This was supposed to be the last part of Runaway Girl, but since there’s one more Sunday in November, and I’ve been getting a lot of views on the NaNoWriMo posts, I’ve decided to make this a five part story!
Enjoy part 4! (Read the previous parts here).
I got up from the table with an adrenaline rush I had never felt in my life before.
“No! I will not go back home!” I cried to them. “I like it here in the States where I can marry whomever I want! Let Samir marry someone else. Someone who doesn’t care about her freedoms and her happiness. Because I want to be happy, and never be forced to do anything I don’t want to do! I won’t ever have a choice if I go back to Bangladesh!”
I stomped up the stairs to the guest room I was staying in. I heard Greg and Priya saying something to them as I plugged Vonetta’s pink iPod shuffle into my ears.
I’ll never let them take me back home. I’d rather die than be forced into a life that will leave me unhappy.
A few moments passed before I heard footsteps getting closer to the room. I pulled the headphones out of my ears and sat up on the bed right when my father burst through the door, Greg attempting to block him.
“Mr. Ahmed, please—,” Greg began.
“SHARMINA!” he called. I stared at his face, forehead wrinkled and eyes widened with rage. Priya and my mother appeared behind my father and Greg in the hallway.
“Pack your things and come back home,” my father said. “The arrangements are still in place for your wedding at the end of the month, and Samir is willing to look past this.”
“Yes, please, Sharmina,” my mother said, stepping through the small space between Greg and my father.
“NO! Don’t you guys get it?” I asked. “I do not want that life. I’ve never wanted it, and you knew it, but you still insist on trying to force it on me.”
“Think about Miriam, hmm?” my mother said, coming over to me and placing her hands on my shoulders. “Think about how happy she is with her children and her—”
“And her what?! Her husband?!,” I was screaming loudly now, tears streaming down my face. “She’s not happy with him! And if it weren’t for her trying to set an example for me, I’m sure she wouldn’t have married Tanvir. She would have run away too.”
“Sharmina,” my mother continued. “You don’t know that…”
“Mr. and Mrs. Ahmed,” Greg interrupted. “I think you should leave. I’ll give you my cell number if you’d like to keep contact with your daughter but it’s late now and you should go back to your hotel.”
My mother looked at me with pleading eyes. My father stared at Greg with a face of fierce vexation.
“Vidya, let us go,” my father called to my mother. “We are leaving for the airport on Tuesday morning at 10am. Please. Come back home, Sharmina.”
Once they left, Priya came back to the room to comfort me. I told her that I have no plans to return to Bangladesh.
“How about I help you find a job here?” she suggested. “I’ll help you write a resume tomorrow and we can start from there.”
“Thank you,” I said. She gave me a hug and went back downstairs to wash the dishes. I offered to help her but she insisted I take a hot bath and get some rest.
As the hot water filled the tub, I removed my makeup with a cleansing cloth. Staring at myself in the bathroom mirror, I realize that I now have a whole life ahead of me. I can get a job, possibly even go to college part time, and maybe get my own place once I’ve saved up enough. The possibilities are endless.
This is the new me. The girl who ran away, and will never look back.