Decisions in a Halo: Season III Premiere – Chapter I

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Written by Alaa (aka Lols)

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“What happens when you hit desperation?”

A couple of months have said their goodbyes since the unfortunate reunion at Zamalek. Sarah Al Tomoum left the country; whether on recreational purposes or business matters, no one knew anything about her except that she was gone.

Ibrahim Romad and Nevine Ladaghi had a lot of planning to do for their wedding. They were still preparing their apartment which was half-furnished. They still had the wedding list to finalize, close the deal with the hotel that was to host their wedding, settle on the dishes they were to serve after the ceremony and keep their respective parents off of each other’s backs. The couple didn’t have time to focus much on Gang drama and all of these preparations were hectic enough as it was.

However, not having a maid of honor or a bridesmaid to give a helping hand topped the list of most annoying. Nevine’s obvious two choices would have been long time best friends Sarah Al Tomoum, and Salma Al Maleb. But both of them had proven to have lost control over their lives- one more than the other. Unfortunately, Salma was no longer an option to be considered by the bride-to-be since she was now known as the “backstabbing-bitch-who-married-an-asshole”. That asshole went by the name of Mr. Karim Imnan, the man who infiltrated the Gang’s lives many years ago and systematically destroyed them one by one, Salma included. But she married him either way.

“You’re not going to send her an invite to attend the wedding?” asked Ibrahim one day as they were preparing the wedding invitations in their new living room of their half-furnished new home.

“Not even that!” It was a done deal for her.

Ibrahim on the other hand, ever since that night, realized that the Gang was no more. He lost the hope of getting them back together and it quickly faded away. Even the mystery of Fady’s disappearance went unresolved. After that night, Ibrahim continued his search alone, looking for signs of his old friend’s whereabouts but they led him to a dead end. Ibrahim made his peace with the fact that maybe Fady didn’t want to be found, or worse.

As for Prof. Samir Tabarem, he buried himself in his work. He went away for a month to the University of Paris-Sorbonne as a visiting professor to teach a class. He’s been occasionally helping Nevine and Ibrahim with their wedding preparations whenever he has the time.

Though he tried obliterating the memory of that night in Zamalek, it kept haunting him. He never mentioned meeting Fady to his remaining friends. He never mentioned that Sarah’s abrupt self-removal from their lives – especially from his – was tearing him apart. She was the only one he could easily talk to and open up to. He never mentioned anything altogether after that night. He shut down completely, something Ibrahim and Nevine noticed but didn’t dare try and fix.

***

The young man was sitting in his car, his nerves were tight and his body was rigid. It was dark outside and dawn was almost upon him. He lit up a cigarette as his eyes repeatedly shot to the entrance of a building in Nasr City. It was eerily quiet and cold too. The distant barks of dogs could be heard from afar, mixed with the chipper of early birds. The young man rubbed his hands together to warm them up when his phone rang.

“Any news?” said the woman on the other end of the line.

“He’s still upstairs” answered the young man, as he dragged on his cigarette.

“Remember, stay hidden. We don’t want him to find out that I’m spying on him and using you of all people to do so” said the woman, a bit aggravatingly.

“Alright, alright! Jeez woman. You came to me remember? You called me and-“

“Spare me the walk down memory lane! When he comes down, you text me and keep on his trail” demanded the woman.

“I know what I’m doing” said the young man, frustratingly.

“Yeah, right! Especially when you were almost nearly caught last week! What were you thinking going into the same place as he was?” The woman laughed to the annoyance of the man, he dragged one last drag on his cigarette before he flicked it out on the street.

At that moment, the hunted man walked out of the building with his coat tightly wrapped around him and a black hat covering half of his face.

“He’s out!” said the young man as he terminated the call and sunk lower into his seat so as not to be seen. The other man looked around him suspiciously and walked away to his car. A few minutes later, the latter was on the road followed by another, a few meters away.

***

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Mariem El Tagoury

I am a graduate from German University Cairo. Reading novels is my passion and writing is my release. My guilty pleasures include fashion & playing around with my make-up kit. A couple of years back when I was introduced to the online world, back in 2007; I was quite surprised that in spite of the presence of thousands of young Egyptians who follow the online sphere daily, there wasn’t one site that represented us or our lifestyle. [Later we’d come to see the rise of the political, religion, social-elite, and foodie websites, but still the voice of the average Cairene youth was missing.] I was glad to find out that I wasn’t the only one who had the feeling of the outsider on the internet, that’s why I decided to gather a team to fill a gap & finally find our place online and give Cairo’s youth a real voice that reflects its true culture. I hope you find our site interesting with a new view of life. Besides running the magazine & editing, I write the “Sans Sugarcoating” column, pardon my french, and a couple of other stuff around here! If you want to contact me, my email is mariem.eltagoury@cairocontra.com; you can also use our contact form or email directly to admin@cairocontra.com

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