“Yes, boss.”

“Give me the list.”

“Which one, sir?”

“Bring the three; I want to select the girl that would be nice for this Saturday morning. The one that slept here last night was too skinny. I was just touching bones all over her body. The bum wasn’t soft enough! You didn’t do your work well when you selected her.”

“Sorry, sir. We didn’t know that she padded her bum. She wasn’t as robust as we thought. It won’t happen again, boss.”

“What is padding?”

“She used some stuff to support her buttocks.”

“You see. You are not accessing them well. Next time, you must touch her bum very well to know if it is original or fake.” He demonstrated by pressing the cushion of the chair that he sat on.

“Oh, alright. Sorry, sir.”

“Sorry for your own mistakes. Fool. Bring me all the lists!”

Molefi dashed downstairs to get a printout of the list of ladies on the rosters. He printed from the Ladies Candidates’ Profile list(LCP), Concurrent Profile List(CPL) and the Recycled Profile List(RPL). He knew that he might be asked to get more printouts if he didn’t bring all the available profiles. He would not want to run up the stairs multiple times.

After collecting the sheets from the printer, he collated accordingly, stapled them and returned upstairs to Bandele’s room.

He presented the printouts, and after his boss had felt how bulky they’d become, he smiled.

“The ladies are increasing in number every day, huh?”

“Yes, boss.”

He returned them back to Molefi.

“Go through them one after the other.”

Molefi crouched in front of him and flipped through the pages of the LCP list.

“This must be the faces that I’ve not met before?”

“Yes, boss. This list is for those we recently profiled. We have even identified some new ladies you may like from the next street and the street after that.”

Smiling impishly, he remarked,

“Oh! We are expanding, huh?”

“Yes, boss.”

As Molefi opened each page, he briefed Bandele on the details of the profile, highlighting the exciting features of the lady. The pictures were there for him to see. Most profiles had a single picture, while others had more. When Pono did a thorough job, he included the Facebook and Instagram photographs of each girl. Otherwise, he relied on the shots taken by his lieutenants on the street.

Bandele would stare at the picture, concentrating on the face and the backside.

“Who is this one looking like Boity?”

“She is Innocentia. She recently moved into one of the flats on our street. She is a student at a college in Joburg CBD. She shares the flat with Ayanda Thulo. Must I go and fetch her?”

“Wait, let me see again.” He collected the booklet from Molefi and assessed carefully.

“Is this picture original? I don’t want those chicken wings like the one that came last night. I need drumsticks, fleshy and bouncy. But this one looks nice. Get her ready for dinner time tonight. Since she’s new, she must come and declare her loyalty to the lion.”

“Okay, boss.”

“What of the girl that was here two weeks ago. That one that was playful on the bed. Which of the lists contains her profile?”

Molefi picked up the CPL, dropping the previous one. After flipping through some pages, he got to the profile of the lady in question. He displayed it to Bandele to confirm.

“Yes, it is this one with gap-tooth. I want her here now! That girl is wonderful.”

“Okay boss. Any other one?”

“No. Those two are enough for today. We will continue tomorrow morning. Do we have enough wine in the fridge?”

“Yes, boss. Pono refilled it this morning.”

“Check my Viagra drawer. I hope it’s not empty?”

Molefi walked towards the chest in the room and checked the lower drawer. It was filled halfway with Viagra packs.

“The tablets are here, boss.”

“Okay, get me the girl fast!”

Molefi rushed downstairs again and dialled Pono. He described the lady Bandele wanted to see, and Pono recalled her immediately. She lived on the third floor of the block of flats. He went there and conveyed his boss’s message. After thirty minutes, she was ready to follow him to the Polemann Castle.

Henrietta walked majestically into Bandele’s room. The last time she was there she had fun with the most popular man in Orlando. The pretty lady flashed an inviting smile and Bandele couldn’t resist her looks. He was sure she was the one he asked for. He had a problem remembering people’s names; otherwise, he would have recalled her details right away. That was why he called every lady he invited a ‘Princess’.

“Welcome Princess, I’ve been expecting you all day.”

“Thank you. Now that I’m here, what can you do?”

Bandele smiled at the challenge. He had stocked his system with Viagra tablets. His bones were irking, and the muscles were set.

He looked at the lady over and over again. She was one of his favourites around: bulky cleavages, luscious fore-arms and invitingly red lips. Her cheek bones were bulging like half-cut oranges. She was dark, smooth-skinned and voluptuous. That bright morning, she wore a red gown that accentuated her mountainous backside. Bandele smacked his lips slowly and rolled his eyes.

As he watched, she took a few steps towards the wardrobe, wriggled her waist here and there to his delight. As if that wasn’t enough to tickle him, she took a turn towards the wall and clutched to the air, as if she hung to an imaginary pole.

Bandele could no longer wait to lay his hands on her. She wasn’t the sort of lady to lift off the ground, otherwise one could end up in a hospital. Her voluptuous structure was so big that it should be suitable to be used as a museum artefact.

Bandele got off the bed, dropped the towel he had around his waist and walked towards Henrietta. Since she liked to play around the room, he would give her a lesson or two in foreplay tactics. He touched her nose, stroked her hair and kissed her cheekbones. The lady giggled loudly. She appeared to be enjoying the playing game.

He noticed a bulge between his legs as his third leg puffed-up.

“You can make a man run mad, this lady.”

“Would you blame me for being so beautiful?”

“No, no, no. I can’t blame you at all. As long as I live on this street, you will always be on my list.”

“No one can be on your list forever, we all know that. The Lion doesn’t date for long. He changes his girls frequently.”

Chuckling at the compliment, Bandele blurted, “This is not the time to argue. We have an appointment on the bed.”

He walked towards the door, banged it hard, turned the key, and confirmed it locked. He dragged her gently to the bed and jumped into it.  They were there for two hours smooching and moaning.

When they were done, Bandele dipped his hand into the bale of hundred Rand notes in his wardrobe and handed over an unspecified amount to her. She smiled happily and left the building.

Later that evening, he welcomed the other lady earlier selected for dinner time. She was with him until the wee hours of Sunday morning.

That didn’t stop him from inviting another pair for Sunday. He called Molefi to his room for another selection session. For the weekend, he hosted five ladies in all.

It wasn’t uncommon for Bandele to spend his weekends in that manner: inviting girls at will to attend to his insatiable libido.

Molefi and others sometimes wondered if he never got tired. They later concluded that it was likely that he wasn’t bedding them all. Maybe he just wanted companionship.

The list kept on increasing. There was no weekend that he was unaccompanied; two, three or four, but never one. A lady must be specially gifted for her to be considered worthy of being with him for 24 hours.

Sometimes he invited two at the same time. How he sorted them out was best left to him. When he felt that many of them had been recycled, he would ask for a hunting rove — it would be time to survey the area for new and yet to be captured ‘antelopes’.

One Friday evening, Bandele was on a roving expedition to add new girls to his LCP list. He and his guys were out of the house for a drink at a nearby club. That day, they didn’t want to go very far away from the house. As he drove through the street, many of the ladies remained indoors. Since they knew he usually left his house between 5:30 PM and 7:30 PM, they had learned to avoid him by staying away during those hours.

The club they were to visit was some few streets away. As they moved on, police vehicles were patrolling around. They exchanged greetings with Bandele.

“The Polemann Lion!”

“Well done, gentlemen,” he responded.

The policemen drove away, chatting excitedly.

Soon after, Pius the drunk, a very popular street ragamuffin saw Bandele and wanted a bottle of beer from him.

Pius waved at the car and they slowed down to talk to the fellow.

“Bandele de Sergeant,” he shouted, referring to his dad’s popular title.

“I want a drink, and I know that it is guaranteed since you are here.”

While listening to Pius, he sighted two ladies walking by the roadside. He asked Molefi to give the thanked-up guy fifty rands. He was looking at something interesting in front.

As his car approached the ladies from behind, he asked the driver to match the brake.

“Hello ladies,”

“Hello Papa,” the older one replied. She was Margaret and lived in the area.

“Are you going far?”

“No, not at all, we live nearby,” she said pointing to the street next to Bandele’s.

“Would you want me to drop you off at your place?”

“Oh! Thank you, nice of you, but we are not going far. We prefer to walk.”

Bandele expressed shock at the lady’s reply. He shuddered and looked around in the car. The boys, who had been looking away until that time, suddenly focused on the ladies and acknowledged that they were not familiar. Perhaps they were new in the area.

“Do you know me at all?” Bandele asked. The question made the older lady step back a bit to reassess the vehicle and the owner. She’d seen the white SUV drive around a couple of times, but couldn’t recognise the owner. She admitted that much.

“I don’t think so.”

“Are you new in this area?”

“Not at all. I’ve been here for many years, but why these questions? Please, we have to go home now.” The lady signalled to her colleague to move on. They crossed the road and walked along the pavement.

After they had crossed the road, Margaret looked back again, wondering why the SUV owner had been arrogant in the manner that he spoke to them. She cautioned her niece to be careful how she behaved in Soweto. Men in the area could be brash. An example of that was what she just witnessed, and Orlando was one of the more dangerous areas.

A young girl of about seventeen, who had been watching while they were talking with Bandele, walked towards them to ask how they managed to stroll away unthreatened from Bandele.

“I didn’t know that he was Bandele of Polemann Castle. I’ve heard about him but have not met him in person. Unlike the stories we hear, he doesn’t look like a wicked man to me. I walked away because he was arrogant and I have no business with him. He offered to take us home, but it wasn’t necessary.”

“You had better beware. I’ll advise you to take cover for some time until he forgets about it. He is likely to come for you or this lady beside you.”

“I’m too old for such games,” Margaret said, “And my niece is still too new in the area to be attracted to any man. She has been here for just one week. Besides, she’s married.”

“Bandele doesn’t care about your marital status. Once he is interested in you, he comes chasing after you with those human dogs he moves around with. Beware!”

The girl left and returned to her house.

Margaret thought for a while and wondered why she got the stern warning. She’d lived in the area for many years since she arrived from Mamelodi and had heard of many funny experiences that people went through in Soweto. She’d however not faced any unpleasant incident, neither had her two kids.

Her concern was for her niece, Sheline, who arrived in Soweto the previous week. She’d come to study at the University of Johannesburg, UJ, and would stay with her for the duration of her degree program.