Written by Amitav Ghosh, the story gives an account of the writer's friend named Shahid, who passed away after he was diagnosed with cancer. The story was written at the request of his friend, who made him promise to write about him after he passed away. The story spans from the time of Shahid undergoing treatment till his death.
In this story, the writer talks about the regular telephonic conversations between him and Shahid. He gives the readers the exact date when Shahid informed him about his disease that is 25th April 2001. The story begins when Shahid has already begun his treatment and has been undergoing it for fourteen months. The writer recalls that although Shahid was still lucid and on his feet, at that time, he would often suffer from memory lapses, and at one point, Shahid tells the writer that he has lost his sight. Shahid had not mentioned death before this incident, and this was the first time he brought it up to the writer.
Thinking about his impending fate, Shahid requests the writer to write about him. The writer looks back on his memories and recalls how Shahid was diagnosed with the disease. The memories serve as a motivation for the writer. He reassures his friend that he will write about him. The writer talks about Shahid's works which greatly impressed him. He talks about Shahid's birthplace and how they came in contact through mutual friends. Although they both studied at Delhi University, they never met and could be acquainted when Shahid moved to Brooklyn. The writer expresses his surprise at the end of the story that even though their friendship was for a brief time, Shahid's death caused a huge void in him.
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