Her dry, lucid eyes were well hidden behind her big Marc Jacobs eyeglasses. She wasn’t sad or depressed as was expected of her by the large crowd that gathered to bid her husband farewell; rather, she was relieved, satisfied and free.
FREE! The words danced in her head like an excited dancer doing her best number. Finally! She mused, finally she had the freedom she had so craved for years on a platter of gold.
In celebration of her new found freedom, she wanted to discard her shades, rip her black, Stella McCartney knee-length dress, ditch the four inch Christian Louboutin heels that adorned her legs, pour herself a glass of expensive wine while she stood on the table and danced to Trey Songz’ Bottoms Up.
That was how she truly felt, she didn’t feel bad that Makun Bello was six feet deep and was probably being raped by the devil in hell…she really hoped and prayed he was being raped and she delighted herself with the idea that he was being held by two ugly, menacing demons, while a third tore his anus apart with his long demonic manhood. All this creating a great entertainment for the devil, Lucifer himself, who she hoped watched in sheer delight with a pack of pop corn in one hand and a can of Pepsi in the other. He deserved it for all the horrible things he put her through while his pot bellied, disgusting and evil self was on the face of the earth.
She endured the officiating minister’s sermon while he said nice things about the dead and counseled the living to move closer to God, she almost scoffed, the dead wasn’t a nice man, he didn’t have a good heart and was full of wickedness, but everybody had still gathered here, at this well tended cemetery reserved for the wealthy dead in Lagos, to say their goodbyes, to a man that was publicly loathed even by this hypocritical bunch that showed up.
“We are at peace with the fact that our brother, Makun has gone to be with the Lord”
Dede couldn’t help herself this time, she scoffed and rolled her eyes behind her designer shades, she was tempted to turn her back on the whole ceremony and drive somewhere far away. Somewhere she could tend to the wound the asshole they were dedicating too much time to his funeral, had inflicted on her a day before his very welcome demise.
“Dust to dust…”
Now, that was music to her ears, it meant the charade was coming to an end. She had endured the monster’s koboko on her back for two years, she didn’t deserve to be put through this excruciating ceremony.
The minister was speaking to her now, he was pointing at a shovel near where she was standing, it was time for her to pay her respect by throwing dust at her husband’s coffin.
She deliberated on that part of the funeral and decided she didn’t want to say goodbye and did not care if Makun had enough dust to follow him to Hades, so she looked at the minister, the rest of the guests which comprised of silicon carrying socialites, nosy journalists and thieving politicians, sneered and spat on her late husband’s coffin.
“I’d prefer that” she said and smiled.
The flashes that followed the clicks of the camera after her action had not even been close to those she got on the night she won the coveted MBGN crown some fifteen years before.
MAKUN BELLO HAD A SON FROM HIS PREVIOUS MARRIAGE, his name was Tomide Bello, a twenty-five year old graduate of Oxford University, who stayed in the United States with his mother and who couldn’t really stand his late father. However, he had been devastated to hear the man had passed on and had flown into the country with his mother to bury the late Makun.
When he met Dede, he had been captivated by her beauty, her grace and her presence. He thought she was one of the most beautiful women he had ever seen and he had wondered how she ended up with his maniac of a father. He knew what his father was capable of and that was the reason he and his mother had stayed away from the man for so many years.
Dede’s behavior at the cemetery had however spoken a million words; she held grudges and she loathed his father.
His father’s mansion that housed him and Dede before his death a week before gradually begun to fill up, the guests from the cemetery had arrived and were offering their condolences to his mother who was perched on a stool somewhere in the dining room. They had come to participate in the last segment of the three-part ceremony; the dirge. Dede was nowhere in sight and his eyes didn’t miss some of the curious guests who looked around the huge house, hoping to catch a glimpse of the audacious beauty.
The largest sitting room in the house had been prepared for this purpose, beautiful plastic chairs had been arranged and an aisle had been created for people to walk through to the front where a microphone stand was and where everybody could give their own dirge.
Tomide was sitting in front with his mother who had barely said a word since the funeral began and who didn’t even have anything to say regarding Dede’s unexpected behavior at the cemetery.
His uncle, Makun’s younger brother spoke first, followed by his best friend and the state governor.
Tomide was approaching the mic when Dede appeared, she had been noticeably absent all the while but now she walked into the room, clad in short neon coloured skirt and tank which revealed full breasts that did a number with each step she took.
Tomide swallowed hard, the woman made him think really forbidden things, why he felt so attracted to someone ten years his senior was beyond his twenty five year old brain.
Dede had replaced her heels with flip flops and she sashayed to the front where she grabbed the seat Tomide had vacated just seconds before.
The room froze as she walked in and everybody watched her every step as she sat near her late husband’s estranged wife, Tomide finally allowed himself to be deprived of the beautiful view and realized she was clutching in her hands a bottle of what he knew was expensive wine. It was a classic French wine that he knew his father must have held dear to his heart.
Tomide cleared his throat and began his speech, he talked about his relationship with his father as a little boy, talked about the type of family he had and how Makun Bello was with his family, all in a good light and with humor thrown in.
Everyone laughed, everyone except Dede who was downing the wine in her hand.
“He was a good man, he had a good heart and he never hurt anybody on purpose”
Dede made a choking noise, looked at Tomide and laughed.
“You’ve got to be kidding me” she said.
Again, the room had her attention. Not like she had to do much to hold a room spell bound, the woman was a stunner, but her action since the cemetery had made sure she had the attention faster than usual.
She stood, swayed and found her way to the microphone stand.
Grabbing the microphone with one hand, she belched into it, laughed and faced an awed Tomide, “one second Makun jnr. I would like to put in a few words too. I am sorry I am taking the spotlight off you, but it is what I have thrived on for years” she winked at Tomide and the latter watched her take control of the room and the microphone.
“I am sorry I don’t have a speech prepared for this purpose” She began, downing more wine to create effect, as if she didn’t have the effect she wanted already.
“You see, the man whom we all gather here to pay our last respects to today and whom I know you all hate, was an asshole. A bald headed, pot-bellied, thieving asshole. But I don’t have to say this because you already know. But what you probably don’t know is this asshole beat me every single day of the week…”
She paused again for another round of drinking, then continued, “Okay that was an exaggeration, not every single day of the week, but every week of the month. At least thrice a week. Can you believe that? The pot bellied thieving green eyed monster beat the shit out of me everyday! Who would have expected that of a man who gave so much money to charities that fought against domestic violence? But he has gone to be with his Lord, Lucifer who I hope is enjoying a glass of wine, like I am and having his boys beat the shit out of that beast”
Camera phones were recording and socialites were watching with horror, they had never had the opportunity of viewing this type of award winning drama at the cinema and here they were watching for free.
“The beast has gone to meet a bigger beast, cheers to that.” she said and raised her bottle. “And to the person who did me the favour of getting rid of that bastard, cheers.” She moved away and began to walk out of the massive sitting area as cameras flashed, she turned to look at Tomiwa who was still overwhelmed with shock, “He did worse to your mother, I can’t believe you wasted money to buy tickets and flew all the way down here”
After she had said that, she dashed out of the sitting area, raced to the bedroom she once shared with Makun, took his ATM card, the keys to his favourite and most expensive car, a Porsche, raced down the stairs and into the compound.
She got into the car, started the engine, turned on Kelly Clarkson’s Breakaway, while she drove out of Makun’s house forever.
As she drove through the untarred streets where the mansion stood, she wished she had a bomb planted in the house, she wanted to blow it and forget the memories that the place held, but again, she was free and that was enough reason to be happy.
SHE HAD PACKED ALL OF HER THINGS AND SOME OF HIS, leaving him stunned and confused immediately he sauntered into the home they had shared for five years. The curtains were drawn, the lights were off and the house was silent, leaving it dark and without any form of life.
He turned on the light, opened the fridge and pulled out a cold bottle of beer, then he leaned on the dining table and took a long sip.
His wife had left him. He had tried to explain to her, tried to make her see why things couldn’t work and why they didn’t have to part with each party bitter against the other but she had being unconcerned about that.
He hated the fact that she hated him, but their marriage had not worked for a day and he was done with the sham.
His phone disturbed his thoughts and he realized it was his wife calling.
The response he got was silence. He sighed, very much aware of the fact that she was at the other end of the line because he could hear her breathe.
“Funlola, are you there?” he asked after sixty seconds had passed.
“Toni, please let’s work this out. Please” she pleaded.
He wished he could say they could, but they couldn’t. He had married Funlola Williams because it felt like the right thing to do, but he had been proven wrong when on the night of his bachelor’s eve, he had run into Dede at the exquisite club that was hosting his party.
Somewhere between having too much to drink and being ecstatic about being together with the only woman he had truly loved since his childhood, they had made love in the backseat of her Jeep.
“Toni, please say something”
He didn’t have anything to say, words had eluded him.
“Is there someone else?”
There was no one else, except he wanted to count the only one that had been there all his life. But she wasn’t the reason his marriage couldn’t hold, she wasn’t the reason the marriage crashed.
“I knew there was someone else.”
She had concluded. Toni didn’t want her to do that.
“There is nobody Funlola”
She heaved a sigh of relief, “Then why are we hitting the rocks? Why cant we settle this thing? Let us go to some Island or resort and settle it. We can afford it, let’s do it”
She was right, they could afford it, but he couldn’t afford it. He couldn’t afford to lie to her, to tell her it would be alright when deep down he knew it never would be.
“You would hear from my Lawyer in the morning. Goodnight”
The line went dead and so did a part of him, he hated that he was putting his best friend through this, but he had better do it before he lived the rest of his life regretting.
Dede was happy that she had prepared a place for this purpose, she was glad she had been doing so before her late husband passed.
She opened the door and let herself in, an eerie feeling overwhelmed her as she stepped into the room, she shook it off and blamed it on her paranoia.
She walked into the kitchen and poured herself water from the fridge, she was drinking from the glass when she heard footsteps, she turned around sharply and froze in shock as she realized she wasn’t alone.
A man in black ensemble was standing by the door, playing with a sharp knife, slowly she recognized him.
“I hear say we no finish our business that last time”
Dede was scared, he came back to kill her?
“I no like wahala, so I wan make we do dis sharp sharp.”
She didn’t know what to do, one of the guys that had come to murder Makun Bello was in her kitchen, wielding a knife at her and declaring to her in a calm manner that he had come to take her life.
“Say your last prayer madam.”
Dede nodded, fell on her knees, the glass cup she was holding tumbling out of her hands in the process. She laid her hands on the floor, her head bowed as she muttered a prayer to God to save her, ignoring the sharp pain the broken pieces of glass piercing through her hands caused.
“Oya fine madam, time don reash, come die.”