Darwesh Bin Khalifa was a respected man.
He had excelled at school, and gotten into one of the most prestigious universities in the UK, graduating with high honors. He had mastered the art of shooting and falconry, as most men of influence in the Emirates did. And when his father was sick, and could no longer run his multi-million dirham company, he had been more than worthy to hold the title of Chairman.
Yes, by all means, Darwesh was well prepared for any ball that was thrown at him, and excelled in every thing he did.
But nothing- not one second of his privileged life- could have prepared him for this. Darwesh had never felt so many eyes on him in his life as much as now, as he poured a shovel worth of soil over his diseased wife.
There were nothing but "I'm so sorry"'s from everyone around him, and Darwesh couldn't help but wonder if God might punish him, because all he could think was-
He had quite a lot not to be sorry about.
Ah, Shoug. Where to start? There was, of course, the fact that she had ruined his reputation. She had come to him during his last year of university in the UK. He had known her since he was a freshman, as she was also from an influential family. Her father was a drunkard though, who had divorced her welsh mother and left her upbringing to the housemaids.
In their last year, Shoug had managed to get herself pregnant. In an attempt to save herself from the humiliation, she decided to seduce Darwesh into marriage.
Darwesh stared at the grave of his wife, who was only 25 years old.
Apart from his reputation, Shoug had also taken his soul. Darwesh was a man who saw the good in all people- he believed the best of them, and so treated them all with honor and respect, as they would do onto him.
He had fallen for her entirely. Unaware of the kniving snake that she was.
And even as he prayed for her, he knew that deep inside he was glad that he was rid of her, and this was just what he had wanted.
When they had married, she told him the truth about her plans, and that she was pregnant with some Kuwaiti freshman's child. It was a blessing from God though, that she'd had a miscarriage in her sixth month, and then died of complications.
Shoug had been his biggest mistake, and changed the person he was for good.
Darwesh refused to spend another minute mourning her.
She had been his dream,
And then she had been his nightmare.
Noora let out a long sigh. After spending the evening pouring arabian coffee for a group of women she was barely acquainted with, she couldn't wait to get to bed.
"It's been a long day." Afra said, walking into the spare room in the Khalifa Family's house that had always been a second home for her best friend.
Noora nodded in agreement.
"It's so sad, she was so young." Noora mumbled, "How is your brother fairing?"
Afra crawled beside Noora on the bed and rest her head in her lap, taking an exasperated breath.
"I dont know. No one has seen him since they left the house to go to the graveyard."
Afra turned her head to face Noora, "Thank you, Nunu. For staying the night and all."
They sat in the peaceful silence for a while, letting the events of their long day sink into their skin.
"He's more angry than upset." Afra mumbled.
"Is he? Odd."
"Not really. She was a witch."
"Afra!" Noora smacked her lightly on the shoulder, "Don't talk about the dead like that. It isn't good."
"She was, though. You know how horrible she was to my brother. All she wanted was his money."
Noora stared at the floral designs on her bed covers, only half listening to what Afra was saying. It'd been seven years since the fateful night that she'd met Darwesh, and as much as it broke her heart when she had heard of his abrupt marriage, she was still deeply in love with him.
He was after all, her first, and only love.
"You should head to your room and get some sleep, Afra. It's been a long day, and you really need to adjust your sleep. We start senior year next week."
Afra sat up, and her big, beautiful brownish-green eyes sparkled.
"Oh my God, it completely slipped my mind! We must go finish our school shopping this weekend."
Noora laughed, it was typical Afra to get excited about a new school. Noora wasn't feeling the same because she knew that it wouldn't make a difference. The only friend she cared about was Afra, and it didn't matter where she went for senior year. But Afra's family had all graduated from a specific school in Abu Dhabi, and as much as she'd fought to stay in her old school just to be with Noora, her family insisted that she transfer.
And naturally, stubborn and persistent as she is, Afra had managed to convince Noora's mother to allow her to do the same.