Earlier today, I found out that Cheryl and Mishael broke up. I was having lunch with Janine when she told me. “What happened?” I asked.
“Mishael broke up with her.”
“He’s seeing another woman.”
“Did he say who it was?”
Janine shook her head. “No. All he said was that he met someone and he was seeing her. Cheryl was devastated. She was crazy about him. Everyone thought that they would get married but that’s not going to happen now. I feel really bad for her. She’s a total mess. I’ve never seen her cry so much.”
“I’m so sorry.” I truly was. The last thing I wanted was to hurt Cheryl.
“I’m furious with Mishael. How could he do this to her?”
“I’m-I’m sure he didn’t mean to.”
“He was seeing Cheryl and this woman at the same time. What kind of a man does that? Why didn’t he have the decency to break up with Cheryl first? I swear if I see him, I will give him a piece of my mind.”
“What about the other woman?”
“I’d like to beat the crap out of her.”
“Why? What good would that do?” I asked, my heart beating fast. Sooner or later, she will find out that the other woman is me. Should I tell her now or wait? Wait for what? Wait for things to cool down.
“It would make me feel better. She’s like those women who sleep with married men, never thinking about how they would feel if they were in the wives’ shoes. How would this woman feel if her man was cheating on her?”
I didn’t answer. What could I say? I lost my appetite and I put my fork down on my plate and wiped my mouth with the napkin before placing it on the table. I was anxious to leave. I couldn’t stand to be around Janine anymore. I guess I was afraid that she would figure out that it was me–I was the one who had wrecked her sister’s love life.
“What’s the matter?” she asked me.
“I just remembered. I have somewhere to be.” I signaled for the bill. As soon as it was paid, I got to my feet.
“Do you need a ride?” Janine asked as we left the restaurant.
“No, thanks. I’ll call you.” I hugged her and then, I walked away.
On the ride home, I thought about what Janine said. She was livid. I knew that when she found out that it was I the guilty party, our friendship was as good as over. She would probably cuss me out and call me Judas. In a sense, I had betrayed her. All the time I was hanging out with her, never once did she suspect that I was sleeping with Mishael. It wouldn’t matter to her if I told her that we didn’t mean to hurt anyone. We just couldn’t deny our feelings for each other. She would tell that there was a line you never crossed–you didn’t get involved with your best friend’s man or you best friend’s sister’s man. Only a gutter snipe would do that. I guess I was a gutter snipe. I had sunk low.
It was not use beating myself up about this. It happened. And the worst was yet to come. I made up my mind that tomorrow, I was going to call Janine and tell her. I couldn’t do it face to face. I didn’t have the courage.
I texted Mishael and told him that I had heard about the breakup. He replied saying that he was on his way to see me. I told him that I would be there in about twenty minutes or so.
I took the subway straight home. I was walking briskly down the street to my place when I saw a car. I recognized it. I stopped and the door opened and I saw Mishael. My heart began to pound and then, I walked towards him.
I wondered if he was here to tell me about the break-up. What would happen now? Would he and I be officially in a relationship? Will we stop sneaking around and make our relationship public? Or was he here to tell me that he has decided that he wants to cool things between us for a while?
Fear gripped me as I walked towards him. I couldn’t bear the thought of losing him and it hit me how poor Cheryl must have felt when he told her that it was over between them. I would have been devastated if I were in her place.
What would I have done if it were me? Would I have made a complete fool of myself? Would I thrown pride to the wind and begged him not to leave me? Would I have lost it and thrown things at him or scratched his face in a fit of rage and unbearable pain? Or would I have tried to harm myself? I don’t believe I would have done any of those things but I would have been an emotional wreck.
He looked so gorgeous in the suit and no tie. I was crazy in love with him. Did he feel the same way about me or was it just a sexual thing? What was I going to do if he didn’t want to see me anymore? I smiled, trying to hide the anxiety I was experiencing. “Hey, Gorgeous,” I said as I got closer.
He got out of the car and came towards me. “Hey, Baby,” he said in that sexy voice of his which drove me crazy and took me in his arms. His greeting and the way he was looking at me made me realize that I had nothing to worry about. He was still into me.