The Storm

>> Wednesday, September 02, 2009

The wind howled around her. Standing on her terrace, she could see people scurrying for shelter below. The tin sheets that formed a makeshift roof of a hut across the road cluttered. They fought a fierce battle with the wind. Trying to hold on. To their identity. Without the four walls beneath them, they would be nothing but tin sheets. Those four walls made them a roof. They were the last line of defense for the simple people that lived under their shelter. They were the only thing that kept those poor beings from being homeless. They had to hold on. They had to fight this battle.

She watched this with a smile. She seemed unperturbed by the howling wind. She stood firm. Her long hair flying away behind her. Her white dress clinging on to her, flailing like the torn sails of a ship caught in mid-storm. She stood there with her back arched, as in defiance to the world.

He watched her. The lines of her face were sharp, unlike the soft features that have come to be recognized as the standard of beauty these days. But in her face, he found something which was rare to come by. He found truth. It was naked. There was no mask. There was the sheer arrogance that she could and would do whatever she set out to do. He realized that she was the most beautiful person he had ever seen. A beauty not masked by years of faking emotions or hypocritical wanderings, but that derived from sheer competence. From the happiness that is inherent in you after a work done well.

And he thought about all the work that she had done. All that she had accomplished. Fighting through the inefficiencies of the bureaucracy, trying not to get entangled in the political games being played out in the capital, she had sustained her march, taking the nation along with her. But somehow, the wolves had caught up. They had ended up making such a big mess of it all, that before she could react, the world had collapsed. She could fight against the biggest masterminds. But it was the most stupid of things that had sent across a crippling wave of losses throughout the world.

Many had been crushed. But she had stood resolute. She had not despaired. She knew what had to be done. And she had started going about it with the single-mindedness of a bricklayer intent on rebuilding the whole building - brick by brick. What she had planned to do was going to ruffle quite a few feathers. But it had to be done.

It was at moments like this that he hated his job. He looked through the lens again. He looked at the hope she gave. At the sheer confidence that she exuded. He saw the steely resolve in her eyes. He traced her from toe to head, taking in the surreal beauty in front of him. A beauty that invigorated the basest of human qualities in him. As her forehead came into his cross-hair, he shrugged, "Oh, what the fuck." And pulled the trigger.

6 comments:

Yamini 2:18 PM  

There must be a variety of interpretations of this piece. I take this as a military man apprciating a female terrorist and ultimately doing what he was bound to do... :)

Very nice. I somehow find narrations better than dialogue wala fiction... :)

Marie 1:13 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marie 1:15 PM  

i felt the other way around. The guy - a terrorist (with some good analytical abilities ;)) but stuck at the wrong place.
And the lady - a widow, a mother, left alone to face death.
Somewhere it says, she was true. There i felt, she tried to raise her voice against all this and stood firm even while facing death.

Interpretations apart, it is a bit complicated for the aam junta like us. :P

Caught Offside! 9:11 PM  

Man! What interpretations you guys made! Totally different from what I had in mind. But I guess that's the fun in writing something like this!

@Yamini: Thanks! :)

@Jincy: You can no longer claim to be part of us aam junta! :P Autograph pleaseee!!

mau 2:03 PM  

well I thot dat both of them r together as a team trying to resolve something messed up by some other party..............

& she's d best @ her own job...........
well u can be a gr8 editor of any daily soap......u exactly knw whr to stop to pull people hard towards reading & waiting for ur next post.....
waiting for d same

Caught Offside! 4:52 PM  

@mau: Thanks! As for the next part, I don't know whether I should continue...

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