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Mahathi Anand

Thriller


5.0  

Mahathi Anand

Thriller


The Photograph

The Photograph

3 mins 10.4K 3 mins 10.4K

As he entered the door of his house after ages, he realised that it was very much the same. The withered paint and rotten wood hadn't been replaced. The creaking front door hadn't been repaired. The garden, seemed pretty much the same with similar shrubs and flowers. However, the atmosphere was grim. There was no hustle of kids playing around the house as before. There was no sign of his sister around. His parents, seated at the opposite end of the house in the dining area, seemed to be having breakfast, silently. It was calm, except for the whistle of the cooker that was blowing in the kitchen. 

He felt strange and uncomfortable, like he didn't belong here. His parents hardly seemed to notice him. 

Feeling ignored, he decided not to disturb them until they would realise by themselves that he was here. He slowly walked around the living area, keenly observing the changes in the furniture. Most of the arrangement was similar. The diwan was on the right to the door, hugging the wall. It was where his father used to doze off while watching mid day news. The TV was placed in front of the diwan, against the opposite wall. On the left to the door was an old wooden sofa, with a medium sized glass table placed in the front. On the table was an empty ashtray, and a newspaper placed beside it. 

Behind the sofa, attached to the wall was a showcase with four compartments, one above the other. In the first two compartments on the top, mementos and medals that my sister and I earned during our schooldays were placed. 

The bottom two compartments were flooded with photos arranged in the little space that was available. His sister, who was a teenager now, looked more beautiful in the photos than he could ever have imagined. His parents looked really dull in the photos. In some, they looked young and unhappy, and in some recent ones, they looked old and sick. To his dismay, he was missing in all of the pictures. He learned that he had missed an eternity with his family, and felt very guilty about it. 

'Maybe that's why they're ignoring me,' he thought. 

He was almost about to turn away from the showcase when something caught his eye. Behind a particular photo frame, he found an unlaminated photograph of himself. He picked it up, feeling glad that atleast one picture of his found its place among other prized possessions. 

The picture was taken in the garden, in the summer of 2006, when he was twelve years old. He had been playing with his remote controlled car at the time the photo was taken. He vaguely remembered the scene. He had been very reluctant to get clicked, but his father had insisted on it. His irritating mood reflected on the photo, with his face almost droopy. 

Below the photo, there was some text etched in black ink, almost faded.

It read:

15/04/1994- 24/09/2007


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