23 FebruaryPosted: August 5, 2011
I was already asleep when Ogre came into my room. She shakes me gently until I wake up. She looks so worried that I sit up with a start.
Me: “What happened, Ogre?”
Ogre: “It’s Etcetra. She still hasn’t come home.”
We had eaten our dinner while watching TV earlier that night. Etcetra had called Ogre to say she was rehearsing late. Ogre never did like that, but she was beginning to tire of pulling in Etcetra’s reins. After all, Etcetra is 18.
But the call had been at around 8. And now it is 2.30 in the morning, and Etcetra is still not here.
Ogre: “Her phone’s off. I’ve been trying since midnight.”
Me: “Did you try Sir’s number?”
Ogre, gloomily: “His phone is off too. I even tried their studio. But of course, no one’s picking up the phone there.”
Me: “Her other friends?”
Ogre: “I thought of it. Then felt nervous at the thought of getting everyone up so late at night. After all, if she had been with any of them, she would have called, right?”
Me: “Don’t know. Don’t know what she would or would not do, anymore.”
Ogre: “What should we do, then?”
Me: “Should we wait until morning. I think she’ll turn up. If not, … ”
Both of us sit awake the whole night, with thoughts of police, and hospitals, and what-not running through our brains, but not daring to say any of them aloud to each other.
Etcetra turns up at around 5.30 in the morning. She looks very tired and discomfited at seeing Ogre and me up.
Me, enraged: “Etcetra, where have you been? You didn’t call. Your phone’s been off. ”
But Ogre notices that she is trembling, and stops me.
Ogre: “Enough, Appi. We’ll talk about it later. Let her get some rest first.”
Etcetra goes off to our room, and Ogre to hers. I sit in the living room, shaking with anger. By the time I go to our room, Etcetra is asleep.
I toss and turn for an hour or so before I drop off to sleep.