Ganesh was a loser. He sat on the curb and mumbled nonsense to his only friends, the dirty pigeons, every morning. Pandita wondered why he didn’t go find some other place to go.
“Go away, Ganesh. This is the bus stop corner,” shouted Vidya.
“You stink!” one of the other girls scolded.
“Take a bath!” Pandita heard herself join in.
The girls stood together, looking down on Ganesh and his pigeons.
Shaibya looked at the bottle she’d just sipped from. “Eww! This stuff is nasty. Tastes like crap.”
“I’ve had that before…”
“Probably just went bad. Is there a date on it?”
The bus came around the corner and slowed. Its brakes shrill shrieking forced Pandita to cover her ears with her hands.
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw something flying. Turning, she saw a twirling bottle bounce off Ganesh’s head. The contents of the bottle sprayed everywhere. Pigeons took wing.
At first, Ganesh seemed like a statue in the midst of a riot. Then the breadcrumbs trickled from his hand. As if in slow motion, he tipped forward, falling face first into the gutter. Blood dripped onto the road.
Everyone laughed and got on the bus.
Photo is copyright by Alex Aw. (200 words)