You are walking down the road with hands inside your pocket and a whistle on your lip. The sun is shining and the world is beautiful. ‘What more could one ask for?’ You wonder; that is when you see one of the most beautiful creations of God walking down the street, towards you. She is slim and petite, with two little plaits resting on the mound of her small round breasts. She is slightly slouched under the heavy schoolbag. Her eyes look straight ahead—towards the bus stop—and you know that she is purposely avoiding you.

You are a hunk and you know that every girl, in this locality, knew that. This one is no different. You wait for her to look at you. She doesn’t. You are disappointed; you are angry. Who does she think she is? These educated bimbos give themselves too much airs. You turn back and start to follow her. Beneath her school bag, her backside goes left-right-left and you feel mocked. She needs to be punished for trying to seduce the men around her. You pass by her and give her a quick slap on her butt. She freezes midstep. You go ahead two steps, turn back and look at her. She wonders if it was you. The little bitch was asking for it—with her short, school pinafore and pink, rosy lips. You have to show her who has the power. You wink at her and give her a smile. She rolls her eyes in shock and then gives out an earth-shattering scream.

Now, it is you who are shocked. Shameless bitch! Is she going to wash her dirty linen in public? Looks like she is going to … “He touched me,” she yells to the crowd and points at you. You have no time to run away. The crowd pounces on you. You get slapped, punched and kicked. Amidst the flurry of arms and legs, you peep in her direction. She looks on with a smug, satisfied look. Her school bus arrives and the crowd board her on it.

Once she leaves the place, they leave you alone too. You are reminded of a flash mob performance you witnessed in a shopping mall. A huge crowd performed, in a coordinated frenzy, as a guy proposed to a girl and then dispersed away just as suddenly as they had begun. You had wondered then, what the fuss was all about. That girl was too fat and dark to be romanced this hard. This one is fair and slim. That’s why she thought she could get away with anything. You know the perfect cure for such bitches. You take an auto and leave the place immediately. You get down in front of the chemical goods shop.

“Give me a bottle of acid please,” you say.

(This story is dedicated to the hundreds of acid attack victims around the country. As long as a person can buy a bottle of acid over the counter, nothing much can be done to rectify this sad plight of women in our country. Of course, there are laws that require shopkeepers to demand IDs and maintain register of acid sales. Still, in my opinion, sale of acid to an individual has to stop. Acid is used in industries, research laboratories, et cetera. Procurement of acid by these institutions should be done at an institutional level and sale of acid to any individual has to be banned.)

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Archana Sarat

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