Chapter Twenty Two
After a long time, the guy gives up and lets Mongi go. We take a taxi to town and then to Summerstrand. We sit in silence. In the corridor of our flat we meet Chuma. She asks how it went. She reads the answer in Mongi’s eyes, “You don’t want to know,” I say and then she goes to her room. We get to our room and Mongikazi goes to the shower. I go to the cafeteria and get something to eat for Mongi and me. When I get back, I find her sleeping. “Mongi.”“Hey.”“Burger?”“No thanks.”“Something is wrong; what is it?”“It’s nothing, it was just a long day.”“Ok, you will tell me when you are ready. But you have to eat or drink something.”“No, Viwe. I am okay.” I drink water and put food in the fridge and then I take off my dress and put on my boxer and sports bra. I check my phone and find a missed call from Milady. I then send her a call back and she calls me immediately. She tells me that she got a call about Nandipha. I pretend to be shocked and all. She cannot know what’s really going on. She tells me to take care, call the cops if I see Nandi and that she is dangerous. She says the police will find her then she drops the call. I go to Mongi’s bed.“Move over,” I command her.“What?”“Please.” She moves closer to the wall I get under the blanket and hold her. “You don’t have to lie to me Mongi. That was your sister, wasn’t it?” she sniffs and holds me tight. “Fuck no. I am so sorry Mongi,” she gasps and tells me it’s okay even though we both know it’s not.“But at least we know she is still alive.”“Do you think she will recognise me?”“Of course she will.”“She was only 4, Viwe.”“You are her blood. You were 8 but you still know her after a long 12 years.”“We have to find her. She is only 16. To be a killer or worse; a prostitute. I have to find my sister Aviwe.” She cries painfully. I feel a sharp pain piercing through my chest.“We will do everything we can to bring her home.”“Promise?”“I promise.” She kisses my cheek. “Still going to the movie night?”“What movie night?”“Come now, the movie night.”“Oh that. No, I am not in the mood to be in a crowd.”“I think we should go.”“What?” she lifts up her head and looks at me. “We had a long day. We need something to keep us busy.” “Aaaaa,” she sulks.“Come on boo. This was your thing; now that I am up for it and you are letting me down. It is so not fair.”“Beg me.”“Ok, I beg you. Come now, Mongi.” “I prefer staying here with you like this,” she says tracing my stomach with his fingers. “But if you insist in going to the movie night I am in one condition, though.” “What is the condition?”“I choose your outfit.”“Cool with me.”“So you’d rather go to the movie than staying with me?”“I am always with you. I am going to be with you tomorrow and the days after.”“Whatever. Anyway, let me go choose your outfit. Go take a shower and don’t be too long.?“Yes, ma’am.” She gets up and walks over to my closet. I take off my clothes and wrap my body with a towel, take my toiletry beg and head to the shower. When I come back I find Mongi ironing my dark blue blazer. “I am almost done,” she says. I just look at her. “What?” she asks looking at me. “Are we going to a fashion show or a movie night?”“Why?”“White pants, white sneakers, white shirt and a dark blue blazer, come on!”“I choose an outfit. You wear whatever I choose for you.”I raise my hands as a sign of surrender, well I am going to over dress only to make her happy. It’s been a very long day for her. She saw someone she had not seen in 12 years. Her sister is part of the dangerous gang and I know Mongi blames herself. We have to find her sister. That’s the only thing that will make her sleep at night. I just wonder what her sister is going to say to Mongi, if she still remembers her. I mean the girl was only 4 years old when she was abducted. I cannot remember anything that happened when I was 4 or 5. The question is how and where are we going to start looking for her. We are just kids with no resources. We are nothing against these people. Truth is we need Milady and she is already in, besides she can take care of herself. We also need Babalo. He knows these people more than any of us do. If we want to take them down we need all the help we can get. They will not just let us take Mongi’s little sister home and arrest them. They will fight back. We have to be strategic. “What’s your sister’s name?” I ask.“Patheka... liked being called Miss P. Why?”“Nothing. I am just asking. It’s 19:30, we are going to be late.”
We leave for the Auditorium where the movie night will be taking place. We get to the hall which is already crowded. You will be so surprised to see how many gay people there are in this universe. They play a very explicit clip of the series “L word”. All the girls scream when this other girl called Shane shows. After the L word they play a short clip from Orange is the new black. We take a break and go to the bathroom while others go to the bar. After 30 minutes we go back to the Hall. I cannot see Mongi. I try her phone but it goes straight to voicemail. I go back and watch the movie. At 02:20 I try her again, but her phone is still off. I am too tired to look for her; she probably went back to res when she couldn’t find me. Besides, the South campus auditorium is only a few minutes away from Res.I put my earphones on and hit the road to res. When I get there and unlock my room, I can’t believe my eyes.
“What the fuck?” I say out loud without hearing myself.I quickly turn off the light and close the door. I feel my knees shaking, my heart pounding faster than ever; I sweat. I don’t know why but I feel betrayed, broken and used. How could she? Mongikazi has no shame, how can she bring another girl to our room? I thought she had it for me. Was it ever true? If she really loved me she wouldn’t have jumped in bed with someone else. It feels like I’m watching a movie; it’s going to end and I will come back to reality. The reality is that ‘my Mongikazi’ is locked in my room with some stranger. I saw her with my own eyes kissing the other girl in the neck. They were making out.I go to the bathroom to freshen up; I wash my face and take a very deep breath. I then go to Chumani’s room. Her room is locked too and I can’t knock because I’d wake the entire flat. I then decide to go to the lounge. I cannot to go my room and watch them make out. In the lounge I take out my phone and see that I have a WhatsApp text from Mongi.
“Where are you?” That’s all she asks. I ignore the text, put my earphones on, play music and fall sleep on the couch. Seeing Mongikazi with someone else hurts. I know she is not my girlfriend. I shouldn’t feel this way but I cannot control my feelings. My heart is bruised. I have no idea when I fell asleep, but I am woken the next morning by a cleaning lady. She says she needs to clean the lounge and is pretty concerned why I slept on the couch. I tell her I forgot my key at my friend’s place and my roommate is not around. Then I go to my room.The chick is still in Mongikazi’s bed. I greet and she greets back. I then go to my bed and stare at my phone; trying to look all busy. I cannot help but look up when Mongi wakes up nude. She slowly goes to her closet and takes her night gown and a towel. She throws a towel at the girl on her bed.“Roomy, did you get the message I sent you last night?” she asks.“Nope!”“Oh?”“I did not get any message; you just disappeared. Phew, just like that.” I try to keep my cool.“Oh, I sent you a message telling you I’m coming home with Lorato.”“Oh, I did not get it.”“Sorry then,” she points at the chick. “By the way this is Lorato, my..., my...” she smiles and looks at Lorato. Their eyes lock. They both giggle and shrug. “Anyway, Rato, this is my roommate and my partner in crime, Aviwe.”“Oh, this is the girl you were with last night at the movie night? Nice to meet you Aviwe.”Mongi nods, I keep quiet and look back at my phone. I put my earphones on. I see Lorato getting up. She wraps a towel around her body, Mongi takes her toiletry bag and they both go out the door. After a minute I hear them laughing in the shower. There is only one shower in the bathroom so they are obviously taking a shower together. I feel a chocking lump growing in my throat; tears burning my eyes I want to ignore the feeling and pretend everything is alright. I think that Mongi is trying to make me jealous. Well, I am not going to give her the satisfaction; it’s time to pull myself together and keep my cool. This Lorato chick will not intimidate me.
When they enter, they lotion each other and make small talk.“Vee, I hear you are studying law?” Rato says.“Yhea I do.”“I studied law too. I graduated last year so if you never need help....”“Oh thanks, now what are you doing here?”“Here as in, in your room or on campus?” Is this chick dumb or she is trying to be funny.“On campus. It’s pretty obvious what you are doing in my room.”“I am doing my masters.”“Nice”“Viwe, I will be back later. I am just taking Rato downstairs to her car.” Mongi says. I look at them, Mongi blows me a kiss, Lorato smiles and I see she has a dimple in her right cheek. Oh my, I feel damn intimidated; anger and jealousy rise again. Lorato is blazing hot. She is tall, skinny and light skinned. The most fascinating thing about her looks is that, even though dressed like a guy, she is still in touch with her feminine side. She still has long hair and girly smile and soft voice. She is not like tomboys I have seen here in Port Elizabeth.They both leave. I am left feeling like punching the wall or hitting my head on the wall. You know that feeling when you always thought you are the one, or thought someone has it for you, only to find out that there is a better person, a person that beats you ten zero. Yes, Lorato beats me. She has all the looks and is totally swagged up, she has a car and is doing Masters in LLB.
Mongi comes back, her face glowing.“That was kak, Mongikazi!” I shout.“Excuse me?”“Where did you think I was going to sleep? Huh? Look, this isn’t your room; it’s ours. If you want to bring a chick, the least you can do is tell me.”“You are right. I am sorry,” then she sits on her bed and looks at her phone screen, smiling. “Is that all you are going to say for yourself? ‘Sorry.’ Do you even know the meaning of the word?”“I sent you a text telling you everything. I don’t know how you didn’t see it. I don’t know what more to say except apologising.”“Are you even listening to yourself? Because you seem glued to your phone, you know I don’t appreciate you paying attention to your phone when I’m talking to you.” She does not reply. I go to her and snatch the phone from her hand and throw it on my bed. “What the fuck do you think you are doing?” she shouts, irritated. “I want to talk to you.”“What’s wrong with you?”“What’s wrong with me? Do you want to know what’s wrong with me?”“I would not have asked if I did not want to know.”“Nothing is wrong with me; everything is wrong with you Mongikazi Nkosana.” She literally rolls her eyes. “What? You joking right?” she throws her head back and laughs hard. I get pissed even more. “Did I crack a joke?”“I am just trying to figure this out.”“I don’t appreciate you bringing strangers in our room Mongikazi! How can you be so careless? We don’t even know if we are tale or not; do I need to remind you that your sister is out there? Nandipha is out there and Don is out there? You cannot go around sleeping with strangers. These people are dangerous.” She frowns and shakes her head. “Oh no, just stop Aviwe, you look pathetic. This just doesn’t look good on you.” I feel the palms of my hands sweating. “Look me in the eye and tell me you are not trying to cover your jealousy,” she says, calmly.
I look away. “I thought as much, I know you like a back of my hand, Viwe. No need to act all dumb. I hate it when you act like a toddler. You don’t get to be all worked up when I am with someone else. You don’t want me, remember? I expect you to be happy when you see me happy, because that’s what friends do. They get happy for each other. Don’t be an ass.”
I am lost for words. I feel like my left rib is broken. I go to my bed, take off my sneakers and sweater and then I get under my blankets. A lump in my throat grows bigger and bigger. Tears roll down the side of my face. I try to keep calm and quiet but the harder I try the more sound escapes my mouth. After ten minutes I cry aloud like a baby. You know crying heals the soul; it lets go of the pain. I hold my pillow and cry harder and harder. I feel Mongikazi crawling on my bed and holds me. She whispers: “you’ve gotta make up your mind, hun.““I know.” I say between sobs. Mongikazi cuts me short. “No buts Aviwe, this is life; it’s not your playground and it doesn’t go by your rules.”“I know. No need for a lecture.”“Good. Then what’s wrong?” I close my eyes and shake my head. “Nothing, I was just sad and I felt betrayed.”“I am sorry.”“It’s ok...I will get over it,” she brushes my shoulder and kisses it. I look at her. She looks back at me and whispers that she is sorry. “Stop apologising,” I say, softly. The corner of her lip curves into a smile. I see my lips forming a smile. I feel her soft lips mashing on mine.
My eyes close slowly as I rest my hand around her butt and slowly kiss her back. This time, the kiss is different; it’s more passionate and gentle. I can feel our heartbeats beating in the same rhythm. She breaks the kiss so we can catch our breath. I open my eyes and find her looking at me with eyes that speaks only their language. Even though I don’t fully understand the language it’s beautiful. She smiles a little and kisses my nose. I chuckle. She takes my head and rests it on her chest. I listen to her heartbeat. All I think about is how much I truly love Mongikazi; how much I wish she can say she still loves me.