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Short Story: The STRANGER Whom I Can't Forget! #TheStranger

By Jaideep Khanduja @PebbleInWaters
"Hello!" he said with a stern tone and piercing look into my eyes, "What are you planning to do? I don't think you will be able to face yourself in the mirror next time if you steal,". I had a shiver flowing top to bottom, legs quivering and bending as if someone had squeezed the life out of them. I felt as if I will fall down if I don't hold something quickly. A sense of guilt puked out of me. I was about to pick that magazine from the counter and hide it under my shirt. The counter guy had gone to the nearby chemist's to get some medicine for his upset stomach. I being a regular customer, he requested me to stay for ten minutes at the counter, till he comes back. This was the magazine, comics and newspaper shop I was visiting for last three years when I was in my fifth standard. Taking my favorite comic books on rent was my regular routine. "Remember always that when nobody is watching you; God, You and me are there," he was smiling now while whispering these words in my ears.
I had tears in my eyes, my face reddened with shame. I anyhow managed to say "Thanks!" when I saw the counter guy entering his shop. His face was still in pain. Probably his upset stomach had not reached an extent of relief. 
"Whom were you talking to?" he asked. Probably he had heard me saying "Thanks" to the stranger who, I found vanished all of a sudden, the moment counter guy had entered the shop. To avoid the situation, I said - "Nobody, I was just singing a new song." 
That day onward, whenever anything lucrative, like the comic book that day, fancied or provoked me to do something wrong, I remembered those words the stranger said. I always felt as if he was there, around, wherever I went. Thanks to the STRANGER I can't forget because he gave me a lesson of my life. Had he not been there that day to alert me, my life would have taken a wrong turn. He simply conveyed a lot in so fewer words.

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