Tuesday, May 16, 2006

The Letter - 4

It was a true fact that many ignored Subir. Nobody knew why. He didn't either. Even people who knew him or maybe ever wrote about him gave him only a few lines to mouth in their memory. He was like a spectator - one who is easily forgotten. Some believed that it was his introvert nature and some blamed it on his quietness, but nonetheless everybody agreed that he drank too much vodka on friday nights. He took life as it came - never did have much plans like others. When others in mid-school were sweating over what occupation to decide upon, he was busy playing football - alone. People dreamt about the future - but he was different. Strangely, unlike others, his dreams were not about his future - it was far from it. And contrary to popular rumours, his favourite drink was whiskey and he didn't go to discos, lounges or pubs to enjoy himself.

Subir had a very bad habit - he used to write in a diary everyday. It was not like that he liked reading it in his spare time - to renovate dilapidated memories - it was just that he liked doing so. Something related to the release of endorphins in your brain, you know. This thing had so grown on him that he even had a name for his mute 'friend'. And one such day, when he was talking with this friend of his, the phone rang. He was expecting it, he didn't know why. The phone had not rung for a long time - he didn't remember how many days had passed since the last phone call had come. After all, with a person not much to look forward in life, such things were bound to happen. He had almost tripped over the cable wire snaking through the floor when he managed to pick up the receiver.

Subir : Hello?
Voice-from-the-other-side : Tui ekta asto kukur! [Literal translation : You are a complete dog!]
Subir : [Silence]
Voice-now-exasperated : Sala chinli na? [{Expletive} Did not recognize me?]
Subir : Vicky. Bol. [Say.]
Vicky : Jaan mere debo - contact korisni keno eto din? [Why didn't you contact me all these days?]
Subir : I was a bit busy. A bit occupied. Now its over.
Vicky : Beshi kotha barabo na - We are going on a holiday. To Sikkim. Inform Abhishek. Tell him that you met me - otherwise he will think that you are bluffing. By the way, my client's paying for everything. Helped that bugger out from a income tax problem. Phoning from a STD - will call back later. [Will not prolong the conversation much.]
Subir : Will you...
[Disconnected]

He hated such conversations where he did not get to speak. It was usual - he did not react nowadays to these. After a phone call to Avi, having dinner, taking off his socks which he wore when he was home - he fell asleep - on the floor under the bed. And a few days after he found himself in Pelling asking a manager where the nearest waterfall was located.

It would be a lie if it was proclaimed that he was not weird.

If he wasn't weird with a capital W, people made the situations so - he had to go through the pain of realizing the dreams people conjured up so quite often. Like it wasn't a secret to him that Avi was daydreaming of gluing back with an already-engaged Priya while walking through the ruin-laden forested path. And strangely enough, Priya too was toeing the same line in her dreams, albeit with censored graphical images of a certain degree which would be quite inappropriate for certain audiences. But dreams had only one spectator - the dreamer. And if Subir was near, two. He himself didn't ever have the slightest inkling of thought that these which he saw were true. He blamed them on his hyper-imaginative brain which was constantly conspiring against him.

And a few hours later, he found himself in a room, and quite strangely enough, he did not remember anything about a walk through some ruins. The clock's hands were twisted in a inverted ninety degree angle and the birds had already come back to their nests. It was quite cool though the hotel was experiencing a power-cut. And through the dancing flames of a crooked candle, he noticed his four friends sprawled on the four-poster - inebriated Vicky, sciolistic Avi, anxious Priya and his silent friend. There was a letter in her hand - which again strangely enough - felt oddly familiar to him. She was talking of a game of sort - to while away their time. Ironically, though this was not a good reason for him to join since his time whiled away without even informing him, he sat there. They had to guess what was in that letter, probably left behind by an ex-visitor. The game was a bit stupid and vague - just like a planchette - but he still thought.

Who was this letter from?
Who was it for?
What was written in it?

Or was he still dreaming?

To be continued...

2 comments:

Euphoric Dreamer said...

Sushir ...keep it up !

I like this part :
Priya too was toeing the same line in her dreams, albeit with censored graphical images of a certain degree which would be quite inappropriate for certain audiences.

i wonder wht certain audiences will say abt it !

Like the climax you have put into the story ? I hope it came from your mind.
But this seems like a separate story altogether.I like it !

Nabanita said...

sushir...... really nice one....keep it up bro