"They are so far from us, right dad" - the child joyfully exclaimed to his father pointing towards the beautiful starry night-sky.
"Yes Hoshi, they are. Do you like watching them?" - asked Joben, his father
"No dadda I love watching them, they look beautiful" - replied the child
"Even I loved watching them when I was of your age" - Joben said
"And now, you don't?" - asked Hoshi
"Yeah, now I don't,I loved the sky, the blazing sun, and especially those tiny twinkling stars until that sky took my parents away from me. But anyways…….I still like it and the stars of course" - Joben
"But now you said you don't, dadda" - Hoshi
"Hoshi, I said I don't love it but I like them and that is why I'm here lying on these green hilly pastures watching those stars and their constellations with you. And you know, when we love an activity so much and have enjoyed it since our childhood, we can neither hate it nor forget it and the most importantly those stars always remind me of my mom and dad and I can still imagine them and all the wonderful moments and memories in those lovely constellations.
Ah…..Whatever, come let's go Hoshi" - Joben, saying this stood up and started walking towards his cottage when he heard Hoshi saying: "You cannot blame those stars for taking up grandma and grandpa. They did nothing, they just shine and twinkle to wash up all our street and grief. And dadda, you've enjoyed a lot watching them with grandpa during your childhood similar to what I do now. And therefore the sky and stars must not be blamed."
"Okay okay, I'll never blame them. Is that fine dadda" - Joben
"Absolutely son" - Hoshi replied and they both laughed and went on to their house.
Joben lulled his 4 years old son to sleep and went to his study room. He stood before a showcase with hundred of awards and Shields with titles tagged and carved on them such as; #1 Best selling book, Writer of the year, Writer of the decade, Universal Author, etc. He then walked towards his book shelf where there were an intense number of books written by Joben himself watching all his books and awards he smiled and sat on his ergonomic chair at his study table. He pulled a parcel, opened it and took out a sealed book. On that seal it was written in bold italic capital letters 'LIMITED EDITION'. He pulled off the seal and opened it. Skipping the early pages of the content he turned to the Introduction and started reading it silently.
I am Joben, a 34 years old published writer, I have written many books on various topics, titles and subjects; some about great biography and some about a specific life history of great people. I have even won hundreds of awards regarding my writing and had performed on various great platforms. I have everything today; name, money, popularity, luxuries everything . But in spite having all these I lack the real happiness of life. In this book, I've described all the events of my life, the enjoyable moments which gave me sweet and lovely memories as well as the disastrous ones which shook and changed my whole life. This book is not just a book, it is the description of the grief inside a man whom the world calls as the most superlative and an exceptional author around the globe………
Joben skipped the remaining paras and turned to the First Chapter.
The 25th of July 1945, War was spread all around the world, it was the time when every nation despite experiencing deaths and bloodshed was fighting with each other in order to prove their sovereignty and their might. It was the time during which people were losing their children, families, properties, houses and their lives. People were searching for peace and love between themselves, due to these wars common yet poor people had lost the happiness and togetherness that they once had in their families and in their lives.
Apart from all these we were living peacefully in the suburbs of Nagasaki in Japan. Everything was fine there away from all the destructive disturbances due to the Second World War we lived in a small town, at a small cottage. I was 8 years old at that time, we used to eat fresh fruits and vegetables, both my mom and dad worked on fields by which they earn a livelihood and manage to run the needs of the house by that small amount. Despite being poor, we were happy. We had everything, we never lacked any good things in our life.
Joben skipped the other three paras and turned to the Second Chapter.
'Stars' I loved them the way they shine and the bright light which they emit. It looked wonderful to my eyes and every night my dad and I used to lay down on the flat and wavy grass in our backyard and just watch them until we fell asleep. This was my favourite activity and I never ever missed even a single day to watch them. My mom named me 'Hoshi' when she discovered my love and affection towards them. Hoshi is a Japanese name which means a 'star'. My mom always told me that your name which I gave you must not be just a name. You must become a star one day as your name means . All day long I used to focus on her words and every night I used to watch the dark blue starry night sky with my dad after dinner. During that period my dad tells me: "Look at those stars Joben, they are alone and far away from each other, but they still shine. No matter if the sun takes over their light, during the day time. They forgive and forget it at night and they shine, and you know why they do that because the sun is also a star like they are. They never avenge the sun but instead they still support its duty during the night time when the sun is unable to shine. At these times those stars shine bright, spread their light and correspond to the sun being its backbone." I always listened to him very carefully and interestingly, but even though I never understood the interpretation of what he actually meant and to what his words are comparable and pointing towards……….
Joben turned to the next page, then skipped the other two chapters and opened page.236, the Fifth Chapter.
It was 2nd of August 1945, we weren't affected by the war which was going on all around the world until America assigned a committee regarding the development of fat man. We hadn't yet known about the disastrous tragedy which we were going to face in just some days which would change our lives or end them.
On 6th of August, an American jet plane dropped the fat man atom bomb on Hiroshima, we got the news. We were worried and felt sad. Sobo's son was in Hiroshima, we never knew whether he was alive or he died, cause we never got any news about him. Mom and dad were consodelenceing her, she was weeping a lot. We were tense but were totally unknown about the great grief and destructive distress that we were gonna face three days after.
It was the 9th of August 1945, the clock showed 10:00.a.m. and I went to the stream to bring water. The fresh flowing stream was 3 miles away in the dense forest at the boundary of our town. That place was pretty familiar with all the town's people even with the children, many of our villagers used to go there in that part of the forest for gathering woods and fruits. Well I was accompanied by my best friend Eiji. My dad was working at the field and mom was with Sobo, preparing her some soup to decrease her body temperature. She was old and broken, she needed rest and relief at the times when she was in great distress while she was worried about her only son. Can anyone imagine the sadness of an old widow who has recently…………...Anyways we were going to face even something greater than this. It must be 11:00.a.m around when we heard a grand sound and experienced a sudden quake under our feet while we were near the stream, and hadn't even reached there. We got scared so we took shelter under a big tree holding each other shivering with fear. We had never experienced anything like this before we were not sure about what had happened but we knew that the war had already reached our place and that it would be unsafe for us to walk back there. We sat there for almost 6 hours, we didn't even stand, we heard unusual loud sounds and suddenly shakes of the ground too. After a couple of hours, we heard a chuffing sound and saw a helicopter in the sky. We first thought of it to be an enemy's helicopter, pursuing people and killing them but when we saw Japan's flag on it, we immediately understood that it was a rescue helicopter and we waved at it and shouted for help. When they noticed us they landed down on an empty area. They hurried to us and the first thing they did was that they made us wear safety gear like a suit which bomb squads wear. They took both of us with them on their helicopter. We flew from over the forest and our town. I peeked down a little and saw my town, it was destroyed, the fields, the huts and all the equipment were all finished, burnt down. There was a dense smoke all around the town. In spite of the smoke I managed to see some burned dead bodies lying all over the ground. I couldn't believe my eyes. We landed at a place which the soldiers called as their headquarters. We were kept safe there and very soon we were going to be shifted to Tokyo, we weren't able to understand anything until a senior-man came and told us everything that Nagasaki had been targeted for a nuclear explosion by the Americans. He asked our names and where did we live? We answered him everything and in return we asked him about our parents. He sadly told us that they found no one alive on that land except for the two of us. We were stunned. We couldn't believe that we lost our parents, my mom and dad had died and they left me alone. I had thousands of questions and whys running all inside my walnut sized brain. At those words of him I was just trying to control my tears and pretending as if I am not broken by heart.
Joben wiped his tears and skipped the further pages of that Chapter and turned to the last Chapter.
The sun was shining bright, it was 8:30 a.m., the war has already ended a week ago, today we are going to be admissioned into an orphanage of Tokyo itself. It's a new day and a new start. We have nothing, I felt in my heart about the loss that occurred in my life. I lost everything, my parents, my family, my home, I am left only with the words which were spoken by my parents. They were my everything and when they were not with me I felt lonely all alone and tired, tormented and sorrowful.
Joben skipped some paras and came to the last page.
I turned 30, 24th of April four years ago I married an American girl whom I lost during her delivery, but at that time a new life entered mine, my son whom I named 'Hoshi' on my own name by which my mom used to call me. I don't generally get any complications in upbringing him, I am always honest to all his questions and queries. Now I am not alone and the very pleasing fact is that my 4 years old little son told me the accurate meaning of the phrase that my dad used to tell me once when I was a kid. I fulfilled my mom's desire and became a shining star just as she wanted me to become. Unknowingly, I also stood on the principles which my dad taught me. That was awesome. My life is awesome now with my little boy and I'm happy.
Joben picked up his Parker pen and started adding a few more lines to the very first print of his upcoming book.
I really don't have to live in grief about the period of loneliness that I had experienced or hate the sky for taking my parents away from me. At that time I was a kid and I had a feeling that the atom bombs were dropped from the jet planes flying in the 'sky' and that I developed hatred for the sky and every object in it, even the stars. But my little boy told me that I shouldn't actually, they must not be blamed and hated though, watching them was my favourite activity and I still love watching the beautiful dazzling starry night sky remembering each and every moment that I spent with my mom and dad, and all the words that were spoken by them. I'll keep watching them all my life long believing that they would also be watching me from over those stars……..because they always remind me of them and I can imagine them and all the wonderful moments and memories which I have prepared and I got, in those constellations.
Finishing his last line, Joben stood up and walked to the window and lifted up his eyes to the stars in the sky. He smiled with a shimmering shine in his eyes and a strange yet lovely expression on his face and imagined his mom and dad's constellation by the stars.