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The following is based on a very real story.

On a particular day in 1975, as the sun shimmered in
the hazy Swazi morning, a beautiful baby girl was
born to two missionaries. Her name was Christine and
she had bright, blue eyes and fine pale hair. Christine
was the first white baby born in Mankayane and on
the day of her birth, the townspeople danced up to
her parents' house and presented her with gifts of
woven baskets and rugs, wooden utensils and bowls,
and fresh eggs. The people named her Lomaswazi,
meaning born among the Swazi.

Christine's parents, John and Sue, had come to
Swaziland five years prior in order to pursue their
calling to mission work. John primarily taught
mathematics and Anglo-Protestant ideals. Sue was
a nurse and taught the women how to sit while
wearing skirts and properly set the table for
company.

As Christine grew, her hair became curly and
she developed a charming if mischievous
gleam in her eye. She was quite precocious
and filled with imagination and exuberance.
Christine was known to chase the goats out
of the yard and yell at them in Swazi, for what
other language would a Swazi goat
understand? Christine was popular among
the townspeople and she always had many
surrogate grandmas and aunts to look after
her.

Perhaps none of her surrogate family was as
important to Christine as Grandma Mkhonta.
Throughout the years, a close bond grew
between these two. Christine proved an
enigma to her parents, however, who were
unable to appreciate her vivaciousness and
independence.

By the age of five, Christine had become an
adorable and pleasant young lady. It was also
during this same year that tragedy struck at
little Christine and her family. Shortly before
Christine's birth, her parents had received a
corgi puppy whom they named Vipee. Vipee
spent his days herding the animals and
playing with Christine. Christine loved Vipee
very much, as did the rest of the family. One
day a field hand named Dlamini labored while
Vipee romped nearby. The sun was hot and
bright that day, belaying the darkness of the
deeds to come. While his motives will never
be known, Dlamini took the sickle he had
been working with and viciously struck Vipee
with it several time until Vipee died, his life's
blood leeching into the soil.

Needless to say, Christine was devastated at
the loss of her faithful companion and
playmate. In her grief, Christine uttered words
against Dlamini which she knew she should
never utter. These words had been taught to

her by Mkhonta, who, fearing retribution, had kept her past as a traditional healer and magic user secret from the townspeople and missionaries. However, because of her close bond with Christine, Mkhonta felt comfortable sharing her knowledge of healing and magic with the girl, including the darker arts. Mkhonta was pleased to pass this tradition on to the intelligent sponge-like Christine, hoping that the knowledge would serve her well in life.

Dlamini did not show up for work the next morning. In fact, no one saw Dlamini alive after that tragic day. A week after his disappearance, one of the townspeople stumbled upon Dlamini's decomposing body. Apparently, Dlamini had been attacked and killed by wild dogs just outside of town, his body torn to pieces. The town of Mankayane took this savage dog attack as an ill omen and set watches for future attacks which never came.

Christine continued to grow and thrive, and before very long, it was time for her to leave Africa and attend a prestigious British boarding school. Fortunately, by all appearances, she had grown into a well adjusted young woman and did not bear any deep scars from certain early childhood events. Christine excelled in school and blossomed into a beautiful woman. By this time her hair had turned to a dark rust color, but her eyes remained blue, deep and bright. After completing all of her schooling, including significant graduate work, she began a career and, in time, fell in love. She is now a part of her own content family and she and her husband have a handsome four month old boy who bears a striking resemblance to her. Christine and her family live in tranquility and happiness together. However, to this day, no one has ever crossed Christine or her loved ones more than once.