The last thing he felt like doing was wearing someone else’s skin today. He stared at the face looking at him in the mirror. It was an image he had seen every morning before he went off to work. But today, his eyes lingered over each feature. Wide eyebrows, deep brown eyes that were framed by unusually long lashes, cheekbones that were so high his cheeks hollowed out noticeably. His mouth was full with lips that thrust forward in a natural boyish pout and his skin; it was a blemish free, a smooth dark complexion that shone with health. He was perfect; on the outside.
With a determined glint in his eyes, he swung away from the mirror and walked into his private study and locked the door after him. His sleek apple desktop waited for him on the polished mahogany table, its blueish light casting an eerie shadow around the dark room. He glanced at his watch. It was almost time. He sat down in front of the computer and with one click he signed in on skype.
Her face came into focus quickly, fair and beautiful as always. Her bare pinkish lips were the first thing his eyes settled on. Her light brown eyes crinkled with a smile when she saw him.
“Hi”, she said.
He stared at her, hard and unyielding.
“I need to tell you something”, he finally replied.
Her face crumpled in concern as her eyes searched his features.
“What is it?” she asked, pushing her chair a little nearer to her webcam as if her eyes could read his mind that way.
“You asked how I cope right? Last week? You’ve been away for nearly ten months and you know I’ve never cheated on you.”
Her eyes were wide with trepidation.
“Yes”, she whispered, I know you haven’t.”
“I love you,” he said simply, but I have the urge sometimes.”
She was still, almost statue like except for the slight flare of her nostrils.
“I’m going to show you how I cope,” he said.
He pushed the chair back and stood up. She gasped. He was naked from the waist down. He grabbed a picture frame from the desk and turned it towards her. It was a picture of her he had taken on their honeymoon. Her head was thrown back, hair wild in the wind, eyes alive and body nearly bare in the skimpy bikini she wore. He grabbed himself.
She was shaking her head from side to side.
“Nooooo,” she moaned painfully.
“Look at me!” he yelled and then he started stroking himself.
She watched him, hand covering her mouth, tears streaming down her face as he masturbated in a sort of mad frenzy. By the time he came, she was quiet, a numb look to her face.
He panted, hand grabbing the table as he steadied himself.
He pushed his face into his webcam.
“That’s how I cope Lily Beth. That’s how I’ve coped since you decided that serving God means starving me of sex. “Look at that picture! He commanded.
“I want that woman back! I want my wife back! Your course in evangelism, it’s not what I signed up for when I married you, I love you, but you’re killing us!”
She was rocking back and forth in her chair.
“Nkem, you have committed a sin, a sin! Quickly, ask God to forgive you…Please…ask him…”
He stood there stunned.
“That’s all you have to say? Lily, we’ve been married for six years; I’ve waited for four years for you to come back to me and that’s all you have to say?
She was weeping. Her bald head shone with a hideous beauty that fascinated and repelled him at the same time.
“God forgive him,” she was muttering under her breath. “Forgive him, I beg you on his behalf.
He watched her. And a part of him died. He stared down at his shrivelled manhood and wondered about her, his ex-girlfriend. She had suddenly called him last week and asked to see him. He had blown her off. Now he found himself struggling to remember if he had saved her number.
He looked back at the screen where his wife was still muttering prayers and sighed.
“I hope your god makes you happy. The one I serve over here wouldn’t break up a marriage.”
He signed off with one click and shut the system down, leaving the room in quiet darkness.
Written by Estrella Gada She blogs here