Daisy said nothing but kept at her juice. With the rate she was going, she could easily down a 500 gram pack of orange Juice in one sitting, but Daisy hardly cared. She knew Brenda was telling the truth, something she’d been so afraid to realise or deliberate upon. But now, hearing it from Brenda, the scales were gradually falling off her eyes. Jide was definitely cheating on her.
Daisy’s eyes turned misty as she gulped down another glassful of juice.
Bren: ‘you might wanna slow down on that’ Brenda asked calmly. She could now sense the effect her words were having & she was sorry.
Daisy shrugged and poured herself another. She could atleast drown her miserable life with Juice since it was nutritious anyways.
Bren: ‘okay, since you don’t wanna stop, there’s more where that came from.
Daisy: ‘all the better’ Daisy drawled. ‘It would be a perfect ending to a happy start’.
A painful silence passed, none spoke to the other, as each sat, lost in their thought. Then:
Bren: ‘I almost forgot! guess who called me yesterday?’ Brenda asked excitedly out of the blues, partly wanting to change the topic.
Daisy: ‘am not in the least interested’ Daisy replied coldly.
Bren: ‘come off it, this is a better news!’
Daisy: ‘and i said save…’
Daisy’s phone rang just then interrupting her. She rummaged in her bag, wondering who the caller was. Brenda was here, so it definitely wouldn’t be her. The other suspect would be mama, but she wasn’t expecting her call. Bringing out the phone, Daisy nearly fainted with surprise as she saw the caller.
Bren: ‘who’s calling’ Brenda asked, noticing the surprise on her Daisy’s face.
Daisy: ‘oh my God!’ Daisy said slowly, holding the phone like its a prized possession.
Bren: ‘would you spill already’ Brenda asked irritated.
Daisy: ‘its…its…its…Jide’ she stammered.
Bren: ‘so?’ Brenda asked, more irritated. She had thought it to be someone special, not atall expecting it to be Jide, with all these buzz.
Daisy: ‘you don’t get it! He doesn’t have my number, and I never knew he did, i got his from a business card sometimes ago and now he’s calling me! I wonder how!’
Bren: ‘the moon maybe’ she drawled ‘News flash! Jide’s calling his wife!’ she added and hissed.
The phone stopped ringing then, soon it started again.
Daisy: ‘what do i do now?’
Bren: ‘pick the damn call! Or better still switch damn thing off, why is he calling you anyways’ she said and hissed. Daisy eyed her then picked the call.
Daisy: ‘Hello’ she said timidly.
Jide: ‘hi. Uhm Daisy its Jide.
I know. Daisy answered in her mind then loudly she said:
Jide: ‘are you home yet?’
A pause, then:
Jide:‘are you coming home soon’
Daisy glanced at Brenda who was watching her intently.
Daisy: ‘am not sure. Is there something you wanted?’
A pause again.
Jide: ‘am not feeling so well at the office’
Daisy: ‘You’re sick? When did that…’
Brenda was by her side in a flash and dragged the phone from her.
Bren: ‘look here Mister, my friend is no Doctor, if you’re sick, find your way to a f.ucking hospital and stop intruding on our discussion’ Brenda shouted into the phone while Daisy, now standing, tried to retrieve the phone from her.
Jide: ‘I called to speak to my wife not a rude lady like you, so if you would kindly…’ Jide replied angrily
Bren: ‘or what? what can you bloody do?’
Daisy: ‘hand back the phone for pete’s sake Brenda!’ Daisy shouted and wrenched the phone successfully from her.
Daisy: ‘Jide are you still there?’ she asked moving away.
Bren: ‘you’re both perfect for each other!’ Brenda shouted angrily and went back to sit
Some minutes later, Daisy surfaced. She sighed and went to her seat, there she picked her bag and put the phone inside, turning to face Brenda, she said:
Daisy: ‘I gotta run’
Brenda raised a brow in shock ‘so soon?’ she asked
Daisy: ‘yeah, he’s not really sick, said he’s hungry or something’
Bren: ‘then what Great and mighty chef? you’re running to go fix him a recipe!’
Daisy: ‘I’ll call you later’ Daisy sighed.
Bren: ‘wasn’t I saying something before he called?’
Daisy: ‘that had got to wait. I will call you okay’ she started moving. ‘come give me a ride’ she added, even though She was sure Brenda wouldn’t accept.
Bren: ‘not on your life’ Brenda retorted.
Daisy: ‘okay then, I’ll call you later, just make sure you pick your call then’ she said and rushed out.
Brenda hissed bitterly. That man was gradually stealing her friend whom he wasn’t worthy of.
Bren: ‘What a waste!’ She cursed. Not giving Daisy another glance as she left…’
Out in the compound, Daisy stood a while before slowly walking to the gate. She hadn’t look forward to going yet, but the truth of Brenda’s word had affected her more than she had shown. It could be true that she’d been drinking Juice and fading away while Jide gallivanted with Grace out there. Then what had she been like to him? A woman only worthy enough to cook his meal and bear his wife? Undoubtedly things hadn’t kicked off on a conjugal note, but now her heart was heavy with grief, anger and feelings of being cheated and treated like a fool?
She’d giving up everything and now even longed to build back their marriage for what gain? Another cold slap upon her face. Grace had very well being in his life all along and he’d denied it that Saturday! Everything had been planned from the onset, and now he wanted a truce, a comeback like nothing ever happened! She’d see how far that went. They were going back to their old war, love or no love.
Daisy wiped the tears that had formed in her eyes and quickened her steps, stopping briefly at the gate, as the gateman addressed her.
Gateman: ‘you’re going already?’ the gateman asked.
What does it look like? Daisy was tempted to reply, instead she nodded and walked on to meet with a deserted road. Daisy sighed.
Daisy: ‘how hard is it getting a cab around here?’ she turned and asked the gateman who was standing at the gate.
Gateman: ‘you mean taxi?’
Gateman: ‘sorry but you’d have to walk a bit…oh! luck has found you’ he said as a taxi passed and dropped a lady few houses away.
Gateman: ‘you’d go with that when it heads out’ he said smiling.
Daisy smiled. This was interesting, the gateman here spoke English fluently unlike Adamu, their gateman. But then, from an estate like this, you wouldn’t expect any thing less. she concluded still smiling.
Daisy waved the taxi as it came closer now, it stopped and she went in, but to the back this time. She wanted so much to be alone. Alone to moan her plight.
Cab Driver: ‘madam where you dey go?’ the driver asked.
She gave him the name of the estate they lived.
Cab Driver: ‘that place far madam, your money go be…’
Daisy: ‘just go please, money isnt the issue here’
Cab Driver: ‘okay na’ the driver replied, kicked the engine and zoomed off.
Daisy didn’t look back as they drove out, didn’t notice Brenda run out from the gate, didn’t notice her ask the gateman some questions, didn’t notice her enter back in disappointment. Daisy couldn’t have because she was lost in her thought. Like a olive tree, Brenda’s harmless insinuation had planted a seed in her heart while Daisy watered it with her grief, self pity and anger.
Names have been changed to protect the identity of the narrator and other individuals in the story.
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