ETERNAL PRESENCE Read and rate this story.

“Tauba Tauba, Ruksaar, it’s ok that you work for them…but now you have started following their festivals too.” Farida Bi frowned looking at the plastic Christmas tree in the narrow porch. It was decorated with cheap Chinese lighting and few plastic stars and glitters.

“Biji…have some cake and be happy.”Ruksaar gigglingly teased.

“Ammi, I have packed all the gifts. I can’t wait to see what Carol Baji will say.” Ali, Ruksaar’s eight-year-old son sneaked in. “Will she come?”

“Don’t worry son…she will love this. You have waited long enough to see this.” Ruksaar patted his hair lovingly and left for work. She was Carol’s loyal housekeeper for the past fifteen years.

The D’souza residence wore a deserted look. Forty-year-old, Carol D’souza didn’t prepare any sweets, nor were any invitations sent. A lone Christmas tree stood in the balcony with tiny bulb lighting wrapped around it. No gifts purchased and no cake was baked. Seven months ago, Freddie, her fifteen-year-old son was killed in a freak road mishap. Since then, her husband Jhon would spend hours at Church.

“I will be back in a couple of hours…” Freddie’s last words keep ringing in her ears. He never came back.

“Baji, its Christmas and I don’t want you to stay alone like this. Please come to my place…”Ruksaar fumbled a little.

Hesitantly Carol accompanied her.

Ali gave her the handmade flowers, “Merry Christmas!”

Carol stared deeply into those eyes of Ali. After a pause, she held his face.

“I can see those eyes. The same twinkling ones…Merry Christmas Freddie…Merry Christmas Ali.” Carol wept with contentment.

She had lost her son, but, Ali was gifted with his sight on that fateful day. An early Christmas gift by Freddie. Seven months ago, Carol became Ali’s Santa by signing the organ donation form.

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Categories: xmastoons