Modupe grabbed the arm rest as she felt her plane lift itself from the ground and let her mind wander away for the millionth time that day.She so desperately wanted to tell someone, her Mum, Feyi , anyone. She just wanted to cry and rant and mourn the trust that had died. She tried so much to avoid looking at Tomi as she packed this morning. She wasn’t ready to deal with the hurt in his eyes, she was hurting too.
A bitter laughter escaped her lips. It was funny that he was hurt. How could he be hurt that she didn’t want to be around him? What was he expecting? That she was going to pet him and tell him it was alright and they were going to be fine?! Things were never going to be fine, they were never going to be fine! She wasn’t even sure there was ever going to be a ‘them’ ever again.
She turned on her side to face the window. She still found it hard to believe that her dopey eyed sweet faced Tomi could actually cheat. Most times when she had even felt the littlest flicker of admiration rise in her heart towards any other man, she always felt immensely guilty for even feeling that way. Tomi had been extremely faithful and committed to them and so it wasn’t so much of an issue when she had complained slightly about Amaka calling him all the time and he had dismissed it as an over-zealous subordinate trying to please her boss. Tears rolled down her face as she remembered how easily her fears had been allayed and how she knew that that trust had been breached and may never be repaired.
Kemi’s driver came to pick Mo from the airport and drove her straight to Kemi’s house in Los Angeles. Kemi was Mo’s cousin and they grew up together in Lagos. Kemi had gotten pregnant when she was nineteen for her boyfriend, the son of a minister then and he had married her hurriedly. Jimi was a student also then at the NYU and Kemi had gone to join him over there. She currently ran a fancy hair studio in Beverly hills and her daughter, Teniola was seventeen already. She had another boy with Jimi, Teju and he was eleven. Jimi was currently back in Nigeria as a senator in his district as he had taken a keen interest in politics but kept his family abroad.
Kemi was glad to have Mo over and she closed early from work that day.
When Mo got down from the car Kemi was outside the door screaming:
‘Modupe Tomi-Benson, one and only wife of T-boy. I have missed you baby girl’
They hugged tightly and Mo began to sob. Kemi tore herself away and searched Mo’s face for a while.
‘Did he beat you?’ she whispered
Mo sniffed and shook her head.
‘Come baby, let’s go inside. Louisa would bring your bags in.’
When they got in, Teni was looking ready to go out but when she looked up and saw Mo she equally squealed in delight and ran to hug her
‘Aunt Mo! I knew mum was up to something but she didn’t tell me it was You.’
‘Look at you Teni! You are so grown and so pretty! Sweetie no white boys ooo’
Teni laughed ‘Of course not, there’s enough of brown sugar to go round.’
‘My friend would you shut up’ Kemi joked
‘ How long are you around for Aunt Mo ?’
‘ About a week.’
‘Great. I finally get to get my hands in your amazing hair.’
‘I cant wait, your mum tells me you are doing better than her now’
‘She can say that again… I have to run now Auntie, I have a school council meeting and then I have to meet up with my friends. TJ should be home soon.’
‘Ok darling , come back soon we have a lot to catch up on and I brought you Kilishi’
‘Yaaay! Do I get it now? My friends would totally love it!’
‘ When you get back Teni, bring them over tomorrow I would like to meet them.’
‘Right. Let me be on my way. Love you mum!’
‘I love you too, be back in this house before 11 Teni. No excuses’
‘Yes Ma’am’ she winked at Mo and ran out of the door.
Kemi faced Mo and spoke up
‘I made some reservations for us at this great spa a few blocks away, the sauna is amazing and their massages are to die for. I figured it would be a great place to talk. What do you think?’
‘Kemi … you are the best. I’m starving though’
‘There’s some chicken and rice in the kitchen. Help yourself. Let me go get ready while you are at it’
‘ What about me? Am I good to go this way ?’
‘ Its you Modupe, you are always good to go, even with your swollen eyes’
‘I hate you Kemi’ Mo said and headed for the kitchen.
Kemi sighed deeply as she listened to Modupe pour out her heart at the Sauna.
‘How could he do that to us K? How? I thought we were in it together. How could he have been doing that when our daughter’s life hung in the balance… I knew … I knew that girl was up to no good from the start and I told him…I feel so humiliated… no wonder, no wonder … I heard him talking in hushed tones one night in the bathroom… I’m so stupid. Twice K, two freaking times… it was not a mistake… he is probably even in love with her… And he came back to me like nothing happened… He lay with me after being with another woman…..’
‘Is she pregnant Mo?’
‘No! I don’t even know… she could be! Oh my God, what am I going to do?’
‘You have to talk to Tomi. Find out the details, is she pregnant? Does he want to be with her? ‘
‘He says he’s not in love with her, that she tried to get him to commit to her and when he refused she brought up sexual harassment claims hence the sack. But, what was he going to say before. If he wasn’t laid off Kemi, I wouldn’t have known about this.’
‘I’m so sorry babe but I hate to break it to you… this happens to most people. You just have to decide if you want to stick around or get out. You need to talk to him Mo. He has been blowing up my phone with texts. He is broken too’
‘Wait what?! He is broken? Really ? Please Kemi don’t even do that. He should have been broken when my daughter was in pains not humping his secretary.’
‘So what do you want to do?’
‘I don’t know …I love my husband but I don’t know if I can deal with this.. I don’t think I can’
‘Who else knows about this?’
‘Nobody yet. I don’t know who he might have spoken to’
‘Let’s keep it this way , trust me you don’t want people gloating over this story or pitying you or hating Tomi on your behalf or somehow finding you at fault. Nobody else gets to know, understood?’
When Tomi told his mother to come over the next day she had asked if all was well and how long she was going to be staying for and he told her to plan for about a week. He knew she had a lot of questions but he was sure it was better to call his mother than Mo’s mother. How do you explain to your mother-in-law that you are jobless because you cheated on your wife when her grand-child was ill and now her daughter has left your sorry ass?
The kids were very happy to meet their Grand-nana as she was fondly called when they got back from school. He told them he had to go see Mum and their Aunt K and Grand-nana was in to stay with them till he got back. In no time they had brought out their lists of all they needed.
After dinner, Mrs Benson called Tomi outside and they sat on the front steps.
‘Oluwatomini… what is going on? Where is your wife?’
‘Mummy she’s with Kemi now. I already told you.’
‘Why is she with Kemi?’ She left on a Tuesday to see Kemi, and now on Thursday you are going to meet her? Tomini, I’m not a child. Why did I meet you at home on a Thursday afternoon? What is wrong with my Modupe?
‘Nothing is wrong Ma, she just needed some time off and I’m going to be with her’
‘So ri ti moba fun e ni igbaju, kia kia lo ma bere sini so nkan ti o nsele fun mi’
‘Mummy there’s no problem’
‘ Ehn ehn, ok. First thing tomorrow morning I’m going back to my husband’s house. When you are ready to talk call me’ she gets up to leave and Tomi holds her by the leg
‘Mummy please ma’
‘Please kinni? You better begin to talk now now’ she hisses and sits back
‘ Mummy, Modupe is not talking to me’
‘What did you do to her?’ she asked without flinching
‘Mummy please I’m begging you don’t make a big deal out of what I’m about to tell you please, I am currently a miserable person I don’t need you to compound this for me please’
‘Tomini … am I not your mother? Ahn ahn, tell me what happened?’
‘Mummy I lost my job on Monday’
‘Jesu! Ah Tomi, nkan to to bayii lo gbe pamo fun mi. Ahhh, ahhh’
‘Ok… ok. Is that why she left?’
‘No, I was sacked because I had an affair with my secretary. I slept with her twice and she wanted more from me but I wouldn’t budge and she reported me to the authorities. Called it sexual harassment.’
Mrs Benson grabs her head and begins to cry.
‘Don’t Mummy me iwo omo adojutini yi. Where did you learn adultery from? Certainly not from me or your dad, Ah, you are such a disappointment to me… Ah, I wonder what the poor girl is going through right now. And you know how good a wife she has been to not just you, but to even me your mother. Tomini, so you left your wife at home and went to sleep with a prostitute?’
‘No Ma, it was when she was away with Nimi for the surgery’
‘So what? So what Tomi? If not that you are a stupid boy, a woman went with your sick daughter when it should have been you and this is how you repay her? See let me tell you something today, can you hear me?’
‘ When you go tomorrow, don’t come back to this house without bringing that girl back with you. I don’t care how you want to do it. Just bring her back with you.’
‘But what if she doesn’t want to be married to me anymore?’
‘Then I don’t want you as a son anymore. Idiot. Se emi ni mo bi iwo yi sha? ’ She gets up to leave
‘I’m not your Mummy Tomini, I didn’t teach you to be an adulterer and neither did your father. What am I supposed to say to her parents? I am disappointed in you big time. Go and bring your wife home then we would know the next step to take.’
Tomi begins to cry
‘Mummy she hates me… Mummy please I need you. My life is falling apart. ‘
Mrs Benson begins to cry too
……. To be continued
Tell a friend to tell a friend that this is only the beginning.
Episode 3 drops tomorrow
Words in Yoruba
- Sori ti mo ba fun e nigbaju, Kia Kia lo ma so nkan ti o sele fun mi= You see if I slap you, you would begin to spill the details
- Iwo adojutini omo yi = you this disappointment of a child
- Se mi ni mo bi Iwo yi sha ?= I can’t believe I bore you