In a small village called Hakasa in Limpopo, was a girl named Lulama Mtobeni. She was very tall, had huge black sparkling eyes, a very bushy afro, brown skin and a very beautiful smile. Lulama was seventeen years old and she had a little sister called Amukelani. They stayed with their grandma in a very big yard which was full of veges and fruits. They had three huts; one was grandma’s room, the second was for the sisters and the third one was the kitchen.

Lulama always kept the yard and the huts clean. They didn’t have much but lived on their grandma’s pension and Amu’s grant money. Lulama lost her documents in a fire when she was young so she wasn’t able to get grant money, well that’s what her grandma told her. They didn’t know their father and their mother left them while they were young to look for a job in Johannesburg.

Lulama was repeating Grade 10 because she had to take care of her sick grandmother while it was exam month. Amu was fourteen years old and she was a hand full. Amu would bunk school every week. Amu tried everything there was to mess up her life from drugs to alcohol. She would go out partying for the whole weekend and still come back drunk. Her grandma had given up on her because she tried everything and it all ended up in vain.

Lulama knew how to put Amu straight, she would do her favours till she changed but for a few weeks though. She had friends who would do anything to get her into trouble. It was a group of boys and girls who called themselves Hakasa Gang. They were a very dangerous gang in the village. They would steal, kill and get killed. Amukelani always wanted out but she was scared of the gang and what they would do to her family. Nobody left the gang unless they were dead.

Lulama was a very bright girl in school, she excelled in everything. She was a book worm, you would always find her lost in a book in the library. She always won debates and had every years’ school academic trophy, except for last year. She hated missing school but she had to. Amukelani was also intelligent and beautiful. She always did well in school but the gang always made her bunk school.

Amukelani was a little different from her sister; she always won pageants. She loved fashion, nature and girly stuff. She and Lulama looked like twins. Amu was just lighter than her sister and she had a small brown afro. Amu was a natural beauty, she dated the Hakasa Gang leader, Blessed. Blessed came from a God fearing family, his parents were minsters. Blessed’s house was the biggest in the village, his family was very rich.

Besides coming from a well-off family, Blessed still stole and killed. His family also tried everything they could but the more they tried it made him worse. Blessed did all this just to spite his parents. He hated the fact that his parents were ministers. He was the last born of five kids. His brothers and sisters were doing well in life. They had their own families and were all following their parents footsteps.

Blessed begged to differ, he messed everything he touched. He failed Grade 9 five times just for fun because he had everything he needed from study guides to tutors. He had been in and out of jail a couple of times and was still not scared to go back again. All the gang members feared him too. They came from poor families so he didn’t mind providing them with food.

Lulama came back from school one hot, sunny day. She did all the house chores and went to fetch water in the river. She started by checking her grandma and found her sleeping soundly; she looked so peaceful. Lulama hurried to fetch water with her neighbours, Hlawulani and Vutivi. They had been friends since pre-school. It was a long walk to the river and Lulama had three buckets in a wheel barrow, her friends had one bucket each.

They helped each other on their way back home, they would take turns with the wheel barrow. They sang beautifully on their way back. People would envy them and their beautiful nature. As they approached Lulama’s house they saw people screaming and crying. Lulama was in shock, something must’ve happened to Amu she thought. She left the wheelbarrow and ran home. People didn’t even notice her; they were all crying.

She didn’t understand why some of them made their way out of her Grandmother’s room. Maybe Amu was hurt and they took her to granny’s room. She stepped in and found Amu in one peace, she came running to her and hugged her tightly.

“She’s gone Lu, she’s gone,” Amu kept on screaming these words. Who? Is it our mum who left us for Johannesburg? Women hugged her and said they were sorry about her grandmother. Lulama’s mind shut down, she couldn’t breathe, next thing she was on the ground. She woke up in her sister’s arms.

Amu was so terrified, she thought she had lost both her sister and grandma. Before her sister woke up, Amu had prayed to God not to take her sister too. She promised to change if God gave her sister back. Her sister woke up that second, Amu couldn’t believe that God would be that fast and most likely answer her prayers.

Funeral arrangements were made and the community supported them. People from the social services came and promised to look for their parents. Their grandma had funeral cover so the arrangements were not that hard. Families that they didn’t know of came to the funeral.

Lulama didn’t know that she had such a big family, none of them showed up when grandma was sick though. After the funeral, arrangements were made to sell the yard. Lulama and her sister were moving to Johannesburg. The schools gave them permission to go and what was left for them was to pack. Blessed was furious when Amu told him that she was moving to Johannesburg. He threatened to kill her and he locked her up in his room. It was now time to go so Lulama and her friends went looking for Amu.

They searched everywhere and in all her favourite spots. They searched till it was dark and Lulama’s friends went home because it was getting late. Lulama searched in tears. She called out for her sister but got no response. She met up with the Hakasa gang and they asked what was wrong with her. The gang respected Lulama because she was Amu’s sister. She told them about Amu and through the gang knew her whereabouts.

Lulama and the gang made their way to Blessed’s house. The parents were in shock when the gang explained what their son was up to. The parents immediately called the police and after 30 minutes they arrived. They explained to them what was happening and the cops broke down the door. They found Amu and Blessed on the ground in a pool of blood. An ambulance was called and it arrived.

A knife was found in Blessed’s hand and he was also bleeding. Both Amu and Blessed had knife wounds, they were rushed to hospital. Lulama and her family went to the hospital to check on Amu and found Blessed’s family there. They all waited for the doctors in the waiting room. It was very silent, everyone was worried. The doctors came and asked for Blessed’s family. Blessed was in a critical condition but he was going to be fine. The knife wounds were not too deep.

His family was so happy they prayed while they waited to see him. The doctor came back again and asked for Amukelani’s family. Amu didn’t make it, she lost a lot of blood so they couldn’t save her. Lulama was devastated, she cried so loud to a point where the nurses injected her and put her to sleep.

Funeral arrangements were done and Amukelani was buried. Blessed was allowed to attend the funeral but after that he was sent to jail for life. Things changed in the village, there was no more gangs, crime rate was low and all the gang members changed their lives. Blessed found himself in jail and he became a pastor. Lulama moved to Johannesburg with her aunt, life was way better there, she went to the best schools and passed with flying colours. She got a bursary to go study overseas.

She passed with distinctions too. Lulama is now married with three kids, Amugelang, Bontle and Bophelo. She is the owner of a big engineering company in S.A. She also has a modelling agency which recruits teenagers from the village and takes them overseas to pursue their careers in honour of her sister Amukelani Mthobeni. She is known worldwide and her name is Lulama.

The End