What a pain if you don’t have a mother to care for you. A life without a mother is like a mouth with no hand to put food in it.

If your mother is still alive respect and cherish her with everything in this world. Everyone can live you but after God is your mother that will stand by you during difficult times….Don’t sleep on this story.

Much love from Faithypearls

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‘Class dismissed!’ shouted Mr Ndlovu, our Maths teacher walking out of the classroom with our exercise books.
As soon as he stepped outside, I quickly stood up from my chair and started packing my books in my plastic bag. My heart keeps on pounding very hard. I knew I was late and I just prayed that woman hadn’t laid her filthy hands on my siblings. I was supposed to be at home welcoming them back from school; it was my daily routine to just being there for them. Today it was different, I couldn’t miss my Maths lecture since it was my favorite subject and I needed to be present for the revision. We had been left with only 2 weeks to our finale and I needed to work hard.
I ignored Gerald, my best friend when he was calling out my name as I stormed out of the classroom like I was being chased. Obviously he wanted me to help him out with the Maths assignment. He had to wait my mind wasn’t at the right place. Thoughts ran through my mind thinking about my siblings. Their safety mattered the most and I wasn’t going to forgive myself if anything bad were to happen to just one of them. It was a long distance to get to my house from school but I ran like a mad person not stopping to rest. I don’t know it is because I was thinking too much; I couldn’t stop hearing my young sister’s voice in my mind crying out for help. I increased my speed and almost bumped into one of the sellers at the market. I quickly apologized to them, luckily it was Mama Sofia and I knew her very well. She even asked why I was in such a hurry, I couldn’t waste more time explaining things to her, maybe some other time and so I had to continue with my journey.
If only I had a phone, I thought to myself as I continued with my Marathon. I could have asked my little brother if they were okay instead of just running there with crazy thoughts but then again with that woman in that house, she would have taken the phone and gave it to her daughter or son.
‘Maybe if I finish writing my exams, I will move out with my siblings.’
I started walking as I reached the gate, breathing heavily and sweating. I opened the gate,
‘Thank God!’ I sighed at least it wasn’t locked.
She used to lock the door whenever I was out and sometimes she wouldn’t open it but send her daughter to give me left overs. She was doing all of this to fix me if I had responded back at her when she was scolding my siblings. I never watched but did something to defend them. I removed my shoes as I reached the verandah and walked to the door after wiping my sweat with the back of my hand. She was sitting on the sofa having a glass of juice. My two siblings were kneeling in front of her tears streaming down on their cheeks. I clenched my fist, I could have killed this woman the minute she announced herself as our new mother but I wasn’t a murderer and my late mother had raised me better not to be involved in physical fights.
‘What’s going on here?’ I yelled glaring at her with clenched fists.
She jumped on her two feet; obviously she wasn’t expecting my arrival.
‘Zanny, come here babe!’ I said to her with open arms.
Her name was Zanele and she was my mother’s last born. She quickly got up and ran into my arms. I embraced her as she kept on crying out loud. The child was 8 years old for goodness sake. Whatever she did, she wasn’t supposed to be treated that way not in a million times. Zayne my mother’s second child walked to me with a ‘I am sorry’ look on his face. Naledi, our stepmother clicked her tongue walked out of the dining room. I finally managed to make Zanny calm down; I loved calling her with that name. We walked out and sat on the verandah, the 3 of us away from the evil woman.
‘I am sorry I failed to protect her,’ apologized Zayne with his head bowed down.
He respected me a lot and had promised to protect Zanny when I was around. I put my hand on his tiny shoulders.
‘It’s okay buddy. What happened?’ I finally asked.
‘She forced us to wash the dishes without eating first. Zanny was hungry when she was wiping the plates. She felt dizzy and dropped her favorite dinner plate. I wanted to say it was me but Zanny had already told her the truth. She wanted to slap Zanny when I bit her arm.’
Honestly I wanted to laugh, that was so brave of him but I decided to maintain the serious look on my face.
‘Then she made us kneel in front of her. It had been an hour until you came and we got saved. I am sorry brother Zviko. I was just trying to protect Zanny from her,’ he sniffed wiping his tears with the back of his hand.
‘Big boys don’t cry Zayne. Crying while your enemy is watching shows your weakness, ‘ I said with a hint of a commander’s voice in me.
‘Yes, my brother,’ he quickly wiped away the remaining tears on his cheek.
‘I understand that you were trying to protect Zanny but you don’t have to hurt her too. Kharma will deal with her one day. I wil prepare you tow something to eat. Come and sit with me in the kitchen.’
We all stood up together and headed to the kitchen. I thought of cooking spaghetti for them since they were hungry. I opened the kitchen drawer and there was nothing. No sign of salt, cooking or anything I could cook.
‘Where is the food?’ I asked Zayne.
‘I don’t know brother.’
‘I saw mother taking it to her room when I arrived from school,’ said Zanny.
‘That woman is evil,’ I said loudly and my two siblings looked at me.
They weren’t expecting me to say such things.
‘Wait for me here. I am coming back,’ I said heading to her bedroom.
I stood at the door and knocked softly.
‘Who is it?’ she asked as if annoyed by my knock.
‘It’s me Zviko.’
What do you want?’
‘Where is the food?’
‘What foods?’
‘Dad bought for us.’
‘Your father is not here and so I am in charge. There is no food that belongs to you here,’ she responded rudely.
To think that Naledi was my mother’s cousin sister. Yes, you read that correctly. My step mother was our mother’s step sister. My mother passed away a year ago with breast cancer and I don’t know if it was part of tradition but it didn’t take long for my father to marry her. Honestly I once thought that she had killed my mother but then it was breast cancer that had killed her.
‘Okay,’ I responded softly, ‘ I wasn’t in a mood to fight with her.
I went back to the kitchen and felt pity for Zanny. She was just a kid and didn’t deserve the treatment.
‘Come I carry you on my back.’
‘Where are we going?’ she asked innocently.
‘We will go kwa gogo.’
Luckily my grandmother, (my mother’s mother) she lived nearby and so we decided to walk to her house. As I closed the gate and turned around, Naledi was standing at her bedroom window looking at us. I wanted to hurt her too, honestly I did but my mother was a church person. She told me,
‘If your father ever marries another woman when I am dead, respect her like she was your mother. She will treat you bad but always remember God is watching. You should all pray and never give up on life. Only prayer saved us from that evil woman and I continued praying. My father always travelled from one country to another. He didn’t know the condition we lived in if he wasn’t around. My step-mother treated us good when he was at the house. Pretending to like us but when the minutes he steps out of the house, all hell broke loose. I wanted to punch my father. Why? Because it didn’t take him few years to take another wife, I don’t understand why he had to marry his dead wife’s cousin sister. I always have these crazy thoughts running through my mind. What if he was cheating on my mother with her? Like he once said to me,
‘You are still a kid and you won’t understand.’
I decided to just drop the subject and never talk about his new wife, my Auntie. We arrived at gogo’s house.
‘Ambuya!’ I shouted walking inside the house since it wasn’t locked.
She stayed with my Auntie who was still at college but for the meantime she was alone.
‘Ndiwe Zviko (Is that you Zviko).’
‘Ndini Ambuya (it’s me granny).’
‘I am just from taking a bath, I will be there shortly. Cook something for your siblings.’
I put on a big smile on my face, something that I loved about granny. She cared a lot and honestly if only my father had allowed us to move in with her but he refused when granny had agreed to take care of us after my mother’s death. Anyway I knew my grandmother’s place very well. I fist popped some popcorns for them since they were both extremely hungry. Instead I decided to cook rice for them with just soup. Later on granny had to join us and we had lunch together. You should have seen how happy my siblings were with their grandmother. I just loved seeing them smile, my smile quickly faded away when my mind drifted to that woman. When we finished eating, Zayne helped me with the dishes. I hadn’t asked him about his day at school. I finally did and he had scared 25/25 in Mathematics. I guess it was hereditary, we were all good in Math and very intelligent at school, I am not bragging. Zayne and Zanny went to play outside after I had told them to.
‘What did she do?’
‘She made the two kneel in front of her until their knees turned red.’
‘That bitch!’
I laughed.
‘That language Ambuya. You have been watching too much of those American movies.’
‘I want you 3 to come and live with me but then your father don’t want you to. You my daughter’s children and what that woman is doing to you is very evil. She will continue hurting you. Naledi was like her own mother, my step-sister. She was an evil woman and now her daughter took after her. She always wanted to marry Jacob but your father chose my daughter. She had been jealousy of Zandile and I know that she rejoiced when she passed away.’
Grandmother told me a lot about my mother and Auntie Naledi. By the time we went back home it was around 7 and Zanny had already fallen asleep. We got at the gate, I tried to open it but it was locked.
‘She locked the gate.’
‘Let’s go back kwa Ambuya,’ said Zayne.
I had no other option but to walk back with them at grandmother’s house. It wasn’t safe for them to sleep outside.
My name is Zvikomborero Makoni and this is my story. I feel and our lives are VOID without our mother’s love. The world is tough.


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After she locked us outside the house, the following day Grandmother went to talk to her. Like the arrogant human being that she is, she scolded granny and called her names. I tell you that woman is very disrespectful and one day she will regret ever treating us badly. Anyway it was Saturday and that meant I had to do our laundry. There was no soap in the bathroom. Sometimes we even had to apply cooking oil on our bodies because we had no body lotion. Sometimes we had to go to bed in an empty stomach but I made sure my siblings ate something. I couldn’t care less if I were to sleep with no food in my tummy. I politely went to ask for the washing soup and I was told that we didn’t have any.
I decided to use the money that I had been serving for my school shoes to buy the soup. The ones that I had were torn and I needed new ones. Likewise my father used to send us something but my Auntie never gave us any of the things. How cruel of her right? I did my laundry and helped my siblings with their homework. I never bumped into that woman in the house and seem she wasn’t feeling well. Who cares? She never treated us good and we didn’t care less if she was seriously ill. I had finished washing dishes for lunch when I heard her calling out her name.
‘Mummy Nicole!’ she shouted in the living room and I knew that she was back from her father’s house.
‘Hey Zviko,’ she said biting her lip.
She was wearing a tight dress that showed off her thighs.
‘Hey,’ I responded and quickly looked away.
Did you miss me?’ she asked coming closer to me.
She was 2 years younger than me and already acted like a slut. I chose not to respond and continued with my dishes.
‘Nadia,’ said her mother walking in on us, ‘you are here.’
They hugged each other and kisses on the check.
‘I had missed you mummy.’
After Aunty Naledi divorced her husband, Nicole remained in his house. Well that was when her mother married my father. Naledi had 2 children from her previous marriage, her first born was Nicholas who was still at varsity and he was a drug dealer. I remember this other time when I shared my room with him, I found him sniffing cocaine and he wanted me to taste some but I refused. I was glad when he went back at his father’s house.
‘Are you feeling okay Ma?’ asked Nicole.
‘ I have got some good news to tell you my baby.’
I just stood by the sink listening to the conversation.
‘Aren’t you done with the dishes?’ asked Naledi.
‘I am almost done,’ I responded softly.
‘Be done quickly and cook something for my daughter.’
I wanted to say something but quickly shut my mouth before I have a fight with her. They walked out of the kitchen just after Nicole winked at me. I don’t know what is wrong with this girl and seriously I don’t like her. At 15 years of age she acted like a 20 something girl. She was in form 3 and I was in form 4. Anyway I was the one who cooked supper that night. My siblings and I decided to eat in the kitchen since the lady wanted to be alone with her daughter. When we finished eating I washed the dishes and told Zayne to go and get some rest. He had helped me in the afternoon with the garden. Our house was very big such that each one of us had his or her own room. My mother had bought the house and my father did a little. I finally finished my household echoes, that woman never thought about finding a maid because I was the maid. Honestly speaking I thank my mother for teaching me how to do all these things. If it wasn’t for her, I don’t know how we would have managed. I had to do my little sister’s laundry and also clean their rooms. I was yet to teach them how to cook in case if I wasn’t around. After doing everything in the kitchen, I switched off the lights and went to take a bath.
I took a long shower and finally came out when I felt that I was looking great. It had been a long day and I needed the long shower. I walked to my room and had just placed the towel on the bed when I had cold hands on my back. I quickly turned around and there was Nicole in my room naked. I quickly put on back the towel since I wasn’t wearing anything to cover my genitals.
‘What are you d…’
‘Shhhhh,’ she cut me short by placing her hand on my lips. ‘I know you have always wanted me Zvi.’
‘Are you insane? If your mother finds you in..’
‘Don’t worry about that witch that treats you badly. She is asleep, I drugged her.’
‘Nicole, can you please leave my room.’
‘I love how you call my name. It turns me on.’
She said pushing me on the bed. She got on top of me and I quickly came back to my senses by pushing her. She fell off the bed and I dragged her out of my room. She was high on drugs and I could smell it. I went with her to her room and locked her inside. If she was going to hurt herself then it wasn’t any of my problems.
‘Who was that?’ asked Zanny startling me as she stood at the passenger rubbing her eyes.
She must have heard the noise and it awakened her.
‘It was nothing babe. Let’s go back to sleep.’
‘I want some water.’
I had forgotten to bring her water. She always drank water in the middle of the night. I carried her to the kitchen and gave her some water. Mind you, I had worn my pants and even my short, that towel had used it to cover Nicole with it. I couldn’t believe that she would try to seduce me.
‘Can you sleep with me? I am having nightmares.’
‘Have you been watching those horror movies on my laptop?’
‘Yes,’ she responded quietly.
I had told Zayne so many times not to let Zanny watch horror movies that I had downloaded.
‘Don’t watch those horror movies. Which one did you watch?’ I asked her as I slept with her on her bed.
‘Annabella.’
‘I bet you now scared of your dolls.’
‘I even wanted to throw it outside when I thought it had moved.’
I laughed.
‘I told you to only watch cartoons my princess.’
‘Can you sing for me? Mummy’s favorite song.’
‘You want me to sing for you again. I thought we were going to bed.’
‘Please Zviko, sing for me. I know that you are a good singer and those girls are always smiling at your voice. Did I tell you that Tasha came to my classroom the other day and asked for your phone number?’
‘You mean Tasha, Father Antony’s niece?’
‘Yes and I told her that you lost your phone. She said that she will buy one for you.’
I laughed really hard, this kid had made my night. She was only 8 years old but the things she spoke. Zayne was 12 years old and I was to turn 17 in November.
‘They are crazy. I am not interested in girls. I only loved one woman and that lady was our mother. She will always be the only woman that I will ever love.’
‘But you will need to marry one day.’
‘Go to sleep Pinky.’
‘Sing for me first.’
I finally sang for her, Fighting Temptation by Beyonce and crew. She fell asleep and I slept beside her. The following day I woke up early to clean the house since church started at 08:30 and the previous day I hadn’t got at the choir practice. I cooked porridge for the kids and prepared them for church. I hadn’t seen Nicole, I bet she was feeling embarrassed to face me. I went to unlock her door at around 3am when I found her sleeping.
‘You forgot to comb my hair,’ said Zanny as she sat on my bed.
I smiled at her.
‘Sorry Pinky.’
I combed her hair just how mum taught me until she was satisfied.
‘We got to go,’ said Zayne.
We walked out of the house to the church and Auntie Naledi was still sleeping.

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Church was okay, no complain. I grew up attending church. Many of my earliest memories are times spent at the church building, with church people, or in church services. Being at church you will have the opportunity to worship God. You will likely have some of life big questions answered. The preaching of the Bible will help set direction for your life. You will probably make some new friends. You will be encouraged in your walk with god. You will likely encourage other people in their walk with God. You will be able to worship God with other likeminded people. The reason why father asked if I wanted to be a deacon, I guess I was good with words as well.
We finally went back home and I didn’t stay behind for Youth meeting. Zanny was already feeling hungry and so I needed to go home and prepare something for them I knew that woman would never leave some of the food she had cooked for us.
‘Did you see the way Tasha was looking at you?’ said Zanny.
‘I saw it too and she was being lovely to me,’ responded Zayne.
These kids always made my day. I just laughed as they kept on talking about Tasha and how she threw herself at me. Honestly I wasn’t ready to be in a relationship or date anyone. I still had my whole life ahead of me. You won’t believe me when I say that, I had never been in a relationship before. It was good to have someone by my side but I was only 17 and girls of nowadays demanded a lot. Where was I going to find the money to take care of her needs when I was struggling to make amends? Tasha was a good person but not the type of a girl that I wanted to be with.
We got at the house and it was looking dirty.
‘The house is dirty but you left it clean,’ said Zayne.
I walked to the kitchen and they were lots of unwashed dishes. The stove was dirty as well.
‘Oh you are back,’ said Naledi opening the fridge.
‘So you couldn’t clean the stove or the house?’ I asked softly.
‘Sorry, are you talking to me?’ she said pouring the cold water in her glass.
‘I left the house clean before we went to church and there were no dirty plates in the sink.
‘Then you have to clean it again and wash the dishes,’ with that said she walked out of the kitchen.
I wanted to say something but decided to kept quiet, I was just coming from church and had a lovely day. There was nowhere that I was going to let her ruin it for me. I decided to cook for my siblings first before I started cleaning the house again. When I finished cooking for them, I had to go and clean the dining room. There were takeaway boxes thrown on the floor. I didn’t understand why someone could throw litter on the floor instead of just going outside to the bin. I wonder where Nicole was because I hadn’t seen her when I arrived from church. I took the boxes and went to throw them in the bin before I started scrubbing the floor. The house looked as if grade 0 pupils were playing inside. I told Zayne to wash the dishes while I dusted the table glass and television.
My mother wasn’t a lazy person at all and I didn’t know if my father was aware of his new wife’s laziness. I had honestly never met someone who was as lazy as her. Now I understood why Nicole couldn’t wash her clothes and made her own mother wash them for her. Whenever she did dad’s laundry, his white shirt always looked cream dried on the line and she couldn’t even iron his clothes. My mother used to iron his clothes perfectly well and polished his shoes. She made sure that we were well dressed up before walking out of the house. Now I understand why my mother was very strict when it came to cleanliness. She made sure that I cleaned my room and no dirty clothes were found in the washing basket but with the new wife. I am sure it won’t be that long when she starts giving me her clothes.
Talk about her cooking skills, that woman was a bad cook. I remember the day she cooked for us; obviously she was trying to impress my dad. We lined up at the toilet door the following day, it was crazy. Sometimes she would add lots of salt and I wouldn’t eat the food and so that is why I preferred to cook the food for the family. My dad would say she was a great cook knowing very well that she was the worst. Instead of her staying at home watching Zee World and Starlife, it was better for her to get herself enrolled at a school of hospitality where she would learn how to cook.
‘I am done with the dishes,’ said Zayne, ‘do you want to come and check?’
I smiled at him remembering my mother. Whenever I did dishes for her, she would tell me to come and tell her once I was done, simple because she wanted to know if the dishes were clean. She would kiss me on the forehead and tell me that I did well. When mum was pregnant with Zayne that is when I started learning how to do the household echoes. She taught me everything that I needed to know and even used to make breakfast for her if dad wasn’t around. To be honest my father was a great father and she treated my mother with so much respect that one day I wished to be just like him. Yes, he might have married Auntie Naledi but he loved us wholeheartedly. He just didn’t know the kind of person he was married to.
‘They look clean,’ I said touching his shoulders, ‘you did well big boy.’
At least he had helped me to wash the dishes and I was hungry.
‘Where is Zanny?’ I said pulling a chair in the kitchen and sat down.
‘She is in her room playing with her dolls.’
‘Did you write your homework? Tomorrow is school remember.’
‘Yes brother.’
‘Good boy. I will iron your school uniform later and polish the shoes as well. You can go and watch the Avengers but don’t let Zanny watch those horror movies please.’
‘Yes brother,’ he responded excitedly running out of the kitchen.
I still had my HP that my mother bought for me when she went on a workshop in South Africa . I always kept it safe just in case I get enrolled in varsity. My dream was to become a doctor one day, the reason why I was doing Sciences. Open my own hospital and help so many disadvantaged people in rural areas. Nothing is impossible with God but I prayed every day to pass my exams and proceed to Advanced level. Take care of my siblings one day and have our own house. I made a promise to my mother; I promised her that I would take good care of Zanny and Zayne.
I stood at the door and watched them laughing. I was happy that Zayne wasn’t a bully but she played well with his sister. The talkative one among the two was Zanny. Zayne was the quiet and only talked a lot when someone had provoked him. Otherwise they were all good children, I decided to just go and watch TV. Naledi was still in her room. I walked in the dining room and found Nicole wearing a bum short with a spaghetti top. The way she dressed sometimes, I decided to just go outside but not before she said something to me,
‘You wanted to watch?’
I stopped mid-way and turned to look at her.
‘I will just go and sit outside; I could use some fresh air.’
‘Do I make you feel uncomfortable?’
Seriously what kind of a stupid question is that? She does make me feel uncomfortable with the way she dresses up.
‘I am sorry with the way that I acted towards you that day. I was high..,’ she paused.
‘On drugs,’ I finished off her sentence.
I went to sit down on the sofa.
‘You are only 15 years old Nicole. Why are you even taking drugs? Shouldn’t you focus on your school work?’
‘I wasn’t like that before but it all started when my mother left my father. I thought my parents were the best parents ever and a great couple. I mean they never fought in my presence up to now I don’t understand why they divorced when they would have spent the rest of their lives with each other. I feel guilty for what I did and I am so sorry,’ she said tears building up in her eyes.
I felt pity for her and got up. I sat beside her and embraced her that is when all hell broke loose when she started screaming holding me tightly.
‘Nicole, what are you doing?’
I tried to free myself from her but she had managed to remove my belt and started screaming more removing her top. She was only left with a bra when I was trying to put my belt back and pleading with her not to shout. Naledi walked in on us and Nicole quickly ran to her tears streaming down on her cheeks.
‘He wanted to rape me mother,’ she said in between sobs.
‘She is lying. I didn’t do that, she the..’
‘How dare you?!’ Naledi slapped me hard on the cheek, ‘I am calling the police now. How dare you try to rape my daughter?’
‘She is lying to you.’
Naledi called the police and they arrived a little later. I tried begging them not to take me away but my pleas fell on deaf ears. I was driven to the police station and left my siblings crying for me.

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Prison is a place that I had never been to; I was scared and nervous at the same time. Nicole had lied to her mother and the police officers couldn’t listen to a word that came out of my mouth. To them I was just like the people who were inside; I was a criminal and had attempted to rape my sister. I had only tried to comfort her little did I know that she had planned to take her revenge on me, my thoughts drifted back to my siblings. I wondered if that woman was treating them well but then we all know the answer to that problem. I had been in their hands for 2 nights now, meaning I had missed school and I wasn’t sure if I was going to go back.
‘Zvikomborero!’ someone called out my name as I had been sitting down on the floor in one of the holding cells.
I couldn’t get up because my feet hurt. For the last 2 days they had been beating me up using all kinds of weapons to make me say out the truth but my answer remained the same. I did not try to rape Nicole, she had lied to them. My whole body was aching and I was in pain. I hadn’t eaten since they refused to give me some food.
‘Your grandmother has paid bail for you. It looks as if you were innocent after all.’
Really? When I told them that I was innocent they called me names, a liar and a monster. Now they believe me.
‘So now you suddenly believe me?’ I asked getting up as he opened the cell door for me. ‘I told you for the past two days that I was innocent but you continued to harass me. Did she pay you to beat me up?’
‘You have a big mouth right,’ said the officer.
‘Big mouth or not. What happened to innocent until proven guilty? You didn’t want to hear my side of the story. You could have killed me instead, I am sure that would have made you happy.’
The police officer didn’t say anything but looked aside as I walked slowly to the receptionist. I wasn’t scared at him anymore, he had done more damage and I promise when I have money, I will tell my story one day. These people are corrupt and they never wanted to hear my side of the story. I was treated harshly and not even one of them on duty wanted to hear my story. I bet Naledi paid them thousands of dollars to hurt me. I saw my grandmother with my siblings and as soon as they saw me, they quickly ran to me. I knelt down and hugged them both. To say that I was happy to see them, it was an understatement. I was so emotional that I couldn’t control the tears from falling. I had missed them a lot and no single day passed without me not praying for them or just missing them.
‘I missed you a lot,’ said Zanny wiping her tears.
‘I was taking good care of her,’ said Zayne.
‘Thank you champ. I am sorry I left you two alone.’
‘Nicole is evil just like her own mother,’ said Zanny, ‘I hate her,’ she cried even louder.
I hugged her so tightly trying to make her calm down but she wouldn’t stop crying that I had to go outside with them and grandmother followed behind since she had to sign some papers. My release papers and made sure that I had no criminal record. I don’t even know how she got hold of my mother’s lawyer but I thanked the Lord, he did answer my prayers after all. I finally managed to make Zanny calm down, what happened to me deeply affected her.
My mother’s lawyer drove me home and my grandmother hadn’t said anything to me. I was sitting at the back of the car with my siblings as they held both of my hands. I just looked at them both and smiled to myself. Will they ever survive when I am not around? Truly speaking I doubt, the way they held me it’s like they didn’t want to lose me again. I was going to make sure that I will never leave their sight ever again. Instead of driving us to our father’s house, the lawyer drove us to his house. I had been there before with my mother when she was pregnant with Zanele. I didn’t ask why we were heading towards his house, maybe he had something to collect before dropping off us to our father’s house.
He parked his car out front and opened the door for me. He helped me to get out of the car.
‘Your Auntie will take care of your wounds. I need to talk to my mother in private,’ he said walking with me to the door.
‘Mother?’ I said with a question.
‘Not today Zachariah,’ said grandmother giving him a warning.
‘Gogo is your mother uncle Zake?’
Why did I even ask him that stupid question? He also had the Z name, obviously he was my uncle but what I don’t understand is that: Why did grandma keep it from us that uncle Zake, our mother’s lawyer was our uncle? My mother didn’t tell me that Uncle Zake was her little brother. I just walked inside the house after he opened the door; he quickly closed it as I stood at the glass door looking at him. He walked where grandma stood and they started charting. I couldn’t what they were saying because I was standing afar. I didn’t want them to think that I was eavesdropping.
‘Let’s go and sit down,’ said Zanny grabbing me by my hand.
She sat with me on the sofa looking at my wounded leg.
‘Does it hurt?’ she asked concerned.
‘No Pinky, it doesn’t hurt that much. Are you worried?’
‘Yes, I am. I thought something bad had happened to you when you didn’t come back home,’ she said with a hint of honesty in her voice.
‘She kept crying all night for you. I told her that brother Zviko will not leave us, he is coming back to us very soon.’
‘You did great and I am very proud of you. Did they give you food last night? Did you eat?’
‘We went kwa gogo soon after the police took you.’
He might have been the one who told gogo about my arrest.
‘It wasn’t me who told her that you had been arrested,’ he said as if he had read my mind, ‘It was Auntie Naledi. She told gogo that you are a monster and she doesn’t want to see us at her house.’
That’s our mother’s house and she isn’t the owner, I wanted to say but remembered they were just kids I was talking to.
‘I know that you wouldn’t do that and Nicole lied to the police,’ continued Zayne.
All this while I listened attentively to what he was saying. I wish those police officers were just like him, the kid had brains unlike those parasites. Uncle Zake’s wife finally came home, she was a doctor. She attended to my wounds and I had no idea where gogo had gone but Uncle Zake was around playing with Zanny in the kitchen. The two got along very well, maybe because he was our Godfather. It was now late at night and they hadn’t driven us at our house, I began to worry but remembered that it wasn’t our house anymore. Lucky enough Uncle Zake’s house was very big to accommodate us all. I had to take the kids to bed since they needed to go to school the following day. It wasn’t that easy to make Zanny sleep, she just wanted to stay up late and talk to me. I had to pretend to sleep so she won’t bother me.
‘She is so beautiful,’ said Uncle Zake standing at the door startling me, ‘I am sorry I didn’t mean to.’
‘No, its okay.’
He walked in the room and sat on the chair.
‘She looks exactly like her mother when she was at her age.’
‘You have her pictures?’
‘Plenty of them,’ he said with a smile spread across his face. ‘I know you have got a lot of questions to ask me right now. Why your mother didn’t tell you that we were siblings.’
‘But why?’
‘Simple because I decided to part ways with her when she decided to marry your father.’
‘You hated my father?’
‘Not that I hated me because ‘’hate’’ is a very strong work. I didn’t want her to get married to him because I knew what kind of job he does.’
‘What does he do?’
‘Son, they are some things that are better off being unsaid.’
‘Why? You think I will go and confront him? I know that my father is into shady businesses. We were together at Ma’s funeral, the kind of people that attended my mother’s funeral claiming to be my dad’s friends. There was something fishy about them and so you need to tell me what he does.’
‘Your father was once in jail for robbery and that’s how he met your mother when I managed to set him free. I was his lawyer at that time. He took me out for drinks and we met your mother as she was partying with her friends. I tried so many times telling her that man wasn’t good enough for her but she went ahead and married him. From that moment I decided to cut ties with your mother until she came to me and told me that your father owed some people a large amount of money. I had to give her because she was pregnant by you at that time and I didn’t want her to stress. I thought she would leave him but no, she was so deeply in love with him. I decided to cross ties with her until she leaves that man. I told her that her kids shouldn’t know that I was their uncle. I will continue to be her financial lawyer but not brother, I was mad at her and I didn’t mean to be that rude. Now that man married that evil woman, who mistreats you,’ he sniffed trying so hard not to let his tears fall, ‘You should have told me that she was treating you badly. She is a good for nothing. I would want you to move in with me.
*
*
VERONICA

I listened attentively as I heard him saying that he wanted the kids to move in with us. To hell with him, I wasn’t going to allow him to let his dead sister’s children come live in my house. I know I told him I wasn’t ready for children but I didn’t want them in my house. I was going to make sure that they were going back to their father’s house and live with their step mother. Who cared? They were not my children after all.

VOID
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INSERT 5

I quickly rushed to my room when I heard him saying his goodnight to Zviko. All this while I had been listening to their conversation and I wasn’t pleased with everything that he was saying to his nephew. I got inside the blankets and pretended to be asleep. I heard him open the door and quickly opened my eyes.
‘You are back?’ I said with a yawn, ‘had you gone for your jog?’ I asked pretending as if I hadn’t heard him talking to Zviko.
Was he going to tell me the truth or not? I sat on the bed and watched him as he removed his pants. He hadn’t taken his bath yet.
‘Can I take bath and then we will talk?’ he said ignoring my question.
‘Sure!’
He grabbed his towel and walked out of the room. I already knew what he was going to say to me but my answer was going to be a NO. I waited patiently for him as I sat on the bed playing candy crush. I had so many words to say to him after I had been eavesdropping on their conversation. He finally came out with a towel wrapped around his butt covering his genitals.
‘What is that you wanted us to talk about?’ I asked him as he was applying lotion on his body.
I was a woman with no patient or whatsoever; I wanted to hear him saying it out.
‘I want the kids to move in with us,’ he finally said what I had been hearing to hear.
He had to say it so calmly as if the kids were his but of cause his sister’s children.
‘Why?’
He turned to look at me. Did he think that I was going to be overexcited to have them in my house? Those little rascals had a home already and a father. They were no orphans and I don’t understand why he wanted them to move in with us.
‘Why are they moving in with us?’ I asked this time around with a serious look on my face, ‘don’t they have a place they call home?’
‘What’s with the sudden rudeness in your voice?’
‘I am not being rude but I am asking you a question that you need to answer. Those kids already have got a home and I am failing to understand why they have to move in with us as if my house is some kind of a charity organization.’
‘Veronica!’
‘No, I will not have any child of your sister stay in my house. Who will take care of them? It’s not like their father is dead kah, he is alive and I think he is capable of taking care of his own kids. Are you doing this because I am not able to give you kids? You want to let them move in with us so that I can continue feeling guilty of not being ready to give you children.’
‘Veronica, they are my sister’s children.’
‘Oh please you want to play the good uncle now because she is dead. You didn’t even get along with their mother because of the kind of man that she married. Did your mother put you up to this? She is the one who asked you to take care of Zandile’s children; I know she was the one.’
‘Their step-mother is abusing them.’
‘Didn’t my Auntie abuse me Zake? But I had to stay with her; at least their father is still around. She will make them stronger Zake and so let them endure the pain.’
‘Why are you being so heartless?’
He might have been a lawyer but when it came to me, I knew he was some weak ass niqqa. I know he couldn’t defend himself, I knew that despite of not being able to give him a child he loved me to the core. He was going to drive them back at their house; I wasn’t comfortable having those kids in my house.
‘I am not being heartless Zake but I am being fair. You didn’t even discuss this matter with me. Did you?’
‘I was going to.’
‘Well that’s after you had made them feel welcomed in my house. Believe me I don’t hate those kids but they need to leave this house. If you know what’s good for us, you will need to take them back. I am sure you wouldn’t want to create a world war 3 with their father. Already you don’t get along and he made it very clear to you that he is capable of taking care of his own kids at their mother’s funeral. Now that he is not around, you want to take his kids without his permission. The last thing I want is a drama and so please take them back,’ with that said I covered my head with the sheets.
I didn’t want to hear a word coming out of his mouth if he knew what’s good for him. He didn’t say a word but also got inside the blankets. Like I said I didn’t hate these kids but they were not our responsibility. They had a home and going back to their mother’s place was a very good idea, trust me. Call me heartless, cruel or an animal but I wasn’t going to change my mind about having them around. My house wasn’t going to be able to accommodate 3 rascals. Imagine finding my house dirty when I always wanted to keep it clean. What about my vase that I recently bought? My glass table and just every fancy stuff that I had bought in Italy obviously those kids were going to destroy everything playing hide and seek in my house. Oh I knew every child loved playing hide and seek, and not forgetting my dinner plates that my best friend bought for me in England. It was better for them to go back at their house, just to save me from heart attack.
The next following day, early in the morning I was awakened by a large noise coming from downstairs since our rooms were on the second floor, the third floor being the gym. I hated the idea of being awakened in my sleeping beauty. I wore my slippers and walked downstairs only to find my house in a mess. Let me not mention my kitchen, my stove that I bought in Canada. Zake was enjoying himself with those parasites. He hadn’t listened to me and they were running around the house enjoying themselves as if they were at the park none of them paying attention to me. I had to switch off the radio so I could get their attention.
‘What the hell is going on here?’ I asked with a hint of anger in my voice.
‘Oh babe you are awake,’ he said walking to me with his dirty flour hands.
Since when had he become a baker, bullshit? I stepped back giving him a warning that he shouldn’t touch me.
‘What were you doing in my house with these little…,’ I paused when I realized that they were all now looking at me, ‘can I talk to you in private?’ I said heading back to our room.
How could he disrespect me like that? Bringing in those parasites and making my house look like some kind of a garbage pit. My shining floor looked muddy and I just couldn’t take it anymore. Dirtiness made me feel nauseas. I ran to the bathroom first to throw up. It made me sick.
‘Babe, are you okay?’ he asked banging at the door that I had locked.
Of cause I wasn’t okay and it was his fault. I came out wiping my mouth with my small towel.
‘Are you pregnant?’ he asked with a smile.
What a stupid question? I glared at him and ignored his question. I was taking pills and I wasn’t going to get pregnant that easily. He didn’t know about it, I had told him that I stopped taking pills. Mind you I always wanted to keep my body in shape, getting pregnant meant losing the shape of my body.
‘Don’t you have fuel in your car?’ I asked.
‘What?’ he said sounding confused with my question.
‘I thought you driving back those kids at their father’s house.’
‘Oh yes about that, I thought about it the whole night and I have to remind you that this is my house. I know you think it’s yours because you married me but when you came to live with me the house had already been built. Now tell me,’ he said getting closer to me.
He sounded different, like he was in charge.
‘Who should move out? You or the kids because I will never abandon my sister’s kids. Yes you were right, we didn’t get along because of the man she married but these kids are innocent in all of this. So if their uncle abandon them sweetheart. Who will look after them? My mother is old and soon you know she will be moving to South Africa for her treatment. I had to let the kids move in with me so that they get used to my house.’
‘So….’
‘Ah ah ah I am not letting you talk back at me today. Yesterday I was quiet as you spoke respecting the kids in the house but today I will have a say in this issue. I love you a lot Veronica but yesterday I met another Veronica that I didn’t know. We had some of your relatives here who came to live with us, your cousin sister Mary and did I ever say that she should move out every time she came back home from her nightclubs drunk? No, Zake didn’t say anything and just kept quiet and when Gary used my car without my permission to go pick up his friends and drove back home here in my house. They sat on my couch watching soccer and drinking beer still Zake didn’t say anything. I brought my sister’s kids and they are well behaved to come live with us but you complaining. Why do you hate them that much? Why do you even hate the idea of having our kid running around the house? I don’t know what your problem is Veronica but those kids aren’t going anywhere. It’s either you moving out or stay that’s your choice. We done with this issue and I won’t have you disrespect me in front of those kids. You are my wife and you suppose to respect me. I won’t hesitate to leave you if you continue acting like some kind of a slay queen. Don’t you have a heart Veronica? This is were some of the blessings come from by taking good care of these kids and treat them like they were your own but with your evil heart, God will never bless you. You are my wife but sometimes I wish I had married someone with a good heart, a heart pure of gold and someone who truly cares. I am going out with the kids later to buy them new clothes and school uniform. Don’t cook lunch for us, we will be eating out,’ with that said he walked out of the room as I was fuming with anger.
How dare he choose those kids over me? How dare he disrespect me like that? I wasn’t going to let them stay in my house for free even if it meant making them my servants. I knew he was travelling in a few days’ time, I was going to deal with them twice their step-mother treated them. Zake was mine and not for those kids.

VOID 🤷‍♂️
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INSERT 6

After my husband made me say nothing about his sister’s kids moving in with us, I decided to put the issue to rest. I didn’t want to argue with him anymore. I needed to pretend to be the loving Auntie which I think I was good in acting. I apologized to Zake for my behavior the previous night and promised him that I wouldn’t treat them badly. Them had names but I didn’t give a damn getting to know them. We were never going to be best friends, once Zake was out of the house, I was going to make sure that they know that I was the lady of the house and this was my house not their uncles. Yes he built blah blah but he married me to be with him. He married me to take care of the house. 3 or more people were a crowd; the house belonged to me and Zake. Why do you think I disagreed about the maid issue? When he married me, he wanted us to hire someone who would help me with the household chores but I didn’t want anyone. Now my excuses of not wanting to make a baby were countless. I would tell him that I needed to do laundry or I spent the whole day cleaning the house.
The past few days I had been acting friendly with the kids. I couldn’t wait for Zake to be out of the country. Firstly he was going to drive his mother to the airport who hadn’t been feeling well. Then he would proceed with his trip to India. I mean India who would tell him that I was mistreating his sister’s kids. I smiled at myself packing his clothes. I would want the whole house to myself, just me and Candy. Candy was my cat and I had named her after the candy crush game.
‘Are you done?’ asked Zake as he walked inside the room disrupting me from my thoughts.
‘Yes I am done.’
‘I wanted us to go with the kids to mum’s house. They need to say goodbye to them.’
Why would he want to go with me? His mother never loved me and she should just die instead of making my husband pay millions of rands for her treatment. She was old and her age was slowly building up with her. I never loved that woman and I only agreed because Zake said so. The only person that I was so much concerned about is Zake, he is the only reason that I agreed to go. Otherwise none of his relatives mattered to me including his mother and the kids. Anyway I got inside the car and the kids took the back seat. They sat comfortable in the car as if they owned it. I wanted so hard to tell them to get out of it but then I couldn’t. I couldn’t help but feel jealous. Zake looked so happy with them. 5 years married to him, I had never seen him so happy and his happiness caused by these kids pissed me off big time. I was supposed to be the only person to put that smile on his face. They were taking my place and he was spending more time with them. He would come to bed late and don’t even touch me. He would talk about their characters and how much they made him laugh. I would listen attentively as he brags about their intelligence. He never bragged about my success to his friends, I bet he will tell them about the kids.
We arrived at his mother’s house and it’s the third time I had been here. She didn’t love me nor did i. Zake led the way as I trailed behind, he didn’t even open the car door for me but for the kids. Pathetic! We walked inside the house and the kids had already run to their grandmother. I sat down on the sofa and waited for them to greet her first. After they were done, there was silence in the room.
‘Maswerasei mama (good afternoon mother)!’
‘Takapedzesera kuonana rinhi (when last did we see each other)’
I didn’t reply her but remained quiet with my eyes focused on her. If she wasn’t going to reply me then whatever that was her own problem and not mine..
‘Mukadzi wako hana hunhu (your wife doesn’t have respect),’ she said to her son.
So she had chosen to embarrass me in front of the kids. I wish she would die and go to hell. She is a witch and I won’t be surprised if she is the one who killed her husband. Zake’s father died of a headache and I don’t think that was a natural death. Jezebel might have killed her.
‘Mukuenda rinhi ku South Africa gogo (when are you going to South Africa granny)’ asked Zviko.
‘I will be leaving today my grandson,’ she replied.
‘I thought you were leaving tomorrow,’ said Zanele as she sat on her lap.
I wish she was just going with her grandchildren. They talked while I just sat there on her sofa like I was invisible. They laughed and Zake cracked some jokes making the kids laugh even more. He had never been so happy with me nor have I heard any of his jokes. Believe me this was painful; I felt out of place and didn’t even know why I had gone at that house in the first place. I found myself outside taking a walk and enjoying the breeze alone. I guess my husband was too busy to notice my absent in the house. When I left I didn’t tell him where I was going but just walked out of the house unnoticed. I was walking slowly when I noticed Jacob’s wife coming my direction. I think she was walking with her daughter, the way she was dressed up like a slut. She smiled as she got near me. I had met her at the funeral and never liked her.
‘If it isn’t the lady, who is taking care of my kids,’ she said with a smile and I didn’t respond to it.
Did she think that I was going to be friendly with her? I might as well deal with her first before the kids.
‘How are you Naledi?’
‘I thought I would hear Auntie Naledi. Had you come to see your mother-in law? How is she?’
‘You can go and ask her,’ I said continuing with my walk.
‘When are you going to give him a child?’
‘Excuse me!’ I turned around and found her laughing at me; her daughter just looked at me.
‘I mean you have been married for 5 years and still you can’t give him a child. Zake is a handsome man Vero and soon he will find someone to give him children. I see you still love your part time modeling job as I had been seeing you a lot lately on magazines. Soon he will be spending more time with his sister’s children and he won’t have time for you. An advice, you should get rid of those kids because they will be the reason why your husband will be pressurizing you to give him a child. I am sure you are not ready to be a mother. Their mother is dead and just gets rid of them when you still have the chance. You should watch out for Zviko that boy is a criminal and he tried to rape my daughter. He once stole my jewelries and went to sell them. If you want a friend Vero, my door is always open for you,’ with that said they continued with their journey.
I watched her as she walked away so many thoughts running through my mind. Thinking about my money and the things in my house. What if those kids were going to steal for me? I went back and found Zake outside the gate probably waiting for me. He had this serious look on his face.
‘Vee, since when you friends with Naledi? You know she is the reason why Zviko spent 2 nights in jail?’
‘She was just saying hie.’
‘That woman is not a good person.’
And you think I am a good person, wait I show you that she is better than me, I wanted to say but instead I said,
‘I know and I wasn’t being friendly with her.’
‘I came out looking for you. Why did you just disappear?’
‘You know that I came here for the sake of you, otherwise we both know that your mother isn’t happy to see me here.’
‘I am sorry and I didn’t mean to make you feel uncomfortable in my mother’s house. I know I have been spending more time with the kids but I will make it up to you.’
I smiled genuinely.
‘Promise?’
‘I promise,’ he said and kissed me on my cheek.
We went back inside the house and I said my goodbye to her. At least she replied me and she wasn’t ready at all. She told me that I should take good care of her grandchildren and of cause I was going to take care of them. We later drove her to the airport.

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