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Christmas is almost here and I’m excited; it’s the day our Lord and Saviour was born…
Here’s the second to the last episode of Broken Pieces of Me. Enjoy! 🙂
The days were getting bearable for Linda, but she still felt that something worse was coming. She hated the feeling. What else could Moses do to her? Did he have other children outside? Fear gripped her heart. She hoped that was not the case.
She was taking care of her baby in her mother’s house along with her other children. She had told them they were spending sometime with their grandmother.
Moses’ mother had come to see her earlier on that morning. Her own mother had gone out with Victoria to buy food-stuff in the house.
“Beautiful baby girl. We should name her Adaeze. Don’t you think so?” Her mother-in-law said as she held her grand-daughter in her arms.
Linda nodded. It was a beautiful name. But she was thinking more of . . . “Isabel. That’s the name I want to give her.”
Her mother-in-law nodded. “It’s a good name. What about Moses? Has he decided on a name for the baby?”
“We haven’t discussed it yet.” Despite the fact that his mother hadn’t said anything to her yet, Linda wondered if she knew about the problems between her and her and her son.
“You people should discuss it fast. I know things have not been so easy between the both of you, but you both can’t just give up on your marriage. You have to fight for it. Fight for your happiness. Most importantly fight for your children.”
Linda shook her head and turned away from her mother-in-law’s gaze. “Mama, should I condemn myself to a life of sorrow and unhappiness just for the sake of my children? I don’t believe in that.” Linda didn’t see the disconcerted look on her mother-in-law’s face.
“He is never there for them. What kind of lifestyle or example am I setting up for my children? That you should be in a marriage and suffer? I’m supposed to be depicting the kind of relationship Jesus has with His church. So far that is not what has happened.”
Linda knew she had promised to give him another chance. But she couldn’t shake off the fear. She couldn’t chase away the thoughts of him touching another woman and kissing her. It made her cringe!
Her mother-in-law rose up from her seat and went off to place the sleeping baby in her crib. She walked back to her seat and looked at Linda.
Are those tears in her eyes? “Mama what’s the matter?”
The older woman let out a heavy sigh. “My dear it’s all that you said that has me like this. . .”
“Mama I didn’t say it to offend you -”
“No. No. I know you’re just expressing yourself. I understand all that you’re saying. I have been through the same situation. But unlike you I chose to stay with my husband. I chose to stay because of my children.”
Linda felt like running away from the room out of embarrassment. She had forgotten Moses’ mother had also been through tough times in her marriage. “I- I’m sorry mama.”
The older woman looked deep in thought. “Back then things were different. Not so much woman power back then as we have it now. Where would I have gone? Both of my parents stayed far away in the village. I didn’t want that kind of life for my children. I didn’t want them doing farm work and then let Theresa be married off to any man. I wanted better for my children.
“My joy was secondary. My pain was kept at a distance. All my love and affection were directed to my children. There was nothing else that could be done. So I endured as much as I could. I knew he had children outside. I knew he had lovers.” The older woman finally looked at her. “But I had my children. They were my primary joy. It hurts me to see my son this way, but my dear I’m not saying you should suffer. Do what you want. The only thing I can do is advice and pray for you. I know Moses is willing to change. Has he ever said that to you before?”
Linda shook her head. Then again he had never confessed to his disgraceful sexual urges before.
“Then why not give him a chance? Even Jesus gives us chances when we sin against Him.”
“I’m not Jesus.”
Her mother-in-law smiled. “Neither is Moses. He was never a Christian when you married him.”
The wedding had been beautiful. Food. Dancing. Love. It was wonderful. Her sister made a gorgeous bride and Kamal had been all smiles. Tomike had invited Tunde and he had looked handsome in his blue Guinea Brocade attire. They had sat together and gisted, except for the few interruptions when she had to attend to different things that required her attention.
The woman Tomike had been filling in for at the studio had finally resumed, leaving Tomike with little to do. But then her boss had given her great news. He had created a slot for her on air and it had been a great surprise to her and her family. It also meant an increment in salary for her.
The year was turning out to be fabulous. At the beginning she hadn’t expected to forgive her uncle. She hadn’t expected to surrender her life to Christ. She hadn’t expected a lot of things. Mostly, she hadn’t expected to fall in love with Dr. Tunde Coker. . . Yes, she finally admitted it to herself that she really liked him.
Wasn’t he too old for her? Was she not too young for him in the first place? How did he feel about her? Did he just see her as his little sister? As someone he could mentor? But then again Stella had mentioned that he had a girlfriend. Tomike shook her head.
The questions bugged her and she couldn’t help but wonder if she was just wasting her time thinking about a man who had no feelings for her. He was the kind of man she wanted to be with. He was God-fearing, kind, compassionate about other people and was fighting for those who had been molested and raped. He was a nice man and so far they seemed to have a lot in common.
But she was discovering more about her love with God. Looking into the story of Ruth in the bible, she was a virtuous woman. A woman that had been through a lot of pain but was still willing to take another chance at life. She had a mother-in-law that was bitter and in a sour mood but was still able to show affection towards her. Tomike knew despite her sordid past, her future was bright; whether it included Tunde or not.
Victoria was elated when she heard what Sandra said.
“Yes o! I told him I wasn’t interested in getting married to him. I heard he had been married twice already but his marriages didn’t work out ‘cause both of his wives were dead.”
Victoria shuddered. “So what made you make the decision not to marry him? You don’t want to be deceased wife number three?”
“I’m so happy you aren’t marrying him. Deep within me it just didn’t feel right.”
“Yeah. I hope one day a man who would sweep me off my feet and be able to take me for who I am would come my way.”
Victoria smiled. “I know someone who’s perfect for you Sandra. He’s told me about you. He said He loves you and would love to spend time with you. He said He knows all about what you did and wants to be with you still. In short, He’s crazy about you.”
The excitement in her friend’s face couldn’t be missed. “Are you serious? Who’s this guy? Why didn’t you tell me since? Let me meet him.”
“It’s the same guy that has been seeking out your attention and love for him ever since.”
Sandra’s brow furrowed. “Who? The gardener?”
Victoria laughed. “No jor!”
Sandra hissed. “You have started again.”
Victoria looked at her in amazement. “I really don’t understand why you get like this.”
“Vicky, it’s not like I don’t believe He exists. But telling me to surrender all of my life to Him . . . It means I can’t be myself any-more. It means I have to stop prostitution even if that’s what gives my children and I food to eat.”
“What if there’s a better way to it all?”
Her friend scoffed. “By selling cakes?”
Victoria could have felt bad at her friend’s jab but she wasn’t. “I’m doing what I love to do. I know you’re not.”
“Victoria you wouldn’t understand. I’m not ready for committing myself to God, it’s not what I want to do right now.”
Victoria nodded. She would continue to pray for her friend. She wouldn’t pressure her.
“How does it feel like living with your former lover’s wife?”
Victoria rolled her eyes. “It leaves me feeling guilty. It’s hard looking into her eyes when she talks to me. I can’t wait to leave the house.”
“Leave and go where? I hope she doesn’t find out any-time soon.”
Victoria felt a heavy burden on her. She wanted Linda to know the truth, but then it would bring a lot of pains and probably the end of a marriage.
Moses parked his car outside the house and got out. He went to the passengers seat and brought out the Chinese food he had purchased for his wife, children and mother-in-law. The aroma drifting from the hot food grabbed his stomach and it growled. He hurried to the house at the back and pressed on the door bell.
He was there for five minutes. His fingers were beginning to ache and he pressed down the knob again. He didn’t have to wait that long when he heard the door being unlocked. Nothing could have prepared him for who he saw standing in-front of him. He felt his heart leap; for joy or fear? He couldn’t decipher.
“M-Moses good afternoon.”
He frowned. “What are you doing here?”
“I stay here. Let me help you with the bags -”
He pushed her hands away. “What do you mean you stay here?
Linda’s mother walked up to them at that moment. “Please would you lower your voice!” She hissed at him. “You want your wife to start questioning you? Victoria collect those things from him and take them to the kitchen. Moses follow me to the study now.”
Moses, half reluctant and half glad to be free of the load, relinquished the bags to Victoria. He walked past the living room and down the hall to the study. Linda’s mother closed the door after them.
“Mum I can explain . . .”
“Okay I’m listening.”
He pointed at the door. “That girl shouldn’t be in this house! She’s a home-wrecker. A prostitute and a good for nothing! She tried seducing me sometime ago. She shouldn’t be near my wife and children.”
Linda’s mother raised her brow. “Oh really? Is that all?”
Moses frowned at her reaction. It wasn’t what he had expected. He thought she would be shocked and have her throwing Victoria’s bags out. “Yes that’s all.”
She shook her head at him. “I’m very disappointed in you Moses. There’s never a time you don’t let me down and prove to me that you are the wrongest man for my daughter.”
He was confused. “Mum I don’t understand -”
“Victoria is a prostitute? She’s a home-wrecker? Okay. How many times did you tell her to abort your children?” Moses jerked back. “Weren’t you the one that rented an apartment for her to live in?”
“Mum where did you get all these lies from? She has been lying to you and you’re believing her.”
“For once in your life Moses be a man.”
He licked his lips and rubbed the back of his head. He took a seat on the long couch in the study. “You’re right mum. I have been a liar and a cheat. A terrible husband and father.”
“When are you going to tell Linda?”
He shook his head. The thought of telling Linda another part of his betrayal frightened him. He believed it would push her to get the divorce. He couldn’t risk it. “If I tell her she would leave. I don’t want to lose my wife.”
“But you can’t build your home on lies and deceit. If you want to start afresh you have to do it with all the cards on the table. You have to let her know the truth and decide if she wants to be with you or not. Moses start manning up. Start accepting responsibilities for your actions.
“See how you tainted that girl few minutes ago. We happened to meet ‘cause her friend stays in the front house, and we started talking without her knowing you were my daughter’s husband. She told me about it and surrendered her life to Christ. It was when Linda came here that she knew and told me all about it.”
Moses was baffled at the turn of events. “And you still let her stay here after everything?”
“Yes. She’s not a terrible person. She’s like a daughter to me and I have forgiven her for everything.”
“Linda won’t want her here -”
“You bet I won’t!”
The both of them turned around to see Linda standing there. Her eyes blazed with anger, pain, tears.
“Moses you are such a bastard! Mum how could you let her stay here?” She addressed the both of them.
Her mother stepped forward. “My dear please speak to your husband first.”
“No! The both of you betrayed me. You,” she stared at him, “for sleeping around. And you,” she looked at her mother, “for harbouring my husband’s lover in this house.”
“Linda please it’s all my fault. Let me explain everything that happened.”
Linda turned on her heels and started shouting Victoria’s name. The both of them looked at each-other and ran out the door to see what Linda was going to do.
“Yes aunty!” She called out and ran down the stairs. Unfortunately, both Linda’s mother and Moses were unable to prevent the first slap that came across Victoria’s face and causing her to fall to the ground.
“Cheap prostitute! You have been living in my father’s house and eating our food while making fun of me. You slept with my husband and decided to play me for a fool here? Get your things and get out of this house right now.”
Victoria struggled to get up and Moses could see the tears on her face even as she pressed a hand on her cheek. “Please ma forgive me. Please -”
“Shut up and get out of this house right now or you would regret it.” Linda cut her off.
Linda’s mother came to stand beside Victoria. “Linda please hear us out first. Don’t behave so rashly when you’re angry. It won’t solve anything.”
“Linda your mother is right. Listen to me first.” Moses said. He was avoiding looking at Victoria.
“It’s either you send her out of this house or I go out of this house and sleep on the streets.”
“Mrs. Johnson I would go.”
“My dear I’m not sending you away . . .”
Victoria nodded. “I know ma. You are the kindest woman I have ever met. You have treated me as your own daughter even when I didn’t deserve it. I – I know it’s a tough decision for you to make. Thank you for everything ma.”
Victoria hurried up the stairs to get her things.
Linda turned to face him. “And you, get ready to meet at court.”
God why did I get married to this man? Why did I marry him despite knowing he was a cheat? Linda asked herself over and over again as tears rolled down her cheeks. She hated him. She hated him so much, that whatever love she had felt for him was nowhere in her heart. I hate him! I hate him!
There were knocks on her door. Moses pleading for her to let him in. But she didn’t want to see his face. She thought about calling Ifeoma, but thought better of it. She just wanted to be alone. The thoughts were biting her. She couldn’t place a face to any of the women he had been with, but now she could picture him and Victoria.
the little prostitute was beautiful. She was slim; a physical attribute Linda had deviated from long long ago.
“Moses why did you hurt me so much? Why?”
Tomike woke from her sleep early the next morning and was greeted with a text message from Tunde asking her how her night was and if they could meet up later on in the evening.
She smiled and sent him a text message. She also wanted to meet up with him. The time didn’t go as fast as she wanted it to. Tomike had called her sister and asked what she could wear out. Bimbo had suggested she check her wardrobe for some clothes she had left behind. Tomike had picked out a black pant trousers with leather pockets and a grey over the shoulders blouse. Then a low-heel silver sandals. They would do perfectly!
Tomike had just finished dressing up when her mother called her down. She met Tunde ten minutes later, discussing with both her parents about politics in America and whether he agreed with what Trump, a politician in America that was running to be president, planned to do. Tunde rose up when she had descended the stairs.
The smile and admiration on his face was affirmation to the fact that she looked good. They greeted her parents good-bye and headed off to wherever he had planned. It turned out to be dinner at Protea Hotel.
He asked about her sister and how work was going. Tomike said her sister was settling down properly as a married woman. She shared with him about her job and a few other things.
“Congratulations. I see you going to greater heights. This is just the beginning for you. You’re young and you have your whole life ahead of you. You have a lot to achieve”
She smiled. “Thanks.”
“Honestly Tomike the way you smile these days . . .”
Tomike raised her brow, smiling. “What happened to my smile?”
“Its irresistible. You’re shining.”
“It’s the glory of the Lord my brother.”
“Your brother? I don’t want to be your brother.”
“So what would you like to be? My mentor? My uncle? My friend? My father in the Lord??” He laughed at that. “Tell me what you would like to be.”
Tunde cleared his throat. “I would like to be your friend.”
Tomike felt disappointment in her heart. She felt something heavy drop in her stomach. “I would love you to be my friend.”
“But not just my friend. I want to be more than a friend to you. I want to get to know more about you. I want us to be a couple.”
Her eyes widened and she couldn’t help but express shock. “What? Are you for real?”
He chuckled. “Yes, I’m for real. Do you think I’m too old for you?”
Tomike chuckled. “I actually thought I was too young for you. I was thinking you wouldn’t want to spend time with someone you saw as your little sister. I thought a lot of things.”
“Really?” Tunde sat up and leaned towards her. “Please tell me.”
“Trust me you don’t want to know.”
“I really want to know.”
Tomike leaned in as well. “Okay let’s do it this way. Tell me the nickname you always had in mind for me and I would tell you a little bit of the thoughts and throw in a question as well.”
“I’m game. As for nickname, I would have liked pretty eyes.”
“Because you have really beautiful eyes. The first time I saw you it was your eyes that got my attention first. I was captivated. Enthralled. Beguiled. Entranced. . . “
Her hand flew to her mouth as she laughed and probably blushed. “Okay, okay I get the point. I know you’re a very educated man. You like my eyes. Thank you.”
He smiled. “You’re welcome. Not just your eyes though. I like your smile, your laughter.”
Gosh, was it getting hot or what?
“Alright. Thank you so much Dr. Coker.”
“You are very much welcome. Now tell me your thoughts and ask your questions.”
Tomike bit her lip, suddenly growing nervous. “I thought maybe you saw me as too young, probably you didn’t really like me and you saw me as your sister or someone you could mentor.”
“Hmm, well now you know none of the above is true. So what’s the question?”
“Don’t you have a girlfriend already?”
“No, I don’t.
She reminded him of what Stella, a colleague of hers, had said about him. “And I also remember what you told me at Terrakulture.”
“Okay let me confess.”
Tomike swallowed hard. “I’m all ears.”
“I was hoping one day we would go out. I had to tell Stella off ‘cause I wasn’t interested in her and didn’t want you to get into trouble at work. So the the secret is out. I have always liked you.”
The ‘confession’ overjoyed her.
“So what do you feel about me? Am I too old for you? You see me as your father-figure? Your older brother?”
She smiled. “I like you. You have always been good to me. I don’t see you as my older brother or father-figure.”
“I’m glad.” He said.
“Me too.” She replied. “Me too.”
Watch out for the last episode this week. . .