12 December 2018 | Story Mirriam Mukiwa

It was a day unlike any other. It was the day my life came to a standstill. Even though there was no life threatening natural disaster, there was a storm. This storm was nothing like the storms I was used to; the storms that caved houses in, flooded bedrooms and left mothers in agony and anxiety searching for their young ones. No, this storm left my heart in shambles, this storm left me wanting more, this storm brought me back to life. Funny enough, this storm had a head of blonde hair and intense green eyes that seemed to see all your dark secrets. This storm was armed with a pistol pointed to my head.


She shouts at me, asking if I’m deaf. She’s been ordering me to open the safe for her. I did not hear this because her eyes had me so mesmerised I could have opened other things. Perhaps I did give her more, for this is the day that changed my life.




I hated my job at the jewellery shop. I had a few cats and by a few I really mean five cats. I had no romantic partner whatsoever. I mean, who needs those, right? Well, I could have used one, actually. My life was a bore. All I had to look forward to was a day at work with those little brats who came by to make my life a living hell. I mean, yes, they came to shop, but they made my life difficult with all their demands and their money to waste.


She was not like the rest of them; her eyes held a certain focus that I could not for the life of me imagine being reserved for jewellery shopping. She walked in with a sense of confidence and vigour I could never pull off even if I were to wear Giorgio Armani and hold a briefcase of money. I loved her legs. They looked like it was sculpted by an artist. She was wearing a black skirt with heels. The buttons of her flowery French blue blouse were loose at the top end, giving the beholder a glimpse of her cleavage. As if aware of my admiration of her walk, she strutted to the middle of the shop, with echoes of her heels reverberating as wide as space when making contact with the floor. She reached into her pocket with her hand like someone who wants to take out cash and give it to a beggar, and out came a gun. She shot at the roof three times or so, and ordered everyone to lie face down on the floor. It was definitely a sight for sore eyes, watching these queens in their Givenchy outfits kissing the floor. I almost laughed in the midst of chaos.


I am pretty sure that I snickered, which is when she made her way to the counter towards me and commanded me to open the cash register. I opened it, and she shoved a bag at me and told me to empty the cash into the bag, which I did diligently without taking my eyes off her. She reciprocated, and for a moment we were locked in a gaze. I cleared my throat to distract myself. When I finished packing the money, she walked away, but halfway she turned and came back to the counter. “Come with me,” she ordered. And being armed with a gun and those eyes, I obeyed.

She flew the car down the road, and after a few minutes, stopped abruptly to change cars at an abandoned garage. Inside the other car, she changed her clothes and I couldn’t help but stare. She removed the blonde wig to reveal a head full of untamed, beautiful red hair, whilst multitasking on the phone with whoever, giving them directions to collect the first runaway car. “Are you not hungry, dear? I’m dying of hunger and thirst,” she said as she drove off, not really interested in my response. We found a restaurant about fifty kilometres from the garage and shared a meal over some conversation. So weird, yet cool.


Bella told me of this fun but life-threatening trip she was about to go on, and seemed to be asking me to come down with her. “Or do you love the store so much you don’t mind missing out on life? You looked sad back there, by the way,” she glanced at me, and the waitress came by between another stare-game of ours asking if we were still fine.


When I said yes I’d like to come with her, she rose and enveloped me in a tight, warm, sweet hug that felt like home. Like I had been there before. A familiarity so profound. We left the restaurant laughing and chatty as though we had known each other forever. We went to my place to get my things, and I left my cats at the nearby pet shop. With loud music hyping her up, she chased down the road and my new freedom made me screamed excitedly. Two young women with a lot of money and yearning hearts.




We arrived at the one place you go only when your life is in shambles, and you do not want to be found. Vegas, baby! We got a room and then went out to a casino. Gambling was one of my secret talents. My mom had been a showgirl in New York in the 70s, so she had taught me how to play. ”Honey, whenever you get the chance to exploit the system use it because the system uses every chance it has to screw you over,” she would say. Bella and I built up a good winning streak, but we knew we had to leave when men in black suits and shades started walking around our table. Winners know when to quit.




On this day we decided to go shopping at all the fancy malls and buy whatever it is that our hearts desired. We arrived at one of the boutique stores. It sold beautiful lingerie, even though I didn’t see a point for that, really. Bella was playing around with bras when I noticed that there’s a man in shades who had been following us. I told Bella about him and we continued with our day as if we didn’t spot him. It was a tactic so that he was of the impression we were going to fall into his trap. So damn predictable!




Bella kissed me! We decided that we were going to have a picnic and that each person should go buy the things that they wanted for the little event. Meeting time was set at 12pm. We went to the shops together and each one went their separate way. I bought everything that I thought she would have liked to have at the picnic, and when I got to the picnic place she was already there. She was never late for anything. But I noticed she wasn’t alone. There was a man that she was talking to and I immediately recognised him as the man from the mall. He left when he saw me, and I asked her who he was, and she said he was just asking for directions. I called her out for lying, and she found my rage appetising. She kissed me with a slow yet intense passion, tenderly rubbing her soft lips against mine. God knows I wanted to argue more, but my fury had collapsed.




The picnic was forgotten. The next thing I remember was waking up in bed with a warm body pressed against mine. A wide grin plastered all over my face as she softly snored next to me, and her bare breasts rose up and down in a breathing exercise. I decided to close my eyes and savour this majestic moment in her arms in case it ended. Shortly after midday we got up and I went to shower. She came to join me. The rest of the day was spent at the cinema, eating popcorn and drinking Slush Puppy, until the cinema closed and we returned to our room to make love.




Bella woke me up at the crack of dawn to get ready for Disneyland. But she was not the same freaky woman of last night’s moans. I could feel that something was not right with her. The kisses she gave me tasted of fear and regret. But when I asked what was wrong, she mumbled something in passing, which made me panic more. She bought me a teddy bear at Disney, and we then left for the beach for sunset vibes.




I woke up knowing that something was wrong. Her side of the bed was cold and vacant. In her place she put ‘Teddy Bella’, a box of chocolates, my favourite flowers, daisies, lots of cash and a letter.


My dearest Mila

I am so sorry you had to find out this way, but I couldn’t look you in the eye and tell you that I was a walking ticking time bomb, that I would not be around anymore to watch your gorgeous smile and hear your contagious laughter. I am dying of Leukaemia and last week my doctors told me I had a week to live. I did what any insensible person would do and staged a fake robbery to get my crush to run away with me.

I have loved you since forever. I was just too scared to tell you, and don’t worry I am not a wanted criminal because my dad owns the jewellery shop. I had asked him for cash, and since he feels guilty for his poor fathering, he told me to go get it from the shop. Thank you for being the best partner in crime and I am very sorry that I had to cut our journey short.

The man you kept asking me about is my bodyguard, sent by dad to bring me home safe.

Thank you for making my final days memorable and please remember me, even if it’s not forever, just for a little while. Please do one thing for me, if it’s not too much to ask for: please go spread my ashes at the beach. I have planned for them to be given to you after the ceremony that dad is having for me, which I kindly ask that you attend.

And always know that I love you!



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