Little Swamy, like all timid children, sucks his thumb and sleeps near his devoted, story – telling grandmother. Father is quite annoyed at this mollycoddling and cleverly provokes his son into a show of courage: he is to sleep all alone in his office that very night. And so, he drags the reluctant child to the office while the women in the family look on helplessly. A petrified Swamy sleeps fitfully’ dreams and reality merge’ but the next morning the little boy wakes up “A Hero” – with a special invitation to join the police force. Swamy abounds in the adulation and praise, while Father is pleased to know his son’s photograph has appeared in the local newspapers. Rushing in one night to break the good news, he finds Swamy back to his old ways one night of manhood is enough for the boy. R.K. Narayan pits the age – old courage vs. strength theory – either you have it in you or you don’t.
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