FICTION: So near yet so far– Part two

By Drum Digital
09 February 2017

When she walked into the dining room, her stepdad smiled at her

BY AGNES KIMBERLEY

When she walked into the dining room, her stepdad smiled at her.

“I hope you had a good sleep, my dear. I remember those long nights working in ER as if it were yesterday.”

Oupa was very proud of Bonny and hoped that one day she would join him at his practice.

Thabo had not yet appeared. Bonny was glad as it would give her a few minutes to compose herself.

As if reading her thoughts, Dad said: “Thabo won’t be joining us for dinner. He said he was meeting up with an old friend.”

Bonny knew by the tone of his voice that he was upset. Like her mother, he’d wanted the four of them to enjoy a last dinner together before Thabo flew off to London.

Bonny knew full well he wasn’t here because of her. Why was he so mad at her? She hadn’t done anything to him, except love him. But nobody knew her true feelings about Thabo.

As soon as the dishes were cleared away her parents retired to bed for the night. Bonny felt she had to get out of the house for a while. The walls were closing in on her. She changed her shoes and grabbed her jacket, as it was starting to get cold. Once she was outside she felt a little calmer. She walked steadily on. She found her favourite spot behind the sand dunes. It was where she used to hide from Thabo when they played hide and seek on the beach.

Bonny huddled down and made herself as comfortable as she could. She pulled a scarf from her jacket pocket and wrapped it around her neck.

She started up in shock when a shadow appeared beside her, then sank back when she saw it was Thabo.

“Why did you come here this weekend?”

“I don’t know. Maybe because I wanted to say goodbye to you.”

“I saw you a few weeks ago in PE. We said our goodbyes then.”

“Maybe you did, Thabo. You knew then you were going to London but you never said a word to me.”

“Why must I tell you everything? Besides – you had your latest boyfriend hanging on to you.”

“That’s not true, as you well know. Siya is a good friend and we often go out for a meal and some drinks.”

“Are you blind, Bonny? He’s in love with you. Any fool could see that.”

“Well . . . I’m not in love with him.”

Finally she spoke. “You’re going to miss South Africa. And I'll miss you.”

“Miss me?” he scoffed. “How on earth would you miss me when I hardly ever see you?”

“Well, whose fault is that? I’ve asked you plenty of times to come and visit.”

“And watch you with all those male doctors hanging around you?”

“How can you say that? We’re all in a cycling club together, and half of them are girls.”

“Sorry, Bonny. That was unkind of me.”

Then, with an abrupt conversational swerve, he said, “It’s so beautiful out here – remember the old days on the beach. Magical, our own special place.”

“I wish you weren’t going away,” she said, her voice breaking.

Thabo looked at her, his eyes full of emotion, and then he blurted out: “I can’t be under the same sky as you, Bonny – it’s killing me! I lied tonight. I didn't have an old friend to see, I've been walking the beach. Because I knew I could never endure an evening in your company. My heart is breaking, Bonny.”

“Thabo!” Bonny gasped.

She didn’t know whether to laugh or to cry.

“You’re heartbroken? Because of me? Why Thabo, why?”

“Because I love you, you fool!” he said.

“But why on earth didn’t you say anything?”

“I thought what we had all those years ago was puppy love. I never wanted to trap you in something you didn’t want.”

“Oh, Thabo,” she cried, taking his hands in her own. “How silly we’ve been! I could have reached out, but I was too afraid.”

Thabo started to sob as she took him in her arms.

“It seems useless to fight my love for you. I love you more than anything on this earth. I’ve loved you from the moment I met you,” he managed to get out.

She put her hand on his cheek and wiped away his tears as she said: “Don’t cry, Thabo, my darling. I’ve always loved you and I thought I was going to die when I heard you were going away . . .”

Thabo looked at her, pulled her closer and kissed her tenderly and then more passionately on the lips.

It started to drizzle, but they were oblivious to the weather. They were far too busy making a late start in life.

The End

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