“Babe, who is Charity?” Lorna asked Lee as she looked at him directly in eyes waiting to catch him in a lie.
“What do you mean who is Charity? Where is this coming from?” Lee answered giving himself time to cook up an answer.
“Lee, I am not playing these games with you. The Charity in your frequently called list, that’s who I am talking about.” Lorna’s frustration was showing on her face in her voice.
“She’s my new supervisor at work.”
“Oh, Was David moved from his position?” Lorna asked in relief but it was short-lived.
“No, David is still my direct supervisor but mmm Charity’s the one who got me into a new project. She is connected to the owner of the company.” Lee said.
“Hmmh, I thought you said you got into the new project because David recommended you?” Lorna asked squinting her eyes like a mother who has just caught her boys in a lie.
“Babe, why are you complicating this? Can’t you be happy about my progress at work? This is your problem, you are never happy with my accomplishments,” Lee said as he walked away from her.
This had become a thing with Lee whenever he was caught in a lie. The victim card was always too close and ready to be drawn out at any time. Lorna was too tired to even pursue this argument.
“Okay,” she said in a high pitch.
Lee had been around women long enough to know what a high pitched okay meant. However, he decided to play the fool.
“Babe, my cheating days are over. I am focused on building a life with you, “he said as he kissed her forehead.
That was the end of the story for a while. Over the next several weeks things got better between them. Lee was doing so well at work. He was working for longer hours over the weekends but this was also coming with great financial benefits.
Lorna was one of those girls who knew how to balance saving and still enjoying the moment. She didn’t have one of those well-paying jobs but she still managed to live a comfortable life. With the extra money that Lee was making they were able to make a few adjustments.
They had been saving for a car for a while so once they started getting money from this new project, Lorna suggested that they get a second hand Mercedes and revamp it a bit. That’s what they did. Lee also started to take her shopping at high-end malls in the city every so often. They furnished the house with better and trendy things. Lee was being extra romantic and they argued less.
Maybe he was really focused on making things work between them, Lorna thought. The doubts she had had previously were slowly dissipating. For the first time in a long while, Lorna remembered why she had fallen for Lee. He was living up to the potential that she had seen in him.
Lee was travelling out of town a lot more often. Sometimes it would be for just one day while other times it would take three to four days. Lorna was okay with this. He would come back eager to see her and they bonded way more than when he was always around.
“Lorna, I think it’s time we formalized our relationship,” Lee said.
“Like a wedding?” Lorna asked.
“Yeah, eventually but for now I was thinking of the traditional events first,” he responded.
Lorna was elated. She was glad that it didn’t come from her first but she also felt like it was time to take the next step. They talked about it a little more and even called the parents to set up a date when they could tell them what they had in mind. The lovely couple then went to bed.
At around 4:30 am the alarm on Lee’s phone went off. Being the heavy sleeper that he was Lorna heard it first. She reached out for his phone to switch it off and then wake him up. This was when another alarm was set off. There was a pop-up message from Charity that read, “We can’t go back there because my friends frequent the place.”
All of a sudden Lorna was trembling. A gut feeling screamed that this was bound to change their lives. There was turning back so she placed Lee’s finger on the phone to unlock it. She went to the washroom and sat down properly. The conversations did not reveal that much but it was evident that the relationship was more than just a professional one. However, it was evident that many of the messages had been deleted. There were about two messages that read, “Something has come up so we have to change plans.” The other one said “I have a little something for you. I have taught you how to be a gentleman.” Looking at his mpesa messages Lorna saw many transactions from Charity – it was a lot of money.
Lorna was so engrossed in the messages that she did not hear Lee open the door.
“What are you doing with my phone in the loo?” Lee asked.
“Charity can’t meet you at that place because her friends could see you two!”
“Babe, are we doing this again?” Lee asked defensively.
“Who is Charity, Lee? Why does she send you all this money? Are you sleeping with her?” Lorna asked in rage.
“Babe, Charity is older. She’s probably in her late 40s. Why would I cheat on you with her?” Lee responded.
Too angry and exhausted Lorna pushed Lee out of the way and got out of the loo. She knew that he was lying but did not have the evidence. She was sure that the extra cash was coming from Charity. On one hand, she was angry at the betrayal but she also appreciated the growth and changes in Lee. So she sat on the bed as Lee prepared to go to work wondering what to do next. Her parents were hosting them for lunch in a couple of days. Was the other woman so bad if she liked this version of Lee better?
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