Chapter 2

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*First Draft*

A few days passed and Zaisha forgot about Taha and her family. She got busy with her school and coaching classes.
One day she was using her phone when a message popped up. She opened it and saw it was a joke sent by a number saved in her phone by the name "TAHA (ASNA AUNTY's SON)" before she could think something another text message popped up from Taha and then there were two more. After reading them all she thought of sending a joke too. As soon she sent, she got a call from Taha as if he was waiting to get a confirmation that Zaisha has her phone in hands. Zaisha picked up and the conversation followed...

T: Assalamu Alaikum
Z: Walaikum Assalam
T: What were you doing?
Z: Nothing much, was just waiting for Amma (Urdu word for mother).
T: Waiting? Has she gone somewhere?
Z: No, she is in the kitchen. Actually, we daily sit in the evening together and then I tell her everything that has happened in the entire day. It's my routine for 5 years now. I love sharing everything related to me with her, she's my best friend.
T: Ohh! Will you tell her that I called as well?
Z: Why not?
T: Oh that means I have to be cautious with you.
Z: cautious?? Why??
T: hahaha nothing, so she is your best friend. And what about school friends?
Z: I have many friends at school too. I'm a very friendly person you see so it's like my whole class is very close to me. Also, we are sharing class since first grade so it's quite obvious that we all are great friends with each other.
T: That's pretty cool.
Z: yeah! You have recently shifted to India, it's your first year in this school so you tell me, how many friends do you have?
T: We haven't really shifted here. We are here for just one year. We will go back as soon my exams of the 9th standard will get over.
Z: Ah I see!
T: yeah! And about friends, I have got many friends but searching for someone special.
Z: ahaan!

Zaisha could only say this, she felt awkward. She has never talked to a guy like that. She has always studied in an all girls school and the only interaction she has with boys is in her coaching, that too is very very minimal because her teacher makes all the boys and girls sit in two different columns. She reaches there on time and leaves right after the class gets over so she hardly gets any chance to be friendly with the boys. Whatever free time she used to get there was spent in talking with girls. She doesn't even have male cousins of her age so she never had conversations with boys that show hints of love relationships. She likes to avoid that topic in her friend circle as well. Knowing her nature, even her friends avoid talking about crushes, love and relationships in front of her. This was the first time a guy who is almost a stranger to her was giving hints to start a conversation related to love and she didn't know how to react.

Taha's voice interrupted her thoughts.
T: Do u have some special friend?
Z: No, I don't have any.
T: Ahaan!! Zaisha we are friends, right?
Z: Um.. yeah?

Zaisha replied but her answer was more of a question to herself. But Taha doesn't care what's her tone. He wanted to hear yes and it was that so he went on with his next question.

T: Great! So you don't mind if we chat on text, right?
Z: No.
T: Cool! So we'll talk later on chat. For now, bye! Take care.
Z: Okay, bye.
T: oh wait Zaisha.
Z: yes?
T: will you tell your mom about my call?
Z: yes, why?
T: nothing, just asking. Bye, talk to you later.
Z: Allah Hafiz.
T: Allah Hafiz.

The call ended and Zaisha proceeded to her mother's room. As expected she was there with her cup of tea. Zaisha, happy to see her free, started talking about the daily happenings and in the end, she mentioned Taha "Do you know Amma who called today?" Before even waiting for her mother to reply she went on "Taha, Asna khala's son. You know Amma he is very friendly in nature, unlike his other cousins like Ahmar and Tabia."
"Why are you talking about Ahmar and Tabia like that? You used to be friends with them, right?" Her mother, Mrs Aniqa Khan asked.
"We used to but are not anymore" Zaisha replies with a sad tone.
"Why? What happened? I remember how excited they used to get after hearing you have come to visit Nani. Ur Nani used to even complain sometimes that Zaisha come to meet her and Ahmar & Tabia take her away to play with them. Talking about Mumani Sahiba ( Mumani= an Urdu word for the wife of maternal uncle, Sahiba= an Urdu word to pay respect to a woman), she loved you a lot, just like her own grand-daughter" Zaisha's mother turned a little sad remember her deceased aunt.
"I know she loved me like her own grand-daughter even I loved her like my real Nani (maternal grandmother) and Nana Miyan (Nana=maternal grandfather, Miyan= a lovable Urdu word) as my real Nana, especially when I haven't seen my real Nana Nani. I miss them both a lot, especially Nani Sahiba because we often go to khala's place and seeing her not there to give me a hug makes me miss her more." Zaisha could see that her mother is getting sad thinking about her aunt because she was very attached to her aunt and uncle both. Aniqa's father died when she wasn't even three years old and mother when she was in school. It was her aunt and uncle who showered the same parental love to her as they did to their own children. Seeing her mother getting sad, Zaisha quickly diverted the topic to a lighter discussion "and yes, you are right, Ahmar & Tabia used to come running down to take me with them but that was when they were young and innocent. They have changed now, we don't talk anymore, anyway leave this topic, I don't want to think about them n turn sad."

"Zaishu (Zaisha's pet name, her mother call her that whenever she feel like showering love at her) how many times have I told you that it's in the human nature to get attached to someone at one point and then detached on another. It is nothing wrong in this. If someone is doing such a thing with you then it is perfectly fine, you shouldn't think of them as bad" Aniqa tried to push the harshness Zaisha has in her heart.

"If this is so, why am I not like that? Why is it that I get attached to people so easily and the feeling stays with me forever. No matter how they treat me I always have this feeling of attachment for them. Why I don't get detached with people?" Zaisha innocently complained.

"Because you my Jaan are different and you should be happy about it. But you must not think that everyone will be like you. Treat them as different individuals and try to accept their flaws because you have them too and Allah will accept your flaws only if you will accept the flaws of his creations, are you getting my point?" Aniqa tried to explain so that Zaisha don't end up having tears as she usually does whenever she thinks of people who changed their behaviour towards her and whom she still love.

"Yeah, I get it. I think I should go and do my homework now, otherwise shahnawaz sir will complain to Abba (Urdu word for father)" Zaisha tried to avoid talking about the same topic because she knew that this will only make her eyes teary, nothing more.

"Yes that's a good thing to do, go get it done before dinner" Aniqa replied after which Zaisha went towards her room.

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