No Matter What: Chapter Fourteen

11:58 AM





‘We can stay here’ Jawad told Fajr and Hilal. He was friends with the hospital administration and managed to get an over night stay for the three of them. Fajr still continued praying and tearing as she held Noor’s hand. She wished more than anything if she could time travel to warn them both. She loathed being part of what is happening to her only close friend. She wanted to go back and discourage her from touching the DJ’s hand; the beginning of the very end.

‘Hurry you’ll be late’ she was rushed through the stairs. Time seemed to rush fast and she wasn’t ready mentally for what was to come. Out of her grand aunt’s place, she went to bid farewell.  She was heading to a journey not many people had the privilege for. She hopped into the 4x4 nervous but excited, it was her very first trip out of her country. The country where she was born and raised in, with the occasional forts, castles and petrol stations passing her by, she said goodbye to the land of her forefathers as she made her way to the holy land of Mecca. She was due to fly with her three brothers who were in the car with her. Noor never was ready spiritually for this big step, but she was forced into going the same way she was forced to be an Arabic teacher.

The back door opened, the cold dry air conditioned breeze mixed with the hot quite humid air. They arrived at the airport. Amazed at how it looked like inside, Noor found herself turning around in circles in an awe. She smiled a happy go lucky smile. It was her first; her first time witnessing an airport building let alone being inside it. ‘Passengers boarding Oman Air flight number A592 to Jeddah are requested to proceed to Gate 3’ she heard the airport announcement as her brothers led the way.  At the gate waiting to board the flight, a book was jostled at her. ‘Here, this book has everything you need’ one of her brothers told her. It was a self help how- to book on performing pilgrimage. She nodded her head absently as she laid her eyes on the beautiful afternoon sky. The illuminating rays reflected on something she never saw so close before; the gigantic glistening white and blue plane that was to take her up in the air. Her eyes grew bigger as her mouth opened in astonishment. She was in heaven she thought, in heaven indeed.

An hour and countless minutes later, Noor found herself inside a crowded cabin, sitting beside the window while beads of sweat started appearing on her forehead. Loud cries of toddlers started intensifying disturbing the quiet atmosphere, sighs of frustrations and complaints of anger erupted.  In less than a few minutes the plane turned to a circus, everyone almost grumbled and whined over their situation; they were 40 minutes behind schedule in a sunny humid afternoon. Glasses of cold water with ice were served while the cooling system seemed non-functioning; the air conditioning seemed inexistent even though the plane was powered and its engine running. Noor thought all of this was normal; she was embarrassed to ask any of her brothers who would turn her into a joke. She decided she would patiently wait like everybody else. ‘For crying out loud, what’s taking so long?’ one of the elderly passengers in front of her complained as she grabbed the flight attendant’s arm. ‘We are waiting for a passenger’ the attendant replied assuring the old wrinkled face she was looking at while grimacing with the signature stewardess smile. The long wait was taking its toll on those surrounding her. The yellow distant sun seemed like it was burning a few inches above their heads. The merciless sun shone its evil rays on them causing them to shed off more pints of sweat. The saltiness of the perspiration in her eyes was a blessing. Noor was drowsy and in an instant fell asleep.

Some loud commotion was going on, sighs of relief, and passenger prayers and pleas to their creator were accepted.

‘Finally’
‘It’s about time’
‘Alhamdulilah’

Some of the phrases going about in the cabin. Noor got awoken from her nap as she heard her brother argue with the attendant. ‘But this is my seat. We booked adjacent seats.’ he yelled.  The boarding pass the flight attendant held in his hand had seat number 15 B, only the steward didn’t know that Noor’s brother had an identical seat number in his pass. He just assumed, like the many ignorant passengers, that he sat at the wrong seat. The argument escalated when the attendant was adamant for Noor’s brother to move. ‘I am not moving’ her brother said firmly as he showed his pass. A heated dispute broke out as the late passenger made his way through to where he was supposed to be seated. The quarrels could be heard throughout until Noor thought it through.  She could easily give up her seat for the other one in front next to her other brother. ‘I can move to the front’ she pointed out innocently to them.

And then there was silence, a solution and outlet to the problem was provided. It was an easy fix to something the flight attendant could have easily thought of. ‘If that wouldn’t be much trouble to you Ma’am’ the flight attendant said masking his mistake with the signature steward smile. Picking up her notepad where she scribbled down her thoughts, she scooted out of the tiny leg room available. Noor made her way to the front. She now headed forward only for her coffee brown eyes to meet with the late passenger’s honey hazel eyes. Her heart skipped a beat as she grasped and hugged her notepad tight. It was him, the DJ in front of her.  ‘Here you go’ he gave her space for her to head to her new seat.

He sat and stood, he nervously got clumsy after seeing her. He tried to place his luggage at the over-sized compartment on top only for his hands to lose balance and shake. People started chuckling at his unsteady hands. He would be better off to place his suitcase under the seat in front of him, he though to himself. He took a deep breath as he tried to relax but then she sat right in front of him. Could it be fate or was it a test?  He didn’t know. All he knew was the girl in pink who touched his hand was here. She was even more beautiful and radiant adorning the black abaya. His heart pounded so hard he was scared she could hear. He felt jumpy, he couldn’t stay still. Pressing the inside button on the left of the seat arm, his body inclined backwards along with the chair as his eyes were still fixed at her. The soft delicate scarf brushing off of her hands as she tried to fix it over her head made him remember how her hand felt when their skin touched. Soft, supple and filled with warmth, he grinned. He smiled even wider when he remembered how he prayed day in and day out for them to cross paths again. At least this time he can put a name to the angelic image of her in his mind, he thought. With his eyes catching glimpses of her hand and the plane in the sky, he had his head in the clouds and went off to a fairytale land.

He was the knight in the king’s castle, and she was the princess, the heiress to the throne. He was the son of a blacksmith who lived a tough poor life while she was a lonely daughter of a mighty king wishing for her savior and prince charming. Shihab the knight would set out to fight off all demons and dragons invading the kingdom to win her father’s heart. He becomes the kingdom’s hero and gets the approval from the king to crown his daughter as his wife. And they would live happily ever after, the typical fairytale ending.

PING...

The seatbelt sign blinked bright waking all those who were asleep, it was time for landing. She felt happy yet sad; happy that she was close to stepping foot in another country, yet sad that she would part ways with the mysterious DJ. ‘Shihab’ she thought to herself as his name rang in her ears. She knew his name when he didn’t. He was her favorite DJ and radio show host, she’d always make sure to call just to hear his deep husky voice up close and personal. She reminisced on the ridiculous sums of money she wasted for phone credit to call and dedicate a song to her girlfriends or answer a quiz question on air. Ever since the moment they exchanged gazes at the beach, Noor was captivated. She knew everything about him from Fajr and the radio show he hosted every weekend.  ‘Hi this is Bee calling’ the favorite cue phrase she used on air. ‘He only knows me as Bee his favorite caller and number one fan, but I know him as Shihab, my…’  her thoughts got interrupted by the flight attendant asking her to buckle her seatbelt. She sat praying and scared as she felt her insides reaching up her throat like clothes tumbling in a washing machine from the plane’s descend but then butterflies in her tummy overtook her sensations, she was glancing at his face. He was leaving the lavatory and heading back to his seat. He looked at her and smiled, blushing she smiled back a bashful smile then looked away.

Crowded as ever, white and black was seen everywhere. They were at Jeddah airport waiting for their luggage which delayed for a good half hour. He was in front of her, this time she gathered the courage to stare at him and smile longer. His heart was overwhelmed with warmth. He was happy and determined that he would ask for her name today.  ‘Noori?’ she got called out. Shihab kept on searching hoping that he didn’t mean her. ‘Noori..!!’ her brother shouted this time. Shihab hoped and prayed for it not to be true, but she turned around. Her brother signaled for her that he is heading to the restrooms as Noor waited for the luggage.  She nodded back smiling as her brother gave her a wink and left.  Noor giggled and turned back to face him again. But Shihab felt sick to his stomach, he was disgusted by the whole affair. How could she look at him and exchange flirtatious looks and smiles with him when she was involved with someone else? He couldn’t understand this and felt rage taking over his body. Walking over to her, Noor thought that this was her chance. All her brothers weren’t around and she was all alone standing and waiting. She was ready to confess that she was Bee, that she was his ultimate fan, that she was indeed attracted to him. ‘Make your move Mr. DJ’ she said under her breath while laying her eyes on his nearing presence. She was nervous, her knees felt weak, her palms sweaty as he came closer. He then stopped and looked at her big eyes and her heart just stopped. She prepped herself to speak but soon stopped after seeing his reaction and frown. Shihab looked at her in the eyes then from head to toe as if she was a piece of trash covered with filth and then walked away. Little did Shihab know that he mistook Noori for a pet name when it was her actual nickname. 

You Might Also Like

1 Comments

  1. i wonder how they got together xD ! misunderstanding min awal!

    post more plzz a month break killed us from suspense ! keep it uP!

    ReplyDelete

Popular Posts

Follow on Twitter

Follow on Instagram