I envisage myself standing in a cold desert with unfathomable silence; absence of everything as far as the eyes can see, the sun just giving up its duty for the day and bidding adieu, the last of its excellence soothing and comforting me.

I see a crossroad, I see thousands of them, and I see myself at the center of them all. Am I supposed to choose a path? The sun is almost down, I feel the tinge of cold in my spine. I walk, I take a path, it’s simple, it feels simple-just sauntering, how difficult can it be?

Somewhere along the trail, I don’t feel right, is it the cold, I wonder? No, no, I’ve felt cold all my life, this can’t be the reason. It’s this path, it doesn’t seem right, am I not supposed to see people who care about me along the way? Of course, I am.

I retreat, the cold is now overwhelming, I don’t mind it, I keep on walking back, now determined to choose the right path. I get back to the crossroads; go on another path, I want to get out of this place, I hate it here, I don’t like being cold.

The path – it’s not right, I go back, I try another, I do it a million times, I’m not getting anywhere.I see a man, I ask him, “What road should I take?” ‘Take the one that makes you happy’, he answers. I want to go back, back to the path I’d taken to reach that crossroads in the first place, relive my happy memories. That place was warm, it was good there, I felt the occasional chill, but the warmth of the people who cared for me took it away, I feel happy just thinking about it. I start to stroll back, but the man stops me, “You can’t go back, you’ve been on that road, you didn’t walk it right, you went off the path, that’s the reason you ended up here”. It’s crushing, I’ve never felt this cold before, it pains, I plead him to let me go, promise him not to go off road again. This cold, this being alone is unbearable. He’s adamant, he doesn’t budge. With my head held down, I meander to the crossroads, just stand there, waiting for the sun to rise again. It gets really cold here at night.


Vishal is a member of LSD. He wrote this piece one day when he had just completed ASOIAF and didn’t know what to do with his life anymore.



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