The Concert

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Read the following passage and do the activities.

Smita bit her lip in self-reproach. She had been so excited at seeing the announcement, that she had not remembered that her brother was very ill. She had seen how the doctors had shaken their heads gravely and spoken words that neither she nor even her parents could understand. But somewhere deep inside Smita had known the frightening truth – that Anant was going to die. The word cancer had hung in the air – her brother was dying of cancer even though she pretended that all would be well and they would return together, a small family of four, to their home in Gaganpur. And he was only fifteen and the best table-tennis player in the school and the fastest runner. He was learning to play the sitar; they were both taking sitar lessons, but Anant was better than her as in many other things. He was already able to compose his own tunes to the astonishment of their guru. Then cancer had struck and they had come to Bombay so that he could be treated at the cancer hospital in the city.
Whenever they came to Bombay they stayed with Aunt Sushila. Her apartment was not big but there was always room for them. They had come with high hopes in the miracles of modern science. They told themselves that Anant would be cured at the hospital and he would again walk and run and even take part in the forthcoming table-tennis tournament. And, he would play the sitar-perhaps be a great sitarist one day. But his condition grew worse with each-passing day and the doctors at the cancer hospital said, ‘Take him home. Give him the thing he likes, indulge him,’ and they knew then that the boy had not many days to live. But they did not voice their fears. They laughed and smiled and talked and surrounded Anant with whatever made him happy. They fulfilled his every need and gave him whatever he asked for. And now he was asking to go to the concert. ‘The chance of a lifetime,’ he was saying. ‘When you are better,’ his mother said. ‘This is not the last time they are going to play.’ Smita stood at the window looking at the traffic, her eyes wet with tears. Her mother whispered, ‘But you Smita, you must go. Your father will take you.’ When she was alone with Aunt Sushila, Smita cried out in a choked voice, ‘No, how can I? We’ve always done things together, Anant and I.’ ‘A walk in the park might make you feel better,’ said Aunt Sushila and Smita was grateful for her suggestion.

(B1) Who said to whom. 02
(1) This is not the last time they are going to play.
(2) We have done things together.

(B2) Describe the condition of Smita and her reaction to Anant when she came to know about the concert. 02

(B3) Write the root forms of the given words from the passage. 02
1. Indulgence 2. Surroundings 3. Fulfilment 4. Happiness

(B4) Choose the appropriate adverb or adjective to fill in the gaps. 02
1. He was able to compose his own tunes. (use ‘could’ and rewrite the sentence.)
2. Smita cried out in a choked voice. (Identify the tense.)

(B5) The two contradictory pictures are depicted in the story. Describe them in your own word. 02

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