Flash Fiction: Ghareeb

By Fatema Masood Salem Masood Aljneibi

Illustrator: Mayyada Abdulhakeem Jaafar Amer Al Katheeri

Once upon a time, there was a simple couple that moved to a quiet town. They were happy in this town, and spent a lot of time outdoors. Every day the husband and wife went to the park for a walk. One day, the weather changed suddenly from sunny to rainy in a moment’s notice. They wondered about the change in weather, but continued their walk through the gardens. Then the rain became very strong, and the wife, who was pregnant at the time, became equally frightened as the rains wept violently from the heavens. The wife could no longer walk her legs simply wouldn’t carry her any further.

She was terrified of having her baby in the park. Her husband tried to make her feel comfortable and helped her to stay on her feet, but it was so wet, he was afraid he would drop her and hurt her and the baby. His wife was in so much pain. She looked at her husband and said, “I can’t take another step,” and sat down on the rain soaked ground. She screamed in terror as she felt the baby pushing his way into the storm surrounding them. Her husband tried to call the hospital, but there was no network. So she had her baby, in the midst of a storm that came from nowhere, in the middle of the park drowning in rain.

The new parents called their son "Ghareeb", which means strange, due to his bizarre birth. Ghareeb also had a strength that no baby should possess. One day when he was five years old he shocked his parents and threw the ball so high until it touched the clouds. Soon after, Ghareeb became a famous hero, all the bad men were afraid of him even the biggest man in town couldn’t beat him. When he grew up he was still inhumanly strong even though he was short, and his body looked frail.

So my grandchildren, now that you know about your grandfather’s story, will you tell this story to your children in the future? The children replied in a chorus “of course grandfather.” Now Ghareeb’s super powers will live on forever in the minds of his children’s children and theirs as well.

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