Muzi stands up, he brushes his trouser at the knees, and the crumbs of dirt fall off. He stands eye to eye with this young man. He looks so beautiful, with his dark skin and big brown eyes.
“Who are you?” Muzi asks the boy, after a long pause.
“Who are you?” The boy replies, with an attitude. He is now standing in front of his grandmother.
“Gogo, what do these people want?” He asks Mrs Ntini. “Did they hurt you, Gogo?” He asks again.
Mrs Ntini smiles sadly and replies, “No my boy, they’re not here to hurt me. Calm down. There’s food in the pots.” Mrs Ntini tells the young man.
The boy walks to the pots after dropping his school bag on the sofa, he takes out one plastic bowl and dishes up the little that was left. He then sits down on the bench next to Portia and eats, without saying a word.
“Ma, who’s this cheeky boy?” Muzi asks
“That’s Fanele.” Mrs Ntini replies.
“What does he want here? You see, that’s why I’m here to take you with me. People are already starting to take advantage of you, ma. He probably just wants your grant money.” Muzi says.
“He should go back to his home, ma.” Muzi says.
“You should go back to your own home. I’m not leaving my granny alone.” Fanele shouts.
“Shut up!” Muzi yells at him. “Ma, please. Send the boy back. He should be a burden to his own father.” Muzi reasons with his ageing mom.
Mrs Ntini walks back to her chair and sits down. She glances at Fanele, who is now placing his bowl at the sink and rinsing it.
“Which father, Muzi?” Mrs Ntini asks.
“Ma, you can’t take care of orphans. Even if he doesn’t have a father, you can barely take care of yourself.” Muzi says. “Take him to his home.” Muzi continues.
Mrs Ntini laughs sadly, “You’re so ignorant, Muzi. Fanele is home.”
“What do you mean?” Muzi asks.
“Fanele, meet your father.” Mrs Ntini says.