Sunday, February 10, 2008

Virgin Irony

The skies had been overcast that day and the gloom of the heavens seemed to have settled upon his mantle as well. But the night had been remarkable, if not strikingly extraordinary. He was about to find that out. The welcome chill had dissuaded him from leaving the room. A muffler was unearthed from the darkest reaches of the cupboard and secured around the scraggy neck. It reminded him of home, cold and distant. Just when he had decided to indulge in a midnight reverie, a face popped into the four walls, harried and busy. Said something about the moon looking particularly appealing. He shrugged his shoulders. It almost always did. The air began to reek of nonchalance and so the face popped out. He remained seated. There was pending work; he realized balefully, brushed the guilt still clinging to his shoulders, and set about effecting the monotonous and then the mundane.

A few shadows later, he chanced to step out of the confines. The cold stung his face and brought him to his senses, now sharp. The face had been speaking the truth. He walked to the balcony, breathing in large mouthfuls of the strange ether. Maybe it was his weird fascination with everything nocturnal. But the air smelled like someone had just cupped a handful of wet soil and blown it your way. He stood still for some time and then jabbed a message on the keypad, the technocrat that he was. Having looked up for longish time and traced out the plough in the night sky, he dawdled back to the door. The bed looked inviting, as it always did. The radical and the rational tried resisting the temptation. But we all know who won. Black Out.

The morning began late. Routine personified. The mellow sun seemed to be spelling out an amused hello. Strange. He ran the gauntlet and sat on the rusty iron bench. The trees still seemed to be reveling in the singularity of last night. Two dogs appeared to be enjoying the gentle breeze and the yellow sun. They frolicked with carefree abandon. Then suddenly realizing that he was observing them, the twosome scampered away, disgusted at this sudden breach of their private space. A cat came out of hiding and took advantage of the coincidence by scaring a few pigeons lounging in the verdant garden. Meanwhile, he tried squinting at the sky and was immediately blinded by the bluish white. A stupid head was shook in disbelief. Then a resolution was stashed away in some nondescript corner of the brain.

A shadow shuffled past him, bucket in tow. It stared at him in ill-concealed amazement and then went about drying the still dirty undergarments. One blue. One brown. One some fancy French sounding color. The shadow filed past, content and smug at having done something much more constructive than smudging ink with paper. He realized how impeccable that smugness had been. He had brought a book too, realizing the fact a bit too late. Pencil. Sharpener. Spectacles. All were handled with due care and placed on the bench, the rust symbolizing something more than just neglect. The book had been serving as the writing pad. A sheepish grin later, another shadow flitted past. Some random questions were thrown about. The shadow departs. This one content and smug too.

The rest of the day hurried past, leaving him with hardly any time to ponder over the obvious. It had been his secret pact with Routine. He would not complain about the monotony of daylight if the dark held enough adventures to sustain his imagination. He was seldom disappointed and thus kept his side of the bargain, quite innocently believing in the honesty of the other party. He was back in his room before the sun had set, expectant and somewhat excited. What would it be? Some new theory to mull over? Some novel idea to be romanticized? He waited for the scandals to pour in. A few whispers were lost in useless contemplation. Nothing new, he thought. They would make an appearance, more sooner than later. More shadows and whispers pass by, somewhat curious about the lack of activity. It is then that restlessness started to trickle in. It was obvious he did not have any stratagem for such a situation. So he charts crooked circles in the room, very clearly frustrated at the breach of treaty. He grumbles and complains, half expecting some brilliant idea to show up any time. But the food for thought is conspicuous by its absence. Exasperated by his listlessness more than anything else, he decides to call it a day.

Far away in his clandestine hideaway, Routine let out a muffled snigger. His plan had obviously succeeded. Only time would tell whether the idiot down yonder realized the same. The poor bloke had quite obviously succumbed to the charm. He had been snatching words from light as easily as he had swindled the night into loaning them out. “Comprehension would dawn soon enough”, contemplated the wily Routine. His task there was done. He set out in search of another fellow, gazing at his yellow window of light in search of some anecdotes and scandals. "What would it be this time?", he thought in a sinister fashion. "A promise rather than a pact", he chuckled quietly and disapparated with a "poof".


  1. "...about the moon looking particularly appealing. He shrugged his shoulders. It almost always did."

    "A few shadows later..."

    "But the air smelled like someone had just cupped a handful of wet soil and blown it your way."

    "The dogs..."


    I knew if you hung around Chirkutlady long enough she would de-kekdafy you. the quoted phrases are my favourites (duh). As said earlier, style of writing is changing. For the _______.

  2. 'Its Marvin I wait for', says Piper, yawning yet again.