The city lights
Spine chilling winters of Delhi have its own charm. The small puffs of breath rises and joins the freezing cold air outside. Woolen jackets, monkey caps and scarf were a common sight. Teeth chatter and rubbing of hands to create little heat and placing it on the cheeks for the little warmth are the little cheats that helps you save yourself from freezing.
On 27th December, the freezing night was not cold enough for Alyna. Tequila filled her veins and warmed her blood to such an extent that cold stood beaten. Her father, who was a doctor by profession, was away for the night as his friend’s wife had a sudden stroke attack.
Lyn, as she was called by her near ones, lost her mother when she was 15 years old. She had a huge friends circle and was enjoying her life to the fullest. On her 18th birthday, she was gifted a Skoda by her father, as gesture of his love. Now, her ride had become her second home. She had turned 19 couple of months before which was also celebrated like a big fat wedding.
This night wouldn’t be the same for Lyn. After dropping her friends at their places, she was gunning the pedal to reach home. It was a bit late and though the roads were the usual and known, fog made it difficult for her to judge the speed breakers and potholes. Alcohol had made her response very slow too. As she enters a narrow lane, the fog cover thickens and she can hardly see 15 meters ahead. Without a second thought, she hammers the pedal and lifts off seeing a speed breaker, after which was an intersection. She again goes flat out on the accelerator pedal, but suddenly she sees a tall figure. Way close she was and she swerves to the right. Unfortunately that is the same direction the pedestrian chooses to move and she hits the pedestrian and her car comes to halt as the front bumper and tires hit the footpath.
The road was empty as the dark sky. Her heart doesn’t allow her to leave. She gets out swiftly and the man is lying by the side. There is loss of blood from an injury to his forehead and he is seen holding his hand, and his face reveals his misery. She helps him into the car and takes him to her place.
Settling him on to her bed, she storms her way into the kitchen and bangs open the refrigerator. Emptying the whole of ice tray makes an ice bag with a towel. She places that on his forehead in a bid to stop his bleeding, which she eventually succeeds. He has inflicted an injury on his left arm which was clear, but by now he seemed to have become half unconscious due to the pain. She goes to her father’s room and finds a small can of spray, which is a pain killer. She sprays it in circles on his left arm and hopes he doesn’t wake up till her father shows up.
The next day, she calls her father up and urges him to return as soon as possible. By the time, he makes it the sun had shown up a bit. Alyna, with a sunken voice and buried face, explains it to all her father.
Dr. Alexander rushes to see the boy. He was young, not more than 20 years of age. Fair toned and average built with slight stubble. The boy was clearly in pain and left arm was the reason. The doctor introduces himself and places his left arm on his experienced palm. Much to his relief, the boy just had a muscle sprain from his initial observations. Rest would heal this. Nothing like he feared. He ties a crepe bandage to the lads arm and tells him to feel free and take rest. After this was taken care of, he rushes to his beloved daughter and screams at the top of his voice for her irresponsible behavior. He gets back the keys of her car. He also demands an answer for not taking the boy to the hospital first thing in the morning. Lyn just stood aside, listening to her father and repenting her mistakes in the form of tears.
Three days passed and the young man seemed to have recovered a lot. All day long, the guy would sit at their place while Lyn would be in college and doctor busy with his routine. After the 4th day, Alexander got a bit bothered as the guy was a total stranger and they had never asked him about his whereabouts. That night he decided he would talk to the lad and if possible help him reach his parents.
That night, at the dinner table Dr. Alexander puts forth the question on his identity. He gets updated that the boy is Akeel Jagpal, a native of Jagraon village far in Punjab. He was a trainee recruit in the Indian Army. He mentions that his friends were supposed to meet him at New Delhi, before which the accident had happened.
That night Akeel calls his reporting officer to let him know about his condition. He was given a period of 4 days to make it to the camp, with a proper medical certificate, which wasn’t a problem when Dr. Alexander was around. The next day, Lyn takes him out and shows him the city and she spends time with him for the next 2 days to make up for what she had done. The 3rd day morning sees Akeel packing up and leaving for the training camps.
(To be continued)