Author Kshitij Shokeen

Category Original Fiction

Abstract A heartwarming tale about an indulgent child and his grandfather, who gets around the philosophy of life through a beautiful metaphor

Kumar took her by her hand, with a jerk, Revathi threw his hand from her wrists. This scene could not escape the sight of the vice principal who came with her long steps with extreme aggression, pulled Kumar’s feminine hands turning him around and slapped him with a clap that thundered the entire ground and the corridor against it.
“Is it how you treat your friends from your own class? Go to your class I’ll call your parents!” he went straight to the classroom, with fans and lights switched off, he sat down on the first bench.
What better environment could have he got in the class, with everyone from the class being busy playing outside, utilizing their sports period and he getting the much-needed solitude to brim his eyes up after that dreadful humiliation.
His shame shifted to fear as soon he thought of his Dau to get the phone call from the vice principal. He pulled out a page from his bag and started writing – “Dau, I am sorry, I was just asking her to come with me but she persisted to stay in the ground because Parv asked him to. But I am her best friend Dau. She should have listened to me, no? I will never call her my best friend ever. Dau please don’t think wrong about me, you won’t, right? I am sorry Dau.”
The vice principal went to her office, got the contact of Kumar’s grandpa, and called him. She believed boys and girls should ideally be kept in seclusion from each other from an early age.
With every ringing bell she was forming a more crisp and uglier version of what she saw.
When the period changed, Kumar went out, and just crossed the vice principal’s office to get a glimpse of her. She was standing with a hand on her desk and the phone in the other hand. Kumar felt like his guts were overfed with something which he could not bear.
For Kumar, the damage had been done. Kumar's high self esteem and pride about himself had shattered. He was now certain that he could do possibly nothing to reverse it all and now his only concern was to go home and confront his fate. Whatever it was.
He did not want to push this confrontation any further. He wanted this whole thing to happen and settle as soon as possible. As the last bell rang, he walked for his home. His feet were afraid to gather the strength to walk faster, but his thoughts wanted this to get over as soon as possible. The sun shined extraordinarily that day.
On reaching his home, Kumar did not remove his shoes that day, neither did he throw his bags off and he straight away went to his Dau's room.
Kumar saw his Dau with his old sitar he rarely touched.
"Kumar? Go get some water, you're burning. You came home running?"
"No… Dau… I didn't.
"What are you doing Dau?"
"Oh… nothing great… I was just tightening up these strings of this old chap of mine. "Tell me if it sounds better."
Dau tightened the first string. And as the tightening of the string escalated the musical note up, Kumar felt nice.
"Take it further up Dau! Make it very fine!
"make it higher!"
Kumar was surprised every time the note went up, and Dau was happy to see him amused. Dau kept on tightening the string. Kumar kept on insisting him to tighten it further. As the note touched its highest pitch, the string strung into two with a noise that was not at all musical.
Dau bursted into laughter, "that's why they say, 'never tighten a string beyond its strength.' "Because… it might break."
Kumar just went and hugged his grandpa.
The next day in his school, the vice principal called him again and said, "Kumar, what happened yesterday should never happen again. I have not called at your home. But next time I will for sure."