MARRIED EPISODE 2

Andy had never been so shocked in his

entire life. Jessica had landed him a

heavy blow which threw away his

senses. When the door had opened, he

had had a mental picture of what he

was expecting. He had expected a lady

in a long oversized gown with long

hands, never in his widest imagination

did he think that she would appear the

way she did. It had taken a few

seconds to fully accept the fact that he

was staring at Jessica. Her skin glowed

under the evening light, everything

about her was different. Her hair was

not packed the way she used to, she

packed half of the hair at the front,

leaving the ones at the back to fall of

their own accord. The length of the hair

was more pronounced and the rich

black colour called him to have a touch.

Her shoulders and hands were bare

before his prying eyes and it glowed

like she had just moisturized them. The

smoothness was so obvious and it took

so much effort to take his eyes off

them. He shuddered when he stared at

her body. He wondered how she could

effectively hide all she had beneath

those God-forsaken clothes. Her waist

was even slimmer than he had been

imagining for weeks, he was sure that

his two big hands would circle her waist

perfectly. He swallowed hard, blocking

his mind to the battle that was going on

in him. His eyes skimmed her slim long

legs till he got to her feet and almost

groaned. It was too much to take in. he

always knew she had a very beautiful

face but now, it was striking even

though she had no makeup or jewelry

on.

As she talked with his father, he heard

nothing as he gazed at her with

amazement. She was smiling widely. He

couldn’t pinpoint when she ever smiled,

apart from the time he had seen her at

the beach with that slim guy. He was

angry that she was not smiling at him,

and that he was not the cause of her

laughter. He struggled to hear what

they were saying and could not hear

anything because his mind was so

preoccupied with her body. He started

hearing what was being said towards

the end and he received another round

of torture as he walked behind them

into the house.

**********

**********

Jessica was surprised that she had

enjoyed the evening. Andy almost could

not take his eyes off her, making it

difficult to concentrate on keeping up

with the charade but Mr Williams was a

very down to earth man, and she found

herself relaxing, forgetting the pretense.

When they finished eating, they went to

the sitting room to relax. She was about

going to sit on the single seeter when

Andy pulled her to sit with him on the

long couch.

At first his touch shocked her, then,

remembering that they were not alone,

she relaxed. Andy could not keep his

hands to himself, and he was becoming

jealous of his father, who seemed to

have the ability to make Jessica laugh.

The small curved couch was small and

when they sat down, they were so close

to each other in a disturbing way.

“You two seem like you just met

yesterday. I am almost invisible” Andy’s

dad murmured.

“It certainly feels like yesterday” Andy

said looking at Jessie who did not look

at him.

Mr Williams looked at them curiously.

“Tell me how you two met”

Jessica stopped short. “Why don’t you

tell dad the story Drew?” she gave Andy

a dazzling smile that turned his heart.

“No, you tell him honey” he said, too

distracted to think about a story.

She placed her palm tenderly on his

chest and his heart raced. “Oh, c’mon

now, you are a better story teller”.

That moment, Andy knew that whatever

she wanted she would get. His dad was

looking at them with curiosity.

“I was sitting with Jeremy at the

balcony of his house when I saw her

taking a stroll. She was dressed in this

disgustingly big dress that was big

enough to fit into an elephant” he

grinned.

Jessica frowned and moved, leaving

Andy’s arms. “That is the sexiest thing

you ever said to me” she looked hurt.

He tried to pull her back into his arms

but she did not accept. “You never told

me you hated my cloth. I am flattered”.

“C’mon baby, those clothes do nothing

to attract the opposite sex”

“So what attracted you then?” It was

Andy’s father that spoke. Jessica

raised her eyebrow, expecting an

answer.

Andy swallowed and almost said ‘desire

to be free from a planned marriage’ but

caught himself in time.

“I can’t pinpoint what it was. Maybe it

is her striking face” he noticed for the

first time that instead of black pupils,

her pupils were a shade of dark brown.

He swallowed heavily. “Or her long

black midnight hair which makes my

fingers itch with desire at the sight”.

Andy was gazing so intently into

Jessica’s eyes until she was almost

fidgeting. The room suddenly seemed

too suffocating as heat washed over

her.

Andy’s dad coughed loudly and they

both jerked. “My son is in love; that is a

miracle. I guess I have you to thank

Jessica”

Jessica almost laughed at the

statement. Andy, in love with her –

Jessica – it was so hilarious.

Andy’s father looked at his wrist watch

and stood up. “Wow, it is so late. I

should go home”.

Jessica felt the daughter-in-law instinct

grabbing her. “Why don’t you spend the

night dad, you had a long journey and

must be tired.”

“You are right. I am fagged out”

“Let me get the room ready sir” she

said and turned. It was as she arranged

the bed that the implication of what she

had just done dawned on her. The room

she usually slept was just few steps

from the guests’ room. Her father-in-law

would definitely get suspicious if she

was sleeping in any room apart from

the masters’ bedroom with Andy. She

regretted her suggestion now and tried

to look for a way out. She could sneak

into her room very late and wake up

very early, before anyone. She groaned.

After ensuring that her father-in-law

was fully settled in the room, she

walked into the sitting room, where

Andy was.

“You do know the implication of what

you just did right?” Andy asked

instantly.

She exhaled. “It was out of my mouth

before I could think but it does not

change anything. I would still sleep in

my room and wake up very early”.

Andy shook his head. “It won’t do. If I

still know my dad well, he accepted

staying over so easily, meaning, he

might still have doubts. He is cunning

when he feels suspicious. He knows I

have given up on love and won’t easily

take the fact that I am in love” Andy

was sure of it.

Jessica thought she and Andy had a

thing in common at last; they had both

given up on love. “So what do you

suggest?”

He swallowed. “You would have to

sleep with me in the masters’ bedroom”

he dropped.

Her eyes widened. She has been terribly

aware of Andy, the last thing she

needed was to stay locked up in a room

with him. “You can’t be serious. We

could work out a story if he discovers

that we are not together. We could say

that I am indisposed and needed to be

alone. Something”. She searched her

brain for what that ‘something’ could

be. “Anything”.

“It won’t work. He would know that

something is fishing. I promise to be a

perfect gentleman. You can take the

bed while I take the floor. That is the

only reasonable solution.”

She looked at Andy like he was a three

headed monster. “You’ve got to be

kidding me”.

Andy roamed the masters’ bedroom in anxious

strides. He was angry, confused, hurt and every

unpleasant emotional feeling that can come to mind.

Jessica had been sitting in the sitting room for over

an hour, with her eyes glued to the TV set. She had

refused to enter the room saying she would only go

in when it suits her. Jessica was the most stubborn

woman that Andy had ever laid his eyes on. He was

angry because he saw no reason why she should

vehemently refuse to enter the room, although he

knew that it can’t be easy for woman to accept

sleeping in the same room with a guy.

‘But she is my wife’, he thought frustratedly and

paused. Even though the truth was so bitter, he had

to admit that he was angry because he could not

imagine sleeping alone in the room when Jessica was

just by the corner. It had been hard for the past few

days but seeing Jessica tonight had almost turned

him mad with desire to touch her. The mere thought

that she was avoiding him like a plague was so

insulting and infuriating. He had gone out countless

number of times to take one thing or the other just

to catch her attention and make her know that he

was still awake but she did not seem to even notice.

He had never been this angry over such a

meaningless issue. He finally removed his clothes

and went into the bathroom, hoping that the cold

water would calm his nerves.

**********

**********

Jessica had been watching a late night Mexican

movie but she could barely recount what had

happened in the movie which had already been

concluded. She had been brainstorming a possible

solution to the predicament she suddenly found

herself. She had changed into a big night robe and

sat in the sitting room hoping for a miracle. when no

solution came to mind, she still sat there, hoping that

Andy would be asleep by the time she got into the

room. This was what annoyed her: Andy refused to

sleep. He kept on going in and out of the room and

she kept on waiting even though she was feeling so

dizzy.

“Jessica”

She jumped and turned. Her father-in-law stood

before her, looking at her critically. “You are still

awake?”

She swallowed slightly then smiled. “Yes sir, I wanted

to watch a soap opera before I sleep. I was just

about entering now because the movie just ended”.

“OK, where is Andy?”

“He is in the room; he does not like Mexican movies”

she paused and frowned. “I thought you were asleep

dad, you had a hectic trip”

He smiled slightly, liking the fact that she called him

dad. “I am a light sleeper. I was asleep but I heard

the sound of the TV and came out thinking that you

left the TV on and went to bed”

“Oh, sorry I disturbed you sir. I would just put

everything off now and go to bed”

Mr Williams went back to his room and Jessica had

to agree with Andy that his father was indeed very

cunning. She put off the TV and all the lights and

walked to the room. She was banking on the hope

that Andy was already asleep since she hadn’t seen

him for almost thirty minutes. She adjusted the gown

around her body even though it was not really

necessary, then she pulled the door open. The room

was very welcoming and tidy. She closed the door

and walked in but Andy was not there. She looked

around critically but did not see him. The sound of

water coming from the bathroom gave her the

answer she needed. She swallowed and adjusted the

bed spread which did not look like anyone had lain on

it recently. The room had Andy’s perfume clinging to

it, making her aware of Andy who was in the

bathroom.

She heard the bathroom door open and she froze as

her heart beat wildly. Andy saw Jessica immediately

he stepped out of the bathroom. She was obviously

very nervous as it showed on her and her stiff back

which was turned to him. The sight of her made his

heart quicken alarmingly and he frowned, wondering

what the hell was wrong with him.

“I thought you would never come inside the room”

Andy said.

“I won’t deny that sleeping on the couch had crossed

my mind” her back was still turned to him”

“Is that how scary I am. I am not going to bite you

unless situation calls for it” he was flirting with her,

Jessica knew.

“Situation would not call for anything, you gave your

word” Jessica said with agitation and turned. She

became iced immediately wishing she had stayed

with her back to him. That was the very first time

that she would really see his chest. His chest was

filled with athletic muscles which depicted power and

strength. He looked alarmingly inviting and try as she

may, she could not take her eyes off him. She forgot

to breathe as she stared with curious interest; apart

from his chest being muscled, it was also hairy.

Staying in the room just became more difficult, she

thought absently. For the first time, Andy left the

doorway of the bathroom, moving fully into the room.

Jessica turned nervously and raised the blanket up

so she could get under in and on the bed but she

was slow, maybe deliberately slow. Andy’s hand

touched her shoulder and she shivered and turned

instantly. That was the biggest mistake she made.

The only time she had been a that close to Andy was

that moment in the kitchen on their weird

honeymoon. Standing so close to him now was much

more frightening because he was shirtless. He looked

totally masculine. Breathing became an impossible

task as she gazed at his chest, not able to look into

his eyes.

Andy took his hands off her but kept his gaze on her,

probing her senses.

“What are you doing Drew?” Jessica asked, her voice

barely above a whisper. He was no longer touching

her but she still felt the heat of his palm against her

shoulder. She could not move away from him also

because she was trapped between his massive body

and the extra large bed.

“What were you thinking when you wore that gown?”

She breathed deeply. “I was not thinking anything”

He did not know when his left hand left his side to

touch her hair. She had packed the hair the way she

was used to again and he so wanted to see the hair

without the band. “I think you knew what you were

doing. You were trying to seduce me Jess”.

Jessica laughed. A very uncomfortable laughter that

she was trying to use to ease her tension. “If I was,

did it work?” Jessica had tried to convince herself

that she was trying to get into character but she had

to accept the fact that she had chosen that cloth

with Andy in mind. She hated having Andy see her as

an unattractive woman. It was definitely a mistake.

“If I was, did it work?” She pushed.

He smiled. “Let me show you just how much”

Before she could think of a word of protest, he pulled

her into his arms, pinning her to his flat chest. He

gazed directly into her eyes, trying hard to control

himself. Her lips beckoned invitingly but he was

determined to never do anything that she didn’t agree

to.

Slowly, he lowered his head to hers keeping his gaze

steady with huge difficulty. He kissed her nose,

expecting a refusal and hoping that none would

come. Jessica was not about to back down. It had

been so long since she had allowed herself the

attention of a man and Andy was more of a man than

any other man she had come across. Andy’s lips

covered hers as he kissed her with the whole of his

heart. For more than a month, he could hardly think

about anything other than kissing Jessie.

He could not resist the temptation again, he removed

the hair band and buried his hand inside. He

marvelled at the length of the hair and texture as he

kissed her hungrily. He sensed his control going over

the bar and quickly broke the kiss as they both tried

to control their breathing.

He instantly left her, not trusting himself to stay

close to her for a second without touching her. “Go

to sleep sweetheart, I can’t control myself with you”

Before Jessie could respond he walked back into the

bathroom for another cold bath.

**********

**********

Andy finally stood up from the bed around past five.

He hadn’t been able to get any sleep throughout the

night. He had turned countless number of times on

the floor, unable to sleep at all. The floor had been a

bit comfortable so his discomfort was not because of

his position but because of his constantly straying

thoughts. Staying in the same room with Jessica was

more challenging than he thought. He walked over to

her and saw her sleeping soundly. Her hair was still

loosed the way he liked it. Even though her cloth was

not what he was hoping for, she looked like a queen

diva. He brushed away the strands of hair in her face

and her striking face hit him and made him

speechless.

What is happening to me? He wondered and walked

out of the room instantly.

Jessica roused from her sleep with a lazy stretch. It

took her some seconds to remember that she was in

Andy’s room, and with the realization, she jumped out

of bed. One quick glance told her that Andy was not

in the room. She wondered if he had gone to work

like he always did but hoped not because it would

mean that she would have to do all the dramatic

scenes alone with Andy’s father if he doesn’t leave

early.

Last night flashed through her mind like lightening

and she was struck motionless. She sat down slowly

on the bed, remembering every single detail. She had

flirted with him, wanting him to kiss her but not being

bold enough to say it. She could still feel his lips on

hers, demanding in a way she had never experienced.

She had always known that Andy was a lady’s man,

the kind that all ladies would like to have for

themselves and the type of man that is not easily

forgotten. In fact, she doubted that any woman would

be able to forget Andy. Jessica’s scattered hair

reminded her of how Andy had linked his fingers with

her hair and she shivered. ‘This is a wrong move’ she

thought, I need to get back on track.

Jessica entered the bathroom and saw new set of

toiletries. She washed her face and brushed her

teeth. Repacking her hair, she walked out of the

room still in her oversized nightie. Andy was nowhere

in sight but looking outside, she saw his car and

sighed.

“Good morning ma’am” Ada greeted as Jessica

entered the kitchen. Her mouth felt so dry and she

needed water.

“Morning Ada, did you sleep well?”

“Yes ma’am”

Jessica filled a glass cup with water from the

dispenser and satisfied her thirst. She loved being in

the kitchen and having a maid was foreign to her. As

a child, even though they had a help, she still did so

many things in the house and in the kitchen and after

she lost her family, she hadn’t lived in a house with a

maid in it until now. Jessica felt the urge to do the

cooking herself. She quenched the thought that said

that Andy was part of her reasons for this sudden

desire.

“Ada, have you seen Andy?”

“No ma’am but his car is outside.”

Jessica nodded. “He might be with his dad. I am

starved. Please slice some tomatoes and onions for

eggs, I would be back. Please don’t fry it till I get

back”

Jessica left the kitchen and went straight to the

guests’ room. She did not know if she ought to

disturb her father-in-law. The sound of Andy’s voice

in the room made her heartbeat quicken and she had

to pause for some seconds to compose herself

before she knocked. She heard the men’s laughter

and almost smiled. She heard the ‘come in’ in

between their laughter and she opened the door

slowly, entering with a wide smile. Her eyes instantly

collided with Andy’s and his laughter died down as he

stared at her. The big gown Jessie was putting on

was no longer unappealing; in fact, it gave him

another kind of unfamiliar hunger and desire. The

past night flashed through them and for a moment,

the elderly man was forgotten. Jessica felt an instant

heat wash over her as she tried hard to break the

eye contact. She swallowed and turned to her father-

in-law with a smile.

“Good morning sir” she greeted, going on her knees.

“It is nice finally being noticed” he had a mischievous

grin on his face. “What are you doing? Come and give

me a peck” he invited. “I have spent so much time

abroad and actually fancy their own way of showing

affection”.

Jessica smiled widely and went to kiss her father-in-

law on the cheek. She instantly remembered her dad

whom she always kissed when he was either going

out or coming in. She had to force away that

memory.

“Did you sleep well sweetheart?” The elderly man

behaved more like her dad by the minute and she

became upset that she was lying to such a man. She

had never been one to love lies, she always avoided

it but now, she had become a potential liar.

Jessica resisted the urge to glance at Andy. “I slept

well dad, hope this room was comfortable enough

sir?”

“Yes dear”

They are doing it again, Andy thought. ‘They have

forgotten about me’. Anyone would think that Jessica

was his father’s wife or daughter with the way they

seemed to get along so well. Jessica hadn’t even

said a simple ‘hi’ to him – her husband. He heard her

ask his dad if he would love bread and eggs for

breakfast and heard him talk of how hungry he was

and how he could not wait to taste the inviting food.

He even called her ‘sweetheart’! Why should he?

“Don’t tell me you are jealous”

Andy suddenly noticed the two pairs of eyes staring

at him. His palms had balled into fists and he did not

know that he was actually glaring.

“Why are you both staring at me like that?”

Mr. Williams looked at Andy and laughed. “Come on

son, you don’t honestly think that this old man would

steal your wife, do you?”

Jessica whitened and stood up. “Of course not” she

murmured for Andy. Andy was just staring angrily at

both of them, not knowing why he was angry.

Jessica managed a weak smile, wanting to vanish. “I

would see to the food” she was out of the room

before anyone could mention jack.

Andy’s father looked at Andy. “Did you two have a

fight? You both seem to be on the edge with each

other, or is it another form of emotion I am sensing?”

Mr. Williams hid a knowing smile.

“Don’t be ridiculous dad. It would help if you two

stopped making me look like a boring furniture while

you talk like soul mates”

His dad laughed. “It might help if you stop being

utterly speechless whenever she walks in”

Andy swallowed and stood up. “I would be back dad”

he murmured, heading towards the door.

“No sex in the kitchen Andrew”

“Dad” Andy warned.

“At least wait till I am gone, I need bacteria free

food. I would be gone soon and by then, you would

have the house all to yourselves”

Andy marched out and slammed the door as his

dad’s laughter followed him. As Andy walked, he told

himself that he needed the TV to reposition his mind

and make him stop thinking about Jessica, but even

as he walked, he found out that his legs were not

moving in the direction of the sitting room.

**********

**********

Jessica wheezed the eggs she had broken into a

bowl. She had sent Ada to get sliced bread because

the one in the fridge would not be enough to feed

the hungry mouths. She was trying to concentrate on

the food she was trying to prepare instead of on

Andy. Instantly, she became aware of the slow

strides that were drawing closer. She needed no one

to tell her that it was Andy because she had become

accustomed to his semi-slow and confidently

calculated steps.

Immediately he entered the kitchen, she became

aware of his presence in a terrifying way. She knew

that he must be standing at the door because she

could not hear any steps anymore. She swallowed

and continued her task, not touching the salt yet for

fear of putting more than expected in the eggs.

“Your hair looks more irresistible when it is without a

band”

Jessica heard Andy’s words and tensed. Andy knew

that she was aware of his presence and smiled at

her rigid back.

“Maybe I don’t want it to be irresistible” she gasped

out. Is that my voice? She wondered. The pounding

of her heart became louder than any other sound in

her own ears. She did not know that Andy was just

behind her until he spoke into her hears.

“It is still irresistible this way” she jumped, almost

toppling the egg in the process. He laughed heartily,

making her angrier.

“What the hell is wrong with you?”

“I don’t know, maybe you can tell me. You are the

one who studied medicine, test me and diagnose my

ailment” he had successfully pulled her into the circle

of his arms. She squirmed and shook furiously in his

arms, brushing her body against his and tormenting

him the more.

“Let me go Drew” she was shaking, trying to loosen

his hold. Her leg brushed against the evidence of his

desire and she froze, standing dead still.

Andy bit back a groan as he stood with a lazy grin on

his face. “It is not a good idea to squirm like that in

a man’s arms, his body might get a wrong message”

He grinned. He released her and she instantly jumped

out of his arms. He laughed and strolled out of the

kitchen. Jessica felt shaky and alarmed. Andy

affected her senses in a very strange way and it

frightened the living day light out of her.

**********

**********

sitting at the dinning was not easy at all for Jessica

but she did it successfully, by never meeting Andy’s

eyes. She felt his eyes on her but never gave in to

the temptation of looking at him back. He asked her

pointed questions but she never for once looked at

him while answering those questions. After eating,

Andy’s dad got ready to leave.

“Oh, I did not tell you both. I have organized a party

for both of you”

“A what?” Andy asked.

“A celebration party. Since I missed your wedding, I

want to have another celebration. It is coming up in

three days time; all you need to do is dress up and

come. The invitation would be sent to everyone, you

don’t need to worry”

What the hell? Jessica almost said. “Sir, I don’t think

it is necessary. You would spend a lot of money, why

bother when the wedding was just two months ago?”

Mr. Williams smiled. “OH son, you married a virtuous

woman. Even knowing that she sleeps and wakes in

money, she is still thinking of spending wisely”

“Am I not lucky?” Andy murmured, unconsciously

linking his fingers with Jessica’s and brushing his

thumb against her knuckles, making Jessie’s pulse

race.

“Yeah son. But I insist on hosting the party” Jessica

almost groaned. “I need to run now, see you two

later”

They bid him farewell and walked back inside as he

drove out. “What are we going to do?” Jessica said

as she paced.

“About what?” Andy relaxed fully as he sat on the

chair.

“What do you mean by ‘about what’? About the party

of course. Pretending to your dad was one thing,

doing the same with a large number of people is a

totally different person and I am sure I am not that

good as an actress.”

“Why are you worrying yourself about that now? It is

still three days away.” He paused. “There are better

things to do now”

“Oh? And what is that?” If Jessica hadn’t been so

agitated, she would have seen the gleam in his eyes.

Before she could think, he jerked her until she fell,

sitting awkwardly on his laps. “What are you doing

Drew?” she asked breathlessly

“Would you like me to show you or tell you” his voice

was husky with desire.

Jessica could not even think of a reply as Andy’s

hand moved to loosen her hair. “Your hair is so

beautiful” he whispered huskily as he kissed her

earlobes. She gasped. He kissed her neck and she

whispered his name, not knowing if she wanted him

to stop or continue. He raised his eyes which were

dark with desire to hers. He could see the desire also

in her eyes in her quickened breathing. He swore and

crushed her mouth with his. Jessica responded with

equal hunger, not even pretending to be impassive.

Her slim hand went to his neck and held him close.

Andy’s hands were everywhere at once and she

became lost. Something flashed through Jessica’s

mind and she tried to slow Andy down. “Bose” she

gasped.

“Don’t… Don’t worry… I gave her the day off” before

the information even registered in her mind, he was

kissing her again. He stood up instantly, carrying her

in his arms and marching towards the masters’

bedroom, kissing her as he went. When he got there,

he set her on her feet. “Today, I would see what my

wife has beneath this cloth”

Andy changed his position on the bed

as he came awake. His eyes landed on

the angelic form sleeping on the bed

and his drowsiness vanished. Jessica

had never looked more beautiful. She

was more than he ever imagined, much

more than any man would imagine. She

had no clothes on and her only covering

was the blanket that he had used to

cover her from the night chill.

Ever since his father had left, he and

Jessica had barely left the room. They

had been too preoccupied with

themselves to even notice time. Andy

never even thought of work for a

second. They were like a newly wedded

couple on their honeymoon which was

so crazy about themselves. They had

laughed and laughed about the present,

never for once mentioning the past or

the future. Jessica was always

beautiful but watching her laugh made

her look downright stunning and

breathtaking. He wanted to make that

happiness resident in her. Of everything

that happened, Andy had been thrown

speechless when he discovered that he

was her first.

To imagine that Jessica would give him

such a priceless gift has moved him

beyond reason. The realization had

shaken him to his very root and he

made sure that that moment was

special for Jessica too. As he watched

her sleep, he felt the intense desire to

protect her from harm. He knew almost

nothing about the woman he married.

He had felt that it was ok to know very

little about her. ‘The less you know

about a woman, the easier it makes it

for you to forget her’ he had told

himself. But he wanted to know

Jessica. He wanted to know every

single detail about her. The only thing

she had told him about her during this

period of intimacy was the mishap that

happened to her family. He had

watched with horror as tears slipped

down her eyes as she told him the

story. It was devastating that she had

to pass through so much pain at a

tender age.

Andy watched Jessie pull up her knees

like she was trying to shield herself and

felt the deep urge to pull her into his

arms, make her feel safe. This time, he

did not resist the urge; he pulled her

into his arms and was alarmed by the

great delight he felt when she smuggled

closer, burying her head in the fold of

his shoulder. He kissed her forehead

and brushed away the hair playing at

her face. Andy yawned and finally went

back to sleep.

**********

**********

Jessica had Andy’s hands around her

when she woke up. She adjusted a bit

and looked at Andy but he was still very

much asleep. She smiled and touched

his bare chest with her fingertips. The

past day was the best day of her life.

Andy had made her feel like a princess;

like she was the best thing that could

ever happen to any man. But…..

‘No… I would not think about it’ she

thought. She refused to think about the

fact that she had slept with her fausse

husband; her contract. Refused to think

about the fact that she had surrendered

the most precious gift she had to him

also; but of all the men that Jessica

had come across, none of them

deserved it more than Andy, and maybe

no one would ever deserve it more. But

why did she do it? Why did she

surrender her virginity to someone who

would become her ex – husband in a

year? She sighed. Somewhere deep

down, she had an answer for that

question; somewhere in the innermost

part of her being she knew that she

would never have gotten in the family

way with Andy if she did not have some

feelings for him.

Andy cleared his throat slightly and

Jessie jerked and looked at Andy who

was now wide awake, staring at her.

She smiled. “Good morning Drew”

He was watching her now, making her

nervous. “Good morning sweetheart” he

pushed his fingers through her hair and

smiled. He knew that she had been

thinking but did not want to mention it.

He did not want the talk of a contract

to spoil the day. “Your skin is so

beautiful” he murmured and Jessie

blushed. “How was your night?”

She smiled. “I was able to sleep at the

latter part of the night”.

Andy chuckled. “Oh… what were you

doing?” He raised his brow.

Jessie’s face reddened. “Should be

what were ‘we’ doing”

Andy laughed slightly, bent and kissed

her. “Should I show you or tell you what

we were doing?”

Jessica frowned jokingly. “I think I know

what we were doing so none”. They

laughed and he kissed her again,

lingering this time to enjoy her sweet

honeyed mouth.

“I am so hungry now” he remembered

that they did not eat dinner.

“It is like I have not eaten for the past

five decades” Jessica murmured and

Andy laughed.

“You are yet to see three decades”

“Yeah but I surely feel hungrier than

that”

He smiled. “Let me fix us something,

just relax here”

“Are you not going to work today” she

half smiled.

He sat up. “Certain benefits come from

owning your own company” he was

gloriously naked when he stood up and

Jessie’s mouth went dry as she stared

at him. Andy noticed her eyes on him

immediately he stood up and smiled as

he pulled on a trouser. He turned and

she instantly averted her gaze. “You

can stare at me honey” he grinned but

it did not last long. “I certainly am

enjoying the view.”

Jessica saw the hunger in his eyes and

was alarmed when she looked at herself

and saw that the blanket had slipped to

her waist. She pulled it up instantly and

could not meet his eyes.

He laughed. “Don’t be shy with me

honey; your body can drive a man

crazy”

“I wouldn’t want you to go crazy now,

would I?” he laughed and left. Jessica

instantly picked up her camisole and

wore it. Andy had seen her entirely

naked but that did not stop her from

being self conscious. She had always

been conscious of exposing herself

when someone was watching even if it

was a woman. Her friends had helped

her get over the feminine part because

more often than not, they had to dress

up together for an occasion. Getting

naked or half naked in front of a guy

was totally alien. Even going half naked

in front of a prying male doctor for scan

had driven her crazy to the extent that

she decided to change her doctor to a

female doctor. Now that Andy had seen

her nakedness, she was almost sure

that he was the only man that she

would give that privilege to. The

surprising part was that she had

actually wanted him to see her naked.

Putting on a flimsy short, she started

folding the clothes that were littering

the floor and straightening the

bedspread. Andy entered with a wide

tray filled with food.

“Woow” Andy murmured as he took in

Jessica’s appearance. “You look divine.

What the hell entered you to make you

dress the way you used to?”

She smiled faintly. “You have no idea.

Bread and eggs, I can eat this

everyday” she changed the topic with a

smile.

He placed the tray on the bed and they

both sat. They blessed the food and

Jessica was about to dig in when she

paused. “I did not even ask if you were

good at this; cooking”

“Are you scared?” he grinned. He

scooped up a sizeable amount of egg.

“Find out yourself. Now, open your

mouth”

“What? No, I…”

Andy pushed the food into her mouth

as she spoke and her rebuke vanished

as the egg tantalized her taste buds.

“Wow”

“Yeah. There was a time when I wanted

to be a chef”

She smiled as she started eating. “Well,

you are good. Ralph was the only guy I

know that cooks”. Immediately she said

it, she knew it was a mistake.

It was Andy’s turn to pause. “Who is

Ralph?”

She cleared her throat. “My ex”

“Oh…” the food did not taste so

interesting to him again.

“He left me at the altar”

Andy froze. “I didn’t get you.” She was

silent. “You obviously did not mean

what you just said”

“He was the reason I never wanted to

get married again, the reason why I

never wanted to catch any man’s

fancy. He left me feeling stupid and

disgraced at the altar on our wedding

day”

“Oh my God” he held Jessie as she

fought the tears that sprang up. “It is

OK honey.”

**********

**********

“Oh, you are coming over… wonderful… I

am expecting you” she said into her

phone and hung up. It was the evening

already and everything had been

magical. She got to the sitting room

and sat beside Andy who was listening

to the news. He pulled her against him.

“Where are you off to?” he asked.

“I need to make my hair at the saloon.

Sonia is coming over. She should be

here in about two hours”

“Hope you won’t be staying long”

“No, just want to set my hair.” She

stood up.

He took out his wallet to take out some

money but she stopped him. “I can

manage Drew”

“Well, I don’t want you to manage” he

gave her some money, much more than

she would ever dream of using for her

hair. She reluctantly took it, kissed him

and left.

**********

**********

One hour later, Andy was still in the

sitting room. He had asked Ada to go

for the day; he wanted to prepare

dinner with his wife. He pulled off his

top and put it on the chair. He heard

the doorbell and went there, expecting

to see Jess but when he opened the

door, he saw someone else.

“Sonia”, he exclaimed. “It is good to

see you. Come in” he murmured. She

was earlier than Jessie had said she

would be.

“Hello Andy” she cooed. “It is really

good to see you”. She eyed Andy

stylishly as he closed the door. “Where

is my friend?”

“She is at the saloon. She should be

here in a few minutes.” He picked up

his shirt. “Please have your seat”

“Why don’t you leave it?” she asked.

“Leave what?”

“The shirt” she held the shirt in his

hand. “You look so sexy. I wonder what

you saw in my S.U friend”

“Excuse me?” Andy was sure he was

not hearing properly. She snatched the

top in his hand and threw it. “I think you

should leave” he murmured as she

advanced towards him. She adjusted

her top until the larger part of her

chest was left open.

“I can give you what my friend can’t

give”

“Well, I don’t want it. Please leave

before I harass you.” Immediately he

said this, she leapt on him, throwing

him off balance. He fell on the chair

with her on top of him.

“Bloody hell” he gasped out. “Get off

me” he roared but she would not bulge.

He struggled and rose and turned until

he was off the chair and she was

sitting. She had her fingers

 locked

around his belt buckle and as he tried

to remove her hands, the door opened.

Jessica entered and gasped.

Andy jerked Sonia’s hands away with so

much force that her hands hurt. He

stood up looking totally confused and

alarmed.

“Jess, it is not what you think” he

managed to put the words together

though he was totally devastated and

confused.

Jessica was not sure she could hear

anything that was being said. The

scene before her was so frightening

and she was hearing loud screaming in

her head. She was not sure what was

going on.

Sonia adjusted her cloth and jumped

up. “Yes, it is what you think Jessica.

Your womanizing husband here was

trying to rape me”

“What?” Andy’s head rotated.

Jess was just frozen to the spot.

“I came in looking for you and all of a

sudden he grabbed me” she made a

teary face.

“You are insane woman; what the hell

is your game here?” Andy was roaring

and he wished he could beat the living

daylight out of the woman. He faced

Jessica. “Jess, you have to trust me. I

can never do this to you; never”

“Oh yeah? Then tell me, why did you

both do a one year contract wedding

then?” Jess gasped, now listening

attentively. How did Sonia know? Andy

was bewildered. “You did not want to

marry the woman brought by your

father because you can’t bear being

tied to a woman. You like the idea of

sampling every skirt that comes your

way and that is why you chose gentle

and unappealing Jessica, while you go

on with your escapades with other girls”

“If you don’t cut this bull shit, I surely

would lay my hands on you”

“Oh, just like you were about doing

before Jessica entered?” Jessica felt

this cold chill that would not go away.

Her blood seemed to freeze. “Tell me,

is that not the reason why you don’t

stay in the house? You go out very early

and come back very late using work as

a pretense, is that not because you

have concubines all over the country?

You were with a woman at Convy Hotel

some days back, what were you both

doing? It must be the wild thing right?”

“What is all these? She is one of our

major contractors” Andy saw red at the

infidelity accusation.

“Oh, really? I came majorly to talk with

Jessica about this but it is no longer

necessary. Now I see that Jessica has

her eyes open and tries to dress

appealingly so I would not be surprised

if you have gotten into her pants

already”. Andy did what he had never

done before; he swung his hand and

slapped Sonia’s face so hard.

Jessica could take no more; she turned

and fled the house.

“Jess… Jessica” Andy ran after her with

his heart racing with dread. He caught

up with her and held her hand.

“Leave my hand” she yelled, snatching

her hand forcefully. He held her

shoulders, forcing her to listen to him.

“Believe me Jess; I don’t know what is

going on here. Sonia came and-”

“And what? Jumped on you?” she

laughed sarcastically. “You know what

Andy, I am done” the tears that she had

been guarding against started coming

and she started rubbing them away

furiously. “I knew from the start that

this was a huge mistake. Yesterday,

last night, this morning; everything was

a mistake. A stupid, irredeemable

mistake, but it is fine.”

“Jess please, don’t say that. Don’t do

this” Andy pleaded and his heart bled

when he saw her furiously wipe away

her tears again.

“Don’t worry, I would not do anything or

take anything. The 20 million; I don’t

need it”

“Jess…”

Jessica started walking away, and then

started running. The waves of the hair

she had just fixed bounced after her.

Andy was about to run after her when

he remembered that Sonia was still in

the house. The anger that bubbled in

him was so intense that he charged

into the house smashing the flower

vase that stood in his way. He searched

the entire house but did not see Sonia.

She must have sneaked out while the

couple was arguing. He swallowed hard,

still trying to come to terms with what

had just occurred. For the first time in

years, something new occurred in his

life that brought joy to his heart and it

shattered before it even begun. He

grabbed his car keys and his shirt and

left in search of Jessica.

**********

**********

Jessica walked the side of the road as

rain poured down. She was just going

like a robot. She was not sure if her

brain was working at all. Events of the

past just replayed in her head like the

clips of a movie’s advert. This was not

the first time that she would find her

man with her best friend. The first man

she ever dated her cheated on her with

her best friend. The horrifying scene of

catching them in the act flashed

through her mind as she walked,

oblivious to the rain that had glued her

cloth to her skin. Being left at the altar

and the death of her entire family still

remained the most horrifying of her

entire life until this evening but as she

walked the sad road, she could not

remember ever feeling this broken in

her entire life. Sonia’s words kept

coming and coming until she felt she

was going to go crazy but she just kept

on walking. No part of her body felt

alive as she walked on the darkened

and wet road, not even the legs that

carried her.

She did not know if she should put the

blame on Sonia. She had come visiting

and almost got raped in the process.

Tears rolled down her cheeks

ceaselessly but no one would have

noticed since the rain water was all

over her face. Her purse which she took

to the saloon was clutched in her hand

as she held it like a weapon at her side.

She had no idea where she was going

but she just went wherever her feet led

her to.

“Jessica”

Jessica heard her name being called

but she did not even think of answering.

She just went her way. Andy came out

of the car, leaving it at the middle of

the road. He had been searching for

some time, moving the car slowly in

order not to miss her and had become

apprehensive and terribly worried when

the rain had started.

“Jessica, Oh my God” he murmured as

he ran after her in the rain. Within

seconds, he was also wet due to the

velocity of the heavy rain. He got to

her in no time but she would not stop

walking. It was as if she could neither

see nor hear him. “Jessica please, for

the Love of God, stop this. Don’t hurt

yourself like this” Jessica was shivering

as she walked but she did not even

seem to notice that she was shivering.

“I am so sorry Jess but please, let me

take you home” he held her hand.

“Please”

She turned her head sharply as his

hand touched her. “Get your filthy

hands off me this minute” Andy did not

let her go. “Home?” she asked. “Which

home? I have no home” she shivered.

“Especially not in your house”.

“Please Jess, even if you are going to

hate me, I would not leave you out here

like this.”

“Well, it is not in your place to make

decisions for me, you don’t have the

right and you never will” she fought to

keep her clattering teeth in place. “Why

can’t you leave me alone? What did I

ever do to offend the world” she cried

furiously. The cars were busy blasting

horns and raining curses as they

bypassed Andy’s car but Andy did not

hear any of it.

“Sweetheart I…” he paused. “Jess,

please, I know it is hard for you to trust

me now but please let me get you out

of this rain, please…”

“No… I said no”

Andy breathed deep and scooped her in

his hands. She started fussing and

yelling and the cars passing started

looking suspicious. He took her straight

to the car, holding her effortlessly but

firmly though she struggled. When they

got to the car, he put her down and

stared straight at her. “I would take you

anywhere you want to go Jess but I

can’t leave you here. It is either you go

with me or we both stay here in the

rain. Please”

Jessica swallowed and entered the car

slowly. The chill was getting to her

bones and she was not sure she could

stand anymore. She had expended all

her energy. When Andy got behind the

wheels, she looked outside the window.

“Take me to Lizzy’s place.”

Andy breathed deeply and started the

engine. His heart ached terribly as he

saw her shivering uncontrollably. There

was no cloth at all in the car that he

could use to cover her. He was cold too

but he knew that he could handle

himself. He turned up the heater to the

highest and turned the fans in Jess’

direction. He quenched every desire to

talk and explain things. He did not want

to upset her more. He was greatly

relieved when her shivering reduced a

bit.

Silence reigned in the car as Andy

drove to Lizzy’s house. On getting

there, Jessica did not even give room

for any discussion. She said ‘thanks’,

alighted and hurried into the house in

the rain which was no longer as heavy

as it was before. She pounded Lizzy’s

door, waiting for the door to open. She

heard Lizzy murmuring something inside

and her anger grew. The door opened

and Lizzy’s expression changed to

extreme surprise.

“What? Jessie, what are you-”

Jessica’s fist swung and connected

with Lizzy’s face. “How could you? I

trusted in you because you were smart

enough to detect that something was

not right between Andy and I. I opened

up and told you everything, how could

you then tell Sonia about this? I thought

you promised never to tell anyone.”

Jessie’s eyes shot fire.

“Whoa Jessie” the slap still stunned her

but she pulled Jessica inside and

slammed the door. “You are speaking

Chinese. I did not tell anyone anything”

“Oh great. Now the world is full of liars”

“Now Jessie, I am serious. I cross my

heart. If I weren’t a good Christian, I

would have sworn. I did not tell anyone

anything”

“But Sonia knows” Jessica knew Lizzy

was not lying but she had no idea how

Sonia would have known of the

contract. Lizzy was someone who was

very transparent and anyone would see

through her if she was lying.

“She must have found out somehow or

from someone but definitely not from

me” Lizzy was alarmed. “What is going

on Jessie? You are really scaring me.

You look like a terrified dripping cat”

“I just want to sleep Lizzy. I want to

sleep so that my head can stop

spinning” Jessica swallowed, not willing

to cry. Lizzy looked at her critically and

decided to wait till the next day before

she found out what really happened.

“OK. Come and get rid of this cloth. Did

I mention that you are looking very sexy

in this dress?” Lizzy said, trying to make

Jessica smile a bit but when Jessica

fought back tears instead of smiling,

she knew that something was terribly

wrong with her and all her instincts

pointed at Andy.

**********

**********

Jessica lay on Lizzy’s bed feeling

shattered. Her life just seemed to go

from one point of disaster to the other.

She wondered why this occurrence

seemed to be more painful, compared

to the other problems that she had had

to face in her life. Her head ached

terrifyingly and she groaned. Tears kept

coming and coming. She had been able

to maintain a ‘no crying’ stance for a

long time but in just one night, she had

cried immensely. The tears came but

she had no strength to wipe it off.

She had surrendered her most precious

gift to Andy, something that she had

treasured, something that she had

refused to give her past lovers.

Thinking of how everything had

shattered was so alarming. Everything

had been a charade. Just a surface

charade to get past her pants. But even

though Jessica wanted to make herself

believe that it had also been a charade

for her and that she did not have any

attachment with Andy, she knew that it

was a lie. Andy had been part of her

every thought ever since she met him,

which was one of the reasons why she

detested him. She had detested him for

being a man and had used her hate or

dislike to her advantage but his late

nights always got to her, terribly. She

always found herself wondering what he

was doing and with whom. He almost

did not notice her and it hurt her

feminine ego. Dressing differently had

almost nothing to do with Andy’s father;

she had only used that as an excuse.

Please

When she had gone to bed with him, it

hadn’t been because she was married

to him, it was because she really

wanted to give him that gift. She had

wanted him to have it, but now, it

turned out to be the worst mistake she

ever made. Why did she always have to

develop feelings for the wrong people?

Why was life so unfair? Why did she

have to cry over and over again?

Lizzy entered with a plate of hot rice

and stew and Jessica quickly wiped her

face but Lizzy did not miss it. Lizzy was

not terribly worried. She could not

pinpoint ever seeing Jessica cry. She

noticed that the hot tea she had given

to Jessica earlier was barely touched.

“Jessie, please tell me what is wrong?

You are scaring me o” Lizzy said as she

sat on the bed.

Jessie smiled faintly and intentionally

digressed. “Are you not sleeping yet?”

“You look famished so I fixed you

something. Come on, get up”

Jessie shook her head slowly. “I am not

sure I can take anything”

“You don’t have to be sure, just try. You

would feel better after eating”

“I am not sure if I would be better Liz”

Jessie blinked severally.

Lizzy was touched deeply as she

dropped the food, seeing Jessie

struggle with threatening tears. “You

can cry Jessie, it eases the pain. Come

here” she pulled Jessie into her arms

and Jessica could not hold back her

tears again as she cried her heart out.

“I just want to die Lizzy…” she cried. “I

want to die… Life is worthless”

“Oh sweetie” Lizzy breathed almost

moved to tears by Jessica’s pain. It

was now that Lizzy wished that Paulina

was there. Paulina would have used her

motherly attitude to handle this

situation. It was obvious to Lizzy that

Andy and Sonia were involved in

whatever was wrong but she also had a

feeling that Jessica had developed

feelings for Andy. She knew a woman in

love when she saw one.

Andy felt like he was going crazy. He

stood up from the bed and sat on the

small chair in the room. This was the

third time he was standing up from the

bed after fruitlessly trying to sleep. He

had been terribly devastated ever since

he dropped off Jessica. He still could

not believe that it had all happened so

fast. He had lost his appetite even

though he was hungry but his thought

that his anger would go down as time

went by was totally wrong because

each passing minute added a measured

level of frustration to the ones on

ground.

Sleeping on the bed was the worst part

of it all. He kept remembering all that

he and Jessie had been doing on the

bed; their intimacy, laughter, jokes,

emotional tears and even their

breakfast. The masters’ bedroom held

far too many memories, all derived from

one day, but the joy and fulfillment he

felt within twenty four hours had

evaporated just like that.

He could not bear to think of the look

of betrayal and hurt he saw in her eyes.

He sighed and stood up. If he had been

told years back that one day, he would

care about the feelings of a woman; he

would have laughed the person to

scorn. But here he was, having

sleepless night because of a woman.

He had only been in love once in his life

but the experience was too traumatic.

He checked the time on the wall clock

as he entered the sitting room and

noticed it was some minutes to three.

He had expected that it would be

around five or something like that. He

sighed and switched on the TV, hoping

that he would be able to focus on the

TV.

**********

**********

Lizzy woke around past six as she was

used to and noticed that Jessica was

still asleep, she was happy. She had

given Jessie some drugs which she

usually used after a really stressful day

and seeing Jessie sleep peacefully told

her that the drugs were effective. She

was not used to bathing so early, so

she just washed her face and brushed

her teeth. Moving about quietly in order

not to rouse the sleeping Jessie, she

went into the kitchen to prepare

breakfast. She checked the rice she

had cooked the previous night and was

happy that it was enough for two; the

stress of cooking another food was out.

She heated up the rice and stew but

also boiled water to use for tea. The

weather was very cold, considering the

heavy rain that fell throughout the

night. While she waited for the food to

steam up, she went to the sink and

started washing the plates from the

previous night. She was happy that she

was on her own and not with her

parents, if not, they would be ranting

about sweeping the entire house, and

she would not be able to ask for food

until she had worked her bones sore.

**********

**********

“Tunji, I believe you should be able to

handle the office without my

assistance” Andy said as he conversed

rather reluctantly with Tunji, his best

friend, over the phone, driving at the

same time.

“Well, thank God you finally noticed

that. Hope there is no problem? I mean

you never miss a day at the office but

today would make it three days”

“Well, that is the difference between a

married man and a single man”

“Don’t tell me that. Did you just get

married? You even came to the office

during your honeymoon so cut it out.

Andy, are you on the road?”

“I have not got time for this now Tunji,

got to go” Before Tunji could respond to

what he said, Andy hung up. Andy

dropped the phone and swallowed. He

knew it was too early but he could not

stay in the house for another minute.

The thought of Jessica was almost

driving him mad and he needed to make

her believe him. He just could not

fathom what it would be.

He encountered a little traffic and was

instantly angry that he lived in Lagos.

Lagos was a state that he had always

known for its overcrowded nature.

Though Lagos was a beautiful place, he

was not happy that today of all days he

was being delayed by traffic, so early in

the morning.

**********

**********

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