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CHAPTER 6

- AT THE MAIN HOUSE -

- TIANA -


We were in the dining room having dinner. once again Ms Moisa helped with the cooking. I am starting to get the hang of it trust me in a few weeks I will be a chief.


I licked my fingers after cleaning my plate up. and I was making that "mnca" sound with my tongue as I licked my fingers clean.


I wasn't even paying attention to Mr Khoza.


I then took my glass of juice leaned back and drank it.


Mr Khoza was not finished and he didn't  even have much on his plate I had a lot yet I finished before him.


I looked at him.


Me: psshhh you eat slow like a baby. 


he looked at me then ignored me and continued eating. 


I sipped on my juice making that "hrrrrrrrr" sound. you know that sound that most people hate hearing when someone is drinking tea.


I wasn't doing that on purpose I just love doing that when I am bored.


as I was busy making that sound he ignored me at first but after a while he looked at me as if he was about to kill me.


Me: what?

Mr Khoza: would you stop that its annoying.

Me: ohh sorry.


he continued eating.


Me: anyway Mr Khoza you said you would tell me about your background.


he looked at me and reached for his juice.


Mr Khoza: you don't  forget huh?

Me: no.

Mr Khoza: fine. as you already know I am the only child in my family.

Me: mhm..

Mr Khoza: My father is the last male born from his family he had 4 siblings 2 female and 2 male 5 siblings with himself.

Me: Nkululeko's father being one of the siblings?

Mr Khoza: good listener. yes. both my parents passed away 4 years ago. first it was my mom she was pregnant and expecting when she went into labour both my mom and little sister didn't  make it. my father was torn especially because for years they have been trying to have another chid but somehow they couldn't then when it finally happens she doesn't  make it with the child. my father felt like it was his fault he felt like he shouldn't  have wished for another child. my dad was in a bad space so I had to be there for him uncle Mnqobi said he would sort out the funeral I was ok with that. about 2 months later I found my dad dead in the house. I ran to him and called the ambulance but it was already too late. everyone comforted me. it is believed he couldn't handle the pain of loosing his wife.

Me: suicide?

Mr Khoza: that's what they say.

Me: ohhhhh that's  sad.

Mr Khoza: mhm... and that's  it.

Me: impossible you still haven't  told me how many grandkids does your grandfather have and your position in the company.

Mr Khoza: and why would you want to know that?

Me: as a gold digger I must know whether my sacrifice to this marriage will be worth it or not I hate competitions.

Mr Khoza: (chuckles) hai Mrs Gold digger try finding that out yourself ok.

me: mxm


I pouted and just drank the left over juice in my glass.


Me: well I will go wash the dishes then have a great night. (I said then already standing up)

Mr Khoza: woaw! sit down.

Me: why?

Mr Khoza: sit down.


I sat down and looked at him.


Mr Khoza: You.... you will be sleeping in the main bedroom from tonight.

Me: main bedroom? wait isn't it your bedroom?

Mr Khoza: correct.

Me: so you are giving me your bedroom? don't you like it anymore?

Mr Khoza: who said I am moving out of it?

Me: (popped my eyes out) I will move in the bedroom with you?

Mr Khoza: why are your eyes popped out like that? you look like a ghost.

Me: wait!! cut. are you joking?

Mr Khoza: I am not. My grandfather will be coming here this weekend to check on me he wouldn't  like it if we are sleeping in separate rooms.

Me: ohhhh so that's  what it is. 

Mr Khoza: what did you think it was?

Me: I almost thought you were falling in love with me. I mean I know I am beautiful and sexy and I am every man's dream.. 

Mr Khoza:  .......... right they always say "beauty is in the eyes of the beholder" even though other people don't  see it its ok. what you see is what matters.


I looked at him and sighed. this guy doesn't  have peace. mxm. can't  he just play along and make me feel good about myself? 


Me: whatever. anyway will we... will we be sharing a bed?

Mr Khoza: I can't  move so I wont do anything to you.

Me: ohhhh Mr Khoza what are you thinking? I was only asking because I wanted to warn you that I don't  sleep straight so I am afraid that I might hurt your legs.

Mr Khoza: (clears throat) yah I was thinking the same thing.

Me: don't  lie Mr Khoza.... (smiling mischievously) 

Mr Khoza: anyway don't  worry about that.

Me: ok so will David also be in the room?

Mr Khoza: no he will be returning to his room tonight.

Me: ok. well as long as you don't  have a problem with my kung-fu sleeping positions then I am fine with the arrangements.

Mr Khoza: ok then you can go wash the dishes then you will find me in my room you can bring your own blankets if you want.

Me: wait here I will take these to the kitchen then take you upstairs.

Mr Khoza: trust me your wont be able to. I always have 2 people holding me up to my room and another person following with my wheelchair.

Me: why haven't you adjusted the house to be wheelchair friendly?

Mr Khoza: it has only been 4 months since I lived like this. I haven't  had time to do that plus I still have hope that I will be able to walk again.

Me: mhm. yes we must have Hope. 


I smiled.


Mr Khoza: go wash the dishes I will go upstairs.


I nodded and stood up. I took our dishes and headed out.


- IN MR KHOZA'S BEDROOM -

- NARRATOR -


David pushed Mr Khoza into his room. he closed the door and wheeled him near the bed.


Mr Khoza: thank you David.


David nodded


Mr Khoza: did you get me a bandage?

David: yes sir. 

Mr Khoza: good. please help me wrap it around my face before my wife gets here.


David nodded and went to get the plastic with the bandage inside.


Mr Khoza used to sleep with his bare face when he slept alone but now that he was going to sleep with Tiana he didn't  want to scare her off so he wanted to hide his face.


David: here it is sir. are you sure you don't  want to show Mrs Khoza your face yet? I mean she is your wife.

Mr Khoza: I am not ready yet maybe in due time.

David: I understand.


Mr Khoza removed his mask. then he gently took out the eye contacts that he had in his eyes.


David took the wet cloth and wiped Mr Khoza's face. then he took the bandage and gently wrapped it around his face making sure to cover his face especially on the left side and then also covered his left eye. now only his right eye was visible.


David: all done.

Mr Khoza: thank you.

David: I guess I don't  have to change you right? Mrs Khoza is here now.

Mr Khoza: (smiles) of cause.

David: ok then Mr Khoza have a great night.

Mr Khoza: you too. thank you again. only you see me this close and yet you still show me respect.

David: respect is not given because of how a person looks

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have a great night.

Mr Khoza: you too. thank you again. only you see me this close and yet you still show me respect.

David: respect is not given because of how a person looks you are a good person Mr Khoza I still don't  understand why you like putting your wife down.


Mr Khoza softly laughed.


Mr Khoza: (smiles) am I?

David: even though this is an arranged marriage be nice to her.

Mr Khoza: (smiles) go sleep.


David smiled and walked out after putting everything back including the mask.


- TIANA -


I was holding my big blanket already changed into my pyjamas and making that "shh shh" sound with my slippers.


I got to his room and it was closed. I knocked.


Voice: come in.


I opened the door and saw him sitting on the bed with a bandage on his face. I walked in and closed the door.


Me: can I lock?

Mr Khoza: no need no one gets in without my permission.

Me: ohh.

Mr Khoza: I see you actually brought a blanket.

Me: mhm Slindile always complained about me pulling the blankets at night so I didn't  want you to experience the same thing.

Mr Khoza: mhm.

Me: why are you covering your face like that? 

Mr Khoza: just.

Me: you look like the mummy.

Mr Khoza: maybe I am.

Me: did you burn your face? 

Mr Khoza: ................ huh... no..

Me: you have a scar or something.

Mr Khoza:........... huh.... I have been waiting for you to come and change me into my pyjamas.

Me: you are such a master at changing subjects. 

Mr Khoza: my pyjamas are in the closet.


I threw my blanket on the bed and went to his closet I looked around and eventually found them. I took the blue one and walked to the bedroom.


Me: this one?

Mr Khoza: mhm.


I walked to him.


I helped him get out of the clothing he was wearing then helped him into his pyjamas.


- LATER -

- NARRATOR -


It was late at night and Mr Khoza wanted to go to the toilet. he never had to stress before because he would just wake David to help him get to the bathroom but now David wasn't here and he didn't  want to embarrass himself by asking Tiana to help him.


he switched on the lamp and looked over to Tiana who was sleeping like a mad person. well she did warn him.


Mr Khoza pulled himself to sit up then slightly moved Tiana's leg away. he then pulled his blankets off and tried getting off but it wasn't as easy.


he pushed his leg to turn. after a while he tried reaching for his wheelchair but ended up falling and dropping the lamp that also broke.


Tiana woke up from the noise already scared that it could be a ghost or something. only to find Mr Khoza not in bed.


she quickly switched on the lamp.


Tiana: Mr Khoza?


she heard some groaning so she hurried to his side and saw him laying on the floor.


Tiana: Mr Khoza are you ok?


Mr Khoza was so embarrassed that he didn't  even want to look at Tiana.


Mr Khoza: I am fine.

Tiana: Mr Khoza did I kick you off the bed?


she asked already feeling embarrassed hoping he would say no.


Mr Khoza: ........... can.... can you help me get to the bathroom.


Tiana looked at him then smiled.


Tiana: Mr Khoza did you fall off the bed? 

Mr Khoza: I asked for help Tiana.

Tiana: well you are missing the magic word.

Mr Khoza: ........ please..

Tiana: ok.


Tiana got off the bed and hurried to help him up.


Mr Khoza held her shoulders for support and Tiana held him tightly as well. with some struggle she walked with him to the bathroom.


Mr Khoza: just put me on the seat I will take it from here.

Tiana: ok.


Tiana put him on the open toilet seat.


Mr Khoza: you may leave I will call you when I am done.

Tiana: do call me don't  try coming out on your own I am your wife anyway. 


she walked out.


Mr Khoza then did his business. 


when he was done he didn't  call Tiana instead he sat on the toilet seat just thinking about the embarrassing moment that just happened.


- MINUTES LATER -


Tiana knocked on the bathroom door but Mr Khoza didn't  answer. after knocking for 3 times Tiana rushed in calling Mr Khoza thinking something happened to him.


Tiana: Mr Khoza!!


only to find him seated on the toilet seat playing with his fingers.


Tiana: Mr Khoza I thought something happened to you why didn't  you answer when I knocked?


he didn't  say anything he just looked at his fingers.


Tiana looked at Mr Khoza and realised he was still dressed. 


Tiana: Mr Khoza are you done?


again he didn't  say anything.


Tiana walked to him and tried looking into his right eye but he looked away but Tiana got a glimpse and figured that Mr Khoza was crying.


she was shocked. Mr Khoza is crying?


Tiana: Mr Khoza why are you crying?


he still didn't  say anything.


Tiana: come ..


she tried getting him up but he pushed her away.


Tiana: Mr Khoza you have to move I am peeing myself.


Mr Khoza looked at her and looked down. 


he tried moving by himself.


Tiana: you are such a stubborn person Mr Khoza let me help its faster and I can pee earlier.


Mr Khoza swallowed his pride and let Tiana help him back in the room. but it was only because Tiana said she wanted to pee.


after Tiana sat him down on the bed and helped his legs on the bed she also sat down. Mr Khoza looked at her.


Mr Khoza: aren't you going to use the bathroom?

Tiana: no I only said that because I wanted you to come out. 

Mr Khoza: mxm (he looked down)

Tiana: Mr Khoza why are you trying to go through all of this alone? am I not your wife.

Mr Khoza: you are my arranged wife there is a difference.

Tiana: in my books a wife is a wife unless this marriage has an expiry date. does it?

Mr Khoza: ................

Tiana: Mr Khoza when I was told I would be marrying someone I was angry angry because I already had someone I was in love with and marrying someone who I didn't  love was not in my books but to please my family I had to accept the marriage and leave my happiness. when I found out you were on a wheelchair I knew I would have responsibilities as a woman such like to wash you help you to the toilet and many more and I accepted that. yes you ruined my happiness but that doesn't  mean I have to turn this marriage into an unhappy marriage. there is a saying that says "when life gives you lemon make lemonade" as your family took me in as your wife let me do my duties. I may not give you love and you may not give me love but the least we can do for each other is help each other and at least be close friends/close married friends with benefits... no cancel benefits its sounds wrong (shakes head) anyway isn't that better then living a tight up marriage where your helper is your guard? then why get married? to have kids? you can adopt.

Mr Khoza: is it that guy you were looking at when we were at the restaurant?

Tiana: ....... (swallowed then nodded)

Mr Khoza: ohhh. its not late to go back I will tell my grandfather that you..................

Tiana: (interrupted) ohhh Mr Khoza I rather have you insult me then have you sulk like this. it doesn't  suit you. 


Mr Khoza wanted to smile but held himself back.


Tiana: now I need the bathroom I am coming.


Tiana rushed to the bathroom and Mr Khoza shook his head.


Mr Khoza: did she hit her head when she was born?


he asked himself as he snuggled himself in the blankets.

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