The BrideGROOM EPISODE 1
Written by Rossy Amarachi Uju
Change, they say, is constant. Change happened and Deric who was once a senior manager in one of the reputable banks in Nigeria was made redundant. Not wanting his wife Charlotte to keep shouldering the family’s responsibilities alone, he goes out Every day in search of employment.
Feeling rather defeated, disappointed and discouraged after an unfruitful day, he walked into their bedroom and found Charlotte dusting the bedroom furniture…
The BrideGROOM Episode 1
Deric: Hello sweetheart, what are you doing?
Charlotte: ermmm, my husband paid for this weekend away in this beautiful resort. So I am just in this swimming pool enjoying myself with this bottle of champagne!
Deric: come on, babe! You can answer my question without being cocky.
Charlotte: Deric, I am aware that you lost your job, but when did you lose your sight? I mean, what was the meaning of that question! You clearly saw me cleaning!
Deric: I did. But I was only trying to start a conversation since you didn’t even take any notice of my presence. Anyway! How was work?
Deric: have you had something to eat then?
Charlotte: no. Because you left everywhere a mess, and I can’t function in this filth
Deric: erm, I’m very sorry, I..I woke up late and didn’t have the time to clean up
Charlotte: were you running late for work?
Deric: I was running late for an appointment, Charlotte!
Charlotte: oh great! So how was the appointment?
Deric: I met the manager and after a brief conversation, we realised I am not what they are looking for.
Charlotte: so cleaning the house wouldn’t have been such a bad idea. Would it.
Deric: can you just stop going on and on about one day I failed to clean the house!
Charlotte: I see. Anyway, you have a letter.
Deric: from who?
Charlotte: find out. It’s right there on the shelf.
Deric: (sluggishly opens the letter, had a glance, dropped it and started undressing)
Charlotte: that letter is not one to be flipped or left in the shelf. It requires action and I am not one bit ready to deal with that rude woman. Rent is due, my dear husband!
Deric: Charlotte, Please give me a break. Will You?
Charlotte: just passing a message.
Deric: message received. Thank You!
Charlotte: It’s a pleasure!
Deric: who is Jaykob?
Charlotte: Bobrisky’s gate man!
Deric: oh will you cut that crap and answer my question!!
Charlotte: hey! You are shouting!
Deric: I’m shouting because you are acting daft! Who is jaykob that kept texting you all night!
Charlotte: I don’t know what you are talking about!
Deric: Charlotte, you attended one of the best universities in the UK, so stop acting as if you have no understanding of the English language!
Charlotte: na asu oyibo (keep speaking English)
Deric: and don’t answer me in your language because you know so damn well that I do not understand It!!!
Charlotte: well! Maybe the time you spent perusing my phone should have been invested in learning a word or two of your wife’s native language! (Storms out)
Nina: Are you okay, Charlotte? You look so pale and sleep-deprived.
Charlotte: phewww! This is not even me. It’s just a left over of last night’s dinner.
Nina: I see! So who had you for dinner last night?
Charlotte: my marriage was this close to packing up last night! This close!
Nina: did you have a fight?
Charlotte: a fight would have been better. I told you stupid Jaykob wouldn’t stop ringing and texting me, right?
Nina: yea? What happened?
Charlotte: Deric read some of his messages and went absolutely bunkers! He accused me of infidelity and every thing else known to man! We argued until about 3am this morning. Really heated argument. Nina, I just wanna go somewhere nice and quiet and be alone! I’m so fed up of it all. I really am!
Nina: did he get physical?
Charlotte: nah, Deric would never raise a finger on me.
Nina: you should have explained to him that Jaykob is only a hopeless stalker
Charlotte: I tried but he saw a message he sent to me about the cinema we went together
Nina: oh blimey! You couldn’t put up any convincing defence to that, could you.
Charlotte: none. I was just blabbing and you know Deric is very smart. Anyway, who left these on my desk?
Nina: it’s a memo for board meeting this afternoon. Apparently, we will be officially introduced to the new manager.
Charlotte: have you seen him at all.
Nina: not sure, but I saw a white man sitting in the manager’s office. It could be him.
Charlotte: Jaykob should know. I’ll text him and find o..
Mr Adrian: sorry ladies to interrupt. Is any of you Charlotte?
Charlotte: I am. How may I help?
Mr Adrian: forgive my manners! My name is Adrian and I am the new manager. I will be officially meeting all the staff this afternoon. But before then, I need you to do something for me, if you would.
Mr Adrian: I’ve just noticed some unpaid bills and I need you to write cheques payable to the companies I’ve written down here. I’ve also included the amounts due to each company . When you are done, please bring the cheques to my office, thanks.
Charlotte: alright. You’ll have it in half an hour
Mr Adrian: perfect! Thanks (walks back to his office)
Nina: hmmmm! Looks like things are about to take a new turn
Charlotte: he seems hands on! Anyway, I better get on with it.
(Before half an hour, Charlotte finished the cheques and took them to Mr Adrian. After about 7 minutes, she got a call from Adrian asking her to come to his office immediately. So she went)
Charlotte: you sent for me, Mr Adrian?
Mr Adrian: I did. Have a seat.
Charlotte: (sits down) thanks.
Mr Adrian: how long have you been working here?
Charlotte: a little over 4 years
Mr Adrian: have you received any formal warning at all?
Charlotte: no, sir.
Mr Adrian: unfortunately, you will be getting one today.
Charlotte: why is that?
Mr Adrian: you’ve just made a mistake that’s capable of causing this company a huge loss. I clearly wrote down the amount of money due to each company.
But from what I have right in front of me, you have made the sum of 1.5 million naira payable to Extext&Co. That is the amount due to Tiletides PLC. Down here, you have made the sum of 2000 naira payable to Clearglass instead of 2 million naira.
You see, these errors may look minor but think about what would have happened if I had asked you to post these cheques. We would have been in a mess.
Charlotte: I…I am really sorry, sir. It’s just not my best day today.
Mr Adrian: it takes only one bad day to do a permanent damage to a business
Charlotte: I have been having lots of problems in my marriage, sir. I promise this will never happen again.
Mr Adrian: I’ll give you some days off to sort thing out. Take one week.
Charlotte: sir, I am better off coming to work. I don’t need the break. Please?
Mr Adrian: go back to your desk. You are pardoned. Take care.
Charlotte: thank you, sir.
(Charlotte got home at 9pm and met Deric watching the TV but the light was off.)
Deric: how was your day.
Charlotte: good. Why are you in the dark? (Tries to switch on the light)
Deric: the bulb died
Charlotte: why haven’t you replaced it?
Deric: we have no spare
Charlotte: phew! Well, I need a new bulb because I will be working online tonight. Here is two thousand naira, get a bulb with it please. If you can be really fast, that will be great.
Deric: can I have the car keys?
Charlotte: you mean you need a car to go the the corner shop, come on! You actually need the exercise as you are beginning to put on weight
Deric: Well, if I am going to walk, you will not have the bulb as quickly as you asked.
Charlotte: there’s not enough petrol in the car. I’m not letting you waste it. So I can wait!
(Deric was walking to the shop when he heard a female voice call his name. He turned around and saw a lady in a sports outfit running after him)
Chioma: Deric!!! Do you remember me!
Deric: I don’t mean to be rude, but I don’t remember you.
Chioma: did you study at Kings College London?
Deric: I did. Wait a minute, are you Chioma!
Chioma: yes, I am!
Deric: you are joking! Oh my God! Chioma! What are you doing here!
Chioma: you have changed! Look at you! We just moved in last week. We live at number 40
Deric: this is amazing! We live at number 38!
Chioma: wow! You must be married now.
Deric: I am. Tell me you are!
Chioma: with two kids. Hehehe.
Chioma: yea! yea! My youngest is only 5 months. As you can see, I’m trying to lose my baby weight. I was just coming back from jogging when I saw you! What a small world!
Deric: unbelievable! My uni crush!
Charlotte: I can’t wait for break time so I could get myself something to eat.
Nina: are you that hungry?
Charlotte: I am.
Nina: didn’t you have breakfast at home?
Charlotte: Nah. It’s been ages since I last made breakfast at home.
Nina: oh dear! Things must be very bad
Charlotte: I stopped because each time I make breakfast for myself, Deric would descend on it. He’s lazy to make breakfast so I stopped.
Nina: you used to speak highly of him before now. I can’t believe how bad things are between you now. That’s sad.
Charlotte: Since he stopped working, I can’t stand him anymore. I wish I have somewhere else to go at the end of every day.
Nina: book a hotel for at least a week. That might help
Charlotte: I’ll actually think about it. Jaykob offered me a weekend away. I think I might consider it.
Nina: with him or on your own?
Charlotte: on my own. All expense paid!
Nina: take it then.
**Charlotte’s desk telephone rings**
Charlotte: ?hello…. to your office? Alright, coming.(drops the phone)
The manager wants to see me in his office. I’m scared now. I hope I haven’t made another blunder
Nina: you just submitted the proposal he asked you to write, right?
Charlotte: yes and I am really hoping he is happy with it. Anyways, I’m going now.
Nina: good luck
Charlotte: I need it!
(Charlotte got to Mr Adrian office and met him holding the business proposal she submitted to him earlier and she was worried that she may have got something wrong…With sweaty palms and an unsteady voice, she asked…)
Charlotte: you sent for me, sir?
Mr Adrian: yes, I did. Take a seat. Erm, I’ve just gone through the proposal and may I say what an amazing job you did!
Charlotte: phew! Thank you, sir.
Mr Adrian: this is very professionally drafted. Just goes to show that first impressions are not really as important as we think. My first impression of you wasn’t particularly great.
Charlotte: I was having a very bad day on that day, sir.
Mr Adrian: so how are things? Any better?
Charlotte: I’m coping, sir.
Mr Adrian: coping means you’ve come to accept something you shouldnt, because you have no option. Do you really have to?
You always have options but sometimes they are not visible to you or you may need someone else to reveal them to you.
Charlotte: I wish I have any options, sir
Mr Adrian: do you mind if I ask. What exactly is the problem?
Charlotte: it’s my husband, sir. He was made redundant over 5 months ago and I have been the one bearing all the family burdens.
It is putting pressure in our marriage and we are arguing a lot.
Mr Adrian: oh marriage! Is he actively seeking employment then?
Charlotte: yes, he is but no good news yet.
Mr Adrian: what sort of job is he looking for?
Charlotte: he was a bank manager before he was made redundant, so he is looking for a similar role.
Mr Adrian: give him my card; ask him to contact me after 12pm tomorrow. I may have something for him. Not here but in another company
Charlotte: oh thank You, sir. Thank You!
Mr Adrian: you are welcome. So when was the last time you went on a date with your husband?
Charlotte: Oh! Decades ago! Ermmm, it should be on his birthday. That was February last year
Mr Adrian: that’s nearly one year. Why don’t you take him out on a date or even a weekend away. That might calm things a bit.
Charlotte: he is not outgoing and would decline any such offer, sir.
Mr Adrian: That’s no good! Anyway I am new in town as you know and I need to go out this Friday. I’m not sure if you know any nice place I can hang out for a drink or two and perhaps watch some music performance. Any idea?
Charlotte: Erm, yes. There’s quite a lot of such places within.
Mr Adrian: do you mind coming with me? I mean you can bring your husband if he wouldn’t mind. I just need some company.
I am currently not getting on well with Jaykob I would have gone with him.
He is a very dishonest sneaky bastard and I can’t stand him. Pardon my language.
Charlotte: like I said, my husband is an indoor person but I wouldn’t mind going with you.
Mr Adrian: if that doesn’t cause more problems in your home, I would be grateful. Where would you like to be picked up?
Charlotte: by crescent bus stop. Amos knows where that is
Mr Adrian: I’ll be coming with my personal driver. I don’t mix business with pleasure. But not to worry he’ll find it. So see you Friday evening then!
Charlotte: alright, sir. I’ll go back to my office now.
Mr Adrian: sure, thank you.
(As Charlotte was walking back to her office, she bumped into Jaykob)
Jaykob: that must have been an annual meeting, with Mr Adrian, Mrs Deric!
Charlotte: Good morning, Jaykob!
Jaykob: it is certainly a good morning, from the look on your face. Anyways! Do take a look at your phone when you have a minute. I left you a message.
Charlotte: will do. (Walks back to her desk)
Nina: is everything okay?
Charlotte: yes! He said the proposal was excellent!!
Nina: great! Your husband called
Charlotte: the office line?
Nina: yes. He said he’s been trying to reach you through your mobile. He said he left you a message on whatsapp
Charlotte: Oh! Okay. Thanks.
(Charlotte opened her whatsapp and replied her husband’s message as well as Jaykob’s. But unknown to her, she mixed things up and sent the reply that was meant for Jaykob to her husband and vice versa!)
Nina: Jaykob bought us lunch. I’ve already had mine. Yours is under your table.
Charlotte: stingy man! What did he buy?
Nina: mine was some rice and drinks
Nina: I can have it if you don’t want
Charlotte: I’m hungry
Nina: then be appreciative!
Charlotte: yes ma’am!
(Charlotte got home and met her husband reading reading a newspaper and taking no notice of her presence whatsoever)
Charlotte: guess what?
Deric: I am not good at guessing
Charlotte: you are getting a job Soon!
Deric: I’m assuming that is my compensation for the kiss, huh?
Charlotte: huh? What are you talking about???
Deric: (grabs his phone and starts reading out the message to her)
“You deliberately made me drink more than I should so you could kiss me. If I wasn’t off my face, I would never have kissed you, at least not this Soon! Erase that memory from your head as it may never happen again!”
Charlotte: it was…ermm, I can explain, Nina used my phone….No! She changed my SIM card. I can call her if you want….
Charlotte: Deric, I swear i didn’t send that message! I swear!
Deric: Just look at yourself! You can’t even tell a convincing lie. Do you know What? Call Nina.
Charlotte: (starts ringing Nina )
Nina: Hello Charlotte, are you okay?
Charlotte: no! I am not! You’ve put me in trouble
Nina: what are you talking about?
Charlotte: remember when you borrowed my phone today to text your ex, you actually sent the message to my husband!
Charlotte: you used my phone to text your boyfriend now I am in trouble because you unknowingly sent the message to my husband and he won’t believe me!
Nina: oh that! Pass him the phone let me talk to him, please
hands the phone to Deric)
Nina: I am truly sorry sir. Your wife can never do a thing like that. I thought I sent the message to my ex who has been bugging me
Deric: you need to be careful next time.
Nina: I am sorry, sir
Deric: no problems. Bye. (Hands the phone back to Charlotte)
Charlotte: I’m not happy about this Nina!!
Nina: sorry o!
Charlotte: Bye! (Quickly sends a text to Nina which reads “you are a life saver” Nina replied “you are an idiot lol”)
Deric: I’m sorry for accusing you.
Charlotte: isn’t that all you do lately? Tomorrow, we all will be having an office dinner with our new manager, I’m sure you will accuse me of going somewhere else!
Deric: I am not crazy, Charlotte! Of course you can attend your office dinner.
(It was Friday evening, Charlotte spent well over two hours doing her makeup and trying out different outfits. At around 7.pm, she was all done and ready in her little black dress and near perfect makeup. Her uber cab has just arrived and she met Deric in the living room)
Charlotte: Deric, my cab is here, I’m leaving
Deric: Charlotte that dress is too short!
Charlotte: it isn’t! Please don’t start!
Deric: really? And why did you call an uber when I can drop you and pick you up when the dinner is over?
Charlotte: with which car?
Deric: our car!
Charlotte: well, I don’t have enough petrol. Bye!
(Walks briskly to her cab and they zoomed off. When she got to Crescent bus stop, she found Mr Adrian already waiting with his personal driver in his brand new Silver SUV
He was dressed in a black suit, white inner shirt and black trousers. His hair was meticulously brushed and sprayed like one of those Hollywood actors. He has his cigar inbetween his fingers)
Charlotte: I’m really sorry to have kept you waiting, sir
Mr Adrian: (takes a puff gets off the car, opens and holds the door for her) get inside. Ladies are never late. Whenever they are ready is the right time. We did not plan on wearing black today, did we?
Charlotte: thank You, sir. We sure didn’t but it’s not a bad idea at all.
Mr Adrian: not at all. Well, this gentleman knows somewhere nice that we can go, so you don’t have to worry yourself about showing him what way to go. It would feel as if you are taking me out for a dinner and that is not so great on my ego.
Charlotte: that’s not a problem, sir.
Mr Adrian: tonight, It will be great if you call me by my name. It’s a bit awkward going on a date with someone and they keep calling you sir
Charlotte: alright, sir.
Mr Adrian: and she did it again. Anyway, keep trying. No pressure
Charlotte: oh! Sorry, Mr Adrian.
(They finally arrived at a very posh club with live music performance, disco lights and one does not need to be told that you need to be earning in millions to be able to go there. The car park looked like some sort of competition on whose car was the most expensive and newest. There was a heavy security presence from the entrance right through the bar.
Mr Adrain went straight to the receptionist and from his debit card, paid the sum of 800, 000 thousand naira and was shown to his space by one of the waiters. His space was a private corner with a table full of assorted kinds of expensive wines and a pole dancer was already leaning against the pole, waiting on Mr Adrian to ask her to start)
Mr Adrian: Monday, you may join the others in the hall. Come back to us at 12.30. Thanks. If you need more money, let me know but keep an eye on your limits, remember, you are driving.
Monday: sure, sir. Thank you.
Mr Adrian: (turns to the pole dancer) you may start. Thank you.
Charlotte: this is a very nice place.
Mr Adrian: I’m glad you like it. Well, I expected your husband’s call but he never called.
Charlotte: phewww! Deric is just some kind of man. He might still call
Mr Adrian: if you say so. So, how long have you been dating Jaykob? (Pours her some champagne)
Charlotte: (takes the glass from him) Thanks. I am not dating Jaykob. He is only trying his luck.
Mr Adrian: how long has he tried and has he had any breakthrough yet? This lady is great at what she does (referring to the pole dancer)
Charlotte: yes, she’s good. Jaykob has not had any breakthrough yet, except making my work life difficult as I have to face him every day.
Mr Adrian: that is not happening any more. His transfer letter is ready. I’m sending him to our Lagos branch. I need you to focus and help me take this company to the next level.
Charlotte: I’ll do my best.
Mr Adrian: so how’s your marriage?
Charlotte: warm enough to melt my butter, but not hot enough to boil my egg.
Mr Adrian: that’s complex. Break it down
Charlotte: it’s not so bad, but it’s not great either. How’s your wife?
Mr Adrian: the question should be, do I have one. Well I was married but we divorced.
Charlotte: mind if I ask why?
Mr Adrian: she is in prison.
Charlotte: what for?
Mr Adrian: she has an unhealthy interest in minors…
Charlotte: Deric, did you call the number I gave you yet?
Charlotte: does this mean you are getting used to staying at home or having your bills paid by me or both??
Why don’t you want to work???
Deric: I’ll work when I find myself a job. This conversation is over.
Charlotte: this conversation is not over!! I am having it up to here, Deric and if this carries on, I will be left with no option than to tell your parents and mine!
Deric: very well then! My dad knows and will tell you that being the man that i am, I will not take a job given to me by another man who is likely trying to win my wife over!
Hey! We have some class. Can’t certainly say that of You!
Charlotte: What are you trying to say, Deric???
Deric: exactly what you heard. I am sick and tired of your endless moaning just because I lost my job a few months ago.
(Raises his voice) a few months ago, Charlotte!!!! And let’s not forget this is a man who saw you through the university and paid your damn bills for five flipping years!!!
Charlotte: Deric, stop shouting! Just stop!!!!
Deric: don’t you bloody tell me what to do! Don’t start treating me like your child. Hey! You are yet to give me one after 3 and a half years of being married to you.
A coursemate of mine who got married two years ago, has two kids now. As a matter of fact, she recently moved into this estate.
Charlotte: (tearfully) your best line lately, isn’t it!!! What else have you got?
Deric: no darling, I have more. How about you go into the bedroom and see the flower and lingerie that was delivered to you this morning, by one of your numerous bed mates?
Awwww! It was from Nina, wasn’t it?….My mouthed wife has suddenly gone quiet. No! Let me guess where it is from! Ermmm! Yesssss! The company is giving out underwears to all their female staff!
Charlotte: wha-t..What are you talking about?
Deric: why don’t you go inside and find out yourself? I’m sure you can still use those legs, my beautiful wife!
(Charlotte went into the bedroom, and found a single rose, a card and a set of Victoria’s Secret underwears. Deric had opened and read the content of the card which says “thinking of you always” And although the sender did not include his name in the card, Charlotte knew it was from Jaykob)
Charlotte: I have no idea where these are from. I am not cheating, Deric! I haven’t and I won’t! You are making my life difficult with this constant argument?
Deric: awwww! Isn’t she sweet! The minute you catch her, she quickly swings into her cry baby and frustrated wife mood! I’m sure a ghost who divinely got your address and underwear size sent those items.
By the way, I took pictures of them. I might just need it some day!
Charlotte: I can’t spend one more minute under this roof! I Can’t! Been at work all day and now I can’t even have some peace and quiet because the man I married wouldn’t let me! I’m out!
(Picks up the car keys and ran out)
Deric: Bye Felicia?
(Charlotte lodged in a hotel not far away from his work place and after she had her shower she remembered she had no clothes to wear to work the next day, so she started calling Nina)
Charlotte: (snivelling) Nina, can you do me a favour and come to work at 6 o’clock tomorrow. Get me any of your dress, please?
Nina: have you been arguing with Deric?
Charlotte: (amidst tears) yes?
Nina: where are You?
Charlotte: in Suresleep hotels
Nina: did he raise his hands on You?
Charlotte: no he didn’t
Nina: have you had anything to eat?
Nina: you must eat something, girlfriend. You must because tell you What? He is eating tonight and probably having a drink or two. Do not starve yourself for the sake of a man. Don’t!
Charlotte: I’ll go grab some sandwich downstairs after speaking with you. They have a cafe there.
Nina: I’ll see you tomorrow at six. Do you need underwears and toothbrush and my makeup box?
Charlotte: yes, please.
Nina: I love you.
Charlotte: love you too. Bye???????
(Charlotte got to work at about five thirty in the morning on Monday, she opened the door and discovered that the lights were on..)
Charlotte: these guys left the lights on!
Mr Adrian: (from his office) you are way too early, what’s the matter?
Charlotte: (startled) Jesus Christ!!
Mr Adrian: (comes to her) did I scare You? I’m sorry
Charlotte: (panting heavily from fear) i nearly passed out! Oh Lord!
Mr Adrian: these are the clothes you came to the work party on yesterday. Why do you still have them on?
Charlotte: (strugglinCharlotte: I’m not hungry
g to hold back her tears) nothing. I..I chose to wear them again.
Mr Adrian: alright. Come with me to the car let’s get you some clothes at the boutique down the road.
Charlotte: thank You?
Mr Adrian: you’ll be fine, alright?
Charlotte: (starts crying) thank you.
Mr Adrian: Hey… the tears won’t help in any way. We are gonna do this as the strong woman you are. You got this, yeah?
Charlotte: (Nods in affirmation)
THE BrideGLOOM. Episode 6
Nina: do you even realise the damage you are doing to her marriage???
Jaykob: When did buying a woman I love some gifts, become damaging?
Nina: the woman you love is another man’s wife!
Jaykob: oh come off it! Is this seriously the reason you summoned me? I love Charlotte and I will keep expressing my love for her in words and in action. You have never been in love before hence your inability to appreciate one when you see it.
Nina: do you realise she’s left her husband’s house because of the stupid and unnecessary present you sent to her?
Jaykob: where is She now? She needs me now more than ever.
Nina: fool! (Walks out of the bar angrily)
Deric:?????? hello Chioma, sorry I missed your call
Chioma: hi Deric…can you hear me? Hello… are you there?
Deric: it’s rather too noisy where you are. I’m struggling to hear you
Chioma: yeah! That’s because I’m driving.
Deric: where to?
Chioma: I’m going to pick my husband up from the airport. He’s been away for the past two weeks and I and the kids miss him so much.
Deric: hmmmm! Happy home, I suppose.
Chioma: I can’t complain at all. I was wondering if you would like to come over for dinner at ours. I organised him a little welcome party. Nothing too loud. Just friends and family.
Chioma: pleaseeeee Deric! You need to meet my husband too!
Deric: What time is it?
Chioma: six o’clock. But you can come earlier but not later. Hehehe
Deric: I’ll try.
Chioma: I’ll be waiting. Bye now!
(Deric was about leaving the house when Nina and Charlotte walked into the house.
Charlotte had visible lost weight and had dark circles around her eyes. You know our eyes have a way of telling the entire world that we are sleep-deprived?)
Nina: Good evening, Deric. My name is Nina
Deric: I’m aware.
Nina: is it okay if I have a word with you, please?
Deric: as you can see, I am on my way out.
Nina: I promise not to take more than 10 minutes
Deric: I do not have a minute to spare. Sorry. (Walks out and slammed the door after him)
Charlotte: this is my life, Nina! I told you Deric is full of himself! God! How did I get myself into this!
Nina: hmmm! I need to stop complaining of being single. If this is what marriage is like, I think I’ll go without. What an arrogant man!
(AT CHIOMA’S RESIDENCE)
Mr Ambrose was seated on the sofa, carrying his two beautiful daughters, one on each leg and answering endless questions from them, when the doorbell rang)
Mr Ambrose: sweetheart, I think someone is at the door.
Chioma: it must be Deric!( goes to open the door) yeaaa! Here comes the long awaited Deric!
Deric: by the start time, I am early hello madam, Chioma.
Chioma: hahaha! Come in and stop with the drama!?
Deric: (Walks to Mr Ambrose and shakes his hands) good evening, sir. My name is Deric.
Mr Ambrose: hello, Deric! Chioma has told me a lot about you. It’s good to finally meet you. You are welcome my brother.
Deric: thank you, sir.
Tatiana: daddy, mummy didn’t take me to my swimming lesson on Saturday.
Mr Ambrose: mummy, why?
Chioma: Tatiana, time to go to nanny. Daddy has a visitor.
Chioma: Kate! Kate!!!
Kate: Yes, madam!
Chioma: please, come and take the kids. They need to leave my husband alone now.
Mr Ambrose: it’s alright, mummy. Stop crying. Daddy will watch cartoon with you all night and find out why mummy didn’t take you to your swimming lesson over the weekend, alright?
Chioma: what would you like to drink, Deric?
Deric: could I please use the toilet first?
Chioma: sure! Come with me upstairs, we have no bathroom downstairs. One thing I dislike about this house. Darling, Go and change before our guests start coming.
Mr Ambrose: alright, as your majesty wishes
Deric: you have a really nice place, sir.
Mr Ambrose: thank you, my brother.
(Deric followed Chioma upstairs and as they were climbing the staircase, Deric stopped..)
Chioma: Yes! Are you, okay?
Deric: maybe… I am just jealous of your home
Chioma: I am sure yours is better?
Deric: I wish. Memories of yesterday are drowning me. You haven’t changed one bit neither has my feelings for you. I just realised.
Chioma: some things never die, but we must keep it inactive, Deric! Here is the restroom?
Deric: Chioma, you are still as sexy and attractive as you were the first day we went on a date.
huuuush! I am a married woman, Deric! Respect my sagged breasts??
Deric: maybe I need to see them before I can comment on that.
Deric: for once, I am serious. So very serious.
Chioma: you know what? We need to meet up and talk. Why do I feel you are unhappy in your marriage
Deric: because when I gave you my heart, I forgot to take it back before you got married. You have that power over me.
Chioma: When are you free for a…
Mr Ambrose: sweetheart!!
Chioma: Yes, husband!
Mr Ambrose: mama is on the phone for you!
Chioma: oh! Coming!!! (Runs downstairs?
It is 5am in the morning, Chioma and her husband are in bed having a conversation about everything and anything. Chioma told him about some of the funny questions the kids asked while he was away, They discussed their family’s business and Mr Ambrose told him in details the high and lows of his journey as well as his plans to take the family abroad for Easter Holidays.
Mr Ambrose: something I forgot to ask you. What does your friend do?
Chioma: you mean Deric?
Mr Ambrose: Yes. I forgot to ask
Chioma: he was my classmate and actually went ahead to become a bank manager. But he was recently made redundant. He is currently out of employment.
Mr Ambrose: You Know, I feel bad whenever I learn that a man lost his job.
Chioma: and a woman?
Mr Ambrose: not as bad. Sweetheart, there is an expectation on a man to look after his home financially. Such expectation is not so much on a woman. The thought of telling Tatiana that she cannot have her Coco Pods today because there is no money, scares me.
I pray he find a job really soon
Chioma: I think it is starting to have an ugly impact on his marriage.
Mr Ambrose: It shakes every corner of the individual’s life.
Why don’t you ask him to come and see me during the weekend. We could fix him somewhere in our real estate department. Of course we won’t pay him as much as he earned when he was a manager.
Chioma: awww! That will be really helpful! I’ll let him know.
Mr Ambrose: Okay! Enough about other people. Let’s talk about us. How much did you miss me?
Chioma: oh! Don’t ask. At some point, I started taking out the frustration on the kids unknowingly. Every little thing made me cry.
Mr Ambrose: (holds her close to his chest) I missed you even more. The video calls were not enough. I couldn’t wait to come back to my baby. I missed watching you fall asleep in my arms and when you did last night, it felt like rain in the desert.
I don’t intend to be away from you this long again
Mr Ambrose: cross my heart.
Chioma: I love you
Mr Ambrose: I love you too, baby???????
(Charlotte woke up, looked at the clock and jumped off the bed into the shower and hurriedly got ready for work. When she came into the living room on her way out, she saw Deric looking into some files)
Charlotte: Deric, you didn’t even bother to wake me up knowing I am working!
Deric: When your alarm rang and you didn’t wake up, I assumed you were off today.
Charlotte: puffffff! I am hardly off work and you know it! Anyway, I am running late. There is some stew in the fridge. You may want to boil some rice and have it for lunch.
I’ll go to the market and buy some food items for tomorrow.
Deric: I tried using your iPhone earlier on and discovered you had put a password on it. Is there any explanation for that?
Charlotte: it’s just that I discovered that people were getting into my phone when I leave it on my desk at work. That’s all.
Deric: you are Such a bad liar, Charlotte! You are! So why didn’t you password your Samsung?
Charlotte: Deric I am running late for work! I don’t have to go to work miserable every day! I am tired of the constant argument and….
Deric: (loudly) and I am more tired of your infidelity!!!
Charlotte: what infidelity are you talking about!
Deric: you will find out Soon!
Charlotte: please! I’m off!
(Charlotte got to work in a rush and Nina told her that Mr Adrian had wanted her to write some proposals for him and was not happy that she wasn’t here. So she quickly went into his office)
Charlotte: Good morning, Mr Adrian.
Mr Adrian: you are one hour late for work, Charlotte. That is very unacceptable. May I know Why?
Charlotte: I am very sorry. I had a little hitch. My husband acc…
Mr Adrian (interrupts) Charlotte, when it has to do with family, you don’t have to give details. That you had a hitch was suffient.
I wanted you to write me a proposal. I have just sent you an email. It contains the details of what I want you to cover in the proposal.
Charlotte: alright. Thank you. Auch!
Mr Adrian: are you Okay?
Charlotte: no. I’ve got waist pain and headache
Mr Adrian: I have paracetamol. Would you like some?
Charlotte: yes, please.
Mr Adrian: (gives her two paracetamol tablets) could you please ask Jaykob to come to my office. Thank you.
(Charlotte went into Jaykob’s office and met him watching a movie on his work PC)
Charlotte: you are working so hard, ain’t You?
Jaykob: well, at least I came to work early. You look as sexy as you looked in my dreams last night. Come and sit on my laps.
Don’t worry nobody is coming in
Charlotte: you are disgusting and your attitude to work is nothing to write home about!
Jaykob: the same attitude got me to the position of an assistant manager. A position you may never get to, until you retire.
Charlotte: I do not have your time yet. Anyway, Mr Adrian would like to see you!?️?️?️
Jaykob: alright, my lovely! (Gets up and goes to Mr Adrian’s office)
Jaykob: you sent for me, sir?
Mr Adrian: I did. Take a seat.
Jaykob: thanks (sits down)
Mr Adrian: ermm, I am making some changes here and there. One of those changes is going to affect you. I need you to relocate to our Lagos branch.
I don’t necessarily need an assistant here. Our Lagos branch is busier and would greatly benefit from having you there.
Jaykob: I am sorry sir, but I am not okay with this. My children are in school, my wife has a job here in Abuja and you want me to move. I am not happy to move!
Mr Adrian: this company has a procedure for challenging any decision you think is unfair. Use that procedure but until then, this is your transfer letter.
Jaykob: (voice raised) there is no way you can come in and decide to move me for such a flimsy excuse! I will fight this to the end. It is maliciously motivated. I will go to court if I have to.
Mr Adrian: can I ask you to leave my office now, please. Thank you.
Jaykob: yes! I will leave but I will certainly take this up!
Mr Adrian: sure.
Chioma: Good morning, Kate.
Kate: Good morning, madam.
Chioma: what are the kids doing today?
Kate: firstly, I will take them to their hairdresser to have their hair done and after that, I’ll take them to their Art class. Then if Tatiana would like to Go for her dancing class, I’ll take her there. That’s all we have to do today.
Chioma: can they have their hair done tomorrow instead? I and their dad would like to take them to the zoo. It’s been long since we went out together.
Kate: Yes, it can. I just need to call their hairdresser to change the appointment.
Chioma: please do.
Kate: so what will I be doing at home?
Chioma: you did all the Lundry yesterday, didn’t you? So have a rest. Go out, may be to the cinema or whatever tickles your fancy.
Come on! you deserve a break from Tatiana’s endless demands.
Kate: thank You, madam. Yesterday, she said she wanted a big elephant ??
Chioma: ??? I know! She has been saying that to us. That’s why we decided to take them to the zoo so she can see the real ones. Apparently, she wants to be an elephant when she grows up????????
Chioma: erm, my husband has asked me to tell you that we will be increasing your salary beginning from the end of the month.
Instead of fifty thousand naira, you will be receiving sixty five.
Kate: oh madam! Thank you! Your family has been so good to me. Please, can I go and say thank you to Mr Ambrose?
Chioma: he is still fast asleep. I would leave it until he is awake.
Kate: thank you so much!
Chioma: you are welcome (grabs her phone and started ringing Deric.???????)
Deric: ???? hello madam.
Chioma: how are You! Sorry I haven’t been able to call since then to thank you for honouring our invitation. It was really nice having you around
Deric: no worries at all. It was a great party. The food was excellent. I enjoyed myself. Thank You!
Chioma: awww glad to know. You don’t sound particularly happy. Everything alright?
Deric: No, Chioma. My whole life is just shutting down by the minute! I’m bloody tired of being like this. I want to pull out!
Chioma: where are you pulling out to? Stand up to life until it gets tired of trying to pull you down
Deric: I’m down already. I have been down for so long. I got a letter from the bank where I took some loan for a bad business I did last year, threatening to sell my house if I did not pay up by the end of March.
Chioma: what’s the pay back arrangement?
Deric: I pay one hundred thousand every month, but I haven’t been able to make any payments since November last year.
Chioma: that’s three hundred thousand outstanding, yeah?
Chioma: meet me in front of your house in the next fifteen minutes; I’ll give it to you.
Deric: You are joking right?
Chioma: see you in fifteen minutes, Deric. Bye!
(Chioma went back Into the bedroom and found the husband watching to the news in bed)
Chioma: Good morning, my dear.
Mr Ambrose: Good morning, love. When did you get up?
Chioma: When my mummy instinct told me to check up on the girls. And yes, Tatiana looked as it she was practicing some yoga pose???
Mr Ambrose: oh dear! We can’t really do much about her rough sleeping position. Can We?
Chioma: well, not at this stage. I tried to use her big teddy to stop her, but when she swings in the mood, she kicks the damn thing away??
Mr Ambrose: actually, my mother did say I was like that when we were growing up. I used to kick my brothers out of the bed to create more space for my moves???
Chioma: there you Go! The Apple Apple tree and the Apple fruit???? anyway, I am going for my 30 minutes run.
Mr Ambrose: my dear, are you sure you don’t want me to get you a personal trainer instead of being out in the street every morning.
People are evil you know? Not praying for anything but you can be easily traced.
Chioma: this estate is considerable safe. But I’ll think about it today.
Mr Ambrose: please do.
Chioma: I’m off now!
Mr Ambrose: careful!
(When Chioma got to Deric’s block, he was already waiting at the gate.)
Deric: hey beautiful! That body is banging!
Chioma: of course I have to stay fit and healthy for my family.
Deric: great job!
Chioma: (hands him a cheque of three hundred and fifty thousand naira) here! Pay your debt and be happy. My husband would also like to see you at your convenience.
Deric: Chioma, you don’t know what this means to me. You just saved my life!
Chioma: what are friends for?
Deric: please permit me to give you a hug.
Chioma: awww! Of course! (Hugs him briefly and ran off!)
(Deric went back to the house and saw Charlotte in the living room with her mobile phone in her hand)
Deric: are you not going to work?
Charlotte: (holds her phone up in front of him) who is she?
Deric: you took a picture of us? That’s Chioma, an old friend.
Charlotte: I see! I guess it wouldn’t be bad to show her husband this image.
Deric: you will do no such thing! Come on! this girl was only helping me! She gave me a cheque to pay my debt.
There is nothing going on between us and you must believe that!!
Charlotte: I see! She gives you her husband’s money too!
Deric: don’t be ridiculous! Stop it, Charlotte!!
Charlotte: I am not stopping it, Deric!!!! It is not enough that you sit at home all day while I bleed sweat, water and blood to pay the rents and put food on your table, now you have added cheating to the routine, right????
Deric: (raises his hands to hit her but hangs it in the air) one more of that, And I will send you to your early grave!
( in a low but firm tone) one more!
Charlotte: I dare you to put those stupid hands on me! Every single day of my life you accuse me of infidelity. Not knowing it’s your way to mask yours! Ungrateful egocentric man! Touch me and rot in jail!
Deric: (grabs the key and leaves)
Charlotte: don’t touch my car! Deric!! Deric!!! Deric do not go anywhere with my car.
Deric: (stops but without turning around) the car I bought you on the 12th day of December 2016. Get that right! (Jumps into the car and zooms off)
Charlotte: Deric!!! Deric!!!! Deric, I need that car to go to the hospital!! Deric!!!!????
THE BrideGLOOM. Episode 9
Deric came back and pleaded with Charlotte to delete the pictures as there is nothing going on between him and Chioma.
After much ado, She deleted them right in front of Deric and promised never to tell chioma’s husband about it.
However, she had earlier sent the images to her email and Deric was unaware of this.
Deric made the payment to the bank, and promised to take her out for dinner later in the evening.
Having been feeling a little under the weather, she decided to call off sick at 5am this morning.
Charlotte : (????????)
Deric: who are you ringing?
Charlotte : my manager. Oh! Hello, Mr Adrian. Good morning and sorry to wake you up
Mr Adrian: is everything okay with you?
Charlotte: Yes. Well, not really.
Mr Adrian: what’s the matter?
Charlotte: I don’t feel well at all so I can’t come to work today.
Mr Adrian: that’s absolutely fine. Do you want me to send the company’s driver to take you to the hospital?
Charlotte: no, my husband will do so this morning. Thanks.
Mr Adrian: brilliant! then don’t worry about work until you are back on your feet. Doesn’t matter how long it takes
Charlotte: Thanks. I’ll be back tomorrow. Hopefully.
Mr Adrian: take care of yourself. Bye.
(At 9am Chioma got ready and told Deric that she was going to the hospital. Deric offered to drop him but she declined with reasons that she would go to the salon after and Deric does not like waiting around the salon. He thinks the salon environment is too “womanish ” (whatever that means)
She got into the car, using her hands-free, she started calling Nina as she drove off)
Nina: (???) You kept me waiting!
Charlotte: I’m sorry, you know I had to be a bit slow to match my claims of being unwell. But I am on my way.
Nina: did you get the address of his company?
Charlotte: Yes. But I am not sure we would be let in. I did look it up on the internet and their security is one of the best. Apparently, you cannot see him without an appointment
Nina: let’s try first! Please don’t start with this weakling attitude of yours!
Charlotte: I’ll see you in 10 minutes
(Charlotte picked Nina up and they made their way to Mr Ambrose’s company and straight to the reception )
Charlotte: Good morning. My name is Peru, can I see Mr Ambrose, please?
Receptionist: good morning. May I see your appointment letter, Please?
Charlotte: I do not have one. But I have an important message for him. A very important message.
Receptionist: I’m afraid madam, we cannot let you in without an appointment letter. Sorry
Nina: (loudly) we are telling you that your manager’s life is at stake and you are more concerned with policies and procedures??? What kind of a receptionist are You!!!
This is insane!
We are reputable ladies just doing this for our love for the family unit!
We run a charity that is channelled towards restoring peace and harmony to the family unit.
Receptionist: it doesn’t matter. I will not let you in without an appointment letter. Not even at gun point.
If you are all you claim, common sense would have told you to book an appointment prior! If you found your way down here, you can find us on the internet.
If you wish to pick up one of our cards, feel free to do so and book an appointment for the next available date! (Telephone rings)
Receptionist: hello, sir
Mr Ambrose: I can see two ladies through the CCTV. What do they want and what are they arguing about?
Receptionist: they are here to see you with no appointment letters. They claim they are here with an important message for you.
Mr Ambrose: get them to go through security and let them in. One at a time.
Receptionist: alright, sir.
(Charlotte and Nina went through security checks and Charlotte was allowed to go in first while Nina waited at the reception)
Mr Ambrose: Good morning, young lady. How may I help You?
Charlotte: I think the question should be, how may I help You?. You see, We are from a charity called ‘Save The Family Unit’ and we have discovered that your family is about to crumble and we want to work with you to avert that.
Mr Ambrose: I would appreciate if you go straight to the point as I do not have the time to chase you around the bush as you beat about the bush.
You have two minutes. Use it!
Charlotte: your wife is cheating on you, with someone he claims was his classmate in London.
Mr Ambrose: anything else you have to say? You have one minute.
Charlotte: We have pictures here. Would you like to see them?
Mr Ambrose: no thanks. That should be it. You may now leave.
Charlotte: don’t you want to see the pictures?
Mr Ambrose: I was clear enough when I said No! Get out or I get someone to assist you out!
Charlotte: well, then!
Chioma: welcome, darling. How was today?
Mr Ambrose: it wasn’t so bad. How was yours?
Chioma: it was fine. I tidied up the kids wardrobes. Lots of clothes they have outgrown.
Mr Ambrose: they need to be sent to charity for children who might benefit from them. Tatiana has more clothes than any child I know. She doesn’t need it.
How are they?
Chioma: they fine. Sleeping upstairs .
Mr Ambrose: and their nanny?
Chioma: she is asleep too. Would you like to eat or shower first?
Mr Ambrose: neither, at the moment. Erm, I rang my mum and asked if the kids could spend the weekend with her and she was excited. Is that okay by you?
Chioma: yeah! Yeah. I need a break anyway.
Mr Ambrose: I feel we need some time together to talk about a few things away from the kids. We haven’t been out alone since I returned. That’s not what I promised you. Is it?
Chioma: I understand
Tatiana: daddy!!! Daddy!
Mr Ambrose: oh dear! Mummy, you must not run down the stairs! Now stop there and I’ll come get you. Stop!…That’s my girl!
Sweetie, I thought you said she was asleep! (Goes upstairs and carries her down)
Chioma: well, as far as I am aware, she was asleep. Probably heard your voice and woke up
Mr Ambrose: why did you wake up, Mummy?
Tatiana: because nanny was snoring! And I woke up and I saw you!
Mr Ambrose: you didn’t see me, because I was downstairs. Did you hear my voice?
Tatiana: yes! Yes I ‘hiad ‘ your voice
Mr Ambrose: you HEARD my voice. Shall we say that correctly?
Tatiana: I heard your voice
Mr Ambrose: excellent! Mummy, Would you like to spend the weekend at grandma’s?
Tatiana: grandma Seline?
Mr Ambrose: Yes. Who is grandma Seline’ s husband?
Tatiana: I know!!! Grandpa Ambrose!!!!!??
Mr Ambrose: why do you like going to grandma and grandpa’s house?
Tatiana: because grandma has a big garden and let’s me play with the mud!! And Mr thief don’t come to grandma’s house because grandpa has a gun!!
Mr Ambrose: but I told you that Mr thief can’t come here. This is a new place. Mr thief only comes to the old house. Do you want me to buy a gun?
Tatiana: I don’t like Mr thief. I like elephants and cocopods and…..and
Mr Ambrose: and me?
Tatiana: no! And….and…
Mr Ambrose: you don’t love me?
Tatiana: I love you daddy!!!!
Mr Ambrose: I love you too, my angel!
Chioma: it never ends, does it! These two. Dear husband, you need to eat now.
Mr Ambrose: alright…
Chioma: mummy, we are giving some of your old clothes to children who do not have clothes to wear. Is that alright?
Tatiana: why can’t their mummy and daddy buy them clothes?
Chioma: some of them don’t have mummies and daddies. That’s why
Tatiana: Mr thief killed their daddy?
Chioma: ermm, yes and some just died. People die for many reasons not just Mr thief
Tatiana: but when they die they go to heaven and buy them loadsssss of ice cream. Mummy when are you going to heaven?
Mr Ambrose: ?????
Chioma: not anytime soon! Now let’s go upstairs. Daddy needs to eat. Mr Ambrose, your daughter is asking when I am dying and you are laughing right? Time to go to my own daddy’s house
Mr Ambrose: hahahaha! She’s only a child. Her innocence is beautiful!
Tatiana: I’m telling you!?????
??????) Nina, I am honestly tired of being home on weekends with Deric and his constant bickering. I need a new hobby.
Nina: (????) Is he home? I can come over
Charlotte: no. He went to Lagos to come back tomorrow. Please come over let’s hang out.
Nina: didn’t you do a bit of pole dancing when you were in London? Why don’t you pick that up again!
Charlotte: Oh my goodness! That is actually true! I wanna get back to pole dancing and it keeps you fit!
Nina: at least on weekends, you can dance in clubs and they pay really good money. A friend of mine who does it says she gets paid 150k per performance and you need to see the car she drives! Solid!
Charlotte: can you link me up with her Please? Does she go different places or works for one club?
Nina: she travels around the country. But you can choose to work for a specific pub.
Charlotte: yea, obviously, with Deric and his insecurity, I have to lie every day I have a performance. So I can’t travel that far.
Nina: I’m gonna have a quick shower and come over, so we can go see her
Charlotte: fantastic! Babe, I can’t believe that man declined to see the picture and to comment on what we told him!
Nina: if I ever get married in life, I want a man like him! In fact, I have been thinking on trying my luck on him?. Afterall he didn’t see my face so he wouldn’t suspect a thing?
Charlotte: do you think such a man would take any notice of another woman? Seems to be committed to his marital vows. I wish!!!
To be continued
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