Monday, 9 July 2018

When A Woman Cheats Episode 3-4

After the warning from Dawson I steered clear of him. I practically kept out of his and Thandi's way and just did my own thing although most of the time my mind wandered to my dark skinned stranger. I could still feel the heat of his lips on mine and this was what I was fantasizing about as I sat on my dressing mirror. I was supposed to be preparing for work bug couldn't help but fantasize about the man and how just one kiss from him made me feel alive.
It had been ages since I felt beautiful and alive. Caleb literally made me feel worthless and ugly most times. The knock on my door is what pulled me out of my reverie. I stood up slowly knowing that Dawson was the one at the door. I opened the door slowly then stood there between the slightly ajar door. Dawson stood there staring at me. On any other day I would have taken time to admire how he was dressed but at that moment I just wanted him gone.
"Caleb called. He says he will be landing around lunch time and he needs someone to pick him."
"I see. Unfortunately today is impossible for me. The major shareholder at work is bringing in his nephew who is expected to take over the running of the company. I am unable to excuse myself," I said as I folded my hands.
Dawson ran a hand through his head. "Then I will make a plan and see how best to pick him up."
I plastered a fake smile on my face. I wasn't looking forward to having Caleb home. Him being away was always a relief for me. I didn't have to walk around egg shells. I had grown to hate him so much that I had reached an extent of wishing death upon him.
"Thanks. I will try to be home early so that I can prepare dinner," I said.
Dawson nodded. He spared me a glance and was about to say something but I took a quick glance at my wrist watch.
"I will be late. Let me finish getting ready."
He nodded then wished me a good day and he walked away. I quickly returned to the dressing mirror and finished with my make up and styled my hair. In my heart I said a silent prayer asking God to not allow Dawson to tell Caleb about my kiss with the stranger. I feared what he would do. I then grabbed the jacket I had lain on my bed and pulled it on. I had decided to wear my read pants suit with a black top. I then slipped on black heels and grabbed my bags. I met the maid as she was just walking into the house. I told her to remove mince meat for dinner and pluck some sweet potato leaves from the garden. I then hurried to the car.
I was at work after an hour of being on the road. I quickly turned on my laptop and went through my emails before the morning meeting which was to be held at 8:30. I spoke to a few of my surbodinates before the meeting making sure that all their assignments were met. I then headed for the meeting. The boss wasn't there yet so I sat chatting with the Human resource Manager. She was a jovial middle aged woman. In different circumstances I would have shared my problems with her but I always feared getting people into trouble especially with the influence that he was generating with his new contacts.
The door opened and there was silence in the conference room as the CEO walked it. As major share holder he had opted to run the company himself. It was a family business even though 20% shares belonged to a certain Indian gentleman who lived in Ndola. The cologne hit me first and my head immediately went up. I would never forget the scent of that specific cologne. My heart stopped beating momentarily as I took in the stranger who had been haunting my dreams.
Damn he looked better during the day. His face was clean shaven and he looked as though he just had his hair cut recently. He was in a black suit and white shirt. A certain arrogance about him oozed off as he stuffed his hands inside his pockets. Well the expression of saying God took time to create certain people was true. The CEO cleared his throat making me trurn my eyes to hom instantly.
"Good morning Ladies and gents. I am so glad you could all make it this morning. I will not take too much of your time. I know we need to plan for the day and give out departmental reports but before we start allow me to introduce Oscar my nephew. He just came into the country a few days ago and is here to learn the ropes. Aftet the meeting I will take him round so that he can meet each and everyone of you individually and as days go he will sit with each of you and get to knowq what you do on a daily basis.
"Please welcome him and make him feel as part if the team."
We all murmures our hallos and welcomes and I watched as he sat down. He didn't spare me a glance and I felt quite disappointed. Had he forgotten me? Was he used to just kissing random ladies at will? I stared at him again hoping there was some sign of recognition in hos eyes but there was none. I felt cheated. I told myself to remain calm and quashed my hurt ego.
The meeting went on for forty minutes and I told myself to be the professional that I was and to forget someone who clearly had no recollection of me. I couldn't even believe that I had spent time fantasizing over him,mtcheww.
After the meeting I hurried away not wanting to be around him and appear to be happy when in actual fact I was boiling mad. I rushed to myswlf and burried myself in work. I only looked up when Tendai the tea lady brought me my coffee and a sandwich. She normally sold scones and sandwiches just to make extra income and we supported her as much as I could. I wa busy reviewing a file on my laptop when I smelt the cologne. I looked up to see Oscar and his uncle walk into my office.
"Son,this is Kasamba. She is our finance manager. She is very smart. When she took ovr everything was a mess but she cleaned up and put everything in place. She is an asset."
I stood up and extended my hand. I was good with poker faces so I told myself to be nice. Immediately our hands touched I felt this surge of electricity which caused me to gasp. Oscar narrowed his eyebrows as he stared me in the eyes. I pulled my hand hastily away. He smiled in amusement. I turned away from him and cleared my throat and smiled.
"Thank you sir but I can't take all the credit. My team has been exceptional. I couldn't have asked for better people to work with."
"She is also modest," our CEO Mr. Sikazwe said.
Oscar nodded then turned to his uncle. "Do you mind if I spend some time with our Finance guru and get an idea of our standing financially?"
"Not at all son..Kasamba Oscar here has an MBA and before that he majored in statistics and economics. He is very good with numbers so please make good use of him."
I promised to do just that and waited for Mr. Sikazwe to leave before settling into my seat and pointing at the seat opposite me. Oscar unbuttoned his jacket before he sat. I watched as he crossed his long legs. For a moment I lost myself in admiring the god who sat before me.
"Like what you see?"
His question made me drop my gaze. I was embarrassed to have been caught out. I heard him chuckle and I could feel my cheeks burn with embarrassment. I cleared my throat.
"What would you like to look at?"I asked quickly.
"The management accounts. I want to know where we stand financially. If I am to take over I need to know how profitable we are."
"I see. Do you want soft copies or...."
"Run me through everything on your laptop and what we won't touch I can go through this evening. It isn't like I have any plans."
I nodded and told myself to just be professional. I started running him through last year's audit report and the signed financials. He asked really intelligent questions and pointed out areas that needed to be worked on.
"There is always room for improvement,"he said as he leaned back in his seat. He then glanced at his watch.
"Wow! No wonder I am starving. Is that the time?"
I looked at my own watch;it was 13:30.
"I am sure you would like to join your uncle for lunch. He normally goes home for lunch."
"Aunt Sarah is a great cook. I don't blame uncle but I was thinking something meaty. I hear the steakhouse has excellent steaks. Want to join me? We can turn it into a working lunch."
I wanted to refuse but he wouldn't take no for an answer. So I gathered my bag and laptop and told my second in charge that I was off and to handle whatever came. Oscar suggested we use one of the company cars and he optes ro drive. The drive to the restaurant was quiet with me wondering what the hell was wrong with me and drooling over a man who obviously would never notice me.
We finally got to the restarant. I ordered steak drapped in mushroom and pepper sauce with chips and a side salad while Oscar ordered the sizzling rump steak,the special for the day. I had to say the meat was very delicious. It practically melted in my mouth.
"That look. It is the same look that you had the night I kissed you."
I looked up sharply as he said that. "Pardon?"
"A lady like you doesn't suit to have their mouths gaped open in wonder. Now eat up. We have work to do."
Again the disappointment. I guess my brain was playing tricks on me again.
I got home a bit after nineteen and I prayed I wouldn't oay for my tardiness. Maybe with Dawsin around Caleb wouldn't dare hit me. I walked into the house and found them seated at the bar area having drinks.
"Ahhhh,my wife finally gets home," Caleb said as he walked towards me and kissed me roughly.
His eyes were cold and that sent shivers down my back. He wasn't pleased.
"Welcome back darling. Let me just change and prepare supper then we can discuss your trip,"I said sweetly.
He nodded and I hurried away. I knew Dawson had watched the exchange in interest. I took off my clothes and pulled on a vest and chitenge. I would shower later. I then hurried to the kktchen. I made meatballs with gravy and then cooked the sweet potato leaves and then the nshima. I set the table and then called out to the men. Both ate heartily while I played with my food.
"Not hungry?" Caleb asked as he sipped his juice.
His eyes had a dangerous glint that put me on edge.
"My tummy fees a bit bloated," I said quietly.
He smiled then turned to Dawson. I waited for them to finish eating before clearing the table and went to clean up the kitchen. I then went to bath. As I got out of the bathroom I found Caleb seated on the bed sipping what looked like whiskey.
"So you failed to pick me up because you were whoring around in town?" He said angrily.
I knew that tone well. "I had a working lunch with my boss."
"Boss my foot. You seemed too cosy!"he snapped as he jumped up.
I took a step back but he was too quick for me. His hand was suddenly round my throat. I felt my eyes burn as he squeezed hard. I could feel the air leave my airways.
"It is true,"I saidwith some struggle.
He pushed me hard and I hit myself hard against the wall. The pain was bad but I took that opportunity to gulp in some air.
"I will not tolerate my wife whoring around. Is that why you work? I have no qualms about forcing you to stop!"
I wanted to answer but his back hand found its place on my face. "I will kill you before any other man can have you do you hear?"he said angrily as I slid to the floor.
Tears stung my eyes as another slap landed on my face. "You even came home.alte because of whoring around! I will not tolerate that. Your contract says you knock off at seventeen and I expect you home by eighteen."
"I swear I am not sleeping with Mr. Sikazwe's nephew. It was a working lunch!"I cried out.
"Wrong answer!"he hissed as he kicked me hard in my ribs causing me to curl into a foetal position.
"I will kill you! Do you hear me," he said as he kicked me again and again.
"Yes,"I said as I cried out in pain.
"Good. Now let us get one thing clear. I alone will have access to your body. I paid for you making you my property. I bought and own you! Get that into your thick skull," he said as he poked my Head hard.
I heard he walk out of the room and I lay on the cold floor crying. Why Lord,why? Why did I have to put up with that abuse? I slowly picked myself up and dragged myself to the bathroom. I filled the tub with hot water to ease my aches and then applied some pain lather. When I was done I drank some pain killers then slowly made my way to the bedroom. Caleb was snoring away still clad in his clothes and shoes. I quietly walked out of the room and into the kitchen. I removed a pack of ice and placed it on my face. I needed the swelling to go down. I let the tears spill as the ice worked on my face. No one ever got used to the abuse. Each time he hit me a part of me died. I had once had dreams but all those had gone down the drain. I had married a monster and there was nothing I could do to change that. I cried for my myself and for the future. I feared him forcing me to stop work. It was my only escape. I heard footsteps and that made me jump up. I couldn't let Dawson see me this way if it was him. I quickly placed the ice pack back into the fridge and then ducked under the kitchen table.

I waited until I was certain he had gone before I stood from my hiding spot. I leaned against the counter for a few minutes before I decided to head to the bedroom. I was sore all over and prayed that by morning I would be okay. I couldn't miss work especially with Oscae wanting to get the hang of the finances. I had just gotten into the passage way when the lights came on. I stood frozen.
My heart started beating wildly as he neared me; his eyes clearly angry. He took one look at me and his emotions seemed to have changed.
"How long?"
I looked at him in confusion. "How long what?"
"How long have you been Caleb's punching bag."
I shook my head. "I fell. He never laid a hand on me."
He laughed bitterly. "If this is due to falling then I am the queen of England. I know what a beating looks like."
I shifted uncomfortably. I didn't like how he was looking at me and whatever was going through his mind was not to be entertained.
"Forget that you saw anything...."
"I can't!" He said sharply. "Men who beat women are cowards! They deserve a fierce punishment."
My heart fell. "If you care at all about me then don't get involved."
He stepped closer to me. I wanted to move back but found myself rooted to the spot. He held out his hand and gently touched my jaw. It was sore. I didn't move nor breath.
"I watched my mother get beaten by a man for years. A man whose name I carry but she never left him. She said she stayed because of us but even when we were grown she stayed. I grew up hating my father and even when he died I felt nothing. He killed my mother each day he hit her but she loved him and said he would change some day. Don't let that be you. There is nothing to stay for; no children. You make your own money...."
I pulled away. He had no idea my pain. I turned my back on him as the fresh tears spilled.
"I tried leaving. I managed for a month but he tracked me down and I got such a beating. I have tried going to the cops but he has friends in high olaces and with his new political appointment I am stuck."
I felt his hands on my shoulder. I stiffened.
"I won't hurt you. A woman like you deserves better."
I looked up and prayed that Caleb wouldn't wake up.
"I pray and pray for a solution."
"I will help you," He said with so much conviction.
I turned to face him. He was so close. I could smell the listerine he had used.
"How?" I asked in a whisper.
"I will find a way. Trust me."
I dropped my head. He tiltled my chin upwards.
"I am sorry I misjudged you. I now see why at times your eyes are filled with sadness."
Before I knew it he engulfed me in a hug. I lay my head on his head and sobbed. I had never ever had someone try to understand my situation nor want to fight for me. I pulled away after a while and wiped my face with hands.
"Let me get back to bed before he awakens and finds my side empty. He hates that," I said Quickly.
Dawson nodded and gave way for me to pass. I was sure he stood in the passage watching me walk away. I wished he could help me but I knew my situation was useless. I opened the door quietly and got into the room. Caleb was snoring away. I guess he hadn't stirred one bit. I tip toed to the bathroom and washed my face then slowly walked back to the bedroom. I slid into the covers before giving Caleb my back. I prayed that Dawson wouldn't do anything reckless and endanger himself and I.
DAWSON
Watching her walk away tore at my heart. I had been angry at her and had actually called her names not really knowing her situation. Sighing I walked back to my room. I had heard her whimper as he hit her. It wasn't anything new. I had wanted to go check on what was hapoening but then again what if I was wrong and embarrassed myself? I didn't want to hurt my friendship with Caleb. He had been a good friend and well he was a brother. I walked into the adjoning bathroom and stripped. I was so angry and needed the cold water to calm me down.
I had almost spilled thd beans about the kiss I had witnessed between Kassie and the stranger. I had been really angry about it. And when I had mentioned to Caleb about whether she would ever cheat in him he had laughed.
"She wouldn't she knows what is good for her and she is my property. No other man will ever lay claim on her whilst I am alive."
His answer had puzzled me but now I understood. He believed he owned Kassie. How had I not seen the signs? The heavy make up and her emotional detachment. If one didn't look closely they wouldn't see that everything about Kassie was forced around Caleb. I wondered if he ever forced himself on her. Thst thought just made me angrier and I hit into the bathroom wall.
I must have been under the spray of water for ages before I told myself I needed to catch some sleep. I was worried about Kassie and I needed a way to help her. I could now see how unhappy she was. My mind immediately went to my mother. I hadn't seen her in years. I had lost contact with her after Dad died. I owed her a visit I thought as I lay on top of the covers. I would sleep nude. My mind went back to Kassie and her plea not to get involved. I quickly recalled Caleb boasting about his new political appoinment. He had been appointed as the new Permanent Secretary for Ministry of Justice. The announcement would be made the following day. I knew Kassie was right about fighting him at that laboured.
I had no idea how I slept with so much frustration. The rays of sunlight coming through the curtains are what woke me. I lazily gazed at my watch. It wa almost seven. I had a quick bath then dressed up. I decided to be in smart casual. I wore a black jean and light blue shirt. I then grabbed my car keys. Something smelt good as I made my way to the dining area. Something told me to turn into the kitchen and there she was. She was just removing the apron she wore when I entered.
Our eyes met momentarily before she dropped her gaze. I could see that she was wearing heavy make up again. Probably to cover her bruised eye and jaw. I allowed my eyes to trail down to what she wore. She had settled for a long sleeved body con maxi dress. She looked impecaable as always.
"I made pancakes, freshly squeezed orange juice then we have baked beans and fried sausages,"she said breaking the silence.
"Thanks," I said with a smile. "How did you sleep?"
She looked up from the tray she was setting up nicely. She poured coffee into a cup before she looked up.
"Please don't do anything that will get me into trouble."
I could see the fear in her eyes. I walked to her quickly and touched her shoulder. she flinched then her eyes quickly went to the kitchen door. I dropped my hand and then looked her deep in the eyes.
"I promise I won't....."
"Babe,where is my food!"
She looked at me one last time as if to say thank you before carrying the tray out. I gave her some time to be in the dining area before following her. Caleb was seated at the head of the table as usual. She quickly left before I sat.
"She doesn't eat?"I remarked.
He shrugged. "She has probably packed something for herself. She always wants to beat traffic and be at work on time. I don't understand why she should work when I give her everything."
"Some one want that sense of independence," I said as I watched his facial expression.
He seemed totally unfazed. "Maybe with my new appointment I can convince her to quit and concentrate on having babies."
"Will she agree?"
"I have my ways," he said proudly as he poured syrup on the pancakes.
I swallowed hard as I studied him. What sort of man took pleasure in tormenting a defenceless woman. I now realised that I didn't really know Caleb. Had he really changed that much whilst I was away? My thoughts were disrupted by the makd coming in carrying my tray of food. It smelled great. I didn't have an appetite but thinking about Kassie slaving away for us made me eat.
"So what are your plans for today?"
"I want to go and see mum,"I answered honestly.
"Oh really? What has happened?" He asked curiously.
I shrugged. "Nothing. I just miss her and it just time we reconciled,"I said picking up my jjice glass.
He nodded then started talking about his day and the upcoming announcement of his new position. After an hour we both left. As I drove to Kafue to see mum my mind went to Kassie. I had to find a way to help her minus Caleb knowing.

To be continued..

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