The burn in the soul 

a short story by Ahmet Ünal Çam submitted on 02/03/2012 (drama, romance)



The young lady checked her make-up with her small mirror. “Quite well” she said. She was sure of her beauty. Though, she was sure she was beautiful from the young men always around her. She was one that enjoyed her life, she lived at ease. When her mobile rang, she was trying to decide where to go out for the night. She looked at the calling number; it was her mum on the phone. - Hello…darling, how are you? - I’m fine mum, what happened? - I have a surprise for you. - A surprise? - Yes. A very old friend of mine has come to our city…. - Oh.. who is it? - It’s a surprise of who it is. But I want you to pick her up. - Me? - Yes, she knows the park near to your Office. I told her to go to the park and meet with you. I want you to go to the park as well and pick her up. - Mum, I don’t like things like this. Can’t you do it yourself? - Dear, I have got things to do for an hour or two. Moreover, she knows you since your infant hood. I’m sure she’ll be very happy to see you. - Gosh… alright alright... How am I going to recognize her? -I told her what you wore today. Some of the banks at the park are like picnic tables. Sit at the first one from the entry from the side of the cinema. She’s going to find you when she comes. -Ok mum ok… - I’m not asking for something from you every day. I haven’t even sent you to pay for any bill since you’ve graduated from university and especially since you’ve been employed. - Alright, I said its ok… - Just look at the way you say its ok… never mind, alright then, ask for permission and leave, don’t get her waiting. I’ll be back as soon as I finish what I have to do. **** **** **** **** **** **** **** **** **** **** The young lady got permission and left the office. After a short walk she arrived at the park. She realized that she had never had a seat this park before. She used to go to expensive places with her friends. She found the first table from the entry as her mother had told her and sat on the empty side. There was a villager woman and a small girl sitting at the table on the other side. She felt ashamed of having to sit with them at the same place. “I hope mum’s friend will arrive quickly and I won’t have to sit with them” she thought. The peasant women called to her in a bashful manner; - Sorry dear, may I ask something? The lady having called her as dear made her feel frustrated. - What is it? Are you going to ask for an address..! The woman lowered her voice when she came up like that; - No, I was going to ask for something else. - You type of people either ask for an address or ask for money. She didn’t even mind about the redness on the woman’s face. Meanwhile she saw a middle aged lady dresses well in luxury. “Finally” she thought. She got up to greet the lady but the lady just walked by her. She sat back down with a sigh. She noticed a tear drop from the women’s eye. When the woman turned her face the other way around she saw the scorch on her face as well. The little girl smiled in a different manner; - See, you can easily cry and you have an ugly scorch on your face. Why are you still here, just sit at a corner and open a handkerchief and then start crying.. But don’t even think about ripping something off from me, alright? The woman couldn’t bear any longer; - You keep calling me clueless, whatever did you see? Did you see me humiliating a woman I don’t even know next to her granddaughter! - Oh.. Look who’s talking? -Alright dear, I’ve understood. You probably have graduated from university and probably have learned a lot of things but you’ve failed from being humane. I wanted my granddaughter to take education as well, but I’ve just given up since I saw you. The old lady got the little girl and left the table while another well dressed woman came and sat down. The young lady wanted to reply the old woman but she forgot about it when she saw the other lady. The old woman prevented the little girl from looking back with her hand. **** **** **** **** **** **** **** **** **** **** Sometime later the girl’s mother came to the park next to her. - Hello dear, so where’s aunt Zeynep? - No one has come yet. A lady was here sitting next to me. But she was just someone who sat to listen to us. - Really!... but I told every detail about your clothes today, I just can’t understand why she couldn’t find you. There had to be a little girl with her. The young lady stopped for a moment. -A little girl? - Yes - Mum! We’re rich and sophisticated. Your friend is also rich and sophisticated, isn’t she? - She’s not clueless, but not rich either. - Don’t you dare tell me she’s a peasant woman! - What else can be said for a peasant woman..! - Oh… ok, you’re just sending me to greet such villagers. - Dear, we owe that woman. We couldn’t give her anything at the time for what we owe and she said “A day will come, and I’ll come to you for anything I need” and now the day has come. -What does she want? - She wants us to get her granddaughter educated. Your dad’s on the way now, he’s going to pick us up and take us to the school to enroll her. - Mum, what can you ever owe her, I just can’t understand? The mother couldn’t bear the anger in her daughter’s voice; - We were in the village when you were a baby. - So… - I had told you years ago, our house was burnt and so we had sold all the cattle, the horses and whatever we had and moved from the village. -Yes, I remember. - But I didn’t tell you a detail about that fire, just because you may break up with us because we had left you at home alone. - But you are going to tell now… - Your father wasn’t at home and I had gone to fill water for us. Then started a wind, whatever you call it, it started blowing in the opposite way, up and down and so.. You were asleep in your cradle while the wind struck the chimney in the opposite way and led the ashes fall back into the house. The ashes jumped over to the wood in the house and started the fire. When I noticed the smoke and ran back, the house was already burning. I was still going to enter the house, though it seemed as if it was about to collapse when I saw Aunt Zeynep holding you in her arms and getting out of the house. I just can’t forget that scene, when I got you into my arms she was crying in screams… -Why? - She burnt her right side while trying to save you. You’ll see when she arrives; she has a scorch on her right side of her face. She experienced a very big pain. But don’t cry so much. I never thought it would hurt you so much. Come on dear, but look you’re just ruining your make up. Oh! Your dad is here too. But Aunt Zeynep still hasn’t found us yet… Ahmet Ünal ÇAM

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