She kept hearing his voices, she tried to hush him and make him stop buzzing in her head. He was always there but now he was getting stronger. There would always be a ‘but’ and there always were terms and conditions in everything he ever told her. It wasnt because she wasn’t perfect but she couldn’t be who she was, she had to change, she had to let him live in her body. He said he loved her a 9 out of 10 but don’t think too much, she had to go and that was final. Then he started feeding her his potions, she began to change, she was getting stronger and her voice was not her voice anymore. As she changed little by little she began to realise that this is who she always wanted to be. The voices were her own and she just wanted to live in this world as him!
Memories lay in old cupboards and drawers, covered in dust and forgotten with time. I walked around the house I grew up in, walked around talking to myself, talking of silly stuff and stupid stuff like when we were 7 year olds like Esta and Rahel(Arundhathi Roy’s dizygotic twins). I looked around, looked around for something specific-all my senses searched for signs of her. Her,the matriarch, the strongest woman I had ever seen, the one we lost 3 years ago, our grandmother.So it was for her that I searched in a house that I had only almost always inhabited with her. Yes it was strange to find that she had been slowly erased by us who are now inhabiting her space, we had slowly mopped and dusted the minute remenants of her physical presence.The pungent smells of her oils were gone, her silver white strands were absent and no one came to force over-feed me breakfast,lunch or dinner. I failed to find her in her own house, she was all gone just like our Sunday morning phone calls. It was time to leave and I didn’t know if or when I’ll be back. I went to shower and then suddenly as I stepped into the already wet bathroom floor a medimix smell greeted me and there I found her again and she wasn’t gone, never would. Now I leave in peace, with a smile on my lips and smelling like medimix.
There I was running late to another potential life event, but that’s okay, I was going to be in all the photographs. Our wide smiles and big eyes will mask all of our insecurities, our indifferences, our grief, the conflicts in our heads and the imaginary conversations in our minds, our lack of communication, our(or just mine) ‘mental traumas’ and our frustration at each other’s stubbornness. It will always capture us smiling, slightly serious or cutely candid;never mad, crazy, pulling our hairs out crying or self destructing. For one moment we put our lives on hold, to pose for the camera, to immortalise the happy person in these billion photographs and try to tell the rest of the world that we are all well, happy, satisfied and having the time of our lives.
There was noticeably no movement to the body,it kept functioning just to ensure that they din’t pull the plug. It was silent, apart from the faint humming of the machines that kept a little bit of the human alive. He had given up on trying to show it, the signs of liveliness. Seconds and minutes, days and nights, weeks and months had passed,he just counted all of it in his immobile head and waited for the plug to be pulled. Grey rooms, dim lights and buzzing machines were all that was around.
And then the door opened, it was her with someone he dint know. She switched on all the lights,it flooded the room with magic;her friend hummed a little tune that blocked out the buzzing of the machines and turned them into music. They saw a spike in the monitor. Tall points and colour bursting up on the dull screen,it was never brighter. Fixing the broken parts, showing them how silly it was to keep the lights off and voices away!!
You called again. I heard you cry. I did my best to hold my tears in and portray myself as the emotionless being that I was so carefully crafting out of myself. I lost my strength when I heard your voice. The sound I longed to hear and feared at the same time. 54 minutes after then, I can still hear your voice in my head. I can hear you say that this might not be a good idea,to the dumb boy that fell in love with you 7 years ago, I can hear you cry out your sadness to the grown up that I have become. When you asked if I can move on, I heard your voice ask if the boy that made you all the promises is still alive somewhere.
He is still there, but he cannot stay. I have to kill him now. I can not keep him fighting the others. What you should know is that he’s changed too. He lost his mind the very day you stopped calling. He is in a dark place now, killing or getting killed is the only thing he knows. Nobody can blame him, it’s his life that they took away and changed everything that was his reality. No he cannot be let out.
The new being is stronger, better and emotionless. But the boy draws strength from your voice messages and memories. If he breaks away it’s the end for all.
For once I thought it would have been nice to have someone to talk to.
The quietness shows a lot around you,it consumes me each time I’m by myself.
I can listen to every sound, watch every flicker of the lights.
I remember hiding away from people to have some alone time.
Alone time is all around now.
Like I have been craving all the while, while I was implanted in the midst of humanity.
Now that I have it, I don’t know what to do with it.
Now, finally, for once, it would have been nice to have someone to share all the sounds I hear in my head(my own and others’) and all the lights I see. Now finally it doesn’t matter when I have got what I wanted!!
Silence. Empty. He told himself a million times he shud’nt have done this. Not alone. The TV now seemed like a life line. Each time the show stopped and silence filled the room like a black ink, He could hear his heartbeat. Each time the screen paused, he could hear the air, the droplets from the leaky pipe. Each time he heard these voices, sound from of silence, he kept asking why did he do this alone. He had to. It was not a trip. It was running away. To be as far as he could from the blind pain that tortured him. To hear how people thought him being alone was ok, and she being with someone else was really important. For once he pleaded if he had someone to hold on. To hug. To hold. To cry on. The thought that it’s going to be empty tiny room.