Adaeze paced as she waited for Edmund to come back from his outing. This was their third day as husband and wife, and they were yet to consummate their marriage.
Their wedding night had been spent with Edmund getting himself more and more drunk, and Adaeze crying her eyes out. Edmund had drunk increasingly from the wedding, alcoholic drinks which Adaeze was yet to discover how it appeared in the wedding, since they had both agreed that alcohol would not be served at their wedding.
After they arrived in their hotel suite, Edmund had taken to shouting at her, and going on and on about her public disrespect of leaving him alone on the dance floor, and had warned her not to try it again as she was now his wife.
After shouting to his satisfaction, and seeing her in tears, he fell on the bed, and began snoring almost immediately, leaving Adaeze wondering if she was having a bad dream, as she couldn’t understand the sudden change in Edmund.
He had changed, overnight, from the man who loved her and treated her with tenderness and kindness, to the man who seemed to find her disgusting and never overlooked an opportunity to let her know. She wondered if her mother’s words were coming to pass so soon. She would have loved it to come a little later instead.
Adaeze had slept on the couch on her wedding night, and the night after.
Today was the third night, and she was hoping Edmund wouldn’t be drunk as he had been the past two nights. They needed to consummate their marriage.
The knock on the door made Adaeze to cease the wringing of her hands while she walked to open it. She was already tired of the hotel accommodation as the honeymoon had gone sour before it even began, but the knowledge of the amount Edmund paid for the reservation made her keep her tiredness to herself.
“Welcome,” she said tentatively, as Edmund stepped into the suite, expecting to get another whiff of alcohol on his breath, but instead she smelt a lovely perfume, and was surprised to see a smile on her husband’s face, when he turned to face her after closing the door.
Adaeze was trying to decide whether or not to return the smile when he spoke.
“I’m sorry that I have been a jerk,” he apologized, shocking Adaeze. “I was only stressed and worried about work.”
Before she could ask him what he meant, he brought his hands from behind his back and presented a box of chocolates and bottle of perfume, which explained the lovely fragrance he came with into the room.
Adaeze released part of her pent up anxiety and felt heart glow with relief, but immediately went cold again when a voice whispered to her that he might be bribing her for forgiveness.
Not accepting the gifts, she looked at him, “what did you mean by being stressed about work?”
“It’s nothing,” he said. “Are you rejecting my gifts for you?” he sounded like he didn’t believe it, and his smile disappeard. Adaeze, afraid that he might get angry, took the gifts and her heart sank further at the realization that she was becoming afraid of her husband of three days.
“We will be leaving here early tomorrow morning, and so we should go to bed early,” Edmund said as he pulled her to sit with him on the couch.
“I’m truly sorry, especially for the fact that we are yet to consummate our marriage,” he said just before he kissed her.
Adaeze felt like pulling away, as she was not in the mood. She was not happy and wanted to be as far away as possible from Edmund, but reminding herself that she was yet to consummate her marriage, she forced herself to relax.
Just when she was getting into the lovemaking, and she expected him to lead her to the bedroom, he pulled away. “It’s not working,” he muttered under his breath.
“Wha – what is the matter?” Adaeze asked, confused. “What is not working?”
From the glare he sent her way, Adaeze realized that he hadn’t intended to speak outloud.
“I have to get out of here,” Edmund said, scrambling off the couch.
“Edmund, you can’t leave!” Adaeze shouted and got off the couch too, causing Edmund to raise an eyebrow.
She was frustrated that he stopped their lovemaking before they even started, and she was also afraid that he was going out to drink again, while a part of her mind observed that he didn’t appear aroused, despite all the kisses they shared. Breathing deeply, she continued, “We are yet to become a couple completely. We can talk about what is ailing and troubling you.”
Giving off a bark of laughter, Edmund jeered at her. “Talk? You really think this is one of those things your silly talks of bonding can repair?” his words shocked her into silence, but he was not done. “You better wake up and stop all your silliness. This is marriage and not courtship.”
Walking to the door, he turned to her just before he opened the door. “You are the Christian, I am not. Pray to your god, maybe he can help us, if not, we will live with our lot. Pack your things, we leave in the morning, immediately I come back.” He banged the door for added effect.
Too stunned and confused to cry, Adaeze sat back on the couch, afraid her legs were too weak to hold her up. She wished this was a dream, and that she would wake up to the man who had proposed to her at the beach, to the man who had appeared to be an answer to her prayer.
She was scared that her married life was going to be hell. This was only three days into her marriage and she was sure she made a mistake.
“O God help me!” she gasped and realized immediately that she didn’t even know what she prayed about, but she knew deep down in her heart that she would be praying a lot of such prayers. What scared her more was the fear that she might not get God’s listening ear, as she had refused her mother’s counsel.
“No!” she exclaimed getting up from the couch. “It is too early for me to give up on my marriage. I will pray myself and Edmund out of this tragedy, and even if –” Adaeze could not say the words; it was what she feared most. It would be a disaster if it was true, but all the pieces fit.
Bracing herself, she knelt down and began again. “It is too early to give up on my marriage. I will pray myself and Edmund out of this tragedy, and … and even if …” drawing in deep breaths she changed the sentence. “… Even if he is not able to perform, we will overcome. There is nothing my God cannot do.”
She didn’t believe her words.
Adaeze feared that Edmund was impotent, and what she feared most was that he knew and had kept it from her.
She wondered what else he had hidden from her.
She was about to find out.
The story continues…
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