The Bride Who Murdered Her Groom: A Stories Collection

Beautiful and sharp-witted, Sophia Solochi—blamelessly eighteen—understands that she must not ever fall in love. If she does, any peculiar man she has adored will not live what will befall him. In unquestionable words, he will die. Fast. Surely. And frightfully. Why would he perish, you may marvel? Sophia, also true with her female descent, is cursed. Any lad whom she falls for is destined to yield up his ghost in her very own arms and care. When she moves with her mother to Brownton to begin a fresh and unimpaired life, far away from their ancient calamities and sorrows, the worst things imaginable happen to them. Sophia cannot resist falling in love with Alex Ramirez, a strikingly handsome but in-a-short-time to-be Engineering postgraduate at Brownton University. Here, whilst pursuing a Fashion and Designing degree, she furtively repeats the self-same pursuit and engagement that effected insufferable agony and bitterness in her bygone days. Falling in love is extremely perilous, she

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11. Fabulous

“Thank you, Chantal. I appreciate it. I sincerely do.”

 

“You are welcome, my girl.” She stroked and toyed with my hair brusquely as she said the words out. I saw tears flashing and shimmering in her eyes. The way she voiced out the word ‘my girl’ made it sound and seem like I was her genuine and blood daughter.

 

“Do I remind you of someone?”

 

“You do. My little girl, Abigail. She must be your age right now.”

 

“Where is she?”

 

“Lost. Kidnapped. In the middle of I don’t know where. They took away my dearest little girl when she was barely fifteen years of age. The police haven’t found her ever since then.”

 

I felt so heartbroken and unhappy for her. That was quite moving and touching. What must be it like to have your one and only girl you love in the world taken away from you? If I were in her shoes, I would howl and search all over the world without a stop. Too bad, wasn’t it?

 

Twenty minutes later Chantal was not here. I sat alone on my bed, just about to finish the cup of hot chocolate she had given me. Hmnnn. I loved chocolate. It was my fascination even; and my most wanted too.

 

Once through with it, I grabbed my cell and rang up Kris. She was quick to answer the call, an indication that she was in the same way impatient and eager to hear back from me. I closed my eyes all the long while that we talked, imagining her facial features and body language and movement as though she was right close to me all the instance we chatted.

 

“Sophia, I am happy that you called.”

 

“You weren’t calling to update me on how things are with you.”

 

“I know. I’m so full of activity at the moment. There is a lot to do before I get to sleep and it all seems like no advancement and improvement is showing so far. How is it with you there at Alvin’s?”

 

“Fine. It is all fine and alright.”

 

“Is he with you right now?”

 

“No. I am just on my own in my room.”

 

“I can assure you that all will be well very soon. Don’t give up all hope, my dear, you hear me?”

 

“Yes, I do, mommy.”

 

“That’s my girl. How is Alvin treating you so far?”

 

“I have nothing to complain about so far. Absolutely nothing to whine on at all.”

 

“Okay.”

 

“Are you safe and protected? There were you are?”

 

“I am. Please, Sophia, do not fret about me at all. I am safe and sound like you can rightly tell on the phone.”

 

“It is such a good thing. It actually is. By the way are you on your own or with someone else.”

 

“I am by myself.”

 

“Where exactly? I just need to know the place. Is it in Brownton here?”

 

“Kitwe. Though I am leaving the town tomorrow morning.”

 

“You will be switching places like continuous, right?”

 

“I am not telling you the answer to that one.”

 

An hour. That was how long I held my discussion with Kris on the phone. I asked if she was communicating with me with the utility of her cell or what. She was using an earpiece, she made known. A wireless one that could function even with her phone put farther than walking distance away from her. It just had to be in the room that she occurred to be. I furthermore asked what it was that she was in fact doing. Typing particular work documents. They had to be all set and completed by tomorrow, meaning that she would have to sleep very delayed if essential. Oh yes, she probably would.

 

By the time I was off-contact with Kris, I discovered that Alex had been trying to reach me but in vain. He left me a voicemail. “Hi, Sophia. Call me when are you are through with your current call. I am missing you big time. I love you, my dear.”

 

“Alex.”

 

“My sweet angel.”

 

“Sorry. I was talking with my mother. Whenever I am having a conversation with her, we almost seem to forget that everything pleasing and pleasurable has to come to a crystal-clear ending. How are you doing by the way?”

 

“Fine. Aren’t you and your mother staying in the same house or is she away from home?”

 

“We both are not home and we are in very far-away places.”

 

“Where are you right now?”

 

“At a relative’s.”

 

“Will I still be able to see you?”

 

“I am not sure about that now. But I will tell you if things get approving and favorable.”

 

“I will kill first you and I myself lastly if that is the end of the two of us. Why do we have to be away and separated? Why us?”

 

“That is just how life is, Alex. Hostile and green-eyed and bothersome.”

 

“The results for your interview are out already. Have you heard?”

 

“No. You are the first one to enlighten me. I had no idea. Where did you hear that?”

 

“From school itself. They have even stuck the listing of students that were accepted into their diverse syllabuses. And you are one of them, Sophia.”

 

“Really?”

 

“I cross my heart to you.”

 

I jumped up and down on my bed, squealing and screaming out raucously. Then I fell quiet all of a sudden, reproving myself for being so loud and slipshod. Ooops! Did everyone in the house have to find out about my lately acknowledged admittance and entry as a first year student at Brownton? With Alex still on the phone, I fetched my laptop and split it open and switched it on hurriedly and logged into my Gmail account as speedily and proficiently as I could. It took a handful of seconds for the page to load entirely and there the e-mail showed in my inbox from Debora Chanda, Aide and Assistant to the Human Resource Head at Brownton University. Her picture was integrated underneath along with her autograph. 

 

Dear Sophia Solochi,

 

It is with contentment and glee that I make known to you about your reception and admittance as a first year stood at Brownton University in the itinerary of Fashion and Design. To collect your calendar of this semester’s curriculums and the typical fees themselves, please show up for Registration at our Registry slab this impending week starting from Monday the 5th of June till Friday the 9th. Remember to bring with you your National Registration Card (NRC) and (High) School Leaver’s Certificate. Any added requirements shall be disclosed to you as obligatory. 

 

I almost passed out. This couldn’t be happening. I had been approved to be a student at Brownton? Thank God for it! This was great news definitely.

 

I hardly slept. Mostly due to the excitement and bliss that was swelling and burgeoning inside me. It had been my dream to study Fashion and Design. A trance that was just about to come true. One day, I would start up my own clothes-making company and run it as seriously and arduously as I could. That was all I ever wanted to do in this life. Dressing people and dressing them real good.

 

Five in the morning. About to strike six o’clock. It was still shady outside. I watched the sky and the never-ending forest before me through the ample and spacious glass wall that looked this unbelievably strong and enduring. Of course, an usual axe was not tough enough to rent and shatter it. Maybe ramming a car against it would effect that.

 

I went over to the living room and sat down to browse the net on my laptop. No, not with that older one that Jack and Joshua Zimba gave me as their bequest. This was a new one that Kris had secured for me six months ago. Yes. It wasn’t that very latest indeed.

 

I launched the Airtel Zambia Mobile Broadband application that went hand in hand with my modem, the screen before me being all this gleaming and sparkly and predominantly red and hardly ever white and black and yellow and so on… I in conclusion looked for Mozilla Firefox…and that was it from then. The browsing was this fast and instantaneous and exceedingly fantastic. I loved the internet. I cherished Airtel too.

 

http://www.google.com/

 

Followed by,

 

John Legend All of Me mp3 download clip.dj

 

And search!

 

I downloaded both the video and the mp3. I liked the mp3 a lot more. Why? Without watching anything, I could listen to the lovable and engaging song playing and without stinting imagine every romantic thing happen between me and Alex. I felt like he was John Legend, singing to me gently and tunefully. Oh yes, that had to be my not well-known Alex and the famed John coalesced. With my eyes closed I began to imagine everything brilliantly and astonishingly…Alex holding my hands, him stroking my cheek leisurely and generously, him smiling at me merrily and from the bottom of his heart, him talking to me on the phone, him mad and aggravated with me, discouraged and dissatisfied even…I was going to break to tears. Definitely. I had to stop this. Certainly.

 

I took away my earphones from where I had secured them and opened my eyes as rapidly and suddenly as I could. I was crying. And Alvin was sitted there right before me, sharp-eyed and totally on the alert Sh*t!

 

 

“Al-vin,” I stuttered, timid and mortified to the extent that if it was possible, I could have concealed myself under the face of nowhere. He had been watching? Everything? Oh yes, he definitely had been all eyes and conscientious to what I was doing. What could he be now thinking about me? What exactly?

 

“Have I broken up any exceptional moment?” He asked as if to taunt and deride me, but then he was grim and stern-faced as he said it.

 

What had I done? What? Damn me a thousand times!

 

“I will leave you if you don’t take felony at it so you can carry on with what you were doing.”

 

“No, Alvin , don’t…it’s not what you think…it is not like I am round the bend or crazy even.”

 

“I didn’t say you are crazy, Sophia.”

 

“I am so possessed with the song I was listening to. All of Me by John Legend. That’s all.”

 

“That explains everything pretty well. I have to get somewhere in the meantime.”

 

“Don’t do this to me, Alvin. Please don’t. I am not chasing you away from…”

 

“Hold it there please. No more another word from you. Don’t finish that sentence or else you are going to irritate me.”

 

I had never seen him be this frightened and irate at the same time. What had I done to him? Oh, oh. I had better learn to stir my tongue with awareness.

 

“Look, I am sorry, Sophia,” he afterwards apologized. “I didn’t mean to alarm or frighten the hell out of you. I am verily sorry. It’s just that…it was so noticeable and observable that you are so in love. You seem to love this man exceedingly much.”

 

“I am not in love, Alvin.”

 

“I am not a kid, Sophia, to be fooled and pulled the wool over my eyes. Yes, you are in love. I can see it in your eyes and in your tears and I can even take notice of it in your voice. You are deeply and seriously in love. Who is he? Tell me just his name. I won’t say a word about it to Kris. I swear.”

 

God. This couldn’t be happening. How was Alvin able to see and read my life? How was he able to do all this?

 

I discovered that I was crying and hastily swabbed away my tears. This was no right time to be emotional, Sophia. This was not the good time and occasion to be frail and fragile-like. It wasn’t. I had to be strong. Exceptionally strong indeed.

 

“Alex. His name is Alex Ramirez. The man that I am in love with.”

 

The sunlight swelled and scattered throughout the sky, agilely and effulgently. Birds tweeted and caroled and warbled in the majestic-heighted trees that were surrounding Alvin’s gorgeous house. The air was easy-going and temperate and pleasing moreover. I felt so alive and fresh this morning like I had enjoyed my chock-full and required sleep the times-of-yore night. Thank God I was still living and breathing and so full of activity and commotion. Another day, another happiness, another sorrow, another struggle.

 

In Alvin’s large office with wooden and concrete walls, I sat before his majestic and stately-like chair that was a bit lofty than mine and he had me sign the contract that we had agreed on the prior day. I did it promptly and eagerly, with the accessibility of his guidance and counsel whenever I was undecided and unsure on what next to do. He was so cooperative and supportive in every step of the way. I admired and treasured him for that.

 

Once we were over and ended, he told me, “There is one more thing remaining.”

 

“Which is?”

 

“We need photos of you. The best ones we can take. They will verify how experienced and appropriate you are for this advert. Fine, we will do it this way. I myself along with Eman will be like your agents. We will organize places where we can take snapshots of you. You just have to handle the dressing and also make certain that your poses are very good quality and the ideal thing. Don’t you think that is good?”

 

“I have no disagreements with you.”

 

“Good then. Let us get ready and moving then, shall we, Sophia?”

 

“Definitely, Mr. Morgan…oh, I mean Alvin.”

 

He smiled brusquely at that. “To you I am always Alvin and never am I Mr. Morgan.”

 

Eman was good-looking and dazzling this morning. He hit me as being unbelievably handsome. In count to that, there was a certain might and energy to him that I couldn’t straightforwardly explain but which I could only evidently and painlessly see. He was the customary. Quiet, serious-looking, and barely any well-mannered or welcoming. Was it part of his requirement to be impolite and standoffish?

 

Alvin said, “The first place we will shoot photos of you will be in my colonnade. I have an art gallery inside there. Don’t be bothered about the paintings and art and moldings in there. I want you to pose your best ever fashions. Will that be okay?”

 

“Most probably.”

 

What a glorious opening it was to showcase what I could do with my clothes-designing and invention ability! Of course, I had to start now with this uncomplicated photo shoot and make myself dress as best properly and satisfactorily as I ever could. Only then could I become more at ease and liberated with bigger and forthcoming ventures. Thirty minutes. They were the first of what Alvin and Eman made reachable to me to prepare and ready myself for our first round of photo-shoots in his fine-looking colonnade.

 

This is what I chose—of course, I had on my part made and fashioned that up a while ago: A white below-the-knee-extended dress, all basic and design-free, without any sketches or drawings on it. It was squat-sleeved with expansive and far-reaching sleeves that would flap and rift each time that the air waved and moved past them. Its collar was a bit lowered farther down my chest, meaning yes, it showed a speck of my full-size breasts and nothing more than that. I straightened and raked my hair smooth in it so as to look pleasurable and respectable. The shoes that I selected for this were a crumb stylish but easy-going. They were basically flat shoes. White in color. With that made apparent, it is all up to you to make out whether I was enthralling in unadulterated white or not. 

 

The instant Alvin saw my dress, he elevated an eyebrow, splitting open his lips vaguely. I almost giggled. Not that I was firm and bent on seducing him. I wasn’t. I was dressing as best and fittingly as I could. “That is good for sure, Sophia,” he disclosed to me, beaming and smiling blissfully.

 

I thanked him for that. Swiftly and with good grace, he snatched the camera from Eman’s grip and reserved and confined it in his. “I will be the one to take the photos if you don’t mind, Eman. Just make sure that it is fine and up-to-standard where I am taking snapshots of her.”

 

Eman agreed softly, not protesting or murmuring out any trivial word. “I will do just that, sir.”

 

Alvin winked at me excitedly. I returned his wink kindly and diaphanously. “Please move this side, Sophia,” he directed.

 

I did my best to make my movements as refined and unflawed as I could probably make them. I mean that was what models were supposed to do, right? I thought so.

 

My…my…I didn’t mean to do it…but I just happened to pull towards me Alvin’s entire senses and awareness like crazy. Men were so perceptive and chary to feminine locomotion, weren’t they? Except they were gay or exceedingly pious in either circumstances.

 

“No, Sophia, not like that. Try something like this instead.”

 

Alvin’s was a hurried and laughable pose that made me and Eman chuckle noiselessly and happily. Eman had smiled and chortled inaudibly! And his was a certainly disarming and gracious-like smile. If only he could wear it at all times and occasions. If only.

 

After Alvin was finished with his ridiculous pose, I mimicked how he had precisely done it. By the way I did recognize what pose it was that he was trying to imitate. Yes, I did. There…there…almost there, honey…oh yes, that was how it was exactly done. Steadily and smoothly, with you feeling the delight and kick and satisfaction that came with moving your body this way and that other manner…it was all exhilarating and amusing to go on the town in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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