- The Storried Platform
‘THE BROODING EX’ – By Dean O. Arutughor
I caught sight of my fiancée’s ex-husband on the other side of Coldharbour Lane before he spotted me. Despite myself, I felt my heart pounding furiously and the muscles in my arms and legs tensing voluntarily. Instinctively, I took a couple of steps back and clenched my fists in readiness because I knew if I had caught some reprobate in my matrimonial bed like he had caught Tracey and me, then I would definitely be squaring up for a fight too. No, scrap that. I would have been looking for the nearest rope and a shovel. End of.
But something about Andy ruffled me. His reaction on the day he returned from work early and walked in on me doing his wife was unmanly! Even unnatural. He was almost apologetic as he backed out of that bedroom, kowtowing like some snivelling cuckold. I mean, what kind of a man apologises for disturbing his wife’s extra-marital affair? And you could have knocked me over with a feather when I hurriedly got dressed and tiptoed downstairs to make my getaway. I had to do a double take when I saw the poor excuse for a man sitting in his armchair and calmly reading his newspaper. What the…
Five months later when I got his text to meet him at the junction of Electric Avenue and Coldharbour Lane and not tell Tracey, my gut feeling was to ignore it but my pride got the better of me. I had to show my face. I had to. Besides, that was the least I owed the man after I helped myself to his wife. It was the ‘honourable’ thing to do under the circumstances.
Andy saw me and waved to get my attention even though he could clearly see I was glaring straight at him. Ugh, I can see why Tracey left this loser. As he crossed the street I observed his right hand tucked tightly into his jacket pocket. Automatically, I thrust my hand into my trouser pocket. For a fleeting moment, the cold feel of my penknife was reassuring until I visualised a gun in his pocket? I took another step back and looked around for an escape route if he was packing and tried to put a cap in my covetous backside.
I tried to play it cool but the words that came rushing out of my nervous lips were:
‘What? What? You’ve got to let this go, man. I don’t want to fight you bro but if you are going to throw it down like this then be ready for whatever is coming your way. On your head be it. Remember, it’s not my fault Tracey came running to me. If you couldn’t please her in bed then that’s not my problem.’
A few enquiring and expectant eyes fixed their gazes on us.
Andy came to a halt about a couple of feet before me. We stood there, eyeball to eyeball, for what seemed like an eternity.
‘Never mind’ Andy said eventually, with what sounded like a hint of regret in his voice. With that, he turned on his heels and returned to whence he came. He paused when he got to the other side and without looking around said: ‘Good luck, mate. You are going to need it!’ He then made a show of ripping up and chucking the confetti of the brown envelope he had been carrying in his jacket pocket into a rubbish bin.
It wasn’t until eight months after our big wedding that I discovered the envelope had contained a copy of the psychiatric report on Tracey in which she was diagnosed with SzPD- Schizoid Personality Disorder in particular covert schizoid and schizoid hunger. This sometimes led to Tracey having multiple affairs and one night stands behind my back and in our matrimonial bed as her way of dealing with her fear of intimacy to one person in a relationship. Whenever I caught her and confronted her she would pull a knife on me and threaten to not only kill me but herself and her two children from Andy.
By Dean O. Arutughor
I caught sight of my fiancée’s ex-husband on the other side of Coldharbour Lane before he spotted me. Despite myself, I felt my heart pounding furiously and the muscles in my arms and legs tensing voluntarily. Instinctively, I took a couple of steps back and clenched my fists in readiness because I knew if I had caught some reprobate