Unveiled       page  13    go to page  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12  13  14  

Admittedly, over the past year I have regained some of my earlier love and trust of Kareem, but it is at moments such as this that my dismay grows over the cowardice of the men of our family. I realize from his behavior that Kareem gives not a thought to the reasons I risked my safety and our happiness to make known the events of my life, or to the very real and tragic events ending the lives of young and innocent women in his own land. Kareem's only concern is for how he is portrayed in the book, and for the fact that he has fared poorly in many passages. 

I tell my husband that he and other men of the Al Sa'ud family alone hold the power to make change in our country. Slowly, quietly, in their subtle manner, they can pursue and encourage change. When he makes no response to my plea, I understand that the men of the Al Sa'ud family cannot risk their power for the sake of their women. They are passionately in love with the crown. 

Kareem regains his composure after I remind him that no one outside our family, other than the author, knows who he is! And those persons know him well and are aware of his good and bad traits, even without the publication. 

Kareem sits beside me and lifts my chin with his finger. He looks almost appealing as he ponders, "You told Jean Sasson about the disease I caught?" 

I wiggle in shame as Kareem slowly shakes his head from side to side, visibly disappointed in his wife. "Is nothing sacred to you, Sultana?" 

Many battles end in an outpouring of goodwill. This evening ends with unexpected displays of affection. Strangely, Kareem says he has never loved me more. 

I find myself being courted by my husband, and the intensity of my feelings increases. My husband reawakens the desire I had once deemed forever lost. I wonder at my own ability to both love and hate the same man. 

Later, as Kareem sleeps, I lie awake by his side and replay in my mind, moment by moment, the events of the day. I realize that despite the evening's end the guarantee of protection promised by my family (due solely to their own fears of royal banishment and/or punishment) and the renewal of my marriage I cannot rest peacefully until genuine social adjustment comes to the land I love for the women whose burden I share. The hard necessities of female life are pushing me to continue my efforts to gain personal freedom for the women of Arabia.

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