Devil with the Angel's Eyes (16+)

(Based on Khaled Hosseini's The Kite Runner)

Saria Ahmed is Assef's twelve year old sister, a charming young girl with bright blue eyes, and curly blonde hair. With her girly dresses and sweet demeanour, she comes across as the perfect child. But there is evil lying just beneath the innocent facade, a darkness that is sometimes beyond her control...

Any characters, words or plot devices taken from the Kite Runner are copyrighted by Khaled Hosseini and Dreamworks studios. I do not own them, and no copyright is intended. Saria Ahmed, and any other characters not owned by Hosseini are owned by me.

Please note that this story does contain strong violence, language and mature themes, but it is meant to reflect the violent and sociopathic natures of both Saria and Assef, and is told from Saria's unique first person perspective. If you are under the age, or maturity level of 16, or are in any way squeamish about violence, please do not read this story. Any feedback/ideas are welcomed.

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15. Old Friend's Return

In the last chapter, Saria's return to school got off to a bad start when a new girl named Ahtrai decided to make her an enemy. She managed once again to manipulate the situation to her advantage and Ahtrai was sent to the principal's office. Now we find that it is midweek and trouble is still following her...

The sun beat in the windows as I packed my bag. School was now over for the rest of this Tuesday afternoon, something I couldn't be happier about. I don't think that I could stand to listen to Mullah Fazir Khan droning on about Pashtun history one more second. It had now been one full week since Ahtrai's arrival into Wazir-Akbhar-Khan. For the most part, she and her friends kept to themselves, which was exactly how it should have been.

She and her circle of friends kept to themselves, not bothering to branch out and make friends with any of the other children. Under my influence, the other girl's in our class avoided Ahtrai with the same vehemence that one bestows upon a leper. Adia had also become a lot happier since I'd stood up for her against Ahtrai. As I said before, that girl was my property and it would be a cold day in hell before I let anyone else push her around.

It just wouldn't do to make the poor little thing feel as though she had two masters now, would it? I prepared to leave the now deserted classroom. Suddenly, I felt something hard ram into me. I overbalanced and fell flat on my face, whacking my nose off floor. My pencil case rolled out of my open bag and under a table. Pencils, pens, crayons and fountain pens all spilled out across the classroom. ''FUCK!'' I swore as I crawled around desperately trying to pick them all up.

''Tsk, tsk, little girls shouldn't be using language like that!'' scolded a voice from behind me. I turned around on my knees, coming face to face, or should that be face to legs, with Ahtrai. She stood over me with her arms folded across her chest. Forgetting about my school things, I instantly leapt to my feet and glared daggers at her. She wore a red dress that had a ribbon tied at the back. I had to laugh at the irony of her choice of clothing. 'Like a red flag to a bull,' I thought to myself.

Ahtrai bent down and picked up one of my books, the heaviest of them. She walked towards me with the book raised. I backed away, raising my hands up at my sides in anticipation. ''OHHH, are you scared of me, Saria?'' she asked teasingly.

''Don't push me, Ahtrai, just don't push me!'' I snapped, clenching my fists. Ahtrai advanced on me, a wide grin plastered on her face. She took the book and swung her arm back. She cracked me on the side of the head with it. My head reeled as I stumbled, catching myself on a nearby table as my legs gave way and I tumbled once again to the floor. I wondered how much time had passed. Part of me wished Assef was collecting me instead of Javid. I didn't fancy Ahtrai's chances against a sixteen-year-old rapist.

Ahtrai leaned down so she could whisper in my ear. ''We're in an empty classroom, Saria,'' she hissed menacingly. ''What's stopping me from beating you to a bloody pulp, hmm?''

''I ask myself that same question about you,'' I retorted, fighting the childish urge to stick my tongue out.

This was now full scale fights or flight situation. There was no way I was going to let her get away with treating me like this! No way in high hell! I shoved her backwards, causing her to stumble, lose her footing. "Bitch," I heard Ahtrai mutter, just loud enough for me to hear. I set my jaw and glared at her. On the Mullah's table, directly behind me, rested a small white ceramic figure. Just large enough for me to pick up and strike her with.

I quickly grabbed hold of it. Ahtrai didn't even have time to blink as I let out an animalistic scream and lunged for her. Ahtrai struggled like an animal in a trap as I pinned her down, pressing one foot on her chest. I bounced the figure up and down in my hand, not saying a word.

She continued to beat and claw at my legs. "You have two options here, Ahtrai," I said in a sugar sweet voice. "Option A, we both forget this ever happened, and you promise not to tell anyone." In response to this, she hissed like a feral cat. I just smiled down at her, knowing that whatever happened, I would remain in total control of this situation. "Or... Option B," I leaned down so I was nose to nose with the thirteen-year-old brat. "I smash your skull in with this until you become so disfigured you no longer resemble a human being. It's your choice, Ahtrai." I gave her the same smile I gave many of my victims.

"I'm not afraid of you, Saria," she said. "I know you wouldn't do it. You're just trying to scare me."

"Not scared of me?" I asked in false incredulousness. "Oh, now I have to rectify that, don't I?" I raised the ceramic figure high over my head and swung it down at her. She screamed as I barely missed her face. "Think I'm playing now?" I asked. She shook her head frantically.

"No, I mean, yes, I mean noo…" she moaned.

I let her up. "Why don't you do yourself a big favor, Ahtrai and just fuck off out of my sight?" I snarled. She just looked at me, completely dumfounded that I would even have the audacity to treat her in this manner.

After all, I was so quiet and sweet. She must have seen me as a pretty easy target, so pathetic and weak. Well, that illusion had well and truly been shattered for her. I swung the figure at her again. She jumped. "Ha, made you flinch!" I teased. For one long moment Ahtrai and I just stared at reach other. Maybe now she would have the common sense not to bother me anymore. I could smell the fear radiating from her, like a shark smells blood in the water. "It seems you've learned a very important lesson from me today, Ahtrai, didn't you? DIDN'T YOU?" She nodded hurriedly.

"Go on home, you little whore but just remember, next time, I won't be as merciful." I swung the figure at her for a third time. She quickly backed up and almost fell over herself in her haste to get away. Once she was gone, I sighed heavily, placing my hands into my hands. This was turning out to be a fairly shitty day for me. God forbid I just get some fucking peace! I replaced the figure back on the desk and straightened the tables so the classroom looked exactly as it had done before. The black rain clouds that now covered the sky thundered ominously.

The weather seemed to change as often as my moods these past few days. I straightened my blonde plaits, grabbed my bag and blue coat, and stormed out the door. A somber silence greeted me as I walked through the now-empty hallway. The other girls must have gone home, fortunately for me. I don't think that I could handle being teased again. 'What the fuck gives Ahtrai the right to treat me in that way?' I bent over and placed my hands on my knees, sighing deeply. Up ahead, Adia was waiting for me. Her father would be dropping me home today.

I walked up to her and cracked her across the face, sending her sailing to the ground like a ton of bricks. Her books went flying and she scrambled about like a blind man trying to pick them up. This caused me great satisfaction. To see someone suffering in the same way that I had suffered. "Come on, you little cunt." I offered her my hand. "Get me home fast." I pushed past her and out to the car. Javid gave me a broad smile as I approached. I smiled back, waving.

"Hello, sweetheart," Javid greeted as I got into the car.

"And hello to you too," I said in a sugar sweet voice. Adia climbed in beside us and we set off. I ignored what Javid was saying and rested my chin on my hand, staring out the window. All I wanted right now was to get home and sulk.

"Saria… Saria…" Adia poked me in the side. Damn, her nails were fucking sharp.

I turned, and, forcing a smile, asked, "What is it, dear?"

"Would you like to come to tea at ours?" Javid asked. "Your parents are away and we were wondering if you wanted to play with Adia."

"I just want to go home." I said. Realizing that this must seem a bit rude, I quickly added, "I have a lot of homework to do, and I'm very tired. It's been a long day." That it certainly had.

"Alright, dear. I bet you've got a lot of work too, Adia," he teased his daughter.

"Yes, Papa," she grinned back. Ten minutes later, we reached the large white compound I called home. I smiled my thanks to Javid, grabbed my bags and ran to the door. Using the key that Mama had given me when I was eight; I burst in and flung my bag into a heap in the corner. There was a resounding crash as it hit the wall.

"Stupid FUCKING THING!" I screamed. Assef heard the commotion and came out of the living room.

"Afternoon, kiddo, I thought I heard your voice," he joked. "You're bleeding!" he exclaimed, taking in my injured nose and lip.

"Afternoon, Assef," I said, hugging him around the waist. My tone showed the genuine love and caring I felt for my brother. "I just wanna go up to my room and cry, alright? I'll speak to you later. Don't worry too much about the blood." I made to go up the stairs.

Assef grabbed hold of my arm. "Wait, wait, wait…" he said, turning me around to face him. He squatted down so we were on a level. "What happened, Saria?" Tears of anger and frustration welled up in my eyes as I debated telling my brother about the events of my horrible afternoon.

Assef held my arms firmly. "What in the world is wrong, sister? Did someone do something to you?" His eyes took on that dangerous glaze. "Is there someone bullying you? Tell me who did this to you."

"Ahtrai," I spat her name like it was some sort of swear word. "Ahtrai, that little cow!" Assef sat down on the bottom steps and gently pulled me onto his lap.

"You want to tell me about it?" he asked. I suddenly launched into a tangent…

"I wanted to go home, Assef, I was just getting ready to leave. That was all I was doing! I have half a mind to slit her fucking throat!" I stomped my feet in frustration. "That little whore, how fucking dare she.. I'm going to fucking kill her, I'll fucking cut her right the fuck open!"

"Slow down, dear, you're going a mile a minute… Shh, come on, start from the beginning," Assef said, stroking the back of my head.

I sighed. "I was packing my bag, right? And the little cow pushed me! And hits me with my fucking Rumi book, right in the goddamn face! Tears of frustration filled my eyes. Wiping them away, I continued my sorry tale. "And then, then… she has the audacity to call me a bitch!" I placed my head in my hands on my head and sighed deeply.

"I just lost control of myself, Assef. I swung the Mullah's ceramic figure at her."

"Did you hit her?" Assef asked.

I shook my head. "No, but I threatened to. Now I wish I had. I should have smashed her fucking face right in!" I stomped my feet into the ground. "What did I do to deserve this fucking shit, what's her problem!"

Assef held me tightly. "Some people are just idiots, Saria, that's all. I'm sure you taught her a very valuable lesson, however."

I smirked at this. "She'll leave me alone now, I'm sure of it, at least she'd better or I'll break her fucking neck!" I stood up and wiped my eyes. "''I just want some fucking peace and quiet. Just to be left alone. Not beaten to a bloody pulp by some little smart ass freak. Who does she think she is, anyway?'' I retorted.

''She just moved in last week and already she's singled me out as her target! Why? What did I do?'' My temper was slowly rising to the surface again. ''I mean, besides crash into her but surely she would have gotten over it by now!'' My already thin shred of patience was slowly whittling away down on to nothing. I wanted answers to my questions, goddamn it! ''ARGHH!'' I shouted suddenly, kicking the banister hard.

All that did was give me a sore foot. I hissed and hopped up and down, rubbing it. My head ached, my nose ached and now my foot ached. What a great fucking day to be me! ''Come on now, kiddo, you don't want a broken toe on top of all the other injuries you've already sustained.'' Assef stood up and brushed a lock of hair behind my ear in a loving and gentle gesture.

''Let's get you a tissue for that nose, eh? You're lucky it just seems to be a scratch, I don't think she's broken anything. Although...'' he trailed off. ''You did say you hit your head off a desk, right?'' I nodded slowly. ''I don't know if I should take you to get that checked out or not, kiddo. I'm just worried you could have concussion. Just... turn around for me one moment, please.''

I willingly obliged and Assef inspected the back of my head for any cuts or bumps. ''Nothing I can see here, now do you feel okay? Not sick or anything?'' I shook my head.

''Just incredibly pissed off, Assef but I feel fine other than that.'' I gave him a warm and genuine smile. He returned the gesture, placing his hand on my hair and ruffling the blonde plaits.

''You look like Rhoda from that American movie. You know the one that Mother's family in Germany told her about. The one she watched the last time she went over. What's that called again? The Bad Seed, that's it.''

With our riches and Papa's airline business, it was easy as pie for Mama to make those trips to Germany to visit the family she had left behind upon moving to Afghanistan to marry our father. We were practically pissing change, after all. Mama had stopped her yearly trips when Assef was born, however, stating that she wanted to devote all her time to being a good mother.

That she couldn't bear the thought of going half way around the world and leaving her family behind. A good mother, HA! That's a laugh! She wasn't even here today to comfort her little girl who had just been beaten and tormented. Who knew where the bitch was, but it certainly was not where she should have been. As usual, it was up to Assef to care for me today as he had done so many other days like this. I neither knew nor cared where our parents went today. All the better for us to have the house to ourselves!

''What'cha thinking' bout, sport?'' Assef asked, tapping me on the nose. I giggled like the innocent child I was so often perceived to be. ''Oh, nothing of importance. Just how happy I am to get to spend time alone with you. I really like it when we get to spend time together. It's just the best.''

''Such a sweet thing to say, kiddo,'' Assef said. ''I take it you're in better form, then?''

''I'm not too sure,'' I admitted truthfully as we made our way into the kitchen where Hamilra had poured out two piping hot bowls of lentil soup. ''I'm just going to take everything one moment at a time. That's how I'm going to get through today. One step at a time.'' I nodded in self-satisfaction as I began to eat.

''Oh and Mother wants you to an hour of school work.''

I pouted childishly. ''Oh, I hate schoolwork!'' I lamented. ''Why do I have to do it?''

''Well, you don't want your Mullah's to get mad at you, hmm? You don't need a reputation for being naughty, do you?''

''Me, naughty?'' I pointed to myself in faux-shock. ''Goodness, Assef, do you know your baby sister at all?''

Assef laughed. ''Don't be cheeky,'' he said, pretending to be cross. I laughed loudly and hugged him. ''You know, if it were up to me you'd be allowed do your homework whenever you pleased. Can't be helped though. Get at least an hour's work done and I'll take you for a 'just because.' We need to catch up on them, don't we? How many have we had this year? It's only been two, right?''

''Third time's a charm,'' I quipped.

''Right, and I'll even let you pick out our lucky third victim,'' Assef said. I whooped loudly, clapping my hands in elation. My teeth clacked against the soup as I ate it in a hurry.

''This tastes like dog shit,'' I lamented, stirring the watery liquid. ''Not that I'd know what dog shit tastes like but I imagine it's pretty damn close.''

''Well don't eat it if it doesn't taste right,'' Assef said. ''I don't want you getting food poisoning.'' He took both half-empty bowls and poured them down the sink. Bits of food swirled around in the plug hole as he cleaned both our bowls and placed them neatly back into the cupboard.

''Bit of hashish would have made that better, I bet,'' I noted.

''You shouldn't be taking hashish, kiddo. You're insane enough as it is. You are a murderer after all.''

''And you're a rapist,'' I teased back.

''Murderer.''

''Rapist.'' We both smiled at each other. Who knew that two monsters could love like this? The fact that we could joke about such serious topics was testament to the dark and evil psyches Assef and I both shared.

I jumped down from the table and skipped off to where my bag lay forgotten in the hall. I swung the bag up onto my shoulder. ''I'll be down in an hour.'' I shouted as I began making my way up the stairs. ''Call if you need anything,'' Assef called after me. I gave him a quick wave before trudging the rest of the way up to my room. I opened the door and stepped inside. My desk stood waiting for me with pencils all lined up in a straight line. Study. Just another tedious task I had to contend with. Would it be too much to ask for a break?

I pulled out my Math book and began pouring over fractions. Normally, I'd find these things easy as piss, but now, my mind was anywhere but where it should have been. Thoughts of what I would like to do to Ahtrai danced around in my brain. The pain and humiliation I had experienced while I crawled like a dog on my knees was eating away at the short fuse that was my temper.

Why, why was she bullying me? Why did it have to be me that she singled out? Why not one of the other girls? She almost made me feel fearful of going to school now, thinking about what she would do next. ''Why are you scared, Saria?'' I asked myself. "Look at what happened to Zainab when she crossed you. To Adia. To Hassan. You don't have to be afriad of anyone!" I slammed the palms of my hands against the desk in emphasis as I snarled the words out.

If I could kill Zainab and get away with it, surely I could do the same to Ahtrai. I'd put enough holes in her she'd resemble a piece of Swiss cheese more than she would a human being. I placed my head down on the desk and let my mind wander for a few moments with thoughts of Zainab and her murder. I came to the sudden realization that no matter what she did to me, I could not murder Ahtrai as I had done Zainab. If I did, then surely all eyes would turn on me considering the beating I had doled out to her in front of the other children last week.

Now, don't get me wrong, I was pissed and I did hate the girl, but I also had to think of the consequences I would face should she fall victim to my wrath. I would take solace in the fact that she now must be as terrified of me as my other enemies always were. And even if I couldn't really murder Ahtrai, I could always imagine it, right?

Imagination was such a wonderful thing. My mind was already filled with beautiful fantasies. Ahtrai, tied up, chafed rope cutting deep into her wrists and ankles, her eyes gouged out of her head, her mouth sliced clean off, a gaping mess of bloodied flesh. I could practically hear her distorted screams as I sliced her face down to the very bone.

If I could, I would slice and dice away at her until only her skeleton would remain. Oh, to be able to bring my diabolical plans to fruition! Believe me, if I could, I would march over to her house and do all these things and more. If I could, but alas, I cannot, fortunately for her. The minutes seemed to tick by endlessly as I sat up and worked diligently at my algebra fractions.

Once the hour elapsed, I threw the book in a heap on the floor. I decided it was time for a change of clothes and pulled on a ruffled beige dress, with large collar. The outfit was nothing short of ridiculous, but I always tried to dress as innocently as possible when going on a 'just-because'. More innocent than normal, I mean. Closing my bedroom door behind me, I bounded down the stairs to meet my brother. He smirked at the sight of me as I ambled towards him. ''Nice... Dress..'' he trailed off, stifling a laugh. I fixed him with the same glare I had bestowed upon Adia many a time.

''Shut up,'' I scolded playfully, smacking him on the arm.

''Homework done, kiddo?'' Assef asked. I nodded, pinching the sides of my dress shyly.

''Yup. All done. Can we go?'' I was bouncing on my heels in excitement.

''Alright. Give me a moment.'' He zipped up his blue jacket- the same one he wore during the Kite Fighting Tournament- and smiled. ''Come on, then.''

In my haste to get out, I almost missed the second last step on the stairs. My heart jolted. I placed a hand on my chest. ''Fucking hell,'' I swore under my breath.

''You okay, Saria?'' Assef asked. I nodded.

''Alright, just be careful, okay? I know it's exciting and everything, but there's no need to injure yourself.'' I giggled. We both left the house. ''I took a key so we could get back in.'' Assef said, locking the front door behind him. ''Doubt Hamilra would hear the door, that dumb donkey is deaf.''

He slung an arm around my shoulder and drew me in close. ''I may have a little... surprise for you. Make sure you pick the right victim. You're going to love this, I promise.''

''Are you gonna rape someone again?'' I asked.

''Nope. Not today.'' We had walked into the centre of town, where merchants were setting up their stalls for another busy days work. The cool air circulated from overhead.

As we walked, I suddenly caught a glimpse of a familiar figure. Could it be? He wore a light blue shirt and American jeans. His hair was plastered to his face with sweat, and, most noticeably of all, his right ear was missing. I squealed in delight. ''It's Farsef!''

''Oh, why, yes, it is. Well spotted, sport. You want to have a bit of fun with him?'' Assef raised his eyebrows. I shook my head.

''Nope,'' I said, popping the 'p'. ''He's not victim material. Although, I would like to say hi. Is that okay?''

''Of course, dear,'' Assef said, smiling. We strolled causally over to where Farsef was. I tapped him in the shoulder. He turned around slowly, his eyes widening in pure terror as he took in the sight of his two worst nightmares.

He began to shake like an autumn leaf.. I just smirked, taking great pleasure in his discomfort. ''Saria?'' he mouthed. Let's see if the cunt tries to come onto me today.

''Hello Farsef, long time no see, hmm?'' I exclaimed loudly, waving. He shook his head. ''Cat got your tongue?'' I asked. He had no response to me as his eyes flickered from me to Assef in utter terror. We both had made a lasting impression on this boy's mind.

I rocked back and forth on my heels, watching, waiting. Assef suddenly stepped forward and spat right into Farsef's eyes. ''Youte no fun when you can't hear, you know.'' He said, signing the words as he spoke them. ''Come on, Saria, people aren't going to torment themselves.''

As we walked, I noticed a one of Ahtrai's friends watching me. The little cow herself was not with her. Surely they must be thinking about what had transpired in the classroom. I held my head high and ignored her sniggers as I walked past. ''How's your head?'' The little fucktard called in mock concern. I had to bite my lip to stop from making a smart-ass remark back at her. She was relentless though, and threw herself on me, knocking me to the ground. ''WHEN I ASK YOU A QUESTION, YOU ANSWER, BITCH!'' she screamed as we both rolled around for a bit.

My head reeled; I couldn't believe that someone would be so bold as to challenge me with Assef standing right there. Did she have a death wish or something? Assef, bless him, came to my aid as he always did. He grabbed the girl and threw her off me with such force that she was almost knocked out. She curled up on her side, moaning in pain. I got to my feet and watched Assef bend down and wrap his hands around the child's neck.

''Do not, and I repeat, do not, let me see you bothering Saria again. Understood?'' She nodded and began to walk away. I looked my brother in the eye. He knew me well enough to determine the meaning behind my glance. We advance on the little bitch like wild cats circling their prey. She ran. We gave chase. We chased the girl for God only knows how long, down winding roads, through twists and turns. My laughter echoed through the silence as I ran.

The chase was half the fun of a just because. As we neared the barracks where I had last seen my beloved Amir, Assef held out his hand to stop me from running any farther. He grabbed the girl by the back of her collar, eliciting a loud scream from her. "SHUT UP!'' my brother growled out angrily. Now, normally we would tease our victim, but I think both of us were so angry, we just wanted to get the beating over and done with. We wanted revenge; we wanted to bust her skull in. The girl was now struggling like an animal caught in a trap. Assef reached into the back pocket of his jeans, pulling out his brass knuckles. Instead of putting them on, as I had expected, he handed them out to me.

''Go on, kiddo. Surprise.'' I became a little watery eyed as I held them with reverence. My brother smiled as he took my hand from me and gently slipped the brass knuckles onto it. ''Go on. I'll guide your hand.''

He pulled the girls hair back and guided my fist to her face. I had her floored with one blow. ''You're a natural at this, kiddo. Well done." Assef complimented me. I grinned at him as I continued to brutally beat the girl who had been so foolish to challenge me. She was truly in hot water as we held her down and gave her the punishment she so justly deserved.

I felt joy overcoming me as Assef and I pummeled the girl repeatedly. Fucking little whore. I punched her once again, this time dislocating her jaw. She moaned in pain. I bent down and grabbed her by the hair. "Mmm, no, please... please…" she begged pathetically. I just smirked, slamming her head into the rough ground. SLAM SLAM SLAM SLAM! Up and down, up and down! She was now past the point of begging and was crumpled in a pathetic ball of torn clothes and blood.

I knew I had to have done some serious damage. "Oh, if only you had left us alone, this wouldn't have happened, dear," Assef said in a patronizing tone of voice, aiming a well-placed kick to the girl's stomach.

I yanked her hair back and struck her again. I got on my knees and leaned over her. "Remember, you little whore, this will seem like nothing compared to what we will do to you if you tell."

We left her in a pool of her own blood. Assef took his brass knuckles from me, wiped them clean and put them back in his pocket. He ruffled my hair and held me at arms length. "I'm proud of you, kiddo. I really am."

"Thank you," I said. "I'm proud of myself too."

"Well, you should be." He kissed me on the head and smiled warmly.

I was genuinely elated as I thought of the crumpled mess that I had left behind me. She'd probably have to go for surgery to fix her jaw, and with any luck, she'd be disfigured, just like Masood. I knew I had made a lasting impression on her.

Let this be a lesson to all those who dare to cross Saria Ahmed.

Coming up, Saria finds something of Assef's that he doesn't want her to see, prompting him to react in a way that could ruin their whole relationship. Please leave reviews and PMs. Thank you for reading...

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