“Hey Anamika! ”
“What happened of the paintings, after all? Do you even know anything about them…I mean, is there even any hope they’re with the faculty you submitted them to or you lost them– gave them away?
At least tell me who you’d submitted to– so instead of asking you again and again, I ll go to her, directly…”
“No, no! They must be with the madam there in the other department. Let’s just go and check together.”
They went to the in-charge of the art department of the magazine for which the paintings were submitted– Anamika had asked him to give them to her so she would get it into the magazine; he’d told her about the last year when they were returned without any of his getting printed, still on her insisting he’d given her the ones she asked for, which included the best ones he had.
“Anyway they’re pretty lousy.” He had been thinking for a long time about those works that he’d done some years ago.
On reaching the cabin, she asked about those paintings.
“Check that cupboard, there” said the professor.
He checked inside that small steel almirah standing by the wall at the entrance of the room– there were three of his, among others’, he said to Anamika “They’re just three– do you remember how many I gave you? I don’t.”
“They were ten or so…”
“Others who rummaged this might have taken them away then- they probably took what they liked” And left the rest, he thought to himself.
“Ma’am, there’re more, they’re about eight or ten” said Anamika while he searched still.
“Where were you when I put the notices in every department?”
He rose up listening to them and said “OK ma’am, thank you!”
“You found all of them?” she asked.
“No. They’re just three.”
“Is that yours?” the other professor there, said.
“No, not mine, thank you” and he left the room, after him came Anamika.
He stood looking at the paintings, shuffling them.
“I can’t believe you selected these– I would never have.” he said.
“This one’s really good” pointing to the cyan and orange shades, remarked Anamika.
“Thanks, then.” He said, she started on upwards on the stairs while he stood there, and finally tore them apart.
“Shankar…” she said.
“Thanks. I’ll make new ones.” Or will I? To himself.
“Fool!”, he thought and started down the stairs to dispose the pieces.
PS: Al, the blue nimbus is gone.