Two of Muslim’s sons were in Kufah. Al‑Saduq (d. 381/991 CE) narrates in his book, al‑‘Amali, by his chain of Isnad from an old man of Kufah, who said, “When the Imam was killed, two of Muslim’s children, Muhammad and Ibrahim, were captured. Ibn Ziyad put them in jail and ordered to give them a hard time. The two kids fasted all day and every night they were given one loaf of bread and water. They stayed that way for about a year. One night, they talked with each other and decided to tell the jailer about their identity so he might make it easy for them. That night, the youngest one asked the man, “Do you know who Muhammad was?”
He said, “Of course I know Muhammad. He is the Prophet of God.”
“Do you know Ja′far Ibn Abi Talib?’’
“Of course, I know him. He is known as Dhul‑Janahayn1 -the one with two wings. -”
“Do you know ′Ali Ibn Abi Talib?
“Of course I know him, He is the cousin of the Prophet.”
Then he said, “O Guard! We are children of the Prophet. We are the children of Muslim Ibn ‘Aqil and you are being so hard on us.”
The old man collapsed at their feet and said, “O, the family of the Prophet! The door of the prison will be open for you. Go wherever you want to go.”
He gave them water and bread and showed them the way and advised them not to move in the daytime and go only in the night.
One night, after they escaped, they ended up at the door of an old woman. They said, “O, old woman! We are strangers here and we do not know the way, would you let us with you for one night and in the day we will leave?”
She sheltered them and when she asked them who they were they said, “We are the family of the Prophet and we ran away from the prison of Ibn Ziyad.”
She said, “I have a son‑in‑law who was on the side of Ibn Ziyad in Karbāla’ and I am afraid that he would catch you.”
She brought them food and water and they collapsed and fell asleep. During the night, the son‑in‑law came home unexpectedly. She asked him “What brought you here at this time?”
He said, “I am searching for two prisoners who ran away from Ibn Ziyad’s prison, and Ibn Ziyad has announced 1,000 Dirhams for the head of each of them. I am tired and I could not find them.”
She warned him, “That is not the right thing to do with the family of the Prophet.”
He said, “You seem to be taking sides, and you seem to know where they are. Let us take you to Ibn Ziyad!”
She answered, “What would the governor want with me?”
He said, “You have to open the door and give me shelter until I find these people.”
She opened it and fed him. During the night he heard the children’s snoring and he searched the house until he found them.
The younger one asked, “Who are you?”
He said, “I am the owner of the house. Who are you?”
The younger one said to the older one, “Get up, it seems that we are trapped!”
Again the man insisted, “Who are you?”
They answered, “If we tell you the truth, will you leave us alone?”
He said, “Of course. You are in my house and the clemency of the Messenger of God is for you.”
After they told him everything, the man said, “You are indeed trapped, I praise God that He gave me success to capture you!”
He tied them with ropes and in the morning he called his black slave, Fulayh and asked him to take the two kids and kill them. While the man watched, the slave took them near the bank of the river to kill them.
One of the kids said to him, “We see that you have the color of Bilal, the caller to prayer of the Prophet, our grandfather.”
Fulayh asked, “Are you of the family of the Prophet Muhammad? What brought you here?”
When they explained their story to him, he became very upset. Then, he fell to his knees, kissed their feet, and said, “I am not going to do what this man says!”
He threw his sword far away, jumped into the river, and swam across to the other bank.
Then, he stood up and said, “I am not your slave anymore!”
After that, the man became upset that he lost his slave. He took the kids back to his home, called his son, and said to him, “I have collected the wealth of the world for you. Take these two kids to the river and kill them and bring back their heads.”
While the son was taking them to the river, one of the kids asked him, “Are you not afraid of the Day of Judgment? We are the family of the Prophet. Why does your father want to kill us?”
When the son realized that they were telling the truth, he did exactly as the slave did, and ran away swimming across to the other bank. When the man saw this, he said, “I have to kill you myself.”
The kids asked him, “Why do you not sell us in the street and use the money for yourself without making the Prophet your enemy on the Day of Judgment?”
He said, “The governor, Ibn Ziyad, would give me 2,000 pieces and you two will not sell for 2,000!”
The kids asked, “Why do you not take us alive to Ibn Ziyad? Let him decide what to do with us. Why do you not have some mercy on us?”
He said, “I have no mercy for you in my heart.”
They asked if they could pray for a few minutes. He laughed and said, “Go pray as much as you like! Prayer will not help you!”
They prayed four units, then raised their faces towards heaven, and said, “O, God! The best Judge! Judge between us and this man by truth.”
When they were done, he chopped off the head of the older one first. The younger one hugged his dead brother’s body. The man said, “Do not cry, I am going to let you join him soon,” and then killed him. He dropped the bodies in the river and took the heads to Ibn Ziyad.
Ibn Ziyad was sitting on his throne. When he recognized the heads, he asked, “How did you get them?”
After the man explained the whole story, Ibn Ziyad said, “So, they were your guests and you did not respect the rights of guests in your own home?”
Then Ibn Ziyad said, “God is indeed the best judge, and you deserve to be killed in the same spot where you killed them. Why did you not bring them to me?”
He ordered someone to take him to the same spot and kill him. While the guards took him down the streets of Kufah, children followed behind him, yelling at him and telling everyone that he is the killer of the People of the House of the Prophet.
According to Mazarat Ahl ul‑Bayt, page 93,
“Their grave site is near al-Musayyab, on the way to Baghdad. Their names are Muhammad and Ibrahim. Apparently, their bodies were taken out of the river and buried immediately by some kind Muslims.”
- 1. Prophet Mohammad honored Ja’far Ibn Abi Talib with the title of Dhu’l-Janahayn (the one with two wings) after he had been martyred in the battle of Mu’ta and lost his two hands there. Hence, as Prophet Mohammad foretold, God will give Ja’far two wings instead of his two cut off hands in Paradise. With these two wings, Ja’far will fly in Paradise anywhere he likes.