The Waiter

Khulekani Ndlovu

© Copyright 2018 by Khulekani Ndlovu

Photo of a cup of coffee on a table.

Mm….something was just not right no no. Maybe I’m some kind of an over ambitious lady but I’m sure someone could justify my polished view. He just can’t be a waiter. I slowly elevated my steaming china cup of freshly prepared espresso to my glossy lips whilst staring into my thoughts. Perhaps I could order another cup to see him again I whispered as I leisurely circled my smooth fingers around the brim of the cup. Yes, that is what I was going to do. I hastily gulped down the espresso, the cup with it.

No this is just a silly dry joke. My lips can hardly accommodate a table spoon. That is why I don’t like smiling. People think I’m too business minded and cannot afford a smile but honestly….. My smile looks like a small slit on a linen sheet, viewed horizontally. That’s how small my mouth is. But if those people could view my mind at that lone moment on the coffee table, they would surely see how ‘business minded’ I am.

Hey dark chocolate would you mind spreading your broad wings and glide to me with another steaming cup of espresso, please make it as hot as you look” I said drowning in fantasy.

What am I doing? Dark chocolate? Oh at least only a pair of fairy ears heard it, and that pair was mine. I almost murdered my reputation in front of doves, I was surely going to hand myself to the police for this kind of first class murder. But I hate how my reputation keeps people away from me. Of course I don’t like people around me like working drones on a queen bee but I wouldn’t mind a few like him, I said as I gazed his way.

My iris aimed at his soft curls which were as black as my lonely nights. His face was neatly arranged, with the right sizes of organs.
Hello madam, his name is Udumo’ one thin man whispered in my ear, oh how he reminded me of Oliver Twist. I respect his bravery for he was the first man who had come that close to me and he would have been the last if I hadn’t seen Udu. He put on a friendly smile but his breath wasn’t at all friendly, it smelled like rotten coffee seeds which had been stuffed in a moist cotton bag ever since the time of Zeus till now. I almost invited him to my dental clinic but I was too busy installing teeth onto my thoughts.

Wait a second! I had not asked this man for Udu’s name. I almost turned back to call him back when I realised my sitting position. Oh no, oh no I had just sold myself out on a non-market. I hadn’t noticed that my cheeks were resting in my palms with my slit (mouth) at its greatest length. Now I badly needed another espresso to cool off. Very awkward coz an espresso is hot but this was no time for me to question my IQ which was actually being disrupted by some random good looking guy.
I slowly parted my lips, ready to call upon Udu. Before I did so I quickly reminded myself that I should not mention his name. I took out my gun (courage), pulled the trigger and shot a glance in his direction. I then quickly looked down and could hear some manly laughs from yonder. He was looking at me and that glance made me realise that he has hazelnut coloured eyes. They quickly crushed my confidence like a mortar landing upon ripe sweet potatoes.

Hey, why was I at this place in the first place. I had come here to refresh my mind after I had been constantly receiving some blackmails from some strangers. Arghh this is the greatest disadvantage of making it in life. Another is too lazy to work but has enough strength to send rubbish, claiming what is not theirs. Well lucky enough I am rich enough to pay for the highest qualified officer and he is already on the hunt for this criminal. This senseless criminals should have just begged me for the money you know.

Udumo, some more hot espresso please” I blatted without thinking twice or thrice, I didn’t even think about it once. My gosh! I just said his name and within a split second he was at my table and I had not thought about the excuse I was going to give for knowing his name.
Here you are ma’am” he said whilst placing the cup on the table. His arms!!! No. they are to muscular, he can’t be just a waiter I thought or maybe he is some kind of a guy who likes keeping a fit body, perhaps for the purpose of attracting ladies coz it seriously worked on me. His bicep was neatly sited in the short sleeve and his veins were like amarula roots, this is the only thing that was kind of faulty on him. No way!! It’s a tattoo. Mm isn’t it too gangster for a gentleman? I looked away as I saw his hand flexing in my direction.

I am Udumo” his hand now in my rear. I didn’t need to think about it, I then motioned my hand to meet his as I introduced myself in a squeaky voice. I didn’t mean to but somehow my voice became rebellious on my lips. He turned away to leave and I continued with the routine, that is staring. I looked at his masculine figure fade away and vanish behind the counters. I was too absorbed in my staring game that I didn’t notice that he was coming back to the table.
Excuse me, how did you know my name before I told it to you” he asked with a grin. My worst fear had befallen me. I thought that it was a narrow escape when he had left. It was an honour seeing him again just like his name suggests but at this point I would be equally happy if he hadn’t come back to the table.

Sorry I have to go” I sincerely said whilst hurriedly dismissing myself. That was the only way I could use to run away from the question. I offered him a tip and he negated. WHAT!!! On earth was he thinking? No one had refused my money before.


See you soon” he shouted and waved behind the closed glass door of the small coffee shop but my mood was already in the red zone

Back in my lovely mansion, the day had given birth to night even though the bright lighting in my house preserved memories of day. I was about to go and immerse myself in my queen bed when I heard footsteps behind me. I was blindfolded and gagged before I could even turn my head by one degree. Was Flash now in my room for he is the only one I know to have such swiftness? Trust me, my previously learnt taekwondo skills were very ‘helpful’. Now I am a kitten fighting a full grown lion.

I was manuevered into some kind of a classic car considering how comfortable the seats were. I could at least appreciate that the thug was gentle enough, at this point Udu almost budged back into my mind but this was the wrong timing and place. Some damp cotton wool was then placed beneath my nostrils and I felt as if I had transformed into bird plumage.
I woke up in a very dark but well ventilated room. Oh I just remembered that the blindfold was still on so maybe lights were on but alas I was not tied. I leaped off the single bed and started directing my hands in the void aiming for the walls. I ran my sleek fingers on the exposed bricks hoping to find the door. My hands stumbled upon a handle and I was about to open it when I was suddenly grabbed by the waist and pulled back from my freedom. I held the man’s arms, planning on sinking my nails into his devil’s thick flesh. I then targeted the veins and when I found them, they were in a weird pattern. Wait!! The arms were also muscular, they were not veins at all, it was a tattoo.

I remembered that I had seen someone with a tattoo but I just couldn’t remember where. I automatically started reminiscing and the first image I saw was that of Udu. I almost smiled but the smile fled from my slit when I remembered his words, ‘see you soon’. This quickly took me to the coffee table when I saw the tattoo yes it was Udu’s arm!! It is the same arm interlocking with mine in this battle of Sarafina, a battle for freedom.
I felt my energy seeping into the dead floor. I deeply sighed and uttered Udu with the last strand of energy in my breath. Or maybe I was dreaming .

Yes” he answered.

So it was him. All the time I was playing Cinderella in a coffee shop love tale I was actually sleeping beauty falling for a beast? How did I allow myself to sleep so hard paralyzing my intelligence and common sense? How foolish I am, is there any greater fool than thou. Busy sipping coffee whilst sipping out my life and praising this criminal. I’m dead.
My floodgates then gave in and the waters of lamentation broke out. Even my cave opened and a vicious lion started roaring from inside. I was in a sobbing and shouting feat. From a boiling desire of getting out alive I broke out of his arms and ran for the door.

But he didn’t pursue after me. He then shouted my name. My feet and feat then stopped with no intention to resume at all. At this point the blindfold had become loose and was now clinging around my neck. I had stopped to listen to what he wanted to say for it was really rare for anyone to know my name.

Khu, I am the officer you hired to help eradicate those filthy blackmailers. After you left the coffee shop some gangsters came looking for you and I knew they would soon be headed for your house so I got there first and took you to this place so that I will explain everything without rush and leave you here whilst I go back for those criminals”
I was still listening as he said this. I just wished the ground would open and let me sink in. what else could I do?

I'm Khulekani Ndlovu, a 16 year old girl from Zimbabwe. I'm a poet, author, spoken word artist and model

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