After trekking the whole length, Neha finally reached the top of the mountain  and was mesmerized by the magnificent look she has of Andaman islands from Mount Harriet. She felt accomplished and compost after this trekking leaving behind all that was bothering. Spreading her arms in the open air and feeling the breeze that kisses her cheeks, draws a wide smile on her face, that which forgot to visit her ever since Neha landed on Port Blair.

xxxx

In the year 2002, when a shy, fearful girl finally accepted her fate and joined Indian Army. She was a bit happy because army-ship was her all time dream, but her bigger half was scrutinizing her for giving up so early.

Neha was a very brilliant student. Her teachers and friends in the school were all fore sure that she will clear her medicals. But, Neha knew she was never meant to be a doctor. She always saw her as a constructor, an aeronautical engineer. She was very enthusiastic, gathered all material to finally join there, but fate has different tale. Money was the glitch which was not in her control. Finding herself helpless, and understanding her parent’s stand in this, she decided to accept the opportunity she had got in life. She consoled herself saying, not everything is meant for everyone. It was difficult for her to imagine oneself in a profession that is totally contrasting to what she dreamt. 

In a middle class family, chasing ones dream is pretty impossible. Settling down with anything is the first priority because they know jobs are not easy business for them and they don’t have big fat assets to enjoy. They are quite aware of the ground reality that they have to earn to make a living which is a necessity for them. Considering these all things, Neha finally submitted to the family member’s pressing plea and joined Indian Army. 

It was difficult to fight with self and say, I will never see myself in the shoes I always dreamt. Big tears rolled down her cheeks every time she saw herself in those white dresses serving the sick. She was shattered completely. Peace of her mind was gone and she had no choice but to move on. But, how to move on? Brain had stopped to receive because it was not of its taste, but body had to keep moving as it is still alive. Torturous were those days for Neha to fight her own depression and give a new prospective to her ruined life. Lifeless she lived in that place, trying all measures to gather her broken pieces to at least form her name. 

Defense is known for discipline and this discipline became the source of life for Neha. She took time to reassess herself and understand herself before accepting this new identity of her. Seeing herself in these new shoes was definitely not appealing but now she had started liking it because of its goodness. Slowly accepting the truth, helped her to cope and come out of her shattering depression. Now she sees herself an efficient professional, good at her work. She totally transformed her in this new look, and now she has even started dreaming herself with new heights in this new job. She was happy that she finally fathomed a territory that was never her’s. She completed her course, got commissioned and got posted at Andaman and Nicobar area. With much enthusiasm and zeal she took on the charge.

Hawk's Nest, written by the top writers at ArtoonsInn and around the Inn.


Get your copy from the Inn: https://artoonsinn.com/product/hawks-nest

But life had a different perspective for her. Being zealous, intelligent and a bit perfectionist she had to face great many challenges. In her new unit, she was soon assigned with mess secretary’s responsibility. She happily accepted it, and was confident in rendering a good service. A couple of months were quite good, then one day year closure was to be done. There was difficulty in balancing the account. This was the glitch point. Even after fervent efforts of her, the account just didn’t match. Time for final verification was nearing, so another senior official was appointed to help Neha. This senior Amrita instructed Neha to do amendments as directed by her. Unable to resist her senior, she did all illegal amendments. The following day, Neha was supposed to submit her account for verification. 

Neha was not at all happy with what was done. Being good in studies, she was sure there was a way to come out of this problem in accounts. So she wanted to know the way. Being very new to the profession, she never knew how to approach people in such situation. On top of this, she was very innocent and believed everyone is as good as she herself is. But a very new lesson was on the way.

Convinced that what she has done on her mess account’s statement is wrong, and there is a right way, she finally showed all the illegal amendments on the balance sheet to the logistic officer. The arguments were genuine and could not be ignored and was considered an offense towards the senior officer Amrita.

When Amrita was questioned for this she was speechless and had no escape from it. This disgrace on her part got backfired onto Neha. Whole unit considered Neha’s approach as wrong and condemned her and completely segregated her and made her alone. On the other hand, everyone showed sympathy towards Amrita. This was not the end, Amrita’s anger didn’t end here. She was just mad in her malice and would go to any extend to satisfy herself. Everyday in the mess she pointed out Neha’s mistakes as mess secretary, but nothing much happened to Neha. Even more agitated, she finally falsely started associating Neha with every male colleagues she was working with. This was totally pathetic. Neha was determined to professionally enhance herself, but life has totally turned her upside down. 

At this stage of her life, the whole unit viewed her as a loose character person. Neha was totally broken. Even her own batch-mate distrusted her. This was devastating for Neha, and she had no one’s shoulder to cry but to keep on dragging. With every passing moment, life was becoming difficult for her, but she had no choice but keeps going. They all were like hungry lions ready to devour her at any moment or incident and they were lucky enough. One day at her work she forgot to enter one essential entry. For this incidence they associated her with one of her male married colleague saying she has an affair with him. Things were not good and on top of that this blow was hard on her. She felt like giving up. But that was not her character, many more lives were associated with her, a wrong decision of her will ruin all. She was much angry on everyone but she also realized that a wrong move of her’s will devastate the situation. She wanted to blast on them and show them that they were wrong, but she also knew this is not her hour and chose to go quiet. Even after such allegations she uttered no words towards them. An ambitious, aspiring, jolly prankster who loved her life was lost in the malice of evilness and ego clashes. She completely transformed her to a very serious, agitated person. Even her sweet tone was now transformed to a hoarse, robust voice of scolding and command. A girl who was known for her chirpiness is lost to the dusk,  amidst the thick fog of malice and slander. Finding herself all alone and no one to help and with broken trusts, she chose to be quietly observe what is going wrong, and how to stabilize herself. To her quietness, her senior colleagues commented, ‘I don’t like people who do not share their feelings. I am open person and receive every open person. What is troubling you please speak out?’ Neha still chose to be quiet. Her quietness was now eating everyone. With all failed efforts, her senior officer asked her to see the psychologist for help. Tears rolled down her eyes on mention of psychologist. If I was wrong, the one who commented these evils too were sick. The very same people who did everything to destroy image, now label her as a mentally unstable person who needs a psychological help. Why were they not referred to the psychologist? Was her question.

 The chirpy Neha, remained quiet to her allegations. The commanding officer was not at all happy with this, and finally planned a mountaineering trip to Mount Harriet. That was something of her interest and helped her to at least stabilize all the tides flowing within herself. But still her untreated regression kept manifesting as serious agitated person and she failed to understand why she had become like this uncontrolled agitated person.

***

Photp By:  Milada Vigerova

***

This is an entry for Greenhorns-3, #Metamorphosis, an Exclusive Writing event for the Feathers club members of room8 by ArtoonsInn.

Check the event guidelines here: https://artoonsinn.com/metamorphosis-greenhorns-3-writing-event/

Don’t forget to rate the story out of 10 and leave a review.

Thanks for reading.

%d bloggers like this: