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Three is a crowd: Tables are turned on David

David and Diane have been married for years; then there is Julie, the young secretary whose axis collides with the couple’s in ways none of them saw coming.

JULIE

That weekend I decided to visit my sister at school to tell her about the pregnancy. I did some shopping and arrived at the school just as the lunch bell went. After the usual small talk about home and school, I broached the topic that had brought me.

“I’m leaving the agency,” I announced somberly.       
“What! How come? I thought you loved it there!” she exclaimed in surprise.        
“I do, but something has come up, and I’m going to be otherwise occupied soon,” I answered cryptically.               

“You got another job?”  
“No, sort of, but not quite, I mean...,” I took a deep breath, then just blurted it out: “I’m pregnant.”                                  

She screamed in delight, and flung her arms around my neck in an excited hug, squealing and jumping at the same time.

“Congratulations! I’m so happy for you! This is so exciting! Oh my God, I’m going to be an aunt!” she exclaimed once she finally released me and could speak rather than scream.

I smiled at her genuine delight; if only everything could be so simple.

“You do know the father is married, right?” I reminded her, in an attempt to bring her back to the nitty-gritty of the situation.
“So? This baby is between you and him, not him and her! He’s going to support you and the baby, right?”                   
“Yes.”       

“That’s all that matters, let her focus on her home and children, and you focus on yours,” she shrugged.                          
“I don’t think mum is going to see things quite the same way,” I pointed out another trouble spot.                       

“No disrespect to mum, but again, this baby is between you and David; she’s not the one going to take care of it, or buy diapers and milk; so, it’s not her problem. In any case, you’re making her a grandmother; so, she should be happy.”

“I wish she would see it that way, but I don’t think she will,” I answered sadly, then went on brightly: “I’m so happy that at least you’re pleased about it; it’s good to have someone in my corner.”

“You know you’ve always got me in your corner,” she assured me and I hugged her close, glad that I had come, and in her, found that unconditional love and support of family in whose eyes you can do no wrong.

DAVID

In an attempt to inject some normalcy and familiarity back into our family routine, I decided to take Diane and the children out for the day on Sunday. The children as usual wanted to go to the beach; so, we spent the day at the beach, then had an early dinner at a lakeside hotel, and got home with the children ready to head straight to bed.          

It was the sort of day Diane would normally love, and yet today she seemed preoccupied and not interested. She insisted everything was fine when I asked her if she was all right, but there was something off about her, though I could not quite place my finger on what it was.  

With the children fast asleep minutes after we got home, I tried to make love to her, but while she readily gave herself to me, she still appeared distracted and I got the impression that she had only given me her body as a reward for the day out, so I quickly lost interest as well.

After a hurried, single round, I gave up the effort, and said goodnight. No matter what people say about men’s sex drives, even we want to feel wanted.

DIANE

It should have been a great weekend; it had all the ingredients of one: David was being a doting father and attentive husband, the children were behaving themselves, and for once not getting into one squabble after another, and yet it was not, and it was all Mark’s fault.

I had not been able to get him off my mind, and even when David made a clear effort for us to spend some quality family time together, I found myself wondering what Mark and his family were doing, and if I was crossing his mind as often as he was crossing mine.

Probably not, and it was this that bothered me; that here I was, a successful, independent, married woman, with beautiful children, a lovely home, and a husband any woman would be proud of, pining after another woman’s husband after just one measly kiss! What was wrong with me?

I told myself I needed to snap out of whatever madness had come over me, but at the same time, I was thinking about how to engineer another meeting with Mark, and I knew I was not about to snap out of it any time soon.

I felt like I was headed for an obvious train wreck, yet I did not know how to pull the plug, or get off the rails. It was an oddly exhilarating, yet scary, feeling.

margaretwamanga@yahoo.com

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