Siboniso has been back in Jozi a few days when he fails to keep their lunchtime date at the coffee shop.
Lesedi isn’t too concerned. The Academy teachers aren’t above keeping their classes working if they think something is important. She drinks her coffee, and sends him a sympathetic WhatsApp.
She’s a bit surprised he still hasn’t replied by the time she gets back to the Academy, but he has told her how Golden Nkuna can get obsessively perfectionist about some things. Siboniso is his star dancer after all.
She sees Zotha in the building foyer.
“Golden let you out? Is it just Siboniso he’s keeping back?” she asks.
Zotha stares at her. “Siboniso hasn’t turned up for classes today, Lesedi. Golden asked if we knew where he was. I was going to ask you. I mean, he was at our place until quite late last night, right?”
Lesedi feels as if all the blood is draining out of her head.
“Something’s wrong, Zotha,” she whispers, and tells her what has happened.
“Call him,” Zotha advises, and she does, but it goes straight to voicemail.
Lesedi can’t focus. She’s imagining the worst, Siboniso mugged when he left the Yeoville flat last night, hurrying because one of his own flatmates called to say he’d lost his key and was locked out of their place.
Finding love and losing your peace of mind? Now she knows what it truly means. It’s pure gnawing anxiety, eating away at her insides, making her feel physically ill.
Then a WhatsApp comes through during an afternoon lecture on the Cecchetti Method. Lesedi doesn’t care if it’s rude to the visiting speaker, she has to check it.
The release from tension is the best feeling. It’s from Siboniso, saying he’ll see her in Yeoville tonight. No explanation for his absence, but that’s OK; she’s confident he’ll explain everything when they see each other.
But shock jolts her when she opens the door to him that night. There’s a small but professional-looking medical dressing taped to one side of his forehead, and his hands, holding a fast-food bag, look swollen and bruised.
“My God, Siboniso, what—” she begins.
“Nothing serious,” he quickly reassures her. “I knew that from the length of time I had to wait to be attended to in Outpatients at the hospital. Such a stupid thing, getting hit by a car…lucky I’m a trained dancer with fast reflexes, otherwise it could have been worse. The weirdest part, though — in the second before it happened, it felt like, I’m not sure, like someone had pushed me off the pavement and into the traffic. Some random psychopath.”
And Lesedi is remembering the fist she felt at her back just before the gogo saved her from being run over. Remembering too the owl feathers left at the door. Remembering Bheka’s threat the other night.
She knows what she has to do. For Siboniso’s safety.
Tell us: What does Lesedi have to do?