Write a flashback, of about 200 words, to the following story.
Ahmed erupted through the door. As he walked to the back of the room, he stared at Rana with the contempt a dead man walking has for his executioner. When he fell into the seat at the back of the classroom, he watched Rana moving around the front of the room. The teacher’s beady eyes seemed to follow everyone as they crowded into the classroom. Just like Jamshed
had said earlier, everyone hated Rana and his aggressive ways. He was always picking on students for no reason. With everything that had happened to him that day, Ahmed just hoped Rana had the good sense to leave him alone. As he sat there, Ahmed’s muscles tightened. “Please don’t say ‘get out your writer’s notebooks’ again today.”
“Get out your writer’s notebooks,” Rana’s voice boomed. He sounded like a broken jukebox always playing the same warped record day after day. Rana stood before the 25 students. Ahmed could see his round figure and the way he always clapped his hands together at the beginning of class as if he were a band director. Ben lowered his eyes, hoping that if he didn’t see Rana, perhaps Rana would not see him. Suddenly Ahmed’s silence was shattered. “I said,
Ahmed, where is your notebook?”
Ahmed heard his mom’s words echo from the morning. “What are you gonna do with yourself, Ahmed?” He heard the sound of the hallway and the birds singing outside the window. He heard the rumble of his car’s motor. He saw flashes of the eastern sky.
“I don’t have it.” Ahmed’s words caused most of the class to take a deep breath. Jamshed looked across the room and began to mouth the words, “No, Ahmed . . . don’t.”
But it was too late.
Ahmed was ready to break the chains that had held him in place. “I said I don’t have it,” Ahmed continued, “because it is a pile of crap. You always make us do this junk for no reason. I am tired of it and I am tired of you.”
Like spectators at a tennis match, the students turned their heads to stare at the teacher. He stood there, the copy of The Literary Magazine slowly slipping between his fingers. A large vein rose on his temple and his brow wrinkled like a mountain range spread across the globe the students looked at in Geography. He shuffled back on his heels and his eyes narrowed. He shot laser beams across the room at Ahmed.
“What did you say, young man?” The spectators turned.
“I said you, this writer’s notebook, this class . . . hell, this entire school, are full of
crap!!!!” Ahmed’s voice had turned into a low squeal, but his face had grown older, like stone rubbed raw by years of wind and rain.
“Get out,” Rana responded. He could barely contain the rage inside him. The class stopped watching and began to lower their heads. When Ahmed did not move immediately, Rana repeated himself. Ahmed thought to himself it was typical for Rana to repeat himself.
Ahmed stood up and began to navigate through the row of chairs. The cuffs of his worn khakis scraped against the carpeted floor as he made his way toward the front of the room. His head was up but his eyes were lowered. As he passed by Jamshed, he touched him on the shoulder. Jamshed lowered his head onto the desk.
When Ahmed moved closer to Rana, the teacher reached out and wrapped his hand around Ahmed’s arm.
“Really smart, Ahmed . . . you are just like the rest of ‘em.”
All of the day’s events rushed through Ahmed’s veins. Almost like a reflex, he struck out.
He shook Rana’s hand away with one arm and brought his elbow up quickly, catching Rana square on the jaw. The thud rang out across the room like a bass drum. One person in the class gasped; another whistled and the others just sat there. Rana raised his arm to protect his face. Ahmed brought his other hand hard into the teacher’s stomach. Breath drained from the teacher and he fell backwards onto the blue carpet.
Ahmed stared down at the teacher and the reality of what he had just done began to set in. He turned and began to walk toward the door. Everyone stared at him. He walked to the door and for good measure, he slammed it as he exited into a world much different from the one he had been in before.
Writer: Fariha Jahangir
His mother’s words echoed in his ears. He had seen the hatred in her eyes. He had seen the contempt there.
“You’re all the same, you godforsaken bastards! First your father, then your brother, and then you!” she yelled, “I wish you’d never been born!”
She hurled the fork at him. He ducked. It dug into the wooden bedpost behind him. She said he was like theM: his brother who had run away from home, and his father who was in jail for murder.
Anger coursed through his veins. How dare she say that. He was shaking with rage. He wanted to make her scream in agony. He wanted to hurt her like she had hurt him. He wanted to make her beg for mercy.
He realized with horror that she was right. In his fury he had flung her against the concrete wall. Horrified at what he had done, he ran out of his house.
The fear in her eyes flashed before him. He wished she had not gone to the parent-teacher meeting. He hated Rana for doing this. The monster overtook him once again. Rana’s face swam into focus. Ahmed struck.
Writer: Aimen Shaikh
Just like the rest of them. The words screeched in his mind like nails on a chalkboard. Had his mother not said something along the same lines that very morning? “Like father, like son,” she had spat out, slamming the cereal bowl on the table in front of him, causing the milk to slop down the sides.
“Don’t you dare compare me to that miserable old drunkard!” Ahmed’s hands balled into angry fists. If he had been slapped instead, it would not have hurt half as much.
His mom rounded on him, her purse slipping halfway down her arm. “Then what do I call those D grades of yours? D for distinction? And what about our regular visits to the clinic? Dr Mazhar’s lucky stars blessing him with a patient who loves to get into stupid fights? And would you mind explaining why you waste all your time doodling God knows what crap on your notebook?” By now, her face was so close to Ahmed’s, the stink of tobacco from her mouth almost made him gag. “Your dad’s dirty genes-”
CRASH! Ahmed stood up from the table so suddenly, the cereal bowl toppled down, the milk from inside streaking miserably across the floor. For a few moments, the only voice to be heard was the soft pattering of raindrops on the window pane and the groaning of a rusty truck somewhere on the street, as mother and son shot daggers at each other. Ahmed wanted to shout out the truth: how he would work his heads off for every test but still could not score well; how he was beaten black and blue by bullies in the playground every day; how he had recently been offered the position of the Assistant Graphics Designer at a local magazine and had decided to surprise his mother with his first paycheck. But no, he thought, his mother probably did not bother about the truth at all.
Muttering something that sounded like “impossible”, his mother had stormed off to work. The door had shut behind her with a loud thud – the kind of sound his fat bull of a teacher, Mr Rana, would make if he pushed him on the concrete floor of the classroom right now. It was tempting indeed.
Writer: Osama Naveed
“Your just like the rest of them,” Mr. Rana’s words reminded Ahmed of the conversation he had had with his mother that morning. She had been very cross and he had faced her wrath.
“Stupid boy! Can’t you do anything right?”
“Sorry mama, I was in a hurry. I didn’t pay attention to what the shopkeeper was giving me.”
“He made a fool of you. That’s what he did . Look At these eggs! Rotten just like you!” She raised her fist. “A hooligan that’s all you are. Small, ugly. You’re just like your good for nothing father and like all those other stupid men who run away when life gets tough.” She hurled one of the eggs at him, he ducked just in time.
“Mama, please” he pleaded as tears rolled down his check.
” Don’t talk back to me you worthless piece of dirt. It’s time you learnt your lesson.”
She pulled out a leather belt and smacked him across his back. It was obvious she hadn’t taken her medication. The scowl on her face had kept his wails silent.
Just like the scowl on Mr. Rana’s face as he waited for Ahmed to exit the door.