“You don’t walk away when I’m talking to you, Somto.”
He was beginning to perspire from another round of what seemed like an unproductive session of talking some sense into his wife. Somto simply walked over to the bar to pour herself another drink. She was clad in a white tank top and ankara bum shorts. There was not a care in the world given.
Uche charged at her and snatched the whiskey glass just before it met her lips.
“What sort of a mother are you? All you do is sit around all day drinking and snorting that…that white stuff.” It took him willpower to control his rage as his unoccupied hand had already made a fist.
Somto threw her head back and laughed. The overhead light bounced off her hazel colored eyes. Uche felt a tug in his chest. Those eyes had been the first thing that had gotten his attention when they met. Now they were dilated and moved erratically. She was high. Again.
“Uchechukwu, if you know what is good for you, you will give that glass back to me.” She held on to the bar top to steady herself.
“Why are you doing this to us?” His voice had a softer tone now.
“What do you want Chidera to think? You are scaring the poor girl to death.”
She grabbed him by the shirt and pulled him closer. “Now, listen and listen really good. I don’t give a damn about you or your daughter…”
Uche flinched. “Our daughter, Somto. Our daughter.” His voice was strained with pain and exhaustion. She didn’t mean that. He didn’t want to believe Somto could have a cold heart towards her own daughter. It had to be the drugs speaking.
Dealing with her change in behavior the past six months had taken a toll on him and as much as he tried to keep his daughter away from all the drama, she had known something wasn’t right. After all, she was seven not stupid.
Somto pushed him away. “Let me live my life, okay? I’m a grown ass woman. You can’t tell me what to do. You are not my father!” That last part was screamed into his face.
She grabbed the bottle off the counter and took a gulp. “Why am I even still talking to your dumbass? I don’t have time for this rubbish,” She hissed and turned to leave.
Uche knew she was headed for the pent house. It was where she spent her time these days, surrounded by booze, drugs and the kind of music that could make the pope blush.
“I’m taking Chidera away. I’m leaving.” Uche said, as a matter of fact.
Somto stopped in her tracks, took another swig from the bottle and turned around.
“You wouldn’t dare.” He was thrown back by the hate in her eyes.
Whoever was behind the eyes that stared him down wasn’t his wife. His wife was long gone. He knew that for sure.
As Uche watched her climb the stairs, he wondered where it all went wrong. Where did they miss it? How did he not see the signs early enough? But most importantly, where was the woman he had fallen in love with several years ago?
(To be continued)
Primavera; Italian word for spring.
Spring refers to the season, and also to ideas of rebirth, rejuvenation, renewal, resurrection and regrowth. (Source; wikipedia)