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I quietly crept out of the room, I didn’t want this man to know I was there, I found Cleo and She Rocks waiting for me I signaled that we should go as Cleo was about to speak I whispered “shhhhhh” and we walked back to my ward, they asked what had happened in my mother in laws room, I honestly didn’t know how to tell them so I said those pipes connected to hear freaked me out so I walked out before I could even speak to the doctor, they seemed to be buying that story. How do I tell them that I think my husband’s mother is the head of mafia and that my husband’s friends have some people locked up somewhere and they are torturing them and waiting for my mother in law to wake up so she can give them a death sentence, that’s not something you share with your friends not matter how close you are, they would probably think I’m crazy, hell sometimes I think I’m crazy with all that’s going on around me. Cleo’s phone rang it was Andiswa she wanted to speak to me, I asked her where she was I needed her to save me from the crazy two; she said she was helping her boyfriend out with something. I had been so pre-occupied with my own problems that I had kind of forgotten that my friends have lives outside of mine, I felt bad. I asked her how the good doctor was doing, I was not even sure if she was dating a doctor, I was crossing my fingers that he is a doctor, she said he’s good and I won’t believe this but I have actually meet her boyfriend, I told her she knows I have been out of it the past few days so that was not fair of her to bring her boyfriend to meet me while I was not myself, she laughed and said “no, he’s the guy that found Neo with the car guard under the car” oh my word, it’s a small world, I said she should tell him how grateful I am for all his help that day. I thanked her and hung up. Mthobisi walked in I had one question for him, “what happened to the car guard lady who saved our son’s life?” he said she had been discharged, the bullet had only grazed her so she was not badly injured she was at home resting and will not have to worry about looking after people’s cars ever again coz She Rocks had actually given her a job, her brothers needed someone to clean and look after the house during the day while they at work, I looked at She Rocks and said “you are amazing, thank you”. A nurse came and said I was being discharged, I just had a few documents to sign and I could go home, I was so relieved, I told Mthobisi we should go to my mom’s place so we could be close to the hospital. I went to the bathroom and changed into my clothes that my husband had brought for me and we went to see my son again before we left and the nurse said he would be discharged by tomorrow, these were such good news I was over the moon, but we couldn’t celebrate as my mother in law was still in a coma. The girls said they would come see me at home tomorrow and left.
My husband and I drove to my mom’s place, both she and Victor were so happy to see me, they were faffing over me, kept asking if the couch was comfortable and if they should get me pillows, I hate being sick I told them I was fine. I asked where Naledi was and they said she and the kids had gone back to their house, the house was so quiet without the noise of all the kids, I missed all of them. We ate the food that my husband had bought earlier, then Victor and Mthobisi went to go wash dishes and chat, I guess they wanted to give my mom and I some privacy. She told me this is the reason why she didn’t want me involved in any of my dad’s dealing now I’m stressed because of him, I told her I didn’t want to discuss this, I was tired and just want to go to bed. As soon as I stood up Mthobisi was by my side, making sure I don’t fall, honestly this man, I was not disabled, I was stressed that’s all, as soon as we were out of my mother’s sight he lifted me and carried me to our room, I was laughing myself silly in his arms, I told him I need to faint all the time so he can be this romantic, we both laughed. He told me how strange my friends have been the past 3 days that I have been in hospital, he said at first they didn’t arrive only Jessica was there and then Andiswa called him and asked why had he not told them that I was hospitalised and he told her that he thought they were coming and she shouted at him saying how can they come when they don’t know and they had found out through Jessica’s post on Facebook, he said then when they came she apologised and said she had missed the sms’s that I had sent to them, good cover up friend I thought. I asked him where my phone was he said my sister had it, she’s had it since the day I fainted in hospital, in all the chaos that was going on he had forgotten to get it from her. He went on and told me that my friends would have these cocas meetings in my hospital room and as soon as he walked in they would keep quiet, he asked if I heard anything while I was sleeping, I laughed at him and said he likes gossip, they were probably talking about fashion, shoes, etc. He said the strangest thing was when Cleo forced him to taste some drink she had bought and when he did taste it was water and she just took the glass and left him there without saying anything, I told him he knows how strange Cleo can get at times so he should really not be worried about her, he said “Cleo yes she’s crazy but then they asked for Neo’s birth certificate, Andiswa said she needs it cause she wants to add him on her policies, and they give me the whole speech about how they realised that life is too short and they want to make sure all their things are in order, then today when I ask about it they give a different story about wanting to frame it, you were there you heard them”, well that was strange now that I think about it and their answers were also a bit questionable. I told my husband I’m sure it was probably a surprise that they wanted to do for us so he shouldn’t worry about it too much. I was exhausted and I think he was still talking when I fell asleep.
The next morning we were going to pick up Neo from the hospital, I was so happy, my sister came by in the morning with the kids, she looked good, I guess I expected to see her with blue eyes since she was back together with her psycho husband, I had missed her kids so much I was more happy to see them. She said we needed to talk, I knew she wanted to ask about Mfundo, my husband had not said anything about Mfundo it was like that whole punching incident didn’t even take place. I was not ready to explain myself to my judgemental sister; I told her we will talk when I get back from fetching my son. She handed me my phone back, it was no use to me the battery was flat so I left it in my room charging, as we were leaving the house, there was a car arriving I didn’t recognise it, Andiswa came out of it and ran to me to give me a hug, she was happy to see me out of hospital. I asked who was driving her she said the boyfriend, I remembered him from the crazy day of the shooting, he came and shook my hand and said “nice to officially meet you, I’m Muzi Mbatha”, he told me how my sister and I look so alike, as if we twins we get that a lot and at times we would just pretend to be the other one just to avoid explaining that it’s not me it’s my sister, he had already meet her my husband in the days that I had been half dead. We told them we were on our way to pick up Neo and they can wait for us in the house, my sister and mom would keep them company, they didn’t mind, they went in and we drove to the hospital.
When we got to the hospital I changed my son into his favourite clothes and my husband went to go sign he’s discharge papers, while I was still busy changing my son, a nurse I had not seen before came to me and said “Hi” and smiled I smiled back and said “Hi”, she said “I’ve got those results you asked me to do for you, it wasn’t easy but I told the lab that they were urgent”, I looked at her confused, she continued “don’t worry your sister and husband they will never know that you did a paternity test on their son” she said looking at Neo. Shit, the nurse thought that I was Naledi, what had my sister done. I thanked her and took the envelope she was carrying I couldn’t let the cat out of the bag and tell her she had the wrong sister. She stood there and cleared her throat, I looked at her and she said “Where is the rest of the money that you promised”? Naledi had bribed this woman to do a paternity test and I didn’t have any cash with me, I scratched in my bag knowing there was no money there and asked her how much did I still owe her she said “R1000”. The fuck is wrong with Naledi, promising so much money, I told her I would do an eft she should sms her banking details and that I had forgotten my wallet in my other bag, she said she trusts me and I better not disappoint her not after all the hard work she did. I gave her my sister’s numbers and told her to sms her banking details on those numbers. Mthobisi came back and kissed me on the lips and said “are you okay Honey?” that’s when the nurse realised her mistake, she whispered “Shit” then ran out of that room faster than Usain Bolt. My husband asked what was that all about, I said “nurses are over-worked and underpaid, she was just sharing her problems with me, she must have just remembered that she has other patients waiting” he laughed and said he had missed me and my dry sense of humour. I told him we should go pop in by his mom to see how she’s doing, he readily agreed we got our son and left, kids don’t enter ICU so I waited with Neo outside while my husband went in to check on his mom, he came back a while later and said her condition had not changed, he looked so sad, my heart was breaking for him.
We got home and Cleo and She Rocks were there, they brought cake and had balloons put up and a sign written “Welcome Home Neo” ahhh these girls were just too sweet, Mthobisi asked if was this the big surprise that they had been planning when I was in hospital, others said “no” and others said “yes” just two completely different answers, I was tired of all this strangeness and secrecy I wanted to know what the hell was going on and as for Naledi going behind my back like that I was ready to give her hell but I couldn’t do it in front of everyone, I told her we need to talk, she told me that she knows that I know, the nurse had called her to explain the mix-up. We went to my room, she told my friends to join us I told her this has nothing to do with them, she said “yes it does, I told them everything” I shouted at her and said “why don’t you just tell the whole world while you at it?” we all went to my room, I locked it I didn’t want anyone interrupting us. I asked them what was going on, Andiswa said “Lee, you might want to sit down for this”. Knowing my fainting disease I decided to sit on top of my bed. Cleo spoke “Naledi told us about the nurse who thought that Neo was adopted and we all found it strange that she would think that, we went to confront her and she said according to the blood types it was not possible that Neo could be related to either you or Mthobisi let alone be your son” wait what? They can tell that through blood? I looked at all four of them and laughed I laughed so hard that I had tears in my eyes “and you actually believe her? You were all there when I was pregnant with Neo, so how the hell can he not be my son when I carried him for 9 months?” Now it was She Rocks speaking “Babe, remember you had just changed jobs and also had to switch medical aids when you found out you were pregnant and the medical aid you were on told you about the waiting period and would not cover your pregnancy and you had to give birth in a public hospital” I quickly replied “Yes genius, how can I forget that? But I was put on the private side of the public hospital so it was not bad, anyway what’s your point?” now it was Cleo’s turn to speak, had these people rehearsed this I thought, “we couldn’t sit and do nothing, we had to find out the truth, so we decided to get Neo’s dna, your dna and Mthobisi’s dna, to have them tested. Getting yours and Neo’s was easy, Mthobisi’s was not that easy”, the glass they took after he drank the water I thought. Andiswa said “I asked Muzi since he is a doctor to send them to get tested for us. Naledi had already bribed the nurse at the hospital by then to have the blood tested that you had all donated”. I looked at her and took out the envelope the nurse had given me with the results and said “since you all want to meddle in my business, here are the results, you read them I don’t want to know, all I know is that outside this door is my son” but I had one question to ask, “what were you doing with my son’s birth certificate?”, Cleo said they went to the hospital where I had given birth to try and track down who had given birth the same day as me and the funny thing is all the other 4 people who had given birth on that day in the same hospital had given birth to baby girls myself included. I gave birth to a what? “So where is this girl that I gave birth to did she somehow turn into a boy?.” Andiswa softly said “that’s a question you need to ask your mother in law”. Oh God, what had that woman done? I quickly opened the envelop that I got from the nurse and handed it to She Rocks and said she should read it she said “the tests are negative for both you and Mthobisi, I’m sorry Lee but Neo is not your son.”
Michael Nkululeko Maphoto (fb page)