“Is it yours?” she asked.
“Yes… thanks.” he took the pencil from her and turned away. He could see the yearning in her eyes but ignored it. After all, who will be interested in the most clumsily dressed girl in the class?
A few weeks later he was returning home from school when he passed by her house.
At first he thought she was crazy mumbling to herself, then he realized that she was talking to a tree.
He knew their mothers were friends, so very casually he popped her up in their lunchtime discussion.
“Oh that poor thing…” her mother gushed with motherly affection. “I dont know what is wrong with Jaya (her mother), she is so educated, beautiful, talented but she doesnot gives a hoot to her two kids, they totter around in rags, when they are sick their father looks after them not her…. poor little things… you dont make fun of them do you?” she turned her attention to her son.
He shook his head. He was not that type.
Next day he was sitting in his class when she passed by.
“Hey!” he called out… “I missed a note yesterday… will you help?”