Unequally Divided

  • 09 Jun - 15 Jun, 2018
  • Salaar Laghari
  • Fiction

Next afternoon, Haroon was with his wife Zoya at a restaurant. They were seated at a table for two. Zoya seemed delighted about spending time together but Haroon rested his head on the table.

“You know, I’m planning to continue my career ahead,” Zoya said.

“Yeah, that’s great,” he answered in the least bothered way.

“Haroon, talk to me,” she spoke getting annoyed with his attitude.

He looked up at her and pretended to be interested.

“Yes, I’m listening. I’m glad you’re continuing your studies,” he said.

“Is something bothering you?”

“No, not at all. I was just… I’m fine.”

“Haroon, why don’t you share anything with me, what’s going on?”

“Leave it; it’s going to ruin our moment.”

“If you have any feelings at all…” she spoke after a pause, “for me or for this relationship, then you’re going to share it with me.”

Haroon gave it a thought and said, “Look it’s my family matter.”

“I am your family,” she interrupted immediately. “I’m your wife. I am your family.”

He was speechless. Even though he didn’t want to speak, he did so anyway.

“The thing is, my father does not like my elder brothers. He hates them.”

“Oh, that’s really bad.”

“That’s all what’s eating me. And as long as this continues, I can’t take you home.”

“Oh, come on! This is not just your problem. It’s our problem. I’d love to sort out these issues for you, as much as I can.”

“Thank you,” he smiled. “That’s really kind of you,” she smiled back.

They talked, had their lunch and left after an hour.


One evening, Dawood was sitting on a sofa. He was watching television and waiting for someone. That’s when one of his servants showed up and said, “Alright sir, I’m leaving.”

“Ok,” Dawood answered looking at him.

“See you tomorrow,” he spoke as he left the room.

After a few minutes, Haroon entered the room and sat next to his father on a separate sofa.

“So Dad,” he spoke a little fearfully. “What is it that you wanted to talk about… on a serious note?”

“On a serious note?” Dawood said, as he turned closer to Haroon, “Indeed. You, my son, are the greatest of all my sons. And I’m grateful to have you.”

Haroon paid close attention to his words.

“Today, I want to share something really important with you,” Dawood continued. “And I want you to take it seriously.”

“Ok, please go on.”

“When you were very young, I sent your elder brothers to hostel; and that was a huge mistake. Because they weren’t brought up properly. They became violent, disobedient and rebellious. As they returned I saw this disastrous change in their personalities.”

“I see.”

“Truth is, I didn’t give them love. To this day, I regret that if only I had given them the same love I gave you, then they might have turned out to be better sons.”

“But Dad, they’re not that bad.”

“Son, you are very innocent. You haven’t seen the evil part of this world. And I don’t want you to, which is why in order to protect you from all the evil, today I want to tell you something special.”

“Ok, I’m listening.”

“Look, I don’t know where to begin. I’ll just ease into it. My dear, I don’t know how many years I have left to live. I won’t stay with you forever. It is a bitter truth that we have to accept. So I just want to tell you about what I’m leaving behind.”

“Dad, can we please not talk about this today?”

“Look son, you can’t keep running away from these realities. You must face them. One day, I will die and you will be left alone with these two devil brothers of yours.”

Haroon closed his eyes feeling upset and helpless, while Dawood continued his speech.

“I am a diabetic patient and only God knows how long I will be able to live. You are about to start your career and you need to take your wife’s responsibility.”

Haroon nodded.

“Haroon, listen to me,” Dawood continued. “You are a kind of person who can easily be misused and pardon my words, easily be fooled.”

Haroon didn’t respond but Dawood kept on speaking.

“Your brothers, they are cruel, clever and cunning. I’m sorry to say this but you need to know all this. You must understand the danger that will surround you after my death.”

“I don’t know what to say, you keep going.”

“I have earned a lot. And I will leave behind some great fortune. I don’t want your brothers to get a majority share. Do you understand?”

“That would be injustice, Dad.”

“I don’t care, it’s all about ‘as you sow, so shall you reap’. Your brothers are only getting what they deserve.”

Haroon did not reply to this.

“Anyway, about the property that I’m leaving behind, you and your wife are going to get the greatest share of all. Is that understood?”

“Sure, the lion’s share?” he said, looking least interested.

“Your brothers will also get some.”


“So I just need you to note down the numbers. By numbers I mean, you should know the percentages of your shares.”

Haroon listened to it carefully.


Two Years Later

The three brothers: Bilawal, Jasim and Haroon were standing together inside a graveyard. Haroon was crying incessantly. Bilawal seemed angry and upset at the same time. Jasim, however, was just pretending to cry and his fake behaviour was evident.

It was Dawood’s funeral. The three brothers were standing together and they were about to leave. Zoya waited outside and kept weeping. Some other relatives also stood outside and felt sad about the tragedy.

Jasim and Bilawal slowly walked towards the exit. Devastated, Haroon was unable to move. He was just looking at his father’s grave. After a while a few of his relatives came and gently pulled him to leave the graveyard.

Haroon left with them but he couldn’t stop crying.

Minutes later, he was in a taxi with his wife. He was still weeping and Zoya was upset for her husband.

“I’m really sorry for your loss,” Zoya tried to make some conversation.

Haroon didn’t answer her.

After a long moment of silence, Haroon said, “I just don’t understand how this happened. My Dad would have never committed suicide.”

“I know and I agree. It’s not suicide; it might just be an accident.”

“Come on,” he said trying to control his grief. “How can an insulin overdose be an accident?”

“That’s hard to figure out,” Zoya said.

“No, either it is really suicide or one of our servants must have done it purposely.”

“Please Haroon, don’t think like that. It’s not a murder.”

“Oh but it can be. I will have to find that out by myself.”

“Oh God!” she said in a tensed tone.

The taxi dropped them at Zoya’s home. They both stepped outside. Before entering home, Zoya asked him, “Haroon, do you think I should move in with you now?”

“Yes, definitely,” he answered remembering how his father always wished him to do so.

Then they entered the house.


Jasim was at Bilawal’s home. This was when Jasim said, “Ok, now what?”

“Now, we’ll wait.”

“Wait? I’ve been waiting helplessly for a long time. I want what has been left behind for me, right now.”

“Just let me contact father’s lawyer then everything will be resolved.”

“No, it won’t be resolved. Haroon knows about everything. We can’t change anything unless he is alive.”

“I know,” Bilawal said in a regretful tone. “You’re right. Something must be done with him.”

“Can we negotiate with him?”

“We can try, but that’s not easy”

Before answering, Jasim thought about something and replied in a disappointing way, “No, forget it. We can’t negotiate with him. This matter cannot be resolved by winning Haroon’s heart. It is a legal matter.”

“That’s right, which is why I’m asking you to wait for a while and let me talk to our father’s lawyer.”

They agreed and made their devious plan together.


Next morning, Haroon was sitting upset at his home. His breakfast was kept right in front of him. Zoya, who was present there, felt surprised looking at him and asked, “What is it Haroon? You haven’t touched your food yet.”

“I don’t want to… I’m not hungry.”

“Look Haroon, I know it’s upsetting but right now you need to pull yourself together and find out some answers.”

“You’re right and that’s what’s bothering me.”

“Please don’t worry. I will be supporting you in every step. But right now you need to have your breakfast.”

“I just can’t,” he said standing up. “I’m sorry I don’t want to give you a hard time but I just can’t get over it.”

He left the room, leaving his breakfast untouched.

He reached another room. Picked up his car keys, wallet and then walked towards the exit. Zoya followed him and saw that he was leaving the house, so she called him out, “Haroon!”

He neither respond nor turned back to see her, instead he opened the gate and left the house. Zoya yelled again. “Haroon! Where are you going?”

Seeing him leave, she went towards the key holder, picked up another car’s keys and rushed outside.

Next minute, Haroon was driving his car ahead and Zoya was secretly following him in one of his cars. Haroon was upset and drove at a slow speed. Tears rolled down his face. Zoya secretly followed him because she actually wanted to know what he was up to.

Minutes passed and they were closer to the sea side. Zoya was suspicious and confused as to why Haroon was going there. She kept following him and made sure to not lose his sight.

“I wonder what he’s up to over here,” she said to herself.

As Haroon parked his vehicle and stepped outside, Zoya stopped her car. He entered the place through the park.

Zoya turned off the car’s engine, and despite parking it at the wrong spot, she stepped outside and quickly followed her husband.

Now Haroon was out of her sight. She kept looking for him desperately but couldn’t see him anywhere.

“Oh no!” she uttered. “Where has he gone now?”

She changed her direction and walked straight towards the sea. She could hardly walk on the sand but kept struggling. While looking out for her husband, a horrifying thought came to her mind.

Oh my God, is he planning to commit suicide here? she wondered.

She enhanced her speed and looked for him everywhere.

Then as she walked further, she saw a little hill surrounded by large rocks. She walked closer towards it and saw someone sitting on the top. She made her way towards that person wishing him to be her husband. She climbed the hill and as she got closer, she recognised him. It was Haroon. She felt delighted and called him out, “Haroon! Haroon!”

He turned around to see Zoya calling out his name. He was surprised to see his wife there. Zoya rushed towards him. Haroon was furious and asked her, “What are you doing here?”

His body got disbalanced and Zoya was frightened to see him in such a state. Eventually, he fell off the cliff.

“No!” Zoya yelled.

Haroon had fallen from the hill’s top. Zoya ran as fast as she could and reached the spot where he stood. From there she looked down and saw her husband lying down among the large rocks. She could see blood all over his forehead.

“Oh my God!” she cried.

She immediately left the hilltop and ran towards the spot where her husband was lying injured. She was praying and crying while running towards him with a fast heartbeat.

As she finally reached the spot, she skipped the rocks and went closer to Haroon, who had fainted and bled a lot. She looked around and yelled.

“Help! Somebody, please help!”

Zoya then took out the cell phone from Haroon’s pocket and called for an ambulance. A crowd of few men gathered around her and they were all looking at Haroon’s injured face.

Ten minutes later inside the ambulance, Haroon was lying on the stretcher. Zoya sat next to him with the compounder. She was praying all the while waiting for the ambulance to reach the hospital. The time passed too slowly for her.

The ambulance got stuck in traffic for a while. That’s when Zoya started to panic. Finally, the traffic cleared and vehicles made way for their ambulance to pass through.

Few minutes later, the ambulance reached hospital.

to be continued...