Peter was getting up from the floor when his father’s voice called him again. “Peter!” He heard quick footsteps coming closer to his bedroom. Peter wished they would continue past his room. His heart sank when he heard the knock on his door.
“Peter.” His mother came into his room. “Peter, the police are here. They say they want to talk to you about an accident that happened last night. What happened?” she whispered.
Peter didn’t look up. He remembered that Tshepo had said he should say nothing until they met.
Finally, he looked at his mother and she covered her mouth with her hand.
Then she asked, “Peter, ngwanake, my child. Please tell me what happened?” Peter kept his face turned away from his mother, but she peeped at his face and gasped. “Oh my God. Peter, Peter. Go rileng? ”
Peter shrugged and grimaced with pain as she reached out and touched his cut. “Peter. You’re hurt. You need to go to the hospital.”
“I’m okay, Mama. Really, I am.”
“The police are here. They say they’re taking you to the police station. Put on clean clothes and let’s go.” His mother left him alone in the bedroom.
Peter put on clean clothes. He walked slowly to the bathroom, trying to stretch the time before he had to face his father. He splashed cold water onto his face.
When he went into the living room, his mother was sitting on the sofa next to his father. Opposite them sat two policemen.“Now, tell us what happened. Everything.” His father sounded angry.
Peter said nothing. He just stood there in front of them.
“Please, Peter. Tell us what happened,” said his mother, softly.
“I can’t remember, Mama.”
“Try,” said his mother.
“I’m sorry. I can’t remember.” It was no use. His mind hit a blank.
“Monna wee. This is no joke. Don’t waste our time.”
Peter looked at his father. “It’s the truth. I don’t remember.”
The policeman with thick-framed glasses on said, “Well, we gave him a chance. He will have to go to the station. I can see he thinks we are his comrades. He will spit out everything when he gets there.”
Peter followed his parents into their car. He closed his eyes hoping he would squeeze the memory of Saturday from deep inside his brain. All the way to the police station, Peter struggled to remember what happened but only bits and pieces came back to him.
He remembered finding himself in the bush. He remembered opening his eyes and looking for Busie. Beautiful Busie, with the beautiful smile. Where was she now, he wondered.
“Get out and walk behind the police,” his father said when they got to the police station. Peter followed the two policemen into the building. An old man sat at the entrance. He looked at Peter and shook his head.
“Bana ba gompieno. Ga le utlwe. Today’s children…you don’t listen,” the old man said. Peter wanted to ask the policemen if they knew what had happened to Busie. Where was she? How was she? And her friend? Where was she? Tshepo? David? What if they were dead? What if he had killed them in a car crash?
Tell us what you think: What will the police do?