“You can’t just stand there go after her!”
Ezile said to me. She was right too and I could not let my embarrassment cloud me. I could not understand though what had just happened here. My mother had convinced me that she was not pregnant and I had convinced myself too that she was not.
I asked myself as I walked out.
“Excuse me sir, you have some document to fill in!”
The receptionist lady said. Crap, why had she not told me this when I first came in. By the time I had finished the form and went outside she was gone. I tried to call her but she did not pick up.
“Four weeks? How?”
I asked myself. A lot of men, me included do not keep record of when we have sex. It’s not that we are bad with keeping a diary, ok fine we don’t keep diaries but it’s not like we keep score. I had had sex with her a few times in the last couple of weeks and we never use condoms. Why then did I doubt that the child was mine? Had my mom poisoned me enough into not believing in her?
“I am so confused!”
I found myself telling myself as I drove. I called her again and her phone was not going through,
“Londiwe please pick up the phone we need to talk!”
I left a voice mail on her phone. I did not drive to my mother’s house to shout at her but I went back to our place. I was going to wait for her like they do in the movies were you find the person sitting in the corner lurking. Things did not go as planned though because my phone rang soon after, I should not have picked up. It was my boss.
“I can’t talk right now I am on my way home from the hospital!”
I told him.
“I am afraid it can’t wait. It’s important you have to come to the office now!”
He told me. It must have been an emergency because it was rare for me to get called in like this so I knew it was important.
“Ok I am on my way.”
I told him. I also felt that it was not entirely a bad thing because my intention was to go see Londiwe so it would give her a chance to cool off before I got there. When I got the office there was a hushed silence as I think it was tense.
I said when I got there.
“Thank you for coming on such short notice!”
He said to me. He was not alone. He was with one of my colleagues whom I was not particularly close to. We had no problem between us but we just never spoke that’s all.
“I will get straight to the point, I got a call from the higher ups, and they want to know how far we are with the tender we are supposed to bid for?”
He asked me.
“Sir you never gave us the specs or anything to that end. All you told us was that we were to place the bid. I even recall telling you that to fill in the document takes a lot of work and if I recall I got my misfortune soon after that so I don’t know how far the project is!”
I told him. I was right too. There was still that conflict of interest where I was bidding for the same contract on the side and that was something I could not reveal. I did not want to sabotage the process or end up being blamed for its failure if they did not get it.
“Well I put you in charge of it that day so it’s your baby! You have to speak to the board they were waiting for you to come in!”
He told me. This guy was throwing me under the bus.
“But sir I have already told you that I did nothing on the project because I have not been there!”
I protested but he would hear nothing of it.
“If you don’t have anything to say I will have no choice but to fire you!”
He said to me blankly. I did say this guy was a dick before and all he was doing here was trying to cover his own ass for not doing his job.
“And I will take you to Labour court!”
“You are not going to bully me like you do everyone else! If you want to fire me then fire me but I swear I will take you down with me! You are lazy and incompetent! You hide behind our work and we prop you up but with all your pride you don’t even see it! I am the only one here with a chance in hell of getting us that project yet you are threatening to fire me? How stupid are you?”
I asked him standing up. I doubt very much he expected to hear such a thing from someone he considered a junior. I too had overstepped a few lines. This was not like me to come out so loud at my superiors but because I was going through so much right everything just came out.
“Calm down, I was joking! The board needs to hear something though!”
He said and the idiot still made the call. There was a board meeting taking place hence why I had been called in. I had to update “Cape Town” as we called them telephonically. It was not entirely a disaster as I obviously knew a few things for the project from the research we had done with my mother’s side. I felt like a turn coat.
“Thank you for that update, we are optimistic!”
One the board members said before they hung up. My boss looked at me and said,
“I don’t understand how do you know so much of the project if you say you haven’t worked on it?”
Which was a good question? I had ended up being asked a lot of questions which I seemed to have answers for.
“I did my research! Did you think I just lay in bed at home dying?’
I responded cheekily which was a lie and I don’t think he bought it. He looked at me curiously as I walked out. This was going to backfire on me I could tell but I just wanted to get home. I wanted to see Londiwe and find a way of making peace. I was wrong that’s a fact and had made the situation worse. As I drove into my estate it hit me that I had no idea what I was going to say to her to make peace!
“Shit I should have bought flowers!”
I told myself but I was already here. She did not even like flowers so what was I going to do with them in any case.
“Time to face the music!”
I said as I stepped out of the car. Yes I accept it, I am weak! I was going to beg for her forgiveness and ask her to take me back. Love is knowing when to say I am sorry. I got out of the car and walked to my place.
My big Nigerian friend said as soon as I got there. He was coming out of his place so there was no avoiding him.
“How are you?”
I greeted him.
“I have not really gotten the chance to say thank you for all the help you have given us through what we went through! I really do appreciate it!”
He said shaking my hand. I was by his door and I think Nobuhle heard us,
“Vusi please come in!”
She shouted from inside. Shit I was in a rush but I could not say no either. The big Nigerians phone rang so he stayed outside as I walked in,
I said to her. I know we leave in a modern age where women can do whatever they want and this was her house but she was seated when I entered so she stood up revealing those very short night dresses that barely cover anything, I was not comfortable but to her it seemed like it was nothing.
“I wanted to thank you too for all the help and the only thing I can offer you is a hug!”
She said and dressed like that she hugged me. It was really uncomfortable and I could not even look at her in the face.
“You are a very sweet man and Londiwe is lucky to have you!”
She said to me.
“Thank you! That’s what neighbours are for!”
I told her but she responded,
“No we are friends! You were there for me when not many people would have been!”
She said. I am not even sure what it is I had done for her to conclude that I had been there for her but I had to go so I took my leave. I was just so glad her Hulk Hogan boyfriend had not seen that because he would have crushed my skull.
“I have to go!”
I told him as he was still on the phone,
“It’s alright my brother I owe you a bottle of something expensive!”
He said and I just laughed it off as I went to my place. He stepped back into his place. It was already dark now. Mp phone rang and I picked it up immediately thinking it was her but it was not. It was the office,
“You left a set of keys on your desk I have taken them with me!”
It was the colleague who had been with my boss who was calling.
“Its ok thanks will fetch them tomorrow!”
I told him. I walked into the house and it was dark inside as could be expected. That meant that she was not here.
“This project is going to divide this company; we need you to speak to the boss because he is putting unnecessary pressure on everyone. You are the only one who can speak to him!”
He went on to say. I tried to switch on the light but the lights were off. Londiwe has a tendency of making a mistake when she wants to switch off the geyser where she switches off everything. I always get angry at her for that because it affects the fridge hence the meat inside.
“Yeah I know but I don’t think I am the right person to do so, it needs someone else…”
Wait a minute; something was wrong with this picture… I knew my house like the back of my hand but why had I not bumped into anything. I went to the power box and I switched on the meter. I was right; she had indeed put everything down,
“Oh my fucken lord!”
I cursed out loud as I put the phone down. I could hear my colleague asking,
“What’s wrong? Is everything ok?”
But no it was not ok, nothing was! My apartment was totally empty. There was not a single thing in the house! Londiwe had packed every single thing in it and left.
“What the fuck?”
I cursed again.
I was so shocked I simply did not know what to do.
Michael Nkululeko Maphoto (fb)
Good morning sir and to all the other readers.
I am 37 years old and I have been a single mum for 13 years. My husband cheated on me when our daughter was 3 years old and went on to divorce me for the other woman. It was quite a shock to the system back then but it’s cool I survived it. I have dated on and off since then but nothing really ever stuck until now. Most of the guys I met just wanted to sleep with me and to be honest I lost trust in men so I never allowed anyone to get close to me. About a year ago I met a man who had lost his wife a year before. We started hanging out and eventually started dating. Things between us are perfect but our children are against it. I don’t blame them either because the man is the father of my daughter’s friend at school. I knew him as one of the parents at school that’s how we met. Things have gotten so bad both the kids got suspended at school for fighting with each other. The man’s child told my daughter I bewitched her mother so that I could have him. They have been ganging up on my daughter because of that and it’s a mess. I have finally found a man I respect and who respects me but we now have to deal with this. I love my daughter with all my heart but I also need companionship. We have tried talking to them but things got so bad my daughter cut her wrists!
I need help please how do I fix this and is there even hope for me and this man now.