Drake dodged bullets flying past as he engaged the enemy in mortal combat, his platoon mate was shooting rapidly, his face contorted in war rage as they moved into enemy territory, by the end of the night, his friend laid beside him dead. They counted their losses, evacuated the wounded and retreated back to camp.
Lying down on his bunk bed, Drake’s exhaustion and the death of his friend temporarily took a backstage as he gazed admiringly at the picture of his bride of twelve months. She was his saving grace, the few letters she wrote to him gladden his heart but it wasn’t the same like seeing her in the flesh. Her picture was also his only source of comfort and in a way, he would survive his stint at the war front only because her thoughts gave him strength.
The war dragged on longer than expected and after twenty-four months, he came back home unexpectedly. The cab driver dropped him in front of his house and he walked slowly to the front door, his heart beating with excitement. But he held it all together and knocked the door, there was no response but he saw someone peeping through the window.
Finally after waiting for about ten minutes which seemed like ten years, Anna opened the door by an inch, Drake’s broad smile was met with stony silence.
”Hello darling,” Drake crooked out in what he thought was a normal voice, but his wife said nothing and she also had problems looking up.
Drake’s intuition was to push her back into the house and then he saw the protruding tummy. It didn’t take him long before he made mental calculations to know that he was not the father, his bag dropped to the ground with a thud and he felt faint.
And then he heard the unmistakable voice of his friend, who couldn’t be drafted to the war because of an illness.
”Honey who was that?” Jonas called out from the room and they both heard footsteps, Anna’s eyes was still drawing maps on the ground beside her husband.
Jonas pulled the door back to show his rumpled pyjamas and hairy legs. Drake doesn’t need a soothsayer to tell him what has gone on while he was away fighting for his country.
Jonas retreated back to the safety of the living room while Anna finally found her voice,
”I am sorry,” she said and wanted to touch him.
Drake’s dream was over, his visions for a happy family crashed like a pack of dominoes at his feet. Ever so slowly, he picked up his bag and turned away from his home…
If you were Drake, what would you do?
Most of you must know by now that I am a story-teller and I guess it runs in my genes. My mum would keep you enraptured for hours on end about tales and rib cracking jokes, my dad would look on smiling just adding titbits to the tales.
And I have one good news, the second edition of my novel, ”The Feet Of Darkness” would be out soon and I would love the candid opinions of my friends.