As narrated by Riza:
The lives that we lead are determined by the choices that we make. And choices that we are bound to live with. Regret and remorse intensify the will to live, to achieve,to accomplish even that which sometimes appears to be out of reach. Everyone faces their share of disappointment, everyone has once been or probably will be at their lowest low. It is how we grow from there that pans out our lifes journey. It is what we learn from it that enriches our very being. It is said that people come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. Some relationships stay until the end of your days, some wither away as softly and as gently as the petals on a dying flower. A flower that will once again bloom in a new season of Spring. We don’t know what tomorrow will bring, we don’t know what the future holds for us…the idea is to smell the flower before it withers, to let it consume your senses as though your lifes last breath depended on it, to appreciate its beauty before its death and to welcome the new bud as excitedly as the birth of a new being. Life is a circle of change…and a circle has no end…it just keeps going..and with that, even we too have to come full circle..to be able to sit back one day and relive our lives by reliving our memories…
Aara: (getting off her car) thanks for meeting me at such short notice
Me: anytime A…what’s up?
And Aara showed me the piece of the silver pendant..
Me: this is the same one that was stuck to your jersey that day at the airport isn’t?
And then she handed me another piece..
Me: no ways…(Joining them together)…you found the other piece!…no wait hang on…this was never yours!…Aara..
Aara: the other piece found me Reez..
Aara: Zoheb had the other piece…it was his
I was shocked! I mean how often does something like this happen?
Aara: he asked me what was the chain around my neck that I always kept hidden…and yeah that’s how we realised that…
Me: unbelievable! Aara this was the day we..
Aara: went back for Nemo…how ironic is this Reez…Nasrun minallahi wa fath-hun kareeb (and a tear fell from her eye)
Me: I’m stumped really…these things just don’t happen but look at this! Its just…its giving me goosebumps man!
Aara: can you imagine what I felt when I found out…I mean we as Muslims believe that there’s two kinds of destiny…one that is prewritten and one that you make yourself by the decisions that you make…so this is…was…not a choice made by either one of us..this was..
Me: prewritten…you were meant to meet Zoheb…(Putting my arm around her) he could be a reason,a season or a lifetime A…right now don’t even try to figure out which it is just…let it flow…you’re happy, that’s what’s important don’t think too much
But who was I kidding? The “change” had already made its graceful appearance in our lives…the winds were blowing from a different direction…and I tried very hard to ignore the howl of fear outside my door. It felt as though that which we had kept hidden was going to be exposed…secrets that would not only shock but may also destroy…
As narrated by Maariah:
Everyone makes mistakes. Three very easy words to say, but it doesn’t make the regret any less. I didn’t know then that a few “harmless” ideas would trigger such a massive explosion.
I have tried, I am trying to be better, to think differently but…things are just going out of my control….
Nemo was responsible for the choices that he had made but was it right for me to “make” Aara see him like that?
Any normal person would have run a mile had they had to face what she did…I thought she would run too…I didn’t anticipate the strength that she displayed…
A strength that held on and I wish I knew how because it broke her every second of every day…but she held on…until he was fine again…
In my entire life, I had never seen what I saw with Nemo and Aara. Nemo was the weaker link, easier to break-but I didn’t know that Aara was strong enough for the both of them…
It wasn’t easy getting into Aara’s yard and now it would be harder getting close to her flat…I need to know what’s going on…
I tried to peep in from the windows but the curtains were drawn. My best bet was to climb into her flat somehow and just hide!
I felt like a burglar!!! The house was silent…I tiptoed into Aara’s room and she was fast asleep…I tiptoed into the guest room and OH MY WORD!!Nemo!!!! I knew it! I knew it! She brought him back! I hid myself behind this huge laundry basket that Aara had as I watched Nemo…he was awake but he was fidgeting with his fingers and tapping his feet continuously. He was unshaven, needed a haircut badly and he looked….dangerously edgy…I actually felt scared looking at him! Within seconds he sprung off the bed and ran to Aara’s room.
Nemo: (shaking Aara roughly) I need to go..give me the keys
Aara: (waking up with a shock) where do you need to go Nemo?
Nemo: (holding her hand and trying to pull her out of bed) I can’t take it…you don’t know what this is doing to me…if I don’t have more I’m …I’m…I need more(stammering)…I need more now Aara open the door please just let me go!
Aara: Nemo please let go of my hand…you’re hurting me…let me get ready, we will go together okay?
Nemo: (tapping his feet) really??
Aara: really…please wait for me in the lounge I won’t be long
As soon as Nemo left Aara phoned Riza but I obviously couldn’t hear what Riza was saying…
Aara: I think he’s having a relapse…he’s in the lounge I’m in my room…yeah the keys are still hidden..okay..
And before she could go on, Nemo had come barging into her room…his eyes were red and puffy and …scary. He grabbed Aara’s phone
Nemo: Riza let me the F*** out of here!!!…no don’t tell me to calm down!!!! I need to go!!!! I will find the damn keys!!
And he threw her phone onto the floor and stomped on it with his shoes…breaking it into pieces…
Aara: why the hell did you break my phone???
Nemo came charging at Aara..Oh my God!!
Nemo: don’t you dare scream at me!! Who the hell do you think you are anyway?!
And he grabbed both her shoulders and pushed her against her dressing table sending her crashing into it…dropping everything on it onto the floor!
Aara turned around in disbelief as she stared at her bloodied hand…with tears streaming down her cheeks she ferverently clutched onto a silver pendant that dangled from her neck.
Nemo ran into the lounge and started turning things upside down…
Nemo: (screaming) I need the bloody car keys!!!
Aara: (walking into the lounge…her eyes full of tears and anger) you want the f****** car keys??? Here take it!
And as Nemo turned around to face her, she gave him a hard slap across his face, shocking them both!
Nemo held his face and looked at Aara with so much…hate….wasn’t she scared?
Nemo: Aara Aara Aara…you think you can make everything right? You think you can “help” me? My own f***** parents couldn’t help me then who the f*** are you??? That’s your problem! You think you have the solution to everything! Why the hell did you bring me back????Atleast at home…even though I was locked away I still used to get my fix!!
Aara was gobsmacked!
Wait, his parents were feeding his habit????
Nemo: I am an adult I can very well take care of myself!! I don’t f****** need you!! Why the f******* hell did you bring me back!!!!
Aara: because I love you dammit!! Because I love you…(And she fell to the floor and cried…she sobbed her heart out)
My heart ached and broke as tears ran down my cheeks and I put my hand over my mouth.
Nemo had a devilish look on his face…what she said hadn’t affected him at all…
Nemo: so let me go then! You know, if you love someone let them go yada yada yada
Was it all a big joke to him???
Aara: (wiping her tears) NEVER!!
That seemed to spin his head as he came charging at her again and he raised his hand as Aara covered her face…but before he could do anything, I heard the front door unlock and Reez and Arshad walked in.
Riza(rushing to Aara):Nemo what the hell are you doing???
Arshad seemed to be frozen to the spot and Nemo saw the opportunity and ran over to Arshad and tried to yank the car keys out of Arshad’s hand. Riza jumped onto Nemo and dropped him to the ground and held him down with his hands and legs! Nemo was giving Riza a royally hard time as he kicked and shouted! This was beyond horrid!
Riza: Arshad!!! Arshad!!! Snap out of it and give him the injection now!!!
And through Nemo’s kicks and blows Arshad managed to inject him and within minutes Nemo was asleep…
Arshad and Riza carried him to his bed and closed the door.
Riza: I told you to keep his door locked Aara why did you leave it open?
Aara sat dejectedly on the floor and stared blankly ahead of her…I could see…she was finished, it was as though someone had sucked the life out of her…
Aara: then I’d be no different from the Moolas Reez…(Looking at Arshad)
Riza: I told Arshad…he’ll help us
Arshad: (bandaging Aara’s hand) don’t worry Aaroo I’m right here behind you both…I’ll find a way and get the meds that will help Nemo…your secret is safe with me(stroking Aara’s face and wiping the tears that fell from her eyes)
Riza: Aara(kneeling down beside her) please reconsider the rehab program
Aara shook her head and looked in the direction of Nemo’s room.
Aara: I can’t dump him from one place to another…when I brought him back…I brought his responsibility too (wiping her tears) guys please…(Holding Riza and Arshad’s hands)I can’t do this without you
Riza and Arshad assured Aara that they would be there for her and take turns to stay with her so she’s not ever alone with Nemo..
I snuck out through the back door while they were drawing up a routine for Nemo in the kitchen.
Every action has a reaction…and a consequence. While these were not solely the consequences of my actions….I had played a big hand in what was happening…and I couldn’t even tell anyone or do anything about it…
*End of Flashback*
I was snapped out my thoughts by the sound of my phone. It was a number that I didn’t recognise…
Caller: did you think you’d get rid of me that easily??
I felt a chill run down my spine as I sat down in shock…