I don’t recall ever being so scared in my life. It felt as though everyone who was around me was not doing enough to help in the search effort. My father insisted that I drive back with Jackzorro and Plizberry. He could see I was not an emotional state to do so alone but I also think he was not sure of my security which made me even more scared. I didn’t know these people but I had to trust them. It turns out they were a couple but very thuggish. Where Jack was tall, skinny and light in complexion, Berry was short and round. Jackzorro was not a yellow bone but you know that orange kind of yellow bone, like he stayed in the sun a bit too long, yes that him. It was in the car that they were arguing about something which is how I picked up they were together.
“How long have you two been dating!”
I asked because clearly they were not married!
“Dating? Not even if you paid me! He is not in my class!”
Berry said cheekily which annoyed Jackzorro immensely.
“Why do you have to tell people such things? You live in my room, eat my food, wash my clothes then finish all my money!”
He snapped at her!
“Yeah do you think the food I cook for you cooks itself?”
She asked him.
“I bought the bloody food in the first place! Must we always fight?”
He asked her annoyed. It’s like they didn’t even see I was here. All I had asked was how long they had been together and clearly they were!
“Well if you bought me a ring then we won’t always fight. Now we are embarrassing ourselves in front of lekgowa because you can’t do what normal people should do!”
She said not backing down. I could see he was so annoyed but I was quite amused. A distraction with all that’s going on was called for.
She said turning to me. I was ‘boss madam’ now, I wanted to laugh.
“Is it ok to be with a man for 6 months and he doesn’t wants talk about marriage or the even the prospect of it. He has kids everywhere but does not think we should have kids?”
She asked me. Now I was being put in the middle. I saw she was the aggressive one so I think it was best not to antagonise her by not agreeing with her so that she won’t turn on me too.
“No he must marry you. You already cook and clean for him and keep his bed warm so what more does he need to be inspired!”
I told them. You should have the look in her face. The look of elation on her face, the vindication and the triumph all rolled up in one!
“See even lekgowa says so, so what’s wrong with you?”
She said and slapped him on the back of the head.
“Ah mara why?
He asked her rubbing his head. She had not hit him hard, it was playful. This woman was funny though. We went all the way home with them arguing and to be honest I was not bored once. They were an interesting couple.
“We have instructions not to leave the gate so we will park here!”
Jack said when we got to the house. I did not argue with him because I wanted my family to be safe as well. I told him I will send them tea to keep warm as it was a bit chilly but he said tea was for ZCCs and he would prefer something more manly. I think that meant alcohol. I found myself laughing again.
As soon as I walked in I got my first of five phone calls from Nozipho’s uncles! It’s weird how the very same people who had chased Sizwe now wanted money from me to help with the costs. Say what you want but of all the sins in this world, not having money is the cruellest of them all. They tell us always that you can happy without money but when your stomach starts making those grumbling sounds there is no amount of smiles or happiness that can make those hunger pains go away. Money is a devil and a blessing at the same time. A blessing in that it’s the universal language for comfort and peace of mind. It’s the one thing that, no matter who you are, where you are from, brings comfort, options and a sense of safety. It’s the devil in that if you don’t have it, the things you are willing to do for it are often unmentionable but who is judge. Only people with money judge you on what you do for money. Two of the uncles called me asking for our forgiveness and for us to come back so that we could bury Nozipho with dignity. Where was the dignity when they were trying to harm my husband! I don’t want to say this but people get excited when they are in a group but forget where their bread is buttered!
“Mmane please, there is not enough meat, please help us!”
He said in the second call. I said I would send someone to but things for them. I spoke to my brother and he took my father’s old bakkie. It’s not that I could not be bothered with it but for me this was a man’s job. I wanted to find my husband.
“You can only use 10, 000 no matter what else they ask for!”
I told him but he looked at me like I was crazy.
“It’s too much! She is not your daughter!”
My brother said which rather took me by surprise!
“She is Sizwe’s child which makes her my child!”
I told him.
“I don’t believe in that to be honest. I know for a fact that if I met a woman with a child and brought her to you, you would tell me that I should not raise another woman’s child! I know this because I think twice you did that to me!”
He said. I don’t know where this was coming from and why now. He was right. Back in the day he was dating some girl with toddler and I warned him against it because one he was not working meaning that the money I gave him he was giving it to another woman’s child! As his sister it was my responsibility to tell him that he deserved to start his own path brand new and probably would tell him that again now if he came with that.
“So how is that any different? It just seems hypocritical to me that you will do anything for Sizwe’s kids from outside when you said under no uncertain terms I could not. With Pheladi you even stopped me from going to school after I refused to listen to you!”
He said. I could sense the feeling of betrayal in his voice. So this was what this was about, Pheladi! He loved that girl. He would have done anything for her. He stopped attending classes or if he did, certainly he was not passing anymore when she came in his life. It’s when he was doing I.T at one of these colleges and I was paying for it. He was my brother yes but at the time we were not as close as we are now which made it worse.
“Didn’t Pheladi end up marrying her baby daddy whilst you were still dating her?”
I asked him calmly. I did not want to fight with him. Right now I had other things to worry about and not drag the past up. That’s what he was doing. How come he had never complained about how I treated Nelisa and Nozipho until now?
“Yes she did but at that point you driven such a wedge between us the relationship was dead!”
He said as he stood up. It was dead because he was not giving her money anymore. People need to acknowledge when they are played. It’s got nothing to do with others but between you and the person that’s doing that doing to you.
“I will go but I think that amount is too much!”
He said. Zethu who had been sleeping walked in.
“What are you two arguing about?”
She asked with a smile on her face.
My brother said still unhappy but Zethu did things to him that I don’t think he understood either.
“Nothing at all. I have to go out. Will see you later!”
He said kissing her on the cheek as he walked out. He was so gentle with her yet you wouldn’t think this was the same woman he beat up just a few days ago. Men are weird creatures. My brother blamed me for all this.
“They need some things at the funeral and with Sizwe not there I have to do it!”
I told her.
“Oh ok! Any news on Sizwe?”
She asked me. My father had not said anything and it was getting late. I had tried calling him but his phone was off. My mother was cooking with Lintle but the mood was definitely tense. People were almost talking in quiet whispers. At dinner my mother practically forced us all to eat. No one was hungry. Her phone rang and she lit up. She went outside! I decided that I wanted to eavesdrop.
“… He is not here but my daughter is. I won’t see you tomorrow; I have a family emergency so we will talk properly about it….”
I heard but something disturbed her and she hung up. She did not see me standing there but she had actually managed to confirm my fears, the old lady was having an affair. Now what?
I sat in the TV Room waiting for my father and one by one everyone said their goodnights to me. My brother came back around ten.
“Did you get everything?”
I asked him. He showed me the shopping list that had been made. They actually did not spend the entire amount I had allocated.
“Do you think it’s appropriate for Zethu and me to sleep here or must I take her to a hotel?”
He asked me. Only now he thought about it? Being a man sometimes!
“It’s too late now. Let her sleep. You need to introduce her properly though because she is not just another girlfriend!”
I warned him. If these things are not done right they come back to haunt you. He said he was tired and needed to go rest so we parted on that note. Only after midnight did my father come back. I was waiting for him flipping through channels.
“Is there anything?”
I said as soon as he walked in. I startled him in fact and he jumped back.
“You shouldn’t do that!”
He scolded me!
“You could give someone a heart attack you know but no, nothing. The people I was suspecting say it’s not them but they are looking too because they know if it’s them tomorrow we go to war. Even they don’t want to mess with me when I am this angry. I will find him!”
He said and he sat down in front of me. Somehow I was not reassured! Somehow there was something missing.
“Did Sizwe have any enemies?”
He asked me.
We had discussed this already!
“I ask this because I don’t know where else to loo’!”
He said and the tears just welled up in my eyes. If he didn’t know then nobody knew!
Michael Nkululeko Maphoto (fb)
Hello Mike and everyone
I’m in two relationships with two different guys. Guy number one, let’s call him Yin. Yin is the exact physical description of Tall, Dark & Handsome. The kind of guy you want to be seen in public with just to show him off. Has a well-paying secure job. He’s the ultimate gentleman and supports me financially here and there and totally adores me. Problem is he bores me, doesn’t tickle my fancy and we just don’t connect whatsoever. Guy number two, let’s call him Yang. Yang is standard in terms of physical looks and unemployed. Despite his circumstances he tries by all means to take care of me and make me happy. We connect him and I and I love being around him. My problem comes in with having to choose between the two, I can’t. Yin is a secure investment for my kids and our future while Yang is the man I could fall In love and struggle through life with. Do I use my heart or brain for this situation?