The silence at home that evening was awkward. I
could not understand anything. Try as I may, I
could not get the phone call out of my mind. I had
cancelled church for that day when I could not pull
myself together. Richard also seemed very distant;
I could not understand the reason for this or if I
was just assuming things.
“Richard? Are you alright?” I asked after a while.
He nodded, saying he was ok but I was not
convinced in the least. Richard is a quiet person
but not that quiet, especially not when I am
around. I swallowed and made for the bedroom. I
can’t tell him. It would be unfair and
unreasonable. He does not deserve that. I would not
do anything until I have strong reasons for doing it
– I am sure I would find none. I lay on the bed
feeling more miserable than ever before. Richard’s
silence this evening was not making things any
easier. I felt burdened and even my physical
weakness seemed to have doubled. My eyes suddenly
became blurry and I closed my eyes tight.
I vibrated from shock when I felt someone touch
me. I hadn’t noticed Richard’s entrance into the
room. He looked at me with concern written all over
him, placed his hand on my head and his frown
deepened. “You are running a temperature” he
“It is just stress, I am fine” I said, trying to
dismiss his worry.
He shook his head. “You are not fine. Sit up” he
ordered. I obliged and within the twinkling of an
eye, he transformed from a caring husband to a
doctor. His eyes did the job of inspecting every
inch of my body, feeling my temperature, checking
my eyes and all other ceremonies doctors perform. I
was getting tired of the scrutiny and I voiced my
thoughts but he would have none of it. He finally
concluded that I was being stressed up and I made
the face of ‘I told you so’. He said I was to do a
proper check-up at the hospital, then asked me to
relax while he went to fix me a cup of tea.
He got back with a cup of steaming hot beverage
and a sachet of painkiller tablets ranting my need
for a house help. The house we live is a big one
and the maintenance could be tasking at times but
I did not see the need for a house help when my
hands were functioning to capacity. Being at work
everyday of the week asides weekends and
maintaining the house was his basis for argument
but I was not overwhelmed because he always lent
a helping hand whenever he was home. He pampered
me, forcing the drugs down my throat with
continuous encouragements. Looking at him as he
did all these, I found it increasingly impossible to
believe a word I heard from the anonymous girl. I
found myself forgetting everything I heard and
relaxing. I slept soundly that night to my
amazement and I woke up the next morning earlier
I saw Richard sleeping peacefully too and spared
few seconds to gaze at him. He looked gorgeous in
his sleep and even when he was sleeping, I had to
agree that his male arrogance and confidence was
evident. I went to fix breakfast and went to the
room to prepare the bathtub for Richard. I wanted
to make up for the doubt I had in him by doing
something, anything, even though he did not know
anything about it. Immediately I finished what I
was doing, Richard’s phone beeped signaling the
entrance of a new message. I was surprised because
it was just 6 am. The message alert did not seem
to awaken Richard, so I picked up his phone. It
might be MTN and their silly messages, I thought;
the name I saw was far from it though.
The sender of the message was Oyinade. I could not
believe my eyes. I checked the time again and it
was as before. Everything I heard and every doubt I
felt came rushing back in full force. I dropped the
phone carefully and left the room in a hurry. My
vision became blurred as tears filled my eyes,
clouding my sight. Perhaps it is an urgent message,
I told myself. I tried to assume the message was a
coincidence but the conviction did not hold water.
I rotated and looked at Richard like I would a
villain as he approached. I must pull myself
together, I thought, righting myself and putting
up a passive front. He did not seem to notice any
of these though because he approached with a
“Good morning sir” I said quietly.
“Morning honey, and what’s with the ‘sir’” he
asked looking at me critically. “Why are you up
baby? You should be resting. How are you feeling?”
he said all at once and I shifted uncomfortably. He
touched my face tenderly and my body reacted to
his touch as usual.
“I am feeling better” I lied. “Since I couldn’t sleep
back, I decided to fix us breakfast and prepare the
bathroom for you”.
He looked into my eyes, searching the way he does
when he knew something was wrong. “You look
I widened my eyes as if bewildered. “Why should I
be?” I looked away. “Come and have your bath” I
said, pulling him like a small kid into the room. He
followed without question though I knew he must
He started undressing, still looking at me critically
and I turned towards the wardrobe, not only
because I felt he might find my doubt in my eyes
but also because I still found his nakedness
“You received a message. Have you seen it?” I asked
“Oh…” he said grabbing his phone. Something
seemed to pass through his face which I couldn’t
understand. Is that surprise or anxiety? I shifted
my weight from leg to leg, nervously.
“Who is it?” I asked.
He stared at me, knowing instantly that my
attitude was linked with the message. Why am I so
transparent to him, I asked within myself. He
seemed to find it easier, reading my thoughts when
I had the professional look on.
“It’s Oyin”. The name seemed more of an
endearment than a name to me. Oyin; meaning
honey. This kept repeating itself in my head
“Oh…” I breathed. “And what did she want at this
time?” I asked, consoling myself with the fact
that he hadn’t lied to me.
“Nothing important” he disappeared into the
bathroom before I could turn back. I glared at the
door, my anger spiraling over the edge. I marched
out of the room with my legs pounding hard on the
tiles. I was sorely tempted to go back to check the
message myself but I could not bring myself to
doing it. He never kept anything from me and never
stopped me from browsing through his phone but I
just could not check this message. I don’t even
want to know what is there, I thought, lying to
myself. I killed the gas, my appetite gone, even
though I didn’t really have one before.
Richard was already out of the bathroom when I
returned. I went about setting out my clothes. I
saw a faint smile playing on his face but I didn’t
even think of it. He saw what I was doing and
started lamenting my need to stay at home due to
my health. He complained that I was putting up a
brave front just to avoid staying at home but I
told him I had an important patient to attend to.
It was a lie but I could not sit back at home while
the person I loved the most was being taken away
from me. He asked me to come to the hospital for
a check up and I nodded. I would definitely go
there. There is someone I need to have a boss’ wife
to staff discussion with.
Oyinade got to work earlier than her usual time.
She had to visit BRP Hospital. She was sure their
efforts the previous day were yielding enormous
results. She had seen Richard’s grim face when he
left the hospital.
She arrived at the building looking for Tunde. He
had been making advances towards her but she
never obliged or noticed him. She had had enough,
having to sleep with Kelvin, alongside Ronke once a
week – a threesome. She needed a break since that
was finally over.
“Hey Tunde” she said flirting with her eyes.
He looked surprised and pleased. “Hey beautiful, to
what do I owe the pleasure of your attention
today?” he asked coyly.
“Aaahn, it is not like that now” she said.
“I guess you need something then” he breathed,
moving closer to her.
She nodded. “A little favour. I want to surprise my
boss’ wife today but I don’t want to be caught
unawares. You know the things you do to secure
your position? Would you mind alerting me when
she is coming over?” she asked, playing with his
“One date for one favour” he cooed and she hastily
nodded, knowing she had to get to her office
before Richard arrived. They exchanged numbers and
she was off.
Richard sat in his office expecting his assistant.
He hadn’t sighted her throughout the day and he
became worried. He had sent his secretary to call
her since she was not responding to her intercom
but he had seen none of them. Her bad dressing
had instantly left his mind the moment he received
that message about his wife. Thanks to Tony’s
visit, he had been able to stop himself from doing
a stupid thing by confronting Belina. Despite that,
he had been cold towards Belina when he got home,
always suspecting her movements and stupidly
forgetting her state of health. His doubt had been
taken over by worry when he felt her temperature.
The sms was out of his mind as he took care of
His assistant’s indecency never crossed his mind till
he read her text message this morning. The veiled
jealousy he saw in Belina’s eyes and actions pleased
him because it showed her love for him. He
however knew that he could not tell her anything
about Oyin’s innocent actions because it would
reinforce her doubt in the poor girl. Oyin had felt
so bad that she had sent a message, though too
early; apologizing for her actions and claiming she
might not be able to face him because of what she
did. She was apparently trying to gain attention
since her fiancé was not giving her enough. Richard
felt bad for condemning her the way he did.
“Sir” his secretary called from the entrance
“Where is she?”
Entering, she replied, “Sir, she might not be able
to come. She seems to have an emotional
breakdown. She was crying when I saw her sir” she
said looking concerned.
Richard’s guilt increased as he stood up. “Thanks.
You can go now”
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I got out of my chair with obvious frustration. My
temper and emotions had been all over the place
since morning. I just couldn’t get two people out
of my mind. I concluded on confronting Richard and
having a long chat with that Oyin of a girl. I had
the conviction that Richard would not have extra-
marital affairs even though that was the routine
with men these days. He can’t betray our love like
that, I thought as I left my office. I stopped by
to give my secretary instructions before leaving.
Oyinade heard a knock on her door and smiled. She
had anticipated this. She knew Richard didn’t like
feeling guilty for anything. She had learnt that
within days of working with him. She deliberately
went to the door without asking who it was,
framing up crocodile tears. She gave Richard enough
time to see her tears before hurriedly mopping her
face. Richard became angrier at himself for being
so violent the previous day as he entered Oyin’s
office for the first time since she became his
Oyin deliberately opened the door slightly enough
for anyone to see what was going on inside. She
just hoped that someone who gossips would see
them. Her phone beeped on the table but she was
unaware of it. She was so preoccupied with the joy
of finally having Richard’s attention, though; she
covered it with a dull emotion-stricken face.
She faced Richard. “I am sorry sir; I am a bit
indisposed right now. You were right to reprove my
action yesterday sir. My fiancé is seeing someone
behind my back and is treating me like trash. I felt
I wasn’t woman enough and I wanted attention
from whoever could give me. I…” she broke down
Richard tried to console her with words but her
tears just increased in tenacity. If there was
something he was always confused about, it would
be how to manage a crying woman. He was so glad
that his wife was not the crying type and once she
was moved to the point of tears, he was always
shaken to his soul.
He held Oyin’s shoulder but instead, she collapsed
in his arms, crying all over his chest. He held her
awkwardly, not knowing what to do with each
passing second but he didn’t have to do that for
long as the door creaked open. Standing before him
was a familiar face, looking alarmed.