“Hello, Ruth? It’s Mrs. Horton.”
“Hello, Mrs. Horton. How are you?” Ruth really wasn’t in the mood to talk to anyone but she didn’t want to be rude.
“I’m fine, Dear. Fine. Just got back from visiting my sister, Ann in Glasgow. We haven’t seen each other in a while so it was a nice treat when she invited me to spend two weeks with her and Grayson. Their kids are married and have children of their own. It was wonderful seeing everyone. I wish I could have stayed longer but I couldn’t. Mr. Horton couldn’t do without me for longer than two weeks. How are Chelsey and that nice husband of yours?
“Chelsey is fine. She’s back to school. As I mentioned the last time you and I spoke, it’s her last year.”
“Yes, you did mention that. Has she decided as yet which university she wants to go to?”
“Yes. I had mentioned that she has decided on Oxford.”
“Oh, yes, you did mention that too. I guess I forgot. Well, Oxford’s a great university. My son attended there and he loved it.”
Ruth wanted to say that she had mentioned that too but held her tongue. “I’m sure Chelsey will love it too. Most of her friends will be going there too.”
“That’s nice. It will help her to adjust very quickly. If you don’t mind me asking, is she dating? She’s such a pretty girl.”
“No, she isn’t dating.”
“I suppose she hasn’t met a boy she’s interested in dating as yet.”
“I suppose not.”
“And how is your dear husband?”
“He’s fine. He’s gone to New York on business and will be back on Friday.”
“He’s such a fine man. You’re very lucky.”
“Yes, I am,” Ruth said although, she didn’t feel lucky at all. She felt trapped in a marriage to a man she didn’t love and could never love.
“Oh, I ran into an old friend this morning and she mentioned Dushan, you know the young man I ran into outside the restaurant where you and were going to have lunch? The one whose mother and I were RN nurses at the same hospital?”
Ruth’s heart was racing. What was Mrs. Horton going to tell her about Dushan? “Yes, I remember,” she replied, trying not to sound impatient. “What about him?”
“He got married again. This time, to his Nigerian girlfriend.”
Ruth’s face turned white. “They got married?” she asked.
“Yes. It was an interfaith wedding. I had no idea that he and his family were Jewish. Anyway, he and his girlfriend got married yesterday and now they’re on their honeymoon. My friend mentioned the destination but I can’t remember the name. I think it’s somewhere in Africa.”
Ruth was shaking all over. “Mrs. Horton, I have to go,” she managed to say. “Someone’s at the door.”
“All right, Dear. We’ll chat again soon. Goodbye.”
Ruth hung up the phone. For several minutes, she stood there in shock. Dushan was married again. He had married that woman she had seen him with and now they were on their honeymoon. She didn’t think or rather, she had hoped that he would have gone through with it, but he had. How could he do it? How could he marry her?
Ruth gripped her hair and screamed at the top of her lungs. She wanted to break everything in sight to unleash the anger and pain that were eating her up inside. Love, jealousy and hate churned inside her. If Dushan were there right now, she would throw things at him, scream at him and hit him as hard as she could. And as for that whore of his, she would scratch her eyes out and then, run her over with her car until she was a stain in the street.
She hated Chioma because she knew things about Dushan that she didn’t even know although she knew him much longer. Why didn’t he ever tell her that he was a Jew? Did he think that it would make a difference to her? It wouldn’t have any more than the tattoo on his arm. If he had married her instead of that woman, she would have converted to Judaism just for him. She would have done anything for him. Anything. And now, any chance she had to win him back was gone. Gone.
Her legs gave way and she collapsed on the floor. Burying her face in her hands, she sobbed heavily.