Here he was yet again on his bed slumping over his pillow. At four when the night was dead silent, his mind was restless and running in circles. Clenching his pillow tightly he began to bang his head back and forth. Christmas was over twenty days ago. He had taken a vow to start afresh that time, but had failed to do so. Thinking that he needed a more clear and rather an official start, he took a resolution during New Year’s to prove himself that he had it in him. To prove himself worthy. The first five days were different and he thought he was improving. That he was soaring high. That his dark shameful days were finally behind him. But that didn’t last for long. He fell down once again on the sixth day. Somehow, the darkness which was still inside him, hidden deep within, took control. One thing led to another and he gave up once again. He was a prisoner once more.
Had he become a hypocrite? he wondered. Had he become so prone to negative thinking? Was he addicted to negativity at whole? This masochist thinking led him to throw his pillow in a rage. He sprawled on his bed and cried. He thought about the time, the last year, when he was such a determined young man. He was ever joyful and always positive, but even he did not know what had caused his downfall. Was it him being not ambitious at all? Was it him not caring that he had such precious time to do whatever he wanted? Shedding tears and being ashamed, he realised he was trapped in his own room. His laziness and his negativity had led him to stay on his own bed for a whole year. He hardly went outside, hardly socialized. Opportunities were thrown at him from all directions, but he had only given them an indignant look and waved them back.
He closed his eyes tightly. He wanted to erase his past. He wanted to start once again. He took an oath, yet again, to stay right on target. But he knew it was too late. One does not get more than two chances. And he had already broken his promises more than five times. He was only left to be thrown away by everyone. Still crying, he opened his eyes when he heard a loud noise. Turning on the lights, he gasped at what he saw. There were thick grey clouds hovering below the ceiling. The clouds spread all across his room. The lights weren’t any help once the clouds gulped it down. Staggering back on his bed, he was dazed by the obscure scene. He rolled himself up and cushioned himself with his knees. He was too frightened to call for help and too horrified to even move. The clouds responded to him by throwing flashes of lightning. The roaring thunder punished him as he hid himself under his knees. When a lightening landed near him, he jumped out of his bed and fumbled on the floor. He gave a cry when he saw that the floor was covered by dark smoke. The smoke, like the cold clouds spread on all corners and once it had, it started rising. He couldn’t see his carpet, he couldn’t see the pillow he had thrown away. The room was getting darker. He was being suffocated.
He ran for the door but when he tried opening them, they were locked. He turned the knob back and forth but it didn’t budge. He tried ramming it with his hands but failed. He was helpless. The clouds roared louder and another lightening landed scraped his hand. Another flash landed behind him and the shock made him fumble over his pillow. He reached for his bed again and got his support. Now, the smoke had reached the ceiling and it was impossible to discriminate the difference between them. Much to his horror, even the smoke started showing its wrath. It joined the clouds and threw the sharp flashes from the floor and the walls.
There was another wild thud – more of a growl coming from behind. He gasped but didn’t have the courage to look behind. But as he was leaning over his bed for support, he moved his hands and felt a sharp stab on his fingers. Yelping out loud, he ran away from his bed and looked at his hand. There was blood. Then he saw his bed and saw it sharp teeth. It growled and gnashed its teeth. It lifted itself up and started walking towards him. The lightening had no effect on the wooden bed and it swallowed every flash that it came across.
There was no escape for him. He pleaded. Begged for it to stop. Begged for mercy. For a second he thought they had listened for when he looked around, the clouds and the smoke remained still. The bed still fiercely alive had stopped midway.
‘Come to me.’ A voice echoed inside the room. ‘Come to me.’ He looked behind and saw a young man near the door. The man in the darkness had a white radiating glow on him. The sudden illumination of the man made him cover his eyes. But there was a serene look on his face.
‘It is safe.’ the man said and came closer. ‘You’re safe.’
He tried to face the man but could’t catch hold of his face without straining his eyes. He stood up and covered his eyes to get a better look.
‘It is safe.’ the man consoled him.
The man’s pleasant voice brought a change. His consolation made him forget about the storm in his room. His voice soothed him. The man repeated to come closer and he did as he said. But still he couldn’t understand who the man was. The man opened his arms and said, ‘You’re fine.’
He came closer to the illuminated man and hugged him. He felt a jolt as he closed his eyes. A jolt not painful as a lightning strike but a jolt so warm that made the storm in his room completely disappear.
He withdrew himself when he felt the silence creep back into the room. The clouds had evaporated, the smoke had disappeared. His bed was back into his position – lifeless.
‘You made it.’
The man he hugged had lost his white glow. He could now see the man clearly. He was shocked for a second and retreated back, but came closer again when he understood who he was. He was looking at himself.
Photo Credit: Ciaran Bryne