Read Chapter 31 here.
Twelve days later, Daphne was discharged from the hospital. Her parents and sister were all present but only Delphine followed her and Kobby home. She helped put her to bed and then headed to the kitchen to cook some rice and warmed some light soup she had brought with her. “I brought some of mother’s magic soup,” Del said as she entered with a tray. Daphne smiled. Del put the tray down and helped her sit up.
“Since I know you’ll eat better when you’re fed, I think I’ll feed you or should I call your husband?” Daphne shook her head.
“Okay. Let’s pray.” Daph closed her eyes as Del prayed over the food and started feeding her sister.
“So have you purchased the car yet?” Daph asked. Del shook her head as she fed her.
“I figured I started this process with you so it is only right that we do this together. I think I’ve seen another…” Daphne groaned.
“Make up your mind already!” Delphine laughed. When Daphne said she couldn’t eat anymore, Delphine ate the rest.
“Del?” She waited for her sister to look up at her. “Do you think Kobby really loves me?” Del dropped the spoon onto the plate.
“I do…why do you ask?” Daphne began playing with her fingers. Delphine touched her chin and forced it up so they were staring at each other.
“Is something wrong? Is there something you’re not telling me?”
“I know Kobby loves me…but I think he loves someone else more.”
“Who?” Daphne only stared at her. Del leaned back, blinking hard.
“No.” Daphne nodded.
“And I don’t particularly blame him. I caused this so it’s only natural that I face the consequences of my actions.” “Don’t talk like that, sis. You did nothing.”
“Do you…have feelings…?”
“No!” Del said a little too loudly. “I have Robert and he’s amazing. I won’t trade him for another man, talk of my sister’s husband.”
“Before Robert…did you…?”
“Daphne, no. I’d never do that, you have to believe me.” The door opened and Kobby entered. Del got up with the tray. “I’ll leave you two,” she said and left the room.
Kobby entered the kitchen where Del was wiping the dishes dry.
“She’s taking a nap.” She nodded. “Thank you for coming over to take care of her.”
“Don’t mention it. I’ll do anything for my sister.” He smiled. She looked away.
“Why are you avoiding my gaze?” “I’m not.”
“Did I do something wrong?” Del sighed.
“I shouldn’t be your concern right now, Kobby. Your wife is beginning to doubt your love for her so that question should be targeted at my sister not me.”
“What, Daphne said that?”
“Are you surprised? I don’t know what’s going on between you and I want no part in part so it hurts me to know my sister feels I’m a threat to your marriage…”
“Let me finish. I understand that you sometimes get confused with what you feel for Daphne and what you think you feel for me. And I must apologize for my part in it. But I want to assure you that, you made no mistake marrying Daphne. She was the one for you from the very beginning. She was the one you met first, not me. I don’t know if you sometimes imagine how life would be if it was I who exchanged vows with you but it wouldn’t be any different.” Kobby sighed and pocketed his hands. “I doubt that.”
“You see, growing up, Daphne made me play her a lot so I know how to be Daphne but unfortunately, she can’t play me for long because she never really learned how to be me. So even if I posed as her to be with you, you’ll never get to be with the real me. I can be Daphne to you for as long as it takes for you to believe it but that wouldn’t mean I am Daphne.” Delphine paused for the words to sink in but she wondered if he actually heard what she said.
“I don’t know if you’ve ever fantasized about me but in case you’re about to, I’ll advise you not to waste your time. Physically, we are the same.” Kobby gave her a once over from the bottom up. Delphine chuckled and threw the napkin at him.
“I’m serious, Kobby. I…I don’t want to put myself in the equation. I want you…no, I need you to love my sister not for me but for yourself. Because Daphne has a big heart and if you make her feel she’s worth your love, she’ll make your life beautiful. Take it from me.” He nodded and stared at his feet for a few seconds. He walked to her still staring down. He looked up at her when he was standing right in front of her. She shivered slightly when she felt his breath on her face. “I hear you, Del. I do love your sister and I intend to prove it to her till all her doubts are cleared up.”
“Good to hear. Okay, I’ll go say my goodbyes and leave you two.” She made an attempt to move but he stayed his ground.
“Kobby?” He smiled and moved back. She touched his shoulder. “See you soon, brother-in-law.” He pulled her in for a hug. She almost flinched at the feel of his stubble on her cheek. She walked out of the kitchen.
She knocked on the door and opened it. Daphne was sleeping. She walked over to her and kissed her forehead. “Get well soon, Daph.” Daphne grabbed her hand before she could pull herself away.
“Did I wake you? Sorry.”
“Are you leaving?”
“Yeah. Why don’t you get some rest, okay? I’ll Facetime you later, alright?” Daphne nodded. Del kissed her forehead again. Daphne fell asleep before Del left the room.
Daphne chewed her lower lip in thought whiles watching the Tales show on GhOne TV. She knew it probably wouldn’t end well but the conversation must be had. She sat up when the bathroom door opened and Kobby came out in a towel wrapped around his waist. She didn’t realize she was staring at him until she saw him smile at her. She looked away. He walked towards her and planted a kiss on top of her head.
“We can still have the shower together if you’re up for it,” he whispered. She pushed him away. “We need to talk.” The tone of her voice made him to look at her. He sat beside her. She inhaled deeply.
“We are going to have this conversation just this once so I advise that you take your time to answer what I’m going to ask you.”
“Do you want a divorce?” The words hit him with shock. “What?”
“I’m not repeating myself either. This is very difficult for me so please let’s talk about this and shelf it as quickly as possible.”
“Why would you think I’d want that? Why are we even talking about this?” “Because though I know you love me…I also know you love someone else even more.”
“Even if that were to be true…,” “Wow…you’re not even making the effort to deny it.”
Kobby ignored the remark. “…it’s you I made my vows to,” he said, taking her hand with the wedding band. She took it away.
“If only that were enough.”
“I don’t want to a divorce, Daphne. Not now, not ever.”
“You don’t want a divorce because you don’t want to live without me or because you still want to keep the one you really love close?” Kobby stood up.
“If you’re deliberately trying to provoke me, I’m not going to take the bait, Daphne.”
“Look me in the eye and tell me I’m lying.” “I don’t know where you’re getting these crazy ideas from. Maybe it’s the drugs you’re on; you’re becoming delusional.”
“Uh huh or my eyes just opened wider. I know you wanted me dead.” “What? Why on earth would you think that?”
“Why then would you stop the car so abruptly in the middle of the road? You wanted me out of the way that’s why you had to put some woman in the front seat so I’d have no choice but to sit at the back. You had it all planned, didn’t you?”
“I will never ever harbor such thoughts towards you. That whole incident was unfortunate but I had no such intentions. I’m so sorry for putting you in harm’s way, honey. It will never happen again.”
“I wish I could believe that.”
“If I have to spend the rest of my days proving to you that I truly love you and that I chose you for you, then so be it.” The room was silent except for the heavy breathing of the two.
“I’m tired. I’m going to sleep,” Daphne said, pulling the cover over her body as she laid down. Kobby went back into the bathroom.
“And where do you think you’re going? The doctor recommended total bed rest for the next week,” Kobby said when he entered the room to find Daphne, dressed up and applying lipstick.
“I’m not a grandma and a girl has got to work,” she replied and smacked her lips together and checked out each side of her face to see if her makeup was on point.
“You’re going to work? Why don’t you wait and get your full strength first?” “You’re nagging, Kobby.” He sighed. “Could you at least tell me where you’re going?”
“Out for fresh air.”
“Okay, but please be careful. Come home the minute you feel tired, okay?”
She put her sunglasses down and sucked her cocktail drink through the straw. She took a folded piece of paper from her purse and unfolded it. Her eyes scanned through the list of names. Some of them were checked, others had asterisks.
“Number 5,” she told herself. She was beginning to hate her present life and she had to find a way to spice it up-walking in her sister’s shoes. A man approached her. She smiled as she got up.
“You must be Ken Ashong. Hi, I’m Delphine Coleman, Marketing Executive of Premium Bank,” she said with a smile, offering her hand.
Robert had excused himself to use the bathroom when his phone beeped. Delphine was holding his phone, reading an article Robert had recommended her to check out. It was a WhatsApp message from someone named Babs. “Thanks for the massage yesterday and for the extra touches. We should do this more often.😘” She raised a brow at the blow kiss emoji. The door opened and Delphine looked up. She opened her mouth to say something but found herself lost for words. Robert sat down and put his arm around her. She gave his phone back to him.
“What do you think? It makes a lot of sense, right?” He asked.
“Yep.” She stared at his hands. The hands that caught her attention. How many more have been enchanted by them and who has he been giving extra touches? What did she even mean by that? She shuddered at the thought.