The boy sprinted away from the crowds and headed towards the rubble. He ran with unbelievable ferocity. Why did everyone have to stop him? Could they not feel? He felt a constant need to scream, his mind unable to comprehend what just happened. The steam vented out rather, in water droplets from his eyes. His red face was wet with them.
All this while, Robert had stood silent in the chaotic compound. The ground had been trembling incessantly. He saw the impressive structures surrender, one after another, until his home collapsed, the wooden furniture and the glass showpieces falling freely, breaking into bits and pieces. Then in the collapsing mass of concrete, he spotted a female body clinging to one of the collapsing windows, her mouth open in an inaudible scream, her hair flying all around her. Robert didn’t need to see the face to know who she was. With no second thought, he began sprinting. How could he forget about the person he loved the most altogether?
They stopped him at first. But then let go. Among the debris and the other bodies, he searched the person, then found her. A chain of ambulances had already arrived. With all his might, he pulled his mother’s body into a red-white ambulance. This was no time for asking for help. In no time, the engine kick-started and they were speeding through the streets, the sirens wailing in frenzy.
He couldn’t help but look at the bloodied body on the grey stretcher beside. The face had abrasions all over, the right foot had been almost crippled. A big piece of glass had pierced into her belly tearing her blue jumpsuit. He kissed her on the forehead and turned the other way, tears of grief dripping down.
The hospital was a nightmare. His mind was numbed by the preceding incidents. When he tried to sleep, the horrifying pictures of his mother’s body floated into his mind and he woke up, startled. He paced to and fro, eventually realising there wasn’t much he could do now.
He only heard from the doctors hours later. They explained how his mother had tried her best to stay alive, constantly uttering your name. They told him that they could still save her, just that they needed funds immediately. But Robert had only an empty wallet to offer. The catastrophe had destroyed their house and all that was in it. He knew she was alive. He had always known that. But when the moment came, he failed to save her.