The heavy eyed man was leaning against the big tree. If you looked at his eyes you would be easily convinced that he must be sleepy. But he was not. His eyes were just like this. They were like the eyes of someone who had three bottles of vodka last night or who had no sleep for consecutive four days. Leaning against the tree he was looking at the severed wrist in his right hand that he had been carrying for the last two days. It was stuck with his hand as if someone had welded both of the palms. There was no sign on the severed wrist by which one could guess that it was chopped off two days ago and there was no sign on the severed wrist that the owner of it died five days back. He lay down on the ground, put the hand with the wrist on his chest and closed his eyes. This is the only thing to be done. Closing the eyes meant ease, as no energy was left in him. It took a lot of effort to open the eyes which he could not give. So he kept the eyes closed for hours after hours. A dog came from the east side and had a glimpse of the severed hand. The dog decided to take over the wrist. It neared to him, tried to have a slight taste touching the severed part with the tip of its tongue and lost all the interest towards the wrist. Then it took its own way to the west. I looked at the other people lying on the sand. All of them were not lying, some were still seated. They had enough energy left to keep themselves seated. All of them except the heavy eyed man. Because they did not have a severed wrist attached with their hand, some people were digging a very large hole nearby. I, again, looked at the wrist.
I, for the first time, saw the man at the sea shore. A number of people of different ages were waiting there. They were to go somewhere. He was standing alone with a jute bag in his hand. When I was wondering aimlessly, my eyes were stuck upon him. I thought I had seen him before. But I had not actually. It was the second time he was running away from his own land. First time, he killed an old man with a machete. But this time he did not do anything. He was charged with a triple murder case instead of someone else. The money was so needed that he did not have the time to think it over. They said everything would be normal in a few days. During those days he should have remained covert. Actually they arranged everything. He even did not know where he was going before his arrival on the shore. Everything was clean and clear to him after he arrived. He knew what was going to happen next and he didn’t feel sorry for that. He felt sorry for the other people there. He heard the people talking about their upcoming shiny future. He saw a father having assurance from his son to take care of himself.
He, with the people on the shore, waited for a day. Before the dawn of the next day, two men came, one had an abnormally long chin and the other was wearing funny shades at night time. The man with the funny shades told them to get on a boat. I followed and secured a place closer to him. A woman in a pale green saree sat beside him. I wondered if there was any company with the woman. But it seemed she was alone. She was the only woman without anybody with her; other women there had someone with them. The heavy eyed man looked at the woman for once and moved a little to give the woman space. The woman moved too towards the same direction and looked at the man for a moment. She was feeling uncomfortable and uneasy. Some men were looking at her with rapacious eyes. The man understood the situation and gave a glance to the woman. She was thinking whether she could depend on him or not. After a while she moved a little towards the man to make everyone convinced that she was with him. Most of the men lost interest all on a sudden, but they did not move their eyes from her.
Another day passed. The boat was running along with time. For once, the man with the funny shades came and gave away some old bread. Everyone ate voraciously except the heavy eyed man. He stood up and walked to the only cabin of the boat. The woman followed him keeping a little distance. The man with the long chin and the man wearing the funny shades were in the cabin. They conversed about something and the heavy eyed man returned to his former place. He looked and tried to find out something. But there was only water. He lied down and went to sleep. The woman sat near the man and tried to be as close as she could to him. The sun was performing his regular duty. No one was sure how many days passed. The people were hungry and weak. A few of them tried to revolt and they wanted to ask their whereabouts. It did not work. Moreover, they stopped supplying water. One night, while most of the people were sleeping, I heard a sharp but tiny sound. The heavy eyed man was on the woman with the pale green saree. I thought he was forcing her, but her hands holding his back tightly proved me wrong.
Two days later condition worsened. Two persons died within one hour. No one shed a drop of tear for them. The man with the long chin and the man with the funny shades came and told them to throw the bodies into the sea. The woman in the pale green saree was at the end of her life. Whole day the man kept his hand clutched with her hand. Late in the night I saw the death-bearer holding her another hand, blabbering some inaudible words. He took her soul with his right hand. It was a pale yellow color. When he was leaving, he looked at me and nodded. I moved my head a little downward and then shifted my look to the woman. I clearly saw the last second of her life. She looked at the man and moved her lips a little. The man tried to perceive her words but in vain. She died a very simple and trivial death except having the reflection of the moon in her two eyes. Next day the man with the long chin and the man with the funny shades told them to throw the body into the sea, but no one moved because they did not have enough energy to lift the body. So they decided to throw the body themselves. Then the problem arose. They could not part the attached hands of the man and the woman. They tried again and again. The heavy eyed man also tried, but there was no outcome of their repeated attempt. At last they left it. They knew that the heavy eyed man was going to die soon and then they would dump two bodies together.
One fine morning, the boat reached in another sea shore. The man with the long chin and the man with the funny shades told them to get down onto the sea shore. Everyone got down except the heavy eyed man. He could not walk since his right hand was attached with the right hand of a corpse. They talked over the issue to solve it but could not find any solution. Two more men came; one of them had an authoritative voice marking him as the leader of their team. He told the man with the funny shades something and left the boat. The man with the funny shades came with a chopper and chopped off the attached wrist of the woman. The heavy eyed man stared at the severed wrist with exploding eyes. He, too, did this type of jobs many times. But he could not endure this incident. There was a strong feeling of nausea and lack of energy in him. The man with the funny shades made him walk out of the boat. He, with other people, was taken to an old temple near the shore with a big truck. They were given water to drink and a little food. In the evening some people came by motor vehicles. Two men and a woman looked into them and then had a long conversation with the leader. After their departure, the leader got furious over the man with the long chin and the man with the funny shades. They were blaming each other. After a while the leader left the place. When he returned, he had a few men with him having digging tools in their hand. The heavy eyed man and other people were taken to the shore again. The heavy eyed man walked to a big tree, he sat under the tree and leaned against the tree with his back.
The men were done with their digging. The man with the long chin asked the leader if they were going wait for everyone’s death. The leader responded in the negative because they had no time to waste for those half dead and almost dead people. They started to put the bodies into the hole. The men carrying the bodies to the hole were fed up with the heavy eyed man as he was a little bit far from the hole. With minds full of curse they went to the heavy eyed man but they did not have to carry him. He stood up with his own effort and walked to the hole. While walking, he was thinking what the woman tried to tell him before her death. Before stepping into the hole he tried to have a look over something but he could not as the man with the funny shades pushed him into it. He remembered the woman’s lips moving and came to the conclusion that she wanted to know his name. He was muttering something. I stepped into the hole, went closer to him and tried to listen what he was muttering. It was, “Does it matter? No, it does not matter. Yes… Really, it does not matter”. I wanted to see the color of the heavy eyed man’s soul. I looked for the death-bearer. He was supposed to be there.
About the Author
Mahmud Masud, Bangladeshi. Book worm and story lover.