The Other Woman

My mother always told me to stay away from married men.That I should never be the cause of another woman’s tears and sleepless nights. When I joined campus and men of all ages were chasing my heels wanting a taste of my honey jar the first question i asked was “are you married? ” with a clear statement that “I do not do married men.” While my age mates were enjoying all the benefits of a taken man,I waited tables during my free time to get money for crazy Fridays out and sexy shoes.

After campus I got a job at an insurance company and the pay was good. Within two years I was living in my own apartment and riding my own car.My friends usually teased me telling me that I had given Mr Luck a kiss of his lifetime for him to be favoring me that much considering that none of my other friends was in a stable job. With all the success you would think there was a man beside me patting my back but no, at 24 I was still a single woman and I spent my free time mingling with eligible bachelors or on blind dates my friends organised but still the longest I could maintain a relationship was three months. Up to the time I decided to quit trying and enjoy my single hood. I was no longer Susan the single and ready to mingle girl; I was Susan. sexy, sassy, successful ,single and satisfied and I was loving it!

I was surrounded by a bunch of wonderful people in and out of the office, I had a good relationship with my family and a job that I loved.What else could a girl ask for? My boss was nothing like the bosses in the film horrible bosses,his skin was not wrinkled with his head covered in white hair and a belly protruding like an over blown balloon ready to explode any second, neither did he wear high waist trousers with suspenders.No, my boss was every girls dream. Too bad he was a married man with three adorable kids.I could bet a few thousand bucks that Mr.Korir had been a model in his twenties. My secretary was five years older than me and she was a charming lady happily married and blessed with a son who was her joy and pride.She never understood how a girl like me could still be single.

The night it begun I was working late,I had a report to file by the next day. I finished it and as I was packing to leave my office phone rang and Mr Korir was on the other end asking whether i would mind a drink with him. And did I? No I didn’t, Korir was my boss in the office but after working hours we were buddies and he too had tried playing Mr.Matchmaker by introducing me to his bachelor friends but none of them had lasted long enough to put a ring on my finger. We drove to an uptown restaurant where the executive chef was my friend and they made roast chicken like no other place in town, that way we could also have a meal.When I asked Korir what his wife would say about him going home on a full stomach, he shrugged his shoulders and mentioned something like not wanting to get home early. As we waited for our chicken to be prepared we ordered a bottle of wine,Talked a little about work, a little about my life,a little about our Mutual friends,joked and laughed at each others jokes, generally we were good company for each other.By the time our meal was brought I could feel the wine getting to my head. We ate,talked,laughed some more and drunk more wine till I reminded myself the following day was a working day. Since we had used Korirs car he insisted on dropping me home instead of me getting a cub.

I can never explain why I did it or how it happened but as Korir bent to Peck my cheek outside my apartment block the usual goodbye peck, I turned my face instead of my cheek his lips fell on my lips. None of us pulled away,I felt his lips part asking for more and I gave in,I felt his arm move around my waist pulling me closer to his body. My skin was burning, I could not remember a kiss better than that or a feeling so great as his hand against my skin on my neck. When we finally broke the kiss I was out of breath my brain was in a turmoil, I tried to say something but I felt his finger on my lips; he said he had to leave and as he drove of I got into the house I didn’t bother to put on the lights I found my way to the bedroom and lied on my bed. That night I dreamt I was lost in an island and as I was wondering around trying to find my way,I had him calling out my name.Korir! He had found me.I called back running towards his voice and there he was on the most beautiful beach I had ever seen.We made love on the beach and it was magic and when I woke up the following morning I discovered I had slept with my shoes on. I didn’t know what to tell Korir in the office or how to explain my behavior.I knew I could blame it on the wine but I wasn’t intoxicated to the point of loosing myself. I prepared myself and called for a cub and headed for work.

When I walked in the office I felt as if everyone knew my dirty little secret. I turned around when I passed two people just to ensure that they were not whispering behind my back. In my office Betty was already there as usual, I asked her to find out whether Mr.Korir was in the office and if not to let me know when he arrived; he didn’t come to work that day and instead of signing with relief, my heart sulk. I can’t recall the number of times I picked up my phone to call him changing my mind just before I pressed his number or the number of times my phone rang and I quickly picked it up expecting it to be him. By the time I was driving home I had sworn to straighten myself out. He was my boss, he was married and nothing more could ever happen between us. I thought of calling my girls for a drink and a chat but I ended up calling a guy I had a fling with, luckily he was in town and willing to meet me for dinner.I had to get home first freshen and doll up before meeting him, we agreed on the time, place and it was a date.

When the doorbell rang and I heard his voice on the intercom asking me to let him up, my heart missed a beat. I was almost done preparing myself for my date, I looked at the clock on the wall,it was twenty minutes past seven. I didn’t trust myself to be with Korir and at the same time a part of me wanted to listen to him. I let him up and let him into my apartment. He looked at me and figured out for himself I had a date to attend and I mumbled something like meeting an old friend as an explanation though he didn’t ask for it. I never ment to ask why he didn’t show up for work but I did anyway; he had a meeting with some client and through out the day all he could think about was me and the kisses, he had to see me before going home that’s why he had come to my house. I tried to remember my mother’s warning, I heard her voice,faint and fading away in my memory. I felt his lips on my on my lips and I forgot everything else burying myself in the moment,in his kisses.His hands were fighting to get rid of the LSD I was wearing while I was fighting with his buttons and belt.There was a hunger, an urgency I had never experienced before, as if someone would grab us and tear us apart. He pushed me back and I fell back on my couch my LSD on the ground,he followed me on the coach his hands all over my body his mouth trailing kisses on my neck, my collar bone and finally my breast. My nipple hardened, he took it in his mouth and just when I thought I couldn’t take it any more I felt his fingers in the core of my womanhood. A moan escaped my mouth, a tremble hit my body and as he entered me I cried out with pleasure. Somewhere in the distance I heard my phone ring but at that moment nothing else existed.

We ended up in bed eating some mashed potatoes and minced meet I had in the fridge. A comfortable silence hang around us,I lay on his chest as he played with my hair strands.He broke the silence, he had to leave , he had never failed to go home unless he was away for business; Miriam, his wife would be waiting for him.A tear escaped my eye and I wiped it off before he noticed, I lay no claim on him, he belonged to someone else and I had just become the other woman in his life. I watched him dress,walked him to the door, he kissed me goodnight and off he went. This became our daily routine and as much as we couldn’t keep our hands off each other we tried our best to keep our affair secret. One morning I could walk in the morning to find a bunch of roses with un unsigned card,the next I could find a basket of chocolates, exotic fruits, shopping vouchers and a nosy Betty wanting to know who the new guy in my life was.We were making out anywhere we found secluded, in the car in the office, like teenagers in love for the first time and the love making got steamer and steamer as the days passed. He begun lying to his wife about business trips and meetings out of town and that way he could spend nights at my place and weekends out of town together.

We were spending every free time we had together, my girlfriends started complaining that I had become too busy to spend time with them. Sometimes we would get sloppy and forget we were having a secret affair, and on one of our sloppy moments we ended up in the daily papers in the society page,lips locked and a column to go with the picture.We were busted, I was having my Sunday morning coffee when the newspaper arrived and I almost choked on my coffee when I opened the society page and saw the picture. My mind was in a rush,I rushed from the kitchen to go find my phone in the bedroom where I had left it. Korir was calling, he had just seen the paper too. He wanted to come over to ensure I was okay, but what about Miriam? Mother to his adorable kids, would she be okay? I promised him to stay indoors and not to answer calls from unknown callers, he had to tell his wife himself before she saw the newspaper. I switch of my phone and spent the whole day wondering how we could have let that happen. How could we have been so reckless? Korir came to the house later after he had told Miriam everything who in turn had chased him out of their home in rage. We sat on the coach wondering what we would do. He said he loved me and I believed him but he loved his family too and he had a responsibility towards them. I could never ask him to choose and so we just sat there.

At the office I knew we were the topic of discussion. I saw single girls looking me with envy and married women including my own secretary looking at me with disgust and I could totally understand them. I was the woman who had ruined another womans marriage.Betty too gave me the looks and was suddenly cold towards me. Korir had tried to convince me to stay away from the office for atleast a few days but I had to face my workmates the sooner the better. My friends were up to my neck to, how could I keep it from them? Although they didn’t judge me and didn’t give me the look, they felt betrayed that I didn’t trust them enough to tell them about the relationship. Through out the week we were gossip bloggers hot gossip. We even landed in a family magazine artical as an example of how clandestine affairs ruin marriages. Through out all this Korir stuck by my side while he still tried to work out things with his wife who gave him no chance.She had gotten herself a lawyer already to draft divorce papers and at the end of the week she handed them to Korir. He was shuttered and I totally blamed myself and as always he was there asking me not to and that we were in it together. I had come to love him like I had never loved anyone else, my friends urged me that it was time to let go but Miriam was set on having the divorce and I knew I could not leave Korir too.

Two weeks later I got home and found Miriam waiting for me at the parking lot.Since the day we were busted I had waited for this day and it didn’t matter how much I had thought about it because I was not prepared for a confrontation . I took in a deep breath and stepped out of the car. She only had three questions for me, that is why she had come. Was I happy that I was finally going to have him for myself? Did I love him or was it just my hobby to destroy people’s families? How did I sleep at night? I could see the pain in her eyes ,the deception and betrayal in her voice and all I could manage to say was sorry, that I never planned for it to happen. She left wishing us the best,I went up to my apartment, my mother’s voice resounding in my mind again and again. When Korir called I didn’t pick his calls neither did I reply to his text.The following morning he showed up but I chased him away,I didn’t even let him up.I wanted to spend that weekend all by myself. The reality of what I had done was downing on me. Could I have prevented it? Was it really love that I felt for him? Would we continue being happy even after his divorce? What if Miriam forgave him,would he still need me or would he sacrifice us for his family? My mind was in a turmoil the whole weekend I didn’t sleep but by Monday morning as I drove to work I had made a decision. I was going to end it.

Korir was not in the office and he never came in that day. I assumed he had issues about the divorce to settle since he didn’t have any business meeting that I knew of. He called me around 3pm asking for a huge favour from me. There was urgency in his voice and he went on explaining that if he had another choice he wouldn’t ask of me…I cut him short and told him to just say whatever it was that he wanted to. Would I mind picking junior from school? He asked. I thought I had him right and before his question settled in he said that Miriam had been admitted at the hospital. He didn’t have much time for explanation over the phone. I couldn’t say no, how could I when we had shared so much together? I was not going to abandon him when he needed me the most and for the next one year I turned out to be a working mother. Miriam had been diagnosed with a brain tumor that turned out to be cancerous. My mother found out about my affair and she was heart broken. My friends thought I had completely gone insane. Having an affair with a married man was one thing and taking care of his kids was another. Miriam was putting up a tough fight against the cancer.Surprisingly we become became friends, sometimes we would go at the hospital and find her full of energy, sometimes she didn’t recognize anyone. She had to be operated on and after the operation she remaind in a comma for almost two months. That was the hardest part of our relationship, Korir would sometime lock me and his children out of his mind,sometimes I could feel that he blamed himself for what was happening but I never doubted his feelings.Sometimes in the middle of the night I could hear him weeping. The kids adapted to staying at my apartment and on weekends we would all go to visit their mother.

Finally when she came out of the coma we had something to celebrate about and we all went to visit her. She was responding well to treatment thou she had to undergo vigorous chemotherapy and radiation. Miriam had become part of my life.I could go to the hospital and chat all evening, when chemo took a toil on her body, I held her as she vomited everything that went in through her mouth. We were given positive feedback she was responding well and with time she would go back home.

The day she was being realised from the hospital I went to her house for the first time. The kids wanted to decorate the house for their mother’s home coming. Korir had hired a stay at home nurse for Miriam and she was coming that day too. Inside Miriams house I felt like a stranger, I looked at the family photos neatly arranged on the walls, this had been a happy family. Since the day Miriam had been admitted in the hospital no one had mentioned the divorce. I knew Korir loved his family, would I be satisfied being the other woman or would a day come where I will demand for more? I had the car arrive and I called out for the kids who came rushing down the stairs. We all rushed out , first came Korir from the drivers side and he went to open Miriam’s door.She was still weak and Korir moved closer so as to support her.The kids seeing their mother all ran and embraced her.Tears freely flowed down my cheeks and watching the five of them, I knew what I had to do.

I could not bring myself to say goodbye so I just said it in a letter. I took time off work, booked a plane ticket to South Africa and after a week I was in jo’bergs vacationing while searching for a possible university for my masters. Korir and Miriam had been given another chance in life and I was not going to come between them again.Going back to the office was not in my future plans. I had fallen in love with a man who was never going to be mine.I had to live my life without him, hoping that a day would come and I would learn to love again.