“Hey baby!” He sang to me. “You sleeping already?”
My eyes popped open! Huh?
“I was.” I replied cautiously.
“So sorry I had to disturb your beauty sleep, but I just had to speak with you before I sleep. How are you?”
For real? I sat up in bed.
“I’m fine, and you?”
“Better now I’ve spoken with you. Just came in from hanging with the guys, about to crash, so jet lagged.”
“You need to rest.” I said stating the obvious.
“Yea, about to, in bed now. What are you wearing?”
And so the discussion took another dimension. It was only after the call ended some long minutes later, before I drifted off to dream land that I realised; Zach didn’t mention his earlier tantrum. We just ignored it like it didn’t happen.
In time, even I had forgotten it. We were having the time of our life.
Zach put me up to styling a couple of his music videos. I could have done it for free, but he insisted on paying and giving me credit for it. The videos were shot in South Africa, all expenses on Zach’s record label, and boy! We had madt fun. The only blip was the video director; Linda Adeshina, who was hostile towards me, to the point of being rude, I wondered why (were we sharing husband?).
Zach advised I ignore her. According to him; she is like that with every female. Anyways, I didn’t let her spoil my fun.
I kept my girls updated, we were always chatting when I wasn’t on set or with Zach.
After two weeks of mega fun, we returned to Lag. My girls were waiting at home, and the gist flowed. After I must have told the stories like twice, and we had gone through my bag and the gifts I brought them, I noticed the glances they kept exchanging, and I asked; “Girls, what’s new?”
Susan opened her left palm; a ring. An engagement ring! I screamed! We screamed!
She slipped the ring on her finger, it was so beautiful. So sparkly, so beautiful! Susan was engaged!
After the scream fest, and shedding of a few tears of joy, I demanded to know the whole story.
On the day Susan received her call-up letter for her Youth service(she was posted to Lagos), her boyfriend; Timi took her for a celebratory dinner and asked her to marry him, off course she accepted.
We were in seventh heaven. Full wedding planning mode activated. The traditional wedding was to be at Susan’s hometown in Delta state, in about two months during the christmas hols.
Clara and I were our own full wedding planning service, while Susan went for her orientation camp.
When I excitedly told Zach about Susan’s engagement when we spoke on the phone the next day, all the response I got was a grunt.
As in a good old grunt!
Or something which sounded like a grunt!
He must not have heard me, so I repeated myself.
“Babe, I said Susan’s boyfriend asked her to marry him. They are engaged!”
“I heard you the first time.” He said dryly.
“The trad will be in Asaba, will you come?” I went on excitedly.
“You ask; if I’ll come as though you are there already.”
I giggled. “I’m so excited!”
“I don’t know what the fuss is about getting married, it’s all unnecessary to me.” He snapped.
His words literarily rained on my parade.
“Don’t you believe in marriage?” I asked, a tad turned down.
I heard a voice in the background, a female voice.
“Let’s not get into that right now. I’m going to nod off now, we’ll talk tomorrow. Good night” And he ended the call.
You know those movie moments where a person stares at the phone in disbelief after he/she has been hung up on, I had that moment then. I stared at my phone. But for the fact that he bade me good night I would have thought it was bad network connection.
‘It must be the jet-lag.’ I rationalised, but the voice I heard…. And the hurried way he ended the call?
No, I must have heard wrong, a female can’t be with Zach at this time. Fidelity is a big issue with Zach, he can’t be cheating. It must be the horrible Nigerian connection.
I sent him a text: ‘Good night, sweet dreams, angels around you.’
My mind immediately went back to the impending wedding. Somewhere in between plans, I drifted off to sleep.
The next day I got back to work. I had a backlog of orders, Ayi and I can’t keep up anymore. Well, I’m not complaining, business is good.
It took NEPA/PHCN interrupting power supply to get us to break.
I glanced at the wall clock, jeez! Was that the time?
I searched for my phones.
“Ayi have you seen my phones?” I asked her after searching without success.
“No, I haven’t seen them today, and they haven’t rung. Quite unusual.” She observed.
When was the last time I used them? I searched my mind.
I called Zach this morning, oh! That must be where I left them! I went into my room, and there they were, both blinking furiously.
Missed calls, bbm’s, emails, whatsapp messages,…
How did we live before the advent of mobile phones, especially smart phones?
Zach called me on both phones?
He also sent a message: ‘Where the hell are you?’
I tried calling him; he didn’t answer.
For two days I kept trying to reach him without success. My calls were ignored, my messages as well. But he was okay, he kept up his social presence, he had a live TV show interview, he was just ignoring me. I was pissed, and worried.
I felt like I was living in twilight zone.
Two days later he eventually answered my call.
“Babe, you okay?” I asked in concern.
“Yes.” He sounded….. Drunk, or high or something. But he doesn’t do drugs, at least not to my knowledge.
“You’ve been ignoring my calls.”
“Just like you ignored mine.”
For real? “Babe, I was working…..”
“I was working also.” He slurred.
Okay, Zach was definitely drunk and I refused to argue with a drunk man.
But it was just three pm, wasn’t it too early to be that wasted?
“Are you home?” I asked, hoping he was and wouldn’t have to drive in his condition.
“Why do you ask?” He countered.
He was definitely spoiling for a fight.
“Just checking up on you.” I replied.
“I’m fine.” He snapped. “If that’s all I have somethings I need to get back to. Later.” And he ended the call.