Friday, October 24, 2008

Strange Adventure

An original short story of mine which won a story writing competition in a weekly paper when I was still in school :)

Strange Adventure

May Day…May Day! My hands froze on the controls as the plane lost altitude quickly. The pilot sat slumped beside me with a single hijacker’s bullet lodged in his forehead. 79 frightened passenger’s lives depended upon me…I had never flown an aircraft before! I wiped my brow, whispered a silent prayer and stared ahead at the onrushing mountain peaks…To think this had all started with a harmless family vacation.
It happened like this. My parents and I were on a flight to Srinagar when to my tremendous delight I found that I had won the pre-flight lucky draw, which enabled me to sit up front with the pilot. Halfway through the journey we realized that something was wrong. Two of the passengers had stood up with guns and were holding us hostage! They were hijackers! One of them opened the door to the cockpit and shot the pilot dead before he could call for help. They probably planned to fly the plane themselves, but before they could move a few passengers leaped up as of one accord and pinned them down. In the struggle that followed, accompanied with much wild shooting, we found that one of the hijackers had shot himself dead, while the other was stunned. In all the commotion the door to the cockpit had somehow jammed shut and refused to yield even to the combined effort of all the passengers and myself. I also found that a hijacker’s bullet had landed on the controls, making it go haywire with the result that we were completely off-course, rapidly losing height and about to crash on the huge mountain peaks ahead. So here I was, alone, and with certain death before me.
Averting my eyes from the dreadful sight of the slumped up figure of the pilot, blood oozing from his temples, I looked desperately at the controls and finally spied a big, inviting red button which I had a sneaking suspicion was not there before. Not knowing what else to do I pressed it hard. At first I thought nothing happened, then suddenly I felt the plane lurch and the entire bottom of the plane dropped below us! The passengers and I were hurtling through the air towards the icy peaks below!
We landed however on something surprisingly soft. I kept my eyes tightly shut, firmly believing that I had died and was now wherever it was that we went after death. I could hear strange musical voices above me, which confirmed my belief.
Do you think she is all right?”, I heard one voice say.
Yes, of course she is, they are all all right. My magic never fails”, another voice seemed to reply.
Two of them are dead though
They were dead from before”, this time the tone sounded offended ,“Anyway I have healed them”.
Are they supposed to see us?”.
Of course not! Once their plane is fixed they will be sent back and never know what happened, no one is awake to see us.

At this, I opened my eyes just a crack, and saw, to my wonder, tiny creatures who looked like they were carved from ice. They were shiny and cold with figures vaguely resembling humans. I quickly shut my eyes again, hoping it was all a dream, and I must have drifted off then for when I next opened my eyes I was back in the plane and the pilot, whom I myself had seen dead just a moment ago, was smiling cheerfully at me and saying, “Dozed off, did you? No matter, we have almost reached”. I looked back. All the passengers were in their seats, including the two hijackers, who looked a bit confused. Everything seemed normal. I wondered, was it all a dream? After all it was just too bizarre to be true. Still, it had all seemed so real. I was still wondering when we landed at the airport and went to claim our luggage. It was then that I saw it, a small icicle on my shoulder. And then I knew for sure. Something had happened out there. Something only I remembered.
Pocketing the icicle and smiling slightly, I took one long look at the distant and unexplored regions of the mountains where I had had that bizarre adventure and where those creatures probably lived, undiscovered and unexploited by humans, and then I quietly followed my family out of the airport.

1 comment:

Rumbling Ranter said...

Wow. Good piece of writing!