A short Story
I stood near the bike and then walked toward my house. It had been almost after 2 days that I was coming back home. The crisis in the office was under control now but not before I had slogged almost the whole weekend. I was dead tired and needed sleep. I needed to be in office the next day and I needed sleep badly.
As I climb the stairs, I hear sound of crying. The neighboring couple were fighting again. They always fought and all that crying and wailing. In normal circumstances, I would have gone to bring some compromise between the two. Now was not the time.
I was so tired that I would just collapse on the bed. I was so tired that I almost fell asleep while driving home. I reach my house and walk in. I notice that the door is open. Mom must have left it open. Should I close it? She must be at some neighbor’s house. Closing it means that I have to get up to open it again. I leave the door open and walk to my room. I kick the shoes and collapse on the bed.
I don’t know for how long I slept when the house phone started ringing. I am irritated. The phone continues to ring for quite a long time.
“Where is everybody?” I yelled at everybody in the house. I heard voices but no one wanted to pick the phone.
There is a parallel line in my room. I look at the phone. It just does not stop ringing
I pick up the phone, irritated. At the same time, someone picked up the parallel line too.
“What took them so long?” I was still tired.
I am about to keep the phone down when a question from the other end jolts me out of sleep
“When is the funeral?”
“2 hours from now” That was my father’s voice certainly my dad.
I am wide awake! Who died? Why didn’t they wake me up? What is happening? I sit on the bed still gripping the phone tightly
“How did it happen?” The other voice was still enquiring
“I don’t know! One moment he calls up he will be late and the next moment he rams into an incoming truck” My dad choked saying those words.
It was obvious that someone close to us had died. But who? I can feel my heartbeats run faster. I dread to go out and see the face of my dad. Somebody died in an accident, someone very close. But out I must go and be with my dad. He needs me. The only question was why didn’t they wake me up?
“So young! Just 30 and….. It is really unfortunate. Such a bright career. He would work tirelessly for days in the office and it was that very work that took his life. Imagine falling asleep while driving…”
30?… Days in office?….sleeping while driving?…
The phone slipped from my hand. I got up and raced toward the drawing room, my heart racing faster. The room was filled with people. Dad was standing by the door with tears in his eyes. Mom was sitting on the floor crying her heart out, literally inconsolable.
And on the floor, wrapped in a white cloth was my dead body!
Note: Loosely inspired by a dream told to me by a friend.