Saturday, August 11, 2007

Ali Setan, Ogy's Definitive 1980s Movie

As you know Fauziah (Ogy) Ahmad Daud is the Female Simon Cowell and Female Paul Moss of Malaysia, as the harsh, leading judge in Akademi Fantasia 5.

I hereby present you a novel dedicated to her acting career in the 1980s.

It is called Ali Setan (Naughty Ali) and it is derived from (with minor alterations) the two Ali Setan films (Ali Setan 1 in 1985 and Ali Setan 2 in 1986) which helped make Ogy a star.

The novel is purely the work of the blogger, and stays true to the films which were created by Ogy’s favourite screen partner Azmil Mustapha, one of the biggest leading men of Native Malaysian film in the 1980s.

Azmil was nicknamed the Michael J. Fox of Malaysia because of his Boy Next Door charm and he has left the acting world to concentrate on business and teaching religion to youngsters.

He last appeared in the 2004 film Puteri Gunung Ledang with Malaysian Brooke Shields Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina Eu, and Akademi Fantasia 3 principal M. Nasir.

Ali Setan 1 earned Azmil the Best Actor award and Ogy the Best Actress award in the Malaysian Film Festival 1986.

The stars of the Ali Setan films were Azmil (Ali), Ogy (Asmidar), Izi Yahya (Jeffri), Sheila Majid (Tipah), Ebby Saiful (Latif), Datuk Shah Rezza (Jalil), Liza Abdullah (Emy), Azlina Aziz (Zaiton), Peggie Ng (Violet), Salih Yaacob (Abu), Faizal Hussein (Shukor), George Teoh (George), Sarabjit Singh (Sarban), Erma Fatima (Tina), N D Lala (Ersat), Datuk Jins Shamsuddin (Tan Sri), Omar Abdullah (Haji Darus) and Jalaluddin Hassan (Pangeran).

Sheila is the ex-wife of Akademi Fantasia 5 principal Roslan Aziz and is Malaysia’s jazz queen.

Shah is a successful businessman and wedding planner. He organised the wedding of pop queen Siti Nurhaliza in 2006.

Azlina was one of Malaysia’s best singers in the 1980s alongside her younger sister Liza Aziz. Their late parents Aziz Jaafar and Normadiah were legends of screen and song.

Peggie is a former television presenter of Radio Television Malaysia (RTM).

Erma is a successful film-maker and actress. She is the elder sister of acclaimed actress and Malaysian Kate Winslet Umie Aida Rahmad.
They are the mentors of Akademi Fantasia 2’s Mas Ghani in her acting career.

N D Lala is a respected TV host and the father of up-and-coming singer Shahila Amir.

Jins is one of Malaysia’s most respected actors and is a protege of the late, great P. Ramlee. He is nicknamed the Malaysian Sean Connery.

Omar is a popular television host on TV3.

Jalaluddin is a popular actor who also hosted Malaysia’s edition of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? He is the younger brother of Malaysian police chief Tan Sri Musa Hassan.

Izi, who passed away this year, was well-known as a TV and film villain in Malaysia. He was sometimes nicknamed the Sean Bean of Malaysia.

Ali Setan Part One

My Early Years

Hi, folks! I'm sure you all know me. That's because you have all seen me on screen. Ali Setan in 1985 and Ali Setan 2 in 1986.

I've also appeared in commercials such as KFC Colonel Burger in the late 1980s.

Since you've all seen me, I'm sure you love to know my story.

What you have seen in the films is not very exact. Forgive me for being long-winded, but I believe in giving correct information.

Not much of my history is mentioned in the story - my childhood, my pals, my education. Well, that's what I'm gonna tell you now.

I was born in Balik Pulau, Penang, to my father, Sutan Takroh, and my mother, Wan Kamariah.

My father was a Minangkabau prince from Negeri Sembilan while my mother was a Kelantanese princess.

I don't remember them much, they were divorced when I was one, and my mother left my father for a Bruneian bizman in Singapore, Pangeran Zain.

She later died of asthma, but lived to see her stepsons Jeffri and Ersat go to school.

Both dad and mum worked for Kedahan prince and businessman-cum-politician General Tan Sri Adam Ahmad, Pangeran Zain's old school mate, military peer and business rival.

Tan Sri and Pangeran are today reconciled, but at one time they hated each other.

Dad was Tan Sri's driver, mum his housemaid.

Dad died of leukaemia when I was 2.

Tan Sri had blood ties to both dad and mum. Thus he was my uncle.

On dad's wishes, Tan Sri adopted me.

However, he actually wanted me to be his son-in-law.

He had an adorable, pint-sized daughter two years my junior. Her name was Umi Latifah, but she was better known to her parents as Tipah.

When I was 12, Tan Sri had me engaged and wed to Tipah.

I was young then, and did not have a mind of my own.

Thus, I had no objection to his plans.

I had not been in love, not even to Tipah. To me, she was just my sister.

Oh, yes! Now I'd like to introduce my friends to you.

My gang of 6. 3 of them had been with me since primary school. I met the others in Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) in George Town, Penang.

Abdul Latif Ali, Abu Bakar Abdul Rahman, and Tengku Jalil Ibrahim had known me since my days in the Gelugor Malay School in George Town.

Latif came from Butterworth, Abu from Alor Star (like Tan Sri) and Jalil from Kota Baru.

Latif and Abu are Tan Sri's nephews, hence my cousins. Jalil is also my relative as his dad and my mum are from the Kelantan royal family.

When I went to study architecture in USM, I met Shukor Kamil, Sarban Singh Tara Singh, and George Chan Hon Keong. The trio were from Ipoh and studied in Anderson School (like my favourite cartoonist Lat).

Except for George who did business studies, my friends were with me in architecture school.

I Meet Asmidar

Here is how I met my lovely wife. On a train bound for Penang. It was the end-of-the-year holidays. I was then a first-year architecture student.

My pals and I had just visited KL. I loved the city and wished to live there.

I did not have a steady. But I was busy finding Miss Right.

I had tried to find her since I went to the university. I wanted to feel what Love was.

In my train, there was this sweet lass from Kajang in Selangor. She was Asmidar Darus, daughter of a prominent bureaucrat.

She had just gotten into USM. She was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen.

Everything about her was beautiful - looks, speech and manners.

Asmidar, or As, as her parents called her, had an elder sister, Zaitun, or Tun, studying business in USM.

She was George's pal and senior. I knew Tun rather well, and she loved me like a kid brother.

She was my personal counsellor. My pal Latif was close to her best friend and room mate Violet Lee, a Chinese-Thai sweetie who studied mass communications.

As was Violet's junior in mass communications school.

As joined USM with her first cousin Nurul Amira Ahmad or Emy. Sweet, yet sharp, she is now Latif's spouse.

I had often boasted to my pals that I loved to rag girls until one became mine. That was exactly what I planned to do with As.

Sarban was eating groundnuts which he bought from Ipoh. I took his packet and said I needed it urgently.

As bait.

"Aiyah! I've no more lah!" said Sarban.

"Buy at station lah!" I replied.

I began to eat the nuts and threw the shells at As.

"Jangan kacau lah (Don't disturb)," said Latif, having a nap.

"Come on, man! I wanna listen to music," said Jalil, holding his little transistor radio.

Emy told As to fight back, but Miss Right kept cool.

I then bought a can of Seven Up and offered it to As. She didn't know I had shaken it, and told me to open it.

She fell for my trap.

The soda wet her dress.

"I'm so sorry!" I said. "Let me wipe for you."

"Huh! Celaka! (Damn!)" she said.

A few minutes later, As came to my seat and told me she wanted to show me a turtle egg.

But she had a rotten chicken egg and smashed it on my head.

My hair, my shirt, all covered with smelly yolk. "Ha! Ha! Serves U right," said Sarban.

Pranks Of The Setan

Back at USM, As was called to the dean Ibrahim Hassan's office. He said As had flouted school discipline by playing a prank on Ali.

He ordered As to find his keys in 20 seconds.

Frightened As got cracking, looking all over the dean's office for the keys.

Before she could find them, Ibrahim said her time was up.

"Denda lagi! (Fined again!)"

As bent down to find the keys in his desk drawer.

She soon realised that the dean was only wearing sports shoes.

She removed the Berita Harian newspaper from his face and found that Ibrahim was really, Ali Setan!

The next day, the real Ibrahim found out what had happened. He called As and I to his office.

"Ali, you have breached USM discipline. You are a good student but I am afraid I have to refer you to the disciplinary committee," he said.

"Sorry, Latif! I ought to have listened to you," I thought to myself.

As said: "He did not wrong me, tuan. We were playing. As freshies, we have to know the seniors and have some naughty fun at times.

"Besides, I played a prank on him earlier and he had to return mine."

"I hope nobody will impersonate the dean again," Ibrahim said.

As and I were told to shake hands. She did so reluctantly.

Sarban and I were police cadets. As we were marching one day, I saw As nearby and marched towards her.

Sarban tried to bring me back in line, but our drill sargeant, Johari, punished us with 100 push-ups.

Later in the afternoon, I saw As and Emy carrying some textbooks to the resource centre.

"Shh! Watch me, guys," said Latif.

"Ya salam!" said Jalil, in his catch-phrase.

Latif ran into As and made her drop the books.

"Oops, sorry!" he said.

"Celaka! (Damn!)" said angry Emy, tweaking Latif's ear. He yelled back "bitch" and did a blow-pipe gesture.

As turned around and saw me. "Setan!" she said.

George's and Tun's pal Jeffri (Pangeran's son) came by. The flamboyant biz student and playboyish snob offered to help As.

"Never mind Jeff. Tak payah lah," she said.

"Celaka Jeff!" hot-headed Latif said.

"Sabarlah! (Be patient!)" I said.

"Let's go to the library."

As and Emy were in the library (resource centre) when Latif, Jalil and I came in.

They were talking to Tun and the teacher in charge, Rosmiati.

Quietly, I sneaked up to As' bag and took her diary out.

I wrote in in this message:

Aku tak berniat mencuri diarimu.

Aku hanya berniat mencuri hatimu.

(I don't intend to steal your diary, but I intend to steal your heart)

Ali Setan.

As the girls started leaving, As picked up her bag only to find her diary missing. "It's on the table behind us," said Emy.

As read the message, tore out a page and wrote on it "Tiada maaf bagi mu" ("No forgiveness for U").

She left the page on a table.

Latif, Jalil and I laughed our hearts out.

As learnt of my nickname Ali Setan from Tun and Violet.

I earned it because I played pranks on pretty girls.

One night, we had our annual dinner. There was a grand poolside buffet.

Latif and Abu, part of the university's rock band, entertained us with their guitars.

I tried to offer As some prawns. She said: "No thanks".

Jeff offered her fish. "Thanks, it's lovely," she said.

Jealous, I offered her more fish. "I buat ni special untuk mu, As," I said.

She declined my offer.

I borrowed Abu's guitar to play a catchy song. She said: "Bising lah, Jeff! (So noisy, Jeff!)"

Angrily, I told myself: "If U think it's bising, try this!"

I lobbed a fire-cracker at As and Jeff's table.

Guests screamed and fled. Jalil jumped into the pool.

Poor Jalil had been busily eating the food meant for As.

Happy Birthday With Frogs

Next morning, after a jog, Jeffri came up to me and said: "As is mine. Keep your hands off her. Else, watch out! This is my first warning!"

Later, when my gang and I were having lunch in the canteen, As came in with Jeffri.

They sat at the table closest to ours.

As saw us and told Jeffri: "Sini tak baik lah. Banyak lalat" (There are many flies here).

Hot-headed Latif lost his cool. I told him to calm down.

As and Jeffri went to another table. They were busy discussing course work when Violet came by. She saw Jeffri.

"Saya pening lah (I am dizzy)," said Jeffri.

"We continue tomorrow, OK?"

Violet passed us and noticed Latif. She grabbed his shoulder.

He asked her how was Jeffri.

"Don't talk about that son of a bitch," she said.

As' birthday soon came. I told my pals we would not attend her party.

Instead, we would drop by at her sister's house and give her a present.

Then, we would have satay in Gurney Drive.

The present was a jar of frogs and toads from the science laboratory. We wrapped it in colourful paper.

When we arrived at Tun's house, where the party was held, angry Jeffri greeted us.

"Hoi! As says beat it! You've got 10 seconds. 1 ... 2 ... 3 ..."

As appeared. "Stop it, Jeff. Ali, Latif, come join the party."

I replied: "Sorry lah. Got appointment in town.

"But here's my present for U. Happy birthday, As."

My pals and I enjoyed the satay. As "enjoyed herself" too.

You should have seen her face the next day. Her course mates had every right to call her "katak" (frog) as her face was as red as some of the rare frogs in the jar.

I've Got Her Under My Skin

As' revenge came when my pals and I decided to go for a picnic in Batu Feringgi.

Latif, Jalil, Abu, Shukor, Sarban and I invited her to come along, but she declined.

She said she and Tun would be visiting George in hospital. He had been there for 2 days for a bout of food poisoning.

She had been busy the night before tampering with my motorcycle.

I found this out when my bike did not stop moving on the road.

I jumped off the bike and allowed it to crash into a tree.

Then, I rolled into a monsoon drain.

I was not hurt. As my pals pulled me out of the drain, Latif had a wonderful idea.

We visited George, who was about to be discharged.

He did not object to me using his bed and thought it was a great idea.

Abu phoned As, while my gang plastered me up.

When As came, Latif said: "Ali's got a brain damage."

The freshie was so shocked. "Ali! Oh, no! Apa telah saya lakukan?! (What have I done?!)"

She embraced me and sobbed.

I said: "Saya OK, As. Maafkan aku (Please forgive me). Aku buli kau (I bullied you). Cinta tak boleh dipaksa (Love cannot be forced on others)."

"Aku salah, Ali (I was wrong, Ali). Aku mungkin telah rosakkan hidup mu (I might have destroyed your life). Dendalah aku (please fine me)," she said.

"Baik, tolong ambil segelas air (OK, please get me a glass of water)," I said.

As As helped me drink, Latif, on my instructions, quietly snapped a photo.

"Excellent, guys!" I said the next day. "Latif, I'm gonna buy you KFC."

I had finally learnt my lesson. Love is God's gift. It cannot be forced upon others.

From that day onwards, As and I became close pals.

We often spent time together and our favourite place was Batu Feringgi's big, graffiti-filled rock.

We talked about love. I told her about me and she told me about herself.

We soon fell in love.

Encouraged by As and I, Emy and Latif started dating.

The four of us often went out together. Sometimes, Tun and Violet would join us.

Jeffri's Scheme

Jeffri grew up under my mother's care. She and my father were bitter about each other following their divorce.

She influenced Jeff to hate dad.

Jeff's father, Pangeran, also taught him to hate. Tan Sri and his family were the objects of hate.

As love blossomed between As and I, Jeff constantly told her I would ruin her life.

She replied: "Examine yourself first before condemning others."

Jeff got close to Tipah. He tricked her, seduced her, and made her pregnant.

Prior to the seduction, Tipah thought Jeff was terribly sad having "lost" As to me. She consoled him.

Tipah told Jeffri that if they were to fall in love, she would be very happy because her foster brother would soon marry As.

Deep in her heart, she wanted her father and Jeff's father to make peace.

Tipah may be soft and pampered, but she knows what she wants in life.

Tan Sri soon found out that Tipah was pregnant. He asked me if I did it.

I said "no". He slapped me and kicked me out of his house.

Eventually, I said "yes" to cool him down and stop him from killing Jeff, Tipah's spouse-to-be.

I confronted Jeffri. He said: "Tipah is yours, As is mine!"

Jeffri, shortly after making Tipah pregnant, forced her to meet As and show her our marriage certificate.

Tipah met As in Craven A restaurant and showed her our marriage certificate. She also said she was pregnant.

Filled with rage, As confronted me and declared our love over.

I tried many times to tell her the child was not mine, but she refused to believe me.

Tun came to me and said the more As cursed me, the more she loved me.

She told me to be patient and give As some time to get over the shock of learning about my "wife", Tipah.

She then had a word with Tan Sri about what actually happened.

I approached Tipah and told her angrily that she had embarrassed her family.

I said she should not have had sex before marriage.

"Tipah tertipu, bang (I was tricked)," she said.

She believed Jeff was good and actually wanted to marry him.

She believed Jeffri would change his evil ways slowly.

I forgave her but said: "Sex before marriage is a great sin. Please seek God's forgiveness."

I had a word with Tan Sri. He knew everything after Tun and Tipah talked to him earlier.

He agreed that Tipah and I be divorced and that she get married to Jeffri.

"Maaf ayah," I told my foster father.

I soon introduced him to As, and he had lunch with my gal several times. He then told me she would make a good wife.

As still would not go out with me. She told me all men were the same, exploiters of women.

I left her a message: "Selamat Tinggal (Goodbye) - Ali Setan".

Then, I sped off to the big rock. I sat on a smaller rock nearby and watched the waves.

As my tears rolled down, I somehow felt As still loved me but was testing my patience.

Reunited At Last

One day, As, Emy and Latif were in the USM canteen when Tan Sri and Tipah came in their limo.

"May I know who is Jeffri?" asked Tan Sri.

Jefrri came out from the gents and introduced himself to Tan Sri.

Tan Sri slapped him, and he fell on a dustbin.

"Sorry! That was for sex before marriage. I am happy you will be my son-in-law. Times have changed. Friends became foes, and foes have once again become friends."

Tan Sri approached Latif. Emy wrapped her arms around Latif tightly.

"Latif, have you seen Ali?" asked Tan Sri.

He is in Batu Feringgi, Tan Sri," Latif replied.

"Latif, As, both of you go find Ali. Tell him I have said everything is all right now," Tan Sri said.

Emy embraced As and Latif, before As got on his bike.

Latif and As found me sitting on my rock. As tickled my feet with a tree branch.

We jumped into each other's arms.

"You came, As! You came!" I said.

"Ali, Tan Sri says all is right," she said.

"Please forgive me."

The three of us left the beach and went home.

As and I would go steady until we graduated.

End Of Part One.

Ali Setan Part Two

KL, My City

After three years in USM, I finally graduated as an architect. Tan Sri found me a job in his pal A. Ayappan’s architecture firm.

Latif, Abu, Shukor and Sarban joined me. My boss’ office was in Sultan Ismail Road.

Mr Ya Salam (Jalil) became a manager of his millionaire dad’s supermarket chain.

Tipah worked with him.

George became a manager in Jeffri’s family business, which develops condos and houses.

Tun and Violet joined a PR firm which works closely with Jeffri’s business.

As and Emy joined a leading magazine in town.

In KL, my home was a large bungalow in Ampang. It was Tan Sri’s.

Jeff and Tipah lived in the Duta Road area in his mansion.

Their first-born, sadly, was not to be.

Abu lived with me but later moved to Section 17 in Petaling Jaya.

Though rich, I kept a low profile. I owned no BMW, just a Honda Civic.

I also had an open car decorated with my personal AS logo and painted in my favourite red and white.

It was christened the Setanmobile.

I had loved the USM gym. For that reason, I made a mini gym in a part of my living room.

I grew a beard while in KL. The reason was because I missed As. I had not seen her for two months.

But one day, she came up to me out of no where and we embraced.

“Oh, As! Long time we have not met. You are still so young and beautiful, sayang,” I said.

“Emy and I are journalists, Setan. We’ll always be in KL. I thought you would not be in KL. Every night I look at your picture and pray that we would be together in KL,” she said.

The Misunderstanding

It was one fine Saturday morning when I was busy in my gym.

Abu was chatting with someone on the phone. I had a date with As.

Latif and Emy were to be with us.

We were supposed to watch a popular film in one of the major cinemas in town.

Just then, Latif came in alone announcing a change of plan.

I was lifting weights while he hopped onto the exercise bike.

“100 Plus dua (two), Abu!” I said.

Abu, who had just put down the phone, replied: “You think I am your butler?!”

Latif said his Indonesian cousins from Medan, Zila and Maya had just come to town.

The girls were Jakarta University students.

They wanted to tour KL and watch the hottest film in town.

Latif was not good at directions and asked me to be his cousins’ tour guide.

He said he had told Emy he’d be taking two guys, his Indonesian cousins, on a tour of KL.

“She don’t like me with 2 gals,” he said.

“Same here,” I replied.

I quickly phoned As at home and told her I was taking Latif’s cousins on a city tour.

So the 4 of us got into the Setanmobile for a tour of KL. We went to several interesting places in the city. Then it was the cinema, and after the show, the nearest KFC.

Luck was, however, not on our side. The film was in its last day. Emy and As rushed to the cinema. As we were walking out after the show, our gals saw us and followed the Setanmobile to KFC.

Maya asked why I was called Ali Setan (Setan = Devil). I replied it was a nickname given by my pals and As because I used to be very naughty in the university.

Latif told his cousins: “Ali is just Setan in name. He has a heart of gold, really.”

At that moment, Maya kissed my cheek.

Latif turned around and found to his horror that As and Emy were two seats behind us.

As and Emy suddenly said aloud: “Hi, Ali! Hi, Latif!”

They quickly walked up to us. Zila and Maya introduced themselves.

“You must be Ali’s and Latif’s good friends,” said Zila.

“Not really,” Emy replied. “Not if he ain’t honest with me.”

As said: “Ali ni lawan, mana boleh kawan! (Ali ain’t my pal but my foe!)”

She pulled my cap over my eyes. “Harap kau merana Ali Setan! (May you suffer forever Ali Setan!)”

“Bye, Ali! Bye, Latif!” As and Emy said as they dumped their 1 sen (cent) change into the donation box at the door.

The next morning, the upset Ali Setan went to visit Jalil’s supermarket.

Latif, Abu and Shukor tagged along. Jalil was not in his office, so we went to his fitness centre.

George was there, and he told us Jalil had just gone for a meal, and would be back in his office after 2pm.

We then went to Jalil’s office and were greeted by his assistant, Tipah.

She said Jalil was expecting us at 2pm and told us to wait.

When Jalil returned to his office, he greeted us with his trade mark “Ya Salam”.

He sent his regards to Tan Sri, Jeffri and of course, As.

In return, we sent our regards to his dad and family.

Shy Jalil had changed for the better and was now a dashing and confident gentleman.

Latif and I told Jalil about our problems with As and Emy. He said: “Don’t worry. Love has its ups and downs. But love will prevail. I’ll talk to As and Emy, OK!”

Later in the evening, Jalil, Latif and I went to As’ house. She did not come out and sent Emy instead.

Jalil told As and Emy that Latif and I were sorry.

“Ali kata maaf. Latif juga (Ali and Latif say sorry),” Jalil said.

Emy then went to As who told her: “As kata benci Ali! (As says she hates Ali!)”

I yelled from inside the car: “Cinta! (Love U!)”

As yelled back from her window: “Benci! (Hate U!)”

The shouting match lasted for a while.

Eventually, Jalil said: “Ali and Latif don’t wanna meet As and Emy again! C U!”

Emy turned red in the face and so did As.

“Thanks, Jalil!” Latif and I said.

The next morning, I visited As myself. I said sorry one more time and told her I lied because I feared she would leave me after seeing me with two other women.

She did not reply and refused to look at me.

At last, she said: “OK, Ali. I’m sorry too. But don’t do it again!”

Emy also forgave Latif that day.

Unfaithful Jeffri

A few weeks later, my pals and I attended a university reunion dinner at the vice-chancellor’s house in Ampang.

It was beautifully lit and had a swimming pool.

Jalil was the MC for the evening. Several performances were made by ex-students. As and I sang a joget (traditional Malaysian dance) duet. Emy and Latif recited poetry. Jalil sang P. Ramlee songs. Abu and Latif rocked the house with their band.

Sarban danced with his bhangra troupe and became the centre of attraction.

As the dance was about to finish, Jalil lobbed a firecracker. It rolled towards Sarban.

Some of the dancers jumped into the pool.

Sarban and the guys grabbed Jalil and threw him into the pool.

Though he deserved it, I pitied Jalil because he got wet in two USM dinners.

Later that night, Abu, Latif and I went for supper at a coffee house in Bangsar.

We saw Tipah performing some jazz numbers and lighting a cigarette.

“Hello, Tipah!” I said. “Why are you smoking?”

“Don’t you smoke, too?” she replied. “OK, I give up!”

“How’s Jeff?” I asked. “He’s left me for Tina,” she said.

“Caught them in the house one night. I then went home to dad.”

Tan Sri was surprisingly patient with Jeff’s adultery.

Perhaps, he blamed Pangeran for Jeff’s bad behaviour and learnt to accept the spoilt child’s sins.

As they say, the older the wiser.

“Be patient, Tipah,” I said. “Come stay with me till Jeff leaves Tina.”

“I don’t want Abu’s room. He snores,” she said.

“Have the spare room, then,” I said.

“But that’s for As.”

“Well, it’s yours until she comes.”

Who was this Tina?

Tipah told me she worked in the USM canteen during my days there and Jeffri also pursued her back then.

Tun and Violet also knew about her.

So did Jalil.

Tina worked with him for a while.

The Failed Marriage

Some months later, Tan Sri and As’ dad Haji Darus decided that As and I tie the knot.

But I had a dream that Jeffri would foil our plans. I was right.

One night, as I was with Latif and Jalil in the Coliseum Cafe, Jeffri came in.

I asked him why he left his wife, and he said she left him.

“She was sick of your affair,” I said.

“Tipah is yours! As is mine!” he replied.

“As and I are getting married!” I said angrily.

“We’ll see about that!” he said.

Jeff’s dad Pangeran Zain was also Haji Darus’ pal. One weekend, Jeff had a game of golf with Haji Darus and told him about my mum, his late stepmum.

He brought to As’ dad’s attention Pangeran’s lie that I was an illegitimate child.

Jeff actually believed I was such. His dad lied to him, as he did not like Tan Sri and wanted to ruin his family.

When As and I went for lunch one weekend, she said: “Ali, there are 2 men I love. One is you. Guess the other.”

I said: “Latif? Jalil? Abu? Shukor? George? Sarban?”

She said: “No, silly. My dad.”

“He says we cannot marry because you are illegitimate.”

I told her the truth and she believed me.

We both went to see Tan Sri. Tun followed us.

Tan Sri introduced us to his kadi friend from Kuantan in Pahang. He would have us tie the knot secretly at his house.

Unfortunately, the news travelled to Haji Darus. Jeffri, through his younger brother Ersat, followed As, Tun and I to Tan Sri’s house.

Ersat overheard our conversation, reported to Jeffri, and they gave Haji Darus a call.

As and I tied the knot in the kadi’s house. Latif, Jalil, Abu and Shukor were present as was Tun.

We all wore simple Malay clothes, for I am a simple man.

The kadi was liberal enough to OK my AS cap.

But shortly before the kadi completed the ceremony, Haji Darus showed up.

He took the kadi aside. They went into his bedroom.

Shukor eavesdropped. He told Jalil: “Haji Darus says Ali is an illegitimate child!”

“Ya Salam!” said Jalil. “Apa ni (What’s this), Shukor!” said Abu.

As and Tun embraced. As knew her fate was sealed.

Sure enough, the kadi came out of his bedroom saying: “Sorry, they can’t marry!”

Before he could say more, I left for home.

Back in KL that evening, As and I met atop Melawati Hill, our favourite jogging spot. My gang and I often went there on weekends, and so did As, Emy, Tun and Violet.

As said we could not be together as her dad would not want to hear of me again.

If we went ahead with our plans, he would chase her out of his house.

She asked if Tan Sri knew any other kadi who could help us.

“As, you must understand, love is as great as the sea and sky. It does not end with marriage,” I said.

I had started to become philosophical. Perhaps, I was finally growing up.

“I am not clean enough for you, As. Your dad wants a truly clean son-in-law. You ought to know I was a bad boy in USM.”

As said: “I’m not clean either. I nearly killed you.”

I said: “Well, looks like we can’t have each other because we both are sinners. But wherever we are, we’ll always be together and I’ll never forget you.”

Amidst a beautiful sunset, the two lovers decided to go separate ways. It was a painful move, but for the better.

Back at home, Abu told me Tina had called and wanted to talk to me in a leading hotel in town.

I decided to go, as I wanted to know about Jeff and his scheme.


At the hotel, Tina greeted me in her suite. She looked friendly and was polite and smartly dressed. Suddenly, she unzipped my pants.

At that moment, religious department officers nabbed us. The next day, we were charged in the Kuala Lumpur Shariah Court with Khalwat (close proximity). I paid our fines.

As learnt about the incident in the papers. She phoned me and we had a meeting atop Melawati Hill again.

“You creature! I’ve a good mind to make you suffer for eternity!” she said.

“Jeff and I will be marrying soon!”

“Say what you want As,” I said. “I am not clean.”

“But beware of Jeff. He ruined me.”

“You ruined your life, sucker!” she said.

“OK! Do as you wish, Asmidar,” I said.

End Of The World

I rejected As because I loved her too much.

I did not want to sour relations between As and her father.

Jeff had Tina set me up in the hotel. He wanted to cast me as an immoral person.

I wrote a letter to Tina, telling her how I felt being tormented by Jeff, Ersat, Pangeran, and herself.

I said they all wanted to ruin me, out of a personal vendetta.

A few weeks later, As and Jeff wed in Haji Darus’ house.

Pangeran was there, so was Ersat. I handed Tun a gift for her sister.

Tun said to me, holding my hands: “Sayang (darling), don’t worry. It’s all a sandiwara (act). Just to please dad. Tipah will be coming soon and the wedding will be nullified. Your dad has planned everything. Truth will prevail.”

My gift for As was a musical box with a necklace. It had a congratulatory message to As and Jeff. The message said As was my only love and I gave her up to make her happy.

When I lunched with Tipah, Tun, Emy, Violet, Latif, Jalil, Abu, Shukor, George and Sarban the next day, Tipah and Tun consoled me, saying that any time now, the marriage would be over.

Tipah said she and Tan Sri would be seeing As’ dad. She had pictures of my mum and dad with Tan Sri at my parents’ wedding.

And pictures of me and my parents, long after the ceremony.

“Thanks, Tipah,” I said.

I decided to take a holiday at Lintang Forest Reserve in Bentong, Pahang.

I told Ayappan about this and he had no objections. I gave the forest reserve contact number to him and my gang.

Lintang had many wooden chalets on stilts. I rented one and found a mattress, some hardware, a stove and a table inside.

Living outdoors was relaxing to me as it isolated me from Jeff and my problems.

Being a police cadet made me appreciate a spartan holiday.

Every morning, I prayed hard seeking help from the Almighty, to be reunited with As and for Jeffri and his family to return to the true path.

Jeffri Is Exposed

One day, Tina appeared in As’ house. She confessed her sins and asked for forgiveness. As readily forgave her.

Tina chose to repent by working for As’ company. She is still there today.

In the evening, As and Jeff quarrelled in his house.

She accused him and his family of being JR Ewings. She also said she was returning to her true husband, Ali.

Jeff called her an Alexis Carrington and threatened to use his rifle on As and Ali.

A day later, Jeff’s marriage to As was nullified by the Kuala Lumpur Shariah Court.

Haji Darus sought forgiveness from As, Tan Sri and Tipah. He told them that he recognised Ali as his son-in-law and the validity of Ali’s and As’ marriage.

Jeff began to practise shooting with his rifle. George, who often visited Jeff, told As about it.

At Jalil’s newly opened furniture store, As told my gang, Emy, Tun, Violet and Tipah that she and I were in danger.

Latif, Abu, Jalil and Tipah decided to follow her to Lintang and alert Ali of the danger posed by Jeff.

Jalil drove them in his Ferrari.

At Lintang, As went to Ali’s hut while the others stayed in the car.

As approached me as I was burning some dead leaves. I had just finished cleaning my hut.

“Forgive me, Ali,” As said.

“There’s nothing to forgive. We are only human,” I replied, assuming that As and Jeff were still together.

Just then, Jeff jumped down from a tree and fired two shots from his rifle.

As and I ran into the chalet, where I splashed red paint on us.

As decided to play dead and fool Jeff into thinking he shot us.

“If U R a man, come out and fight, Ali!” Jeff said.

I carried As out, saying: “You killed your wife!”

“I’ve lost her, so have you!”

“Kiss her hands!”

Jeff hesitated, saying: “Why should I?”

I replied: “Her hands are clean, unlike your filthy ones which kill!”

So Jeff kissed As’ hands.

“Oh, As! I am so sorry,” Jeff said. He touched her body.

“Stop it! Haram!” I yelled.

“Her body is clean, yours is filthy!”

“Kiss her feet!”

“Why should I?” Jeff asked.

I replied: “You must bow to this martyr who gave her life for us. You killed her.”

As Jeff was kissing As’ feet, she got up.

“Damn you, Setan! You tricked me!” You must die!” said Jeff.

I said: “Mr Jeffri Zain, you are such a fool! You can’t tell the difference between blood and paint!”

Jeff raised his rifle again.

“Let me die!” As said, shielding me.

“No, I must die!” I said, going in front of As.

“Stop!” Tipah cried out.

Jeff went down on his knees.

“Oh, God! I’m sorry. Forgive me. I’m not a killer. I won’t be one. I won’t kill my brother and sister-in-law,” he said.

Tipah came up to Jeff and hugged him.

“Forgive me, Tipah,” Jeff said.

“Don’t worry, Jeff. Forget about the past,” Tipah said, caressing him.

Jeff then embraced me and As.

“Forgive me, brother. I ruined your life. We have the same mother. She would not have wanted me to torment my flesh and blood,” he said.

“It’s over, Jeff. The past is the past,” I said.

Jeff said: “Ali, As, you are my kin. Ali, As is your wife. Tipah is my dear wife.”

“I want to do this for dad and Ersat. I want to show them we should not have any grudges.”

“I love you all!”

Abu, Latif and Jalil came up to us. “Take care, guys. I’m visiting you next week,” Jeff told them.

Hand in hand, Jeff and Tipah went to his car.

“See U in KL, Ali and As!” Jeff shouted as he entered his car.

“Bye, Jeff! Bye, Tipah!” As and I shouted.

“I’m so happy to see you guys safe and sound and back together again,” said Latif.

“How wonderful God is,” said Jalil.

“May His blessings be on us all,” said Abu.

“When are you and Emy getting hitched?” As asked Latif. “Soon,” he replied.

“I knew you were made for each other,” she said.

“Tun and Violet fully agree.”

“Wanna join us at the nearby cafe?” Abu asked.

“Go ahead, guys. As and I got to talk,” I replied.

“I don’t want to pay any Mas Kahwin (dowry). Money makes us evil. I’d rather be single and spiritual,” I said.

As said: “I’m not for you, Ali. You are a saint and I’m all too human. Goodbye, Ali.”

She put on her jacket and walked away.

Suddenly, I yelled: “I love you, Asmidar!”

She replied: “Wait for me, abang (boyfriend)!”

We embraced. My wife and I were so happy to be together again. We shed tears of joy.

Thus, Ali’s trials and tribulations came to an end. He was truly one with beautiful Asmidar, his college sweetheart, forever.


My life has never been better since then. I thank God every day for all that He has done to help me and the people I know and love.

Latif, Abu, Shukor, Sarban and I still work for Ayappan, but we have become managers now.

Jalil still runs his dad’s biz, and Tipah is one of his managers.

Jeff and Tipah get along very well and are very much in love. Jeff is still managing his dad’s business. Ersat is also a manager and both he and his old man have turned over a new leaf, and made peace with Tan Sri.

George, Tun and Violet still work with Jeff.

My wife, As, who helped me compile the facts for this story, and her cousin, Emy, are editors in their magazine now. Emy and Latif, just like Jeff and Tipah, and As and I, are very much in love today.

I guess all’s well that ends well. But here’s the lesson of the story. Love is God’s gift. Man cannot force it on fellow humans. Let’s all thank our Creator for giving us all unconditional love.