Mthobisi walked and to find my phone on the phone shattered, I guess he must have heard the sound of something falling and came to inspect what was going. “Honey, what’s wrong?” he asked looking at my obviously shocked and confused face, I stared at him dumb-founded, I couldn’t find my voice, the words wouldn’t come out of my mouth it felt like if I said then it would be come real. “Honey, you have to tell me what is going on, I can’t help you if I don’t know what is wrong, talk to me” he said holding both my hands and looking me in the eyes. I shook my head and said in a hoarse voice, my voice was struggling to come out, even the words were painful just saying them “Thandie has been shot” I said, he looked at me confused, he joined my world in a matter of seconds and asked. “Here in the Estate? Why didn’t we hear gun shots?” I shook my head and told him that Nozi had just called to tell me they went to a club and that’s where all this happened. “Let’s go get her, I didn’t realize how much of a handful having a teenager can be.” Mthobisi said grabbing his car keys. I quickly told Mavis that we were going out, I didn’t give her any details because I didn’t have any myself. We rushed to the club that Nozi had said they were in, it wasn’t too far from our house, when we got there the place looked chaotic, there were ambulances and police cars.
Mthobisi and I rushed to the front of the club and the police were all over the place, we approached a policeman who was taking notes. “I’m, we are looking for Thandie, she was shot, she’s injured.” I said just blurting out words, I wasn’t even sure of what I was saying, words were just flowing out of my mouth, the policeman looked at me and told us that he didn’t know everyone’s names that was there and he was doing his job and if my daughter was hurt I should go to the hospital because he saw an ambulance leave, he didn’t know which hospital the ambulance had gone to and he was very disinterested in the whole situation, you would have sworn he didn’t want to be at work and we were irritating him with our questions. Mthobisi pulled my arm and we walked inside the club the club was empty, I guess everyone ran after the shooting, who would sit there and wait and put their lives in danger. There was no sign of Thandie or Nozi anywhere and when I tried calling the number Nozi had called me with it went straight to voicemail. Outside the club, it was chaotic with police and people and everyone just talking at the same time, no one was listening to anyone, the whole scene was very confusing. Mthobisi went to a group of people that had gathered with some police the people were explaining what had happened and the police were asking questions and everyone was just answering at the same time saying their own version of the story. “Can everybody just shut up. We will ask each person individually, I’m tired of this circus. You go with him and you follow her, you come with me” one of the police officers said taking charge of the situation which was something that they should have done in the first place. We followed two girls that were being interviewed by one of the cops, they must have been around eighteen and nineteen years, we just assumed that since they were young maybe Nozi and Thandie were with them or are friends with Nozi, we were desperate, the one girl said she was in the bathroom when the whole thing happened and the other was in so much shock she couldn’t even speak, she kept saying “I…. I … I” Mthobisi pulled my hand and said we should go listen to another conversation because this one was wasting our time. As we were moving to another group of people being interview a police officer approached us and asked if we needed help. I told him we were looking for our daughter and her friend had called us saying she had been shot and the paramedics were with her and we couldn’t get any further details, I didn’t mention the part of me dropping the phone on the floor. He told us the ambulance went to Carstenhoff hospital and he doesn’t know who is hurt and but we could go to that hospital. We rushed back to the car and drove straight to the hospital, on our way there I received a call from Mali, I let the phone go to voicemail, what the hell was I going to tell him when I myself didn’t know what was happening.
When we arrived in hospital it was so busy there were so many people around, I grabbed the first nurse I could find, the reception was too busy for my liking. I asked the nurse and she said there was a few people in who were there from there club shooting. She pointed us to a ward where they were all being treated. When we got there, we saw Nozi standing outside the ward crying, my knees feel week, I had to hold on to Mthobisi tight to keep my balance. Why was she crying? Was it because of Thandie? Before I could even ask those questions Mthobisi was on her asking her why she took our little girl to a club and if anything was wrong with her or if she was hurt in any way he was going to her and each and every one in that disgusting family of hers. I composed myself and told Mthobisi she was just a child he shouldn’t speak to her like that. Nozi on the other hand couldn’t be bothered by what Mthobisi was saying she was still sobbing and just pointed us inside the ward when I asked her where Nozi was. We walked in and saw Thandie on the bed and she had a drip in her arm, the other arm had a bandage on it, she was asleep. I went to her bedside and I immediately joined Nozi in the water works, and started crying. A doctor came and asked if we were the parent’s and Mthobisi and I both nodded, we didn’t have time to explain that we were her aunt and uncle and that her father could not look after her because he was too shit scared of his wife, no that was just a too long explanation and we needed to find out what was wrong with Thandie and he said he needed to speak to us away from her and that’s when I knew we were going to hear bad news. “What’s wrong?” I asked as soon as we got to the corner of the room away from Thandie. “She was lucky the bullet just grazed her arm, but next time she might not be this lucky, you need to look after your child, we have called social workers and she will not be released into your care until the social worker has interviewed the both of you to see if you are fit parents. What is a 13 year old doing in a club? How do you let that as a parent happen?”
I could not believe this, I just kept shaking my head was speechless, I didn’t understand what this man was saying, interview with social worker. “This is the bullshit that happens in private hospitals, we didn’t ask for her to be brought here, you should have taken her to a public hospital, then none of this shit with social workers would have happen. It’s fine keep her here we’ll see who is going to pay that ridiculous bill.” Mthobisi said, I don’t think the doctor expected to hear such words from parents. He was to shocked to even utter any more words. He looked at both of us and shook his head and walked away. We walked back to Thandie’s bed and I looked and Mthobisi and I asked if he had a plan. He looked at me then went to Nozi who was sitting sitting outside the room she had stopped crying and was on her phone. “You can go home now. Did you guys fill in any forms for personal details?” Mthobisi asked her, she shook her head and said she just gave them her name and told them she was on medical aid and that’s why she was brought to this hospital and anyone else who wasn’t on medical aid the paramedics had taken them to a public hospital, they said they were going to get her details when she got up. “Okay, get your Uber and go home, we will take care of Thandie.” Mthobisi told her, she requested an Uber on her phone then told us it was five minutes away and said she was going to wait at reception. As soon as she left Mthobisi pulled me back inside Thandie’s ward, he told me to check the drip, I looked at him confused what the hell was I supposed to look for in the drip, he saw my confusion and came to where I was standing and looked at the drip then said he was removing it before I could say anything he removed it and told me to hand him my jacket, I did and he said he would be right back.
He came back after a few minutes with a wheelchair, he dressed Thandie with my jacket and put her on the wheelchair. “Mthobisi what are you doing?” I asked unable to believe that we were about to steal a child out of the hospital. “Do you want to go to deal with a social worker, go to court and be charged with child neglect and all that nonsense of being investigated. Do you know how much shit they will find if they start investigating us?” I didn’t think of it that way, he was right, I was short sighted. I helped him put Thandie in the wheelchair, he handed me car keys and told me to go get the car and meet him at the ambulance entrance, I told him I didn’t know where that was and he told me to follow the signs and told me to hurry. I grabbed the car keys and on my way out I passed the evil doctor and he gave me a dirty look, I ignored him and kept walking as soon as I got inside the car, I became nervous, I started shaking, what if we get caught, that will be worse than being investigated we could go to jail. I was not doing this, Mthobisi would have to forgive me but I can’t, I was not going to do this. I was going to sit in that car in that parking lot until he changed his mind and put Thandie back on the hospital bed and come back to find me and when he comes back I was going to drive us straight home and explain everything when we were home. Mali could go back and pick up Thandie from the hospital, this was his problem after all.