I purposely remained silent for the next few minutes, trying to unnerve her. I knew it was working when she kept glancing over at me to check if I was fine. I however didn’t even look up, but the next time she looked at me I forced my lip to wobble just a little bit. I’d sworn of crying for good after the events that happened 3 years ago, that no one would ever cause me to spill my tears again because no one was worth it, but it looked like I’d have to make an exception. I mean, it was for a good cause. Her eyes softened after that, barely perceptibly, but it did.
I didn’t give in though, I needed to wait for the perfect moment. When it came I was ready for it, “Haalah, is something wrong?” And perfectly on cue, I let loose a torrent of tears. Her countenance softened considerably after that. I kept up the act, forcing out huge sobs until she pulled up at the side of the road. She then did something I really didn’t expect, she pulled me into a hug and began to soothingly rub my back. The gesture was so motherly and unexpected, that I involuntarily stiffened due to the unforeseen emotions that bubbled up in me. When was the last time someone hugged me, was it sad that I couldn’t remember? If I were to guess, I’d say maybe 4 or 5 years ago. When was the last time that someone even just.. . I forced down this unexpected torrent of emotion that she caused to rise in me and if it weren’t for the fact that doing so would ruin my plan, I would definitely have pulled away immediately.
I remained in her embrace for a little while longer, secretly loving it but hating myself for loving it. I gave one more sob for good measure before pulling away, and wiping away the tears. “Want to talk about it?” she offered gently. Shaking my head vehemently, I tearfully spoke, “No, it’s just that… That I made a mistake, and .. and now papa’s going to hate me and… I can’t bear that he’ll be disappointed in me and… I promise I’ll never do it again.. Please don’t do this to me.”
“Sshh Haalah, it’s okay. I wont, just calm down,” she soothed. I was all teary-faced on the outside but inside, I was jumping for joy, She took the bait. I was saved. “It will all be fine, Haalah, I’ll come in with you and help break the news gently and I’ll make sure your dad doesn’t do anything too drastic.” What! No no no! This can’t be happening. Anger surged in me. Who was she to poke her nose into my business? She cannot tell papa. She can’t destroy the perfect image he has of me. She can’t, I thought desperately. I needed to find another way to stop her. I was snapped out of my panicked musings when the car jerked back onto the road
“Wow! You should apply for the Oscars,” she said angrily, “Way to control the tears.”
It was only then that I registered what I had done. In my shock, I’d dropped the act. How did I not realise that. I was caught! As the enormity of what I had done hit, so did despair. I was running out of options and had absolutely nothing to fall back on. Someone please help me out of this mess…