Written by : Dora Achieng’ Okeyo
Follow her on Twitter: @herhar
Read more of her work here: http://www.dora-jodie.blogspot.com
I believed him.
He never minced his words. “I’m done!” and he left me standing there. After three years you think you know someone, only to wake up to the beast himself! What hurts is- he is right. He left first. Come to think of it, I left first! I left on a Friday night. The clock read 10:43:36pm. I recall because I was trying to write. When that urges comes over me I lock myself in the tower. The tower is four walls of blank pieces of paper. I go there when the world sleeps. I have spent weeks there. When he’d see me head there, he’d look down the drive off later on. My life has been like that. I’m either in the garden or the tower. I bloom in both but always enjoy being in the tower.
Like any other woman I reckon the question is ‘what did I do wrong?’
He said, ‘I am tired of the questions.’
So, he left because he was tired. Or was it that he didn’t have any good answers. ‘What did I do wrong?’
‘I can’t stand this, what should I do Ariel?’
‘Tell me the truth.’
‘What truth Ariel?’
‘Where were you on Friday?’
‘I said I was out with Gregory.’
‘Let’s try this again Brian, where were you on Friday night?’
‘I was out with Gregory, how about we call him, shall we?’
That’s when I gave him the pictures. He was the guy. He was the lead actor. His mouth covered hers. His hands were all over her. Her? Well, allow me to introduce the supporting actress- Nelly, my best friend. On the back of those pictures- she scribbled “now you know he’s a dog!”
Brian looked at the first picture. He had ten more to flip, but the first one was worth a million words!
‘How did you get these?’
‘She sent them to me.’
‘Now you see Brian. I am glad you can see.’
‘Save it Brian.’
I left him standing near his black leather seat. His Papa seat like he liked to call it. Three years, two betrayals and the greatest of them with my best friend. She was on a mission, so was he. She wanted to prove a point. Guess we both know Nelly wins this round!
Love doesn’t hurt, lovers do.
Love isn’t blind, lovers are.
Love doesn’t cheat, lovers do.
Love doesn’t forgive, people in love do.
So here I am in my tower.
I can hear their voices down stairs. Up here, everyone is an ant- ants dressed in black. I’ve always loved black. Nothing exudes power like black! Some apologize, others pity- but I love my tower. It is the only place that his scent doesn’t haunt me. It’s the only place I can breathe.
They all know. Grace told all of them about him. She let them know he was a dog. She told the whole world about Brian. Now, what’s left of me is my dignity. I hold my head up high. I walk among the vultures. I can see Mary, Neischa, Daisy, and Nelly- his conquests. On my left hand finger is his promise to me alone. I cannot be mad at Brian. I reckon that bitterness is long gone. Brian is nothing like me. His love is different from mine.
The gravel below is a beautiful bed. I could jump off this window and catch up with him. We can argue till eternity. But, he stormed out on me. He stormed out and in his rage was welcomed by an electric pole hours later. The Coroner’s report said his blood-alcohol content was too high. The man even asked me if he could breathe with that much liquor in him.
I know he could have. My Brian had it in him to do the impossible.
But never in my life did I dream of him never returning home. So here I am in my dungeon- he’s downstairs. He’s confined in wood. Now he knows what it feels like to be four-walled.
When I leave this room, I leave in peace. I leave knowing I loved. Love didn’t let me down, Brian did. He let me down four times. My mind tells me I killed Brian, but my heart…my heart says I died before him and maybe, just maybe…there’d be a chance for us in the afterlife.