CHAPTER - 1
Chapter – 1
“Wake up buddy, you are very late. Tyagi will kill you if you aren’t on time today”, Sid yelled.
Sid as in Siddharth was Raman’s roommate. It had been about two months since Sid entered. Raman wasn’t too excited for his arrival, as he always thought that he was better off alone. But Sid’s benevolent and considerate attitude made him a very enthralling person. In just a couple of months, they became the best of friends.
Raman turned to his side and shut his eyes tight, as if he didn’t hear anything. He felt like someone had stuck his eyelids together. A pit had been dug in the center of his stomach and all his organs were falling into it. A sudden pinching started on a nerve at the end of his head. His entire body was drained of all energy. The unpalatable thought about spending another day running a marathon from his desk to photocopy machine to Tyagi’s and back to the desk resisted him to rise.
Tired. Helpless. Irascible.
“Get up, lazy bones or you’re surely gonna get into trouble”.
Sid pulled Raman out of the bed. He stirred the coffee with his fingers and handed it to Raman.
“Coffee is meant to be hot” Raman scratched the back of his head.
“I don’t have time for all this nonsense. I have a big presentation today. Raghav has told me that if I pull this off well, my promotion is confirmed. I really have worked hard for this.”
Raman noticed how Siddharth’s eyes glittered.
“I am going to leave now, your breakfast is on the table and don’t forget to take a bath today, it has been four days.” Sid adjusted his tie and picked his bag.
“Best of luck for today, I am sure you’re gonna crack it. By the way, was it not my duty to make the breakfast today?”
Sid was already at the door, he picked his car keys.
“Never mind, dinner is on you” He smirked and left.
‘Buzz buzz’ vibrated Raman’s phone. ‘Mummy Ji’ it said.
He stared at his phone and then cut the call as he caught a man watching him, the man in the mirror. Sid was thrilled for his due promotion. Raman could recall his zeal for career as an entrepreneur, the person he used to be in college, an exuberant player and a bright student. He used to be on the ninth clouds for his achievements. What had happened to him now? What had he become? He had no ambitions, he could not see any goal to achieve in future, he could not even fulfill his New Year’s resolutions. This was all because of his job. He never imagined himself in a packed cubical, working nine to five.
Raman slid his head into his hands. Lost. Aimless. Anxious.
He looking at his watch, ‘10:11’ he was super late for work. Quickly, he washed his face, wetted his hair, wore a dirty shirt and drove off to office.
“Raman Singh! You are late again! I don’t believe you. You possess such shabby work ethics. Did you forget about the Ahuja Project Meeting today? You are the team leader! How can you be so careless? I am warning you Raman, if I get one more complaint from you, I’ll have to fire you.” Tyagi was furious.
Raman kept his head down for a while and apologized for his laid-back attitude. He looked around and saw everyone looking at him. He kept his stuff on his desk and dashed into the restroom.
Once again, he had to confront himself into the mirror.
“How do you feel Raman? Like a failure? That is exactly what you are. You are a joke! Can you ever be a reason of pride and happiness for somebody? If not somebody else, do you even satisfy yourself? You lose. You lose every day. I’m sure everyone outside is making fun of you. ‘Raman is so dumb. Tyagi bashed him today, it was such a funny sight’.”
Raman saw his eyes turn red, tears ran down. Unstoppable. Inevitable. Suddenly, On the back wall he saw Mummy Ji dusting away the dirt on 6 years-old Raman’s cloths. Little Raman is weeping his eyes off because he fell on the ground.
“No, my dear, don’t cry. Boys aren’t allowed to cry, when a boy cries, everyone make fun of him. Because boys are very strong. Are you not mamma’s strong child?”
Grown up Raman, just like the 6-year-old, obediently wiped off his tears and returned to work.
“I will not cry mummy ji, I am your strong son.”