Rosita stood by the side of the road and dialled her husband’s number again and this time, he answered.
“Where are the kids?” She asked.
“They are with me…” He said.
She bit her tongue from telling him what was on her mind.
“I want to pick them up.” She simply said.
“I’m not with them right now but when they get back, I’ll bring them to the house.” He said.
“You’re not with them right now? Where in the world are my kids?” She yelled.
“Vivica took them out for ice cream.” He said.
“Who? Vivica did what?” She yelled.
“The kids are mine too and Vivica is my woman and she has a right to play second mother to them.”
Rosita tried so hard to calm herself, she closed her eyes and spoke to God within her heart, begging for strength and patience.
“You left the house without so much as a word and you haven’t taken care of the kids’ upkeep or welfare since then. I delayed picking them up from school because my car broke down and after taking a public transport to my children’s school, I find that they are not there because you picked them up. Now, you’re asking that your mistress plays the part of second mother to my children. My children!”
“You seem to forget that they are my children too and Vivica is not my mistress.”
“Oh really, so if she’s not your mistress, what is she then?”
“I didn’t want to tell you this over the phone but…I can’t avoid the topic anymore.”
“What do you mean by that?” She asked.
“I want a divorce…because I am going to marry Vivica.”
Rosita felt as though her heart was pulled out of her chest and as she closed her eyes to recuperate from the pain, she opened her eyes to some sort of relief.
“Rosita…” Her husband called. “I wanted to tell you about this when we see face to face but since you called…”
She still kept silent.
“Are you okay?” He asked.
“Yes…yes I am. Please tell me where I can pick my kids.” She said.
“I’ll bring them to the house once Vivica brings them back from the ice-cream place.” He said.
“Rosita…” He called.
“I am sorry.” He said.
She ended the call.
Marianna watched her husband rejoice and call his family members including his mother. Her phone rang off the hook as everyone called to congratulate her. Despite the calls and felicitations, Marianna felt so empty inside. She had tried playing smart but had ended up ending her ex-boyfriend’s marriage and probably destroying the happy family he had built.
She sat on the bed and stared unseeingly at the television. She was sad and was feeling very depressed. Her husband opened the door to the bedroom, he had a wide smile on his face.
“Have you called your friends? Patricia and Rosita…” He said with an excited smile on his face.
“You’re still in shock am I right?” He asked, sitting beside her.
She nodded and forced a smile at him.
“Can you call them to come?” He asked.
“Call them to come? Why?” She asked.
“Let’s celebrate. This weekend. Let’s have our friends over and have a toast.” He said.
Marianna looked at her husband and didn’t know what to say.
“I’ll…try to call them…it’s just that they are busy and…errm…” She sighed.
“Call them and tell them that we’re having a get-together on Friday night and that they are invited.” He said.
She nodded and he got up from the bed and rushed out of the room to call his god-mother and relay the good news.
Marianna looked at her phone and sighed, she placed a call to Patricia who answered on second ring.
“Hello Marianna, long time.” Patricia said in an excited voice.
“You sound happy.”
“Whooo hooo…of course I’m happy. I’m getting married.”
Marianna sat up in surprise.
“Are you for real?”
“Yep! Chuks is going to propose to me.”
“Really? Did he tell you?” Marianna asked.
“Well…not exactly but I can feel it. I finally let go of my insecurities and I am getting what I’ve always wanted.” She said in triumph. “So, what’s up?”
Marianna took a deep breath and said.
“I’m pregnant and Ifeanyi wants us to celebrate.”
“What? Oh my God!” Patricia screamed. “Whaaaat??? Tell me the truth, the child is not your husband’s. You took my advice.”
“Keep your voice down. Of course the child is my husband’s.”
“Oh yeah! Then how come you got pregnant now after my advice instead of after a thousand years of prayers and fasting.”
“That’s not the reason I called. Are you free on Friday night? We’re having a small get together.”
“No, I won’t ooo…I promised someone that I’ll be at her engagement party on Friday so I won’t be able to make it but I am so proud of you for thinking outside the box.”
“Stop saying that.”
“I know you well Marianna and from the tone of your voice, I can feel your unhappiness because you feel that what you’ve done is wrong but remember the saying that goes thus ‘when life gives you lemons, make lemonade’. You made lemonade with your life and I am proud of you for that.”
“So, you’re not coming for the party?” Marianna said trying so hard to change the topic.
“Nope…but if I finish from the engagement party on time, I would stop by. I hope you understand how important it is for me to attend this party especially because I am getting married soon and I have to learn from those who…”
“It’s okay…I understand.”
“Have you called our holier than thou sister?”
“Not yet.” Marianna said.
“I’m sure you’ll call her and even in the midst of her problems, she will say something like this,‘my darling sister, I would definitely be there to pray with you and hold your hand through it all’ hehehehehehe….”
“Stop it…I have to hang up now.” Marianna said quickly and hung up.
She called Rosita’s number as soon as she was done talking to Patricia but the phone rang twice and there was no answer.
Rosita paced her living room and as she paced, she said words of prayers and repeated them over and over again.
“Dear Jesus, please help me…help me control this raging anger within me…help me…help me..” She said as tears fell from her eyes as she paced.
She had come back home and had tossed her phone and bag in her bedroom and rushed out to the living room to wait for her husband to drop off her children.
As she paced and prayed, it felt as though the knot within her heart was slowly being loosened. She was still praying and pacing when she heard a knock at her door.
She walked over to open the door to see her husband’s mistress, Vivica, standing at her door holding her children by the hand.
“Mummy!” Her children chorused as they rushed to hug her.
“Hello babies…I’m sorry for not coming to pick you up on time.” She said to them.
“I told the headmistress to call daddy because I missed him.” Her daughter started.
“It’s okay, go inside and remove your uniforms.” Rosita said.
Vivica stood there and stared at Rosita with a smile on her face.
“Hi, I’m Vivica.” She said.
“I know, we’ve met.” Rosita said, recalling her from the last year Christmas party at her husband’s office.
“Well…I insisted on bringing the kids inside. We brought them here together but he…he doesn’t really want to face you errm…this is awkward but I hope we can be friends.” She said referring to her husband.
Rosita wanted to fling it to her face that how did she think that she could be friends with her husband’s mistress but she bit her tongue.
“Thank you for bringing the kids.” Rosita said. “God bless you.”
Vivica looked at her and seemed stunned, she had thought that Rosita would hurl insults at her and perhaps tear her to pieces with her bare hands.
“I also want you to know that I didn’t steal your husband from you, we love each other.”
“I am aware of that.” Rosita said. “If you don’t mind, I need to attend to my kids.”
Vivica nodded and left, Rosita quietly shut the door in her wake. As soon as she turned the key in the lock, she crouched to the ground and wept bitterly.
To be continued….