I'm rather excited about this series, it's taking a very different form than I'd planned but I'm so loving this new path and all the unexpected bonuses. You can catch up on the older stories in this series if you click on the HIV/AIDS label on the right. Let's start today's episode shall we?
Anytime she saw the girl and her mother waiting to see Patricia and collect drugs from the pharmacy, she’d want to punch something or kill something just to assuage the feelings of rage and helplessness that coursed through her at the sight of them. She struggled to school her facial features to reflect cordiality even though her heart burned now and had been burning since Jesse called last night.
She hadn’t thought that Jesse could have made her angrier than she was on the night that she’d discovered his infidelity but he had surprised her, shocked her and even infuriated her yesterday night. It wasn’t even his almost drunken and thoughtless statements that riled her, it wasn’t even when he said he used condoms on all of them! It was when he mentioned Patricia that she lost it.
She could barely remember flinging her phone across the room, jumping out of her bed and unlocking her front door. She must have run for ten minutes before stopping to catch her breath and waited for the burn from the accumulation of lactic acid in her muscles to subside. The pain pleased her because it cloaked the pain of the repeated trauma that Jesse had put her through recently. When she felt better, she walked home and whispered a small prayer of gratitude when she found her house undisturbed and saw that her phone had fallen in the pile of clothes that she’d selected for donation to her church’s charity programme.
After saying goodbye to mother-daughter duo when they came to her office to tell her they were going home, a restless energy surged in her blood. She knew she wouldn’t, couldn’t rest until she’d confronted her colleague. Her imagination had thrown up several theories, case studies and scenarios explaining why Jesse would discuss them with Patricia and most of those involved both of them naked on a bed and laughing at her naivety. She sprang up and made her way to Patricia’s office, there was fire in her eyes.
“Patricia what business do you have with Jesse? How come he discussed what happened between us with you?”
“Is that why you are shouting and tapping your foot like you are going to kill a lion or something” Patricia adjusted the shoulders of her gown raising it up so it covered her cleavage better.
“What I want to kill is not the issue here, it’s the shenanigans going on between you and Jesse that is the crux of the matter”
“Like I would even have anything to do with that one” She would have said more but the expression on Martha’s face made her consider it unwise to continue.
“Just don’t tell me he tried to sleep with you too, I…” Martha burst into tears and started sobbing immediately. Each sob sounded like a desperate grasp for air. Patricia sprang up and held Martha to her chest which immediately aroused the envy of Aaron the pharmacy technician who’d been watching the whole thing from his window and fantasized about how he’d feel if his head was in that massive and undoubtedly soft bosom.
“I’m sorry I lost control like this” She said when she stopped crying.
“Don’t be, emotional matter will always trump control” Patricia cooed
She supported Martha as she sat down on the white plastic chair, she went across the table and sat down opposite her, mimicking the counsellor patient dynamic.
“Why couldn’t we have been friends?”
“Well you took one look at me and decided that you were too good for me”
“You know that’s not true!” Martha sputtered.
“Ok, it wasn’t as bad as that but you can’t deny that sparks flew when I was transferred here to counsel and you were still pushing the files and taking vital signs”
“I’d have made a crappy counsellor” Martha said with a wry smile.
“Hindsight is always perfect, right?” Patricia replied with a wry smile of her own.
“Now let me tell you how I know your boyfriend Jesse”
“But both of you have never let on that you know each other, he never told me anything.” Martha said.
“Let me start at the beginning, Jesse was my roommate’s fiancé back in the university”
“Are you sure you don’t mean boyfriend” Martha cut in.
“Not at all, he proposed and she wore a huge ring until we graduated.”
What happened next? I mean he’s obviously not engaged to her at the moment.”
“She caught him cheating on her with her cousin”
“Jehovah!” Martha screamed.
“Yes o! Well he also used to be one of my late boyfriend’s best friends so I have a soft spot for the mudafucker”
Martha’s mouth suddenly felt too dry to form any words so she just stared at Patricia’s face and it saddened her just how little she knew about her colleague and how she’d frozen her out just because she’d been intimidated by her beauty and of course the big boobs.
“Martha your phone dey ring o”
She stifled a hiss when she saw the name on the display and debated with herself for five seconds about answering the call.
“Peter if you’re calling to beg for your friend, don’t waste your breath”.
“No dear, I just want you to have dinner with me this evening” Peter’s eager voice crackled in the room.
“Will Jesse be there?”
“Not at all, just you and I in that Chinese place you always talk about.”
“The same one that Jesse has refused to take me to” She said with a smile and he chuckled in reply.
They arranged to have dinner at 7:30 and they were both smiling when they ended the call. Patricia’s stern face brought her back to reality and Jesse.
“Jesse will kill you both” she said with narrowed eyes.
“I don’t care, I want to live a little and use condoms with someone else.” Martha replied coolly and sauntered out of the office as she mentally raided her wardrobe for an appropriate outfit