Jason Cage - Chapter 2

Jason Cage - Chapter 2

Embraced by the darkness, Jason sat at the high window as the third day of the week crept to be the fourth. His weight rested on the muddy wall. The mist kept on rolling, indifferent to time. Jason mildly hoped to witness that pure moment when the snow would begin to fill the enormous landscape in front of him on that moonless night. Earlier in the evening, the heavens gave him some hope by shedding a few flakes but then nothing more. The looming snowfall was tempting him with its own sweet time. He was ready to wait.
The room was illuminated by a single lantern resting near his study desk. Surrounded by a glass case, the flame flickered steadily. On most nights, Jason admired the dim reflection of objects in the room on the semi brick wall and tonight was one of those nights. He lowered the flame further. Without the sliver of light, the window only reflected what was beyond. He had a clear view of the night beyond the panes. If only, he could see how his life was going to change, just as clearly as he was able to see the valley beneath his shadow. If only.
In the Monastery of Phugtal Ghompa, Jason was more a guest and less a monk. He had vast swathes of time at his disposal but then time takes a lot of time to reveal its true intent. Jason was waiting that how it would unravel for him.
The monastery overlooked the Lingti Tsarap River and a massive canyon. A rope bridge swung at a distance over the river. Jason thought of reaching out and walking on that bridge when the snow would fall. But neither the snow arrived nor the perfect moment.
Situated on a sheer cliff face in Ladakh, the monastery rested on a foundation of twigs and mud at a height of over 3,800 meters. The honeycombed structure was home to some sixty monks who stayed, prayed, read and served in those small composites.
That night the primeval forests that wrapped the rising slopes were themselves cloaked in darkness. From the third-floor window, Jason could see only part of the deep front yard and the blacktop lane that cleaved it. Four small lantern posts converged light in round pale pools.
Jason’s room was in the northwest wing of the abbey. The ground floor featured prayer rooms. Monk rooms occupied the higher and the highest floors. As he watched in anticipation of the storm, a ray of white light drifted across the yard through the lantern light.
The monastery had only one creature that wasn’t a monk or a guest. An outsized cat. Larger than an average homely one yet sharper for any walking piece of meat. A mannish feline. Entirely white who moved with the grace of fog. Jason named him Don but never called him aloud and never in front of anyone else.
The reason for this, he gave to himself was something like staying as discreetly as one could and because Don was his only permanent companion from childhood.
The real reason was that Jason was the only one who could see Don.

Read Chapter 1 here.
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