Insomnia

His eyes were wide open. The pupils showed no signs of dilation. He lost count of when was the last time he even blinked. He had tried all possible ways of inviting sleep, but sleep was not paying heed to his enticing calls. Maybe he hadn’t tried enough.

He stared at the ceiling. Shapes started forming from the shadows. He enjoyed looking at the monkey which jumped from one tree to another. Bang. He chuckled at the cloud’s feeble attempts to bump each off other from the imaginary track. Bang. He marveled when a bridge was constructed between two edges on the wall. Bang. Gun. Bang. Definitely, staring at the ceiling was not helping.

He tried keeping his eyes closed for eons, but ultimately it used to defy his willpower and open at even the slightest distraction on cue. The poundings at his door wasn’t helping either.

He remembered some statement that counting backwards helps in this case.

100, 99, 98, 97, 96, …

He knocks on the door. Waiting to be greeted by his wife. After a tiring day of work, he always used to look forward to the kisses she showered upon him.

81, 80, 79, 78, 77, …

She wasn’t opening the door. Aaaah. She might have slept. He had told her, he wouldn’t be coming in the night as work would be keeping him occupied. He pushed in his key in the keyhole, and gave it a rotation.

63, 62, 61, 59, 58, …

He walked up the stairs. Light was coming in through the shaft of the door. He tiptoed in wanting to surprise her, but…

47, 46, 45, 44, 43, …

he was surprised. Seeing his wife’s body entwined with someone else’s, he tried hard to tip the dipping scales of his mood in the favour of serenity. But her  words had more weight and they provided the final push, “Steve, what the fuck are you doing here?”

30, 29, 28, 27, 26, …

Fueled by anger, out came his gun. BANG. BANG. Two shots was all it took, to ensure that when they breathed their last, they were naked.. Pressing the cold muzzle of the gun to his temple, he pulled the trigger again. BANG.

5, 4, 3, 2, 1.

Counting backwards wasn’t helping either. He stood up, glided across the room, passed unnoticed by the neighbours whose poundings on the door had finally managed to bring the frame down.

Even though he would remain asleep forever, in a different realm, he could never sleep again.