A heart-wrenching pain radiates throughout the body and forms an eternal ache on the neck. After an hour or more of continuous agony, he tries to get up and a memory of her runs past his ribs. He screams in remorse.
He hears a cat moving outside the kitchen window and waits for a response.
After a long pose, Bhaskar gets up and dawdles inside the apartment, one step at a time. An unbearable emptiness sulks inside and he tumbles. The sofa creaks as if in pain. A constipated memory explodes inside like an unhealed hemorrhoid.
In the evening, a prayer from a nearby temple touches his soul making him arise in an overpowering memory and anticipation. He goes to the kitchen, washes utensils, prepares her favourite sardine fry, fish curry and boiled rice for dinner. He waits for her, but she never returns. He receives a message after sometime in his cell phone: “I’m going to my friend’s place.”
He makes small sticky rice balls with his nervous fingers and gulps it after dipping in the fish curry. He grows big like a lonely monster in his shadow, chewing the bones of fried sardine. Then he retires to the bedroom and struggles hard to fall asleep.
He tries not to weep. But he can’t… So, he weeps and falls into a half-sleep, sad and disturbed.
In the wee hours around two, Bhaskar wakes up suddenly as if in response to someone’s plea. But he hears only a frightening noise from within. A broken man sulks inside and prays. He stares at the roof and stays awake in bed for hours. A stifling quietude embraces his conscience.
A hidden fear of loneliness creeps in and takes the dreaded face of a werewolf. It hangs from the roof and stares back at him. He feels it like a tripping dream projected on to the roof. A table full of books and a pen-stand turns upside down, crumbling him under its weight.
Lying numb in bed, he sees a big white cat slowly descend to his bedroom. It comes to the bedside and stands right in front of his face with a tail wagging incessantly. The cat looks into his eyes, turns around and poops.
The stink of cat poop fills the bedroom. It slowly begins to spread across the plenitudes of his memory.
The cat walks into the kitchen, grabs a sardine fry and disappears.
Bhaskar sees the door lying half-open in the morning. He leaps forward in a bid to shut the door. It closes with a banging sound.
Trembled, he turns around. He feels no pain on the neck!
Bhaskar sees a feline tail swish behind, grown from his body. He jumps on to the floor and cries: “Meow…”