Death by Laughter

A feverish and delirious man walked into Ram Mandir. He was a stout looking shabby young fellow with a pointed nose, unkempt hair and wore a black overcoat which was rather shredded here and darned there. He wore a scarf around his neck; one could see it was a woolen scarf with all the hues of a rainbow. It was unusual for anyone to dress like that since it was summer but given that summer can be sometimes be deceptive with the rain and the its ensuing cold in Kathmandu, this man apparently looked like he held on to his attire regardless. He assumed a grim countenance, his brown eyes shallow and dark circles contrasted to his pallid and freckled skin. He held in his hands, Thus Spake Zarathustra.

He walked clumsily, treading towards the priest who had merely finished his morning ritual and worship. The priest who wore a yellow dhoti and a holy thread diagonally across his skinny body lifted his hands and thrust forth water in the direction of the main temple and he did it three times. It was like the priest himself was rinsing the very soul of Rama with the water from an oblong water pot.

Approaching the priest, the man began, “Hey priest, did you worship my god?”.

Taken aback and quite surprised the responded reluctantly, “Why yes, I have paid my homage to all gods here”, he cleared his throat and put up with a smile while he pushed up his round spectacles which had sunk by the tip of his Tinker bell-like nose.

“But, my god? Have you?” insisted the man. Raising his slender black eyebrows and biting his upper lips, the priest inquisitively asked, “Well, that depends upon whom you have faith in?”

The strange man snarled “Me of course” and imperatively said, “I want you to build a sculpture of me and place it somewhere inside this temple’ now thoughtfully and stuttering, ‘I……I don’t know, maybe…..maybe there”, pointing out to a block of stone were a beggar was tranquilly still asleep. ‘Yes, Yes there’ he added with some resolve now.

Totally perplexed and startled, the priest, after some moments of silence said, “But, why…..would you deserve to be depicted through a statue?” And the strange man before the inquiry could finish very joyously and rapidly answered back, “Why, I declare myself god, but you may ask why I would be so audacious to assert myself of such divinity? Come on ask me why, ask me now”, he was already in hysterics.

The priest, to avoid any confrontation or disagreement with the strange man, for he had already decided that the poor invalid could only have been mad, asked, very calmly, “why would you declare yourself to be a god?” The man husky and stridently replied, “the gods are dead…..they laughed themselves to death”.

The priest who had never read Nietzsche or had ever come across such ridiculous statement was completely startled. He gaped and ironically stood there like a statue which had seen the very eyes of Medusa, completely bizarre and horrid and in the least enchanted.

And to add fuel to fire the strange man added restlessly, fanatically and swiftly, “Well, I guess one of the gods must have declared himself to be the superior one and all of them laughed and laughed and died, I don’t suppose that wold be a pleasant death huh, death by laughter”. He began to laugh euphorically and mockingly at the priest.

The priest, who by now was panting and sweltering at the nonsense and vilification expressed by a total stranger upon god, his god, the divine lord who hadn’t surely marooned us in this dark times, the hope for salvation from this incessant evil and immoral world.  Surely the gods weren’t dead for they weren’t allowed to be one. It would be ungodly for even the gods to have forsaken us…..or have they? The priest for the first time in his life began to marvel at the existence of his faith. He surely didn’t get the gist of the man’s mockery but it was doubt that was realized. Now, the priest stooped low and touched the flowers that were being dispersed by a gust of wind that had suddenly transpired. He picked up a sunflower that was probably trampled and kicked unknowingly many times by the devotees. He sniffed it and gave it a faint smile.

A sudden paroxysm of melancholy grasped the priest and started to strangle him with its dark palms. He felt breathless while the sweltering was incessant. He could literally feel big lumps of sweat descend his nape and through his spine. His lips felt dry and he began hearing ocean waves clash against huge and dogged rocks that had stood the test of times.  He nonchalantly looked at the strange man but the invalid was already leaving through the narrow wooden exit yet he could still be seen laughing derisively. The mad man clearly meant to play a prank on the priest but the priest commenced having his own enlightenment.

The priest who was unable to consent to this new and naïve experience began to laugh hysterically. For a week the priest was mirthful. Sometimes he was in a spasm of laughter and sometimes it was mere masquerading.  A week later the priest died of laughter.

The Mona Lisa Smile

While the dawn commenced, Hari was still staring at the portrait of Mona Lisa which his grandmother had installed in her bedroom. His grandmother had passed away a month ago. Hari had come to take back the articles his grandmother had left behind in this rented apartment. Only a year ago, Hari had visited her which was the last time unfortunately for him to have seen her in all her glory. She was wise but she was humble. “Only because I am slow makes me appear wise”, she used to joke. She was sprightly and had her way with the words, rhetoric yet lucid, her precious smile stretched wide enough to cause Hari into a spiritual delirium. She had made Hari mount a portrait of Mona Lisa adjacent to the window of the room and she sat in her bed which lay exactly opposite to that wall where the famous lady was installed. ‘She said, “Do you know why I have Madame Lisa’s portrait done?” No grandmother, Hari inquired, ‘Because, your grandfather married me since I looked just like her, in earnest, those were the days, child’, then they looked into each other’s eyes and had a nice heartily laugh.’   Now, after a sleepless diminutive night, Hari was in deep slumber of thoughts, he gaped.

He had been staring into the portrait since yesterday, and it was not only Madame Lisa he was observing but he saw a splendid motion picture in his imagination which served vividly and the manifestation was a revelation! Only providence could induce such bizarre yet truthful rationale. Hari was in spiritual delirium yet he appeared as calm as a rock. He felt like he saw his grandmother’s apparition assume a wide and wise smile. Hari was frenzied profoundly in his soul.

Now, the sun was rising, its rays gradually began to consume the portrait and just like that Hari was also consumed in impulsive hysterical monologue. With jerking legs, he stood up and began to walk around the room at random.  ‘How could it be? Such atrocity, how dreadful of him, I cannot live now. My whole existence questioned, it cannot be’, began to roar Hari and simultaneously he began to pull his hair and covered his face like he was in shame, Hari’s ecstatic movements were more expressive of his rational state. He was shouting around the room like a drunken man who was robbed of his desire to live.  Suddenly, Hari threw a vase into the mirror which was hung in the tainted wall adjacent to the door.  The mirror shattered in undesirable pieces.

With treading steps, Hari who sweltered out of the delirious engagement, stooped to pick up the shattered pieces of the glass but was suddenly taken aback when he saw his grandmother with a faint smile in that particular piece which he had picked up. He dropped the mirror in sheer horror and crawled back towards the wall. He shuddered from his very spine. He was holding on the ledge of the window and thought about jumping out….then suddenly she spoke. ‘Why, my child, what seems to be the problem’, said she in her gracious manner as always. Hari muttered, ‘but ….but….you are…..no…..grandmother, please let this be a dream.

‘Pick me up child, I was sent to make you believe’, the grandmother said.

At this, Hari started to quiver and his lips twisted and fearfully answered, “Of what? Believe in what?”

‘In humanity of course, what did you think’?

Sent by whom, I don’t understand…..why I think I am dreaming and I quite know it’s my mind playing games with me….you are the sleepless phantom’, Hari said.

“It doesn’t matter what I am…..but what purpose I am to deliver”, answered back the grandmother from inside the broken piece of mirror.  There was a noise of silence for a while such that the flapping sound that the eyelashes made when he winked at random and obviously of fear, Hari thought he could hear such a ridiculous sound.  It was only providence which could conjure such a bizarre event.

And now timidly yet resolutely Hari picked up the piece of glass from which his grandmother was reverently talking to him. His hands shook and the sweat began to exude heavily but regaining some faith in his love for the dead old woman he sat down in the bed while his legs didn’t cease to jolt. Hari stuttered, ‘the pur-pose’ and stared at the glass piece for some while as silence grew. The grandmother slowly drew a smile and spoke, ‘your heart is in dark, why do you think the portrait is a depiction of the  human  predicament, such thinking serves no purpose….I think the portrait is merely a masterpiece of art and nothing more…..the art is what it is and nothing more’.  At this Hari raised his eyebrows and bit his lips. He then drew a deep breath and started, ‘ the old master knew well I think, such divine work shouldn’t be allowed for eye sighting  and such dread that manifestation of  our state-the human state should be merely taken for an art- confound you!’.

‘Since I knew the existence of the world famous Mona Lisa I never cared to look into the portrait’ paced Hari and nearly out of breath ‘I now have observed the reality and you of all people want to rob me of this revelation’ he was panting now.  ‘The reality is what you desire child’, replied the grandmother and slowly speaking said, ‘you see it’s like us’, Hari indifferently blurted, ‘Us?’.  ‘Yes, just like us’.  The apparition disappeared.

Hari sat there is the bed all confused. He wanted to believe that ‘such a divine portrait depicted the absolute truth- that we were disillusioned at our whole existence and we live our life like we are immortals and forget that when we were born our death was born with us too and then just like that we desire….all the oddities life can offer and upon deliverance we want more, the Sisyphean struggle. Such desires and lust leave us nowhere but in the hands of suffering, the consequence which we created and which we refute. For what do we refute such heartbreak? For, we are disillusioned. All of us’.  And he thought again, ‘what do I desire? The reality, the illusion or the revelation’.

 

The Mistaken Doctor

A long time ago when Jean Paul Baalayar was still a student, youthful, lively, a vernal soul yet abrasive. He was just another rudimental and proud man who saw the world full of possibilities. It is only time that makes a boy into a man and only the harshness of privation which brings enough grief to conjure a man to realize his destiny. Baalayar had merely turned into a man.

Having been apprenticed to a senior doctor of a public hospital, Baalayar had also undertaken a study to comprehend the behavior and cognition of people with anxiety disorders. Baalayar himself was quite a neurotic but he had his ways which were peculiar yet acceptable. And here he was, young and full of potential, a remarkably fortified soul yet bashful.

The hospital was a mediocre public institution, nothing peculiar, dull and silent like a graveyard however, better than other governmental services in the city of K_____. There were three rooms and a dormitory altogether. The patients were housed at the dorm, forty beds. While there was a pharmacy and two remaining rooms served as a clinic. Jean Paul Baalayar would regularly arrive at the hospital and get himself comfortable at the waiting room with patients.  It was an unwavering and dull routine. He was absolutely stanched to complete this investigation which he had undertaken as a requirement of his curriculum.

One Tuesday afternoon, Baalayar reached the hospital as usual and sat on the bench, jerking his legs when a superintendent who was walking towards the doctor’s room faintly smiled at Baalayar and came to shake his hand.  It was a friendly gesture.  He had barely conversed with him since his apprenticeship but each day they used to smile at each other as an amicable gesture. However, this particular day, when the doctor was to arrive late and Baalayar himself was experiencing periodical twinges in his chest while he jerked constantly, the superintendent greeted him benevolently and arranged for the room to be served at his disposal till the doctor was to arrive.

It was nothing remarkable at the pleasant gesture of this person whom Baalayar barely knew but such an idea to wait comfortably for the doctor was more than amicable gesture to him, while, he couldn’t say no for an answer , Baalayar was taken aback. He couldn’t afford to be discourteous, his intrinsic bashful idiosyncrasy. So, with a broad pretentious smile at this face he unobtrusively went to the doctor’s room and sat in a rather comfortable chair and after a while tea was served which he thankfully accepted as he requested the valet-nurse to send his regards to the superintendent.

Baalayar sat in a red chair, rather comfortable than the wooden benches of the waiting room and he ruminated, about the pointless manifestations of his swerving mind which only envisaged him with the prosaicness of the senseless thoughts. The more he waited, more he felt like a prostitute, waiting for a customer. But, why, thought Baalayar would I feel as a harlot. Oh, my mind! It must be playing games with me. Such an incongruous thought!  The thought didn’t subside. A palette of thoughts transcended into his fat and coarse brain. He felt a twitching of his heart and he perspired while a myriad of bizarre sensations leveled his soul. He felt for a while he was having a seizure. He lifted both his hands and pressed it against his temples with all his drive. He felt his brain swerving against the skull and his neck; he thought he tasted his slimy brain. He felt a choking sensation and there was something in his throat he couldn’t clear. He tried to cough but he felt empty of air to breathe out. His to and fro head suddenly felt a free-fall and he could see the blaze of absurd manifestations, some were flying high while some were aloft in the air, blue, red, white, green, gradually they faded away and a white light appeared, a speck of light and he clung to that white and he clung with all his might until he regained consciousness.

When he woke up he was still on the chair, he felt a cold breeze through his spine. He was wet in sweat and he thought he heard loud voices outside. He looked at his watch; it was already 4’o clock.

He heard sounds, clamorous, rowdy, ‘Am I still inside my mind’, he commenced to take a few steps but his legs were stiff like a rock. He felt paralyzed yet with much resolution he tried to take a step, his legs jerked more. Suddenly his stomach gave way to a new predicament, he felt bilious, I better go to the toilet and throw up, thought he. But he couldn’t move an inch let alone go to the toilet. He stooped and scowled while his hand gently pressed his belly, ‘oh, getting mad at a mental hospital, its common I guess’, he raged. Suddenly the door flung open and the superintendent who was assumed a very nervous and sullen countenance came inside and began to stammer, ‘why, ___what’s__ become of you’, he jolted too. Having raised Baalayar on the chair, he felt the forehead with his palm. You are cold and sweaty. The superintendent drew out an unused and fresh white coat from the drawer of the doctor’s table and said, “Just wear this for a time being, I’ll call the nurse.” And when the superintendent was just about to leave, Baalayar with his feeble and husky voice asked, “Hey, what’s the noise?” oh, the patients getting anxious, he assumed a faint smile and went out. Neurotics being neurotic, he gagged.

He wanted air. He choked now and then. It had been half an hour since the superintendent had gone. The noise didn’t subside and sometimes he could hear the patients kicking the wooden chairs or the wall and the complaining was incessant. Why is the doctor so late today, wondered Baalayar. He usually arrives in time. After another fifteen minutes he now wanted to go home. But, what if the doctor came, well, it won’t matter anyways, I feel sick and how can I concentrate let alone be in this cold and nauseating room for another hour or so. I should probably go now. Baalayar became resolved. A paroxysm of drive flowed inside Baalayar, he was resolute and the sweet thought of home made him hate this place more. He suddenly got up, flung opened the door and got out to the waiting room where the patients were fervently waiting. A woman suddenly shrieked, “There he is, the doctor”.

Baalayar was startled. There was something remarkable in the way she shrieked, it was a shrill, a cold long expression which assumed the state of anger, hatred. It wasn’t just hatred; it was a squeal which endows the apparition, a pursuit, for something so desirable that the object of desire is certain to be doomed. Just like love, an endless desire, a journey into the unreachable bliss.  And there she was and her companions, scowling, offended, fixated, hateful and mostly fanatical. They were patients, the clinic’s patients. Most of all what they were was down to one communal emotion. Revenge, the purest emotion.

“Err, I am not a doctor”, Baalayar impulsively responded after observing their body language. Suddenly, the throng of patients, all at the same time took a step forward and it was now evident to Baalayar that he was the redeemer to these poor people. Being at the center of attention was not what Baalayar usually desired but today he had to address a crowd. He cleared his throat. Nervous and bashful, he reiterated, “I am also waiting for the doctor to arrive”, he jolted relentlessly. There was an unwavering silence.

They still stood there looking at him resolutely; he sensed they didn’t trust him. What more, he had to pass through this resentful horde of people with neurotic inclinations, across these angry, mistrustful and impulsive individuals who have been robbed of their patience.  ‘How anger brings unity to those who are enraged’ thought Baalayar. And with some courage Baalayar paced towards the exit. While he took those tense long steps he jolted, like a gust of wind jolts the leaves. He could see sunlight outside the door and he now desired for the warm embrace of the fat old sun. But midway through the waiting room, the woman who had earlier shrieked suddenly got hold of Baalayar’s arm and drew him some steps back. And thrusting him with all her might, she asked aggressively, “why, then do you wear the white coat”.  Baalayar was startled. He wasn’t sure what would be an appropriate answer. ‘Should I tell them I had a seizure, would they trust me, should I lie, but what should I say, oh! Where is the superintendent’, all these thoughts racked into Baalayar’s head, he gaped. Unable to answer the question in haste, he began, “I… I was… there was a light…”, what am I saying, what is there to say, Baalayar looked straight into the woman’s eye, he was exasperated surely, and very impulsively with his loud husky voice asserted, “who are you to demand an explanation from me”, he flung his arm against the woman’s hand which she was holding firmly. Her eyebrows shrank, she tried to get hold of his arm again, and Baalayar exclaimed, “Leave me alone, will you?” He turned back and paced towards the door. There was already a commotion. Somebody shouted, “He’s running away, don’t let him go, catch the doctor”.

Baalayar ran towards the door. However, upon reaching the doorknob, suddenly, he felt a blow in his head. Somebody had hit him with a blunt object. He began to blur. He heard voices but couldn’t make out what it meant; he abruptly landed on the floor. Baalayar wanted to scream but no words could come out, he wanted to explain but who would have the patience to listen anyways, he wanted to see what was happening but his vision was teary, all he could see was light, a speck of light and he clung to that white and he clung with all his might.

Mr. Floyd’s Kafkaesque Dream

It was a cold and weary December. The half-moon had embodied for Mr. Floyd’s state of mind, delirious and hazy.  One could see the silhouette of the grinning moon through the transparent white curtain reflected by thick glass of a window of the garret he had been renting for six months.  The room was mediocre in size, two tainted windows with conventional ventilators, its ledges covered with black dust which made an impression of the charcoal which had just been poured water upon. The door was ajar.  The crude unpolished old leather sofa lay adjacent to a wooden study table which had been scribbled all over from inks of blue and red while Dostoevsky’s “Crime and Punishment” looked like paradoxically and intentionally placed beneath an empty teapot which completed the chaos.  Just opposite to this bedlam was placed a bed which looked rather comfortable while it was definitely small for Mr. Floyd who slept there quietly with his arms crossed beneath his giant pulpy head and against a bolster. It had been a day.

There in his warm and firm paradise he dreamt. At the outset he dreamt of his childhood home in the district of K___ where he was walking with his father who was clumsily dressed and wore an elevated “dhaka topi” which was slightly inclined to the right and with his left hand he had a firm grip of his son while the right one had been amputated and only the sleeve swerved with the gust of a wind.  Floyd dreamt with a pre conceived notion that he had been quarreling with his father and they were not in talking terms and Floyd Sr. had been thrusting and dragging his son who was completely exasperated and was turning red with anger and without success had been trying to escape from the clutch of his father. He didn’t remember what the argument was about but it was lucid in his dream that his father performed like a conceited and malevolent ancient high caste.

Upon reaching home Floyd Sr. with all his might threw his son into the porch where for some time he laid, cursing and unable to see as he now had a burst of tears and it now appeared misty to him. How dare you vilify me, roared the father while picking up a brick and threatening to hit him.  Floyd spooned tight and dropped his head to the ground and closed his soggy eyes. He was trembling and felt a chill through his spines. His father let the brick drop off his hand and strode inside the house with faltering odd steps. Floyd Sr. lived with his son and a pregnant wife who was about to bear him with a baby daughter.  Now Floyd dreamt that he was alone in a boulevard and he was riding past a tavern in his little mare, the dreadful looking tavern produced a foul stench but he wanted to get inside and observe the place and listen to its profoundly Kafkaesque philosophers. A strong desire to attend this loathsome and grimly heaven grasped his heart. In a paroxysm of “id” Floyd rushed inside the tavern. A bright light from the bar side flashed upon his eyes and he began rubbing the blaze from his twinkled vision with his hands. A while later when his clear eyes ascended upon the place it was truly and horribly conceited.

He saw women, naked pregnant women drinking and toasting. He saw them dancing and arguing. The tavern looked plagued with women. One cannot find a difference between the plague and a woman.  Naked women of all sorts. Fat and skinny, young and old, beautiful and spiteful, graceful and vengeful but all pregnant. He looked upon them with spite and vexation. “What place is this?” bellowed the indignant Floyd, but his voice was hardly audible to anybody in this the clamorous festivity.  He hastily scrutinized the place with heavy breathing and now he saw a man with his hands crossed against the bar table while his head leaned upon it.  He walked to the man and called upon him. The man didn’t respond to his call and it seemed that he was leaden in drunkenness.  “Hey mister, hello, hey there errr……. Excuse me…..” wavered Floyd as he now felt incongruously thirsty. In his last attempt to revive the strange man he grabbed his soiled and food stained shirt and pulled him and looked into his face. It was his father! His closed eyes suddenly stared back and his countenance began to glow yellow. “Father…… Father!”  Shouted Floyd but he didn’t speak back. Slowly and gently the father slid his hands from Floyd’s chest and ascended smoothly at his neck and with much vigor and swiftness he thrust his hand into his throat. Floyd tried to shove back the big and greasy hands but he wasn’t powerful enough. He began to get out of breaths…..

Mr. Floyd awoke abruptly. He was covered in sweat and respired heavily. He hands were cold and dizzy while his mouth felt very dry. To wake up from such dreadful dream, he felt bilious. He stayed there in his bed while his anxiety sufficed. He looked absentmindedly across the room. Suddenly he realized something and rummaged through his bed and after a while from underneath the bolster he produced a neatly folded paper and again, like before he had slept, hastily read the last sentence silently. He had been diagnosed for a throat cancer.

“It wasn’t a Kafkaesque dream after all”, he thought while he absentmindedly asserted, “now I know what a pregnant woman suffers through, only that my baby is growing in my neck”.

Random Musings From Mr. Floyd: A Hallowed Soul

Mr. Floyd was indignant of the judgments that people impulsively and abruptly made about human adventures. And it was such an adventure that had befallen upon an intimate friend of his when they were at school. This misadventure accounts Mr. Floyd’s paranoia and his incessantly incredulous musings.

About fourteen winters ago, on a cold evening, a junior student of the K____ house complained to the duty teacher, Mrs. Paudel that his Phone Card was stolen and that he was confident about the place he had earlier kept. It was under the quilt and over the pillow which he was adjacent to his locker, he had confided with her.

The duty teacher, realizing the situation had assumed a grim and stern countenance and told the student that she would find the culprit and would make an example out of the thief. Mrs. Paudel was one of those people with superegos who wouldn’t accept the degeneration of morality. She had always kept an amicable relationship with students but would act tough and was indignant to those who she thought to be causing a disturbance to others in this perpetual life of eternal salvation. She considered human life to be a way of salvation from the sins committed in our past lives. It was her way of reasoning with the bizarre nature of human existence. One can assume that she had a leap of faith and had continued to live her life with moral obligations.

Now that the card thief was to be found, she formed a prefect quartet and commenced her investigation like the mediaeval church ready to pounce upon any inquisitive scientific brain. After supper, when the students were doing their assignments and tasks required of them, in the preparatory room, the prefects began to call upon the students in group of four. Then they were required to show them their lockers at the dormitory and even of the bathroom’s. The four prefects checked the lockers of their juniors like they were the policemen themselves, making a menace of their lockers hurling their clothes, disheveled and in the floor.

There certainly was a commotion in the preparatory room and all eyes were vexed at the complainer who for all the students was the creator of this unnecessary and juvenile complaint.  Someone even shouted, “Why, you are such a crybaby, losing a petty phone card”. The room erupted in laughter and support to the lucidly annoyed voice.

While this all was going on in the room, another student, S_____ was unaware of all the noise and upheaval, for he was deeply distressed by the news of his ill father. He literally wasn’t there all this time and was wondering how his beloved daddy was feeling. This mind in grievance didn’t have the faintest idea of what others were doing and even saying. It was in an agitated state of indifference and sorrow to the outer word.

S____ was incessantly thinking about his father and even more, home. He remembered the colorful flowers that blossomed in the garden, roses, red and white, orchids of all kinds, the small pond where he used to bait for trout with his rusty reddish of the fishing rod and spent hours with his father, fishing. It was vivid. It all was coming to him. Then he reminisced about the old well that had been installed before even he was born, how he used to, with all his might draw the bucket and his father would run to fetch empty containers. Oh! The taste of the water from the well, rusty and bitter. Bitter is sweet for fatalist people. How he loved that taste, like drinking a glass of sacred water. There is nothing sacred than food and wine at home.

Suddenly disturbed by a loud laughter, S_____ comes to his senses and apprehends where he is. The first thing he remembers is his water bottle, which had rolled over to the other side of the room in the morning. He stands up, observes his friends who looked senselessly jolly, doesn’t suspect anything and walks towards the dormitory.

He approached the big cold room which was partitioned by a row of bed and into two different dormitories.  He approached the opposite end of the dorm while Mrs. Paudel and her soldiers were livid. S___ doesn’t care what’s happening and walks straight towards the end of the partitioned room, stoops and picks up his now dusty and greasy green bottle which was only about two paces behind the complainers’ bed, walks out of the room and down the stairs to the filter.

Mrs. Paudel, having seen S___ doing something conspicuous at the other side of this cold yet brightly lit room is dubious. However, she decides to stay as quite as a cat for she may have found the culprit. She wants no stones unturned and continues with her investigation.  This hurling and barging of private innocent property ensues for a while but is put to a stop when the phone card owner paces into the room and exclaims, “By the love of god, I have found it”.  Mrs. Paudel is startled for she truly desired a thief to have existed. But, where did you find it? Well, it was at my bookshelf on the top of my locker. I may have misplaced it there. Mrs. Paudel stops the checkup and sends the four juniors and the prefects away. She places her hand in his shoulder and asks caressingly, are you sure you had kept it in the shelf? Oh no, ma’am I don’t remember if I should have placed the card on the shelf. Then you doubt this whole affair? The junior assumed a grim appearance and raised his hand to his head then added, I am certain I had put it under the quilt but I don’t know what to say anymore.

Mrs. Paudel unable to accept that the item had been misplaced called upon S___ to enquire about his little adventure in the room.  On the onset he was quite startled but he swiftly grew in composure and flatly denied the idea that he had installed the card later. Mrs. Paudel was adamant that he had something to do with the stolen card, “you want me to believe that you had no idea that the card was stolen despite all this clamorous excitement amongst the boys”, Mrs. Paudel spread her wings like a vulture ready to pounce upon a dead meat.  But , but he muttered while his countenance grew red and the eyes became doleful assuming a state when one has been robbed of something treasured and he now felt his heart pounding feebly and his hairs were already erect. He had been robbed. Mugged of his honor, the Brahmin honor which lies not only in showing devotion to god but the idea of moral indignation and such capacity to which their superegos fall into the lowest ebb of morality. How could he who was born under such Brahmin guardianship be reduced to such a crime?  How could I be accused of such misdemeanor? He looked at Mrs. Paudel who posed as some detective in the verge of solving a crime, proud and pompous.

A week later S___ walked out of the school gate. Mr. Floyd had helped him pack his bag and had embraced him with eyes full with tears prior to being escorted out of the school by the headmaster and Mrs. Paudel, the new assistant house master. He was suspended for two weeks from school. His father was also dead.

A dead soul needs its first born son to transcend into the high heavens.  And hallowed was the soul.