Khola bint Al-Azwar - The Veiled Knight
Lady Knights


Kaan Ya Makaan, Fee Qadeem Al-Zamaan…
There was a Place, in Times of Old…

Called Ajnadeen in long-ago Syria, where two great armies clashed. One army was the Muslim army led by Khalid bin Al-Waleed, nicknamed the Sword of God. The other was the Roman army led by Theodore, brother to the Roman Emperor Heraclius. During this battle, a young Muslim warrior by the name of Dirrar bin Al-Azwar was captured by the Romans.

After the Battle of Ajnadeen ended in favor of the Muslim army, Khalid bin Al-Waleed decided to follow up the victory by storming the Roman encampment and freeing his captured warriors. During the weary march to the Roman camp, Khalid bin Al-Waleed noticed a veiled warrior riding at the forefront of the Muslim army. The Veiled Knight rode a great warhorse and carried a mighty spear in one hand and a wickedly sharp sword in the other. There was an air of fierceness and danger about this mysterious knight who, in his eagerness, seemed to be leading the way.

When the Muslim army reached the Roman encampment, it immediately launched an attack, hoping the element of surprise would safeguard the prisoners' lives. The Veiled Knight, with a heart-stopping roar, lead the attack and cut through the enemy ranks like a raging fire through dry brush.

Most of the warriors, both Muslim and Roman, watched this Veiled Knight with complete and utter awe. Many of the Muslim warriors assumed that this fearless knight must be their general, Khalid bin Al-Waleed, who as the Sword of God was unbeatable and could not be broken. So they roared out their own war cries and leapt like raging lions into the fray.

So fierce was the charge of the mysterious knight and his followers, that their attack took them clear through to the very heart of the Roman forces. When Khalid bin Al-Waleed saw this, he called to his men to push forward lest the Veiled Knight and his followers be overwhelmed and killed.

Even as the Muslim army moved inexorably forward, the Veiled Knight and his followers realized their danger. Accordingly, they began to cut their way back towards the main body of the Muslim army. The Romans pursued the knight and his companions, hoping to put a quick end to so deadly a foe. The Veiled Knight almost seemed to welcome the Roman attacks, he would halt suddenly and cut down all the enemies within range of his flashing sword and glittering spear.

When the Veiled Knight and his followers finally reached the main body of the Muslim army, Khalid bin Al-Waleed saw that the knight was covered in blood from head to toe. Awed by such a fierce warrior, Khalid bin Al-Waleed called out to the Veiled Knight: "God save you, knight! Tell us your name or show us your face that we may know you!"

Instead of responding, the Veiled Knight simply turned away and wordlessly continued fighting the Romans. Surprised, Khalid pursued the knight and said, "Wait! You have distracted us all with your bravery and actions! Tell me, who are you?!"

The Veiled Knight realized that Khalid bin Al-Waleed would brook no more silence, so he spoke, "O' my Prince, I do not turn away from you out of disrespect but from modesty. I am a daughter of my people and I have done what I did due to an aching heart and out of desperate hope."

Shocked and intrigued, Khalid insisted, "Who are you?"

"I am Khola bint Al-Azwar. I was in our camp when someone announced that my brother, Dirrar, had been captured. So I picked up my weapons, mounted my horse and acted as you have seen me act."

Just then the fighting reached a new level of frenzy and any more words would have to wait. So Khola once again became the Veiled Knight and the two legendary warriors returned to the fray.

After much stalwart fighting, the Muslims emerged victorious yet again. But the victory was not complete for the Veiled Knight, because Khola could not find her missing brother anywhere. She searched among the wounded, the captured and the killed but Dirrar was nowhere to be found.

Eventually, Khola became discouraged and began to weep, "O' son of my mother! If only I knew where they left you! With what spear did they stab you?! With what sword did they kill you?! O' my brother, your sister would trade her life for yours! If I could only see you, I would save you from your enemies! Will I ever see you again?! You have left, O' son of my mother, in the heart of your sister a fiery coal that will never stop burning and tormenting her! May you be reunited with our father who died fighting for the Prophet PBUH! Peace be upon you, always, until we meet again in the next life!!"

When those around her heard the raw agony in her words, many of the hardened warriors wept with Khola and set about searching for the missing Dirrar with a will that did Khola's aching heart good to see. With renewed determination, Khola again began her search.

Khola's heart trembled with every broken body she turned over and every blood encrusted face she tenderly wiped clean. She feared it would be Dirrar and she feared it would not be Dirrar. She did not know whether she should pray that she would find Dirrar here or not. If she found him, then he would most likely be dead but at least she would know his fate. If she did not find him, then she would not know his fate that day. Then perhaps another day would pass without knowing what had become of him, and another, and another and another after that. For how many more days could she stand such painful ignorance?

As Khola searched, every disappointment was both a great boon and a terrible curse. Nevertheless, she was determined to persevere, she had come to find Dirrar, and she would not leave without him.

What happened next? The accounts vary. One account says that Dirrar was found amongst the prisoners and freed and reunited with his sister that very day. Another account says he had been sent back to the Roman Emperor along with a small group of Muslim prisoners. When Khalid bin Al-Waleed heard of this, he sent a portion of his army to intercept the caravan bearing the prisoners and free them. Whereupon Khola, the Veiled Knight, joined the small army and helped lead it to victory. Only then was she reunited with Dirrar. Either way, all accounts agree that Khola and Dirrar were reunited and the two fearless warriors went on to fight another day.

*Written by © 2011. Care to read or leave Comments?

Notes:
  1. Names, Translations and Aliases:
    • Khalid bin Al-Waleed: خالد بن الوليد
    • Khola bint Al-Azwar: خولة بنت الأزور
    • Dirrar bin Al-Azwar: ضرار بن الأزور

Sources:
  1. Al-Amili, Z. (2000 AD, 1421 H). معجم أعلام النساء [Compendium of Notable Women]. Beirut: Al-Rey'yaan Co. Page 298-302.

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