Kaptain's Blog

The writings and musings of The Kaptain

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Through The Godless Hours (46)

It was at a little before two in the afternoon that Ramani finally found herself sitting on the idling bus, fidgeting as she awaited its departure from the terminus. Despite her best efforts she had narrowly missed the one o’clock service, forcing her to spend a frustrating three-quarters of an hour purposelessly fingering the bric-a-brac offered by the busy stalls of a nearby bazaar. Attractive in a loose headscarf of her favourite – lucky – colour, the mother of one harboured mixed emotions as she impatiently tapped on the ledge running along the base of the window through which she gazed. Naturally excited at the prospect of seeing her only son’s face again, she was also a little worried that he might not take kindly to the surprise her unexpected appearance would deliver. Don’t be silly! Of course he’ll be happy to see you, she corrected herself, as her mood swung once again.

But Ramani still carried with her the feeling of dread that remained lying in the pit of her stomach, like a heavy pudding. A feeling that had continued to grow in its intensity ever since she first felt it a couple of hours ago. Deep down, she remained convinced that she would be confronting something terrible upon her arrival in the capital. Something she could not quite imagine, but which made her shiver, nonetheless. Closing her eyes, she tried to relax. At least I have acted, she mused, as a stray ray of sunlight painted her eyelids red. There’s nothing more I can do right now, except get off this bus at the other end and go straight to him. She settled herself, eyes still closed, as she heard the hiss of the bus’s pneumatic doors. The engine was revved before the driver slipped the clutch and accelerated unevenly away from the bus stand. If the rain were to ease off, as it now seemed to promise, they would reach the big city in something over four hours.

Poor Ramani had every right to feel apprehensive. For events outside Sate Blora had already unfolded, were in process even as she had frantically dialled the number of the public telephone from the old bakelite set in the home of her friendly neighbour. And had she known the circumstances that would be greeting her upon her arrival in Jakarta, she would now be climbing up the walls in frustration that there was no quicker way of getting there.

posted by Kirk at 10:30 pm  

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