This Girl

Kevin was waiting in the lobby of the psych ward of willow brook hospital in Cleveland, Ohio. He was sitting in a chair and was very restless; he seemed visibly agitated as he was tapping his feet hard with his boots making rhythmic noise on the wooden floor. He had his hands on his hair plowing through his hair like he was trying to find a lost treasure inside it. No one seemed to be noticing his actions annoying, as it was a common sight in this part of the hospital. Kevin was raggedly dressed, wearing 3 layers of mismatched clothes, a yellow shirt, a blue sweater over it and a brown sport coat with grey jeans and brown shoes. One could easily figure out something was wrong with him.

This restless wait lasted for about 45 minutes after which a nurse called out his name on the intercom asking him to head to counseling room 2. Kevin slowly stood up on hearing the call and rushed to the exam room. He stepped into the room before the doctor could ask him to come in. Kevin went straight for the couch and sat again in the posture he was waiting outside.

The doctor called him by his name, he did not answer. So the doctor introduced herself as Dr. Rebecca, she was a woman in her mid 50s. She asked Kevin about his problem in a sweet tone. Kevin looked down to the carpet with tears filling up in his eyes. He wanted to talk but couldn’t speak a word; he was on verge of crying hard. Rebecca noticed it immediately and asked him not to inhibit his emotions, to let it out, and before she could end her sentence, Kevin burst out into sobbing with his face shoved into his palms. Rebecca sat next to him, offered him some tissues and pats his back again asking him what was bothering him. Kevin replied with a broken voice and said “A girl”. Rebecca asked “who’s this girl, why is she bothering you” she also added “tell me your story, if you don’t mind…”

There was a Long pause between them, Kevin then started talking after taking a deep breath “ It’s a Girl, she comes in my dreams. I don’t know her, I haven’t seen her in my life, I don’t know her name, I don’t know anything about her but she keeps coming in my dreams. It’s been three months since she first appeared in my dream. I am in love with her for a while and I have been trying to find her in my real life for the past one month, I have roamed almost entire east coast of the United states to find her, I am online 24/7 trying to find her in any website possible. I think am going mad with her memory in me. I desperately need help now. Please doctor, can you do something to me.”

Rebecca, who was listening each word carefully, replied back “of course, I can help. But I need to know more about this girl in your dreams… like what relationship you have with her in the dreams, what she does in these dreams, why you fell in love with her… things like that, if you could describe them in detail, I can help much better” . Kevin wiped off a tear from his left eye and continued his talk, “she came in my dream first, once when I was lonely and devastated after I lost my dad in a car crash, he was the only relation I had in this world. She came in my dreams, consoled me back to normal state, gave me courage to live and made me happy whenever I was sad… In my dreams she would give me advice on how to handle situations, tackle personal problems and they would work out really well. The last three months of my life were the best time I ever had and its all due to that girl in my dreams.”

Kevin took a deep breath again, without looking up at Rebecca, still sobbing a little, He said “she was the girl friend I never had, so I thought to myself, if she comes in my dreams, she should exist in real life too, somewhere close by or with someone I know. I had to find this girl, know her, and tell her about my dreams. live with her for the rest of my life… so I started trying to find her, I googled for her image, looked in Facebook, AIM, yahoo and all social networking sites possible, even tried looking in adult websites too. No luck at all. So I started travelling to various cities, roaming everywhere on the streets trying to see if I could find that face in anyone living anywhere. I have travelled to 17 different cities in the past one month, literally staring and stalking people with similar looks, I’ve spent all my money, I am almost broke now, every night in my dream I try to talk to her, ask her where she is, many times I started to sleep deliberately just to dream about her, just to see her face”. Kevin was still looking at the carpet, tears falling down from his eyes like water from a dripping tap, he continued “I knew am going crazy but that face kept haunting me every single second and here I am in Cleveland sitting before you seeking medical attention. Please doctor, help me. I need to find that girl, or help me erase that girl’s memories off my head”.

Rebecca asked him “Kevin, can you describe me that girl, how she looks and descriptions? Kevin said “oh yes, yes, I can actually draw her face for you, I am a cartoonist by profession” Rebecca smiled and said “that’s even better”. She handed him a black pen and a sheet of paper and added “I could also see if I maybe have seen her somewhere or who knows, might be someone I know.”

Kevin got excited hearing her words and started sketching her face with intense concentration, meanwhile Rebecca got a phone call from her daughter, so she got engaged in her call. After about 15 minutes, Kevin called out for Rebecca, he had completed the sketch, Rebecca signaled to him to wait for a minute with a hand gesture and told bye to her daughter and kept the phone.

She stretched out to get the paper from Kevin, and Kevin looked up on Rebecca for the first time, he had his arm stretched out and was looking at her with a smile. Kevin seemed to have distracted with something on the wall behind Rebecca. She did not notice it, she was eager to see the girl’s face, the moment she saw the girl’s sketch; she was taken aback by shock and was literally gasping for breath or in other words, stupefied seeing the sketch. She wished she had taken back the words she said before he started sketching. She slowly looked toward Kevin; he was also in the same state with his eyes fixed to the wall. Rebecca knew what he had seen; she turned slowly to see the wall. It was her daughter’s photo. The girl in Kevin’s dreams was her twenty year old daughter, Leila.

Both Rebecca and Kevin were in a state of shock and there was an air of long awkward silence.

 

 

Take  a Second to choose your desired ending for this story.

 

Published in: on December 1, 2010 at 6:40 am  Comments (2)  
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mistaken Memories

October 15th 1971

A rainy morning at St. Antony Hospital, London, and the rain was pouring down from the skies as if gods left the shower open for a long time. The hospital grounds were covered with a layer of flowing water and the bow windows were trickling water down their cubical designs. The chief doctor Dr. Gordon was on his usual rounds when he stepped closer to a patient who had been in coma for past 48 hours and he could become conscious any moment. The hospital authorities had informed the police about his admission and the newspapers had been informed to flash pictures of him to find out if any of his relatives would be searching of this missing person, but no one had come for him yet. The unconscious white male about 45 years old who was admitted to the hospital late at night before 2 days after having a severe road accident, where his car had fallen off the road after crashing to the side of a truck.

He had severe injuries to head and chest, his leg was fractured at 2 places and there was bleeding from his wounds. The hospital treated his injuries and had been unconscious from the time of admission. Later that afternoon, the staff nurse knocking the door of Dr. Gordon, bringing him the news about the unknown man’s regaining consciousness. Gordon rushed to the ward to go and talk to him. The person was wrenching slightly because of the pain from the injuries suffered. The pain killers were wearing off and he needed a new dose of the analgesics.

Gordon asked the man, about him, his name, where he came from, anyone they could contact to tell about his presence but to his surprise, the man was blank; he had no clue about himself. He had lost his memory due to the trauma of the car crash. The doctor tried to talk him into getting any bit of memory back to him; it was bringing him more mental pain adding to the physical torture from the injuries.

The doctor was thinking about how to handle this situation, when a nurse brought him a bag, which was found in the car in the passenger seat next to him. The bag had nothing but 8 diaries with filled with writings without leaving a blank page till now, no one cared to see what was written in those books.  Dr. Gordon took out a diary and started reading it from a random page. He was amazed at what he read. It was the solution he was trying to find for this man. The diary was filled with precious writings, not just any scribbling, they were memories. This man had written down his life’s memories in these diaries. This was the perfect medicine for that man’s amnesia. Reading from these diaries could spark the old memories from his past. Dr.Gordon felt so relieved to have got these diaries, he smiled with a bright happiness and praised the nurse for safe keeping of the bag and handing it to him in time.

Dr. Gordon sat with the patient for the next one hour, talked him through about reading the diaries and told him to read it with at most concentration and determination, so that he could bring back his memories. Dr. Gordon also had a cat’s curiosity to know who this person really was. So he flipped through the diaries to see if he could get any clue and as he wished, he found the biggest clue. A photograph of this unknown man on the back was his name, address and his signature. The doctor felt like he had solved the greatest medical mystery ever, he would have jumped up in joy with loud ruckus, if it wasn’t the hospital.

The writing behind the photograph said

James Wallace

1210, maryhill road, Glasgow.

The photograph had this unknown man dressed in a fine black suit with matching hat, he had a thick beard and the same brown bag was hanging down from his right shoulder. He seemed to be standing in front of the doors of a parish church as they looked like classic dungeon doors with hard brown wood and metal locks.  Dr. Gordon immediately sent out a man to give the new found evidence to the police and let them know about the man’s consciousness.

October 22nd 1971

A week later, early morning and it was raining again. Dr. Gordon was doing his usual rounds, when he saw the man ‘James Wallace’ staring out the window, which was trickling water down it, looked like a vertical river. Gordon went closer to him for a small conversation. He asked him if he remembered anything from his past. James replied saying he never tried to remember the past, rather learn a new life from the memories he had in the diaries. Now he was living the life from what he read in the diaries. The diary had mentioned about his half sister ‘Josephine’, born to his mother and her first husband. James mentioned this to Dr.Gordon and asked him if he could find any information about her. Dr. Gordon said the same answer he had been telling him all week that the police were investigating and it will be anytime soon he’d be hearing from his relatives. James had been reading those diaries again and again all through day and night and now knows each and every letter in it. The memories from the diaries were his memories now.

The diary mentioned that he was a preacher from a parish church in Glasgow, who went around the country giving sermons and spreading the good word about Jesus Christ and Christianity, which he took up as a full time duty after he lost his family, his wife and two daughters in a fire accident before 8 years. The only relative he had was the half sister Josephine. The memories were framed like a man’s daily journal for the past 8 years, how he lead his daily life, the interesting incidents he came across such as a near physical fight with a Islamic leader at a school, the temptation he couldn’t resist in sleeping with a prostitute ‘Janet’ for many nights in a row at his brief stay in Aberdeen. His only form of love, money could buy. James had become a loner after the tragedy, since the diary never mentioned about any friends or other relatives. Most of the 8 years, he spent eating at local diners and sleeping in his car. The memories never mentioned about any happy incidences except for the vivid descriptions of his love making sessions with Janet. The diary lacked one important information about how he got to London, since the last entry in the diary locates him being in Edinburgh, Scotland. Where he had dinner with the head vicar of the church and his family, which was described as the best wholesome meal he had eaten in years.

James Wallace thought to himself, that this accident was a god sent message to change his life, he should not go back to his past, but start fresh, a new life. The diary was just a peek into his past to know that his life should not go back to the old miserable ways. James felt like a new man, he was getting back to normal conditions and his injuries were healing fast. James asked Dr. Gordon to discharge him from the hospital so that he could go out and start the new life.

Dr. Gordon granted his wish and signed his discharge papers. James Wallace was going to stay his last night at the hospital and leave at daybreak. So he went around the hospital meeting the friends he had made in the past week.

October 23rd 1971

Late evening, Dr. Gordon was packing his briefcase to leave his office, a woman in her late thirties, came to meet him. Along with her was police officer Briggs from Glasgow, Scotland. She introduced herself as Mrs. Kate Miller. She showed him the newspaper advertisement that had been published a week back in the newspapers about the then unknown man, James Wallace. She asked him in a low tone if he that person was there in the hospital, Gordon replied that he had left the hospital that morning as he had discharged him and followed his answer with a question “may I know why you are asking about this person”. Kate miller spoke to him in disappointed sad voice with an American accent “the man in the picture is my husband Joe miller, he is a writer and had come to Scotland for research and writing his book which was set in Scotland before 6 months”. She paused for a second, and then continued “we are from Orange, Massachusetts. I got this news about the missing person advertisement from one of my friends who were visiting London two days back. So I rushed here to find my husband, he hadn’t been in contact with us for about two weeks now”. Kate miller was on the verge of tears as she asked Gordon “where is he now?”

Dr. Gordon realized his mistake, a big mistake he had done. The solution he thought he found was actually a problem he created for the unknown man. He had given him a false identity to believe in. the diaries were actually the manuscripts of his new book. Joe miller had been living in Scotland and writing a book on the fictional character James Wallace. Dr. Gordon had made the character come alive in Joe miller due to his amnesia. Gordon trembled in shock as he realized his dreadful mistake. He stuttered in disbelief of his mistake as he talked “I am sorry… I have made a terrible mistake. Your husband suffered from a traumatic amnesia and had no memory of him and the diaries he had with him were like daily journals of himself for past 8 years, which I thought was a perfect solution to bring his memories back”. He stopped and took a deep breath and said “The last time I spoke to him, he told me that he was going to start a new life and went out into the streets of London”, he added “am really sorry, I have made the biggest mistake of my career, I have given your husband a false identity, and he now thinks he’s James Wallace, a preacher from Scotland, with no aim in life”.Gordon sat in his chair, put his palm over his face and sunk himself in it; he was frustrated with his mistake.

Mr. Briggs, the police officer, who was a silent observer in this conversation, spoke with an authoritative voice, he said he had a suspicion on this case, after the address behind the photograph didn’t match out, the place was a old grocery store, but admitted to Dr. Gordon and Mrs. Miller, with a nod that he had never thought of this twist to the story. Mr. Briggs immediately ordered a search for the man, Joe miller aka James Wallace in the streets of London, to bring him back and try to cure him of his illness, the traumatic amnesia he had suffered.

The Next three weeks…

Joe miller was finally found by the London police at a local bar after getting into a brawl with another Christian preacher about an argument over the existence of the Holy Grail. Joe Miller was brought back to the hospital and was given electroconvulsive therapy to make him regain his actual memories.

Dr. Gordon resigned from his designation as Chief Doctor and retired his medical profession taking full responsibility for the mistake he committed, even though he could argue otherwise.

Joe miller regained his memories and recognized his wife Kate miller and also gave insights about what actually happened before the crash and why he was in London. Mr. Miller had completed his book , a journal view of a man’s life who lost everything he loved and lived for mere survival and was returning to London to catch his flight back to Boston, when he had the car crash after colliding at high speed with the truck.

October 15th 1972.

Joe Miller’s latest book “Mistaken Memories” based on the incidents that unfolded in London last year had released and became the New York Times best seller.

Published in: on September 16, 2010 at 6:27 am  Comments (1)  
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Purely Coincidental

Raj was driving back from his friend Sam’s wedding reception, beside him sat his fiancée divya. Raj was thinking over and over about the reception. He asked divya “do things like this really happen..?” he paused, “i mean… what is the probability of things like this occurring in one’s life?” Raj was very surprised about what his friend told about the marriage. He couldn’t still digest the role, coincidence played in his friend’s life.  When divya and raj both asked each other at the same time “can anyone have such a coincidence in their life?”

So what really happened at the reception, that made Raj ponder so much about it… let’s find out.

3 hours earlier…

Divya’s phone was singing its ringtone for a long time. She was busy admiring her beautiful new saree neatly clad on her slim body. She was almost lost in her own beauty when a car honked outside her house. She immediately picked up the phone and spoke into it, “wait… wait… 5mins… will be outside… bye”. It was her fiancée Raj; they both were going to raj’s friend’s wedding reception.

Divya got into the car and looked at raj, expecting a compliment from him about her stunning looks but as always, like every other guy Raj failed miserably, when he complained to her that she was late. It’s a girl’s thing to expect and a guy’s thing to fail it.

It was a busy evening hour, so the car was swimming through the Jam. Although, it was about half hour late to the reception, Raj and divya had made it pretty earlier than the others. He held her hands guiding her to the people of his college life but she was going to meet them for the first time. It was a great time for divya to put a face to the person from the stories she has heard from raj about them. Some introductions made her laugh a little, just for the nature of funny incidents that had happened.

Raj then settled down with his friends, and started talking about the marriage, bride and groom. He and his friends knew Sam as their senior and bus mate during college. They knew about Sam’s love affair during college times and everyone were sure that was the same girl too. So raj was explaining to divya about Sam’s love story and how he used to act stupid at times, when it comes to love.

After a while, everyone started to go to the dais to congratulate the couple on their wedding. On the way to the dais, Raj met Sam’s brother David; he had a casual conversation with him, and asked    “your brother is lucky; he got the girl he loved… I guess it’s your turn next.” David replied “what? This is an arranged marriage raj; Sam wasn’t in any relationship for a long time now. This girl was chosen by my parents… he just nodded his head in approval… that all”. This version twisted raj a little. He had thought it was a love marriage but his brother seems to say otherwise.

Divya also got a little confused hearing the conversation, and while walking to the dais, she told raj “see raj, I thought so from the beginning, the whole setup seems like an arranged marriage, I don’t think it’s a love marriage”. Raj also a little perplexed, reaffirmed to divya “am sure divya, I’ve seen these two as a pair, although Sara was not from my college, these two used to hang out all over the city. Am sure this is the same girl.” divya questioned      “come on dear! The brother just said it’s an arranged marriage, maybe it’s just a coincidence that names match. This could be someone who looks quite like the other girl”.

Raj couldn’t hold his curiosity, when it was his turn to congratulate the couple; he went straight ahead and asked Sam “Bro… tell me one thing… isn’t this love marriage? I thought so, but it turns out to be different… what’s up with it?” Sam just couldn’t control his smile hearing this, his smile almost turned into a blush; he turned to Sara, who was smiling uncontrollably.

Sam answered to Raj “yes… Raj, it is an arranged marriage.” Raj thought he had got all of his memories wrong about Sam’s relationship, he was bit worried that he had told all his friends that it was a love marriage, when it was not, and as raj was leaving the dais with a heavy thought, Sam held him and whispered to Raj “dude, its kinda like a twisted story, let me tell it to you in detail after I get down from this place. You have your dinner and come back”.

Raj’s curiosity got bigger than before, it was like a blown balloon almost at the verge of bursting into pieces, all through dinner, and his mind was calculating all permutations about how twisted this story would be. He even went to extent of imagining a face change operation of that girl.

After dinner, Raj came back to the hall with divya; he was predicting his versions to her, who on hearing his crazy theories had a hearty laugh. Raj’s curiosity spread to a few friends and they also gathered to wait for Sam to come and reveal the secret. After a 20 minute wait, Sam finally came along with his wife Sara, he sat beside Raj in a chair and laughed. He asked Raj “so you thought it was a love marriage eh…?” he laughed again and said “you are right as well as wrong”. Raj had a very confused look on his face.

Sam then started his version of the story, the actual one; everyone around him listened to it keenly. He said “I and Sara were in a relationship for 2 yrs in college, but during final year due to many differences, we broke up. After that we never met or had any contacts, 2 years passed” he stopped and looked at Sara, who continued “ my parents were looking for a suitable alliance for me and when I was browsing through the matrimonial website for possible matches, I stumbled upon his profile. I told my parents that I liked his profile and they fixed the rest”.

Sam then said “my mom showed me her photo and told that they liked this girl a lot, I too accepted that I liked her, so they asked if they could talk to her parents to finalize the marriage.” Sam took a brief pause, a lot of crowd had gathered to listen to the story now. Sam continued “when we met at her place for the customary bride visit, we both talked for first time after 2 years, she told me that it was destiny that brought us together, and we were meant to be together. We both hadn’t had any other relationship after our break up and it seemed like we never really wanted to get over each other. Sara felt like this was a divine intervention to bring them together, a second chance for true love.

Sara interrupted “yea, it was my idea to keep our past relationship, a hidden secret; because I thought it might create a few rough patches in the arranged marriage, if the parents tend to believe it was a setup from us. So none of our family members knew about our love affair till now.” Sam and Sara both concluded saying “this whole thing was purely coincidental, no one knew this was coming, we ourselves still don’t believe this is happening”.

Everyone around them were so surprised and for some it was a shocker, but everyone had the same thought on their mind “Love does perform miracles”

Raj was now satisfied with his curiosity finally getting solved from the creators itself.  Divya just had a memorable experience which she could share with everyone she knows, a truly inspiring love story with a heavy role of coincidence. She wished for it to have happened in her life.

When Raj and Divya reached the home, the question “can anyone have such a coincidence in their life” appeared again in their mind, but now they had an answer “definitely not, this is a one of a kind experience. It is truly a divine intervention to make true love succeed.”

Published in: on July 18, 2010 at 6:56 am  Leave a Comment  
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