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Blemished Love Episode 3
© Loudest Thoughts 2018
They ate in silence. Tom and chicken were twins. Chicken time always meant quiet time for Tom.
But that afternoon was different, he suddenly had a lot to say.
Grissel could feel it because he kept stealing glances.
‘Tom stop doing that.’ She announced.
‘The weird glances.’
‘I wanted to ask if you ever thought of going back home.’
‘Yes, it would be good for you.’
‘I’m sorry about last night. I can be better today, just don’t send me back.’
‘Wait, I’m not sending you home as in to your sister’s place. But I mean Ghana. It’s been ten years and you never mentioned anything about visiting.’ He clarified.
She sighed heavily. ‘I don’t need to go. I talk to Mom regularly and I’m not sure I need to be home anytime soon besides she came over for our engagement.’
‘But you need some family around Grissel.’
‘I have my sister, that’s enough and you are now family too.’
‘And Aubrey too.’ He added.
‘Aubrey,’ she repeated without any expression.
‘Who is that?’ She asked focusing on her meal.
Tom was suddenly quiet.
‘Tom,’ she called out before he blinked.
‘Are you okay.’
‘Yeah, absolutely.’ He feigned a smile.
‘Who is Aubrey?’ She asked again.
‘Ooh that, I was referring to your sister’s husband.’
‘But he’s not Aubrey.’
‘Adam, I mean. The decorators name is still ringing in my head I guess.’ He lied.
‘You just need to forgive him, but I had no problem with the turn out of the reception. I don’t see why you nearly punched him Tom.’ Grissel changed the topic.
‘You call that quack job, good.’
‘But it’s in the past now, just forgive him, next time maybe your sister can get over her pride and help with the event planning.’
‘Forget Mel, but that punch would have made your heart drop into your stomach.’ He teased.
‘You sure know me well.’
‘Do I?’ He sighed.
Grissel raised her head from the plates where she bent it a second ago to pick up chicken from her plate.
‘That was a joke right?’ She asked with a serious face on looking directly into his eyes.
Tom was suddenly quiet and looked apologetic.
‘I got you right there,’ he suddenly burst into a hilarious laughter.
Grissel didn’t find it funny at all. She wore a worried grin on.
‘Come on, I was just trying to make a conversation and apologize for last night.’ He muttered. ‘You don’t have to forgive me yet but it won’t happen again.’
Grissel kept her worried face on him unable to tell if he was lying earlier.
‘Grissel, I said I’m sorry and don’t sue me.’
‘Is that all you are going to say.’ He had no idea what’s going on with that expression on her face, her attention was on him but maybe her mind was occupied with different thoughts. Tom guessed.
‘Grissel’, He called out to her.
‘Tom, it’s okay. I’m fine and I’m glad we talked about it. And for your information you are my husband, I can’t sue you for what I happened to enjoy myself.’ She said hurriedly and stood up with her plates.
‘Really, you enjoyed?’ Tom’s eyes almost popped out.
She paused and nodded with her back facing him.
‘Is this girl for real right now?’ A tiny voice whispered to him and he quickly shrugged it off in his surprised state.
‘Okay, I know you might be thinking I let you off the hook easily but it was my fault same as it was yours as well.’ She tried to force a smile which appeared on her face foolishly.
‘Are you for real?’ He finally asked the question his mind had wanted to ask earlier.
‘Yeah, we are okay Tom.’
‘Thank you but where are you going? You haven’t finished your meal.’ He asked when she took some few steps away from him again.
‘I’m full and tired. Want to get some rest after here.’ She still said with her back facing him.
‘Are you sure that’s all or you just can’t forgive me yet.’ He asked worried.
‘No,’ she responded with her back facing him and not so sure which of the questions she responded to.
Grissel stood an inch from the table with her eyes shut for seconds and then she opened them quickly with a painful look which drew lines on her forehead. She finally turned around masking her expression earlier with a fake smile which Tom hardly noticed because when it came to Grissel everything about her is genuine.
She walked over dropping her plate on the table and leaned over sealing his opened lips with hers.
He responded weakly, that wasn’t his idea of apologizing. He wanted a real talk because he had a lot of things to talk about.
‘Gri..ss..el, le..t’s t..alk first.’ He said in between their clenched teeth’s.
‘No,’ she responded.
Tom shut his eyes immediately and opened it, he wasn’t so sure what had come over his shy wife.
‘Okay, ar..e y..ou su..re,’ he managed to ask with his breathe increasing.
‘Come with me,’ Grissel finally let go of his lips and whispered into his ears.
‘I thought you were tired earlier.’
‘Don’t ruin the moment Tom.’ She feigned a smile when Tom was not looking.
Tom stared, was that his wife. He thought silently and followed her gesture.
Grissel came to the states to pursue her educational dreams.
She did extremely well and was lucky to get a job at the firm she practiced with.
She had always wanted to be a lawyer like her father. After he died, her mom a retired nurse sacrificed everything to send her over to the states to pursue her dream. Grissel was just eighteen when she came to the states though very young her mom didn’t want the opportunity of studying law to pass her by and she checked up on her regularly.
Grissel was the only child and her mom had always been so proud of her.
Jessy’s mom is a Ghanaian and her Dad an American so when she met another Ghanaian in her class they became family. Jessy was one of her lecturers, who was married to Adam Riggs.
As fate would have it she got along with Grissel since she joined her law class in her first year. Jessy was always amazed at the level of knowledge she had about law and took her in. They both had to depend on each other several times along the line. Jessy became her sister, confidant and everything far from home.
‘I would be there soon Henry.’
She smiled to herself on the phone.
Melisa had no idea Julia was standing behind her in the hall way until she saw her reflection on the glass window.
Melisa hanged up quickly. Her Aunty never liked Henry she felt he was bad news anytime he spent time with her niece.
‘Going somewhere this late?’ She queried.
Melisa turned around like a child, smiling mischievously.
‘Okay, I know you don’t like Henry but I have to meet him soon. We have a night out.’
‘Alright,’ she responded quickly and walked away while Melisa followed.
‘Aunty, it’s not what you think.’ She tried to clarify. ‘Your precious Grissel is out of hook ups for now. We are just hanging out for a few drinks.’
‘I didn’t ask you for an explanation. You know what’s good for you.’
‘You seem a little angry.’
‘I’m not angry but just call me to pick you up when you feel too drunk to drive. You don’t want what happe……’
‘Yeah I get it, you don’t want another accident happening soon.’
She smiled and gave her a hug, picked up her bag on the sofa and rushed out before Julia could start another lecture.
Julia shook her head worriedly.
‘Do you think we just made our first child?’
He asked smooching her face which was facing the ceiling with her head on his chest. Grissel rolled her eyes unintentionally and then realized she was in his arms. She tried to smile but couldn’t.
‘Grissel, are you with me?’
‘Yeah but I’m not sure to your other question.’
‘Wow, don’t hurt my ego lady,’ he said jokingly.
‘Ahaaa, I got you right there,’ she feigned a smile and raised herself up pulling up her wears.
‘Are you going somewhere?’ He asked locating his shorts lying by the sofa in the hall.
‘Clear the lunch table and get this hall cleaned up before someone walks in here.’
‘Someone like who. Grissel this is our home, who cares if we lie here all day. I might even cut you some slack if there’s no dinner tonight.’ He winked.
‘Tom that’s not happening.’ She hit him on the shoulder and walked away.
‘You know you just ruined the fun right?’ He announced as Grissel walked away.
‘Stop whining and help here with the plates.’ She shouted out from the dining.
He pulled on his shirt and held on the couch to stand up.
‘Can we shower down together after clean up.’ He asked walking up to the dinning section.
‘Anything you want Tom but only after we are done with the dishes.’ She smiled mischievously to his direction.
Though Tom was relieved from the happenings the previous night, he couldn’t help but wonder how her wife quickly recovered from the traumatic experience.
‘That earlier was weird.’ He muttered quietly reaching out for a bowl on the table while Grissel seemed lost cleaning up.
‘What was weird?’ She asked pausing what she was doing.
‘Nothing, I was referring to something else.’
‘Tom, don’t lie now.’ She sounded angry.
‘I meant we have to talk at a point.’
‘Talk about?’ She opened her eyes widely.
‘You not wanting to talk about last night and the sex earlier was not expected.’
She rudely dropped the plates on the table and rolled her eyes.
‘I already told you talking about it isn’t worth it.’ She raised her voice at him. ‘It’s not like you can help me forget so let’s not mention it again.’
‘But you are making me feel bad and I j…’
‘Were you supposed to feel good about molesting your wife?’ She asked with her eyes fixated on him without budging.
‘I didn’t mean to rub it in but I ju..s..t w.a…’ He stuttered with a regrettable face and paused.
‘You just what?’ I want to forget this so please let’s not bring it up ever again.’
She threw the napkin on her shoulders onto the table with the attempt of rushing off.
‘Grissel, wait up.’ He held on to her before she could run off.
‘What?’ She asked pushing her tears back.
‘I thought we were okay earlier.’
‘You were okay Tom because, I told you I was.’ She snugged out from his grasp. ‘Who is ever okay after this experience?’
‘But you said I was forgiven and we even made lo…’
‘Made love?’ She scoffed. ‘Tom that was an obligation.’
‘An obligation?’ He repeated painfully.
‘Yes, I did you a favor as a wife Tom.’ She spewed out with an expression that showed was serious.
‘Grissel, what do you want me to do when you were ou….’
‘Save it.’ I don’t want to hear it.’ She quickly rushed off while Tom’s mouth was still opened.
Tom watched her almost falling down but she quickly got her balance back and vanished into their room.
He decided to let her cool off and then continued with her cleaning.
Melisa pulled into the Champs bar parking lot which was her favorite joint because it got the caliber of men she ends up with at the end of the night.
She discovered Champs when Tom moved into that area and Julia dragged her along to help with packing of his stuff.
Anytime she came to the area Melisa knew she was safe as it is just an hour drive from Tom’s house.
She straightened her hair and got out and was locking up her door when Henry yelled out.
‘Mel, here’, he called out to her.
‘Relax, let me just lock up.’ She retorted to Henry who was standing a few meters away from the parking lot.
Mel finally walked to where he was standing.
‘Let’s go inside,’ she gave her friend a bear hug.
They walked to their favorite table and signaled to the waitresses who gestured back.
‘Hope your Aunty didn’t give you any fake tears this time.’
Mel rolled her eyes.
‘Sorry I get it,’ she’s off limits.’
‘Glad we are on the same page Henry.’
Just then the waiter walked to their table.
‘The usual,’ Henry announced once she noticed the waitress with her notebook and pen between her lips.
She nodded and was turning away when Melisa called her back.
‘I will get Soda water for tonight. The gentle man will take his usual vodka.’
‘Okay, that’s strange.’ She whispered and left immediately after.
Henry, looked at her friend and smiled. Melisa on the other hand was looking around as the bar was quiet and not fun as usual.
‘Spill it Mel.’
‘What is there to spill?’
‘You taking Soda water?’
‘Oh that, I guess I’m just too full tonight.’ She replied.
‘Are you sure or you’ve found him.’ Henry queried.
‘Him? You mean my Dad?’
‘Really, may I remind you we both know the where about of Mr. Addison.’
‘Great, then let’s change the topic.’
‘I remember you telling me, you would stop taking vodka when you meet Mr. Right.’
‘Well I haven’t yet, today happens to be one of those days I meant to shame the devil.’
‘I’m the devil then.’ He frowned.
‘No, I didn’t mean you.’
‘Who else is with you here?’
‘Okay I’m sorry. Forgive me love.’
‘Love? That won’t make me forgive you now’
‘I will take our usual.’ She feigned a smile. ‘Is that enough to make you forgive me?’
‘Now my friend is back,’ Henry stood up with a cheerful smile and signaled to the waitress which he spotted walking back with their orders.
The waitress understood and went back.
Melisa wanted to cut down her drugs and alcohol intake. A decision she made the last time she met her Dad. Though she despised her Dad, sometimes she felt he had other reasons for leaving their mom.
They met several times when she was five and she kept it to herself.
Not that she cared what about her dad’s long speech on addiction but she doesn’t want to end up like him and that night was not about obeying her dad.
She had a feeling something was off about the night as her usual men were not at the high table as if they all decided not to come in that night.
Morris Addison who left Tom’s mom for the same reasons known to everyone became a shadow of himself, buried himself in work and drinking but he somehow got his old self back when Tom turned five. He had his friends advising him, Tom looks exactly like him so he should clean up his life and reach out so he did.
He never re-married and has been trying for years to reach out to his children. Mr. Addison knew he failed his children so he buried himself in his job as an Import and Export Specialist with his own company.
‘Girl you are sweating. Are you okay? You barely touched your drink.’
She feigned a smile and picked up her glass of vodka.
Before they knew it, they were on their sixth glass.
‘Mel, you promised me Grissel, yet I still don’t have her.’ He said while checking his phone.
‘Yeah, see how that turned out. You were too slow Henry.’
‘Slow, your brother just didn’t want her to be mine. I won’t give up though.’
‘She’s my dream woman, Mel.’
‘Dream woman? You still don’t believe she’s a love peddler. Do you?’
‘I don’t care Grissel, just get my love back. You know, you owe me.’
‘Henry, let’s not go there.’ She put on a serious face. ‘I must admit I hate Grissel’s gut but Tom has made his choice. Just let it go.’
‘I’m not going to Mel, i love her. And you are going to help me out.’ He said finally and took his last glass.
Julia worried all night. She knew Melisa would end up in either Henry’s or one of her numerous rich men’s bed if she doesn’t go after her.
Her niece never regrets her intimacy with Henry or anyone else and Julia blamed herself all the time for how she turned out.
‘Did they stay too long in another man’s land or she took better care of Tom than her sister.’ She sighed and pulled in front of Champs.
She saw her car in the drive way and whispered to herself.
‘Thank God. She’s still here.’ She smiled weakly.
Just then they both came out fighting with their balance. Julia thought she saw someone rolling her glass up with his hands when she drove in but she shrugged it off since it was from afar.
‘You sure, you don’t want to follow me home?’ Henry asked scratching his head. He always looked sober even after a lot of drinks.
‘Nope, I have lots of planning to do for some clients tomorrow so I better get going.’
‘Are you sure? You could drive behind me so we continue back home.’
They heard a familiar voice behind them. Henry saw Julia first and walked away briskly to his car.
‘Mel, see you next Sunday.’ he waved his car keys in the air.
She watched him drive away and turned to her Aunty’s direction.
‘What are you doing here?’
‘Nothing, I was in the neighborhood and since you didn’t get back before I left, I decided to check on you.’
‘Great.’ Melisa replied surprising her.
‘You are not angry?’
‘Why should I?’ She questioned Julia barely standing straight.
‘I mean you usually snub me when I come around to pick you up.’
‘Ooh so, that’s it. You came to pick me up.’
‘I’m sorry. I was worried about you.’
‘Yeah I know and it’s fine. I think I can’t drive with my head so high on a few drinks.’ She staggered. ‘So you are driving.’
‘Okay, let’s go. I will let Tom pick up your car.’
‘That isn’t necessary. Besides he might not.’
‘Leave that to me.’
Julia held her by her waist and led her to lay at the back of her car.
She took her car keys and walked to the security. After discussing with him, she got herself into her ride while stepping on the brake.
She dialed Tom’s number and placed it on speaker out.
Grissel who was closer to the phone in the hall while cleaning up picked it up.
‘Tom, your Aunty is calling.’ She called out to him upstairs where he went a while ago to wash down.
‘Take a message for me. Would be down in a while.’
‘Hello, good evening Aunty.’
‘My dear, how are you.’
‘We are fine, Tom is taking his bath.’
‘That’s fine, just let him know I left Melisa’s car at the Champs. He should drive it home while she picks it up another day.’
‘I will let him know that but how do we get the car keys.’
‘Ask the security at the gate. Just mention her name.’
‘Okay but I hope she’s fine.’
‘Nothing to worry about, drunk as usual but kindly let Tom have someone check it out for any faults before he drives it.’
‘I can hear you both Aunty.’ Melisa informed.
‘I wanted you to hear me,’ Julia retorted.
‘Let us know when you get home. I’ll have Tom call you back soon. Goodnight.’
‘Not so fast, you sound like you planned to get rid of me.’
‘No, I just felt you were driving so it wouldn’t be a good idea to talk and drive.’
‘Yes, you are right my dear. Did Tom apologize Grissel?’ She asked when Grissel was mute over the call suddenly.
‘You know what I’m talking about. You don’t have to always cover up for him. Learn to fight for your rights.’
‘He told you?’ She asked immediately.
‘Just answer me, did he make things right.’
‘Yes, he did.’
‘Are you okay and has he taken you to see the doctor?’
‘Umhh.. .’ Grissel paused.
‘Aunty I’m fine.’
‘I will take your word for it. If I find out you are lying…..’
‘I’m not. We are both okay now.’
‘Good news then, you can hang up now.’
She hanged up quickly and shyly.
‘Tom do you have to tell your Aunty everything.’ She thought to herself loudly but shrugged it off.
She rushed up to let him know they have to pick up her sisters car.
Grissel knew Tom wouldn’t oblige as they both hardly get along.
She knew of how best to convince him.
Grissel didn’t want another misunderstanding that evening like the other time she left him rudely at the dinning and they had a real argument after, which was ruining their honeymoon.
But she was so glad when he spent the last three days trying to fix what has already been broken.
Tom was the man she pictured herself with even after Amy nearly ruined their relationship so she had decided to let go of the resentment because despite what happened she still felt the same way she did every other time with Tom in her life. Tom had promised not to repeat his mistakes and they have been doing so well for the past few days.
‘Is she with you?’ The man at the other end of the call asked him.
‘Not tonight,’ He frowned over the phone while his other friend who joined him in the car along the road glanced at him uncomfortably.
‘Who messed up?’ He further asked.
‘Julia came around.’
‘Gosh, the evil aunty you told me about?’
‘Yeah, but don’t worry. We will have fun soon.’ He said and hanged up.
‘Why are you looking at me that way?’ Henry asked his friend.
‘I was just wondering why not just ask Melisa. ‘I mean, she’s already sleeping around so I’m not sure how this is different.’
He looked at his friend who was behind the steer. Anytime they over drink and Melisa had to end up at his end, Henry makes sure his friend does all the dirty work and drop them off.
‘When men are talking, nitwits also want to talk.’ Henry said rudely.
‘I’m sorry man.’ Henry’s friend replied apologetically and turned to the steer.
Henry relaxed on the seat and kept his eyes on the road for a few seconds.
‘Melisa could be a slut sometimes, but she chooses his own men carefully.’ He finally found the need to reply his friend. ‘There was no way she would sleep with the rest of the boys if she knew about them.’
Henry who had arranged with his friends to spend the night wasn’t so happy about Julia picking her up.
He usually had to tamper with her car anytime they had a drink up night at Champs. Once the car was unable to move Melisa always had no choice than to end up going home with him.
Though she suspected a few times, Henry always managed to convince her.
To be continued