Monday, November 30, 2009

Strawberry Crush...

He was still in a trance when the missile hit him. The small, white cylinder got him somewhere around the right pectoral. The impact was enough to jolt him back to the real world. In the next couple of seconds, his mind raced quickly enough to evaluate the summary of what was happening while he was away. The results were quite startling.

Professor Mr. D was the source of the piece of chalk that was sent flying across the hall towards him. And Mr. D was now practicing the dreaded stare he was famous for. It was the conditioned reflex that instantly told him to stand up. Mr. D’s eyes seem to see right through him coming from behind those thick glassed spectacles.

“I’m sorry to have disturbed your visit to dreamland.” The tone was sarcastic. “Should we expect an answer from you ? I guess we aren’t fortunate enough. Well, it would be just as fine if you could repeat my question.”

Darn. Had Mr. D caught him ??? Did she know he was looking at her ??? She’d surely know now… How could he be so careless ??? What to do now ??? What was the stupid question Mr. D had asked ???

There were whispers from the immediate neighborhood. Most probably suggesting the answer. Not the answer but the question. In fact, the answer to Mr. D’s question. But he didn’t seem to grasp anything. His mind seemed to refuse to do so. Bonny from the back seat even said it loud enough for Mr. D to hear. But panic didn’t allow his mind to work.

This sudden activity startled her a bit too. Though she was constantly feeling uneasy about something. What was it ? Maybe the sixth sense which was perceiving the stare of a pair of eyes. But she daren’t look. How could she, sitting in the first row of the class.

And she was trying her best not to look there, even now. She was just listening to voices. Voices, which tried to make a picture of things in her mind.

“I think you need some fresh air. Better if you go get some outside.” Mr. D’s voice boomed. And that was that. There was no other option left, but to comply with the suggestion. But now was the most difficult part of it all. He would have to walk across the room. Right in front of her. Darn. Better to get it over with as quickly as possible, he thought.

He gathered his belongings, and walked up towards the front. Even approaching Mr. D in one of his bad moods didn’t seem as tough a task. His mind was just concentrating on the front bench. The silence was deafening.

She couldn’t look up. Or at anyone else. She just glued her eyes into her notebook. But her eyes couldn’t read. The letters seemed to be some haphazard design in ink. All she could sense was him walking past her. But she didn’t look up.

At last, he was out of the hall. Somewhat a with a sense of relief which a ringmaster would have experienced after coming out of the ring, completing the dares with a pair of newly recruited lions. But still, he wanted to kick himself. How could he act so stupid ? Why on earth did he have to look at her ? Why ?

He was still sulking when he seated himself on an empty bench in the shade. And it all came flashing back in his mind for the hundred and sixtieth time in two days. Just two days ago, the past weekend, there he was, outside the lecture-theatre-complex, waiting for the doors to be open so that he may peacefully complete the mid-afternoon nap that was so mercilessly broken by the odd hourly class. He restlessly looked around as people were busy chatting with their friends.

And that was when, suddenly, out of nowhere, without warning, their eyes had met…

It couldn’t have been much longer than two seconds. There wasn’t a smile, nor a frown. Just two expressionless faces staring into each other’s eyes. Those two seconds seemed longer than eternity. And suddenly, back to reality.

And that was the beginning of the strange uneasiness…

(to be continued.......)


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