“Get dressed; we’re going out for a dinner party”
Priscilla awrapped the towel around her and stepped out of the bathroom her body glistening with moisture. She turned to face her husband who was already dressed in a dinner suit backing her, “We’re going for a party?”
“That’s what I said,” he replied with a bit of irritation. For the first time that evening, his gaze swept over his wife and he recognized the familiar rush of desire looking at her. He let his gaze drop. “Wear something decent, I’m meeting with clients”
“So that’s what this is about? No wonder because you never take me anywhere”, she remarked wiping her body consciously. Her color rose as she backed Tunde feeling his gaze burning through her back, she heard him sniff and smiled.
Tunde sat on the bed and idly picked up the book he left unfinished the past week “Karen’s going to be there” he said feeling the need to rile her up
“Really?”, Priscilla asked with unusual patience it surprised him “I’m surprised we haven’t been introduced” she continued putting on her underwear “I heard you two used to be close.”
He did not know how to reply that, finally he found his wits. “You wouldn’t blow up about us?”
“No” she replied lightly though within her she felt differently “I don’t think it would be wise getting worked up over that.”
“For the first time I agree with you.”
This time, she turned to look at him with her towel dropping loosely to reveal the upper clefts of her chest. He felt his heart slam against his chest just looking at her innocent brown eyes the way she sat unsuspecting of what she was doing. He grunted within himself, she knew what she was doing after all; she was her mother’s daughter.
“I’m glad you agree”, she replied smiling at him. The past few weeks seemed to be in her favor, it seemed God really was interested in her marriage seeing the way her husband had transformed towards her. Now, they could have a short conversation without an argument. She applied her makeup lightly and got up to wear her black knee length gown.
“Where did you get this?”
“I bought it a while back, you like?”
He shrugged and watched hungrily as she put it on. She looked good, really good.
…WHILE the party was going on Karen sat downstairs on a pavement by the patio away from the crowd watching Tunde as he greeted some of the other guests. She smiled to herself; this is how it should have been: them hosting parties and walking hand in hand to a party they were invited to. She missed those days when Tunde used to run after her when they were young. She missed those days. She smoothened down the knee length skirt of her gown; she wanted to be the next Mrs. Ariyo, his lover and confidant and the joint owner of Hallmark Enterprises and now look how all her hard work had been paid off with that bitch who schemed her way into his bed: Priscilla. The girl too had smartened up, she had changed her wardrobe trying to warm her way into Tunde’s heart.
Tunde came back and sat “Sorry about that, business”
“It’s okay” she replied forcing a smile “My mind was clouded.”
“Me?” he looked at her amused “What about me?”
“All that we’ve been through I guess”, Karen looked down at her feet “How long we’ve been this way and I’m thinking of how my life is going to turn out.”
Tunde sighed and looked away knowing where she was going to “I know where you’re going Karen and we’ve talked about this.”
“Well, where’s this going? I’m 36 and nothing, I’m all alone!”
“I can’t do anything about this Karen I’m married already and I’m not stopping you from moving on.”
“You want me to move on?” her voice shook with effect “After how many years together?”
“Okay so what do you want?”
“I want you to be happy Tunde!” she didn’t state the obvious, she wanted them together “It’s clear your wife has been trying to get things right after what you told me and what I saw tonight.”
Tunde said nothing looking back at her.
“You aren’t saying anything?”
“What do you want me to say!” he exclaimed
“I think you are falling for her already. Your mind hasn’t been with me all evening,” she suddenly said making him turn to look at her sharply.
“Don’t be like that; you know that’s not possible” Tunde replied in irritation, his heart tugged at him but he ignored it. For the umpteenth time, he wondered where Priscilla was.
Karen hissed in annoyance, feigning a smile as people passed by them “Be honest with yourself Tunde, she’s deceiving you.”
“Karen please let’s stop this. I cannot deal with this now; I have told you there is a lot of pressure from work. The last thing I need is this obscene notion that I’m falling for a woman like Priscilla.”
“What’s wrong with her? I saw the way your eyes followed her as she walked up the staircase, we cannot deny that she has changed and I am sure she is now more cunning than ever. You’re falling for her abi?” Karen shook him and he rolled his eyes in irritation. “I’m sure you are!” This time, she was actually panicking. He still said nothing and as she removed her hands from the sleeve of his jacket, a silent tear escaped from the corner of her eye. “I’m more concerned about you Tunde, what she’s doing with you.”
“Argggh! Karen let’s stop this, you are more concerned about yourself and the fact that you might be losing me.”
“That was a rotten thing to say”, Karen’s voice shook in anger. She was very angry that things did not go her way. “I can’t believe you could say that, we’ve been friends for how long and…”
“Geez I’m sorry, Karen”, Tunde replied impatiently “I’m just stressed out and I need to unwind that’s why I’m here and not with her, for Pete’s sake you know the relationship between my wife and I.”
Karen shook her head in disgust and got up with the pride left in her.
“Where are you going?” Tunde asked looking up at her.
“Away, I’m going to find my escort. I think it’s time to leave” Karen walked away from him wondering for the first time where Richard was.
…THE party was not so much, just a small get together for the clients and other firms organized by one of the companies who offered their services to Tunde’s father’s firm. She smiled up at the guests as they passed by her side resting lightly on the black railing upstairs. Priscilla held a glass of wine in her hand, looking idly at the clusters of people discussing politics and business.
She smiled to herself- seeing some women scantily hiding the look of boredom registered on their heavily made up faces as they stuck close to their escorts. It made her wonder where her husband was- no doubt with Karen. She had seen him whisked away to some place with the woman’s arms twisted around his. For the first time since they got married, he had given her an apologetic look as he left.
Priscilla sighed as the cold night breeze caressed her sleeved arms; at least Karen had been shocked to see her dressed that way, the way the gown clung lovingly to every inch of her figure. She turned to back the crowd content with just looking at the mowed lawn before her. Her mind was in chaos as her feelings were confusing her.
Was it not the same man she hated the most? The same man she loathed? Here she was after a few weeks, aching for his touch again, and every part of her body aching in anticipation of it. She found herself looking for a smile from him, looking at him under her eyelashes: Priscilla shivered at the thought- was this love? This feeling of wanting to get approval from him alone was what she had never felt before for any man. Was it the grudging respect she felt for him, acknowledging the fact that he was a good man regardless of the fact that he did not love her? At least he gave her enough to be comfortable and how did she repay him? She had slept with that stranger: Richard.
For the first time that evening, she felt that long forgotten sense of dread, she had not even thought of him since her first visit to Mrs. Bridget’s office. Did he still think of her? She had ignored all his calls and text messages. Feeling the guilt of what she had done, Priscilla took a long sip of the wine and smiled sadly to herself. Maybe this was not the ideal marriage, but it was better than before. At least, there was a dim glimmer of hope: but was all this done to honor her mother’s wishes of her getting pregnant? Was she callous enough to deceive her husband into making a child with her? Moreover, after that, would she walk away from this marriage with their child as a means of making money from him? Is that what she really wanted to do? Yes, her freedom was important but so was her conscience, so would that really make her happy?
“Priscilla” a voice called from behind her
Safe Haven: Episode 12 CONTINUES HERE
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