How The Tiger Saved My Grandpa

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After a long time, I went to Himachal to visit my grandfather. I was warmly welcomed by the villagers. I was exhausted and lay on my bed as soon as I entered my room. As I lay I observed something through the hole in the attic. It was a rectangular object with the words ‘DIARY’ written on it.

“A diary! It must be grandpa’s diary.” I said to myself.

Somehow I managed to get it with the help of a stick leaning on the wall. I blew away the dust. It had yellow crinkly pages, most of them half-eaten by termites. I randomly opened a page and started reading it. It was dated “21 September 1890.” It read, “It was all dark. I was returning from my shop. Suddenly, I noticed something moving in the bushes. I felt butterflies in my stomach. Suddenly, I saw a wagging tail and sparkling eyes. To my surprise, it was a tiger’s cub!”

“A TIGER’S CUB!” I exclaimed. I continued to read.

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“I played with it for a while and stood up to leave. But, a thought struck my mind. I thought that a child is a child, doesn’t matter of whom. My mind was thrown into turmoil. So, I decided to take it with me. I kept it away from the sight of everyone in the extra, unfinished room of my house.”

So, my grandfather owned a tiger? But why ever I hadn’t seen it? Neither had father told me anything about it. I continued to read further. The page ended with ‘Good night diary’. I don’t know what struck my mind but I again decided to open any random page.

It read, “Finally my wife found the hiding place of the cub.” I had to leave it alone in the jungle. She had been suspecting me for a long time. She realized that meat was vanishing from the refrigerator. It was really a sad day. I got so attached to that cub that I didn’t realize when time passed. Goodnight diary.”

“That’s why I was wondering why we don’t still have it.” I wanted to read further but time was passing and everyone was expecting me at the dinner table by 8:30, that is half an hour later. So, I decided to directly read the last page. It was all empty so I decided to ask grandpa about it.

I narrated the whole story to him on which he replied, “Child, I was on my deathbed, taking my last breath. The doctor had said that I won’t live anymore. But suddenly a miracle occurred. A tiger with the same sparkling eyes entered the room. Everyone stared at him with astonished eyes. He came near me, licked my palm and gazed at me for a while. I was suddenly full of vigor. I opened my eyes and looked back at him. Everything around us was still. He then turned away and left with his tail swishing.

I didn’t hear but my friend told me later that the doctor said that the bond of love between the tiger and I had the power to overcome even the demise.

It was indeed a miraculous day. Since then, the tiger and I meet occasionally- he stops, turns around and disappears in the darkness but we do share our sentiments in silence.

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