Prologue

Flickering dim lights swam in front of his eyes…now pooling with tears. He was running in a tunnel. Wind gushed past as his flailing hands tried to cut through, his legs achingly dragging him forward. Was he in a tunnel? The darkness encompassing all fear, his heart thudded… He was being followed. Hot balmy air brushed his back as he stopped and panted, all in his well-dressed attire. It was then he saw it. The ball of fire…the fiery orange monster was extending its hot limbs touching him from the back as he stood paralysed with fear. He was on fire… He opened his mouth but a voiceless scream filled his being as he saw the fire swallow someone near him… a human being. Who was it?

The sirens of the police van, blasted through the silence making him hopeful. But respite was not for him it appeared. This was just a prelude… and was being detained. What was his fault?

The bars of the prison came into focus and along with it the tormentor’s hand. The silence was now filled with a cacophony of laughter. The hand pulled his hair back and slammed his face long into the bars. The maniacal shrieks continued as his entire being throbbed…

Suddenly it was cold… he was on the frosty floor all bleeding and bare. He couldn’t move as he was spread eagle by pairs of rough hands even as his body groaned in pain. And he was …violated again… The angry pulsating mass of flesh made its way up his rear. It tore him apart… broke him totally… shattered him to the extent that he didn’t feel anything anymore… he couldn’t breathe… Where was the prison guard? He couldn’t see anything as his vision blurred with tears of agony flowing in vain…

He was pulled up, beaten and subjected to the same agony…repeatedly. The invasion increasingly agonising in each attempt… he couldn’t take it anymore. The chill of the floor was getting into him. He screamed with all he had.

“…NO…NO…PLEASE…NOOOO…”

Gaurav chocked as he sat up on his bed. His bedspread wet with his profuse sweating. The nightmare had claimed him yet again. He had had it many times but it affected him just the same. He shivered as the AC breeze hit his wet body. He touched his cheeks. They were wet and… his voice was hoarse. He must have been screaming. He checked the time. It was 3AM…

He knew he wouldn’t be able to sleep anymore. He got off the bed and saw himself in the full length mirror. He was a far cry from the youthful personality he once was. Clad in only his track pants, he used the bathroom walked to his little arena where he liked to exercise out his frustrations and could only manage to sit on his wooded crate filled with his dumbbells, but today they didn’t recon him. He was still trying to calm down his racing heart… they always said, you couldn’t remember your dreams, then why were his nightmares so vivid, that they still sent a shiver down his spine. He got back to his study and sat up with the hospital accounts like he always did whenever he travelled through the purgatory. They always took him through the remaining of the night. He shook his head placing the ledgers on the table in front of him as he sat back on the cushioned office chair. He switched on the music as his therapist had recommended, though he wasn’t religious there were certain numbers that gave him the solace he craved especially after what he went through some nights.

But this time, he couldn’t focus… neither on Rahman’s melody nor on the numbers crunching on the papers before him. The pair of kohl rimmed almond eyes smiled at him. Oh… It was such a calming vision. It was…correction… ‘she’ was a balm for his injured soul. The song played out as he stopped the player and thought about her…the more he did, the more he relaxed on his revolving chair and before he knew, he was asleep again.

He didn’t visit the tunnel and the flames this time…

Copyright Disclaimer: All content posted here is a work of fiction and original work based on the author’s imagination. There is no intention to disrespect any person or faith. Any resemblance to any person living or dead or any community is purely coincidental. No part of the content can be copied, reproduced or posted anywhere else either entirely or in parts, without the consent of the author.

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