Just Toying

The doors rattled, and almost jumped off their rusty hinges. The windows banged against their frames. The wind rushed in through the cracks, howling like a battalion of banshees. Rain came down in torrents from the dark heavens, thunder rolled, and lightning flashed every now and then, lighting up the small room like a bright electric bulb, dying out the next moment, all within the blink of an eye. Creatures, small and big, sought shelter in their homes with relief. Such could also be said for the thin figure of Theo Klein. Once a burly figure residing in Newcastle, Klein’s stature had now reduced to a mere stick figure, with a head hinged on top of his body, not unlike a black-plumed globe. The toymaker sat at his table, busy with his work. He shivered in his flimsy shirt whenever the wind managed to brush past his body. A mass jumble of small hands, feet, hooves, tails, miniature cloth pieces, and other items, hardly distinguishable, lay at one side on the work table. The expert took his time, chose a perfectly suitable piece, and put it at its appropriate position, where it stayed and would stay on till the end of time. How he did so without stitches, tape, or glue or any other sort of integration methods (not even the one developed by Leibnitz *), shall not be mentioned as requested by the aforementioned virtuoso.

As his hands glided over his equipment, his dexterous fingers at last picked up his special, almost magical tool, a mechanical calliper, and touched its main scale to the back of the horse he had designed with such care. Tutoy would be his best creation yet. Although not much of the sort of the latest equine varieties, Tutoy rather resembled a puppet-horse, not of out place in a children’s play. When the main scale made contact, the click, which otherwise should not have made more sound than a pin drop, could be heard distinctly over the broken-up melody of the flashy heavens. Klein stood up, stretched himself, and beaming at his trotting Tutoy, left the worktable to relieve himself. The horse sat down, yawned, rubbed its beady eyes with his front leg, and with a placid expression, took account of the room he was in.

When Tutoy turned his head towards the wall to his right, his attention was arrested at once. A screen blinked at him, a progress bar flashing green, indicating a file transfer success. Tutoy realised that his entire life was built out of a computer program, but he didn’t know the reason. Questions devoured his stuffed head. He presumed that he was not supposed to look at the source of his life. No one should ever wonder about one’s reason of coming into existence, for one cannot help but draw a blank every time.

Just then, Klein entered the room. “What’ve you done, my beauty?”, he shouted. “Why did you have to look at that screen!? Ooohhh No, blunder blunder. I’m so sorry Tutoy, I created you, but violated a fundamental testament of nature. According to it, “None shall be aware of the origin of his creation and must accept it without doubt, for in violating this principle, he shall be deemed to be composed of non-natural rare matter, created differently.” “In other words, antimatter”, said Klein his brows knitted together. “Then I shall leave all matter and go away”, replied Tutoy resolutely, fully aware of the consequences of matter and antimatter collisions. Klein had tears in his eyes. His month-long efforts had gone in vain. He was forced to send away his beautiful creation, but knew in his heart-of-hearts that it must be done. “There’s this one thing. Something’s gnawing at me from inside”, said Tutoy. “Oh that would be hung.. anti-hunger. Let me get you some antipasto,” offered Klein lovingly. He brought out some meat, olives, mozzarella cheese and vinegar soaked vegetables to satiate Tutoy’s anti-hunger for anti-food.

Having done full justice to the (anti-) meal, Tutoy went out into the dark, damp forest . The rain had thankfully stopped. Klein stared at the retreating horse, hearing the fading clippity clop. The horse could still not believe his ill fate. Having been brought to life, and then to be outcasted just for knowing that-which-should-not-be-known was just unfair. Oh, how wonderful it’d be to become matter and live peacefully ever after with his master! He stomped his hoof on the grass.

Back at the toymaker’s hut, Klein heard a deafening explosion as particles and antiparticles annihilated each other giving rise to extreme gamma radiation. The toymaker ran out, unconcerned about himself, and stood aghast. The forest no longer existed, but Tutoy stood there, unharmed. “I anti-died, master, I anti-died”, the horse shouted excitedly. “That is, to say, I lived !”

Note: Baryogenesis is the generic term for the hypothetical physical processes taken place that produced baryonic asymmetry, i.e. the imbalance of matter and antimatter in the observed universe, with matter being more abundant than anti-matter.

* The integral notation ∫ was developed by Gottfried Wilhelm Leibnitz and has been widely used since its publication.

© 2017, Just Toying by Ritom Gupta. All rights reserved.
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