Category Archives: Short Stories

Short Story: The Jasmine Tree

The rain had finally stopped.

She walked out of the house, closing the door behind her. She was careful, dragging it slowly so that the rusted hinge didn’t make a sound to announce her departure. She stood still for a few seconds, listening, making sure no one heard her leave. Once certain, she continued across the yard, slowly making her way to the edge of the cliff. When she got there, she  allowed herself to breathe in the cool air.  It was always crispy for a short while after it rained, a relief from its normal hot and sticky. She was free, even though it was just for a few moments.

She looked out at the sea below, in the fading light of early evening. When she first came to this house, her first glimpse of it gave her the one ray of hope from the darkness that her life had become. In the early morning it was a soft grey, waiting for the sun to wake from its slumber and illuminate it. During the day, in the height of Mombasa’s unbearable heat it was a bright blinding blue throwing shards of lights. It was difficult to look directly at it. When it was raining it turned an angry metallic grey. Right now, in the aftermath, it was a darker blue. By night fall it will be an inky black, deep and mysterious and a bit daunting. She loved how it changed colour at different times of the day.  In the distance the sun was in its final descent, almost touching the water; a liquid ball of orange fire. Birds dotted the sky, returning home from a hard day’s work. It was quiet now. In a few minutes the calls for prayer will signal the beginning of night.

She walked around the small garden, looking at her flowers. The viluas were ready to be picked.   She absently plucked a rose. But her favourite were the yasmini flowers. They were 5 bushes at the edge of the garden, next to the fence made of old mabatis. The green leaves were dotted by the white flowers. Their scent filled the whole garden.  I should pick them she thought. But she liked seeing them on the tree first, a reminder of their fragile beauty. If not plucked as soon as they opened, they started to die, turning brown at the edges. It was bitter-sweet; how beautiful they were and how short their lifespan.  Some were scattered on the ground, discarded and already turning brown. She felt like that sometimes. Then there were the young ones, not yet opened. They live to die another day. Her youngest daughter, Shadia liked picking them so she’ll call her later. But not now. She needed some time alone first.

She makes her way to the bench near the trees. She had asked her husband to put it up for her, after she was done planning the garden. It was the early years of their marriage and he was still eager to please her. It was nothing elaborate, just 2 pieces of wood erected on the ground and a board nailed on it. But it was enough to sit on and look at the ocean. And it had been a victory against her mother in law. May God rest her soul in peace.  She sat down and finally allowed herself to think of what had brought her here.

She had seen him today.

She had been in the market accompanied by Hamida, her house girl. She was examining the coconuts. You have to be careful when choosing them so that you don’t end up with one too young. Or an overly mature one. She shook it to make sure it was full of  juice then tapped it with a small stone listening for the hollow sound.  She then told Hamida to break it just to be certain. “Ikiwa ni mbaya ujue sikulipi”  she told the vendor. “Mama usijali, nazi zangu zote nzuri” he responded in the sing-song Mombasa accent. She looked around her absent-mindedly planning in her mind what she would make for dinner. Cassavas in coconut milk and fried fish. Or maybe some mahamri. She was lost in thought and at first didn’t notice him. He was standing at Mzee Abdallah’s gahwa stall, a small coffee cup in his hands. At first she didn’t recognize him. He was taller than she remembered. And she could see by the way the kanzu he was wearing fit him his skinny frame had filled out. But it was his stance that gave him away; slightly leaning on the leg he had broken as a child. His face was half turned away from her and she could see he had grown a beard. She almost turned away, thinking it was one of her false sightings. In the beginning she had looked out for him everywhere she walked. Those days her husband didn’t let her out of the house alone. He accompanied her everywhere. So she had been discreet about looking. But she had searched every face. It was torture, those days; His smile in someone else’s lips or someone with  exact shape of his eyes. But never the real person.

But just then he turned as if sensing that someone was watching him and there was no mistaking that face. Her breath caught and the gasp that came out was masked by the crack of the coconut breaking. Their gazes held. It must have been just a few seconds but it felt like hours. She stared at this man, almost a stranger, with the face of the boy she once knew. His eyes crunched as if puzzled, and then he looked away. He hadn’t recognized her. But how could he? She was one of the many buibui clad women moving in the market. Her face was hidden by her niqab, just revealing her kohl lined eyes. She could be anyone. And yet she couldn’t avoid that pang of disappointment that settled in her stomach. She doesn’t remember the rest of her shopping trip only that it felt like her heart was pounding in her mouth.

To be continued…

Short Story: Tear Drops From The Sun

She woke up with a start, feeling a bit disoriented, not sure what had woken her. She lay still for a moment listening to the sounds of the night. The drip-drip of  the bathroom tap that couldn’t tighten. Need to call a plumber about that, she thought. The branches of the mango tree tapping lightly against the window; it had kept her up many nights before she got used to it. The distant sound of cars in the highway a kilometre from the house. Next to her, she could hear her husband’s soft breathing . She turned and watched him using the street lights. Even in sleep, his face looked animated. She smiled wondering what he was dreaming. Her husband was always in motion. He couldn’t sit still for a minute, always talking, gesturing to emphasize on his speeding thoughts. It had fascinated her when they met.

They were in college and she had accompanied her room-mate to a party. She wasn’t much of a drinker and didn’t do well in crowds so she spent the first hour sitting in a corner watching people. She didn’t mind though, she loved observing.  He was passing near her when a drunk boy pushed him and he poured his drink on her. He apologized profusely while wiping it off her. It took him a while to realize he had been rubbing her bosom. He stopped abruptly as if burned and hit his leg on a chair. His painful swears made her giggle and the ice was broken. He  introduced himself. and they spent the rest of the night talking. About their classes, politics, social issues and everything they could think of under the sun. She had never had so much fun at a college party before. Later, she realized he hadn’t touched her the whole time. Not even to hold her hand. He was refreshingly different from the other boys she’d met. She got to her hostel at 9 the next morning and her roommate teased her mercilessly assuming she had done more.  But he didn’t call her, until a week later, and by then  she had convinced herself she had been mistaken and he wasn’t interested.  She reluctantly accepted his invitation for dinner. By their 3rd date she was in love.

As it always did, when she looked at him, her heart filled with warmth. She loved this man with an intensity that scared her sometimes. The only consolation was he loved her with equal fervour. If not more.  2 years dating and 3 years into the marriage and he still made her feel the same way he had those early days.  She sent a silent prayer of gratitude. She was lucky and she knew it. She touched her stomach and smiled again. She  now remembered what had woken her. Probably a kick from her little one.  “Hello little lady, are you alright,” she thought. It sometimes amazes  her how she talks to her unborn. Although she was only 5 months, it’s came naturally. To her she already had a face and personality. And she had decided it was a girl. Her husband thought she was a bit nuts.  But she didn’t mind. She was too happy to care about appearing crazy. And she knew he was happy too.

She frowned a bit when she remembered the past year. Her marriage had been tested to its limits. It was only because they had a strong foundation that they managed to get through. The lack of a child in her marriage had almost broken them. Her in-laws had launched a malicious campaign to drive her husband to marry another woman.  The first 2 yrs her husband was unmoved. They had both decided to put that on hold until they became more financially stable. He had just started his business and needed time to focus on that. But as soon as they thought he was well settled they  went on an all out war against her. She shuddered thinking of how the people she had accepted as her second family became spiteful strangers. And her husband ‘s strong will had started to crack.  She forced herself to stop thinking about that.  No point dredging up old hurts. That was all in the past. There was an uneasy truce now, with her in-laws, but she knew things will never be the same. But she had her husband and soon her child. That was enough for her.

Just as she was drifting off to sleep she felt a sharp pain on her lower abdomen. She sat up gasping. That was no kick.  Before she could even think of what it could be another one hit her,  harder. She doubled over and stuffed her fist in her mouth to stop from crying out loud. She was shaking uncontrollably, her heart racing furiously. She had never been so scared in her life. There was nothing for the next 15 mins and she started to relax a bit. She decided to get off the bed and go to the bathroom. Halfway there, she was hit by another one, that drove her to her knees. She squeezed her eyes shut, and willed herself not to make a sound. She managed to get to the bathroom and locked the door. She looked at herself in the mirror and her pale reflection stared at her wide-eyed. She didn’t want to think of what could be happening. It’s just a cramps, she tried to convince herself. She had read that they sometimes happened. Nothing much to it.  “Yes, just cram- ouch!” This time the cry came out before she could stop it. She listened out checking if her husband had heard. There was silence in the next room. She rubbed her belly, willing the pain to stop. If only it could stop, she will go to the doctor first thing in the morning and everything will be ok.

The next bout of pain drove her to the floor. That’s when she noticed the red stains. She hadn’t even felt the blood dripping down her thighs.  She was crying, tears rolling down her face. But she still didn’t make a sound. She willed this to be a nightmare. She willed herself to wake up and shake her husband and he would hold her tight and tell her it was alright. She had a few nightmares before about losing the baby. She willed that this was one of those. But the choking smell of the blood, and the now continuous throb of pain was too real. She clutched her stomach and thought of her little girl. She thought of her eyes, wide like hers.  Her tiny nose sort of like her father’s. Her head full of hair and her tiny fingers. Thought of her toothless smile melting her heart. She thought of the yellow dress she always envisioned her in. She thought of this person will never be. Her night-gown was soaked in blood now. She touched it and looked at her hands in wonder. This here was her baby. This is what her hopes and dreams were reduced to.

At the horizon of her mind she thought that she needs to wake her husband before she bled to death.  Maybe they can get to hospital and something could be done. But she couldn’t move. She was held in place by the enormity of what was happening. She knew it was too late. She had lost her baby. She sat clutching her stomach rocking back and forth screaming, voiceless, No, not my baby. Please don’t take away my baby. But the pain kept getting worse. Sharp contractions that felt like she was being sliced from inside. It took her a while to realize that her husband was pounding on the bathroom door, shouting her name. She could hear the panic in his voice. It was the amount of blood that finally jolted her. The bathroom floor was red. So much blood. She dragged herself to the door and opened it. His eyes widened at the sight of the blood. “What’s wrong,” he asked. She showed him her bloody hands, looking at them with a confused expression as if she’s just noticed them.  Something is wrong with my baby, she whispered with  a broken voice. Then everything went black.

She woke up staring at the bright lights of the hospital. Without looking she knew her husband was sitting next to her. Bracing herself she turned slowly and was met with pain and frustration in his  tear filled eyes.  By his side, she saw her mother in law. Her expression wrapped up the cruelty of the past year.  She looked again at her husband, questioning how they will get through this. His expression faltered. The pain that had been in her stomach slowly moved and filled the emptiness that was her heart.

The End

The Emancipation of Danny Boy

A Monologue

“Look at me! Look into these eyes Danny boy, these eyes that have seen you in every way! I have been in this house day in day out taking care of this family, while I let you go out there and live your dream. I have been a supportive wife, Danny, for 5 fucking years. Lord knows I have been a good wife. And now just because my ass isn’t tight anymore, and YOUR kids that I carried for 9 months have made my stomach a bit wobbly you think you can sit there and tell me that you think this isn’t working anymore?

What? Now you think you’re too good for me? Remember when I met you Danny boy? Remember how lost you were getting in all sorts of trouble with that group of riffraff you hang with? You were dead Danny boy. Dead with despair and hopelessness. An empty pool of bitterness and anger. Nobody loved you your whole life Danny. Nobody showed you that you were worth something until I came along. And I loved you from the first moment I lay my eyes on you. Even when you pretended to be a hard man Danny boy, I saw the sadness in your eyes. I saw the sweetness and the yearning that you tried to hide and I knew you needed me. And I have loved you with all your faults since then.

But now you think cos you wear them fancy clothes and go to fancy restaurants with those leeches you call your friends, who would cheat you and steal from you if you turned your back for a minute, then now I am beneath you? I got news for you Danny boy, you might have hidden behind the glitter and the shine, but I know you Danny boy. I know what you carry inside you. I know what you’re capable of. I seen in your soul and it’s a mirror of my own. So don’t you go thinking that just because the world now smiles at you that you are one of them. Me and you Danny boy, we two of a kind. We the only two people in the world who can understand us. So you can go to your fancy women, the whores who would suck a rabid dick for money, but remember this Danny, I made you who you are. Without me, you would never believe in what you could become. And I made sacrifices so that you can get ahead.

Remember, how talented I was. I brought tears in your eyes with my singing Danny boy. Remember the first time we saw each other? You said my voice was like an angel. You said that I soothed all the demons inside of you. And I would have made it too. But I gave all that up so that I could work to support us. And I didn’t mind. A good woman stands by her man.  So I worked hard, Danny boy 2 jobs, 3  sometimes so that we save enough money for you. I fed you and your kids so that you can be free of worries and build your business. How many times you lost our money, no MY money in one of your schemes? But I loved you Danny boy, and I stood by you and worked hard for you! But now your dream has come true you want to discard me like last week’s used condom? I won’t allow it Danny boy, NO WAY!!

What happened to us? Remember how we used to whisper at night? How we’d lay in each others arms after making love and make plans for our future. We said we would conquer the world, me and you and you said I was your Queen Danny boy, remember that? We can still have that can’t we Danny boy? Can’t we Danny? You still love me don’t you? I know underneath you still love me. You used to call me you good luck charm. I can still be that. Your white dove.

You hear that, Danny boy? DANNY! DANNY! DANNY BOY?”

Almost like she has woken up from a dream, she turns towards him and for the first time  notices the red around her. She vaguely wondered what it was.  Danny boy was sprawled on the bed, wearing his boxers. On his face was  a look of mocking amusement, almost like he was daring her. His abdomen was the defied the calmness on his face, a storm of flesh ribbons decorating the bed.

She looked at the bloody knife still clutched in her hands in puzzlement.  She doesn’t remember how it had gotten there.  She stared at it for a moment before sanity finally returned.

Light fades.

Wailing begins.

The Proposal: Part 3

The Proposal is a short story about a young  woman of about 21 yrs who’s about to have her life changed. This is the conclusion of the story. Read  Part 1 and Part 2.

Enjoy! 🙂

Before Salma could act, Nasra and a group of her friends came to join her. She lost the guy in the crowd. Next time she saw him he was with a group of boys. Her curiosity aroused, Salma kept him in her radar. A few times she caught him staring at her. Once he caught her and gave her a smile. About an hour later, Salma was coming out of the kitchen with a tray of glasses when she ran into him. Literally. “I’m so sorry,” she said. “I wasn’t looking where I was going.” ”It’s OK, I wasn’t looking either.” She looked up and saw it was the boy.

“Beautiful eyes,” she thought. “Deep pools of liquid honey. If I’m not careful, I could drown in there.”

“Even more stunning up close,” he thought. Her skin looks like satin. Wonder what she’ll do if I touch her.

A moment of awkward silence ensued as they stared at each other. “You,” he said. “You’ve been avoiding me”.  Salma realized that he was holding her arm. Lightning shooting from his fingers. She also noticed that the group around them was looking with interest. “Erm, I, I, have to go. They need the glasses,” she stammered looking at her arm. “Sorry,” he reluctantly let go. “Let me help you with that.”  “Thanks, I need to arrange them at the food table,” she smiled at him. Rays of sunshine.

“My name is Zahir,” he finally introduced himself as they worked. “Salma,” she answered.  “Do you live here, Salma?” He asked. She nodded.  “Oh, I live abroad. I’m visiting. I came to the party with my friend Steve,” he continued pointing at another boy at the dance floor. “I think you went to school with him; we were friends before I left the country. Do you know him?” “Yes,” she said. He frowned at her one word answers. He had hoped he could draw her into conversation. Maybe she’s not interested, he glumly thought. For the first time in his life, Zahir was unsure of himself.

For the first time in Salma’s life, words escaped her. She felt flustered and excited at the same time. This made her uncomfortable and she didn’t like it. She never lost control of herself. She needed to get away to compose herself. While she was thinking of a polite way to get away, Nasra joined them. “This is the best party ever! We throw a good party my Best Friend.” She enthused. She noticed Zahir and she gave her a curious look. Salma knew her friend well and inwardly sighed. She quickly said “This is Zahir, he was helping me arrange the glasses.” before Nasra said something that would embarrass her. It didn’t help. “I can see that” Nasra said looking pointedly at his hand on her arm. “How did that get there?” she wondered. In true Nasra fashion, she continued to interrogate him. In a way, Salma was glad; because she could get to know him without showing him she was interested. Zahir was slick though. In a few minutes she had them laughing. “Oh, this is Salma’s favourite song. Zahir, why don’t you dance with her?” Nasra said with a mischievous look. He didn’t need to be told twice.  “I’m gonna kill you, Nasra!” Salma whispered as they moved to the dance floor. Nasra laughed and moved on to another group.

At first she was nervous, but Nasra was right, she did like this song so she soon loosened up. Plus Zahir was a very good dancer. And she didn’t mind his arms around her at all! This was a new feeling for Salma and she was enjoying it. After the dance, Salma and Zahir spent the rest of the evening with a group of their friends, so they didn’t get much time to be alone. But Salma liked him. And from the number of times she caught him looking at her, and finding excuses to be close to her, she knew he felt the same. All too soon the party winded down and it was time for Salma to go home. They exchanged phone numbers and tentative plans to meet again. When she got home, he sent her a text saying that it had been a pleasure meeting her and he was looking forward to see her again. After a recap of the night with Nasra, Salma slept with a smile on her face.

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Salma’s mother noticed that there was something amiss with her daughter. But Salma reassured her she was fine so she put it down to anxiety at the prospect of meeting the boy. Salma was in a bad mood. She hadn’t met anyone who had affected her like Zahir had and it was all so unfair. For the first time, Salma questioned her culture and her parents’ wisdom.

While the guests and her parents ate, Salma stayed in her room on the pretext of baby sitting and kept herself busy by entertaining her nephews. The kids always managed to put her in a good mood and by the time her mother called her to serve dessert, she was feeling slightly better. She had also decided she was just going to tell her parents that she wasn’t interested in the boy. It was rare for a girl to reject her parents’ preferred choice, but it wasn’t completely unheard of. She knew her mother would be upset, but she hoped that they would understand. She would enlist her father’s help.

Salma carried the bowl of faluda and went to the sitting room where they had moved to after lunch.  “Asalam Aleikum,” she greeted. “Waaleikum Salam,” they answered. She saw her eldest brother and his wife and smiled at them.  She hadn’t looked around the room and she concentrated on serving the dessert in small bowls. “Salma, meet your Aunt Hamida and Uncle Swaleh,” her mother introduced as she served the dessert.  “And that’s their son,” Salma could hear the barely disguised excitement in her mother’s voice. She looked up and her gaze was met by a familiar pair of eyes. I’d know those eyes anywhere. The look of surprise in them mirrored hers. Her heart skipped a beat as she realized what happened. She started to smile. It’s Zahir! She thought happily. The gloom she had felt the whole day lifted. Zahir started to smile with pleasure before comprehension hit him suddenly it him. No, it can’t be her, he thought.

Salma’s was puzzling at Zahir’s sudden changed expression when she heard her mother say, “No, that’s Zahir, Aunt Hamida’s nephew. Her son, Ali is the one seated next to your brother.”  Salma felt her world spinning out of control from the roller coaster of emotion. She heard a crash as the bowl she was holding slipped from her hands. The tears she had been determined not to shed since morning felt dangerously close to falling. “Salma!” her mum gasped. “I’m sorry” she mumbled. “Let me get something to clean that.” She looked up and found Zahir looking at her miserably. She quickly left the room before she embarrassed herself and broke down.

The End

The Proposal: Part 2

Hey guys,

I am so sorry for the delay in posting the second part. I promise to be less erratic in future.

In case you just started, The Proposal is a short story about a young  woman of about 21 yrs who’s about to have her life changed. Part One is here. Enjoy! 🙂

Salma and her friend, Nasra had known each other since they were toddlers. Their fathers grew up together back in Mombasa and both moved to Nairobi when they got married. Unlike Salma, Nasra was an only child.  They grew up in each other’s houses and were inseparable, more like sisters than friends. After completing their high school education, Nasra’s parents decided that she should go to University at the school that her father went to in England.

The girls had spent months planning the farewell party. For the past few weeks, they had been a flurry of phone calls and text messages discussing decorations, caterers, music selections and most important whom to invite. Normally, Salma’s parents put a short leash on her social activities. Her parents were Muslims first and there were boundaries she wouldn’t dare cross. But of course they made an exception for Nasra’s party.

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Salma couldn’t believe she had forgotten which day it was. A few months ago, her mum’s childhood friend had called informing them they were in the country, staying in Mombasa and would like to come for a visit.  She was coming with her son who was a few years older than Salma. Salma remembered him from their previous visit but they hadn’t been in the country for about 10 years. Although it hadn’t been spoken, Salma knew what the purpose of the visit was. Her cousin had received the same kind of visit and they were now in the process of planning a wedding for her.  She hadn’t given it much thought because it had seem so far away and she had adopted her usual attitude of dealing with things as they come. and the excitement for the party had pushed it to the back of her mind.

Salma was unusually quiet and subdued that day. Her mother asked her if she was feeling unwell because she was used to her incessant chatter. “I just have a mild headache, Mama,” she replied. “You know I slept pretty late last night” “Ok, get yourself some painkillers. We want you at your best today.” She could see that her mum was very excited. But the last thing that Salma wanted today was to be her best. Her mind was filled with images of a boy with a twinkle in his eyes.

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The day of the party, Salma woke earlier than was her norm and went to her friend’s house. They spent the day putting finishing touches and getting ready. By 7pm the party was in full swing. Most of their high school friends and a few they had met in the Language college had come.  However, Salma was distracted. She was trying to enjoy the party but she could not stop thinking that her friend was leaving in a few days. She would be lonely without her friend. She couldn’t remember a time when she didn’t have her by her side sharing her life and secrets with. Also, now that her friend was leaving she wondered about her own future. She still wasn’t sure what she wanted to do.

So it was in this state of mind that Salma suddenly found that she was staring with unseeing eyes at someone. And by the amused look on his face, it seemed she had been staring for a long time. Salma quickly looked away. Despite having 4 brothers, Salma was quite shy around boys. Her experience was limited to group outings and a few stolen kisses behind the school cafeterias. Going out for dates was also one of the few things her parents didn’t allow. Besides, most boys her age were too scared of her brothers to make any move. She looked up again and found the guy was still looking at her. “”Who was he?” she wondered. He wasn’t one of their friends so he must have come with someone. She saw that the boy was approaching and quickly looked for something to keep her busy.

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By the time the guests arrived, Salma was in no mood to meet new people.  As much as Salma knew that her parents would never force her to get married, she could see that they hoped that she would accept this proposal. Her mother was old school and her biggest concern for her daughter was to find a nice man to settle with. She was constantly worried about her precious daughter being corrupted by what she called “the devil’s trap.” So she knew her mother would be disappointed if she rejected the proposal. She figured her best bet was to make sure the guy did not like her. So with the help of Nasra whom she had been chatting with the whole day came up with a plan.

What does Salma have in mind, who was the guy in the party? Find out next Wednesday for the conclusion of the Proposal.

The Proposal: Part 1

(Please check out the Short Stories tab for further details. Thanks)

She woke up with a smile on her face. A slow, lazy one spreading across her face transforming a pretty face into  a beautiful one. Before her body was fully aware that she was awake, her subconscious was reminding her that she had slept a happy girl. She turned lazily, while details of her smile started to filter into her mind. The smile grew wider.

“Salma!!” Her name on her mother’s tongue reverberated throughout the house. With a groan, she opened one eye. She had hoped she would be allowed a few moments to at least indulge in her memories. She heard her mother’s irritated voice getting closer and quickly jumped out of her bed. She doesn’t know what she’s done this time but she knows her mum well enough to know she should get out of bed before she gets to her room.

“I can’t believe this child. Subhanallah! She was brought into this world to test me! Dear Lord, what did I ever do to deserve this? Was I not a good daughter to my parents? Didn’t I follow the teachings of the Qur’an and pray my five salats? Have I not for 35 years been a good and dutiful wife to my husband? Why then was I given such a trial girl as my daughter?? God why?

Salma listened to the familiar tirade. She knows this speech. It always ended with her father being blamed for how she is because he spoils her. For as long as she could remember she was the bane of her mother’s existence. Salma was what you can call a retirement baby.  Her parents had raised 3 sons between the ages of 11 and 7 before she was born. They had given up on having a daughter so she was a pleasant surprise. Her father and brothers dotted on her and her mother was always complaining. But despite her constant complaining her mother loved her deeply. Salma has pretty much managed to always get her way.

Salma rushed into the bathroom before her mother got to her room. Singing happily she got about her morning rituals. She vaguely wondered what had set off her mother this morning. But at the top of her mind was the activities of the previous evening. Her best friend was leaving the country and so there had been a farewell party for her. The loud knock interrupted her thoughts. ” Salma, how could you sleep this late when you know what day it is? We still have so much to do in preparation for the guests. The biriani is already marinating but you haven’t done the dough for the tandoori and the chicken needs to be prepared….!”

Her mother’s voice faded into the background as Salma stood frozen her toothbrush held mid-air. She finally remembered what had her mother in a frenzy this morning. The good feeling she had the whole morning suddenly disappeared and was replaced by a cold sinking feeling at the pit of her stomach. Today was THE day!

 

Part 2