She looked at him
with faint amusement.
now? What is going to happen right now, dear?
am trying to tell you, Mother.
Really, Madhav, you are full of alarms nowadays. Well, tell me then. But I
did hope that we could have a few moments of peace together. What
can happen right now? Is someone coming to visit? I am not receiving
anyone, Madhav. Not today.
I ... But it was too late. He fell to the floor, his
tongue cleaving to the roof of his mouth, his arms and legs flailing
the air wildly, uncontrollably, moved by a force outside himself He
tried to cry out that he was perfectly all right, indeed that he
felt a certain elation. But he was able to make only groaning sounds
like those coming from one sorely afflicted.
His mother at once
jumped up and ran to the door, calling for the servants.
Then she was on the
floor beside him, trying to grasp his arms, to hold them still, but
finding this impossible, stood looking down at him, wringing her
In a moment or two
the fit subsided. Madhav felt that his limbs had grown heavy. He lay
immobile, unable to move even his eyes. And now, as he tried to
reassure his mother that all was well, he could make no sounds at
all. His mother knelt beside him, calling his name. There was terror
in her voice, but also there was an imperative note in it,
compelling him to respond to her.