I was in my house with my family, drinking the hot tea and discussing about the daily chores in that cold winter evening. We were laughing and helping each other in the usual evening rituals. My mother was busy in the preparations of the dinner and my father just sat near the fireplace eating groundnuts. I laid forward my feet near the fireplace to absorb the warmth of the fire. My sisters too sat near me. I always loved winters because those are the times when all of your family spend most of their time together. We were celebrating a perfect evening and we were so into our talks that we didn’t even notice our neighbours’ loud voices. Suddenly a loud noise shook our house. We were extremely terrified by that sound. Everyone went outside to enquire about the thing that had just happened.
As we went out we noticed all our neighbours and the village people were crying out loud as if they have seen something horrifying. But to our surprise, we could not see anything. The three sides visible from the point where we stood were normal but there was the fourth side obstructed by our house and the big persimmon tree and everybody seemed to be looking in that direction only. So, I moved little far from the house to a point from where I could see what was not visible otherwise. My mouth was wide open when I saw smoke coming out of a mountain that was just behind our valley. Everybody was wondering about the reason of that gigantic never-ending plume of smoke. Everybody thought that a war has been initiated and our enemy had dropped a bomb on that mountain. But a thought popped up in my mind that how an enemy would drop the bomb without any aircraft and if any aircraft was used then its sound would have definitely made us notice it. Moreover the smoking mountain had no habitation and this fact convinced me somehow that the smoke was definitely not from the bombardment. Suddenly I recalled something that I had learnt in the school that the mountain behind our valley had hot springs and geysers which were created because of the presence of a dormant volcano underneath them. I shouted loudly that it might be a volcanic eruption. Everyone was confused of my suggestion as nobody has ever heard about anything like a volcano even not from their ancestors. I tried to explain them about the volcano, its dormancy and why nobody ever told them about it.
Everyone was thinking about what we need to do. Some of them immediately fled away. My father ordered us all to get inside our jeep so that we could also run away to the safer places. We were about to climb downstairs from our lawn when another explosion shook everything around. From that second eruption fire balls started flushing out. They started falling everywhere. Everyone panicked and the atmosphere was filled with cries and screams of the terrified crowd. Without wasting anytime we ran towards our jeep that was parked at almost 50m distance from us. But suddenly hit our jeep, and with it each of the family members became petrified. We had no option left than to run on our feet. We ran continuously through our fields, roads and the forests without resting anywhere. It was dark already when got tired. We had crossed the danger line and reached to a safer area, so my father suggested staying for the night in the nearby village. The villagers were very welcoming, they helped us with whatever they could.
The next morning, everything seemed to be calmed down. My parents started discussing about the loss that they might have encountered. We met many other people who were also displaced from our place. They all were disturbed from the recent events. Nobody had the latest update of the place and they even didn’t have the courage to go back and enquire about it. I wanted to go back as something inside me was forcing me to do so. I tried to convince my parents to return to our home which they rejected hastily. I was very desperate to go back so I decided to go by my own. I was about to leave the village when my mother came to me and told me that our family will too join me. We started our journey back to home and till the evening we were there.
The house was not harmed at all but almost all of the adjoining areas were still lit by fire. I raised my eyes to observe the surroundings, the mountains that were earlier home to lush green plants, wild animals and tribal people were now converted into pyres. The misery of the environment was very depressing; watching this entire scenario a stream of tears rolled down from my eyes.
My family moved inside the house but I still remained outside praying for the living beings that were harmed in the recent incidents. The cause of the disaster was still not confirmed and I was still boggling my mind, when suddenly a fireball projected from behind a mountain. I was startled because the mountain range from where it came from should not be emitting anything as it was just opposite to that from which the fireballs projected the previous day. I was still scratching my head and the projectile just landed in front of our home. My eyes remained wide open at the sight of the thing that I earlier thought as a fireball.
To be continued…