Saturday, 13 December 2014


The next week was an absolute nightmare for Simon Thambisa; a strangely disjointed time in which he sunk into sullen silence, and Pearl sailed over it with bright indifference. The more he sulked, the calmer and sweeter she was. And she never asked him what was wrong...

Not by a single word did she allude to the Gala or to what had gone so disastrously wrong.

Simon was by turns silent, mordant, and coldly polite. She ignored his attitudes utterly, and responded with warm kindness. In fact, she responded to him in exactly the same way - the same tone - she used on Thali or Isaiah in a huff. Simon realised he had placed himself at the same level as a six or a ten year old in a sulk.

He resolved to sit down and have a talk to Pearl, set his cards on the table. Yes, he was a grown man, with a successful life, what was there to be frightened about?

Simon got up from his desk and walked to Pearl's and Thali's room. He knocked on the door, and opened at the muffled “Come in!”.

He walked into a riotous tornado of femininity. A silky multicoloured heap on the bed hinted at some play at “dress-up”, Pearl standing by the long mirror in the wall-closet suggested something more sinister...

She was wearing a lick of red, and the gold and garnet antique choker he had given her. She was wearing high-heels, and red lipstick. She looked good enough to eat.

“Oh! Hello! I thought...You are going out?”

“Yes, it is Friday night, remember, I spoke to you? I am going to the art opening?”

“Ah yes, yes indeed...And the children?”

“The children will be with Mrs Markovish, and your dinner is in the oven, Sir. It is all taken care of.”

“Yes, yes, of course.”

Thali interrupted “Does Mama Pearl not look fine?”

“Yes indeed. Yes she does.”

Thali sighed. “And you are just seeing the outside. She is wearing the prettiest red lace bra...Makes her boobs look extra bouncy, doesn't it?”

“Thali!” cried Pearl, “We don't comment on our underwear in front of gentlemen!”

“We don't?”


“Then why do you wear them?”

Pearl choked and gasped in embarrassment, and Simon manfully wrestled with a vision of Pearl in her lacy red bra.

“I think I will let you ladies finish up...”

Pearl frowned, “What did you want to talk to me about, Sir?”

“Nothing...Nothing important. I am going out too, to a movie. So we will speak tomorrow.”

“Alright, Sir. Goodnight.”

“Goodnight, Pearl, good night, my Thali.”

“Good night Papa Simon!”


Simon walked to his bedroom to get his coat and wallet. He was determined to spare himself the sight of the Nazi drooling over Pearl. He would go to the movies at the shopping centre, See something macho and warlike. Something with no women in it...He walked past the sitting room and a glum Isaiah.

“What is the matter?” he asked.

Isaiah pouted, “I go up to Mrs Markovish with Thalie. They will spend the evening putting on jewelry and shoes, I will be bored. I am tired of women talking, talking...”

Simon nodded sympathetically. “Well how about you ask Mama Pearl if you can go to the movies with me tonight? We eat a hamburger, hang out? Guy's stuff.”

Isaiah jumped off the couch with a joyful shout and ran to Pearl's bedroom. In an instant he had returned, eyes bright, to match his huge grin. “Mama Pearl said yes, but I have to wear my coat, and you have to make sure the movie is not violent, or for over 10 years-old.”

“Cool! Let's go!”

He helped Isaiah with his coat and walked out with a skipping happy child, talking a mile a minute and tugging on his coat-sleeve to emphasise every second word.

It helped. It made him focus on something other than Pearl in a lick of red silk, with red lace cupping her breasts...

They had a hamburger, they saw a Jackie Chan movie in which Jackie beat up a whole lot of bad guys without ever drawing blood, and with nary a woman in sight. It was a good evening. He hardly thought about Pearl at all.

They got home at 10:30, and Pearl and Thali were still not there. Simon and Isaiah went to bed.


Simon tossed and turned for what seemed like hours until he heard the slick-sliding click of the key in the lock, and the giggly whispers of the two feminine voices. He glanced at the alarm-clock's fluorescent screen: 11:45!

He was filled with righteous indignation. It was late. It was very late for Thali. He would have a talk to Pearl about the children's bed time. He would impose a curfew. On the children of course, and by natural extension, on Pearl.



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