Chapter 2

Written by: Hemali Ajmera

“C’mon, let’s go back. If we are lucky, we might just find the owner of the mysterious shadow,” announced Nick excitedly.

Michelle was exhausted. She was sure the shadow was that of the old man she had met near the cave. He said he had been waiting for her. Why had he said that? And what if she met him again? The thought frightened her.   

They reached the marble steps but there was no one there. The cave was certainly not a ‘must visit’ spot on the itinerary of most tourists.

Nick took the lead and started climbing. Michelle, tired and wary, fell back and tried to catch her breath. She look around to find a place where she could sit and rest. At a distance she spotted some flat rocks. Sitting on one of them was a man in white.     

As she neared the rock, she recognised the old man. This time he was dressed in pristine white robes instead of the dusty overalls.

“Above the cloud with its shadow is the star with its light.”

The old man chanted joyfully.    

Michelle was dumbfounded. 

“Who are you?”

“I am your father, your philosopher, your guide. Don’t you recognise me, agapití Myia?”

 

******

“Nick, Nick.” shouted Michelle hysterically, looking in the direction of the cave. By the time she turned around, the old man had disappeared.  

Nick was beside her in no time. 

“He was here. He said he was my father. I think I am going crazy.”  

“Maybe some weirdo playing a trick. Calm down.” Nick commented, half-intrigued, half-concerned. 

He coaxed Michelle to stand up. Holding hands, the couple once again clambered toward the cave. A flash of white near the mouth of the cave caught Michelle’s attention.

“There he is,” she screamed.

“Where? I see no one!” snapped Nick.

When they reached the mouth of the cave, Nick walked inside and then around the cave to see if anyone was around.

Michelle stood at the cave entrance, too afraid to go in.

Geiá sou. Nice to see you again, to paidí mou. Come inside. Let’s start learning again. You have missed much.” The old man had reappeared. 

“How can you be my father? My father is in London,” Michelle managed to mumble.

“I was your father in one of your previous births. Metempsychosis my child. It has brought you back to me.”

Meta what?”

“Transmigration of the soul. You have come back to this place to serve a very special purpose.  I have been waiting for you for centuries,” smiled the old man. 

*****

Nick found Michelle lying at the cave entrance. He surmised she had fainted due to unbearable heat. He sprinkled some water and took her inside the cave where it was much cooler. 

When she regained consciousness, Nick asked her if she was alright. 

 “Do you know that, my father Pythagoras says that the oldest shortest words - ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ – are those which require the most thought?”

Comments

Ooh what a lovely way to end this chapter Hemali. You've tied it back to the title (double play on Spirit and on Pythagoras) and kept to the theme. No wonder she fainted. And I love the piece of philosophy at the end. That also was a clever way to tie in the title. Great work Hemali.