Ashley had always been a hopeless romantic. The idea that two people could come from completely different worlds with different ideas and perspectives and still find happiness within each other was completely fascinating to her. She longed for love so beautiful that no one could tear it down.
All through high school, she watched as her friends experienced love but it never reached her. She always thought that something was wrong with her, maybe her pheromones or something. She watched love movies over and over again and cried every once in a while at the thought that at 25 years, she had not had a long term boyfriend yet. Like the movies, she had purposely dropped her books so many times in the university corridors but no guy offered to pick them, and thus no love came from here. She almost gave up, but something deep in her soul kept her going, longing and searching for love.
When love finally knocked at her doorstep, she couldn’t believe it had happened to her. She had waited a whole lifetime for this, and it finally happened. Ashley met her boyfriend in the craziest way. They had both been travelling upcountry to visit their grandparents. They arrived at their destination in the wee hours of the morning, because of all the traffic that they’d encountered on the way. Ashley got off the bus and was walking towards a petrol station to find shelter for the next thirty minutes before the taxis started to operate. As she was removing her bag from the bus she noticed a homeless man, dressed in a rugged suit and holding onto a water bottle that had since discoloured. She was scared, but she kept going because the bus had to leave.
Ashley carried her bag and started to walk quickly when she heard heavy footsteps behind her. When she looked behind she saw the homeless man, following her quickly. She began to ran and couldn’t help but scream a little. She ran as fast as she could and when he looked behind, she saw the homeless man talking to another man. He looked like he was shouting at him. Ashley then walked and found a place to sit next to a watchman by the petrol station.
She was exhausted from the journey and she was trying to decide what to do then somebody came to stand near her.
“Hello, was that man disturbing you?” The man asked.
“Yeah, he was chasing after me. I was terrified. Is it you who distracted him?” She responded.
“Yes, it was me. I told him to stop chasing you.”
“Thank you, that is a little embarrassing. What’s your name?”
“Kaberia, what’s yours? Where are you headed this early in the morning?”
“I’m Ashley. I’m going to see my grandparents. They live up the hills. How about you?”
“I’m going to see my grandparents as well. Anyway, I know this is a long shot, but can I get your number?”
“Yeah, of course, it’s the least I could do. You saved my life.”
Ashley took Kaberia’s phone and dialled her number, and then saved it. They parted ways soon after that.
Weeks later, Kaberia had still not reached out to Ashley. She couldn’t help but think about him, and a lot. He was tall and with very neat hair. His complexion was dark bronze and he had a beard that was extremely well shaven. Ashley had tried to stalk him on social media a few times but she didn’t find him. She almost gave up when one day he called her.
Kaberia apologized for his disappearance. He said he lost his phone and took a long while to recover his contacts, but he finally did. This time, he wasted no time in asking her out.
“I know this is too soon, but can I take you out?” He asked.
Ashley wanted to say no. She was angry at him, and she was scared of getting attached to him because she thought it would end in tears. She thought about it for a while (five seconds) and then she gave in.
“Yes, you can take me out. But because you disappeared, I get to pick the place,” she said.
The two of them met a week later at a fancy restaurant in Karen. Kaberia instantly knew that this girl would be a lot of work. For starters, she seemed to come from a well off family where money wasn’t considered in choosing the restaurant. Kaberia used his savings to pay for the meal because it was almost the end of the month and he was broke. He didn’t regret it however, this girl was good company. She was funny and had the most positive vibes.
When the food came, Kaberia lost his temper as soon as he tasted it. He said it was too cold and demanded to see the manager immediately. Ashley tried to cool him down saying that it wasn’t as bad, but he insisted. The manager finally came and gave them complimentary wine, as a way of apologizing for the cold food.
Couple having dinner. Image from http://citifmonline.com/2015/09/01/the-science-behind-great-sex/
“I always do that. Complain a little and the manager will give you something on the house,” he said slyly.
Ashley found this quite sly but she chose to ignore it.
After a few dates, Ashley had begun to dream of a happily ever after. She became obsessed with him. She would call him at least three times a day, to find out where he was, who he was with and what he was doing. At first, Kaberia fed off the attention. He loved to be loved, and this was a reminder that he was treasured. But then a few months later it started to become a problem. He realized that each time Ashley felt even slightly insecure she would ask him where he was and go to that place. He couldn’t stand it.
They had been together for six months, and Ashley was pressurizing him to meet his parents. She said that it was the only way she would be sure he was serious. Kaberia had pondered upon the matter but he thought they were rushing things. But Ashley kept pressuring Kaberia about meeting his mother.
One evening, they were seated in the seating room when he decided to bring it up.
“What are you doing tomorrow, baby?” He asked.
“Anything, with you,” she said as she smiled.
“My mum wants us to have lunch together. Nothing too serious. She just wants an introduction,” Kaberia said.
Ashley nearly jumped in excitement. Her broad smile proved that this was one of the best things that she had heard in a while. She went to her wardrobe and came back with three different outfits, dresses to be precise. They were all decent enough, if not too decent.
She asked Kaberia to pick out an outfit for her, but he seemed quite uninterested.
“Just wear anything love, it doesn’t matter. It’s just lunch,” he said as he played soccer on his play station.
The next day, Ashley woke up in good time and went to the salon. She came back with a new dress in her hand which she had supposedly bought to wear to lunch.
“What?” She asked when she saw the look on Kaberia’s face, “You refused to help me out. Besides, I have to make a good first impression.”
The two of them drove down to Hurlingham, that’s where they were to meet. He called the mum who said that she confirmed that she was already there.
Ashley and Kaberia walked into the restaurant and he identified her immediately. She was seated at a booth by the corner of the restaurant. She had ordered a dawa and was facing the opposite side. The two of them walked towards her and when Ashley saw her she was confused a little.
The woman looked extremely familiar but she couldn’t tell where she had seen her before. She didn’t want to seem rude so she acted like she didn’t know a thing.
The three of them went ahead to eat, and as they were having their meal, it suddenly appeared to Ashley where she had seen this woman before. This was her Mama Njambi, her dad’s cleaner!
She didn’t overreact at first. She asked to take a bathroom break. She called her dad immediately.
“Hello, dad?” She asked.
“Yes, hi Ashley. What’s up?” He asked sounding impatient.
“Remember Mama Njambi? So apparently, she’s Kaberia’s mum. He just introduced me to her!”
“Darling,” her dad said laughing, “Don’t you remember Mama Njambi’s story? She’s never had a child. Anyway, let me call you later. I have an urgent meeting in a few minutes.”
“Okay, bye dad.”
Ashley instantly put two and two together. She stood there for a while, breathing heavily as soon as she discovered that she had been introduced to another woman, not Kaberia’s mother. She walked to the table, picked up her handbag and left immediately.
She sent Kaberia a message telling him off for lying to her and pretending that her father’s cleaner who was childless was his mother. She then blocked Kaberia, deleted his contacts and moved on with her life.
This story is partly based on a story we found on twitter