Sid looked in the mirror opposite him. His unkempt unshaven face reminded him of the scarcity of water that had plagued the city. It was not just the city. According to the TV broadcasts, it was the whole world. It had been two months. He hated to be like this, messy, unclean and smelly. Cleaning, the one thing he was obsessed with, the one thing he could not do now. Reason, no water.
He tried turning the taps on. Nothing, not even a drop. Everyday he would do this, the same thing, look at the water taps in high expectations that someday the water would flow through those tainted dusty steel taps and everyday his hopes, his expectations would be beaten down. Then, he would return sad to his wrinkled heavily used bed with dirty sheets upon it. What he was before and what he had become now? He loathed himself. No water to bathe with, no water to drink, no water to wash his clothes, no water to shave. What a life, he thought? Sid had stopped even going to his job. He loved to go clean and washed and now that he could not, he stopped. He even quit. He saw no use of going out and meeting with people. He had suddenly become an introvert.
He switched on the TV. Again, the same news. The TV Reporter was going on about the same thing, there is pretty less water in the world, the water tables have gone dry. He switched the TV off, frustrated. He then strode to the windows and looked down from his flat. The streets were emptier than usual. The roads smelled of reek. What had the world come to? Why? Why? Why? Sadness and dejection crept into his eyes. He looked at the calendar. August 3, 2100. It was turning out to be a very bad year.
He opened the main door of his flat, hearing some sound and saw that his neighbors were moving, their luggage being carried by robots. They smiled at him weakly, their throats too parched to speak. The man seemed to text on his mobile phone.
He heard a beep instantly. It was a message from his neighbor. It read, “Moving abroad. Hopefully will find water.”
He then texted back, “Hope you do. Best of luck.”
They looked at each other and smiled. They waved their hands and the next moment they were gone.
He looked at his neighbor’s flat dejectedly and then closed the door behind.
A splash of water rained on his face and he woke up with a start. His chest was heaving and his heart was thumping.
“What the hell dude?” he asked, seeing his brother, Floyd, with a pink bucket in his hand.
“You are late. You were not getting up, so this was the only way I could make you.” replied Floyd, laughing.
“Damn you. Water is a precious thing, do not waste it, otherwise who knows. One day, we might just run out of it.” said Sid, still mad at his brother.
“Look at who is speaking. Bro, you leave the taps on everytime you finish washing or saving. Who is wasting water then?”
Sid, for a moment, looked ashamed. Then he said, “Okay, okay. Do not do this the next time. Get lost now.”
Floyd went away laughing, bucket dangling in his hand.
Sid went and washed his face with cold water. But this time, he turned the tap off. He vowed in his heart, he would never waste a drop of water again. He could not live without it. He smiled at his reflection in the mirror and then turned to go into the living room only to see the same calendar of his dreams, this time showing August 3, 2012.
(Disclaimer: Written For Facebook Group Scribbler’s Ink Writers: https://www.facebook.com/groups/351022088275863/)