She always prefers her four corner cozy world to any open space that involves talking to people. That is just her. Plain, old Barira.
She loves it that way, it has always been like that and anything that has to do with change she despises it. She likes her routine, the fact that her world starts the same and ends the same everyday and knowing what to do and how to do it, that's why change is never her thing.
She could hear her sister's voice in the next room as she spoke so freely and cheerfully. She groaned. In five, four, three-
The door banged open.
Okay.. That was quick..
"I know you are awake, please get up and let's get this over with"
Barira sunk into matress tangling up her self with her soft, cozy, flush pink blanket. Ignoring her, she closed her eyes tight.
"Adda Barira" her sister, Yusrah tries again and she groaned loudly. This girl is always after her!
"I don't understand why you can't do this alone. I'm a mess already as you can see, I need to think this through. It's happening so fast" she whines sitting up while glaring at Yusrah who was sitting by the bed.
"I need you to talk to her, please. and what are you thinking through? It's already done, don't you get it?"
She exhales deeply. "Not yet.. I have time"
"It's less than two weeks to your wedding, and guests will start trooping in tomorrow! What time?" Yusrah rolled her eyes and this time she glared at her harder.
"Okay bridezella, let's not get cranky. Stand up already!"
She was already on her feet before she finished her sentence, she removed the black cap on her head and threw it on the bed frustrated. "I need to brush my teeth"
Yusrah chuckled laying on the bed. "Yes you need to, Gosh your breath is disgusting, I feel sorry for the man marrying you"
"Yusrah!" She gasp "It's a full package by the way, I come with my awful morning breath, take it or leave it" she walked inside the bathroom ignoring Yusrah's snicker.
She did her business as fast as she could before draping on her black hijab over her night gown.
"You look scary, with your eyebags and this black thing. I hope you won't take this dark thing to your husband's house.." Yusrah said with a bitter expression.
"I'll smack you, let's go"
"I'm just saying, don't give the man a heart attack. We can't have him sending you back home, who will marry you then?"
Barira felt the pang in her chest. She knows how chatty and straight forward her sister can be but that was just plain mean.
She is well aware that Yusrah is only trying to get her married so she it will be her turn next. Her fiance who she has been engaged to two years ago is tired of waiting and when their father, Baba, made it crystal clear that she is not getting married until Barira who is older than her is married, she took it upon herself to find a man who can marry her sister.
They stood infront of the brown wooden door, "Let me do the talking" Barira said to her sister before knocking on the door and pushing it open. Slowly..
"Asallamu Alaikum" they chorus walking in the dark room. Barira flick the light on as her feet sink into the soft Russian rug in the middle of the room, her eyes landed on her mother who watching the television sipping a drink from her mug.
She was shocked to see them as she stand up and walk away to the kitenette, pouring away the mugs content, she rinsed the cup. "Girls, sit down"
Yusrah held on her sister for support. The smell is strong, so strong she can barely breathe well.
"Yusy how are you? So early in the morning, is everything alright?" She beamed sitting on the bed while Yusrah bit her lip to stop the tears from falling.
"We were a little bit worried, it's been two days since you came out Mama" Barira chirped in as if it was normal to find her mother likely possible to be drunk in the morning.
"I think I'm coming down with a fever, I'll be fine don't worry"
"May Allah grant you shifaa" and guide you to the right path. She added silently.
"The guests are coming in tomorrow. You know how Baba's sister are, maybe you should step out a little bit and not give them something to talk about?"
Hajiya Sumayya flinched at that. "They always talk, no matter what. I could care less"
"Mama it's your first daughter's wedding. You have to take control over this if not they will"
Yusrah nods her head "Mama don't let them deprive you from your own happiness"
"It will be fine InshaAllah. Don't worry, you will get your happily ever after" She smiled warmly
"So about your dress?"
"I believe this is my cue to leave, Yusrah will give you all the details. I need to get ready, Maryam is coming to pick me up" Barira stood up and left.
How on earth did she even convince herself that everything will go fine. That it will be okay and it will go smoothly. With Mama and her aunts, they are like oil and water, they don't go together no matter what the situation is. Even if it's her wedding or not..They will always be on each other's tail.
She rolled her eyes before sneaking past them and to her room which is the only tidy room free of any human being thanks to Maryam who locked up at her instance.
"This is a disaster!" She mumbled falling on the bed as Maryam, her best friend locked the door behind her.
"It's not that bad, at least they are not throwing words at each other or fighting" she shrugged off sitting beside her.
Barira glared at her sitting up "Maryam they are having two different wedding under the same roof. What will people say?!"
"Okay madam, calm down. It will be alright bi'iznillah (by God's grace)"
She pouted and Maryam laughed at her "ew, stop making that ugly face"
"Now your calling me ugly instead of making me feel better? I hate you"
"Glad to know the feeling is mutual" she shurgged off her shoulders and after two seconds they burst into uncontrollable laughter.
"SubhanaAllah! We are so weird" Barira snort
"Speak for yourself, I'm alright as you can see" a knock resonoted through the door and they both stiffen.
"I wonder why the room is locked, this is stupidity. A wedding is going on then why on earth will they lock her room? Now where will I direct the guests?" The voice complined and after a short while the person walked away.
"That was close. when is this programme ending?"
"Maybe around six everyone will start going" she replied "so how are things with your groom?"
Barira lay back on the bed as if exhausted from the topic "Good i guess. we only spoke twice of the phone and it was mostly about the wedding preparation and how it will go"
"Are you serious? Do you even know his name?" She furrowed her eyebrows
"Yes, Muhammad. I'm pretty sure that's his name.."
"ouch!" She yelled when Maryam pinched her upper hand.
"You deserve that. What else do you know apart from his name?"
She kept quiet. "I know that they call him Sabeer, He is an engineer and he has been married before-"
Maryam cut her off "I didn't know that"
"Yeah well, he is in custody of their daughter" she whispered awaiting Maryam's reaction or response but when she didn't say anything, she turned to face her.
"Suddenly cat got your tongue right?"
Maryam rolled her eyes dramatically, "How are you going to be a stepmom when you know nothing about being a mother?"
"I will learn" she replied determined not to lose.
She can't afford losing every game in her life.
She could not be a good sister nor daughter but not anymore.
She is aware that Maryam only wants the best for her in life but she can do this. How hard can it be? Seriously.
"I know I didn't grow up with the best mother, or best father and values but i can do this, right?"
She hummed. "I believe in you Barira but this is huge, your building your very own kingdom, there is no second chance, either you win this or not. You can't give them anymore reason not to believe in you"
She swallowed the lump in her throat, she can feel her eyes burning as the tears threaten to fall. She refuse to be weak and give them a chance to break her anymore.
"It will be fine InshaAllah"
she prayed hoping somehow she convinced Maryam even though in reality, she is convincing herself to believe so.