I was lost. How could she start a conversation with how she was confused and didn’t know what to do? She could see I was not interested in what she was saying, so once again I asked her what was for dinner but she avoided my question and responded with praises of what a wonderful man I was, I didn’t understand what was her inspiration behind those words and I just didn’t care. We had a system, work and then dinner and then sex, sometimes a little small talk or a few jokes in between but there was never any need for anything mushy or sentimental. We had a system and now she was ruining. “Baby, you are the best man any girl could ask for”, she said with a smile on her face. Normally I would engage because I always enjoyed being the reason behind her smile but today I was in a hurry, I didn’t have time. 

“Samantha, did you not cook? Is that what’s going on?” She giggled and replied, “No silly, I made plenty of food, enough to feed a village, you’ll see, I just want to praise my husband. Jay, can’t I do that? I haven’t done it in so long. Let me praise you before we leave, now come let us hurry”. I was surprised and baffled, where were we going but before I could voice my inquiry; I felt the grip of her hand wrap itself around mine and the bulk of her strength pulling me down the driveway and into the living room. “Sam, why is the house dark? Switch on the lights; I don’t have time for games… Sam? Lights please”.

 

Her grip on me loosened and I was alone. Standing in the middle of my living room with the lights off and annoyed, as I went to reach for the light switch, I felt someone place their hand on my shoulder and heard them whisper “Hello son” and a second later the room was illuminated with lights and brought to life by recurring shouts of “Surprise”. I looked around the room and saw my family and friends had nestled themselves in my living room, some on the floor, some behind the curtains and others on the foyer. Everyone now rushing to hug me, to congratulate me, to tell me how proud they are of me and aspire to be like me.

 

“Wait… Sam… What is going on?”, I asked her bewildered, she giggled, “I’m sorry I ruined the surprise but during my lunch hour your secretary called and said she managed to change the flight dates from next week to tonight. At first I didn’t know what she was talking about, so I rushed home and went to your study because I know you keep all your documents there. I found the plane tickets but the place was a bit of a mess and so I did a bit of cleaning but that’s when I found the receipts for the rings.” She paused, a smile forming on her face once again, her hand making its way to my cheek until finally her lips connected with mine. “I know what a romantic you are; you wanted us to go to Mozambique so we could renew our vows right? The surprise plane tickets? The secret rings? It’s why you are always hiding your phone from me nowadays, it’s because you didn’t want me to find out too soon but I did, so I invited everyone here so we could do it here before we leave. Our priest said he couldn’t come without explanation but I asked the one from our sister church and he is on his way. I can’t wait to say I do again, I love…”.

 

“Sam,” I interrupted her, “Can we talk? Please? In private”. She shook her head, “Don’t worry baby, we will have plenty of time to talk on our honeymoon”. I held her hand, guiding her to go upstairs, “Please Sam, can we go to our room and talk. I need to tell you something”. She shook her head once again, “Jade, you know I don’t like being late. Say what you want to say or leave it till after. Go change, the priest will be here soon, let’s get married, eat and then we will go to the airport and we can talk then. I didn’t put request emergency leave for nothing, so we will talk. Go change.”

 

There she was doing it again, micromanaging everything. She didn’t ruin the system, she just adjusted it. “I’m leaving you”. The words slipped out just as the music paused to change to the next song and everyone just stared. We were all in shock, the spectators shocked their role model was retiring from his role, her that I could say it without any remorse and I that I wasn’t afraid to let everyone know I was in love with Maira. Like a broken tap my thoughts became words and everything started to just pour out, “Her name is Miara. I love her and I am going to be with her. The rings are for her, the ticket, everything. I am leaving you for her”. I walked over to my mother and gave her a hug, she couldn’t say anything but I could feel she was relieved that I found the courage to escape a marriage that didn’t make me happy. I walked over to the front door, “Thank you everyone for coming, you are free to eat, drink and once you are ready, you may leave. Enjoy the rest of your evening”.

 

I made my way across the living room, I walked slowly up the stairs and as I entered our loveless bedroom I let out a sigh of relief, this was the last time I would be here. I packed the last of my things quickly, I just wanted to get out of there. As I closed my suitcase, I heard the door slam and turned to see Sam with a bottle in her hand, she slowly started to make her way towards me. “You’re not leaving me, you’re not leaving me for any bitch. After everything I’ve done for you? I lost weight, I was always there for you, I swallowed, I even let you fuck me in the ass. I did what my mother said good wives should do and you are going to leave me for some Maria bitch? Saint Maria. Am I not beautiful enough? Smart enough?”. “Sam, her name is Maira, not Maria. Now get out of my way, I am going to be late for my plane”

 

She dropped the bottle and pinned me against the wall, “Okay. I know what this is, you just want more sex right? Okay. What do you want now? I will give it to you.”, she undid her blouse and began to undress, pulling me closer, kissing me, trying to wrap my arms around her, her body longing to be held and all I could do was pull away, pull even further away. She needed to understand that I meant it.

 

“Jade, you can’t leave me” she yelled, “everyone is downstairs waiting on us, tell them you are lying, tell them that we are okay… Jade, why are you doing this? What have I done to deserve this? I thought you had my back, why were you pretending? Why were you pretending to be there for me while you were busy screwing someone else. I thought you wanted to make us work. You bought me new lingerie last month, was that a way of easing your guilt? You can’t buy me you asshole. What does she have that I don’t?”

 

“She listens… Samantha, she is there for me, she listens, she cares.” I could see the words had no effect on her, she couldn’t understand, she didn’t get it and it just made me feel better about the decision I made. “Okay Jade, I see”, she said sarcastically, “It’s the family thing right? You want a child? Okay, I will give you a child. I will put my career on hold and give you a child. Is that what she promised you?”

 

“Fuck it Sam, this isn’t about a child, I don’t want you to stop your career, it’s the only thing you have going for you anyway. It’s the only thing we talk about, how you are going to move from this position to that. My career is also progressing but I never let it overshadow what we have but you did, follow you career but let me be happy. My path to happiness is not with you. Not with you anymore”, I moved towards her, holding her in my arms for the last time, “I am tired of living a lie. I see her when I kiss you and I wish it was her screaming my name when you climax, I long for her touch and I want her to bear my name and no longer you.”

 

I kissed her on her forehead and as I felt the life slip out of her eyes, leaving her body soulless, I shed a tear. I shed a tear not because I was leaving but because once upon a time, the love was genuine and the only thing we have in common now, was that we existed in the same tax bracket. I walked to my car and put my bags in the trunk and called Maira, “Baby, I told her everything. I am on my way. Pack everything quick, hurry before James gets home”

Jade Novelist © 2017

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