Platform No.1

I wake up to the sound of a train passing. Well, I haven’t slept like this since weeks. This was the best sleep I had in months. I pick up my cardboard from the floor and walk towards the water tap. I turn it, but no water is coming out of it. Now I cannot even get a free sip of water. There is another tap on the main platform, I will see there then. I start walking but my tired legs start to give up on me, my knees are weak and my bottom is hurting. I cannot even stand properly. I go and sit down on a bench. People are gawking at me awkwardly. They don’t sense my pain but only the outward look I hold right now. For them I am a disgrace, a bad image for the society. But they don’t know that I didn’t want this life, a life so degrading that I am sitting right now with blood in my pants and I cannot even wash it off. The coolie is staring at me now, I don’t like the way he looks. I must now get up, my throat is parched and I cannot even croak out my voice to beg. My body hurts now, my shoulders and back are stinging as if pins are stuck on my body. I try to get up but my knees don’t hold, they buckle and I am on the floor, on my knees. The people keep on looking but nobody comes to help me. Am I that pathetic that I don’t even deserve help? A boy and a girl are staring at me, the boy wants to help but is reluctant. The boy comes and helps me up.
“Are you alright, my boy?”, he asks helping me sit down again.
“Ji”, I managed to say. I give him a weak smile and he smiles back. I hear a train coming. He goes and brings me a small bottle of water and after giving me a kind smile, goes and boards the train. I am thankful for that. I feel like I am human again. I finish the bottle and I see a half eaten bag of chips on the other platform. It is lying on the floor and I don’t have money or will to beg right now. So, I climb the foot bridge, and as I reach the end of stairs, I am panting and am on all fours. Two men come and stand above me, “Hey, isn’t this the boy we were fooling around with last night?”
The other man smirks, “Yesterday or today?”

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