Another Earth

[A short story]

Where am I? Aah! My head hurts—
Whoa! Watch out. What! How am I on the road?!
What was I doing?
Why’s all blank?!
Wait, do not panic. Let’s count. What is the last thing I remember?
Well, I probably fell asleep. Yes! I came home, I was tired and then, then I think I passed out. Where is everybody? What is this place?
What’s happening?!
Let’s move— Why does it feel I have been here before?! Oh I know, there’s the sign, “Regnarts lane”. Which means two blocks to the rail gate. Keep walking M—

Huh— What!!!!!
There used to be a rail gate here, where is it?
The roads are awfully empty today—
There’s someone, finally!
Hi! Excuse me! What happened to the rail road here?
What? But… Probably my mistake—
Could you— show me the way to Edoba bakery? Seems I took the wrong lane—
What do you mean you’ve never heard of it? Everyone here knows it. Ok, sorry—

What is wrong? It is all of a sudden like a whole other dimension! Except it is the same place—
Wait! There used to be that Namon statue, where is it?
And the old lamp post? The post box? The toffy store? OK, Ninth street, the bank? The bookstore? I have been coming here ever since!
They all had been here for last twenty four years, now what? All vanished?
Something is terribly wrong here or with my memory!
Am I dreaming? Is it again a lucid dream or something?
What’s the time? Oh yes— my phone! Yes that’s it— it should be in my pocket. There it is. Quarter to six! Isn’t it too bright for the time— light usually goes down by now—
Whatever, but what am I doing here and why? Was I abducted? No. Can’t remember any such thing. But how?!

Man! What am I, mad? I have my phone. Let’s call mamma, I guess it’ll be clear. But…
If she too does not know— and— I am really lost?! Again! I am detouring— Will see, let’s call first— then figure out. Does it have signal? Now’s not the time, please be there, please. Yes! there is—
Oh thank god! Please pick up please…

Hello! Maa? Wh… What’s up? Where are you?
Whoa! Calm down—
Why are you yelling at me?
What do you mean past two days?
So you are telling me that you have not heard from me since Saturday?! (But— we talked, just before…)
Yes I am quite alright— The matter of fact is, I am
I am coming home. Yes I am…
Don’t worry. I’ll be there soon—

Except I don’t know my way back HOME…

Cover and footer images: Snapshots taken from Another Earth, 2011 movie.

©Moulina Bhattacharya