Metamorphose: Second Runner-Up Piece by Shrijani Manna

“The streets were deserted. Where was everyone? Where had they all gone?”
Her eerie whisper had pierced the cold darkness that enveloped us. The nuances of her petite and pale face, her platinum locks dancing before her widened eyes, sculpted a visage of anguish in my mind.

As I watch the stars flicker like fireflies in the moonless sky, that sculpture—which for so long lay cloaked in white linen—stands stark naked among those shimmering specks. Her eyes hold the same disbanded illusion, sheathed by a thin film of passivity.

“She’s sick, darling,” they had said with a pitiful smile. “The doctors have to take her away for her to get better.”
In my six-year-old mind, the coarse implication of their words held no immediate consequence. Now, ten years later, I can feel the consequences through the potency of her blood flowing through me.
They weren’t wrong when they’d said, “She’s a star now. She’ll watch over you every day from up there.” Trapped in the night’s cold arms again, I can feel her gaze, like a mighty storm washing over me. The same intrusive dubiousness grapples me as it did back then.
I close my eyes, and all my remnant days with her—the visits, watching her slip into the cracks of time with each manic episode—flash before me. And I find myself falling, as she did. I look around for a way to escape, but all I see are deserted streets, with everyone gone.


Written by Shrijani Manna for Metamorphose

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