But the snow wasn’t gone by morning. Ntando gazed out of the window and across the great white expanse. The campus had never looked so clean and bright.
“Ugh,” groaned Gerda. “All flights are cancelled.”
Ntando glanced over at her roommate sitting on her bed, glued to her phone. Gerda was OK, but nothing more than that, and Ntando had been looking forward to having their room to herself. “You going to stay here?”
Gerda shook her head, as she thumb-typed rapidly. “No way am I spending Easter break here. If my parents can’t fix this, then I’m staying with Kay’s family. They’ve already offered. His dad has a 4×4, so he can get here from Constantia.”
Ntando nodded, not really caring about Gerda’s boyfriend, just glad she’d be gone.
Continuing to stare out the window, she thought about Vuyisa’s kiss. It had made her feel warm, tingly. She had wanted more. But then there was the snow, and the excitement, Vuyisa twirling as snowdrops landed in her long braids. Those moments had felt magical, surreal.
The walk home, however, was anything but. Vuyisa hadn’t said a word. Maybe the cold got to her, Ntando thought. After all, they hadn’t dressed for this kind of weather. It was only April, with Easter around the corner. Climate change is getting freaky, she decided.
A knock pulled Ntando from her thoughts. Turning, she saw that Gerda had left, so she crossed the room and answered it.
“Hey,” Ntando said, opening the door wide, “I was just thinking of you.”
But Vuyisa did not come in as expected. “Listen,” she said. “I need you to pay me back for last night.”
“The money I loaned you to get into the club and have a few drinks, I want it.”
Ntando’s jaw dropped.
“You are paying me back, right? I mean, you can’t expect everybody else to pay for you, just because you don’t budget your cash properly. We’ve all got money problems.”
Ntando kept staring. Vuyisa’s eyes were bloodshot, her skin ashy; her lips had taken on a blue tinge. Even more disturbingly, the hum of sheer joy Vuyisa typically gave off was gone. Instead, she looked mean and cold-hearted.
Vuyisa’s lips twisted into a cruel sneer. “What? You think because I kissed you that I was going to forget the loan? Girl, I was only playing. Isn’t like I would ever like you like that.”
People in the res were now openly staring, many with their doors wide open. Ntando struggled to keep her features calm, as she swallowed carefully. With a small nod, she went over to her wardrobe and grabbed her emergency R50. It was the only money she had.
“Here,” Ntando said, holding it out.
Vuyisa snatched it with a cackle. “So long, loser.”
Tell us: Do you think Ntando should have given Vuyisa the money? Why might Vuyisa have turned so nasty?