Friday, June 24, 2005

Galaxy: The Prodigal's Return

Jayken walked down the corridor, excited to be hearing the voices echoing around the corner. He knew who one of those voices belonged to.

He missed her.

He had missed her dearly all this time.

His heart beats faster in anticipation as he turned the corner, a wide smile plastered on his face.

Then he froze.

Kye.

He was laughing along with her.

And his arms were around her.

Then their eyes met. His laughter faded away, his smile transitioned into a cold smirk. "Hello, Jayken.”

The anger simmering beneath the surface remained so for now as Jayken struggled hard to keep his cool. The memories, the fury, the rage came rolling back, hammering its way through the mists that was a time long ago. He tried to hold all of this back.

And he was rapidly failing, his clenched fists visibly shaking. “What are you doing here?” he growled.

Jo’s face quickly puzzled into confusion. “You guys knew each other?” She looked at Jayken.

Jayken flicked his hardened gaze towards Jo. “You brought him here?”

“Yeah,” came the answer, still unsure of what is going on.

Jayken looked back at Kye, that cold smirk still on his face. “The thought of you and Tristan makes me sick," he started, his voice low. "But the thought of you and him…” he breathed that out slowly, the feeling under his neck getting hotter all the time.

I need to get away from here.

Jayken turned and began to stalk away. Kye called out to him, the smirk completely gone. “Jayken!” When Jayken didn’t stop, he turned to Jo, “I’ll be right back.” He started after him.
Jo tilted her head, her confusion clear for the world to see.

“Jayken!”

“What do you want, Kye?” Jayken hissed, suddenly stopping and swiveling on his right heel at the same time. His body faced the corridor sideways, but his eyes were fixed on Kye.

“Jay, chill man,” said Kye, slowing to a stop. The anger in Jayken's eyes burned him, so he pretended to look downwards as if to size him up. “What’s the matter?”

“What’s the matter?!” The incredulity on Jayken’s tone rose. “You know full well what’s the matter.”

“Jay, I don’t unders…”

“You made me tell your lie,” Jayken's voice lowered to nothing more than a hiss. He clenched his teeth the entire time, tempted to spit out the ground enamel at Kye. “You made me tell your lie, and now Dallas is dead! And for what?” he flailed his arms. “For what?! An empty worldship that’s not even fully operational!”

“You think Dallas died for nothing?” Kye raised his voice, no longer willing to be polite. “He died for you, he died for me, he died for these punks here you call your friends. He died for the war!” He stopped to catch his breath, loudly inhaling and exhaling them. “It was a good sacrifice.”

Kye didn’t see Jayken’s fist as it flew towards the side of his face, catching him straight on the eyebrow. Neither did he truly realise what happened as he was flung, shoulder first, into the opposite wall.

What he did realise, however, was that he was in a lot of pain.

But that was only after he realised that he couldn't see properly as the blood trickled into his left eye.

“HE WAS MY FRIEND!” Jayken roared, loud enough for Jo to reach and cover both her ears. “NOT A LAMB WAITING TO BE SACRIFICED!”

Kye felt the blood as it trickled down his chin. His lower lip was busted open as well. He felt for it with the tips of his fingers, and examined it, before glancing up to Jayken, meeting him squarely in the eye. “Is this how you treat your friends?”

“You just remember you are not my friend.”

Kye sighed. “Well…” he began, trying to piece together the correct train of thought that won’t have Jayken ramming into him again. He gave up, and let the truth find its way. “I’m sorry you feel that way. I wish I didn’t have to lie to you. But I did have to.” Pause. “You wouldn’t have helped my otherwise.”

“And I’ll never help you again,” Jayken responded, his voice full of venom. “You can count on that. Even if you were dying of thirst on the Salikh One, I wouldn’t even spit on you.” And with that, he looked up to Jo for a couple of seconds, before stalking off.

“Jayken,” Kye started, just before Jayken turned the corridor. When he didn’t stop, he raised his voice. “Jayken!” When he still didn’t stop, Kye forgot all about his pain, and became defiant. “That’s right, Jayken. Walk away. Walk away!”

Jayken disappeared around the corridor.

“The GREAT JAYKEN WESTLEY!”

Monday, June 20, 2005

Love is Dead

"The only regret I will have in dying is if it is not for love."

Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Love in the Time of Cholera

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Take One

"Come on man," said Iqbal, his eyes squinting behind the viewfinder of the video camera as he focussed on my face. "Say something."

We are at his house. It is 1am in the morning. I had just finished interviewing his maid for a class presentation tomorrow (typical. The presentation is tomorrow and I do the interview the night before). My shirt is untucked, my hair dishelved, my eyes red and heavy at the end of a long day.

"Something," I smiled.

He looked up from the camera, looking straight at me, as if he's about to smack me for pulling another lame one. I returned the favour, before we both broke into a smile and laughed. It's a routine that never fails. "Come on man, seriously," he said, as he eyed the finder once again. "Say something."

"What do you want me to say?" I moaned, not exactly enjoying being in front of the camera. Somehow I've always enjoyed being behind it; I get incredibly self-concious of myself on camera ("There's so much oil on my face I'm beaming like a freakin' lighthouse!").

The red light came on. "Anything."

"I can't think of anything right now."

He stopped recording. "OK." He pondered that for a couple of seconds. "Imagine that you're saying it to your girlfriend. What would you tell her right now?"

"I don't have a girlfriend."

"You know....OK, just pretend that you have one or something." Pause. "Alright, I'll give you...2 minutes to think of something. I'll even..." motions towards Najyah, his girlfriend, "I'll even turn off the lights. Maybe you can think better like that."

He is persistent. "Alright, I'll do it," I relented, willing to indulge him for a bit.

"OK!" he beamed. He motioned to Najyah again, who flicked off the lights. "I'll turn it back on right before we start recording."

I sat there, engulfed in my thoughts as darkness descends. Though the light is turned off, some of it filtered from the kitchen, now the sole source lighting my eyes. I thought hard. What would I say.

Before I knew it, time was up. "OK," said Iqbal as the lights came back on. That wasn't two minutes. "I'll signal to you the countdown, before I start recording, alright?"

I nodded my understanding.

"Alright," he peeked through the viewfinder once again, before raising his hand and stretched out three fingers on his right hand. "Three," one of the fingers folded. "Two," and so did another. The last one was silent.

The red light came on.

Monday, June 13, 2005

The Chosen One

They say that you may not choose your family, but you may choose your friends.

Though is not untrue, it doesn't tell the whole story.

For sure, I may decide and choose to whom I shall grant the chance to be my friend. At the same time, I cannot grant myself the same to be someone's friend, for just as a man's soul is his alone to keep, so I may not move another's heart to open up and let me in. That choice is theirs and theirs alone to make.

Thus, I thank you, for I am honoured at your decision, at your choice, to call me friend.

To friendship.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Thin Red Line

Where do you cross the line? The line between never forgetting the mistakes that you made and the lessons that you learnt, and not being able to let go?

Is there a difference between the two? Or are they just different ways to explain the same thing? One with good connotations, the other tainted with the bad?

Is there even a line there in the first place?

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Traitor

Dear Turncoat,

How dare you.

How dare you go and do that to me. Despite all of that which I have done for you, you went and you did just that.

I find it difficult to swallow. I have trusted you, put my faith in you, believed in the good of you that shall always prevail.

There must have been times when I feel more letdown, but right now nothing jumps to mind.

Why didn't you do it? WHY?! I ask of you only one thing, ONE THING, and you don't even do that. And it's not even for me! I've never asked for me, only for others, and you don't. Do. Even. THAT.

Until now, I have never doubted your capabilities, but now perhaps therein lies the problem: you are not capable.

You don't do it because you simply can't.

Or perhaps there is simply no good in you.

I hate you.

The question now is...do I do the same to you? Given that you've turned your back on me, should I return the favour and give you the cold shoulder? Like for like, eye for an eye?

I think not. Just like an eye for an eye makes the world blind, so shall my faith, my trust, and my belief in you return to where it was. Time will pass, and my hatred shall die, of that I have no doubt. I will forgive you, for it is within me to do so, even if such faith may ultimately be proven to be misplaced.

But mark my words.

I will never forget this.

Sincerely yours,

Fikri

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

The Dark Ages

Q. What do medieval knights do when they're bored?

A. They send each other chainmail.

courtesy of Eddie G.