Saturday, October 13, 2007

Takeover

[Submission for Lab 4]

Pardon me if I'm making a mistake, but I do believe a man of my age deserves some luck when he needs it. Therefore, I may be excused for having fled to the seaside today. I could not face another day there - where nothing I do can find appreciation. This must be what rebellion feels like.

I know, I know. Tomorrow, I will be back at my desk, insults and payscales left by the wayside. By then, the ember of revolt would have died from surprise at being given a life. But today, it spends a day by the sea.

I'm on my toes. I look to the left and then to the right. No one in sight. Just like everyone else, the sun is also earning its pay. It is delivering a performance of a lifetime. No surprise that I'm the only grain of sand on two feet.

After an hour, I spy someone walking towards where I am sitting. He seems to carrying a tripod, a pot, and a briefcase. I look back at the vessel of shimmer in front of me. He stops near me, saying nothing. Instead, he pulls out a flier and hands it over with a smile. He starts to unpack. He pulls out a robe.

If he's an artist of any confidence, he has chosen with care. I'm open to all kinds of ideas today, so I open the pamphlet. The contents are shy and do not demand my attention. Without fuss, it says: Hello. I'm 'K the Redeemer'. To prove it, I shall perform a miracle today at 12 noon at the beach, and hide the sun for 15 minutes. Please do come and watch. Thanks.

All he's asking for is my time. I'm any performer's dream today.

It's only 11, but as you would expect of a god and a pro, he's set the stage and is prepared for everything. Though, I don't see Murphy's Law kicking in. It's not as if the power will go out and ruin the show.

Half an hour later. We've been talking and it looks like he's got no worries about the lack of turnout. His publicity has been limited to some fliers and an newspaper insertion buried amidst people trading machine parts. The sole concession to the demands of stagecraft is his robe studded with stars and crescents. He bought it for 200 rupees and admits to being drenched in sweat.

It's time. He walks over to the pot and lights a flame under it. Fragrance surrounds us. A seller of peanuts stops to see what these two idiots in the middle of the beach are upto. The sun waited above, from its vantage point.

He smiles, he waves his hand, he mutters. I look up, and yes, the sun's gone. Yet, there's light, so you wouldn't notice the ball of fire was missing unless someone pointed it out. However, you might wonder why you were not perspiring.

He turned to me, smiling. The vendor could be seen fleeing in the distance. Gone nuts, you might say. It looks like we have a god in our midst after all.

Thirty minutes later, we walk away together. He'd shed those garbs and I was carrying the pot (what an aroma). Things had changed. Oh, and it does seem that we meek will inherit the world. That is, if it isn't a lot of trouble to the rest of you. We apologise for any distress in advance.

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5 Comments:

Blogger George said...

Nicely done. The style reminds me of someone, but I can't seem to find a name. You can use 50 words from the savings of my post :)

10:24 AM  
Blogger Ramanand said...

Thanks. Do let me know if you realise whom this reminded you of! BTW, I see a few more adjs have crept inside, inadvertently.

6:47 AM  
Blogger Abhishek said...

Loved the opening stuff.
George: reminds me of one of Dickens' confident heroes speaking. (Whether I shall turn out to be the hero of my own life, or whether that station will be held by anybody else, these pages must show.)

Loved "But today, it spends a day by the sea." Nice.

Overall very nice. Liked the fact that it was not shrouded in cryptic talk and mysterious phrases all over. Direct style is perfect.

PS: I think, this story could do a better character description of K - the redeemer. I think that would readers place him better.

11:30 AM  
Blogger George said...

a tense moment (or am I missing some subtle literary move?): A seller of peanuts stops to see what these two idiots in the middle of the beach are upto. The sun waited above, from its vantage point.; then again with He turned to me, smiling. The vendor could be seen fleeing in the distance and Thirty minutes later, we walk away together. He'd shed those garbs and I was carrying the pot (what an aroma). Things had changed.

I'm still drawing a blank on the influences. I'm any performer's dream today would've been Palahniuk except that he'd write You're instead of I'm.

Lines like He bought it for 200 rupees and admits to being drenched in sweat and The contents are shy and do not demand my attention cause some bells to tinkle (the potent brevity of Hemingway?), but that is all I get.

9:40 PM  
Blogger Ramanand said...

G: no, grammar isn't my strong suit, and tense-ion is always rife in my prose. Next time, I promise better.

The nice thing on the influences is that I have not read any of these people (CP: not more than 2 chapters at any rate), so thankfully it's not something that just stuck.

7:40 AM  

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