Mandla’s guests grabbed the Kontax crew. Joseph held the struggling Sbu’s arms behind his back.

“Why would you do that? Why would you tell your friends?” said Mandla. “You’re my family. You’re my guest. And you do something like this? I thought I could trust you of all people, Sbu.”

“What should we do with them?” asked Joseph.

“I don’t know,” said Mandla. “I don’t have time to deal with them now. We need to deliver the goods. Lock them in the storeroom ’til we get back.”

The men started pushing Song, K8, Airtime and Sbu towards the house.

“Hey! Stop! Nd’yeke!” shouted Sbu.

“Help!” shouted Airtime. “Someone help us!”

Joseph laughed. “No one’s going to help you!” he said. “We run this neighbourhood.”

Sbu tried to struggle free, but Joseph had a stronger grip. He kicked out his legs wildly, knocking over the braai. Hot coals spilled out onto the grass growing up against the house.

“Cut that out!” said Joseph, pulling Sbu’s arm up painfully behind his back and pushing him into the house after the others.

The men shoved K8, Airtime and Song into the storeroom, and threw Sbu in after them. There were still stolen goods on the shelves. The skinny guy was loading things into boxes, which were being carried out by the others.

“Stay at the back,” Joseph told them. “Don’t get in the way, and no one gets hurt. And give me your phones. No more calling for help.”

Sbu and K8 reluctantly handed over their phones. Airtime turned his pockets inside out to prove that his had already been stolen.

“Why did you call the cops?” asked Sbu quietly. “What were you thinking?”

“I’m sorry,” said Song. “I knew you couldn’t do it. It’s your family.”

Airtime shook Sbu’s arm. “Do you see that?” he said, staring at the shelf.

“See what?” said Sbu.

Airtime ignored the question.

“Listen,” he said. “I’m going to do something stupid, okay? You guys just trust me, and stand back.”

The skinny guy with the shaved head was leaning over a box, putting a DVD player into it. Airtime walked over to him casually and klapped him on the back of the head.

The man dropped the DVD player. “Hayi man!”

“Don’t sweat it,” said Airtime, looking at the DVD player. “Everyone will have Blu-Ray in a few years anyway.”

The guy punched Airtime in the face. Airtime fell sideways, against the shelf. Song yelled and Sbu lunged forward to help, but Airtime waved him away.

The skinny guy was furious. “You think you’re funny, né? You think you’re a funny man?”

He kicked Airtime’s legs out from under him, and Airtime fell to the ground.

Image: Space Lama, CC-BY-NC-SA

WHAT DO YOU THINK? What do you think Airtime is up to? What did he see on the shelf?