uncontrollably. Alfred scoffed and wanted to punch Toba in the throat. “It is nice to know that my predicament is funny”
Toba laughed and laughed, trying to stop himself. “Ol boy… I think… 2face is your role model” he laughed out loud and his laughter vibrated the walls. “But 2face never married his baby mamas so I think you need to take lectured from him”
“Shut up” Alfred boomed angrily. “If you are not going to say anything sensible, get yourself out of here you swine”
Toba forcefully brought himself under control. “Sorry… So, is that all?”
Toba forced himself not to laugh as he tried to listen to the rest of the tale. Alfred told him of the contract, how Precious moved into the house and sped up the wedding date and how Amara moved out of her room for Precious and how he had told her that she was merely a bet and…
“Wait” Toba stopped him with wide eyes. “Are you trying to tell me that you actually told her that you placed a bet on her?” Now, this did not sound funny.
“Oh, Alfred, you are probably the most stupid man on earth. It seems this Amara knows how to make you do stupid things. How can you do that?”
“I really deserve whatever insult you throw because you are right. That is the most stupid thing I have done so far because she has changed. It is like she is about to invoke the spirits of hell” he explained all that happened ever since he told Amara about the bet and when he finished, Toba’s eyes were wide.
“Oh, you are in for trouble man”
Alfred exhaled deeply. “I know but I can’t sit down and do nothing. I need to do something. Something to destroy that confidence she now has and give her back that inferiority complex”
Toba thought for a while. “Well, that shouldn’t be so difficult. She is a woman, you are a man. Beating her up every time she runs her mouth would cool her down a bit, it would be preferable to do it in presence of one or two people. That would give her a level of inferiority complex. Downplay her and put all her shortcomings before her, use it to taunt her in the presence of people and you would see that this newly found bravery would vanish. Although, I hope she won’t be pushed to do anything rash…” he said thoughtfully. “… Like kill you”
Alfred swallowed. “That is a brilliant idea” he could not wait to get the control back. “Why did I not think of it before?” He remembered when he had hit her when she just entered the house. She had squirmed and fled. “It is an excellent idea” he breathed again. “And no, she won’t be tempted to kill me because I would make sure she does not have enough strength to even try”.
Precious paced her room. This has got to stop. She could not sit back and watch Amara trample all over her. It was as if Amara knew how to get her blood boiling with anger. She has been with Alfred for about two years now, and all of a sudden, this tramp shows up out of the blues to snatch him? No. Precious was not ready to share Alfred. And she was also sure she would still not be ready to do that fifty years from now. She needed to get Amara out of the house and she did not care how she achieved that.
She heard the driver enter the compound and minutes later, she heard the voices of the maids as they talked with Amara. Yes! She thought. She needed an accomplice to accomplish her mission and if her hunch was right, Tola would be her best bet.
To be Continued