Sing Me (Finale)
By Ayanda Xaba, South Africa
It’s been a month since Cordelia’s funeral where I was requested to sing as they lowered her coffin. It was an intimate affair, only her close relatives and her colleagues were there. The play “When The Rainbow Is Enough” was dedicated to Cordelia’s memory and it began showing a week after her funeral. I personally felt like it was rushed because we were all still emotionally disturbed by witnessing Cordelia’s death. The medics had concluded that whatever drugs she took that night made her hallucinate and jump from the window – I’m not sure if that’s the whole truth but there is nothing we can do about it now.
My thoughts are disturbed by Zian whispering behind me.
“Are you up already?”
His voice sounds so creepy when he wakes up. I turn to face him, he doesn’t know that I never fell asleep tonight – like many other nights after Cordelia’s death.
He brushes my face as he says; “It’s probably 3am baby, did you sleep at all last night?”
I shake my head.
“I don’t want to leave you like this. Why won’t you agree to see a therapist or something?”
There is that too. Zain got an offer to lecture music in Delaware, USA. He was so excited when he told me about it and I just cried. I’ve become such an emotional wreck but him going to America is a nightmare for me; I’ve fallen for him so hard. I try as much as I can to forget it but I’m reminded about it almost everyday. In a week from now-yes a week-he’s moving.
“Can we not talk about this now?” I ask, my voice sounds loud.
He nods and then says; “Go to America with me.”
“Why not? Let’s go start our lives together far from this place.”
He looks serious, and somehow his face has lightened up. Can a human be this handsome though?
“What do you say?” He asks.
I must admit this is a very exciting offer but…
“I can’t just leave work baby, and it’s short notice.”
“You can join me in a month or so. I’ll settle down that side and once your play stops showing you can come. Imagine the opportunities waiting for you in the states.”
“I’ll do it.” I say softly.
I can see he wasn’t expecting me to agree that easily. He simply kisses me and smiles.
I’ve been ignoring this issue for some time but before we make such a big move let me just clear it.
“Love, were you in a relationship with Cordelia?”
He doesn’t seem surprised by my question. He calmly responds; “Yes, we had a thing about a year ago.”
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
He lets out a sly smile as he says; “We’ve never spoken about our exs love. Why are you even asking about this?”
“Someone accussed me of…”
“Don’t let them speak nonsense to you. Cordelia and I lasted about a month, we were not good for each other. As you can tell, we’re just too different.”
“Did you love her?”
“I never got the chance to”
“Sing for me”
He wastes no time, his voice all cracked he sings;
I promise you
I’m always there
When your heart is filled with sadness and despair
Oh, I’ll carry you
When you need a friend
You’ll find my footprints in the sand
Leona Lewis, really? I wonder why he chose that song. I love how it sounds either way and I can feel myself being sleepy.
There is a loud noise backstage today – last day excitement. There will be a closing ceremony after the show and I don’t think I’ll attend it. I haven’t been well for too long now and I’m also starting to worry. Snowy says I’m pregnant, like every stupid human who think females don’t get sick. I thought maybe it’s work pressure, Zain’s departure and a lot of things that have been happening around me.
Do you remember Puseletso, the cow that said Xhosa girls are bitches at Sonti’s party? She is now dating the married man that Cordelia was with. I guess she said all those mean words because she was jealous and I gave her a piece of my mind.
“Yerrr,” I yell out. My dress just doesn’t want to fit.
Sonti comes closer and looks at me through the mirror; “Let me just lend you my dress Bongi.”
I roll my eyes. Have I gained that much weight? Sonti is a plus size, a proud one at that, and I was a size 34 until recently. I don’t even know what I weigh now.
Sonti leaves me to my thoughts and comes back with one of her dresses. I take it and say thank you.
“So when are you due?” She asks as she helps me take off my dress.
“Due for what?”
“If one more person says I’m pregnant I swear I’m going to scream!”
Sonti laughs and then says; “Let the next person be a doctor then so you can scream there.”
I get ready for the performance in silence, I can’t allow her to upset me during the closing night.
I am beyond exhausted, the pressure of closing night alone tired me out. I decided to pass by the garage and get a pregnancy test. I lied to Snowy, who came to see my final performance, that I was getting sweets at the garage . We have grown very close these past months and I’m glad I took the decision to move to Soweto. My mother has also called to tell me how proud she is of me; she no longer wants me to be a teacher by the way.
Snowy is probably sleeping in her room while I am nervously waiting for 10 minutes to pass so I can see the results of this test. Do you know how long a minute is when you’re waiting for something? I decide to log into my chats to keep busy. Zain is online – great! He did say he will wait for me to get back so I can tell him about the closing. He says USA is 6 hours behind the South African time, so it’s still afternoon to him. 5 minutes to go. Zain has been updating me about Denver and said he won’t travel out of town until I join him there. My producer gave me an offer to extend my contract – When The Rainbow Is Enough may go on tour around the country’s cities. I didn’t tell him I’m moving to USA, probably because I’m still not sure if I really want to do it. Zain sends a voice note. 10 minutes – finally! I take the test from the table and hesitantly check the result as I listen to Zain’s smooth voice singing;
“Kune ntfombatane lenhle kamakhelwane
It’s positive – Good Lord I’m pregnant!