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A long time ago.

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In a galaxy far, far away.

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Yoda

DO or DO NOT. There is no TRY.

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No, I'm your father.

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You don't know the power of the dark side.

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X-Wing Fighter

Long live the Rebel Alliance.

January 23, 2012

Knight and Dawn

Knight staggered to his SUV. The blast of cocaine he had a minute back made him feel like he had just scored the winning goal in the World Cup Final. He didn't seem to care about anything anymore.The whole world seemed at his feet.His heart thumped out a drum 'n' bass crescendo, and he felt an intense and powerful euphoria clouding his senses. 

Unfortunately the hit wouldn't last very long.Around 20-30 minutes.No fear. He had enough supply for a few more hits in his car.But this shit was damn costly. Thankfully,the inheritance from his deceased tycoon of a father ensured he never had to worry about money.
Regular cocaine usage was screwing up his nasal passages and smoking crack caused him acute chest pain sometimes.His lungs were paying the price for his excesses and he knew that. No soul to call his own,nobody to care a damn if he lived or died,he wondered how long would it be before life gave up on him altogether.He was waiting for his last day on this barren world with bated breath.Even hastening it in fact.Existence was a bane he wanted to get rid of desperately.
He pushed the key into the ignition and started his ride.
***
Dawn finished her work at the motel and walked out into a calm and beautiful evening.A light breeze blew and she felt immensely at peace.The calm gentleness of the evening reminded her of the nun who used to visit her at the orphanage when she had been young.The nun,her name was Martha,used to bring her candies and books to read.She made her feel loved and cared for.Dawn adored her.Her death had made Dawn weep for days.She could never forget Sister Martha,nor the beliefs she had instilled in her.It was her teachings which made her smile through all the vicissitudes of her life.She was confident that even the greatest of tragedies would not weaken her desire to live and her resolve to fight.Despite having no parents to care for her and no family whatsoever,her infectious smile and energetic blue eyes proudly proclaimed the strength of her spirit.

She got into her car and pushed down hard on the accelerator.She wanted to get home early so that she could prepare the dinner she had promised her boyfriend,Alan.She had met him two years ago,when he had come to dine at their motel.They made a good couple and Dawn was grateful for having him around.Time and again,she pictured the two of them sharing a happily married future together.She chided herself for being so romantically deluded,but she badly wanted to belong somewhere.Belong to a family she had been so cruelly deprived of for so long.

Thoughts of Alan and herself occupied her mind as she drove,when suddenly a SUV sprung out of a bend ahead at a break-neck velocity. Her eyes grew wide with terror and panic,as the SUV rammed into her sedan.Squealing tires and blaring horns deafened her as the realization of what she was getting into dug its claws into her.She felt a vicious jolt against her seat-belt,as her face crashed against her windshield,shattering the glass into a dozen screaming pieces.She felt the cold of blood running down her cheek.Her vision faltered.Blackness engulfed around the edges and finally filled her sight.Before she lost consciousness,she could smell gasoline.Her gas tank had ruptured.

"Save me Alan!" was the last thought on her mind as the front of  her car burst into flames.
***
"You are in deep shit,Knight!" Knight's lawyer hollered at him."Do you hear me?That gal can sue your last set of undies out of you.How the fuck could you be so irresponsible,Knight?The cops tell me they detected enough cocaine in your urine test which could put you in jail for a shit-long time.And on top of that,this accident!Do you know what condition you have put her in?My god!!It's terrifying even to look at her.Do you have the slightest fucking idea what hell you have brought upon yourself and the gal?"

"Is she going to be okay?" Knight asked his lawyer anxiously.

"She burnt for one minute in that car.Third degree burns all over her body.The docs are scared she might even lose her eyesight," the lawyer replied gravely."Her face has been burnt beyond recognition.I saw one of her photos.They were there in her purse.She was beautiful,Knight!And now you have fucked all that up completely.I wonder how she will ever look at herself in the mirror again."

"Christ!What have I done?!!" Knight buried his face in his hands.A tumultuous wave of guilt washed over him as he realized what he had just done to Dawn.He had ruined her life,blown her halfway to hell.He wondered why fate had brought them to such cross-roads.Here he was,alive and well,with just a few scratches and an injured knee-cap.And Dawn was in the throes of pain,her life incinerated,her existence charred,her glowing-20-something-young and beautiful self  tuned into a twisted mockery of burnt and eaten up flesh.Death would have been a blessing,but she just wasn't lucky enough to die.

Death.He would have given his own life up gladly.It held no meaning for him anyway.And yet,fate chose to spare him and punish Dawn.

"I got contacts at the District Attorney's office," the lawyer continued."I will see to it that the cocaine mess gets sorted out.You should be able to get your ass out of it just by signing some papers and coughing up some dough.But this woman,Dawn Paige.No judge in this country is going to exonerate you after what you've made her go through.Honestly speaking,I wouldn't have either.You deserve.."

"I will pay for all her medicals," Knight interrupted,his voice suddenly taking on a steely resolve."I did this to her.She is my responsibility.I don't care if I am bled dry trying to get her back to normal.I am going to fix this."

"It ain't gonna be so easy,son!" The lawyer shook his head sadly."The docs don't think she is ever going to lead a normal life again.Your intentions don't count for anything.Her life has been screwed completely."

He was right.Over the next two years,twenty reconstructive surgeries were performed on Dawn.They just managed to ease her physical trauma somewhat.Her upper body had been severely disfigured,mutilated and damaged.Her face could never be reconstructed again.Dawn spent her days in the hospital in unimaginable pain,emanating from her body as well as her soul.Alan used to visit her regularly in the beginning.But gradually his visits dwindled into nothingness.Her sense of loss at Alan's insensitive withdrawal,coupled with her rage and hatred against Knight pushed her to the edge of insanity.She didn't want to live.Not like this.She deserved a better life.She had hurt no one.Not borne any malice towards anybody.Then why did she have to suffer like a sinner?Helplessness and hopelessness clawed at her plundered soul and tore it to tatters.In those dark hours,she used to remember Sister Martha often.She prayed for strength just like the kind nun had taught her to.
"Remember,dear child," the nun used to say smilingly,in rhyming verse," Forget,forgive, and above all,pray.To see the dawn of a happier day."
Dawn wondered when happier days would dawn putting an end to the ceaseless night which had engulfed her life.

Knight watched her suffer and suffered along with her.He was clueless and had no idea how he could reach out to her,or how he could possibly lessen her affliction.Shame and remorse set his soul ablaze in a hell-fire just like the one which had burnt up Dawn's beautiful body.He felt as if life had made him vomit and then rubbed his face in his own puke.He paid all her medical expenses,but he knew that would not come remotely close to being enough.There was no one to care for her.Even her boyfriend had slipped away.Her loneliness often reminded him of his own.She never deserved this,he couldn't help admonishing himself cruelly.She deserved a happy,fulfilling life.And he had walked into her life and took her everything.Even worse,he could never give it back to her,even if he wanted to.He visited her everyday.But Dawn stubbornly refused to acknowledge his presence.Her indifference to him only escalated his inner turmoil.

Time flew.Dawn slowly became more accepting of her situation.Her bitterness towards Knight melted away gradually.She couldn't bring herself to forgive him completely.But she realized he was doing all he could to make life a little easier for her.Thoughts of Alan still haunted her every now and then though.While she realized that maybe it would have been unfair on her part to expect him to carry her burden,the way he stole away from her still felt hurtful and demeaning.

Five years sped past and she was finally discharged from the hospital.She had nowhere to go except state financed care-centers.Knight took her to his own mansion.All the surgeries which Dawn had been through had cost a fortune to him.Even with his inheritance,he had been finding difficulty meeting the expenses.So he had tuned his focus to his family business.A series of calculated risks and a few lucky breaks ensured his business kept on running smoothly.He shun drugs and alcohol like gangrene and plague.Sometimes,he used to stay awake at nights staring at the blazing fire in his fireplace.He used to ponder the irony of fate.That accident had brought him back to his senses,jarred him back to reality.His quality of life had steadily improved.And yet,he didn't deserve this life.He had been willing to throw it away just five years ago.And Dawn....she had been made to suffer in his place.Unfairly.In a cruel twisted mockery of every belief about reward and punishment he and she used to believe in.

It was on one such night,when he heard the sound of muffled cries from Dawn's bedroom.He peered in to see her sob with her face pushed against the pillows.She wept inconsolably.A torrent of horrendous memories and deep-seated insecurities regarding an unknown future chafed against her bruised soul.How she wished Alan were there to hug her.Hug her and whisper in her ears that everything is going to be all right.He always used to make her feel protected and safe.

All of a sudden,without warning,she felt someone's arms around her.Knight hugged her softly and gently.He was careful so as not to cause her any alarm or panic.He just wished deeply to apply a balm to her wounded tenderness.

"Don't worry," he purred in her ears,"everything is going to be all right."

 Dawn could not help herself.She let out a wail of anguish which sliced through Knight's heart.He hugged her even more tightly.And he remained that way,throughout the night,as Dawn's tears wet his shirt and her arms looped around his torso.Somehow the warmth of his body caressed the frigid iciness in her soul.

The next day,Knight came back early from work and anxiously looked into Dawn's bedroom.She was nowhere to be found.On the bed there was a note.He picked it up immediately.

"Dear Knight,
In the beginning,I hated you and I wished you rot in hell.But I now know, despite what you have done to me,you are a wonderful human being.You don't have to carry my burden all throughout your life.That will be too cruel.You deserve all the happiness life can shower on you,Knight.And don't feel guilty.I forgive you with all my heart.Goodbye and stay blessed."

Knight bolted out of the bedroom to find his bewildered house-keeper who informed him that she had seen Dawn taking a stroll towards the west just a quarter of an hour ago.Hearing this, he shot out of the mansion in Dawn's pursuit.Quarter of an hour.She couldn't have gone too far!

He pushed as fast as his legs could take him.After ten minutes he spotted Dawn in the distance,a muffler wrapped around her face.The fire had taken away her hair completely and despite all the corrective procedures,she still couldn't show her face in the public.

"Dawn,wait!!!!!" He screamed at the top of his lungs.

Dawn tuned back for an instant and seeing him,immediately turned on her heels to flee from his sight.But her legs got caught in some ground-hugging vegetation and she fell with a heavy thud.Knight was beside her in an instant,helping her up.

"Don't you ever do that to me again!Do you hear?" He pleaded to her desperately as Dawn averted his gaze.
"You don't owe me anything.I owe you everything I have.My life,my each breath,you own it all.That day I took away everything from you,that day-you don't know it-but you saved me!!!I was ready to waste away everything I had.Shove it down the drain and flush it away with booze and crack.But you-you gave my shit-hole life a meaning.I learnt to care for something other than my stupid selfish self.You don't need me to survive.But without you I will just wither away and die.Please don't do this to me.I need you-I.."
Knight broke down into tears as he left his sentence dangling.
"Please don't leave me!!" He managed to say in between sobs."I don't want to have you around me because you make me feel guilty.I want you around because it gives me a reason to..to stay alive.You are all I have.Please don't go away.Please don't punish me like this."

Dawn stood up on her toes and kissed his forehead.She wrapped her arms around him,comforting him as a mother does her child.She knew she would never leave him.She had finally found her family.

**The End**



Reactions:

23 comments:

  1. This was amazing!
    I loved the way it ended. For once I thought, that she would die. Thank God you didn't do that to her. When I read the first half, I knew that something would go wrong.
    It was a lovely read :)

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  2. Awww, this was beautiful. I loved it. :) You described everything so perfectly. And she has my name, yayayaya! :D Though I hope, I never have to be in an accident, though! :P

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  3. @???PhilO???:-) I donno.I was a bit apprehensive about this story.Felt I couldn't do justice to it.Anyway,thanks a lot.:-)

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  4. @DawnZhang:-) I was also wondering what your comment might be after seeing the name of the heroine.:-) Thanks for your appreciation.

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  5. @Rachikajust good?that means it was crap..

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  6. nooooo! :O
    it was good :D

    PS i've thought bout it and am not gonna compliment you anymore, i mean whats the use you dont believe me even if i do, so i've decided to tell u that its good, but it will be upto you if u believe it or not.

    PPPPPS i really loved it honest. it was so simple yet so good.
    the dependency, the need, again the hidden gender roles, blew me off. :)

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  7. You know..the way the story started..it looked straight out of some hollywood film and as the story progressed..it sweetly meandered towards a emotional touch, bollywood style.

    Its funny, we only realize the shit about life when it gives a painful kick in the ass.

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  8. @RachikaThanks Rachika.Altho,I still kinda feel maybe this story is not so good.

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  9. see i told you am not gonna make u believe now, its upto you sirah, if you think then i wont say anything :)

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  10. @Rahul

    Pretty much. It could be greater, yes.. I recommend you to write volumes on the topics. Posting volumes is better and smarter than writing the whole story in just one single post! Its upto you, after all :)

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  11. This was a fucking masterpiece.
    I have no words.

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  12. @I do, I do.I used to write volumes once.:-( But people used to lose interest in reading stories which spanned multiple parts.So I stopped writing them.Btw,if you want to read a few of those volumes,and if you have some time,you can try out....
    http://randomrahul.blogspot.com/2011/12/love-game-epilogue.html
    or
    http://randomrahul.blogspot.com/2011/10/love-and-other-bugs-part-iii.html
    or
    http://randomrahul.blogspot.com/2011/09/complicatedpart-ix.html
    All these links point to the last parts of my long stories which spanned across multiple chapters.You can find the links to the earlier parts in those parts themselves.Of course,they are long stories.So read them only if you have some time to spare.:-) And if you think my writing is worth all that time and effort on your part.

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  13. This is wonderful writing. Life changing or faith changing events. An accident giving way to two lives...

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  14. @Rahul

    I think you haven't updated your id in the info here.. Do mail me.

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  15. That was a beautiful story i read with an amazing ending. For a while i felt like i was watching some kinda movie and its all happening right in front of me. Dawn's a wonderful name and the story is very heart touching and emotianal.

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  16. A very nice and touching story! romantic indeed..
    Descriptive writing skill and the names (knight and dawn) complement each other! just like the way u ended it..

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