Its night , unusually dark . People are walking toward something , its not quite visible whats calling them even though i stand on my toes . My sister comes out of the crowd and looks at me , showing no expression she rejoins the crowd which has now grown in number . It suddenly hits me that she had already invited me to a prayer meeting organised by a fellowship shes part of . As i walk toward the hall where everyones headed , the crowd thins out  , and by the time i reach the hall theres nobody there around me , only people gathered in worship inside the hall . The hall  has blurred glass walls and is about 2 mtrs or so above the ground , so that all you can make out whats going inside is from the lights and music coming out . Everyone inside seem very excited in worship . But theres a group of people around the same age as me sitting below the hall , looking intently at it . As im in no mood to join worship i decide to go sit with them . Theres about 5 people in the group . Three girls who all look similar to eachother (all wearing mismatched jeans and tops , glasses) , a girl from Phillipenes(fair,extremely nice looking and cute.dimples and a smile to top it off) , a boy who looks slightly older than me (mismatched clothes,long sleeve sweater,jeans). The girls all take interest in me as i walk towards them and sit right in front of the girl from phillipenes . The boy however doesn’t take his eyes off the hall .Theres regret and yearning in his eyes , as if he badly wants to be inside but can’t because of what he has done . I turn around to look at the three girls , they all start giggling and smiling , disgusted i look at the girl behind me(frm phillipenes) , she gives a cute smile , showing her dimples , i smile back and am just about to talk to her when the mat (i notice only then that we all were sitting on a brown straw mat) , transforms into a huge bed and tilts itself , so that me and the other guy are on top,slanting part , while all the girls are sitting at the bottom . I look at the girl(phillipenes) and she smiles again . I look toward the hall , theres great commotion , it seems the worship is over and everyones is coming out and going into some other place away from the hall , seems its lunch time. Not wanting to sit in such an uncomfortable position i slide down , landing right beside and girl(Phillipenes), she doesnt say anything justs smiles , I tell her

Me:”Good thing i came down , i was about to fall off”

She doesnt reply , causing me to get annoyed . Meanwhile the other three girls jump to their feet and pull me up and drag me away to join the crowd . I look back at the girl (Phillipenes) and shes not even looking at me . So i notice the three girls with me for the first time . They all look shockingly similar in appearances and attitude . Every single thing they do is to grab someone’s attention . The way they smile , walk , talk everything . It disgustes me to even stand next to them but theyve taken me by my arm and are dragging me along the crowd . As it transpires , we’ve now entered into a long dark tunnel , White tiles all around and fluorescent lamps at regular intervals . The crowd is thick in the tunnel almost suffocating . The tunnel itself is scary and it got an unknown atmosphere to it  , too dark to describe , the kind that makes you want to constantly look behind your shoulder when your walking in the dark in some lonely alley . As we walk toward the end of the tunnel we see it leads into a .. . . .well quite simple put its a mess hall . But its much more than that . Its so vast , you cant see the walls on any of the three sides .Everywhere there are extremly long tables and benches (made of cement ,immovable and stuck to the floor) . But wierd as it is only two of the tables are occupied . And everyone seems very familiar . The three girls holding me let go of me and take seats at a table while glad that they’ve left me i walk toward the other table . Theres even more familiar faces here , all of them smile at me and strike up conversations ., while i sit at a third , empty table facing the second and first .From here i notice a new girl (her hair is all dark brown/red,wearing a white top, very familiar face). She is animatedly explaining something to her friend seated right next to her. As im lost in thought she looks right at me and smiles . I remember then that i know her  . I smile back and mouth the following words to her

Me: “Wait for me after lunch”

She nods her head , gives another smile and continues her conversation with her friend as though nothing had happened .Soon after this she walks into the washroom , and i lose sight of her .Dissapointed that ive lost her and knowingi wont ever see her again i walk back through the tunnel alone to the hall .Im met with a strange sight , the hall is no longer there and in its place a lot of plastic chairs are strewn around , and the place somehow seems like a continuation of the tunnel . The atmosphere , lighting , and tiles are all the same here. There are people sitting around on a few chairs , all unfamiliar faces . Majority of the people gathered are extremely well built , tall and tough looking young men (Maybe 19-25yrs old) . When i look around again , all the chairs have been occupied but one . I walk towards it . Its right next to two men , both look older than me and are engaged in conversation, they look up to notice me walking upto them .As i sit on the empty chair they tell me , theyre from Satyabhama University(Where i study) . Im a bit terrified at first guessing they’re seniors but relax when one of them tells me they just joined the college and classes are yet to start . I feel confidence briming in me and tell them authoritatively that im their senior .They turn their backs on me and continue their conversation . Not knowing what to do i walk back to the mess hall looking for the girl (white top, familiar smile) . Im running alongside the long tables and looknig everywhere for her face when i suddenly hit another person . I look up after i’ve recovered from the impact , to find that he is my classmate and very good friend , Sidhartha !! (In the dream however he is extremely well built , broad shouldered ,and tall, wearing yellow sleevless , Blue shorts). He tells me

Sidhartha :”Anand!!!! You didnt call me but i came”{very happy . has a smile }

Me:{Lost for words , embarressed}

Sidhartha : {Starts talkin in Telugu}{Not clear what he is saying}{still has smile}

As he is talking to me , he suddenly turns ecstatic and gives me a pat on the back and picks me up with one hand and throws me away . I fly 10 ft into the air and fall about half a kilometer away (The cement tables and benches are now made of wood ). My fall shatters a lot of the tables , but im unhurt . More people dressed like Sidhartha try to make their way to where i’ve fallen . i sense evil in their eyes and quickly get up and start running as fast as i can , through the crowd and towards the tunnel . But this time there are no friendly or familiar faces. All the faces are staring back at me expressionless giving me no hope . I keep running all the while hearing people chasing me . . .

END

Theres a vast expansive field ,but its all dry brown and all the crops which used to grow ther have now gone dry . We see a borewell and an old hut next to it . Theres two people . One is an old lady(wearing a red blouse and green saree) pumping water out of the borewell the other is a young man (25 or so, with a long beard, wearing a white lungi{unusually white and clean}) .The man is deep in thought , we know that the lady is not his mother , but theres respect in his eyes as he looks at her toiling in the hot sun .

[We go into his thoughts . . . . .

He remembers how he came into Chennai with all high hopes to finding a high paying job when he was still young . Freshere from college and full of dreams he was . He was clean shaven then . Then there was a great flood in the city which cut off all food and drinking water supply to the city . He calls up his mother and wife , but they give no words of comfort to him , only listen to what he says and cut the phone . He feels awfuly lonely and rejected . A huge wave sweeps him away and he is knocked unconcious . Next thing he remembers when he wakes up he sees an old woman(wearing red blouse and green saree) standing over him and smiling (very toothy smile) .He looks around at the vast dry fields and tells himself that this is his new home . ]

He comes back to himself and looks around to a banyan tree and a few people gathered under it . They keep saying

People gathered under tree : “She took care of him” “She was like a mother to him” “What is he going to do ?”

He has a look of contentment and happiness on him . He is happy where he is .

END

The part  where Sidhartha throws me away is repeated , but this time my fall is harder and the people chasing me are more brutal and have an unknown purpose in their steps as they run me down . And as i run away from them the whole scene dissolves and we see Rajinikanth (A South-Indian Film actor){dressed as Sivaji, black leathers and a long knife in one of his hands}. He is worried about his 5yr old sister . He thinks to himself

“Neither can live while the other does”

He caresses the deadly knife in his hand and we know the two people he is thinking about are me and his 5yr old sister .

Scene dissolves into a stage (Brightly and colourfuly lit, red , violet , green blue) Theres a word formed from small multi coloured chocolate balls on the stage floor , Its not clear what it says but it seems it is of interest to Rajnikant who walks upto it , takes off the shades he was wearing . He bends down next to it and picks a few of the multi coloured balls and looks at the huge crowd gathered in front of the stage , all silently waiting to see what happens next . This isn’t what they came expecting to see but they patiently wait . He puts his shades back on and gets up on his feet again .

END

Advertisements