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Passion never dies

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A university student aspires to become a writer. He is determined and argues with his teacher and fellows that he would pursue his passion, no matter what. After 12 years, his prospects change.

Drama / Humor
Samana Syed
Age Rating:

Passion never dies

“Ladies and gentlemen! May I have your attention please. I have a good news for everyone of you. Prose teacher is probably absent.” We all shouted out loud, “Yahooo!!” Some of the peers, however, wanted reconfirmation. “How can you say that?” Tariq ignored the question and resumed after jumping in joy, “So if you want to celebrate this ‘auspicious day’ please join in here. Okay, without wasting time, allow me to call on stage, Miss Azka Bashir from the group “Hawks”. She will sing a song for us.”

Azka was an extremely beautiful and intelligent woman. She went near the white board walking like a queen. After holding the duster as her mic, she begin mimicking the famous singer, Lata accurately.

Her performance was too loud but enjoyable.

When she left, Tariq and his friends performed different parodies for the class. He was energetic and a chatterbox. Most of the noise from our class was due to tariq. Throw him out and 80 per cent noise would be cancelled automatically.

After some time we stopped paying attention. We were done with his repetitive pranks and parodies. He was a young boy of age 20-21 who was highly interested in showing his talent to his classmates.

“Ladies and gentlemen! pay some respect to us or we will not leave the stage unless you do,” he threatened us. Despite that, we carried on our activities.

Aimen was telling a story to her friend. Imran and Binish were exchanging text messages. Anum and Rehman were fighting with their group. That means the classroom looked more like a ‘fish market’ at that time than a proper university classroom. Shafaq tried to hush every one once or twice. But the more she tried, the more we became noisy.

“The whole corridor is echoing with your hullabaloo,” a senior standing on the door shouted. “Keep your fingers on your lips like children or I call….” he warned.

“Shhhh…” Imran rose from his seat and whispered something in the senior student’s ear. He nodded in response and left the door. Imran closed the classroom door quickly and stood near the blackboard. “You are too loud guys. Keep quiet please or they will send that grumpy senior here again.” We frowned on him, then paused for a while as if to show agreement; then restarted afresh.

It was half past 8 and our teacher was a little late or on leave probably. He was very punctual and so we thought he was not going to make it that day. After awhile however, we heard him rushing in from the back door. Seeing him enter, we all took our seats and pretended to work. When he stepped near the first row, we cried altogether, “Good Morning TEACHER!”

“Shhhhh………” he put one of his fingers on his lips.

After keeping quiet for a few moments as if were scanning the room, he cleared his throat. His face was blank and expressions, stern!

“Morning class. What a bad day it is. I received tens of complains from other teachers about my class.”

He put his laptop bag on the table and stood by the board with his hands clenched together.

“Very bad class, very very bad…I did not expect my students…such grownups like you to make noise like morons. You know the whole lobby was quivering with your noises. Even the dean could hear you from afar. Shame on you all. Who can say you are degree-seeking students, studying at a reputable institution from such a brilliant teacher. Shame, shame guys.”

We dropped our heads in humiliation.

“Anyways, next time please be careful. I will not tolerate this.”




“Proctor? Who is the proctor here?”

“Imran…” we all pointed towards Imran who was sitting in the second row.

“Me Sir,” Imran got up with his head up and a buffoon-like smile on his face.

Sir Ahmed asked, “Did you take the attendance in morning?”

“Yes Sir, I did. 20 students are here, two are absent and three are on leave. Here is the register.”

“Good. But you are also responsible for ensuring complete silence in the class.”

“Okay sir, I will enforce class rule next time,” Imran looked at us as if he had was awarded presidency of the United States.

“It’s your first week so I am not giving any punishment. Next time, I will not entertain anyone of you who would break class discipline rules,” adjusting his glasses, Sir Ahmed warned. We noted he was fuming. He had to start a new lesson that day. Unfortunately, he could not because of being late and the load of complains against us that he received from dean’s office. It was Sir’s habit to repeat what was on his mind time and again. That day, he repeated scornful words for us. “Very bad….shame shame…disgusting!!!!”

Felt embarrassed, we opened our textbooks like obedient students and waited for him to direct further.



After some minutes, he rose from his seat and picked the black board marker to write on the board.

Instead of the lesson name, he wrote, “My Aim in Life.” “Today, we shall talk about your aims in life. Do not open textbooks. We are starting a discussion activity in this class.”

His information gave immense joy for no reason. Like many students, we were not a big fan of textbooks. Formal learning had always been boring. The idea to interact for learning made us happy.

“Let us begin from Alia. Tell me Alia, what you want to be in future?”

“I want to be a teacher”

“Why? Why do you want to be a teacher?” Sir Ahmed interrogated his student.

“Mmm…let me think…” Alia replied clumsily.

“Come on, tell your class.” Sir insisted.

“She does not have another option,” the boy in the red shirt sitting in the front row shouted. And the whole class burst out laughing.

“Silence!!!!I did not ask you, Tahir. I asked Alia. Kindly wait for your turn if you want to answer the question.”

“Yes sir” He responded stubbornly.

“Okay, let us ask Imran.”

“Sir, I want to be a government servant because my father is a grade 20 officer.” The proctor replied.

“But I want to join army” Asif made a gun with his hand and pointed toward Imran. “Bang!”

Asif gave us another reason to titter again.

Sir’s face turned red, “Silence please! I already told you to please wait for your turns. Could you not wait, Asif?”

Instead of apologizing, Asif started giggling. “Sir, I thought I should speak up.”

“Do not speak up unless I ask you to do so.”


“So, you tell me Anum. What do you think? What you want to be?”

Adjusting her lemon-yellow dress, Anum rose from her seat to reply, “artist.”

“Yes, we know she can doodle very well. All the paintings on the board are done by the master painter Anum Sir.” Tariq mocked her skills. The class giggled again.

“No Sir, I am a good painter. I am polishing my skill as well.” Anum became defensive, “If you want to see my paintings, I can show you.”

“No, we do not want to ruin our day.” Tariq poked his nose once more.

Sir did not like his comment, “Tariq, do you want me to throw you out of the class?”

“Sorry sir.” Tariq responded quickly.

“Okay Shafaq, you tell what you want to become?”

“Sir, honestly speaking, I wanted to be a doctor. But I could not attain good marks in FSC. Then, my dad persuaded me to choose the Computer Sciences field; while mum wanted me to learn some business skills as she is a businesswoman. But I did not have any interest in both of these fields. So I opted for Arts subjects in the end.”

“And that is why you ended up here….” Anum whispered. The class wanted a reason to laugh.

Sir made sure the whole class participated in that discussion assignment. Jokes apart, all peers exchanged their ideals. Twenty students had twenty different plans. All were determined to pursue those goals in the near future. When my teacher asked me, I became excited subconsciously. The reason was I responded what I really wanted to become after completing my studies. And I was too sure to hit my target as if it was too easy.

“I want to write Sir”

“Oh that’s great. Good.”

His kindness and positive words encouraged me to speak more. I could not share my thoughts with my parents at that time. My father wanted me to do something else. When Sir showed a little agreement, I started day-dreaming.

My tone was louder and full of high hopes, “Sir, I want to be the best novelist in the world. I want my stories to publish and sell like hot cakes. People read my stories, like and adore me. My books become the part of textbooks for children and adults alike. I want recognition like Shakespeare, Thomas Hardy, and Virginia Woolf ……”

“Good. So we will have our ‘own’ novelist soon. Wow” Sir murmured.

“Be careful. Writers usually do not get well paid in Pakistan.” Imran interrupted.

“Yes sir, I know someone personally.” Taking a brief pause, Shafaq added. “My uncle is an Urdu poet. But unfortunately, he is from hand to mouth.”

“So what? I do not care.” I commented in a determined voice.

“Yes, Here in Pakistan, writers, poet, and ‘pen-people’ are not respected,” Sir ignored what I said. “They have to invest more than they make. I also wanted to be a poet but it is not a lucrative job.”

The class nodded except me.

“I do not want money, Sir. I love writing. This is my passion. I have a whole plot on my mind to start a novel and I can write it for free. For me, money does not matter. Passion is EVERYTHING!”

Azka, who was listening carefully shared her view, “These are all pipe dreams, dear. Humans cannot eat ‘passion’. We need food to live on.”

My friend’s remark enraged me. “I am sorry. I disagree. Those who think this way are not passionate at all. Such people usually have no aims or goals in life. In fact, I think such people never have understood what passion or hobby is.”

“Yes, we need classes from you,” Tariq giggled.

I was not ready to surrender. So my stubbornly response send the ball back to Tariq’s court, “I am ready for teaching you some life lessons. Tariq join me today. And your first lesson be on passion.”

Aimen raised her hand to say, “I agree with you. I also think passion makes life happier. It makes you feel satisfied with yourself.”

After Aimen, Shafaq and Saira also agreed with me which divided the class into two groups. A battle of words pursued in which everyone tried to prove their point.


“Alright class, let us stop here. We shall continue later. However, to summarize the whole discussion, I would say you guys are too young to understand reality. Passion dies when your basic needs are not met.”

“No…..no….no…passion can never die,” Aimen and I responded.

“They are correct perhaps because…once a LOVER is always a LOVER…” a backbencher shouted and the whole room chuckled.

“Okay…alright…let me cut you here. We understand that you want to be a novelist.” Sir and the whole class laughed at my enthusiasm.


This is the journey of 12 years. I became a writer now. But I am writing for money! I had to make my ends meet. And the best way to do that was to sell my services. Love and passion tumbled in the hands of ‘need’ and all the passion and love for words evaporated when I had to make money to survive.

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