Escape to the Sky

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: August 12, 2016

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Submitted: August 12, 2016

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“We can never satisfy people. They’ll always want more.”

 

It was a Friday evening. Two best friends were sitting down on the rooftop of the building that Vihas’s father worked at. The sun was setting, painting hues of red and purple to the sky. Glimpses of the fluid blending between the two colours were able to take the two's breaths away. Vihas never failed to see the beauty of the painting in the evening.

 

It was the very reason he loved rooftops.

 

“Why do you say so?” Vihas asked, not taking his eyes off the sky as it soothed his heart. Abhiru looked at his friend for a moment but later glanced back at the horizon.

 

“I am just thinking, you know...” Abhiru hesitated, rubbing his neck while wondering whether to confess or not.

 

Eventually, he allowed his mouth to continue, “My sister is still pestering my father for a car and my brother is asking for a laptop, claiming that it’ll help him improve his grades.” Abhiru turned to survey at the other, worry evident in his eyes.

 

“My father can’t afford that much, Vihas. If he could, he would never turn their requests down. Why can’t they just understand that?” The tone of Abhiru’s once steady voice wavered uncertainly as he clenched his fists, attempting to suppress the overwhelming agitation inside him. It was more of a statement than a question, Vihas knew.

 

Vihas gazed at his friend.

 

“What do you mean people will never be satisfied?” questioned Vihas, not quite sure if it was the right time to ask.

 

“Well, what I mean is that if we had a car, then my sister would be asking for something else, like a new dressing table. If my brother had a laptop, then he would also be asking for something else and talking about the benefits it would provide,” Abhiru was explaining, throwing his hands here and there while rambling, “Do you see? People always want what they don’t have and never appreciate anything that they have.” Resenting that fact of humanity, he unleashed a huge sigh.

 

Silence enveloped the air. The attention of his eyes was directed back to the sky again. Both boys were immersed in their own worlds.

 

Vihas was thinking; he was thinking about all the times he annoyed his parents to buy him an Xbox or a Nikon camera which he later received. Even then, he still had the urge to get an iPhone. The thought of his actions shot shudders down his spine. Greed sure knew no boundaries.

 

Vihas wondered if Abhiru was right. If that was the case, what about him? Didn’t he have something that he really wanted in life?

 

“Abhiru, what is it that you want?” inquired Vihas whose mind was filled with question marks.

 

“What I want?” Abhiru asked.

 

“Yeah. What is the thing that you want but don’t have in your life?”

 

Abhiru was silent for a moment, but later, he smiled weakly.

 

“Well, I won’t call it a thing, but I’ve always wanted to become a singer.” Vihas’s eyes widened in shock as his head whipped to the side to look at his friend.

 

“You want to become a singer?” he asked in disbelief. At that time Abhiru chuckled, sound almost inaudible. He tilted his head questioningly.

 

“Why? Is it hard to believe?”

 

“I thought you wanted to become a doctor. You worked really hard to pass the exams, after all,” Vihas spat out.

 

“I tried to convince myself that I’d like to become a doctor, but it just seems like it doesn’t work.” Abhiru laid down on the concrete, bringing both his hands behind his head and using them as a pillow. Abhiru’s focus was on the brightly lit sky. It was completely orange by then. Vihas didn’t know what to say so he laid down as well. Both boys adored the sky light, wishing that they could disappear into the shades of colours.

 

Silence lingered in the atmosphere before Vihas spoke, “Why don’t you become a singer?” The question caught Abhiru off-guard. He dreaded the day he would have to answer that question. Even so, hearing that from his best friend’s mouth was totally unexpected. Pursing his lips, he tapped his chin thoughtfully before finally speaking.

 

“I-I really don’t know. I think my parents won’t like that.”

 

Vihas rolled his eyes.

 

You think!

 

Taken aback by Vihas’s outburst, Abhiru immediately followed up, “Well, no; I know they won’t like that. They won’t like it if I become a singer.” The tone of his tinged with bitterness somehow. Abhiru got up to a sitting position again, with Vihas following.

 

“How do you know that?” he asked sternly, raising his eyebrows.

 

“I have lived enough time with them to understand what they like and dislike,” Abhiru reasoned out.

 

“Abhiru, if you told them who you want to become once, they might have considered it. Have you ever tried that?” Vihas’s tone sounded challenging. He knew that Abhiru always jumped into conclusions without enough facts. It wouldn’t be a surprise to him if Abhiru made up his own story in his mind and eventually started to believe that it would come true if he ever let his inner voice be heard. Being his best friend, Vihas was used to his cowardice.

 

Abhiru was speechless. Head hung low, he let an inaudible ‘no’ escape his lips.

 

“Do you realize that if you had voiced out what you wanted, you wouldn’t have to be in this situation, and that your life might have been completely different?” Vihas tried to convince the other but got no response.

 

He continued, “You know what? I’ll tell you exactly why you won’t become a singer. It’s not because of your parents or your siblings. It’s because of you, Abhiru. You are scared. You are afraid to voice out what you want. You are afraid of the outcome. You are scared of how they would react. However, let me tell you this, Abhiru: You'll never know until you try.” Vihas stopped and fixated his stare at his friend. Abhiru was still looking down with shaking hands, completely mind blown by Vihas’s speech. He murmured incoherent words to himself as he contemplated the validity of his best friend’s words.

 

Seeing that the atmosphere was becoming gradually tense, Vihas joked, “What; are you mute now?”

 

Abhiru sighed heavily and faced the horizon again. “I never thought that far, but how can I not be afraid? I’m just… not that strong.” His lips trembled slightly, struggling to find excuses for his own fears.

 

“Oh please, name one thing you can do, Abhiru.” Vihas was baring his teeth, at the verge of pulling his hair out thanks to Abhiru’s constant complaints about how he couldn’t do anything.

 

“I’m the eldest in my family. I just can’t do whatever I want; I have to think about my family first. I’ll just keep doing this. I’ll pass my exams and become a doctor. At least, I’ll try,” Abhiru muttered, more to himself than to Vihas.

 

“Will you be happy at the end? What if you regret this?” Vihas didn’t know what else to say. He was the youngest of the family, so he had no idea what it felt like to be the eldest. Looking at Abhiru then, he knew that it could not be that easy.

 

However, in contrary to the wrinkled expression that Vihas had, Abhiru’s features emitted calmness as he stated, “I don’t know, Vihas, I don’t know. Maybe I’ll be happy, maybe not. I’ll try my best to stay happy, though. Who can predict the future anyway?” The way Abhiru reacted told Vihas that the former had had accepted the reality long ago. His efforts would be in vain even if he continued to convince the other do otherwise.

 

“Who’s right, though?” Vihas uttered out without even realizing.

 

“Huh?” Abhiru quizzed, unable to grasp what the other was referring to.

 

“Who’s right? Your parents or you? What if they don’t like you as a singer and you will do anything to become one? Who do you think is right, in that case?”

 

Rubbing his head, Abhiru replied, “...I don’t know, really. You’ve been asking too many questions. I feel like I’m gonna pass out.” Abhiru gave a weak smile after a long time.

 

“Is it wrong to follow your dreams, though?”

 

“...I think it depends on the situation,” Abhiru started as he tapped his chin thoughtfully.

 

“We really can’t tell who’s wrong or right. It’s subjective, after all.”

 

“Ah, this is so complex!” groaned Vihas as he ruffled his hair.

 

“Yeah…” Abhiru nodded in agreement before shifting his attention to the horizon. He didn’t want to fret over the issue again.

 

“Hey. Look at the horizon, Vihas.” Abhiru pointed at the scenery in front of him. “It separates the complicated city from the sky that is as calm as a river. I’ve always wanted to jump into the blanket of the sky and be covered by its comforting embrace.”

 

“What? Are you suicidal now?” Vihas gave a strange glance at his friend.

 

“What? No!” Abhiru laughed at the wooden guy beside him.

 

“I… I just want to know what it is like to fly.”

 

“Typical aesthetic people,” Vihas groaned, earning a smack on the head from the other. Vihas grinned broadly, glad that the stiffness had been lifted.

 

“That means that you just want to jump into the sky, don’t you?”

 

“I’ll rather say escape to the sky.”

 

 

 

 


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