Thursday, December 9, 2010

Honor Crime


By: Yousef Zreagat

Short story 



© 2011 by THE BIRD(http://www.thebirdali.com/)

This story was written when fourteen honor crime girl victims announced by the end of November 2010 in Jordan. 



     It was early morning on her way to school, when Amal heard a romantic song for the Lebanese singer Fayrouz. She knows these poetry lines by heart as they are in her “Arabic Literature” text book. It was a poem from “The Prophet” for Khalil Jubran, a poem that raised her pride of being an adult girl. Next morning another song tackled her heart, and she felt that she had to break the social taboo and steel a look to the garden where Saleem smiled and shyly waved for her, while looking to the gold sand dunes far away from his small town.
    Few weeks later she came back home late, putting her bag on her left shoulder and holding a red red rose in her right hand. Just before touching the green metal door a tough hand pulled her in, then dragged her on the floor with more than a foot crushing her head. For a second or less she saw the red red rose and some books scattered on the floor before she was locked in the kitchen.
    Harsh voices of men she knows were hammering and coming through: “What a shame! What a Shame! Both of them have to be killed, we will be shamed forever, I will burn her to death now, where is the gun” then her eldest brother said: “let's go to our uncle before any one knows about this”. As soon as they left the house her mother opened the door crying, sitting down on the floor and embraced her daughter: “Why did you do it Amal? Did he take you for a drive out of the town? Amal replied by shaking her head again and again, then her mother said: “You have to escape with your brother Khalid before they kill you." Until now Amal didn’t pronounce a word but crying. Half an hour later Khalid came in with his sad tears and asked his mother: where shall I take her? “To my family in Amman, go now before they kill her, here is the money”. She hugged and kissed her daughter before covering her head and said: “go, go, go, go please, go”. Amal grabbed her mother’s hands with tears dropping on her cheeks like her grandmother’s rosary beads and said:” I didn’t do it, he didn’t touch me, believe me, believe me”.  
The fifteen years old girl was reluctant to leave a family she always thought that they are the most merciful people. “follow me , quickly” said her brother while he was pointing a narrow path behind the goats room.  

After few minutes they found a refuge in a ruined Arab warrior tomb who was killed long time ago defending his people against the Romans. For half an hour all thoughts of honor and shame came up to his confused mind, “she did it, I will kill him, oh God we are disgraced forever, why did she do it, why?”.
Amal stopped crying and came to silent moments, looking to the sunset in the red horizon that reminded her of Saleem’s rose. Suddenly she felt Khalid’s fingers getting deep in her long black hair from behind, and a shiny cold dagger dropping like a shooting star stabbing her childhood dreams. “I didn’t do it, brother. He didn’t touch me.” “Die, die with your shame” he screamed loudly, while placing the read dagger in her soft heart. 
Amal’s little dead body turned over the rocks with her eyes gazing to the sunset and Khalid came back feeling honored for cleaning up the family disgrace. 

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