Ziggy staggered across the Old Rugby field towards where the group of young men were. His
beltless pants hung shyly, half way down his waist, unsure whether to remain there or just fall to his ankles in shame. In his right hand he held a metal flask. The stainless-steel container gave a hearty laugh as its contents sloshed about hitting the inner walls of the flask.
“Haaa!” he removed the cap irritably and took a swig from the container, smacking his lips in satisfaction.
“What does he want?” Charlie grunted as he looked in the direction of the intoxicated youth.
“Chii, urikuvhundukei? Hehe, aren’t you happy to see me? Eh? Charlie, close your mouth, uchamedza nhunzi.” Ziggy took another gulp of his concoction.
“Izvozvo, That’s exactly it. Kuparara ikoko. Uri kutsvageii kuno? What do you want, mfanha iwewe?” Zaks yelled at the trespasser.
Twista, jumped down from his throne on the topmost bench of the Rugby field terraces, ready to pounce like a lion whose pride land had been invaded.
“Haha, maChef Twista heheeee, blaz, you’re still here? Ko dzidzisa vanhu vako unhu ka. They got no manners your boys, don’t they know how to greet vaenzi?” he placed his flask in the dusk, as he cupped his hands, mockingly and gave a lousy attempt at greeting the boys,
“He-e. Hamuone? You see? Our grandfathers taught us respect boys. Makadii maChef?’ Ziggy continued his artless applause achirova gusvu, as if he was swatting flies.
“AH, get away mhani! You’re not wanted here, chidhakwa!” Zaks had zero tolerance for Ziggy’s nonsense.
“Iwe Zakias,” Ziggy pointed a wobbly finger at his accuser, “Usade kuzvichenesa, just because you’re hanging with mwana waBishop. Taisarova tese here?”
“That’s enough, man. It’s time for you to leave,” Pk stepped up to intervene.
“Hehe, Peekaaay. Hah, you’re doing things my guy. Hanzi you’ve got something neChimumumu chiiye? Ah you’ve got guts my guy, you-“
Before he could finish his sentence, PK had charged right at the drunk and hit him hard in the
stomach, knocking him straight to the ground.
Ziggy groaned in pain and squirmed like a drugged Mopani worm in the dust.
“Ah, bruv! You showed him the anointing…!” Tino called out excitedly from behind Zaks and Charlie.
Tino had won a scholarship to study overseas later that year and had since developed an LAFA
(Locally Acquired Foreign Accent). It drove Twista mad.
“Iwe Tino, hakusi kuLondon kunoku. Bruv, bruv chii? Get that loser off our field mhani!” Twista barked angrily, kicking hard at the dust where the drunk still tumbled and tossed.
Mona ran. Her feet had a mind of their own, and she was compelled to follow. She ran down the
remaining steep of the hill, till she reached the bottom, where the turf kissed the tar. The rush of the wind in her face as she made her descent was like water from Gogo’s tsime, on a long hot day when her throat had been parched. Refreshing. She gave a deep sigh and gulped in the air, like that glass of clean water, before turning into the main road and heading home.
Well, almost heading home…
Her phone jumped violently in her trouser pocket, before chiming its familiar tune. She reached
for it, as it rang. There was only one person crazy enough to actually call her.
“Momo! Come kumba quick. It’s an emergency, havasikumuka, I don’t know what to do. I need you here, NOW!”
The call ended before Mona even had a chance to ask anything.
Mona, you can’t ask anything anyway, silly girl, she scolded herself, then she spun around and raced in the direction of the distress signal. She would get the answers she was looking for when she got there. The voice had given her new strength. Paida needed her help. And Mona was ready to be the hero.
It was when she was almost halfway towards Paida’s place that the Adrenaline suddenly died down and common sense sunk in.
What on Earth am I panicking for? Mona asked herself. Paida is a drama queen, everyone knows kuti anopenga. Crazy. The girl is just crazy. It’s just an attention seeking stunt, again. She’s probably just having a wardrobe dilemma, or arambwa netukomana twake. She’s terrible with
heartbreaks. Yeah, that’s it. It’s definitely a boy.
Mona tried to reassure herself and settle her racing heart. What was with her that day? What
was she fretting about? She’d been feeling anxious and uneasy all morning, up until the encounter on the hill. She just needed to get a grip of herself. Seriously.
Her heart still pounded fast, as she reached the small gate by Paida’s house. It had to be unhooked from the inside, the latch had since been dismantled by Paida’s notorious cousins. Mona was no visitor to the house. She knew all the tricks as if she stayed there herself. She was practically part of the family, although Paida’s cousins had never been too friendly towards her, “quiet” friend. Composing herself, she steadied her shaky hands, Don’t be so silly Mona…and unpinned the pseudo-latch. As soon as she stepped into the little paved yard, Mona heard a cry from the kitchen door,
“Mona! Ndiwe? Huya sha, come, come. Ah Mwari imi!”
The fear in Paida’s voice startled Mona. It was definitely NOT about a BOY.
Charlie hadn’t told a soul. Especially not the boys. It wasn’t anything serious and it wasn’t
really a big deal, but they’d never understand that. They’d never let him live it down if it got out. Plus, they were just hanging, he didn’t need that kind of attention. Even she understood that and she wasn’t bad really. Not like how’d they’d said she was. She was actually kind of cool to be around, maybe he would think about making it official. Maybe. Nah. Too much pressure. No, he
wasn’t ready for that. Witchcraft.
She was calling him. Why on earth was she calling him? Musikana uyu.
He muted the volume and placed the phone back in his trouser pocket. He would just tell her
he was busy.
“Sha, your phone hayisi kurira here?”
“Ah, nah, iAlarm.”
“Haha, ok bro. But you should probably answer your ‘alarm’ maBhebhi aya, hmm…vanokuoonesa
“Shut up. Bhebhi ripi? I told you, iAlarm,” Charlie snapped.
The phone vibrated angrily in his pocket. The caller wasn’t about to be ignored just like that. Charlie sighed. He reached for the phone and was just about to decline the call.
Just Answer it. His conscience overruled his intentions, as he slid his thumb across the green icon on the screen,
“Charlie, come quick, it’s an emergency, Mai Kiri…takutovaendesa ku24 hour…Charlie, am scared. Kasika!”