Part 2 (Part one of the story is here)
Concluding the battle after 22 years
“General, You seem to be alright now. You are in the golden years of your age. Tell me honestly, do you like living a retired, sedentary life with an old man?”
The statement came as a surprise to Tataya Khan. He took no time in understanding the import of the statement.
Old man continued “I too was a soldier and I know how can sedentary life affect the entire life of a soldier. I, too was forced….to live..here because of….well..” He stopped abruptly then veered his conversation “… and I too started enjoying the easy life of a civilian. I too liked conversing with my mind, enjoying the remoteness of this place and a relaxed life, unmonitored by anybody. Soon, I lost the vigor and bravery. My body too enervated. I just wanted to rest sufficiently, just for a month, before I headed to the city and rejoin army. But it made my body taut and I developed a strange dread towards army life. I started despising The same discipline that I respected. For making a living I became a small time trader and here I am today, an old, frail man who is a naught to his country!”
Tataya Khan was carefully listening to the old man. Not only listening to him but also foreseeing his own future. Frailty? Weakness? The brave soldier who had subdued a tiger bare fisted will become frail? Never. Tataya Khan realized that what old man was saying was right.
Tataya Khan too had started relishing this carefree life that did not require him to be answerable to anybody. He was enjoying the comforts of sedentary life and was apparently losing his vigor. He pictured himself as a frail old man good for nothing and living aimlessly. The thought shuddered the brave soldier. “No I don’t want to live a vegetated life not at all, not in this birth, Never!” He thought and looked at his chest that had now reasonably healed.
There was almost no pain at all. It also reminded him that he was bare chest. No, barebacked instead. Because he had taken a pledge. Tataya Khan was walking with the old man but his mind was meandering in another terrain till he saw a thing who was moving with fast pace not very far from them. As Tataya Khan recognized the figure his blood boiled. He finally got the chance to settle scores. Not at a far distant was moving that weirdo because of whom Tataya Khan could not fulfill his long cherished ambition. All his laxity melted instantly with the heat of anger and Tataya Khan ran with an agility of an authentic soldier. The soldier was at work and offender wasn’t far. The desert was to witness another magnanimous battle between a beast and the brave. The old man stopped in his track. More than being worried about the outcome he was happy that at last Tataya Khan succeeded in regaining his vigor.
The pace of that weird creature was unusually fast. But Tataya Khan was not in the mood of submission. In his heydays he had many times raced with Cheetah and barring a few initial attempts, had never been defeated. In fact 2-3 time he even succeeded in defeating the Cheetah. His present gait an stance was no different.
The way he ran, it seemed that Tataya Khan was competing with the wind. His entire figure hazed just like a freshly released arrow. This time around he wanted to nab the weirdo at any cost. He wanted to teach him the lesson. He did not want to leave any stone unturned now. With what skills was he able to run so fast on the desert sand. It seems that many times the techniques are shaped not by the nature but by the requirements. He managed to go very near to that prehistoric man. There was a distance of only 20 meters when…
Destiny, again. A camel family was crossing the road preventing Tataya Khan from going further. In his perfect health he would have jumped over the camels without a second thought but now he had weaken and the fast pace had already sapped him. The weirdo hadn’t spotted him but with his fast pace he went away while Tataya Khan stood there looking at him. “Old man is right, indeed! A soldier is like a tool that would be rusted without use. Too much of relaxation. Now I put my body to serious work.” The soldier was back.
For six months he went through rigorous training that was further toughened by the hardships of desert. The size months seemed as long as six years. However the next six months passed quite quickly. As one year passed so did the another. Now, it had been 12 years that he had been living in the desert. The old man grew older but could still walk on his own. Even Tataya Khan’s dark black hair had grayed. But his vigor remained He was still living with the same objective and yes he still remained bare backed.
But he did not want to delay anymore. The hair had already started telling his age what of the age decided to affect his muscles. No, he did not want to lose his strength before his accounts were settled. So, for last few days Tataya khan would spend the entire days in far regions of the desert, finding the one with whom he wanted to settle the scores. Finally one day…
As he was keeping an eye sitting behind a cactus to catch the sight of the weirdo for last one hour he was tired so decided to leave. But as he stood up he saw the big rock at a distance of 20 meters. When Tataya khan took the shelter of cactus he saw the rock and now it had been moved. Moved? not even 10 people could move the rock together. And, not so swiftly. Tataya Khan was here not even for half an hour. He was still thinking who could have done than when he saw that huge rock coming towards him from a distance. Tataya Khan jumped several meters up before landing down on the stone, it was a respite for him to realize that he was on the rock rather than other way round. He sighed with relief but as he saw in the directing where it came from he became enraged and issued a roar that could be heard from a far distance. The offender was back.
He wasted no time in jumping on him but the weirdo sifted to the other side swift and Tataya Khan landed on desert sand. The weirdo repeated his favorite strategy and caught hold of Tataya Khan legs. But Tataya Khan was already cautions so even before he old swing Tataya khan in the air the soldier clung on to his huge arm. He started kicking him in the arms. It did not hurt the weirdo but it became inconvenient for him to move the area, so he put Tataya Khan down. As soon as he did Tataya Khan issued a blow on his eyes. The infuriated weirdo reversed him and put him into the sane, upside down. He reversed Tataya Khan and put him inside the soil his entire body. Tataya Khan could not even shake his land and then suddenly he felt someone taking him out of the sand. As Tataya Khan came out he saw that same kind old man. The incident diverted the attention of weirdo and he was almost ready to wound him but even before that a sharp arrow entered the weirdo’s body and he writhed in pain. Tataya Khan wasted no time and sprinkled dust in his eyes. The weirdo subdued and Tataya Khan put his knife instead his nose and the giant could not understand anything within a fee moment the giants eras had ended.
Tataya Khan roared in happiness as the old man covered Ttaya;s Back. He had finally won the battle. But how unceremoniously. Wit an hour the battle concluded. He wasn’t satisfied but at least was please he had settled the scores/