After the assembly when everybody settled down. Tina started searching for her pen. She told the class teacher that her pen was missing. Miss Ali wanted to know who was in the class during the assembly. Vimala was called Miss Ali searched her bag but could not find the pen. She scolded Vimala for stealing. Poor Vimala! She started crying. Sweta was too afraid to get up and give the pen to Tina. Miss Ali gave Vimala a day’s time to tell the truth.
Now, Sweta was a very sensitive child. She spent the night tossing and turning in bed. She could not sleep. The pen was still hidden under her pillow. She looked at it again, for the hundredth time! The pen no longer looked beautiful to her. She could not forget Vimala’s face when Miss Ali had accused her.
She felt bad. Vimala had been scolded for no fault of hers. She decided that she would keep the open back in Tina’s bag the next morning.
Next day, when Sweta reached school, she saw Vimala sitting alone in the class. She was very sad. `Do not worry. Maybe somebody will keep the pen back today,’ she tried to comfort Vimala.
`But everybody will think that I have kept it back,’ Vimala replied sadly.
The bell rang and the school started. When Miss Ali entered the class, she called Vimala. Before Vimala could get up, Sweta got up. `Miss, the pen is with me. I was looking at it yesterday when suddenly Vimala entered the class and without thinking I put it in my pocket. I was afraid to tell you when you were scolding Vimala. I am very sorry. I will never do it again.
Everybody was surprised. Miss Ali was the first one to speak. `Sweta, you are a brave and honest girl. You have told the truth in front of the class. We all make mistakes but we are always afraid to admit them. Say sorry to Vimala. It was because of you that she was scolded. And make a promise that you will never do something like this again.’ Saying this, she asked the class to take out their books. Everybody was happy once again. Sweta had learnt her lesson.