Thursday, March 27, 2008

Lucy Decides to Die - IV

Lucy's husband, Jove, was a busy man. But that day, he had no work. So, at midday, Jove called his wife's cellphone to ask her if she was free for lunch. The phone rang, but was unanswered. After three consecutive tries , Jove grew impatient. Perhaps , she had left the phone at home, he mused. He then , called her office. A practised voice answered. He asked for his wife. After thirty seconds of blank noises, the voice informed him that his wife had not turned up for work that day.

This was extremely unexpected. His wife had left for work. And she would have informed him, if she was sick. But she hadn't. Neither was she answering her phone. Jove knew something was amiss. He called home. No one answered. He had enough. He decided to go home and check. He took half a days leave and left for home.

His fourth-floor flat was as deserted as ever. His wife had indeed left her cell-phone at home. His three missed calls glowed at him, when he checked it. But where was his wife? She was never this irresponsible. She never went anywhere without telling him first. After pacing the house for half an hour, and searching through her things for another half for any clue to her whereabouts , he started to call her friends and family.

Three hours later, he still couldn't find her.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Lucy Decides to Die - III

She entered the air-conditioned mall to escape the mid-day heat. The glaring lights that were switched on even during the day fascinated her. She wandered through the alleys , often stopping at certain shops to stare. She carefully counted the money she had, and decided she could spend some. Finally, after three hours she bought high heels and new lingerie. She didn't want her corpse to be found in dirty underwear.
She was almost late. So instead of the bus, she took a cab. She had had no lunch, but now she didn't have the time. She reached the cathedral just in time. She walked in slowly and deliberately. The silent darkness of the cathedral on a weekday afternoon calmed her. She sat beneath a pair of cooing pigeons perched on the rafter.
She waited. Then , looking at Jesus on the Cross, she folded her hands and bowed her head in prayer.When she opened her eyes, he was sitting beside her.
"Did you get my message? ", she asked slowly.
"How did you know i would come?", he asked.
"I knew", she answered.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Lucy Decides to Die - II

Lucy boarded the first train of the morning,as she usually did for work. She waved to her husband till the train pulled out of the station. She watched his familiar face fade away forever. Then she took out her phone, plugged into her regular radio station, and started to listen to music. She did not get off at her station. Today she was going someplace else.
Soon, the train pulled into the last station. Lucy unplugged the radio and got off the train. Even at eight in the morning the station was burdened with a bevy of people, all of them in a hurry. Lucy formed a bubble of laze in a sea of haste. Lucy had nowhere to go. She stepped into the dusty city, and a waterfall of noise drenched her. She walked aimlessly for a while before she stopped at an ATM.
She walked in and used her card. Crisp notes gratified her. She carefully counted the money and put them into her purse. Back on the road, she boarded a bus to the centre of the city. Once there, she first went to the bus depot. She bought two tickets to the mountains. The tickets were for the next day. She had almost two days to spend and nowhere to go. But she had money. Money, of course, could buy a place to go to. It could ,infact , also buy someone to go to.
By now she was hungry. It was almost nine-thirty. Yet she walked to a phone booth. From there she called a number that she had scribbled on a piece of paper last night. The phone rang thrice, and then the machine took over.
"Hi! I'm not at home right now. Please leave a message after the beep."
She left a message. She fed the phone. She left.
She went to a sweet shop. She had the sweets she used to like as a child. She found she no longer liked them. She walked back to the bus stand and took a bus to the biggest shopping centre in town. She watched the roads snake away from her bus window.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Lucy Decides to Die - I

Inspired from Paulo Coelho's book - Veronica Decides to Die.

The alarm beeped six. With eyes still closed Lucy turned to her husband, and searched for his mouth with hers. He returned her kiss, and told her to stay in bed for five more minutes. She did. With a minute still to go of her extended sleep, Lucy decided to die.

She left the bed. With routine haste her husband and she moved through the foggy morning. She carefully brushed her teeth, stopping at all thirty-one of them. She wanted to be a good-looking corpse. When her husband was in the shower, she quietly packed her seldom worn jeans and her soft blue dress into her sturdy office bag. She also put every last penny of cash she possessed into her wallet. She dressed with care.

Her husband and she had their usual breakfast of cornflakes. She apologized for not making him lunch, and told him to use the office canteen for once. He made no fuss. They were just about to step out, when she stopped him. She pulled him close, and kissed him full on his mouth. Her husband was a little surprised but brushed off the sudden show of affection as one of the mood swings she often had. Only she knew, that it would be the last time they would kiss.