Opening the door carefully, Amir came in, back from his late soccer training. His younger brothers were already sleeping. Well, not all of them; Malik’s bed was empty. That rascal! Out in the night again! After all those reprimands, he does not learn how to behave. He just feels and does whatever he pleases. And that isn’t proper. Not for this family.
The problem is: Malik has become a teenager here, in this country where they arrived a year ago. Always hanging around with all those other mischievous, spoilt guys. And it is obvious that their beloved mom is missing. Poor mom, she passed away when Amir, the elder, was just thirteen. And Malik, always the black sheep, is badly needing her. He is so immature…
Amir is not that mature, either. But at least he is conscious enough. And that hurts him a lot. Because he knows how he must behave. How he should go about. How he should properly address girls; after all, girls do have families who care about them. But in this country it is not that easy, because young people behave in such strange ways. Here, girls talk openly to guys, nobody forbids them from doing. Hm, nobody…? There seem to be exceptions.
That lovely dark-haired girl from the flower shop in the market. The florist’s daughter. Whenever he goes and helps his dad with his spice stall, Amir can’t help staring at her. From time to time, she might be looking at him among the parfumed flowers. Why not? Amir always takes the chance to pass by the flower shop. His saffron-smelling clothes attract the attention of passers-by. Hers too. Which makes the situation all the more tempting. But…
Not possible. Better forget about it. Amir can imagine her dad yelling and telling. ‘If I see you once again staring at that bastard, I’ll send you far away from here’. He dislikes him. He’d rather see his only girl as a fiancée of a guy of her same class and creed.
Love is so blind sometimes… Amir goes to the small dining table and takes a look at the Book. Praying or complaining? He just allows himself to think some words. ‘You, so Clement and Merciful, please tell me. Why do I have to suffer all this torture being so young? Why can’t I just express what I feel? Is there a strange language I cannot master yet? Please, let me know, I desperately need to talk’.
But to no avail. No voice is answering. Only the sound of his own heart beating. His breath getting intense when he remembers her dark-brown hair. His dreams of a secret passion. The perfume of those flowers. Her own perfume. But then, all of a sudden, he avoids thinking about all that. Too much for Amir. He does care.
Unlike Malik, that scoundrel. He doesn’t care. He just says whatever comes to his mind. He’s learning quickly to speak to local girls in their own language. With his crushes, he risks getting into trouble. He is so… troublesome? Really…? Who has really problems? Which teenager doesn’t have them?