Sunday 21 April 2019

Flaming Home! (Episode Twelve)

Najwa’s Point of View
The Rescue/Revelations
“Anas? Anas?” I stare at him as his eyes flutters. My throat is parched and words can hardly come out of my mouth. I swallow hard as I watch Anas roll on the floor. Dried red-thick blood stains his milk-coloured shirt and his hair looks disheveled.

Anas’s eyes finally open and they widen in shock. It takes seconds for him to realize how he got here and what had led to his loss of consciousness. I could see his face twitch into a frown as he remembers how Barakah had hit him on the head…blood dripping down his shirt as he falls to the ground.

Anas tries to move his arm but is then he realizes that his hands and legs have been tied. He raises his eyes and stares at me gloomily, his eyes moistening in tears. “I’m sorry, Najwa. I couldn’t save you…I could have prevented this from occurring. It is all my fault.” Anas says as tears are streaking down his face.

“No Anas…you’re not at fault…I shouldn’t have trusted her…I thought she was my best friend. Where is Sahadat?” I ask with a husky throat.

How did I just realize that my daughter has to be safe…that I haven’t seen her…that she has to be fine…?

“Sahadat is with Yasmin. She is safe.”

I sigh deeply as I watch Anas gaze at me with sympathetic eyes. I’ve never seen him cry…not till now. I haven’t realized how much he loves till this moment…we’re together…locked in a room, not knowing what would happen next…if our love story would be another version of Romeo and Juliet or if we would scale through this and live happily ever after with our daughter…and probably have more children…

I wish life could return to the way it used to be when we newly got married…when our love was still strong and unbreakable…and we adored each other despite our individual differences and imperfections.

“You look sick and pale my love…”

“I was poisoned. Barakah says that it will be a matter of days. My stomach sting and I feel pain all over me. I haven’t eaten food or tasted water in days. I can’t make it out of here… I will eventually die, Anas. You shouldn’t have come here. Why do you have to be a part of my calamity?” I cry in pains as I watch the man I vowed to spend the rest of my life with. Despite our current state, he still looks handsome and breathtaking; dark, smooth-tawny skin, captivating eyes, soft small lips, and black wavy hair. Oh no Najwa, you’ve been wrong all these while. You truly love your husband…you love him with all of your heart and he loves you too. He risked his life to save you! Now, you’ll end up leaving this world without professing your love for him.

“Don’t say that again. We will both leave here alive. We will raise Sahadat until she leaves for her husband’s house. We will have Mustapha, Aisha, and Farouk. We will raise them in the right way and be the best of parents to them. We will be together till our old age and watch as our hair turns from black to streaks of silver. I love you, Najwa. I love you more than you can ever imagine and I won’t trade it for anything else.”

“I love you too, Anas…”

“Whoa! Whoa! Whoa! You guys still have time for all these…you’re professing your love for each other when you should be muttering your last prayers? Ooh, what a lovely couple…all tied up in a dark room. Why don’t you kiss yourselves? You can’t? Such a pity! Your hands are tied.” Barakah roars in laughter as she paces around the room.

She must have probably gotten here some few minutes ago, eavesdropping and mocking Anas while he reassured me that we will leave here alive.

“What do they call you guys again? The most loving couple, dream couple and blah blah blah? I wish the world can see how their most cherished couple looks now.”

“What do you want from us? Why don’t you leave us alone? We have never hurt you in any way. Why did you decide to pay good with evil? Najwa trusted you and cared for you like a sister, but is this how you’ll repay her kind virtue?” Anas glared at her in disbelief.

“I’ve hated Najwa from the first day I set my eyes on her. I wondered how we even became friends. The first day she resumed work at XYZ and I walked into her office to welcome her into our organization, Najwa stared at me repugnantly and haughtily from head to toe like I was a piece of shit and guess what she said? That she would teach me how to appear fashionable instead of looking shabby. Soon, she rose to a top position, and I got there before her…I’ve been at XYZ two years before Najwa arrived!” Barakah chokes in tears and she cleans her face with the hem of her blouse, struggling to regain her composure. “Suddenly, Najwa started to visit my office to have a little chat and invite me over for lunch. She wanted us to be friends but I never considered her as one. She talked about how much she despised you and wished that you were dead. She told me the truth…that all she said in her show and on her Instagram page were all false. She said she hated you and regretted getting married to you. She made me hate you without even meeting you…and the first day I set eyes on you…all I could see was love. You were the perfect man I wanted to get married to. I knew she hated you but I love you and I wanted us to be together. I become closer to Najwa so that I could spend more time with you. I would stare at you while you talk in the car…the movement of your small lips and the glimmer in your eyes. I fell deeply in love with you, Anas. I would spend sleepless nights staring at your picture and dreaming of you lying beside me, pulling locks of hair beside my ear and staring at me with lustful eyes. Najwa became more popular and famous. The higher she rose, the more I despised her and wished for her downfall. I devised a plan…I made Najwa hate you the more…especially when I realized that she still loves you. I poisoned her mind over Mutmahinat and encouraged her to find ways of dealing with her and teaching her a lesson. I created the perfect plan on how to take over her family and job. I framed her so that she could get suspended, and in turn, get fired from work. I had planned on killing her when she surprisingly appeared by my doorstep. It made the plan easier. I poisoned her with the plan that I get married to you while she dies.

I didn’t expect you to be here, Anas. I believed you when you confessed your love for me today. I was the happiest woman on earth because it was what I’ve always wanted. But I noticed a foul play when you were holding my foot mat. I knew you were on a mission when the key hidden there got missing. I pretended to be asleep when you broke into my home to rescue your so-called wife. Now, I have the two of you, captured like goats waiting to be slaughtered!” She chuckles and rolls her eyes, staring at us with a perpetually disdainful expression.

“Please Barakah, just let him go. You can kill me but please, let Anas go. You can get married to him and take my position at work. Please, release Anas because he isn’t a part of this. This is all my fault.” I cry disconsolately as I watch Barakah raise her eyes in surprise.

“You love him that much?”

“No! Kill me and let her go. Nothing bad must happen to Najwa. You mustn’t harm her. I will never get married to a murderer like you!” Anas screams incandescently.

“No. This is all my fault. I was the one that trusted her…you had warned me several times. This is a cross I have to bear alone. Please take good care of Sahadat…”

“What is wrong with you two? I haven’t decided what to do with you. You can’t impose on me who to kill and who not to. By the way, you only have a few days to spend on earth, Najwa. I’ll figure out what to do with him later.” Barakah scoffs impassively as she leaves the room.

The room falls silent and I am numb with horror as we hear the sound of her feet marching away. Soon, the sound dies down and I blink in pain, wondering why Anas has decided to risk his life for me.

Petrified, I try to yelp in pain and frustration but what comes out are breaths of dry air. My stomach rumbles loudly and I weep, knowing fully well that the end has come and I will never leave here alive…I will never live to correct my mistakes and see my daughter again.

The sound of a chuckle makes me swivel around incredulously. To my utter surprise, Anas is grinning widely. My mind is a whirl of confusion. Just a minute ago, he was pleading that Barakah takes his life instead of mine. Now, he is smiling broadly and watching me with a look of triumph.

What is wrong with me? Have I started to hallucinate? Why will Anas be smiling when our lives are at risk? Or is he a part of the plan? Maybe he works with Barakah…they plan on killing me?

“Don’t be frightened, my love. I am fine and we are fine.” Anas says reassuringly.


“Can you reach into my pocket? Try your best…” he is saying as he drags himself closer to where I am. “You’ll see a pocket knife. Bring it out and cut the rope off my tied hands.”

Blinking rapidly and swallowing hard, I quell a shudder as I try my best to reach into his pocket despite my tied hands. My brain reeling, I bring the pocket knife and start to struggle with the rope, watching as Anas gaze at me with a look of encouragement.

Within minutes, I am done with the rope and Anas cuts mine in return. He pulls me into a tight hug as our hands have been released. Anas pulls away and thrust his hand into his pocket. To my utter amazement, he brings out a small phone.

“Where has this been?”

“I hid it in my knicker. Barakah broke the wrong phone. I will call the Police. Barakah will be arrested and we will be rescued.” Anas hugs me briefly and pulls me into a kiss. “I recorded all that transpired here. In sha Allah, you will be treated at the hospital and the poison will be prevented from eating your system.” He says as he raises the phone to his ear.

“Hello, this is Anas Mukhtar. I’m calling to report…"

A/N: Maryam is back!☺❤

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