He holds onto her hand, either out of the fear of losing her or maybe that is what he has seen so often, and this last fleeting gesture of seeking comfort in the nearness of beloved, repeated countless times, is etched in his mind. He doesn’t know how much more time he has and it is impossible not to think of the looming doom upon his head. He looks at her and tries to keep his composure, so as not to hurt her any further and rather calm her down. ‘I want to be your strength, my love’ he thinks and traces his thumb gently over her delicate face.
She lies on the bed, pale, shrunken and like a ghost of the past already. Every breath she takes, make it sound like an effort pulling at the very core of her heart. The only part of her which still feels alive is her eyes. The deep blue of her eyes seems restless, as if a fish after being caught in a net. The very last of her strength is draining slowly and she opens her mouth to whisper some inaudible words.
He comes closer to her and puts his ears near to her mouth. She sighs ever so slightly, so patient even in her last moments. “Take care of Amile and …” she pauses and rests her hand on his head, “gain strength and grow well for the both of us, while….” He couldn’t hear the rest of it because he felt a sensation like an electrical shock crushing his very soul and he slips away from her.
He couldn’t stand the misery and disbelieve her words causes him, and does she not know? “Gain strength?” he sputters and looks at her incredulously, “How could you even ask that of me?”He stands rigid and decides that he can’t face her anymore; it’s too much to ask of any mortal.
He feels angry beyond comprehension and realizes that lava of burning hot fire is seething inside him. Something shifts inside the room, a very imperceptible turn but they both feel it because he hears her pleading for him to come to her and hold her. He doesn’t hesitate for a second and she is in his arms in a swift movement and he can feel strange wetness on his face. He feels silent tremors and is not sure which of them is shaking. “Sing me our song”, she says.
In a scratchy voice barely audible to anyone he starts to sing tonelessly but starts to make his way into the soft melody:
‘A thousand miles seems pretty far
But they’ve got planes and trains and cars
I’d walk to you if I had no other way
Our friends would all make fun of us
and we’ll just laugh along because we know
That none of them have felt this way
Delilah I can promise you
That by the time we get through
The world will never ever be the same
And you’re to blame’
He can see she is smiling that warm loving smile that made him mad the very first time he saw her and he was besotted from the word go. His family thought she was very plain and his friends, who knew the mystery behind her presence in the lands, openly condemned it as illegal and thought that he was a fool for following an ‘emagrati’ (a common word for immigrant in our part) and that they were destined to be star crossed lovers, and nothing more from the start.
He never cared much for her status as an immigrant or considered her plain because he was in love for the first time and whenever she was around he felt a strong magical pull towards her. A long forgotten elaborate poem by Yeats came to his mind whenever she was around and he still remembered the glimmer in her shining eyes the first time he recited it to her:
To Ada, my love:
‘Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Inwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams’.
They had danced all night long and the poem in itself has been a way to ask her to marry him and thus as was the cosmic plan, they eloped within a month of meeting each other, quietly with attendance of few close friends. They never even consider the danger that her illegal immigrant status might pose to their relationship or the terrible circumstances that now inflicted themselves upon them. They were young and naïve and thought that nothing could stand in the way of their eternal love, which obviously was foolish of them and he is amazed at how long they still got to be together without any suspicions from authorities. However, it ended one fateful day and all the others like her, who were considered nothing more than mere filth crowding this sacred land, were suddenly being specially sought after, so that they could be removed. He remembers how for months they felt a tight scrutiny around themselves and felt a paralyzing fear whenever anyone in official looking attire stared at them for a tad too long.
He feels a pressure on his shoulder and it’s Amile. They stare at each other and then he feels her shifting in his arms, fluttering like a bird, to hold her baby. She hugs him tightly and I can see fear and confusion in his eyes.
He feels as if his insides have turned to ice and the very prospect of Amile growing up without Ada is pure heart wrenching to him. Kevin, his brother, enters the room and nod slightly towards him and then says softly that it is time to let go. He opens his mouth but nothing comes out and he feels weak and thinks his legs will not support him to the place of execution. However, he puts up a last brave attempt and moves her bed slowly until they reach the place of execution. He can hear faint screams and sobs, while a strong smell of dying souls emanate from the place. From here on the moments stretching beyond take a dreamy or more like nightmarish quality and he loses count of time and remembers only faintly the dark reaching out and sucking his beloved Ada forever into an abyss, from where no living soul ever escaped.
Samuel can feel a hollow feeling as he comes around and looks at the doctor worriedly. The doctor, however, smiles kindly at him and says that his liposuction procedure has been done safely and he can now live a more fit and happy life.
Samuel had gained a lot of fat over years of eating greasy food and living a stagnant life, leading to a massive weight gain. He tried to lose as much as he could but then the stubborn fat cells in his body refused to budge and a liposuction was suggested. He feels a calm settle over him and a drunken sense of optimism swell inside him with the idea of beginning a new, improved life from right this moment.