He stumbles over a loose rock and nearly loses his balance. He grips his chest as the sobs issue forth uncontrollably and he sits down in the pathway staring through his tears at the ground. How he wished Khadija could have been here with him now. She would have known what to do.
The moon had by now nearly completed its sojourn through the heavens and Muhammed (pbuh) knew it was nearing daybreak. He struggles up from the ground and staggers on, his chest burning.
He reached his house just as the first rays of dawn painted the eastern sky. There was a donkey cart moving down the street and he starts to hammer on the door. He hears Khadija calling out from inside and he breathes a sigh of relief.
"Who is it?"
Muhammed (pbuh) didn't answer immediately and he hears her calling out again. "Who is there?"
"It's me, Muhammed."
"Muhammed?" (pbuh) She seemed puzzled but opened the door. "Muhammed!" (pbuh) Her mouth opened wide, and all sleep disappeared from her eyes. "Muhammed! (pbuh) Muhammed! (pbuh)"
Muhammed (pbuh) nearly fell into her arms.
"Oh my word! Muhammed! (pbuh) What happened to you?"
Muhammed (pbuh) didn't answer. He started to shiver intensely. Khadija took him to their bedroom. "Come! Come lie down! You must rest!" And she helped him onto the bed.
"Dear! Dear! Dear! Who did this to you?"
Muhammed (pbuh) kept on shivering as Khadija placed a blanket over him. He still couldn't speak. Khadija wondered if he wasn't coming down with a fever perhaps. His face looked so red and he was sweating profusely!
"Let me get you another blanket." She stared at him anxiously. "You are burning up, Muhammed! (pbuh) Dear, oh Dear! Did someone rob you?" She placed the blanket on top of the other one. "I've told you so many to be careful at night, but you don't listen! Did you see his face?"
"No!" said Muhammed in a croaking voice and placed his hand on her arm. "I'm not sick, Khadija. It's just that I've seen something very mysterious and very frightening, indeed!"
"What?" She sat down on the bed next to him. "What did you see?"
He told her and he cried as he relived once again the unbelievable events of the night, especially the immensely powerful grip of the Archangel Gabriel when he had commanded him to read. He was sure the 'figure' had said his name was Gabriel!