Black Friendship

'It's real,'he wished he could inform the whole world that COVID-19 virus is real,it has recently dawned on him that he was here in a quarantine facility because he didn't believe in the virus hence he didn't adhere to the restriction and now he's paying the price.

He was sentenced to be here for the remainder of 14 days , 6 full days away from his pride, his taxi business. His mind worried of the mere fact that his drivers will have a field day with his wife since he was stuck here, no it was not about his money but he wished to leave his wife and kids something to fall on. Ever since he's been here he feels somewhat changed.He's seen many deaths to last him at least seven life times. Sometimes he would lay awake at night fearing to close his eyes and die in his sleep just as the three that died yesterday.They were fifty in the room at the beginning of the 14 days trial but now they were only twelve.The more life was lost the more cautious we've become,we sanitized our hands after 5 minutes,and we use bathroom facilities with a gap of 30 minutes ,realization had hit hard, covid-19 is real and we had a vital role to play in curbing its spread.He took out his note book and wrote off Mduduzi, Mr Heinz and Phillip the three that didn't wake up to see day 9.He looked to his right and saw a man in his mid thirties who looked somehow hopeful.He thought of greeting him to somehow make this predicament a little bit normal.

"Hi, I'm Sbu, a taxi owner and you're ?" The guy sat up, turned towards him,offered a tiny smile and answered"Hello, my name is Themba , a pediatrician or was ,so what brings you here?". Sibusiso felt sorry for Themba surely he was infected saving a life or doing something useful and he was here because of his stupid motto'If it felt too good to be true then it is too good to be true'it seemed like he deserved to be here but not Themba."Stupidity" he grumbled inaudibly. Themba looked at his neighbour and felt sorry for him , he knows that if you weren't lucky to be in Hospital wards witnessing the strength of the virus and the fragility of our bodies then the numbers would've been too good to be true."Don't feel foolish or anything we are wired differently from the rest of the species, so what are you looking up to?" A smile spread on Sibusiso's face "I am looking forward to the Soweto Derby I can't wait to wipe the smug look of Lorch's face when Nurkovic scores ..." Themba shook his head " Impossible how will your golden boy pass our ruthless Hlatshwayo and Jele the veteran player" 'I should have known you were a pie rat, your resilience is palpable' Sibusiso got off his bed and stood next to the tap,careful not to touch it unnecessarily."So King of the Pride tell me do you have any immediate family or you're just a rouge lion" Sibusiso smiled"I am sure that you meant that as an insult, I do have a lioness, and two cubs Simba and Nala,how about you Jack Sparrow?" Themba took out a picture under his pillow of an old woman smiling brightly at the camera or the person taking the photo"She's my grandmother but raised me on her own after my parents abandoned me on her doorstep and she's my everything,coincidentally it's her birthday on the 30 January 2021 and I wanted to show her what she means to me" 'It's not common for a young man to feel sentimental about an old person this really shows that you're a good person Themba if I don't make it tomorrow ,please give this to my wife...' Themba took the offered notebook and kept it to Sibusiso's chest 'I am sorry I can't my friend, we are going to be discharged on the 27th of January 2021 , we will retake the test , get the results, go home and watch the Soweto Derby together via Whatsapp Video Call.You will introduce me to the rest of the pride and I will introduce you to my lovely grandmother,the virus is 1% sickness and 99% attitude , don't think otherwise my friend , just look upon the Derby and the days will fleet by,okay?' Sibusiso nodded repeatedly.

'Attention group 121 who boarded on the 13 January 2021,please proceed to Hall B for your results,Safe travels and best wishes for the days to come but please don't forget to continue adhering to the restrictions and playing our part,washing our hands with a soap and running water or using alcohol based hand sanitizer.Lastly if we're negative now we can be positive and hour from now'.The speakers boomed loudly.

Sibusiso pranced up and down the corridors waiting for Themba,who haven't returned from Hall B since the announcement.As if they have became synced he raised his head to Themba who carried a sealed envelope like his,since Day 9 they have became inseparable brothers than friends,they silently exchanged their envelopes and a minute later they both screamed "Soweto Derby is on brother" They opted for the elbow pump and headed to the transport waiting outside,they couldn't wait to arrive home and introduce each other's extended family to the other. When the car stopped to drop of Themba ,Sibusiso laughed to realise that they lived two streets from one another.'Say Hi to Grams for me brother see you at 15H30' Sibusiso took one last picture of his new brother home. Themba smiled 'chat to you in a minute brother'

Sibusiso thought of the little motivation he wrote on all walls yesterday hoping the next group will get it"COVID-19 is 1% sickness and 99% attitude.He also purposefully left his notebook behind hoping to offer some solace to the next person who will occupy his bed.He thought of the schedule he saw on the bathroom wall this morning and laughed to realize that all 12 of the survivors wanted to live some hope to the next ones, he hoped that the messages left will be used for good for it surely did him good, he imaginary willed the taxi to move fast he couldn't wait to get home and watch the derby, he was sure that Kaizer Chiefs was going to win at least 3 goals to 1.

February 01, 2021 10:13

You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.


Bring your short stories to life

Fuse character, story, and conflict with tools in the Reedsy Book Editor. 100% free.