As the alarm blared from the bedside she mulled over the thought of going to college. She had International Relations and Economics today, her attendance was low and she couldn’t afford to take a day off if she had the option.
Lying in bed she looked up at the ceiling and sighed. It had been 6 months since she started going to B.Sc classes at Government College University but she still hated it. Stuck in the past, every day dragged by unless she immersed herself with events and work. And so she did. She joined all the societies she was presented with and got involved in everything she could. They kept her occupied with less time to sit and brood. But she felt lost. She couldn’t stop, but she wondered why she’d joined in the first place. She didn’t want to stop but she wondered when she’d get to her actual dreams. Every day they seemed more and more fictitious, more and more distant.
She socialized yes, but it felt like going through the motions. For the life of her she couldn’t understand why she felt so detached. Less than a shadow of herself. When did smiles become forced and painful? When did crowds become so lonely?
Rubbing her eyes, though she wasn’t tired, she trudged downstairs; too lazy to change. The person staring back at her through mirrors was hardly recognizable, her mouth literally drooped and sometimes she liked it that way. Other times she would practice smiling to herself because of how alien it was getting.
She didn’t understand what she wanted, she knew she couldn’t get her friends back, they were all far away and though they still talked, she needed them with her. She wanted them every day. But the fact was she couldn’t. So why the sadness? She should move on, she had accepted their distance, but she still craved their presence. It was pathetic. Was this about them or was it something else?
Fact was, she was stuck, stuck at the University for 5 years. She was ready to go into the world and work. To go on adventures and see the real world. But this was just the same old routine she’d gone through in college. Things were supposed to be different now. Not in another 5 years, now. Would things ever change? They had to change; if they didn’t she didn’t know what she would do. She already fantasized about just leaving everything and trying her luck. Heck even kidnap.
Sitting on the sofa, waiting for the bus to come she played videos of ‘nigahiga‘ on her phone to try and cheer herself up. To wake up just a little……….
I always do this shit. I pin expectations on people, get self conscious around them, and all for nothing. This has got to end. I’m too old for this shit. Focus. Focus.
I need to stop these fantasies here and now. They’re so utterly pointless. They just make you feel like an idiot. But what can I do if I have an overactive imagination. Imagination and thoughts are so beautiful, but they’re distracting. What to do, what to do. Maybe if I didn’t let people get to me. Easier said than done. You know, I’m most comfortable around strangers. The more I get to know people, the quieter I become. MAJOR problem. What am I doing? Shit I’m talking to myself again. Dammit.
I walk into the university campus and wander around the corridors, openly staring down all the people who have the misfortune to pass by me on this fine cloudy day. I was Arya Chaching, I was an author, I had a blog, I could do what I wanted without having to worry about what people thought about me. Besides I only stare for sociological reasons…… and well because I’m a writer, I need to observe. I can’t help laughing at the thought. Bahaane.
I’m late for class again. I don’t care. I will take my own sweet time because not only have I got no one to impress, but the weather’s so beautiful. I’d rather be out here than in a stuffy room which has barely enough oxygen for a dozen people let alone the hundred or so that squeeze in. I trudge towards class, it’s going to be ok, everything’s going to be fine. To my right a hawk swoops down and grabs a twig from the lawn. I stop and stare, awed. It’s so huge, it’s so cool. It glides away with it’s spoils and I watch it shrinking in the distance.
Refreshed I continue my journey and sing to myself. Today is a good day.
I walk in class, everyone turns around and stares. Cheeks aflame I sit down on the nearest seat I can find. Shit. Back to notch one.
Her stomach growled and the hunger pangs were getting more and more painful. She groaned knowing she would have to get up to eat something but there was nothing in the kitchen that appealed to her. She wanted to eat, so badly. Putting the laptop on her bedside table she got to her feet wearily.
Stupid stomach, she thought to herself. It doesn’t even need the food. It has so much stored glycogen and fats and proteins. If only my hormones could be consciously controlled she thought, amused. Imagine it, to just point at an especially blubbery mass of your body and order your body to use the energy stored there. Glycogen, cortisol and corticosteroid all released at your minds consent. xD Forget dieting, everyone could be as slim as they wanted. And if someone was planning to go to say the desert, instead of packing they could just put on weight, literally. ‘Trim that fat’ she said to herself, chuckling. The house was quiet and her laughter faintly echoed back. She shuddered and opened the fridge.
……………Meanwhile in a parallel universe……………
Zaid sat up in bed groggily. Rubbing his eyes and glancing at the clock he realized he was late for school. Pulling off the blanket, he scrambled under his bed, groping around for his shoes. Finally finding them and putting them on, he grabbed his backpack. He got up to head out for school, but as an afterthought looked down, pointing at his stomach, ‘Trim that fat’ he muttered and a few grams of fat disappeared. He was getting low on reserves, he noted as he tried to recall the last time he ate. Shrugging, he decided to eat something after school………
I sigh loudly as I watch the old woman, jogging past in her track suit. Her smile, her passion and her love for life usually make me all warm and fuzzy inside. Today, I feel nothing. If she can’t lift my mood, no one can. Hoisting my backpack on my shoulders I begin the twenty minute walk to my school, eyes down, mouth slack. The cracks in the concrete don’t entice me, I no longer care what magical world could possibly be lurking inside or what wild species of bugs might have mutated to survive such drab conditions. It does not matter.
My feet move mechanically. I know the path like I know my house, who cares about the back of my hand. The colours in the world aren’t as bright. Is it just me, or is life pointless? My thoughts are wandering. If I don’t control them, they could wreak havoc. I submit, they can do what they want, I feel masochistic as they slowly unfold. One after the other the pictures, the memories rise from behind the withering shield. My granddads smile, his warm hugs and his love……a flashback of me holding his hand, walking home from school. Another flashback, him favouring me over my brother….my eyes start to water. He’s taking me with him to Queens market now, we’re on a bus and he’s gazing out the window, he pats my back. My breathing gets heavier. He looks at me, with his big blue eyes, disoriented from the medication, so weak, so helpless, but still he pulls me closer and tells me he’s proud of me. I try breathing slowly and deeply……. It was a mistake to let it come out, I’m a few streets away from the school. I don’t want anyone to see me like this, I don’t want anyone’s sympathy. I wipe away the tears that apparently spilt without my consent. There’s not point in crying, I should pray for him.
As I round the corner, my name being yelled out breaks me out of my reverie. I look up, confused as a shape hurtles towards me and yanks me into a choke hold. I gasp and register the familiar scent of lotion. I laugh and untangle myself from my best friend’s arms. I grin at the group of teens before me. With them, I can forget for the time being. All is right. I am safe.