The clouds played peek a boo with the moon, veiling and unveiling it occasionally. Ravi looked outside the window of his hostel room with a sign of relief, giving the final touch to his PhD papers. He had been working on this for a long time, having sleepless nights, doing his research and writing. Finally, it was complete!

Today had been a big day for him. Not only was his research work getting over but also, he had qualified the prestigious civil service exams. Double celebrations for him as his hard work had taken shape.

After many days, he went off to sleep soundly.


‘Sir, here is my research paper.’ Ravi submitted his papers to Prof. Radakrishnan, hoping to finish off the formalities soon, so that he could rush to the station to catch the train. Everyone at home was exulted with his performance and were eagerly waiting for his return to celebrate.

‘Well done Ravi! Congratulations for cracking the civil service exams. I am so proud of you.’

‘Thank you Sir.’

‘It’s a big day for you today. New life awaits you.’

‘Yes sir.’ Said Ravi brimming with joy.

‘Can I ask you for something? If you don’t mind.’ Professor asked him looking through his spectacles.

‘Sir… please order.’

‘There is a boy from a humble background, in great need of money. You have cleared the exams, your needs are now taken care of by divine! But this boy has nowhere to go. He is barely able to support his family. If you don’t mind can I give your PhD papers to him so that he can at least get the scholarship money and help feed his family. He will certainly repay you once on his feet.’

Ravi was startled!

How could Professor ask him for his hard earned work? It was not just words on papers… it was his sacrifice, his patience, his thirst and hunger pangs… which were all put together to complete this. Nothing can repay this!

How could he let go his labour? Doesn’t professor know how he too struggled all these days to achieve his doctorate!

Who can this boy be for whom he is being so sympathetic that he wants me to give away my work, my scholarship!

‘Think about it son. Had I been financially sound myself I would have never asked you. Do let me know.’

‘Ok sir.’ Ravi said shuffling on his feet.

Professor had been a very gentle soul, living an honest and a virtuous life. He was very well versed with Ravi’s background and aware about his pains and struggles.

Ravi was disoriented for some time. He had been waiting for this day eagerly. For him professor asking for his papers looked off the mark but he decided to go ahead with what his mentor had asked from him.

As professor said he was taken care of by divine… he went ahead surrendering his hard work to an unknown person, believing that better things lay ahead.

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Shristee Singh
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