When he walked out, he took my heart with. I felt like my heart had been ripped out. No amount of tears could ever make the pain go away. Whoever taught us to cry when we’re hurt, owes me an explanation. I just looked down. “Mandy, don’t let this get to you. Alex is just shocked. He will get over this” he assured me. Chukwudi just didn’t understand. Alex hated me. I saw hatred in his eyes, and I have heard it in his voice as he forced himself to talk to me. There was no way things would ever go back to normal. I had no energy left in me to argue with him over that, so I decided to let him be.

He came to sit next to me and rested my head on his shoulder.. “Don’t stress too much, this will affect the baby” he warned. The baby. That thing wasn’t even born yet, and it was already taking over my life. I was going through pain, but I had to bank my emotions in the far end of my heart, because of the baby. That little thing wasn’t even born yet, but my world already revolved around it. I hated my life, and to some degree, I didn’t blame Alex for hating me too. I removed my head from his shoulder. “I may be pregnant. but this is still my body” I said. He laughed. “Don’t be like that. This baby deserves all the attention in the world” he jokingly said. “But it’s still my body, my life, and I don’t need any little rascal to take my life away from me!” I exploded. Upon realizing that I wasn’t laughing, he stopped laughing too. “I’m sorry, Mandy. I didn’t mean to offend you” he apologized. “I’m not offended. I just hate it when you bring the baby into everything” I said.. He apologized and promised it wouldn’t happen again.. “I’ll forgive you on one condition” I announced. “What?” he asked. “Go and make me something to eat, then I will forgive you” I said, pulling a cute smile. He laughed. “Now that’s really not fair” he protested. “Okay fine then, I’ll just stay mad at you” I folded my arms and pulled my lower lip. He was laughing softly.. “Okay fine, I’ll make you something to eat” he got up.. “Thank you” I said.. He walked away. My smile slowly faded away.. Chukwudi was trying so hard to cheer me up, and I just had to play along. I needed to learn to control my stress levels .. Shortly, he walked back into the room, with a tray. He made me a sandwich. He gave me my food and I thanked him. He sat next to me.. “How many months do we have left, before meeting the little one?” he asked. “Its still a lifetime away” I replied. “It would be so nice to have little feet running around the house,” he said. I laughed.. “Why don’t you make your own?” I asked. “Zizo wants us to get married first, and I respect that” he explained. I nodded.. ,”To think that Alex is about to be a father to two babies, wow” he said.. ” I’m not even sure if he will be my baby’s father” I said. He looked at me. “Don’t be like that. Alex is just shocked.” he said. I ate my food in peace while he went on and on about how excited he was that he was about to become an uncle. I didn’t want to entertain him, because being a mother was the worst nightmare to me. When I was done eating, I placed the tray on the coffee table.. Chukwudi got up and picked it up, but I stopped him. “No, don’t worry about it. I’ll do the dishes” I said.. “No worries, its just these things” he insisted. He was the sweetest. I thanked him. He took the tray and walked away with it.

‘Let’s go to sis Meissie’s’ he suggested, as he walked back into the living room. I looked at him. “What?” I asked. ” You heard me. I feel like sis Meissie’s samp and beans” he explained. “Go ahead then, I’m not going there” I said. “Why not? Mandy, come on man. You can’t lock yourself up in here all your life. You need to go out” he tried to convince me. “I can deal with going out. What I can’t deal with, is going to sis Meissie’s.” I replied. “In order for you to heal, you need to confront your past. Running away doesn’t mean you’re coping” he added. “You know what that woman did to me ” I said, looking away. “If you stay mad at her forever, you’re giving her the power to continue to hurt you from a distance” he said. “How do I just move on from that? That woman wanted me to sell my body” I said. “I know. I am not asking you to forgive her. I’m just saying, you need to let go of it” he said. I argued that I couldn’t deal with what they nearly did to me. I nearly sold my body, while I was carrying my baby. I would have hated myself so much at that point in time if I had gone through with it.. “Okay fine then, let me go and get my samp and beans” he said, walking away.

What exactly was my reason not to go there? Sis Meissie just had her own way of doing things, we didn’t click but that doesn’t mean I shouldn’t go there. I probably won’t even see her there, and even if I do, I don’t have to talk to her. I changed my mind as Chukwudi walked away. “On second thoughts!” I shouted. He stopped on his tracks and turned to look at me. “Let’s go. Its not like I have anything better to do” I said. He smiled. “That’s my girl!” he said. I got up and we walked out.. “We’ll have to go and pick Zizo up from work on our way back” he said, as he locked up.. “No problem. Where do you think Alex went?” I asked. He looked at me.. “Can we not talk about Alex or the pregnancy? This is meant to clear your head, and you won’t do that if you still talk about the things that stress you out” he responded. “Okay, you’re right. No more talking about Alex and the pregnancy” I agreed. We went to the car and he drove off.. “What is that one thing that calms you down even when you’re at your worst?” he asked. “Nature” I replied, without even thinking twice. “Nature?” he looked at me. “Yes. There is just something special about nature. I just find peace in how everything is structured” I explained. “That sounds like something Alex would say” he joked. “We said we’re not going to talk about him” I replied. “I know, I’m just saying. He loves watching the sky and trees, and all that. I thought he was going to study something that would expose him more to those things” he explained. I really didn’t want to talk about Alex.. “So, what calms you down when you’re at your worst?” I asked. “Driving” he replied. “Driving?” I asked. “Yes. My mind relaxes when I’m driving. Nothing else matters, but just me and this machine” he explained. “I see. So why didn’t you choose a career that would make you drive?” I asked. “No, I am not obsessed with it. I only drive when I’m going somewhere or when I need to clear my head,” he replied. “I see. You know, I also want to learn to drive” I told him.. “That’s great. You really should learn to drive. Especially now that there’s a baby… Uuh.. I mean…” he mumbled. I laughed.. “Its okay, you can say it. There is a baby on the way” I said. He sighed. “Me and my big mouth” he joked, and I laughed..

We got to sis Meissie’s, and Chukwudi safely parked his car.. “Look, you will not talk to anyone you don’t want to talk to. You’re here as a paying customer, not the desperate girl that they knew” he said. I nodded as we stepped out of the car.. We walked in and headed straight to place our order.. We sat by the bar and listened to the loud sounds of House music. We were both not fans of House music, by the looks of things, but we sat there anyway.. When our order was ready, Chukwudi paid up and walked out.. “Yho! I feel like my ears are about to explode!” he said. I laughed. “I thought I was the only one” I replied. “I really don’t appreciate House music anymore. I’m very selective of artists I listen to” he said. “At least you know them, I am so clueless its not even funny” I told him. He laughed.. “What? You’re clueless?” he laughed some more. “I’m so out of touch with things that are happening around me” I explained. He stopped laughing.. “I’m sorry for laughing. I didn’t mean to” he apologized. “Chukwudi, you don’t have to tiptoe around me. Say whatever you want to say around me. I promise I won’t fall apart,” I assured him. Honestly, he didn’t have to handle me with care, like I was some fragile glass.

“Mandiphumle??!!!” someone yelled. Chukwudi and I both turned around to look at her. It was Phila. She was dressed in a bum-short purple dress, with a Black pair of stilettos. Her hair was neatly tied in a bun and her makeup was on point. She was so beautiful. “Phila!!” I shouted back. She ran up to me and gave me the tightest of hugs. “How are you?” she asked, breaking the hug. “I’m okay, and you?” I responded. “I’m good man. Oh my word, I never thought I’d see you again” she said, looking at me in disbelief. “I never thought I’d ever set my foot here again” I replied. She laughed. “Sis Meissie told me how you ran off, in the middle of the night, naked” she said. I laughed too.. “Yes, I just couldn’t stay anymore. That woman is evil, I don’t know why you’re still here” I said. Her smile faded away. “Don’t start” she said. I laughed. “Okay, I’m sorry” I apologized. “But on the real, she really has a heart of steel. I guess I am used to this life” she explained. “Uhm, Mandy, I don’t mean to be rude, but we really have to go” said Chukwudi. Phila and I were carrying on like there was nobody else around us. It was almost as if Chukwudi was invisible the whole time. We both looked at him.. “Sorry for being rude. Hi. I’m Phila, Mandy’s old friend” Phila introduced herself. “Its okay. I’m Chukwudi, Mandy’s friend” Chukwudi replied. “You’re just friends?” she asked. “Yes, we’re just friends” he replied. “And here I was, thinking that you guys are out on a date” she said, and we laughed. “No, this is just me grabbing our dinner and Mandy tagging along” he explained. “Our dinner? Do you guys stay together?” she asked. “Look, Phila.. Chukwudi is my boyfriend’s brother. He stayed with his girlfriend and I stay with his brother, in the same house.” I explained. She laughed. “Wow! Who would have thought that the innocent Mandy would ever move in with a man? Do you have sex with him?” she fooled around and we all laughed. “Let me go and get the car” Chukwudi said and walked away.. “Who is this guy? He’s so hot” Phila said. “I just told you. He’s my boyfriend’s brother” I replied. “I should have him, even if its for one night . I can’t let such hotness pass me by” she said. “Anyway, I’m happy to see you. You’re so beautiful” I changed the subject. “I’m happy to see you too. We should hook up, there’s a lot of catching up to be done” she suggested. Chukwudi’s hooter spoke in volumes.. “Take my number and call me” I said, giving her my number.. I then ran off to the car..

“I’m sorry to keep you waiting” I apologized. “Its okay. Its just Zizo I’m worried about” he replied. “What do you mean?” I asked. He sighed. “I left the phone here, when we were going inside. I have twenty missed calls from her” he replied. “Twenty?” I asked. “She is going to skin me alive. I tried calling her, but she didn’t pick up.” he said. ” She’s mad. I don’t wish to be in your shoes right now” I said. He sped off, flying off the streets, rushing home. Upon arrival, Zizo was pacing up and down, in the veranda. We parked and Chukwudi jumped out of the car. I stayed behind for a minute or so, just so he can get to her first. I saw how she threw her hands in the air as she addressed him, she was really mad. She then rushed to the car and opened my door. “Mandiphumle, what’s going on here?” she asked. I stepped out of the car. “What is going on here???” she shouted. “Zizo, can we do this inside the house though?” Chukwudi asked, walking up to us. “No, we’re doing this right here. What is going on here?” she asked again. “I told you, Mandy and I went to sis Meissie’s. What more do you want me to say?” Chukwudi replied. ” You knocked off early, just to go to sis Meissie’s? Why didn’t you tell me you were knocking off early?” she asked. “I was going to tell you later. What’s the big deal?” he asked. “What’s the big deal??? You’re asking me what the big deal is, when you knocked off early without telling me and ignored my calls?” she angrily asked. “I didn’t ignore your calls, I forgot my phone in the car” he explained. “I’m sure you did. I’m sure you had the best afternoon of your lives” she looked at me. I remained silent.. “Zizo, I’m sorry I missed your calls. I get why you’re mad, but I hate the fact that you’re accusing Mandy and I of this” he said. “Of what?” she folded her arms. “These nasty remarks of yours are implying that you don’t trust Mandy and I.” he explained. “How can I trust you? I don’t even know where you went” she replied. “I just told you. We went to buy this” he pointed at the takeaway bag. “The whole afternoon? Who do you think you’re fooling?” she asked. Alex’s car drove in, while we were still outside, talking.. “Who are you fooling, Chukwudi?” she repeated. “Zizo, Mandy is going through shit. She is pregnant and the baby is not Alex’s. Now Alex is not talking to her. I came to offer an ear and try to fix things, but Alex walked out on us” Chukwudi burst out. Zizo froze. I froze too. The summarized version sounded really bad. Alex stepped out if his car and walked up to us.. He greeted, and we greeted back.. He then walked past us, going to the house. “Mandy, is this true?” Zizo asked. “Leave me alone, Zizo. You saw how cold Alex is, so I don’t need your drama in my life” I replied . Before she could say anything else, I walked away. Alex was just getting into the house, when I rushed in too.. “Alex, can we talk?” I asked, standing by the door. “Let’s go to our room” he replied, walking away and I followed him.. We got there and I closed the door behind us. “Sit down” he ordered, and I sat down. He sat next to me.. “Uhh, Alex.. I just want to apologize for how I hurt you with all of this. I want you to know that I will always love you and I hope that you will find a way to forgive me” I said.. He looked down.. “Mandy, I will be completely honest with you” he said. I nodded.. “I love you so much, and I’ve loved you since the day I laid my eyes on you. I had hopes and dreams for us and our future. I looked beyond your current situation, and saw a future with you. ” he said. “However, you have shown me a side of you that I hate so much. The side that lies, schemes behind people’s backs, and is dishonest. I hate this side if you. What you did goes against everything I believe in” he added. I could hear my heart beating louder than usual.. “I gave myself some time to think things through. I am not even angry anymore. Mandy, I don’t know if we’ll ever find a way around this. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to trust you again” he said. I looked down too.. “Maybe in time, I’ll be okay with everything. For now, I can’t do this.” he said. I looked at him.. As he was looking down, I saw glitters of tears in his eyes. “It’s not even the pregnancy that I have a problem with here. I fully understand that part and I am still willing to help you where I can. What I can’t stand is the dishonesty. I can’t stand the lies” he explained.. “Are you breaking up with me?” I asked.. “Don’t look at it that way. I just need some time, to come to terms with everything. I just don’t want us to be in contact for a while. I can’t deal with you nagging for forgiveness and understanding. The further you are from me, the better” he replied. “So, you’re kicking me out?” I asked. “No no.. No!” he looked at me .. “You are not moving out. You’ll stay right here. All you can do though is to move to your old room, just for the time being” he said. He wiped his tears and got up.. “I’ll still be there for you, but not as a boyfriend. As someone who genuinely cares about you and wants what is best for you. I will be here for you, and your baby” he said.. That was the most cutest way of breaking up with someone.. He reduced me to nothing but a charity case…