I found her hanging freely, dangling mid-air. I stared at her lifeless body for a whil, breathed in, then out in a sigh of relief. I felt that cold chill run down my spine, but one thing I knew for sure was I wasn’t going to mourn her death. She had taken away all the emotions that made me human, she had broken me, I felt invisible in my own home. Not that I needed attention, but it had gotten to a point that we were dead to each other. I could tell she had just died, her body was somewhat warm and her face had turned pale, quite a scary scene to watch.
I didn’t touch the body, I had no reason to. I went to my closet, pulled out my towel, removed my work clothes then went straight to the shower. All this while her body was at the same place I found it. While showering I had a lot of thoughts racing through my mind, I couldn’t quite figure how we got here. How do two people who mirrored Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet become total strangers? The possibility of the person you love so much ending up to be the one you hate the most settled as a figment of my imagination. When I finished showering, I went to my bed and lay there, a thousand and one questions in my mind.
Why did you have to do this Mercy? For heaven’s sake you had kids to take care of. I said this, all along looking at her lifeless body.
Dad, daaaaad… Can I come in? I want to talk to mum.
I heard my son call me just as I was about to start dressing up. I quickly rushed to the door to respond.
Your mum is asleep, I will let you know when she wakes up.
Okay? Okay dad, but can I just see her for a second, I want to show her something, pleeeease!
My son was 10 years old then, loved his mother dearly, a typical mother’s boy. He would look for any reason to spend time with his mother. I have to say I admired their relationship. But today his world was going to be torn into pieces. Her mother had just committed the most selfish deed ever, and for what? Exchange of fluids ! Guilt maybe?
Being a high ranking soldier, my work dictates that I have to be a globe trotter for different kinds of missions. She always knew this was the order of the day and before we tied the knot, we agreed that she would have to compromise when it came to me and travelling for work. But one thing I ensured whenever I came back home was to spend time with her and the kids without any distractions.
I am a family man and I understand my role as the figure head. On the other hand my wife was a devout church goer and she was respected both in our estate and place of worship. I respected her more since she gave her all to raise our two kids as a stay at home mum and home school teacher. I never had any iota of doubt that she could ever betray me the way she did. I had noticed she had started growing distant and it never occurred to me why. Anytime I sat her down for any kind of conversations she was always not in the mood. I tried to engage her more and do more but all my attempts were futile and the frustrations slowly set in and boom we started becoming strangers in that house.
Some days she would wake up on the good side and act as if all was well and I thought, things are finally getting better, halleluyah. But before I could finish celebrating she would pull that silent move on me again. I decided to consult with one of her close friends since I needed closure on this madness at my home. The friend also mentioned it had been a while since they last spoke and that Mercy had grown distant. Ama was she depressed, I asked myself? But what would get her there yet I supported her fully, she never lacked anything. Nikajiambia ni sawa tu, maybe one day we would resolve it. But I never stopped trying, I always fought for our love to go back to the way it used to be.
On this one time I had travelled for work for close to 30 days. Being that the place we were was very remote, our access to electricity for charging our phones was very limited but I always made sure we spoke at least once a day. On the 30th day, we had an emergency meeting where we were warned of an imminent attack so we had to travel back to Nairobi and that’s what happened. It was never planned. This is where the plot thickened.
I arrived home early safe and sound. I knew on that day I could go pick my sons in school as a surprise. The elder one always wanted me to pick him up in my army uniform so that he could have something to brag about to his friends. The younger one who was 7 never had any expectations, only food excited him. So the idea was for me to get home, freshen up, have a warm meal and rest before the pick up time. I enthusiastically opened the gate since I had the keys. There was no need to ring the bell, plus I wanted to surprise my way not knowing what awaited me . Along the way I had bought flowers and some chocolates, she loved white chocolate to spice up the dwindling love.
As I got inside, I realized the house was awkwardly silent. Nothing was on and this was a bit strange. Or maybe she wasn’t home? Maybe , I thought so myself. I dropped down my luggage bag and the goodies I had brought for wifey. Went to the kitchen, had a cold glass of fanta, then ate an apple ya kuteremsha soda. I lazily strutted across the kitchen as I headed towards the stairs leading up to my room so that I could rest. Before heading up I removed my boots, they were a bit heavy at this point yet I didn’t want to feel as if I was doing any more work. Up I went, slowly, thinking about my wife and wondering if she would be happy to see me. I hated drama and those silent nights, I mean, what’s there to love about a marriage that is losing its grip by the day? I wondered.
I arrived at the front of the door leading to my room. It was closed, my room is never closed, maybe it is when I’m not around but I don’t remember seeing it closed if it wasn’t late at night and we didn’t want the kids snooping around. I slowly opened the door, out of curiosity, then nikachungulia ndani to see if anything was going on. Truth be told I never expected to find anything, nothing! But when I opened the door there they were in plain sight. I could tell there were two people under the sheets. And the motion was so sensual and dramatic and graphic at the same time. I froze, I didn’t know what to do at this point. I froze! He has brought another man inside my house, inside my room, inside my bed. How come I never saw any clues as I came in, being in the forces clues were there to be seen. They never heard me opening the door, they were so engrossed in their activity that nothing else mattered to them. They were in cloud nine. I drew out my gun cocked it, I knew whoever was with my wife in that bed was either going to die or badly hurt. He didn’t respect me. I was enraged. I called out her name and in a split motion, she sprang out of bed. By this time my gun was pointed at them. I’m so sorry babe, I’m sorry, she wasn’t sure whether to run towards or away from me. By this time it wasn’t even the action that shocked me, it was who she getting laid by that sent more shockwaves.
I stopped pointing the gun at them. I was defeated. It was an unbearable scene even to a military man who had seen it all. This was my house so I was not going to walk away. I picked up my towel from the drawer, and with my uniform, I marched to the bathroom where I took my sweet time to shower. I hoped I gave them enough time to finish their deeds.
An hour later I came out, she was seated on the bed crying and all she could say was that she could explain. I couldn’t take any of her excuses and I never bothered to listen. I went downstairs, took some food out of the fridge which I ate to fill then I slept on the sofa. I slept my sorrow away! For the next one week, I never brought up that story. I never spoke to her and in front of the kids we acted like the perfect parents. But after they were gone, we went back to default mode. Guilt was killing her slowly and I never gave her a chance to explain anything.
This was the defining moment in our lives, she had defined hers already by her actions. I was still thinking about the next move.10 days later, a usual day like any other. I went to pick my boys from school and on this day. I felt light for some reason. Like I was happy and all but there was nothing that happened to trigger this feeling. But since the day felt good, I felt good too.
Hi guys, how was school today? That question has always been met with a lot of talk and k knew those two boys wouldn’t stop talking until we got home. At least anytime they talked much I knew they were okay so I never interrupted, I just asked more questions. When we got home like the norm the mother had already prepared their afternoon tea with some snacks and they were already set on the table. They ran to their room to change to home clothes before getting to their daily routine.
I was meant to go meet a friend for a drink so I decided to go upstairs to get my kofia. Anytime I went to the bar I always had a kofia on. When I opened the door that’s when I saw her. I stood still at the door, it’s only when I heard my two sons fighting over something that I quickly got in and closed the door. There was a note on top of the bed, the suicide note. .Refer to the 1st three paragraphs again…How was I going to explain this news to my sons? That was my biggest worry, they loved their mum. Again, I had to act normal around my kids and they never knew anything that was going on even after my 1st son came knocking. When the night settled, I called in the relevant authorities and reported what had happened but I told them not to raise any suspicion within the neighborhood when they came to the house. Seeing my 1st born son screaming as he watched the body being carried away crushed me to pieces. He knew, he was old enough to know. My younger son cried because his elder brother painfully cried, but maybe he understood too.