City of Masks


Finally after the month-long chaos they had created in the City, it was time to meet up.

All this time, anonymity was maintained. Nobody knew who or what or why, but everyone did their part for the lucrative sums they were promised and paid. Everyone knew they were part of a team, but they did not know their teammates. Everyone knew there was one Leader, one Brain, one Authority they ultimately answered to, but they didn’t know who he or she was. Everyone wore masks as they were asked to, but they didn’t ask why.


And all these days the City was being torn apart. Bombing, arson, sabotage, riots, people in masks were running the City. Total anarchy. Police and the military stood watching as the masks ravaged the City from within. Nobody were caught and even if they were, they were either saved or killed off by the masks themselves.

They were informed and convinced that it was for the good. To purge the City off the unwanted. To burn everything to ashes, for the City to re-emerge from them like Phoenix.

Like it was predicted, the change was imminent. It was time to meet up. They were informed that this was the meeting to celebrate the success, to get to know each other and to know who were really under the masks.


It was a room full of masked people. It used to be a conference room of a big corporation during those peaceful times.

One by one, the masks were taken off. There were cries of delights and surprises and cheers, as the faces were recognised as the next-door neighbours, teachers, passers-by, waiters, cab-drivers, doctors, cops, passers-by and even the Mayor. They were just normal people.

All faces were revealed except one. The one man who walked to the middle of the room and climbed on top of the oval conference table. Everyone knew who that was. Yes that should be the leader.

With an elaborate and dramatic gesture of thanks, amidst the deafening claps that  final mask was taken off. Underneath, there was no face. It was hollow.


Involuntary Dishonesty

He was a liar. An obsessive compulsive liar, because he could not help lying. He lied for no reason – making up stuff out of thin air and feeding them to people to around him, who gobbled up those lies without a doubt. He called his condition ‘involuntary dishonesty’.

He wanted help. But he could not got to a psychiatrist. So he decided to treat himself. Instead of spreading them around, he began jotting down his lies as and when it occured to him. Then he read them and added more colour, more spice.

Nowadays he is a best selling author. People regard him as a dream merchant. But only he knows that all he is selling are his best lies.