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Once Upon a Time…or Maybe Not!

Author: Mithran Ladhania, Class VII C

What can a hair dryer do?

Well, I would be wondering the same thing if you asked me. My reply would be something like “Umm, I dunno, like dry hair and ruin people’s hair just after they managed to comb it down before a party?”  But that would be before the Parcel arrived.

It was one of those fresh mornings that rarely come, one that makes you want to sit outside with a milkshake and a cookie and gloat over the fact that you didn’t turn any of your plants into The Sahara Desert or Michigan Lake, while your neighbour destroyed five of his plants and had to spend all his monthly savings (probably) into buying new crotons.

So, I did just that. I walked out of the door, with some cash in my pocket for buying milkshake and cookies. I hardly noticed a large lightning blue box, nothing like your average courier box. That is, until I tripped over it. I hit my shin, landing face-first into my chrysanthemums. “So much for my houseplants,” I grumbled.

I got up and started checking for broken bones. I was just checking my rather painful shoulder blade when I noticed the blue box, with an irregular imprint where my shin had collided with it. Confused, I checked my phone for any orders that week, though I already suspected that no courier companies used bright blue boxes for delivering stuff. And no, there were no orders due that week, that month, that whole quarter of the year!

Sceptically, I surveyed the box, the way a detective would survey a scene of crime. After a few moments of suspiciously surveying the box, I gingerly took it inside.

All the while carrying the box, I wondered who had sent the box to me. Could it be the FBI? Or the CIA? Or space monkeys who ate pizza? Definitely Space monkeys who ate pizza.

I set the box down onto the table. And inside the Bright Blue Box that beheld the mysteries of Space monkeys that ate pizza was a … hair dryer!?!

“Oh great, now I have another hair dryer,” I said, remembering that my uncle Jai had given me a hair dryer on Christmas. I reached for the dryer but instead my fingers touched the surface of something that burned like lava. The pain was so bad that my hand went numb. My vision was as if I were seeing through a layer of red frosted glass. Thank the gods I remembered to put my hand under cold running water. The tap became soft as clay when I touched it and the cold water turned to steam on contact with my hand. The ice I put on my hand did the same. But the worst was yet to come. The gel ice pack! It exploded into blue coloured toxic stuff that released an acrid fume.

I went to the laundry and fished out the baking gloves that my Aunt Isha had given me and returned to the box. But this time I wasn’t going to be fooled. I took out a pair of ancient tongs made of zirconium (who knew I had all that lying around) and carefully reached for the hair dryer.

Funnily enough, it came out, though not peacefully. The hair dryer burned a deep shade of orange. The moment the dryer (that is if you can call it a  dryer) came out of the box, it exploded. I hoped that my hand would go numb again, but this time I wasn’t so lucky. White-hot pokers of pain shot through my arm, screaming for me to let go, and my hand went limp, the pain however remained. I silently cursed myself for not calling the fire brigade. I almost screamed, but then remembered that I would need my voice box for the rest of my life. My vision flashed red.

Somewhere a jug of water turned over and splashed onto the dryer. It sizzled and burned, then suddenly, shot straight up into the ceiling and created one last, dying explosion, a release of such a tremendous amount of energy that the ceiling rippled like water.

But before the dryer had collided with the ceiling, I noticed something.

“It was going to be dangerous all along. Dear God, please warn me beforehand next time.”

* * *

Finally, I woke up in my bed, with a faint memory of a bright blue box with a hair appliance inside. “I wonder what it could be?” And still I do not know. But if you get to know, please contact me on the planet of Space monkeys that eat pizza.

P.S. The author of this piece does not actually own a hair dryer nor does his allowance cover milkshake and cookie at the same time.

P.P.S This was written in the middle of a Lockdown so who are we even kidding.

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