It was past midnight, but Jane hasn’t slept one bit.
The sounds wouldn’t allow her. She has turned the other way, pressed her ears into the pillow, but nothing worked.
The very air around her seemed to vibrate from each sound.
She was staring at her husband’s nose now.
Albert’s fat nose.
Like sound outlets of a giant machine, both nostrils worked tirelessly all night, emitting sound, causing turbulent air vibrations.
Jane tapped her husband.
He stirred, but did not wake. With the disturbance, his snores took on a different velocity, turning a further deeper, now like the rumbling of the sky during a rainfall.
Jane groaned in misery.
She tried to push him now, the space he left for her couldn’t even adequately contain a 10-year-old.
Finally she was able to move him, his densely packed, 300-Pound frame.
She sighed in relief as the rumbling stopped after the slight movement.
But the next minute, it started again, now the high, whistle-like one.
The one that gave the feel of little mosquitoes in your brain.
A frustrated Jane slapped her husband, so hard he finally swallowed the snores and opened his eyes.
He was staring at her with open eyes, but it appeared he wasn’t seeing anything. He ran his palm over his face. ‘Baby, you are not sleeping, why?’
‘I would have, if you had allowed me!’
He pulled up to a sitting posture on the bed. ‘Ah-ah, what do you mean by that?’
‘Gosh, Albert, we’ve talked about this your snoring, haven’t we?’
He sighed, clutching his head. ‘Baby, was I snoring again?’
Jane depressed the corners of her lips. ‘No,’ she said, sarcastic. ‘You weren’t snoring, Albert, you were roaring—ghhrrr! Like a lion!’
His features wilted. ‘I’m sorry about that. I will start at the gym tomorrow, the doctor said it would stop once I lose some weight.’
‘Better for you, cuz I can’t stand this any more.’ She hugged the pillow, her back to the wall. ‘Really can’t!’
‘Again, I’m sorry,’ Albert said. He took the other pillow and stood. ‘I’ll be in the sitting room. You can try to catch some sleep now.’
She watched him walk away and felt a prick of remorse. She shouldn’t have talked to him like that.
She should have endured, or better still, had picked one pillow and gone to the sitting room instead.
After all, he hasn’t always been like this. He used to be better; he used to be a sexy, non-snoring man.
There was a time he had a flat belly and a puffed-up chest. A time the sight of him made her instantly warm with desire. The time he newly married her.
The next night, Jane suffered the same torture.
Downstairs in the bitter morning that followed, Jane asked her husband, ‘Why didn’t you register at the gym again like you said?’
‘I’m sorry, honey, will do today, ok?’
Jane said ok, but her okay wasn’t really an okay. She’s had enough. As soon as the door shut behind Albert, she ran upstairs to the room and started packing her things.
This was how Jane left her husband two years ago.
This morning, Jane woke up on Kennedy’s bed. As usual, she was alone on the bed. She could easily count the few nights she had woken up to find her new husband on the bed with her.
The space she once so craved, was now threatening to drown her.
She rose, tied the ropes of her pink night dress together and slipped her cold feet into the rubber flip-flops by the base of the bed.
Downstairs, in the wide sitting room, she heard noise in the kitchen.
A knife has fallen, obviously. In her mind, Jane battled with whether or not to leave the stupid knife on the floor till morning when Ngozi woke up to pick it.
A few seconds after, she opened the kitchen door and horror slapped her still.
There, on top of the cabinet she prepared food on, her husband, briefs pulled down to his thighs, stood between Ngozi’s spread legs, digging hard in and out of her.
Though Kennedy’s palm was on the plump maid’s lips, holding down her moans of ecstasy—precious, expensive ecstasy given by Oga himself—Ngozi still gave muffled growls.
A horrified Jane screamed, ‘Oh God!’, covered her lips with two hands and ran out of the house.
Kennedy turned, shocked, but he was so close, so he completed a few more strokes and arrived before pulling up his briefs to run after his wife.
Deep down the street, a shattered and confused Jane dropped to the roadside grass and folded herself to the early morning cold.
Warm tears trickled down her cheeks.
A man ran past her— a tall, fit package in jogging suit and white trainers.
It was only when he was coming back that Jane saw his face.