I SEE NO GOD HERE
‘Attic, my favourite place on earth. It’s next only to the open skies where my heart dwells’, thought Bradley. This was his routine reflection before going to bed. Recently, after a great fight with mom, he had shifted his base from otherwise well-appointed bedroom on the ground floor of their spacious villa, to this attic. Mom, was right. It was a crammed space for a tall and messy young lad. But for him, it was a window just next to the bed, that had stolen his heart! After umpteen promises of not keeping it up late, putting things back at their places and being punctual with meal times, he was allowed reluctantly to use the attic!
Few days passed by without a single word being uttered from both the sides. Silence of the space, imagined Bradley, wouldn’t be anything other than this! So peaceful, so unassuming indeed. But his joy was short-lived. One night, over dinner, Suzan, his mom, erupted into sobs. She had just said her prayers and he just had kept mum, as usual. His face always grimaced at the hint of prayers. Where was He in the hour of need, he questioned; as always to no one in particular.
Pulling back himself from the most haunting images of life, he witnessed a deluge. Suzan was inconsolable. Bradley quickly got up from his seat and pulled a chair next to her. All this while, he did a mental check and recheck of just one thing… have I erred on any of my duties today? As he offered a handkerchief to the moist eyes and a shoulder to the petite figure, he took a mental note that the grays of her hair had occupied the prominence now.
I must pamper her with a paid visit to the beautician, he promised himself. After all, he was the sole witness of her untiring efforts and hardships of bringing him up for almost one and half decade. Putting the shattered pieces of life together had taken a heavy toll on her. But it was her indomitable spirit that had helped them ride through safely.
There’s was family of three, headed by a robotics engineer Robert and ably supported by a librarian. It was reduced to a lonely mother-son duo by a quirky twist of fate. A freak accident at the work place had taken away Robert from the lives of Suzan and Bradley. Bradley missed the bed time stories by Robert. Robert was a great story-teller. He would spin the stories around the scientific base and make the young mind believe in the magic of science.
For Robert, everything in the universe that existed, was purely a matter of science. Opposite was the thinking of Suzan. For her everything existed out of love of Almighty and was a creation of the Master, the supreme power, God! Like father, like son. Bradley had inherited the same genes! And after the sad demise of the Robert and subsequent perils that they witnessed, made Bradley question the existence of God!
“I am just little emotional, Bradley. I don’t wish to lose you. Please reconsider your decision to travel to the space. I know, you have earned this opportunity solely on your intelligence. Winning the Space contest from thousands of aspirants in the country was no mean feat! I am so very proud of that. But that doesn’t stop me from thinking of loosing you. What if… God forbid…”
Before she could finish her sentence, Bradley got up from his seat. “There is no God. Mom please stop that. You used to fool me when I was a kid. “Up there in the sky lives God” was your pet peeve. “He is protecting us. He took your father away and made him a star.” That’s all a lie Mom…a lie to console a grieving child. I am going up there in the space, just to re affirm only one thing… I see no God here!” It’s just a vast space”. Saying this, with his giant strides, this time with thumping sound, he walked away.
Suzan was shocked and remained motionless for a coupe of minutes. Loud bang of the closing attic door brought her back to the senses. She wiped her tears. Folding her hands and bowing her head, once again, she prayed… She prayed the hardest this time!
A red light in the arms of Bradley’s space suit flashed. Probably it was flashing for a long while. Bradley tried hard to look around. He was in space, away from his space station, he recollected. It was a routine spacewalk. There was a sudden and unexpected blow of a meteor shower. And he had lost the connect with his space station. The blow had left him unconscious for a while. All this time he was drifting in his memories! He was gasping for the air.
There was indeed nothing in the space, just a calm blue-black vastness. There was no God either. He was right. He wished to tell this to his mom. She must believe in it this time, he had thought. But for that he should reach the space station he realised. The chord connecting him to the space station dock was served. He was drifting away from it.
It was a struggle of life and death. Bradley was struggling hard to find a way to clinch something. But the low-level of oxygen was playing a culprit. He was not able to keep his eyes open. Long over the distance, he could see the blue-green earth, fading into the blur. As his eye lid went down for the last time, he saw and felt a warm blue-green black palm stretching towards him. As he raised his arm to reach the heavenly help, he felt the warmth and smelt a known scent.
“Is that you Mom?”, asked a feeble voice… “Yes Bradley, its me, Suzan”. The familiar sound encouraged Bradley to open his eyes with great efforts. And there sat Suzan, holding Bradley’s palm as gently and reassuringly as she could! It took Bradley several months to come out of the cosmic accident. On the ill-fated day, Bradley had gone out of the space station to note down certain observations. The meteor shower had hit them unexpectedly. His ties with the space station were served. A massive emergency rescue operation had pulled him back to the safety of the space station.
Today, when Bradley was watching the night skies again, from his attic, he was not sure…was he right in saying “I see no God here?”
—–By MocktailMommy Anagha