Winter Departs

She pulled the jacket closer and tighter around herself and moved ahead. With every step she took, her boots squished deeper into the thick snow, making it difficult for her to walk. Her palms, bare of the gloves, had turned into marble. She buried them deep into the pockets of her jacket, attempting to revive them back. After almost every 10 steps, she stopped and shook the snow off herself which tended to settle on her head and shoulders.

What was she doing here? The weather channel had clearly predicted a blizzard and warnings had been sent out to everyone to stay indoors. So what was she doing out here today?

She looked at the white desert that lay in front of her. There was a stark blankness all around. The road that once there was, was no more visible. But yet she kept moving. She didn’t need to know where the road was. It was the same path that she had traced a million times before. She could have walked on it with blindfolded eyes.
She kept moving, slowly, counting each step. The cold that had seeped right into the core of her bones were hindering her movement, but yet, she fought on and moved on.

The cold wasn’t the only thing that was slowing her tread. The questions that were buzzing inside her head were no less. If the cold outside was on a mission to freeze her blood, the questions inside her were the leeches that were feeding on it.

“This is stupid, Aggie” a voice broke into her ear. She froze in the place where she stood. No it wasn’t the chill of the snowstorm. It was the voice. She slowly turned, trying to look for the source of the voice. Nothing. No one.

A short chuckle broke out from her, and she turned again to continue her journey. And right there, right in front of her, she stood.

She herself.

It was like looking into the mirror. The same nose, the same hair, the same lips. Everything was the same, but the eyes. The eyes that she was looking into now. There was something startlingly different about those eyes, she could not place what, but they were. They were cryptic, they held a look which she was trying hard to decipher, and was failing. They seemed to held her and bound her.

“What are you?” she thought, and immediately she saw the lips of the girl in front curve into a smile. “Go back Aggie.” came the voice again. The lips were still turned in a smile, they hadn’t moved but then from where did the voice came?

She scrunched her brows, and a look of confusion spread across her face.

What is happening? Is this some kind of hallucination? She thought she is turning insane. She closed her eyes hard, assuming that may be its the snow blindness or some kind of snow mirage. But when she opened her eyes, she was still there with those same cryptic eyes, still smiling.

“This is no hallucination, Aggie, and no you are not insane. But now you have to stop. Enough it is already.” Caught by the look in her eyes. Her own eyes, she stood there before herself, motionless. And the voice, continued to echo in her ear.

“Its time to go back, Aggie. Its time to go home. Everything will be fine. All you need to do is trust yourself.”

“So turn around now.”

And as if held my some invisible arms she was shaken from her position and flung around.

“Ma’am, are these yours?” There stood a man holding a pair of reading glasses, waving them in front of her eyes.

She found herself standing in the middle of a jogging track in her tracks and jacket. Her headphones were dangling around her neck, and faint music was emanating from it. She looked at the man in front of her.

“Are these yours?” the man repeated his question. She shook her head. The man nodded and moved ahead. She looked at her wrist – 7.30 am, the watch said. She could feel the perspiration trickling down her back. It was mid April, and the morning was as usual a bright and cheerful one. But somehow she felt as if she had just returned from a winter.

Exasperated, she drew her hands to her forehead where she was greeted by the shock of ice cold fingers. She pulled them away in a quick movement and stared down at them. They were pale and hard as marble. 

But just the next second, the warmth returned to them. She could feel the blood rushing to her finger tips. A faint smile started to break on her lips. She looked around the park and filled her lungs with the warm summer air, and she started on her way back home.

PS: Please help me with suggestions and corrections to make it better.