“Noooo, Sohaib! You are singing the lyrics wrong. Again!”
I burst out laughing.
He looked amused for a second and then started laughing with me.
I suddenly stopped. The smile on my face pales.
Sohaib’s face fell too.
I bet he must have thought, “Not again”
Concern was the only visible expression on his face.
“Jaan, kya hua?”
“Nothing” I said.
He stared at my face, searching for the lie behind my answer.
He always know when I am lying. But I don’t think I can tell him the truth.
He pulls me towards, held me against his chest and kissed my forehead.
I smiled, looking at him and kissed him.
He tightened his grip around me, crushing me. It always feels like he is trying to assimilate the broken pieces of me together. I want to let myself be comforted by his warmth. But I can’t. And I never have the strength to tell him that I find it suffocating.
He is lying next to me. His hand still on my breast. I gently ease myself from underneath him. He must have fallen asleep.
I drank the last sip of coke left from the glass on the side table and picked up my half smoked cigarette. I dragged my self to the window and propped myself up against the railing.
This dreary weather will soon turn into a full blown storm. I better go home before my mother starts worrying about my whereabouts.
I wrapped my dupatta around my disheveled clothes and turned back to look at the figure sleeping beside me.
Fawad. The guy I met on the internet. His personality is as pathetic as his performance in bed.
I found my bag under the mess of his clothes and started to leave.
It isn’t a walk of shame if you do it two to four times a week, right?
“What do you want with chai?” I asked Sohaib who was trying to find his favourite jazz vinyl.
“Nothing. Just chai would be enough”
I gave him his cup and stood in the balcony with mine, staring at the cars going by.
Beth Hart started crooning “You heart is as black as night” as he walked up to me and wrapped his arms around me. I flinched a little. Just enough for him to notice. He didn’t say anything. He pressed his lips against the nape of my neck. I tried harder not to move away this time.
I was 7, trying to recite Quran quickly so I could go back to the playground.
QariSahab scolded me for pronouncing a word wrong when I felt his fingers prodding my belly through a tear in my shirt.
“What is this hunh? You’re a naughty girl.” He said with a smug smile.
“Where do you like it best when I touch you?” His hand graze against my underdeveloped breasts. “Here?”
“or down there”
I didn’t answer. I sat there without moving an inch.
For better or for worse:
“It killed you to say this, haina?” Sohaib said.
“I promise I will never leave you.”
I felt tears staining my face. I tried to wipe them away before he saw them.
I cried for the first time in 3 years. That too for a boy I have only known for 3 days.
It felt like a dam had broken down.
That day I cried for all the unwanted touches,the forceful kisses, the wandering hands that would grope whatever they can hold. Because for the first time it felt that someone would take care of me. That someone would give rather than take from me.
I also cried because I know I would hurt this man. I would hurt him every time I flinch away from his touches. I would hurt him every time I will choose to walk away from his embrace. I would hurt him when he will wake up to an empty bed each night.
But I promised I wouldn’t run away anymore. Even if I had to tie myself down to a wrecked ship with a rotten deck, I wouldn’t leave this man. For better or for worse.
The credit for the featured image goes to the author herself. To see more of her work, visit her Instagram @elleoncoffee