The Blue House S01 E05

Olayinka looked disdainfully at Helen. “You want to do what?”
“I want to return them, my husband said he can’t afford the price.”
“If you knew he couldn’t afford it why did you take them in the first place? My friend would have taken them to others who can. You should learn to cut your coat according to your cloth!” Olayinka hissed, grabbed the nylon bag from Helen and slammed the door in her face.
Helen was stunned with shame, never before had she been so embarrassed. She was angry too, Olayinka had no right to speak to her in that manner, she contemplated knocking on the door and giving her a piece of her mind but she decided it wasn’t worth it. She had learnt her lesson in a very bad way, and she was more hurt by the fact she had known that Obiora would not be able to afford them but she really didn’t want to look underpriviledged in the presence of the other women. She sighed and readjusted her handbag, wishing she was richer.
**********
Obiora sat at his desk thinking of last night’s event. Even though Helen had been wrong to buy clothes they didn’t need and at such an exorbitant price (in his opinion), he thought he over reacted. She had never done such a thing before and he was now beginning to think he could have just obliged her or at the very least paid for some. He picked up his phone and typed a message.
I may have over-reacted last night I’m sorry. You don’t have to return them, I’ll pay for them.
He sent the message and leaned back in his seat, thinking about ways to pay the bill without upsetting their finances. His phone beeped, it was a message from Helen:
I’ve returned them.
Obiora sighed, she must have been embarrassed. Her message had simply said she had returned them, nothing more. But he had read so many more words of hurt, anger and shame. He sighed again, now he had to think of ways of making it up to her. He had gone from being the offended to the offender. He picked up his phone and typed a message to begin his reconciliation campaign.
Do you think you can get them back?
He waited all day, Helen didn’t respond.
**********
Effiong had given the twins their bath and put them to bed. He now settled on the couch to watch the day’s news when there was a knock on the door. He would have ignored it but he had just changed the channel so whoever it was would know he was indeed at home.
He dragged himself to the door and opened it. It was Obiora. “Ah my man! I didn’t know it was you. Come in” he urged.
Obiora settled on the couch and then asked. “The twins are asleep?
“Yeah…” Effiong replied
“Looks like we’re both on night duty with the kids uhn?” Obiora said laughing
“At least you know where your wife is” Effiong said with meaning
“What’s that supposed to mean, you don’t know where Yinka is?” Obiora asked sitting up
“Well, she said she has a late night meeting at her office. They’re retrenching people or something like that so they have a lot of loose ends to tie up’
“But you don’t believe her”
“Guy, I don’t know what to believe these days. She just doesn’t seem to be here. Remember last week I told you that she got carried away with her phone and forgot the oil on the burner? “
“Yeah…”
“Well, today she forgot to pack the children’s lunch boxes despite the fact that she left the house later than usual today. It was when I came home briefly to get something for the office that I saw their boxes on the kitchen slab.”
“But that could have just been a coincidence, she may have been in a hurry. You don’t know if she’s under pressure at work.”
“Obi, I’m telling you something is wrong.” He hesitated. “We’ve not had sex in almost two months” he said painfully.
“What? You’re not asking for it”
“What do you mean I’m not asking for it? I be calabar guy na! She’s not giving it to me. She’s always giving one excuse or the other.”
“Maybe you offended her, you know how women can just deny you access when you offend them. I think you should talk to her, give her a chance to explain herself. Why would she suddenly change towards you and the kids, it’s only a woman who is having an affair that acts like that and I’m sure that Yinka can never do that” Obiora said
“Yeah…” Effiong said dryly
“Guy no dey tink like that o! Talk to your wife!” Obiora said reading Effiong’s mind. “Make I dey go” Obiora said rising, “The kids can just sense it when I’m not there with them. By the way I was going to give you this” He said giving Effiong a bundle of notes “That’s for me and Kunle, the guy doesn’t want to have anything to do with Dapo.” They both laughed.
“He’s still a young guy, he’ll get used to people like that.” Obiora said amused by Kunle’s avoidance of Dapo.
**********
Obiora lay on his bed and thought about what he and Effiong had discussed, Olayinka wasn’t the type of person to have an affair. Or was she? But then he remembered what Effiong had said about them not having sex in almost two months, even if she was angry with him would she deny him for that long just to punish him? He couldn’t imagine the same thing happening to him and Helen. The thought of her made him realize that he still hadn’t heard from her, he picked up his phone and decided to call her. It rang out the first time but he tried again.
“Hello” Helen said curtly
“Hey sunshine…I hadn’t heard from you all day so I decided to call” He said huskily
“Oh” Helen said indifferently
“How’s work?”
“Fine”
“Are you still angry with me? I’m sorry… I just didn’t expect you to do what you did, I mean you know the state of our finances. I’m sorry…” he said pleadingly
“It’s okay” Helen said without emotion
“I miss you…it’s raining here”
“Okay” she responded
Obiora sighed, the cold war was still on. “Let me let you get back to work, I’ll see you tomorrow evening”
“Okay” Helen said and disconnected the call.
Even though Obiora thought Helen was now over reacting he made a mental note to order for a red velvet cake the next day with the words “I’m sorry”, in the light of what was going on with Effiong and his wife, he just wanted all to be well in his own marriage.

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