Kids Short Story – Cheeku and The ‘Thump’
The best thing about being a child is that everyone wants to see you happy. I don’t know what is it with the adults that they are so adamant on making you laugh. Your smile, your laughter,your carefree, non stoppable cackles can really make them go nuts over you. I am not a cry-baby as other five years old like Mandeep and I surely reciprocate the curtsy of nice people by amusing them with what they desire. I don’t know why but I feel every adult seeks a life in a baby’s smile.
I tell you what, chachu just knows where my button is, and he just makes me laugh so much that my face turns red and my tummy starts aching sometime. He holds me in his hands and sometimes even throws me in the air and I feel like flying. He pretends that he will leave me, but I trust him and not scared of us playing like that anymore. Sometimes everybody just in the family, like mom, dad and grandpa and granny, would just stop doing whatever they are doing and come to see us playing. I think they love to see me happy and I love to see them happy, so it is some sort of happiness business between us where I give them happiness by smiling and they smile back to give me love.
That day I got up early as I could listen to the rattling of the utensils in the kitchen and Dad was asking mom about newspaper, then tea, then towel, then his clothes and then his socks. I woke up when he asked for the socks and was wearing it, sitting on the bed. I opened my eyes to see his back towards me. I got up in a hurry and ran from my corner of the bed towards him and put my arms around his neck and said, “Good morning daddy”. My daddy was so elated that he extended his hands backwards and held me somehow and swung me to his lap and said, ” Very good morning my dear son.”
When will I grow heavier? Everybody can swing me or throw me in the air… blah… I like it anyways. He then put me back on bed and got engaged in tying his shoe laces. I went two steps back when I suddenly stepped on the white pillow and lost my balance and fell on the bed with a ‘thump’.
“Eheheh” I chuckled as I liked that. I stood up and jumped again on the pillows and O hell yea.. it was very nice. I did that three or four times when my dad just lifted me and put me on the floor. I wanted to jump again for sometime but I suddenly felt a pang of hunger in my tummy and missed my milk bottle. Mom suddenly appeared from the kitchen and took me to the bathroom and brushed my teeth. (I can brush my teeth myself, I have tried many times and I can shave like dad too but I like it when mom does it for me).
I was then given a glass of milk and felt good again after drinking it. As soon as I finished it I felt like jumping again. I went to chachu’s room and he was still sleeping on his bed. They say chachu study late at night that is why he is allowed to get up late. I went to him and placed my right leg on his bed and with my right elbow I pulled myself on it (see I am growing fast,I can climb chachu’s bed). I stood on the bed staring at him for some time and… ‘thump’, I jumped on him. Chachu got startled a bit but smiled to see me jumping on him. I jumped on him three or four times and than ran off from his room.
In the midway to granny’s room I spotted tiger (our big dog with big ears and cute eyes) lying lazily on the ground. He got alert as I ran towards him and stood upright. “Woof” he said good morning to me. I went to him, held him by his ear and shook his head vigorously. Then I stopped shaking his head but I was still holding his ears. “Woof” he asked to play more. I stared in his eyes for sometime and banged my head on his and started shaking him again. I kicked him and slapped him and then he lye submissively on the ground with both of his right legs in air, as in a defensive position.
“You may hurt him Cheeku, he is good dog, don’t kick him.” It was my mom who called to stop me. I thought he liked it and never protested. He was a good dog to me. As he lay on the ground the ‘ thump’ occurred to me once more and I fell on tiger as I did on chachu.”Pyaauuun” Tiger squealed like a mice and ran away. I couldn’t understand why he made such a sound and then I went to play with granny.
In the afternoon my mom took me to Mandeep’s house. He has a big brown dog too but he is not as cute as tiger. They call him ‘browny’.
I don’t like browny very much. Whenever we enter their house he starts barking and he makes some “grrrrrr” sounds when I look at him. He tries to scare me but he forgets that I am a grown up now, I don’t drink milk from bottle and I can count till hundred. If he will try to bite me I will kick him on his face so hard that he will go flying up in the air like a balloon and then come back dropping like a ball and will bounce back many times.
I chose to ignore him altogether as we passed the gate and entered their drawing room. Mandeep was lying on the sofa with his one leg on the other, with the milk bottle in his mouth supported by one hand and the other hand under his head like a pillow. As we entered, he tilted his head towards us , looked at me for some time and then again straightened his head to drink his milk and stare at the ceiling.
Oh how much I miss my milk bottle. He looked at me as if he was teasing me for still being able to enjoy that luxury but I didn’t mind. My mom says he is not a grown up like me. I spotted a train which was kept below the table and went to pick it up. It was a super train and had the tracks and the signals and even the driver was visible from the window. Mandeep saw me picking it up and frowned. I ignored him once again and tried to run it on the floor while my mom was talking to his mother. I liked that train and I was trying to run it again when I heard Mandeep screaming, “Uuuuannn..”
My mom and his mother both looked at him to find out the reason. The nipple of the bottle came out of his mouth as he opened it to cry and the milk even dropped on his neck…”yuck.. so dirty”. He pointed out with his fingers towards me and said in a crying voice, “my telaain” My mom looked at me and frowned (Oh oh… I understand it very well when she frowns). I shrugged my shoulders and dropped the train. The train hit the floor and a wheel came out of it. “Uaaaannnnnn” Mandeep cried louder now as he saw the wheel coming out.
“See, what you did Cheeku? You broke the train. Say sorry to him and give the chocolate from your pocket to him.” My mom believes in justice. And suddenly Mandeep stopped crying. I am sure he listened to the word chocolate. I looked at my mother and nodded my head in a ‘no’ for the chocolate. She frowned once again at me and said, “Cheekuuuuu?” Mandeep saw me nodding and started crying again , “Uuaannnnnn”.
I looked at Mandeep once again and went forward to give him the chocolate from my pocket and said sorry. He was smiling greedily and then both the mothers got busy in talking again. “How much can they talk?” I said to myself. Mandeep was really a devil and he opened the chocolate in front of me and started eating it alone. I looked at my mother to ask her to say to him to share it but she ignored me. I am sure if I had opened the chocolate then she would have surely asked me to offer it to everybody.
“Double standard grown up society” I said to myself and gulped the saliva which came in my mouth as I saw him eating it. I sat on the sofa with a thump and bounced back a little. Mandeep saw me bouncing on the sofa and gave a chuckle. He kept the half chocolate in his pocket and sat up straight. He sat with a thump too and bounced a little. He chuckled once again.
My mom and her mom somehow finished their chatting and my mom held my hand to leave for the home. We came to the gate when they suddenly got engaged in some other thing and I stood with her and Mandeep was hiding behind her mother.
“Grrrrrrr” came the voice of browny. He was sitting near the gate and looking directly at me.
“Chhhh…chhup” said Mandeep to him and he got silent.
“He understands whatever you say?” I asked.
Mandeep nodded proudly in a yes.
“Can you hold his ears and shake his head like I do with tiger?”
Mandeep nodded once again and went to the dog to catch him by his ears and shook him.
“Grrrrrrr” said the dog. My tiger is different, he never protest but browny seemed angry.
“Can you thump on him while he is lying?” I asked suggesting the way he sat on the sofa.
“Ummm hmmm” Mandeep uttered in consent.
Mandeep went to the dog again and held him by his ears to play like me, but browny didn’t lie down defensively and playfully like tiger, instead he growled once more. I didn’t find that sound very friendly but I decided not to caution Mandeep (he has eaten the chocolate alone). Mandeep turned towards me and and took a step back and was about to sit on browny’s back like adults sit on a sofa. Mandeep was smiling at me proudly and sat with a ‘thump’.
“Grrrrrrrr” the dog suddenly got up and Mandeep fell on the floor head on. “Wooof … grr” the dog warned Mandeep very rudely and even caught hold of his pajama. Luckily he didn’t bite him.
There was a sound of a ‘thump’ when Mandeep’s head collided with the floor and both the ladies got alert. Mandeep immediately got up and was in state of shock. The dog then growled at him and caught his leg by his pajama. The second attack made him numb further and he again sat on the floor with his bum again making a ‘thump’ . Mandeep now sat on the floor and with his pajama in browny’s mouth. He looked at me as a man to another man and there was an embarrassment of defeat in his eyes.
“Don’t laugh Cheeku” my mom caught me giggling but I don’t know why she was also trying to suppress her smile.
“Hai! my child” The reaction came from his mother after a prolonged second. Mandeep was looking at me when my mother asked me to not to laugh. This diverted his numb face from me to the left, where my mother was standing and then his mother’s emotional hue further diverted his numb face to the left . As her mother approached him to pick him up, he looked at her in her eyes and his expression changed from numb to dumb to pain to embarrassment and finally he gave out his trade mark cry, “Uuuuuuuuannnn”
I looked at my mom and said, “Mom… home”. My mom looked at me and squinted her eyes playfully and said to Mandeep ,” Na beta, don’t cry. Ok Mrs Mehra I will leave now. I think browny is not as friendly as our tiger.”
Mandeep’s mother was holding him and smiled back as a goodbye.
As we were moving towards the home we were on tenth step when she said ,” You asked him to do that?”
“Ya” and I smiled proudly and lovingly towards her.
She smiled back and I was back in that smiling business.