Somewhere deep in his heart, the old man used to cry. He used to take Rehan near the window, point towards the stars in the sky and say, “Those are your parents,close to each other shinning and looking after you from there”.
Rehan was a small child of merely 8–9 years,long hair, fair complexion,a bit of a flat nose,always overloaded with questions which he used to put up to anyone he found older to him. Rehan with his grandfather lived in a place which people mostly referred to as “Hill station in all instances.” For Rehan,the place was not just a hill station. He felt it was his only world where he could see the nature at its best with water falling through hills,observing snow covered roads,people who always loved his curious nature of asking this and that made him feel that there is no any kind of suffering. Everyone was charmed by his nature and hence everyone loved him.
Grandfather,on the other hand, was in his 60s who loved playing with his grandson in evening,sometimes going for an evening walk,reading out fictional stories to him before the dark sky could reach his innocent soul. He took great care of Rehan.
Rehan was a school going boy and he had many friends who often came to his place to play. Sometimes he went to their place to socialize and learn. But every time he returned from his friend’s place one question always bothered him. The difference that he used to notice in everyone’s house was that he used to see two more elderly people. After coming back he used to ask his grandfather about who they were and with grandfather’s reply came his another question — where are my parents?
Grandfather knew that Rehan won’t understand that they were killed in an accident. He would dig more and more into this for which the old man had no answers. Also he knew Rehan loved listening to stories; so every time Rehan asked this,the old man had something or the other to distract him from the real fact that they were no more.
Somewhere deep in his heart, the old man used to cry. He used to think, what kind of world it was where he had to lie to an innocent child to keep him happy. However he had written a diary; in the diary he had explained the truth of his parent’s death and he decided to hand over the diary after he grew old. He wrote that because he felt that it wouldn’t be possible for him to speak to Rehan about his parents after the fake stories he used to tell him.
However time passed by and Rehan went out to a different city to pursue his higher secondary level of education. The old man knew that after he returned from there, Rehan would be ready mentally to know the truth of his parents. But grandfather also had intuitions that by the time Rehan returned he would be already aware of everything.
Finally it was the day Rehan had returned to his place. Next morning after Rehan came,the old man kept the diary on the table in his room before he woke up. He then prepared the morning breakfast and awaited his grandson’s arrival on the stairs. Rehan read out the diary,came out with teary eyes, sat beside his grandfather and asked,“ Why didn’t you let me know before? I mean why did you speak about some stars in the sky looking after me?”
To this the old man said, “A human being is nothing but a puppet made up of only emotions. At every stage of life they want to listen to stories. When he is innocent he loves listening superficial stories. He imagines himself in them like it would really happen. Then as he grows up he understands that all these don’t actually exist,so he needs a better story which would be stronger and more believable. At a certain time he also makes up his own story that he would do this and that unaware that life is something that happens while one is planning to do something else. And in this way life continues listening to humor,fiction,non-fiction and many more until a time comes when he finally understands the real fact,he indeed realizes that all of these were nothing but some rhythm he was playing on the tune of imaginations”
Rehan hugged his grandfather while the old man was left with tears in his eyes.
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