Let us sail together to the end of April and ride the waves from A to Z along the journey.
This is a collection of stories I am writing for ‘Blogging From A to Z Challenge in April 2014.’ Each post is of 55 words and I have attempted to create a complete story by bringing together all the posts, from A to Z. The story so far…
A memory from the past flashed briefly in the confines of Shiva’s heavy heart. The twinge of remorse he felt was cloaked with unconcealed longing. Sia had written to him and begged for his help, why had he walked away? The news in the papers next morning had confirmed his fears, she was no more.
Beside himself with grief, he had walked into the sea, uncaring of the rising water. The deserted beach had offered him the opportunity of unburdening his soul by plunging into the crashing waves. If only his sin was pardonable? The fishermen spotted him disappearing into the waters and rescued him. Was he saved or condemned?
Countless emotions clouded his heart and mind during that brief instant he was submerged in the waters. He heard her smile, saw her laughter, smelt her touch and touched her affectionate scent. She was with him in his watery grave while he had abandoned her on a bright and sunny day. She had loved him.
Death was a welcome relief to him after living a hollow and bereft life for these past many years. With the constant ticking of the watch reminding him of the endless lonely guilt-ridden days ahead of him, the unbearable emotions threatening to spill over at the slightest provocation. He had not given her a chance.
Eyes closed, Shiva drifted in and out of consciousness with Sia’s name on his lips like a chant. Just when she was within his arm’s reach, he was pulled back and his head was held out of the water by his rescuer. His lungs bursting with salt water and helplessness at his failure, he wept.
Frantic calls for help by the fisherman drew a huge crowd at the beach where Shiva was brought out of the sea. He was thankful for the water which camouflaged his tears; his anguish was mistaken for his reaction to the near-drowning. Maybe he was cursed to suffer throughout his life for abandoning his love.
Groaning with hurt and pain, he closed his eyes and reached his happy place where Sia was waiting for him. Shiva let the dreams take over from harsh reality and opened his arms wide, inviting her to run into them with abandon. Their embrace lasted an eternity; the kiss that followed drew his soul out.
Hand in hand they walked around on the small lawn on campus, bunking the boring economics lecture by Mr. Raman. Every time they reached the edge of the lawn, they retraced their steps but not before sneaking in a quick kiss. Shiva thanked the Universe for bringing him his Sia, his soul-mate and best friend.
I Love You, three words that encompass the world for those in love and Shiva and Sia were no exceptions. Contemplating their future together was a pleasurable but fraught with obstacles and danger. Didn’t her brother warn Shiva of the consequences if he ever dared to date her? But true love is gullible and guileless.
Just before they said goodbye, Sia felt a shiver run down her spine on seeing her brother Dev standing near the college gate. She pulled Shiva back into the main building and begged him to hide from Dev. Shiva assured her he would handle the situation and walked out of her sight and her life.
Knowingly walking into the trap set by Sia’s brother, Dev, Shiva felt a little apprehensive but angry too. Why did Dev object to Sia going out with Shiva? They were in love and wanted to get married very soon. Dev glared at Shiva and put his hand into his pocket, he pulled out a knife.
Lunging towards him with the knife glinting in the sun, Sia’s brother aimed for Shiva’s heart. Shiva stepped aside and grabbed his hand, forcing him to drop the knife. Sia stood frozen with fear watching them fight; praying for both of them, her dilemma was heartbreaking. She stood to lose, irrespective of who eventually won.
Masking her fear, Sia ran towards the two important men in her life who were dueling for her honor. Her brother Dev, had a crazed look in his eyes, while her beloved Shiva’s gaze was warm and gentle like a winter’s midday sun. She was torn between sibling affection and unconditional love for her soulmate.
Never had Sia felt so torn in her affections – Shiva was her love and Dev her brother, it wasn’t easy to take sides. Hands folded she implored them to bury the hatchet and become friends, after all they were going to be related in a few months. Dev rejected her entreaty, Shiva watched helplessly.
Overcome with guilt at having caused this rift between Dev and Shiva, a distraught Sia decides to slow things down with her and Shiva. Her brother hated Shiva and a truce between them wasn’t a possibility. Shiva observed her dilemma and his heart ached, he knew what he had to do to ease her suffering.
To be Continued-