At the beggining it had all been good.. The relationship had been idyllic until after the honeymoon.
They were having dinner, in their large sitting room, overlooking the Lekki penisula.
“Do you like the meal?” She was so eager to please. Eager to see the appreciation his eyes.
His smile was different. Kind of knowing. “Not bad. Could do with a little more salt.”
Her eyes fell in disappointment. She felt his hand cover hers.
“Don’t worry darling. You will learn.”
She smiled and started talking about how eager she was to get back to work, meet her colleagues.
He looked at her intently. ” You are so lovely.” his eyes travelled over her and rested on her face. ” Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night and have to keep reminding myself that I’m not dreaming that you are lying there besides me.”
“You are young and innocent. You have no idea of how men think. Of how they view women who work. They see them as prey, people to be taken advantage of. Ive seen how they carry on. Even the Managers.. They even make passes at married women. Its not a safe environment.”
“Ive worked with them for years. They have always treated me with respect. Im not stupid – Im aware that there are so affairs going on but no one has ever bothered me when I was single so why would they do that now? Especially when my husband works in the same office.”
He shook his head. ” I dont see why my wife has to work, when I earn enough to take care of her. You can stay at home, amuse yourself, go shopping ….just relax. You dont need to have to spend long hours in what I feel is a very masculine dominated and chauvnistic environment.”
She stared at him. “What you have just said is chauvinistic enough! I cant imagine vegetating at home when I have an HND in Business Studies and a diploma in Marketing.”
He stood up from the table. ” We will discuss this later.”
She wanted to tell him that they would discuss it now, but there was something about the way he said that made her decide to keep quiet.
He walked off into his study and closed the door.
He had never closed the door against her before.
She had gone upstairs and was lying in bed watching the TV, when he came up. He folded his arms across his chest and watched her.
“I need to get something straight. I am your husband. I tell you what I want and you agree to it. You promised to obey me.”
“You promised to love me.”
He watched her through half closed eyes.” I dont want to argue about this. Tommorrow, you will hand in your resignation.”
“You cant force me. You dont own me.”
He laughed after that. ” Oh yes I do. I own every bit of you. You owe me. Your father and your whole family owes me. If it wasnt for me , your whole family would be in the gutter.”
“How dare you talk to me like that?”
“I dare because it was my money that bailed your Father out. I dare because it is my money that keeps a roof over your parents head, that pays for your brothe’rs university fees.”
Tears sprang to her eyes. Tears because she knew that what he said was true. Tears because she knew that she was in a prison, manufactured by her own parents.
She was still crying, when Ade took her in his arms, begging her, apologizing for his harsh words, telling her to trust him because he knew what was best for her. He loved her He couldn’t live without her. She was the one for him. She was the most beautiful woman in the world and he was crazy about her.
“My princess…” he whispered against her neck.
She was too dazed and tired to push him away. Everything else that followed was a surreal blur.
All she could think of was the fact that her parents had sold her for the proverbial seven pieces of sliver.