Extracts from Bishop Lawrence’s Diary

20th December.

10.30. a.m.
Khunjulwa arrived distraught and almost suicidal. Her father has decided she is to marry Paseka, the President’s cousin. He needs the alliance he says. Her pleading for time has been dismissed as girlish nonsense. I need time to think. If her marriage to Romeo comes out now it may well lead to terrible bloodshed and even to her being murdered by her family. There is no reason left in the world; all is going mad. I must pray for guidance.

21st December.

3.00. p.m.
Her Father is absolutely committed to her marrying Paseka. He is not going to relent. He was furious when I tried to get him to listen to her, accused me of attacking his culture and race. It was, he said, the parent’s right to decide. The marriage is to go ahead. I am at my wits end.

22nd December.

7.00 a.m.
Dreamt last night of a possible solution. It is a desperate idea but could work if the girl is committed and brave enough. She says that she will do anything, well let’s see if she is constant. She is coming to see me this morning.

11.00 p.m.
Talked my plan through with Khunjulwa. She is willing to try. Now I have to find the doctor to help.

16.00 p.m.
Dr W is willing to get me the drug although he asked many questions about why. In the end I simply lied and said it was a request that the President’s Office had made. They had asked me as they didn’t want it to come from them directly. I gave him my word that I believed no one was to be harmed or tortured by the drugs. In fact I went so far as to say that their use may help the present political situation. He very reluctantly agreed to supply the drug. I think more out of fear of refusing the President than belief in my story.

Khunjulwa seems delighted. We agreed that she will take the drug on the night of the 27th. She will be found “dead” on the morning of the 28th. In the holiday chaos there will be less scrutiny of everything.