Post Series: The night when crayons came to life

As the school bell rang, all the students exclaimed with joy. Sadhna Madam, the drawing teacher in grade 4, squeezed out an instruction in the midst of the noise, “Everybody please bring your drawing book tomorrow. I will check the drawing assignment which I gave you a week ago.”

Our boy Abbie (Abraham) who hardly remembered what he had for lunch that day forced his ice cream cup sized brain to recall what Madam had given as homework! The one which was a week ago! But, unfortunately, had no luck recalling that. His best pal told him that they were supposed to draw a village scenery. Abbie, who was born in a maternity ward with five star facility and was living a modern urban lifestyle, did not know that there are places where there are no automobile exhausts and no pollution from industries, a clear night sky where you can literally run out of numbers by counting stars, people walking without face masks, no fast food stores, and no video gaming consoles at home and yet the kids are happy! It was difficult for him to imagine a rural lifestyle as he had never experienced one. Abbie too was blithely unconcerned about the consequences. Instead of worrying about the homework he was thinking about the PlayStation 4 (PS4) that his dad gifted him on his birthday. He was all dressed up and ready to open and play!

Little Abbie comes home.

As his dad arrives, he opens the door and quickly pounces on his dad’s waist and starts pleading to give him the keys.

Dad: Okay! Okay, son! Which keys you want?

Abbie: The one to the closet in which you have the PS4!

Dad: Oh! That! I gave it our maid’s son.

Abbie: Daddy, stop kidding! I know it is in your closet.

Dad (laughs): Ha-ha, okay son! I will give it to you, but on one condition!

Abbie: And what’s that?

Dad: Finish all your pending homework and then I’ll give it to you!

Abbie: Dad, we don’t have any homework! You can check my school diary.

Abbie’s dad looks in a suspicious way towards him. Abbie, on the other hand, stands up front with confident eyes and psychologically gains his dad’s trust!

Dad: Okay! Here are the keys!

Abbie: Yippie! Thank you so much Dad.

Abbie unpacks the PlayStation TV, game disks and assembles everything (PlayStation TV to all Ethernet cables) to his television set in no time and starts playing. He plays up to 2 A.M. in the morning and goes back to his room. Just then he remembers Sadhana Madam’s homework. He takes out the crayon box and drawing book from the drawer and he says to himself, “What I am gonna draw? I haven’t seen what villages are like.” He is indeed right, but that should not be an excuse of not doing homework.

“Oh no! What shall I do now? I’m in a big trouble. I don’t know what to draw,” says Abbie.

Soon he hears a voice and that leaves him perplexed as he has no idea from where it is coming from. Eventually he goes back to sleep. And when he is asleep, the crayon box moves abruptly as if there’s something inside it and falls from the table. And as the crayon box opens, a bright light diverges out from it. Two crayons come out from the box.

A Night When Crayons Came To Life (Part 1)

“No, White! Let the boy learn a lesson. We should not help him,” says Blue.

“Our hands are tied, Blue. We have to! As per the Crayons Act of 1990, Section 1, Rule 2.1, if any person casts this exact spell, ‘Oh no! What shall I do now? I’m in big trouble. I don’t know what to draw,’ we are bound to help that person. And moreover, for us, the situation is perfect! Abbie is asleep and so he won’t notice us and this saves our time. Plus, we can do our job calmly.”

Meanwhile, Black and Orange join the conversation.

Orange: But, what if we pretend we never heard that spell from him?

White: No.

Orange: Wow! Objection overruled!

Blue: White, if we help this boy, then on moral grounds, we are not doing the right thing.

Orange: Yes! Objection sustained!

White: I don’t know, Blue. Rules are rules.

Brown: I say let the boy get bitten tomorrow and enjoy the show!

Orange: What? That would be harsh! Objection overruled.

Red: No, Brownie!

Black (in a sad voice): What difference does that make to me? No one is going to use me! No one is going to even look at me as an option! In fact, no one even considers me a crayon. What am I doing with you people?

Orange: Great! Here comes the waterfall. Mr. Crybaby, objection overruled.

White: Shut up, Orange. Don’t be so mean.

Blue: Please, Black! Don’t start that again. And White, as far as rules are concerned, Section 10 also says that in a conflict of interest, the final decision is taken by a vote and I say “no work”.

Purple: And I say we work! Tell me when my help will be required, I’ll be around.

Along with Blue, Brown and Orange are the only ones who don’t want to work and hence by majority it turns out they are working tonight. White gathers them for a meeting and suggests that everyone brings out the layout. All the crayons start designing various sceneries. Everyone comes up with an idea, whereas Black sits alone in the dark. Purple’s layout gets selected and all march towards the drawing book.

Speaking about Black, he is a sad person who feels he is underutilized and no one really cares about him, Orange is a funny guy and always makes acerbically witty remarks, Brown is a bad guy, while his best friend, Red, is a good guy. Purple is a bit egoistic and enjoys good fortune, Pink is an emotional guy who breaks into tears more often than not. Yellow, on the other hand is timid, Green and Blue are the most hardworking. But, Green is naïve and foolish. While his counterpart Blue is pessimistic and always shares a healthy debate with White, who is an optimist and apparently the leader of the pack as everyone looks up to him. Yes, every crayon looks up to him. I mean literally everyone has to look up to him because he is the least used out of all crayons and that makes him the tallest!

White addresses all: Okay. So, let’s get down to brass tacks, gentlemen. First thing, you two, Blue and Green, we are drawing a typical rural scenery, so you guys have to put in a lot more effort. Unlike cities, villages have greenery and since there are no industries and not too many vehicles so the skies stay blue throughout on a regular sunny day, unless of course there’s a monsoon. You both don’t over drag yourself while making the painting, just give a nice once over and move on because we don’t want one part of the sky dark blue and the other light.

Orange: It also means you guys should use yourself as less as possible and stick to making only one layer. We don’t want you both to get finished by morning. Ha-ha. (Everybody laughs)

White: Shut up, Orange! I’m not done. Coming back to the plan, Mr. Brown, please let Mr. Green finish the leaves and then you take over from him to complete the trunk. We don’t want green color overlapping brown and vice versa.

Brown: Green is a fool. He never stays inside the boundaries. He is the one who overlaps everything surrounding him, whether it’s the sky or the sun or the trunk of the tree.

Green: Hey, this time I won’t. Believe me!

Orange: But, Mr. Green, we think you will.

White: Okay. Keep quiet, everyone, let me finish. Mr. Orange, we are not drawing a sunset, so please make sure you let Mr. Yellow do his job. Mr. Red and Mr. Pink, we are drawing a girl so please give some beautiful designs on her traditional dress. Mr. Purple, you have to monitor and look after them. And Mr. Black…

Black: Yeah! Yeah! I know. I will keep quiet and will try not to come in their way.

White: No! This time around you will be needed for that girl’s hair.

Purple: Amm… actually no White. We are planning to cover the girl’s hair by her dupatta.

Black: Oh no! Why?

Orange: It’s a bright sunny day, pal! The girl will die if she doesn’t cover her head area in direct sunlight.

Purple: Exactly.

White: Okay. Let’s get down to work.

As they start doing their respective jobs, they hear a sound of someone scuffing and flipping the switch and as the tube light of the room flashes, all the crayons freeze! They are petrified.

Did anyone see them?

Word meanings:

  • acerbically: harsh or severe.
  • get down to brass tacks: deal with the important details or get down to business.
The night when crayons came to life (part 1)
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