“Raj, you should participate in the upcoming art fest.” Nita urged her husband.
“It’s in vain Nita, they won’t accept my entry… yet again….” Raj lamented. “… It’s two years now. I have lost my sheen.” Raj walked out of his home studio.
Nita stared at the viridescent gossamery canvas splattered with a psychedelic insignia, placed awkwardly on the ornate easel. She straightened the painting and smiled. She always favored Raj’s paintings; after all, she had fallen in love with them before the artist himself. Every piece of art adorning the studio had Raj’s signature element, Chaotic passion, as he called them. She read the board he had hand painted with stunning calligraphy right after their marriage six years ago.
Life is where chaos and grace intertwine,
Blend in an allegory of passion
Here’s our love shrine…
She blew a determined sigh. She had to set things right. Painting meant the world to Raj and he was her cosmos. Raising her right hand, she looked at the glowing signet ring on her middle finger, the only part of her legacy she had a claim to.
A little later Nita went to their open balcony where Raj stood staring into oblivion with his hands in his pocket and his hunched back was a dead giveaway of his state of mind. His silky hair, her fingers loved to meander ruffled in the evening breeze. She joined him and the spread of the lit-up town in the little valley twinkling before their high-rise lifted her spirits. She loved this time of the year when winter had seeped into their skin but was yet to chap it. The ambrosial environment around her seemed to arrange its own symphony.
The glittering lights in the darkness resembled a sequined black Afghan and filled her with hope.
“Raj…” Nita later offered her special chamomile tea. “…I believe in your abilities.”
Taking a lone sip of the concoction Raj kept the cup away.
“Nita, I am sorry but my fingers just don’t seem to flow with the paintbrush presently. It’s almost a year now that I have painted something concrete. Colors don’t speak to my soul anymore and my life seems just plain black and white…”
“It’s December Raj, there may be a shower of blessings, a sprinkle of the special kaleidoscopic Christmas magic” Nita’s eyes twinkled even as she blinked back tears.
“Ahh… Magic again. When are you going to let go of your alchemic beliefs?” Raj seemed peeved and Nita turned to go back into the house.
He immediately held her hand and pulled her closer. Holding her svelte shoulders he said, “Ever since we first met a decade ago, you haven’t left any stone unturned to coarse me to believe in magic. But Nita, magic for me was always in the form of polychromatic flamboyance on canvas. That kind of conjury doesn’t exist for me anymore. My career as a painter is done…” His hands dropped and Raj looked away, dejected.
“Don’t forget Raj, you were an award-winning artist…”
“…And that was once upon a time, Nita. Let it go.”
Later that night when the world slept, Nita shut herself in the art studio. She knew it was time.
Six years ago
“Narnia, you shall not go to the human realm anymore… It’s against our rules” Nita’s grandmother and the queen of witches of the Gordon kingdom, Beatrice had announced.
“But Grams… I am not a genuine witch, am I? I don’t have the special marking on my body… I am blemish free.” Narnia insisted.
“That my dear is because you were born out of my daughter’s indiscretion in 1889 when she rescued the captain of the doomed Clan McKenzie… she remained a mere mortal after she tied the knot with the man. They both died in quick succession leaving you, an infant at the mercy of nature’s fury. Fortunately, we got you here on time and you could retain some of the prowess you were endowed with at birth…”
“But grams, everyone loved mama. Glinese fairy mother said so” Narnia had argued.
“Yes, my child, no one hated your mom. She was a selfless fairy. Her soul was a sponge, absorbing all melancholy around her, yet when she married your father, and he soon passed, her life throbbed like a pustule all the time. It’s our celestial rule. Once you become a part of the human realm it’s the end of this world for you.”
“But grams, it’s 2012 and I love Raj…”
“Life in the human realm isn’t a bed of roses, Narnia…” Grams had warned. “…You will have no magical powers whatsoever. You will cease to become a half-witch. My dear, you have grown up engulfed with magic and Raj is a non-believer. How will you survive my dear?”
“I will grams, for love conquers all.”
The day she left Gordom for good, her Godmother, Minister Glinese gifted her a signet ring.
“My dear, this ring has magical powers but can be used only once…” Lisa said with a melancholic smile. “… and one more thing. If your turn your husband into a believer, you will get back your powers from this realm, so you can help needy humans till the time you live.”
Narnia, now Nita had loved her life with Raj who had been a wonderful husband and friend. She reveled in his love and rarely missed Gordom.
She sighed and turned the signet ring. A flash of light gushed in through the partly open window and fell on the painting. The light returned as suddenly as it arrived and the painting now portrayed her favorite story…about how her parents met. The melancholic brine… she submitted the entry.
Raj’s painting won the coveted Kala Ratna award and that night post the celebratory dinner, he said ecstatically, “Nita my darling, I don’t understand how and what transpired but I now believe, magic happens. My fingers seem to have got back their aptitude.”
Nita smiled seeing the signet ring glow once again!