Hidden in plain sight – part 1

Warning: Reader discretion is advised – this is a 3-part story of one Emma Mwarogi.

My name is Emma Mwarogi. I am in hell. They’ve put me here even though I have done nothing wrong. I don’t deserve to be here. I don’t belong here. My stepmother’s hatred for me is to blame. She has been telling lies about me and they believe her more than they believe me. I hate it here. I can’t think clearly here. I am suicidal, and at times homicidal because hell is not fun. This morning, however, I got some good news: a TV crew wanted to interview me. My court assigned solicitor says the show producers wanted to hear my side of the story. “About time too!” I exclaimed as I exited the visitors’ room without thanking or saying goodbye to the lawyer.

A few hours late or what felt like an eternity, I was led to a room where the interview would take place. There was a wooden table with a microphone on top, a metal chair bolted to the floor and a swivel chair opposite the bolted chair. A gentleman stood in the corner holding some equipment that I assumed were for recording. A young-looking lady sat on the swivel chair. She stood up as soon as I was led in. The Xena-warrior-princess lookalike female prison officer commanded me to sit on the bolted chair and proceeded to handcuff me to it – it was beyond humiliating.

The lady introduced herself as Janice and her gentleman colleague as Brad. I was certain those were fake names. I didn’t care as long as I got to tell my story. She said the name of the show too fast and too quickly it didn’t register in my mind. I couldn’t be bothered to ask her to repeat herself. The man didn’t speak at all and every time I looked in his general direction, he smiled broadly. He was cute and sexy. I wished he was the one asking the questions, but I was in no position to choose.

The first question Janice fired at me transported me to easier times when Mark and I first met. My Mark, my man. Quite unnecessarily, I swore to tell the truth and nothing but the truth so help me God. The two looked at each and said nothing. Janice cleared her throat and assured me that I was in safe hands and that I should feel free to tell the story to the best of my ability from the beginning to that moment. I knew I needed to tell the truth as it was my ticket out of hell, and above all, I had nothing to hide. As I told Janice the story, I imagined the whole world was listening.

I met Mark Levine officially one Sunday after church. I mean, I knew him, but that Sunday last summer he spoke to me. He said he liked my dress and hair. That day I wore a green/yellow kitenge knee length and quarter sleeved dress. The dress hugged every curve of my body. I have a nice body – a typical African woman body, you know what I mean? Curves in the right places and proportional to my frame and weight. I was elated that he noticed me. I never thought he would. I had seen him many times in church but never thought he saw me… you know like really see me. From then on, I decided to only wear kitenge prints outfits of olive green-lemon-yellow patterns – like I wore that day. I had a smile on me for the rest of that week.

The following Sunday I made extra effort and not only wore a different but similar outfit and makeup, but I held my hair up – I had long fat braids that cascaded on my curvy bottom. When the braids were up, my bum looked curvier than usual and I bet my last penny Mark found that attractive. That day he smiled, winked at me and blew me a kiss. I blew him kisses back. I couldn’t think straight for the rest of that week. I thought only of him: about him: I wondered if he thought of me. I couldn’t wait for Sunday.

The Friday before Sunday, I met him, purely by accident at a café near where I worked. The law of attraction really works. The universe works in mysterious ways and we were meant to be together. He said hello and I said hello. A special silent and intense moment passed between us and he broke it by asking for my phone number. My heart nearly exploded out of its cavity. I trembled as I wrote my number on a piece of napkin and gave it to him. I intentionally didn’t ask for his number, I figured if he never called then I wouldn’t be tempted to embarrass myself by calling him. I wasn’t that desperate – I could get any man I wanted.

Later that evening as I cooked and debated whether to go clubbing or stay in, my phone rang. I answered cautiously as there was no caller ID. To my pleasant surprise, it was Mark. “Hello, Emma. It’s Mark… how are you?” I nearly choked on a grape I had just popped into my mouth. My heart beat increased exponentially with every passing second. Janice, I can’t explain to you in coherent terms the happiness I felt. My bright future flashed right before my eyes – me walking down the aisle dressed in an ivory white satin dress, in hospital having Mark’s babies and living in the countryside in a cottage. I was happy.

The throbbing between my legs caught me unawares as I longed for Mark. He was now my man. He pronounced my name with such elegance and grace. He didn’t call me Ems like everyone else did, which I took as a good sign… you know. He called me Emma. We chatted for about one hour every night after that. We spoke with such ease you’d think we’d been dating for years. He told me about his job as an IT consultant for a big firm in Canary Wharf. This was perfect as it was near the underground station where I worked as a ticket inspector. We talked about church. We talked about our families, well mostly his because I don’t have a family I can really talk of. Janice, everyone knows my stepmother is evil, and my father is the devil’s incarnate who married his mistress days after his wife, my mother died of a mysterious illness.

After chatting for weeks, Mark and I realised we had a lot in common and we were meant to be together. We started dating……..

To be continued…..

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1 Comment

  1. Olivia

    Wow can’t wait for the rest

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