The Barbarians: Night of the Cat Whisperer

Barbarians: Adventures of Drunken Nights

The Barbarians: Night of the Cat Whisperer

Illustration: Akshita Monga


ne morning, I woke up feeling as if someone was scraping nails across a chalkboard inside my skull. This was followed by cold silence around the breakfast table and death stares from my grandmother. The headache subsided after I ate some bread, but the stares did not.

Something was definitely amiss. I noticed the additional anomalies: I had no recollection of changing into the T-shirt I woke up in, I found mysterious scratches on my arms while bathing, and when I tried using my cellphone, the polite Vodafone woman told me in three languages that I had used up my prepaid balance. I left for college in a bewildered state where a kind friend showed me a strange video of a six-foot, broad-shouldered guy in a wrestling match with a cat, the size of his face. It took me several seconds to realise that the crazy fella in the video was me. Why the holy hell had I gotten into a wrestling match with a cat? The answer came to me through the course of a throbbing day in a series of movie-like mental flashbacks.