With just a blanket on his skinny body, the old man started the fight with increasing chilling of the night. His hopeless night has ignited one last hope for him, that today he will get what he wanted.
Light glared from some lamp post at a distance, he didn’t know how far it was. He had lost his fairly good powers of sight and calculation. But he always believed his instincts and turned left from the junction. That must be south. Yes, SOUTH! That’s what she had told him. Yes, south was the direction.
He started walking with more energy. Chilling weather was unable to stop this old man. A joy of a child was filled in his body. He was shivering, his teeth were chattering but the feeling of meeting her erased every trouble of the journey. He was ready to face everything now.
His loneliness has taken over his life. She made her lonely. She was her life, she was her wife. She has told her in day dream that she will meet her.
Last night she asked him to get out of the care home and walk to the south. She said she would be waiting under a cherry tree. Though reasonable thinking was alien for his age, he asked her how to know south and how to locate cherry tree in the dark night.
And all what she told was this – “You will see, however dark be the night, a big cherry tree full of pink blossoms; I will be waiting there for you, in a white gown!..” She then paused.
“Take whatever direction you like, but ultimately you move to the south! Be calm, this time it will work! See you there…”
That was too much for this man. He gained what he wanted, a hope.
Running away from the care home was not that tough as he had imagined. The cold night and the drinks made the guards forget the world. That bloody bottle of poison really worked this time.
He walked, and then he ran. But he didn’t find any cherry tree. He doubted that he took the wrong path.
He became mad, he walked to all sides; which was south? Which was north? Which was east? Which was west?
He felt the world around him spinning.
A call from the back frightened him but he turned and looked.
He saw her in the white gown, standing under the pink cherry tree, with both arms stretched towards him. Tears were now ready to flow down her cheeks.
He sighed in great relief, for he has reached his final destination.
He looked at her, she looked beautiful as always.
He hugged her and cried like a baby. With every drop of tear he tried to flow down the worries and trouble and loneliness he felt in these years without her………………
The night patrol team found an old man lying dead under the cherry tree.
His hands were tightly clasping a stone.