The Hues of Friendship

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

Submitted: March 22, 2018

A A A | A A A

Submitted: March 22, 2018

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I picked up a pebble and flung it into the water - my eyes riveted on the tiny ripples emitted from the collision spot that gradually diminished to stillness.

‘No, I can’t do it. I can’t be like them,’ I whispered through my trembling lips, breaking voice - my chest lurching and my whole body quivering…with rage…resentment over myself.

‘I can’t be like them!’ this time, I yelled with my lungs out - my voice amplified into the air and disappeared, summoning the silence again.

I thumped my head against the tree-trunk next to me, stuck to it, and lifted my head to catch a glimpse of the green foliage above me - the branches crisscrossing over each other…forming a net, through which the last light of the day played hide and seek with me. This huge, unknown tree stood immobile at the same spot every day, beside its dear river friend. Their friendship was so strong that they never left each other - as it seemed to me. Who knows for how long they had been friends?

'Ah! Friends,' I sighed.

At that moment, I could not tolerate such a mind-soothing scenario, so I squeezed my eyes shut, collapsed on the ground and curled up. My heart’s audible beats still followed the throbs of vehemence. What was wrong with me? Why was I feeling so arrogant?

The local kids’ insults thwacked against my brain - their criticisms. It made me flush, for, being an seven and a half year old boy; I still couldn’t be like them.

‘You can’t play cricket, go away!’

‘You are socially impaired.’

‘You don’t know how to be a boy!’

‘Go huddle in one corner of your room and chit-chat with yourself.’

These words swirled around my brain, sending agonizing spasms through my spine. I darted my eyes at the pond water - its surface acting like a perfect mirror, reflecting the sky streaked with the hues of twilight, with the setting sun gleaming like a magnificent ruby in its centre. I could not endure it either, for it made me recall my best friend…his crimson nose. I pressed my eyes close again, striving to attend to another memory, but his face interrupted me…prohibited me from focusing into anything else - his ash-grey face, piercing blue iris, curly ocher hair and spherical cherry nose. He gazed at me with the universe’s delight - striving to cheer me up…but I strived back to wipe him away from my brain. Tears accumulated beneath my closed eyelashes and cascaded down.

‘What’s the matter, John? Why are you weeping?’ a soft, friendly - and familiar voice aroused me, just as a gentle breeze brushed past my cheeks, and I startled. I took time to flap my eyes open and meet his fluttering eyelids, but just as I did, I swiped my head away from him.

‘Go away,’ was all I could tell him through the sordid lump stuck at my throat.

‘Why?’ he whined.

‘You are my imagination, and you don’t exist. For you, other kids mock me. They peep into my window when I talk with you. You accompany me, and…’ I hurled out in fury; a profound wound inflicted my heart as I did - but I could not finish, for…

‘Is that what you really assume?’ he inquired, cutting me off, in a tone mixed with chagrin and sorrow - he was offended.

I was embraced with guilt as those words wafted gently into my ears. I felt a warm touch on my right hand, and knew it was him. It calmed me down….magically. I looked at him again - he was squatting in front of me, wearing a plain yellow T-shirt and blue jeans that exactly matched the one I was wearing, drooping down his head, his face empty of the regular, playful expression.

‘If I really am a figment of your imagination, then why can you feel me? Why do you visualize me only at times convenient to you? I know well that you love me very much, and if I were your hallucination, then why don’t I snatch your attention away from your studies by wriggling my hands in front of your eyes?’ he mumbled in an emotion-choked voice.

I felt a pain weigh upon my heart as I listened to his each and every word keenly - his manner of speaking was ridiculous…but rational.

He was tilting his head to stare at me with intrigued eyes, sadness-streaked face; trying to intrude into my thought…or expecting a retort from me. I gazed back at him speechlessly. I felt that he was more than a friend. I was striving to tell him something that would bring back the smile on his face…but I couldn’t think of anything.

A train of thoughts sped across my brain:

‘Is he really just the effect of a mere creative power?’ But human brain is capable of materializing imagination into reality. In this way, your brain can even drive you crazy - I recollected these words from a science fiction story. ‘But what if he is not such a trick, what if he is real?’

Abruptly, a gush of wind snapped me out. I was aroused and alerted.

The hues of twilight had vanished and the sky became murky with grey-black clouds. Flashes of lightning peeped through the cluster of clouds. The wind gained more strength every second.

‘I must get you home safely,’ he gasped. I had forgotten that he was there, but his voice made me recall him. I looked at his pale face with furrowing forehead and creasing eyebrows.

Without giving me a chance to say anything, he clasped my arms as he stood up in haste, hauling me along as he plunged through the overcoming storm. To my surprise, I found his snug grip very comfortable. He cared about me, more than just a friend would probably…like an elder brother. He always seemed a few years older than me, so he was like an elder brother for a lone child like me. I buried my face in his arm and a charming, bizarre aroma drifted into my nostrils. I felt the warm affection of an elder brother - I felt so relieved…

 


© Copyright 2018 Ayesha Binte Islam. All rights reserved.

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