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Death, Tonight

Join me… join me…

His voice was clear in her head, even after all these years. It hadn't creaked or become softer with age like hers had. She closed her eyes impatiently. Hadn't she suffered enough?

He smiled down at her longingly. He couldn't even imagine what it must feel like to be in her place right now. Through that otherworldly connection that they shared, he willed her to be patient. He was still trying… everyday. In the meanwhile, he would play to her. She would listen. The soothing tones of the old piano would echo through the house, bringing back visions of moments lost.

For these were meetings stolen from Time. He would have a lot of explaining to do when he got back.

This life ain't worth livin'

She sighed as he left her once again. The grand piano fell silent. Who knew when he would visit again? She snuffed out the candles and sat in the darkness for a while, thinking about him. Would he remember what light looked like?

The memories hung around the house like cobwebs. She had never thought to brush them off and move forward. As far as she was concerned, the melodies were food enough for her soul. The melancholic tunes made her forget about her rheumatoid joints and about the myriad other maladies that haunted her old body. For a while, she would even forget that they were still a lifetime away from each other.

Before life tears us apart, let Death bless me with you

“Please…” he implored with everything that he had. The dark, anorexic figure before him wouldn't even look up. She waved her hand impatiently at him.

“Her time hasn't come yet. You must wait, both of you. How many times do I have to tell you this?” she ended on an exasperated note. She had seen many things. She was Death, after all. But never before had she encountered a couple who actually invited her into their midst. She clutched at her head. What was wrong with the world these days?

But the beseeching eyes were still fixed on her. She tried her best not to meet them… such ridiculous requests! “Go,” she said, trying to sound imperious. She was Death, after all. His shoulders were slumped as he left, his pleas tossed aside once again. She watched as he went his way, almost feeling sorry for the mere mortal and his petty little feelings. She didn't like to admit it, but he had grown on her through all these years of nagging and pleading at her feet. “Her time will come,” she added softly to his retreating figure.

Won't you die tonight for love?

He went straight back to her, simply out of spite towards Death. But the candles were out. The piano lay covered. Where was she?

She had dyed the sheets ruby with her blood. On them, she lay spluttering for escape. Her eyes bulged, her body convulsed, and every few moments she choked up some more blood from her already drying-up body.

It was obvious she had tried to call Death. But she had been foolish. If only she knew the harsh rules that Death played by! Why did she have to suffer like this? She counted the seconds inside her head, not knowing that they would never end. Any moment now… any moment now…

But he knew what Death was really like. It burned him to see her suffer. Not knowing what else to do, he sat down at their old piano and he played for her. Her weak body stopped twitching as the melody filled the room. This was it, she thought. But he knew how cruel Death could be. He knew she would leave them hanging forever.

This world is a cruel place, and we're here only to lose

He was beginning to give up hope by now. He tried to keep playing, for her. But the tunes wouldn't come any more- only tears. He threw up his hands and cried in abandon.

Baby, join me in death…

She watched thoughtfully over all this. She had seen far worse. Cold-blooded murders, injuries, accidents… all in a day's work if you happen to be Death. In comparison, this old couple almost melted her. This was almost sweet. Almost. She was Death, after all.

He was still crying. His tears flowed onto the sheets and made roses bloom as they mingled with her blood. Her chest heaved in pain as she gripped the sheets tighter.

Death she was, and she might not understand the things that went on between the hearts of mortals, but even then this seemed to be important. She had never seen anything like it. She sighed softly and went to her side. “Call me crazy…' she muttered to herself.

He looked up when he felt her there. He couldn't believe she had actually come. “Thank you,” he managed to say. “Thank you so much.” Death gently placed her hand on the old woman's forehead, caressing her with a mother's touch. It comforted her, gave her peace after all those decades of waiting. She reached up to embrace her; and then she was gone.

They were reunited on the other side. This time, forever. Death looked up at the shadowy figures soaring into the sky. They seemed happy, she thought. And for the first time ever, Death smiled.

By TheAlien4mEarth
Lyrics taken from H.I.M.'s 'Join Me In Death'

Riots FAQ

If you read newspapers or watch the news or in fact care even in the slightest about what's happening in the world, you would know that the British are rioting. But we know the masses are too busy to look through the tedious number of articles to get up to date on it. That's where we come in. Here we try to answer all the questions one may have on the matter.

How and why did it start?

On 4th August, Mark Duggan, a 29 year old father of four, was shot dead when police intercepted him and attempted to arrest him. The policemen claimed Duggan opened fire on them and they only shot back in self-defence. An eye witness though says that Duggan was shot at close range after the police had pinned him to the ground. The police who shot Duggan were part of Operation Trident, a special unit dealing in gun crimes in black communities. And people said this wasn't a race issue.

On 6th August, a “peaceful” protest of 200 people including Duggan's family and friends, took to the streets of Tottenham. Some of the members in the group of protesters became violent. By that night, vandalism, looting, arson and just plain violent disorderliness had swept through the North London neighbourhood.

This spread like wildfire and the next night, other parts of London witnessed burning buses and bricks through windows. Over the next few days, other parts of England, refusing to be left out, joined the trend. The situation deteriorated to such a point that ministers, mayors and even prime minister David Cameron had to grudgingly cut their holidays short.

Why has it escalated?

Because protests always have to escalate to actually bring about change. No, that was a bad joke. Protests can be peaceful whilst accomplishing the objective. Tahrir Square in Egypt, for example. It brought down a decades-long regime with largely peaceful protests with sparse incidents of violence.

The riots are about more than the death of some guy. It appears to come from a deep-rooted frustration. The youth in Britain are angry. There is severe discontent in their society. They have no jobs awaiting them after college. That is if they can afford college now with recent exorbitant price hikes in education. Britain's economy is still struggling to recover and more and more austerity measures are being introduced every month. At the same time they funnel money to help fight wars in Afghanistan and Libya.

Well, that is ONE reason. The other reason is far simpler. They're spoiled and secretly want to be bad. What better way to get a new big screen TV or a Wii? You can hide out in the crowd and all the Queen's alarms and all the Queen's police can't do anything to stop you, 'cause hey, you're part of a crowd! As George Osborne, British MP, puts it “It's not entirely about money. If it was, it would have been solved years ago. This is a deep-rooted problem with the culture and that must be changed.” Good luck with that.

We burn cars and have gonopitunis all the time. Why isn't that on BBC?

There are several reasons as to why our former colonial master's riots are far more BBC-worthy than our violence. The first being, the BBC is British. They don't have to do much to cover this story. Just stick a camera out their window maybe.

Secondly, we burn cars all the time. It's nothing new. We have fights and violence almost everyday thanks to Chattra League and Chattra Dol, stock market fluctuations, hartals, scathing political backbiting, rising food prices... ok, this can go on for a while. Gonopitunis are slightly less common but it is coming to prominence recently after the Aminbazar incident where six students were killed by locals because they assumed, yes assumed, that they were robbers. Another surprising thing about when we turn violent, we never loot. Is it because we realize that by looting we're compromising our own integrity? Is it because the shopkeepers would unleash a deadly wrath on the looters if anyone dared? It's a mystery.

As explained in the last paragraph, stuff like the British riots albeit on a much smaller scale happens all the time in Bangladesh. It's not so common in England. It's truly an occasion when the British have gone stark raving mad for something other than football.

When will the violence end? Can't we all just get along?

Well, since the British government higher powers have had to abandon their holidays causing them much annoyance, police efforts have been stepped up. There are somewhere around 16,000 police officers on foot, patrol cars, horses, and any other mode of transport you can think of, wandering around London's streets as we write this.

Police security has also been stepped up in other cities such as Manchester, Birmingham, Sheffield etc. Oh, and also, the police budget is set to be slashed once these riots have subsided.

The most important question. Will this affect the Premier League season?

Well, you never know. We sincerely hope it doesn't. Fingers crossed.

By Bareesh


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