(Short Story by Adebayo Mary)
Sometimes, I hate my work, my boss and coming home every day feeling tired and stressed but I do love my job.
I dropped my bag on the table as I didn’t feel like taking it in. I couldn’t even feel my legs. If you are a personal assistant to the she-devil, you will probably understand.
I sluggishly walked into my room, removed my dress and went into the bathroom to take my bath. I walked out of the bathroom feeling refreshed and a little bit active.
The sound of my phone ringing in the silent house made me shivered in fear. I hissed when I remembered my phone was in my bag. I was already feeling lazy about walking to the sitting room but I had to.
I smiled when I saw the name on the screen.
“Hi Tom” I smiled and sat on the cushion with my leg on it. I just feel comfortable sitting like that.
“Hi Mary, sorry for disturbing you. I know you must be tired” he said probably feeling guilty. That’s Tom for you. He knew me like the back of his hand.
“It’s no big deal. Hope no problem?” I asked knowing he doesn’t like late calls.
“Not really. Can you come to my house tomorrow?” He asked. I mentally checked if I have an appointment remembering none I nodded and then remembered he couldn’t see me.
“Sure. I will be there” I said expecting him to cut the call.
“Hmmm… Mary?” Tom called.
“Yes?” I asked he sounded nervous.
“Make sure you dress nicely,” he said. Wait for what?
“Hmmm….okay,” I said and dropped the call even though I was a little bit confused about his behavior. I always dress nicely and he knew it so why would he tell me to dress nicely?
What if he had a surprise for me?
What if it’s just a sleepover? No, he wouldn’t tell me to dress nicely. He can only say that if it ……
He wouldn’t have told me to dress nicely any other day. Getting excited, I stood up as I nervously walked around the sitting room. I felt like crying and laughing at the same time. Somebody wake me up. Is this a dream?
I picked up my phone and call the only person I knew will always know what to do.
“Hello Ella” I met Ella in college and since then we have been best of friends. She knew every of my secret including my love for Tom.
“Hi, girl. Hope no problem? This one that you called this late” she said and I heard something fall. She worked for a publishing company as a writer.
“Guess what?” I told her as I started jumping on my chair. Yes, I was excited. I know I should be matured at 25 but I am just so nervous.
“You won a lottery?” Ella said not bothering to think about it.
“No, why will I get involve in betting?” I sighed.
“So tell me. What’s the gist?” She asked.
“Tom called” I shouted and I can imagine her rolling her eyes.
“Is that a new thing?” She asked. God, this girl is something else.
“He asked me to come to his place and dress nicely” I shouted.
“Oh my, he finally got the courage to ask you out. I’m happy for you girl but don’t damage my ears” she said laughing at my giggles.
“When is the date?” She asked and I remembered I didn’t ask.
“He didn’t tell. Probably at our usual time” I told her.
“Yes! I am coming to dress you up then. Need to go, see you tomorrow” she said.
“Okay, see you. I am so excited” I said and we both laughed as she dropped the call.
Never would I have guessed that this day will come. I am so excited and happy. It was a dream come true.
“I’m not wearing that revealing dress. He asked me to dress nicely not slutty,” I said as I stared at the dress Ella choose for me.
“Come on grow up. You are 25 for God sake” she said glaring at me.
“I’m still not wearing it,” I said ignoring her as I checked my closet for another dress.
“If you wear it, I will go on a date with Jimmy,” she said and I gaped at her. Jimmy was this guy who had been asking her out for months but she wouldn’t budge. Ella had been heartbroken so many times that she grew to had hatred for men.
“Bribery!!! Fine” I groaned knowing I couldn’t say no to this. She laughed as she jumped around but I could see she didn’t want to meet Jimmy.
“Ella, you don’t have to go on a date with Jimmy if you don’t want to,” I told her.
“I think it’s time I let go of the past and move on. I should go. Put the dress on,” she said smiling and I nodded.
“Wow!!! You look beautiful he won’t be able to keep his hands to himself,” she said and I blushed.
“Yea, the dress is nice,” I said as I stared at the gown in the mirror. It was really beautiful.
“Not only the dress, you, Mary, but you also look amazing. I have to go. Wish you luck” Ella said and I nodded. Though I missed seeing her every day, I am happy she was doing what she loves.
“Don’t forget to call me when you return?” she said and fake a glare.
“Okay. Thank you, bye” I said and she nodded as she rushed out. I looked at the mirror once again and I really love myself.
I picked my clutch and walked out of the house since I was driving to his place not that I care that he didn’t pick me up.
AT TOM’S HOUSE
“Mary, thanks for coming. It really means a lot,” Tom was wearing a blue suit, my favorite color with a white tie and black shoe. I couldn’t help staring at him. He is handsome. I love is black curly hair, his eyes were looking at me with love and admiration.
“You are welcome,” I said and smiled at him. I almost fainted when he returned the smile.
“Have you sit?” he said pointing at the cushion. I nodded as I sat down. Looking around, there were no flowers nor roses but it felt perfect.
“How are work and everything?” He asked looking deep into my eyes.
“Work is fine and I am too,” I told him and he nodded.
“So, why am I here?” I asked. I didn’t want to be too forward but I couldn’t help it.
“Nothing much. Let’s have dinner first,” he said and stood up gesturing for me to go first. We both walked to the dining and sat opposite each other.
“You already set the dinning?” I asked when I saw the covered plates and cutlery.
“Yes, I want everything to be perfect,” he said and my heart skipped a bit. I opened the plate but nothing could prepare me for what I found.
“Oh my God, Tom” I felt like crying. The ring was simple but beautiful and it is perfect. Tom smiled and knelt down.
“I have waited for the right time and the right moment to tell you this. Mary, ever since I’ve met you as a kid, I have always known you are mine. I am just so happy I get this chance today. You are an amazing woman and any man who has the opportunity to be your husband is the best man. Will you do me the favor of making me your husband?” He stared and I couldn’t help the tears as they flew.
“Yes!!! Yes!! Yes!!!” I shouted.
“She said yes!!!” Tom shouted and I laughed as he hugged me. I was a little bit surprised when he stood up and walked to the sitting room without putting the ring on my finger but I followed him.
“I know you are happy Tom but you need to put the ring on my finger?” I said laughing at his excitement.
“Ring? Why will I give you the ring?” He said looking genuine confused.
“What do you mean? I said yes” I said reminding him.
“But I don’t know if she will” he answered. What is he saying?
“What? Who?” I asked looking confused.
“The girl I love” he answered looking at me as if I should understand. Is this a joke? Where is the camera?
“The girl you love? That’s me” I told him smiling but I couldn’t feel my smile. I was getting a little bit afraid and nervous. He started laughing, hard.
“Come on Mary. You know I was only kidding” he answered in between laughter.
“Kidding? Tom, what are you saying?” I asked as I tried to understand what is happening. What did he mean by kidding?
“That’s a practice about what I will tell Emily, my girlfriend. Sorry for not telling you earlier but I felt it won’t look real” he said and smiled at me as if I am dumb for not catching on. My whole world just collapsed and he was smiling? Practice? Are…..What?
“Why do you look so surprised?” He asked. Who is this and where is Tom? If this is real then my world is crumbling down. I could feel my heart breaking. Squeezing in pain.
“You mean this is all a rehearsal on how to propose to your girlfriend and not me?” I asked him.
“Come on Mary. Why are you making this a big deal? I made real dinner are you sleeping over?” he asked as he sat on the cushion. What he could think about is food? Did I give him that view of being a glutton?
Keeping the tears at bay, I picked up my clutch which suddenly felt too heavy.
“No, I have to go see someone. Sorry, I need to go” I said as I walked to the door.
“Oh.. Okay. Do you think Emily will say yes?” He asked and the first tear dropped. Thank God I was facing the door.
“I don’t know Tom, Goodbye,” I said and rushed out of the house.
I didn’t bother to stop the tears. It all felt unreal, unsure.
I was so stupid.
I was really stupid.
I dressed up for nothing, nothing.
I felt so used, alone and betrayed.
Anger rushed through my veins as I packed the car. I dropped my bag in the sitting room and walked to the kitchen. Chocolate, wine, sugar and Ice-cream even fluffy my teddy bear joined me on the bed as I cried. I picked my phone and called the only person I could call mine.
“Hello, Mary. Why are you back so early?” Ella asked.
“Ella….he …..” I couldn’t finish my statement as I sobbed.
“Oh my God!!! I’m on my way to your place” she said and cut the call.
A FEW MINUTES LATER
Ella rushed into my room and hugged me.
“Calm down. Breathe” she said as I sobbed.
“He used me!! I feel so used Ella” I said crying. She didn’t stop patting my back as I sobbed.
“Hey, it’s okay. You can tell me what happened when you calm down” she said and I nodded. After I calmed down, I used a tissue and she patiently waited.
“I got to his house and he proposed….” She stopped me from talking.
“Wow!!! That’s good news. You got me worried girl” she said smiling and I wished it was the truth.
“No Ella. He said he was practicing how to propose to his girlfriend” I said sobbing.
“Wait. What? He said what?” She shouted and I nodded.
“He said he was practicing. He even said it to my face that he loves her” saying it brought a fresh set of tears to my face.
“Oh my God. Practicing? I will kill him” she shouted looking angry.
“Don’t mind him. He is a bastard” she said hugging me when she saw the tears.
“I am really hurt. I thought he loves me” I said, it hurt.
“He isn’t worth it. If he does he wouldn’t have done that” Ella said and I shake my head.
“But….” I started but she cut me off.
“No, but Mary. He isn’t a responsible guy. Who practice with other people’s emotions?” Ella asked.
“He said….” I started again.
“No matter what he said Mary he isn’t right. Apart from that, you are an amazing and beautiful lady. I always feel you can do more better than him” she answered.
“I love him, Ella,” I said. Saying that hurt me. It felt like I was admitting defeat. How could he do this to me?
“No, you don’t. You are just in love with the fact that you love him” Ella said.
“No Ella, I really do love him,” I told her. I really love him.
“Maybe. But the truth is he isn’t worth it. Mary trust me a nice guy who will care for your emotions will come” she said as she sat on the bed.
“How? When?” I asked feeling hopeless.
“In the right moment at the right time,” Ella said. But.
“And when he comes, he will cherish your emotions,” she said cutting me off.
“Are you sure?” I asked as I looked at her.
“Yes, I am very sure. So smile for me because you are now on the path to waiting for the right man” she said and I smiled.
“Will I get over Tom?” I asked what was my fear.
“When the right guy comes, you will. You deserve the best” Ella said and I nodded.
“Yes, I do,” I said smiling.
“That is the spirit girl” Ella shouted as she picked chocolate.
“Thank you, Ella,” I said and gave her a genuine smile.
“You are welcome dear Friend,” she said with her mouth full and I giggled.
“Cheers to all ladies like me,” I said raising the chocolate bar and she did the same.
“For strength and future Love,” I said.
“Future love indeed” Ella said and we hugged.
So many ladies have had their heart broken simply because they didn’t define their relationship. Some look up to a guy who is already planning his wedding as their husband patiently waiting for the right time he will propose.
Some get involved with a married man only to end up as a single mother.
Some go as far as doing the wife’s duty. Yet, they always need chocolate and a box of tissue.
What do you expect? That he will leave his family for you?
That he will propose to you when he hasn’t asked you out?
That you are now his wife when he hasn’t married you legally?
That you are now a Mrs just because you have sex?
You are deceiving yourself and you need to start thinking of what that relationship is all about before you end up like Mary.
W, women,n need to be wise and accept reality. A man who is not yours can never be yours.
Close your eyes, relax, and redefine all your relationships.
Be wise today.