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ROUGH DIAMONDS AND BLACK PEARLS-

TEBELLO MONYAGO

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*Lebo*

I was woken up by a banging sound at the door. 

I wore my gown and went to open the door. There stood Entle wearing the skimpiest dress I’ve even seen. Her weave was messed up and the mascara had trailed down to her cheeks. All in all she looked like a wet chicken. 


She pushed herself into the house carrying her very high stilettos under her arm. 

I folded my arms and stared at her waiting for her to answer to her sins. 

Entle:. Eish girl. 

Me: Don’t “eish girl” me! I was worried here thinking you were hurt or something. Little did I know that missy over here had a fantastic night and forgot all about her daughter. 

Entle: Hai maarn Lebo. Don’t shout. My head hurts. 

Me: You really don’t know me. 


I walked to the kitchen and pulled out a glass and steel plate. 

I walked to her and banged the steel plate and glass right next to her ear. 

She sprung up and ran to the door. 

Entle: What the hell!? Are you trying to kill me?

Lebo: Go bath and get some rest. I don’t want Hlehle to see you like this. 


She left the house. I sat down and calmed myself down before waking Hlehle up. 

I shook her lightly. 

Me: Nana. Wake up  

She stirred awake and rubbed her eyes. 

Sihle: Is Entle here?

Me: She went to bath. 

Sihle: (looking down) Oh...

I sat next to her and brushed her back. 

Me: What’s wrong baby?

Sihle: I...I just like staying with you more than staying with Entle. 

Me: Why wouldn’t you wanna stay with Entle baby?

Sihle: It’s just that she leaves me alone at night and I get scared. 


I felt myself burn in my seat. This girl is not serious! How do you leave a six year old alone every night? I need serious strength to deal with this. 


Me: I’m sorry baby. I’ll speak to her. 

She nodded her head and stood up from the bed. 

We took a bath together and ate cornflakes while watching the some soapies. 

Me: Hlehle?

Sihle: Yes Aunty?

Me: Are you in school?

Sihle: No...Entle says it’s a waste of time and it’ll never get me anywhere. 

Thats it! This girl isn’t mentally stable. 

 

I kept calm and washed the dishes. When I was done I left Hlehle watching cartoons and went to Entle’s place.

I barged in and found her humping on top of one of our male neighbors. 

This has to be “piss Lebo off day” or the universe just keeps giving me signs on why I should take Sihle away from her” 

Me: (roaring) What the hell? Really now. 


She jumped up and wrapped a towel around her naked body. The man who was old enough to be someone’s grandpa wore his pants and left some money on the counter before rushing out. 


It all became clear. The skimpy clothing and excessive makeup

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I left Hlehle watching cartoons and went to Entle’s place.

I barged in and found her humping on top of one of our male neighbors. 

This has to be “piss Lebo off day” or the universe just keeps giving me signs on why I should take Sihle away from her” 

Me: (roaring) What the hell? Really now. 


She jumped up and wrapped a towel around her naked body. The man who was old enough to be someone’s grandpa wore his pants and left some money on the counter before rushing out. 


It all became clear. The skimpy clothing and excessive makeup leaving Sihle behind the man leaving money on the counter. 

Me: Entle are you a prostitute?

She looked down and scratched her cornrows. 

Me: Entle no!

She looked down and started crying. 

Me: Why? Is this the life you want for yourself? I know finding a job is hard but this?

She didn’t respond. 

Me: You know what I’m taking Hlehle to live with me. When you finally decide to be a parent and a role model to her you’ll let me know. I won’t let her grow up in such an environment. 

She cried harder. 

Entle: No! Please don’t. I’ll be better. 

Me: I’ll bring her back when I see improvement. 

Entle: You can’t do that! 

Me: Oh yes I can. Or would you rather I call social workers who might never bring her back? Look at this place and tell me you’d be happy if your child was growing in it. There’s cigarette butts everywhere and bottles of alcohol on every corner. I’m not taking risks. Fix yourself if you want Hlehle back.

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