A single action. Waking up on that fateful Tuesday morning led to all of this. If only Nikiwe had stayed in bed, she wouldn’t have gone to work. She wouldn’t have found the files. She wouldn’t have followed the case. Her family would have never been in this predicament. Just one single action led to a series of misery.
Zindaba was trying get up when he saw his father being dragged out of the other room to the living room by his side. The boy managed to crawl to his father and laid on his back finding comfort. In less than a minute, the unmoving Jackson was also brought in and thrown where Zindaba and Clarence laid. Zindaba stretched his hand and put it on Jackson’s tummy. “Wake up Jacky,” the boy cried.
Jackson wasn’t moving at all and neither was Clarence. Only blood was oozing out of their bodies. All the three had wounds that needed to be taken care of if at all they were still alive.
The possessed Senzo stood by them as he looked at them looking all miserable including Senzo. “What death suits all the four of you?”
“Joe Sinkebu’s gun,” The possessed Senzo walked back to the other room and picked up the gun.
“Everyone here dies,” he walked into the room.
Zindaba had closed his eyes as if resting. It was like the boy had known his fate. Inwardly, he cried for mommy. Mommy catches bad guys, he thought, where is she? He tightly held on to Clarence and Jackson and rested.
The possessed Senzo cocked his gun, looked at the three victims. A bullet each in their skulls would seal the deal. For the witch, this had been the most difficult killings. Alas, she was getting done and off to her new victims in the next 6 years.
Zindaba was pointed at first because he was the only one who could be seen breathing. The gun was directly pointed at his forehead. Reaching for the trigger, a sudden breeze passed. The witch turned around and saw the angry Nikiwe in the air screaming with a plank in her hands furiously aiming for the possessed Senzo’s head. Quickly turning and wanting to point the gun at her, a blow to the head landed as fast as lightning Senzo’s possessed body flew to the glass table and broke into pieces. The gun slid under the couch.
“How dare you hurt my family?” Nikiwe got up and walked to the confused witch. “She flung the plank again and banged the possessed Senzo’s face.”
Hands in the air. “You’re not hurting me, you’re hurting Joe Sinkebu!” the witch yelled.
Nikiwe was extremely angry to even notice the difference. She defiantly stood before the witch panting heavily and sweating. She knew that was Senzo’s body but the witch had taken over his body and looking at her boys, she was not going to show mercy, no, not now. The witch had to pay. Even if it meant hurting Senzo’s body, eventually he’d heal. She charged towards him as he got up and swung the plank which he powerfully blocked and headed her she dropped to her knees. He went for her neck and choked her but she quickly got up and upper cut him in the throat he staggered back.
Shouting, she charged and dived at him and they both fell in the other room where the envelope was.
Both slowly getting up looking at each other and their eyes set on the envelope, the witch knew that Nikiwe knew how to get rid of her. Nikiwe also knew what the witch was thinking. Quickly she dived at the envelope whilst the possessed Senzo threw himself on her and they both grabbed it. They started struggling for it while kicking and punching each other.
Like what she did to Senzo, the witch thought it wise to possess the strong willed Nikiwe. She quickly let go of the envelope and jumped on Nikiwes back and held her by the throat and the envelope suddenly opened and the note fell out.
Anything you touch, you destroy just like the person reading this. Death upon you!
Nikiwe felt powerless. Her hands were weak. The witch started laughing that she had conquered her. She was expecting to see herself in Nikiwes body but it didn’t happen.
“Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh,” Nikiwe shouted. “Not today b****.”
“Impossible!” The witch screamed. “How? You’re supposed to be possessed!”
“I guess I am a different human being,” Nikiwe quickly grabbed the envelope and the note whilst throwing the possessed Senzo off her back.
The witch was confused as to why she couldn’t possess Nikiwe. It had never happened before. Who was this woman? As she kept thinking and thinking, Nikiwe stood at the other side of the room with a lighter in her hands.
“Don’t do it, you will kill this body!” She shouted.
“Nikiwe do it!” The real Senzo shouted. “Do it for all the families this crazy witch has destroyed.”
“Shut up Joe Sinkebu!”
Nikiwe knew what that meant. Senzo would die in the process but he had given her a go ahead. It was now or never. She lit the envelope and the note up. They quickly caught fire and it started spreading in the room. The possessed Senzo was on fire too.
“Noooooooo!” The witch screamed.
“Thank you,” Chenga said.
“Get out of here,” Senzo added. “Tell Bufweme that I Love her and never should she ever blame herself for our parents death.”
There and then, Nikiwe finally confirmed her suspicions about Senzo. She quickly went back to the living room. She grabbed the two boys first and ran outside. She put them by the car Senzo had come with. She ran back inside and as she got in, the living room was also on fire. She quickly went to Clarence and picked him up. He wasn’t moving. She had to gather strength to carry him. She managed and ran back to where the boys were. Getting outside, the whole house was on fire and the witches screams could be heard. The way the fire spread was inexplicable.
Nikiwe focused on her boys. She started shouting their names in hopes of waking them up. Zindaba opened his eyes and smiled seeing his mommy. He thought he was dreaming.
An ambulance arrived at the scene with police cars. Ngoma quickly came out of one and rushed to Nikiwe who had Zindaba in her hands whilst the paramedics were tending to Clarence and Jackson.
Ngoma was speechless looking at the house engulfed in fire. He couldn’t even ask Nikiwe what happened but just watched in awe. The paramedics got Clarence and Jackson and put them in the ambulance.
“We need that boy too,” one of the paramedic said looking at Zindaba who was stuck in Nikiwe’s arms.
Nikiwe didn’t want to let go of her son but she had to. She handed him over and followed. She walked past Ngoma who didn’t say anything. She got in the ambulance and it left.
“What happened here?” Boice asked as he and Manda arrived at the scene.
“The case happened,” Ngoma answered with his hands in his waist.
“Where is Senzo?”
Ngoma didn’t answer.
“Are you telling me that Senzo….?” Manda feared the worst.
“The way she looked at me, I know she did it but at a cost,” Ngoma nodded.
“How did she get back so fast?”
“She got on a plane,” Ngoma chuckled. “When I told her Senzo said her family was fine, she didn’t believe it.”
“That’s what you get when you put a detectives instincts and a mother’s intuition together. Such a powerful force,” Boice said.
A week later, everyone wearing all black and sobbing quietly as the preacher gave a eulogy before two coffins at memorial park. The atmosphere was very sombre. Wailings could be heard from the back from one or two women. In the front sat Nikiwe and by her side, Zindaba who had cast on his hand and neck. Not far from them was Ngoma and the other detectives and Bufweme who had been escorted by prison guards.
After the preacher got done with the eulogy, the two coffins were slowly lowered in their respective graves. The women wailed even more. Nikiwe’s eyes were sore with the crying. Once everything was done, Nikiwe stood with Bufweme who was bitterly weeping. She consoled her. “His last words were that he loves you and never ever blame yourself for what happened to your parents.”
“That’s like him,” Bufweme said. “My brother died a hero.”
“He is definitely a hero.”
“Thank you. My heart is now at peace knowing that it will never happen to anybody else again.”
Nikiwe didn’t say anything. “Proving that you’re innocent will take some time though. We have to find judges who tolerate the aspect of the supernatural.”
“Take your time. I am not in a hurry. All I needed was peace and I have it now.”
“I promise I will make sure you walk out of prison one day.”
“I’ll be waiting for that day.”
Bufweme was taken by the guards. Ngoma joined Nikiwe who was still standing before the two graves. She looked at the Graves and sighed.
“A young girl is waving at you,” Ngoma told Nikiwe.
Nikiwe looked up and saw Tanashe with her guardian. They were both smiling as they walked away.
With them was Chipande’s son and his family. She waved back at them and could see how relieved they were. She had given them hope for a better future. A future where they wouldn’t be looking over their shoulders.
Interrupting her thoughts, Ngoma went on. “I will never understand why Ba Yama killed himself,” Ngoma looked at the other grave besides Senzo’s. “I never knew that we would be putting to rest him and Senzo side by side. They never even talked to each other.”
“The guilty I guess,” Nikiwe said. “He thought everything happened because he put the files on my desk and decided to end his life.”
“He really thought you’d crack the case. I never knew he was the Kainga Siwale in the cases. Wonders shall never end,” Ngoma chuckled. “You solved it though. It’s no longer a cold case now. The files have been destroyed.”
“I better be going now Ngoma,” Nikiwe turned around and walked towards Zindaba. “See you in a few days time.”
“Detective Nikiwe!” Ngoma called her.
Nikiwe stood and looked back.
“We got a call from Mbereshi Mission Hospital that a certain Mala Kingston died. They told me to pass the message to you.”
Nikiwe expected this message the moment she had gotten rid of the witch. She was not surprised. With her son, she walked to the cars and from the distance, saw Clarence and Jackson by their car. She smiled as she walked to them. They were all in casts and their bruises were visible but they were getting better. As she got to the car, Jackson ran to her.
“Mommy I saw ba Ngoma. He came to say hi to us,” Jackson smiled. “He told me I’m the bravest boy in the whole world.”
“You are, my boy,” Nikiwe said.
“Me too mommy,” Zindaba said.
“You’re my heroes my boys,” she smiled at them. “Now get in the car.”
The boys rushed to the car and got in while Nikiwe walked towards Clarence. “Are you okay?”
“Thank you for saving us,” Clarence said grabbing her hands.
“How many times will you say thank you,” she smiled. “Nobody messes with my boys. I am sorry I came late.”
“You were never late. You came at the right time.”
Nikiwe got quite for a while and thought about that day. Up to now, she didn’t understand why the witch couldn’t possess her despite reading the note but she was glad, it didn’t go the witches way. “I guess I came at the right time, yes.”
I am just worried about the boys,” Clarence sighed.
“What do you mean?”
“Will they ever look at me the same way?”
Nikiwe looked at the boys in the car who were busy playing. “We will get back to how we were. It will take time but we will rebuild.”
“I hope so.”
“Trust me, we will.”
They held hands even more tight, looked at each other for a while and smiled. They were each others lives. Whatever they had gone through, they came out even stronger. Piece by piece, they will build their lives again and like in the beginning, it would be like nothing ever happened.
6 years had passed and the badly burnt down house was still abandoned. No local person wanted anything to do with the allegedly haunted house or land as it had been called by the locals.
Everybody had their own version of what really happened during that weekend to the family that owned the house. All the stories were horrifying. Rumor had it that an international Chinese Company had bought the land and was starting construction of a warehouse anytime soon. At least, with a warehouse, the horrifying stories would eventually be myths.
Three boys were walking past it and looking at it dreadfully. The gate had been stolen a long time ago. One of the boys said, “I hear a police officer died in this house. Burned to ashes sooo.”
“Yes, he was possessed,” the other added. “That detective woman beat his ass. I read it on Facebook.”
The other boy didn’t say anything but just looked at the house curiously. He saw something bright shining through the ashes. “Do you see that?”
“That!” Jeremiah pointed whilst looking at his friends.
“Ahhh Jeremiah,” his friends didn’t see whatever he was seeing. They started walking leaving him standing. “Let’s go!”
Jeremiah stood motionless. He then sprinted to whatever he had seen and true to his eyes, there was something under. Using his hands, he dug through the fire’s debris in search of what his eyes had set on. His hands covered in ashes and dirt, he grabbed it.
DO NOT OPEN!
The teenager chuckled. Who hides an envelope in the midst of this trash? He thought as he looked around waiting for someone to shout at him to put it back where he’d gotten it. The environment only had him, the ashes and the envelope. He looked back at the envelope and it was as neat as new. It didn’t even get dirty with all the ashes surrounding it.
“Jeremiah!” His friends called him. “Get outta there!”
Quickly putting it in his pocket, he ran to his friends who were annoyed by his curiosity. “Let’s go,” he said.
“What was that in your hands?”
Later, Jeremiah was at his place together with his family. His father was busy watching soccer on TV, his mother and elder sister were in the kitchen preparing supper, his cousin was busy writing her homework and his little sister was playing with her doll.
After an hour, supper was ready and they all sat at the dinner table. Mostly, when eating, they would talk about their day. Each one was supposed to say how their day went and what they did. Everybody said something about their day and it was Jeremiah’s turn. Without even hesitating, he told them about the envelope.
“You lie,” his mother said. “Who would hide an envelope in such a place?”
“I don’t know mom but it was there, clean as brand new!”
The others kept eating their dinner in peace and not minding Jeremiah’s story about an envelope at an abandoned land.
“Jeremiah is full of s***ty stories,” his elder sister added.
“Language,” the father looked at Jeremiah. “Go bring it we see it!”
Smiling that he was about to prove them wrong, Jeremiah got up. As he left the dining table, he walked with his head high. He loved proving them wrong and he knew he was about to do it in a few minutes, especially his elder sister. As he walked, he had so much love for his family he wouldn’t even imagine life without them. He rushed to the bedroom and there it was, laying on his bed. He smiled as he looked at it and read the warning;
DO NOT OPEN!
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