• 02 May - 08 May, 2020
  • Salaar Laghari
  • Fiction

Few Weeks Later

One afternoon, Rizwan returned home before his usual time. He was a bit curious as he saw that the house was empty. He called out, “Omama!”

His wife Alia came out from the room and said,

“Oh, you’re back!”

“Where is Omama?” he asked kind of sternly.

“She’s not back yet. It is kind of late though.”

“Exactly, where is my daughter. She should be back home by now.”

“It wouldn’t hurt you, if you would show the same concern for your son, Rahman.”

“He is a boy. He is strong and brave. I’m worried about Omama because…”

He went silent and didn’t speak any further. Although,

Alia asked him,

“Because, tell me what is it?”

“Just forget it, can you call their school to find out where

the kids are?”

That very moment, they heard their phone ringing. Rizwan rushed to answer the call. He picked up the phone and answered,


He heard his son’s desperate voice,

“Dad, Omama got injured. Her head was bleeding.”

“Oh, God!” Rizwan said shutting his eyes. “Where are you two? Just tell me, where are you?”

“We’re at the hospital near our school.”

“Alright, I’m coming.”

Rizwan without even hanging up the phone said,

“I knew, this would happen

one day.”

His wife asked getting impatient,

“What happened? Are the kids okay?”

“No, the kids are not okay,” Rizwan said angrily.

One hour later, the entire family was standing by Omama, who was lying on the hospital’s bed with a bandage wrapped around her forehead. Alia said to her daughter,

“How many times have I told you to not descend down the stairs in speed? Now, you can see what has happened.”

“I’m sorry, Mom!” Omama said.

Rizwan separated from his family and said to himself while walking,

I think, the bad time on my daughter has begun. I better do something about it.

He turned and saw his son, Rahman really depressed. Rizwan went to him and separated him from the group.

Next moment, both the father and son were walking outside, in the hospital’s corridor. Rizwan said to his son,

“Rahman, I am very proud of you. You were so brave. You did the right thing at the right time. You were really so brave.”

“No Dad, I was so afraid. The way I saw Omama crying, I felt so worried. No one was even helping me out. Not even the teachers.”

“Don’t worry about that. Everything is under control, you saved the day.”

Few hours later, the family was in the same room. Omama was sleeping and the others were sitting on the sofas of the room. Rizwan stood up and said to Alia,

“We need to talk, come outside.”

As the two of them were standing outside, Rizwan said to her,

“Today, I’m going to tell you everything about my past.”

“Okay,” she answered with anxiousness in her eyes.

For half an hour, Rizwan kept on talking. He told her everything about his past with Hannan and his other family members. After he was done, his wife was left quite shocked and the first thing she asked was,

“Why have you been hiding this from me?”

“I was afraid, you wouldn’t really marry me if I would have told you about our daughter.

I always knew that her life would be filled with pain and torment. It was my father’s prophecy,

I can’t deny it.”

“Well, I guess, I now know why you were always so worried about her.”

“Yes, even though she is elder than Rahman, I treat her as if she is younger.”

“Well, what were the other prophecies,” Alia asked.

Rizwan couldn’t pay attention to what she was saying as he was looking at the doctors on the other side. Alia asked again,

“Rizwan, what are the other prophecies?”

“Well uh, the other prophecies are not any better. I have them on a diary, I’ll tell you.”

As there was a silence between them, Alia asked raising her voice,

“So, what are you thinking ahead?”

“What do you mean?”

“I’m asking that what have you decided about Omama. Are we going to get her education completed?”

“Well, here’s the thing. I am thinking that we should get her private education.”

“Okay, that’s not a bad idea.”

“But more importantly, we must get her…” he stopped speaking as he was reluctant.

“Get her what?”

“I think, we should get her married.”

“Married? Really?”

“I’m sorry, but I don’t see any other option. Do you have a better suggestion?”

“Why can’t we keep her at our own place?” Alia asked.

“Because one of my father’s prophecies was that this mischief is going to last really long. He defined it as a dark period. If we’ll keep her at our own place, she will be in trouble. But as long as my brother and others do not know about where she is, she might not be harmed.”

“I see,” she responded.

“So, are you with me? On getting her married.”

“I guess, but what if she doesn’t like it. She is too young to run

a family.”

“Don’t worry, I have a close friend. I know his son would be good for her.”

“Oh, okay!” Alia replied feeling very upset.

Meanwhile on other side of the city, Hannan was seated in his apartment’s terrace. He was having coffee as usual. He heard someone approaching towards him. He turned and saw his wife Naila standing behind him. She asked him,

“Aren’t you applying for any job here?”

“Naila, this is not what I came here for. We have enough money to survive a few weeks.”

“Why do you include us in these trials? You are the one who want to stay hungry, homeless and even hopeless, but every time it is us. We are the ones who suffer because of you.”

“This is so wrong,” he replied feeling upset. “I just can’t believe you think so little of me.”

“You give me no other option. You are a poor and unsuccessful man, our son, Jafar is involved in bad activities. You know very well about him.”

Hannan stood up and said to her,

“Listen to me please, we are not discussing Jafar right now. I told you before that we are going to live here as middle class citizens.”

“Middle class? You call this lifestyle, middle class!”

“Alright fine, lower middle class but the point is that I had clarified this initially. I told you guys that we won’t be living a luxurious life in this city.”

“Then, why did you force us? Why did you ask us to hop along with you?”

“What do you mean by that?” Hannan responded. “You are my family. You’ll go,

where I go.”

“And may I ask, who made this stupid law?” she asked sarcastically.

Hannan felt kind of angry

and said,

“You need to calm yourself down, or else you might see

a dangerous side of mine.”

“Oh, so it is true that you betrayed your own family.”

Hannan expressed a rage of anger that he kicked the chair on which he was sitting.

Naila was terrified and thought of slowing down a bit. She moved back and said, “We’ll talk on this later. But, I cannot tolerate this lifestyle.”

She walked away leaving her husband alone.

One Week Later

There was a small ceremony at Rizwan’s house. Only families of Khattab and Uncle Taha were invited. It was a marriage ceremony of Omama, with her second cousin Zakariya. The ceremony was quite a dull one as there was no music or any kind of special food.

Although, Rizwan and his wife were happy that they were getting their daughter married. Rahman was not quite happy about it as he was seeing the sadness in his sister’s eyes.

Mr Taha came closer towards Rizwan and said,

“You did the right thing, Rizwan.”

“I hope so,” Rizwan responded with respect.

“By the way, have you shared all the prophecies with your family?”

“Not with the entire family, just Alia. We are not sharing these with the kids.”

“I see! Well, that’s understandable.”

Mr Taha heard his cell phone ringing. He took it out from his pocket and excused Rizwan for attending the call. It was a call from an unknown number, he answered it,


“Hello Uncle Taha, how are you?” Hannan said from other side.

“Who am I speaking to?”

Due to weak signals, the call got disconnected. Mr Taha felt quite curious about it for a while, but then ignored it.

Rahman saw that his father was standing alone, he went to him and asked,

“Can we talk about it?”

“Not now,” Rizwan answered.

“I told you not to schedule this wedding too soon. You have no idea, how upset Omama is.”

“I said, not now. We are not talking on this any more.”

“But, have you considered the fact that how it will traumatise Omama for the rest of her life?”

“It won’t,” Rizwan said confidently. “Trust me, staying single would have been worse for her.”

“Worse? How?” Rahman asked getting eager.

“We can have this conversation later, at home.”

Rizwan walked away from him, in order to maintain the decorum of the ceremony.


Next morning, while Rizwan was sleeping, he woke up as he heard his cell phone ringing. He sat up and answered the call.


“Is this Tariq Yasar’s son?”

“Yes, this is me.”

“You have to come to the police station.”

Rizwan was a bit worried now, so he asked,

“Is everything okay?”

“Well, you’re not in trouble, but there’s a criminal who was about to crush you father’s grave.”

Rizwan’s eyes opened out for a second. He felt a bit furious and stood up. He said in a stern tone,

“Give me the address!”

While, Rizwan had gone and wasn’t in the house, his son, Rahman saw that his mother was reading a book in the guest room. He felt curious, seeing this unusual behaviour and asked her after stepping inside,

“What are you reading?”

His mother acted even stranger as she stood up. She was acting as if she was hiding what she was holding.

“What is it mother?”

“Nothing, just go.”

Rahman saw a folded paper falling down from the book. He said to his mother,

“Alright, I’m leaving.

But, can I touch your feet first?”

“Okay, do it quickly.”

Rahman walked towards her and sat down, instead of touching her feet; he picked up the folded paper and within seconds put it in his pocket. He stood up and left the room immediately.

While, he was outside the room, he said,

“Whatever she is hiding, there must be some clue about it in this paper.”

He unfolded the paper after taking it out of his pocket. Seeing its condition, he commented,

Oh, dear goodness! It must be a hundred years old.

He found a list of prophecies, written on the paper and read them all one by one.

• A dark period will come to this family.

• Our father’s grave would be crushed.

• My daughter will see a lot of pain and torment in her life.

• A two-faced person will illegally capture the land that belonged to us once.

• The first phase of the mischief would be different than the last phase.

• A liar will see several owls in a single night.

Oh, my God! he was shocked as never before. So, this is why my father is so much worried about everything.

Meanwhile at the police station, Rizwan was taken inside the lock up cell by the SHO. He showed him the prisoner. The prisoner was an old man who was quite injured from the face.

The SHO said,

“This guy was found that night. He was trying to crush the gave.”

Rizwan walked towards him to have a clear look at his face. SHO continued,

“He mentions one name only. I guess, it is the name of the guy who ordered him to commit this crime.”

“What name does he mention?” Rizwan asked impatiently.“He’ll tell you, ask him.” Rizwan looked at him and asked him raising his voice,

“Who sent you to do this?”

to be continued...