Fifteen minutes past midnight.

The dwindling sound of the ceiling fan, accompanied by the wave of sighs galloping through the cool mid August night breeze startled him a wee bit. Power cut. Very common in the farfetched, secluded Boy’s hostel in the corner of a humungous campus.
As the sound dampened, he, again shifted his focus from the obvious to the oblivious. The cigarette had burnt its last; the smoke, dispersed into thin air. The window next to him was his sole passage to the outside world. He looked outside. The moonlight seemed to be compensating for the untimely power cut. It showed a bit larger that night. The river, left roaring from incessant downpour, seemed to have calmed down. The alabaster on the graves, a trace away from the boundary, seemed to glow under the moonlit sky. The combined effect seemed to be casting a spell on the onlooker.
Sitting alone amidst the darkness in his 8x7 room, he confessed his fears and vulnerability to the ounce of brightness that found him. The woes of a yet to be adult, who had a lot of things to say. The unsaid feelings, stories and suggestions that lay buried in the mind since time immemorial resurfaced as the soothing moonlight brought them to life. After long years of a well disciplined, routine of a life he sat there hundreds of miles away from the warmth of his home, thinking about the ‘Whys’ and the ‘What ifs’.
The souls of a Doctor, Actor and Author entrapped in the garb of someone poles apart finally found their voice. The memories of the Girl who waited long enough to see him fall out of love questioned him. The promises made in pure innocence, which couldn’t be kept, mocked his conscience. The deeds that were left unfulfilled filled up his idle mind. For, he never owned them. For he kept running from them, denying them their deserved pages in his book. For he had too many promises to keep, too many vows to protect, too many expectations to meet.
His long chapped lips traced a curve as the beaming moonlight gave him the most awaited power of all. He started by doing the hardest thing of them all. He forgave himself. He owned everything that ever went wrong because of him. And thus, by allowing the apparitions their rightful place he unburdened himself of the long drawn burden. The moment was sealed by a call from his family.
The Moon showed brighter than ever. It seemed larger.


-Samrat Chaudhuri.
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