Kamcheche

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The search for Kamcheche continued. Her mum was so restless she never slept a wink. Kamcheche was her only source of joy after losing her own child. And she was not alone, even Kamcheche’s nanny missed her and her juicy stories. The gateman missed her cheekiness and if animals could speak, the family cat would have said it missed her companionship. The sombre mood continued in that house for three weeks. Other than few Inquiries and the occasional screams and cries by the mother, much wasn’t said in that household

That night, with all the hope gone, Kamcheche’s parents walked into their bedroom and changed into their night regalia in silence. They even seemed to be avoiding each other’s eyes as if neither of them wanted to admit that they had lost hope of ever finding her. When her mum kept tossing as it had become her norm, her husband became agitated.

“You know, tossing in bed won’t bring her back.”

“I have no idea where our baby is yet you have the audacity to talk to me in that manner?” she sat up in bed, furious.

He turned and moved closer to her, touching her shoulders. “Sweetheart, what means have we not tried in this world in an effort to find Kamcheche? We have reported to the police who have made little or no progress. We have used the media, we have made posters2 he shrugged, “It’s time we quit this search and lead our normal lives”

She couldn’t believe he said that. Her whole body trembled as she climbed out of bed. She wanted to speak, but no words came out at first. So she paced the room, mumbling before she finally spoke. “Lead our normal lives? What’s normal about our life? Is being childless normal to you? Is that it?”

“That’s not what I meant.”

“What did you mean?”

He climbed out of bed too and walked to her. He tried holding her but she pushed him away and stomped out of the room. She spent the night in the guestroom where she blew most of the time whimpering, crying, begging God to bring Kamcheche back, crying again, and then back to praying.

Nights looked like days in the city. Hawkers were all over, lights illuminated everywhere. This was the time when lovers coming from their usual joints publicly displayed affection and nobody cared. The commercial sex workers were at their peak of business. Simply, it was really busy. And as it is the norm, the clubs were crowded with people, loud music filling the air. Well-built bouncers in cheap suits stood like trees at the entrance of the clubs. A bunch of small kids approached one of the bouncers and asked if they could go in.

He was used to cheeky street kids, so he simply shoved them off and resumed his upright position. One of the kids, a girl, approached the bouncer again, this time politely, and asked him with a wink to let them in. He looked at the girl. She was young. Too young. But his hidden animalistic trait reminded him that age was nothing but a number.

“Unataka nini ili tuingie?”

“Nakutaka wewe,” the bouncer answered

She expected the girl to be terrified but no, she raised an eyebrow and said, “Tukitoka tutaongea.”

He knew he wasn’t supposed to, but by that time of the night everyone in was probably too drunk to notice a bunch of young kids so he let them in, eyes following the girl who spoke to him as they made their way in.

The girl who was really bold seemed to be the leader of the gang. She had not been on the streets for long but her expertise made people think she grew up in the streets. She had a necklace with an inscription “MUM LOVES YOU”. Kamcheche had escaped into the streets. The girls danced but were careful not to touch alcohol. By the time morning came, the bouncer was drunk so the girls ran off.

The girls went off narrating their experiences of how the night was, occasionally, laughing their hearts out. A woman who recognized Kamcheche stopped them.

“You are the child who is being searched for all over. Can you accompany me I take you home?”

“I don’t know you,” Kamcheche ran off.

The woman quickly retrieved her phone and snapped a photo of Kamcheche running away. She walked to one of the Missing Person posters stuck on a wall and called the number written there.

Back at home, the tension was still high. Kamcheche’s parents were not on speaking terms. However, they had to work together especially when it came to going to the police to find out their progress. They were driving to the police station when they started arguing again. They talked over each other and distracted, Kamcheche’s father did not see the oncoming lorry. By the time he realised an accident was about to happen, it was too late. He tried to step on the brakes but panicking, he stepped harder on the gas pedal and bang! A crowd gathered. Kamcheche’s mum was lying unconscious on her seat while the dad’s face was on the steering wheel

Their phones were off by the time the woman who had seen Kamcheche called. After trying a few times to reach them to no avail, she gave up. She thought they had given up too. So she deleted the photo of Kamcheche running and washed her hands off the case like Pilate during the crucifixion of Jesus.

The suspense hovering around this family became even thicker. Tragedy upon tragedy. Was this the end of Kamcheche family? Was all hope gone?

Author: Anne Mumbi

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Last Modified on 05/08/2017
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One thought on “Kamcheche

  1. PETER

    Oooooohhh!!!! Noo!! How comes she walked into streets??

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