Oblivion. The gifted Curse.
“I want to go higher daddy, higher!” screamed the seven-year-old. “As you wish, my princess.” And the swing was pushed with greater intensity, with its occupant dreaming about a flight to the clouds.
“Higher!”, and higher did she reach. After an hour or so, she dreamed about diving through Mother Earth from the slide, and thus, the swinging stopped.
After some time, she hurried back to her father; who had engaged a formerly lonely park bench, in pursuit of reading the newspaper serenely, and said, “Daddy! That girl over there destroyed my sand castle!” “The one with the braids?” “Yes, daddy! I want you to destroy hers! Please.”
He lifted Lily and placed her on his lap. “Dear Lily, you should always remember what I say to you. It takes a strong person to say sorry and an even stronger person to forgive.” His smile met a concerned, and melancholic Lily. “But this is not fair, daddy.” “It is almost always that unfair reactions give satisfaction. What are humans without Humanity, after all?”
Yes, that was how he brought her up. That was how she never felt the absence of another parent.
That was how she grew.
Summer 1997. Lily was sixteen now. And, being the beautiful young woman with kindness and intelligence, she was bound to be the Prom Princess. She met a proud father, who sat beside her that night, saying how elated her mother would have been, if she were present. But, in her heart of hearts, Lily did not seem to consider anyone else’s presence or happiness, for it was, has, and would always be her father, who meant the world to her, if there were such a possibility to express so.
Winter 2009. Her lover had left her. Her company replaced her. She had nothing except sadness, bank statements and regret. Her entire life presented itself in front of her closed eyes, through phosphenes. The wind blew, cold, calm and disconcerted, all at once. Yes, Nature has always been revolting to those who went against Her.
She stared at the infinite, blurred landscape from the edge of the terrace, over which she stood. Her last breaths were soothing her, when her phone rang. Twice did she think of ignoring it. Of what use is any human connection or communication, when one attains that of the Divine? But, revolting as she is, the phone was answered to, in accordance to the Third Thought.
“Princess?” Fresh streams of tears left her already moist eyes. She reminisced him. He, however, seemed to be a part of the much resplendent, and beautifully compelling past. The part of life she had abruptly forgotten at once.
“I will be beside you in an hour, Lily. Wait.” Wait. Ah, that word. She did not want to wait. It was so out of reach for her. She had suffered a lot.
It is almost always that unfair reactions give satisfaction.
He prepared her favorite cinnamon pancakes with honey, tucked her into her bed, and sang a misty lullaby from her childhood. Kissing her forehead, he said,
“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.
Always trust yourself, my Lily, for the World is yours to conquer. Let no scare scare you, let no hurt hurt you. Afterall, you are my daughter. I will always be there with you, for you, around you.”
She was woken up by her cellular phone. There were four missed calls from the Doctor.
“Yes, doctor. I am on my way. I will reach there in an hour.”
“Where is he, Doctor?” “Well, I’ll lead the route.” “Sure.”
The hallway was calm and emotionless. It always was, perhaps due to the presence of extremities. “How is he feeling now? Is he conscious?” “Yes, fortunately, he is. However, I must let you know something.” Just then, the door was opened, and Lily accompanied the Doctor to the bed. There was her father, lying weak.
“Oh, daddy! I am so happy to see you. I assure you that in no time you will be strong and mighty and brave, as you always have been, and again make me my favorite meals, tuck me to bed maybe, and play with your grandchildren.”
But, she was met with strange eyes. The countenance of someone who had never met her before. “There is something I need to inform you, Lily”, said a distant voice.
“Though the surgery was successful, it, however, amplified his symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease. As you know, he was already at stage 2, so. . .”
The words perished in the deafening silence.
I will always be there with you, for you, around you.