He's like a drug to
Her phone toots as his last
message comes through. I luv u, sweet dreams, it
Zahra feels an exultant swell of
pleasure in her heart as those magical three words fill her
Aw. Me 2. Nite.
She switches off her phone and
leans back against the bed, her mind swimming with blissful
thoughts. Sameer has become everything, her sky and earth, her
world! She envisages those profound whirlpools of warm honey,
which are his eyes. The landscape of untainted white, which is
his face. The two thin clasps of soft pink, which are his lips.
The waves of spikes, which is his hair. And the tall, cool
attitude, which is him as a person.
To Zahra, Sam is the most perfect
thing in existence. His beauty well beyond normal. His wit, his
solemnity, his everything has taken the wind out of her. He is an
angel in her eyes. And he makes her feel so good about herself.
So why should it be wrong to speak to him? Sam is always there
for her. He listens to her cry and sends her sweet messages,
sentences of humor to make her smile. He tells her he is her
'Knight In Shining Armor' and he will come save her. He makes her
She met him in a chatroom. Just
one of those things. All friends. It might seem typical, but she
was so blown away by him that she got his number and started
going out with him. Zahra promised to delete all her boy contacts
and he did the same. He promised her an eternal relationship, he
said he loved her so much his heart ached, said she was all he
wanted. And Zahra was so happy, who wouldn't be? It feels so good
to have someone look into your eyes and admit that he's damn
crazy about you. It makes you feel as if you're actually pretty,
y'know, at least someone likes you. You're not
It's been a year already. They're
now solid, a single unit, a joint. They know everything about
each other. She knows when he wakes up, baths, sleeps, eats,
exercises. And likewise for him.
Sam has become a drug to her.
Somehow she feels she will never be able to let go of him. Yet
her mom looked at her straight and told her with a razor-sharp
edge to her voice, "Zahra. I just want you to know that if I ever
catch you with a boyfriend, you will see my true colors. So if
you don't want to go backpacking to a boarding school in Jo'burg,
you better watch who you talk with." Which had sent shivers down
her spine. She called Sam that night, trembling as her dainty
fingers punched in his number.
"Hey babe wazzup? You sound
One reason she loved him, he
cared, he was sympathetic, and he knew her so well. "Yeah. My
moms like, threatened me, if I get a boyfriend. She's gonna freak
if she finds out."
"Babe. I'm so sorry. Don't worry,
she wont find out. And I'm just going to finish my matric, then
we'll get married and run away. It'll be fine.
Zahra breathed out, "I'm so
scared. My mom is quite mean when she wants to be."
"Whose isn't Zee? It's okay. Do
you want to stop communicating with me?" He asked it so sweetly,
that Zahra felt something crunch in her heart. "That's not even
an option!" She snaps, running her hands through her hair.
"Whatever happens, just remember
that I love you, I always have and I always will."
Her love for him pounds with a
vicious energy. "I know," she whispered, a tear trickling down
her eyelid. "And I love you too, so much. What am I going to
"Please don't cry. Hey, why don't
you come with me for milkshakes tonight. Sneak out and we can go
have some time together?" He said it with a naughty
"Ah. I wish. My mother expects me
to sit at home and study."
"Agh! Tomorrow maybe. I'll make
up a plan to kidnap you, oryt?"
Zahra chuckled, "Go
"Yeah, anyway, gotta vie to the
mall now with the guys."
"Lower your gaze," she
"Oh I have eyes for only one
girl," he said in his deep, seductive voice.
Zahra burbled with pleasure as
she wished him goodnight, heart thumping.
"I'll text you from the mall
babe. Miss you already."
Zahra switched off her phone and
pulled out an exam-pad to doodle Mrs Zahra Bakr all over the
She sits at the edge of her
dressing table, peering into the mirror and fiddling with her
fringe. She gazes at her reflection. I'm not so bad looking.
Boring eyes, boring nose, but I'm alright. She runs her hand
over fair skin, which has a soft brown undertone. Her eyes are
ordinary brown, but are accentuated by long, heavy lashes. Her
hair is short and layered, with blonde highlights and a cheeky
fringe. Sam said she looked dangerous.
Which sort of thrilled
Couple of weeks later, there is a
huge cream envelope on the porch steps, adressed to her, it has
intricate gold carves, incised to the paper. The perfume it
emits, is sweet rose. Zahra races up to her room, slams the door
shut and opens it rapidly, her cinammon eyes burning with
I watch the dawn rise, in
shades of elaborate pink.
I watch the sunset being
swallowed into dark.
From the sun, a final
I watch the moon glow to
life, a lantern to the night.
I watch the sun rise, healthy
and fervently bright.
I have traveled the world,
seen things that look impossible.
Yet I was ignorant, I had
absolutely no clue.
That I would meet a girl, as
damn beautiful as you.
Zahra folds the letter, her eyes
glinting with tears. "I love him," she murmurs to herself, over
and over again, weeping. How many girls would kill to have
someone write romantic poems to them. The emotions in her are
wild. She grabs her phone, aware that she is ten minutes late,
and calls his number. It goes to voice mail. "Omg I love you you
sweet thing!!!" She shouts. "So SO SO much!! I got your poem.
It's the most gorgeous, lovely thing I've ever read. Please call
me back soon!"
She heads for school and tells
Aziza, her best friend, that she got a poem from Sam.
"OhMiGod!!" She shrieks. "That's
As Zahra works through through
the boring parts of the day, she sends Sam constant messages, he
replies. He's in the middle of Physics and he still finds time to
talk to her.
Isn't that so
sweet? She cooes to
herself, swinging her legs. I'm a girl in luuuurve. I will
never fall in love with anyone else as much as I love
Next day she gets a phone-call
from him. She hits the button.
"Hello love!" He chants warmly.
"I missed you today."
"Yeah me too. I need to see you.
Last was two days ago, don't make me forget what you look
Sam chuckles, "I see you in my
heart Zee. You're always there."
"Lucky so. So, tonight?"
"Cool. Love you, ta ta."
The phone slides from her ear to
the bed. She jumps up breathlessly and races for a beauty bath.
After an hour under the egg mask, when her skin is glowing with
moisturizer and perfume, she flips through her clothing.
Casual, formal? Zahra settles on a little bit of both,
tight black skinnys and a beautiful white top that flares to her
Another hour passes. She sits at
the dresser, flipping open the latch to her make up box.
A soft creamy foundation to fill
in her flaws and give her skin a smooth, silky surface. A coat of
light pink lipstick, with a slick of gloss over. A shimmering
cherry and silver over a thick black coat of eyeliner. A few
mascara brushes to her eyes and she's ready!
Zahra pulls open the clip in her
hair and combs it out. She grabs a black clutch purse, stuffs it
with money, and slips a cloak over to fool her mother.
Something pummels inside her as
she sees the boy of her dreams standing infront of her. She gazes
into his pure gold eyes and pulls him forward, wrapping her arms
all the way around his back and kissing him furiously. She pulls
back, and then realizes that somethings not right.
"Sam. What's wrong?"
Sam sighs, running his hand
through his spikes. "Sit down Zee."
Curiously, she sits down, placing
her hands over his. He pulls it away to switch off his phone, and
then locks his fingers together. "Zee. I um…I'm breaking up with
She freezes, her blood and organs
become ice. "What?" She asks stiffly.
He sighs again, reaching for her
hands. This time she pulls it away, shock burning in her
perfectly made up face. "Don't make this any harder than it is.
Look there's this…um, other girl I like."
Her eyes expand, stunned.
Sam fiddles with his fingers,
"Look I er…y'know, sorry."
She channels a wave of anger,
hatred and jealousy towards him. "What's her name?"
She almosts falls off her seat.
"W-Who-How?" Her eyes are welling up with tears. The hurt, the
pain, the horror, is stinging her physical and mental
"Are you not even a tad bit
concerned about how I feel right now?" She whispers, fingers
trembling. "You suddenly decide I'm not good enough and you gotta
Sam laughs, a bitterness mingling
on his voice. "I'm a guy Zee. Get used to it. I'm sorry. I still
think you're hot and stuff but…we're getting too serious."
That did something to her,
"Excuse me?! Who sent me poems, and promised me marriage and
eternal love?! Is that not a hell of a lot SERIOUS?!" Each
word she said, was a mixture of emotion. Her make-up dripped down
her skin with huge tear-drops.
Sam shrugged, "Guys are like
that. I was just trying to act like…y'know-"
"Some lying freak immitating
Edward Cullen or something?"
"Well uh…I guess there's nothing
wrong with trying to be sweet to your girlfriend."
"Ex-" Zahra snapped.
"Chill. Look Zee-"
"Okay, look Zahra, guys at my age
can't stick to commitments. We kinda…play the field. Have some
fun before we do the serious husband thing."
"Have you been dating whilst with
me? The one whom you only have eyes for?"
Sam shrugged, "Well yeah. Little
bit. I'm not a backstabber Zee, I wouldn't date like, properly.
"Boys are filthy," she spits with
an immense level of hatred.
"Hey, don't put guys into all
this. Girls are not exactly the sweet, perfect cherubs they
portray. Believe me I know?"
"Are you referring to me?"
"'Course not, you're a good girl
Zahra. Please, I'm not a bad person, I feel really mean right
now. I'm just…an idiot. I didn't mean to do this to you. I'm
genuinly sorry. Just…I really like Aziza, she's a bit more on my
level, and she's fun. I don't want to lie to you whilst I go out
with her. I'm a bit more selfless."
"I don't believe this. Enjoy your
life dude. Just let me speak to your wife before she signs her
ageement to you. Give her some second thoughts," Zahra snatched
up her bag and stormed out the restaurant. When she was out of
sight-view, she broke down and cried. The pain was so much. She
thought she would collapse, or suffer from an attack of
As she returned home to see her
tear-stained face in the mirror, crumpled, devasted, distressed,
painted with drooling make-up that took hours to perfect-she
climbs desperately to the top of her building. As she sees the
traffic whizzing across the streets, she knows she's being
stupid, she knows she's dying for a guy who is going to raise his
You're being silly. You have a
long life ahead of you. Zahra takes a step back, breathing. "He drew
me in, made me fall crazy over him. Just for his own pleasure.
And now, after all that, he breaks my heart. He puts me in pain
worse than all the love I've felt for him. She curls into a ball
and gives a hard sardonic laugh, saying flatly to herself, "Was
he really worth it?"