Chapter 10: Marriage

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     "What, so you guys shook hands?" Ahmed laughed as Dawood went over his first meeting with Annie for the fifteenth time that week. "Dude, move past that. We've been hanging out all week. She's pretty chill," Dawood shrugged and felt himself blush. "Look at him, acting all shy in front of us," Rana smirked before lightly punching Dawood's arm. "He's blushing! He's blushing!" Ahmed said in a singsong sort of way. "Stop it, both of you," Dawood sighed and ran a hand through his hair. "Oh, we're just messing with you," Rana smiled and gave Dawood a hug. "Yeah, I mean she's spending the rest of her life with you, so the main thing is if she gets along with you or not," Ahmed nodded and watched as Jannat ran past them towards the front door. "Speaking of weddings, I think Jannat's about to explode from excitement. I second doesn't go by before she's cooing over Adham," Dawood pointed out. "Have you guys met the guys from his pop group or boy band or whatever?" Rana asked Dawood and Ahmed. "Nope," Dawood shook his head. "I've been running around shopping with Annie for our wedding." "Yeah, and I've been busy sampling the fine cuisines of Lahore. Did you know that they have a street just filled with restaurants? It's literally named Food Street," Ahmed detailed. "I met them yesterday while shopping with Jannat. Good God are they handsome or what?" Rana sighed.

     Dawood smirked and shook his head, "Rana Baji has a crush on Park Street." "Damn right," Rana chuckled and stood up. "Where are you going?" Ahmed called out as Rana headed down the hallway. "I have to go change," Rana waved them off. Dawood smiled and shook his head, "I'm kind of glad she's hanging out with all the ladies. She never gets girl time, you know?" "Hey, any time she's busy and not nagging me, I'm totally okay with it," Ahmed chuckled and tossed an apple to Dawood. "Thanks," Dawood smiled before taking a bite out of the fruit. "What have you got planned for today?" Ahmed asked. "I don't know. Annie is going wedding outfit shopping with her family and I already have my outfit. Did you know that traditional groom outfits are called sherwanis?" Dawood asked as he finished his apple and tossed the core in a nearby garbage can. "Sounds like some Persian kid I used to know," Ahmed chuckled. Dawood laughed and shook his head before adding, "Well it's not some Persian kid. It's like a traditional shirt with skinny pants. All of it is full of embroidery like from head to toe." "Wait, that funny shirt thing?" Ahmed asked as he looked at Dawood. "Yeah," Dawood nodded. "Dude, I was WITH you when we bought that! The dude kept saying you were so tall so they had to custom make you the skinny pants," Ahmed said as he tossed a pillow at Dawood. "Oh, yeah," Dawood grinned sheepishly.

     "Sir," Faisal walked up to Dawood and smiled. "What's up, Faisal Uncle?" Dawood smiled at the man. "There is someone outside who wishes to see you," Faisal explained. "Really? Okay, I'm coming," Dawood nodded and hopped onto is feet. "Want me to come too?" Ahmed asked. "That's without asking," Dawood grinned. As they made their way outside, Dawood spotted an unknown car sitting in the driveway. As he approached the car, the sunroof slid open and out popped Ruby. "Assalam alaikum, Dawood Bhai!" Ruby grinned as she waved at Dawood. "R-Ruby? Walaikum assalam," Dawood said and shook his head. "Told you I'd find you guys," Ruby grinned before popping back into the car and exiting through the door. "Yeah, you weren't kidding when you said that," Ahmed nodded. "I rarely joke around," Ruby smiled. "Alright, so what are you doing here?" Dawood asked. "I got your invitation to your wedding! Auntie had one sent over," Ruby smiled as she held up an invitation card. "Mama did? How'd she find you?" Dawood asked as he looked at the invitation. He hadn't even seen the cards that had gone out, so he was surprised at the eloquent calligraphy on the card. "Auntie's awesome. She told one of the waiters to give it to me at my restaurant," Ruby smiled.

     "These are awesome," Ahmed said as he looked at the card and read out loud, "In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. You are cordially invited to the wedding of Dawood Khan, son of Harun Khan, to Qurat-ul-Ain Malik, daughter of Badar Malik, on blah, blah, blah." "Why'd they have to list our fathers?" Dawood asked as he looked at the card again. "Traditional Pakistan card writing skills. That and the fact that you are recognized by your father or husband in Pakistan," Ruby shrugged. "Oh," Dawood nodded. "Okay, so since your wedding is so close, Adham Bhai called me and wanted me to kidnap you guys to my house." Ruby smiled. "Wait, I wanted to ask you this back then. How do you know Adham?" Dawood asked. "I'm Rubina Siyal. It only makes sense that I know another oddball in Pakistan, especially since he's famous. Plus, our moms are friends. You'll find that Pakistan is a very small country. Everyone knows everyone either through relatives or connections," Ruby shrugged. "Are we going to be kidnapped now?" Ahmed asked in confusion. "Yeah, I'll get the ropes out in a second. First things first, where is Rana Baji?" Ruby asked as she looked around. "I'll get her," Dawood said before running back inside.

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