Arun is a trained diver. One day, when he is in trouble while diving, will an angel come to his rescue?
Arun loved diving…Diving had always been one of his greatest passions ever since he had completed the diving course in the Andaman and Nicobar islands. He could easily spend hours in the sea, without a care in the world. It was one of his most favourite hobbies of all time – the others were reading and swimming.
As the summer descended, Arun knew how he would keep himself busy. He was fortunate to live on Havelock Island due to his parents running a restaurant there. Life was great and he had no complaints. School kept him busy and the rest of the day went playing with his pets on the beach and meeting all the interesting people who frequented the restaurant.
One warm summer day, the weather was just perfect with the right amount of breeze. As he walked towards the beach, he could feel how calm and silent everything around him was – the stillness in the air was soothing. The sound of the waves crashing against the rocks was the only thing he could hear, and that exact sound was like music to his ears. He was so attuned to the sounds of the ocean.
Before he went into the water, he stood for a minute on the beach and soaked in the view. Arun wanted to admire the natural beauty in front of him. He never got tired of gazing at this phenomenal sight. He noticed the stunning horizon, the way the sky and the sea were colliding and making an incredible version of shining blue interwoven colours. He knew at once that this was an unusual day. Something was special about this one.
With his diving suit on, Arun moved slowly between the small waves, focusing himself on the bottom of the sea.
He loved the way the sea was keeping him calm, clearing his mind, making him forget about everything for a while.
The seabed was even more beautiful that day. It was interesting to see every movement of the sea creatures, little colourful fish swimming and following each other around, octopuses trying to hide under rocks, elegant squids flowing nearby…Every moment was breath-taking.
Arun usually forgot about time at such moments but he always kept a sharp eye on his scuba tank. He knew he couldn’t play the fool under-water even though the scenes under-water mesmerised him completely. He would often raise his head and look around to see if there were other divers around or any predatory fish. A good diver is always on guard.
Somehow, today he had a feeling that he was being watched. Even though he found no other divers in the vicinity, he felt eyes on his back. It was a weird, tingling feeling. But soon, the beautiful corals and algae made him forget all else.
Soon it was time for Arun to resurface and get back home. He had a curfew and had to be back on time for his studies. That was an unwritten rule and he hardly ever broke it.
Suddenly, he felt a cold tingling through his body, like he had stepped inside a freezer…He wasn’t supposed to get cold, he had a diving suit on, after all. Something was wrong…his legs were starting to freeze…he couldn’t even feel them anymore. Arun tried to calm his mind and think through what may have occurred.
It was one of those things that happen, within seconds and without any explanation – the unexplained, the unknown, that terrifying feeling. His heart started beating faster when he realized that the cold chills had started moving through his whole body.
He wanted to get back to the surface, so he started swimming upwards. But no matter how hard he tried to swim, he wasn’t able to move. Panic and fear started to take over with each passing minute. The air in his tank was also reaching low levels. He glanced around to see if there were any divers around so that he could call for help.
Confused and scared, he still couldn’t believe what was happening to him. Something like this had never happened to him before. It was weird, terrifying and horrible. He didn’t know what to do anymore, but he still did remember to turn on his back and start to swim backwards. He could make out from the light falling on the surface that the sun was starting to set.
He could feel himself drifting into a far off space…Dark clouds seemed to be descending on him and he could see shadows and silhouettes fading in the background and then he felt as if he was losing consciousness. Out of the blue, a white light streamed in and he could feel the glow shining a path in front of him. The water seemed crystal clear and he could hear the sound of the waves gently lapping against something. At that very moment, something moved out of the light and the haze cleared showing him an apparition.
It seemed more like a person and as the light cleared he noticed it was a woman. She was beautiful and seemed to be floating his way. He could barely open his eyes but Arun suddenly felt at peace and the chill from his body vanished. The apparition was trying to save him as he felt himself gliding along with her. He could feel the air pushing into his lungs and his body responding to movement and sensation. As they broke through the water and bobbed up to the surface, Arun felt incredible. He couldn’t fathom what had just happened but he knew in his heart that he had just witnessed a miracle. There were so many questions that he wanted to ask as he lay on the beach, looking at the night sky and the twinkling stars.
The sea was calm again and the air still but he could feel the woman’s eyes on him. She never said a word but her eyes were piercing and she kept a close watch on him. Slowly Arun’s breathing returned to normal and he was able to sit up without a problem. My God! He was alive after that horrific ordeal. He couldn’t believe it and kept pinching himself.
There were many questions that were bothering him at this moment. Who was that woman? The one that saved him from everything? Even though he was still in shock, there was one thought that was running through his mind. He wanted to find out the answers from her as soon as possible. Her beauty had completely blinded him and also the way she had saved him…there was no doubt that she was a true diva. He wanted answers to everything of course.
As he turned to look at her he suddenly realised that she had disappeared. Arun quickly jumped up and started walking around the beach with the thought of finding her. He could barely walk due to his weakness but he still wanted to find her. Far away, on the big sea rocks, he noticed her standing peacefully. He could make out her silhouette as she was shimmering and glowing.
“Wait!” he had yelled and then sprinted towards her. As he moved closer to her, she seemed to fade away. One minute she was there and the next she was gone. He suddenly heard footsteps and turned around to see if it was her but it was his parents walking towards him. They looked anxious and worried. They let out a gasp when they saw him standing looking all washed out and bruised.
“Where were you? Oh God…we were so worried about you…What are you doing here? Are you okay?” asked his mother breathlessly.
“Yes, I’m fine”, he nodded slowly. “I don’t know what happened. It’s a long story. I was just coming home. I am so sorry for worrying you all”
“Let’s go then, but you look really pale, though. Are you sure you’re okay? You have cuts and bruises. What happened while diving?” asked Arun’s father.
“Yes, I’m okay. I’ll tell you the whole story.”
The three of them started walking back towards their home moving through the paths made in the coconut groves. Suddenly, he turned around and looked towards the beach and as far as his eyes could see on the horizon.
Arun quietly whispered a “Thank you” and said a small prayer. He was thankful for being saved and for going through such an incredible experience. He would never forget this in his entire life.
For a long time after the incident, Arun tried to look, research and investigate as to what had happened to him. There were a million explanations, stories and legends that told him all sorts of things but there were never any real answers or any sort of proof to verify the mystery. At times, he sat near the same rocks waiting for her…hoping she would make an appearance but that never happened.
There was not a day that went by without Arun thanking his guardian angel. He knew he had been very lucky indeed.
- Attuned: familiar
- Silhouettes: shapes
- Apparition: vision