Last Christmas

“What are you saying?” Angrily entered the house Mr Muthu the next door neighbour. With blood on his head he angrily waited. Sadagoppan asked again “What are you saying? My son? He would never hurt anyone” he said with confidence. Muthu said with his deep voice, it was loud like the whole Street can hear his voice “Do You think I did this to myself, I should go police station, For your friendship I’m here telling you all this and handle this here, call your son, he got crazy” Sadagoppan can’t understand the situation, it was blurry to him, his neighbours suddenly complaining about his beloved son was hurtful to him. Sadagoppan with racing heart sat on his chair and looked at his wife and asked her to call his son.

It all started like months ago, due to COVID people were trapped at their own home. IT employees stuck at home and began work from home job in order to continue earning, even though people stayed at home, for some people the job was mentally stressful as the working hours increased than their usual work hours, with no breaks to go out it felt like a trap to stay at home and work all day. Bala felt the same. Post Covid lockdown announcement he came back to his native and began to work from home, weeks passed, months passed, he got more stressed at work. To relax himself one day he called up one of his local friend Saravana.

Saravana, a local person did drugs partime and full time politics. He received the call from Bala, he answered it, Bala shared his thoughts and about work pressure for sometime and he shared he felt like to continue work from home. Saravana replied “Yes it’s must be very stressful with no wineshop around,. Can’t even smoke, poor guys do you all even take a break?. Atleast in office you all will enjoy chatting with girls and snacks and tea break, but here, I feel pity for you. Want to drink?” He asked. Bala knew if get caught at home drinking he don’t need COVID to die, his mother is enough to kill him with her words, he instantly replied “No way. You know about mummy? It will be a clean murder. She will kill me cut in pieces and pretend like I’m missing” Saravana replied “you must be watching lot of Netflix series, so, I have a special item, you won’t get caught, no smell nothing, just get the effect of drinking, what you say?” Saravana being an old friend he tried to lure Bala into the habit of drugs.

Sarvana, with his political influence he bypassed local cops on duty and reached Bala house. Both of them reached their top floor and began to talk. Bala asked “What kind of thing you were talking about? How nobody will know?” Saravana answered”it’s called Pot, Smoking pot” Bala asked “is it like our regular smoking? But we don’t have shop to buy even cigarette” Saravana replied who needs a Shop, I have it all. Sarvana took a cigar and began to remove all tobacco from the cigar. He pulled out a cover full of leaves and began to grind it with his bare hands tightly to turn it into small pieces like tobacco leaves. Bala wondered at the process of him doing it and asked “Where you get all that?” Saravana grinding the leaf told him “It’s from the Batman. We call him Batman because he roam at night, no one in our town actually seen him  before, some say he is a ghost, some say he is a magician, and we sat he is Batman, he does everything at night and yet Nobody know him or from where he get the stuff, he is a lonely soldier, he works alone, sells alone and earn alone” while they were talking Bala stuffed the cigar and got ready to smoke. Bala stopped him and warned him the smoke is too much. Saravana pulled him close by his arms and he sniffed the first smoke, his head began to feel like he is in a ship. Bala said “I feel like I’m in a ship, is this how it begins?” He questioned.

Saravana replied “Yes, and keep smoking for the Next 4 hours you are the God, you can accomplish so many things, make use of this opportunity wisely and enjoy the life, Life is too short to miss these amazing things”

After several smokes Bala laid there motionless, Saravana tried to Wake him up, he shook his body rigorously, Bala opened his eyes, BUT it wasn’t Bala.

To be continued.


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