That night I sat up thinking about how strange it was that those police officers came to question us. The whole episode left me feeling unsettled. Luqmaan had played a big part in all of this, so and I asked my mother for his phone number.
He picked up and I asked him why he went to the police, suggesting that we were ISIS members. He just dismissed the conversation and said that the money was good. He asked why I was complaining , it wasn’t like we had been hauled off in the middle of the night. I tried to reason with him, I even asked him how much he would accept to just leave us all alone. He went on and on about how we were from Africa and there’s so much going on there that he was certain we belonged to some Islamic group. As the conversation progressed I realised I wouldn’t be able to change his mind. Speaking to him would get me nowhere.
Sadia tapped me on the shoulder and told me there no point because Luqmaan had already decided on his plan of action and he would twist anything I said and use it against us. She comforted me, saying there is nothing to worry about and we would soon be home.
I helped Sadia pack the bags so we could leave for Paris as early as possible. As soon as I’d laid down, Sadia rested her head on my chest and weaved her fingers into mine. She told me to trust in Allah, he would always protect us. She reminded me of the story of Bilal R.A , an african slave who was a companion of the Prophet (saw). He was among the first to embrace Islam which led him to be brutally tortured by his master until eventually he was bought and freed. Our faith will be tested and we will be persecuted only because we are Muslim, will we rise to the test? She told me that our iman should be as strong as Bilal R.A. She also said that we had done nothing wrong and hugged me tight. She was right. We were here to enjoy a family vacation and my best friend’s wedding and from now on that is exactly what we were going to do. So i held Sadia close and pulled the duvet over us… the fun part of my vacation was about to begin