1st Muharram 1420 Zeysh wandered through a dark alley. In the distance, she could hear the chime of a clock striking midnight. It was a new day, a new year, a new start. All around her in the city people were celebrating with champagne, music and loved ones, but she was alone. Her eyes glistened like morning frost. Her life was a mess. There was no way that she could clean it up now. Everything had gone downhill after her parents died. They’d left her in this cruel world, all alone, to fend for herself – but she hadn’t done a very good job. She closed her eyes, only to see a reflection of her past self. This younger girl wore a beautiful and charming smile that reached her eyes— eyes accentuated by makeup. She was popular at school, amongst both boys and girls. The reflection spoke: Yes I am the past, and also the present: We are both sinners Look at me and see yourself God will always forgive If only you repent. Anger engulfed Zeysh. She screamed out: Why would God forgive me After all I have done? I’ve caused too much destruction. There is no hope. Her reflection replied: Sometimes dear, when all seems lost, Allah has His own surprises in store. He is the Most Merciful All you need to do, Is to give repentance a try. Zeysh responded again and again: Everything that’s happened to me is wrong. Her voice echoed out into the empty alley. She was tired. She knelt to the cold ground, shivering. As she reached up to the night sky, a familiar voice whispered: If only you had listened to me, honey. If only you had tried to find your purpose, your essence, your Lord. You had time, you always did. Working towards righteousness would have helped you fight this fire. You let hopelessness engulf you – you let Satan get to you. But now the stars were fading. The voice was melting away: Darling, you forgot: Allah had told you: “Take one step towards me, I will take ten steps towards you. Walk towards me, I will run towards you.” He had left the path of forgiveness wide open for you. It was never too late, but now it is. Zeysh felt as if hours had passed. Like the overflowing dumpster beside her, she was just a mess that needed to be cleaned up. She slumped forward, breathing no more. 1st Muharram 1420 Far away, in the distance, a clock chimed for the twelfth time: midnight. It was a new day, a new year, a new start. But for Zeysh, it was too late.