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[STORY] LIFE, ABOVE ALL (Episode 04)

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Episode 04.

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“Where grief is fresh, any attempt to divert it only irritates.’

I am angry, full of rage.
I am angry at everyone around me. I was angry at God for taking mother, how could a God of love allow sickness and death to come upon a woman so loving and peaceful?
I am furious at mother for giving up on life couldn’t she have fought harder for us?
I am angrier at father for replacing mother in just five months. I doubt if he ever loved mother at all. Come to think of it, when mother was sick he never stepped foot in that hospital and when she eventually died, I didn’t see him shed a tear. Her death must have made him happy.

I feel so confused right now, there is a dull ache in my heart and stomach.
I think I am stuck someplace between denial and anger, it feels like my life has lost its meaning and I am at a seemingly permanent crossroad.

I find it so hard to accept Auntie Stella as part of this family I hate her with a passion. I don’t think I and her can live in the same place for long, maybe I should leave.



I felt my heart break into tiny pieces as I watched my sister break down in tears, I can’t blame her for reacting the way she is, father should sit her down and talk to her she still hasn’t gotten over the fact that mother is gone and now she has to deal with his new wife, this is all too soon.

I have decided to pay a blind eye to what is going on at home because I hate confrontations but truth is, I am mad as hell and if it were up to me I would have kicked Auntie Stella out.

Walking towards Tiya I quickly engulfed her in a tight hug and comforted her.
‘She needs to come back, mother needs to come back,’ she says between sobs.
What she is asking for is impossible, mother is never coming back she needs to make peace with that fact.

‘Sush! It’s going to be okay, I promise,’ I said even though I wasn’t sure if things would ever be fine.

After she calms down a bit, I sit her down on her bed so I can try and talk to her. Thoko is already sleeping.
‘I know this is hard on you Tiya, it’s hard on us too but what can we possibly do? Father made a choice, this is his house and we can’t challenge him least he kicks us out.’

‘What should we do?’
‘Ignore Auntie Stella.’
‘It’s hard to ignore her when she has made up her mind to turn our lives upside down.’
‘Just let her be please Tiya, I wouldn’t want father to send you to the village.’
‘Maybe I would rather go to the village than pretend to like that traitor of a woman.’
‘Please,’ I pleaded,’ Mother would have wanted you to live in peace with father’s new wife.’
‘Mother is turning in her grave.’
‘Just let it go please.’
‘I have heard you brother, I will try and stay away from her as long as she does the same.’
‘Okay, you need to sleep now.’


I woke up early the next morning to get ready for another day at school. As soon as both Thoko and I were ready, we headed downstairs for breakfast. Ganizani had already cooked and set the table.

‘Good morning,’ Ganizani said
‘Morning bro,’ we said in unison
‘Breakfast is ready.’
‘Thank you.’

We sat down and quietly ate our breakfast, when we finished eating, I double checked Thoko’s bag just to make sure she had everything she needed for school.
Then we headed towards the bus stop.
We arrived at school an hour later Ganizani went to his class while I escorted Thoko to her class before going to mine.

We had Math and English in the morning before it was finally break time. At break my friend (Ivy) and I sat on the ground while eating our food.

‘So how is the situation at home with your wicked step mother?’ she asked taking a large sip from her juice.
‘Bad, we had an argument even last night.’
‘Step mothers are always evil,’ she said
‘You can say that again.’
‘So what’s the plan?’
‘I don’t know, my brother says I should just ignore her.’
‘That won’t work, you need to fight back.’
‘But how?’
‘I can show you show,’ she said with a smirk

Ivy who is also bearing Lydia is the only friend I have at school though she is a whole lot older than me, she is 16. This is the fourth time she will be rewriting her grade 7, she isn’t academically bright and she doesn’t hide the fact that she hates school.

‘You will show me how to fight back?’ I asked
‘Break time is over, let’s talk about this over lunch,’ she said as we stood up.
The rest of the day sped by, the dismissal rang and it was time to knock off before I realized.
‘Can you come by my place tomorrow?’ Lydia asked as we walked to the bus station.
‘What time?’
‘In the morning.’
I got home an hour later feeling exhausted, I decided to take a bath before helping Thoko with her homework.

At 7 pm, I made my way downstairs to the dining room. Auntie Stella was setting the table around the others she looked up at me and frowned.
I shook my head and sat in my usual chair next to Thoko.
‘Dinner is ready,’ she said after a few minutes.
‘Thank you darling,’ father said

As we started eating, the room was quiet, there was a heavy tense silence compared to a normal and peaceful one.
Father cleared his throat then he looked at me and said ‘Stella’s daughter Celine will be moving in with us tomorrow.’
‘Oh?’ Ganizani blinked.
Celine is Auntie Stella’s only child from her previous marriage she is 18 and done with school.
‘Ganizani! You must clean the spare room before you sleep so it should be ready by the time she gets here tomorrow.’
‘Okay,’ Ganizani said
‘My husband, thank you so much for allowing Celine to move in with us, she is very excited,’ Stella said
My father looked at her and smiled, ‘Celine is like a daughter to me, this is her house too.’
‘Aw! You are so sweet,’ she said
I pursued my lips, mind blank as I stared off into space while the two love birds went on and on.
‘I love you,’ he said
‘I love you too,’ she bent forward and kissed his forehead.
The more I sat there and listened to them, the harder it was to keep myself from shaking anger from glaring at them.
Instead, I quietly excused myself and left the table, grabbing my plate and walking towards the kitchen.
‘And where are you going?’ dad’s voice ran through the room like an echo in a cave
‘I am going to sleep,’ I said irritated
He didn’t say more, I was so irritated after I left my plate in the kitchen I went straight to my room and slept.


‘You need to talk to your sister, I have had enough of her tantrums,’ dad said
‘You are her father why don’t you sit her down yourself?’ I shot back
‘Ganizani, you and your siblings are forgetting that this is my house and I can do as I please.’
I shot him an evil stare.
‘Thoko please head up to your room and get ready for bed please.’
‘Okay,’ she stood up and rushed off.
‘You know what, I am tired of pretending that all is well,’ I said my voice little louder.
‘You should have spoken to us before bringing her into this house father.’
‘Asked you as what?’
‘We are your children and our wellbeing should be your priority, we are still grieving over mother’s death and here you are entertaining another woman and acting as if all is well.’
‘I will not allow you to talk to me in such a manner.’
‘Did you even love mother?’ I asked the question that had been lingering in my mind for months now.
‘That’s enough,’ Stella said, ‘You will respect my husband. Your mother is dead and we will not talk about her in this house.’
‘Yes you heard her right,’ father said harshly. I looked up, his eyes locked with mine and I knew not to argue with him. I knew it was futile. This was the kind of man he was, he made the rules and we stuck by them.

To Be Continued….. . . .

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