t w e n t y - f o u r

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I go out to search for him but he isn't anywhere nearby.

The place is big and I don't want to get lost and trouble him, so I go back and lie down, warning myself to not go to sleep because that's what I do all the time.

But I'm stupid, and I drift off.

I hear movements behind me and jump up. "I didn't-!"

"-Calm down, Sawera. Are you okay?"

"I didn't want to go to sleep, I promise. I just lay and waited and I don't know how I fell asleep. I promise I-"

"-Sawera? Relax. It's all alright."

He puts his watch down on his sidetable and I notice his night clothes.

I've slept for too long.

Fuck it.

I always do the same.

"I'm sorry."

And then I apologise as if my sorrow will fix everything.

"You fell asleep, Sawera, you didn't murder someone. It's okay. We'll go sightseeing in the morning." He says. "I should be the one apologising. I'm sorry for making you wait for so long."

"Who was on the call?"

Fuck me.

Fuck me and my habit of suspecting him.

Fuck me and my willingness to peek into everyone's privacy and not leave them to themselves.

He gets in the enormous bed and pulls me from my side to his, leaving more than three fourths of the bed empty.

"It was bhai." He kisses my forehead. "Nothing important, he just wanted to see how we are doing."

I want to ask him why he cried then, but he clearly doesn't want to tell, so I nod.

I feel him focusing in my eyes, as if finding something different than usual in the white - dark brown - black pattern.

I feel too conscious of my existence and the urge to move away or distract myself makes me shift around.

I don't move his arm that stays on my waist even though I feel awful about it.

After seconds of silence, he sighs and kisses my temple before holding my cold hand in his warm one. He watches how our lefts don't fit.

I slightly pull it out but when he doesn't let me, I don't act stubborn and let him hold it until he pleases.

He slides his own hand up and caresses mine.

"Don't you miss being in peace?" He takes a long pause to relax, "I miss being with you."

Did he ever love me?

"I miss the tweets you used to message me, Sawera. You don't do that anymore."

"I miss the time you used to give me, Azaan. You don't-"

Fuck me.

Fuck my impatience.

Fuck how intolerant I am.

Fuck how I said that, imitating him.

"Good. Say it, I want to hear you. Communicate what you feel. Is it about time? Do you still feel, in this place, that I do not give you enough time?" He asks.

"No. I'm an idiot. I talk before I can think-"

"-You say what is in your heart, and that's one of the reasons I love you so much. Don't feel guilty about it."

Zehnaseeb ✓Where stories live. Discover now