Wed. Feb 14th, 2024

October 18th, 2019. 12:50PM 14

 

I look at him as he puts his phone against his ear ‘Hello.’ He says

‘Which hospital?’

 

‘Okay I will be there.’ He says before dropping it ‘I need to leave.’

‘Who is sick?’

 

‘Come with me.’ He says without giving me a response The seriousness in his voice makes me leave with him.

We are driving towards CFB Medical Center and he is cruising, a part of me is scared but I don’t say anything.

 

We are literally running when we get there but he doesn’t let go of my hand.

 

 

‘What happened?’ he asks when we get to a nicely decorated pink room

 

‘She injured her leg, it’s nothing serious.’ Olipa responds but her eyes are fixed on me

 

She looks different from the last time I saw her, her skin is bleached and she is hiding under too much make up. Its past 10PM and I can’t help but wonder why she is still in so much makeup.

 

Mulife lets go of my hand and moves towards the little girl that is laying on the bed.

 

‘Hey baby.’ He says kissing her forehead

 

She brightens up, her huge smile makes me smile too. ‘Hey daddy.’ She responds

‘What happened to my princess?’ he asks ‘I was trying to build a castle.’

‘A castle?’

 

‘Yes daddy, a castle so that you me and mummy can live happily ever after.’ The little girl says excitement in her eyes

 

‘Oh isn’t that sweet?’ he responds and she stretches her little hands until he is hugging her

 

‘I will come see you tomorrow okay?’ ‘I want you to sleep here.’

‘Daddy cant baby, I need to do something at home.’

 

‘Is she the reason why mummy has been crying?’ the girl asks pointing at me and I almost wish the ground can swallow me when they all turn to look at me.

 

‘Of course not baby, that is daddy’s friend and she would never do anything to make mummy cry okay?’

 

‘Yes daddy.’

 

‘Hey aunty.’ She says looking past Mulife to me ‘Hey.’ I say

I move closer when Mulife signals me to do so ‘This is aunty Thelma, daddy’s good friend.’ ‘Thelma this is Olivia my daughter.’ He says to me

The girl is beautiful, she has these huge brown eyes that are so lovable. Her curly hair is out of this world and she sounds like a pretty intelligent child.

 

‘Nice to meet you aunty Thelma.’ Olivia says extending her little hand and I take it in mine with a smile

 

‘Same here Olivia.’

 

‘Can I have a word with you?’ Olipa says looking at me and I can feel her eyes burn on my skin

 

‘Can you watch her for me?’ he asks and I nod my head

 

*

 

‘The hell Mulife!’ Olipa screams immediately we are outside Olivia’s room ‘Watch your mouth.’ I warn in a calm but stern voice

 

‘What are you doing bringing your former maid to see my child? Is she the reason why you insisted on coming to Lusaka?’

 

I look at her wanting to get angry but instead I feel sorry for her, being here in the first place is because of Olivia and the love I have for her and now she wants to be a drama queen.

 

‘I don’t want to see Thelma around my child anymore.’

 

‘You might have to get used to seeing her around because she is not going anywhere.’ I see making sure not to break eye contact

 

She opens her mouth to say something but immediately closes it ‘How many times am I going to say I am sorry?’ she says tearsfalling

Anyone who doesn’t know Olipa might think that she is a saint but the only good thing about her is Olivia.

 

‘Don’t bullshit me with those croc tears Olipa.’ I say clicking my tongue

 

‘Both you and I know that I love you, yes I might not be the best person or know the best way to express it but my love for you has never been fake.’ She cries

 

I want to laugh, but I choose not to.

 

‘Olipa are you hearing yourself? Do you even have an idea what love is? You are the most terrible person I know and you are here telling me about love?’ I ask in disbelief

 

‘Just get over it already.’ She begs as tears continue falling I shake my head

‘That is not how it works Olipa, as long as Olivia lives she will be evidence of the kind of person you are and no don’t get me wrong; she is a lovely child but

circumstances with which she was brought into this world are wrong.’

 

 

‘How long will you hold that against me? Cant you let it go? Like a normal person?’

 

‘Normal people don’t go about..’

 

‘Mulife all I am asking for is that Olivia grows up having love from both you and I, I don’t want her growing up in a broken home.’ She says cutting me short

 

I sigh heavily.

 

‘I promised you since day one that I would love Olivia as long as I could and I am not going back on that promise.’ I say with assurance

 

‘But can you please stop bringing the maid here.’

 

I feel the anger build up again but I let it go

 

‘You might have to get used to seeing Thelma around because she is not going anywhere.’ I say going back into the room

 

‘Daddy.’ Olivia says and I smile

 

‘Princess daddy needs to take aunty home, then I can come see you tomorrow okay.’

 

‘That is okay, I made aunty promise to bring me breakfast tomorrow.’

 

I look at Thelma then she smiles ‘I will be here.’ She says toOlivia

We say our good byes then walk out before leaving, I know Thelma has questions and I am debating within myself if I should really tell her the truth.

 

‘So you will be going to the hospital tomorrow?’

 

‘I did promise though I don’t think your wife will let me see her alone.’ ‘Thelma.’

‘I asked you to tell me the truth Mulife.’ ‘There is nothing between I and Olipa.’ ‘Oh really?’

‘I will see you tomorrow.’ I say dismissively

 

I watch as she gets into her house, I wait until she has safely locked herself in. I love Olivia and though I know keeping the truth from Thelma might cost me what I am trying to build with her, I would rather Olivia has a stable future. Her happiness is all that matters to me.

 

Winnie

 

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