Shadow of Love

Shadow of Love

I have evaded writing about this not simply because this kind of stuff is never to be found on the popularly trending topic lists but also because it’s complex, unbelievable and completely inexplicable.

I was out looking for a rented accommodation in Delhi and had not been lucky yet. It was really hot and sultry and goes without saying this added to my overall irritability and lack of patience. So when I reached the present address I took out all my exasperation on the doorbell. This self-created prolonged noise alerted me but not strongly enough so as to expect a St. Barnard ready to pounce on me soon after the door opened.  

Well let me be specific here! The dog did raise itself against gravity with a clear intention to make me experience a painful gravitational fall when suddenly he froze in the air. He looked scared, gave a timid bark and unexpectedly receded to his cosy corner. I turned around to verify if someone stood there but like I suspected, there was no one to be seen.

“What made that ferocious St. Barnard give up his attack on me?” I wondered. I tried distracting myself by pretending to judge the suitability of that property but this strange experience had got me thinking deep and hard!

Months later I returned to Nainital, my hometown and with it returned my strange experiences. One day it felt as if some invisible hands rocked the Grand Pa’s chair on which I was cradling with joy, without me having to put any effort to build its momentum. 

Days passed and stubborn oblivion that stalks everyone, finally did catch hold of me. Then one fine day a family feast was organized by the elders at home which all family members had to attend compulsorily! The dogmatic family priest began his monotonous mantras. Some repeated religiously and some lazily slurred. Then suddenly as the Aarti began, with it began some real action as one of the aunts started whirling her head in the middle of the gathering. Her body rumbled and tumbled like the oldest model of a poorly designed front-load washing machine. This was usually read as a sign that some Divine force had entered her. But to everyone’s disappointment the holy spirit spoke nothing!

Finally came the time to devour the feast. Me being the favorite grandchild of my Grand Pa, was served first. My plate had a generous amount of all the delicacies loved by him. As I ate I sensed something strange. It felt as if I had become a puppet and some other being controlled all my mechanics. Things started happening involuntarily.

I tried to ignore this experience and proceeded to pay my regards to the picture on the wall. I stood smiling for a while and shockingly it felt as if the picture responded.

As the lips on the frame resumed stiffness I felt a warm hug from behind. I looked back this time to discover my Grand Pa’s Shadow! It was his first death anniversary today!

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Deepika Dobriyal
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