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Chapter 03

My Dear Freedom 


I'm sorry I couldn't protect you my Freedom but Ndondoyethu promised me that he is going to protect you and take good care of you. This is not much but I hope it will keep you going. Freedom please When all is over remember home. Love Gogo 


Me : Which home gogo? 


(I sigh and open the brown envelope and there is R3 000. She gave me her whole salary. Tears are running down my face. I open the window as I wipe them. I don't even know where we are but Ndondo calls it the city of gold. These flats are not in a good condition but at least we have a roof over our heads. There is chaos all around. It's a pick up hour for the taxi drivers. I thought Lindelani was a busy place but here? You don't want to know. I've seen almost everything in less than two weeks. People will do anything to put food on the table. There is a protest. It has been going on for the past 3 days) 


Ndondoyethu : Another students protest? 


(Oh he is awake) 


Me : Uh! 


Ndondoyethu : They are just wasting their time….Eish my neck is killing me 


Me : You've been sleeping on the floor Ndondo so yeah 


(He sleeps on the floor and I sleep with his aunt in the bed. Our flat is small with only one bed.) 


Me : Why didn't you tell me that there was money here? 


Ndondoyethu : I didn't know Blue. How much? 


Me : R3000. It should cover rent for this month and other things 


Ndondoyethu : What about you? Your needs 


Me : Does it matter? 


Ndondoyethu : Blue I… 


Me : How was she? 


Ndondoyethu : Gogo Maureen? 


Me : Uh 


Ndondoyethu : Fine I guess. She was worried about you but I told her that we are going to be fine. 


(I close the window) 


Me : Fine?(I shake my head) Ndondo it has been weeks now and we can't sit here and do nothing. Your aunt needs help. This R3000 won't make any difference 


Ndondoyethu : I know. I didn't want to tell you but yeah she is complaining already. They need money back home and she needs to take care of you and I. It's too much 


Me : I'm going out today. I need a job. Any job 


Ndondoyethu : You can't. It's not safe here 


Me : Where am I safe? Nowhere! 


Ndondoyethu : Where are you going to start Blue? 


Me : I don't know 


(Door opens and Selina walks in. This is Ndondoyethu's aunt. Why is she back so early?) 


Selina : I lost my job. The students burned down the factory last night 


Ndondoyethu : Oh no. I'm really….. 


Selina : Don't say it you know I always get back up. It's time for you two to grow up now. Get a job and… 


Ndondoyethu : Where are we even going to start? 


Selina : I don't know and I don't care. I do not have kids and I have my reasons. I decided to come and stay here because I wanted peace. Ndondoyethu you know me 


Ndondoyethu : I'll look for that job 


Selina : Freedom? 


Ndondoyethu : Aunt? 


Selina : I want you to meet someone who is going to change your life 


Ndondoyethu : Who is that? 


Selina : Ndondo please mind your own business 


Ndondoyethu : Blue is my business! 


Selina : Is she your girlfriend? Your wife? Your sister? 


Ndondoyethu : That is…. 


Me : I'm up for it. Ndondo please 


(Ndondo took his towel and walked into the bathroom) 


Selina : Good girl 


(Selina takes out her cigarette and starts smoking) 


Me : My grandmother gave me this. I did not know there was money inside but today I decided to… to open it 


(The truth is I am scared of Selina. She looks at me as she counts the money) 


Selina : Are you sure that this is all? 


Me : You can search me 


(She laughs) 


Selina : I trust you. Do we have food? 


Me : I'll make breakfast for you 


Selina : That's my girl 


LATER That DAY


(Time is 19h09. Selina knocks at the door and a tall dark skinned guy opens the door. He had a gun in his hand) 


Selina : It's me 


Guy : Be careful next time 


Selina : Oh please. I want to come in 


Guy : You had your chance last night. Someone else is here 


Selina : Fuck you! 


(What on earth is going on? I'm nervous now.) 


Guy : I know you don't mean that. Is this her? 


Selina : Yes


Guy : Tell her to come in 


Selina : Freedom I'll come later. Go in 


Me : I… 


Selina : Now Freedom! 


(I quickly walk in. The guy walks out and kisses Selina. Ok I don't want to see what he is doing now. I look around the house and there is a naked woman sitting on the couch. I swallow) 


Me : Hi 


Woman : Go upstairs. You will find others 


(Others?. Without asking questions I walked upstairs and there I found 5 girls. They are giving me weird looks. Why? I sit down and wait for God knows what. I'm not going to say anything to them. I'm going to mind my own business. The wait is frustrating and finally Selina's boyfriend walks in. I'll call him her boyfriend because why would she kiss him if he wasn't her boyfriend. He sits down on the couch and puts his feet on the table. He is that "don't mess with me" kind of guy. His eyes tell a story and I don't like what I see. I want to pee. I want to run. Why is he looking at us like that?) 


Guy : What is your name again? 


(Oh my God he is asking me. I want to speak but my voice won't let me. Oh no he sees it! What is he looking for? Oh he is going to shoot. Sir I want to speak but this voice is just gone. It happens a lot when I'm scared I'm not trying to disrespect you. Why can't you speak Freedom? I sigh when I see him giving me a bottle of water. I needed that) 


Guy : I don't bite 


Me : My name is Freedom but others call me Blue. 


Guy : The power of water. 


(The ladies laugh. What is so funny?) 


Guy : Blue. Do you know why you are here? 


Me : I don't 


Guy : You are here to make money. For me and yourself. Clear? 


(Silence) 


Guy : I hate repeating myself Blue 


Me : Clear 


Guy : Good. 


(He stands up and takes the remote. The television switches on) 


Guy : Now I want you to pay attention to the screen 


Me : Ok 


(It's a movie. Nice! I love movies. Wait. The ladies in this movie are the same ladies sitting next to me. They are movie stars? I continue watching. They are wearing the same dresses in the movie but I don't like their dresses. They are too short. Ok one of them is going inside a house. A big house. She walks in and heads to the bedroom. There is a man in bed and he is naked. Oh no she is taking off her clothes. Now this is weird. This lady is sitting right here next to me and she keeps smiling as she watches herself in the movie. Why is she smiling? This is embarrassing?. They are having sex now. I tried to close my eyes) 


Guy : Blue watch. It's about to get interesting 


(I continue watching. The lady reaches under the pillow. Wait. Isn't that an injection? In a blink of an eye the injection was on that man's neck. He seems unconscious. The lady quickly got out of the bed and packed something inside the bag and there was money too. She is robbing him! She is robbing him! Is he dead? My eyes are wide open and the television switches off) 


Guy : That is exactly what you are going to do Blue. I'll tell you when and where you are going. When you get there you do exactly what she did. The injection will always be under the pillow. Be smart when you take it out and always aim for the neck 


(What is he saying? I'm not doing that.) 


Me : I'm sorry but I can't do that. Kill innocent men? 


Guy : We don't kill them. We drug them. They are not innocent men

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you know I always get back up. It's time for you two to grow up now. Get a job and… 


Ndondoyethu : Where are we even going to start? 


Selina : I don't know and I don't care. I do not have kids and I have my reasons. I decided to come and stay here because I wanted peace. Ndondoyethu you know me 


Ndondoyethu : I'll look for that job 


Selina : Freedom? 


Ndondoyethu : Aunt? 


Selina : I want you to meet someone who is going to change your life 


Ndondoyethu : Who is that? 


Selina : Ndondo please mind your own business 


Ndondoyethu : Blue is my business! 


Selina : Is she your girlfriend? Your wife? Your sister? 


Ndondoyethu : That is…. 


Me : I'm up for it. Ndondo please 


(Ndondo took his towel and walked into the bathroom) 


Selina : Good girl 


(Selina takes out her cigarette and starts smoking) 


Me : My grandmother gave me this. I did not know there was money inside but today I decided to… to open it 


(The truth is I am scared of Selina. She looks at me as she counts the money) 


Selina : Are you sure that this is all? 


Me : You can search me 


(She laughs) 


Selina : I trust you. Do we have food? 


Me : I'll make breakfast for you 


Selina : That's my girl 


LATER That DAY


(Time is 19h09. Selina knocks at the door and a tall dark skinned guy opens the door. He had a gun in his hand) 


Selina : It's me 


Guy : Be careful next time 


Selina : Oh please. I want to come in 


Guy : You had your chance last night. Someone else is here 


Selina : Fuck you! 


(What on earth is going on? I'm nervous now.) 


Guy : I know you don't mean that. Is this her? 


Selina : Yes


Guy : Tell her to come in 


Selina : Freedom I'll come later. Go in 


Me : I… 


Selina : Now Freedom! 


(I quickly walk in. The guy walks out and kisses Selina. Ok I don't want to see what he is doing now. I look around the house and there is a naked woman sitting on the couch. I swallow) 


Me : Hi 


Woman : Go upstairs. You will find others 


(Others?. Without asking questions I walked upstairs and there I found 5 girls. They are giving me weird looks. Why? I sit down and wait for God knows what. I'm not going to say anything to them. I'm going to mind my own business. The wait is frustrating and finally Selina's boyfriend walks in. I'll call him her boyfriend because why would she kiss him if he wasn't her boyfriend. He sits down on the couch and puts his feet on the table. He is that "don't mess with me" kind of guy. His eyes tell a story and I don't like what I see. I want to pee. I want to run. Why is he looking at us like that?) 


Guy : What is your name again? 


(Oh my God he is asking me. I want to speak but my voice won't let me. Oh no he sees it! What is he looking for? Oh he is going to shoot. Sir I want to speak but this voice is just gone. It happens a lot when I'm scared I'm not trying to disrespect you. Why can't you speak Freedom? I sigh when I see him giving me a bottle of water. I needed that) 


Guy : I don't bite 


Me : My name is Freedom but others call me Blue. 


Guy : The power of water. 


(The ladies laugh. What is so funny?) 


Guy : Blue. Do you know why you are here? 


Me : I don't 


Guy : You are here to make money. For me and yourself. Clear? 


(Silence) 


Guy : I hate repeating myself Blue 


Me : Clear 


Guy : Good. 


(He stands up and takes the remote. The television switches on) 


Guy : Now I want you to pay attention to the screen 


Me : Ok 


(It's a movie. Nice! I love movies. Wait. The ladies in this movie are the same ladies sitting next to me. They are movie stars? I continue watching. They are wearing the same dresses in the movie but I don't like their dresses. They are too short. Ok one of them is going inside a house. A big house. She walks in and heads to the bedroom. There is a man in bed and he is naked. Oh no she is taking off her clothes. Now this is weird. This lady is sitting right here next to me and she keeps smiling as she watches herself in the movie. Why is she smiling? This is embarrassing?. They are having sex now. I tried to close my eyes) 


Guy : Blue watch. It's about to get interesting 


(I continue watching. The lady reaches under the pillow. Wait. Isn't that an injection? In a blink of an eye the injection was on that man's neck. He seems unconscious. The lady quickly got out of the bed and packed something inside the bag and there was money too. She is robbing him! She is robbing him! Is he dead? My eyes are wide open and the television switches off) 


Guy : That is exactly what you are going to do Blue. I'll tell you when and where you are going. When you get there you do exactly what she did. The injection will always be under the pillow. Be smart when you take it out and always aim for the neck 


(What is he saying? I'm not doing that.) 


Me : I'm sorry but I can't do that. Kill innocent men? 


Guy : We don't kill them. We drug them. They are not innocent men they are your enemies. They left their wives and children back home to come and sleep with prostitutes. Those are your fathers and they spend all your money for education to prostitutes. Our job is to take that money because they don't know what to do with it 


Me : No no no. This is… 


Guy : Easy. Blue I can't let you go now. You've seen more than enough and that is dangerous. If I let you go I'm going to have to kill you. To protect myself and my ladies here so choose. 


(I stand up and head to the door. The sound of the gun stopped. He is cocking his gun. He is going to shoot me. Maybe he's just trying to scare me? What If he is going to shoot me? I slowly took steps back and sat down.) 


Guy : Good. Now she understands. Let's get down to business ladies 


(He opens a box and takes out a bag. He gives each of us a cellphone.) 


Guy : For business only. You don't call me. I call you. Clear? 


Me : Clear 


(I'm so upset right now) 


Guy : Tomorrow I want you girls to go out. Have some fun and get to know each other because after tomorrow it's work work and more work. No play 


(The annoying ladies laughed) 


Guy : Freedom welcome to my team. Now let me introduce myself. I was born in Mozambique but South Africa is my home now. My name is Ike Muianga 







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