Vijay was never a fast driver, but today was different. That old Maruti screeched and splashed across the watery streets. It didn’t normally rain that much in his city, but nothing had been normal about this time. The streetlights whizzed passed him, as the fortunately empty streets made way for his car. He wanted to call the hospital and ask them to start the operation, but he couldn’t, he cursed himself for not having one of those fancy mobiles everyone else was buying.
Even as he drove, he could hear those faint sirens. Getting nearer, every time he slowed down. He was not sure if it was his mind was playing a trick, or if he was really getting followed. “I should not be caught, I cannot be caught, I will not be caught”, Vijay thought to himself.
Someone was crossing the street, he would have slowed down, but for the damned sirens behind him. he swerved to go from behind him, but the pedestrian just stopped in the middle probably frozen scared. Vijay hit him from the left side of the bumper, the pedestrian ricochet of the collision and landed up by the pavement with a huge splash. Vijay’s car got a bit out of control and collided with a nearby street light. He hit his head against the windshield and felt something warm running down his forehead, it was blood. A little dazed, for a moment he thought about getting out and checking up on his 2nd victim. That’s when Aarti came back to him, and so did the sirens, those damned sirens in this infernal rain. He had to go, there was no time.
“A little more time, and it will be over.”, he said to himself as he entered the hospital. Drenched in rain, blood running down his forehead, carrying a ridiculously thick pillow case overflowing with money he ran across the halls upto the doctor’s room. He wasn’t feeling too well himself, things were getting murkier and swirling around. He just had to hand over the money and be done with it. He barraged into the doctor’s room, and threw the money across the table, shouting (at least that’s what he thought), “Operate now”. The doctor looked at him wild eyed, and then at the bag full of money. How did he? He hadn’t expected him to return. Vijay stood there, panting hand on the table, waiting for the doctor to start right awawy, but it wasn’t so simple.
“What’s taking you so long? Start now.”, Vijay shouted. The doctor hung his head down, and said something about asking him to sit down. Vijay had no time for formality though, he wasn’t sure how long he could stay conscious. He the doctor again, almost wishing he hadn’t thrown away his gun, the blood was in his eyes now. That’s when he heard the doctor say “You are too late”. He felt as if he had just woken up from a trance. The doctor kept on saying something like he didn’t expect Vijay to come back, but he had already alienated that sound. He didn’t want to hear anything now, just the rain outside, and the fact that he was, “TOO LATE”.
Vijay was on his knees right in the middle of the compound, he did not know how he had reached there. He had tried walking out of the doctor’s cabin and just fell down when he couldn’t walk anymore. People walked by him, taking a moment to stare at him but not offering help (they knew better to offer a shoulder to a grieving stranger). Vijay still couldn’t believe he had failed, after all that blood, he had lost, he was beaten.
Someone from behind him shouted “POLICE”, but it didn’t matter. Vijay didn’t want to run anymore, he wanted this to end. If only he still had the gun. He could hear the rain outside loud and chaotic. He knew that this rain will never stop, crying…forever.
This the final chapter of the noir short stroy The Rain. This a 4 part short story that I had written while I was in school.You can find the other parts here:
Chapter 1: Tragedy
Chapter 2: Cold
Chapter 3: Gun