Feb 10, 2013

Short story: Where is My Khadija Chapter 3

By Alawiya Abdalla

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I’m still on the spot where I fell, I am on the floor not wanting to move because I have failed

I have failed Khadija MISERABLY. I was not fast enough, I wasn’t strong enough, I was not older.

That evil man just tossed me like I am some kind of dirt, and there was nothing, absolutely NOTHING I could have done.

At a time like this I wish I had Ahmed’s strong
legs, and I wish I had Ibrahim’s strong arms

But I am neither! I am the youngest, the weakest, the one with the skinny body.

I am the one who was tossed aside like an idiot

I am so mad at myself, that I start punching the ground. I am punching because I am angry, and since I cannot punch the kidnappers.

I will punch the floor.

I do not feel any pain, I do not see the blood pouring from my hand and I certainly do not hear my mum Halima’s pleas to stop.

It’s only when Ahmed lifted me from the floor that I felt the pain on my left hand

“WHAT HAPPENED? OMG He needs stitches, I’ll take him to the clinic” He says it breathlessly.

“NO! WE MUST FIND HER” I protest, and try to stand but everything seems to have taken it’s tool on me as I lean on Ibrahim.

“Did they say anything when they left?” Asks my mum frantically.

“The woman says she’s her mum, the guy was giving her orders to grab Khadija” I recall the incident, trying not to lose any detail out

“Ya Allah! That’s Manafisa and her husband Saydi, why would she come to claim Khadija all of a sudden? She abandoned her when she was only one month old! why now??” She asks, looking at us for answers.

“I know.” replies Ahmed.

“What is it??” I ask him desperately.

“Isn’t it obvious? Khadija is going to be inheriting all of her dad’s wealth and money! Her mum would want to keep her close. VERY close” He explains the very grim situation

“She can’t just come and kidnap her from under our noses, and get away with it? There’s police, court and all that right?” Says Ibrahim rationally.

“Even if all that is true, her mum IS still her legal guardian. Dadda (grandmother) will never be able to look after her physically. The guardianship will go straight to her mum” Ahmed says it sadly, more to me than anyone else

At that moment Khadija’s grandma catches up with us, coming towards us with a walking stick.

“Where is Khadija? I saw you all running!” She asks us in a panicky tone.

My mum takes her hand and walks with her towards the villa___I don’t know if she’s gonna survive this news

The poor lady would have lost everyone she knows

“Mohamed, let’s go to the clinic. You’re bleeding is not stopping, you need stitches” Says Ahmed in a kind voice, that makes me break down in tears.

Do you know the feeling when you are trying so hard not to cry, and then a small act of kindness sends you right off the edge?

Well, that’s exactly how I’m feeling in this bleak moment

I will ALWAYS blame myself for this__

I alone was the reason why we lost Khadija.

It was all my stupid fault.


This is not happening to me, this is not happening to me

Someone claiming to be my real mother has just kidnapped me! And now we are in a car driving to an unknown distance

The woman is holding on tight to me, that the pressure of her hold is hurting my arms!

“Let go of me right this second!” I say it, trying to wriggle out from under her grasp

I put in a good fight, and I actually manage to break free

I was just about to open the door while the car was moving, when the man saw what I was trying to do in the front mirror.  He started swerving the car recklessly from left to right so I lose my balance, and he succeeded He parked the car at the side of the road, and got out of the driving seat getting into the passenger seat at the back where I was

“MOVE!” He orders the lady. She does as she is told with no hesitation at all!! For a person who is calling herself my mum, she sure is not protective at all

He pulls a knife out of his pocket, and brought it so close to my throat that if he just pressed a little bit more I was to be pronounced dead by now

I do not know what it was that made me freeze on my spot, maybe it was the glistening light from the knife or the strong smell of his bad breath. Maybe it is his bulbous eyes that resembles a fish, maybe it is to do with the fact that he had his entire weight on me.

Or maybe it is the simple fact that I was just a 9 year old helpless girl.

All I know is that the combination was lethal. This is the first time that I actually felt fear.  Fear that comes from deep within your stomach, fear that makes people want to throw up. All my life I have been taught right from wrong, how come no one mentioned what fear feels like

He brings his lips near my ears and says

“If you scream or talk back to us, I’ll kill you and your whole family. One by one like sheep.”

The 9-year-old in me was screaming at him saying

“GO ON I DARE YOU! You didn’t kidnap me to kill me, You could have done it by now”

But. I’m a 9-year-old.

I believed that he would kill me right there and then. I believed him and I was terrified, feeling cold shivers running down my spine

When he made sure that his threats was effective, he went back to the driving seat again.

And he drove off to an unknown destination

I could not utter a word when I saw myself at the airport. I could not utter a word when I saw that they had my passport!

And I could not utter a word all throughout the flight to Dar esalam in Tanzania


It has been two days and we are all sitting here doing nothing There is GOT to be something we can do! My mum called the police, who arrived really late She told them the whole story, and they said that there is nothing they could do because that is her mother.

They also told us that they are dealing with a bigger issue, they told us that the country is on a brink of a civil war. They advised us to leave as early as possible to Kenya

How can we leave without Khadija?? My mum was in a state of shock when she heard what they said.

“I kept hearing about clashes and unrest here and there at the funeral, but I never thought it could be serious!” She told Khadija’s grandmother Fawziyah.

“Take your kids and go to Kenya, Halima, I’m not leaving my country” She advised my mum.

“I will not do that!! How could we?? Please come with us” My mum pleaded with her.

“I have lost everyone I cared about, Halima. If I were to die, I’d want to be buried in my country next to my son Omar” She says it sadly

“Please! You guys have done so much for us. Let me try to repay some of the favour please” The words barely leaving my mum’s voice as she tears up

“Halima sweety, I really want to stay here. If you really wanna help, then look for Khadija in Kenya. They are bound to be there.” She takes my mum’s hand in a warm embrace.

“I promise I’ll look for her Inshallah, even if I have to kidnap her,” promises my mum

So the next day we left for Kenya, my mum told us that her brother Amin lives there. She also told us that he might not accept us, so there could be rough nights ahead of us on the streets of Mombasa

Luckily when we arrived in Mombasa, my uncle allowed us to stay with him in his three bedroom house. We all sleep cramped in the tiniest room in the house, it is definitely not like the comfort rooms we had in uncle Omar’s villa but it was something Alhamdulilah.

My uncle’s wife was not happy that we stay at their house for free, so she ordered our uncle to make mum go to work instead of him

My uncle works for this Indian man who sells gold, and according to his wife he’s not bringing in enough commission as he does not have a sales person’s ability to smooth talk his customers!

Now it is left to my mum to bring in the money, while he sits at home doing absolutely nothing

“Look after your sister, and don’t let your cousins near her, my dear boys” She tells me and Ibrahim, while she and Ahmed go to work.

My uncle’s boys are very nasty people, so we keep an eye on my little sister like eagles

Months turn into a year and we still have not found Khadija

My mum would ask every customer, when she sells them the gold but no one seem to know who Manafisa is! It’s like she is vanished into thin air

My mum became an expert in selling gold, which made her demand her commission from my uncle. She used to give him all the commission before, but she soon realized that without her he will not be earning that much.

She also demanded to be introduced to the boss, my uncle could not refuse her anything because she is bringing money to the entire household.

The unrest in Somalia turned into a full blown civil war, so many lives were lost and so many people stranded in Kenya.

Words were being spread about a possibility of a new life in Britain and all around the world, all we need to do is pay someone who can take us there.

The money was a lot, but my mum has been saving ever since she started having her commission and it was enough to take us there Alhamdulilah.

The road to England was tough, and we often landed in jails in a foreign country not knowing the language but we eventually got there at last.

We got there 4 years after we left Somalia, I am a 13 year old boy now.

And all through our journey, I kept praying that Khadija was making the same journey. I prayed to see her in a plane ride to Holland.

I prayed to see her on a cruise ship to France.

I prayed to see her on a train ride to Dover.

But she was not in any of them__She just vanished

Completely vanished


We arrived in Dar esalam in Tanzania to a damp two bedroom house in the middle of the city, tired and late in the afternoon.

I was introduced to two girls (my sisters apparently), 5 year old Zahra and 6 year old Alawiya( The author struggled to come up with a name so she used her own name instead )

Zahra came running towards me immediately taking me into a warm hug, Alawiya on the other hand just stood there giving me dirty looks

That night I was allowed to sleep in peace. However, the next morning my “mum’s” husband barked at me to clean the house

I have never cleaned houses before I don’t know what to do!

Zahra would want to show me, but Alawiya would stop her

I tried. I really tried, but I really don’t know what to use for what and that used to send the beast into a rage.

He would grab me from my hair and yell


To make matters worse, my mum would not utter a word in my defence. It’s like she is void from any real emotion towards me

She would spoil her daughters, but when it came to me she would just turn away. She was not mean towards me, but she would avoid looking straight into my eyes

It is like she was happy that I was the one on the receiving end of his abuse, and not her!

One fateful day, my mum’s beastly husband was in a foul mood as usual. He took her to the room talking loudly, forgetting that we were in the living room.

They kept shouting and yelling at each other, and then he came out.

My heart stopped when he looked at me furiously

“It’s YOU who brought bad luck in here” He told me lunging towards me like a mad beast

He grabbed me from my hair and threw me across the room. I banged my head on the coffee table and everything went black___

I couldn’t open my eyes__I tried but I couldn’t

At the hospital

“Your daughter has suffered a severe concussion, she is stable at the moment. But she does not seem to recall her name or where she is” The doctor delivers the news to Manafisa and her ghastly husband.

“Is it temporary or permanent?” Manafisa asks guiltily.

“We cannot possibly tell, but you must keep her in a familiar surroundings if she is to ever regain her memory. Do it slowly though, as remembering too fast might cause her to have a nervous breakdown” He finishes his explanation and leaves them in the patience waiting room.

“How could you?? We were supposed to use her to blackmail Fawziyah into giving us everything. And now you did this??” Yells Manafisa.

“Don’t you see how perfect this is? We can use her AND keep her at the same time, without her realizing anything” He says it, revealing his rotten teeth as he smiles

“What do you mean?” She asks, confused

“You’ve always wanted a maid right? We can convince her that she was a maid in our house all along. And we can get the inheritance money from that old hag, so it’s like hitting two birds with one stone” He tells her the very evil plan

She takes a minute to ponder the situation before she agrees to the sick plan.

What they did not know is, the war in Somalia has reached crisis point. So forget making any kind of deals, let alone try to sell Omar’s houses and mini buses.

Their plan to get their hands on Khadija’s inheritance has well and truly gone out of the window.

“When the unbelievers were planning to imprison, kill, or expel you: they were planning, and Allah was planning. However, Allah is the Best Planner” (Surat al-Anfal: 30).

I'd love to hear your views on this chapter. Please post in the comments section below! :)


I love the way the story is building up, the suspense is killing, rising action is moving up, I can't wait to see the climax.

You write beautifully, keep it up!

This is One of the Most Amazing Stories I have ever read.......
Basically I am not a Fan of Reading but Once I started reading this story, there was no ending to it........I am Looking forward for more chapters of this story.......Please Continue and post it soon! =)

Please keep writing dear Sis. Love the story. I also love the way you're bringing out societal issues all woven into the story.

May Allah bless you with Khair for your beautiful words :)

Oooh its realy amazing story please continue

The story is amazing!! I loved it!!
Looking forward for the next one :)

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