The boy was sitting in the interrogation room. The inspector cursing and sprinkling spit on the table in-between them.
“Why did you do it?” the Inspector knew he won’t be getting an easy answer. The rebellious eyes of that young boy were silently testifying that he could crash the entire shutters of their pretentious cages with only a blink. Those eyes were full of anger, resentment and his expressions snorting with indignance yet he chose to mock the officer and quizzed him back.
“Why did YOU do it?”
“Do what? We did nothing. You broke into that Vintage-Guitar shop and tried stealing it.”
“Is that what you’re going to write in the report or do you have guts to document the exact scenario?”, retorted the boy.
The Officer went livid. His palm landed harshly on the boy’s cheeks and barked at him for his audacity.
He slapped that lad who was already black and blue after the shop owner and their neighbors found a perfect aim to vent out their day’s frustration.
His face was remarkably red with the current encounter but a devilish smile entered his eyes.
“Youngsters like you are the reason for the doomed society. You want to get easy money so you could party, do drugs, indulge in all sorts of illegal activities and then you blatantly attempt to put us in a bad light?
Do you have guts to be true to yourself?”, demanded the Inspector but was hurt by his own words. The boy could see and so he revealed since the one who arrested him was another officer.
“I was arrested while I was playing the guitar in front of that shop. It was past midnight, the shop was closed. So yes, I crashed the glass wall using a wooden plank not to steal it but to play it. Just one more time before I give it up for forever.”
“What! Is it that hard to buy a Guitar that you have to break-in in someone else’s property and steal it?”, the officer was confused.
“To your surprise, Yes!” The boy continued. “It is hard. It’s very hard to continue art if you’re born poor.
It’s hard when you see your family looking up to you with such expectations to build their future as well
and then those eyes filling up with disappointment because you chose music over studies.
It’s back-breaking that the only basic, second-hand Guitar you could afford and earn working through different part-time jobs, is smashed by your parents in front of you.
It’s unfathomable when you can’t brush your creativity off and it keeps poking at you to be fed while the stomachs around sleep hungry.
It’s exhausting when you know your family understands the weight of your dreams, did everything to protect them but failed before the repulsive weight of poverty.
It’s strenuous when only to pursue music you agree to work in a pub at night and apart from playing the Guitar, they make you do all sorts of odd jobs of waitering, pouring booze in their glasses whole night, moving illegal stuff from one place to another, letting customers be extra-friendly to you. The situation clearly growls of being exploited and abused but the moment you raise your voice against the unfairness you’re rewarded with zero payment and a kick-in-your-buttocks attitude.
I don’t do drugs, Sir. I never got the easy money. I could have stolen if I wanted to but that’s not how I am raised. Yes, the way I let all my frustration out was wrong. But there was nothing else that could calm my soul down amidst the dreadful chaos if I didn’t hold the guitar and sing my pain away.
Charge me with all the bullshit if that gets you with higher-number-of-cases-resolved status.
I don’t care!.”
The officer wasn’t moved. At least he didn’t seem to.
“Look here, Young Man! If you think you are the only one with the hardships then
Welcome to real life!
It’s never going to be easy, nothing is easy but that doesn’t give you an excuse to destroy someone else’s property so you could have your own peace of mind. Pave your way out. If you’re really that determined, the path will find you.”
“I don’t want another lesson”, shrugged the boy.
“Fine, have it your way.” Said the officer putting his hands in the air as a giving-up gesture.
Officer 2 enters the room meanwhile.
“So, what’s up with this lad? He got to pay a hefty fine. I was about to inform his family.”
“Yeah, Yeah! He’s going to pay what he is due.” Said the 1st Officer and both the Inspectors left the room leaving the boy alone with his thoughts.
The boy knew all this was leading to a worse situation. By this time his family would know. He wasn’t afraid of what was to happen to him but what would his parents feel. He kept murmuring in his mind, ‘I am not a bad Son, I am not a bad human being. You raised me well. But things didn’t work out and I messed up. I hope you don’t blame yourself for it.’
The 1st officer came back into the room and handed him few sheets of paper that looked more like forms and asked him to submit them on the front desk. “Go home, and we will call you when we need to settle things.”
The boy was confused now but he took it and moved out of the room to hand it over to the reception area.
“What? Why are you giving me this? There is no such formality and go home. We don’t have time to deal with you.”
The boy thought what sort of dirty little trick he was being played at but slowly stepped out of the station. His fingers gingerly brushed the envelope beneath those forms which he didn’t notice before.
He saw some hard cash nicely pressed in it. Enough to buy a Guitar and some essentials with a note saying:
“Buy that Guitar.
Stay out of trouble!”
The boy sensed and suddenly felt the turmoil after reading those 2 lines and squatted on the same spot.
His head touching his knees, cupping his mouth to silence his painful but happy cry.
“Hollow perceptions and people’s expectations cut wings of the dreamers
yet there are some souls who become their wings.”