Neha moves to a new place. There she comes to know about an old lady who is very mean to kids. But she soon comes to know that the old lady isn’t what she seems and first impressions aren’t always correct.
It was early in the morning. They have just reached their new apartments. Neha and Arun got down from the car while their parents proceeded to park their car.
Neha looked around. She seemed to like the place. It was peaceful and she being a nature lover really loved the serenity in the atmosphere. Still drowsy and yawning, Arun walked towards their new house and Neha followed him.
The sun seemed to come out in full now. Neha got up by some noises outside. She walked out of her room and noticed some kids munching on cookies served by her mom.
She turned towards her mother enquiringly and her mother said-“They are Arun’s friends”.” She is Neha, Arun’s sister” her mother introduced her to them. “He surely does make friends real soon”, thought Neha to herself.
A 12-year-old boy smiled at her and said –”Hai Neha! I am Rithvik, this is Suhas and she is my sister Raga nicknamed Shorty”.
Raga made a poker face and sticking out her tongue at him said: “His nickname is Golu”.
Neha snickered and Suhas giggling said “Stop it you both, is Arun there Neha? He said he will play with us today. “Why don’t you join us?”
Neha was about to say something when Arun wiping his wet head with a towel said- “Neha won’t be interested in playing our wild games. She really loves to draw at some quite place. You see she is a nature lover too”.
Neha shyly said “Stop it Arun. You make me seem like a very boring person”. “I shall definitely join you but I would like to check out the terrace and scenic view there today”.
With wide eyes, Raga said “The Terrace! You better do not”.
Rithvik and Suhas nodded their head frantically.
“But Why?” Neha asked surprised.
“You see there is an old woman living there. She is very cranky and short-tempered”, Suhas said. “She never allows us to play on the terrace”, Rithvik added. “She lives alone and I have always felt a bad vibe about her”, Raga interjected.
“Wow! She must have really scared the daylights out of you” Arun exclaimed stuffing his sandwich into his mouth.
“I would better steer clear of the terrace and the old lady if I were you,” Rithvik said.
“Ok then let’s leave, for now, Neha you can join us after you get ready”.
Neha nodded and they left. Neha kept pondering about what they told about the old lady. But she really wanted to view the terrace.
Mustering up her courage, Neha, with her drawing book and some pencils climbed the stairs. She slowly approached the wall and hiding behind it peered over. There was no one there. She walked onto the terrace and looked around. There seemed to be a room with a lock. She felt the fresh breeze of air on her face and taking out her drawing book and pencils started drawing the view.
She was very much immersed in her drawing when she heard some footsteps. She immediately closed her drawing book, picked up her pencils and hid behind a wall. She noticed an old woman with a wrinkled face. The old lady unlocked the door and went inside.
“She must the old lady they were talking about”, she thought to herself.
Breathing a sigh of relief, she tiptoed onto the entrance and sprinted towards her house.
Out of fear she avoided going back to the terrace for two days. But soon she was tempted to go back again. Very slowly she climbed the stairs towards the terrace, carefully hiding behind a wall she looked around to see if the old lady was there. Straight opposite to her, she saw the old lady. But what struck her most was that there were birds all over the place, birds of all types, some on her head, some on her shoulders, some on her lap and some on the ground. The old lady sat there frozen not moving with an unreadable expression on her face.
Neha immediately took out her drawing book and pencils and started drawing. After some time the birds started to fly away slowly. Very soon the old lady was all alone. Getting up from her chair slowly she walked towards her room went inside and locked it.
The next day Neha arrived at the same time. She saw the same scene. She continued her drawing. Just like the other day the birds flew away one after the other.
The old lady as soon as the birds left walked slowly towards her door entered it and locked it from inside. This happened for 3 days. Neha was very soon about to complete her drawing.
She went to the terrace that day but neither did she find the old lady nor the birds. She waited for a long time but she didn’t come. Disappointed she went back.
A week passed by but there was no sign of the old lady. Unable to contain her curiosity Neha decided to approach the old lady.
Mustering up her courage she rang the doorbell. No one answered. She rang the bell again.
The door clicked and out came the old lady with what seemed like a very serious expression on her face. Neha moving an inch or two back stared at the old lady.
The old lady then said in a very weak voice-“You must be the girl who sits behind the wall and keeps drawing”.
Neha was stunned. She then said –”Umm! You knew?”
The old lady nodded. Neha then asked, “What happened to the birds, why aren’t they coming anymore?”
The old lady then said “I do not feel very well these days. I couldn’t feed them as I was very sick”.
Neha then asked “Umm! Can I feed the birds?”
The old lady smiled for the first time. She went inside and brought a bowl with bird feed. Handing it to Neha she said “Here you go. Do not make too much noise as that may scare the birds away.”
Placing the bowl on the ground she sat silently on the chair. The birds slowly settled on the rooftop.
They were initially hesitant about approaching the bowl with Neha sitting there. One bird flew towards the ground and moved towards the bowl. Soon birds flocked around Neha. Some sat on Neha’s lap, some on her shoulders, and some on her head. Neha was overjoyed for she never experienced anything like this.
After the birds flew away the old lady said -“The birds sure seemed to like you. They don’t approach people so easily. Those kids scared the birds away because of which I have to drive them away.”
Neha soon understood the reason why they weren’t allowed here. She opened her drawing book and showed the drawing of the old lady with the birds. The old lady gave a very warm smile-“That’s me! It’s beautiful”.
That was the beginning of a new and special relationship.
She soon became a regular to that place. They were two chairs now and both of them fed the birds every day.