Tears slowly dropped from Amira's eyes as she replayed the events of the previous week in her mind. Her planned elopement with Julius, her lover, had been foiled. Now she didn't even know where Julius was, she didn't even know if he was alive. Sometimes she even wished herself dead. Her husband, Mallam Idris Abdullah, a powerful man and friend of the feared Alhaji, was taking out the shame of a cheating wife on her. He hadn't killed her as she had expected. Instead, he planned to remarry and was keeping her alive to be his new wife's maid. He pleasured himself with her whenever he felt like it, and beat her harshly at the slightest annoyance. Indeed, she preferred death to this.
Just then, her husband walked in. She hurriedly dried her tears and straightened her dress as he strode into the expansive bedroom cheerfully. He was drunk, she knew.
''Welcome, Sir,'' she croaked out.
''Thank you, Amira,'' he replied with a smile. A smile she knew all too well. ''Prepare a bath for me,'' he ordered.
As Amira got up to go, he held her back, looking her over. She had soft, flowing dark hair, beautiful brown eyes, and lush pink lips. She had beautiful, glowing fair skin, and every time he imagined that filthy man's hands and lips on her, it filled him with a boiling fury. Her slender body with it's beautiful curves still enthralled him. Only a goddess could be so beautiful. In fact, not just any goddess, it had to be Iris of Egypt or Aphrodite of Greece. Even her feet, with its perfectly pedicured nails drew him in. He was totally consumed with her. He had loved her, cared for her and lavished on her every pleasure he could.
Yet she had cheated on him, and had, even worse, planned to elope with her lover. A slap to his face. Suddenly all that love and admiration faded away, giving way to hatred and disgust. His once smiling face contorting into one of fury, he slapped her hard.
''Forget the bath. I'll take a walk instead,'' he declared. ''I can't stand the sight of you,'' he added, stalking out.
Amira lay on the floor, weeping helplessly. At this rate, she wouldn't last the week.
Khalil covered his eyes as light flooded the room. It was probably the guard bringing food. Julius stirred next to him. They had been captive in a less glamorous part of Alhaji's stately house for about a week now since the dramatic events that saw him lose the love of his life, and Julius, his wife. Extraordinarily it was the same person. Miracle, known as May by Khalil, was Julius' wife, and Khalil's lover. Now she was dead, and it was all his fault.
''Here's your food, boys,'' the guard said, dropping two trays with food and water. Khalil nodded gratefully as the guard walked out and locked the door.
''Hey, wake up,'' he said, hitting Julius on the arm. ''Food's here.'' Julius stirred again, and then opened his eyes.
''Thanks, mate,'' he groaned, stretching and getting up.
Fifteen minutes later, they were all done. Both men sighed contentedly and settled down in their cots. At least Alhaji wasn't maltreating them. They were well fed too, their lunch had been white rice and stew. There was no meat in the food, but having enough food was already a cause for gratitude. Apart from food, their ''cell'' wasn't bad either, a small room with two cots where they slept, and a bathroom with running water! By prison standards, this was quite comfy.
Both men lay on their cots, each lost in thought. Khalil looked at Julius.
''Penny for your thoughts,'' he said. Julius looked up, surprised.
''I thought you hate me,'' he said warily.
''Oh I do,'' Khalil replied. ''But we're stuck in here together. Anything to keep me from losing my mind. So I ask again. Penny for your thoughts.'' Julius sighed.
''We have to get outta here.''
Amira sat down on the floor, crying. She took a look at her lavish bedroom. A huge room, drenched in gold and royal blue. Her huge bed with it's gold-plated frames had a mini library built into it. The huge windows and velvet curtains, with a beautiful view of the city, completed the epitome of grandiose. So much, yet so unhappy...
How had she gotten to this? A stupid hookup! Just a bit of excitement, Maryam had convinced her. Then she had to stupidly fall in love. Knowing her husband, she wondered where she'd gotten the balls to fall for another man. And now Julius was in trouble because of her. She was paying for her sins at her husband's fists. Maryam would also have to pay....
''I will suffer for what I did,'' she said determinedly. ''Afterall, we reap what we sow!''
Mallam Idris stood outside his house taking in the cool breeze. He was quite the imposing figure. At least 6'0, his broad shoulders and chiseled face accentuated a look of dangerous power. And indeed he was a powerful man. A powerful man reduced to a pile of mixed emotions. Amira was his wife, the most beautiful wife anyone could set eyes on, and so he loved her, at least that's what he told himself. But he hated her too... Cheating on him? With a man like that? It was a shocker that had rocked his feet right out of his ten thousand dollar sandals. He would make sure that miscreant called Julius would pay for this.
Yes, he must pay...