Friday, August 27, 2010

A CONDOLENCE CALL

A CONDOLENCE CALL
 
Flash Fiction
 
By
 
VIKRAM KARVE
 
 
From my Creative Writing Archives: A Very Short Story - Flash Fiction 

The moment I returned they all asked me anxiously, “What happened? What happened? You found the place?”
 
“Yes,” I said, “I found the house and paid my condolences to the bereaved wife.”
 
Suddenly they all started speaking together, “His wife… widowed so young…poor thing…so unlucky…such a pity…so sad…tell us…tell us…how has she taken it… what was she doing?”
 
“She was in bed,” I said.
 
“In bed?” they all exclaimed simultaneously, and then there was a cacophony of remarks: “Oh My God…how sad…what a terrible way to lose her husband…she must be so devastated that she still hasn’t recovered from the sudden shock…how cruel fate is …she’s so young…she must be totally shattered…poor thing…it’s been three months now and she’s still bedridden with grief…”
 
“She’s not bedridden with grief,” I said.
 
“What?” they all said in chorus, and then the voices started off again, “Was it an accident…fracture…heart attack…stroke…depression…due to the unbearable sorrow…poor thing…lying ill in bed for three months…she must have taken it very badly…you should have gone immediately…helped her out…shared her agony…but how could you…you didn’t even know…you were abroad…you were not even here…but you immediately rushed to mitigate her distress the moment you came to know… ”
 
“Please, please,” I interrupted loudly raising my finger, “She’s not ill, she’s not had an accident, heart attack, stroke, nothing, she’s not in distress, she’s not taken it badly at all; in fact she has taken it rather well. She wasn’t alone in bed when I suddenly reached her house early in the morning – she was in bed with someone else.”
 
“What? Impossible…tell us…what happened…tell us…”
 
“What’s there to tell?” I said, “I reached Delhi in the evening and went to the address I had with me, but she’s shifted to Gurgaon, bought a swanky apartment in a posh township…”
 
“Must be with the insurance money…”
 
“Maybe,” I continued, “By the time I found her place it was quite late, but I rang the doorbell. She opened the door, dressed in a flimsy nightie. I told her who I was. She invited me in, offered me a drink, and poured one for herself. We sat down on the sofa. I didn’t see any signs of sorrow or grief on her face – in fact she seemed quite happy, pleasantly high, when suddenly a man’s voice called her out from inside the bedroom, ‘hey sweetie pie, what are you doing out there? Come fast, I’m getting cold’ and she said, ‘someone’s come’ and he shouted, ‘just tell him to vamoose’ so I gulped down my drink, bid her good bye and beat it; and caught the first flight back to Mumbai.”
 
“Bloody hell, she must have been two-timing her husband!”
 
“Maybe!”
 
“Maybe her husband knew all about it!”
 
“Maybe!”
 
“Maybe he didn’t fall off the balcony accidentally – he jumped off!”
 
“Maybe!”
 
“Or maybe they killed him!”
 
“Maybe!”
 

A CONDOLENCE CALL
[Flash Fiction]
by
VIKRAM KARVE
 
VIKRAM KARVE 
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2010
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work.  

VIKRAM KARVE educated at IIT Delhi, ITBHU and The Lawrence School Lovedale, is an Electronics and Communications Engineer by profession, a Human Resource Manager and Trainer by occupation, a Teacher by vocation, a Creative Writer by inclination and a Foodie by passion. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles in magazines and journals for many years before the advent of blogging. His delicious foodie blogs have been compiled in a book "Appetite for a Stroll". Vikram lives in Pune with his family and pet Doberman girl Sherry, with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts. 

Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog - http://vikramkarve.sulekha.com
Academic Journal Vikram Karve – http://karvediat.blogspot.com
Professional Profile of Vikram Karve - http://www.linkedin.com/in/karve 
 

Post a Comment