Saturday, January 14, 2023

4184 : The house that Jack burned

(Excerpted from a piece of fiction)

In that cold alien city, we were sitting across from the bonfire. Dark and somber, the wind played a chill stony eolian. Staring at the fire, I hummed, "....and the wind begins to howl." 

You asked, "What?" with the expression of 'shcumfuck' written on your face.

I started telling you about Jimi boy and you immediately faded away. I could see you were deep into the paper you were sculpting. Looked like a house..

I said, "Can I come in for a night cap?"


"Nightcap, my beastly princess."

"Where? What? You are already on your 4th whiskey already." 

"In that home of yours", smiling and looking at the paper in your hand. 

For a minute, you smiled a knowing smile back. Strange, melancholic and wistful. "Without you, I don't have a home. You know what that means, right?", you paused. "I shall never ever have a home."

You stared deep into the paper, as I continued looked intently at your face. At some point, you turned to look at me. The wind was still blowing. Deliberately, you opened your grip on the paper. Thread by thread, it some point abruptly escaping your hand. I was still looking at you, but could see from the corner that it was close to the fire now. I gestured to go pick it up. You stopped me, holding my wrists with a firm grip.

"Please", long pause, "phook do", you said in your immaculate deep intones of Hindi. "Let it go. Today is as good a day to burn it down."

I have so often wondered, since that day, what did you know then, Spin, that I had so completely missed?


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