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Black Tax

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2

I walk back into the house not knowing how to feel, I didn’t see Allan treating me the way she did. But then again if I were in her shoes I would have behaved the same, maybe even worse because who would be okay with their partner’s ex being in their house.


Clarice and Shannel are seated on the same couch watching God knows what. I decide to let it slide and walk to the bedroom but then walk back and switch off the TV knowing very well that if I put up with this behavior it might be hard to change her soon.


‘Really Deshawn? What is this about?’ She asks looking straight into my eyes


‘Don’t you have somewhere to be?’ I ask looking at the time


‘My class is starting in the next two hours, I don’t have to be at school until then.’


‘And her?’


‘You know you can always talk to me without pretending that I am non existent right?’ Shannel asks


‘I wasn’t talking to you?’


‘When did you become this rude? She is my guest.’


‘I will go to the bedroom, get my laptop bag and by the time I come back I don’t want to see either of you here. And this should be the last time I see her in my house.’


‘Or what?’


I raise an eyebrow


‘Are you really asking me that question?’


She looks down wordlessly


‘I thought so.’ I say walking away


I get into the bedroom and bang the door really hard, how does one even start the day like this? And to make matters worse my own sister is giving me a headache which will make things go south between us.


After getting my bag I walk back to the living room am this time it’s just Clarice.


‘Bro I need to talk to you.’ She says with folded arms


I know this attitude too well and right now I am not about to tolerate


‘Clarice I am late for work, can we have this conversation later?’


‘Unfortunately it can’t wait.’


‘Okay, what is so important that you want me to be late?’


‘Bro I didn’t like how you talked to Shannel.’ She says making a face


‘You didn’t like how I talked to Shannel?’ I repeat as though I haven’t heard her correctly


‘Yes, I didn’t like how you talked to her. She is my friend and I feel you should respect her as such, just because I am living under your roof it’s no reason to treat me like a peasant.’ She says hands still folded and pressed hard against her chest


‘Clarice are you okay?’


‘No have you lost your mind?’ I ask again trying not to show my anger


‘You dare stand in my presence and utter such things?’ I add not giving her a chance to respond


‘Bro I am sorry to say this but Shannel was my friend even before you two started dating, I don’t know why you cheated on her or why you married another woman but that doesn’t mean that I will stop being her friend. Unless of course you are telling me that I don’t need to have friends anymore.’


I look at her, at a loss of words. This is a girl I took under my care when she was only twelve years old, I have gone out of my way taking her to the best schools I could afford and now she has the audacity to look me in the eyes and say such things? I mean where did I go wrong with her? Was it making her feel like she could always ask me for anything and not creating anything boundaries? Was it that I was too soft with her and she forgot that despite us being close I was still way older than her?


‘Anyway, since I have noticed that nothing seems to please you anymore I have decided to leave. Shannel is okay with me staying with her that way I won’t have to come between you and your wife, I guess she and her son are more important to you than your own family.’


‘I see.’


I remove some hundred kwacha notes from my wallet and put them on the table


‘And this?’


‘I am sure you need transport money to go to Shannel’s, don’t you?’ I ask not looking at her twice and I can see the shock on her face


I walk out of the house and get into the car but instead of going to the office I call my Managing Director and tell him I am having a rough morning and will delay by some hours, I go to PNP Centro mall where I get Allan a bouquet of flowers and her favorite chocolate then drive to her work place in long acres - she works as a marketing manager for Magnetic Motors whilst I am the Director Operations for Premium Oil Limited.


‘Good morning Mr. Mutti.’ The receptionist greets


‘Good morning.’ I respond with a smile


‘Is Allan in?’


We have always been comfortable calling each other by our first names, it has more to do with her background than mine anyway and we have seen how some people have been uncomfortable once or twice but it doesn’t bother us in any way.


‘Yes she is, except she is with someone.’


‘Oh okay, I will wait then.’ I say


She points at the visitors chair where I go and take a seat, I didn’t expect to be seated in this chair and it actually feels really weird.


After about fifteen minutes she comes out of her office laughing with Willie Snr and I can’t help but feel this mixture of jealousy and anger. What is he doing here and why is she laughing with him like that?


‘Deshawn.’ She says


‘I will see you around.’ He says pecking her cheek and then walking away


I try to pretend like I didn’t see anything because I don’t want to cause a scene in front of the receptionist.


We walk into the office and I feel like a fool coming with the flowers and chocolate because I notice there are a bunch of fresh flowers on her desk and I can only guess she won’t be needing mine.


‘I guess you won’t be needing these.’ I say throwing them in the trash can


‘Really Deshawn?’ She asks with a raised eyebrow


‘Should I throw these too?’ I ask looking at her


‘Deshawn leave my office.’ She says without blinking



..


Your Friend and Author

Winnie

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