Satyam was new to the life of boarding schools and was not able to take bath and dress up quickly. As a result, today he was late again and was afraid that his teacher would hit him on his hand with a scale. He looked at his hands: soft, tender and pink in color like the hands of a typical seventh standard boy. Then he looked at his nails and cursed himself, he again forgot to cut them. He remembered his mom who used to cut his nails regularly but now he was alone. He wished he could run away from there but it was not possible as he was in a boarding school which was located on the hillside far from any city, town or even a village. Then he thought to hide himself in a toilet for the whole day but then he thought that he’ll have to come out of the toilet sooner or later. He was beginning to panic now. His heart was beating louder as the class was nearing.
He stood in front of the door of the class with his eyes dug into the ground. The class teacher had already started the roll call. She didn’t notice him but murmurings and chuckles were getting louder in the class. Finally she noticed. Now the chuckles turned into guffaws. The whole class was laughing. The class teacher looked annoyed.
“Come in you dumb. When you’ll learn to be on time? I don’t understand why these parents send such dumb heads to international schools like ours.” She Shouted and without warning smacked a tight slap on his face. Satyam started crying and covered his face with his hands. She straight away noticed his nails. Satyam had forgotten about his nails already otherwise he could have hid them from her. Teacher was boiling now and the whole class silent. The teacher took out the scale and this time she hit him on the nails. Satyam yelled. He had never felt such a pain ever in his life.
His hands pained for the next few days. Actually he was physically very weak and even the smallest of injuries took long to recover.
English lecture was going on. The teacher asked Satyam to read. He refused as he was poor in reading but teacher forced him to do. He agreed. He was not afraid to read but the only problem was that his classmates used to make fun of him while he read. He started to read. Everything went fine till the first paragraph ended. But he got struck after the first two words of the second paragraph. He was not being able to pronounce it.
“What happened? Carry on.” Said, the teacher.
“Ma’am what is this word hadaaaacke… hadaaache… I’m not getting what is written.” He replied.
“The third word ma’am.”
“What? Can’t you read it you dumb? It is headache. Just get the hell out of the class and let someone else read. You are hopeless. I can give you in written that people like you can’t do anything in your life. Tell your parents not to waste their money on you.”
The whole class laughed holding their stomachs. Satyam had really made a fool of himself. But he was hurt. He had tears in his eyes. He didn’t say anything and stood out of the class for the whole lecture. He was really ashamed of himself and wanted to improve. But there was no one to guide him but there were many to laugh.
Days went on and Satyam’s miserable life continued. One day the class teacher told them that they’ll have a story writing competition the very next day. Satyam was glad to hear that. He remembered the days of his previous school when he his writings were appreciated by all. The teachers praised him for his imagination. Actually being very introvert, he used to think a lot. Some of his friends even teased him as ‘philosopher’ but his teachers told him to take it as a compliment. He had even won many essay writing and story writing competitions in that school. And now he thought he had a good chance to prove himself in his new school.
The day of the competition came. The topic was given and the bell rang. He wrote a very adventurous story. He was actually satisfied with what he had written. He knew that it was the only field in which he could prove himself. The results had to be declared the next day in the English lecture. He went to his hostel and had a very sound sleep after a long time. He had a hope now and that too after a long time.
The day came. He waited for the result very eagerly. He could not think of anything else but the results. Every second seemed to him like an hour. Finally the English lecture started. The teacher came in. His heart started beating loudly. She announced the results. He held his breath after every name being announced but His name was not there. After congratulating the winners teacher came forward again.
“Students, there is something more that I want to share with you people. There is some one in this class who don’t even know how to spell ‘these’. He writes it as ‘thease’. Do you want to know who he is? He’s the new comer Satyam. I couldn’t stop laughing when I looked at it. Call a second class kid, he’ll tell you how to spell ‘these’ but this seventh class fool doesn’t know and he participated in the competition. Huh.”
It was a shock for him. He was stunned. He couldn’t believe that he was not even in the top three and not even the fourth one who got the consolation prize. He was broken not knowing that his story was not even read. He cried the whole night and a few nights after that. His hopes were shattered. He was depressed to such an extent that he never wrote a story again.