Love and Hate

  • 06 Mar - 12 Mar, 2021
  • Salaar Laghari
  • Fiction

It was like climbing a mountain, getting married to Martha. But I did it. I conquered this and felt as if there was a happy ending forever. But I was very wrong. A really bad, in fact the worst phase of my life was just about to begin. It was so dark that I had to pick up a hand gun.

Two Years Later

I should thank God. I am living a good life. My marriage with Martha lasted quite well and we have two kids. Our children are twins. A boy and a girl, I call them Martin and Julia.

The boy is my fan and the girl mostly likes to stay with her mother. We are living a comfortable life and nothing has really bothered us. I am sure there are people out there who envy our lifestyle, but I obviously wish them well.

Even though Rita is not quite happy with our marriage, she seldom drops by and pays visits on occasions like Christmas and Thanksgiving. I am sure she will be fine someday.

I am still doing that job that I started several two years back and I think I’m not asking for anything more.

My father is in Mexico and we are in touch through email. He is very happy to see me and we exchange pictures occasionally.

Martha, my wife, she seems to be the best person ever who happened to me. She understands me and she chooses to live with me even though her standard of living has dropped down a bit after getting married. She is someone who really deserves my love.

Carl and I meet every Thursday night and we spend time at the lake talking about life and different experiences of past.

Although, there’s one thing that has bothered me over these years and that is my Uncle Raymond’s disease. He has caught some disease that can eventually turn out to fatal, which is the only thing that keeps me worried.


One afternoon, while I was standing alone at the short garden of our house, Martha came from behind and asked nicely,

“What are you doing?”

I turned and looked at her as I got distracted from my thoughts. I smiled and said,

“Nothing, I’m just standing by myself. Thinking about our future.”


“Where are the kids?”

“They are sleeping.”

“Both of them?”


“Isn’t it past their…forget it.”

I avoided the question.

“They’ll be up soon.”


“So, what about you? What were you thinking?”

“Nothing important.”

“Anyways, I was just wondering what if we go for a tour.”

“A tour?”

“Yes, somewhere close.”

“All four of us?”

“No, not all of us.”

“Just us two?”


I chuckled and then asked,

“Any specific reason why?”

“Come on, now I have to give you a reason?”

“No,” I chuckled again, “I’m just asking.”

“Wow!” she taunted.

I laughed a bit and got romantic. I then said,

“Alright, we’ll go. Wherever you want… No questions, no objections.”

She smiled.

“I mean it,” I said.

“Thank you.”

“The kids, they need a proper baby sitter though.”

“Don’t worry about that.”

We talked a little more about that and then went back inside.


Few days later, Martin who was now ten months old learned how to sit; according to me he had learnt this quite late but I was happy about it anyway and I shot his video with our movie camera. I shot different videos of my son, and every time when Martha caught me doing this, she used to say,

“You also have a daughter.”

I used to make lame excuses whenever we talked about this but she always insisted that I should give them equal love.

“I love them both equally,” I used to lie to her.

But the truth was that I naturally liked my son better. It was not something deliberate, it just happened naturally. It made me realise why and how my father loved me so extra ordinarily.

Anyways, one day, I brought two tickets and showed them to Martha who was making lunch in the kitchen. She said looking at me,

“You’re home early today?”

“Yes, I want to show you these.”

She walked towards me looking at the tickets and asked,

“What are these?”

As she borrowed them from my hand, she looked at them carefully and uttered getting surprised,

“Oh, my God! You got the tickets.”


She got so excited that she almost hugged me but then she stopped and said,

“Oh sorry, my hands are full of gravy.”

I smiled and said,

“No problem, anyways call the baby sitter quickly.”


“We’re leaving day after tomorrow.”



Few days later, as the two of us were returning home from our trip, I received a call on my phone. I answered the call while we were seated on the taxi,


“Is this Bradley?” some woman asked from the hospital.

“Yes, who is it?”

“Your Uncle Raymond is getting really sick. He is in the ICU.”

“Oh, my God! Are you calling from the hospital?”

“Yes. You must come here someday.”

“Okay, I will. I will come tomorrow afternoon.”


The call got disconnected. Curious Martha asked me,

“What happened? Who was it?”

“My Uncle Raymond is getting very sick. His condition has probably worsened.”

“Oh, my God!”

“I know. I’m very worried now.”

“Does your father know about his disease?”

“I don’t know if he does or not. I never got to talk about this.”

“You know you should inform him already,” she suggested.

“I know. But I have to go and visit him tomorrow.”

“Yes, you must.”

“She told me that he is in the ICU.”

“Oh, God! That’s even more dangerous.”

“I know. Please don’t…”


“I’m just saying please don’t use such words.”

“Oh, okay.”

We kept silent until we got home.

Next day, I was walking inside the hospital and I was headed towards my Uncle’s room. I was following some nurse’ lead. I was quite worried but I had some hope.

As the nurse stopped outside the ICU room, she said to me,

“Your uncle is admitted inside this room.”

I looked at the room. She then said,

“You cannot go inside, but you can sit over here outside.”

“Is there any hope?” I asked. “Will he recover?”

She got silent and left without answering me.

Meanwhile at our house, Rita dropped by unannounced.

Martha opened the door and said getting delighted,

“Hi, Mom! What are you doing here?”

She entered inside and said,

“Why? Can’t I come over for any reason?”

“No, it’s not like that. I was just curious. Anyways, why don’t you have a seat?”

Martha rushed towards the kitchen to arrange something.

A minute later, while Rita was seated on the sofa, Martha came by holding a glass of water.

“Where are the kids?” Rita asked.

“They are here. I’ll bring them.”

“No, don’t.”

Martha stopped and looked at her mother. Rita continued,

“I’m just leaving.”

Rita stood up and then said,

“I just came here to tell you that I have received multiple death threats.

I have more enemies than you can imagine.”


“So, I’m just suggesting that you both must leave the city.”

“Don’t say like that. We will stand by your side.”

“No. Just think about your kids.”

Rita walked towards the exit and left the house.

Martha kept on thinking about what her mother just said.

Back at the hospital, I was called by some nurse from behind. She said to me,

“Mr Bradley, your uncle has recovered. But it seems something temporary.”


“Look, you have few minutes. He says that he really needs to talk to you.”

“Okay, but tell me please. Will he recover eventually?”

“I don’t know much about this stuff. But I do know from the expressions of other doctors, there is very little, in fact

no hope.”

This really hit me like a thunderbolt, but I managed to pull myself together and said to her,

“Alright, thank you.

I’ll talk to him.”

I then walked inside the room and saw that Uncle Raymond was lying with his eyes closed.

Should I talk to him? I talked to myself. Should I wake him up? Or maybe not.

I was getting different thoughts; I called him out with very little voice. He obviously didn’t hear me.

I was getting confused,

so I opened the door and almost left the room when I heard his voice,


I turned and looked at him. His eyes were open. He asked me to come closer with expressions of his eyes.

I went back in and slowly walked towards him.

“How are you feeling?”

“I’m better. But I don’t think I’ll live any longer. You have to understand something.”


“There’s something very very important that you must know. It won’t please you but you have to know this.”

“Okay, I’m listening.”

I walked even closer towards him. He hardly spoke feeling the pain in his body.

“This is something that I have kept as a secret. For years…”

Meanwhile, Martha who was at our house heard the door knocking. As she answered the door, she found Carl standing.

“Hi, Carl! What is it?” she asked.

“Martha, I have to share this terrible news with you.”

“Oh, my God! What is it?”

“This week, your mother has received more than ten death threats.”

“Oh, dear! This means she was speaking the truth.”


“My mother just came by. About half an hour ago.”

“Oh. So she told you?”

“Yes. She said that Brad and I must shift somewhere else because of this.”

“Exactly. That’s what I came here for. Look she’s a cop. A tough one. People like her do receive such threats.”

“But she’s my mother,” Martha argued, “How can I leave her alone? In this city?”

Back inside the hospital, while my uncle was having a cup of coffee as a medication,

I was standing with my arms folded.

I said to him,

“I understand that you are going through a lot of pain since you are ill. But this curiosity is also killing me. I would really appreciate if you would make it a little fast.”

“Brad my son, this will change your life. You will really dislike me after I tell you what I’m about to. So, it is better if I take my time.”

This increased my eagerness even more and it got me annoyed. I was losing my temper but I controlled it and started walking in the room.

Finally, he said,

“Alright, here’s the thing.”

I stood straight and paid complete attention to him.

He continued,

“This will really leave you shocked. But I have to reveal this truth before I leave this world.”

“Okay, now please make it quick. Please.”

“Your father is dead. He died a long time ago.”

“Oh. So she told you?”

to be continued...