Munna eagerly woke up on a Sunday morning with an optimistic face. He wished good morning to his only true friend he had in Sunflower orphanage — his teddy bear “Puffy”. When Munna found Puffy in the garbage can, puffy had already lost one eye and was too torn to say cute. Puffy was the reflection of Munna’s inner state— dead, lonely and unhappy. Munna revived Puffy by his craft skills using thread and needle and in return, Puffy revived Munna from his deadly loneliness. Munna had only one dream in his life and that was to meet his parents. It is quite natural for an orphan to wonder and to wish for his parents. But, Munna’s wish to meet his parents was not only because he was missing the love and care of his own parents but also to defeat Rohan Neerav. Munna is jealous of Rohan Neerav.
Rohan Neerav lived in a middle-class family and his house was close to the Sunflower orphanage. Unlike Munna, Rohan had a real name gifted by his loving father Neerav and mother Kavya. He had own room filled with toys of various colours, shapes and functions. The shelves were filled with comics books of Batman, Spiderman, X-men, Superman, Ironman and countless other ‘man’. The paint on the walls of his room shone brighter than Munna’s future and the ceiling had stickers of stars that glowed at night. Rohan never knew the word “loneliness” as he was always surrounded by parents and friends. In short, Rohan was in an ethereal world full of joy while Munna was in a hell managed by a dictator warden.
It was 9.55am and Munna opened the window to welcome the sunlight to brighten up his day. He saw Rohan proudly sitting in the front yard. “Mom and Dad, don’t be late,” shouted Rohan which was enough to reach Munna’s ears. Rohan saw Munna staring from the window and shouted again, “Mom and Dad, today I want chocolate ice cream and new Ben10 toy when you come back home” Rohan always loved to indirectly insult Munna by showcasing his fortunes and proclaiming his wishes emphatically and this wasn’t the first time. His birthdays were the best days to insult his orphan neighbour. He proudly plays with the toys, that he had received on his previous birthdays, in the front yard to break Munna’s heart. After seeing Rohan’s usual morning drama, Munna brushed his teeth with an old brush with bristles that resembled the head of a half bald man. He got himself ready to survive one more day.
It was 1pm and Munna stared outside the window like a sniper to see whether Rohan’s parents arrived home with toys or not. They didn’t arrive yet and Munna resumed cleaning the floors of the orphanage. At 3pm, loud sound of ambulance, car and people caught his attention and he looked outside the window to see something unexpected. He saw two bodies been carried outside the ambulance. It didn’t take long for Munna to realize the fact that the lifeless bodies covered in white cloth were Rohan’s parents.
People from far and near gathered around Rohan’s home with heavy heart. Munna could hear people saying some words like “car crash”, “accident” etc. In the midst of noises, Munna could feel the anguish of Rohan. For the first time, Munna forgot that he hated Rohan and started feeling sorry for him. Tears started to come out of Munna’s eyes involuntarily. He wished to make everything alright like he resurrected Puffy from death, but this was far beyond his control.
As per Hindu beliefs, it is better to cremate dead body before the next sunrise. Relatives of Rohan arranged the funeral and Rohan had to do the inevitable — set fire to his beloved parents’ lifeless bodies. Rohan’s heart was more deformed than his parents’ crushed faces and his hands were shivering in deep shock. He saw his parents for one last time and then his relatives covered them with more firewood. Rohan did what any child can’t imagine even in the worst nightmare — he set the funeral pyre alight.
The flames burned Rohan’s happiness, pride and peace. Memories of his parents flashed before his eyes. He could see Munna crying and staring at him and he bewailed. Rohan’s tears couldn’t soothe his mind and instead became the fuel to burn himself from inside. He stood near the funeral pyre, witnessing the nightmare, like a burning candle.
The sun was travelling to someplace unknown, hiding behind the horizon. Maybe it was carrying the souls from earth to heaven. The dusk was an epiphany for both Rohan and Munna. They realized the ultimate truth of life that “nothing is permanent.” Munna buried his greatest wish deep inside his mind — the wish to meet his parents.
It was the day when an orphan felt fortunate about his misfortune— that he will never have to face such a dreadful day for himself. It was the day when Rohan, whose life was as dazzling as dawn, felt Munna, whose life was as dark as the dusk. It was the day when dawn becomes dusk!
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