Study Guide

Beneath a Marble Sky Chapter 19

By John Shors

Chapter 19

Journeys

  • Nizam and Jahanara disembark at Allahabad, buy four horses, and take off into the desert.
  • It's hot. It's miserable.
  • Jahanara and Nizam travel during the night as much as possible and rest during the day for ten days.
  • For lack of anything else to talk about, Jahanara asks Nizam whether he's ever loved anyone. He says he does love a woman, but due to his maiming, he doesn't feel like he can ever pursue her.
  • On one of those mornings, as they travel, Jahanara and Nizam encounter a battlefield strewn with corpses, and Jahanara is disgusted.
  • Jahanara is worried about using violence to free Isa and Arjumand when they get to Bijapur, so she's concocted a plan involving betraying Aurangzeb to the Sultan there.
  • Suddenly, Nizam and Jahanara are overtaken by riders (most likely Deccans) firing guns and arrows.
  • Just when things are starting to look pretty bleak, Jahanara tells Nizam to throw the gold they carried at the riders. That distracts the bad guys, for sure, and Jahanara and Nizam are able to escape.
  • During another idle moment, Jahanara worries about whether Isa will still think she's pretty. Nizam is all, "Pshaw. Of course he will. Stop being silly."
  • Jahanara discovers that Ladli is the woman Nizam has always loved. She rubs her hands in mischievous matchmaking glee.