5

Nobuhle Mthembu Pillay....
It was beginning of February. In the morning we were having breakfast. The boys were still sleeping. Their nanny was going to come any minute.
Heather: Mom I will need new clothes. Beautiful clothes.
Me: Clothes for what?
Heather: We are dressing up on the valentine's day.
Rajiv: You need new clothes for dressing up?
Heather: Yes daddy. I want to be beautiful more than every girl in school.
Rajiv: Even if you have new clothes or old clothes. You'll still be the most beautiful girl.
Heather: Really? Mom? Dad is telling the truth?
Me: Yes baby your father is telling the truth.
Heather: Okay. But still I will ask grandma to buy them for me. I am visiting her this weekend.
Rajiv: No. You're not visiting anyone.
Heather: But daddy I promised that I will come and visit her.
Rajiv: You'll call her and tell her that you can't make it. You'll go some other time.
Heather: That is unfair.
She got off the chair and took her bag. She walked away.
Rajiv: Heather come back here!
I sighed and stood up.
Me: You know we can't get in between her and Claudine. I don't know when you'll accept that.
Rajiv: I just don't want my daughter to love Claudine more than anyone else in this planet.
I left him and went to Heather. She was standing beside my car. Her father bought me a car.
Me: You're riding with me to school today?
Heather: Yes I am because daddy doesn't want me to go and visit grandma.
Me: Okay. But you can't go to school without brushing your teeth remember?
She nodded and went back inside. She went to the bathroom. I went to clear the table. Rajiv stood up and kissed me.
Rajiv: Have a nice day. I love you.
Me: Thanks. You too have a nice. I love you.
Rajiv: She's angry with me so I guess she'll drive with you?
Me: You know how it is.
He shook his head and headed to the door taking his bags.
Rajiv: (shouting) Heather baby bye bye.
Heather: Bye bye.
Rajiv: You don't love me today?
Heather: I love you a little.
Rajiv laughed and left. The nanny came and we left.
Afternoon I was cooking in the kitchen. Brandon and Bradley were on the floor. Heather was doing her homework in the lounge. Their father walked in. The boys crawled up to their father. They knew exactly when he was going to get home. I followed them. He picked them both up. After putting his bag down. He kissed me. I took his bag.
Rajiv: Hello Heather.
Heather: I am doing my homework dad. You're disturbing me.
Rajiv looked at me and I shrugged. We went to our bedroom with the boys. He put them down.
Me: So what happened?
Rajiv: Kiss me first.
I smiled and kissed him deeply. He kissed my forehead.
Rajiv: They appointed me.
I screamed in happiness. I was really happy.
Rajiv: You know what does that means right?
Me: Yes baby and I am happy.
Rajiv: Not like I am. I can finally take you to school and you'll get your Degree.
Me: I can't believe we're leaving.
Rajiv: You better believe it my love.
We kissed each other once more. I was happy I was finally got to study. I left him and I went to finish up my cooking. Rajiv was going to be transferred to Cape Town. He was going to be paid more than he got in KZN. That meant we were leaving KZN and we were moving to Cape Town. We were going to leave in the end of March. I was more than happy. Once dinner was served. We were telling Heather.
Rajiv: Heather baby daddy got a transfer to Cape Town.
Heather: What does that mean dad?
Rajiv: It's means we're all going to live in Cape Town. We won't stay here anymore.
Heather: Everyone will be leaving with us?
Rajiv: No but we will visit them.
Heather: What? We can't leave them. Cape town is very far. I don't want to go.
Me: Baby we can't leave you behind.
Heather: Yes you can. Grandma will take care of me. I don't want to leave her.
Rajiv: Well just in case I didn't make myself clear. You will go with us. We weren't giving you a choice. And don't you dare think about leaving this table.
Heather didn't leave. I could see that she was very angry. She was crying. I looked at Rajiv. I didn't like it when my daughter cried.
Rajiv: Don't say it.
I didn't say anything. I stood up with Bradley. He was sleeping so I went to put him on his cot. That night I slept with my daughter because she was sad.
**
Ever since Heather was told that we're leaving she wasn't on her usual mood. There was nothing I could do to help her because I couldn't leave her behind. I wanted all my children to be with me. It was Saturday. We were at the Pillay mansion. Rajiv have just told everyone that we are leaving. Others were happy for us.
Claudine: Heather is not leaving right?
Rajiv: She's leaving with us. We can't leave her behind.
Claudine: No. Please don't leave with her. Please.
Rajiv: We can't.
Garry: I think there's something mom is not telling us about Heather. She loves her more than her other grandchildren.
Claudine: We have a strong bond. And I don't want to loose Heather. You all don't understand.
Nadine: You won't loose her mom but she'll be away. That doesn't mean she won't visit

baby your father is telling the truth.
Heather: Okay. But still I will ask grandma to buy them for me. I am visiting her this weekend.
Rajiv: No. You're not visiting anyone.
Heather: But daddy I promised that I will come and visit her.
Rajiv: You'll call her and tell her that you can't make it. You'll go some other time.
Heather: That is unfair.
She got off the chair and took her bag. She walked away.
Rajiv: Heather come back here!
I sighed and stood up.
Me: You know we can't get in between her and Claudine. I don't know when you'll accept that.
Rajiv: I just don't want my daughter to love Claudine more than anyone else in this planet.
I left him and went to Heather. She was standing beside my car. Her father bought me a car.
Me: You're riding with me to school today?
Heather: Yes I am because daddy doesn't want me to go and visit grandma.
Me: Okay. But you can't go to school without brushing your teeth remember?
She nodded and went back inside. She went to the bathroom. I went to clear the table. Rajiv stood up and kissed me.
Rajiv: Have a nice day. I love you.
Me: Thanks. You too have a nice. I love you.
Rajiv: She's angry with me so I guess she'll drive with you?
Me: You know how it is.
He shook his head and headed to the door taking his bags.
Rajiv: (shouting) Heather baby bye bye.
Heather: Bye bye.
Rajiv: You don't love me today?
Heather: I love you a little.
Rajiv laughed and left. The nanny came and we left.
Afternoon I was cooking in the kitchen. Brandon and Bradley were on the floor. Heather was doing her homework in the lounge. Their father walked in. The boys crawled up to their father. They knew exactly when he was going to get home. I followed them. He picked them both up. After putting his bag down. He kissed me. I took his bag.
Rajiv: Hello Heather.
Heather: I am doing my homework dad. You're disturbing me.
Rajiv looked at me and I shrugged. We went to our bedroom with the boys. He put them down.
Me: So what happened?
Rajiv: Kiss me first.
I smiled and kissed him deeply. He kissed my forehead.
Rajiv: They appointed me.
I screamed in happiness. I was really happy.
Rajiv: You know what does that means right?
Me: Yes baby and I am happy.
Rajiv: Not like I am. I can finally take you to school and you'll get your Degree.
Me: I can't believe we're leaving.
Rajiv: You better believe it my love.
We kissed each other once more. I was happy I was finally got to study. I left him and I went to finish up my cooking. Rajiv was going to be transferred to Cape Town. He was going to be paid more than he got in KZN. That meant we were leaving KZN and we were moving to Cape Town. We were going to leave in the end of March. I was more than happy. Once dinner was served. We were telling Heather.
Rajiv: Heather baby daddy got a transfer to Cape Town.
Heather: What does that mean dad?
Rajiv: It's means we're all going to live in Cape Town. We won't stay here anymore.
Heather: Everyone will be leaving with us?
Rajiv: No but we will visit them.
Heather: What? We can't leave them. Cape town is very far. I don't want to go.
Me: Baby we can't leave you behind.
Heather: Yes you can. Grandma will take care of me. I don't want to leave her.
Rajiv: Well just in case I didn't make myself clear. You will go with us. We weren't giving you a choice. And don't you dare think about leaving this table.
Heather didn't leave. I could see that she was very angry. She was crying. I looked at Rajiv. I didn't like it when my daughter cried.
Rajiv: Don't say it.
I didn't say anything. I stood up with Bradley. He was sleeping so I went to put him on his cot. That night I slept with my daughter because she was sad.
**
Ever since Heather was told that we're leaving she wasn't on her usual mood. There was nothing I could do to help her because I couldn't leave her behind. I wanted all my children to be with me. It was Saturday. We were at the Pillay mansion. Rajiv have just told everyone that we are leaving. Others were happy for us.
Claudine: Heather is not leaving right?
Rajiv: She's leaving with us. We can't leave her behind.
Claudine: No. Please don't leave with her. Please.
Rajiv: We can't.
Garry: I think there's something mom is not telling us about Heather. She loves her more than her other grandchildren.
Claudine: We have a strong bond. And I don't want to loose Heather. You all don't understand.
Nadine: You won't loose her mom but she'll be away. That doesn't mean she won't visit she will visit.
Claudine: No. I can't believe you're hurting me like this. I can't take this.
Claudine stood up and left. She was even crying. I wished I could understand what was going on with her and Heather?
*****
Claudine's Point Of View
When Heather was born I didn't care at all until Rajiv and his wife came to our house with her. The first time I laid my eyes on her. I saw my sister who ran away from home. She was my younger sister. We had a tough childhood. Our father was a very difficult man. And he was abusing mom. My sister couldn't take it when she was 18 years old she ran away from home. And I never saw her from that day. I had this guilt that I never protected her enough. Heather was just like her. Exactly like her. The love I have for Heather is something I have never felt before. I tried to put the pieces together and I asked my husband how Rajiv's mother looked like. They way he explained it sounded like my sister. I asked for her name and I contacted people I knew in India to research about her. Though she was dead but her profile must be there to people who knew her. When they gave me feedback and her picture. It was my sister. Rajiv was my sister's son. And Heather was just like my sister. I made a vow to myself that I will correct every wrong I did to Rajiv and not protecting my sister through Heather. Now they want to take her away? I couldn't deal with that. I wanted to see her grow and be more beautiful. I wanted to see her be whatever she wanted to become in life. I had to do something that was going to make them stay. I had to....

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