Thabisa stopped showing interest in me after our fight and months went by without sex in our relationship. She started working long hours and she would come home very tired. When I asked her not to overwork herself she told me she was doing this for both of us because we needed the money.
Thabisa was right. We needed the money, but only because she was spending more than we were making. The friends and colleagues that she hung out with were people who were either born with money, married to money or making really good money. This was the way she chose to deal with her trauma.
One night I heard a car stopping in front of our house but I didn’t hear the gate being opened. After two minutes or so I opened the door and I saw Thabisa laughing in the car with a man. They started kissing so intimately they didn’t even notice me standing at the door. I walked back inside and closed the door behind me. My heart was shattered when I saw her kissing another man. Thabisa was so distant from me I had even forgotten the taste of her lips.
I went to the kitchen, poured myself a juice and waited for her there. I looked at the time. It was 23:45. Thabisa must have thought I was asleep. I always slept with lights on when she was not home yet.
I heard her locking the gate, pushing the front door open and locking it behind her. She stopped at our bedroom door when she didn’t find me in bed.
“Simphiwe!” she called me.
“I am in the kitchen,” I said.
“Why are you still awake? Have you seen the time?” she asked.
“Do you know how much I love you, Thabisa?”
“Why are you asking me that? Are you alright?”
“I saw you and that man outside.”
“So? That’s doctor Eric and he was just dropping me home,” she said.
“I saw you kissing him in the car,” I said, trying to control my anger.
“When? I … I would never do that. Come on, Babe, why would I do that to you?” she said, coming closer to me.
“So I am crazy now? I see things that aren’t there?”
“No, Babe, you are not crazy,” she said, and tried to hold my hand but I moved it away.
“If I am not crazy then what?” I asked.
“It’s not what you think, Babe. It was a mistake. Please forgive me,” she pleaded.
“Are you cheating on me? After everything that I have done for you, Thabisa,” I asked.
She kept quiet and began to tremble.
“What is this?” I said. I took out a used pregnancy test from my pocket and tossed it over to her. I found it under the bed that morning when I was searching for my shoes.
“It was meant to be a surprise, Babe. We are going to be parents and everything will be back to normal,” she said, forcing a smile.
“Back to normal? Who is the father, Thabisa? We haven’t had sex in five months.”
“Please, Simphiwe, it was a mistake. It only happened once. I was drunk and I found myself in Dr Eric’s bed,” she whimpered.
I couldn’t hold back my tears. I felt heartbroken and betrayed. I walked to her and I raised my hands to her face. She yelped. She thought I was going to slap her. I cupped her face with my hands. Her cheeks felt cold and her body was shaking with fear.
I spoke closely to her face, “Why are you doing this to me, Thabisa? What have I done wrong to you? What’s my mistake in loving you?”
She kept quiet for a moment, then said, “Are you happy with the life we are living, Simphiwe? I want more, Simphiwe. Unlike you, I never got to grow up in the suburbs and I am tired of living in the township.”
I took a deep breath, and brushed her eyebrows with my thumbs.
“How can I be happy when our relationship is like this, Thabisa? Why didn’t you tell me you wanted to live in the suburbs?” I asked her.
“It wasn’t easy, Simphiwe. You seem happy to live here,” she said.
“But it was easy to throw yourself in another man’s arms. Look at you, you are now carrying his child,” I said.
“You know what? Maybe you should just let me go. This relationship is broken,” Thabisa said, walking away from me. “I don’t think you will ever accept this child. I’ll call Eric and ask him to pick me up.” She took out her phone.
“What? Are you listening to yourself? You are not going anywhere,” I said walking up to her. I slapped her phone out of her hand. It hit the floor and broke.
Thabisa grabbed a knife that was on the table and stabbed me in the arm. I screamed in pain.
“Put the knife down, Baby, ” I pleaded, backing away.
I took off my shirt and tightly wrapped it around my arm. I was bleeding profusely.
“What was coming next, after breaking my phone? Were you going to beat me?”
“No Babe, how can you say that? You know me, I will never beat you,” I said.
“I am not like my mother. I won’t let a man lay his filthy hands on me. No, Simphiwe, that’s not me. You have put your dirty hands on me, and now I will do to you what I did to Themba,” Thabisa threatened.
She walked towards me, the knife pointing at me.
I stepped back again and asked, “Who is Themba? Please put the knife down, Baby.”
“He is the man who made me lose my child,” Thabisa said.
When she started chasing me around the kitchen, I ran from her, knocking our wedding photo off the wall and exposing a nail in the plaster. The frame smashed into pieces.
“Thabisa, I love you. You need help, Baby, and I am willing to help you seek it. Please, I am not like your father or Themba,” I said and stopped running, hoping to calm her down.
Thabisa charged at me but I had no time to run so I blocked her arm when she tried to plunge the knife into my neck. I pushed her away, onto the wall, and after a few seconds she limply fell down to the floor.
She had hit the back of her neck hard against the exposed nail on the wall.
“Thabisa? Thabisa? Baby!” I cried, shaking her. But she was not moving and there was no pulse.
I slumped next to her on the floor. I cried as I brushed her hair. It was wet with blood.
Tell us: Did you see this coming? What scenario for the murder had you imagined?