My secret admirer
The doorbell rang. It was 2pm and I was preparing food for lunch. It was almost time for my 15-year-old son, Omar, to come back from school. Wiping away sweat from my forehead with my left sleeve, I rushed towards the entrance. But there was nobody there; just a small package tied with a red ribbon-flower.
I was shocked for a second. It wasn’t any special occasion that I could recall neither was it anyone’s birthday at home or any sort of anniversary. I picked it up. It had my name written on it but the box had no name of the sender. Amazed, I came inside, holding it tightly in my hands and put it aside in my bedroom.
Five minutes later, Omar arrived and, in the midst of catering to him and setting the table, I totally forgot to open the gift. I got very busy with my son and his little mischief and so, the whole day passed without me really thinking back to the mysterious gift lying in my room.
In the evening, when my husband came home, the first thing he noticed upon entering our bedroom was the package. His suspicions arose the same way mine did, there was no sender name on it and the package contained an expensive women’s perfume!
He called me to our bedroom and asked:
“Who sent you this present? Such a nice fragrance!”
“I don’t know. There was no name on it.”
“Who could it be? Do you have any idea?”
“No. All my friends are abroad. And with my parents dead, who else might it be? I can’t think of anyone.”
Had it been just that one incident, it would have been okay with my husband. But no; that anonymous person kept sending me more gifts – a bouquet, a golden wrist-watch, a bronze purse. Slowly, it began getting on my husband’s nerves.
“Who the hell in this world is sending you these expensive presents?”
“I already told you a zillion times, I don’t know. Why don’t you believe me?”
“I’ve got a feeling you have some sort of a secret admirer and are refusing to tell me about it.”
“What rubbish! You do recall that we married because we are in love, right?”
“You’re just being insecure, dear. I’m just as curious about these as you are, but I promise, I don’t know who is sending them.”
“You’re lying. How is it possible that someone sends you gifts and you don’t even have a hunch?”
Then, out of nowhere, my husband slapped me in the face – this was the first time in my life that I had experienced such an assault. It shook me to my core.
I was utterly dumbfounded. My ever-so-loving, kind and gentlemanly husband had turned into a wild beast. I couldn’t bear the pain. It wasn’t my fault that I was getting those gifts. I started crying but my husband turned his back on me in anger.
At that moment, my son came into our room, a bit hesitant.
“Daddy, it was me. I was sending those gifts to Mum.”
“Don’t try defending your mother, Omar.”
“No Daddy, it’s really me. Let me show you all the bills of the gifts I purchased.”
Omar had some papers in his hand. My husband snatched it from him and had a quick look. His expressions changed immediately.
“Mum, I just wanted to tell you that we don’t need birthdays and other stupid occasions to exchange presents. I just wanted to tell you that I love you… I’m sorry, Mum…”
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