Alex flipped through the divorce papers. Lola wasn’t kidding. They were authentic, duly stamped by a notary stamp. She wasn’t even asking for anything. She just ‘wanted out’. Alex wiped some perspiration off his forehead. He grabbed the documents and hurried upstairs to their bedroom.
She was not in the room. His heart skipped a beat. (Did she disappear?) He knew she had gone upstairs, so where could she be?
“Lola!” he shouted. No response. He pondered for a moment in his heart and then he turned towards the bathroom and for the first time, he heard the shower sound. He took a deep breath and sat on the bed as he waited for her. The divorce papers were not going to deter him from apologizing to his wife. She had to find somewhere in heart to take him back.
Lola stepped out of the bathroom into the room with her towel tied to her chest. Alex swallowed as he fed his eyes on her body. She was still as alluring as the first day he set his eyes on her. ‘What did he even see in the women?’ he thought as he kept his gaze on her.
“What are you doing, Alex?” Lola asked.
Alex blinked as he stretched the divorce papers before her. “I won’t sign them.”
“Why not?” she asked. “I am done with this marriage.”
Alex was roused. “You can’t walk around this room in that body and say you are done with this marriage.”
Lola sighed as she stepped away from him. “Talk is cheap.”
“Babe, please.” Alex said as he got on his knees before her.
She took her seat on the bed. “I already told my parents. I am moving out.”
She nodded. “I can’t look at you anymore.”
Lola watched Alex’s eyes prey all over her body and his hands moved slowly to her legs. She had him where she wanted him. Tears streamed down her eyes as she stared at Alex. He lifted a finger to stop the tears from falling. Her heart raced fast as she watched him pull the towel slightly off her body. Alex was getting too close for comfort yet she couldn’t let him go.
Alex stared at her. Her eyes didn’t mean exactly what she said. Lola’s eyes gave her away at this moment…or was he picking the wrong signals? She wanted him. He could see it. Why was she saying she couldn’t look at him anymore when all he could see was the timid look of his wife on their wedding night? His heart beat fast as he moved closer to her. She didn’t draw away. She just stared at him. “I’m sorry.” He whispered.
Lola closed her eyes. She forgot her fears, her hurt and pain and let Alex make love to her.
A YEAR AGO
Alex stopped by a flower shop to pick up some flowers as he planned to meet Lola at a nearby coffee shop on the island. He knew she wasn’t the lady that would be buoyed by flowers, but then every woman is still a girl at heart and needs her prince, so he was going to be that. They had been together for quite some months and everything seemed to be going just fine for them. Lola’s career bloomed and his did same. Thoughts of getting married had crossed his mind but he wasn’t sure if Lola would want to be with him…just yet. Her life was just starting and he was ready to settle down. Lola was his choice and he wasn’t going to settle for another woman in his life. He was prepared to wait till whenever she would be ready.
Lola stared at her wristwatch as she waited for Alex. She had postponed her meeting with some clients to meet up with him and he was running late. She loved her job so much and it paid her well financially too. The clients she had put off for a later time were crucial to her firm, but she knew where her priorities did lie. It was with Alex. How he had crept into her heart and won her over was still like a mystery to her. She had vowed to break her own heart before anyone could after her last relationship, but with Alex, it just came easily. This time, she wasn’t going to give Alex a chance to hurt her, instead she was going to make sure they had something special. She was never the lady to give priorities to what could come secondary but she had learned not to back-pedal someone who cared about her.
Her last boyfriend would have been the ‘man of her dream’. Technically, every man that a lady ‘falls in love’ with turns out to be the man of her dream until there is just one man to complement that status and bring her own fairy tale to reality. It didn’t have to be the Cinderella story but it had to be their own story and with Alex, she was ready to join him in writing their own love story.
“Hey, beautiful.” Alex said as he stretched the flowers before her, interrupting her deep moment.
She smiled faintly as she stared at him. She took one glance at the flowers and then the other at him. “I don’t like flowers.” She said.
He nodded. “I know, but I am going to keep bringing them until you love them.” He then took his seat. “What are we having for lunch?”
“I don’t know. This is a coffee shop, they don’t serve main courses here.” She replied.
Alex frowned. “Then why did you let me choose this spot?”
Lola chuckled. “I am not responsible for your choices.”
“You are. Everything I do is for you.” He replied.
She smiled. “Then we have a serious problem.” She said with a perky smile.
“How so?” he asked as he took her hand from across the table.
She withdrew them in an instant. “Do you have to hold my hand to show you are in love?”
Alex smiled. “You need some romance in your life, Lola.”
“It means you are doing poorly for a lover then.” She replied with a girly smile.
He stared at her smile. He was sure he knew where his heart was. Every little thing she said or did looked like the big things to him. You know when someone you love just knows how to do and say all the right things or even knows how to make everything that feels wrong right? That’s special. Lola intimidated him, but she also possessed the heart that swallowed up his fears.
Lola was happy to love the right man. She wanted this to be forever. Alex’s charms and wits made him a charmer to any lady, but he was with her now…and that meant something. It meant everything. She couldn’t be sure of everything but she wasn’t seeking answers when no questions were posed at her. She was in love with Alex and yes, it was a beautiful feeling. Just thinking about something he says and finding all the right reasons to smile is a beautiful feeling.
“I love you, Lola.” Alex said. There he said it! After battling with the forces in his mind and with Jude constantly warning him against ‘letting a lady know you have gone rails for her’. He had said the most important word to her and she just sat there…silent. He was going to ask her to say something or even anything when she said;
“…and I love you, Alex Ojo.” Lola said with a smile.
And it was true…
Mr Idahosa was livid and with all the right reasons too. His best pitcher wasn’t at work. He had rung Alex’s phone to no avail and Jude had been trying for about an hour now and he was still nowhere to be found.
Jude stood before their boss trying to find all the logical explanations for why Alex’s return to work was taking forever. “Sir, I believe there is a tangible reason for this.”
“Tangible? Our clients are tangible! They are the ones with the substance. How am I going to make my millions if Alex is not here?” Mr Idahosa barked.
“Sir, I want to believe that maybe the traffic held him up.” Jude replied.
Mr Idahosa growled. “Traffic? At this time of the day? You must think I am an idiot! Did he tell you he was going somewhere else?”
Jude shook his head. “Sir, he went home to get a change of clothes. That’s all.”
“Why did he show up late this morning? Why did he have to go home for a change of clothes? Didn’t he sleep in his house last night?” Mr Idahosa blurted angrily. In all honesty, Alex’s personal life had never mattered to him, but his money mattered so much to him. Alex was key to almost all the funds that came into the bank. He owned the game…and he owned his boss too. Mr Idahosa knew better than to threaten his best man with a sack or it would delight their competitors to latch on to Alex. But that wasn’t enough reason for Alex to take him for granted. Actually it was…Alex literally had him by the balls in the bank.
Jude stared at his boss with some defiance. Between himself and Alex, they called him ‘fatso’ or ‘doughnut’. He was on the big side. Mr Idahosa enjoyed his role as President and played it out to the letter. He wasn’t half as good as his best employees hence he was at their mercy. Jude watched him as he lifted the receiver of the intercom and dished out orders to his secretary to get more cookies and tea for the clients.
Mr Idahosa rose to his feet and stared hard at Jude. “I am going to try to stall our clients for another hour and pray that Alex gets here before they move to the bank down the road!” he said. “And Alex had better not make me miss my lunch today.” He added as he stormed out of the office angrily.
Jude struggled with his phone’s screen as he tapped Alex’s number. The phone just buzzed again with no response. Then he dialled Lola’s phone.
A YEAR AGO
“Bro, you are really serious about getting married?” Jude asked as he watched Alex adjust his jacket.
Alex ignored him.
“Think about it, man. Is she putting pressure on you?” Jude asked.
Alex sighed as he picked the tiffany box from the table and put it into his jacket. “Dude, did you see her put a gun to my head asking me to marry her? I am the one shivering just in case she doesn’t want to marry me.”
“Hey, she might have put a mental gun to your head! Besides, who won’t want to be tied down to you? You are young, rich and successful!” Jude said.
Alex snapped. “She is younger, smarter, rich…maybe not richer and also successful! Who won’t want to marry her?”
Jude smiled. “I am just trying not to lose my best buddy to forever.”
“I am proposing to her tonight. I pray she says yes to me. I want to be with her.” Alex replied. “How is my tie? Should I wear a blue tie? I am kind of nervous about black.”
Jude tossed a blue tie to him. “So, are you ready for this? If she says yes to you, bro, you do know what that means, right?”
Alex blinked. “I am ready for this. Stop talking, Jude.” He replied.
Mr and Mrs David watched their daughter descend the staircase with beaming smiles on their faces.
“She is so delicate.” Her father whispered into his wife’s ears. “We should tell her.” He added with a soft chuckle.
“Don’t ruin the surprise.” His wife said through clenched teeth as Lola drew close to them.
Her father smiled as Lola stood before them with a smile. “Do I look good?”
“As beautiful as always, darling.” Her father replied.
Lola smiled and turned to her mother. “What do you have to say?”
“Your Father has already ‘hyped’ you. Does mine matter?” she asked with a faint smile.
“I am not leaving this place without you telling me how much you love me.” Lola said.
Mrs David smiled. “Of course, darling, I love you and you look very beautiful.”
“Have a good evening, my dear.” Her Father said as he walked her to the door.
Lola smiled. “Thank you, Sir.”
“Take care of yourself.” Her mom added.
Lola blew them kisses and hurried out to meet Alex by his car. “Sorry I kept you waiting.”
Alex stared at her.
“What is it?” she asked, slightly put off by his look.
He took a deep breath. “You are gorgeous, Lola.”
“Thank you.” She replied.
He turned the ignition and drove off.
Alex smiled as he heard the shower rush. All seemed to be fine between himself and Lola now…at least, they were just intimate and it was filled with passion, so, they had to be fine. He couldn’t feel totally at peace as Lola had left the bed without a word and gone straight into the bathroom, but still, he was going to stay optimistic.
BUZZ!!! Lola’s phone rang from the side table. He reached out to it and saw Jude on the caller ID. He shrieked. He had completely put the important meeting at work behind him to solve his family issues. He jumped out of bed and picked his clothes from the floor in a hurry.
Lola stepped out of the shower and stared at him as he started to dress up.
“Babe, we have a meeting at work. I am going to hear it hot from my boss once I get there.” He said as he tugged into his pants.
Lola stayed silent.
“We should do something fun for dinner.” Alex continued. “Maybe order in shawarma or pizza rather than have you do the cooking.”
Lola stayed silent.
“Babe?” he called as he adjusted his jacket. “Why are you not saying anything? Are we not cool?”
Lola smiled faintly. “Cool?”
He nodded. “I know I have messed up big time and I am really sorry, Lola. I swear, it’s never going to happen again.”
“Really? This is not your first case of infidelity, Alex. I’d be stupid to believe you.” She replied and started to slip into her clothes.
Alex swallowed. “What just happened between us?”
“Revenge.” She replied coldly.
He stared at her with some concern. “Revenge?”
“Honey, if you want to have revenge sex, you cheat on your husband. It doesn’t work this way.” he added.
Lola scoffed. “Apparently, there seems to be a rule of how things apply to you, right?”
“I didn’t mean it that way, but all I am saying is-”
Lola cut in, “-Forget it, Alex. We are done.”
“There is nothing here anymore.” She replied. “What just happened between us was casual and meaningless. It is exactly what goes on between you and your whores.”
Alex couldn’t believe what he had just heard. “Lola, I don’t love any of them!” he screamed.
“Exactly my point. I just needed to validate myself with you.” She said as she attempted to leave the room.
Alex pulled her hand back. “Lola, I don’t know what game you think you are playing with me but this is not going to work, you don’t stop loving someone in one day, you don’t do this.”
“You don’t get to tell me what to do and what not to do, Alex Ojo.” She replied. “I have loved you, respected you, done everything right. And what do you do to me? You make fun of me and my love by sleeping around.”
Alex clasped his hands on his head. “I am sorry.”
“Why did you do it?” Lola shouted. “Give me a reason. Please. What did I do?” She asked as tears rolled down her eyes.
He swallowed painfully. “You didn’t do anything wrong.”
“I know. I just wanted to hear it from you.” She replied. “Goodbye, Alex.” She said and walked out of the room.
Alex caught his breath and then slipped down the bed.
Jude opened the door to the bedroom and saw Alex sprawled on the floor. “Hey!” No response. Jude hurried over to him and pulled him up. “What are you doing on the floor?”
Alex’s eyes were red.
“Where is Lola?” Jude asked.
Alex took a deep breath. “Gone.”
“What do you mean by gone?” Jude asked.
Alex clenched his teeth. “She is divorcing me.”
“She is leaving me!” Alex yelled.
Jude took a deep breath. “What happened?”
“She found out.” Alex replied.
Jude stared at him. “About what?”
Alex groaned. “She found out about those women!”
Jude took a deep breath. “Chill bro, a woman doesn’t really know these things except if you admit it to her. Okay? Right now, you are going to pull yourself together, we would go and finish the business deal which Mr Idahosa is about to have your head for, and when you are back, you would find something to tell her, okay?” he asked.
Alex stayed silent.
Jude sighed and offered him a hand. “Come on, let me help you up.”
Alex took the hand and pushed Jude into a chair as he pummelled him with two strikes on the face.
Jude groaned as he fought back pushing Alex into the wall. “Chill out!”
“My life is over!” Alex shouted. “It’s all because of you!”
Jude wiped some blood from his mouth, “Calm down. You can’t blame me for everything. You enjoyed it too.”
“I want my wife back.” Alex said.
Jude rubbed his forehead and took a seat. “What are we going to do?”
“Are you asking me? I want you to give me an answer!” Alex shouted and then took a seat.
“Alex, you have got to get a grip. You are in trouble already, a solution out of this is what we need to find.” Jude replied. “Hmmm…why don’t you buy her a necklace?”
Alex hissed. “Does she look like she is hungry to you?”
“You know, I think this is the real problem in your marriage. Lola is almost perfect at anything that you seek other women to make you feel perfect too.” Jude replied.
Alex sighed. “Are you making excuses for me?”
“No. I am just stating the obvious.” He replied.
Alex ignored him.
“There has to be something you can do for her. Maybe buy her a car.” Jude said.
Alex remained silent.
“A piece of land? A boutique? Hmm…I know it! Shopping spree in any country of her choice.” Jude said as his face lit up. “She is going to love it.”
“Clandestine”. Alex said in a low tone.
Jude stared at him. “I was right, unh? Shopping spree!”
“Clandestine.” Alex said with a smile. “I am going to take her to Clandestine on Thursday night.”
“Clandestine Bar?” Jude asked.
Alex nodded with a smile. “I am going to reignite our lost passion.”
“What’s so special about the bar?” Jude asked.
Alex took a deep breath. “That’s where it all began.”