Short Story #3

This is again another attempt to appease my emotional excess. Read on and give me your critical opinions,folks! 😀


The streets were dark and intimidating. There was no moon that night .

It was all but endless , smooth, even darkness.

How it came to be night or why I was not in the comfort of my home, I didn’t know. All I knew was that I was lost ,somewhere dark  and nerve wracking.

There was not a soul in sight if the dark would let them be seen nor the rustle of a leaf.

I cautiously moved, one step at a time, searching for light, a safe path in the blinding darkness.

Slowly, my eyes adjusted to the dark haze and I could make out the tall buildings that lined down the road.

The windows were all shut, I imagined . No light came from them. I stood still for a moment taking in the darkness and the shapes I could make out. I crept up to what seemed to be a wall and sank down on the floor.

I sat there for hours and hours. Somehow, time would not move on.

Solitude, I loved. But not for one moment in my life did I think that I’d want company, a hand to hold.

The quiet place near the sea where I sat lost in thought watching the waves kiss the shores  came to memory.

I started pretending that this was also such a place, where I could be alone when  I wished. But fear wouldn’t loosen her hold on me. I couldn’t pretend that the depths of darkness didn’t scare me.

I remembered the nights I spent under the starry sky. I would just lie on the terrace staring up at the sky.

What I thought, I had no idea.  I would  lie awake a long time and then the  cold air would wrap her arms around me and I’d soon fall asleep in her embrace.

This place was quiet. That was what  most scared me here. Only if there was some noise. I longed to hear the kids play, the banging of doors , the TV at its loudest, the pigeons coo.

The solitude was killing my nerves. I closed my eyes in an attempt to relax .

I did not know when I fell asleep. When I opened my eyes it was morning and I was curling  on a lonely pavement . The streets were deserted . There was not even a bird up in the sky. I walked into a building . It was empty. I went inside a loft. It was furnished to my taste. There was food but strangely, I was not hungry. I walked around. All the other apartments were empty. I trotted along the road hoping to meet someone.

The places seemed to make sense now. I was near  home.

The park was empty. There was not a kid running around or even a slight breeze pushing the swings. I was distraught.

I was alone and grief took over me but I couldn’t cry.

I walked towards my house and opened the door. The plants were just like I last saw them. The house looked just like I left it except there was no unceasing noise of my sisters and family.  It was empty of the people I loved.

I sank down on my knees and wept.

St John’s Hospital

Her mother, her father and her sisters crowded around her bed, hoping that one moment soon  she would open her eyes.


Jovi!

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“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”  – Maya Angleou

Winter closed in on the streets of  Satayr . It was evening . Summer had left and winter was just stepping in.

The yellow maple leaves decorated the grass floor of the park and flew to the tune of the breeze that  frequented the streets. The street lights yellow paled beneath the shop lights. The smell of burnt bread and coffee wafted through the air.

 

She brushed through the crowd, the cold air hanging around her. A loose sweatshirt and purple mittens kept her warm. Her black curls lay strewn across her face wildly framing her eyes  and the cold did not account for the blush on her cheeks. Nyla turned left, to her new apartment and sat down on the chilly steps of the building recollecting the face she had seen at Zach’s corner.

 

His laugh was infectious always. A quick glance had surprised her. Aiming for a better luck, her memory confirmed that face she’d never forget .She sprung to her feet and rushed through the crowd before any single thought could fill her empty mind. Now, she wondered why she had run away from him instead of running towards him and startling him.

 

He occupied his seat deep in thought, staring at the world outside  . He had looked right through her and not seen her.

 

“Was it him?”, she wondered. It was definitely Stefan.  It was seven long years since she last saw him.

 

He was her childhood chum. She was  six years old when he moved next door. He had hung about the gate .When he first saw her, his mouth had twisted into a heart-warming  smile and  his hands held out a funny looking chocolate.  She instantly liked him.  It took him more than a chocolate and a lot of effort to drag her out of the comfort of her shell and out into the sandy shores of the Arabian sea.

 

 

They would watch the sun sink under the sea and the sky streak into  several hues of orange and red.  She would lie on the sands counting the stars and he’d be playing catch and run with the others. Sometimes, no, more than often they caught these tiny little crabs crawling in the sands. They would disappear into these tiny holes they had drilled and never be seen after(you wouldn’t find them even if you dig them up into giant rabbit holes). Stef ,being the expert had devised his own way to catch these puny little creatures crawling up the coast. He’d dig his hands into the sand and feel it.  He’d go that way about until he felt a crab moving somewhere and clasp it in his palms. He’d hold it safe in his palms, not letting it go, until he showed his pretty little friend their catch (No doubt they’d use the opportunity to sting his soft palms)  and tow them away in a cover. They would put them in a tub later at night  and when morning came, the  magical little creatures would have vanished. They would sit and talk on her doorstep. He would tell her stories about the Boogie man and she’d listen to them in fright.

Each day he’d scare her wits about her with stories of Jack the ripper and ghosts that haunted the nights .

 

Time flew, he found new friends and she slowly retreated back to her shell.    She was twelve when they moved away, to another street , to a beautiful house.

She missed him. He’d occasionally surprise her with a visit but the visits dwindled with the passing years. They had drifted apart. She was sent to a boarding school .

 

When finally she came back from her exile , she had met him again , he even had a moustache then and she was all giggles about it.  She left town for college ,they had parted and a year later, when she came to visit again, she didn’t know what happened, he refused to speak to her.

 

She would smile at him when she saw him on the road or elsewhere and he’d quickly tear his face away. Gathering up all her wits, she went to his house to seek an answer .He had left the town  in search for work. There was no word of him after.

 

Seven long years after, he was sitting right there, in the cafĂ© around her corner  and she was scared he would dismiss her nonchalantly and that, she could not bear. But it was time to put all her worries to an end and confront him. She gathered up her courage and walked down the street, to the cafĂ©.

 

The door bell sounded and she drifted  in and sat two tables away. She ordered her usual and nervously glanced around.

It wasn’t a rush evening and silence had its strong hold on the two familiar strangers sitting two tables apart.

 

But for a second, their eyes caught and for a moment, she was in her happy place as sweet memories rushed by. She held a weak smile, it was not returned. There was no glancing around after.

 

And then she firmly decided that she would not care. There would be no more brooding over the matter. People grow apart all the time, that was life and she had to take it as it came. She would no longer be bothered by the indifference, that she swore to herself.

No more crying, no more useless brooding.

Later at night, her soaked pillows told a different tale.

 

 

A small attempt at a short story!

Simple things, she loved, like books, the wind, the sea and being alone.

Her favourite  haunt was the café down the street. One could find her, clad in one of the sombre dresses she owned, sipping coffee at the end table, looking out at the streets with earnest  eyes, the perfect picture of solitude.

Day 1 :

When  the busy monotonous city life was more than he could take , he would turn around to this quaint place, and relish his coffee in lost thoughts.

The end table with the window overlooking the street was his province. He would silently ,look out  the window and gaze at the passer’s-by  and drink upon the realization  that each random passer-by is living a life as original and crowded with worries, friends and all that is life. Each person living their own period piece  and sometimes, you are just invisible, nothing but  a voice at a distance.
Continue reading “A small attempt at a short story!”