Friday Fictioneers: The Scholar

copyright-adam-ickesSince Faiza was a child, it had been rammed down her throat that she would never amount to anything. Firstly, because she was a girl and secondly, that despite being a girl, she didn’t have the looks.

So Faiza employed all her faculties towards her studies. She completed her Bachelors privately and then started applying for scholarships abroad.

It was only when a television crew came to interview Faiza that the family realized how wrong they had been about her. Faiza was the first person from their village ever to be accepted at Harvard with a full scholarship.


This story has been written for Friday Fictioneers. For details see the link below:

26 thoughts on “Friday Fictioneers: The Scholar

  1. I agree with the sad truth of Nida S.’s comment. How defeating it must have been for her to grow up in such an emotionally abusive environment. I’m hoping, and pretty sure, that Faiza knew her family was wrong, and she was worthy of love, happiness, and success, even without televised attention. Very moving story, well done!

    • Thank you. Many girls grow up in this kind of environment being taught that they are inferior to their brothers who get all the attention and love. This is common not only in the villages but in the cities as well.

  2. Dear Zainab,

    Good for Faiza. A courageous woman who knew her own worth. It’s sad that women have to live with that kind of negative reinforcement. An uplifting story. Well done.



  3. Always a joy to read one of your short stories. I’m soon to be starting a blog for daily (or at least several times a week) creative writing, separate from my ‘normal’ blog.
    Hope you’ve been well!


    • Hello there! So nice to hear from you after a long time!
      Do let me know your new website would love to read your short stories as well.
      I’m in the middle of shifting to Bahrain from Dubai. Really excited about it.

      • How exciting! I’ve never moved farther than a few miles from where my folks lived the day I came home from the hospital after I was born. Not from lack of desire, though.

        I’ve always had itchy feet, just never the means to scratch them, lol.

        I’ll definitely be posting a link to my writing blog on my current blog, although I’m not sure if you still follow me. As often as I’ve disappeared, I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t!

        Your son grows more handsome with every picture you post of him, and your photography skills have noticeably improved as well (please don’t take that wrong, they were good before).

        Have a wonderful day!


      • This is our second move, the first being from Pakistan to Dubai. What is exciting is that my husband will no longer be commuting and we can be a normal family.
        Thank you for noticing the improvement in my photography, a lot has to do with the photography challenges here.
        All the best,

      • Congratulations! I know how much it can strain a person/family, when commuting is involved. I’m very happy for you that your family has this opportunity to become closer-knit and spend more time together.

        Wishing you all the best, and a stress-free move!


  4. Zainab, Good for her. Will people never learn? It’s so wrong for people to hang onto those old ways of thinking about girls. It handicaps the whole family and eventually the whole country. Educate a woman and you educate a family. Well written as always. 🙂 —Susan

  5. Hurray for Faiza … I’m glad she went beyond the sad empty life that was being rammed down her throat … she was brave and wise and very strong and also the only person who could have achieved this rewarding future for her.

  6. Your stories always have a fun, moral twist to them! Good guys win and bad guys lose, but in plausible, realistic ways. Love it!

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