اَلسَّلَام عَلَيْكُم وَرَحْمَة اللهِ وَبَرَكَا تُهُ
The night was cold but not unpleasant. A glance to his bare wrist revealed that he had no way of knowing the time. But he knew it was getting late - tomorrow was going to be a big day. And what better time for a detour? So when he was nearly at his door, the boy went straight instead and followed the road until a bend took him left.
A few paces later, uncertainty crept into his mind. "Should I be doing this?" The roundabout was deathly quiet. In his moments of reflection, two cars sped by from his left: one took a twelve and went on, while the other took the path straight from him - the path he so wanted to go into but dared not. The rear light of the vehicle soon vanished from sight and with it his fears. And so, he crossed the road and let the unlit road swallow him in its darkness.
Of course, it took a while to see afterwards but he kept on walking. The road ahead should be a straight one if memory serves. With one of his senses muted, he was walking blind. But the sounds never left him. Sounds of rubber on gravel constantly reminding him that he was still walking and needed to keep moving. Sounds of keys clinking against one another - his fears had returned now that light has deserted him, spurring his hands to fidget in his pockets. And loudest of all: the music of the night! Winds whistling scary tunes, branches swaying and dancing eerily, leaves rustling and rustling all to the beat of his heart. In all the madness, all he could think of was "There's no turning back". So he pressed on.
The field. The lack of stars. The birth of stars. Music ceased. Calmness ensued. Only thing missing: moon. To be replaced by a memory
"Are all your family members Muslim?"
"No, unfortunately it's just me"
"It's nearly a year now I reverted to Islam. I started reading a few books, met a Muslim friend and then I came here..."
A second pause, this time longer.
"You know, you're lucky. See, I was born into Islam. I never knew what it entails or what Islam meant. I was showed what to do and I've been doing it since without knowing why. You are lucky. You knew Islam before embracing it. In a way, brother, I too am new. On paper I was always a Muslim. But in reality, you and I are not that different..."
What is there to be scared of? We create our own demons. Making peace with the world and the Creator, he left - calmer than before. Still surrounded by darkness but a different kind. One that beckons to be discovered. Guided by two rabbits, trusting the animals' eyes more than his own to avoid hidden hazards. Past dark windows of abandoned halls. into the light of the world of the living. Grateful to be back. Even more to finally be friends with the night. The very night in the items of horror movies. The very night humankind tries to keep at bay. The exact same night chained by forbidden gates. Gates that we put in place to protect ourselves and our children when in truth the ones that needed to be chained most are within us.
-written approximately a year ago-