Chatting to the Grave

By M D Zigo

Chatting to the Grave

Are you married? In a relationship? Still chatting and flirting with someone you met on social media or in real life and do not want your wife or husband to know? Ever occurred to you it might be cheating? What about the consequences of your actions?

''We are home!'' Jason exclaimed, as he drove off a busy motorway into a side street. We emerged into an enchanting neighbourhood and parked in front of an imposing red-and-white building. Jason switched off the car’s engine.

''We are home!'' he said again, to the only passenger in the car, seated next to him in the dark blue Citroën. ''It's nice to be home again, don't you think?''

Jason didn't expect any response from the passenger, who happened to be me. I didn't respond, buried in my own thoughts.

''Come on, Danny, come on. We are home and we are starving. The good news is, a freshly cooked lunch's waiting for us. Jane prepared one of your favourite meals. Let’s move.''

''Go ahead,'' I finally told Jason. ''I need a few minutes to reflect.''


Jason opened the car's door and stepped out. I watched him walk away until he disappeared into the magnificent building. He was such a nice bloke - my best pal, who'd always been there for me and particularly when trouble knocked at my door two years ago. It's been two long years since I visited Jason and his family in this lovely neighbourhood.

I looked around, as a few cars drove by. The leafless trees looked dead in the aftermath of winter. Springtime. Dozens of beautiful flowers were springing everywhere. Spring had always been my best period of the year - full of life and beauty and happiness. Not anymore. Not when I left prison having served time for a crime I didn't commit. Not when I knew nothing of the whereabouts of my adorable wife and two kids- my own flesh and blood.

My goal in life had always been to pursue happiness. And yes, I pursued happiness and became happy. With the best education and job, living in an amazing home and crime-free neighbourhood, a wonderful family -an amazing wife and two lovely kids, Bryan and Brenda, I felt we were living the best life on earth. People admired us. Many envied the relationship my wife and I enjoyed which endured so many years after our marriage. We enjoyed that union until two years ago, when my darling wife started chatting on Facebook with a man, a Danish man whom she met at work.

When you are with someone for a long time, like I had been with my wife, you are quick to notice changes, either big or small. I noticed when she started talking with someone. At first, this wasn't cause for alarm and I told myself - even assured myself not to worry and that the most important thing was that my wife and I loved each other. Unfortunately, the relationship persisted and things got worse! My wife soon found chatting with this man more interesting than some of the things we valued and shared for all those years such as our frequent kisses, our late night or early morning cuddling and our closeness. The atmosphere in our home became tense and my wife felt to me a stranger. Simple phrases such as ''I love you'', ''how are you today'' became history.

I finally decided to act and rescue our marriage when our two kids got caught up in this state of affairs. Many times, she told me to pick up the children from school on her behalf giving flimsy excuses why she couldn't. Other times the school called to inform me the children were still in school well closing time. We ate late when my wife cooked. The children began looking shabby and unkempt. When I talked to her about these, she dismissed my remarks as trivial and things kept on getting worse.

I am one of those guys who believe in marriage, the need for a strong and stable family. I knew when my marriage started suffering, when my family started crumbling. I could not fold my arms any longer, sit and watch the worse set in. I needed to act, before it was too late.

My wife's most important possession was now her phone. For the first time since we met, she changed her password and kept it from me. I resolved I needed access. She had been on the phone for hours that Thursday evening and only fell asleep quite exhausted in the early hours of Friday. That's when I had my opportunity. I picked up the phone and tiptoed out of the bedroom, locked myself in the rest room and tried accessing her phone. I cracked her password after a few tries. Her password? Her birthday and 321 at the end. I opened Facebook Messenger and voila!

A Danish name - Lars Kosh Mortensen, stood at the top of her chatting list. I opened their conversation and scrolled to the very beginning. Their chats started almost three months ago. Their conversations were mostly in Danish. After staying in Denmark for over a decade, my wife and I were fluent in Danish. Kosh had initiated the conversations:

He did not understand why his wife spent countless hours on the phone with another man

Kosh: Hej!

She: Hej!

Kosh: Thank you for accepting my friend request on Facebook.

She: Thanks for inviting me.

That was all for the first day. They resumed a week later.

Kosh: Hej. Been a while.

She: Yes, it was such a busy week.

Kosh: Right. How are you?

She: Good. Well, not so good. I am tired.

Kosh: Want to chat?

She: Maybe, but not for long.

Kosh: Great. Don't know why but since I met you, I can't get you out of my mind.

She: Really?

Kosh: Really.

She: Aren't you married?

Kosh: Does that matter? Does marriage prevent someone from feeling for another?

She: No, but...

Kosh: Well, no. I am not married. I live alone in this bungalow of mine. I am lonely most of the time.

She: No girlfriend?

Kosh: None. What about you? Married?

She: Yes.

Kosh sent a surprised emoticon.

She: Why are you surprised?

Kosh: A girl like you shouldn't be kept under one's control. You should be a free 'spirit'!

She: You must be joking.

Kosh: I am not.

She: Are you happy living alone?

Kosh: Yes and no. I don't feel happy being alone all the time and yes, it's so cool being on your own.

I kept reading for close to two hours. Their conversations in three months could produce a book. The chatting became intense as the days passed by. I retrieved a number from the conversations, which my wife saved in her phone as WC1. With luck, I also got an address, which Kosh sent to my wife. The address preceded an invitation to his place. I tried to find if my wife had visited, but couldn’t. Their most recent outing though was packed full of intimacy. My wife had become too trusting, free and bold that she said things she could never easily have said to me. She discussed a few family issues, which ought to have been kept private. She even mentioned the size of my manhood and challenged Kosh whether his was big enough to give her as much satisfaction as she derived from her African man, to which Kosh replied there was only one way she could find out!

At a certain time, she complained about my nonchalant attitude towards her and that I am away most of the time. His frequent referral to my wife as ''min smukt og digligt piger'' angered me.

I returned her phone and went to bed, anger building up in me. I did not sleep. Instead, I pondered, for the rest of the night, on a plan to stop this romance before it got out of hand.

Friday evening. My wife returned from work to an empty and boring house. The fridges were all empty - nothing to eat. She dropped her bag on the bed and stepped out again, heading off to the supermarket.

We were barely on speaking terms. She was angry I had talked bitterly to her about leaving the children in school and not caring much anymore. She accused me of overreacting and trying to capitalise on a problem that did not exist.

I sent the children to the living room and picked up her phone, again. I unlocked it and went to Facebook Messenger. Kosh had written.

Kosh: Hi sweet-heart. Hi Sweetie - are you there?

No reply from my wife. He was typing again.

Kosh: Are you there, Smukt peger?

I decided to respond.

Me: Yes. I am. Sorry I was away. How are you?

Kosh: Great. What's your plan for tonight? Friday, you know.

Me: Chilling at home with my beautiful family.

Kosh: Oh, I am jealous.

Kosh sent a sad emoticon.

Me: Are you? Ok, can I come over to your apartment?

Kosh: Are you serious?

Me: Yes.

Kosh: That would be great!

Me: I guess so.

Kosh: What time?

Me: It takes 30 minutes to reach your place. Snowing, which means it will take longer to drive.

Kosh: No problem. Waiting. Please, don't fail to come.

Me: Believe me, I won't.

I did not want my wife to know I was on the phone with Kosh. I didn't want her to talk to Kosh either, before our meeting. I wanted to see Kosh in person, confront him face to face, man to man and talk to him about my beautiful family and how I do not want him to destroy what we enjoy as husband and wife - to destroy what I spent so many years to build. He would stay away from my wife - at best advise her to value what she possessed. So, I turned off Madam's phone and pushed it under the bed. She won't find it for a while and won't be able to receive any calls, until I returned.

When she came back from the supermarket, I dashed out and locked the door behind me. A few minutes later, I sped out of the parking lot in Glostrup - a few minutes away from the railway station - my destination Lyngby, a Danish Municipality located in the northern suburbs of Copenhagen.

It was 16:30, but darkness had descended over the land. The darkness was further compounded by low clouds and heavy snowfall.

Kosh lived in one of the buildings at Toftebaeksvej, a few metres away from the Lyngby Store Centre. I drove for fifty minutes because of the heavy snow and poor visibility. I left my car in the parking lot adjacent the building. When I approached the main door, someone was leaving the building. I hurried inside and so didn't have to ring Kosh to grant me access into the building.

Kosh lived on the third floor. I rang the bell of his apartment and moved aside. I didn't want him to see me and maybe refuse to open the door.
''Is that you, sweetheart?'' he asked, excited, as he opened the door. To his greatest surprise and chagrin, I forced myself in.

''Hej Kosh, it’s me instead - your girlfriend’s husband!''

''We don't have an appointment. You were not invited.''

''I know.'' I stared at him into his eyes. Kosh was above average height, but I was a few inches taller than him. At 49, he was eleven years older than me.
''It was you on the phone, wasn't it?''

''Yes, me.''

''You didn't harass her, did you? Where is her phone?''

''I don't harass women. And about the phone, not any of your business.''

I looked around his apartment. It was such a beautiful place - cozier than mine, large and classic, with expensive sofas, chairs, white exotic carpets and the latest, biggest model of Samsung Smart TV covering a cross section of the wall in his living room.

A Nigerian love song by Flavour was playing. I mentally noted it was one of my wife's favourite songs. Kosh had set up everything perfectly - the mood, the table had two candles lit and a red rose at the centre of it. There were also two golden Chinese coffee cups, a strikingly colourful coffee jar and a place for two at opposite ends of the table. It was a cozy, lovely atmosphere at the apartment and I was taken aback - even remembered those old days between my wife and I.

''All these for my wife'' I asked. He didn't answer.

''Tell me, have you laid your hands on her? Have you touched her - kissed her even or is this - this setup, just for courtship? Are you still trying to worm your way into her life?''
''Why don't you ask her? You must leave. You are not welcome here.''

 ''I am not leaving until I get what I want,'' I told him.

''And what do you want?''

''I want us, Kosh, to reach an agreement. I love my wife. She loves me too. We've had a wonderful life for so many years. Recently, things changed and I found out you are the cause. That's why I am here. I love my family and I don't want us to split. We have kids. We are bringing them up in the best way we can. I don't want them to suffer. I want you to stay away from my family. I want you to tell her to stay away from you, for her own good. Tell her to value what she has.''

''Why don't you tell her that?''

''There is a reason I came to you first.''

''Well, talk to your wife...''

''I read your conversations with her and realised you are the one making the efforts...''
''Look, Mr, I didn't invite you here and I don't have to entertain your ramblings...''
''Ramblings? My ramblings, you say! You don't get it, right? This is just a piece of advice. You see Kosh, the world is made up of almost eight billion people. More than half of that population are women. More than half of those women are single. Most of them are actively looking for a partner. You won't go far to find one who loves and cherishes you. In the meantime, stay away from my wife!''

''Get out. Just get out, before I call the cops on you. Don't ever come back. You will regret if you do.''

''I get it. I hope I won't come back, because you won't like it if I do,'' I told him as I walked to the door.

''And please, give this to your so-called wife!'' He retrieved a headscarf from the sofa and threw it at me. ''She left it the last time she visited.'' I looked at the scarf. Yes, it belonged to my wife. It was a huge provocation from Kosh and I clasped my fists, ready to punch him on the face. He walked passed me and opened the door. But lo and behold, I saw the barrel of a gun, held by someone, as he slowly walked into the apartment.

''Hi Kosh, been so long. Remember me? I promised to return. I told you that when I do, you won't have time to run your mouth again - that you won't have time to explain that there is no law in Denmark that prohibits eh...what did you say last time? Well, never mind. Been such a long time, but I came, Kosh, I came.''

Kosh raised his hands. But the unexpected guest shot once at him, right on the forehead. Kosh fell. Blood started oozing from his forehead into the thick white carpet. The guy turned the gun at me. Then he smiled and turned away, towards the door, satisfied and left. Shocked, I bent down and checked on Kosh. He was dead. Shit! I pulled out my phone and dialled 112. It rang once, but I stopped the call. Without second thoughts, I ran out of the apartment, down the stairs and into my car. I drove straight home.

Kosh raised his hands. But the unexpected guest shot once at him, right on the forehead. Kosh fell. Blood started oozing from his forehead into the thick white carpet. The guy turned the gun at me...

I got home and dropped the headscarf on a chair in the living room and sat down. My two children ran to me as always and for the first time in my life, I shoved them aside. I placed my hands on my face and felt like a looser.  When I lifted up my face, my wife was standing there, the headscarf in her hands. More important issues were on my mind.

My wife suspiciously stared at me and took the scarf into the room, without uttering a word.

I rang my friend Jason. He didn't pick his call.

I turned on the telly. 7:00pm. News time on TV2 Channel. Breaking story underway!

''A Danish man has been shot dead in his apartment at Toftebaeksvej, in Lyngby Municipality. Neighbours are advised to stay indoors. No reason has been advanced for this shooting. Police are optimistic the perpetrator would be brought to justice as soon as possible. Stay tuned for updates.''

My wife joined me to watch the news. She looked at me and I looked away. I left the living room and sought refuge in the bedroom. I continuously stared at the ceiling - my thoughts racing.

I'd panicked. Why did I do that? Why did I not complete my 112 call to the police? Why didn't I wait for the men in uniform to arrive the crime scene? Why escape instead, for God's sake? I didn't kill Kosh. Regardless of his fling with my wife, killing him did not cross my mind. I didn't kill him. Someone had and I didn't know why.

But I went there. I'd chatted with Kosh and arranged the meeting. At that moment, it occurred to me that I had not used my phone. I had used my wife's phone. I remembered switching it off and pushing it under the bed. I reached under the bed and pulled it out, switched it on and went directly to Facebook Messenger. She'd received more messages from Kosh and more than 20 calls, which, of course no one answered. Just then my wife walked into the room.

''Where did you get that from? I've been looking for it since 5:00pm. Were you keeping it? Give it back to me!''

She descended on me and pulled her phone away, her hands shaking and she hungrily checked on her messages and started crying.

''Did you do anything?''

''What do you mean?''

''Did you murder him?''


''Don't play with me. Did you kill Lars Kosh Motensen? He is dead. Investigators just confirmed his name. He was shot on the head. They just made the update on the television. Before you ask questions, let me provide some answers. Yes, I was chatting with him. I visited him once. That's where I left my scarf - the one you brought home. I was just excited. That's all. But should you kill him because of that? Should you? Why? Why? Why? Murder? Why? I am calling the police. I am.'' She cried hysterically and pounced on me, punching and scratching.

''Do I look like a murderer?'' I asked her, stricken.

''I don't know you anymore. You ended his life! First, you hacked into my phone. Then you sent him messages - you pretended to be me. You arranged a meeting. He opened his door for you. Now he is dead and you are on the run. You ran from the scene. How long do you think you can run? I am calling the Police!''

''I didn't do anything to him. Do I look like a killer?''

''I don't know what a murderer looks like. How then did it happen, if you didn't?''

''The past three months have not been easy for me, yes - for us. I've called your attention to your behaviour, but you won't listen. I wanted things to become normal again. I wanted to have my family back- to have you. When you slept last night, I got into your phone...''

''No. You hacked into my phone!''

''Ok. I hacked into your phone...''

''And pretended to be me. You used my account to chat with him. You arranged a meeting with him!''

''Yes and he was so pleased that you will abandon your family on a cold, dark evening and spend it with him!'' I snapped.

She didn't say anything.

''When I arrived his place, everything was set. He envisaged such a romantic evening between you two! Roses, candles, wine, exotic glasses and cups. I was embarrassed. I told him I loved you and didn't want to lose you. I told him to look elsewhere and not worm his way into your life anymore. He refused to listen...''
''You dealt with him because he refused to listen?''

''No. I am not a killer. I was about to leave, although I wanted to punch him so badly when he threw your scarf at me - the one you forgot at his place! It appeared he already had another score to settle with someone else. The guy shot him right in front of me and felt great about it. He even pointed the gun at me.''

'' Do you want me to believe you? Why did you run? Why didn't you call the cops?”

''I panicked.''

''Ok. Call the cops and hand yourself in!'' she demanded.

I didn't have to. Someone knocked at the door. When we opened it, four heavily armed men stepped in. They wanted to talk to my wife. According to evidence, my wife had scheduled to meet Kosh that evening. Kosh had also tried to call her more than a dozen times before he died. So, my wife was a prime suspect. However, it turned out I was indeed the one they were looking for.

I went with them to the station. They didn't believe anything I told them, especially the part about the shooting. There was no evidence on the mystery shooter. He'd left nothing behind which could enable them identify him.

That was my last evening as a freeman in a foreign land. The forces of law and order were contented they had their man. My lawyer argued that I'd never committed a crime before. The prosecutors argued back that it was premeditated murder and that I be locked up for life, without possibility of parole. They argued I had a motive, because Kosh was in a relationship with my wife and I went to his apartment that fateful evening to kill him. After just a month of going to the courts, I was sentenced to twelve years without parole and sent to the state prison at West Jutland.

I lost everything. I lost my job. I lost my apartment, which I bought almost five years ago. I lost my family - my wife and kids. I saw my wife for the last time in court the day I was sentenced. After the sentencing, she left without saying goodbye and did not visit throughout the two years I spent in detention. Most of my friends also abandoned me. They believed I killed the man because he was having an affair with my wife.

While in prison, I insisted upon my innocence. No one was willing to listen except my lawyer and my friend Jason. I pleaded that they find out more about the mystery man who had shot and killed Kosh.

After a year of digging, my lawyer came back with information that Kosh had an encounter with a man from Nigeria many years ago. The story went that Kosh had connected with his wife on Facebook. The man found out, got her well beaten and threatened to kill both. The man got six months in prison, was later repatriated to Nigeria and banished from Denmark. Kosh spent some time with the man's wife, before they fell apart.

That was five years ago. The findings did not help my case, because there was no evidence to prove that the man had returned to Denmark or if he visited Kosh that faithful evening. I was still a prisoner.

Two years after imprisonment, my lawyer informed me there was new evidence on my case and I had to reappear in court, first week of April. I was driven to the Danish court at Glostrup. The court was full on that day. My wife and friends, most of whom had abandoned me, were there. My kids were also there.

My lawyer talked about the new evidence, which came to his attention not long ago. It turned out that to capture his romantic evening with my wife, on the day of his demise, he had set up a small hidden camera, which he had switched on immediately I knocked on his door that fateful evening. The camera had captured everything that had transpired that evening, since Kosh turned it on. Investigators had missed the camera. One of Kosh's relatives who inherited his property at his demise. He had found the camera but not watched footage until two years later, when he picked up the camera and found the video.

My lawyer played the video in court, and it proved beyond reasonable doubt that I was innocent. He demanded my immediate release. He argued and presented how much I lost and asked the court to grant me compensation for wrongful imprisonment.

''We cannot underestimate the role of family - of strong families in the construction of successful societies. On this fateful day, this man stepped out to meet another man, who was forcefully warming his way into his wife's life, to discuss with him man to man, face to face, in order to solve the problem and save his marriage - his family. He ended up in prison, for a crime he did not commit. He lost everything - his apartment, his job, his friends and most importantly his wife and kids. Everything! I therefore demand justice.''

He had laid his case.

Thanks for  reading.

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