Another excerpt from the story that I'm currently working on. Something I've refined this evening, during yet another spell of insomnia.
Where is the place that all stories begin? Is there a single point from which all our narratives flow, a single indescribable nucleus, where all our pasts, our presents and our histories are determined? And if such a point exists, could we ever trace our steps back to that place, that wellspring of our human-ness, to redraw the paradoxes and petty tragedies of our frail existences? Is it that, then, which we seek all the time as we go through life, apparently aimless but in actuality searching for that which can never be found?
She has a story too. But perhaps the only truth in that story, hidden deep within a web of perceptions, opinions and delusions is that it has no single beginning. Like all stories, it is born anew at every single instant, but also dies in that instant, and is condemned to never be repeated ever again. For her story, like all stories, is nothing more than a string of innumerable instances, microcosms and random events intricately strung together, which each moment almost bearing no relation to the one that came immediately before, or the one that will follow it only a second later
And that is why when she looks for a place to begin, to find out where it all started and where things were inexorably set it motion (oh, that cliché), she is unable to identify a single point, a single over-arching instant in her life to start.
But stories are born to be lived, to be told, to be passed on from the lips of one generation to the next, carrying within them the seeds of destruction that all humanity is inherently drawn to. Years later, she will look back onto that night and recognise that it was her one chance at sanity, for succour, and yes, for redemption. But that redemption can only be achieved through her narration, standing in an invisible confessional box, her past lives and sins surrounding her as clearly as angels and demons richly carved in dark mahogany.
And so she must find a place to begin, to find a single place in her past from where she can stand and begin to draw the tangled threads of her past three years into a single cohesive weave, finding patterns and order where none perhaps have, never will exist. On this night, as she drives all through the night through the rain that hammers the North Indian plains in August, smoking endless cigarette after cigarette, she will force herself to remember.