Fasting [ficlet]

I still remember the last time I saw you.

It was during the holy month. We had to wear two veils now instead of just the one, and I was upset because I had just lined my eyes so that they would turn that color that you like. Green-green like that parrot that belongs to our neighbor, Mohammad. I imagined what you would say to me: “Your eyes look very pretty today, Sahira.” And I would just smile.

Well, now nobody would see all of my hard work.

I sat with my back against my door and watched the townspeople preparing for the festival. I waited for you. My stomach grumbled thinking of the sweet pastries that I would be eating soon, once the fast was finally over. It was very difficult, fasting like this. Especially when you were in love, because then you felt hungry all the time.

While I waited I played with the frayed ends of my veil, taking care that my tangle of hair wouldn’t come loose. Then Dada would get really mad.

When I heard your whistle from around the corner, my heart leaped into my throat.

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