CHARACTERS for IN BLOOD: KA MADI
Monewa – the Main character/narrator/first born daughter of Grace and Modjatji
Mamabolo James Modjatji – the family name/company name/ the father (the heir to kingship of Bathope tribe)
Makgotla – the first born son of Modjatji + Mmamakgotla (first wife)
Makalo – second born son of Modjatji + Mmamakgotla
Mohapi – third born son of Modjatji + Mmamakgotla
Mohato – fourth bon son of Modjatji + Mmamakgotla
Morena – first born son of Modjatji + Mmamorena (second wife)
Mokgethi – second born son of Modjatji + Mmamorena
Molahlegi – third born gay son of Modjatji + Mmamorena
Motlalepule – forth born son of Modjatji + Mmamorena
Malefane – first born son of Modjatji + Mmamolefi
Modise – second born son of Modjatji + Mmamolefi
Mafike – third born son of Modjatji + Mmamolefi
Mmamakgotla/ Joyce – first wife of Modjatji
Mmamorena/Celia – second wife of Modjatji
Mmamolefi/Delilah –third wife of Modjatji
Grace – fourth wife of Modjatji
Lydia – Makgotla’s Wife
Detective Pat Biyela – The detective on the case
Rangwane James II – the second born of Royal James Modjatji
Ga ke tsebe gore ke feletše bjang mo seemong seo ke lego mo sona. I was kind, understanding, and followed every rule in the book. You see this started when father made his decision about the succession legacy of our company’s CEO. Ke be ke sa nagana gore a ka kgetha nna, gape nna I had my own dreams and ambition and I was not even in the race to take up a seat because I knew I had eleven brothers who were capable go ka tšeela kgwebo ya papa kgole. I never knew that he would make that kind of a decision. But now I am faced with my youngest brother, my trusted brother and he has a gun in my face. I am now fearing for my life and I do not know what to do. I am trying to calm him down so this does not get out of control. O no fela a mpotša gore o swanetše go dira ka mokgwa o bamo laeditšeng ka gona. I faced his fearful face, I could understand. In the midst and shadows of eleven brothers, who’s father could have easily chosen, he chose his only, inexperienced, young girl. My father is a proud Mopedi man, and he follows his culture according to the rules, but my mother says since I was born, father was a totally different a man. In years he kept on receiving boys and plus my mother, his youngest fourth wife was unable to conceive. My mother claims that he loved her more than the other wives, and they were jealous and so they cursed her not to conceive. But I believe that it is just my mother’s superficial believes, and I mean how can you be cursed. From my understanding of our culture, choosing a wife is based on the consents of the other wives, but she still claims that the curse was uplifted and I was born and from that kind of magic it had a price and my father payed it because since I was born he became ill. Then, ngaka ya di taola said that my father will never be the same man and his death was upon my age of turning 25. So according to the relevant calculations my father had been ill for twenty-three years. He announced my succession at a big family dinner when I was turning twenty-two and then he died, and by the looks of it no one was happy. So, this means that ngaka ya ditaola was lying, my father never lived passed my 25th birthday. So, going over the whole events that led to this final moment where my only trusted brother is pointing me with a gun and promising to kill me, it is an awakening moment and right there I made a promise – if I survive this I will unleash eleven plagues to my eleven brothers, hell is coming for them and not even death can save them from their impending fate …
ENTER. NIGHT TIME, MONEWA’S DUPLEX ESTATE. She is standing still at the surprise of her brother holding a gun to her. She is trying to calm him so that he does not pull the trigger. Mafike is holding a gun, petrified and from the looks of it, he is internally battling with the decision, his heart is racing and his hand is shaking – he is even trying to close his eyes.]
MONEWA ~ please ngwanešo, I beg of you. Eketle, o goge moya, we can figure this out. There’s no need to do his, just tell me what you want me to do.
MAFIKE ~ Shut up! You cannot make deals now. Go be go swanetše e le Makgotla, not you! I need to do this.
MONEWA- You don’t! I can help you. Remember you are my right hand man, my favourite out of all my siblings. I can give you what you want [stuttering]
MAFIKE- I do not think so [indecisive]. This is a family decision, it’s something that has to be done.
MONEWA- So our brothers sent you here? But why? If you want the power and the chair, then you guys can have it
MAFIKE- [still pointing] You do not know? They say that father bewitched the chair, and you cannot dethrone it, it is yours till the end of your life and the only way a succession could take place, it requires your death…!
MONEWA- … Okay you guys have to stop with your curses stories. None of those things exists. Ga gona boloyi, go no ba fela lesedi le lefifi. And darkness can be overcome by light. Just look into the light ngwanešo, nka se go nyatse [Reasoning].
MAFIKE- Stop it! I do not need consolation from you, ga ke nyake kwelo bothloko go tšwa mo go wena. If I fail in this task, nna ke tlo go…
MONEWA- So they promised to kill you if you do not kill me? Fine! Look nka kgona go tloga mo and go somewhere, moo ba ka se kgone go tseba. We can stage my death, okay!? They don’t have to know, e tla ba sepiri magareng gaka le wena.
MAFIKE- [Nodding in disagreement] You do not get it do you? This requires quantification, the media has to believe it, an open casket funeral for you and this requires your blood. You may not believe in our own culture, but that will be the death of you sister [insisting]
MONEWA- Then fine [giving up], if my own blood promises to kill me then I have no say in that. I just want you to remember what we promised each other as family. Forever with each other. A na seema seo ga se na kgatlego mo go wena, gora gore ga ke na kgetho go seo o tlo se diregago gona bjale. And you better kill me brother, there’s no going back!
[A sound of a car on the driveway, and it startles Mafike, he looks in in fear and Monewa launches at him, before he can even digest what his body is doing, a sound of a fired gun rings in the air. Monewa falls down and Mafike looks in disbelief. He looks around and the sound of a closing car door in a hurry is head. He jumbles the gun, and holsters it in his pants. He puts on his hoody and takes the back door in an outmost fear. Monewa is lying in a pool of her own blood, and she is not crying in pain, she is crying in sheer anger and hate in her eyes, she is angrily losing conscious and the last thing she hears is someone trying to break her door]
MIDNIGHT. Mafike is at Makgotla’s house. He is shaking and unable to speak. Makgotla’s wife, Lydia, is offering him water. Makgotla says nothing and he just stares at Mafike.
MAKGOTLA- Mogatšaka, ke kgopela gore o re tlogele [he orders her, and she silently leaves] … so? Go diregileng?
MAFIKE – Ke-ke- mo [stuttering] I…
MAKGOTLA- Bolela monna, tia o e sware, and do not be ashamed of victory. Phumula mebokgo monna!
MAFIKE- [wiping his tears] … I killed-shot her, but I was disturbed. Go be go nale koloi yeo e tlago and I was disturbed, ke ge a nkwela godimo.
MAKGOTLA= [in disbelief] she launched at you? Is she dead? [unable to contain himself]
MAFIKE- I-I-I think so. I just ran, a neighbour was coming in because of the shot gun. I told you we should have used a silencer.
MAKGOTLA- No! you heard gore ngaka a reng, we were to use father’s gun. Its good. It will be confirmed on the news [he switches the television on] Brother you must contain yourself. [To himself] I hope o bahug le papagwe.
MORNING AT THE HOSPITAL. Monewa is in slightly critical condition. Detective Biyela is busy talking to Monewa’s mother outside the patient’s room. He is tall and dark. He is wearing an excusable suit, and he is clean shaven, he has a smile to knock any woman down.
DETECTIVE- Mrs Modjatji, can you tell me anything that may help us, like any person you suspect, any enemies?
GRACE`- Detective, ge nka go botša o tlo nagana gore ga ke rate lapa la ka. Motho yo a dirileng seo, o gona mo kgauswi. Ngwanaka yena ga a na manaba, manaba a gagwe ke lapa la gabo.
DETECTIVE- You want me to believe that your own family could do this? It is a bold accusation Mrs Grace, but I will interview the rest of the family.
GRACE- You are sly Detective. Cinderella’s stepmom could betray her, what makes you think that it is any different from real life? Hate is a very strong potion in our culture. Ke nagana gore le wena wa e tseba, sehlare sa lehufa, ke lehloyo.
[while busy talking to Grace Modjatji, the doctor approaches and call them in that she has awaken]
DOCTOR- please keep it short, she is still weak.
GRACE- Ngwanaka, ba go dirileng? [in disbelief] Ba be ba nyaka go go bolaya. Ke sebe se, your own blood!?
[Detective is starring at Grace and unbelieving]
DETECTIVE- Mrs Modjatji please, ke kgopela o ntese le yena, ke tla go bitša ge ke feditše.
Morning Miss Modjatji. You are quite strong to have recovered so quickly, most people will be in a coma at this stage. My name is Detective Pat Biyela, and I have few questions for you. Please tell me what happened yesterday?
MONEWA- Your so formal detective, and handsome as well, but I have nothing to tell. I guess I accidently shot myself.
DETECTIVE- I do not take you for a suicidal type. I looked at the photos and that was not self-inflicted, someone was at your house and at that range I am guessing that you have seen their face. Your mother is guessing your siblings; is she correct? And I could arrest you for obstruction of justice if you are lying to me and withholding information.
MONEWA- ke nyaka go go bona detective o leka seo. This is my story and I am sticking to it, if you want to formulate your own, then, o setše morago.
DETECTIVE- What are you planning Miss? And I can see that you’re up to something, and do not lie this time, it will be off record.
[switching his recorder and putting away his notebook away]
MONEWA – Fine [trying to move and coughing in pain] I am fine detective. Fine since you want to know, I may as well share it with you. I do not want you to arrest my brothers, they are my brothers and only I have the power to inflict justice upon them. What you people call justice, it is actually translated into a holiday. You see my brothers are still rich and their wealth will continue to replicate with every growth of our company. [in sheer anger] I will unleash eleven plagues to my eleven brothers, and no prison or death is enough for them, actually that would be too kind and common. Ke mosadi wa mopedi wa ga Modjatji, ba gešo ba kgolwa gore, the only way to reprimand sinful behaviour is an act of punishment. My brothers’ misery for a lifetime is enough punishment for them. You see I want to inflict the most internal pain and suffering, and since your prison cells and death can’t do that, therefore I can only do this. I am going to single them out and inflict devastation in their lives and in the end they will beg for death since is the kindest thing badimo ba ka go fa yona.
DETECTIVE- Why though? And this is not how the system works. What you want to commit is crime in itself? You cannot pull this off, and what if those plagues you want to inflict leads to death of you brothers, then what? I don’t see how this could be appealing to you, but the prosecutor wants my report by the end of the week? [frustrated]
MONEWA- Then I cannot help you [calmly]. You are a clever man, I guess you can figure out something that you could do, Ohh, just say that there isn’t enough evidence to prosecute, I don’t know, whatever … and detective if it is to any consolation, you will soon realise my motive and even help me, you’ll see [conniving]
[The detective starred at her in sheer amazement and unyielding behaviour. His own disbelief to the nature of the crime]
MAKGOTLA’S DUPLEX HOUSE, Makgotla was in an outrage. The news bulleting was reporting the miraculous survival and abrupt awakening of their only sister.
[breaking his juice glass]
LYDIA- Mogatšaka, please calm down, it is not over yet ….
MAKGOTLA- … yet!? What are you talking about woman? She survived and that is just something that we do not need. She is going to be unto us, or maybe she is already. Ga ke nyake gore di boye go rena!
LYDIA- [interrupting] It won’t, you need to pull yourself together [man-handling his shirt] you cannot lose yourself now, the rest of us are counting on you. Monna tia! o swanetše go bitša lekgotla, we need everyone on the same page.
[starting to realise the point his wife is making]
MAKGOTLA- Okay, we need to strategize, I bet by now she has bodyguards all over her, and it will be unwise to try to kill her, re tla molebadiša, ge nako e fihlile re tla mo ela manong.
LYDIA- Now you are thinking mogatšaka, bare nnoga o e emelwa borokong. Victory will be yours.
AFTERNOON AT THE HOSPITAL, Monewa is engaged in a confrontation with her doctor, her mother walks in in disbelief of the plans Monewa has.
MONEWA- Doctor I need to sort things out, just write me that letter and I will be out of your hair [adamant]
DOCTOR- No! I cannot let you leave, you are still under observation …
MONEWA- [interrupting] I pay for your salary and you have no say at this moment, I need to attend an important party.
DOCTOR- This is not your boardroom missy [snapping] I do not care what you claim you do, and how long have you been here, like two days? [sarcastic]
MONEWA- Don’t get fresh with me doc, I can get you fired [the doctor looked at her in a serious note] fine! If your so worried let me recover at home.
DOCTOR- if you tear that stich, you could lose a lot of blood and die [turning to Monewa’s mother who was standing behind her] Miss Modjatji, please explain to your daughter that she needs to chill.
[Grace was just as surprised as the doctor, regarding Monewa’s demands. She asks for a room alone with her]
GRACE- Ngwanaka, botse botse o nyaka go hwa na? Seo o se dirang gona bjalo ga se na kellelo. What do you want to achieve with your oblivious behaviour? [concerned]
MONEWA- Mma ga ke nyake your judgement right now. I just heard from a birdie gore bagešo ba nale lekotla lehono, I need to be there [reasoning]
GRACE- [furious] A na wa gafa? O nyaka go ikepela lebitla? Don’t you see what they are trying to do, sending people to kill you?
[Monewa dressing up]
MONEWA- Mom! Mafike is the one who wanted to kill me on the commands of the rest of the family, ba nnyaka bahung le papa. I need to show them that I am not scared, so right now I need you gore o lese go ngwapa hlogo, ke kgopela gore o eme lethokong laka. Call detective Biyela and tell him to meet me at my house, o bitše royal guards to my side, ba be mo as in today.
[Monewa took her bag and her mother on the other hand and walked out]
AT MONEWA’S DUPLEX ESTATE, she is preparing herself. She painfully tries to put on her dress, her mother sees her struggling and she helps her.
GRACE- what do you want to accomplish my only daughter?
– …. They tried to kill you, just as they did to my James, your father. He was a great man and he died before his time…
MONEWA- [interrupting] … mom please don’t start with your father nonsense, papa o be a fokola, legona sebaka se se telele. He died just as the Mighty wanted. Mama since Mafike came, threatened me and actually wanted to kill me, something inside me clicked [disappointed] I hated them, and I need to do as I shall, and in my power. They are going to be punished. I cannot shun them now, I need time then the whole village will know the whole truth, and peace will be once restored.
GRACE- What really are you trying to say Monewa?
MONEWA- That I am a changed person, Rakgolo o be a nketetše. I shall rule over my brothers with an iron fist.
GRACE- [staggered] What!? That man was cruel, and nobody dared to cross him, he could unleash your worst misery and fears. O go boditše goreng Monewa? …
[There is a door bell as it interrupts Monewa and her mother]
MONEWA- Come in it is open [she shouts]
[INT. Detective Biyela swiftly walks in with his notebook in hand. And Monewa walks down the stairs, detective felt slight tingle on his back, as if seeing her for the first time]
MONEWA- Detective I am glad you could make it, please let me fill you in [smiles]
DETECTIVE- Does it have something to do with your case [excited], have you finally reached your senses?
MONEWA- No! not really, I told you leave my brothers to me [happiness leaving his face]
DETECTIVE- You do know that I am a laughing stock of my station? Unable to solve a simple case. The prosecutor is even disappointed, what do you want!?
MONEWA- Oh feisty. Calm down detective, I need your assistance. And do not worry about the case, just stall the evidence and the suspects. I need you to accompany me to an important meeting, that is about to start in less than forty minutes.
DETECTIVE- Miss Monewa, I cannot just do as you request. I am a detective, I have actual work, I am not your bodyguard.
MONEWA- I am well aware Detective. You will be ushering me as a date.
DETECTIVE- [he laughs] You think I am going to parade with you, like I am some prized possession, o nnyatša bokanang kgane wena?
Monewa – I do not mean any disrespect to you detective. I just want you to take your dear time investigating this case. And once ke feditše ka baratho ba gešo, then you can proceed to pour the full might of the justice system.
DETECTIVE- You think I am a fool, justice does not depend on you. We have laws and there is no exemption, regardless whether you are royal or not. I am sorry I cannot play this charade with you.
MONEWA – [sighs] Well clearly detective you do not know my power of persuasion. I can either show you the mysteries of my culture, and bewitch you to come with me, or I can just politely ask, and you humbly accept?
[the detective was lost for words, he couldn’t call her a bluff, or either find out what she is capable of. He has heard stories of the Bathope tribe, and the royal clan of Modjadji.]
MODJATJI HOLDINGS INCORPORATED BOARD ROOM. There was whispering and concerned backchatting in the room, everyone was unsettled.
MAKGOTLA- Bana ba gešo, we need to convene the meeting [the sound of the gavel filling the air]. We all know why we are here. She is alive, and the Royal Guard is by her side.
MOKGETHI- [standing up] We must infiltrate our own guards at this point!
[Makgotla eyes him and he keeps quiet, and sits down]
MAKGOTLA- That is not advisable, she picked her own guards, who she trusts.
MALEFANE- Anyone we can turn to our side?
MAKGOTLA- Not at the moment. I believe that we must remain patient, my brothers.
MOLAHLEGI – Aowa! Iyo! [being dramatic] We cannot wait another year for this, and how do we know we will be able to get her, nna ke lapile go ema!
MOTLALEPULE – This is not about you Molahlegi.
MODISE – [interrupting] Ya wena Molahlegi, you think everything is about you, get over yourself.
MOLAHLEGI – Oh, even though we are half-brothers, I know you want me.
MODISE- What the fuck, what is your problem?
[everyone starts talking at the same time!]
[Makgotla is trying to get their attention by banging the gavel, but no one hears it]
ENTER, Monewa storms in! Suddenly everyone becomes quiet, starring at her. She swiftly walks in, ignoring her painful wounds, holding onto her posture. The detective stands still at the entry door, remaining sane. She walks over to Makgotla,
MONEWA- You are sitting in my seat, move! [without blinking]
[he moves over to where Molahlegi was sitting at the end of the oval table, Molahlegi wants to put on a fight, but Makgotla fiercely eyes him]
MONEWA- Are you sick losers here to discuss my funeral? Making any funeral arrangements? Did you think about my memorial service? Or maybe you guys are conversing my next attack, any ideas? [mocking]
[they remain silence and look at each other]
MONEWA- Mafike, you have nothing to say now? I have always known you as a coward, but I thought after shooting someone, o tla gola marete.
MAKGOTLA- Monewa, we were discussing a way forward, we were not sure what was your condition.
MONEWA- And none of you thought of coming to see what was my condition?
MAKGOTLA- You were heavily guarded, we were denied access.
MONEWA- So you say. I am back, and everything now is proper.
MAKGOTLA- The board thinks that you should take some time off and heal properly, an interim CEO will be appointed.
MONEWA- Let me guess, it is uncontested, and you are the first choice [cynically]
MAKGOTLA- You have been through a traumatic experience, we believe you are not in a full form to perform your executive duties. Take your time and recover, the company is in good hands. That is why most of us got our MBA’s.
MONEWA- Offer declined! I will work the company at home, and make regular visits.
MOLAHLEGI- [interrupting] You bitch! You know that’s not how things work.
MONEWA- You ignorant gay slut, I will do as I see fit. After all, I am the head of the family and head of this company.
MAKGOTLA- Everyone! Let us calm down. Re baratho after all. Re swanetše go ba kutwana e tee. Division will only cause the company harm. And the fact that you have brought an unknown person in the boardroom is not helping. Who is he [pointing at the direction of detective]
MONEWA- Just a friend, came to analyse the situation. A great advisor of mine.
MOLAHLEGI- I smell a cop. [flipping his imaginary hair]
MONEWA- Yes, he is a cop, but he is not here on cop business. He has ceased his investigation based on lack of evidence.
MAKGOTLA- What does this mean?
MONEWA- I do not remember who shot me, nor did I see him for that matter.
[they stare at each other]
MODISE- Is this a joke? Ga re mo go raloka!
MONEWA- Do I look like I am joking.
MAKALO – Eeh! [interrupting in a godly voice] Wena o tletše ka di tori. Ga ra tlela mo go tlo raloka le wena. Ga re bana mo, ngwana o a le go mo ke wena. Maitshwaro a gago a re swabiša.
MONEWA- Makalo, your authority only works at home, and to your children. Look at me carefully, I am not one of your little brats. Batho ba ba swabišago ke lena mo ka moka. Not honoring father and his wishes. Lena le nagana gore ge le fetša go mpolaya, go tlo diregang? How long do you think you will hold on to that chair?
MAKALO- Go lokile! Thabiša pelo ya gago. Mara, monna yo o swanetše go gata kosini. Ga a nyakege mo, ke tša lelapa tše [looking at the Detective’s direction]
MONEWA- You little brats still don’t understand the dynamics here. I am the head of this family, and you stupid men of Modjatji need to perceive me clearly…
MOLAHLEGI- Eh wena! Gape ga re tlo botša ke wena gore re direng!
[everyone starts talking at the same time]
ENTERS DRAMATICALLY, AN UNKNOWN MAN.
JAMES II- Every-body! [in a horse voice] Ge le te swere okare le ka lešakeng? A na le diphofoolo!
[everyone goes silence and stand at the same time at the sight of their uncle]
MONEWA- [down casted] Rangwane, what are you doing here?
JAMES II- I do not answer to you.
[she sits down, and everyone follows]
[James II signals his hand to Makgotla to get up the chair, and he quickly moves. He sits down facing Monewa head on]
JAMES II- Ge sefane sa gago e se Modjatji, re tswele ka motse!
[The detective quickly retreats, except for the bodyguards standing next to Monewa]
JAMES II- A lena ga la kwa? [looking at the bodyguards]
[Monewa signals their retreat, and they leave]
JAMES II- Monewa, are you alright? We heard of what happened on the news.
JAMES II- Ga o na mafoko? Re thabile ge o sa inama.
MONEWA- Death is not an option for me Uncle. Father did not agree.
JAMES II- Ke thabile go kwa seo, gore ngwanešo o kgethile go šireletša ngwana wa gagwe go manong. What happenend?
MONEWA- Burglary, ke lekile go lwa le yena, fela…
JAMES II- What? You launched at a burglar? Were you trying to kill yourself!
MONEWA- Adrenaline I guess. Why you here Uncle?
JAMES II- I thought you will still be hospitalised, re bile le lekgotla go rerišana ka seemo sa gago. We were scared that you might die. So we had to delegate about your succession.
MONEWA- Ga la senya nako?
JAMES II- You know that, lapa la Modjatji ga la swanela go dula le se na moemedi.
JAMES II- We talked for 12 hours straight.
JAMES II- [takes a breath] you know you have no kids, and even if you do. They will be separated one blood line from us. They will belong to another man. We never thought that your father will choose you. We were not prepared for this. We consulted years of wisdom, and the only conclusion is that…
MONEWA- …Ke eng Rangwane?
JAMES II- [sighs again] you have to marry your brother Makgotla!
ENTER. MONEWA’S DUPLEX ESTATE. She is on the sofa drinking whisky, her mother is sitting on the next couch, waiting for her to talk,
GRACE- Go diregileng?
GRACE- Ke eng Ngwanaka?
MONEWA- You brother-in-law is a pierce of something…
GRACE- Careful! [warning her to watch her words]
MONEWA- He says I must marry Makgotla, what a disgusting thing! Incest, imagine?
[Grace down cast her face]
MONEWA- Did you know about this? [looking at her]
[silence and shame]
MONEWA- Mom! What the hills is going on?
GRACE- Well it is not uncommon to have siblings marry.
MONEWA- Mom! Do you know the statistics of incest? Crazy and disabled children!
GRACE- This is not your high school science. This is Modjatji science. There are rituals for bypassing that.
MONEWA- [unable to contain herself] What did you say?
GRACE- Your father married his half sister as his first wife, and the other two are his cousins. I am the only one who is an outsider, I am the only one who’s blood connection is much further, though I am also a daughter of a Modjatji girl child.
[Monewa’s phone rings]
MONEWA- [biting her lip] Hey Detective. What do I owe this pleasure?
(BIYELA)- We never got to talk after the meeting. What happened?
(BIYELA)- You seemed angry, and hurt at the same time. Should I come over?
MONEWA- Ah [not knowing what to say], no it is late. Lets rest and convene tomorrow.
(BIYELA_- Good night [in a soothing voice]
[she hangs up]
[her mother is starring at her, with her mouth opened]
MONEWA- [looking at her] What?
GRACE- Nothing [she looks away]
[Monewa leaves for her bedroom]