US

What a charade

April 13, 2018
By Laraib Zakir

Pulling back the satin curtains, she sat back on her bed, sipping the morning delight, her lips curved into a sinister smile....

STORY

Tranquility shuddered

Somewhat deliciously It was the time of winds

To whirl the serendipity

Pulling back the satin curtains, she sat back on her bed, sipping the morning delight, her lips curved into a sinister smile. “So when are you going to tell them? It’s been so long! And, oh look what you have again done to the curtains! I just opened them, let them be! It’s such a beautiful morning!”exclaimed her mother.

Her thoughts were in such contentment that she chose silence.

*************

An aisle of crimson swirled all along to bring closer

what was never near to the heart

It sent a chill down their spine as they closely inspected the side of her mouth. How could merely drinking a harmless cup of steaming coffee lead to a streaming line of blood that had just emerged probably out of nowhere? She was all right a minute ago, not hit by anyone or anything, then how? She chose not to be bewildered by what had happened because that was destined to happen.

*************

The sealed utterances quieted the chaos

To put down the agitation that came through animosity

She had not been speaking much the last week. Not that she talked much in the first place, but this silence was eerie to her friends. They mostly found her somewhere lost in her thoughts, always wandering somewhere too far away. It took so much effort to get her attention. Nowadays, she almost always seemed angry, which wasn’t her usual way. She would huff at their inquiries and leave right away.

*************

They held everything Nothingness, intrigue

The sheen fainted to combat the unknown

Her friend was intrigued by her eyes that day. She felt as if they were uncomfortably strange. To her, they were lighter, not that they were previously light, but this time they seemed empty. Her friend was very much sure about that, the spark was simply not there. The green in her eyes was diminishing to grey day by day. This belief of her friends made them more quizzical every day. Even if they tried to avoid, they could not help but observe her eyes when she was looking away.

*************

The bleak day embracedthe foreign hostility

Brisk as never she held to the brittle cold

That day, one of her friends was lucky enough to shake hands with her in search of a warm greeting, but to the friend’s amazement, they were unnervingly cold ... so cold that she pulled it away immediately. Turning away, all her friend could think of was how cold her hand was! She did not dare to ask her why she was so cold, for she was too afraid to hear the answer.

*************

It came all of a sudden

An answer to their questioning glances

Obvious as it was

Her power had them awed

It was a fine outing where they noticed the most unthinkable of her actions. Her delicate hands had suddenly gripped one of their friend’s throats who had courteously asked if she was fine. All of them wanted to help her if she was troubled at all and had planned a get together. But the incident had left them stunned ... even anguished. She disappeared within a minute, not bothering to give explanations at all. Her actions were like a burst of ferocious flames which had burnt her friends’ sense of well being. They all stood in awe with their words clenched firmly inside their mouths.

*************

The yearning had long gone

For everything that was once desired

The eyes searched for abyss

That lurked in the bottom

They had been noticing her loss of appetite. She would sit at the cafe’s table and revise her notes, engrossed in whatever she was reading, or her mind would read someone else’s. Their efforts to initiate a conversation seemed doomed; it was as if they had never known her.

They had lost complete track of her.

*************

Denying the truth

With utter confidence

Was barely what she looked for

In a heart filled with guilt

The frolicking wind heaved delicately upon her presence, blowing her strands of hair, a luscious light brown novelty that descended below her shoulders as she gently traipsed along negotiating the obscurity of the night. Contemplating about the calmness of the hour, it felt as all of it was real, no ambiguities and no doubts, she gladly went with the duskiness of ages.

The convictions fragmented

Into fabricated truths

It was all about contentions

That were so firm

“Hey, what’s with you and not coming in the sun? Vampire maybe?” Her friends teased her along the way as she squinted her light green eyes to ward off the resilient rays.

The next few days, they talked how pale her skin had gotten.

Soon all of this was forgotten.

Until, by November, she had set out some clandestine goals.

“Why not make them believe, what they wished to believe?” She said to herself. Smiling, she knew it would be tough, but fun.

She had added corn syrup mixed with red dye to her list of essentials, knowing that this would definitely come in handy. Next, it was a blessing for her to stop being social for a long time, and keeping her mouth locked for a long time was never a problem for her. Instead, she enjoyed everyone’s anxious glances judging her actions. To make matters worse for others, and better for her, she rejoined Karate classes - she had discontinued the practice in childhood and it was the best time to resume it. To her parents’ surprise, she keenly ate at the breakfast table. No more laziness, no more lethargic excuses, and no more useless cluttering; just eating as if she wouldn’t eat the entire day till she came home. And yes, she did the exact same. The cafe had become her reading spot, minus her eating routine. There is a practice in winters to keep one’s hands warm by wearing gloves, or rubbing the hands together, or sitting by the fire; she, with all her self-possession, resisted the temptation. Her cold hands were a source of curiosity to her very dear friends.

She wished she could tell her friends how hard it was to be a vampire, if it all had not become so captivating.

The sun rose

Less threatening that day

To ward off the perils

Of captivating speculations