Another fire episode coming up!
Delphine took a sip of the glass of red wine and smirked as she looked around her.
Gane’s Bar. A serene, relaxing atmosphere to be in. One of her favourite spots to spend her nights at when she wanted a break from the books. And that is what she desired that Wednesday evening.
She snickered as she thought of how nicely she had Toby tied and twisted up. It did surprise her that he was standing his ground, even after getting a dose of humiliation at the restaurant back in school, but of course, he was acting to his own detriment.
Idiot boy. He thinks issa joke. It will do him like Chinese movie, eh, she thought to herself as she looked at the Muhammad Ali picture across the table. Humming to herself as she turned to observe the long line of old, classic pictures the bar owner had seen fit to decorate the place with, she nodded. “Chale, the man knows how to make a place look good.”
She went back to her glass of wine and took another sip.
Staring at the door, she noticed a lady enter. Dressed in a dark running jacket and black jeans.
An eyebrow went up. Well, I wonder what she’s doing in that attire. Seems a little… wound up. But ah well, not my business. Doesn’t do much to cover up some mad curves, though.
The lady walked in the direction of Delphine, settling to sit at a table just beside her. Delphine turned her gaze off her, not wanting to come off as rude or intrusive. She continued to take sips of her wine.
“Is that a bottle of Meridies?”
Delphine turned in the direction of the lady, realizing she was asking her a question, then looked at the bottle of wine, and nodded. “Yeah. My personal favourite.”
“Oh, I see. I actually tend to prefer white wine over the red. My husband never understands why; he thinks red wine is much sweeter,” the lady said.
“Hehe, interesting. Does he like Meridies?” Delphine asked.
“Yeah, but not so much. He’s more of an Anfora kind of person, although he does buy this one whenever he can.”
For the next three minutes, Delphine and this lady engaged in talk about the kinds of wines they liked and disliked. It was all giggles and snickers as they discussed wines like some professional sommeliers.
As they laughed over a funny comment the lady made, she looked at the TV, where the news was being read. She shook her head. “News. Always got something negative to tell us.”
“Huh, tell me about it. It gets so painful having to pay attention to it. I’d rather just read it on my phone or something,” Delphine replied.
“Hmmm. You heard about the young lady who killed that politician?”
Delphine nodded. “Yeah. Apparently, he raped her a few times, and she got back at him, or something like that. Chale.”
The lady shook her head. “It’s just crazy how much agony we girls go through. Sad part is how almost every girl gets sexually harrassed one way or another. I’ve had my experiences. Getting my ass pinched by some dirty old man a few times. Thank God my work people actually listened to me instead of calling my bluff.”
“Wow,” Delphine responded. She wondered for a moment whether to mention the Toby issue.
Nah, it’s not really rape. Besides, this isn’t social media. Let it brew from there. I doubt this woman is even on social media to begin with.
“I’m sorry to hear that. Hmmm. Crazy that in spite of all this goodness I got, I’ve never really experienced that before,” she added.
The lady looked at her, surprised. “Seriously? So no harassment?”
Delphine shook her head. “I mean, maybe the catcalls are considered abuse to some, but, for me, I kinda take it as normal. But for a guy to like, really harass me, nope. Never had that. Never even allowed it.”
“Meaning any kind of forced sexual activity is not even in the picture?”
Delphine laughed. “Not at all. As far as that’s concerned, I tend to be the one in control. There’s no man who has ever, or will ever, overpower me and get in between my legs against my will. If he’s there, it’s because I want him there.”
“Mmmmm, I see…” the woman responded while Delphine nodded, feeling quite pleased with herself. If there was anything that gave her a good sensation in her bones, it was that thought that she somehow had the remote control over men.
“… yet you’re threatening to tell the world that Toby Dolphyne raped you? How does that work?”
Slowly looking at the woman, every cell of hers stiffened up in utter shock. How the bloody hell did she know about that?
The lady zipped down her jacket halfway and turned her chair in Delphine’s direction. “So, now that we’re at the real agenda for this meeting, how about I introduce myself?”
“Wait a minute, how did you- where did you- who are-“
“That, Miss Delphine Awittor, is none of your damn business. Just sit the hell down and don’t even think of moving away.”
Delphine looked at her in horror. “Oh my God, he sent you to stalk me, didn’t he? I should report you-“
“Zip it, young lady! And don’t even go that route about reporting me to anything. Not gonna work. Now shut it and listen to me… now, where was I?”
Delphine felt stunned. Thoughts began swirling around her brain. F**k, why didn’t I say I was raped? Did he send an investigator or something? What the hell is this?
“Oh yes, I was about to introduce myself. My name is Larissa Dolphyne and, let’s just say, I’m an eternal baby girl. I love giggles, as you probably have seen for yourself. I love apple juice, nkate-cake, and most especially, my amazing husband and five kids. The third of which you’re planning some ridiculous blackmail nonsense against. And I hope you know that when someone’s trying to destroy the one you love, they touch a raw nerve, and that, miss Delphine Awittor, is exactly what you’ve done.
“I’m still pretty annoyed with Toby for falling into the trap, upon all the advice and exhortations he’s received from us as his parents. I mean, I can see you and I are kinda from the same mold, but he still should’ve known better than to sleep with a girl just coz she’s as sexy as you are. Nonetheless, I’d never throw him under the bus and let any evil lioness rip him to shreds. Far be it from me to do such. He’s still my son, and I love him, and I will reveal the monster in me to anyone who intends to harm him in any way.”
Delphine bristled at the thinly-veiled dig at her. The words “Don’t you call me an evil lioness!” were begging to be let loose from her throat. Yet she remained mute. This woman did not look like someone who would take that clapback lightly.
“But you know what? There’s another nerve you’ve touched in all this that’s really pissed me off. The fact that you’re gladly willing to spread a fallacy that will not only be eventually found out, but will have a mad horrible effect. If you must know, young lady, I’m helping out with the young lady under trial for murder. What she did was wrong, all right, but I’ve been up close and personal with her, and let me tell you, that girl’s life was destroyed by the man who raped her. You look into her eyes, and all you see is pain. Despair. Anguish. A readiness to give up on life. All because some fool saw fit to violate her. It breaks my heart. Not just to see her like that, but to know there are so many out there in the same boat as her who have nobody to listen to them. Many who have been cast aside, silenced and told to be liars. And they just sit in their sorrows, dying a slow death. Do you know just what your silly little scheme will do?”
At this point, Delphine had lowered her eyes. That last part hit her real hard, and truthfully had never crossed her mind.
“If you go ahead with this silly revenge thingy just coz my son won’t have sex with you, once it’s revealed to be fake, so many people will jump on your foolishness as an excuse to not believe the stories of real victims. And that, honestly, is the last thing we need in this fight against sexual abuse. We already have a system that more often than not, will rather heap the blame on the victim than actually look to listen and help them. Don’t you realize your little plot to wreak revenge or whatever rubbish it is will empower such people to discard their stories? Does it honestly make you feel good knowing that one day, a rape victim will put out her story and people will be like, ‘oh, remember that Delphine story where she lied about being raped? Maybe this is just like that.’ Does that make you feel good, young lady?”
Delphine was silent.
“Answer me, damn it!”
She shook her head slowly in response.
“I thought so. The last thing we need is for someone to use her selfish, senseless ambition to set the fight back by a few more centuries. In any case, once he’s been humiliated and all, what benefit really will you get out of it? Will you get that tingly feeling in your little garden when he’s being ripped apart on social media?”
She kept her head down. It was the pleasure of having control over men that she would have extracted from it all, but she didn’t need to have an IQ of 130 to know that was no wise thing to blurt out before her.
Larissa rose to her feet, turning the chair back to its proper position. “Well, Miss Awittor, whatever your motive was for this madness, I don’t know, and honestly, I really don’t care. All I know is that you are setting yourself up for some crazy ass massacre at my hands if you move on with this, because for one, I will not let you destroy my son for something he never did, and two, I’m not gonna sit back and let you set us back in our battle against sexual abuse with this nonsense. If nobody has ever harassed you, good for you. But many others have, and I fight for them, and I’ll continue to fight for them and make sure s**t like this gets shut the hell down!”
She began to walk away, then turned. “Oh, and uh, in case you plan to just give my speech the middle finger and go on with it, please be informed that your little boast has been comfortably captured on audio.”
Delphine gasped, looking incredulously at her. “But… but, but that’s-“
“But what?” Larissa sneered. “But what? Young lady, there is no need for me to use it if you do the needful. So stop stuttering and get to doing the right thing. If you don’t, then it goes out. And afterwards, I will look for you, and I will find you. And when I do, trust me, honey cakes, it won’t be pretty. Not even a little bit. So, do what’s right, and don’t be silly!”
If there was ever a facial expression that perfectly conveyed what it meant to be stupefied, it was that on Delphine’s face as Larissa walked away. Her head spinning, she looked at the bottle of wine. The glass which was still slightly full.
She shook her head, before placing it in her hands.
Dammit, my evening is ruined!
Well well well!! Larissa doesn’t play at all! That was some no-nonsense dealing right there. What’s gonna happen next, now that Delphine’s been confronted?