Her warm hands hold tightly mine squeezing them tightly she gives me a reassuring smile as tears at the brim her eyes i take a deep breath.
"Am proud of you for doing this" Noni says looking back at me i can't say i feel the exact way she does i wasn't exactly given a choice it's been a week since i met Shaka and he gave me two weeks of telling my family i had decided that i would do it now if i die i die the yard hadn't changed the house was still exactly the same way the neighbours were peaking to see the expensive car in the neighborhood Noni took one of her 'lovers' convinced him to drive us all the way to here and he agreed here i was in front of my parents place.
"I had too do it" i said she didn't know about the marriage and i wasn't exactly thrilled to tell her anything yet i didn't know where to begin.
"Do you want me to go with you" she asked i soon shook my head immediately knowing my father i wanted to do this alone a knock statled us it was a man i hadn't seen in 3 years he was carrying a knobkerrie he was ready to attack. I took a deep breath before opening the door and stepped out he staggered back a few minutes holding his head.
"Liyana" he whispers i stood there quite unable to say anything the tears i didn't even think existed they rolled down my eyes "MaRhadebe" he shouted countless times before my mother came out of the house wiping her hands over her apron she too staggered as i just stood yet again.
"Liyana" she said shouting too my knees shook threatening to fail me a sob left my mouth i wouldn't tell you why i was crying but the tears wouldn't stop falling soft hands wrapped around my body it was noni she rubbed her arms around mine.
"Ufunani" my father's words came i stood dumbfounded unknowing what to say my mother fell on her knees crying i couldn't help but run towards her and hug her she equally squeezed me back once we came down she pulled away cupping my face.
"Kodwa Liyana why did you leave us just like that" she asks her voice still shaking my father approached us showing no emotions.
"Asingeneni endlini onondaba sebaphumile"(lets get inside the house noisy peoples are already outside) he said leading the way i dismissed Noni.
"I'll wait for you" she said i nodded my head the 4 hour drive had exhausted me but now my body had jolted awake it was becoming all too real my feet with each step were trembling the house was awfully quite without my 4 brothers i wonder how big they are now whether Mongameli was still studying in UKZN or not as soon as we all settled silence had engulfed us non of us had taken any action in showing we about to start i looked at my nails ashamed to even face my parents in the eye.
"Ngiyaxolisa ma baba cela ningixolele" (am sorry mom dad can you forgive me) i said still unable to withstand their intense gazing
"Kungobani Liyana yini le siyenzile nganeyami"(why liyana what did we do my child) my mother asked my heart broke in peaces.
"Lutho ma"(nothing) i said immediately shaking my head "kungoba nje benginamahloni ma bengakhoni ngiphinde ngibuye la nginiphoxile"(it was just because i was ashamed and i couldn't return after i had disappointing you) i said finally looking up.
"What did you do Liyana why were you ashamed to return home" my father finally opened his mouth my parents would hate me i couldn't let that happen.
"On my second year the was problem with my Nsfas and they didn't fund me i had to drop out i couldn't show my face because i was ashamed so i lived with a friend from then trying to find a job so i could continue studying " i told the truth even though it was a twisted truth.
"Are you sure that is all i know Johannesburg can change people perhaps you started selling your body i can see the expensive car nalomgani wakho ongagqokile"( with your friend who is barely dressed) my father says earning a stare from my mother.
"I swear on my life baba i would never not even at my desperate hour can i do that" i said "i didn't even have a boyfriend baba am still as sealed as i left this place i promised you mama and you know i keep my promises i promised I'll never let Johannesburg change me and i kept that promise mama i saw the situation here at home and i promised to make you proud i intend on keeping that promise mama even if i cannot do this now but i promise even if it's the last thing i do I'll continue my studies and be what i always wanted" i said i intend on keeping that promise.
"Baba uyazi nawe noMongameli angisho ebenenkinga efanayo"( you know too Mongameli had the same problem) my mother said pleading to my father she had always been a selfless kind and gentle women since i have known her but she can be strict when she needed to.
"Ngiyazi loko MaRhadebe inkinga lo unekhanda elishisayo modinga usizo zange ngikufundise uyacela thina la ekhaya besizozama indlela yokusiza uzame indlela yoqhubeka neyifundo"( i know that the problem is that this child is stubborn didn't i teach you when you need help you ask for it we would have found a way to handle this problem and find a way for you to continue with your studies) my father said.
"Yilokho bengakufuni baba i didn't want you stressing about me and embarrass you in this place while everyone knew i went to study in Johannesburg i didn't want people talking about you that Johannesburg had ruined me and i left to study and come back with no education"(that's what i didn't want) i said he rubbed his head.
"Liyana that's not your problem to worry about who says what when that shouldn't bother you people will always talk here you know that who is this man that brought you here" he points with his head outside.
"My friends friend "i sugarcoated it hoping they get what am saying.
"Lo ongagqokile "( that one who isn't dressed) my father said trust him for saying that he was exaggerating who am i lying Noni is used to those bandages of hers.
"Yebo baba" i nodded "where are the boys" i couldn't help but ask seeing they weren't in the house.
"Eskolweni " (in school) my mother answered "where were you staying all these years what were you doing " she continued.
"I was staying with her after i was kicked out of the res she took me in and I've been sleeping on her couch job hunting she had been supporting both of us" i say i see pain in her eyes immediately i knew i was telling half truth but i wasn't lying either.
"You've been suffering for so long and didn't think of coming home Liyana " my father said standing up and brought me to his arms hugging me "i failed you" he suprised me i had expected hate from them being kicked out immediately not a hug.
"No baba i failed you" i said immediately at him taking those thoughts it was his fault away from his mind.
"Cha Liyana i should have tried finding you instead of assuming the worst my daughter when you didn't come home all these years i was hurt that my only daughter became those women i assumed you were one of those women now selling your body just like all Johannesburg women i thought you'll come home with hiv and a child" he said "i should have known better look at you you lost so much weight" he added.