Take Yet Another Look at Mzansi by Nyakallo Lephoto
“I bet you enjoyed it…” I wanted to punch the bitch in the face, let her bleed and watch her whole pea-sized brain leak to death; but I couldn’t. This saggy–titted, wrinkled faced, bearded, smelly old fart is handling my case. And I don’t want to ruin my chances of ever getting justice by letting my emotions take over me. Captain Dlamini, the most feared investigating officer in town. Groping my thighs and fondling my dick as she changes gears of the police van, and I cannot scream for fear of upsetting her; upsetting her to the point of her ruining my case. Ruining not only my case, but also my reputation and painting me a false alarmist. A false alarmist who is just another man trying to extort money from a rich woman.
What was supposed to be an easy process turned out to be a prolonged replay of my original ordeal. Driving to the crime scene with this slimy, temperamental old hag is top ten most uncomfortable situations I have ever found myself in; having to politely answer questions that had nothing to do with my case. “You wear skinny jeans often, loverboy?” And how she looks at me while quizzing and smiling with the look that commands me to smile back “or else…” I really didn’t wanna make eye contact with this woman; I was in no state to make eye contact with any woman, not after everything I had suffered in the hands of that other woman…
Got to the crime scene and I really didn’t want to get out of the car and face that woman again. I was glad Captain Dlamini was going to go inside alone and when she came back with her in handcuffs I would make sure to look down, avoid looking at her in the eye and endure all her insults until we get to the station where they will lock her up for a long, long time. But what do I know? They came out of the house both laughing and sharing a cigarette. Had a short conversation I could not hear as the car was parked out of earshot, but I could tell by their body language they were just casually joking. I took a glance at her and she looked at me and blew a kiss. I have never looked away a woman’s direction faster.
When Captain came back into the car she reeked of alcohol; she carried a smell she did not have when she entered the house of that woman who violated me. Now her gazes had intensified and when she leaned towards me she got even closer than before and her smile carried a frown whenever I would lean away. It was a definite “be nice and smile back at me or else…” kinda vibe.
Despite it all, she assured me we would get that other woman that violated me behind bars, despite the both of them sharing the same cigarette earlier. Despite her drinking that other woman’s whiskey; the whiskey I too drank one day. But that whiskey wasn’t a down payment on my body so perhaps it was also not buying the investigating officer’s favour.
Dropped me back home and asked for my number which I gladly obliged; she is handling my case anyway. She has to have my contact details in order to let me know when I am needed to testify or assist in any other court proceedings.
Once my mom and dad got divorced, finances took a dip such that dad, Thabi and I had to go stay at my dad’s home where her siblings also stayed. Uncle Zozo would look after us after school until dad arrived back from work; in truth he merely made sure we had changed uniform after school and ate before going to school. He wasn’t that hands-on, he cared more about the attention he was getting from girls in the streets, but we felt safe around him. Over the holidays, my dad’s youngest sister would also be around the house as well, on recess from university and would help out looking after us. I was nine; I really didn’t need much looking after. It was my two-year old sister, Thabi, who still required being bathed, clothed and somewhat supervised when eating. Our 20 year old aunt Kate volunteered all this work.
She was hella strict, and only allowed us minimal playing time outside of the yard. Dad appreciated this because he was highly concerned about our safety in the streets; if it wasn’t about us being hit by a car it was about the possibility of being fed food laced with poison by neighbours that have always hated him from childhood. So, around Aunty Kate dad knew we were safe.
When Aunty Kate was around, dad didn’t even bath Thabi in the morning before going to work; Aunty Kate would do all that when she woke up. And indeed she did, but later she started walking in on me while I took a bath. At first I thought it was accidental, but also I was nine; didn’t really think much about these things. She would apologise but linger on a bit before closing the door.
This became a drill; Aunty Kate would bath Thabi then walk in on me while bathing. She had a new excuse every day; she forgot to comb her hair, “Bongani have you seen my toothbrush?” Thought she left her sleeping gown in the bathroom… Her excuses became ridiculous by the day. I wasn’t really alarmed by Aunty Kate’s behavior; just like every child, I have always known adults are a little retarded, until one day she walked in for her regular drill but did not walk out after closing the door. She tendered yet another bizarre excuse, closed the door and remained behind looking at me…
She would text me to check how I was coping after the whole ordeal. “What a thoughtful woman”, but her texts started getting less and less professional and more and more personal; to the point they were straight up “Good Morning, Handsome” texts. I wanted this justice, and what’s a lousy “Good Morning” between me and receiving justice for not only what Ms Khumalo did to me but for all Aunty Kate’s transgressions. This wasn’t just justice for me, but for all men that never received justice for being sexually violated by women. Captain Dlamini was the only woman powerful enough to bring down such a rich, influential and politically connected woman such as Ms Khumalo. If my case had been handled by a lower ranking police official the docket would have long disappeared. Captain Dlamini is my only hope of bringing Ms Khumalo, Aunty Kate and many women like them to book.
The “Slept Well?” texts quickly escalated to “let’s have lunch sometime…” When I finally gave in to these requests the conversation had nothing to do with my case; she made it clear that she was “not going to ruin our first date by discussing work”. I was now in a relationship I wasn’t aware of, women just can’t grasp the concept of consent. Just like that, I was her boyfriend and we were on our first date; I better get on with the programme.
After that lunch “date” I was now asked to send “photos”; like chronic medication I had to take one three times a day. “Please send me a picture of you” became a regular feature in my life. I regret having sent photos in the first place because that seemed to suggest I was comfortable with the requests. I thought I was putting a plug on it, but I had just opened the floodgates. Suddenly, I had to channel my inner Aunty Kate and invent three lame excuses each day as to why I was not able to send the Captain pictures; from “there is no one to take me a picture right now” to “I am with people and they will look at me funny taking a selfie” to “I am indoors, my camera doesn’t have a flash”. When the excuses kept coming she grew desperate and, in an attempt to encourage me, she sent me a picture of her “wet” vagina.
My eyes nearly popped when I realized she had not left. She had been smiling when my eyes met hers and quickly the smirk on her face turned into that parental rebuking frown. “You have been playing with your peen, Bongani?!” I hadn’t been, but she wouldn’t let me finish protesting my innocence. “I have seen how you look at Zama from next door, Bongani! You are already having sex with girls…” I really wanted to prove to her that I was not sinning and she kept scaring me about how I would burn in hell, but not before my dad had killed me with his bare hands for playing with my peen and having sex with Zama, of all girls. I was close to tears when she said she would like to prove that I was indeed innocent. She started fondling my penis rather gently, saying she wanted to feel something inside that would prove to her that I was still a virgin. She would thrust slowly and look me in the eye; I was scared and embarrassed, but also felt a bit of pleasure while also hoping she would feel whatever lump she was searching for with her thrusts so she would know I had been behaving. This may have carried on for just over a minute but it felt like a whole lifetime. When she was done she left without uttering a word. I didn’t know what she had found out; I was scared she had told my friends in the streets that I had been sinning and that I am “the child of the devil”. And dad… I am dead!
Since the divorce, my father had been cold-ish and distant-ish. He walked around with a broken smile and was easily irritable. I knew if the news reached his ears he’d take his frustrations out on me. That night I pretended to be ill and went to bed early. I did not want to see anyone’s face. The guilt ate me; I was in no space to face anyone.
The next day I was reluctant to take a bath, Kate was quick to scream my name just as she was done bathing Thabi. Right on schedule, as I was applying soap on my upper body, she walked in; this time with no excuse. She reached for my penis and I moved away. “I am gonna tell your father about your sins, God is also watching you”, she threatened. I gave in. But that day she did not only thrust my penis with her hand, she took her top off and knelt down in front of me to rub my penis against her breasts. They were so large my penis would disappear between them. This was a daily ritual for the three weeks she would be at home for about five years.
Once schools reopened she would go back to university, but not before warning me not to tell anyone about what had been happening. I had to remember that God was watching me commit sin every day and my father would kill me if he found out I was no longer a virgin.
I was no longer a virgin when I went to party at Ms Khumalo’s mansion that night. I cracked the guestlist through a friend and could not believe how one woman managed to have all the rich, famous and powerful women of our town all together at the same time in her house. Champagne was flowing on tap making music sound better and conversation even smoother.
It was already past midnight when I decided to leave, but I was told Khumalo wanted me to join them at the VIP lounge where they were smoking cigars and drinking even more expensive whiskey. I couldn’t believe my luck that I was chosen among all the hot guys at the party. I went in and was at my best behaviour; only spoke when I was spoken to and never interrupted or argued with anyone. I was just enjoying the whiskey; perhaps a bit too much because one thing led to another and I found myself naked in Khumalo’s master bedroom. I was a tad over the limit and she was violating my passive body. I woke up next to her and I knew I didn’t end up there by choice.
Captain Dlamini has to put her behind bars; behind bars for so long she never violates another man again. Dlamini has to put Khumalo behind bars for all the men she violated because I could tell she does this sort of thing quite often. But above it all, I want her behind bars so she pays on behalf of Aunty Kate who stole my childhood.
Yet she began being more direct in her demands for my affection. She was going to lock Khumalo up, I knew she was the only one authoritative enough to bring such a powerful woman down, but she wanted my body in return and made it clear the case wasn’t gonna progress any further unless I surrender to her demands. I was already in too deep in this thing, desired justice much I could endure two minutes with an ashy, old hag in exchange for a smile on my face watching Khumalo go down! I offered to sleep with her once she had secured a conviction for Khumalo, but she rejected it. I had no choice but to go ahead with it; spent a night at her place and we hardly slept. She was insatiable, and kept demanding more and more and more until the morning. I got home the next day and slept two full days. When I had finally gathered enough strength I went to the station to check the status of my case, but was told Dlamini was no longer at SAPS’ employ; she has retired and they held her farewell just the day before.
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