Fiction: The Door

July 14, 2016 Fiction , POETRY / FICTION

By

Rinita Banerjee

 

 

Glazing in the yellowish mustard oil, the finely chopped onions now appeared drunk from the heat of the stove. They also carried the burden of sugar on them. Soon, the yogurt-ginger-and garlic-marinated chicken pieces would be added to them, and Nina would scatter them to wakefulness. Such delight had begun to nest in her heart when she had turned her head towards the main door. It was 6.46 on the oven clock.

 

An excerpt from Nina’s diary: I had seen it first in a film. A single door, alone, in the middle of two ivory-white walls on either side. It was a shot from the position of a man who stood facing it on the other side of the road; just before approaching it. There were no steps leading to it. It was not because it was alone that it stood out. Or was it? I think not. There was its color too: a cadmium red. I knew this red because I had used it on canvas before. Other scenes had followed, but I had rewound to return to that shot in the film time and time again, so struck I had been with the red door. It was not as if I had not seen a red door before; I had seen it elsewhere, multiple times – even while on my travels abroad. I remember seeing one on a day-long trip to Winchester. It had not stood out to me then. But this scene – the shot of a red door that lasted a few seconds at the most, amid a silence only to be broken into by the footsteps of the person who was going to knock at the door – had stood out. I remember wishing that the stillness be not interrupted, that the knocker on the door be not lifted and let loose. Lifted and let loose a couple of times in quick succession. The noise would have been most unwelcome. I remember wishing that the scene not lead to another and the red door stay immoveable. Like a corpse in a coffin, straight, hands in a certain position, immoveable. The door would not be icecold like the corpse of course, but I would be mad to expect something as wooden and inanimate as a door to have the same warmth as a soul that breathed, or as veins that throbbed and jerked – perhaps – when, now while, the red in it gushed ahead, and up and down, flowing the same way every day, incessantly. The same, every day…. Excerpt ends.

 

It was 6.46 on the oven clock. She had turned her head back to the cooker. It would soon be 7 by the time the chicken pieces would cook slowly. Then Nina would add the green chillies, and salt, and the cooker would let out the steam in so many whistles, and then an hour later, an hour would have passed, and so on.

No one had knocked on the white door to Nina’s house.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Rinita Banerjee

Rinita Banerjee recently graduated with a Masters in English (British and American Literature) from the North Carolina State University, North Carolina, in the US. Currently a freelance content-writer with a SEO technology company, for over four years she was an editor with a reputed academic publishing house back in India. She also has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Lady Shri Ram College for Women, University of Delhi. Rinita likes to write fiction, memoirs, and is keen on translating her grandfather’s novels into English one day. She is interested in the self, food, remembering, journeys and words.

4 Comments

  1. Iliena Bosu October 14, at 03:47

    I read The Door and just loved it. I am in awe of the way you use words to create imagery. Some writers keep rambling about one simple thing and they fail to hold on to readers' interest until they get to the point. And when they do, it is so underwhelming. But you say so much in so little words. The way you have talked about each element in the story is beautiful. "Glazing in the yellowish mustard oil, the finely chopped onions now appeared drunk from the heat of the stove. They also carried the burden of sugar on them." "but I would be mad to expect something as wooden and inanimate as a door to have the same warmth as a soul that breathed..." WOW! Also, I too am in awe of the red door and keen to know what is behind it without disturbing the silence that surrounds the door. :) I feel that both Nina and the doors are relatable characters.

    Reply
  2. Sharon Stauffer July 27, at 15:33

    I enjoyed this story immensely - the scenes were painted vividly and carried me away to the place where the red door stood. Looking forward to reading more!

    Reply
  3. Sugandha Singh July 16, at 00:01

    Its quite a good read. Looking forward for more articles by this author.

    Reply

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