You see, 2020 has been like that girl you had been dying to make love to, but when you finally did, the whole thing was not as thrilling as you thought it would be. It was bland, tasteless. It dawned on you that you were too choked with expectation.
Her hands did not grab your torso and pull you into her as you ploughed her. Her skin was not as warm as you had imagined it would be. It was like a sharp ghast of cold. It felt as if you were in bed with a machete that had stayed outside all night. She did not wrap her lanky legs around your waist when you thrust in and out of her, huffing. She did not scratch your back with her acrylic nails and urged you to devour her. You wished your juices could explode fast so that you could roll over to the other side of the bed, cut your losses and run for the hills in the dead of night. But you could not. You were stuck with her. When you dumped 2019 on the 31st of December, snatched the engagement ring you had bought her, and shoved her into a dark abyss, you had signed up for what was coming your way. When you went on your knees at 11: 59 p.m., a tiny burgundy case in hand and begged 2020 to be yours, you signed up for this- a twelve-month contract.
Oh, how bewitching she looked when you first laid your eyes on her that night. The fullness of her cheeks and the ivory of her teeth. How her collarbones jutted out sharply. How enchanting she looked in that lilac dress. She reminded you of a book you had read earlier. A book about a woman that was so fine that she could only be compared to a stone that lay beneath a gushing spring, rubbed smooth by years and years of sparkling water, and looking at her was similar to finding that stone, knowing that there were so few like it.
Like any couple, you had plans. A house on the hill with an expansive backyard, a doorbell, and a swimming pool. And you thought to yourself, “of what essence would a backyard be without a pet?” So you asked her whether she would like a green-eyed cat or a hairy dog, and she said any could do. You decided you would get a dog. And then she said she wanted kids: twins, to be precise-a boy and a girl. You joked about how you would name them Beau and Tiful so that the teachers at Kindergarten would refer to them as the Beautiful twins. And you laughed heartily at the thought of it.
And then people started talking. A relative from overseas called you and asked if the missus was around. And when you said “No,” he started ranting something almost incomprehensible about your woman. That she was bewitched. That bad luck followed her more than her shadow did. That she will bring a deadly flu that would change the status quo. The flu that would take lives. Agitated, you hung up and cursed at the person on the other side of the line. How dare he? Could a person not marry and live in peace? A bunch of jealous nincompoops, you thought to yourself.
Then one day, a gloomy Sunday afternoon, you were seated in the living room munching on groundnuts and scrolling through your phone when you heard somebody mention your woman’s name. Startled, you sat up and cocked your head towards the direction that the voice came from. A narrow-faced woman with a pointed nose on TV said something about being a reporter from an international broadcasting house and that she had something to say about your woman. With a voice so hoarse that she sounded as if she spoke in whispers, she said that your lady was being probed for aiding and abating murder. That while she was overseas, she had brought with her the flu that had claimed scores of lives. What a lazy bunch of journalists, you thought to yourself. How could a person come on to live TV to spread propaganda? For What? Cheap publicity? Githeri media! You cursed.
You had been together with her for what? Two months? A whole sixty days. Is that not enough time to know if she is a serial killer or not? Is that not enough time to know whether she is the angel that she claims to be or the devil’s incarnate? If she were what they were saying she was, then you would surely have been the first to catch the flu.
Sometimes you hate yourself when you think it was the thirst to get in between her legs that blinded you from seeing her for who she truly was.
She created the impression of a conscientious lady when you saw her first—a woman who had her shit figured out. You were amused when she did not give in to your advances like most girls would have. She said that the only ticket to get under her dress was if you could survive the ninety-day rule. And you thought to yourself, another Steve Harvey fan, huh?
She was all you had ever wanted in a woman. But with the neighbors talking in hushed tones and the incessant calls from people overseas, doubt was beginning to creep over you like a dark shadow.
Your fears came to pass on the 12th of March when a government official stood behind a microphone with a furrowed forehead and said that your lover had brought the deadly flu on Kenyan soil. That people had to wash their hands from time to time even when there was no food in sight. That people could no longer behave normally because the flu would treat them abnormally. And your heart sunk.
Of course, you confronted her. How could you not? But she gave you the silent treatment. She stood in front of you, hands akimbo, and tormented you with her eyes. You are not sure what you did to deserve the bombs she hurled at you, but you surely cannot wait to serve her with divorce papers.