Thursday, January 13, 2011
And there he stood unaffected by the noise around him….And there he was oblivious to anything that happened near him. I was touched by the intensity in his eyes. For some reason I could not stop looking at him. His mere presence made me curious and conscious of my own self. He was tall, lean and excruciatingly pale. Light brown beard spread generously across his face adding to his intriguing personality. I had never seen him talking to anyone which made me wonder-“Is he always this quiet?”…
The crowd grew wilder but he still stood there without any hint of expression on his face. I moved towards him with evident awkwardness. I was a waitress, so maybe I chance of approaching him without anyone noticing. My hand trembled as I moved towards him. “What would I say?”-asked my mind…”Do your JOB”- answer my brain. “Would he even respond”-I wondered as I finally went and asked if he would want a drink.
“NO, Thank You, I don’t drink” his voice was almost inaudible.
“Oh you don’t?”-I was louder than my meeker self and I hated myself for that.
“DO you have a problem with that?”- He asked with his brown eyes flickering for a moment and dying down once again.
“Ah…I..Ummm…Nahh..Nooo...NO Sir, Why should, Why should I have a problem, Excuse me Sir” and I left as my face flushed with embarrassment.
I felt too humiliated to even look at him after that. I constantly reminded myself of how my landlady would kick me out if I did not pay the rent and with that note I had almost forgotten about that man. IT was one in the night when I finally got off work and I decided to walk back home since a waitress cannot demand a lift back home.
And then it happened. For quite some time before that I heard a group of guys on a jeep behind me passing snide comments. I ignored them and kept walking. The very next moment I was lying on the ground with a man over me. I heard a bottle crack next to him as he held my shivering self. His grasp became tighter as I sat up .I realized that I was attacked with an acid bottle and it was the man from the party who had saved me and had bore the brunt of it all.
Being the daughter of a nurse I thought that it would be better to take him back home and treat him there. He barely spoke through the journey and sat calmly as if nothing had happened. On reaching home I got everything in place and asked him to remove his shirt so that I could treat the wound better. As he undressed, I could not help but stare at his magnificent structure. He was just so PERFECT…I shamelessly wondered what would it be like to have him hold me in his arms once again. And then I began treating him, but still no movement. His entire back was burnt but it looked as if his purpose in life was much greater than the ordinary pains and joys which haunted us day in and out.
After applying the first aid I asked him whether he would like something to eat. He nodded his head grimly to indicate that he was not hungry. I asked him to rest and left the room. I had a disturbed sleep that night and woke up rather early to find that he had left already with a note saying-“Thank You for yesterday”.
I was distracted the entire day and had terrible premonitions .The next morning I found his picture on the front page of a newspaper saying-“Terrorist killed in police encounter.” I sat on the bed with a heavy thud; I felt t as if I had lost a part of me. It was a very difficult moment considering the fact that he was a stranger who made me feel things I had given up on a long ago…………
“What thhhhe…”- my roommate had just poured a bucket of old water on me.
“Wake up Maam…you are already late for college”
“Yeah right”….I said sleepily as I got ready to be lost in the monotony of daily life, completely forgetting about the dream I had seen last night.