hot pink bridesmaid dresses

“Not this again,” complained Zinzi.
“Don’t tell me, tell Mama,” said
Ntombi.“If she’s ever here to tell.” As hot pink bridesmaid dresses
they ate, on Bold, a soapie star
reclined on a lounging chair beside a
pool somewhere in America –
somewhere hot and lush with lots of
money. A butler handed her an ice
cold cocktail… she didn’t have a care
in the world. Her nanny was looking
after her kids, and Ntombi knew that
her fridge would be brimming with
food. Just then there was a sizzling
sound and a bang from the back of
the TV. The smell of burned plastic
filled the room.
“No!” screamed Zinzi. “Not the TV!
My life has ended.” And she buried
her face under a cushion.
“Don’t be such a drama queen!”
yelled Ntombi. She went into the
bedroom to get away from her sister,
before she exploded like the TV. She
lay on the bed she shared with Zinzi
and started paging through a
magazine. But she wasn’t reading the
words. She kept thinking of Asanda
and Lettie standing on the stage of
the school hall, learning the words of
that new song, and them all laughing
and having fun as they got one step
closer to the finals, while she was
stuck in this dump with a younger
sister who was driving her crazy and
not helping one bit around the
She looked down at the glamorous
pop stars in the mag. Who did she
think she was, trying to compete with
girls like this? Maybe she was
dreaming after all. Maybe Zakes was
right. Maybe she didn’t have what it
took to be a Teen Voice star. “Why
bother entering the competition,” he
had said. “These days you have to
have the whole package: the looks,
the sex appeal and the voice. You’ll
only be setting yourself up to be
taken down.”
Her dad would never have said those
hurtful words. He had told her that
he was so proud of her when she
had got into the choir at Harmony
High. And when he had his
employer’s car for a few days he had
taken her to practices himself. Once
when she wanted to go and get her
ears pierced he had said, “Why spoil
something so beautiful already?”
Now she didn’t even know where he
was, or who he was with. Maybe he
had a whole other family somewhere,
another daughter, whom he loved
now, more than her?
* * *
As she lay there she thought of the
three promises she had made to
herself on New Year’s eve three
months ago. First: to enter the
singing competition and go all the
way to the final. Second: not to go
out with a guy unless he was kind
and respected her – not like the guy
Busi had dated in the holiday, who
had seemed the real deal – too good
to be true – because he was too
good to be true. He was good
looking and clever, but he had left
her with a broken heart and a
broken arm after he had pushed her
and she had tripped and fallen hard.
If Ntombi and Asanda hadn’t run
when they heard her cries from
behind the sports shed at school,
things might have been a lot worse.
But when they appeared Ebenezer
had left her and run – a coward at
The third promise was to find her
dad and bring him home. There was
no way that she was going to let
Zakes move in with them and
pretend to be their father.
Chapter 3
Ntombi woke up from a nightmare in
the middle of the night. In the
dream she was wearing a long pink
dress with lots of frills and her
friend Asanda was putting a tiara
with plastic flowers in her hair. They
were in the changing rooms at the
church hall where the auditions were
going to be for the Teen Voice
competition. First Ntombi thought
she had won the competition and
she was really excited. She was ready
to walk out on the stage in front of
hundreds of people and be given
flowers and a recording contract.
Pink wasn’t really her colour, but
who cared, when she was about to
become a pop star? But when she
walked out into the hall there were
no screaming teenage fans and no
sign of a microphone. In fact the
hall was full of men and women
dressed in suits and formal dresses.
And there at the back, next to the
door was her mother. She was also
dressed in a huge pink dress, with
more frills and lace than Ntombi’s.
For a second Ntombi thought that
this might be her own wedding, and
that at any minute the handsomest,
coolest guy was going to appear,
walk towards her and announce that
he was her fiancé. But then Zakes
walked in, and Ntombi realised that
this was no fairytale wedding and
she definitely wasn’t the princess.
She was a bridesmaid at her
mother’s wedding to Zakes. The
dream had just turned into a terrible
Her mother was smiling and kissing
Zakes. He was smiling that fake
smile. Before she knew it her mother
was calling her to the bridal
procession. Her sister appeared in
an identical pink dress. The whole
thing made Ntombi feel sick.
“What’s wrong, Ntombi?” Suddenly
her mother had the face of a witch.
“Can’t you be happy for us?”
“Just wait.” Zakes gripped her arm
and led her away so her mother
couldn’t hear what he was about to
say. His breath was warm and stank
of beer as he lowered his
voice.“There’s no escaping from me
now,” he said. “You will do exactly as
I say or there will be trouble. I am
the boss in your house.” He let her
go and she rubbed her arm; his fat
fingers had left marks on her skin.
She watched as her mother took
Zakes’ arm and walked up the aisle
and up the stairs to the stage where
a priest was waiting to marry them.
Ntombi had to do something to stop
them – nobody else was. She tried to
run but her feet were glued to the
ground. She opened her mouth to
scream but no words came out.
Zakes took the ring and was about to
slip it on her mother’s finger.