04 November 2010

The Hunting Day.

Once again a year passed away breezily and it was time for the annual results. The hostel was filled with tensed students. 

Yunus was the smart ass of the Harmony Welfare Boarding School in the picturesque hill town of Mussoorie. No one meddled with him as he was big for a 14 year boy. And like every result declartion day, he was excited. He called it the hunting day where he could pick on the kids who failed. He lead a pack of average joes like him who neither failed nor topped. It was his favourite day, but the worst day of the boys who failed.

The school was within a five minute walking distance from the hostel. As soon as they entered the school there was a blackboard at the entrance describing the results. The results of his class were:

Distinction: 13
First Class: 20
Second Class: 17
Fail: 1

Yunus knew that it had to be Ruskin. The puny little boy who regularly failed to answer in the class and was the butt of all jokes, especially Yunus' jokes. Today was the day when he would be hounded and laughed upon. Poor Ruskin.

Yunus entered the school gate with his flared chest asking every one about Ruskin's whereabouts. He was completely uninterested in going to class and collecting his result, but Golu wanted to get his. Golu was a rotund boy, perpetually scared about little things, therfore result day for him was like the Judgment Day. Yunus gave into Golu's constant requests to go to the class.

The senior wing of the school seated the ninth and the tenth grade students. Yunus was in the ninth grade.  The coming year would be the year to 'rule'. The year where he could bully any helpless soul. He entered the senior wing imagining pictures of next year in his head. The royal gait. The scared little juniors.

He entered his class and told Golu to get his result and leave as soon as possible. He did not want to miss the 'crowning shame' of the boy who failed. Golu hurried to the teacher and collected his report card and called the rest of the group to collect theirs too. The teacher, Ms. Jones, noticed Yunus not collecting his report card, so she called out, "Yunus don't you want to see your report card before your parents do?" He ignored. And then she yelled, "Yunus, you failed! 

Now he understood the reason why  the other kids stared at him and giggled when he entered the wing. These kids were not the seniors.  Each and everyone he passed had looked at him in the eye. This contradicted his routine. No boy had ever looked him in the eye! 

Yunus never felt so uncomfortable. Yunus had never been uncomfortable! He was taken aback. He walked out. He wanted to run away. The moment he walked out of the class over a hundred pair of eyes greeted him with Ruskin standing in the front. With the precision of an orchestra, all of them raised their right hand with the index fingers pointed at Yunus and laughed in unison. The painfully beautiful orchestrated move was lead by it's conductor, Ruskin.

Yunus threw the report card and sprinted to the hostel's direction like a cheetah. The only difference this time was, the cheetah was running away from the deers. He was the hunted.

P.S.: This short story is dedicated to one of my favourite writers, Ruskin Bond.

This story was inspired by a true life incident I heard ten years ago. A boy called Yunus walked into his college and unknowingly started ridiculing the lone failure which he later realized, was him. Legendary!

Ruskin Bond


  1. Ultimate Brother...Very Intresting...Keep writing ...

  2. well, the style is definately ruskin, the only thing you gave away the story in the begining....so next time am sure you will keep the unsaid simply unlletered till the end..........but you do write well with ease....am jealous.....good going...

  3. @Sheema aapa: i got what you said, and thanks for the critique that u mailed me. I need a lot to learn!!!!!

    @Kashif bhai: I'm glad that u read it and also Liked it :) Thanks again