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Writings > Short Story > Classic

Requiem

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Life & Times - Chapter 2
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcIqZoxV0sA

Like most people who enjoy spending their time loitering at cafes; these two were no exemption. The best friends used to live in the same neighborhood when they were little. Maybe it was fated but the circumstances that led them close to one-another was poverty. The two friends were from a poor family living in a middle class neighborhood. They connected immediately and realized they needed each other and acknowledged the importance of having someone that gets it. This led to a beautifully blossomed and sustaining kinship.
 

Though they don’t live as neighbors anymore the bond they shared acted as a living flame that tied them together and enabled them to trust one another. You don’t see this kind of Friendship too often these days; it is a rare quality.

 They were sitting on a set of what appeared as old-fashioned wooden stools that came with a matching round table. Our first protagonist was named Scotter, Scotter was having a cup of hot plain tea and the other, Aslam who shouldn’t be drinking coffee was having his favorite sweet black coffee. They both resented milk in their drinks. 

About an hour later of what was filled with updating each other with experiences and stories they deemed worth sharing, Aslam sat up and exclaimed as he remembered something he wanted to talk about. 

He began, ‘You know, I have this interest towards listening to a certain type of music that sometimes conjures up emotions, right?’

 ‘You mean your penchant towards dark and miserable things?’ replied Scotter sarcastically.

 ‘Well whatever man, we all have our inclination towards certain things that others might deem as weird.’ Aslam continued, ‘here is what happened, it was early in the morning, and this morning I had to take my medications and I wasn’t working that day thus I took things easy and I noticed that I wasn’t stressed out on having to go anywhere or rushing for anything; It was a good feeling, I have to say.’ Aslam nodded to himself as he said that.

 ‘Well good for you then, what are you trying to say?’ Scotter asked losing patience. ‘Relax man, just listen to me will you?’ Said Aslam.

 Scotter looked at his now empty cup and asked the waiter for another hot cup of tea, ‘with lime this time’, he told the waiter. Aslam too asked for another cup of coffee.

 ‘To be honest, your stories have always been a little weird and gloomy man, don’t you think of anything normal?’ Asked Scotter again with a sarcastic tone in his voice.

 ‘Haha! I don’t know, I wish! But you know how circumstances tend to make people think and have a different outlook on certain things? So will you stop with your cheap sarcastic remarks and just listen to me vent out? I just need to share this with someone and who better to share it with than you?’ Aslam explained to him.

 ‘I am privileged.’ Scotter replied carefully and nodded in silent. Aslam took the hint and continued, ‘I turned on the computer and was looking forward to watch a movie or you know anything I’ve downloaded. As I was browsing through the files, I realized that I saw almost everything I downloaded recently’. I then got restless and started moving the cursor to the available drives and started double clicking random folders.’

 ‘To my surprise, I came across one of the clips I used to listen to all the time and is still one of my favorite till today. So I played it on. It must’ve been the medication I took, because I started to feel dizzy and floating. I stood up from the chair I was sitting and lied down on the floor instead, I was now aware that I was staring blindly at the ceiling.’

 ‘Wait, this song it’s not the one entitled requiem? As Aslam nodded Scotter let out a sigh and said, ‘Here we go again, you are going to talk about the song you listened to, aren’t you? He said agitated but a little interested. Aslam’s story was always a little peculiar and never normal to the point of entertaining.

 Ignoring what Scotter just said, Aslam continued with his story, ‘Anyway the medications affect were getting stronger by the second.’ He paused for a moment and continued again, ‘now that I think about it I might’ve taken extra doses than what was originally prescribed by the doctor; and the speakers started singing out this amazing music. I was lying down on the floor looking at the white ceiling and my ears felt as if it was attending a feast.’

 ‘I noticed whilst the tunes came out from the speakers and swiftly entered my ears and flowed into my brain. My eyes were closed now.’

 I started feeling a deep sense of hunger and I was also feeling weak all over. I opened my eyes and I was now standing on a vast black platform and everything below was black. Around me everything was as white as the ceiling I was staring at. As the song progressed I felt more and more alone.

 Due to the stimulation of the music to the brain, I corresponded with the tune vigorously. In a trance like state, I vividly saw myself standing alone with nothing to atone. I tore away my relations with the world. The pangs of miseries stroked me vehemently, before any admonishing it started diminishing every little confidence and self esteem.

  I needed a light that illuminates the path. These petty escapisms, I can’t account for them anymore. The self-fulfillment they bring out, little by little dispersed into mundane familiarity. What had done the job before was not able to come close to satisfactory anymore. The self gets used to things too fast, momentary escapisms, temporary happiness all in vain, accumulated into waste and disgrace.

  

They construe what they misconstrue; they adhere to what they don’t comprehend. Disparity, impunity they attack from all sides. The choir continues singing excitingly, bringing to ground fleeting memories and bounded miseries that I never knew still living within.

 All sorts of heavy tragedies passed through the vivid theatrical version, the production of what appeared as depicted by the mind. They fastened their pace and elaborately haunting the mind with melodies of grace. It made my mind race while I was standing perfectly still. And in a daze I started witnessing many strange things.

 I was hypnotized, standing upright but everything else moved swiftly around me. I had to lie down and so I passed out but the vision in my mind kept conjuring up pictures and tales. The sudden serene followed by the shocking outburst of iniquity, still evoking and awaking my seething memories.

 The orchestra was an inch away from me, they continued putting words into my mind. They mocked and they laughed, they sympathized and showed compassion, they serenaded and instilled hatred.

 Scotter by now had taken interest and was amused listening to his friend’s expressing some very twisted tales. He always knew his friend had a weird sense of story telling but this was overly dramatic. He even started to assume that Aslam was making things up or did he really overdose on his medication? He then for some reason decided to test his friend, Scotter interjected and blurted out, ‘Have you ever wondered how rice is composed of flesh, bone, hair etc? Isn’t it amazing how food can turn into flesh and bone?’

 Aslam stared at him disapprovingly. They both stared at each other for a few seconds until Scotter sighed and said with a regrettable tone, ‘sorry, carry on’.

 ‘As the song went on towards the middle, the conundrums in my eardrums were almost unbearable, I witnessed earth quakes, mountains colliding against one another, volcanoes erupting, tornadoes, thunderstorm and it was snowing where it shouldn’t but still the people lived on uncaringly in oblivion.

 I could feel the thirst within me drying me up from the inside. The next minute I was in a completely different place, this time everything was great. My thirst was quenched! I was lying on a rich green carpet at a splendid forest. The air was pure, the atmosphere a cure, the flowers bloomed and animals happily loomed. The children were hopping joyously, the adults all looked without stress and worry and appeared sincerely happy.

 Soon I once again noticed a change of phase; the conductor began signaling other things. As swiftly as I was comforted, the next second I find myself gasping for air. I knew I was in a state of calamity. I was in a country in way and I saw the face of a worried mother carrying her child running around aimlessly with no sense of direction. A number of other mothers with their children too joined her and they ran around seeking shelter and protection. They came into a dark alley whilst their enemies waited gawking treacherously. The mothers’ eyes were filled fear and tremor, the enemies eyes were colored with deceit and an unaccountable amount of foolishness. The mothers fell into their trap and their journey ended protecting their child.

 The melody changed and so did my vision. This time I was bounded and shackled by heavy wooden garments.  My hands, feet and neck were chained and I was put to kneel in front of a mad shrieking crowd. Having always been too self-conscious, I was surprised that I didn’t care what the people thought. I hope I always saw it this way, but at that moment, they appeared as merely objects who were moved and pushed around.

  A huge man with a charming face came out with an axe. He looked at me and let out a crooked smile. He didn’t waste any time, while the masses were getting rowdy. He lifted up the axe and said goodbye.

 I was now in a different state; in a desert where nobody lives; my body was stretched out longer than I could ever imagine. Under the scorching sun and dried by the burning sand. My back was burned and the pain was unbearable. I witnessed then a sudden appearance of thousands of beings walking from a distance. They came out of nowhere and as they neared me, they deliberately walked on me and as they got to my chest stepped unto it bashed and kicked it. I could feel the stab from every step and they proceeded to my head and when they were there they left their crazy thoughts and ideas into my head. Some shouted, some whispered but everything they said were dimwitted.

 I was now fast asleep, like a child sleeping. The lullaby carried on. There was a revelation; they were never anything bringing me down, not a single burden. The world is my heaven—I noticed then I dropped my guard and the world started spinning once again, bringing about realism into the reality. As it spun, everything affected me.  I was affected by every single occurrence. That led me to believe in my existence of a weak, dependant human.

 The song was coming to an end. All these while, while they were punishing me I finally noticed something worth mentioning, I wasn’t at their mercy, they were merely mercenaries, the one controlling them was moving his hands frantically into the empty air. This man too was a tool controlled by certain entities and they too were controlled by other parties and finally every man has to abide and is at the mercy of nature or the one that commands it and as long as you’re human one cannot devoid himself from abiding with the laws and rules of the universe and being human.’

 Aslam rubbed his hand that it almost looked like he was clapping them. ‘Is that it?’ Scotter asked. I know you were making this up and you made me listen and I got interested, why didn’t you finish it off with a happier ending?’

 ‘I wasn’t making it up man’ Aslam replied and paused and thought for a bit. ‘Well, there’s no use fooling you, but I really did dream or hallucinate about most of them. He stopped again expecting a reply. When there was none from his friend, Aslam asked Scotter, ‘was it good? Did you like it?’  ‘I want to go home now and you are paying.’ As he got up Scotter added, ‘I like happy endings man!’ and walked out the café.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Previous short story:
Life & Times - Chapter 2
Next short story:
And
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about the writer

Alam

Often seen as cold, bitter and distant but in reality is cool, sweet and not very distant..haha Sometimes I feel like saying what Kierkegaard said, People understand me so poorly that they even dont understand my complain about them not understanding me. On the other hand often I assume of understanding people completely...so i guess its a given or an irony or something else..depends on how you see it..
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