And we two—a lovey-dovey couple, get married one day. Always be true to the truth, be honest to each other—we harmonized on that point. Years later, it is our fifth marriage anniversary evening. She dresses up gorgeously, stands before me and asks, “How do I look?” “Awful,” I reply without thinking. Her heavily made-up face darkens as she says, “You don’t love me anymore.”
He sleeps there in solitude, forlorn and friendless. We all have got along, only mother weeps occasionally. His colorful shirts, suits await him in the wardrobe. He was a social media geek. But now there’s no Wi-Fi where he lives. Is he sad? It’s been five years. One day it will be fifty years. His memory will lose the gravity inside our brains as we will all perish someday. And his grave will continue to be replaced by fresh bodies, fresh memories.
I wake up hearing a baby crying. My eyes search the bed. Next to me is my husband, asleep. I cock my ear to locate the direction of the whining. From the cries I can tell the baby is poor and miserable and in pain. I shake my husband, Can you hear? A baby’s crying. Can you hear? He grunts. There’s no crying, he says in his sleepy, distant voice. Go back to sleep, babe. I sigh. I keep thinking of the little being that left me untimely.
He comes back. I thought I had killed him five years ago. He was an intelligent, unbeatable dog. In a hot summer, he went crazy—would kill roosters, terrorize every stranger entering the house. The day he chased a visitor into the pond, I got mad. I tied him to a tree with a rope and beat up until he collapsed. I dropped him by a river. But later I heard he survived. He never returned to me though. Now, years after—aged and impaired, he is back to his birthplace, in our house. My guilty hands try to feed my old friend. He has no appetite. Next morning he is dead.
Things She Wanted
She wanted love. A life. A family. And children— lots of children. Years pass, and she has had them all. Now old and tired, she wishes she had nothing at all. All she wants is peace- a peaceful sleep in the grave.
Rahad Abir is a writer finishing his debut novel.