Thursday, June 21, 2007

The Crossing

The leaves on the solitary tree rustled. He woke up with a slight start. For a while he had forgotten where he was. Then he remembered. He stood up and looked across the road. There she was on the other side, waiting as always. Till date she had never mustered the courage to cross the road. He hoped today would be the day. He longed for her, and even looking at her standing there made him yearn for her touch.
And then he heard it. Coming round the bend on the street. The unmistakable drone of a Corvette V8 engine. How could he ever forget that sound? And then he knew. She would cross the road today. He would hold her again. He walked ahead.

She heard it too. And it sent a shiver down her spine. How she longed to cross that stretch of tarmac and walk across to him. She saw the pain in his eyes each time he looked at her. But she had tried to cross, and failed. And when she heard that sound again, she took a step backwards. Her brown eyes clouded with fear.

Alan’s fingers drummed the tune on the steering wheel. He cranked the radio up a notch. They were playing his favourite song again. He smiled to himself. The judge had ruled in his favour. It wasn’t his fault. Who would have expected it?
His mind went back a week. The second day in his shiny new Corvette. And it had been such a long day at work. He was getting home as quick as he could. Sheila would be mad at him for being so late again. He stepped on the gas pedal ever so slightly and the car jumped ahead. She was such a beauty. He was now doing 70 in a 45mph zone. But it was 11 at night and the cops didn’t frequent this stretch of road.
He came to the turn near the little hillock. One tree hill, it was aptly named. He usually slowed down for this sharp turn. But heck, he had a Corvette. This car was meant to eat up roads. He went around the bend at 60. And there she was, about to cross the road. For a moment his headlights had illuminated her face. Eyes open wide in sheer terror. He had braked hard, but it was too late. And then he had heard the sickening thud and felt his wheels run over her delicate frame. He somehow stopped the car after about 20 feet. Getting out he walked back. He grimaced when he saw her lifeless body at the side of the road. He had turned around to go back and it was then that he had seen him. On the other side of the road. He was standing very still. And then he had seen the eyes. They were fixed on Alan. They were following his every step. And even in their silence they were accusing him. That’s when he had panicked and run to his car, started it and zoomed off.
He shook his head as he approached the same turn again. He was only doing 40 today. He turned round the bend and for a moment felt a sense of déjà vu. There she was again! How was it possible? But then he saw the huge antlers. It wasn’t her. It was him. He would never forget those eyes. So mesmerized was he that he didn’t even brake. Neither did he hear the thud or feel the wheels run over the body. He didn’t flinch as his car crossed the shoulder and hit the boulder straight ahead. All he saw was the eyes. And then the darkness.

Alan opened his eyes. It was bright outside. He felt strangely relaxed. How had he fallen asleep in the car? He looked at the boulder in front of his car. It seemed to be a part of the car now. And then he saw her. She was looking at him with a hint of sadness in her eyes. As he watched, she crossed the road and walked across to him. He was still standing on the other side. They both seemed to be hale and hearty! Something wasn’t right here. And then he knew. He screamed. But there was only silence.
There was a soft breeze blowing. The leaves on the solitary tree rustled.

This is inspired by the innumerable gory roadkills that I have come across during my travels in the US of A. No one spares a second thought for these unfortunate victims of human encroachment.
Putting it in the form of a story was inspired by this blog.

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Blogger 666 said...

awesome! loved it..

m sooo glad i someway inspired you to write a story so touching and well crafted.

I loved the he she usage.. no names please right.. its a damn neat style and the unexplained road crossing motive just makes it so much more endearing

Keep writing Equinox.

Best Regards

6/22/2007 1:35 am  
Blogger Moi said...

Oh beautiful.....rings close home all the more coz we are just back from a trip where we saw all these little fawn hit dead, despite the fact that the road had deer signs so clearly put up....why is the world always in such a hurry , i will never understand ....

am here on 666's recommendation and am glad i followed the link ...

the story reminds me of what Hemingway once wrote, "There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed."

6/22/2007 3:42 pm  
Blogger EQUINOX said...

@ 666: Thanks a lot. Keep inspiring and I shall keep writing.

@ Moi: Welcome! And thanks for sharing your thoughts! Its always good to get a few more points of view.

6/22/2007 9:11 pm  
Blogger Jas Bhambra said...

Hopped here on 666's recommendation. Beautiful story, loved the style.

6/23/2007 1:47 am  
Blogger EQUINOX said...

@ jas: Welcome! And thanks!

6/23/2007 10:08 am  
Blogger Radha said...

Great story, loved it !! :)

6/24/2007 11:57 pm  
Blogger vrinda said...

beautiful....and yes the absence of names and teh motive for crossin adds a charm which could never have been attained had they been mentioned...real touchin...cheers equinox

6/26/2007 11:37 pm  
Blogger EQUINOX said...

@ Radha & Vrinda: Thanks a lot!

6/27/2007 9:28 pm  
Blogger Neers said...

NEAT!!! absolutely! :)

6/28/2007 1:49 am  
Blogger EQUINOX said...

@ Neers: Thanks!

6/28/2007 9:05 pm  
Blogger Samyak said...

Nice!! Painful yet nice...

7/02/2007 1:47 pm  

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