‘We were sitting by the lake. There was a serene wind blowing through the lake and we were sitting close by each other for some warmth.  No one had said a word for an eternity now. I had one hand around her waist which I clasped with the other to bring her closer. I rested my chin on her shoulder. Her eyes were still fixated on a spot in the lake; she seemed to be in deep thought. Her perfume made my breath cede to its trance. I kissed her neck, my nose gently prodding her chin. She turned, looked at me and leaned in. It wasn’t submission nor was it out of custom but something I could not comprehend. She retreated a little, slowly opening her eyes exuding confusion. I couldn’t blame her but I couldn’t resist either…

couple at the lake 151887

I loved the cosiness of a bed in the winters. Her head was resting on my chest. She was fiddling with my fingers. “Why do you have to do it?”

“To feel”

“Feel what?”


“Do you really think I paint that well?”

“You painted that yesterday (pointing to the painting) and anyway it is your content that matters”

“What if my priority is your approval?”

“Well then we’d have a paradox on our hands” ‘

I woke up with a startle. I had never discussed my plan, to any extent. I knew it must have been a dream. All the research on the realms of dreams finally paid off. I had slept on the chair in the tree house.

Though my happiness was short lived. She was sitting in front of me with a kitchen knife. “Who are you?” she shouted.

“I am Aadrian Peralta” I replied looking straight and being as calm as possible.

“Why did you get me here?”

I did not reply. I knew there were many more questions to follow.

“Did you follow me? How did you know I’d paint or even find this place? Where am I?”

I replied after a narrow pause, “It is strange how one can lose track of days without a calendar. It is Wednesday today” I smiled. It hit her now that there was a day missing. We had met on Saturday.

The Devil’s Breath was a fine discovery. The ease and the use, all were perfect for me- I needed a day for the set up hence I did so while she was sleeping for hours on the boat all through Sunday. The paint, canvas, brushes and off course the food, had to be arranged.

I knew she’d find the place, they always do. I didn’t think she’d settle this fast though. Chaos if given the time turns unidirectional, a direction that’s most stable and the initial impulse is what defines it. Civilisation tends to find outlets to chaos. For example we are enthralled by the idea of an apocalypse alleviating us from all evil. We don’t realise that we came after a similar apocalypse and that same start is what defined us. There is never a guarantee of the flow but I take my chances. The house was a mess but it was meant to be for that mess conjured beauty.

I got up from the chair, with her knife still pointing at me. She wouldn’t have killed me. She just wanted to leave and I was in no mood to deny that.

I gave her a key and told her- “Walk about eight kilometers from here in the east direction and you shall find a car. It’s a fifteen minute drive from the highway.  Say Auf Wiedersehen while you cross the borders. Your passport and everything you need shall be there“.

She was very confused and had a million questions. She just asked,“Why did you do it? Did you rape me?“

“I shall be gone out of the country before anyone can trace me. You were not touched.” She somehow believed me; for reasons I never understood; I hope I do someday.

Read Chapter 5: Ascent


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