November 18, 2008
Love Me, Love Me, Love Me
It was a cold winter night and the moon lay hidden beneath the clouds. Silence engulfed the air due to the lateness of the hour. I was on my way back from an old friend's house. I pondered over what I had witnessed there. Due to some unknown reason, Abhishek seemed very distant towards me. I noticed that much of his hands and face was covered in ugly scars. When I asked him the reason, he blatantly refused to talk about it.
I had been walking for what seemed like half an hour. Though I was quite sure I was alone on the road, I kept having the eerie feeling of being watched. I stopped and looked around but saw nothing unusual. I started walking again keeping my eyes and ears open for any sign of unwanted company.
Within a few minutes, I was in front of the gate to my house. Just as I opened the gate, a cold wave of air swept past me. I felt a shiver run down my spine. I had never felt such coldness even in the severest of winters. I thought it best to get inside the warmth and solitude of my home and enjoy a quiet cup of coffee in front of the fireplace. I entered and proceeded towards the kitchen to make some coffee. As I was in the process, I glanced outside through the window. For a moment I felt sure I had seen the rosebush move even though there seemed to be no trace of any wind blowing. Just to make sure, I opened the front door and stepped outside. Ice cold air stung my face. Again I had an uneasy feeling of being watched. But somehow I was aware that I had nothing to be afraid of it, whatever it was. Maybe it was afraid of me. I smiled at the thought. How could something which I couldn’t even see be afraid of me? I spoke in the gentlest voice I could muster, "Don’t be afraid. You can come inside if you want to. It’s pretty cold out here." For a while I waited, hoping for something to happen but nothing did. I went back inside but kept the door open in case it changed it's mind. I sat down by the fire and waited…
Bright sunlight forced me to open my eyes. My neck was stiff since I had fallen asleep on the chair. It was about 7 A.M. I got up and closed the door. As I pushed aside the curtains, I saw something written on the condensed dew on the window pane, 'Love me, Love me, Love me'.
I got the news of Abhishek's death a few hours later. The cause of his death was uncertain. Before dying, he had scribbled a note on a piece of paper with his blood. It read, 'She was mine'.
The thing had definitely come inside the house. I couldn’t see it but I felt it by the coldness around me. It would turn up in every corner of the house. Till now it had never shown its bodily form. Many a times, I would find the same thing written at random places with blood, 'Love me, Love me, Love me'.
One night I was sitting by the fire after dinner reading the papers. As I put down the papers, I was taken aback to see a woman sitting in front of me. She wore white clothes and even her skin was as white as snow. She was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. Her deep blue eyes stared at me with deep anticipation. I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. I got up and went near her. As I extended my hand to touch her face, a cold wave of air swept passed me and she disappeared. At that moment, I realized who she was.
After this incident, she started showing herself more often. I would find her staring at me with those beautiful blue eyes of hers with what clearly was a smile on her face. But more often, I would find her sitting on her favorite chair; the chair I had sat the night she had followed me home. I started calling her Jynx. I would sit for hours in front of the fire at night, talking to her. I poured down my deepest secrets and desires out to her. I had no idea why I was doing this but something told me I had to, as if I had no other choice. I would go on for hours without a single word from Jynx. Eveytime I looked at her, a thought crossed my mind, 'I was falling in love with her, falling in love with a spirit'.
Weeks passed by without me getting out of my house. By now, I had got used to the coldness around me. It had become my habit to wish Jynx goodnight when I went to sleep. She would sit beside me the whole night and I would find her staring at me when I woke up in the morning. One night, I was sitting by the fire. Jynx, as usual was at her favourite chair staring at me. As I looked at her, the look in her eyes told me that she wanted me to come close to her. I walked over to her and extended my hand towards her. Then, as I had expected, she extended her hand and put it over mine. I felt my hand freeze. The coldness around me increased. My head started spinning. I fell down and as I felt myself losing consciousness, I muttered out the words – 'I love you'.
The next night, I invited a friend to dinner. After dinner, we were sitting by the fire. Jynx was sitting on her favourite chair, staring at Tushar.
"It’s so cold in here...", Tushar was saying.
"You look so tired. You should take a vacation."
"I...can’t go." I said looking at Jynx. "I have work here."
Jynx was still staring at Tushar.
"What happened to your hand?"
"Nothing. Just burnt it." I had tried to hide my hand but Tushar had seen the bandages.
"Well, I must be going now. It’s pretty late. By the way, do you have any idea what exactly could’ve happened with Abhishek?"
"I have no idea." I knew what had happened but if I told him he would think I was crazy.
"Well, see you then."
I closed the door and went back to Jynx. As I sat down in front of her, I saw a tear roll down her cheek. I knew the time had come. Jynx put her hands on my face. A piece of rotten flesh fell down to the floor. I knew that wherever she would touch me, the blood would dry up and the flesh would rot. But I was helpless. I was in love. Her hands slid down to my chest where my heart was. I knew in a few moments, my heart would freeze up, forever trapping my love for her. I felt my knees getting weaker and I stumbled to the floor. Somehow I made it to the window and saw Jynx following Tushar. I knew in a few moments I would die. As everything around me grew darker, I heard myself say, "She was mine..."