African StoriesLife and General Fiction StoriesNaija StoriesSeries

The Confound (Episode Fifteen)

Continued from the last part…

It’s Sunday morning. Roseline Evans had a sleepless night filled with nightmares. She couldn’t recover from the shock yet. For the first time since she got married, David had slapped her.

She tossed from side to side on the bed in the cold room. She regretted the fact that she gave David the impression that she was cheating on him.

“I wish I never did,” she sighed as she switched on the light in the room. She felt so dizzy. She had been feeling this way every morning for some weeks now and she could tell from the signs already that a baby was on the way. So, she had gone for a pregnancy test two days back at a nearby clinic in order to confirm. She was confirmed positive, five weeks gone.

She sat up and held her forehead which ached as a result of lack of sleep, nausea gripped the whole of her internal system. She got up quickly and rushed to the adjoining rest room where she vomited and felt a bit relieved. Her noise woke her friend in the next room.

Yes, she had spent the night with Evelyn. Immediately she left the house last night, she had first thought of calling Michael but she changed her mind. “It’s dangerous spending the night with a single and lonely man,” she had concluded and headed to Evelyn’s place.

Evelyn was one of her friends and hostel mate back in secondary school. They met again when Evelyn moved into the estate with her husband who was not often around because he had been transferred to a branch of his company at Port Harcourt. He came home only once in two weeks.

“Are you okay Rose?” Evelyn called as she entered into the guest room where Rose was.

“I’m fine Evelyn, how was your night? Thanks for hosting me,” she replied

“Thanks to God, I hope you slept well too?”

“No friend, I didn’t. I can’t deceive you.”

“Hmm,” Evelyn sighed and said, “you know what Rose, you are really silly for what you did. I will be frank with you because I’m a blunt person.” She led Rose to the edge of the bed where they both sat as she continued her speech. “It’s exactly two years now that I got married to Stephen and we are yet to have a child. Part of the reasons is because he doesn’t stay with me for more than four to six days in the whole of a month, which you can also bear witness to. He was transferred to that Port Harcourt branch office six months after we got married. It’s a pity that we both earlier decided not to have a child yet until eight after our wedding. If I had known that he would become a part time husband like this, I would have just started trying for a baby immediately after the wedding, maybe by now, I would have had a child of my own to keep my company.

“But in all of these Rose, I still give thanks to God for at least, my husband still comes home to me. There are some women who had been completely abandoned by their husbands but mine had never done that. He calls me often and comes to Lagos whenever he has the opportunity. He takes very good care of me just like David has been doing to you. So, why wouldn’t I be thankful? I know one day, things will get better. At least, the job he had gone there to do is to fend for both of us. Whenever I miss him and feel so lonely, I either call or chat with him to bridge the gap and at times, I take the pain to travel down to see him as well.

“You acted like an ingrate Rose. David is a caring and godly man. Though his background may be different from yours, but in marriage, love covers a lot of shortcomings. You should have tried to bridge the gap yourself by teaching him how to be more romantic and working things out with your husband, instead of seeking solace in another man. That can never be the solution. Don’t destroy your home with your own hands, a lot of women are out there wishing for a type of husband like yours, value what you have.

“Remember the Bible says: ‘A wise woman buildeth her own home but the foolish destroyeth it.’ Rose, go and build your home while you still have the chance, right all your wrongs and amend all your ways before it’s too late.”

By now, Rose has started weeping profusely. The whole of her body shook as she sobbed continuously in her friend’s arms.

“Thanks Evelyn, I shall heed your advice, I’m going home right away.”

Evelyn hugged and comforted her. “All will be well Rose, just be positive, David is a good man, he will forgive you, I am very sure.”

Rose left her friend’s house at exactly 7:15am that Sunday morning and went straight home. Her heart beat rose as she knocked on the door.

“Who is it?” David asked from within.

“It’s me, Rose,” she answered quietly.

The door opened and she stepped in. She could tell from her husband’s red eye balls that he didn’t sleep well also. Why did I stir unnecessary troubles for this man? she regretted within her again…

“What the hell are you doing here after you have enjoyed yourself again for another night with your man?”

“David… Please, I’m sorry—”

“You are what? Sorry? For cheating on me deliberately? Wait a minute, I will be back.” And like the speed of lightning, he rushed into the bedroom and came back with a piece of paper which he flung at her.

“Your game is over Rose, I guess your new found love was the one who planted that baby in your womb. Congratulations.”

Rose was too confused to utter a word. She was thinking of how to convince him that it was only an expensive joke she had cracked but now there was this new development. Yes, her husband had the right to think that the baby doesn’t belong to him because she didn’t tell him about the pregnancy test result.

“No David, never! I never cheated on you,” she cried

“I see, which one should I believe? You did, now you didn’t. You think I’m a fool? Oh, oh, maybe your new found love has dumped you, now you think you can bring the remains of the spoilt broth back to me? No way! Anyway, for the sake of the love I once had for you, I won’t send you packing so that you won’t be exposed to shame and ridicule. I’m leaving this house for you right away so you will have enough time for your outings and escapades. And I am leaving with my daughter so she won’t learn waywardness from you.”

Rose sank to the floor of the room. It was as if she’s just been sentenced to death. What was the essence of her life without David and Debbie?

“Noo!” she cried suddenly as the reality of what was about to happen dawned on her the more.

“Sweetheart, please don’t ever leave me, I can explain everything,” she cried.

To be continued…

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