there is a body next to my bed sdiahrth vardhan

There is a body next to my bed

“But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.”

– Genesis 19


There is a body next to my bed. The body of a very sick kid. A very, very sick kid. I call it a body because I am already thinking of it as dead. And that is how I write. Not as I see things, but as I feel them – not as a realist, but as an impressionist. And this observation should perhaps be enough for some of you to stop reading or, at the very least, to make sure your children won’t read it. Not that I see the chance of what I am writing ever getting published. In a world where suffering is a norm, it is to expected that anyone talking about how they feel should be taken as insane or criminal.

Pardon me, if in this introspection – since that is what this piece of writing is, I say some obvious and well-known things. The reason behind saying them is not that I assume you to be ignorant of them my reader (though I don’t even think you exist) but, rather, my own limited intelligence – which needs to ‘see’ things in black and white in order to comprehend them properly. And this is what I am trying to do here – better understand my own condition, so that I can clear mists of this despaired confusion that at this moment cloud my mind. Pardon me also if I say some things that are too uncivil to talk about, of things about which we are not supposed to think, for our own good, as if they simply don’t exist – for it is in them that I believe the source of my own despair lies. Most of what I write is taboo and yet I can’t help writing it.

If any of this offends you, please remember that I am a good person. I really am. Though sometimes I myself doubt it – yet, and this is point of utmost importance, you (and me too) must understand that I am a good person.


So I found it, the body, next to my bed when I woke up one morning – and was shocked to see it there. I know this has happened to millions of people worldwide but, much like cancer, it always seemed to me the sort of thing that happens to others so I was still shocked to see it happen to myself. There is a degradatory word for those who like me wake up one day to find a body next to their bed – Kafkirs.

Kafkirs react to their misfortune in different ways. Many are too embarrassed of its presence and try to hide it. Some Compie Kafkirs will react by illegaly posting pictures of bodies to social media – social nuisance in the most macbre way. But even while Compies do so, most of them too act as if they themselves can’t help the distressed kids bodies. As if these bodies belong to some other planet, far beyond their reach, rather than lying next to their bed .

Since I am hardly the first one in this condition, I think you already know what this body look like. A sick child which in my case seemed to be about seven year old (though it might seem so only because of undernourishment) lying there in torn barely there clothes; its legs collected, arms embracing the knees held to chest – perhaps in reaction to cold it must be feeling. It sure was trembling from it. The hair on head are small while the eyebrows are altogather missing, but it is anaeroxic nature of the body which moves you most.

It is easy to use the word ‘anaeroxic’ because I know it has not eaten for days it has been in my apartment. It seemed so weak and miserable that you would think it was gonna die any moment now. The skin color, the nature of disease, small hair, absent eyebrows the mourns, the wailing – they are always same with these bodies but their ages and gender are often indeterminate.

My first reaction up on first seeing the body was feeling terror. As now I try to understand this terror, I think it was born of compassion that I might that very moment have started feeling. That would been the first symptom that you are getting worse because, you see, compassion is, after all, nothing but imagination. You imagine yourself, whether consciously or unconsciously, in the condition of the person suffering and it is this imagination that prompts acts of kindness and piety. But if this compassion is evoked for a creature whose suffering is that unbearable, that helpless as that of the body seemed to me – especially if you are caught off-guard as we often are in moments after we wake up; and in its full force, than the intensity with which strikes your mind will only terrify me. The very slightest possiblity of it happening is enough to give you nightmares.

It seems the reason why government or doctors (on this subject, doctors must always concur with government) want those in my condition to tell themselves repeatedly “you and the body are different species. The body has no life or soul.” – an advise I myself would adhere to a lot in next few days. And it was true as well, if it had life and a soul, I surely would have helped it. I am a good person after all.

While the terror generated by compassion lasted only a moment, the shock lasted much longer. It is of this shock that I stayed in my bed, stupified for a few moments. After all, the boy (or is it a girl?) is just what? eight years old? ten years old? And terror in its eyes! who won’t be moved to compassion? And I am a good person, I must definately help it.

A part of me was thus already wanting to help it, but the other part, the more cautious one was already there advising why I should not do it, I must not sacrifice my whole life to a momentary instinct. It is in those moments of first shock itself that I realised that I will be having this anguished debate in me on this moral dillema my whole life or during this episode of it while the kid next lay to my bed which may last for days, months or even years.

Many feel pure disgust at sight of such bodies – a reaction encouraged by government too. I envy those to whom sufferings of others is just pathetic or, better still, disgusting but I fail to be modal citizen on this score. Though no Compie, I feel sorry for the bodies. I do. I even used to find starving kids’ pictures on internet and post the blurred versions of same on Facebook and internet reminding people of their existence, to spare them a thought. I even tried to talk, hold discussion about them with my friends – often to later’s frustration. sometimes wrote about them – lines deemed beautiful by lots of people and, which, have earned me popularity. Not sure though, if it helped the kids. But this should prove my good intensions, that I am a good person


Once I got over the initial shock, I was able to think a little more clear headedly. Though the child’s distress troubled me still; I knew exactly what I should be doing from what I had learned from all the government commercials ‘released in public welfare’ that keep popping up everywhere – ‘Zombie kids. The Undead Children. Ignore them, as much as possible – dont try to talk about them, or worse still talk to them and, under no, cimcumstances are you to feed them. They are sick, they are in themselves a disease, a tumor. They will make you a permament deformity. At worst, if you engage with them you will be at risk of becoming a traiter or a public nuisance, go mad, kill yourself or die from Lot’s wife syndrome. Most probably, you are liable to become dysfunctional. ‘Be Functional’ as founding parents of our nation have declared to be the first parameter of a good citizen.

And so I tried my best to act as normal as I could. I prepared my breakfast. I live in one those small economic lodges which has no walls seperating what I call my bedroom, drawingroom and kitchen. Walled seperations are there only for bathroom. So, all the time i was eating in my kitchen, I could still see the body lying near my bed and hear its moans. Yet, I could do eat more or less functionally while listening to news. I vould do so because, I told myself, ‘fortunately the body next to my bed is an exception. It sure is going to die. It looks so miserable.’ It was, of course, false hope and I knew better. Though all these bodies always seem ready to be on verge of dying any moment, they never do die.


Yet the hope it will die of its own accord was so real to me that for the first few days I didn’t even tell anyone or inform the authorities in the false hope that it would just die and I won’t have to deal with it. I could not shift to a new place for fear of being discovered for who I am. And no one else will take this lodge anymore because of body in it – so I was stuck in it. That said, I knew it won’t be good for me to be near the body for too long.

Thus, as I waited for it to die, I spent more and more time outside the lodge. I stopped taking any visitors which affected my dating life. Plus it started appearing to me that I was talking to people as if from across some kind of unsurmountable abyss. Leave alone dating even talking to my friends was growing difficult. I would take myself to meals on restaurants but even something as simple as eating a regular meal seemed like a battle to me.

As for the time I was forced to be in lodge, I tried my best to not think about it. Providing myself with all kind of distractions on internet or listening to music on my ear phones. Sleeping was the hardest thing with that body’s constant moaning and frequent wailing. It grew so troublesome. And I have this bad temperament where if my sleep is once broken, I can not fall back to sleep that night again.


Those white nights were the worst. Temptations grow stronger during the nights. And after all, how easy it was to try to help the child. It didn’t seem wrong at all to me. May be just giving it one glass of water could help it a little. How thirsty and hungry it must be! it was be lying there without having anything to eat or drink for days at least. There is nothing stopping me and after all I am a good person.

‘But no’, I would stop myself, ‘I must not do it. That is how it all starts. It would ruin everything even if the kid was saved. ‘Not kid’ I would then  correct myself, ‘Body’. And then repeat it to myself ‘body, body, body, not a kid, just a body. Call it a zombie or undead if you like, but not a kid. you would be kinder to a kid, after all you are a good man.’…. but if I was to help it, my whole life would be destroyed, turned upside down, become a sort of punishment. And what would I get in retun? even if I saved it, there are thousands like it.’

But if I can’t help it, must I take a knife and kill it? I wish I could. But I am not strong enough to give it a mercy death. No. Anyway how long it will live anyway? A few years? Months? Days? Hours? Minutes? It always seem like minutes, that the body would die any minute …. But it never does.  It seem to always grow lesser and lesser, dying a rather slow death and yet it never becomes nothing.

In those first few days, I taught myself to never refer to it as a child or kid even in my own mind, it was just a ‘it’ for me – a pronoun encouraged by government as well. And I could see why government was so particular about pronouns used. The idea of it having a personality was scary. If it had a personality, it would be a person. If it was a person, we must be kind to it. No, it was just a ‘it’ ‘a body’, ‘a zombie’, ‘an undead’. It had to be objectified as giving it a personality is inconvenient.

It wasn’t exactly easy though. There were times during those white nights that I found myself staring at the body wondering what these bodies that would appear on bed step of some of us turning is into Kafkirs and dooming us for life are suffering from. I look at the body next to my own bed. It’s skin must have been an unhealthy shade of white but it has gone scarlet all over the face; of a persistent silent anguish. Dark white dots weren’t there the first day it appeared …. Or I didn’t notice them before. But they have grown bigger, more prominent over time as if a sort of white darkness was slowly devouring the child. I remember thinking of it as anorexic, but it is more like a child of famine earlier because it doesn’t have any food to eat or drinking water.

Catching myself thinking of it as a child, I would be annoyed. A couple of times my frustration at my own failures to ignore the body was so much that I could have just thrown the body out on street if it wasn’t for fear of punishment in form of electric chair that would be my lot if I did this for putting several other people who might get infected when passing through the street.


To avoid the instinct of looking at the body, I started giving in to the lesser evil, the instinct of googling about my condition. The ‘Alien Body Syndrome’ is what the doctors call it and behave as if it is you, near whose bed the body is, who is patient and thus to be treated.

The government approved sites would talk about the symptoms of someone suffering from my condition – that is, apart from the obvious one of body next to your bed and these include a sense of powerlessness, dysfunctionally and, in worst of cases, a propensity to be involved in Compie inspired public nuisance. Other symptoms of first fe stages einclude – absent mindedness, sudden spells of anxiety including active weeping for no apparent reason, loss of hunger, depression, insomnia, loneliness, suicidal tendencies, increased desire for solitude, loss of sexual appetite, inability to enjoy anything, social alienation, anger issues etc. The patient was more than normally likely to increase consumption of drugs, narcotics, Tabbaco, porn and more like to hire a prostitute. And it not infrequently, the end result would be madness or suicides.

The sites also talked about the behavior you should adopt in case you get this disorder – the very first step being informing the authorities. Unlike other diseases, there is no talk about its cause or anatomical nature of it’s effects.

There was something so devoid of soul in the medical jargon used to describe what I was going through that it although it was objectively correct, it seemed wrong in some higher sense. (Please pardon my using the word ‘soul’ out of its true (religious) context in last sentence, I just don’t know a better word for the quality the presence of which can make inanimate words and arts life-like and absence of which make so many fully functional human beings look like walking dead.)


It is only on more rebellious and also more dubious websites that we see discussion about its nature, about the body itself. I was cautious enough not to let myself actively get engaged in these discussions knowing well that it was much frowned upon to be a part of such discussions.

The discussions were of purely speculative nature. There were only few things those voicing their opinions on these sites were sure about. For example, it was well known that the first such case was discovered nine years ago near the time wallisation was done under which the walls around big cities of the world were built to protect us, the Dius, who because of our robotized industries no longer had any need for the scums. I have lived long enough to know that earlier names of ‘Dius’ and ‘scums’ were ‘haves’ and have nots’ and new terms were coined by the former to distinguish themselves from later whom we held in very justified disgust. And about whom we must not talk except to our children, so as to succeed in process of active forgiveness.

When the condition was still new in the world, the reactions to it were also raw and varied a much greater deal. In first few cases, the concerned government authorities even carried away the bodies wanting to research on them, however it was discovered that merely being near a body was enough to contaminate you and no amount of protective gear will save you.

In cities, the only limitation was that of limited land. And thus, it was realized that it is best to leave the body to itself. As to the patient, s/he was quarantined or, if s/he was very useful to Dius, kept a close eye upon, in order to ensure s/he doesn’t use the words that might spread the disease. Government carried out the propaganda against the disease, which because of disease’s communicable nature, was also propaganda against people inflicted by it – much like AIDS once was.

I also know that it is a much believed theory that these are the children of scum people – who, so a theory says, have been turned this way because of exhumed gases and radiation released from our walls. But it is hard to prove it. But the biggest mystery how a child that would end up next to someone’s (that too a Dius’) bed when they are not allowed to enter the walled city? And about this there weren’t even any good theories.

The next big question is however they chose a victim? (For though it is the body suffering, I do feel like the victim.) What criteria they have? Some researches show that they are more likely to go after the kind ones, compassionate ones, intelligent ones, lonely ones etc. The more the check boxes you tick, the more likely you are to be affected. But these ‘researches’ were carried out, so to say, underground and so I doubt their validity.

And anyway, even the tone of comments and articles seemed so eager to provoke sensation or some sort of revolution, that they seemed like created by some punky teenagers who are ever on lookout for something to rebel against and probably think it to be a cool thing.

I also read about the theory that it can stay in that ‘barely alive’ condition by inhaling Carbon Dioxide and further burning it to some other gas for energy but I am not sure it true. But this theory was challenged on grounds that it didn’t make any scientific sense, that such mutation will need centuries to evolve, that it was a propaganda trick by government to dehumanise and objectify the child just as they encourage you to call it zombie, ‘it’, ‘body’, ‘undead’ etc. And anyway, the bigger question is how come it is next to my bed? How did it enter a locked apartment?

The bodies, this too I find out during my surfings, have never been known to die of themselves and haunt the place they are found even after the victim himself or herself has died. The oldest such ‘body’ is still alive nine years after being first being found out, though having no food or water – not growing, not giving out any excretions, but still alive; wailing and moaning in that never ending agony.


It is a open secret that there are Kafkirs who can adopt a mask of perfect functionality for years – always getting up, dressing in a suit and going for the work; acting like the moans of anguished body are just a background noise, almost fooling themselves into believing the disease wasn’t already devouring their heart. Hiding your Kafkir condition from relevant authorities is a civil crime. If you are rich enough to feed those in government and useful enough in your job; the authorities might spare you the humiliation or red ribbon tattoo and keep your ‘condition’ secret as long as you are not turning into a public nuisance.

I, myself, was not so good with wearing a mask. Moreover, there were bound to be at least some changes and others which were probably born of exposure to the alien body. I have mentioned them before, but it got worse as I was losing the motivation to even get out of my bed. In the first very first few days, a good friend of mine cautioned me that my colleagues were starting to suspect I was a Compie.

Before that day, I had never spared much thought to Compies and, to be honest, though it is a rather common insult and degredatory term, most of us seem to know very little about Compies except that they are very likely to be a public nuisance. As far as public opinion and understanding is concerned, Compie is a usual suspect in all matters of public nuisance.

Now that I myself was called a Compie, I decided to look deeper into matter. The word ‘Compie’ comes from ‘compassionate’ ones. Most Compies have never explicitly admitted to being one – they just got tagged (just as I was being tagged one now) ‘Compies’ by people around them frequently enough to be thought of one. They are far most liable to develop the Alien Body Syndrome than rest – with them, it only seems a matter of time; a question of when rather than if. The general attitiude toward them is, in fact of suspicion – that most of them already are having a body next to my bed and keeping it secret. In casses where these Compies ones are also lonely, the suspicions rise further. The government is said to have its eyes set on them of this very suspicion.

In fact, some people claim the bodies are a symptoms of hearts too compassionate and that excess of compassion in Kafirs must be exercised to solve the problem of bodies …. But the ‘problem’ according to these people is not the suffering of bodies but their inconvenient visibility because Compies, particularly self-claimed ones, won’t stop talking about them. Thus those who do not have to suffer from misfortune of the presence of these bodies can often be judgemental of both Compies and Kafkirs. Kafkirs do often show a undesirable change in their behavior even in first stages, if not outright dysfunctionally or indulgence in public nuisance – they might start srtweeping at parties and festivities, at dinner tables full of merry crowds spoiling it for others.

However some of the self-claimed Compies can go on living with body for years without infomring authorities at all. It is a punishable crime if you do so for over a year. The government can’t make house raids or use those mini cameras inside private places of people without their pemission because of ‘privacy rights’ consciousness among us and so it is difficult for police to catch these criminals. A selection of harder (a quality that mistakenly confused get with ‘stronger’) head of government this election might help passing of law that will give more rights to police to help find these criminals.

Though Compies never interested me before, some of their values hav egained acceptance as the general attitude toward Scums have grown kinder and benevolent. There are more and more posts about them and their miserable conditions on Facebook and social media – much liked, shared and commented upon.

I myself have always had soft spot for them and always talked about their miserable condition. In this much, many of us are just the same as Compies, what set them apart is their ideas as to how to correct the condition of the scum. They would have you admire those which are considered a public nuisance. They would have you believe that gases exhumed through walls of the cities – the gases created by robot-operated factories, are causing this disease in scum people. They would have you destroy the factories.

As much as I feel sorry for scum people, I continue to think the wall itself was built for a good reason. And I don’t  know how to help scum but breaking the wall or treating exhumed gases through some other way is hardly the viable decision. Some of compies themselves, much like some of worse cases of those who have suffered from the condition have gone out of city to support scum people which is the very height of dysfunctionality and public nuisance – though government has given people choice to do it if they want to, perhaps considering it good riddance. Of course, the pass is one way only and you lose the citizenship as soon as you leave the city.


The body, as you can guess, continued to wail and cry. It wasn’t possible to do anything anymore. Even eating food had become difficult during those days, it was as if I had a very sore throat. Everything had lost its taste and color and the music was just noice,

And you began to question yourself. No matter how much you tell yourself that the body is already dead, you began to doubt your own morality. You began to wonder how good you really are. And it was one trick I would teach myself – repeating to myself that ‘I am a good person. I am, I am. I cry on seeing death of dogs in movies. I am actively showing my concern for the scum people in my social profiles. I am miserable, constantly suffering with underdogs of the whole world.’

Each morning I woke up hoping it was all a nightmare and there was no kid next to my bed or that it was gone or dead. Yet each day I would find it right there. Yet I was patient for a few days, hopeful.

But then though the child’s condition grew worse and worse, it did so without its dying – which seemed hardly possible. And one day, I knew it might go on like this for several years. Strange, I thought, how stubborn and hopelessly we can stick to our life. Something had to change. Nothing compares to the anguish that one feels when one has to live in presence of such misery and being unable to do anything about it. You just start wishing for something or other, anything at all that will change the dynamics of this silent relationship between you and the suffering soul. Anything that will excuse your behaviour.


And it was, I think, out of this frustration that I kick the zombie kid lightly a couple of times to get some reaction from it other than the usual silent moaning but get no further reaction; as if it is too focused on its existing anguish to register any fresh outside intrusion.

Even as I marveled at its lack of reaction, the realization of my own mistake crawled down my spine in a creepish, intensely scary moment. With this act – of kicking the body, I had shown a big sign of dysfunctionality already. ‘Inability to ignore the pain of bodies’, I remember the popular info commercial saying, ‘is the first sign of dysfunctionality arising out of this condition. Reacting to it is second.’

And so, I delayed it no further and informed the authorities about my condition. They branded me with a big red ribbon like tattoo on my wrist, a sign of my infliction – to make those around me beware. This condition though not viral was communicable – literally, it was said to spread through communication (though how the events of my talking about it and bodies being found next to their bed could be connected, I couldn’t see).

It was humiliating as they reprimanded me for not informing them already. What if I had passed it? As you can guess I was fired from work though it was okay in a way since I would now be quarantined in my own place where groceries will arrive once a day on my door and government would be paying my bills. You are no longer allowed to leave your lodge except for an hour a day when you could still go to a community park provided you do not initiate a conversation (though you can respond if someone engages you by asking a question directly to you).


The ribbon must be worn on your wrist on these outings and you must make sure it is clearly visible to anyone you might come across. Its sight attracts lot of reactions from people. Most common one was that they will ignore and avoid you which is what they are supposed to do anyway; make a semi-circle while moving past you and won’t react even if you illegally try to talk to them.

Truth is like the burning, blazing sun, that must not be directly looked at with makes eyes. If my neighbors knew about it earlier when I wasn’t yet quarantined and they could visit my place, they won’t ever look at the kid directly and don’t expect me to either. That is why they are prejudiced against me. Because I fail to ignore it.

The only solution for a Kafir is opt-in ignorance. To chose to develop an ignorance of the bodies. Pretend as if they are not there, pretend there is nothing awkward happening. That is what normal people do and expect Kafkirs to do. Treating the bodies like they are a fart someone made in a social party – an indecent presence that can’t be undone but not to be talked about under  social decorum.

But it is much harder for Kafkirs to do who must wake up every morning to the sight of these suffering children and more so when they get quarantined. But that is what I am trying to. I have been trying my best. As you can see I continue to objectify it calling it a ‘it’. I haven’t ever tried talking to it. Before one showed at my doorstep, never seen other bodies directly – except in pictures.

Though almost all of them ignored me, there were a few who reacted differently. These mostly showed their disgust at you failure in losing functionality. Some might laugh at you. A couple of times I was chased back to my lodge by children who started throwing stones at me calling me Kafkir. Occasionally there were other kind of reactions too.

Then again even though, the government strictly advised public to avoid communication with a victim, some out of compassion, piety or curiosity won’t be able to help it. The curious ones, and these often included journalists would want to see the body in your place; poke you with humiliating questions etc.


Quarantine actually made it worse. Now I was struck in this room all by myself and kid. It seems to me as if that disgusting kid had already destroyed my life, my career already. There were already moments that I started feeling that brutality rise in me – that brutality which would kill the child and bring me back some of my old freedom. I had found about this, the only thing that could help you get rid of this disase online.

The only way to get rid of body is to take help of some ‘experts’ on youtube who train you to kill your sickly instincts of kindness and become brutal. Having mastered your skills, you are to one day kill the body yourself. They say the government will reloacte you and let you have a fresh start on life (under certain restrictions of course) where you can hangout with other people who have got rid of the body same way.

The government did have such a scheme, and it even had a website where you can contact them after having accomplished the task of getting rid of body and a task force will take you to your new home (you are not to talk to talk to police during your journey). Your old place will stay sealed though.

I can’t say that I wasn’t tempted or didn’t found myself having the violence in myself for same. More so because I was already suffering from Lotus’ wife syndrome. It is a rare condition evne among Kafkirs that inflict very few of them in last stages. In the begining the patient find little bit of salt like substance below his or her cheek, below cheeks. Over time though you find this substance forming on all your body and it would seem as if you are slowly disolving in this white powder as you grow weaker and weaker and then one day you just die. Your dead body disolves into this commin salt like substance much faster now – and is all powder within hours. Once you are struck with this syndrome you only have few months to live.

When I discovered the salt forming on my cheek, this filled with an awful rage and I believe I could kill the child (there was speculation that killing the child might stop the Lot’s wife syndrome, though it wasn’t tested).

And yet I was feeling equally tempted to do the opposite as well. To help the body (which was speculated to be another way of treating Lot’s Wife Syndrome). There was not much to lose now – except the little extra money I make from my internet based ‘work at home’ job – the only functionality I have left. I would not be allowed to work at all if I chose to help the child though I will still receive the daily supply of groceries. And after all I am a good person right?

Even as I write, I can’t help stealing a glance at it every now and then but I must not look at it for too long. Especially at its face. The biggest source of compassion  disease. The anguish in its eyes, the wrinkles formed of intense, persistent pain but what bothers me particularly about its face most is those lips – grown brown and so dry, the way they quiver, I am moved to almost feed it. Give it some water to drink. May be, I sometimes tell myself, I could fetch some water from my kitchen (less than a dozen steps away) and give it to drink …. Only once, no one has to know….. Maybe it would make the body a little miserable. It is so easy. And won’t take long. Even I with my, most busiest routine of the world could find time to do so (internet work was too much work for too little money). And like I said I am a good person.

But no, I must repeat to myself, I can not help the body. The body probably won’t be saved anyway in first place. It is probably already too late. And even If I could do so, not only I lose the extra little money, but also the child will become my responsibility from then on. I must also feed it (groceries might be insufficient to feed the two of us). And what kind of future I would be able to give it in this house arrested condition anyway? No, then my only option would be to cross the wall and take the child along with me to join the Scum. Scum who do not even have basic necessitates of life – what kind of life I would have there?

And it is not like it is my kid. Right? It is just as much anyone’s responsibility as mine. Or rather it is as little of my responsibility as anyone’s. No I would rather just ignore it. There is nothing to be guilty about that. I just must ignore a dying child and not offer it water. But I am a good person and financial concerns by themselves won’t have stopped me.

The truth is even if money was not the problem, the sickly disease of compassion is bound to get me. I must not do it for I must live, for myself. And the simple act of bringing the body a glass of water could kill me. Because that is how it starts – the slippery slope of compassionate acts. Now you are just giving it a glass of water, next thing you know you would be feeding.

And than you are trying to help other bodies – the ones that are at bed step of others. Next you are looking after them outside the wall to scum people. You forego your own meals because you could rather feed a child. Till you realize you can’t help them all. And one day, of all the agony that ensues, you kill yourself or go insane. Many Kafkirs have gone down that way. And I have their examples to know not to make their mistake.

After all, chances are even I save this one kid and it managed to find a functional life within the city, it would probably grow up to find another body by its side and thus suffer just like me. No. No, no, no. I am a good person, a very good person but under no condition must I be moved to help the child dying next to my bed.

Copyright – Sidharth Vardhan

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