When Life Feels Like A Test You Didn't Study For

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
When Life Feels Like A Test You didn't Study For Part.1: This short story is about a young prince from the countryside in the amaBhaca kingdom. The prince is suffering from a very rare disease called hemophilia. After the death of the prince's mother "Queen Nobhobhuwaya", the prince inherited all her mother's assets. That customary law of succession made the family in the royal house egocentric, evil and jealous. Thus, they hired assassins to kill the prince. The assassins showed unexpected remorse.

Submitted: June 18, 2017

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Submitted: June 18, 2017






AUTHOR: Lindokuhle Ndinisa



It was during winter when the news were told that she has departed this life. Her absence was felt and seen just immediately after the news were told. What a powerful influential person she was and what a painful experience it was for her family at the time. Her name was Nobhobhuwaya, a Queen of AmaBhaca tribe, a woman of honour, notability and integrity.

Her departure left many of her people under no guidance, no security and no recognition. She left behind her only son who was struggling with haemophilia. His name was Mohlwayi . The only person the orphaned son trusted with his rare medical problem was his late mother.

During the funeral of the dignified woman, family members fought for the custody of the boy since they knew all the assets of his late mother will be inherited by him. Mohlwayi decided to end the war between his family members by deciding to stay alone. His paranoia was at his extreme level.

Time flew like birds moving from a cold polar region to a warmer region. The jealousy in the family became a habit and some of the ménage were unemployed, uneducated and poor. Their standard of living made them egocentric about everything that involves amalgamation to the entire family.

Mohlwayi was hated by his family for being his mother’s successor. His presence to them was unappetizing and unsavoury, but the boy was so careful about their bitterness towards him. His enemies, the one’s of a better expression(family) decided to constrain him from enjoying his legacy. They came with a plan of injuring him so that he can bleed to death since he was suffering from a very rare disease, haemophilia.

One early morning, Mohlwayi was on his way to the river to look for a cattle calf that was missing two nights ago. On his way, he saw two grown men carrying an old big silky bag, in his mind he thought they were shepherds. Sadly, they were not, they were kidnappers bought by his greedy ménages.

[They grabbed him and closed his mouth to stop him from shouting for help]

Kidnapper 1: Let’s kill this boy, he is heavy. We can’t carry him to the royal house all by ourselves. You can see how strong he is trying to get out of this bag.

Kidnapper 2: No, we can’t kill him now. The place is not safe for us. Anyone can see us. Let’s go to the bush and force him to drink poison.

(They carried Mohlwayi to the bush near the river of Kwanodukhwe)


[They took Mohlwayi out of the bag and started beating him up so that he can drink the poison they had. During that process Mohlwayi’s traditionally made bracelet fall unnoticed].

Mohlwayi resisted, crying and shouting “why God am I having bad lucks at a very young age. Firstly, I was born with a rare disease. Secondly, my mother passed away and my family turned their backs on me. Now this, I am forced to drink poison so I can end my life”

Kidnapper 1: You can cry an ocean, today you will see your ancestors. Drink! [grabbing a stick nearby]

Kidnapper 2: Stop it! Maponya. Can’t you see the boy have suffered worse than us at this young age.

Kidnapper 1(Maponya): Why are you revealing my name Sisa? We agreed we will remain unknown until the job is done. You are so unpredictable.

Kidnapper 2(Sisa): We need to be considerate. This boy is a son of the late queen. If it happens that he lives, he heard our names. He can report us and the whole village will be out looking for us. We can’t spend our whole life running.

Maponya: Let us kill him then and make sure he is dead.

Sisa: No! man, why are you so obsessed about killing this boy? You should be thankful that we have him as our ticket to a better life.

Maponya: “A better life” uthini na wena Sisa(what are you saying Sisa) [Xhosa vernacular]? Have you forgotten that his family paid us good money to assassinate him?

Sisa: I know. If we can help this boy from that evil family of his, he can open many doors for us for saving his life. Do not forget, ifumile lentwana (this boy is loaded) [Xhosa vernacular].

[There was a long uncomfortable silence from Maponya’s side…]

Maponya: (convinced) let’s release him. If he reports us to the village authorities, it is your fault Sisa.

Sisa: (Pleased) let’s take the boy to our home. He is going to be safe there.

Maponya: (with a sudden anger) what! Do you know how risky that is, what if his family have opened a case of a missing person to the village authorities? Udlala ngomlilo Sisa(you are playing with fire Sisa) [Xhosa vernacular].

Sisa: Do not forget that we will be protecting him against his family. They want to see him dead. Bakhohlakele kakubi ababantu(those people are very evil)[Xhosa vernacular].

Maponya: (staring at Mohlwayi) you are a one lucky bastard. I was planning to celebrate your death today.

Sisa: (looking at Maponya) Assist me to carry the boy home.

[Sisa and Maponya carried Mohlwayi to their home to keep him safe. They seemed not to be bad people after all. Assassins who have good hearts are rare to find].


Mohlwayi: Thank you very much for saving me. You were hired to kill me but you decided to save me. Why? (looking at the assassins)

Maponya: Don’t look at me. It’s Sisa who saved your butt.

Sisa: You are welcome young Prince. What is your name?

Mohlwayi: I’m Mohlwayi, the son of queen Nobhobhuwaya who have departed this life. I’m..(Maponya interceded him negativity)

Maponya: Oh! Shut up. Sisa wanted to know your name. We know you are from the royalty and your mother have passed away.

Sisa: Stop it Maponya. Why are you always grumpy?

Maponya: Whatever. Sitya ntoni kulenjika langa?(what are we eating this evening?)[Xhosa vernacular]

Sisa: Samp and cabbage. Mohlwayi is there anything you are allergic to?

Mohlwayi: No sir.

[Sisa is dishing up sump and cabbage]

Maponya: (whispering to Sisa) How long are we keeping this boy here? His family think we have killed him already and they probably have opened a missing case to the village authorities.

Sisa: (with tranquillity) relax buddy, no one will suspect that the boy is here.

Maponya: You better be sure. I do not want to spend my life as a peasant of the village. You know exactly how people are being punished by the village authorities.

Sisa: Your problem is that you worry too much. You create problems that are not there. Be careful, you will get mad Maponya.

Maponya: Mxm! Ungathi andikukhuzanga (don’t say I didn’t warn you) [Xhosa vernacular].

[The kind assassins kept Mohlwayi safe in their home, risking their lives. Maponya, the grumpy assassin ended up enjoying Mohlwayi’s company. He even gave Mohlwayi some of his old clothes to wear].



[In the royal house]

[Mohlwayi’s family believed that he is dead. The happiness in their eyes was so wild like they have won a war. They even didn’t bother opening a case of a missing person to the village authorities. They were loathing Mohlwayi with all their hearts. Only Muzi, Mohlwayi’s cousin who was against all the evil].

Nomakhwezi(Aunt 1): I am sure that annoying little pig is dead.

Sibane(Uncle): Who does he think he is? He is just a small boy who does not know anything about ruling a kingdom.

Zinzi(Aunt 2): I wish they took his body and threw it to the wild animals in the jungle. I hate Mohlwayi with my heart and soul.

Muzi(cousin): Mohlwayi is a good person. I do not remember even once seeing him disrespecting any of you. Why hating him so much?

Sibane: Shut up! Uyabhuda kwedini(You are talking nonsense boy) [Xhosa vernacular]. Mohlwayi cannot lead this kingdom. His mother was weak as well. Who can be led by a sick prince with haemophilia anyway?

Muzi: (talking to himself)…Bakhohlakele ababantu futhi banomona (these people are cruel and jealous) [Xhosa vernacular].

(Muzi shaking his head disappointed)……

Sibane: Kwedini kukho into ofuna ukuyithetha? Sunqala intloko apha. Phuma ngalamnyango (Boy is there something you want to say? Stop shaking your head and leave us).[Xhosa vernacular]

(Muzi left the royal house. His aim was to go and look for his cousin Mohlwayi, he really hated the way his family loathed Mohlwayi. He even thought of committing suicide because of the abusive language at home which affected him emotionally).


(Muzi went to the river Kwanodukhwe to drawn himself. He was terrified by the words his uncle and aunts were saying about his cousin Mohlwayi. He was emotionally and spiritually weak by his very nature. He couldn’t handle the pain, thus he saw suicide as an escape route in finding peace.

Muzi: Dear Lord and nani boChisana,Ndebe, boKhopoyi(clan name) [Xhosa vernacular]. I am delivering myself to you. My time in this world of the living have arrived and there is no turning back. I have tried to be strong for myself and for my hated cousin Mohlwayi, but I have failed. I cannot stand the pain and the suffering my uncle and aunts are bringing in the family. Ever since the queen departed this life, all we are living under is impasse. Our lives are at stake and we are put in very unpleasant  positions as if we are illegal immigrants. We are in precipice because of the jealousy and greediness our family have embarked to. Ngalomazwi(with these words) [Xhosa vernacular], ndiyabuncama ubomi bam(I give up my life) [Xhosa vernacular].

[Just before Muzi jumps to the deep running water of the Kwanodukhwe river, he noticed a very special and rare traditionally made bracelet. He knew it belongs to Mohlwayi. He started believing that his cousin is still alive and decided to stop going through with the suicide]


[In the assassins home]

Maponya: It is getting late, I will go fetch some water in the river so that we can bath. It has been a long day.

Sisa: That’s a great idea.

[Maponya went to the river to fetch water. He saw Muzi standing in a cliff looking very sad. He knew the boy was from the royalty by the look of his clothes. They were shiny and new, very rare. He approached the boy.]

Maponya: Kwedini(boy) [Xhosa vernacular], please step back you are going to fall there, and believe me you will have no chances of survival.

Muzi: (with tears droping) you know sir, this bracelet was my cousin’s Mohlwayi. I last saw him three days ago. I don’t know whether he is dead or alive. I just wanted to warn him about that evil family of ours.

Maponya: (wipes him tears) It’s alright. Everything will be okay. Trust me. Your cousin is safe in my home. He stays with me and my brother. My brother and I are assassins, we kill for a living. Your family gave us money to kill Mohlwayi but we decided not to, he is the prince. If he dies, this kingdom will fall in the wrong hands and our lives as settlers of the kingdom will be hard like a test we didn’t study for.


[Muzi went to the home of the assassins to meet his cousin Mohlwayi. He arrived and saw him happy as ever before. They all planned on how they will overcome the obstacles they were facing. The assassins promised they will provide safety for the prince. The royal house was left chaotic and the family itself did not know which to appoint as an interim king or queen. What made the royal family even more under pressure was the public interest, people wanted to be assured that the prince have departed this life. Without such a proof, the royal crown will remain vacant.

© Copyright 2018 Lindokuhle Ndinisa. All rights reserved.

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