Isla, Mzi, William and Karabo climbed into their taxi. As they opened the windows to the warm night air, the tropical smells of vanilla pod and flowers swept through the car, mixing with Isla’s perfume. Karabo felt free as she breathed the fragrances deep into her lungs to suppress the gnawing feeling in the pit of her stomach.
Once again, the festival was heaving with people and music. Many more people had travelled from the mainland to attend the festival for the weekend.
It was difficult to walk through the throngs of gyrating bodies. When they found a place to dance, Karabo felt herself moving to the rhythm of the music and being jostled from side to side by other dancers. Once again, they danced and laughed. Then, without any warning, Karabo felt her chest constrict. She opened her mouth and tried to gasp for breath. Her body felt frozen in time, and she blinked as she looked around, holding her chest. Isla and Mzi were still dancing, looking at the DJ and not noticing
her standing dead still. Only William wasn’t dancing. He was looking past her. Slowly Karabo turned and looked behind her. The man William was looking at wasn’t moving either — probably in his late twenties with dark hair and cruel green eyes. He mouthed to William, ‘time to go’ as he tapped his large wristwatch. As he looked at Karabo, he eyed her up and down, a small smile on his thin lips. Karabo felt her skin crawl.
As she tried to breathe in, she felt William push past her towards the man she knew was his brother. They looked alike, except that this man was pure evil and looked almost identical to Edward English. Karabo blinked as she watched William disappearing into the crowd. She had to stop him. Her body started to push through people to try and catch him, and eventually she managed to grab William’s T-shirt, almost ripping it. ‘Stop!’ she shouted at him, barely audible above the music. Her breathing rasped from her throat as William turned and looked at her. Gently he took her hand in his and removed his T-shirt from her grip. He shook his head and leaned over her, before speaking into her ear, ‘go back to the hotel. I have to go with him.’
‘No! no you don’t!’ she shouted at him.
He looked at her, ‘I’m sorry Karabz…I do,’ he said and kissed her gently on her mouth before turning and disappearing into the crowd. The tears streamed down her cheeks, her lips burning from his kiss. She knew she couldn’t stop him. He was gone and she couldn’t move and the tears ran down her face and splashed onto her chest.
Bodies and people moved all around her, as her world felt completely devoid of anything. She wasn’t sure how long she stood there crying, before Isla eventually found her.
‘Karabo!’ she cried, shaking Karabo’s shoulders. ‘What the hell is going on?’ she screamed, her voice hysterical. ‘We’ve been
looking for you! You just disappeared. Why are you crying? What the hell is going on!’ screamed Isla, now frantic. Mzi appeared at her side.
‘Karabo?’ he asked, looking quizzically at her. ‘Where is William, what’s happened?’ he prompted, the genuine concern in his voice only fortifying her tears. Gently he led Isla and Karabo off the dance floor and towards the exit. As soon as they could hear their voices Mzi paused and held Karabo in front of him, his warm hands gripping her shoulders firmly, but kindly.
‘Karabo, where is William?’ he asked. ‘He’s gone,’ was all she could say.
‘Gone where Karabz? Please…please help us understand,’ begged Isla.
Karabo felt her heart crack in two, as her breathing returned in hiccups. ‘Gone back to his father!’ she choked, before throwing her hysterical self into Isla’s arms.
Question: Where do you think William has gone?