The changing tides
Maria looked around and when she could not see them following her she ran faster and
disappeared in the small market and later went home. .
A guy she had met in the night club was after her. She got his money but was refusing to sleep
When Maria went back to the night club after giving away her baby to Paul, she decided to go
against the rules of the business. She would get money from men and sneak away without
sleeping with them. .one of the reasons Maria had given herself was to purnish men, like
somehow letting them pay for the pain she was feeling.
Some of them just ignored her afterwards but unfortunately the K500 she had swindled this
particular business man got her into trouble.
Maria had made it a mission to get money from men but she promised herself she won’t give her
body for s£x anymore. If the guy was lucky enough Maria could use her hand to make them feel
good and left untouched.
Over the months it was working. She got herself free beers and money without a scratch on her
Her other reason was the fact that Maria since the day Paul knew who she was and she talked to
him, she felt her body belonged to Paul only. Somehow even when she had convinced herself
going back to the bar was a solution, her inner self longed for the man she loved. She hoped that
one day she could learn to forgive herself and learn to live past her shame.
“I won’t use my body any more my friend” she had told Doro,
“I have given enough and am not getting either pregnant again or sick.”
“Well my dear, that’s hard to do cause this particular man will not leave you alone. Look at how
he’s sending his men to chase you whenever they see you Maria and where are you going to get
the K500 to pay him back?
You chose prostitution and prostitutes are expected to give themselves for s£x remember that,”
Doro scoffed looking at Maria who was still panting from the ran she just had.
“I thought over time this guy will get over his money but he’s so stubborn ” she shook her head.
“I gues I have to work hard and find that stingy guy’s money, ” Maria added.
Doro smiled and giggled,
“you are the most strange woman I have met my dear friend, you become more interesting each
day, now you have become a dancer and seducer of men and won’t use your body to give themwhat they want. I can’t seem to understand you my dear. I can’t figure you out” She said as they
“Well what can i tell you, I love Paul even though it’s too late now. And somehow I keep myself for
him only even if it’s just a dream that am so sure now that he’s stopped coming after me and he’s
with that Tasha girl, it will never come true. I like the fact that he’s moved on somehow. He
deserves better my friend. Even when it hurts, am glad he made the right choice. And when am
ready, I will start seeing my son.
Last time I saw him in town with the baby I followed them and watched them from a distance at a
My baby has grown and he looks so good,” Maria smiled tears in her eyes. As she narrated to
“This weekend it will be his 2nd birthday and am so proud of him. You know what? whatever you
people say, I still believe those two derseves better Doro, am damaged, I feel like a lost cause
and to be honesty I fear if I were to be part of their lives I might end up spoiling things for them. ”
Doro smiled at Maria,
” you know what your problem is? You have this theory that you are not worthy anything just
because of what you have gone through. You have just been unfortunate like most of us but don’t
think you are a curse or something Maria, you used to be prayerful and I used to admire your
faith.where is that girl I knew who used to make even me check myself sometimes?” She asked
“well what can i say? that girl is gone my friend. A new one was born and this one can’t even say
grace when eating. I don’t know but I lost my faith somehow and now God won’t listen to me , in
fact I don’t know how to tell him things anymore.” Maria added sadly.
“Enough of this sad talk, I told you I don’t intend to spend my whole life crying .
Am now saving up from my new adenveture business and when I have enough, am moving out of
Lusaka, find some new life probably on the copperbelt and when the time is right I will come for my
son. ” she smiled hopefully.
“yeah and where is Paul in all this your plan ? ”
“Well he’s probably married to Tasha and happy, he will learn to live without me you will see, I
even think he’s done that already,” Maria added with a scoff.
“I love him so much that I would do anything to make sure he’s happy and not mesirable, he has
to be…” she nodded her head.
“Oh lets eat already” Doro sighed,
“am so hungry those men from last night drained me. They were like hungry beasts” she laughed.
“And for what? A K100 , oh God this life is something mwandi” she added grabbing the plate of
the fish she had and sitting up to start eating.”Well, they won’t get mine, all they will get is my hand if they are lucky” Maria added laughing as
she went for the plate of nshima.
At Paul’s house the party was organised and some kids and their parents gathered to celebrate.
Paul looked at his son jumping excited with his little friends and he smiled to himself, the boy
looked so excited.
He stood there for a long time still aching for Maria to be around.
He was lost in thoughts when someone called from behind.
“Paul it’s time for the cake and you have to stand next to your son,” his cousin called him.
Tasha was in the fore front organising the kids and she stood next to Paul as he lifted his son and
held his hand to cut the cake.
“Thank you for this,” he smiled at Tasha.
“Don’t mention it Paul it was my pleasure. ”
They cheered and sung happy birthday for the baby. unbeknownst to Paul, Maria stood at a
distance with dark shades on her face and watched the party.
She smiled as Baby Paul struggled to blow the candles and his father helped him. Tears ran
down her face and she wiped them with a small hank.
As the party went on, she watched Tasha smilling and laughing as she called out the presents and
She shook her heard.
“Playing mother with my son huh..” She whispered to herself.
She heard Tasha calling out. .
“the owner of this present there’s no name, please come over so we thank you for this gift.”
Maria looked at the package she had bought for her son.
A remote control car and some T shirts written ‘mom loves you forever’, she shook her heard and
“Well gues who sent it dear Tasha” she whispered to herself. As Tasha opened the present.
Paul walked to Tasha and looked that the present. He turned to look around and knew who sent
“Maria” he whispered to himself and started looking around to see if Maria was around. He knew
she must have gone to drop it.
Maria had used a kid she found by the gate the time she went to drop the present.
“Take it where they have put those presents” she instructed the boy before she hid and watched
from a distance.
Paul walked towards the gate to look for any signs of Maria. He had the strongest instincts to
believe she was there. But Maria was gone already and he found nothing.
“I know it was her” , he told Jake as they cleaned up the mess after the party was over.”I don’t know how, but I felt it strong that she came over and was probably watching from a
No one can send such a present with two T-shirts printed with ” mom loves you foever” it’s her
Jake I know it.”
“Well, that’s a good sign right?” Jake smiled.
“If she can remember her son like that then its a good sign uncle. .” He added.
“I hope so boy, despite everything my heart can’t just stop longing for her. I seem not to move on
even months of not seeing her” Paul shook his head lifting the chairs and placing them in one
2 weeks later,
Paul was in his bedroom after work on a Friday and was just changing from his work clothes when
he heard Tasha’s voice. She had become a regular visitor and Paul knew she was intrested in
him. He didn’t make any advanced to make her his again but Tasha still insisted and came to see
“Paul can i come in?” She asked from the door. The maid had allowed her in.
“Am done, yes you can come in,” Paul responded.
She walked in with a short jean skirt and pamps that made her look so great.
“How was your day? “She asked with a smile as she gave Paul a hug.
“Good” Paul answered.
“Hey you should have called you are coming or something, one day you will find am not around. ”
he shrugged not really interested in being with her.
“Well since there’s another Paul, that wouldn’t be a problem I would just sit and chat with him
right?” She laughed.
“Well” Paul shrugged.
“Can we go to the sitting room now?” He asked standing by the door.
Tasha looked at him for some minute and walked towards him holding him by the neck.
“Paul, you know I still love you, why won’t you give us a second chance?” She asked pushing
him towards the wall.
“Am sorry I just need more time” Paul responded as Tasha pressed herself on him making Paul
feel her so close and making it hard to ignore.
“More time or you still waiting for that girl you have no idea where she is. Don’t lie to me anymore
Paul, someone in the family told me the whole story about that prostitute. ” she spat with
Paul looked at her surprised.
“Grace?” He asked knowing only his cousin would do such a thing.”Forget about her already Paul, she’s a lost cause . You and me can start our lives together and I
promise I will help you raise your son. I love the boy you know that” she spoke holding Paul’s face.
She went on to kiss him and Paul stood there motionless. He was trying to control himself but his
body could not. .
He held Tasha by the waist and led her to the bed.
As he just begun to kiss her, his phone rung from the pocket.
” Am sorry I have to pick this” , he paused withdrawing.
“Come on Paul you can answer that later” Tasha insisted trying to grab the phone away.
“No!” Paul pulled himself up and grabbed the phone placing the phone on his ear as he remained
laying on top of Tasha.
“What?” He spoke on the phone and quickly stood up.
“what happened to Maria? Is she okay? ” He asked the person calling him.
“Paul you have to come here now, am sorry you are the only one i could think of to help Maria,
she’s being beaten and if no one rescues her she might die.
I saved up your number the last time you gave me to call you for anything about Maria and I
thought I could tell you. Please help her” Doro spoke on the other side.
“am coming right away, just make sure she’s alright do whatever you can!” Paul shouted grabbing
his car keys.
“Paul, stop! Where are you going? ” Tasha asked angrly,
“Am sorry Tasha, Maria is in trouble and she needs me now. I got to go.” He panted whilst
“Oh now you are running to that prostitute after all she’s done to you? ” She screamed following
him as he walked outside.
“Tasha stop it now! Maria is in trouble, Just let it go okey?” He shouted back and ran to the car leaving Tasha so upset.
She watched him as he speed off to the road.
“Oh God! he’s mad” she whispered to herself and went in to get her handbag before leaving