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The Queen, clearing her throat soundlessly, said to the ministers, in a poised tone, that she cannot care less about De Mallow’s missing dog. Disappointed, she roared sophisticatedly that pivotal issues like taxes, status of the palace treasury and the upcoming royal party should have been ranked higher than the issue of a missing dog.

Bowed heads, the ministers, said in a rehearsed chorus that De Mallow’s missing dog’s issue was chosen by the chit system that Her Highness had herself started for providing a fair chance to everyone during these sessions. The Queen raised her gloved hand and her voice simultaneously, which made the quiet and meek looking ministers, quieter and meeker. The Queen politely, in a high pitch, suggested that they should pick another chit; everyone agreed unanimously.

With a picture perfect smile on her face the Queen picked up another chit and with an expression best caught in an old ugly portrait, she brusquely said, ‘Mary’s missing lamb’. Someone among the ministers gasped in horror.


Little Mary loved her little lamb Pufo and refused to accept that his sudden absence meant that he was dead… probably it was the fox. She garbled many stories, which didn’t make any sense unless one also looked in her big blue eyes.

Mary’s blue eyes could hypnotise everyone without even intending to and thus, every day, every new fellow hypnotised, heard a new tale about Pufo’s absence. To me she told that her Pufo had gone to get her starry wand with which she will make this grey land glitter.

I believed her… her big blue eyes can’t lie. I too will wait for Pufo, I told her. She smiled through her eyes and said that the night Pufo left, both of them were watching the sparkling night sky and relishing the thought of a glittering land.

She asked me not to cry, because by then I was, and gave me some freshly made carrot cake. It was delicious, but still I couldn’t stop crying… maybe because she said that she had kept some for Pufo also. Oh little Mary!


I went to meet De Mallow, he too had lost his dog, can’t remember his name, nevertheless, like Pufo, he too deserved to be mourned for. My eyes were still glistening.

Me:  Ello, De Mallow, old chap! Am sorry to hear about… about… your dog.

De Mallow:  Hmm!

Me:  When… how… a… so he is missing… Little Mary’s lamb is also missing.

De Mallow:  My dog is not missing, he is dead.

Me:  Now, now, don’t you say so De Mallow, cheer up, I heard that your case was discussed in the royal palace and the Queen will definitely…

De Mallow:  I found the carcass yesterday night near my farm; eaten by a big animal.

I stood there stupidly with an awkward expression, gaping idiotically when De Mallow closed the door on my face.