Decree of Hope

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After Kailee left, I knocked on Ommy’s bedroom door.

“Yes?” she said.

I opened the door. Ommy sat on her bed crying.

“I know you’re upset. But I think it’s unreasonable. You didn’t really have an arranged marriage, and you shouldn’t have expected us to. I’m going to college at the end of the summer in Denton. If you want to come, we can get an off-campus apartment.”

“And if I don’t come?”

“Kailee and I plan on renting a two-bedroom, because we spend most of our time together and it’s cheaper.”

“You’re going to live with that girl you’re not married to?”

I sighed. “We’re not shacking up. We’re going to be roommates. And you need to get used to her, because one day she is going to be mine.”

“I’m not moving to Denton, so you can chase a girl.”

I shrugged. “I’d have to move somewhere. I can’t finish school here. Mirriam’s going to California, and she’s not considering inviting you. If you don’t come, you’ll be alone. If that’s what you want, it’s okay. But we won’t be around.”

“If you’re both leaving, I’m going to Qatar to stay with my cousin. It’s a nice place.”

It was time to ask the question I’d wondered about since she mentioned it. “Ommy, if we had family in Qatar and UAE why did you bring us here?” After meeting Kailee, I was glad we came, but life would have been so much easier for Mirriam and me at a school in Qatar or UAE.

“Most of my family did not believe my marriage was arranged. They said I would ruin their name if I married your baba. He said if we were going to be together, we were together and there was no hiding it. They made an issue of our wedding and said they would never help me. I didn’t want to ask.”

“But you do now?”

“I don’t like the U.S. That’s closer to home.”

“You were willing to put us through hell because you were too proud to take help, and now you’re willing to do it?”

She shrugged. “Things have changed.”

I didn’t want her to be so far away, but her last comment relieved me of any guilt I had for moving off with Kailee.

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