The Rain That Never Came

The sweet-smelling dust of a scorching May evening settled in front of Daya’s house. The blistering sun had dipped down beneath the horizon, the salmon sky sporting a canopy of faint grey clouds which never rained. As the darkness spread its veil over the land, the clouds seemed to be devoured into the night, replaced by a sprinkle of stars. The clouds brought with them, a little spark of hope- a hope that led farmers like Daya to believe that it would rain that night. When it didn’t, they felt their hearts wrenched out till it shed the last drop of blood. This type of hope was dangerous, for it brought them happy dreams and later pushed them into the dungeons of delusion.

 That evening was no different.

 Daya sat in front of his house, on top of the weak bamboo fence that had cost him a small fortune.

When his old father had passed away, the land in front of their dingy hut had been passed on to him. With high hopes and brimming dreams, he had taken out his broken bicycle with the bent wheel frame and leather-less seat and rode to the marketplace where he had brought five fences to cover either side of his land.

 On his way back from the marketplace, he had stopped at the moneylender Govind ji’s house and asked him for a little bit of money to buy the seeds and the fertilizers. When the scrawny, greedy man with a bald head had hesitated, Daya had told him about the piece of fertile land he had inherited and how it would reap the gold. With eyes on the little land, the moneylender had given some money to Daya.

 It was strange how things had suddenly started favouring him. He had money. He had the land. He had the spirits. And he had a bundle of hopes that he was going to make it big. Perhaps, they might appoint him as a member of the Farmer’s Association in their little town of Kaman. For a man who had spent almost half of his life doing odd jobs on another person’s land, even six feet of earth meant a lot to him.

 That very evening, the rains had come lashing down on the little village, quenching the thirst of the parched soil. The rain had drenched the flamboyant trees and their leaves had turned a shade brighter. Little saplings were awoken from their slumber and they greeted the silver sheets of rain as it crashed deafeningly on the thatched roof of Daya’s hut. In a matter of few minutes, the sky had gone from an eloquent blue to an ominous shade of gravel grey.

 Daya and his wife had sat in a corner of their little hut, escaping the dripping droplets of rain. As occasional flashes of lightning lit up the dark sky, Daya had felt a uncontainable joy at the pit of his heart. Oh, how he would plant the radishes and carrots and potatoes in this little land! Oh, how generous were the lords to bring them a spell of showers in early summer! It certainly meant something good, didn’t it? Daya’s poor human heart exploited his hopes with richer thoughts.

 Daya had tilled his land with viral enthusiasm, singing songs in merry stupor and buying his wife a brocaded silk saree from the market. When his wife had complained, he had asked her not to worry for they were going to be rich! Such were his hopes that it drove him into a frenzy.

 Each night he had gone to sleep, smelling the rain that lingered in the air and the canopy of stars in the desert night sky.

 However, only the smell of rain had lingered. It never came down in a glorious downpour. It never kissed his land and never brought it back to life. It doused off all his dreams, zoning them out into oblivion.

 How he had waited for the rain! How he had waited for his hopes to come back!

 Two dry months.

 And it hadn’t rained.

 The last traces of summer wind waltzed past him, creeping into his lonely house where his pale wife lay, bathed in the glorious light of the evening that trickled in through the little windows. The same saree, that  Daya had given her months ago, was wrapped around her in a careless fashion, rough knots of her unwashed, dark hair drowning into the creases of the fabric.

 The sound of a little bird rose and fell with the wind, the wispy clouds clearing from the sky to make way for the stars.

 The chilly desert air had taken its toll, but it did nothing to the restless, thirsty throats of the couple who hadn’t eaten for a week. The land in front of their house had cracked open. The little saplings that Daya had planted had withered away, leaving no trace behind.

 A faint light from the lantern flickered inside his house and smelling the scent of the burnt wick and the smoked glass, Daya turned around to see the same, obliterated by the rapidly darkening night. The darkness of the moment devoured his sanity, transforming him into a madman.

 Everything had started chalking his doom.

 When he had visited the mukhiya the other day, he had waved Daya off. At a time when drought had taken over the land, there was very little anyone could do for anybody.

 The greedy, heartless moneylender had come to his house, demanding him to return the money. Poor Daya could only give him the brass utensils and a pair of bronze bangles that belonged to his wife. Although the man had his eyes set on the piece of land, he left, knowing that the land wouldn’t be of any use as the drought had set in.

 There was nothing left in the house. Only two pitchers of clear water stayed in a desolate corner of the house, staring at the agony of the helpless couple.

 Daya jumped off the fence and started making his way inside his little abode. The tatters, he wore were unwashed, and covered with freckles of dirt and his bony chest glistened as the low light of the lantern hit him. His wife sat leaning against the mud wall, her hand on her head, wondering if they were suffering because of some sin they had committed in their previous lives.

Oh, the heartbreaking explanations we resort to!

 The things that had seemed to be going so well had instantly stopped, driving their ripened dreams into an unfathomable dead-end. Life was a brute, wasn’t it? And so was the restless human heart that held on to the withering thread of hope, thinking that one day or the other, radiance shall come through the pain.

 Daya staggered down beside his wife, crawling up to the bed and leaning against it. Staring at the faint darkness that was interrupted by the light from the night sky, he let out a hollow laugh.

 “It will rain!” he cried in feverish excitement. “We will grow everything on our land! We will be rich! Everyone will look up to us!”

 A slight sob escaped his wife’s lips.

 On a dull, summer night, when the moon was high up in the sky, a blissful cry erupted from somewhere, the breeze carrying its echoes into forgettable corners of the land.

 From nowhere, the air became thick with moisture, the rain-laden breeze calling out to the people of the land. A clammy haze of rain spread across the land, hiding the moon and the stars somewhere behind their drapes.

 Tiny drops of rain splattered across the unpaved paths, clearing out the sand and trickling in between the cracks. A few drops trickled into Daya’s house through the thatched roof and landed on their limp bodies. If only they had held on to that hope for a little more.

 The next morning, all the people of the land knew was that, the drought had driven yet another farmer to his death. No one sympathized. They blamed it on fate and they blamed it the sins the poor couple had probably committed in their previous lives. No one blamed the rain. No one blamed the drought. For them, it had become an everyday phenomenon, waking up each day to hear how a couple of farmers had given up. They stared at their abject poverty and prayed it didn’t happen to them.

 It rained for the next few days as well.

 If only Daya was alive to see the same. If only…

The BEST Things About Wattpad – #3 – The People Out There (Third Edition)

So, here I am back with an excerpt from an exciting interview with Wattpad author @DarkEmeraldGem.

Recently, I had the wonderful opportunity to have a talk with this very talented author who has been on Wattpad for almost two years now. So, if you need any sort of advice about Wattpad, you know who to look out for.

When I contacted her first for the interview, she had been listening “Perfect” by Hedley and trying to “conquer a deadly disease called writer’s block.”

Excerpts from the interview-

akan_great16.128.33180

Me – Tell us a few things about yourself? You can also tell us about your hair colour, if you really want to!

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

She – My name is Nikki. I’m 21 years old, and live in Ireland. I’m about 90% Irish and 10% Italian – my great-grandfather came from an Italian family. There’s a possibility I might even have some Scottish ancestry, I’m not too sure. I have dyed brown hair and blue eyes, and I have glasses.

akan_great16.128.33180

Why did you join Wattpad? Had you always been looking for a site to share your work with a wider audience or you stumbled upon this site for reading free books?

 DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

I joined Wattpad about two years ago when I was getting a bit tired of fanfiction.net. I needed an outlet to share my writing with, and a simple google search led me here. It was the most interesting out of all the writing websites I’d looked at before then, and I loved the community aspect of it.

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What is your favourite pastime? Let’s put it this way, what is one thing that people will always find you doing, when you’re free?

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

This is probably going to sound like a cliché answer, but I’ll say it anyway. I love to write. It is my entire life. I can always be found either typing on the computer or my phone, and when I’m not writing, I’m planning future chapters. I also really love to make videos and trailers on my youtube account.

akan_great16.128.33180

What is the craziest thought that has ever crossed your mind? (Maybe the craziest explanation to some Science phenomenon?)

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

If I told you, I’d have to kill you. No, but seriously, I have a lot of crazy thoughts. A lot. And that’s all you’re going to get. I’m a mystery, but then again, aren’t we all?

akan_great16.128.33180

Ever read a scene from a story book and wished you were in the same setting? If yes, kindly share with us what that scene was and from which book?

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

Honestly? No. I don’t really find myself wishing I could be a part of any book. That’s probably because the books I tend to read are all thrillers and murder mysteries – not the kind of settings I’d like to find myself in.

akan_great16.128.33180

From where do you get your inspiration from writing your stories?

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

I take inspiration from a lot of things. My current story is a fan fiction based on Khaled Hosseini’s novel, The Kite Runner. It centres on my Original Character, Saria, who is the younger sister of the novel’s antagonist. With this story, I aim to change the perspective of people regarding mental disorders such as psychopathy. My main character is a mentally unstable young girl who has psychopathic tendencies and lacks remorse for her actions. But at the same time, she’s not a monster. She is able to feel compassion for both her brother and a select few people. Her ultimate goal is to create the perfect life and perfect world for her loved ones. I got inspiration for this story because I think a lot of people need to stop viewing the world in black and white. A lot of the time, we judge psychopaths as being simply evil monsters. However, this is not the case and we need to look at it from the other perspective. My story challenges people to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, and to try to understand why they are this way.

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Twelve years from now, where do you see yourself?

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

 I hope to be a book editor. I really want to help other writers to improve their work and work with them to create something great.

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What’s your craziest wish?(Becoming NY’s best seller? Flying?)

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

I want to travel around the US and Australia. I have never been to either of these places but I really hope I can see them at least once. I want to go to Disney World and Universal Studios Orlando.

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Tell us a bit about how your life is? The typical life of an average character in a story? The ultra cliché character’s life?

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

 My life is, for the most part, average. I’m currently on a year-long hiatus from college, so I have a lot of free time on my hands that I usually spend either on Wattpad or browsing the internet. I also spend a lot of time reading, and love to sit down with a good book, whether online or in paper.

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What, according to you, is the most overused plot on Wattpad? The-bad-boy-likes-me or I-live-with-fifty-handsome-boys or I-love-my-brother’s-best-friend? Do you think that writers these days are heavily looking at the market status before coming up with a story?

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

 I think One Direction fan fiction are the most common type of story found here. I spend a lot of time on the fan fiction club and there seems to be a new thread regarding One Direction stories popping up every day. A lot of stories seem to be a bit cliché and poorly written. It can be a bit frustrating for those of us who genuinely care about what we write and try to make it better. Now, I don’t mean to say that cliché plots are a bad thing. I think people should write whatever they feel comfortable with. If someone likes writing a bad boy story, that’s fine. I just want to see effort put into it.

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Do you believe that thirteen is an unlucky number?

DarkEmeraldGem.128.524686

No. I make my own luck.

Her novel Tainted Perfection can be found by clicking on the cover.

taintedStay tuned for more interviews and book reviews!