By Calis Cheah
The beginning of life.
A cycle spinning on and on
Until it dwindles ever so slowly
Into the end that is death.
Life and death...
The inevitable wheel of mortality
With an orbit mapped and set.
A fate that man is meant to endure
Since the dawn of time.
How a infant wails
When it comes forth from the womb
As if in protest against its destiny.
I had the chance to do the same...
Fei sat by the only window by the front door, his small face pressed so near the pane that with each breath the little boy took, the glass ended up misted by the water vapor. Rubbing at the damp spot on the window for the myriad time with the sleeve of his shirt, the corners of his mouth started curving down into a pout. The sun had already begun its retreat with the approach of the coming night, its golden glory diminishing from the land. Soon the word outside would be dark with only the wan white light of the moon and distance stars marring the perfect black sky.
" Fei? Dinner is already. Do you want to eat now? You barely touched your food in the afternoon, " the gentle voice of his mother, Karen, called from the kitchen.
" I want to wait for Father. "
" Hmm, Kahn is late. He must have been held back by work again. Why don't you eat first? I'll save the soup so you can drink it with your father when he comes home, " Karen stood at the threshold between the kitchen and the living room, her brown eyes watching the small back beside the door.
" Father said he'll be back in time for dinner, " the tone of her four year old son was a touch petulant.
Like father, like son... Fei is just as stubborn as his father. Shaking her head, Karen smiled as she thought about the similarity between her husband and son. Knowing full well that Fei would not budge an inch from his seat by the window unless his father reaches home, Karen headed back to the kitchen to stir up the fire again. She busied around, putting the food to heat so that at least there would be warm food when Kahn returned.
Karen had long gotten used to her husband's frequent comings and goings. It was an integral part of his work even though she was not sure what exactly it was that he did. All he ever told her was that he was in service to Queen Zephyr, the ruler of Shevat. Kahn was usually away from home for stretches of time but she did not begrudge him for his absence. Because he always made it up to her and Fei when he was home and that was all that mattered to her. It had been harder before Fei was born and Karen had really felt the pain of loneliness then whenever Kahn had to leave. Her son's birth was like a gift from god and Karen was really grateful that she had him for company.
Picking up a raisin muffin from the batch she had baked in the afternoon for tomorrow's breakfast, Karen walked over to where Fei was sitting and waved the tasty morsel in front of his nose temptingly. She had to resist the urge to laugh when Fei practically snatched the treat from her hand. Resting a hand on his shoulder, her eyes grazed at the fast approaching twilight. Perceptibly, she caught sight of a distance figure upon the horizon.
" Mother! Look! "
Her lips broke into a smile as she watched Fei flew out of the door, running as fast as his little legs could carry him. The raisin muffin felling half-eaten onto the floor in his excitement. In a more sedate fashion, Karen strolled through the open door to greet the man whose neck Fei hanged from.
Her husband had come home.