This is the continuation of chapter-Darkness. In order to escape from the rogue cloud, Izalla travels to her father's house. But something awaits her there...





Izalla ran. She ran as fast as she could and moments later, she found herself panting in the middle of the now-empty street. The clouds were unleashing their fury and people around, were scrambling, taking shelter under the stalls. Izalla turned back-the guard was nowhere to be seen now.

Izalla couldn’t believe that her father did it again. Although he was a busy man, but Izalla wanted him to be there at every important stage of her life.

Maybe a Japanese client has come and dad is helping in the translation, she consoled herself. Maybe he didn’t forget. He is just awfully occupied with other important things.

Splash! A large spray lashed on her face coming from a car speeding away made her realize that the middle of this street was not a good place to stand and contemplate.

She quickly moved away and halted in front of a bus stop. Luckily, there was bus which was towards the apartment where her father stayed. It was a gamble but Izalla, in an impulse, got onto to the ride in order to escape from the clouds’ anger. She managed to grab a seat in the crowded bus. Securing her things, she looked out of the window. The fluffy, fleecy, cottony cloud which served as a distraction in the train seemed to have gone rogue. It was dark and pouring down furiously into the city.

Izalla’s heart was thumping loudly and she felt that any moment it might come out of her throat.

The bus slowly made way through the avenues. Its roof served as a shelter from the rain. Izalla looked out until she was far away from the rogue cloud. Some distance away from it, she managed to catch a glimpse of it and the next moment, it was gone. The sun was making its way out too.

Izalla turned away from the window & the commuters pushing each other reminded her of the confinement. She was wet, nervous but not scared of the closed space at all for she had other things to worry about-had other fears to face.

The bus slowed down and stopped in front of a gigantic apartment. Izalla got down and looked at the sky. It was clear now and no cloud was to be seen. She clutched her belongings tightly and walked to the end of the street and stopped in front of a comparatively small building.

A flight of stairs later, she paused in front of a door numbered-113. She looked around- it was silent. She remembered that her father would keep a bunch of keys under the foot rug. And old habits did die hard. The key was there and Izalla found a way to rush inside.

The small, two-bedroom flat looked the same as it did six years ago. Except for the documents lying here and there, the place looked tidy enough.

Dad is going to throw a tantrum if he finds out what I did, she thought. He knew I was running away but…about the clouds.

Izalla shuddered at this thought.

She cleaned up and changed her clothes. She prepared a cup of tea for herself and sat down looking at the house.

It had a special place in her heart for she had spent most of her time here before her parents divorced. She could visualize her younger self running around with a toy in her hand while her mother chased her with a bowl of ‘veggies’ in her hand. All the days, when her father and she would go out fishing by the lake under the clear, blue sky, seemed to be coming back to her. Oh! How badly she wanted to relive those days!

Cool breeze flew in from the balcony. Izalla felt safe surrounded by the protective walls of the flat. It was no confinement, but it seemed sound and secure to her. The weather was balmy, the pleasant evening and the light-tasting tea made Izalla drowsy. Soon, she was exploring the land of dreams.

It was eleven o’clock when Izalla was awakened by the heavy but the clear footsteps.

Must be dad, she thought. He must’ve brought a guest too. I hope it’s not mum or my teacher.

There was knock on the door. Izalla immediately opened the door hoping to welcome her father but for the second time, she was disappointed. There were two grim-looking men outside. They were in black suits accompanied by black ties.

“Izalla Emilia Somerset?” One of them asked.

“How did know…” Izalla was astonished.

“Are you Izalla Somerset?” interrupted the other man rudely.

“Yes.” She was trying to be cautious.

“Ma’am, you need to come with us. No questions asked. You’ll be briefed on the way” said the first man.

“What…” Izalla was about open her mouth but a sharp sting on her arm rendered her silent.

The world seemed to moving in a psychedelic manner. Izalla swooned and fell back. Her eyes were struggling to see.

The sky was falling…

A moment later, the world turned dark.


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