I wanted to tell him I was sorry, but suddenly I was salivating, the back of my throat tasting bile. I turned around, lifted the tarpaulin, and threw up over the side of the moving truck. Behind me, Baba was apologizing to the other passengers. As if car sickness was a crime.
You couldn’t trust anyone in Kabul anymore—for a few or under threat, people told on each other, neighbor on neighbor, child on parent, brother on brother, servant on master, friend on friend.
Do you have to always be the hero? I thought, my heart fluttering. Can’t you just let it go for once? But I knew he couldn’t—it wasn’t in his nature. The problem was, his nature was going to get us all killed.
My eyes returned to our suitcases. They made me sad for Baba. After everything he’d built, planned, fought for, fretted over, dreamed of, this was the summation of his life: one disappointing son and two suitcases.