Lumbiwe – Episode 10
© Tisa Phiri
The rest of the week we met with Mani and talked about lots of things. He in fact declared his interest in marrying me.
” i will go back and finish my studies first” he had told me
” then i will come with my people to see your parents.”
“Really ?” i asked excited.
“yes Lumbiwe” he smiled
” or am not good enough for you uh?” he asked.
“no,” i corrected him,
“i didn`t know someone like you would want to marry an uneducated village girl like me.”
He let a laugh.
” a woman doesnt need education to make a good wife Lumbiwe.”
I smiled my hope of settling with a man of status rising higher. I noticed the prince didn`t pay much attention to me all this time. Mani even told me Smart was going to marry some time soon. That his parents had organized a woman from another village for him.
“Thats good for him” i said, really not caring what was going on in Smart`s life.
One day as Mani and i sat by the small hills talking. Tendeka appeared from the bushes carrying his traps. he looked at us and said nothing. I wondered what was with him, he couldnt greet us or anything. So when i met him the following day i asked him about his altitude. According to him, he had already heard rumors of me and the town boy so he was not surprised seeing us.
” oh thats nice of you” i teased.
“i thought you would misbehave and mock me around my visitor.”
” not to worry Lumbi” he responded in a sad voice.
“I will never bother you anymore, i respect women and i cannot ever do anything like that to you. I just hope you will be happy with him” he said walking away.
For some reason, his words got to me. I felt like there was more to his sad voice. so i stood blocking his way.
“Tendeka you look sad, is something wrong with you?” i asked looking into his eyes.
He responded with a weak smile,” am glad you care for me after all”
“of course you are my friend” i said seriously.
” i mean we always quarrel and all but you are a good person and deserve better” i added.
” Thank you ” he said touching my hand.
Someone cleared his throat behind me and i turned just to face Mani.
” what is going on here ?” he asked jealousy written all over his face.
“umm Mani,” i stammered moving to his side.
“this is Tendeka a friend of my cousin” i asnwered avoiding mentioning a friend of mine, of course there was nothing like having a male friend in our time. A man and woman were not to befriend each other. Tendeka greeted him extending his hands and Mani answered without touching him. I saw Tendeka drop his hand and walked away.
“Greet Jonas for me” he said looking at me. like confirming what i had said about my cousin.
“what was that?” Mani asked furious,
” nothing, i was just greeting him” i defended myself.
” oh no don’t give me that Lumbiwe, i saw him touching you and am a man i can tell that guy wants more from you.” He spat angrily.
“please stop being all jealousy” I told him holding his hand.
” you are going to be my husband and i cannot lie to you so lets just go” i pulled him.
He took me to the palace into the room he was sleeping in.
“what are we doing here?” i asked when we entered.
He squat before me and sighed.
“Oh Lumbiwe, you know i like you and i want to marry you so i want to make sure no other man has ever touched you before, i dont like the way that man was looking at you” he added seriously.
” why are you saying such things Mani. I told you already i have never been touched before why wont you trust me? ”
“Hm” he shrugged standing up.
” i cannot be so sure and the truth is am scared i might loose you since am leaving this place anytime soon.. so what assurance do i have i will find you intact waiting for me?”
I shook my head in disbelief.
“so you are saying you cannot trust me, because I was greeting a man ?”
He came closer to me lifting me from the chair,
“Lumbiwe” he started, his eyes fixed on mine.
“I love you and i want you for myself. so thats why i want to marry you and i know you feel the same. So now , if you are going to be mine after all why can`t you make me feel like a man right here and give me the pride of being the first with you. Am sure there`s no problem if we are going to end up husband and wife after all.”
I tried to resist him but not hard enough to make him stop. Everything in me screamed ‘No!’ but i just let him go ahead touching my body. I didnt even feel the stings i was feeling when Tendeka touched me. He removed my chitenge and blouse and caressed my body. His lips placed to mine and i had no idea what to do with them, he leaked my mouth or whatever that was called but i stayed put like an idiot who couldnt fight her way out of what I didn’t want.
Moving me to the mat, he slowly went inside me as i cried silently. I felt so much pain between my legs and even shed more tears without saying a word. With his every thrust, pain ran through my stomach.
What pained the most was my heart, i raised this image of Tendeka`s sad look the last time i had seen him, his voice comforting me all through the time.
” Lumbiwe dont just lay there shake for me or something” Mani whispered in my ears his voice sounding more like a noise gong. I moved a bit not really applying anything i had learnt in the initiation, my mind still on Tendeka, until he fall on me after pumping faster and moarning loudly. His sweat running down my neck making me want to throw up.
“wow!” he sighed after he lay on his back facing up.
“you were really untouched and sweeter than i ever imagined” he smiled to himself.
I sat up and touched my private part which felt sore and painful. lifting my finger i saw blood covered on it.
“Thats what happens the first time” Mani explained with a grinn. I didnt answer him tears just run down my face as i stood to dress up.
He helped me button my blouse and moved the sheets on the mat in a heap to hide the stains of blood.
“stop crying like a baby Lumbiwe” he whispered hugging me. He didnt understand i had lost more than my virginity at that moment.
I realised how much i had hurt myself because of stupid ambitions and ignored what my heart really wanted. But most of all i had just lost my dignity as a woman and should it turn out he doesnt marry me then who ever will come to marry me will never respect me as a woman.
I couldnt stop crying even after he assured me he would come back for me. He explained that then he had all the reasons to have me as his wife and finish what he had started.
“let me go home already ” i told him sighing as i removed tears from my face.
To be continued