Short Story: The End

12 December, 1999

A strange sort of emptiness took hold of me. As I stood there, every inch of me perspiring, and sweaty hands making it difficult to grasp the rough and battered hold of the bat, several unconnected thoughts flashed in my head. Memories, rather. Good memories. Things weren’t supposed to turn out this way. But at that very moment, as my heart thumped in my chest, and my breaths came in short and deep breaks, everything around me seemed to be slowing down, and turning sour. The memories, the people, my life so far. Everything was turning sour. I was not a bad person. And a strange sort of emptiness took hold of me. At that very moment, more than the fear of losing my degree, more than the fear of breaking my skull, more than the fear of Baba’s wrath, the fear that he might be slipping away gripped me. At that moment, everything ceased to matter. I never did anything bad to anyone intentionally. The ugly, loud and deafening abuses that filled the air, the throngs of people that were coming towards us with blood and vengeance on their head, the odd tear that trickled down my cheek, merging with the beads of sweat and dying a slow, noiseless death as it fell to the uneven concrete, everything. Why was this happening to me? At that very moment, the only thing that remained, amidst the ruckus, the penetrating shrieks and the pounding of my heart, was the look in his eyes. When I pushed him. That look kept interfering with my vision, my thoughts, the memories, the melee, the loosening grip of the bat. I was very scared. I heard the crack when he fell to the ground. And I saw the blood as it started to flow slowly, just so slowly. It was dark. It could have been red, but it was just dark. It was a sight I can never get off my chest. I was standing right there then. I couldn’t be a part of this. I was standing right there then. The bat was now an extension of my arm. I could feel the cuts, the coarse edges, the jagged rubber, I could feel them all. I was ready to take a swing. But was I so full of hatred yet? I was ready to take a swing, all right. But was I ready to take the swing? I hated myself at that moment. I was so full of questions. And there was no time to contemplate answers. They kept drawing near. I could hear the frightened footsteps of the others as they dragged back through their feet the impending doom every tiny second they could, as the bats and stumps shook in their hands as much as they did mine. My grip was loosening. They swung at me. I flinched, but I didn’t scream. I staggered, but I didn’t fall. I could have swung back. I was ready to take the swing. I heard shrill cries of my name behind me, and piercing abuses ahead me. I heard bones cracking all around, and I heard pain. I heard pain the second time today. I threw my bat away. I didn’t take a swing. Instead, I waited. Then, they swung again. This time, I heard nothing. As I lay on the ground, smeared in my own blood, a strange sort of emptiness took hold of me. 

Note: This story was written by me around 7 years ago.. it is part of a larger story that I hope to write some day. 

Picture courtesy: Google. None of the pictures are owned by the author all rights belong to the original owner(s) and photographer(s).

© Copyright belongs to the author, Nikhil Taneja. The article may not be reproduced without permission. A link to the URL, instead, would be appreciated.

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