Teni dropped her plate, the potatoes suddenly felt like cement in her stomach.
“What do you mean Tejiri is your ex-wife? How’s that even possible?”
Kachi stood staring at her for a few seconds without answering.
“Kachi, I’m asking you! How is it possible that Tejiri is your ex-wife?”
“You’re gonna tell me ‘I told you so’”
Teni got up from the bed and raised both palms up as if restraining him from coming closer
“Don’t do that! Don’t do that right now. Apparently you have some serious explaining to do and I’m waiting for it to happen right now!”
“Tejiri is Cynthia. The woman I married. The one I told you about. Tejiri is her native name.”
“I don’t care about her native name. I’m wondering why the story she told me is utterly different from what you told me. You told me your romance was short. That’s the only thing that is accurate with both your stories. You told me she died in a car accident. So can you tell me how or why it is that she’s alive and living in my estate?!”
Kachi looked as though he was trying to suppress both anger and hurt
“Tee, please calm down.-”
“Don’t frigging tell me to calm down! She called you a wife-beater Kachi! When did you start hitting women?! And you’re married again? And your wife can’t have children so you’re hunting her down? We’re supposed to be best friends. Apparently, I don’t even know who you are-”
Kachi grabbed her shoulders mid-sentence and shook her violently.
“I need you to calm down and listen to me!”
Teni had fear in her eyes. In all her years of being friends with Kachi, he had never touched her or grabbed her so violently. She was scared. She kept quiet and stood staring at him, heart thumping wildly in her chest
“Tejiri lied to you. The same way she’s been lying to everyone who cared to listen. The unfortunate thing is she mixed her lies with some iotas of truth so people believed her.”
He walked away and stood by the window. Teni looked at him in shock. She tried to register what he just said and she instantly felt bad for judging him based on Tejiri’s version alone. But she had just asked and he had seemed shifty with his response…
“When I first met Tejiri, she was fun, exciting and adventurous. I thought she was just the woman I needed. She was huge on PDAs and she made a man feel like the world revolved around him. She seemed like a determined, focused lady but she was merely a hunter. You remember we had a huge fight over her when I told you we were getting married and I was really mad coz I thought you were jealous-”
“And you banned me from your wedding.” Teni shook her head. “I swear, you should always listen to me. Bad things happen to you when you don’t.”
“Well, I was mad coz you hadn’t even met her and you were so disapproving. Soon after we settled down, I started noticing the changes. You know how I’m always travelling for business and stuff. We used to make trips together until she started wrecking my credit cards.”
Teni snorted. She couldn’t even help herself
“It’s not funny. From Milan to Paris. She would shop till she dropped. Teni, the babe was ruining my life. I tried talking to her about it. I mean, I have no problems spoiling my woman but not to the point of my own financial ruin. She never listened. She accused me of being selfish. So I changed the pins for all my cards, reduced her own allowance, told her to get a job and she stopped traveling with me. I think that’s when it got worse. She started chasing men. Like, she didn’t care who she slept with, as long as the money was good, she was game. She slept with some of my friends and my business partners. Tee, I was going crazy. I never caught her and she always denied it! She turned into this really wild, terrible person, it became extremely difficult for me to reconcile the woman I’d married with the woman she’d become.
Anyways, she was constantly getting on my nerves. I was going to divorce her but I kept thinking of what the church would say so I endured her. She was rude, disrespectful and utterly selfish. Never a thoughtful or kind gesture. It always had to be all about her. And after almost a year, I was certain I’d had enough. The last straw was on our anniversary. I took her to Rio, Brazil for the weekend. I told myself that even though we’d had our differences, maybe we could try and work things out. I had reduced my travels and tried to be around more and she had seemingly calmed down. I had business in Rio so I thought I would tidy it up Friday and Saturday then we could have a lovely anniversary dinner Saturday night.
I wanted to surprise her so I made all the necessary arrangements with the hotel staff then called her and told her I would be back at 9:00pm when actually I was going to return at 7:00pm.
I got back to the hotel at 7:00pm and walked into the room to find her having sex with one of the guys I’d done business with only the day before. She had accompanied me to that meeting. Teni, I lost it. I swear, I’ve never been that mad my entire life. The guy hurried off and I descended on her. Like I actually did beat the crap out of her. She was crying and begging me to stop but I did not care. All the pent up frustration and anger of the past year came out in torrents. When I eventually stopped, I stormed out of the room and out of the hotel.
I returned a few hours later and there was police everywhere. They arrested me and detained me until one of my guys came to bail me. I was ‘politely’ asked to leave the country the following day.
We returned to Nigeria and the witch had the guts to sue me. I could not believe it! Like she was basically going to take me to the cleaners. I spent a week in Pantin and it was hell. I can’t remember ever paying that much bribe my entire life. Everyone was sympathetic to her. She had pictures to prove that I’d beaten her that night and so she spun these tales of how I had constantly abused her and stuff. So I bribed my way out of it.
We got divorced at the end of the day and she managed to clean out one of my major accounts. Fifty million naira Teni. I was gone. You can imagine the level of damage that did to my business. She took my fifty million naira and I spent about 10 million paying bribes and making the case go away. She essentially ruined my life.
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To be continued