(Continued from Another Woman’s Husband III)
“That is a very cheap lie from your father, sweetheart; and a very unfortunate one.”
“What do you mean?”
“When did your father say he caught me in bed with King?”
“Last week Friday, to be specific. He said that he came home from work unexpectedly and found the two of you on the throes of passion, on your matrimonial bed.”
“And what did your father say he did when he found us?”
“So it is true?”
“Of course it is not true, and I will tell you why shortly. But tell me, what did he say he did after he caught us?”
“He left the house in disgust and went straight to a lawyer and filed for divorce.”
“King is dead, my dear. He has been dead for three months, and his body is still in China. Your father obviously didn’t know that the boy left for China three years ago, or that he is dead, before he made the stupid allegations against me.”
“Are you serious mother?”
“You can call King’s mother and ask her. She always liked you.”
“How come you didn’t tell any of us, especially me?”
“I found out on Monday, when I bumped into King’s mother at the Supermarket. By then your father wasn’t talking to me. He told me on Sunday evening that he wants me out of the house by Friday, so for the last three days my mind has been all over the place. I had planned to call you to tell you, but with all that is going on between your father and I, I quickly forgot about it until now.”
“What happened to King?”
“The Chinese government insists he committed suicide, but his parents don’t believe it. Apparently, he left for China three years ago after he got some form of scholarship. Everything was okay until around five months ago when he fell in love with one of his classmates, a Chinese girl. Their relationship apparently did not sit well with some Chinese racists, who included the girl’s brothers. He told his mother that he was receiving death threats and they pleaded with him to leave the girl. But he was apparently determined to marry her. They planned to settle in Kenya after graduating, and that seemed to incense the girl’s family even more. Then one morning, three months ago, he was found dead in his apartment. It is the girlfriend who found him. After he failed to show up in class, and when she couldn’t get him on phone, she went looking for him in his apartment. She found him sprawled in the kitchen. He had apparently been shot in the head. The Chinese authorities claim he killed himself, but his parents are certain that the racists killed him.”
“That is so sad. So why hasn’t his body been brought home yet?”
“Bureaucracy. Our Ministry of Foreign Affairs is tussling with the Chinese Government over the issue.”
“We can only hope that the matter is settled soon. I don’t want to imagine what the delay is making King’s parents feel while they are still mourning.”
“Agnes was devastated when I saw her. She made me forget the problems I am having with your father as I listened to her. She adored her son.”
“I will call her when we finish talking just to give her my condolences. She and I always got along well even after King and I broke up.”
“Please do. It will be a very kind gesture.”
“Back to my father; why would he lie about something like this?”
“I have no idea sweetheart. He gave me till Friday to leave the house, because apparently his bride is moving in. But he seems to have changed his mind, because he has thrown me out. My things are in cartons outside the house, and he has changed the locks of the house. I wanted to buy a house-I mean, if he is keeping this one I figured that I have a right to use our income to buy myself a place to live-but I found that he has emptied the account. Part of the money went to his girlfriend’s account, and the rest to a personal account that he has apparently opened at KCB.”
“I am so sorry mama. I was so furious at you because I would never have thought papa was lying. You should have seen how crestfallen he looked in that video conference.”
“Your father has always been a great man. I have no idea what has become of him. Anyway sweetheart, why don’t you tell your brothers what is happening? I called them and they did not pick up. Maybe they are mad at me for “sleeping with their small sister’s ex”.”
“They will call you mama. To be honest I am the only one who was not planning to call. I even almost not picked up your call. Please forgive me. But Johnson said he will call you immediately he wakes up, and Liam will call you after his training today. They told me that they want to hear your side of the story.”
“I am glad to hear that. Thanks honey, and take care.”
“Anytime mama. I love you.”
“Babe, why did you have to send me so much money?” Jackline asks. “I am content just to know I have your heart.”
“Two million shillings is nothing baby girl. It is a small gift from me to the woman who has helped me rediscover who I am. I had lost my identity to the society, bending so as to conform to the whims of the society. But in your arms I feel like a free man.”
“By the way babe, why are you not going to work?”
“It is part of the freedom you have given me. Do you know how much I earn from my job?”
“I earn one hundred and sixty thousand shillings. One sixty thousand shillings a month after working at that godforsaken water company for close to thirty years.”
Jackline is shocked. She had been earning a hundred thousand at the radio station as an entry level graduate at the radio station, and she had thought that that was peanuts.
“They have been paying you so little?”
“Yes. Now, do you know how much I make from my rental houses every month?”
“I make a whooping one million, six hundred thousand shillings a month. In other words, I make ten times more from the rental houses than I do from my job. So what is the point of continuing to slave under those arrogant bosses at the water company when I make more money than they do?”
“I see your point. But I don’t see how I helped you reach that decision.”
“You know many times we live in fear. I was stuck at that job because I wanted the security that came with it, you know, having a secure pension and all. But seeing you daring the world with your YouTube business and all made me realize that my fear was founded on nothing. That same fear is the reason I put up with a boring and tiresome marriage for so long. But I don’t regret that because if I had kicked out Edith earlier I probably would not have found you.”
“You would have found another exciting woman.”
“There cannot be a woman more exciting than you,” Caleb purrs, as he draws her closer to himself. He kisses her and is just starting to undress her when his phone rings.
From the conversation Caleb is having on the phone, Jackline has already figured that he is talking to his son Johnson. Jackline can only hear Caleb’s end of the conversation, but it is enough for her to figure out that Johnson is threatening to hire a lawyer for his mother. Jackline knows that if the case goes to court, Caleb might lose half of his wealth, including the palatial house. She cannot allow that to happen. She has already started seeing herself as the queen of that empire that brings in close to two million shillings monthly.
Jackline is aware that divorce is not the only way to terminate a marriage in Kenya. Death is the other option. If something were to happen to Edith, then there would be no divorce. She remembers that one of the guys she dated years ago was a shady character whose business rivals had a tendency to disappear mysteriously. When Caleb’s conversation with his son becomes heated and he wanders away from the bedroom to the sitting room, Jackline quickly calls the guy, whose name is Nick.
“I knew you would miss me,” Nick says as he picks up the call. “All the women who have had the delight of seeing me naked always come back begging.”
“You wish. Is your business still thriving?”
“Is that even a question?”
“Do you still have a remedy for annoying mosquitoes?”
“That is inevitable in business.”
“I have a mosquito that I want vanquished. But I am a poor woman Nick. I can only afford half million bob.”
“That is too little, Jackie Baby. What kind of mosquito is this?”
“She is a middle level administrator with the County Government.”
“Let me guess; you want her out of the way so that you can steal her husband, who I can suppose is moneyed.”
“That is none of your business, Nick.”
“It is, actually. Because if I am correct it means your rich boyfriend can cough up more money than what you are offering.”
“He wants to divorce her, Nick, so he is not in on this. But I want her dead because a divorce will shrink the estate available to me.”
“I see your problem. I will accept the pea nuts you are offering but with an additional benefit.”
“I want to sleep with you three times a week for a month.”
“Okay, that can be arranged, but I get to choose the days I can see you. There is no point of doing this to keep a man’s wealth then losing it all because I was caught cheating.”
“I am flexible. As long as I can have you three times a week.”
“When can my mosquito be vanquished?”
“If you send me the money today, she will be dead latest tomorrow. Then we can start our dates next week.”
“Send me your account details. You will have the money in the next one hour.”
(This is the final free part of this story. To find out what becomes of Edith, kindly follow the instructions below to purchase your copy of the novella)
Image by Nina Stock from Pixabay: https://pixabay.com/photos/people-man-adult-outdoors-looking-3139779/
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