The largest government hospital in the city. It was a matter of great surprise that old fan was running condition, but movements was very slow. The roof and the walls of the hospital have been asking for color from when they were not known. Spider webs here visible on the roof and the walls several places. Where the spiders were waiting for the ambushed prey to be trapped. Many patients suffering from various types of diseases were admitted in the ward here. Here Baldev was sitting on a corner bed in a posture of repentance. His best friend Akhilesh was standing in front. Baldev’s mind was now wandering about the old things with Akhilesh last meeting on the road.
“…. Nonsense is all, smoking cigarettes or chewing tobacco causes cancer.” Baldev laughed while blowing cigarette smoke on the slogan at the betel-vendor shop. His half bottle of the whiskey was showing came out of the jeans pocket a little bit.
“Why are you laughing?” Akhilesh said.
“If I don’t laugh, than what I can do?” Baldev laughing again, “when drinking alcohol causes cancer, then why does the government not ban it?”
“You are mad the government has more income than these things.” Akhilesh replied.
“And I’ll laugh because It has been six years since I smoked alcohol and cigarettes…” Leaving a smoke on Akhilesh’s mouth, Baldev said, “And I’m not suffering from cancer!”
“Don’t laugh too much…” Akhilesh said seriously, “Thanks to God!, you are not suffering from cancer!” .
“Are you prayer… to God?” Baldev laughed too much that day, “ha… ha… ha…!”
But today the circumstances had changed. Baldev literally got cancer. After seeing the report, he did not know how long he cried.
“Friend, I used to warn you from time to time that quit drinking alcohol and cigarettes, but you didn’t listen…” Akhilesh said seriously now, “You didn’t even care about the future of your children.”
“Now I worrying about only my children. What will happen to them after me?” Baldev started crying like an innocent child. When he saw his sight on the roof, he saw a insects fluttering in the spider web and the spider sitting ambush was slowly moving towards the victim.
“Baldev already half past eight now. I’ll go to the office, otherwise it will be late.” Seeing the wall hanging watch in front, Akhilesh said, “If you talk about time, it gets cut off… good or bad for everyone …”
What will happen to Baldev’s children? Both had no answer to this question. Answer may be hidden in the trough of time? Akhilesh left Baldev in the same condition on the hospital bed. Baldev saw that spider had tightened his grip on the hunt. The sound of Akhilesh’s shoes kept echoing in Baldev’s ears for a long time.
(Hindi short story of Mahavir Uttranchali “Makdi”
English translation by Abhishek Bhandari)