Rael was so happy when Priscilla arrived because she would have access to her own car and could avoid Steve for a few days. His presence had started to stifle her. He was always talking about his ex-wife and whining about their marital problems. The sex had also become mediocre. She needed to go out without him and find someone who would give her mind-blowing sex without any attachment. She hoped her sister would not judge her if she decided to have a one-night stand. Steve was adamant about him remaining at her place despite the sister being around.
“Priscilla can stay at the hotel room I am paying for babe. She can use your car as you and me use mine.”
“Do you think my sister cannot afford a hotel room? She is here to see me as we try to make up for the lost time. I want her here and there is nothing that you will say that will convince me otherwise. This is my house.”
“Rael do you want me to tell you out rightly that my wife is after you and the only way she cannot harm you is if you are with me?”
“What do you mean?”
“Despite acting crazy and all, she is obsessed with me and all she can do is run her mouth but never hurt me. You on the other hand, are her enemy and she can harm you without thinking twice just to get you off her ‘man’. I know I have been acting like a psycho lately but it is because I am trying to protect you Rael. I would never forgive myself if anything happened to you.”
“Stop scaring me Steve. I think you should go back to your wife. Putting my life in danger like this is not fair.”
“Listen, I will use the extra bedroom while your sister is around or I will sleep in the car like I have been doing”
“This is crazy. Sleep wherever you want but my sister has to sleep here.”
When Priscilla arrived, Rael had to drag her to her bedroom and explain the whole situation to her before she could start asking lots of questions.
“Ask him to pay rent and shop or the house.”
“Hahahaha! My life might be in danger and all you have to say is that Steve has to pay rent? Very caring of you my sister.”
“Nothing will happen to you. A dangerous person would have whopped your ass at the restaurant. If you are going to have a roommate, let him pay for some stuff around the house. Ama you want a free loader?”
“I have heard you. I will ask him.”
Thankfully, Steve and Priscilla hit it off almost immediately and it was not awkward having them together. They talked and laughed non stop and even went out together. Priscilla was even able to convince him that he did not have to take her to Busia for the funeral. The work place had become very volatile since Elizabeth had started grilling and questioning every female staff in the office. She tried not to be very close to her despite her efforts because she had seen how nasty she could be plus they had nothing in common. She felt sorry for her though. She knew that she was deeply hurt and angry and she wished she could do more to help. She had asked her if she was sure that she wanted to proceed with the abortion and if she knew somewhere safe where she could have the procedure done and when she confirmed in affirmative, she knew she would be fine. She was not sure that she would go ahead and have an abortion though. She had wanted the baby initially and as much as she was angry, she loved Collins and would love to hold on to his memory. It was none of her business. She just wanted to be done with the funeral.
The travelled to Busia by a bus provided by the office. The journey was long but thankfully, there was a lot of alcohol and gossip. Some of the clients and influencers who had worked with Collins also travelled with them so it was so much fun than anticipated. They travelled overnight to enable them get to Busia early enough not to miss any part of the funeral. Being from the Bantu community, Rael was quite used to the screams and wailing at the funeral. It was however very amusing to see the reactions of some of her colleagues who had never seen such amount of fanfare in a funeral. There was a time one of the mourners fell and rolled on the ground wailing and few minutes later, she was relishing a piece of chicken with brown ugali like nothing had happened. Asha their receptionist who does not drink came to her and said
“Rael, wapi ile pombe yenu ninywe kidogo. This is not normal. I need to be high to go through this walahi”
“Relax, you haven’t seen anything yet. The rituals can get crazy but if you really want a drink, the boys at that corner have chang’aa and busaa. I can get you some”
“Wewe you are not even helping me bana.”
They were shocked to learn that Collins had five baby mamas back in the village and others from the city. Due to the fact that he had committed suicide, the burial should actually have been conducted at night but because his father was a pastor, some of those rites were kipped. His body however, was covered in banana leaves instead of normal clothes. This really amused some of her colleagues and they wondered what Elizabeth would say if she saw her boyfriend covered in banana leaves. Rael had been tasked with giving the speech on behalf of her colleagues which she did pretty well but as she left the podium, the master of ceremony commented
“Unaona venye watoto wetu wanakula vizuri huko Nairobi”
The crowd burst out laughing, apart from her colleagues who knew that the weight comments started her beef with Collins. She did not understand why people felt they could easily talk about people’s weight when no one had asked for their opinion. For a minute, she thought Collins’ spirit had come to make fun of her one last time. She felt tears stinging her eyes and she thanked God they were in a burial. She went back to where Asha was seated and asked her to take her to the bus.
“Are you okay Rael. I know Collins death has really affected you.”
“I need a drink. Why are people talking about my weight when they have a whole burial to talk about?”
“I do not think he meant any harm Rael. Would you like my opinion or do I shut up and let you drink?
“Shoot, I am not that salty.”
“Why don’t you try working out. You can start by walking for fifteen minutes daily and reduce your food portions. You do not have to do extreme things.”
“I am tired Asha. I do not know how I got here but I am tired. I will try walking and practicing portion control.”
“You will also have to go slow on that alcohol”
“You are now reaching Asha, I do not want such negative energy around me please. Let me drink in peace.”
“Hahahahaha! Pole dada. Kunywa.”
After the burial, they were given lots of food and after handing over their contributions to the family they left the home and decided to catch a few drinks before heading to the hotel they were meant to sleep in. Most of them ended up partying the whole night. Rael had to go sleep early because Steve kept calling and texting her to the point she got irritated and mad and went to bed. She was also still pissed at the comment about her weight and was in no mood to have fun. The first thing she did when she woke up, she texted Steve
“It is a good morning to remind you that I am not your wife.”
“You are a piece of work. What did I do this time?”
“You cannot be calling and texting me after every second. I have a life of my own and I can take care of myself. This has to stop.”
“I am sorry if me being caring irritates you. I will stop”
“You had better. If I need your help, I will get in touch. By the way, if you are to continue staying with me, you have to start paying rent and shopping for the house as well.”
“I will assume that the burial and the long journey has made you moody and you have lost your mind so I will not engage in this conversation.”
“I am damn serious Steve. We will talk when I get back but I am very serious.”
“Travel safely babe. Let me tell your sister to be prepared to receive a crazy person in a few hours’ time.”
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