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In Prison - Flash Fiction
|by Ananya S Guha|
I never needed to go out of the house. I loved to stay glued to it and listen to the transistor. In those days there was no television, let alone mobiles. The radio was the only means of listening to the outside, almost alien world. And of course the telephone, but few had acces to it. My parents afforded one, but phone calls were strictly limited.
Sometimes I came out to post letters, but rushed back home as if demons had chased me. I hated seeing my class mates, hanging around the main road and staring at girls. All the staring I did secrely at the girls next door with the help of binoculars. I was a cheat, a fraud and only I knew it. To the world outside I was the Mama's son, studious dutiful and holy. I loved this schism in me, the hydra headed monster that I reared inside me and the facade I put up outside. My parents' family friends would say: ''Look what a well mannered obedient boy he is ! And, so good in studies''. Yes cramming was my forte and I invariably landed up among the toppers.
But I had an indwelling secret which no one knew. I was a master cheater! I would put snippets of paper in very small handwriting, including mathematical formulae. And, in between (cheating) I would pretend to give my arm a rest and look inside the sleeves. They were all there like a machine. And I was a cog in it. My schizophrenia remained till the school finals. I topped. Those stupid invigilators did not even know, that when I ostensibly went out for pissing- I was doing the inevitable- cheating my guts out. I laughed to myself - I should be called the master cheater.
And well, ogling at girls continued with the binoculars, and I would fantazize about those beautiful creatures. Obviously salacious tendencies overtook me even when I was quite young.
But I was the 'holy' boy to all - sitting in he front bench, noting down the home work assiduously, ineffably polite to my teachers and doing well in examinations. And I was very good in theatre, because I was acting all my life!
This is part one of the story. Part two is that I joined the government as an officer. I became duty bound, and surprisingly became quite good at work. At least my bosses appreciated my work. But one thing I would not do was to misappropriate money. For this my knees weakened and I lacked guts.
Yes, I cheated to get into the job. There also I used my genius to prepare those short notes, point wise in small handwriting.
You will now ask me what I am doing right now? Yes, my life has traversed through ages, and at this point of time I am sixty two and serving a term in prison. They discovered (finally) that I had forged my mark sheets...
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