أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

(Translated from the Arabic short story by: Muna al-‘amad.)
As usual she sat to her sewing machine after finishing her home chores. She had no time for rest as she has to earn a living to feed her four children after their father got murdered. He was fighting the occupant Israeli army who were in one of their military operations that involved killing, arresting & terrifying the little hearts of children & robbing their peace of mind & life.
‘Husam’, her eldest son entered & mock fully said, “Whenever I enter, there I find u sitting to this machine. Wouldn’t u ever desert this thing? Don’t u get bored of it?”
Trying to hide what was in her hand, she said, “How can I get bored of it when it is the source of our income since ur father’s murder!”
“Let me see what u r sewing today”
She replied “some garments for the neighbors u r not concerned with them.”
He said, “Soon, I will work & relieve u of this.”
She said sternly “u r not going to abandon ur studies”
Then she added pleadingly “if u seek my pleasure please desert these friends u started accompanying them, u have started staying out late at night & lengthening ur hair &…”
He interrupted her saying, ” whom do u want me to accompany mother?”
“I want u to accompany pious youths & be a straight man like ur father.”
He said gazing into her eyes as if he wants to penetrate to her heart, “this way leads to death mother!”
“On the contrary, it leads to immortality” then she said silently to her self,” what is the meaning of this strange look in ur eyes?!”
She heard him saying “they r hunting the youths, one after the other… wouldn’t they ever stop resisting Israel.”
“You idiot! Do u think Israel will let us to live peacefully if they stopped resisting? Don’t u perceive that the victims of submission &surrender are far more than the victims of honor & self esteem!”
“What will my self esteem grant me if I get murdered? The blood of martyrs has watered the hills & valleys.”
“Therefore valleys & hills turned fruitful & produced alive hearts & resistant minds.”
“But I want to work & find a living to relieve u from this machine & feed my siblings.”
We r not created to eat & drink. Let the life of eating & drinking for the animals. We are having a mission to fulfill. We live this life while our mind’s eye is on the immortal life.
He was silent for a while & after looking at his wrist watch, he said, “mother! I have to leave, my friends are waiting for me.” she sighed with pain & went to her room to continue her work praying & pleading with Allah.
She went out to hand over her completed piece of garment to the woman who after seeing it said, “Mashallah! This is a very beautiful & perfect work. Here! This is ur money”
She said “this time my payment will be different”
The woman said, ” I am going to pay u how much u ask for but in limits, Um-Husam u know I’m not too rich”
She laughed & said “this time my payment is a promise u would give me that this piece of garment will be worn by none but a brave warrior. & that he would wear it only when he is doing a holy operation against the Zionist criminals.”
She added, “This is my payment & I want no other payment. I want him to wear it when he gets murdered so that it would be my witness before my lord in the hereafter.”
She went back to her house feeling relieved& contented. She has done a part of her duty. But her son, ‘Husam’ is her major worry. She brought him up with the hope that he would be his father’s son. But her dreams were demolished after he accompanied those young men. She knows nothing of them but their appearance is suspicious. She started repeating “oh God! Oh God!”
She waited for his return. Dawn appeared but he didn’t arrive. Where is he now? She heard the creak of the door. She ran to him. He hesitated & said trying to hide a package behind his back,” mother! Why are u still awake. I thought u were sleeping.”
She looked at him doubtfully “what were u doing till this hour?”
He said stammering, ” we… we were… we were playing cards.”
She said with deep grief, “playing cards!!? I didn’t bring u up for this.”
She drew closer to him, touched his forehead & said suspiciously, “the one who plays cards, sweats like this in such a freezing winter?!”
He said “mother! Mother! Please… I ran home to make myself warm… come on mother! I want to sleep. I am exhausted.”
She got even more suspicious but said nothing & allowed him to go to his room.
She waited until she thought, he would have slept by then.
She entered the room on tiptoes & searched for the package he was hiding. Finding it, she unknotted its strips. With her heart beating frantically against her chest. She thought “oh God! Will there be cigarettes or drugs or immoral pictures or…”
But to her utter surprise, it was nothing but the clothe she sewed & delivered that very morning…
 http://tasneemrajab89.blogspot.com/2011/06/suit-of-hero.html
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