- “Oh…” Jo said. That was the first time I had ever seen her flustered. “I didn’t know what else to do…”
“You know how all of that hurt me. Steve cheated on me with her. And you are my friend and you stood by her instead of me?” Fatma continued her rant.
“What?” Mariam yelled as she approached me. “How dare you say that?”
“I said what I said,” I shrugged, trying to look nonchalant although I remember feeling very afraid that things would turn physical – and no one hates a fight more than me.
“You know Liz, sometimes you are just mean,” she hissed.
“Now, now ladies, no need to get like this,” Jo interjected, standing up to stand between us. “We came here to have a good time, so can we please do that?”
“But I am tired of the way Liz gets sometimes – like if it’s not about her then it doesn’t matter.”
“You really did say a hurtful thing, Liz,” Fatma, who had been quiet up until then, had pointed out. I remember throwing my hands up in the air.
“No one understands that I am not having it easy either!” I exploded. It felt like all the strife I had been holding in – from the office, from Chris – had coalesced into this one, big ball of flaming anger and it was about to burn everything down. “I’m here, having to fight men at work and women over the weekend… and I’ve just been dumped and I don’t know how to cope with anything!” I shouted.
“What?” Fatma gawped, standing up. “Chris has left?”
“Yep,” Jo nodded.
“Hmph,” Mariam growled. Then she walked off to continue making her phone calls while I sat back down in my chair and took an angry sip of my drink. Suddenly what should have been a happy trip didn’t feel so good.
“Ok, look, ladies, we need to get our act together,” Jo had said. “But first we need Mariam to come back and join us. Liz, promise you’ll apologise when I bring her back?” I nodded grumpily while Jo walked off to have a chat with Mariam.
“I’m so sorry Liz,” Fatma said, sliding into the chair next to mine, that had just been vacated by Jo. “What happened with Chris again?” I said nothing, simply handed her my phone with the screen turned on to his curt email message. “My goodness. I am so sorry. He didn’t even have the guts to tell you face to face? Just an email?”