You are definitely the most beautiful woman in here’ said Alfred as he suddenly crept up silently behind me. I stiffened from surprise as I didn’t know when he had left the group he was talking with. He was so close to me that I could feel his breath on my neck. Good lord this man was going to get me in trouble I sighed as I wiggled away from him. Stop it I hissed’ people are watching.
I don’t care he murmured let them. I turned to him eyes blazing. What is this? I asked fuming. Do you want me to get into trouble? Show some tact I cautioned him.
He smiled and whispered I can’t help myself especially when you look so amazing in this dress. Inwardly my heart is leaping with joy. I can’t remember the last time any man paid me such glowing compliments. Soon enough someone calls him over and he excuses himself from my company and heeds to the call. I am left alone with my thoughts, doubts, regrets and nostalgia all rolled in one. In a few short hours Alfred would be leaving and I would be left behind with my feelings.
I must admit it has been exhilarating and a bit frightening too but then I knew from that first kiss six nights ago that our shared moments were only stolen and soon enough we must come back to earth. One thing I do know is that I regret nothing, not his touch nor the fact that I have been unfaithful. I have been more alive these past few days than I have been in ten years. Some part of me wonders if we could have made it had we stayed together what our paths would have been, twenty years on. There must have been a reason for this encounter and affair of ours. God knows that I have never done anything like this and without remorse.
But I must get real here; I have three children a husband that provides for my every need, relations, friends and families ties. I can’t throw it all away because of passion. And besides Alfred has not made me any promises. It is better to just say goodbye and put a permanent closure on him. I have to let him go’ I think as resignation sets in.
Hey’ he says rushing back, do you want to dance he asks as the band strikes up a highlife oldies tune. No I reply.
Can we go? I ask.
Yes he replies immediately and we make our way out of the hall. As we approach his hotel room, we are both silent knowing that this moment was the determining time for us and whatever this is.
I want you to know that I have fallen in love with you’ he blurts out as soon as we are in the room.
Oh Alfie! I sigh and walk into his embrace. What are you asking me to do? I am not asking you to do anything I am just telling you. He says pulling me gently away from his embrace to cup my face in his hands. I am not afraid to lay claim on you.
Alfie’ I say disentangling myself from his embrace and walking to the bed, let me ask you honestly I say as I sit down on the bed ‘if we hadn’t run into each other at the restaurant would you have looked for me?
I see a look of anguish come over him. He takes in a deep breath and covers the space between us and sits beside me on the bed.
I will be honest and very truthful with you. No I wouldn’t he says. I had looked up your profile on the social media and seen from some of your pictures how happy you looked in your marriage. And besides I didn’t think this would ever happen. I must admit however that seeing you again has revived my feelings for you and I don’t know how I am going to give you up again.
I can’t give up on my family I say with a heavy heart.
I know and I am not asking you to do that. He replied.
We sit quietly, companions in misery.
I really wished I had the strength to damn it all and say good bye to my life and follow my heart which is entwined with Alfred, but my obligations surpasses how I feel. What if we grow tired of each other? I wonder silently, what if, he is in love with me because i am unavailable? I know what we must do’ I say quietly.
What’s that he asks?
We have to say good bye I reply.
I can’t forfeit my family for my passion.
I understand he says with sadness in his eyes. What I really want to say is ‘Alfred take me away with you, let me be yours forever. Erase my doubts and fears tell me that you will never leave me again. But I do not say any of these and instead I stand up and pull him to his feet.
It’s time for me to say goodbye.
Good bye Patricia he says and I walk to the door and open it gently.
I turn to give him one last look and he waves at me. As I shut the door I feel as though I have shut a better part of my life away and I hurry to the lift.
Blessedly I am the sole occupant in the lift and I feel my eyes welling up with unshed tears. Life happens I say to myself and shake my head as though trying to clear some imaginary fog. I sniff as a tear threatens to slide down my face and raise up my head as the lift opens. My hearts literarily skips a bit as I alight from the lift and see a man standing by the lobby in a black suit just like Alfred. As I walk towards him I catch a glimpse of his side profile and I am disappointed that it isn’t him. I walk slowly to my car and hope that he comes after me begging me to be his and all that. But alas nothing like that happens and I drive home with my heart in shreds.
A wide smile is forming on my face as I approach the arrival terminal of the JFK airport my heart is beating very fast with anticipation as I take this leap of faith into my hands. It has been three months since I last saw Alfred and a lot has changed in my life. The events that has happened over the course of ninety days are like a badly written Nollywood script, my life has been overrun by some life changing events. These past events have opened my eyes to the possibility of a new life. All the while it seemed as though I have been waiting to exhale and now I am doing just that as I have found the meaning of true love through an affair with Alfred.
The details of the past ninety days can best be summarized in a few words. I can’t live my life without the love of my life ‘Alfred.
My opportunity had come through Richard’s infidelity which was revealed in the guise of a receipt and a report card which I had found in the pocket of the side door of his car. I had needed to make use of his car charger when I discovered this. Naturally I do not snoop around Richard’s turf but something caught my attention when I saw the envelop sticking out and curiosity got the better part of me and low and behold I found a receipt for payment of school fees for a child who bore my husband’s name and wasn’t mine.
Confrontation and revelations came up. Richard had another family hence his numerous trips away. He had three other children by some local woman. This hurt a lot. I had never felt so betrayed and angry. He had begged and asked for forgiveness. What could I do but to forgive him, I had also broken the yoke and sanctity of my marriage by having an affair with Alfred but I was going to take that affair with me to the grave.
But last week, something in me snapped and I couldn’t take it anymore, I found myself reaching for my passport as I made a reservation for a one way ticket to the United States.
I told Richard that I needed to get away and he did not put up an argument. My children are grown and in boarding school. I had to get away I could not bear to be with Richard anymore as his betrayal was threatening to consume me. The only voice I want to hear is that of Alfred and the only arms I want to be in are also his arms. I longed for him with my mind, body and soul and I could hardly wait to be with him again.
A card board with my name catches my attention and it is Alfred holding up the card. He is standing there smiling like someone from a romantic movie and I feel my desire for this man rise with such urgency and I physically restrain myself from plunging into his arms.
There is a lot of catching up to be done.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents either are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.