Shalom snatched the journal from Andrew’s hands and turned to the next page. It was the last straw that broke the camel’s back.
Sex doesn’t mean anything to me again. I’m now sixteen and I’ve grown well. Halimah has stopped coming to my room. I was now going to her room. We would get into the bathroom together and touch each other before she will lead me to her bed and we would have sex. Even what I said was for babies, I was now enjoying it and I always liked the way she would scream when I did it. She would hold my head down and keep making her funny sounds. One day, she screamed so loud I feared mum and dad were going to find out, and she reminded me that they were the only two at home.
Mum and dad had gone for their regular trips. She said we were home and free, and doing what mum and dad does. For one week mum and dad travelled, Halimah did not allow me go to school. She would play some pornographic movies on the TV and we would do what they were doing. She would tell me to make the sounds they were making that I was not a small boy again. She told me that anytime mum and dad were not around that I should invite one of my friends over. She would also call the gateman to come and we would do what they did on the TV. The gateman and I were now sleeping with Halimah. I always looked forward to our night together.
I no longer cared about mum and dad. They abandoned me a long time ago so there was nothing new. At least I was a disgrace and a nit wit, but I had someone to show me love. Mr. Kola had stopped coming for me and I miss him. He does what Halimah can’t do, and I enjoy both of them.
Halimah has been avoiding me lately and it is killing me. Maybe because mum and dad have been around these days and they almost caught us once. I can kill myself if I don’t sleep with Halimah. It’s almost one month. The day I went into the kitchen when she was cooking and touched her breast, she pressed her hands on mine and pushed it away almost immediately. Mum and dad are around, she said in a hushed tone. I gave her a playful spank on her bum and grinned at her. I thought she would come to my room that night but she didn’t come. When I went to her room, she only allowed me touch her before she pushed me out of her room. I haven’t been able to get over her.
It’s been two months now and Halimah has not slept with me. I’ve tried to move on with other girls in my school. They gather around me like ant on sugar, but I don’t enjoy any of them like I enjoy Halimah. Halimah is full and knows how to do it well, but the girls in my school are still learning. Halimah had taught me many things and I crave her like I crave cigar. I don’t know what to do. I think I’ll kill myself. I’m even tired of life already. Halimah wants to abandon me the way mum and dad abandoned me. Maybe nobody truly loves me. I’ll just end it so I know I’m not useful to anybody, even Halimah.
Shalom and Andrew had been drained of everything they had. Shalom moped while Andrew kept starring at the journal in his hands. The clouds had gathered and it looked like it wanted to rain. Halimah bolted from the gateman’s post at the sight of the darkening cloud. She adjusted her skirt and her blouse before creeping into the house. She went to the kitchen and saw the cooler of food untouched. Afraid that something had happened to her employers, she went to their room. She had free access to their room.
She knocked on the door and pushed it open slightly. She was glued to the ground at the sight before her. Like a flash, before Halimah could close the door, Shalom sprang to the door and caught her by the blouse. She drilled her teeth into her neck and began to pound on her. She pushed Halimah to the floor and kept throwing blows at her. Andrew was at a loss on what to do. He dragged Shalom away from Halimah and when she managed to stand up, a slap sent her crashing to the ground. She tried running away and Andrew threw another one at her. He held her by the neck and pushed her out of the door.
He walked to his bed and fell in it, crying in anguish. I failed you as father, Tony, I failed you. The tears poured out. Just forgive me from your grave, that’s all I am asking for. I can never forgive myself and get over this guilt but at least you can forgive me. Forgive my stupidity. Forgive my carelessness. Forgive my ignorance. Minutes passed and Andrew felt the sting of silence. He looked up at Shalom and saw her still on the bed. His heart skipped and panic set in.
He rushed over to her side and lifted her hand. It fell limp. He shook her but she wouldn’t respond. He raised her head. He could see the marks of grief on her face. She still had that beauty that caught his attention buried beneath her sorrows. When she wouldn’t respond, he managed to lift her and bolted down the stairs, dumped her in the car and drove out of the compound.
“Where were you when it happened?”
“Doctor what happened. I was with her… we were in the room together.”
“And you did not notice when she had an attack?”
Andrew scratched his head as paced before the doctor. He had seen it. He had seen that pained expression when she was pounding on Halimah. He could hear her gasping for breath before he pulled her away, but he was too focused on what was at hand. He knew something was wrong. That was not the first time she was going to have an attack. She was undergoing treatment for asthma. Andrew gave a loud shout that drew the attention of other patients. “So, what is wrong with her?”
“We’re sorry. We did all we could, but we lost her.” The Doctor walked out.
Andrew placed his back against the wall and went down. He remained like that. He drowned himself in his grief and began to think over his losses. He sure was going to miss her. They had not been in the best of terms in the past three years, but he was not prepared to lose her either. He had to hold on. He wished he could undo the past. He determined to do better. Marta and Mitchel must not go through what Tony passed through. He was determined, but he was too weak to carry on.