CHAPTER FIFTY NINE

I was woken up by my phone buzzing in my pocket. I looked around and I was on the couch in Lando's ward the sun was out and on the window sat a white dove. It looked pretty. I took out my phone and answered.

Me: "Biyela."
Razor: "Brazzo you need to come to the safehouse. Now."
Me: "Why? What's going on?"
Razor: "You have to see this for yourself." I hung up and stretched myself on the couch. I sat up and my back was in so much pain. I forced myself up and went to the bathroom and washed my face. I need a shower. But first I need to attend to business.

I walk back into the ward and kiss Lando before walking out and heading to the parking lot. I get into my car and drive to the safehouse. When I get there I go into the lounge and find Nate Lindani and Sbu watching Razor pace up and down the lounge. He stops soon as he sees me.

Razor: "Thank God you are here." He comes over to me and hugs me. Firstly Razor doesn't hug and he doesn't believe in God he says God was used by the white men to enslave black people so he doesn't fucks with the guy. So hearing him say "Thank God" is a surprise.
Lindani: "Ok so we are all here now why did you call us."
Sbu: "Bra Siz is not here arent we waiting for him?"
Razor: "That's why I called you. You have to see this." He leads us down to the basement. The light is on so we walk down the stairs.

We get to the bottom of the stairs and when I looked up I couldn't take another step. It felt like I had been glued to the floor. I have never been to a haunted house but this sure felt like it. There was so much blood on the floor. A bloody Sizwe sat in a chair looking at a hanging Rafael who had his skin peeled off literally.

Sizwe has never been the inflict pain type of person. He loved his rifle more than anything. He always said a rifle and a few feet between your target leaves no mess. So seeing this whatever this is was a shock to the system. I looked around and we were all in shock. No one was ready to say anything instead we slowly tiptoed our way back up the stairs. We got back to the lounge and sat in silence for what felt like an hour.

Razor: "Off all of you bra Siz was the one I was never afraid off. But now now i am not sure what to feel."
Lindani: "If still waters run deep was a person it would be him."
Nate: "I still dont understand how he was able to do that without killing Rafael." We all looked at Nate in shock. There's no way Rafael is still alive.
Me: "What do you mean he is still alive?"
Nate: "He is alive. I saw him blink a couple of times."
Lindani: "There is no way he is alive Nate did you see what we saw?"
Nate: "Trust me that idiot is alive."

We all got up and quickly ran down to the basement. Sizwe got up and turned to look at us. His clothes were bloody his hands and arms were covered in Rafaels blood.

Sizwe: "Yoh dont scare me like that."
Me: "What happened here?" He smiled.
Sizwe: "Oh this. I had time so I figured I would try something new. You like it?"
Lindani: "Its impressive alright. Impressively scary."
Sizwe: "I know we were supposed to do this together but I got a headstart."

Nate got closer to Rafael and looked at him up close before turning back to look at us.

Nate: "He's alive."
Sizwe: "Unfortunately but he will give in soon." He said as he walked to the bathroom and closed the door. We left soon as we heard the shower running. Nate and I went back to the hospital for the surgery. When we got there the operating room was already set up and all I had to do was sign the papers and it would be done.

We were in the reception area when Buli and Faith walked in.

Buli: "Hey." We hugged them.
Nate: "What are you doing here?"
Faith: "We came to see Lando before the surgery If that's okay."
Nate: "She's being prepped for surgery but you can go in." They leave us and go into her ward. I signed the papers and handed them to Nate. We went to Lando's room and she was already being wheeled out. I gave her a kiss and watched as she was wheeled off into theater. I might not pray much but she does so I hoped that God still has his eyes on her.


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NARRATED



At OR Tambo airport Uche has just landed. She walks to the parking lot where a car is waiting for her. She gets in and drives off to SunMed hospital. She makes it to the reception area.

Uche: "Good morning."
Nurse: "Morning maam what can I do for you?"
Uche: "I am here to see Lando Lando Biyela I was told she is admitted here."
Nurse: "Are you family?"
Uche: "Yes I am she's my husband's sister."
Nurse: "Okay she's in surgery right now but her ward is on the fifth floor private ward three."
Uche: "Thank you." She walks away.

She gets to the ward and finds Philani sitting on the couch with his head bowed and buried in his hands. She sashays over to him and sits next to him. He lifts his head up soon as he feels the couch move next to him.

Philani: "Uche what are you doing here." She pulls him in for a hug and he doesn't fight her.
Uche: "I am sorry about your loss I wish I had been here for you earlier but you know with work." He pulls out and looks at her.
Philani: "Thanks. But it wasnt necessary."
Uche: "Of course it was honey no one deserves to go through all you've been through the past couple of weeks."

Philani got up and walked over to the side table and poured himself a glass of water. He took a sip as Uche walked over to him and wrapped her hands around his waist and kissed his back.

Uche: "You know sometimes I forget how strong you are but even the strongest soldiers need people to lean on. And I am here to be your shoulder." He turned around and looked at her releasing himself from her hold.
Philani: "Do you think I am cursed?"
Uche: "Of course not why would you even think that?"
Philani: "Everything that has happened to Lando somehow always leads back to me she was kidnapped and almost sold to human traffickers because of me she's had to have guards around her even though she hates it all because I was trying to protect her from my own enemies and now she is having her child pulled out of her before it's time because she was shot all because of me. She had an easy life before I waltzed into her life and changed it all. Now she might die all because of me. She had an easy life before I waltzed into her life and changed it all. Now she might die my child might die all because of the choices I have made." He said as tears flowed down his face. Uche wiped away his tears and gave him a hug. She pulled out and held his face in her hands.
Uche: "This is not your fault Philani yes you have made some shitty decisions before but you cant bear the cross for someone else's choices. Think about it you have made shitty decisions before but none of the people you were with at the time were ever affected in fact I would say she is the one who is cursed. You were forced into a marriage with her adopted a child weeks into your marriage you were shot trying to protect HER friend Philani she did this not you."

Woman: "The next time you decide to call my daughter cursed make sure you know exactly what you are talking about before saying that rubbish."

They turned around to find Nelsiwe Gugu and Ntombi standing by the door looking at them.

Philani: "What are you doing here?"
Nelsiwe: "I came to see my daughter unless you have a problem with that."
Philani: "No I have no problem with that. Excuse me." He walked out and Gugu followed him.

Gugu: "Bhuti Philani." He turned around and hugged her.
Philani: "I am sorry I couldn't protect her. I am sorry." He pulled out and they sat on the benches in the hallway.
Gugu: "Its not your fault I know you did all you can to help her."
Philani: "Arent you supposed to be in school?"
Gugu: "I should be."
Philani: "And what are you doing with her?" She chuckles.
Gugu: "Well she showed up to school a couple of days ago apologized and now we are good."
Philani: "You trust her?"
Gugu: "It will take a while but we'll take it one step at a time."
Philani: "I am glad to hear that. Lando will be happy."
Gugu: "I hope so."
Philani: "You hungry?"
Gugu: "I could do with some food." He laughs.
Philani: "You could never say no to food. Let's go." They leave.

Meanwhile in the ward Ntombi Nelsiwe and Uche have been in a stare off with no one willing to speak first. Uche decides to leave but Ntombi and Nelsiwe block the door.

Uche: "Move!"
Nelsiwe: "Where the hell do you get off calling my daughter cursed?"
Uche: "Its a little too late for you to be playing the concerned mommy now. We all know how you feel about your daughter so you can take that I care attitude and shove it where the sun dont shine mummy dearest." She tries to push past them but Ntombi pins her against the wall making it hard for her to breath.
Ntombi: "My sister is not dead yet for you to come here and act like a vulture she will wake up and when she does her husband will be right there with her and you will be out in the cold as always. Stay the fuck away from Philani or so help me God I will personally send you back to whatever hole you crawled out from under." She let's her go and Uche fixes herself.
Uche: "Little girl you have no idea who you are dealing with." She walks out.

Philani and Gugu walk back into the ward with some takeaways and give Ntombi and Nelsiwe. They sit in silence while eating. Soon Buli and Faith walk in too followed by some of the Biyela family including Sihle and Banele together with Bab'Biyela and aunt Kholiwe. They all greet and take seats while waiting for news on Lando.

A few minutes later Sipho and mam Busi walk in too followed by Lindani Sizwe Sbu and Razor. Busi walks over to Nelsiwe who is standing by herself in the corner with a cup of cold coffee in her hands.

Busi: "I am glad you could come. I am sure Lando will be happy too."
Nelsiwe: "I dont know about that. I have hurt her way too many times. I don't think she'll ever forgive me."
Busi: "Gugu forgave you right trust me Lando will forgive you too it might take a while but she will eventually."
Nelsiwe: "Its crazy to think that every person in this room knows more about my own child than I do."
Busi: "We all make mistakes Nelsiwe the trick is being able to acknowledge those mistakes and do better." She rubs her shoulder before leaving her and walking to the others.

The door opens and Nate walks in with a nurse behind him. The room goes silent and everyone looks at him waiting for him to speak.

Nate: "Baby is okay. She has just been taken to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. You can all come see her but it will have to be through the glass.
Sipho: "What about Lando?"
Nate: "The doctor just started removing the bullet shards."
Busi: "How long will that take?"
Nate: "Its hard to say but it might take a while. We need to make sure no pieces get left behind."
Bab'Biyela: "Can we see my grandbaby now."
Sipho: "You mean our grandbaby. She is half Shongwe you know."
Bab'Biyela: "Half Shongwe in spirit and a full Biyela."
Sipho: "Mxm I shouldn't have accepted your lobola."
Bab'Biyela: "Too late you cant return it now."

They walk out still joking around and making the others laugh. Philani and his friends stay behind.

Philani: "Is the baby okay?"
Nate: "She is perfect but we still need to keep her in the incubator until she is strong enough to breathe on her own. But other than that she is okay."
Lindani: "Good now let's go see my goddaughter."
Nate: "Dude stop being weird everyone knows she's my goddaughter."
Lindani: "Keep telling yourself that if it helps you sleep better at night."
Sizwe: " We'll just let them fight this out cause we all know I am the godfather." He whispers to Philani who just laughs and walks away leaving them still arguing.

He gets to the NICU and the others are standing outside looking at the baby through the glass. He walks into the NICU and a nurse hands him some scrubs to put on. When he is done he walks over to the incubator where his baby is. He pulls up a chair and sits down.

Philani: "Hi baby its daddy." He wipes the tears that keep falling from his eyes. "I am so happy to meet you babygirl. You have no idea how much I love you but I promise I will spend the rest of my life reminding you of that."

He wipes some more tears before putting his hand into the incubator and holding his daughter's tiny hand. She wraps her little fingers around his thumb.

Philani: "I love you my angel." 

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