THE PATH - Episode 2

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Elim held the door for her. He was beaming with dazzling smiles. His hands shook with excitement....

Elim held the door for her. He was beaming with dazzling smiles. His hands shook with excitement. His heart was composing and releasing a cacophony of lyrics.  He heard a million sounds in his head although none actually existed. Finally, his persistence and patience had paid off. He was not sure whether to dance, sing, just talk or cry. The fruity whiff of Margret’s perfume wafted into his nostrils as she walked past him while he held the door. The smell left him giddy. He felt his knees go limp. He held tenaciously onto the doors. Despite his state, his eyes were fixated on her beauty. Her black skirt and white dress latched fittingly onto her skin, subtly highlighting her curves. Her long straight legs glared at him…or rather, he glared at them non-stop. He left the door hurriedly, ran over to the table and pulled out a chair for her. He was like a servant attending to a master, and with glee too.

“This place is beautiful.” She said, looking around the impeccably furnished restaurant. “Yes it is…It really is Maggy,” Elim said as he hustled to gather his ‘discombobulated’ thoughts. Soon, they were wolfing down Italian delicacies. “Thanks for coming Margret. This is certainly, the happiest day of my life,” Elim said. “I don’t mean to be difficult Elim, but please could you stop saying that,” Margret answered. “Why is that Maggy?” “You promised we were going to have dinner as friends. I want things to stay that way for now.” “It is okay by me. If you don’t mind though, can I say you something?” “Sure, what is it?” “You don’t think there is a future for you and I, right? Is it because your heart is elsewhere or is it because I don’t stand a chance with you?” “I’d rather we eat and leave as friends. I don’t want to talk about us.”

“I know there is someone else somewhere. How long are you prepared to wait for him…wherever he might be? I have waited patiently for you Margret. I am willing to do anything to make you happy. I promise you, I will worship the air you breathe, if you give me a chance. I will put my heart to the edge of a sword if I have to, just to protect you. I love you more than words can explain. After tonight, it is over between us. You can wait for Mr. Right for as long as you want. Remember, someone has loved you with indescribable loyalty and commitment. You don’t buy those. They stem from the deepest recesses of the mind….and mine is bristling with them; all for you. If I am not good enough for you, so be it. I will no longer chase you around town like a clueless fellow, gallivanting the streets of Nairobi with no clear destination. Carry on with your life. I hope it all works out well for you. I guess I will always love you, but I have to find a way to expunge you from my mind and carry on.”

Margret stared at him in confusion. She wished life had been less complicated. One look at Elim suggested he had run out of gas. There was a concealed frown on his face. His initial enthusiasm had vanished. His eyes begged for help…for her love. She wondered if it would be right to walk away from such a committed young man for the sake of her love for James. What if James is in love with someone else abroad…perhaps a white American girl and he does not have the guts to tell me. Maybe he is and yet he still wants me for himself when he returns home. She was choking on balls of frustration and confusion that ran riot in her heart and head. “Can you really do that?” She asked him. “Do what?” Elim asked. “What you said a moment ago…can you really expunge someone you truly love from your mind? Can you just wake up one morning and brush them off your mind as if they no longer existed? What if you still loved them?” “I knew there had to be someone else…What is the essence of love if the other person does not love you back? For how long are you prepared to wait for them to show you the same love that you generously shower on them?” “What if they did but they could not be there with you physically to share their love with you?”

“If you love someone, you do whatever it takes to be there for them.” “It is easy for you to say that, but some situations are far more complex that what you think. What if you expunge them from your mind…as you put it (if that was as easy) and then they resurface and you still love them, what would you do?” “Love is a choice; some are easier than others. For some, everything falls into place when they fall in love. For others, they have to fight for it, but there is only how long and how far you can go…or fight. Sooner or later, you will have to turn and look at a different door if the one you have been knocking on won’t open.” “He is not shutting the door on me Elim!” Margret raised her voice involuntarily. “I am sorry, but I guess I should say it now.  I have boyfriend and I love him to death…but he lives in the US. We have not seen each other in years, but he has never stopped loving me. We talk often, and I…I really think that this guy is the one for me.”

Elim wished he was in Margret’s boyfriend’s place. He looked at her beautiful face. Even in her emotional state, her beauty was still shining through. A barrage of pains stabbed ruthlessly at him as he looked at her insanely ravishing beauty. “Does it not bother you that he may never come back to you?” Elim asked, willing to win her over by all means. Now that he knew his competitor was far away, he was willing to fight harder for her. “Think about it Maggy, what if he is married there?” She had told herself time and again that James was still madly in love with her and that he was not married to some white lady. “I have to leave now Elim. I am sorry; I am not in a good state to carry on this conversation. I will see you soon. I need some time to process all this,” she explained. “I am sorry! Please don’t leave yet. Let’s discuss something else…anything, just to have you here beside me. Please, you finally went on a date with me, there is no need to end it like this.” “I made clear it was not a date Elim. Besides, I am in a bad state right now. It would be best if I left. Please forgive me, but I have to leave,”

Slowly, she dragged herself up, placed her purse on her shoulder and languidly shuffled towards the door. He looked on helplessly, wishing he could make her come back. As she pushed the door open, she turned back and said, “Bye…I will see you soon.” Her eyes were masked by a shroud of tears. He wanted to reach out and hold her…make her pains go away. He felt a knot in his stomach as frustration and knifing pain aimed at him with brutal tenacity. Out in the open, Margret trudged down the street. She was emotionally and physically drained. It was as though the wind was propelling her as she dangled her way home. When she finally reached home, she went straight to the bedroom and dived into bed. Beside her lay her Samsung Galaxy S5. The screened glistened against the light that peered in from the living room.

She wondered if she should call James. Her hands shook as she picked up the phone. She tapped on her WhatsApp icon and searched for James in her WhatsApp contact list. His smiley face stared brightly back at him. James had a picture on his profile where he smiled broadly. Margret placed her hand over the picture and pressed a finger against it. She wished it was him…the real him physically, and not his picture. She ran her finger across the face that stared at her on the screen of her phone. She thought of the year James had left for the US. There was not a day that went by without the two of them being together. They were neighbors, living in adjoining buildings. He could wrap his arms around her at night as they sat in his balcony and counted the stars. They even talked about the number of children they’d have and their names. She picked the female names and he the male ones - 2 boys and 2 girls. A wave of nostalgia coasted over her sending tears down her face. She closed her eyes wishing that when she opened them, James would be there to scoop her up in his big strong arms again and kiss her.    STORY CONTINUES...

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Written by:
Victor Chinoo

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