“How can I break free from the clutches of my captor?” Falak kept tapping her feet on the floor. How… How?
She was lost in thoughts when a peal of scornful laughter reverberated around the room. It came from the silhouette standing firm near her bedroom door. A cold shiver ran down her spine. Falak felt sick to her stomach. The wild guffaw continued.
Enough now. I have to put an end to this. Falak mustered her guts and spoke, “Please let me be. I clung to you for long; it was a mistake. But it’s time to part ways; time to let go. I can’t live under your dark, dingy drape forever. Your presence is an obstacle; like the dense smog that obstructs a drivers vision, leading him to a fatal situation. I don’t want to suffer in the labyrinth of my dark memories.”
The laughter gurgled to a halt and a pregnant silence crept in. Shortly after, the image became wavy and elongated as it burst into a fit of giggles. Falak was being lampooned as if her idea to break free was a shaggy-dog story.
“Well…well! Look who’s talking. You invited me into your life. It’s you who kept holding onto me for years. I stayed ‘cause you wanted me to stay. My presence helped you to survive. And now, all of a sudden, you decided to zap me. How ungreatful!” Another round of chortle from the inky outline echoed around the room.
Falak grew up in a broken family. She faced situations that were depressing and tormenting. Yet, she never succumbed to the grim circumstances. But hell broke loose when her fiancé died in a road accident. She suffered incessantly. Her memories acted like quicksand; sinking her into a dark hole. She was too feeble to emerge from the dungeon of old memories. She lived on until one fine day, she decided to get rid of the mucky load.
“Answer me and don’t just laugh away,” Falak snapped back.
The silhouette moved closer. “You’ve been clinging onto me like a kid, afraid to be lost in the crowd. Why did you befriend me if you despised the pain I brought along? Ah, I guess you were trying to find solace through that pain. It’s been too long. Do you think you are strong enough to detach yourself? Can you? Will you?”
Falak straightened herself. “It’s difficult but I will ‘cause I want to forge ahead. Back then, I couldn’t see beyond. But I won’t allow the shadows of the past to cast a shadow on my future. I’ve suffered enough. It’s time for me to outpace you and head towards the light. Anyway, you will always be a significant part of my life.”
“As much as I’d want you to hold on to me, I’m happy that you decided otherwise.” Slowly, the silhouette retreated. And then, it shrunk out of shape.
With that, the shadows of her past dissolved with the sunbeams of the approaching dawn.
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