Scarlet Light

Scarlet Light

I see him every day or rather early morning. He halts his car and doesn’t move even when indicated. I know he lives in the big mansion just across where I stand. He doesn’t mind, my keeping an eye on him.

“Honk… Honk…” the car horns blare and the driver storms out, spitting expletives.

“Why don’t you move your car and let the traffic move…“

“I can, but I refuse to… Don’t you know who I am?”

His inebriated state and three accompanying muscle men, seems harbinger of an omen. Sensing trouble, the irate driver scoots to his car and sprints away.

They celebrate their victory by snorting a white powder, neatly arranged in rows. I have seen that often consumed by others too, on darkness engulfed crossroads.

*****

Sun kissed, sultry morning is synonymous to the old man’s presence. I see him too, every day. He however, acknowledges my presence, with a lovelorn look.

“Aa… Aa…aa…” he addresses the street urchins. All flock him, stinking naked children and salivating dogs, all hungry for the love, he showers unfailingly.

“Dadu!…Dadu!…” they shout in unison.
“Woof … Woof…” the canines in chorus.

My day brightens on seeing his selfless love. Today will certainly be a nice day.

“Boom… Boom…” deafening music interjects my thoughts.

“Skerrt…” screeching tyres, I can see him from a distance. Impending doom.

Hey old man! Move! Move right now.
He can’t hear me.

That young boy and his muscle men seem to have lost control of the car, it’s racing towards the crossroad.

I turn red; on alert, hope he slows down.
Slow down lad. Please!

He seems inebriated, he doesn’t stop, he hits him!

The old man went flying in the air, flung high over me.

The car stops.

The henchman gets off, “Is he dead?” questions the teenager behind the wheels.

“No. Still breathing.” he replies, analysing the road around.

“Should we take him to the hospital?” queries one of them.

“No!” bellows the teenager, “come back and sit in the car. If we take him to the hospital in this condition, we will be nabbed.”

No! This can’t be happening; I have seen this boy grow up. When did he become so callous!

“Father’s political adversaries will target him. Let him die. No one saw us. Get back in the car!”

They are scooting away, can anyone stop them?
Please help this old man, he is bleeding to death.

No one comes forward, the urchins scurry away, dogs lick his wounds and the pigeons’ pirouette around him.

He’s gone. I see his soul drifting away. I stand here, useless witness to his apathy.

I am exasperated. I won’t mellow down; I won’t turn green. This crimson tide of his death will always question my presence.

I tried my best to stop him, he didn’t pay heed to my scarlet light. His alcohol laden eyes never respected my presence.

I can’t speak but you can… Say no to drunk driving.

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