It was five in the evening. The birds were on the retreat for the day. The sun was starting to sink slowly behind the silent mountains into a brief eternity. There was a brief conflict between the light of the sun and the darkness of the night, resulting a new hue of color sprayed all over the sky. This is where the story starts.
The day was too tiresome for me. I had just then started recovering from a bout of flu, which thereby resulted in me not going to work and also a strange ache in every part possible in my body. I was sick of sleeping the whole day; the room was filled with a kind of morbid smell, which spread black streaks of headache of the anterior parts of my head. I then decided to take a small whiff of fresh air and dragged myself a few feet towards the balcony door, to access my only links to the outside world keeping in mind my low energy resources.
I went out. The cool evening breeze quietly tried to ruffle my unattended, crop and dandruffy hair but in vain, my hair also seemed to have gotten lazy by the flu and hence it didn’t make any attempt to make a move!. There was a small slab cemented to the wall of the balcony, the place I loved the most in the entire house to sit. In summers it’s cool as it was in shade and in the winters it’s warm as it absorbed quite a few more heat rays than the external surrounding hence providing adequate comfort for my posterior part of my body. There was a semi huge, demonic looking potted croton with extremely huge leaves which reminded me of the tongue of the Brontosaurus in the “Jurassic Park” tended by my mom. The leaves were so colossal that even if I were to dance on it they wouldn’t bulge (mind you, the last time I checked, the weighing machine showed me an eighty!). The cement slab is the vantage point for the rest of the events to follow, so pay attention!
Staying on the first floor of an apartment has its own advantages, firstly, the surroundings can be observed with greater detail with fine servings of voices, hence we can listen to almost anything in small radius with unique clarity blame it to the effect of wind. Hence having this viewpoint is a boon for me as I got listen many things, chatter of college girls, howling of dogs, children screaming and jumping all around the road and surly abuses of some passerby who got knocked down by a bicycle or thingy.
Today, the situation was different. There were no kids and there were no abuses. But yes!, there they were, the chicks. Chirping, tweeting, coaxing and seducing with their sublime beauty so divine. My jaw almost dropped and my hair electrified with their sight, adrenaline rushed through my eyes and salivary glands giving a tangy feel to the flu virus (yes, I felt it!). My Non-working part of the brain asked me to jump over the wall and show some much needed machismo but the working part contradicted leaving me in a state of entangled stupor. The girls started moving in groups, which hurt my salivary glands even more till a situation where I was completely devoid of saliva. They walked like a group of models straight out of a Paris Fashion week, cat walking on the Indian roads.
It was in such I a situation I saw him. He was a few meters away at the crossing, at first I didn’t pay much attention, there were better things on the road which needed even more attention (The girls, obviously!). But his skeptical looks and a tawny face had me hooked. He was of a medium height, with a muscular body, a sort of Arnold Schwarzzenegar in a mini scale, a worthy select for the second fiddle in the soaps in TV!. He had a huge black backpack with him, a common site in the Himalayas, but not on Indian roads, that too at places where only bridges over gutters are worth watching. He sported a military hair cut and had a pair of odd looking sunglasses (definitely it looks as if he sneaked them from his Grandfather) which even gave a sort of eerie look about him. If his oddity was only restricted to his dressing sense I wouldn’t have cared, but his movements made me suspicious. He moved in a random zigzag fashion all across the road with a very weird look on his face, it reminded me of something in the newspapers a week ago.
“Wear the gloves for hell’s sake, just wear them, you wouldn’t want to die like a fuckin’ leper right?”
“Man, C’mon, I am just handling the apparatus right, how the Fuck will leprosy effect me?”
“Yea, you are right, while handling the sewage of a little over 20 homes with over a population of 200 people, you don’t expect leprosy without gloves right, and you will die with fuckin’ herpes!”
“Okay man, I am wearing, please don’t skin my brain to death, anyway this job is damn boring, sitting on the edge of gutter ignoring girls and collecting shit samples of the sewer is damn so fuckin boring!”
“C’mon, this is for the grades remember?, do this or get smacked, what would you choose?, anyway, this is the last day of our work, 30 more readings in five hours, one every ten minutes and then we are done!”
“Yea, whatever! Let’s get back to work, but we need to do something about these fuckin mosquitoes right?”
There were two guys with some weird looking tools at the end of the road. It looked as if they were washing their hands in the sewage water. They were doing all type of oddities since the past three days, writing, dipping their hand into the gutter, arguing and then repeating the process all over again. That was certainly funny, as no one else would put their hands in the gutter except kids, whose cricket balls fall in the gutter.
The man was doing a weird kind of March. Previously he seemed to have kept much of his talking to himself, but now, he looked panicky and he was sweating. Surprisingly, he looked at every passerby except the girls, something very funny, people flock from many other areas to ‘admire’ the natural beauty here. A few days ago, there was an article in the newspaper, in which it was deeply described the modus operandi of suicide bombers. The main characteristic traits were that they would be very very nervous and also work under a false pretense in the area and get to know of it more and that they carry huge backpacks otherwise in some case suitcases. All the descriptions in the article perfectly matched the movements of the man. It was time I realized, it was time, to take my sleeping pill and aspirin, for the growing headache inside my encephala.
“What the Fuck is the dog doing behind my back?”
“Smelling it I presume, is it disturbing you in anyway?”
“Yes, it is. Won’t you be disturbed when there is a hungry looking stray dog right behind your butt, looking as if it were some Katrina Kaif?, Shoo it away arsehole!”
“It’s looking quite cute by the way, if not for your bum, Hey doggie!, shoo shoo!”
I almost dropped down laughing, as I came back with a dose of aspirin and sleeping pills. One of the guys standing near the gutter was shooing some poor old dog and in the process the dog got acutely interested in the guys white surgeon gloves and with a sudden jolt it bit the glove and ran away with the glove safely placed between its jaws, leaving the man flabbergasted.
“Fuck, Fuck, Fuck, you slimy arsehole, you couldn’t stand a dog behind your buttocks and look what it has done to me, it stole my only pair of gloves”
“What the Fuck?. I expected you to shoo the dog away but never thought that you were such an arse to put half your hand into its mouth!”
“Fuck you, man. The other glove looks odd now, whatever you tell, I am removing the other one too”
“Fuck you, and may God of Herpes torment you!”
The man became more brisk and active. There was a visible a visible streak of pain across his face and his antics also represented the same. He walked here and there like a drugged monkey and there was an odd shaped thing in his right hand. “Could it be a remote?, to trigger the bomb on?”, this was the thought which was running in my mind. I decided it was time to act. In five more minutes it was either the bomb or me. My suspicions reached their height when this man approached the two freaking guys and asked something like some directions. Muddled they were already, they moved their hands frantically, one showing one side of the road and the other just the opposite. Sensing a serious foolishness around the man made an apt escape and proceeded ahead, each step he took reduced the distance between both of us. I was ready to scream “Terrorist” and had my vocal chords ready for the act, a small stream of sweat flew from my face into the croton situated beside me theryby vitalizing its roots with my precious mineral rich sweat.
One... Two... Three... Blackout.
“Man look, Isn’t the water a bit more warmer now?, there is a very abrupt change”
“True, it certainly looks weird!, did we come across anything like that during the past three days?”
“Nopes, this certainly is fishy, who knows this might be an important component which we missed and we may get more grade points!”
“True, do you want me to feel the water?. I just want to recheck!. Forget about the gloves please, nothing stays ahead of our shining grades”
“Feel free and take a look!”
“Man, you are right!. This is definitely warm, add the sample immediately and note the time and write a small note in the abnormal report column too!”
I woke up at 11 in the night. It looked funny, everything looked funny. There was a lizard on the wall which looked as if it was getting ready to devour me up. My mom was telling me something which I didn’t understand. There was kind of extra terrestrial light in my brain which suggesting something, which was nothing. It was then I remembered. The man with the backpack. I asked my mom, “Terrorist”, to which my mom replied, “Take Rest”. I had to agree with her as I neither had the patience nor the energy to argue and oppose her. I slowly slipped into temporary oblivion, with the thoughts of the man exploding inside my head.
“Sir, we have completed our analysis at the end of the gutter at street X yesterday.”
“Good, give me your report and submit the samples for further examination.”
“Here is the report Sir!”
“Why did you write some Greekish blabber in the abnormal report column at 5:50 P.M.?”
“The water became suddenly hot and there was a sluggish flow then, and within two minutes the temperature was back to normal!”
“Hmmm. This needs some checking, could you boys wait till the analysis reports are out?”
A scribbling on the pad of the analysis report: Time: 5:50P.M.
Constituents: Water, oil, thiocyanites, hydrogen sulphide, E.Coli bacteria, Ammonia, and a strong presence of urea in the form of uric acid!
“What the Fuck?, you two buffoons couldn’t see a fully grown man taking a leak in the canal?, and you report your folly in the abnormal report section?, you definitely need a good spanking, in the form of grades and get out before I was your sins in your water samples!”
“Fuck, and I put my hand into the gutter without a glove!, man!. What are the symptoms of herpes?!”
[Sorry for the considerable usage of the F-word, I felt its unique presence was required, and I have taken queue for "Reservoir Dogs".
This is my first post on fiction, i.e a story with some humor applied, so shower your blessings, blasphemes in the comments section.
I hereby end this post with a link of blog post by "As The Mind Meanders" titled "In Vino Veritas - Drinking to Death" for its brilliance!]