‘Anna*, how much for the Cricket Ganesha?’
I looked at the boy. He was dressed in cricket-whites and carried a kit-bag.
‘Hundred rupees,’ I answered curtly. Kids did not make good customers.
‘I have only fifty,’ His voice fell.
I rolled my eyes, ‘Get another fifty if you want it.’
‘Do you have a smaller idol?’
‘No. Now, don’t disturb me.’
‘Can I give you the balance tomorrow?’
‘Anna, please. I have State Under-13 selection tomorrow. Grandpa told me if I prayed to Cricket Ganesha, I will get selected.’
I smiled sarcastically, ‘Playing gets you selected, not praying.’
‘I play well Anna. I have hit five centuries for the districts. My name has come in the papers.’
I wrapped the Ganesha idol and handed it to him. I waved him off when he tried to pay me.
‘All the best. Play well.’
He ran away with a smile.
My dreams of becoming a cricketer were squashed by corrupt selectors fifteen years ago. I murmured a small prayer to Ganesha that the current selectors valued talent more than money.
Anna – Elder Brother (in Tamil)
This piece of fiction is in response to FFfAW hosted by Priceless Joy. Image credit to Lavanya. Please find other entries to this week’s prompt here.