Hdg: As different as cheese and chalk
God! what a clatter! Slow down, you tornado', said Shama. Only no one heard her speak. It wasn't because the clattering feet of Divya, who rushed up the stairs to their flat, drowned out her words. It was because Shama hadn't said the words aloud.
Shama, older to Divya by two years, had always been quiet and soft-spoken. Divya was boisterous and too loud for Shama. Soon Divya overshadowed Shama, deciding for two of them and readily agreed to by their parents.
Shama, however, didn't meekly acquiesced to Divya. Shama continued doing things she wanted to do, quietly. No one, not even Divya noticed, because Shama was largely ignored.
Left to herself, Shama was happy, if trifle sad. Realising that her opinion don't matter and hardly anyone took note of what she said, Shama kept up a constant dialogue with herself. And, when she thought her brain would burst with conversation spilling out, Shama took to writing.
She wrote whenever she felt like. Until, Sheela Miss came to teach creative writing to her class in the second term, it didn't occur to Shama that she should show her work to someone.
Young, friendly and gentle Sheela Miss discovered that there was a budding writer in her class and encouraged Shama to write her thoughts more effectively. Shama enjoyed the process, basking in her teacher's praise.
And, then came the biggest surprise of the year. The school's annual gathering was announced with just one change. This year students were to shoulder responsibility with teachers – in writing, getting costumes and prop ready, roping in actors/actress....the works!
Shama was thrilled when Sheela Miss chose her to write a play, alongwith a few seniors. She was so busy, brain-storming and writing and drafting the play, that she had no clue that Divya was chosen to play the role of princess, in her play.
It came as a shock to Shama when one evening, Divya announced to her parents and relatives, that she was going to play the princess in school play. She also proceeded to enact it, while Shama watched with her jaws dropping.
'Stop it! Princess Pia is sweet, gentle and courageous and what you are doing is a terrible imitation of a spoilt brat', Shama's voice rang out clearly and firmly.
Divya stopped, her hand clapping her mouth in shock, while her parents and relatives were stunned.
'Look...Divya. What you are doing is wrong! Be a little more....' Shama went back to speaking gently, but firmly.
Divya and others, who were in a daze, didn't stop to think about how Shama knew about Princess Pia. Next few days, Divya went over to Shama with her lines and learnt to deliver them with perfect expressions too.
On the day of the annual gathering, Divya shone as Princess Pia, while her parents beamed in the audience. At the end, they sought out Sheela Miss to thank her for giving Divya the main role.
Sheela Miss was happy to meet Divya's parents and said that the role of princess was conceived and developed by a student in her class.
She called out to Shama, much to her parents bewilderment. Shama too was puzzled on seeing her parents and Divya with her teacher. Sheela Miss then presented Shama to her parents and said, 'Shama shared the responsibility of writing the play along with two other students. The characterisation of Pia was solely her idea, Divya.'
Stunned into silence for a few minutes, Divya then rushed to Shama and enveloped her into a bear hug.
'Thanks Shama,' Divya whispered.
When Divya freed Shama from her embrace, the latter's eyes were shining with happiness. She had not only found her voice, but her darling sister too.