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You were locked up for so long that I was almost certain that you’d forgotten how to talk. Every now and then, you’d let out a soundless murmur but it was just so easy to drown you in the sea of chaos. Then one day, you whispered, “Remember this?” and flashed the most terrifying trial I had ever witnessed. In that moment, my body spilt – a fine layer of frost formed on my toes and slowly worked its way to the top; my eyes, so firmly fixated on the imagery, held its own so gracefully yet remained fragile enough to break in a heartbeat; my throat, parched to a fault, cleared itself to make way for what was going to be the most horrifying, voiceless, scream I had ever conjured. “How could it be? If I’m sitting here, then who is she?” – The only question that pierced through my gut, over and over again. Is this what nightmares are made of – a whole lot of illusions stirred with a dash of truth?

There she was, defenceless and distraught, struggling to fling answers to rid herself of this humiliation. The jury sat still with poker faces on display yet their minds relentlessly trying to piece every snippet of evidence together. With every hurl, she let out a scream so violent and fierce that it wiped out every trace of energy from her being. Finally, the moment of truth arrived, killing the euphoria that overshadowed her internal battle. Motionless and tired, she waved one last time to the jury of statues, hoping that they would break, hold her and scream out in pain with her.

What she knew all along finally manifested into reality: she wasn’t good enough and that’s all that the jury could see.

With my eyes quivering at the sight of this horror and my heart trembling to the sound of her shrieks, I had finally witnessed, that the real war was waging within me.

Radhika is a creative escapist constantly looking to break away from gloomy chains of monotony through art, books and words.

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