It is a sitting room.
The furnishings are modern, tasteful and expensive.
The walls are painted a warm green.
The brown accessories add to the feeling of an embracing calm.
On the love seat, she sits.
Her legs are crossed one over the other. The smooth skin of her legs are illuminated beneath the glow of the floor lamp that is the only light in the room.
Her hand cradles her chin and is held up by an elbow that sinks into the arm of the chair.
Her bosom rises and falls, the smooth globes of her breasts bursting against the fabric of her low cut blouse.
Her braids have been swept away from her face and so her eyes are exposed.
They are very sad but they are dry.
This is suprising because clearly someone in the room is crying.
It is not her.
It is him.
He sits on the other side of the room, on the edge of the middle seat of the sofa.
His head is bowed, his tears hidden to fall silently on the fabric of the dark grey coat that he holds limply in his hands.
He does not make a sound but even the silence knows that he weeps.
He weeps for him.
He weeps for her.
He weeps for the unborn child he would never know.
He knows why that child will never call him father.
He knows that once she rises from that chair, she will go up to her room, pack her things and be gone
He weeps because she does not weep
And he knows that it is because she has wept the last tear she will ever weep
And that means there is nothing more he can say.
She had warned, hadn't she?
They had warned, hadn't they?
You will look up one day and all you take for granted will not be there, they had all said
He had listened but too late
He had lost it all.
"Please." he tries to beg
She does not respond. She unfolds her limbs with her grace that amazes him still.
She leans forward and on the coffee table places two gleaming pieces of gold.
They are her engagement ring and wedding ring.
She gets up and walks away.
Her movement is like that of a swan.
She glides up the stairs and disappears at the top of it down the hallway to their rooms.
He is left with the demons that are his thoughts.
He thinks of what he has to do to make her stay.
She will not come back
He should let her go.
He owes her that much.
All he has put her through.
And the loss of a child.
If he had been there, maybe he could have saved the life of their child.
He did not know that Selena would come and challenge Belema.
That there would be a tussle and that Belema would fall and miscarry.
He thinks of why he strayed in the first place
And the second and third and all the others
Selena was just the last straw
Even his friends backed off when that affair started.
Her father could destroy him and the business.
As it stood, he was going to.
Selena had been buried according to the Muslim Rites that morning.
Her suicide and letter was all over the news.
Belema just came from the hospital to get her things.
It was over
It was all over
She comes down the stairs. She is holding an envelope
It contains documents of property she owned before the marriage.
She had listened to his request that she not work while they were married.
She had stayed home.
And received one story after the other.
She walks past him and picks up her bag.
"Cherie," she calls him. She speaks french.
Boarding school in Switzerland can help ensure that.
He went to government college in Osun state.
He looks up. The despair the sight of her brings is painful.
He can barely focus.
"My lawyers will contact you in a bit. I don't want anything. When you receive the documents, sign and it will all be over."
He shakes his head.
"Belema...I am sorry."
She chuckles. It is without mirth. It is cold and cruel.
It makes him shiver inside.
"Don't kid yourself," with her accent 'kid' comes out as 'keed'. "That stupid girl did not kill my baby."
"I am not raising a child by myself. And I want nothing to do with you...nothing to remind me of you.So, I got rid of it."
"Now, you and I can start afresh. You, with whatever nonsense brings herself your way and I with someone more deserving of me."
His eyes grow hard.
She waves and walks out.
She does not slam the door but the sound of it shutting echoes through his head.