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.
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 that close to Andy was that moment in the kitchen during 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”.
A very uncomfortable laughter that she was trying to use to ease her tension. 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?”
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?”
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 s£x 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 thing 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.
The BLACK MARRIAGE