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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

An Open Conversation




He looked down, what looked like miles below, cars zooming past signals, ants running amok among scattered crumbs. The moon, of course had no business interfering, so it stared,nonchalantly and continued to shine upon a dismal world.He wiped away a tear that seemed almost on the verge of stepping out of the comfy confines of his eyelids."Only I am allowed to fall;from grace or from the top of a building",he thought and thats when the past came hurtling back, an unruly engine without a driver.His life was the way it was supposed to play out in the movies;his girl dumped him for someone richer, he lost his job to recession.The latest was his landlord finally asking him to vacate the house.So here he was, talking to himself, playing out the movie of His Life.This is how it was all supposed to end. He would jump off this building, stop traffic for sometime,till a few screams later, someone would finally scrape him off the sidewalk.Quite simple actually.Infact...


" I wouldn't do that if I were you", someone spoke from behind him.The shock almost knocked him off balance, into the screaming nothingness below, but he just managed to right himself.He couldnt let his death be an accident.It had to be a well thought of exit from this world to the next.No accidents please.


The man was standing in the shadows and was not clearly visible. He wore a shirt and pants, all shadow colored, not revealing anything about him. Besides, when he had come on the terrace to end his life, he clearly remembered himself being alone.Then this must be...

"Yes I am the Devil himself", the man said and moved forward. He was now standing in the dimmed neon glow of the single bulb that flickered on the terrace. The man was, no offence whatsoever, ordinary.He looked like he could use some maintenence but being in hell was far from it. So our very own "suicide man" asked the question that would probably be bubbling in some cornerof your brain now,

"You dont Look like the devil."

"If you had expected me to come with my tail and pitchfork, I am sorry to have broken your heart", he retorted, smartly fishing out a cigerette from his pocket and lighting it. The glow from the match revealed what the bleak bulb could not; two pointy little stubs sticking out of his head. That proved it then. This was the devil. The suicide man believed it and he did not need a certificate.
Smoke rose up, forming a little stinky cloud of cigrette smoke, as he continued," I decided to give you more time you know. A few setbacks and you want to come storming, right up my ass!Whatever happened to perseverance and 'things get better'?Couldnt we all use a little more time?"
This was starting to get a little weird for someone who had come up to put a period to his life's sentence.He stared at the man who claimed to be The Devil and wondered if this was all a dream. He looked down at the traffic which was still moving just as he had left it.He finally mustered the courage to ask him what had been troubling his mind,
"Wouldnt you be happy to have me as a part of your army? Or maybe in the league or whatever you call it?"

"Accomadation is a problem everywhere sonny",the Devil said slowly, rings of smoke drifting out of his mouth."Its this new thing that I have started.I try to reduce as much traffic up there as I can, and ask people like you to hang around here. A little bit of effort and things start getting chirpy. Trust me, its happened to people before you, and there is no reason why it wouldnt happen to you!All I am saying is stick around for a while and if you dont like it, then you anyways have a one-way ticket to my place!"

His things were all over the place when she had spoken her final words, " you could do better you know. Better than this atleast!"And then, with a swooping motion she had crashed the vase that had been standing like a dusty sentry at the corner of his roomfor years. The sound echoed in his head like a hollow drum. He shut his eyes tight and when he opened them, he was still standing in front of The Devil in overalls,smoking the common man's cigerette.

"Ok, how's this for a deal;you dont jump now, and I dont tell anyone up there that you were a sissy. Infact no one needs to know that you committed suicide.If you let it go for now, I would pass off your death as a heroic attempt to make an old lady cross the road, whenever you die. That way you get a double deal!"

Funny.Maybe that wouldnt be the right word, but really, who cared? He had come to end it all, and here was the Devil, trying to take him off the ledge like a cunning insurance agent.Had he not been there, his existence would have been a myth by now. Ash to ash, dust to dust.
But the last one finally struck home. Here was a chance of living off another week,maybe more, and then entering the next place in style.He would give it his best shot and hope things to work out.If it didnt, he already had, as they said "the devil on his side". So he spoke,

" All right Mr Devil. I like your proposal. I am not going to kill myself right now. Instead, as it happens in the good stories, I would try to be a better person or whatever they call it. But if that doesnt work out, you know you would have to stick."


"You have the devil's word my boy. Now go before I change my mind", he said and looked up to a sky where someone had left out a neglected bunch of stars. Withing seconds, our suicide man, was gone from the terrace, leaving the smoker to his own tending.


He stubbed out the cigerrete and reached out for his horns. "Almost real", he smiled to himself and took off the hairband carefully, so the horns would not be damaged.He stuffed it in his coat pocket and walked towards the door, mumbling to himself,

"I wish being the janitor of this building was a little easier..."

11 comments:

SiMbA tAgO said...

this is the 1st time im visitingur blog.. wt ever i dunno if this is a real devil or a virtual one... but hats off to ur expressions.. nice write... kudos... welcome to myh blog also

Anirban said...

Good stuff..great writing....and brilliant wordplay..."put a period to his life's sentence" "devil on his side"- great stuff!! Had a smallish problem with the end...i mean the last sentence..

The Rat... said...

"If you had expected me to come with my tail and pitchfork, I am sorry to have broken your heart"

ha ha ha.. yeah rite, that wud be me in btw...

and wah! wat an ending.... i wish i cud play that janitor. i wud be pushing everyone down towards the traffic :P

i had this unread in my reader for Friday read... was all the worth.. wont have enjoyed reading during the past hectic week...

Great one mithun :-)

-D Rat
Plz Vote for me at the Indiblogger contest

chloe said...

hmmm..... i kinda like that.... its funny how even the devil becomes credible at times...

Sarath said...

awesome ending..

creyzeee said...

wow...thnx :)

workhard said...

Interesting stuff.. u ve got good creativity...


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Sowmya. said...

Great writing!

Preeti said...

hahaha...blackly humorous and extremely well written. the anti-climax was sweet like the icing on a super delicious cake...

you know...i get a strange feeling that this particular post has a very different aura...there is a certain level of maturity in the sentence structure and in the expressions...
it almost feels as though an accomplished writer has sat down and just keyed a few thoughts because he wanted to while away his time...
im glad. because if you read your posts you can actually see how you've matured and grown as a writer. it is a beautiful testimony of an even more beautiful fact.

This is great stuff, Scribbler. and im not going to complain about the long hiatus. because if this is what materializes after a prolonged absence then it is so worth the wait.

Roma said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ganga Dhanesh said...

That was wonderful....a lovely untypical piece, i must say!

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