فصل 12

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فصل 12

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  • زمان مطالعه 4 دقیقه
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متن انگلیسی فصل

Chapter twelve

At Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors

While Mma Ramotswe was blackmailing Dr Oswald Ranta - for good reasons, of course - Mr JLB Matekoni took his two foster children to the garage for the afternoon.

The girl, Motholeli, wanted to see him work, and he had agreed. A garage was not a good place for children, with all those heavy tools and machines. But he could ask one of the assistants to look after them while he was working. A visit to the garage might make the boy more interested in mechanical work.

He parked in front of his office door and the boy ran off immediately. Mr JLB Matekoni had to call him back.

‘This place is dangerous,’ he warned. ‘You must stay with one of the boys over there.’

He called over the younger assistant. ‘Stop what you are doing and watch these two while I am working. Make sure they don’t get hurt.’

The assistant smiled at the children. He seemed happy with his new job. ‘He’s the lazy one,’ thought Mr JLB Matekoni.

The garage was busy. A football team’s bus needed work. With the help of the other assistant, Mr JLB Matekoni took the engine out of the bus. Motholeli watched them carefully from her wheelchair. Her brother looked once, and then looked away. He began to draw pictures in a pool of oil on the ground.

When Mr JLB Matekoni paused in his work, Motholeli asked, ‘What is happening now, Rra? Are you going to change those rings? Are they important?’

Mr JLB Matekoni looked at the boy. ‘Do you see what I am doing, Puso?’

The boy smiled weakly.

‘He is drawing a picture of a house in the oil,’ said the younger assistant.

‘May I come closer?’ asked the girl. ‘I will not get in the way.’

Mr JLB Matekoni agreed, and she pushed her wheelchair closer. He showed her the part of the engine that he was working on.

‘You hold this for me,’ he said, and she held the tool he gave her.

‘Good. Now turn it. Not too much. Good.’

He put the tool back in the toolbox and looked at her. Her eyes were bright with interest. He could see that she loved engines. His younger assistant did not, and that was why he would never be a good mechanic. But this girl, this strange, serious girl, could become a good mechanic. He had never seen a girl become a mechanic, but why not? People thought detectives were always men, but look at Mma Ramotswe.

Motholeli looked at him politely.

‘You are not cross with me, Rra?’ she said. ‘I am not annoying you?’

He put his hand gently on her arm.

‘Of course I am not cross,’ he said. ‘I am proud. I am proud that I have a daughter who will be a great mechanic. Is that what you want?’

‘Yes, I have always loved engines,’ she said. ‘But I have never had the chance to do anything.’

‘That will change now,’ said Mr JLB Matekoni. ‘You can come with me on Saturday mornings and help me here. Would you like that? We can make a special work place for you - a low one, so you can sit in your chair and work.’

‘You are very kind, Rra,’ she said.

When they had finally put the engine back, Motholeli smiled. ‘That bus is happy now,’ she said.

Mr JLB Matekoni looked at her proudly. He was no longer worried about the future of Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors.

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