“Do you want some, dude?” the boy asked, staring at Ace, his eyes as red as blood. Ace shook his head. “Are you sure?”
“OK! It’s your loss,” he said and went back to his drugs. “So, stop staring at me and voetsek.
Ace didn’t say a word to Bra Themba about what he saw in the toilets. He stood up and danced to the loud music. The whisky had done its job. He staggered to the toilets again, singing. Once again, he found the boy doing drugs.
“Sharp sharp. Wena o mang (Who’re you), bro? I’ve never seen you here before,” the boy asked Ace.
“Where do you come from?”
“I see,” the boy said and paused, smiling. “I’m Scara. I stay here in Tembisa. Come, join me,” he continued, giving Ace a short straw. There was a white powder around his nostrils.
“Come on, village boy. Don’t be a snob like I expected. Take!” Scara insisted. “You’ve nothing to lose. Hai! These village boys. They always act dumb. Old fashioned. This is the in thing. Try it, man.”
Ace smiled hesitantly and took a straw. He looked at it for a moment, silent. He wondered if taking drugs would make him a real guy or a snob. He couldn’t believe what he was about to do just to prove a point to someone else.
“Oh! Sorry village boy. Let me show you how it’s done,” Scara said, taking out another straw. He sniffed the line of white powder up off a small mirror he had laid out. “Aaaa! Good stuff. Go on, try it.”
Ace took the cocaine. Soon he felt his mind begin to race. It was as if he was living in a different world, where everything was happening faster. He started enjoying Scara’s company.
“Golden Legs!” Bra Themba said, entering the toilets. “What the hell?” He was shocked when he saw white powder on Ace’s nose. “Hei monna, are you doing drugs now?”
“Bra Themba … my saviour!” Ace said, intoxicated. “Guess what … I’ve got a new friend now. This is Scara. He gave me a magic powder. I like this guy,” he said and burst out laughing.
“Dammit! Wena idiot! Why did you teach this boy drugs, monna?” Bra Themba fumed. He grabbed Scara by his shirt.
“Hadi (Sorry) Bra Themba. I was just trying to welcome him to Gauteng. He told me he is from Limpopo and I thought I must teach him how to live like a city boy…”
“Shut up!” Bra Themba slapped Scara hard on the face, sending him down.
“Ao … Bra Themba! What’s wrong now? Why are you hitting me?” he cried, lying on the floor.
Bra Themba kicked Scara like a dog. “You fool! You’re trying to ruin my plans. I didn’t bring this boy here to be a junky, idiot. I’ve got big plans for him, and you introduce him to drugs?” He grabbed Ace by the arm. “Wena zwakala (You, come)! Let’s go home, and don’t ever take drugs again. Do you hear me?”
“I’m sorry, Bra Themba.” Ace was scared but as they drove back to the house Ace wondered why Bra Themba was livid when he was the one who encouraged him to take alcohol. Was there a difference between alcohol and drugs? And what were the big plans Bra Themba had for him?
Tell us: Do you think hard liquor, like whisky, is as harmful to health as hard drugs like cocaine?