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   Chapter 104 NO.104

MAFIA INDEBTED (Mafia Series 1) By NSH_SHAHEEN Characters: 30914

Updated: 2018-08-15 04:52


Shehryaar couldn't sleep. He tried but sleep continued to evade him as he tossed and turned in bed. But still he couldn't sleep. And he knew the reason why. Because every time he closed his eyes, she was there. Her hazel eyes, that were once so strong and full of determination, were now cold as they stared back at him, mocking and taunting him.

And that smile, that malicious yet victorious smile that she gave him that day, wouldn't leave his mind.

And the despair he felt would come back. He would be reminded of what she had done to him. And he would fall back into the pits of devastation from which he was desperately trying to get out of.

Why? Why did she had to do that to him? Why did she have to betray him? Why did she have to commit the one sin that was unforgivable for him? Why? She just made herself hateful and loathsome in his eyes.

But his hurting heart disagreed. His heart still wanted her. His heart was trying so hard to fight the rage and hatred that he was feeling for Anissa.

This had never happened to him before.

His heart and his mind were at war with each other.

Yesterday, he almost killed her. All that his logic pointed at was killing her and claiming her blood. But his heart prevailed and won him over, trying to make him understand and see reason that killing her would solve nothing.

He would still be hurt. And nothing would change.

He sat up and rubbed his temples. The lack of sleep was getting to him.

What Anissa did to him shook him badly. He never knew that betrayal could hurt this much. He hated betrayal with a burning passion because betrayal led to distrust and to Shehryaar, trust was a huge thing.

And her betrayal cut him deep. And it made him realise that she truly did hate him.

The only person that he loved and wanted, hated him from the bottom of her heart. And acting on her hatred, she hurt him so much.

Why? Why did she have to go so far as to consort with the enemy and stab him in the back like that?

He didn't know which was worse, her betraying him by siding with the enemy or ended up being used by the enemy to ruin his plans. Of course, in his denial, he desperately tried to believe in the latter for he wanted to find an excuse, any excuse to get Anissa out of the mess she had landed herself with him but he couldn't. Not when he closed his eyes and that moment would replay in his mind.

Her betrayal pierced right through his heart and made him bleed. Why? He never knew that heart break could be so painful. Being shot multiple times was nothing compared to the pain he felt upon learning of her betrayal.

He tried. He was really trying despite himself. But to no avail.

And now, everything was ruined.

He felt empty.

Everything around him turned cold and grey once again.

His world, the one that he built around Anissa, was as colourful and beautiful as her. But it started to crumble down.

He had trusted his heart to her. And she took and crushed it, leaving nothing behind. He felt numb and empty.

Why him? He loved her so much and she betrayed him? Why? What he do to deserve it?

And that's when he realised, everything wrong with her was because of him. He acknowledged his mistakes. He caused her to stoop so low. He knew why she did it. He acknowledged it. He knew she acted because of what he did to her: he knew that what he did to her was wrong and he wanted to make amends for it. But she was just too blinded by her hatred for him to let him set things rights at his own pace.

Weren't you also like that once? Didn't you also hurt her because you were blinded by your jealousy? That small voice reasoned.

Shehryaar was pulled out of his thoughts by the ringing of his phone. Already he was suffering from a headache due to lack of sleep and now this annoying noise was making his head throb. He felt like throwing the device to the far wall and smashing it into pieces but one look at the caller had him on high alert.

It was Zameer and Shehryaar knew that if Zameer called, then it must be in regards to Anissa.

His heart clenched as he received the call; despite what she did, he still cared for her safety.

"Saeen, I can't find her in the hospital. She left through the entrance that much we found out but-" before he could finish, Shehryaar ended the call and logged into his security app and tracked down her location.

***********

Anissa fidgeted in her seat. She had no idea why she agreed to come with them for coffee. And that too in such a public place. Of course she understood that they were just being careful. After all, they couldn't meet with her in the hospital since Anissa was under constant surveillance. It was almost unbelievable with the way they were able to escort her out of the hospital without the guards finding out.

"So, " Anissa began, looking at the two sitting infront of her. "What is it that you want to talk about?" Anissa said as bluntly as she could but she couldn't help but be distracted. Shehzad was looking at her with a open yet calculative gaze while Khadijah looked at with her kindness and gratitude and it made Anissa feel queasy. But what got Anissa's heart pounding like crazy was the apparent warmth she could feel from the young couple as Shehzad held onto his wife's hand that was resting on the arm of the chair. She couldn't help but feel conscious and inferior to them.

Khadijah gave Anissa a soft smile. "I'm sorry for the inconvenience. We realise that you must've been very busy." She said.

"You should know that it's dangerous for you to be meeting with me so whatever you want to say, I'd suggest that you make it quick." Anissa said, sounding rude even to herself. Shehzad's eyes narrowed at her with disapproval while Khadijah let out a nervous chuckle.

"Yes I know. But it's alright. What we want to discuss with you is important." Khadijah said.

"Actually, I was alright with doing it on my own but my wife decided that we should consult with you first." Shehzad said monotonously. "After all, we are in debt to you for your help." He claimed.

Anissa's heart stung. These people actually felt indebted to her when all she did was serve her own agenda. She did not feel worthy of their gratitude. Her head bowed down in shame.

"What is it that you want to discuss?" She inquired, just wanting to get this over with and leave this place.

They were silent for a second until Shehzad started. "I'm pretty sure that you are unaware of the animosity between our families. If you did, toy wouldn't have helped us. You must not know why your husband kidnapped my wife, yes?"

Anissa gave a meek nod.

"There's a reason. You see, my family, the Atish family, is the rightful family that used to rule the Sikhai province."

Anissa frowned. "Used to?"

Shehzad Atish nodded. "Yes, you see, the Ghulari family was an immigrant family that settled in the Sikhai after partition. My family at the time was the ruling family. They took in the Ghulari family and helped them. Everything was going great until the Ghulari family betrayed my family, killing my great grandfather and his wife and forcing my grandfather to flee the country. In his absence, the Ghulari family usurped all of the lands and property that belonged to my family. As a result, they gained power in the region. They bullied, threatened and killed most of those who were loyal to my family. Things were going in the Ghulari family's favour but my grandfather wanted to reconcile and return back to Pakistan but he couldn't since the Ghulari family would have him and his family exterminated the moment they set foot in Pakistan. So as gesture of good will and peace, my grandfather asked for an alliance between the families through marriage. But even then, the Ghulari family couldn't honour the alliance. Things are never as simple as they seem especially when you are dealing with an enemy that's dead set on annihilating you."

"My grandfather thought that through the marriage of Bano with my eldest uncle Umair, he could finally end the feud. But that never happened. He was foolish but he had good intentions that led to so much pain and destruction in my family. First, my grandmother was assassinated, then my father was killed and just three years ago, Khadijah and I narrowly escaped with our own lives." He told. Anissa felt her heart tug painfully. It's no wonder she felt so overwhelmed by the young couple: they had been through a lot.

"The Ghulari family is still out to get us. They killed my father, Mansoor Atish, just because he tried to reclaim what rightfully belonged to the Atish family. Six years ago, He started a whole assembly of business magnates and associates and started the Builder's Association. Their initial goal was to start development in the Sikhai by building dams and restoring the underdeveloped province into what it deserved to be but the Ghulari family liked to keep the region poor for ruling over the poor and making a profit out of them is easier. My father and his ambitions posed a serious threat to the Ghulari family. So they had my father killed along with every board member of the Builders' association along with their families. It was done in a period of two years. And your husband wa

so precious that you could never get it back?"

Khadijah drank her tea. "You know, " she gently placed the cup in the saucer. Anissa glanced into her eyes and saw them become sorrowful as Khadijah's features morphed into sadness. "This is my third pregnancy. Before that, I was pregnant twice. The first time, it was with a baby girl, a year before my twins were born." She told, swallowing hard as she tried to keep her emotions in check but Anissa had already seen the moisture gather in her eyes. "She was right here, " Khadijah brought her arms up and looking at them with longing. "She was right here in my arms. But I lost her and I was powerless. I couldn't do anything despite shielding her from harm. I couldn't save her." She said, her voice growing thick. "I don't know why I tell you this, " she looked up at Anissa. "I lost my Huria because of the Ghulari family. To this day, I have not gotten over her death. She was my first born. And I can never forget her." She broke into silent sobs, fat tears falling down her cheeks. Anissa's heart stirred and she got up to sit next to Khadijah and comfort her as she rubbed her back soothingly. She had no idea that Khadijah had been through so much. Anissa felt not only moved but belittled. She couldn't believe that she was hearing this from someone younger then her. And it made her realise that Khadijah wasn't weak, she was wise and strong. It takes a strong heart to forgive. While with Anissa, she let her bitterness mar her once kind and caring heart as a result of giving into hatred and anger.

"It was the most darkest time of my life. I was in an accident on the day Huria died and as a result, I was left crippled. It took me two years of vigorous physio to be able to walk again. But Allah was with me and He restored me back to health as long as I kept a firm hold on my faith. And I was blessed with so much after that." She said and looked at Anissa.

"We suffered a lot because of the Ghulari family even though we had nothing to do with anything. But instead of revenge, we are focusing on rebuilding. Revenge is a double edged sword. It only hurts you in end." She stipulated. Her would stabbed Anissa right in the heart.

"I don't know what happened to you." Her soft glossy eyes studied Anissa. "I don't know why you went against your husband and helped us. But I can see that you are deeply hurt and broken. I can't say anything other then to offer you advise: whatever happened happened, let it go and take a leap of faith. Choose happiness over anything else. Be patient and leave everything in Allah's hands and see how things get better. All you have to do is trust in Allah and see what happens." She conveyed.

Anissa's eyes welled up. She couldn't believe how influenced she felt from just a few words.

But then again, it takes only a moment for hearts to turn. And all the emotions that Anissa kept locked away were now coming out. And that snapped the last threshold of her buried emotions and every suppressed emotion was out.

Anguish.

Pain.

Compunction.

Contrition

Remorse.

Guilt.

And they overwhelmed her. The guilt that she was desperately trying to ignore was finally out. Anissa's heart leapt in her chest and she broke into sobs.

Because she knew that this guilt would make her realise that what she had done was wrong and eventually, it would lead to regret, something she didn't want to acknowledge otherwise the whole purpose would be defeated.

But now that her emotional flood gates were open, she had no other option but to accede with what she had done. What she did to Shehryaar was wrong. Though he may deserve it, but was it really his fault that he was a psychopath? Was it really his fault that he didn't have a conscience like her? Was it his fault that he was a sadist and took pleasure in pain? No it wasn't. She knew that as long as she believed that he was a psychopath, a person incapable of empathy or remorse for his actions: even if she hurt him in the most worst of ways, it still wouldn't be enough because he deserved far more then that. But now she realised that she did hurt him. And it didn't make her feel any better but worse.

Khadijah was right: revenge really was a double edged sword. It hurt her more and left her with so much regret.

Her pride refused to accept this regret but her bleeding heart has already accepted it. Then what was the point of ever betraying him if she was bound to feel this way in the end?

But could she really blame herself? She was human after all and making mistakes was only natural. But what she did wasn't committing a mistake, no, it was equivalent to committing a huge sin.

Why Allah why? Why are you making me feel this way? She thought.

No, she couldn't even blame Allah for how she was feeling for it was her fault and hers alone.

And it resulted in so much pain. Her heart was in pain. It was her heart that was in turmoil now; Her bleeding heart that was once the home of her goodness, innocence and purity. This same heart that was so strong and enabled her to fight for what she believed in. This was the same heart that made her defend the man who took away her purity for the sake of humanity. It was the same heart that made her selfless and enabled her to think of others. But what did anger and hatred do to her? Turn her bitter and ignore her heart and now her heart was bleeding with guilt and regret.

And is this how she did it justice? By hurting another human being? No, she only ended up tainting what she used to be.

No, he deserved it. Her stubborn pride tried to reason.

Then you also deserve this unrest. Yes he hurt you, but, he did it out of anger and jealousy and as a result, you hurt him out of anger and hatred.

This conclusion led to such a strong revelation. The common denominator of the two: anger. That's how powerful that raging emotion is, leaving no difference between the two.

Then what was she to do?

Because whatever decision was going to make would decide the fate of both her and Shehryaar.

***********

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