Motherhood isn’t all about falling pregnant and keeping a child in one’s womb for nine months and then later giving birth to it. True motherhood may involve the process of pregnancy and raising a child but raising a child too can qualify to be true motherhood even if you weren’t the one who gave birth to the child in question. Hope I’m making sense though.
Anyway, I loved Faides to the extent where I decided to do as Lubona wished. Eh, I couldn’t risk her shooting my baby weh. I had seen Lubona’s handiwork firsthand and so I knew better than provoking her. It was more than obvious she was a raving psychopath.
Speaking of the psychopath, she had seen to it that I’d handed her my phone and tied Faides up, next to Bob. Imagine the irony of me tying my own daughter up.
I was still crouched down, tying Faides up when I felt a blow at the back of my head and it was lights out for me.
When I came to, I was tied to another chair and my head was pounding like hell. Lubona on the other hand was seated atop her father’s desk, her legs crossed and a glass of wine in one hand and the gun in the other. The lunatic was obviously having the time of her life.
“And my nemesis is finally awake, let the fun begin. Can we toast to that?” Lubona mocked. “Oops, all of you goddamn losers have your legs and hands tied up. Tututu, how sad.”
“Why are you doing this?” Bob asked, as if reading my mind.
Lubona smiled. “That’s an easy question. I’m doing this because I was born to do it. You don’t get what I’m saying, do you? Okay, pay attention and listen to this tale…….”
The more she spoke, the more convinced I was that she was definitely nuts. I mean, who envies other people to the extent of backstabbing their own best friend, killing their father and sister? As if that weren’t enough, holding their best friend, her baby daddy and daughter hostage?
After what seemed an eternity, Lubona finally finished narrating her tale. She was raving with raucous laughter by the time she was done. She got off her desk and approached Faides who was silently shedding tears.
“You sure are a replica your b—h mama Lisa.”
“Shut the hell up, Alicia! When I’m here you don’t run the show so you better keep that sewer you call a mouth shut before I sew it for you, trust me to literally do that if crossed.”
I sighed in defeat. This was it, nothing remains hidden forever under the sun so I guess today was the day Faides had to find out I wasn’t her biological mother.
“Faides,” said Lubona, peering down at my daughter. “I know you deem your mother a goddess who isn’t capable of hurting you in the least way possible. Now I’m telling you she isn’t your mother as your mother died a few hours after giving birth to you. Alicia is your aunt, you little brat. Your aunt, you hear?! What do you have to say about that?”
Faides didn’t reply.
“Lubona, she’s only but a kid, why can’t you spare her?” Bob asked. “And Alicia, what’s Lubona talking about?”
“Not now, Bob, please.”
“Yeah right,” scoffed Lubona. “When if not now? And you little brat, I thought I asked you a question. Why aren’t you replying?”
“I’m not replying because to me, mummy will always be my mum. After all, she’s the only mother I’ve known all my life so it doesn’t matter whether she’s my real mother or not,” said Faides bravely. She spared me a glance and smiled. “And mum’s always told me some things are better left hidden for a reason so I’m guessing there was a very important reason as to why mum hadn’t told me she wasn’t my real mother.”
Clearly infuriated, Lubona put down her glass of wine and smacked Faides hard across the face. “You’re as rude as your old sack of shit for a mama!” she bellowed.
Bob had to intervene. “For the love of God, leave the child out of this you psychopath!”
“What did you just call me, a psychopath? You’ll know I’m definitely one and a half by the time I’m through with the whole lot of you.”
Now you must be wondering why I was just silent as all this drama unfolded. Well my mind was focused on getting me freed and I think I was making progress. Lubona hadn’t really tied me up tightly so as I rubbed the rope against the legs of the chair I was tied to, I could feel myself achieving my goal. Not really soon though.
Lubona was now looming over Bob. She held his chin up with the aid of the barrel of her pistol. “Oh, you handsome son of a s–t. I loved you, Bob. Oh my God, who I’m I kidding? I still love you,” her tone was dreamy. “If only you hadn’t picked this bland Alicia, none of this would be happening. But anyway, what’s done is done.”
She leaned forward though and kissed Bob’s lips. “Oh how much I’ve waited to feel your soft lips on mine, this is a dream come true.”
She had barely uttered her last word when Bob spat in her face.
Wrong move! I screamed in my head.
And indeed it was a wrong move as Lubona ended up hitting Bob’s temple with the but of her gun and blood began to dribble from the wound she’d inflicted on the side of his head. She then wiped his spit off her face with the back of her hand.
She was now standing right in front of me, a malicious smile on her face.
“If it isn’t our feisty cop. What can you do now, madam police officer?”
“Lubona, we’ve been friends since forever, can’t we at least talk this through? Like civilized people?”
“Civilized people my black ass,” she laughed. “And don’t you dare pull that card on me cause it ain’t working. I ain’t no goddamn dumby so none of your negotiation tricks will work on me.”
She sighed and went back to pick her glass of wine which was stationed at Faides’ feet. Faides was loudly sobbing.
“Will you shut up already? Alicia, please tell this your daughter to shut up before I put a bullet in her mouth.”
“Faides, keep calm, baby. Everything shall be alright.”
“You’re such a pathetic liar,” Lubona made her way to the desk and took her original posture. “Just tell the girl neither of you is leaving this place alive. Speaking of which, who should I kill first?” Lubona was twirling her gun round. “Maybe I should do piki piki napikidoli or as you all know it, mini mini mo.”
“Um, Lubona,” Bob croaked. “I’m single now and free to mingle so why don’t you just let Alicia and Faides go and then you and I can go overseas and get married. We then can have a dozen kids and lead a happy life.”
Lubona burst into laughter. “How funny, Bob. But I’m not buying that crap so try something better, something more believable.”
I was still trying to free my hands and I think I was slowly getting there. “Lubona, how about you think about my unborn baby and reconsider?” I was only blabbering this in a bid to distract her and buy myself some time.
“If I was capable of murdering my heavily pregnant sister who was carrying my own nephew or niece by the way, what makes you think I’d think twice about killing you who’s only carrying a zygote, huh Alicia?”
My arms were now free, yes! I now had to untie my feet. “You’ve got a point there. How about Bob, you claim to love him so I don’t get why you’d wanna kill him too.”
“That’s a quite challenging one. Yes I love Bob but I think we weren’t meant to be in this lifetime so we’ll probably be together in the after life or something.”
As I was untying my feet, I noticed Bob was doing the same too. No wonder he’d been so quiet. So Lubona wasn’t as smart as she thought she was after all, neh?
I winked, urging him on.
Lubona was saying, “Why all these useless questions? Wait a minute, are you-”
“Too late, b—h!” I pounced on her and together, we went rolling on the table, sending books and other documents flying as we were entangled in this brawl. All I wanted was to disarm Lubona but the witch seemed to be holding on to the gun for dear life that she only let go of it when we heard a gunshot and Faides let out a piercing scream. At first I thought she’d been shot but actually, it was Bob who had received a gunshot on his shoulder. Blood was now oozing from his gunshot wound.
Amidst all this commotion, I managed to punch Lubona hard in the face and I slapped her gun hand and she let go of the gun which went spinning across the floor and for some reason, stopped right at Bob’s feet.
I did a fast maneuver and was in no time holding Lubona hostage, her hands pinned behind her back and there was no way she was freeing herself from my grip.
Bob picked the gun up as he had finished untying himself and he aimed it straight at Lubona’s forehead. He smiled and said, “The hunter’s now the prey, not so? Isn’t this ironic?”
Lubona struggled, trying to free herself from my iron grip. “Tough luck, honey. But I believe jail’s awaiting you,” I mockingly whispered in her ear.
“This isn’t over yet,” she hissed. “This isn’t over yet!”
Just then, we all heard a voice boom outside the house, “Lubona Habeenzu, this is the police! We know you’re in there holding Bobby Chizinga, Faides Maliti and Alicia Zulu hostage. Please surrender yourself before things turn sour!”
I couldn’t help but smile. “Perfect timing, Baison my dude,” I said, more to myself than anyone.
I told Bob to give me the gun and untie Faides as I led Lubona outside.
“How does it feel to know you’re finally going to pay for your goddamn sins?”
“Whatever,” I said as I shoved Lubona out through the front door. “I must admit I didn’t expect this from you.”
“Yeah right, life is full of surprises. Not all that glitters is gold and not all smiles are genuine.”
“You’re right, Lubona. And you’ve really done a great job at teaching me this.”
We were now on the porch. In Lubona’s yard were several police officers stationed at almost all exists. I noticed Baison smile as soon as he saw me, Curtis sighed in relief beside him.
“Am Alicia Zulu after all,” I loudly bragged as I led Lubona down the porch steps. “This Tonga girl’s no match for me so here she is. Make sure she-”
I felt an excruciating pain in my belly. Lubona had apparently jabbed her elbow in my now slightly visible baby bumb and the pain I felt forced to let go of her, the gun fell with a clatter too. She sprinted for the gate even though there were policemen sited there, sealing all exits.
Even as Baison shouted, “Don’t open fire!”, several bullets were now being lunged into Lubona’s body. Like a log, she collapsed on the lawn.
Curtis was now holding me, leading me to the lawn. “Are you sure you’re alright?”
“Yes, Curtis. But I don’t think she is,” I pointed a finger at Lubona’s unconscious body which lay face down on the lawn.
“I thought I ordered you not to open fire,” Baison fumed as he made his way to where Lubona lay and tossed her body over, feeling her pulse. “She’s dead,” he announced.
I didn’t know how to feel nor react so I just said, “Oh.”
Curtis exasperated, “The wages of sin is death, may her soul rot in hell.”
“What? The witch was a mean one so you don’t expect her to go to heaven, do you now?”
Several police officers present shared hearty laughter at Curtis’ words.
“Mummy!” Screamed Faides.
I turned and rushed to hug her. “We made it out alive, baby. We really did.”
After that, I gave Bob a hug too. He deserved one after what we’d just gone through. Baison then offered to drive him to the hospital and have his wounds(Bob’s) treated.
I’m guessing you want to know how the police came to know we were being held hostage, not so? Well, some dude called Daniel Mkandawire had wanted to get in touch with Bob and when he noticed the calls weren’t going through, he knew something was wrong somewhere so he informed the police about Lubona and all that. And then Baison tried to call me and inform me about the latest news but when he couldn’t get through to me too, he gave a Curtis a call. I’m sure you can connect what happened after that.
The following day, Fred was released from prison and all charges against him were dropped.
“Mum, I feel like I’m dreaming,” said Fred in disbelief as he, Bob and I went to where Bob’s car was parked. “I just can’t believe I’ve evaded death.”
“That’s all God’s doing,” I said. “And we should sanctify His name for this.”
Bob abruptly stopped and he ordered we share a family hug. “We promise we’ll make up for lost time,” Bob and I said in unison.
When Monde heard about Lubona, she shook her head in dismay. “That girl can cause one never to trust their friends. She was indeed a green snake in green grass and I’m happy she’s joined people of her caliber in hell.”
“You can say that again.”
For once in a long time, our lives moved on normally for the following five months. Curtis and I got engaged on the same night that Baison and Diana got engaged too and when the time for Diana to have her baby came, she gave birth to a baby girl while I gave birth to a boy two days later. Fred was now staying with me but he also spent some days over at his father’s place.
And I almost forgot to fill you in, I resumed work five months after giving birth to my son whom Curtis and I had named Cornelius.
Faides on the other hand was over the moon to have a baby brother and an elder brother. To her, I was and would always be her mother.
The Maliti mansion was located in Lusaka’s New Kasama. The mansion’s walls held with them so many happy memories. Baison Daka and his wife Mrs. Diana Maliti Daka and their 17 year old daughter Megan had lived in that house for 15 solid years and so had Curtis L. Maliti, his wife Mra. Alicia Zulu Maliti and their two children Faides Maliti and Cornelius Maliti.
It was on a stormy night when all of them had decided to sit in the living room. There was a power cut and Fred who had come over hurriedly said, “Why don’t we tell stories as we wait for power to come back?”
Bob who had spent the last seventeen years single but always finding solace in hookers said, “I like that idea, sonny.”
“But daddy,” chirped in Fred’s only son. “What sort of stories?”
Yes, Fred now had a wife and son but his wife worked as a nurse at a certain hospital and she was currently busy so she wasn’t present for this family gathering.
“Mum says dad, uncle Curtis, aunt Alicia, Fred, uncle Bob, and not to forget she, have been through a lot,” piped up Megan who had a loud mouth. “I’d like to hear that story in detail.”
Alicia who was seated beside her husband smiled. “I love your suggestion, Megan. I think I’ll open the platform by beginning my tale first.”
And for the next 6 to 7 hours, Alicia, Bob, Curtis, Baison, Diana, Faides and Fred took turns narrating the story of their life.
All this while, Fred’s 9 year old son Jackson, Curtis and Alicia’s son Cornelius and Baison and Diana’s daughter Megan intently listened and they couldn’t help but be mesmerized by how much their folks had gone through.
As the narrators told their tales, they couldn’t help but shake their heads in amazement when they realized that they had indeed endured all this BITTER LOVE.