Otieno felt unloved, his loyalty misused. Ken felt that she had used him to disappoint her cheating boyfriend. When Otieno met Judy three years ago, she had small beautiful eyes, and well-rounded breasts, breasts she would never get tired of fondling. She would visit him at his Nairobi University hostel.
Presently, Otieno and Ken were sitting on the rails of the Kasarani flyover. Otieno was dressed in a green Gor Mahia Jersey, green shorts and blue slippers. His face was contorted with anger, and his spit disintegrated into invisible drops as it hit the Thika Highway below.
“Ken or whatever you are called, I cancelled my date with my girlfriend to come and see,” Otieno said.
“Yes, I called you. I don’t know how you will believe your girlfriend cheats on you.”
Otieno controlled himself from punching Ken in the face when he saw people coming from the other side of the footpath. Otieno knew that Judy could not cheat him. Not when she was four weeks pregnant with his baby. He loved her, and had decided to impregnate her so that she can never walk out of him because he wanted to marry her.
“Let’s talk man-to-man. I met your girlfriend a fortnight ago and we touched,” Ken said. Dipping his hand into his jeans’ hind pocket, he retrieved a PK chewing gum, split its paper open and tossed two pieces into his open mouth. He offered Otieno the remaining two pieces.
Otieno shoved the two pieces into his pocket.
“Then?” Otieno prodded.
“We met twice at the National Museum and we had good time.”
Ken was being honest with Otieno. He wanted to see how they could help each other. He was already hurt and was willing to do anything to revenge for being misused by Judy. He had been serious with her.
Otieno felt unloved. He loved her. He could not look the other side when he came across with her Carol, the friend of his girlfriend. He believed in having as many girlfriends as possible. He could not understand why Judy thought he could be totally faithful to her. Soon, he relaxed and they went on chatting with Ken. He left it for destiny to decide whether he could leave to marry Judy.
Done, they descended down the footpath. Otieno walked towards USIU Road, Ken entered into Safari Park Hotel.
The Kenya National Museum is like vast a cleared bush, in which houses are built and cultural stuff installed all around. Ken, dressed in a black pair of pipe trousers that cover her loafaer shoes’ bottom, is seated on the museum’s wooden seats, below the snake park.
Relaxed on his lap, Judy pointed at the wooden sculptures miles away, and giggled. They were sculptures of young boys, young naked men with wooden penises hanging off their scrotums.
“Judy, I love you so much.”
“I also love you. When I saw you, I felt an instant connection.”
Judy’s lips covered Ken’s in a warm kiss. He slipped his hands behind her back; she sat straddled against his scrotum. When he caressed her breasts, she gave a slow mourn. A jogging woman passed by the small path below and they instantly pulled away.
They loved each other. Judy loved Ken partially. She had encountered a lot of cheating from her boyfriend. She wanted to forget him completely, and move in with Ken. A part of her felt she was forcing herself on Ken. He was a handsome boy, a boy who was in his final year at Kenyatta University. A caring boy who was kind enough to buy take-away chicken at Omega Restaurant, before they left town to the Museum. Ken went up to The Museum Hotel, and came back holding two milk sachets. Handing one to Judy, they began sipping it.
“Listen, Judy. I love you so much and I do not want to lose you. We only met last week and I feel like we have been together for three years.”
“Yes, three years is enough time for lovers even to marry.”
“I even love your brains. May God guide us to get married to each other one day,” he said and stood up and hugged her tight.
Judy alighted from a number 29 Manmo Sacco matatu. The Mathare Area Four was busy with buses struggling to turn around in the small corner. Judy has to walk near Wa Mkoko Supermarket, where she took the path leading to her aunt’s place, whom she stayed with.
She met with Carol, her friend, at their plot’s entrance. Carol was surprised to see her friend happy.
“J, you have been so worried about your guy’s cheating,” Carol said, and embraced Judy.
“Happiness is necessary in life. I met my heart’s match.”
The smile on Carol’s face went dark. She couldn’t understand her friend’s shallow mind. She knew that Judy was already pregnant with Otieno’s pregnancy, and she thought she would not lie to him.
“Judy, you are lying to yourself. Remember you are carrying your guy’s baby.”
“So what?” She had been crying from the inside. She began despising Otieno, who had previously approached Carol.
“I can’t do that. Yes, your guy wanted me. But I value our friendship and that is why I declined.”
“Mmh, I see. Otieno is the only guy I have ever loved so much. He is the only man who shagged me.”
“If I wanted him I couldn’t have told you what he was trying to do.”
“He is just an animal. Ever since I learnt not to trust him, I had been crying from the inside.”
Carol took the opportunity to strike.
“Now, tell me about your new catch.”
Judy smiled. Now, they were seated on a form outside a shop in their plot’s ground floor, sipping at soda. Judy’s Krest was half full, and she kept tilting it a she talked.
Placing her Fanta Orange on the ground, Judy giggled like a shy school girl.
“He is called Ken. He told me that he is not a chiq’s guy.”
“He is gay?”
“No. He told me that he hated women when his friend Jack hanged himself over being cheated on by his girlfriend.”
Carol gave his friend a knowing look. Then her face went serious.
“Are you sure you are not using this innocent boy?”
“No. He is in love. Yes, I feel like I’m forcing myself on him.”
“Certainly. Because you want to console yourself over your cheating boyfriend.”
Carol felt her friend’s words hit her hard. She knew that had she met Ken earlier, before his boyfriend had shagged her without a condom on that New Year Eve, maybe things could have been different.
“Caroh, this is my way of finding happiness, perhaps.”
A sunny Sunday afternoon, Ken picked Judy from the stage, near Baba Dogo Catholic Church. At the house, Ken cooked ugali and beef stew. Judy was overjoyed; Ken was caring and knew exactly what she wanted. He was not rich but he tried to make her happy.
They took a walk in the evening when the rays of the sun were comfortable with the body. Kasarani stadium from the hind part looked like a huge movie theatre. A huge movie theatre with vast grounds slipping into it. Ken and Judy walked westwards, bypassing Ngomongo Police Station.
They sat on a low rock and the sun was gradually getting enveloped by darkness. Judy turned her mouth away when Ken tried to reach out for a kiss. He was shocked. He had never seen his girlfriend behave in such a way.
“.Swiry, ninimbaya?” he asked. She only kept looking at the distance.
“Something is the matter with you.”
She turned slowly to face him. She gazed at him for a long minute; words dry in her throat.
“I’m pregnant,” she said. Ken shuddered, as if he had been electrocuted. He could not believe what she had said. He knew that he had never shagged her. He knew the pregnancy could not be by the Holy Spirit. He barely went to church.
He heaved deeply.
“Who is the father?”
“My boyfriend. We have been together since I was in Form Three,” Her voice was calm. Then she began to sob.
Ken knew he wouldn’t have anything else to do with her.
“I love you despite that,” he said, surprised for contradicting himself.
“Can you take care of a baby that is not yours?” she asked.
He knew he couldn’t, but something in him convinced him he loved Judy enough. A sudden realization hit him. Maybe Judy was just using him to achieve her plans.
“Is your boyfriend faithful to you?”
“No, you are not like him. He tried to approach my best friend….”
“Meaning he has other clandestine affairs, if he can approach your friend.”
“Yes. But I now love you.”
It was now around eight pm. A security guard from the nearby flat approached and told them to go if they did not want to be arrested.
Ken never called Judy again. He ignored her calls. He had picked her boyfriend’s number from her phone when they had been at his place. Judy knew that being pregnant by her boyfriend did not mean she would marry him. She liked Ken more than Otieno, and sometimes found herself dreaming of him. But he was no longer there for her; she was convinced men are always wary of responsibilities, especially raising other women’s children.
Ken worked at Baba Dogo Primary School, and could maybe provide for a baby, his girlfriend’s baby. But things here were against Judy. His unfaithful boyfriend was an unpaid intern.
Judy knew that her boyfriend may easily get himself another girlfriend. He was handsome, this Otieno. He had a head which looked as if naturally designed to be worn by a New York cap, a huge chest packed with muscles due to doing the gym, teeth with gold studs at the top.
When she had tested positive for the pregnancy, her boyfriend embraced her. She was happy he accepted responsibility. But he had changed over the last few days. She had wanted to marry him one day, until she learned of his bad ways. Until she met with Ken, she had decided that Otieno would be a good father. But she knew she wanted Ken’s shoulder to cry on, when she recalled her unfaithful guy.
Ngila’s Short Bio
Peter Ngila is an aspiring writer and a trained journalist, currently a correspondent with The Star Newspaper. Peter’s short fiction has appeared on Jalada Africa (Kenya), Praxis Magazine (Nigeria), Lawino Magazine (Uganda), Prachya Review (Bangladesh), Daily News (a Tanzanian Newspaper), among others. Ngila has attended the Writivism Creative Writing Workshops in Nairobi (2014) and Dar (2015), participated in the Writivism Mentoring Process (2014 and 2015) and attended the ultimate 2015 Writivism Festival in Kampala. He has a novella manuscript, and is currently working on a new project. Peter believes stories should be told freshly.