Representing Malaika Sujeet

Page 1





REPRESENTING MALAIKA SUJEET PART ONE

escapist

malaika sujeet


special thanks to the lovely humans on the ma illustration: authorial practice course 2017-18.


FOR MY MOTHER, MY FATHER AND THE REST OF MY HEART ON PAGE 20



prologue Homunculus

M9



it'simpretty common to agi n e a little siversi ttingoninofsideourselves our minds

behithend person the mask

controlli everythi ng weng do.

voice ithe nsidlie tourtleheads

The homunculus. Heyaaa!

1


s dihead ve intolet' her for a we? bit shall

Thibigs nugget herekia.s malai

imatter' n!come thes onwarm! grey

ploop

2


3


here she plays herday-dream favorioutte malai ka always iinssihead. de her

where she isherbeholden to nnog and one and spends ti m e readi watching an endless stream of movies. with zero consequences.

4


after ch sheworldrowswhere back topeople thewhireal expect thiin turn, ngs of her, and she expects them of herself..

she inmgagithree nes spendi months of the year on her escapist island .

. . . Thatfraihelps escape from the ltiesherof adulthood thiis sthewhole fantasy by-product of aimhiagighlynatiwiosntful

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and that senseless

unrelenting

all-consuming

Belithe eve me, Inamg ofasage, sick of comi Biltrope dungsroman-esque as you are.

search for identity !

Bildungsroman*

These es always seemstori to have ...

noun [bil-doo ngz-ro-mahn] A novel dealing with one person's formative years or spiritual education.

* compli Stay incated, schoolGerman kids -synonyms to learn for phrases you already know.

6


The Angsty Teen

The Rag-Tag Bunch of Misfits

The Doomed Love Story

Fuckty! authori *sigh*

The Huge Crisis He's been g on momcheati allnalong!

areAdults liars!

Everythi ng is! meani ngless

Thiswork willout never long-term . we're like 21 amy!

The Resolution/Making peace family is! forever

isover aChililedhood i,tbutnow.I'mEh, what ya do?can

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I now reali sea lot that there are more fishlove. in the sea of


And justof telli the ng thought ainstory about amyl consequenti liproper fe seems. . .

To tbeknow honest,what Ikidon' of story wilnldturn out tothibes

Even so, fromof thethilooks ngs . . .

- na

-

rcissistic

8


This is something my generation is notorious for already.

So,toinavoiorder d breaki n g from tradi tion, as your average year old 22. . .

I'm pretty much, most conclusi vely, probably, obli g ated to be all about . . .

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ME !

10


andpart, for Ithethink most Ibeicannglilabeled ve with a narcissist,

what I'But mafraideathly . . d. of

worldon iworse sn'Thet short to thibe. ngs

- he-he-he -

Isnthat, istory, n telli g my tell storiIfimust et mys ofnarrati otherstheveto

areinSotenti mywhatreal here?ons

I'mto be tryi n g honest myself!with

myly, my fami friends . . .

(and youcourse) too of

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If I'm just somerather puppeteer I'd much not fooli do thinsg . around, ..

Although I don' 12 t think I am .


when re someoneng who iBut sn'tseri usedoustoyou'thiconfronti ngs in life . the

Atnt thiyou'sre poi probably goirl,ng -areDamn gi you ever gonna on story? with get this

You'reto bound tryit offandforput as long possi ble .as. . comes a poinand t inworlds a girl'siBUT lin her feThere when the words head just don't cut it And so,theI found closestto proxi mate the insideinofthemy head real world

It'real s aboutweitord get here. in

Comics!

13


Fromitpriseems or as research, IF I SHOULD START ATG THE VERY BEGI N NI N and that means . . .

HMMM ...

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Sitncereally I can'remember what theborn dayhappened .I . was . Ihave 'Illguess just to . . .

wing it.

15


Nobilities, responsi justalongfloati witn- g huh?

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAH AAAH

Ahh,s is thi the life.

Hey!s is Thinew.

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No.This. no.place. noo.looks . nooooooo like a whole lot of trouble! let me back in!

WAAAGASP

- snip

-

My slifrimeynd. li t tle They've CUT her off!

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Why is ng thitosmeeeeeee! happeni

havethinoI s icraz dea y what ladybutis sayi ng, she seems nice

*incoherent noises*

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mehaven'unhand yout youfiend!! done enough already!

And thentaken I wasto probably meet the rest my motley crew.of

wthowat. ated reesaclalquick.

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PATERNAL GRANDPARENTS

MATERNAL GRANDPARENTS

As bipeople rths go,involved mine wasit pretty must'veuneventful, been a bit excibuttiInguess, g causeto. the HEYYO 1 2

3 4

the aunt and uncle THE MOTHER

5 lisiTHE tster tle

6

THE FATHER the aunt and uncle

7

the aunt and uncle

8

the aunt and uncle

10

the aunt and uncle

9

11

12 the that first fact bornhaschileidtiher n myinfami lledy, thewithieldest offalse 12 cousisense ns onofeiimtportance, her side. or AssomeaI was result, sti l n me a unspoken dread as to the example I'm meant to set for the rest of the brood. On that count, as it happens, I didn't manage to get off to a great start.


PARTescapiONE st nope nuh-uh I'MHERE OUTTA BUH BYE

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Wha are tupthoonto?seearkidths

A GBrharanesndk'katrtahne'sy ids?

Didyou 'nt thiI s tell would be fun! yeah sure diyoud.

23

How much do goyoufurther wanna Mal?


Summer Holish d)ays (The2004-i of Col. K.house Bhaskaran (my maternal grandfather) Kerala, India Are youmal? serious l be funIt'lSanya! That's waya long down.

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What ifseesammama us?

pshh . . .youI thought guysbrave! were She'gonna s never find out!

and we did it again . . .

ously, along i got mythewayledge so, weobviwalked

(floor first window )

until . . .

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whooosh

whooos

h

and again


N N N N U D N N DU

- DU

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i don'truly t thinmeans k you unti knowl what you seehorri . . . fied

and this

this and that

last i promionese

andofsomemore this

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OHOHMYMYMYGOD GODGODOH

MOM SAWYOUR US i n the window!

AREWeSO DOOMED!

- SHRINKS TWO FEET -

LG OOM

AND

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DOOM


UMgonna ... just doorshutonthethat. we did never climb agai tHATn. ledge

How could you THEIS ASELDEST THIS knowyouhow dangerous YOUVE COULD' DIED!

= M A L =S

after that WE ng JUST stuck to playi make-beli death and enegoti dyivenwhere g were somewhat able. Oh, andto my welcome memory board. We'here,ve got itthe all from glow-y, memorishiensy. happy ..

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To THE MORE. . . UH questiyour onable stuff mind DOESN' T let go off.

chielsdhood memori - for the most part tend tofifall under the rst category. up theweandladder go!

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asuseda kitod Iaccompli sdayh more Iindoa now than in a year !

Itto's slialways funin p back time isn't it?

and a just few childozen dren.

i juggled ahome,steady an injob, vi. s. i.bale husband

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summer ( 2003-iholish d)ays The paternal house of grandfather) Karunakaran (my Bangalore, India

the House

OOOH, AAAAH, OWWW, I thiinsk thecomibaby ng!

we *gasp* need toto take mom the hospital.

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walks back

Iwe't's rokay mom, ethere! almost

Wa alk way ing

Owww, HURTS!it

theoooooh paaaain!


STAGENAMENAME:: Aashna Jennifer

ita STAGENAME: NAME:NikNatasha

: JenniRoles fer, played the Doctor Aashnafer Age Jenni Age : : 715 Character trai tperforms s: veryoneresourceful and heck of a c-section

Roles played : Natasha, the Nurse Nikita Ageage: :614 Natasha character traits : is adorable

NAMENAME : Malai: Susan ka STAGE

character cards!

Aashna

Roles : fer, MotherPlayed of Jenni MotherSusanof -Natasha, Mother of Dolls Malai SusankaAgeAge: 35: 9 Character : has Is a bossy know-i tthtrai -allantsandaverage the abi l i t y to bi r of 7 children in one day

Doctor

Jennifer We recycled ourselves through every game fi l li n g i n the needed without batting anroles eyeliwed

33


tal

the hospi

Lie down mom!

Ithe 'll godoctor. call

in labour? Okay, I'm on my way!

Doctor,come please quimy cmom k! Help! labour!is in

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I'M THE IBEST SURGEON NDON' THIST HOSPI T AL YOU WORRY MA'AM.

I'mwehere needrinow! toht operate g away! MEHAAAALP DOCTOR!

GETGETIT IT OUT OUTOUUUT! GET IT

NURSE! PREPARE THE ROOM! OPERATI ON YES DOCTOR!

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Operation in Progress towecuthaveyour stomach NOW.Nurseopen meknihandthe fe. YOUHEREGO!

AAAAAAAA AAAAAAAAA!

ING -

- VIGOROUS SLIC

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Ourthemothers hadsidonly everNGS,letsousthere in on cesarean e of THI was way less pushing AND A LOT MORE . . .

PULL! PULL PUUUULL!

CONGRATULATI IT'S A GIRL!ONS!

SOSHE'CUTE!S

37


Here she- NODDY is join- edTHEbyONLY the MALE rest DOLL of herWEsiACTUALLY sters andHAD.BROTHER Come on I chi l dren! needsometoAtta. go buy Comi mom!ng

raise . thimys weieldest rd MIdaughters XED BAG OF HELPED DOLLS ANDME PEOPLE

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Whenmy mad our brood youngerof sidolls blingsandgrewhumans old enough to play, grew larger Come onLET'S chi l dren! GO TO THE POOL! CoOOOOOOOOOOOOming mom!

nikita's brother ankit

my sister tanushka Onannoyed the daysmewhen my litrewri tle sitseter i ' d often her character roles . maid orYouthecandogplay- pitheck one! This is a blue blanket

This is also a swimming pool

. . . but,I be Butcant why your daughter?

39


I madeAshertheaneldest, offer Ishewascouldn' refusethe-Godmother Or wasn't allowed practictally of my owntomiisnmore i-Mafiali. ke it. Come onLEt's chi l dren, teacha the bad guys lesson! lez do dis mom!

aaarf arf!

As for the father you ask?

we devised a pretty foolproof scheme to ensure he never stepped foot into our lives.

40


Monday

Sunday

sooo, my husband?

okay,aboutso what husband?my

America he'nsessontria p busi in Australia.

Tuesday antarcti okaytime?thicsa

AN-T-T-TARcTICA?

yup!

THAR-TE H-NOTHB-BERPS-Eto BUANSINTAESRcS TRTICIA ! BAPSLEAAYCTCKHOMEYO! U

some never top bein ongeographi seemed Heendialways cA.al tri ess n busi g n letter the h t wi g n starti zones

41


MAYBE VNODDY? BUTEXCEPT HE WOULD' E MADE A TERRIBLE HUSBAND. NOPE - I APPARENTLY DIDAN'MAN. T NEED

BUDDYSORRY - WEOLDANYONE DIDN'T REALLY HAVE TO PLAY THE PART.

your REI N CARNATED VIHERE, RGIN MARY OVER MANAGED AROUND WITHOUTA 100ONE.KIDS

ItGRhIEVinnEAokLwLaYtbhoDauI tt iit, OVAbEBaROPUOTPAUHLDUAMMADNNN'T ck theAnT. IOn

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ALTHOUGH . . . I DOWITENVY LDISH OBLIVION H OUR WHITHE CIMHAGIWECHINEDCONSTRUCTED LIVES.

at TthiEVEN s poiWANT nt I DON' MOREWORLD KIDS INTOTOBRITHINGS MAD

honestly, i'd much rather adopt.

These wimemori esthehelpinfimenitescape from a world t hout e possi we had playing Make-believe.bilities

Imagi sn't cthat what i s ? Space forA belipossiefbithat lity? thithan ngs mithey ght seem? be more

43


2001 r(ei back think?to) Col. K.We'Bhaskaran' s house So? Kerala, India So what? t So,do wha l l yA' think?

ItI''ms not just tya! goia nmagi g toc abepotiPuddle aonwitinchAdiitand make . two can be my henchmen!You Henchmen?

44

aAbout SOAPY puddle?


FIRSTTHETHIMAGINGSC FIINRGREDI ST, FETCH ME CHOP CHOP HENCHMEN! GETENTS!TO IT!

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3 neem leaves 5 rose petals

sidew nagle drop

FINand ALLY. . . .

A PIECEAND OFTHECLOUD EYE OF AN EAGLE!

46


t madshe'issn'at bishe?

we supposed are that howto get mal? ... jeezyour use ati n agi im guys! on

47

yup .


potiAndbegan onsomakithe . . .ng

and sanya got some cotton play the cloud.to

Aditya got a marble the eagleto play eye

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jungisalaaaaa and Now, for the magic words!

jungisalaaaaa mujhe pilpani aaaa

mujhepaani urrkkk . . .

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ohfrogmy GOD! Thethat sensed we making the were potion!

Andhihemselfsacriforficed the cause! DOMEANS? YOU REALIWE'SREEWHAT THIG S DEALI N WITH REAL MAGIC NOW!

WETHEENDED UP BOTTLIALLNOVER G ANDMYPOURI NG VIGRANDMOTHER' LE STUFF POOR S GARDEN.

QUICK! BEFORE AMmAMAUS! SEES

50


TIABOUT ME PASSED ANDIMWEPORTANT WENT OUR ALL BUSINESS OF BEING CHILDREN.

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until eventually . . .

nwer MADpetour EalsThepotchafloiongE colour!

Wme'agreicireanals!

I thinktell we should achacha ammama.and

Awww, yeah!

I KNOW! let' sto turn goldi e i n a banana next!

No!practi We NEEd TO secret forcenow.in

AAWoo?

53


MAN . . I TRULY LOVe all theUP ridic.ulous stuff we made back then. QUITE OBVI OUSLY, We never ditod manage turn Goldi e into a banana.

although, SHEdIeS the nowbanana buried trees riinghtmy besi grandparent's backyard.

I'd liafter ke to all thinthik, s that e, some part of hertimiprobably di d turn nto a banana.

AHahchange . . . I know that time and are constants butgivedamn a gir. l. . acould seconyou-

54


Gently.

GENTLY!

Ohfriehello old Nd! I see beenme. waiyou'tinvge for

Oof! i rdeoanl'ltty oo spoirfatlen . . .

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Butsome ondays, I don' t reallya have choice!

WAAAA -

- AAAAAAA -

- AAAAAAA -

- AAAAAAA -

-AAAAAAAAAAAH! OOOF!

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NASTYPILE. . EVIOFL. . . . . NOYOUGOOD * sigh *

this much room fun. is never

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oh bum .

58


- Proceeds to do so anyway Now, one I'm notto air usually my diinrpubli ty laundry c-

But I started off thibys mental monologue escaping into my head.

I escapi thinknweg vistart off young, a make-beli eve. asthatwe and growseem olderto welevelweanup off ...

Escape has a now become comfortable pattern for me.

59


to bootheks,world inand s e i mov hinnetthe. tha beatutilifeuls wiintter asvelongotg asa bit you' of- you'cashre toallsparset.e

is whereto adulthood pay other imake for me. believepeople

by some and consume ngmei default, everythi eas in idwhole swathes not how i'am partner aboutwithout s and thigoal supreme ofabichirthild.ng

ismeant that allfor?I'm

- SPROING -

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is sthat myspiPRInniMARYng ball purposeof mud on thi gi a nt hurtling through space and time?

who am i? how?am i? why,what? why, why

aAAARRRGHH!

UUGHHH!

oh lord! that feels

annoyioldngtwi22t! year

so much better!

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umm ... rude! R ,ohYOGUERTSEOLVFE!

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BREATHEfIf*N *SSSSSSni BREATHE *PHOOOOO*OUT-

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BREATHEfIf*N *SSSSSSni

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BREATHE *PHOOOOO*OUT

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ifthii ask nicmom ely -would do you n k my letuterus me rent FOR out A BITher ?

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Representing Malaika Sujeet Copyright Š 2019 by Malaika Sujeet All rights reserved Written and illustrated by Malaika Sujeet All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.