The afternoon sun burst into the room. Passing through the light pink curtains, it gave the entire room a dreamy appearance. The house was empty. The silence of the usually chirpy birds gave her a feeling of insecurity. Yet, shrugging off the dread, she removed the towel that wrapped her, and got dressed. She then applied a lotion delicately over her entire body, gliding her fingers smoothly over the moist of her skin.
She walked up to the mirror.
There she stood, angelically beautiful, devoutly pious yet, blasphemously sinful. Her graceful frame seemed to tell a thousand stories, a little at a time. The roundness of her physique, the child-like innocence radiating from her face and yet, a melancholic tinge in her eyes, made her all the more attractive.
She looked her reflection into the eye. All at once, raced a million reflections through her mind-of the past, the present and… let it be. She looked at herself, rather, watched herself. She’d watched herself since a long while, from her very childhood. She’d watched herself grow; grow from a little kid to what they call a lady, a full grown lady. She had watched her own self transcend through the many seasons-the flowers of spring, the snow of winter, the sweat of summer and the bliss of monsoon. She’d watched the many tears, the many pains she had endured. All of them were like messengers from some far away land. They had messages to convey, lessons to teach.
She smiled. The reflection smiled back. But, would it last? The smile? Maybe yes, if she tried. And she did. She did try. Holding on to the smile, she raced her thoughts back to all the lovely presents offered to her, the presents that made her being worth it-the rainbows whose colours were difficult to distinguish but the fact that they were there, gave her solace; the tinkling of anklets as her mother rushed from one corner of the house to another; the sound of her father turning the pages of the newspaper and finally the contented feeling when he’d place it on the table, for now he’d come to her; her younger brother’s monotonous tantrums over the same little things. And just how there’s no end to counting the stars, there seemed no end to counting her blessings. The reflection seemed to be able to fathom that, and naturally, the smile broadened.
She looked at her lips and remembered him, the dreams she dreamt about him. She remembered her heart racing every time he would come closer. How desperately she hoped he would be hers, but alas! Yet, she had never let her dreams be shattered. There’s nothing wrong in dreaming, is there? Her reflection grinned, like a child, at being offered her favourite chocolate.
How blissful it all is! How marvelous! She carried within her a wonder, a fairytale- some of it revealed, some held back. She wasn’t at all times what she appeared to be. Not always that epitome of strength she was believed to be, was strong enough. Neither were the smiles always smiling. Like a rollercoaster, she had hurled herself to different directions, high and low, yet at all times, like the rollercoaster ride, it was joyous. She smiled all the more.
But, bless the Devil that lurked in the shadows. Well, can he tolerate smiles? No. Never.
Like the harrowing thunder that disrupts the tranquility of the night, there barged into her thoughts the echoes of his voice – the doctor’s voice, kind yet ruthless, “Actually, it’s too late, maybe a year more.”
And, probably that explained the silence of the usually chirpy birds.