short story Titled “Wedding Dress” by Ahmed Mahmoud Sharqawi
We have in the country more than once found a bride's dress buried inside a grave, to the point that more than one family closed their group of graves with a fence with a huge iron gate on it, and rumors began to spread about this matter, and the most common rumor was that this is the easiest way of passporting. And there is a charming girl who goes to him and chooses the guy she wants, and in fact the young man is less than a week old and proposes to her, but there are some conditions, and if the girl does them correctly, then congratulations to the groom she chose..
I had reached the age of 29 and had not yet gotten married. It was a single engagement, and over the years problems had arisen between me and my fiancé, to the point that he accused us of theft and we accused him of theft, and the whole country knew, and since that day no one had approached our house to propose to me, and the issue was upsetting my mother to a degree that no one can imagine.
That's why my aunt came with the well-known solution in her hands in all the countrysides of Egypt. Your daughter is doing something and we will go and break it up to Sheikh So-and-so, and my mother was waiting half a chance to get caught for any reason other than the main reason. This reason is that we really wanted, after breaking off the engagement, to seize the network by force and force. This is forbidden by law and is not acceptable even in logic. The network is only part of the bride’s dowry, and as long as you don’t get married, you can return the dowry that is the network, no matter who broke it. But my mother was fed up with the world that day and wanted to take the network under the pretext that he was the one who wanted to leave, but It was caught and we were exposed throughout the country to the point that we were forced to return it in the end.
That's why my mother had a great opportunity to justify that my miscarriage was due to witchcraft and not her actions, and she forced me to go to the sheikh that my aunt said about him, and indeed we went to him and told him everything, but contrary to what was expected and what was strange was that he said that I was safe and that no one had done anything to me, it is assumed that they are all swindlers. He would say anything to do something for us, but he didn't do anything, and before we could continue our conversation, he said that the young man he chose from among the people of the country could marry me, no matter who he was.
His words made me laugh. I never imagined that this could be true, and when my mother asked him how, he told her that we should identify and identify him by the name of the one we will choose and bring with us 10 thousand pounds next time, and within one week this young man will come and ask for me from my father’s house..
We left him, not believing that this could be true, but my aunt insisted that this sheikh had a secret and that everything he said was true. My mother started borrowing from here and there until she was able to collect the amount, and she, my aunt and I sat thinking. We thought about almost all the youth of the country. Until we reached the richest one of them and the son of an important man in the country, we identified his name after a long thought and went to the sheikh. We gave him the money and informed him of the name of the wanted person. Without any introductions, the sheikh informed me and told me to prepare my wedding dress. The word had a magical effect on me.
We tried to inquire from him, but all he said was that we would design the wedding dress, buy it, and leave it, and then we would know the rest of the details. Indeed, on the same day, we went and bought the wedding dress and took it away. He said that we would bury the dress in the family cemetery of the person we chose, and that we would go to the graveyard and he would help us reach the grave of the family of this young man. The grave will also be opened for us, and then we will put the dress down and leave it until this person comes forward. On the same night that I come forward, we must go and remove the dress, and be careful not to forget it for one more night, and then the dress will be removed for the day of joy..
We left him and I felt very afraid and terrified. I tried to convince my mother that we would not finish, but my aunt did not give me a chance at all. We also paid ten thousand pounds, which means that the time to return was over, and we actually took the dress, and my aunt and mother and I went and met the boy, and we told him the name of that young man, and we took the dress. In fact, I reached the grave and opened it, and as if a policeman came down to bury the dress myself. It was a difficult, terrifying situation, but I did it against my will, and God saved me, and almost nothing happened. I waited. I waited a week until some neighboring people spoke to us and they said that there was a young man who wanted to propose to me, and that was my good fortune. He was the same person, and the strange thing is that things were very smooth. He and his family came and moved forward, and from the first sitting we agreed on everything without any problems.
And for the first time I felt joy, intense joy, I was going to get married, and not just anyone. I was going to marry a very, very good, rich young man, and we forgot, unfortunately, we completely forgot about the dress, and I started preparing the wedding preparations and arranging the apartment and everything, and within one month I was with my groom in our apartment..
I went in to take a shower and I was filled with joy, and as soon as I left I started to hear a voice coming from the bedroom. I opened the door quietly and entered, and I found someone wearing a wedding dress and sitting on the bed. She was a woman with her face blue and her dress covered in worms, and her eyes were not there. Her place was an emptiness. I could not. I couldn't stand it and fell from my height without a single thought, and I woke up. I woke up to my husband waking me up and I was very worried. I held myself together and didn't say anything and remained silent. As soon as my husband entered to take a shower, I started to hear the same sounds coming from the bathroom, these strange and incomprehensible sounds. I approached the bathroom door. I was shaking my head, and as soon as I opened the door, I found my husband taking a shower with someone, the same woman, he was closed and lost like a sleeping person, and she was in his arms, and worms were falling with water on my husband and on the floor..
I fell from my height again, and anxiety began and we were unable to do anything, and the matter was repeated for three nights. Every time he was near me, I would see her sleeping next to me on the bed, until I called my mother and aunt, and we ran to the quack who asked one question:
“Did you remove the dress the day I proposed or not?”
My mother gasped, and we knew that the dress that was not removed was the reason, and that this was a bride from the graves. Since the dress had been in the grave for a long time, she had put it on and gone to the owner of the grave. He told us that we would go and get him tomorrow and come with the dress to his place and he would see what he would do. My mother told me to go back to my husband and she would carry out the mission, and I actually went back to my husband, but the next day we woke up to cursed news, my mother was found holding Farah’s dress and dead in front of the graves of my husband’s family, and the whole matter was revealed and we were exposed more and more. I got divorced, and my mother died, and just as we used to be called thiefs, we are also called witches and charlatans, and I have been stuck in my life since that day until this day, the day on which I celebrate my fiftieth birthday alone..
I wish I had learned only one thing in my life, that anything that is very easy happens on the path of supplication and what is permissible, and very difficult on the path of what is forbidden..
“If you had seen the unseen, you would have chosen reality.”