Enjoy this sneak peak at THE EYES HAVE IT!
Kuwait–Saudi Arabia Border—1991
Josh’s Arabic was rudimentary. He understood it better than he spoke it, although even that was rough. But the most flawless Arabic wouldn’t have made this conversation with Samar easy. It was even harder than he’d expected.
They had just made love. It wasn’t the first time. He never meant for this to happen.
When his regiment first arrived in Saudi Arabia during the military buildup, he had two things on his mind. Make that three things. First was surviving the war to come. Second was concluding his military commitment, preferably alive and fully intact. And last, but far from least, marrying his fiancée, Emily.
Josh and Emily had been a couple since their freshman year of college. They were a good match, because they had so much in common and shared so many interests. Family definitely was important to them. They defined success as doing something they enjoyed that mattered to society. Their friends joked about them, saying they sounded more like a Kennedy-era ’60s couple than one that came of age in the glitzy yuppies decade.
But Samar stirred his soul. Haunted his dreams.
“They will kill me,” Samar said quietly, eyes averted. “My brothers. I have dishonored them. They will have no choice.”
“They don’t have to know,” Josh replied, so naïve, so self-centered. He had not considered the clash of cultures. Had not thought about what this meant for a Saudi Arabian woman.
“They will know.” She turned away from him. “They may already know.”
“Then come to America.”
“They will not let me. And even if they agreed, the process takes so long. Years.”
Josh tried to turn her back to face him. She resisted.
“Then I will tell them I want to marry you.” Those words choked out. What about Emily? But how could he abandon Samar? How could he allow her to be stoned to death because of him? Because of their love? How did they get here?
“They will not allow it. You are American. You are Christian.” Silence. “I am dead,” she added quietly.
What could he do? How could he prevent a tragedy? One for which he was responsible? He had never felt so powerless.