Its winter, the days pass so fast that you cannot even notice when the day ended and dusk started. You come out of your daily work just to know that the day has already turned itself into night, the sun has waved goodbye till tomorrow morning and the dark sky has already appeared. And all of a sudden, all your excitement of getting out of your work place vanishes.
It was around 8 o’clock and I was at baneshwor today. I got myself stuck in some important work that I couldn’t keep aside. I just ran towards the main road to get a micro. It was already dark and very hard to find a public vehicle at that time. I stood there for about 15 minutes. But, no it was too late for that.
“Seems like I have to walk or take a lift,” I whispered within myself. Walking would be an awful thing to do at that time.
You are tired of your hectic schedule and later have to walk to home. How ridiculous would that be?
“Let’s take a lift,” I made a verdict choosing the best solution for that moment.
There was bountiful number of bikes on the road. It wasn’t the problem, but the problem arose when must of the bikes were already packed and even the vacant ones won’t stop for you.v
Every bike would appear closer to me with its headlight focusing on my eyes. I could figure out nothing. It was difficult to know if the backseat was vacant or packed. Like throwing stones in the darkness, I stopped one by one and ask where they are going. Most of them mentioned the opposite direction to mine. And someone was so rude that they won’t stop pretending they didn’t notice me. May God be graceful to them.
Later, a bike stopped and I asked, “Where are you going Dai? Can I take lift?”
That guy, covered with full black leather jacket, mask over his mouth, healthy and strong by the appearance replied positively to me.
“Lagankhel,” he said.
I was like ‘Thank god’ for that second of my life.
I hurriedly replied to him, “Can you drop me at jawalakhel? Please Dai.”
Then after a few minutes, I was on the backseat of a bike being handled by a complete stranger while the day had completely turned into night. It was dark and things couldn’t be seen vividly. From back, I could see nothing of that guy besides his huge back and black helmet. When I tried to have a glance, only I could see was his fist monitoring the gear by the left one and accelerating by another. They were quite large with rings on the middle and fore finger. I could infer that he wasn’t just a normal guy.
Suddenly he bent himself towards me and asked, “Are you in hurry Bhai? If not we’ll have to go through patan.”
I immediately answered, “No, no problem. I’m in no hurry.” As there were none in my room to scold me if I become late which is a kind of freedom when you stay in rent.
“I will just have to get a package from my friend and then we’ll leave.” He further explained the reason.
My heart got a bit warned by that. I started thinking some negative aspects of that lift. What if he takes me somewhere else? What if he kidnaps or robs me? What if he harms me? It’s dark and none will notice. My heart suffered a bit of fear, which I couldn’t respond for.
The bike was stopped suddenly. I wondered what was going on. Is he going to do any of the things I just thought? I was scared.
“Wait a second Bhai. I need to make a call.” He told me. He took out the phone from his jeans and called someone.
“Yes, I’m coming via patan. Stay there, I’ll be there within few minutes.” He commanded someone through the phone lines.
My innocent heart thought that he called to his friend from whom he was getting the package. But then, the other side of my heart doubted again on that guy. What if he is really doing something bad?
But, I could do nothing. I just stayed quiet at backseat with my scared heart. The nearer the patan was, the more argument there was arising between the two sides of my heart. I couldn’t control them either. I was just waiting for the time when I’ll have to get off from that bike and walk home.
We parted the company of the main highway at the junction of pulchowk campus and headed towards patan dhoka. He led me towards mangalbazar from there. The road was very narrow and silent, darkness all around, not a single person walking and only a few vehicles were coming across the way. I got kind of nervous getting myself into such kind of dubious situation. I started regretting about that lift I took.
“I could have walked”, I screamed without a sound.
A few hundred meters ahead of us, I saw two guys standing and we were riding towards them. I thought they were the people with the package he was talking about. But, they were in a mum place where not even a dog was barking. My fear geared up, I was going numb.
He stopped the bike. I confirmed they were the guys waiting for him but I could see no package with them. That accelerated my doubt but still, I pretended like I was calmed down.
“Hey, come over here.” One of them asked me. Now, that scared the hell out of me. My heart was trying to escape my body through the chest. However, I made my way to him.
“Take out all the money you have.” he ordered me in a very rough and heavy tone.
“What? What’s going on here?” I acted like a naïve. Though, the thing I was thinking about was happening right in front of my eyes with me.
“Shut up and do as we are saying else it’ll cost you more than that.” another guy standing there berated at me.
“I don’t have anything. Please, let me go.” I thought my childish words would melt them. But,that was never going to happen.
“I said do as we say.” The one who provided me lift screamed as he slapped me. That same hand which I was noticing while he was accelerating the bike now had a strike one my cheeks. A few minutes ago they were being victim of the cold breeze and now those heavy hands.
I silently took out my wallet and gave them the amount I had.
“Now, may I leave?” I asked in gloomy voice.
“Leave boy. If you tell anyone about this, you’re dead.” One of them warned me and opened my way to leave from there.
I could report to none at that time about the incident. Neither there were anyone walking nor I had that courage to complain. I just walked and somehow found out the way to get to the main highway. Till then it was already 9 o’clock.
I ran towards my room wondering how cruel can people be.
By the time we are living with scarcity everywhere, some people are taking advantage of it. Those bastards should rot in hell.