Sasha bit her lower lip and winced in pain. Sekuru Gutu sunk the razor blade on the nape of her head, making two parallel incisions with the steady hands of a surgeon. His assistant, a young cross-eyed lanky boy with snake skin around his neck handed sekuru a small bottle of ointment. He smeared it on the incisions while muttering rapid fragments of words. Lanky boy handed him a bunch of ostrich feathers and he smacked Sasha in the face with the feathers while chanting maledictions of the underworld. Sasha sat still, her head bowed not daring to look directly at him. He passed her a cup with grey liquid, “Drink it!” he commanded and without hesitation she drank the liquid as her face shrunk into an ugly grimace. Whatever it was, it tasted like bodily waste but it didn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. “My child, this is a candle of redemption”, he pulled out small ball of clay mold. ” Roll it between your palms into a thin candle with a sharp point, then light it up, as it burns, call out the name of your lover 10 times. Do this completely naked while facing south for three days.”He looked at her for a fleeting moment and with a dismissive wave of the hand he added, ” Now go.” Sasha took the clay mold and put it in her bra. “Thank you Sekuru” She stepped outside and hurriedly walked to her car. The place gave her the creeps.
“What?! You broke up with Sasha?” F.J looked at his friend quite emphatic in his expression of disbelief. “I had to man, Sasha was becoming a liability and you know my wife is pregnant.” Nerudo sighed and took a sip of his beer. ” I don’t wanna lie, you look like shit, it’s eating you up ain’t it?” Amos looked at his best friend with concern. He knew Nerudo from elementary school, they practically grew up together and he could tell his friend was not in the best of his spirits. The three middle aged men sat at their favourite bar and grill. An inconspicuous spot on the outskirts of Harare. ” She lost it and slapped me, I don’t blame her though” , he shrugged his shoulders and gulped down the last condiments of his bottle. ” I must commend on your will power because the ass on that girl? She carries the world’s burdens on that.” F.J said with sly smile. “Hahaha c’mon, don’t be talking about her like that”, Amos replied. ” Aye, I don’t mind, after all I am done with her” Nerudo said as he stood up and grabbed his car keys from the table and added, ” Sorry gents, I need to pick up Melissa from work, a recap tommorow?” Amos stood up too, “Tomorrow it is, I will be on my way out as soon as I finish this last beer”. FJ dramatically took out his phone from his pocket, “So, can I have Sasha’s number then?” He asked his eyes dancing with mischief. Nerudo shook his head, ” Fuck you FJ.” Both Amos and FJ burst into laughter as Nerudo walked out with a middle finger in the air.
Melissa sat in her office reading the chats again for the umpteenth time. She was the secretary to the one of the partners of Mbada and Co. Law firm. Nerudo was late again, where was he? She scrolled through the chats.
Sasha: Hie, u don’t knw me but I knw yo husband very well. Mayb he has not told u yet but I am expecting his baby
Melissa: Excuse me? You mean Nerudo? What do you mean you are expecting his child? Who are you?
Sasha: So he hasn’t told u yet. Ask him abt Sasha. That’s my name. Pass my love to Paida?
Melissa: How do you know my daughter!! If you think you can break my marriage think again. This not the first time Nerudo doing this, it will not end well for you and the baby if you’re really “pregnant”
Sasha: hu do u think paid for Paida’s fees last term when u decided u could nolonger afford that pvt skul?
Melissa: ?? Wow, I will get at the bottom of this tonight. Don’t ever text me again.
Sasha: ???? the joke is on u. U are the bottom. Lemme know what u discuss with our hubby ??
She remembered the look on his face when she asked him about Sasha. His weak attempt to hide his initial shock was a little too late. Guilty as sin. This was the last straw, the following morning she packed her bags and left. Nerudo had cheated so many times. She didn’t even know who she was in the midst of pain and self doubt. She lost herself trying to be the best wife to a man who remotely cared about her. That morning when she packed her bags, she made up her mind to leave a cold loveless marriage. 12 years of wasted time. He came to her mother’s house and begged for her to come back . She succumbed and returned to him. He was trying but Melissa was not completely convinced. How long? How long will he keep this up? Nerudo walked in her office with a bunch of roses, he beamed at her, ” How is my lovely wife? Flowers for a beautiful and deserving lady” Melissa rolled her eyes, ” Take me home, I am tired.”
Sasha sat cross legged, stark naked on the floor of her living room. A little black candle flickered in the darkness. She closed her eyes, ” Nerudo Matavire, Nerudo Matavire, Nerudo Matavire…..”
To be continued..
Stay tuned for The Dark Mistress 3 on Monday 27 January 2020, 0800 hrs.