Newtown is buzzing on a Friday evening. Making their way to the theatre, Lesedi and Siboniso catch the mood, keeping their conversation light and laughter-filled.
“The worst thing today was this spider that appeared in the bathroom when I was getting changed to come out.” Lesedi runs her hands over her black-and-white tunic top, smoothing the soft fabric. “I might have let out a tiny scream. So of course Zotha and Mariel came rushing in, and Mariel lets out a big scream. Can spiders hear? I think she scared it, because it started running around all over, with us trying not to let it touch us but also desperate to catch and kill it. Finally I got my shoes on and stomped on it.”
“You know it’s bad luck to kill a spider, right?” Siboniso’s face is alight with laughter, because he already knows how superstitious she is about the bad luck that comes from leaning brooms against beds, shoes on tables, and broken mirrors.
“Seriously?” Lesedi is alarmed as they enter the pedestrian walkway.
“So I’ve heard—” He breaks off, distracted. “Lesedi, isn’t that Bheka over there?”
“There… Oh, he’s gone.” Siboniso wears as slight frown as he turns to her. “It really is over between you, isn’t it?”
“Yes, of course. Why?”
Lesedi is also frowning now, wondering why Siboniso is suddenly questioning what she has told him. Doesn’t he trust her?
“Just…the way he seemed to sort of duck out of sight when he saw me looking his way, like he didn’t want us to see him.”
“Maybe he’s embarrassed.” She thinks about it for another moment. “But it’s strange that he’s here. He was never that into Newtown.”
“Why would he be embarrassed?” Siboniso asks as they reach the theatre entrance.
“He pulled a silly stunt just before I broke up with him, something really immature. And he made a slight scene at my place one evening. I’d be embarrassed too, I think.” Lesedi wants to be fair to Bheka. “But he must have moved past all that. I haven’t seen or heard from him in a while.”
Of course, she’s blocked him on her phone, and what about all those times she has thought she’s caught sight of him?
She shakes her head, trying to free herself from such thoughts.
Mostly she succeeds, because the performance they’ve come to see is superb. Then, there’s Siboniso’s company — all she wants in the world right now, she realises.
It’s just that the thought of Bheka drifts across her mind at intervals, like the shadow cast by a cloud passing across the sun.
Later, when she and Siboniso leave the theatre, she looks around, half-expecting to see Bheka somewhere.
“What’s wrong?” Siboniso asks.
“Nothing. I’m just being silly.”
Then she feels Siboniso taking her hand in the warmth of his, and all thoughts of Bheka disappear.
Tell us: Is Lesedi right that she’s being silly expecting to see Bheka, or is there reason to be uneasy?