When Everything Blows Up (for [livejournal.com profile] theprivate_ryan)

Nov. 8th, 2009 12:10 pm
seesonlysmoke: (bloody)
[personal profile] seesonlysmoke
The trip to America with Ryan, seeing Gettysburg and the Alamo, had been so eye opening for the young Kashmiri. Learning of the fights that those people had gone through had been interesting, but he had also come away very confused. The things that Ryan had said to him about how he was living his life, wanting to give his life over to jihad and revenge against his adopted father went against everything he had held onto for ten years, everything that he had been told in that time by Hilal. He tried to reason it by saying she didn't understand that Inayat Khan's death would bring an end to his nightmares, that Hilal's plans, Mission: Kashmir would bring independence and freedom to Kashmir at last.

It was in this way, he had returned to Srinagar for the last phase of their mission to be implemented. Ordered with the rest of his cell to wait in an outlying village, he found a way to call Sufi. Altaaf wanted to call her, knowing that he had betrayed her trust, but he had to try as he struggled to work through the things Ryan had said, but she just hung up on him. Needing someone, he called Nilu, his adopted mother and wife to his enemy. Slipping her husband's security, she visited wearing a burkha even though she was Hindu. They talked and much of what she said echoed that of Ryan, that putting his anger and hatred aside, he could move forward in his life.

But despite all that he was hearing, he still wasn't ready to let go of his hate.

And so, on the anniversary of his parent's and sister's deaths, he went forward with the plan to kill Khan. His briefcase was swapped with an identical one with a timed bomb inside. For once, Khan had taken an uncharacteristic lunch at home so he could beg Nilu's forgiveness for being so angry with for visiting Altaaf. The bomb detonated, and although Khan was injured, it had killed Nilu. When Altaaf heard, he screamed in grief, but the night after her funeral, when he sat vigil at her pyre, Khan raided his cell, killing them.

Hilal used both to assure and reinforce Altaaf's commitment. Saying that Nilu's death was God's Will and Khan must still pay for what he had done ten years ago and now for his brothers' deaths. Hilal called him 'my child', held him, knowing that giving him that connection motivated him. As such Altaaf was reassured and went through his plan to shoot down the Indian Prime Minister's helicopter as he visited Srinagar. One group would launch the attack with their rocket launcher, and Altaaf's group would do the same and kill Khan.

What Altaaf didn't know was that it was a rouse and he was the scapegoat. It would really be an attack on the mosque, with the blame pointed at the Indian security forces. Then there would be an attack on the Hindu temple. With both houses of worship destroyed, Kashmir would ignite. Chaos that Hilal's masters would take advantage of, and it would all end pointing to Altaaf.

Only one had discovered the truth, Inayat Khan, but Hilal had told him, and so Altaaf had gone down to kill the man of his nightmares once and for all. They fought, the son having the advantage over the father while the older man tried to get him to listen. Then, in an instant, Khan so a chance, and he threw Altaaf through the rotting wood walls, bringing a whole section down on him. Bloodied, Altaaf glared up as Khan, but something was happening in his brain...shifting, especially when Khan threw down a bloodied handkerchief, as he said, the only thing left of Nilu. He told Altaaf of Hilal's real plans, what Mission: Kashmir really was, and he didn't want to believe he could have been used like that, but he knew it was the truth.

When Hilal showed up and demanded Altaaf kill Khan, that battle waged inside him...the same conflicted thoughts that Ryan had prompted in him, and he shot the Pathan wounding him, seeing his lies for what they really were for the first time. The real fight was on, and while Altaaf grabbed his own rocket launcher, the other group was firing on him and his father. A bullet hit him in the side, but he managed to fire the missile. Then he was hit again, the force of the bullet sending him falling backwards into the lake below, and then there was the explosion as all the shells ignited.


***

"Ryan? Please, it's Altaaf. I need help." She was the only one he could think of to call any more. In his voice, it was clear he was frightened and hurt. Everyone else was dead or thought of him as dead or a terrorist. It was two days after the fight on the lake. He had managed to swim to safety despite his wounds. The bullet in his side had passed clean through, but he had also been hit in the shoulder, and it needed seeing to, but he couldn't risk going to a doctor. The little bit of news that he had heard, reported that not only had the jihadists been killed, but so had IG Inayat Khan. And Altaaf mourned twice, for his father who he had finally managed to forgive, and for the fact only Khan had known Altaaf was innocent of this plot, and who the news were broadcasting as being behind the plot. Even Sufi was reporting that.

He had found one medic, a nurse, who was willing to at least tend his wounds as best as possible outside of a hospital, and somehow just knew they wouldn't report him even though he would quickly wear out his welcome.

There was only Ryan left to turn to.
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Altaaf Khan

November 2012

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