He stands in the doorway, tall and well built; his legs wide apart and his huge frame blocking off rays of the morning sun. With a strong, firm hand on the doorknob and the other on the handle of a small travelling bag, he stands looking different – leaner perhaps.
His black pants are not as fitted as they should be, and I can make out the outline of his muscled chest through his grey-coloured T-shirt.
“Daddy! Daddy!” Adebanke shrieks excitedly, bouncing ahead of me down the stairs, as fast as her tiny legs would carry her, with small outstretched arms. I am right behind her, praying that she does not trip over, grateful for the shortness of the steps.
“Hey, Princess!” He says, his face breaking into a big smile as he drops his bag on the floor and bends to scoop his daughter into his arms. “I missed you, Princess!”
In that deep, familiar husky voice, Dapo has a conversation with his little girl, taking his time, stressing each word, gentle with his voice. He gazes lovingly at her, as he listens intently to all she has to say, which is an awful lot for a three-year-old … her teddy bear, her new playground, the neighbour’s giant dog, grandma’s cat. A lot!
I stand, waiting, listening to this conversation between father and daughter, punctuated by guffaws from one and short, excited giggles from another. I let a small grin play around my lips, letting it widen into a smile, proud of my little one.
Soon, Mother appears from the kitchen, a wet napkin on her left shoulder. Dinner must not be missed, she insists, just before forcing a reluctant Adebanke out of her father’s embrace.
When they are gone, I turn my back to Dapo and start up the stairs without a word.
“Hey!” That voice again, the same deep and husky voice that leaves me goose-bumped. It stops me in my tracks, with a foot on one step and a hand on the banisters, but I do not turn.
“We should talk, you know,” he says.
Now I turn. I want to race into his arms, feel his strong arms wrapped around me like they were wrapped around our daughter minutes ago. I also want to walk up to him, stare him squarely in the face and give him a slap, and another, then another, and yet another, till my hand is sore. I sigh instead, waiting for him to speak. He does.
“Look …” But that is all he says before he covers the space between us with long, strong strides and slides an arm around my waist, pulling me to him. His lips are on mine, full, hard and forceful, before I have a chance to get anything out. I become limp in his arms and enjoy his lips prodding mine open.
I shudder, feeling something wet and thick between my thighs as his tongue explores the insides of my mouth, teasing and tickling. He pushes me against the wall, pinning me with his body, one hand resting just above my head behind me and the other on my cheek.
His lips don’t leave mine, even as he starts tracing invisible lines with his fingers from my jawline to my breasts. Sliding his hands under my soft cotton blouse, he finds my naked breasts and squeezes till I moan. I feel one nipple, then the other, harden against his touch. He begins to unzip my jeans trousers then stops abruptly.
“Come!” His voice is now thick with desire, huskier than I have ever known it to be. Grabbing my arm, he starts to lead me up the stairs.
I obey silently, following his lead, letting him open the door to my bedroom, my childhood bedroom, the one I grew up in. It is where I sleep with my daughter now, where I have been sleeping since that night in September.
The door is hardly shut behind us before his lips find mine again. He is more forceful, urgent, needy, almost rough. I gasp, then moan, when his left hand begins to fondle one breast and another and back again. His right hand finds my zip, pulls my jeans down to my feet, and slides into my lacy underwear. It is old – the underwear - with a couple of tears just around the edges. I titter nervously in embarrassment.
“I wasn’t expecting … you … this …” I offer an explanation.
“I know!” He laughs, his breath warm and fresh against my lips. “I wasn’t expecting this either. Then I saw you and I knew I just had to have you … I must have you. Now, Baby! Now!”
His fingers start to caress my wetness, then stroke, and poke around my insides. I let out another moan, biting my lower lip, digging into his shoulders with my finger nails and pulling him closer to me. His bulge against my thighs is hard and impatient, and I fall to my knees to free it.
It looks monstrously big when it is freed from the trousers and neat white briefs it was caged in seconds ago. I stare at it for a moment, then hold it, as if to weigh it, before I begin to suck on it. It fills my mouth, as Dapo pushes his thighs forward, with his hands on my head, urging me on.
I hear a groan escape his lips, just before he bends to lift me up. He turns me around to face the wall, uses a strong, lean thigh to push my legs apart, and drives his shaft into me from behind. I squirm beneath his tall frame, letting out a loud moan as he drives his shaft in some more, its entire length.
One hand gropes my breasts and another is on my waist, as he pushes and shoves, thrusts and pokes, till I shiver and feel a tremor running through me.
“Yes, Baby! Come!” he groans, short of breath.
I obey, whimpering as the tremor explodes through my body and my legs buckle under me. Dapo holds my arms firmly and soon begins to groan as I feel his wet, warm fluid inside me.
Holding on to the wall for support, spent and exhausted, I remember it’s another September - the first since the divorce, the second since that September night I came home to find him in bed with my best friend.
I hate how I love him. I hate that I let this happen. I hate that it’s another September.