Brian was in a new world, his own world. The landscape was carpeted by a rough tapestry of broken dreams with meandering rivers of withered hopes. The atmosphere of his new world was engulfed by a thick putrid cloud of despondence and the horizon was lined with a constellation of dead visions. It was a forlorn world. His eyes were now drinking in the sight of his expansive sitting room. From his comfy seat, he could see the multiple corners of the expensively furnished room. The quaint carvings and the original paintings lined the walls with the multi-coloured chandeliers giving the house an ethereal air.

His ghostly eyes on his wife Diana who was ironing his favourite red “Manchester United” Shirt. She was composed as usual and this sent a chill of discomfiture through Brian’s immobile body. Her lips were rounded into a whistling position and he sadly wondered which song she could be humming to. His visage hit her eyes now and a flood of guilt swarmed his body almost racking it with spasms. Through their seventeen years together, he had never shown his love overtly or even pretended to do it. He had mistreated her through a string of liaisons but she had never complained. In the past, this had thrilled Brian as he was an outgoing man, always in the company of high fliers. He knew clearly that Diana was suspicious but never bothered to reassure her. She was a blessing, a relic from the past, a woman born to serve. She had served him well but now… His thoughts started trailing off as his enervated brains slowly took a beating. Within no time he was in another world, a world awash with soothing memories.

Diana had never known happiness. As she ironed Brian’s shirt, the disgust in her mind was almost strangling her. The shirt was a symbol of her torture, the shirt he always wore for his “Foot ball outings”. He never even sat with the kids so as to go and watch his favourite club play. What did she care about football clubs? Her whole life had been like a journey through a wanton desert, full of mirages but strewn with suffering.

During her childhood, her mother had divorced and she had become the unlucky object of projection for her pent –up wrath. She never made any friends in her school life days and when college came calling, a sense of freedom had inundated her imprisoned mind. To spite her mother, she would show off her men like trophies but with time, this game bored her and she slowly settled down. It was Brian who came to change what has started to became an interesting life. He used to visit with groups of other guys over weekends in college and within no time, Diana had fallen for his charm and wallet. He was a gentleman in eyes, a chivalric kind of man who was both a lover and a friend, her life took a detour and her education was packed snugly at the bottom of her wardrobe. Brian was then working as a marketing executive for one of the largest computer Hardware Distributors in the country. In spite of her mother’s fiery exhortations, Diana had gone ahead with the relationship. When at last she decided to put a hold on her education, her mother had bee living but this didn’t throw the young girl obstinate heart,

“Am I not twenty two mother? How old were you…”

“This is not about me, that was my time and you saw what happened, please…”

“Don’t nag me mother, I know Brian and I love him; you can’t change that”

“Please, it is your education; he has his degrees what if …,

“Look at you mother! So suspicious of everybody, that’s why you even divorced with dad …”

“Me; Diana, do you know what you are doing? I won’t curse your but …”

Diana’s mother did not get the chance to complete the sentence, as the beautiful girl had already banged the door and ran off. The lover’s courtship was so smooth and full of bliss that she always wished she had known Brian forever. The wedding was arranged with minimum involvement from her mother. At least, she wasn’t interested in witnessing her daughter waste her life as she told Diana’s aunts. To the young bride the day was the stuff of young girl’s fantasies. From her flowing gown to the decorations in the party room, everything seemed to have a fantastical edge.  From her flowing gown to the decorations in the party exam, everything seemed to have a fantastical edge. She couldn’t resist the feeling of joy emanating from within her heart like a geyser through a thin fissure every time she looked at the handsome man. Her face had beamed throughout the ceremony and the honey moon in South Africa had been mercurial, after all, she had never gone for another honeymoon! The world was hers.

When Brian was promoted to head the regional office, his regular travels set in and with them, a schism started growing gradually between the couple. The birth of the two boys did nothing to bridge the gap that was growing with Brian’s increasing absence. At the onset, she was sure that Brian could not cheat on her but with time, suspicion started growing on the edge of her mind, After their second child, Brian was almost never at home and it was obvious even to the blind owls that he was seeing other women. Diana was not ready to raise a storm; her mother’s words were still fresh like a raw would in her mind.

(Continued here)

© Chrispus Kimaru