Saturday, May 17, 2008

The Locket

He had never cried. As far as he could remember. And, at this moment at least, the past was really clear to him. The place he was presently standing in brought the memories back. None of them, that came readily, were happy ones though. He remembered that particular day as if it were yesterday.
This place, where he was standing, along with his little brother and his grandmother, had been his house, his home for the first fourteen years of his life. The main door opened into a room with stairs leading to the altar, where he remembered his mother praying every evening. The room to the right of that place was his and his brother’s, and the room to the left was his parent’s. The house had been neither too big nor too small. It had been just right. It was times of war. It had always been most of his childhood. His brother, four years younger to him, and himself had always played in the broken, bullet spattered buildings.
But that day was different. The sounds and the screams from the city were louder and more ominous. It was late evening. His mother was praying at the altar as usual. He remembered sitting with his brother on the step at the bottom of the staircase. His brother had fallen asleep on his lap, somewhere through the story he had been reciting. For some reason that made him smile. Then it all happened at once.
The locked door was kicked open, and he was staring into the barrels of about five rifles pointed at him. He remembered not even being able to scream. The shock was intense. Natural instincts had made him turn back to seek help from his mother. He looked back wide eyed, soundlessly at his mother. He would never forget what happened next. He could see his mother stare directly at himself and his brother. She looked at the soldiers. Then she ran away from there into the room on the right. Even now he could not believe it. She had betrayed them. That realization was worse than the initial shock. That was when he screamed. That was when his brother woke up. That was when the bomb hit the house and it half collapsed. The rubble instantly buried the soldiers and his mother too. He and his brother had escaped barely. They had run from there then, with his brother clutching their mother’s locket which had somehow fallen in front of them.
That was three years today, to the date. They hadn’t discussed about that event after that day. They had stayed at their grandmother’s since then. Only their grandmother’s repeated orders had made him come back to this place after all these years.
His brother had the locket on his person at all times. It angered him, but he didn’t complain. He hadn’t told his brother about his mother’s betrayal. He didn’t want to change the impression his brother had of their mother.
His grandmother stumbled, as she walked around the place where the house had once stood. His brother hurried over to break her fall. A flailing hand caught the locket and caused it to break open. It had never been opened by his brother earlier, out of respect for his mother.
The locket, on the inside, had a picture of his mother holding both him and his brother in a warm hug. The picture was lovely. It had captured true happiness. It was a really heartwarming scene. The locket also, held some small, round, white colored pieces.
His grandmother picked one of them up, looked at it closely and remarked it was some medicine for the eye. She said ‘My daughter, your mother suffered from a certain eye disease, but she probably pretended that she could see, so that you guys wouldn’t worry. Come to think of it, she told me that she couldn’t do most anything for her children because of her condition. She must have had a real tough time on the inside, though’.
It was then that it stuck him. His mother couldn’t see them sitting on the stairs. She had run into their room to alert them, to rescue him and his brother from the invasion. She had never betrayed them. The realization hit him like a sledgehammer to his stomach.
It was then that he cried.

4 comments:

Logik said...

wowesome... simply wowesome...

descriptive in the storyline... yet usccint and hard-hitting..
kewl punch..

Hashish said...

Cool one man...keep on writing more of such short stories and later publish them in a book and later get involved in a scandal and later write a few more from prison and later....

Later, dude.

evilsense said...

Well written. Too good.

arbitblogs said...

extraordinary imagination and well put in words...
looking forward to more of these short stories..