Chapter 76


“The man who has confidence in himself gains the confidence of others.” – Hasidic Proverb 


Beast


My encounter with Ghadaffi and his motherfucker of a father left me shaking to say the least.  I honestly thought I had rid myself of Dragon the day Malachi and I decided to part ways with him for eternity.  I couldn't help but shake the feeling that he had come to seek revenge on me.  I mean Ghadaffi was legit following me almost everywhere that day and I refused to believe that he was just visiting his family.  A coincidence?  I thought not.  Perhaps he was the past that had come to haunt me as I was told by Malume Sfiso even Malachi had warned me before his death.  I felt a little lucky at the time when being told all that but once I saw how real it was about to be I became petrified.


Usually I wouldn't have been shaken but everything involving Hazel made me increasingly alert and moreso afraid.  I did not appreciate Ghadaffi's sudden interest in Hazel knowing very well we were engaged.  Everyone knew and as far as I was concerned he lived in Jo'burg and hated the township.  I refused to let a small boy like him intimidate me but when he mentioned Raymond something within me died.  He said his name like he knew him personally.  Also no one knew what I had done to Raymond – except Hazel Malachi Malume Sfiso and Sporo.  I knew that Sporo would never rat me out – despite everything I had done for him.  He would have never betrayed me like that – never.  


If he had I'd have killed him.  I didn't trust anyone beyond that part any more so I had to keep my own eyes and ears open.  I honestly wasn't afraid to go to prison.  I mean I did commit the crime but what good would our marriage have been had I been imprisoned?  What kind of husband would I have been while behind bars?  Hazel was young childless and and exceptionally beautiful.  She didn't have anything holding her back nor did she have anything forcing her to wait for me.  I also wouldn't have expected so much of her.  That would have been completely selfish of me.  She was my world and facing the reality of potentially losing her brought me so much anxiety.  I had to do whatever it took to keep myself out of prison.  I was scared of nothing and no – one but God and losing my Hazel.  That was the latest problem I had that was giving me sleepless nights leaving me sweating in my own sleep if I had even fallen asleep.  Keeping the faith seemed futile but I had to keep trying.


Brandon Ghadaffi Mashile


My name is Brandon Mashile AKA Ghadaffi.  I am the first and only son of Godfrey Dragon Mashile.  I was born and bred in Atteridgeville but all thanks to my successful father I grew up in the Suburbs in Pretoria East.  He made me the man I had become and without him I wouldn't have gotten to where I was.  I had achieved a lot for someone who was only 27 at the time.  Yes I was educated; I had attended prestigious schools my entire life and I had graduated with a Degree in Chartered Accounting from Wits University a few years prior.  I was a reputable member in my community family and also I had become a member of the Wits Alumni.  Everyone who knew me knew the kind of person I was; I wasn't the best looking guy but I was rich and I had immense class.  I had been married for about three years but it was an arranged marriage and I didn't love her.  She herself knew that when she married me.  I didn't compromise my happiness for anyone.  The moment I laid my eyes on Hazel I knew she had to be mine.  Yes the fact that she was Beast's fiancee was of course a bonus.  I mean yes I was married to Norah but I didn't choose her – my parents chose her for me.  I only married her because my mother kept nagging me to do so while my father insisted because she was a virgin and that I wasn't getting any younger.  Hazel was something different man she was so light her green eyes were so alluring I could tell that they were indeed telling a story.  The fact that Malachi was gifted and was her brother meant that she would have contributed immensely towards my life and my businesses.  She was lady luck and I needed her on my side.  After my unpleasant encounter with beast I knew I had him right where I wanted him.  My father and I walked back to his family home just across the road from the tavern.  He poured us both a drink while I was still love-stricken; I couldn't stop thinking about Hazel and her beautiful milky skin.


Dragon: “Brandon will you take the damn glass before it falls to the ground?”


Ghadaffi: “Oh sorry Papa.”


Dragon: “Don't tell me you're still thinking of that girl.”


Ghadaffi: “Eish (oh) Papa I think I'm in love.”


Dragon: “Ska ngafela (don't mess with me) Brandon.”


Ghadaffi: “Papa ke (I'm) serious.”


Dragon: “You're married.”


Ghadaffi: “I don't love her I've told you countless times.”


Dragon: (sigh) “You cannot hurt Norah like that.  I made a promise to her father- even though he thought you were no good for her.  Do you have any idea how much 30 cows cost now?!”


Ghadaffi: “Come on Papa.  You always get your way.  I mean you can blame it on her.  It's been 3 years already and she hasn't given me any children.”


Dragon: “Patience is a virtue.”


Ghadaffi: “besides this is the perfect opportunity for you to get back at Beast.  The upside is that Hazel's brother was a seer.”


Dragon: “So?”


Ghadaffi: “So she'll be valuable to my life and she could help us with the business.”


Dragon: “How is that?  Her brother was a seer – not her.”


Ghadaffi: “She's highly favoured – so she'll bring luck to me as long as I love and treat her well.  I mean look at Beast how on earth does he have all these booming businesses?  He's not even educated.  It must be something to do with that girl's ancestors.”


Dragon: “I don't know but it would be really great making that fucker pay.”


Ghadaffi: “See?  I get the girl you get him to pay for Raymond's death.  It's a win-win.  Double tragedy for him.”


Dragon: “Perhaps you're right.  Although you'll need a good strategy to get her to fall for you.  She's head over  heals.”


Ghadaffi: “Come on Dad.  Have you seen me?  My money speaks for me.”


Dragon: (clicking tongue) “Mxm it will take more than just your money to get her to fall for you.  He most probably took her virginity.  It will be a miracle for her to leave him.”


Ghadaffi: “Fine.  Just don't make me wait too long.”


Dragon: “I cannot wait to make him suffer for killing my nephew.  Him stealing my money was just a tip of the ice-berg.  He will regret ever messing with me.”


Hazel


Ever since that Ghadaffi guy bumped into me at the tavern Beast's mood was off.  He was interacting with my uncles and all but I could tell his mind was afar.  It left a huge damper on y mood too because I kept trying to think of a million possible scenarios in my head.


Portia: “Are you okay?”


Hazel: “Yes I'm fine.”


Portia: “Don't worry yourself about him.  He's just being a man.”


Hazel: (frowning) “I don't follow.”


Portia: “He's still a bit upset about Brandon's interest in you.  Men are jealous beings you know.  He'll get over it.”


Hazel: “I guess you're right.”


Portia: “Why do I get the feeling you're worried about something else?”


Hazel: (sigh) “What would you do if I told you that Beast was into shady dealings before we became an item?  Like he was a gangster or something of the sort?”


Portia: “Nothing I mean who am I to judge?  I was married to a man who ended up raping a child I adopted and loved.  He loves you and he would never endanger your life – at least not intentionally.  I am all for love honey.  People go through so much worse and never get to experience love in the process.”


Aunt Portia was right.  I guess I was just over thinking.  I decided to let Beast be until I headed for bed hoping he would follow suit.  We were going to leave the following morning and I was surprised he wasn't tired enough or eager to sleep after the long drive from Stellenbosch.  The Beast I knew was going to follow me to bed almost immediately after I had gone.  He came to bed an hour after me and I could tell something was weighing heavily on him.


Hazel: “baby what's the matter?  You've been off ever since that Ghadaffi guy.”


Beast: (deep sigh) “Promise me one thing Hazel.”


He called me by my name.  It was serious business.


Hazel: “Sure.”


Beast: “Promise me that should anything happen to me you'd move on and live your life.”


I was so flabbergasted that I thought perhaps I hadn't heard him correctly or that I was probably still drunk.  What was he trying to tell me exactly?


Hazel: “(anxious) “Beast what on earth are you talking about?”


Beast: (sigh) “I need to tell you something.  It's been eating me up for a long while now.”


The knot in my throat started growing restricting my throat.


Hazel: “Are you dying?”


Beast: (shaking head) “No but... A few months before Malachi died he told me he was going to die.”


As soon as he said that he looked as if he had a huge weight lifted off his shoulders.  I was in such a deep-seated state of shock that my mind was not registering what I was being told.  I had expected the worst news actually.  No one expects good news after hearing “I have something to tell you.”


Hazel: “I don't follow.”


Beast: “Malachi had a vision of himself.  He saw himself die a few months prior to his death.  Initially he was supposed to die right in front of Beverly but he couldn't leave her with such a traumatic memory so he took a walk right before it was time and that's how he got hit by the car.”


I felt my palpitations sky rocketing.  Not because I was angry because I was anything but.  I felt so sorry for him that he felt so afraid to tell me.  What kind of a girlfriend was I that he felt he couldn't confide in me and tell me the truth?


Hazel: “Why are you telling me this now?”


Beast: “Because I can no longer keep this a secret.  I felt so guilty for not telling you but he begged me not to.  He made me promise.  So should I die or get arrested or something were to happen to me promise me that you'll take all the assets I have written in your name and forget about me.  Promise me you'll move on with your life.  I owe you that much.”


Why was he talking in riddles about death and imprisonment?  What on earth was going on with Beast?  He was confessing and forcing me to promise him something I could never do at the same time.


Hazel: “Beast it musn't have been easy living with that guilt but I can only imagine living each day waiting for the expected news of your best friend's death.  I am not angry at you if that's what you were hoping for.  You were honouring his wishes and you did your best in assisting me while going through the most.  Had I known I'd have been even more of a mess than I am right now.  What you're asking of me is down-right impossible.  Why on earth would I give up on you Beast?  When you've never given me reason to do so?  When you've never given up on me even when you most probably should have?”


Beast: (teary) “You deserve a life a full-time hands-on husband.  Should anything happen to me please do not be afraid to release yourself of all my baggage.  You deserve a life.”


Hazel: “So do you Beast.  No I'm not promising you that.  I promise to fight for you because that's what we're supposed to do for one another.  I love you Beast and I refuse to do anything of that nature.  I've never known a love like yours.  You're my world and I'll be there – no matter what happens.”


He sobbed while I caressed him from behind.  It felt a little relieving knowing that he was feeling overwhelmed about the secret he kept about Malachi's death.  I didn't know what was wrong actually but it sure broke my heart seeing him so vulnerable.  There's just something about a big man breaking down that just tears one's heart into a thousand pieces ripping it apart from one's inner flesh.  I somehow knew it had everything to do with that Ghadaffi guy and his father.  I just couldn't figure out exactly what it was that upset him so badly to even say goodbye to me when I didn't even know what was happening.  Only time would tell if only I had that much time – of which I didn't.  That was the last intimate conversation I had had with my Beast before shit hit the bloody fan.


Proverbs 16:9 - “The heart of man plans his way but the Lord establishes his steps.”

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