Following a highly competitive game night, Zee left a lasting impression on JJ with her intelligence. It had been a while since he met a woman who had posed such a challenge. She was well-read and quickly picked up on cues. Then she had a crazy idea in the morning.
“Guys, who wants to go watch the sunrise with me?” Zee asked the group.
“Zee you know you’re crazy. A simple drive to watch the sunrise could turn into a drive to Naivasha,” laughed one of the guys.
“Brilliant! Why not?” Zee responded.
“Let’s do it,” said JJ.
The rest of the group declined the invitation, so JJ left with Zee. They left in Zee’s car. JJ was in awe of Zee’s free spirit. She’d already impressed him earlier while playing card and board games, but this was another level.
“Thank you for joining me. I love sunrises,” said Zee.
“Glad I did,” replied JJ.
“I think sunrises are magical. As the first rays of sunrise grace the sky, the horizon stretches before us. A canvas painted with the promise of endless possibilities, marking the perfect demarcation between what was and what could be, where the magic of a new day unfolds,” said Zee as she stared at the horizon.
“Okay, Shakespeare,” JJ said as he clapped teasingly.
He looked at Zee intensely, got close, cupped her face, and whispered, “Can I?” She blinked in approval, and they had an intense kiss. “Sunrises will never be the same for me,” JJ said after the kiss. The spark between them was ignited, and then they decided to go to Naivasha for lunch like the free spirits they were.
By the time they got back to Nairobi, they had declared they were now dating. Their relationship was filled with many wild and crazy escapades. Zee had never met anyone who matched her energy like that. A month later, after they started dating, she woke JJ up. His phone had been buzzing nonstop.
“Babe, there’s a Grace who’s trying to reach you. She’s been calling and texting nonstop,” she told JJ.
JJ put the phone on airplane mode.
“Who’s Grace and why did you do that?” Zee asked him.
“My ex. I don’t know why she’s calling this early,” said JJ.
“Your most recent ex?” Zee asked.
“Yes. She’s a handful.”
“Oh, tell me more about her,” Zee said.
“Zee, do you really want to talk about my ex this early in the morning?”JJ asked her.
“No time like the present,” said Zee, and she adjusted her position to listen to him.
JJ proceeded to tell her the story of Gracie. He had broken up with her two weeks before he met Zee, but he left out that part. Gracie was different from Zee in many ways. Zee was book smart, which had landed her a lucrative job at an early age. Being a woman in the engineering sector, plus her personality, she achieved a lot in a relatively short time. Grace, on the other hand, knew her beauty and physique were her strengths.
She wasn’t as lucky as Zee in academics, and she came from a poor background, so she hardly had any education past high school, but she took up product activation and modelling gigs to make money. Most of the products she worked with were alcohol brands, so she was around men who were looking to send money on a good time a lot. That was how she met JJ.
Gracie had an allure that caught JJ’s attention. Initially, it was pure lust, but when they got to know each other, JJ liked her. She reminded him of his humble background and the desire to do anything to have a better life. Gracie also knew how to pamper a man’s ego. JJ was bossy and loved submissive women. He was also picky with his food. For instance, he loved eating fresh food at every meal. Gracie had no problem doing that for him.
They would go out for a night out, come back at 3 or 4 A.M., and Gracie would gladly prepare him fresh food. She was also a good host when he would have his friends over and serve them continuously until they left. She made JJ feel like a man in charge. Their physical intimacy was also remarkable. JJ made sure she was comfortable.
It was all good until JJ had a rough financial patch, and Gracie started hitting on his more affluent friends. Within no time, she was cheating on him. JJ cheated, too, and they decided they were even; by then, JJ was back on his feet, so they tried to salvage their relationship, but they argued frequently. Eventually, they broke up just before he met Zee.
“Wow! Quite an interesting relationship that was,” Zee said. In her mind, she was taking notes on what JJ didn’t like about Gracie. She didn’t feel threatened by her. Their relationship was more substantial, and she was a better girlfriend to JJ. Every so often, she surprised him with gifts and had his back when he was low financially. If she knew he was broke and they had to meet friends, she sent him money to settle the bills in advance to save face with their peers. There wasn’t a mountain she wouldn’t move for JJ, and she had shown him that. Their relationship was solid — or so she thought.
JJ only declined Gracie’s call when he was with Zee, but once he was alone, he called her back. He agreed to meet her, and the love triangle began. After meeting Gracie in his house, one thing led to another, and they were intimate. JJ told Gracie that he was in a relationship with Zee afterwards. Gracie was hurt that he had ‘replaced’ her so soon but took it as a challenge. She was going to win back her man.
JJ, on the other hand, enjoyed the attention of both women. Initially, he tried hiding it, but Zee saw a thread of messages on his phone, and he had to confess. Zee threw a tantrum for a week but decided she wouldn’t let Gracie steal her man.
Zee played to her strengths. She remembered the first time she gifted JJ a perfume. He looked so surprised and almost saw a tear, “I have never been gifted by a woman I was dating,” he said.
“Not even boxers and socks?” Zee asked him.
“Nope. I had to pay for my birthday ‘surprise’ that my ex planned,” JJ said. They laughed.
Zee was on a mission to show him that women can also show love to men using material possessions. She’d buy him the expensive drinks he liked. JJ was intelligent and ambitious, so Zee also told him about investment opportunities. Their adventurous escapades also continued. They even had a bucket list.
Gracie wasn’t backing down either; she’d show up at JJ’s house randomly. They would have a good time; she’d try new recipes for his favourite dishes. She was also fun and random, only lacking the financial muscle Zee had, so their outdoor activities depended on JJ. He didn’t mind going out with her occasionally. They had intense chemistry on text, too, so they would chat frequently.
JJ was excited but also exhausted from juggling Zee and Gracie. For about two months, the games continued. He hadn’t argued with either about their interactions in a while; instead, they showed him so much love. Then he met Agatha. She was cheerful, calm and serious. He wanted her, but Agatha had heard about his colourful life and warned him that she wouldn’t have any of that drama. That was how he dumped both Zee and Gracie.
Before he left Zee, she had found a receipt from a specific coffee shop where they’d have a breakfast date the day before an important event in life like an interview, presentation or exam. They would go through the plan to ensure the best possible outcome. From the items on the list, it was clear he had been there with a woman. Later, after he dumped her, she joined the dots. He had even replicated some of their rituals with someone new. It broke her.
Gracie held on for a while, thinking JJ’s relationship with Agatha was a passing cloud, but JJ stood firm on his boundaries. Eventually, she left him alone. Ultimately, a new player with a different game plan got the man.
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