Fiction: The impermanence of everything

The door yanked open. A ruffle of wind in burst almost pushed the skinny body jerking upward and backward, the balance tilted just in time by the semi brown classic shoes, hand glued to the wall. The legs became numb and a burning sensation rippled through the skin as cold wave seeped through. Mike lost his way and wandered aimlessly like the night's vagabond, emptying a bottle of Vodka quenching his thirst and warming the body in the frozen winter. Alcohol washed all the pains and troubles of a broken marriage.

A floor littered with fags end, crumpled papers, alcohol bottle whose stench wafted in the dimly lit room and thick dust which would make anyone ran away. He liked it that way, the obnoxious smell of everything, the tiny bed lying in a corner and black and white TV in this garbage called a room. No one to make love to after the wife of ten years slapped the door and a lawsuit on him for his alcoholic ways or the apple of his eyes, the only two-year-old daughter adopting a new father to disown her legitimately, natural one.

The saga continued uninterruptedly like the monsoon in the city for days, weeks and months, cheap alcohol, cigarette, drugs and a new girl every night. The doting father has turned into a pleasure seeker, destroying every moment of his life every moment till the monsoon washed the entire building that crumbled and collapsed. Like every resident of the old building, there was no sign of Mark who the world told swam in blood coalesced into the angry water to meet his end. He became history. The heavy rain washed his pain and trauma which no alcohol, fags or women could do.

On the banks of Vanarasi, sat a white man adorned with wooden amulets, flower garlands and ring as the conch blew for the evening arati lighting up the old city. An old friend could recognize the fresh face behind the unkempt beard and dressed in saffron robe who whispered into his ear, "Dead to the world, how can you fool me, Sadhu Mark?" The Sadhu remain unaffected and gently touched the shoulder of the stranger, "You may be the friend to a certain Mark who died six months ago in the heavy rain. Nothing is permanent, my son and belongings are just an illusion, sex, love, life, and property. Bondage is the biggest lie. Go ahead for the arati."

The Sadhu went into his world of trance and no protest from an old chum would perturb him from his task. He was a changed man with a new identity, sprinkling blessings on travelers and visitors. The saffron-clad religious man got up, trotted his naked feet and took a dip in the Ganga.

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