read Part 2 here.
“Ashish, where are you now”, I was almost shouting.
He replied lazily, “At my home, obviously. Why are you asking this? Are you still under the effect of last night’s drink.”, laughing as he said this.
“And Varun, where is he? Did you talk to him last night?”, I questioned.
He replied, “I dropped him at his home first, he was too drunk, so I didn’t let him drive.” I felt relieved. Satisfied, I told him sorry that I disturbed him and hung up the phone.
“…it happened in morning.. that would hurt.. people drive rashly these days…it was really unlucky….”
The words rang loud in my ears. I felt a little edgy.
I went to my mother and asked what had happened. She said something about an accident during the early morning. A worried look ran over her face when she said that. I ran downstairs. It was already ten in the morning and the pups were roaming outside. All, but one. Lucky was missing. I looked here and there frantically, stamping my foot loud on the ground, hoping that he recognizes the sound of my footsteps. Lucky didn’t turn up. I kept on looking around the area. After a few moments of running around frantically, I saw, behind the banyan tree, Lucky lying on the grass under the tree’s shade. At first, I thought it was sleeping. The stillness of its body was unnerving me.
My heart was beating against my chest faster now. Nervously, I moved towards Lucky. As I had taken a couple of steps, I saw Lucky, lying on the grass, still, lifeless, motionless and . . . . . . . headless. I stopped with a heavy jolt, shocked to my bones. It took me a while to realize what I was watching was true. Lucky was lying in front of my eyes and it was headless. The cruelty of the scene in front of me made me choke. My chest became heavy and I sat on the ground with a thud. My mother told me later that Lucky had got out of the shelter in the morning, far from our home, and then a speeding car ran over it, trampling its head.
Lucky was gone. It was dead.
A tinge of sharp pain ran inside my body. I felt helpless, weak, abandoned. I pinched myself hoping it to be a dream, expecting myself to wake up in my bed. Expecting Lucky to jump and lunge towards me. But nothing helped and nothing changed. Lucky was gone. Realization sunk in slowly and cruelly. For some time, I didn’t know what to do, what to say or where to go. I stood there, near Lucky’s lifeless body, hoping somebody to give me answers about this loss.
Slowly, denial changed to despair and then to acceptance. I realized that there were things needed to be done. Painfully, I trudged upstairs. I found my mother standing at the gate, apparently watching me all this time. She had tears in her eyes.
“You can’t do anything about these things,” I said with a straight face, trying to put up a strong facade.
Seeing tears in her eyes, I realized I was welling up too. I went inside and took out a fresh bed sheet. When I came downstairs, I saw the other pups standing around lucky. They too had realized something amiss, something wrong. Lucky who would not stand still for a second while it was alive, was lying still, motionless and that ached every other pup around it. I spread the sheet near Lucky and rolled its lifeless body onto it.
Watching me do this, the other pups became wary. Realizing something was wrong, they started jumping on Lucky, hoping to irritate Lucky, bring out a reaction out of Lucky, the way they used to do earlier. I had to push them away hard. My tears were falling in a continuous stream now. I placed its body in the backseat of my car. I took the plow which my mother had brought down with her and started driving towards the edge of the town, near a canal.
I remember the last night when I had seen Lucky. What if I had stayed with it a while longer? Would that have changed something? Maybe if I wasn’t outside until late night, things would have been different, and Lucky might have been alive. I cursed myself. But nothing would change now.
I was helpless. Lucky was gone.
I drove slowly. I wasn’t able to concentrate on the road ahead. Every other second I hoped that somehow, lucky would come alive, it would jump right at me. But it never happened. I reached the canal and started digging the earth. I don’t know which drenched the soil beneath me more, my sweat or my tears. I held up Lucky for the one last time and placed it on its grave. Unable to control anymore, I started wailing, heavily.
Read the part 1 HERE – how it all started.
Read More Series HERE.
Also published on Medium.