It was raining heavily outside. Yet, Budul was stuck to her computer as her online classes were going on. Back-to-back classes were giving her a headache and rendering her eyes sore. Finally, she got an hour’s break. She felt like resting for a while. She lay on her bed and shut her eyes. Just then, her phone vibrated zainnn… zainnn….
She checked her mobile wondering, “Is there an update from school again?” Instead, there was a photo that her friend, Devanshi, had shared, showing their Maths teacher way too aged. This was done though some mobile app which could advance anyone’s age by 20-30-40 years from now. So, at first, Budul burst into a laughter but later an idea struck her mind. “How will the entire world look like say, some hundred years from now?”
Budul quickly uploaded a picture of the planet Earth from the Internet onto that app. The moment she did that, all the rain stopped outside and a violent dust storm took over. A view of the whole, wide earth appeared before her as she remained standing in her balcony.
Budul observed that the green cover was rapidly wiping away from the face of the earth. The lakes and rivers were running dry. Very soon, the earth began appearing like the Mars.
“Oh! What’s this happening?!” Budul yelled in awe and horror.
The Mars-turned- Earth smiled and replied to her, “Isn’t this justified? You, humans, are not concerned about me. In the name of constructing highways, dams, and cities you have chopped away jungles after jungles. You have dumped garbage into waterbodies. Soon, the entire greenery will eliminate from me and then your Earth will become a Mars. You people anyway wish to settle on Mars, don’t you?”
Budul screamed frantically, “No! No! I want my green earth back. I don’t want to go to any random Mars. Isn’t there a rewind button in this app? Please help!”
The Mars-turned-Earth replied point-blank: “There’s no such option. But there’s one way by which you can get your loving Earth back. You’ll have to make a promise for that… Are you ready to take a small pledge?"
"What pledge?” Budul inquired feeling intense fear.
“You will take care of the greenery and will also ask your friends to do that. Tell me, are you ready?”
“Yea, yea, definitely! I promise that I will protect the greenery now onwards, wholly and solely,” swore Budul sincerely.
Before Budul could speak further, her mobile vibrated once again and an alarm rang aloud. She had set it for her next class.
“So, I was dreaming all this while!” realized Budul as she returned to her senses. She immediately ran towards her balcony. It was still raining cats and dogs outside exactly as before. "Thank God!" prayed Budul in great relief.