Chapter 8 – Hangover

I was disorientated and did not know where I was when I woke up. I still have no clue how I got home from the club but what scares me the most is how I got changed in to my pjs.

I woke up at two that afternoon and looked at Aneesa. She was still sound asleep. I thought back and the night was unforgettable.  Getting ready is such a mission when you have a killer hangover. I felt like every thing took twice the amount of effort even just batting my eyelids was exhausting.

Looking at my phone I saw a reminder for my zuhr prayer, guilt suddenly rushed over me, not wanting to dwell on this pessimistic emotion, I lit up a joint and let the feeling pass. There is enough time to catch up on prayers I thought to myself. I’m finally living life now and finally a rebel.

The high didn’t last long. Suddenly I felt the calm and soothing feeling slip through my fingers. Annoyed my euphoric state escaped so quickly, I decided to text Aslam, to distract my mind from all these feelings.

“hey last night was amazing, thank you.” I texted in attempts to start a conversation.
“Baby face I want more, u’ve seen that I can get any women I want, but now you need to realize what you have.” He responded. What I have? What is he going on about?

meaning?” I responded curiously.
“You will see baby face….”  A thousand thoughts filled my mind with his response.

I went inside feeling overwhelmed by my emotions. Layha was on the phone planning Aneesa’s engagement.  I dreaded the thought of us returning to that  droog farm place after the engagement. I decided to offer my help. Suddenly looking at Layha a sense of guilt over took me.I was kissing this woman’s husband. Panic set in and my emotions started racing as realization dawned upon me. I decided that I needed an immediate “calm me downer.”

Knowing Layha, she probably has some sleeping pills lying around somewhere. I managed to sneak away unnoticed and raided her bathroom cabinet.  “Happy” pills. What a find ! I decided to keep a few for my self and took one right away. The feeling was exhilarating, so I thought.

Shaheen came later that afternoon to see if I reached home safely.
“Yoh, you are a real party animal, so what happened once you and Aslam left the club.” The nerve, I thought. He suddently took my hand and looked deeply into my eyes.

“I have always been attracted to the goodie two shoes, I want to get to know you more. If everything goes well before I start university next semester I want to make it official.”
Yeah right who died and made him a saint? I thought to myself.Thank goodness Aslam walked in when he did, wearing a look I had never seen before. Shaheen, sensing the tension, left. Not even two seconds had gone by before I received a text from Aslam.
What does he want? There’s no way I’m sharing my women. I don’t like u talking to him, so next time? Tell him to get lost. By the way I have a gift for you.” The text read.
“Are you jealous? Omg u are! Sweet! I love gifts, can’t wait.” I responded with a smirk plastered across my face.

I waited till every one was asleep. The nerves overtook my body, a tight knot forming in my tummy. In an attempt to relieve all my tension I popped another happy pill. I sat at the pool side and suddenly felt a hand around me. As I turned around Aslam pulled me up pushed me against the wall, kissing me with pure passion, it was heavenly.

“I missed you doll face.” Aslam whispered in my ear. I didn’t know how to answer as I tried to come out of his grip.

Aslam smiled at me and handed me a pink box wrapped with bright bow on it. I clutched the beautifully decorated box tightly excited to unravel what was inside.  I was surprised to find a provocative set of underwear. I sat there emotionless as if all happiness had just been drained from the earth.

“Baby face, I was your first kiss, I plan to be your first of many things to come.” smirked Aslam with a naughty look on his face.

I became enraged,

“I am not a slut, if it is sex you want. Go and have sex with your wife.” He held my hand tightly and pushed my hair behind my ear and suddenly all the anger dissolved into thin air. He looked at me passionately,

” I am going to have you because I am in love with you.”

Before he could say another word I took the box and ran. I ran into my room and I took a deep breath and whispered to my self ” I love you too.”

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Chapter 7 – Sins

As Friday night arrived. Shaheen called saying we should join him as he’s going to this “hang out” spot in New Town.

“Please doll face loose the scarf. Where we’re going? People will look at you oddly.” he pleaded. I have been wearing scarf  for eight years. I  never took it off regardless of the situation. Not for even for weddings and mendhi nights.
For the first time in eight years, I would be leaving home without a scarf. I felt so lost, as if a limb of mine was missing. Shaheen was gushing  with compliments,

“Wow, you  look gorgeous,  I would have never knew such beauty is hiding behind that scarf.” he commented.  Aneesa was so happy that I had allowed Layha to dress me up, with make up and the whole nine yards. I wore a skinny black jeans, with a platinum grey off the shoulder top underneath a silver platinum greyish sequins shimmering type cropped jacket with silver cinderella style stiletto shoes.
We arrived to this so called “trendy place” in Joburg. As you step foot into the dimly lit building with nothing but blinking lights and subtle music your eyes struggle to adjust to the new scenery but the rhythm in your chest quivers with expectation. I have never been inside a club before.

“What would you ladies like to drink?” asked Faheem
“Make is a cooler for me, ” answered Aneesa.

“My bro a cola for me, we need to get home some how.” said Shaheen swiftly.

“Uhm” I said while thinking to myself I have never drank alcohol before but I can’t seem like the slow one. My head and heart at war again. My head saying, taste a little it won’t hurt you. My heart screaming please girl you know better.

“I’m fine” I said to Faheem. I still have values and this isn’t how I act.

“Dammit girl, live a little, stop being the ‘dadima’ no one wants around.” said Faheem frustratingly. 

Quickly thinking of all the movies I’ve watched trying to recall a well-known drink. Thoughts of a martini, cocktail and Cooler came to mind. After a while of contemplating I finally said,

“ A bloody Marry.”
Faheem gave a quirky smile and left to get the drinks.
Shaheen came closer whispering in my ear “Have you ever kissed a boy?”

“No ,I haven’t. I will save that for marriage.” I retorted.  He just smiled in his cute way. “This is my song, come on Fati, let’s go and dance,” he swiftly said while rocking back and forth to the constant beat.

“No” I say, meaning it. I have no idea how to dance. I’ve never danced before in my life. Ok girl! I think to myself whilst trying to recall any “moves” from movies I’ve watched and before I knew it I was there, standing like a cactus doing nothing.

“Oh my, the haari poiri ( good girl) doesn’t even dance at home.” he mocked.
Who would’ve thought that Aneesa and Faheem would be so intimate? They were all over each other. I couldn’t help but sit there and feel jealous, of what she had, every girl dreams of a prince charming. Suddenly I saw Aslam walk in. Shaheen and I started to make our way back to the table where Aslam was only to find him alone. I wonder where Layha is? I thought to myself. Aslam had said, that good wives stay at home and bad girls go and party. I drank another drink. We had shots, and loads of it. Without thinking, unaware of what I was doing, I made my way to the dance floor and started dancing with Shaheen but strangely, found myself looking at Aslam.
Later, Aslam and I sat next to each other. He had ditched the girl he was with earlier, and we began dancing having a blast. He took me where no one could see us and held me. His warm embrace feeling so wrong yet exactly like home. As I looked up at him he kissed me, ”

“Farm girl lets get back before any one notices that we were gone.” he said huskily.
As I returned to the table Faheem rushed toward me saying that in order to have real fun I had to try this out.

“Ecstasy, only take half of it!” he yelled over the now blaring music. So that’s exactly what I did.

WHOA I thought to myself. Now watching the rush of the world passing by extra fast and I felt like I was invincible once again. After dancing a little more, we drank and drank , until I felt so sick that the bathroom floor at the back of the club had become my soul mate for the evening.
All I remember from that night was the feeling of death dawning upon me and as for the rest of that night is a blur. Till today I still have no idea how I made it home, up the stairs and into bed. From the hang-over feeling I experienced the next day. I was certain it must have been one wild night.

Chapter 3 – Things fall apart

Sipping her morning coffee,  Layha was not looking her elegant self.

Layha was going through a whirlwind of emotions. The why and the how could not come to her mind. As she thought about what had happened last night, tears began to roll down her cheeks. Yes, she had the dream home, the fancy car and the untold riches but what happened was unexplainable. How was she to deal with this situation? How was she supposed to move forward? She felt so lonely at that point despite having a lot of friends. She especially felt lonely because her friends always thought she led a perfect life. Maybe she should just forget about it since it only happened once. Maybe she was to be blamed for what happened. Maybe she was not good enough for him. She whispered to her self “not good enough? Look at me I AM good looking, maybe he’s trying to ruin my image so that he can cure his jealousy.”

“Hello mummy it’s me Layha.” Tears gushing down as she began to sob.

“Bethi calm down and talk to me” her mother tried to console her.
“Mummy he hit me…. I don’t know what or why he came home late last night and I asked him why so late. That’s all. He went on screaming and yelling so I told him maybe if he was home more we could have children because all he does is work late, come home odd hours and sleep. Mummy he looked at me with so much hate and so much rage. He told me he took me from a middle class home to live like a queen in his house and now I have the nerve to question him about his going and coming, who the f#*k did I think I was. I told him I’m his wife and when we got married he was working in car sales and together we sacrificed life and saved so he could open up something and make his own money. That when he looked at me and slapped me saying “you want gratitude from me, you did nothing. You are no one I made this myself.” Mummy he continued to hit me as I fell to the floor he started kicking me calling me all despicable names. Mummy how could he?”

“Bethi, he provides well for you. Every function you never have to wear the same dress over. You have a cook and a maid. He has provided you so well that you don’t have to do anything except look good for him. Bethi what he did was in anger, forgive and forget and go do something nice for him to show him how much you appreciate him. Marriage is not easy but you have to remember that he is the man of the house, his coming and going should not be your issue. Don’t go opening a box that you don’t want to know what’s inside. All man have extra hobbies outside of home, only a few don’t so don’t mention the hitting again to anyone. Aslam is well known in the community and should be respected so don’t go be a spoilt brat and mention this to anyone. Remember that you caused this, you only have yourself to blame.Have I taught you nothing my child? I’ve told you a thousand times, spend his money, dress up for him and let him do as he pleases. Tomorrow if you leave where will you go to? You are so used to the lifestyle you have now that nobody will take in a spoilt brat. Tonight let the cook take the evening off, prepare something yourself for your husband and be quiet about this whole thing. In any case what does that cook know about Indian food? Maybe your husband just misses good home cooking. I’ll send you some easy recipes that even you can’t flop. Ok my child. I have to go now, daddy’s up for breakfast.”

With the phone still in her hand, Layha sat there in disbelief, shocked about what her mother had just said to her, wondering what’s wrong with her mother. That was the worse advise any mother could give a child.  She was now more confused as ever. Her world was turned upside down, about to crumble and fall apart. The question is was she about to let that happen? Was she supposed to just look pretty and bow down to this man and never know anything about his life just so that she can have her every materialistic desire?  Surrounded with so many possessions she felt as if the world was now an empty black hole. This was the start to her addiction of hell.