TLS – Chapter 7 & 8

Chapter 7

One Twenty-Seven knew the actual meaning of pain. He knew because he has seen all kinds of it, in different forms and in different ways.

He has seen the pain of an old lady who died without her last wish being fulfilled, he saw the pain of the mother who died at childbirth and her despair that she wouldn’t be able to witness her own child growing up, he saw the pain of baby that is born still, the pain of a child who died unexpectedly and he didn’t have enough time to even think about death and after life.

But he had also seen some faces with relief. Relief that they died after enduring so much pain and suffering in their lifetime and they were happy that they left it all behind them and can finally move on.

He had witnessed anger and denial too. The souls who wouldn’t just accept that they were dead yet. These souls mostly chose to not to move on from their life and they wander aimlessly on earth, haunting some places or just observing the life they wish they could get back to.

He looked at the unconscious girl next to him. He never understood girls, he never understood why they took every emotion to their heart and never gave them enough time to heal from it.

Especially Aisha.

Aisha wasn’t much of a speaker but he could read her thoughts easily. She was so scared from herself. He had never seen anybody who would be very insecure about their life even after they had died.

Even though her heart wants to end this suffering, her brain wouldn’t just let her remember what she was, who she was.

The more she fought with herself, the more time she would be wasting and in the end, she would never be able to make her decision.

One twenty-Seven knew everyone had a different meaning of pain and he could never compare one soul’s pain with another but he just wished she would understand that there is nothing she could do fighting against herself. The only way she could move on was accept herself as who she is, without feeling guilty or remorseful about it.

Pain is a part of life, he knew it best but he hated that the souls had submitted their whole life to pain and sufferings and have literally devoted their life for power in expense of others.

He took out her life card again, going through her lifespan, her thoughts and he had marked what he thinks would be the most important days of her life, hoping she would remember how she died.

How she had destroyed her own life.

Chapter 8

Aisha woke up this time on her own, because her head hurt so much that she couldn’t bare it. The pain was very extreme this time.

This man, Ashwin, whoever he was must have caused a lot of pain in her life. He must have had a deep impact on her life that she just wanted to erase him out.

When she tried to remember him, her head would hurt more. It was like someone was hitting her with a hammer on top of her head and her heart always felt heavy. Tears would automatically spring out of her eyes and she would feel breathless.

She hated this feeling. She felt hopeless and alone. She felt cold too and she started shivering.

“you will feel cold” one twenty-seven told her.

She looked at him, she forgot that he was there with her.

“why?” she asked him as she hugged herself.

“the more a soul spends time in the real world wandering around, the colder you will feel. Take it like you don’t belong here and the world is trying its best to remind you that you don’t” he said with a small smile.

She frowned, “aren’t you feeling cold?” she asked.

“no not really, I mean I work for the soul society, going through the different worlds is kind of my job…” he said with that optimistic smile.

She observed him, he was too optimistic for someone who is dead. But at the same time, she was also grateful. What one twenty-seven was doing, for all those souls, it can’t be easy. But it’s like he was born to do this, he was good at his job and that smile of his always made her feel warm.

“look at your feet” he said, distracting her from her thoughts.

She did and she gasped.

Her bare feet were blue. Like icy cold blue. She wiggled her legs immediately trying to get it off but nothing happened. She touched her feet but she couldn’t feel anything.

“it’s been sixteen hours; your soul is rotting. By the end of our forty-eight hours your soul will rot completely and you won’t be able to enter the soul society. You will become one of those lost souls who wander aimlessly with nowhere to go. That blue will spread as the time goes by, that’s why we can’t waste any time…”  he told her.

She looked at her fingers and saw that her nails were also blue.

“but… but you said it was a choice if you wanted to be a lost soul… it was a choice if we want to move on or not…” she asked him.

“yes, but you cannot take your own sweet time, can you?” he said as he looked at the watch in his hand.

It was a peculiar watch.  it had all the numbers multiplied by two.

The hour clock was on sixteen and the minute hand was moving much slower than expected.

“this watch shows hours instead of time…” he said as he shoved it to her face which caught her off guard and she fell to the ground.

He laughed and picked her up.

“now let’s go and find out who this Ashwin is shall we? Time is ticking!” he said.

She sighed and took a deep long breath and nodded at him.

And he just gave one of those annoying optimist smiles back to her.

-Bhargavi Ravi

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