ONE MONTH LATER…
Ben was home one afternoon, waiting for his wife to come back. He had noticed she wasn’t going for work for almost 2 weeks and when he tried to ask why, she simply pushed his question away.
“I have something am doing that has made me to stay off work for a while Ben, but you cannot know about that since you have someone keeping you busy” she snapped and walked out leaving him mouth shut, it hurt that his wife was keeping her word to stay away from him.
“My love, please listen to me. Can we put this mistake in the past and try to work things out for the better of the two of us and our family? You have punished me enough for the past weeks, please forgive me Jena, don’t do this to me please” he pleaded following her outside to her car as she tried to push the keys in the door to open it.
“I have forgiven you Ben, it`s no wonder I do everything for you as a wife should, I cook for you, I do laundry for you and I make sure everything is well with you before you leave for work. The only thing I refuse to give you is my body and you know why, so please leave my hand I need to rush out” Jena looked at her husband seriously.
“no, am not taking this anymore my love, you don’t even address me well these days, I want my old wife back, I want my sweet and lovely Jena who would hold me and tell me she loves me. I want the woman I married years ago who always puts a smile on my face and makes me a man. Please come back to me my love, I miss you that much, I miss us” Ben knelt down before her crying without minding the garden boy who was watering the flowers in the back yard.
“stop this Ben, I am going to be late I have a very important appointment” she scoffed in her heart feeling so much pain she was failing to swallow her saliva as it chocked her.
“I can’t let you go, you are mine Jena, you hear that? I have messed up big time but I have no were else to go but back to my woman where I belong. I belong here and am not going to leave no matter how much you push me away. Am hurting as much as you are my love and I can’t go on. Talk to me please” he cried his face wet, Jena could not look at him as her eyes were getting filled as well she looked away.
“Okey, let me come back” she finally told him her eyes still away.
“Ok” Ben nodded and let go of her hand watching her drive out.
Here he was hours later seated in their room waiting for her. Luckily the kids had gone to Chilanga for a holiday and it was just the two of them in the house with, junior still at campus. Ben walked about looking at his watch, each passing minute making his heart race he started wondering if Jena was just teasing him or was serious about having to sit down and resolve their differences.
He was still pacing around a glass of wine to calm his nerves in his hands when he heard the car hooting from outside he sighed in relief
“Finally” he placed the cup on the table and walked to the front door to welcome his wife. He could not even go to the office that day and was still in his office clothes only loosened his shirt and took off the neck tie.
Jena stopped to look at her husband as she got off the car, seeing him stand in his suit and wondered why he was still in the same clothes yet he looked like someone who had not gone for work. She took in a deep breath as she walked towards him her friend`s words echoing in her mind,
“He is your husband Jena, your own man, don’t give the devil the chance to separate you two and the beautiful marriage that you have. This is what the enemy wants, to set you both apart so he can come in and destroy. Am not disputing he made a mistake but we know that he is only human and everyone makes mistakes sometimes. Now go home and talk to him, hear him out and make amends so you move forward. He needs to know about his daughter he has the right to. you cannot keep him away” Muma had outlined to her seriously making her reconsider the wise words.
“am going to try but I don’t think it will be easy to trust him again, I can forgive him but any slight silly thing, my mind will be reminded of what he did Muma, it won’t be easy” Jena had stood to leave from her friends place where she had been the whole day after running one errand in town.
“Hey!” the voice of her husband came to wake her from her thoughts she looked at his face.
“Hey, sorry am late” she sighed
“It’s alright love, come on let me help you with that” Ben smiled weakly and grabbed her bag following her as she walked inside. He noticed how much she had lost weight and shook his head sadly.
“Am sorry” he whispered to himself
“My love um…”
“Stop Ben!” she raised her hand at him as she sat in the bed Ben still standing. “I want to go first” she sighed
“Okey” Ben responded looking into her eyes and relieved he was not seeing that anger that was in them before.
“Am not going to say this is easy for me Ben, it’s hard enough to live with the thought of being betrayed, now I have to live in my own house with so much in my heart that I have no one to share it with. We were married to share our lives and live as one.” She paused taking in the silence and looking up at her husband the moment her eyes meets his she started shedding tears.
“Am so sorry my love, I know I was so wrong” Ben knelt down
“No, you were not wrong Ben, you just became this person I don’t know. My Ben would tell me what he was feeling at any given moment, just like I would tell you. So we both had diverted from who we truly are and that is what has brought us this far.” Jena shook her head sadly.
“I will not ask you who it is you slept with or how it all started, just know one fact Ben, the second time this happens, just know that we are done. I will take my kids with me and there will never be us again. You will go back to whoever it was you found comfort in and marry her, give her kids and forget about mine as I will make sure I use every bit of law I know to turn things against you and you should know am not bluffing” she warned this time wiping away the tears and looking at his face direct.
“I know, it will never happen again am sorry. I love you and I missed you so much, you have no idea how much I needed you this close my love. We have come a long way and please let’s not let this silence and whatever has happened put us apart. I love you Jena, I love you, God knows how grateful I am to be married to a woman after my heart” he whispered as he holds her firmly and close talking in her face as he places his forehead on hers and closing his eyes his voice so sincere and sad.
“Am sorry okey” he added opening his eyes and looking at her.
“I missed you too, it’s alright, please don’t do this to us again, don’t..”
“Shshshs” Ben stopped her kissing her lips
“I won’t I promise” he nodded his head and hugged her close again, she held on to his body as their heart beats met, both of them knew that is where they belonged. Together and united. The next hour they spent it in a romantic making up session that left both of them satisfied and happy again.
“So what is going on?” Ben finally asked rubbing his wife’s back gently feeling her soft skin in his palm.
“Oh, my love, I have been dying to tell you this” she looked up his face.
“Really? Tell me” he sat up holding her hands.
“Grace is alive” she stated without warning and Ben was quiet looking at her like she had lost her mind.
“Okey?” he exhaled causally not really knowing what she was driving at.
“it’s true my love, look at this” she quickly grabbed her hand bag and handed him the papers that showed the remains that were buried years back had no human traces in them.
“What is this supposed to mean my love, you are confusing me.” Ben shook his head.
“This means our daughter was taken away Ben and she was never in that car that day. Someone wanted us to believe she was dead so we would never look for her. I was right all along to feel she was alive. I see her in my dreams and I felt it deep in my heart she was alive my love. “Jena explained as Ben stood shocked he could not keep his feet in one place.
“No, no, this can’t be, no dammit! How could I not see it, my God who could have taken our girl?” he asked himself holding his head in anger and shock.
“that is what kept me so sad and busy the past weeks, I was following my intuition and when I tried to lead you on you pushed me away Ben, I wanted to find out the truth and now we know she was not burnt like we have always thought” Jena spoke
“Am sorry, am so sorry I never believed you my love. Here I was busy doing….” He paused looking at his wife.
“We are going to find her Jena, like before we will find her and when I think through this there is no one else that could have done this, it’s that family. Mr. Mwape and his wife, how could they? They will pay dearly for this, I swear on my life they will pay” Ben yelled hitting the wall in anger.
“We have to go to Mpika and find those lunatics, they are so crazy!” he yelled on top of his voice.
“I know Ben, am ahead of you and unfortunately, they moved from there years ago. The people I sent to look for them said they moved away and sold that new farm they bought about the same time we lost our baby. They played us for fools and even came for the funeral knowing so well they took Grace away” she shook her head holding her husband’s shoulder as she stood behind him.
“It doesn’t matter, we have the resources and I will not rest till we get her back. We will get her back my love don’t worry” he turned to look at his wife.
“Come what may, we will find her. If it takes the last of me, then let it be. One thing is certain they cannot hide her forever.” He added hugging his wife closely and kissing her forehead.