“Mistaken Identity” is one of the outstanding stories of the first biannual International Short Story Contest 2017 written by Pachipala Aishwarya, India.
Have you ever mistaken an identity before? Well if you did not let me share with you about one such incident.
The scorching sun shone brilliantly in the sapphire sky. Columns of creamy white clouds glided carelessly in the vast blue. I was red in the face with exertion and my body ached with exhaustion. School had just ended with my last period being Physical Education. My feet felt like lead as I shuffled to the bus stop.
As I waited impatiently for the bus to arrive, someone caught my eye. It was a lanky man. He slouched down the street with a hand in his pocket. He had parts of hair lightening with chemical treatment to reddish gold colour and a pimply face .His nose was long and curved like a beak. He looked like an ex-convict! The man took his seat inches away from me. Goosebumps broke out all over my body.
Out of the blue, the man stood up and looked at me with his small beady eyes. I was immobilised with fear and blood seemed to freeze in my veins. Various thoughts started to bubble into my mind. My hair stood on its ends all over my body. I sat rooted to the seat. The man stopped in front of me and spoke in a surprisingly gentle voice,
“Excuse me can you tell me where Cherry Plaza is located”.
I stared blankly at him for a moment. Then I heaved a sigh of relief. I realised that I had mistaken the man just by his appearance.
As I was familiar with the directions of Cherry Plaza (it was just a stone’s throw away), I volunteered to show the man the place. The two of us had a pleasant chat along the way. The man turned out to be a famous and well-known hair stylist who had just transferred here from America. He even offered to give me a free hair cut when I visit him the next time.
I regretted my thoughts, and after this incident I learnt and vowed to never judge a book by its cover again. The pretty and famous may be mean but the quiet and average may be brilliant.