Samir had decided that tonight would be the night. As he sat in his car with the engine off, he stared at the house across the street. The rain had eased to a trickle, and he could see movement past the windows. The man of the house was helping his wife set the table for dinner. Curtains billowed, hiding the man’s face. But Samir knew it had to be him. The apostate. The blasphemer.
Samir exhaled, feeling so many things at once. Joy and hate. Faith and doubt. Excitement and fear. Which was which? He could no longer tell. Pain started to bloom in his temples, and he could feel it reaching into his eyeballs, stabbing him in sync with his heartbeat. That damn headache was back.
He clenched his jaw, trying to tough it out. He didn’t want to medicate himself. Didn’t want to risk dulling his senses, blunting his edge. But in the end, the migraine proved too crushing, too searing, and he relented. A bit of pain was good for the spirit, yes, but too much would be a hindrance.