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Sunday, August 19, 2012

And His Companion

  - written by Ronnjone S                                      

 He was leaning on the railing on the bank of the river side. Hardly 20 kilometers away from the estuary, so is the broadness of the river remarkable. After 15 minutes the whole area will sink into dark. The whole city will be covered with a black sheet. Now the setting sun is applying its orange rays on his face. The image of the sun is breaking by the running waves. Two or three country boats are moving here and there. The young lovers are on the boats. Just now a boat is passing through the middle of the setting sun. Though he was looking the setting sun and its surrounding scenes, but he is no poet, nor painter. He was trying to bring some past moments at present. He was in his past, so could not hear, a boy was calling him behind.

Even after third time, when the boy was not responded, about to leave with an impression that he might be angry, he called the boy back, “Yes, yes, come on, you wanted to say something, I was so engrossed, sorry, tell me ..”

The boy, surprised, became speechless for quite a time. After some time the boy opened his mouth, “Sir, I thought, you would be angry, so …, sir, I painted this ..”

A painting, he saw. It is of him, he is looking at the setting sun leaning on the railing. He smiles.

“Sir, will you please buy it, I drawn your picture, if you purchase, or else nobody will give me proper price …”

He realised, the boy wants money immediately. Otherwise he can easily sell it with higher price, if waits. “How much?” asking, he started looking the boy properly. A fatless, thin boy of 20 to 23 years, irregular unshaved face, comparatively fair. “ur name, what u do?”

“I spent Rs.50.00 altogether, please give me Rs.70.00”
“That’s all ?” He saw after getting the money the boy went straight to the roadside motel, where only daily wage earner used to go and have unhealthy meal in that filthy environment. Otherwise with Rs.20.00 who can offer full plate food.

After purchasing the drawings, he kept his eyes stick on it and did not know when the sun set and the boy left leaving some memory in his mind.

Now he is in his world, an apartment of nearly 300 square feet area. He placed the paintings on the wall in such position, so that while in lying on the bed, his eyes can point the picture. After finishing his dinner, today he went to bed at about 8.00 pm, the unusual time. Why ? Because he can look at the picture? Yes, keeping his head on the pillow and fixing the eyes on the drawings, it is so perfect one can imagine; and started netting the imagination. He started creating his own dream.

Neelu, the artist, painter boy, created him so lively; what is he, where is he, seems poor and talented. Is the boy alone, like him?

Why he is alone. Even he wants, can not wipe out his past; who can detach with its shadow?

He invited his twenty or twenty two years’ back memory. It was a practice match. The preparation for final match is due on the day after tomorrow.  

“Why, who’s there, to call u, where from she is, never seen before” By hearing from the goalkeeper, Tutu, he surprised. Who can be! Is she his sister, brought any sad news… his father is bed ridden. Who can be! After clothing off his worn vest, he was wiping the sweating, sitting in the dressing room. Now he came out wearing his normal shirt-pant. And surprised to see the lady, never seen, how will Tutu see her before. His team mates were smiling.

A college girl, probably, “Wonderful, fantastic, fabulous….” He never was appreciated with these much adjectives earlier. “Since long I used to enjoy your match, the style …”. He was not hearing properly, only responded by “Yes, yes”

“I,m ur fan. Come’n meet my sister-in-law”. Another lady?

“Hello, young boy, you played well, hope this time our state will win the final match, my daughter is ur fan since ..” Father of Bhavya was saying. He is quietly sitting on the sofa in their drawing room, eying curiously on each item of this room, totally different form his house.

Bhavya left him upto the gate and while leaving, lastly she winked at him, he recollects. Her driver left him at the doorstep of his.

That night he could not make his two eyelids in one. Placed two palms on the back side of his head, while sleeping. Will it be justified to request Bhavya’s father to arrange a job for him? One year left he graduated, though not with good marks. But he is good player, can do magic on the ground. The total team depends upon his two legs’ art of handling ball.

But, fortunately, he need not persuaded any body and bagged a clerical job, in Life Insurance Corporation in player’s quota. But it was too late.

His dream, kissing Bhavya, was luxury. He could not call a notable doctor for his ailing father. He had to bear passing comments on his sister, was wanton and not under his control. One day, he remembered, he slapped the constable, used to meet his characterless mother on the excuse of helping household. Ultimately the whole situation could not be controlled.

It is a mystery, how one’s life is planned for future on the basis of past and present. All his calculations proved wrong.

He wanted to wipe out the date from his memory, could not. It was 15th August, birthday of Bhavya. Because of 15th August, he could not forget. Now he understands why he was invited. Had he known earlier. She was not happy with his petty clerical job. But because of job only he could afford a gift for her. It was an electrical show piece, a football size electronic round ball placed on a plate. A bulb was fixed in the ball. After switching on, it rotates automatically spreading black and white light. Bhavya did not open the wrap, ordered one of her domestic helps to keep the gift aside. His eyebrows were shrunken seeing her disinterestedness. She was introducing with her brother, cousins and other relatives “Meet my elder brother, marine engineer, my maternal uncle, IPS, my sister-in-law, secretary, ministry of finance ….Doctor, IPS, IAS, Lecturer…. I already requested dad, there was a vacant post of attendant….. ”

He could not control himself, when he was introduced, “Meet him, my friend Swapnil, Managing director of … see, presented this…”. A diamond ring, cost? He can not imagine, how can, he does not have even a golden watch. But, matter is something else, is he unwanted here ? Is the diamond ring bearing the news of engagement? Why Bhavya called him, just to say, “Leave you fool, can’t you see my status? You may be good player, but do not have any thing to maintain a lady like me. Can’t you see my engagement ring? I praised you, because of your game, and you fool, thought that it is a love and then marriage .. rubbish, nonsense”

He accumulated some courage and requested, “Bhavya, I have to leave now. It is already 10.00 pm; my father is ill and waiting for me. I’ll come some other day and sit with you on dinner table”. Had he not taken the help of lame excuse, she would have searched other excuse to leave him from this party.

Whatever it is, he did not go for home. Searched a wine shop. He started crying fie upon himself, “Fool, wanted to touch a moon being a dwarf? Shit! Only sex can not satisfy a lady, you fool. You wanted to have sex with a princess?” Two drops of salty water fell into the alcohol from two sides of his chicks. Several nights he wetted his undergarment just to mate with Bhavya in dream. Now he realised, Bhavya wanted his macho body and not soul.

Now he laughs remembering that incident on Bhavya’s birthday party.

After consuming liquor he took the way of Bhavya’s house. It was almost mid night. Reaching nearby to the gate from he came back, and chosen the backside of the hall, where still the party was going on. It was on the first floor. All the windows are opened but the curtains tried to curb the sound of the colourful, musical, laughter party. He can see the foggy gestures of the bodies of the participants of the party. All of a sudden Bhavya sensed something wrong and took permission from him, with whom she was enjoying a joke, and straight entered her room. The window of her room was closed. But still she could hear his voice, “Hey baby, what do u think yourself, a daughter of a bitch! A whore, acting ? hua, acted very well.. wait, one day I’ll manage a job. U bitch ….. I’ll fuck ..” Bhavya immediately closed the door from inside, the sound may disturb the party. And she all of a sudden opened the window, the light like deluge suddenly cleave the thick dark squat out side the room. He became completely visible and found his heightened erected male organ in his left fist facing towards the open window and in right hand, a bottle. By looking on it, she astonished with fear and turned her face immediately. She was panting, still made her able to close the window. And ultimately she mingled with every body in the party as if nothing happened, let the dog bark outside.   

Once again he looked at the paintings, marvelous; he could not find any flaw. Where is Neelu, such a beautiful creator, he thought. The boy, is so talented, but no money. Why can’t he bring him here? Neelu may break his loneliness and will be engaged fully in his creative art.

He still became bachelor. He started hating women. In his young stage, he had to bear bad remarks on his sister, who fled away with a loafer. He could not resist. His mother was caught in a compromised position with a police constable, when his father was in death bed. He could do nothing. Bhavya, whom he loved also, betrayed him. The serial incidents made him more woman hatred and he became more manly man. Once he fired a lady, who took privilege to get thing, was not in the queue. Women, you want equality, but can not stand in a queue, wants thing before a man, want advantages of becoming lady, at the same time equal right with man!

Neelu wanted, his paintings will be displayed one day in Academy of Fine Arts. People from all over the world will praise his drawings. Poor boy, he does not have money to take food, but dreams sky-high! He sighs, by thinking the fate of Neelu. But where is he now, how can he meet him in this populous city?

Next day, his office colleague Md. Esar forced him to purchase a cinema ticket. In fact it was a donation; a movie will be screened to collect money for charitable purpose. Every lady of this office knows that he never cooperates with lady staff. So, Divya, the computer operator took the assistance of Md. Esar to approach him. However when the price was paid, he will definitely go to the theatre tomorrow.

This theater hall is famous for screening art movie. Naturally one can find lot of intellectuals roaming here and there nearby the hall, on gossiping in the adjacent park. Some of them are poets, some painters, some actors, writers and what not. He is not interested in any kind of neither art, nor he reaches to … So, he stands beneath a tree, alone, and observing people till the show starts.

A known voice suddenly broke his silence. He found a fat lady with full makeup, trying to avoid a boy from purchasing a painting. The boy is entreating and humbly repeatedly, “Please ma’m, please take it, pay less money, since morning I have not taken …” The disappointed boy, perhaps could not complete his words. This voice was frail, but very much known to him. He immediately rushed to the boy and heard, “Sir, will you purchase this? Pay me less money… only Rs.30.00. Sir, please .. I have to take food …”
“Neelu, me, can’t recognise ?” But Neelu could not. But both of them went towards a restaurant. His first and foremost duty is to feed Neelu.

When he was convincing the grocer, to whom Neelu was employee, to leave Neelu, the shopkeeper was not ready at all. Ultimately, with the help of local people, he brought Neelu to his home, his world, a flat of 300 sq ft. This way he got his companion to share their joy and sorrow. His loneliness is broken now, he looks happier. Now he need not talk with the wall. Neelu, an orchid, orphan too got a shelter. At morning on breakfast table, in night on dinner table, on bed they used to share their daily experiences. They talk, talk and talk. When he is in the office, in tiffin time, he used to think of Neelu. Whenever he gets a little leisure time, sinks with Neelu in imaginary world.

Both of them generally avoid mixing with their neighbours. The curious neighbours have no work but to busy with discussion of their relationship. Our society always sees the friendship with suspicious. They ignore and do not care.

It was a strike day. No public or private vehicles were plying. The road was looked deserted. Children came out from their homes on road to play cricket and football.

He told, “Let’s prepare chicken today. We both are at home at this time.”
-“Ok, nice, I can cook chicken, but I’ll take egg. I don’t like chicken, but I’ll prepare for you..” Neelu does not want him to make unhappy. But surprisingly he said, “Is it? I too don’t like chicken, I’m very much fond of egg. I thought you like chicken .. so I … ”. But the fact is just reverse. He hates to eat egg, but because Neelu loves to eat egg, so …. Thus these two creatures slowly started mingling with their souls. 

The spring can not last forever. It was in mid July. The rainy season. Any time any body can expect rain, and spoil your well set program. Because of incessant rain he came back from office early and expected Neelu too would be present. It was over 11.00pm. Neelu did not return. He became restless, where did the boy go. First he became anxious, then slowly he started angry upon. Let him come once, he will show him ….    He started perambulate restlessly. His mind is full of anger and sorrow, if Neelu does not come at all! He will be alone again! He fears. The door bell ultimately rang… it was 11.30 pm.

By standing in the main door, he began shouting, “Is it your time to come, Neelu?” Neelu did not response, he is totally drenched. He controlled himself, diminished his voice and brought him inside by holding his feeble arm and shut the door. Neelu did not react. “Don’t you think, some body is eagerly waiting for you?” Even after buffeted Neelu did not utter a single word, as if it was expected. Neelu without talking anything, kept his drawing materials in proper place and begun washing his face on the wash basin, and then left his wet cloth, wore a loose night garment and went to bed without food. He was observing Neelu’s activities. He too did not take food and after some time silently went to bed. Both of them are on bed, but none of them could invite the sleepiness. He was turning about restlessly and continuously, though Neelu was lying straight, but eyes were open. After a pause, Neelu broke the ice, “ Sorry! I gave you much trouble these days. My job is like that, no timing, I should have informed you, though I tried…my mobile was also wet…. I’ll be leaving tomorrow morning…” without turning his body or face.

He did not reply, but felt, the pillow of Neelu is wet. He could not control him self, and immediately kissed Neelu’s eyes, and started drinking the tears. But the tears came out from his eyes also met the existing tears of Neelu. “Please Neelu, do not say any thing, you do not know … how much … how I’ll live without .. please …” Hugging tightly he begun kissing Neelu and going on kissing on his eyes, forehead, chicks and finally lips deeply. Thus both the soul became one. The cloud is still emptying its water outside.

He did not know, by hating his lecherous mother, wanton sister and ultimately traitor, covetous lover, when he became gay, a man lover.

Neelu’s fatherless mother was domestic help, and where she used to work, they stayed in the staircase of their owner’s house. Once Neelu’s mother was busy with owner’s house hold work for day and night, because of a grand festival. Neelu had to stay alone, he was then only 14 or 15. Still remembered, the middle aged driver, who always twist his thick moustache to make it curl, found him weeping. Took Neelu to his bed with sympathy. That night the driver made Neelu understood the bodily love between the duos.

So, Neelu is not totally ignorant about gay-love.   

Now both of them removed their night dress and became completely primitives. This biological pleasure made their relationship more strong. This way, silently they promise each other to stay forever and forever and ….

Let the so called civilised society go to hell!