Underneath the Shadows

That afternoon in the month of May in 1950 in Sirohi village of Central India, was as bright and fierce as the reinvigorating blood that started flowing through the veins of this young democratic, republic country.

16-year old Mohan was excited to leave for the capital city in a few days. His mother was emotional and adamant not to send her oldest son at first, but, after long persuasions by his uncle from paternal side, the family agreed.

While returning from his father’s field, the thirst, heat and his aching feet begged him to take some rest on the way. Shadow of an abundant Mango tree caught Mohan’s eyes. He walked up to the tree and sat quietly, resting his back against its large trunk.

Occasional puffs of air caused by the heavy, leafy branches, when rested on the sweat of his forehead, pulled him into the aliveness of the nature around him.

Not far away, he saw buffaloes standing still, in a pond with their bodies immersed in water and their heads simply looking in one direction, peacefully.
It reminded him of his childhood days when he took dips and played with his friends not bothered by the scorching sun, until, his mother came shouting for him when it was time to return home.

Remembering her calling, Mohan was concerned about his mother’s behaviour from last some days. He had never seen her so emotional and uncertain at the same time. He felt that his mother was constantly afraid of losing him to the life of the city.

He never intended to, but had started becoming annoyed of such responses.
A tensed look came across his face thinking about the morning of his departure and his mother.

After a while.

His thought was interrupted by the buzzing of small honey bees. He looked up the tree and saw a rising unrest in a beehive. Mohan stood up quickly but continued to gaze at the disturbance.
He saw a little bee struggling in a web and that a spider was making all the efforts to make the killing.

A few bees hovered from the hive to the web in an attempt to stop, but the spider refused to bow down.

A moment later, the entire bee colony attacked and covered the spider.

The battle forced Mohan to move away from the tree.
Hoping that the little bee was rescued and with an awe of such heroic act by the army, he turned and began to walk on his way home.

On reaching the neighbourhood, Mohan saw his mother drawing water from a well.

As soon as he saw her, Mohan realised that the sudden rush of distress in her mother, was simply for the reason of her love, for him. She wanted to protect him with all the weapons she had, to her reach, even if they were, neither desirable nor explainable.

He smiled thoughtfully.

Mohan walked to his mother.

And calmly stood next to her with a deep and unforgettable affection as she wiped her eyes off the sadness and fears…


———The End———


16 thoughts on “Underneath the Shadows”

  1. A real short story that is able to tell so much, and have an affect on the reader, that is the mark of a skilled writer. I am as always impressed,

    Liked by 1 person

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