Screen Shot 2016-02-23 at 5.44.37 AMArnold waited for the splashing, sloshing sounds to die down. His mother always fell asleep in the bath and he wanted to be confident she was out of it before he started. The Stilnox he had thrown into her glass of red box-wine had helped, and speeded it up.

He listened. Nothing except the rhythmic barking of Rex, locked outside and settling in to his single barked shout every two seconds. This would later be punctuated by the ‘shut the fuck up’ from Stan next door. The evening sounds of Queen Street.

Arnold turned on his computer. The light in his bedroom changed, swirling with the blues of start up. He typed in his password, wishing he had wiped his hands first; the Steers barbecue sauce he had smothered his chips with had made his fingers sticky and they spread over the letters, making his password wrong three times before finally getting it right. He went straight to his internet browser and straight to google.

He had everything ready. Slowly, he typed Russian Bride into the search box. The first one that came up was highlighted purple. That was the one he had been to before. Good. He clicked. Yes, that looked familiar. Now to find her.

The pictures of the sexy blonde girls had changed. “Your Russian Doll” wasn’t third from the left in the top row anymore. Arnold panicked. He had already made his choice. He didn’t want to have to start all over again. No, wait, there she was. He had just miscounted.

He clicked on her image. He remembered now. Belarus Beauty. Was Belarus even in Russia?, he thought. He read through her profile again. The funny feeling in his tummy started. It spread to his crotch and down his legs.

He clicked onto the order form. He remembered it too. He remembered where he had to type in everything. He only stopped once, to take his mother’s credit card out of his back pocket. He had to stand up to get it, and he almost knocked his Coke onto the keyboard. Imagine if that had happened, he thought.

He was ordering a whole person in the post. A mail order bride. How would she come? In a box? He typed in the credit card details, wondering what dollars would be in Rands. He was good at maths. It was quite a lot, he thought. But, was it too much for you, Belarus Beauty?

He came to his personal details. He knew that this was the one lie he would need to type. Instead of his real age, twelve, he typed twenty four. Double he thought. But not too much for you.

PS. This is the third tandem blog post in the series. 7 writers have all written on the same topic. To check out the next one, go to Ashley Visagie