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The Stamp Album

“Oh no, my stamp album is not here!” cried out Rahul.
“Where did you forget it, yaar?” questioned Akash.
“Nowhere. I kept it right here, in my bag”.
“Then, don’t worry. Detective Akash is on duty”, beamed Akash.
“It’s too much. Just help me search my album”.
‘I’ll do that in the lunch break”.
During the lunch break:
“Now, what was your album like?”
“Haven’t you seen it?”
“Of course, I have seen. But, now I am not your friend Akash. I am detective Akash”.
“This is a matter of seriousness. Don’t joke”.
“Tell me how it was?”
“A green album, with the cover having my name in bold letters and the picture of a stamp”.
“Okay”.
“Anyone having a green book will get a treat from me”.
“What’s special, Akash?”
“Nothing”.
“Akash, I have a green book. Give me a treat”.
It was a normal notebook and not an album. Akash was disappointed that he’ll have to waste his money.
‘It’s okay. It’s Rahul’s work. I’ll charge him later”, thought Akash.
Later:
“Akash, where’s my album? Did you find it?”
“Not yet. Pay me an advance of Rs.50. It’s required to find your album”.
“I’ll pay you later. First, find me my album. I can’t live without it”.
“Does anyone have Rahul’s album? It’s green in colour”, shouted Akash, hoping that he would find it, after relying on the last option of asking it openly.
“I am not here to steal albums”, said Sandeep.
Everyone was present, but Mandeep walked out, making Akash suspect that he is the thief.
“Hey Mandeep, wait”, shouted Akash, running after him.
“What?”
“Do you have Rahul’s album? I’m not telling that you stole it, but you may have it by mistake”.
“No, I don’t have it. I am not interested in albums,”, said Mandeep, calmly.
“Okay. I am very sorry”.
Akash was hoping against hope that he would get the album, soon. He wanted to make Rahul happy. All he ever did anything was to make Rahul happy. After all, he was his best friend.
“Rahul, do you have a list of all your stamps?”
“No, why?”
“Just to check it out”.
“I have the bills of all my stamps”.
“A collection?”
“Yes”.
“Don’t lose it, too”.
Rahul smiled. He handed Akash all the bills.
“Let me see if I can buy him his stamps”, thought Akash, glancing at the bills, sitting on his bed, “What! I can’t buy a single stamp.
Everything is priced over Rs.2000. I should really give up my detective job. I am not good at it”.
“I should do something to help him out. But, how?” he thought. Just then, he heard: “Welcome everyone! Great sale of collection items at cheap prices!” shouted a man.
It caught Akash’s attention. He made his way to the shop.
“Uncle, can I get stamps here?”
“Of course”.
“At what price can I get them?”
“Above Rs.1800”.
“Uh…Okay. I can’t buy them”.
He made a sad face and was about to leave the shop.
“Hey kid, wait. At what price do you need it?”
“I can’t get it, Uncle. I need hundreds of stamps.
“Are you passionate about it?”
“No. My friend lost his stamp album. I took up the task of finding it.
But then, I couldn’t. So, I thought of buying it for him. But, I am short of money”.
“Give my album to your friend. I am sure it has more stamps than his album”.
“But Uncle, I don’t intend to get it for free”.
“Look, I have stopped adding to my collection. Now, I am helping young children like you, pursue a hobby. The unsold items here will go to them”.
“Really? Can I get it?”
“Of course”.
“Thank you very much, Uncle”.
The man handed Akash his album.
The same day, Akash went to Rahul’s house.
“Hey Rahul, I have got your album, at last”.
“Really? Where did you get it?”
Rahul looked at the album.
“It’s not mine. This one is red in colour. Mine was green”.
“But, it has more stamps than yours. You can get your name written, if you want”.
“Where did you get this?”
“An Uncle gave me this, after learning about your passion. Just have it and don’t ask me any questions. Really, I didn’t steal it”, said Akash laughing.
“Okay, okay. Good job, Detective Akash”.
“Thank you, Mr. Rahul. Detectives will always do their job perfectly”.
They both had a good laugh, later.

Suma N Hegde
13 years
BEL High School
Bangalore

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