Such a Long Journey by Rohinton Mistry Plot Summary



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Chapter 11 Analysis
Chapter 11 again brings out the ominous international situation, as Dr. Paymaster declaims on India, Pakistan, the refugees, guerrillas, and U.S. in diagnostic medical terms. We also learn the history and lore of the House of Cages, hearing ancient and modern tales of sexual exploits. The Nobles' conflicts, internal and external, deepen. The resident police inspector is shown to be ineffectual. Tehmul remains unaffected by his treatments.
Chapter 12 Summary
Dr. Paymaster changes Roshan's prescriptions and orders costly tests, forcing Gustad to hock his camera. Roshan knows that her strong Daddy is scared and feels helpless, almost near tears. Gustad suggests they bring out her doll to keep her company in her bed.
Gustad collects the 39th bundle. He's now almost halfway done. As he nears the bank, Laurie asks to talk in private, at lunchtime, outside. Gustad is puzzled and flattered. Inside, Dinshawji is re-telling an old story about how a wife's driving improves her sleeping sexual performance. Gustad hands him the daily bundle and says he has a lunchtime mission to attend to. Gustad wanders by Laurie's desk at teatime, not sure why he does.
Gustad and Laurie, who asks him to use her first name, walk to the restaurant Gustad visited earlier with Dinshawji. The private rooms upstairs are empty. Gustad muses on what Dinshawji would say, so close to Laurie's undulating bottom as they climb. A sign inside the room instructs guests, "Please Ring Bell For Waiter Under Table." Gustad laughs at the poor grammar, and is surprised at Laurie's ugly laugh. It is clear from the furnishings what the private rooms are for, and Gustad assures Laurie he has nothing like that in mind. After studying the menu, their hands accidentally touch, as both grope for the bell. A surprised waiter appears, takes their order, and assures the couple how long it will be before he returns. Unhappy men make poor tippers.
People have clued Laurie in to the pun. Now she is embarrassed come to work and even hates her name. Embarrassed before the innocent girl, furious at his foolish friend, and fearful of the boss, Gustad promises to make Dinshawji stop teasing Laurie. At first, Laurie thought Dinshawji was a cute old man. However, now he is also talking about secret service work, helping fund guerrillas. Gustad restrains his response and jokes the topic away. Laurie appears concerned that Dinshawji is ill and only two years from retirement, but cannot let the joking to go on. Gustad will convince him this evening, he says, thinking what he will do to the bloody fool.
Gustad regrets not being able to come home early as he promised Roshan, to help dress her doll. He has a sharp headache, and kneads his forehead and neck at his desk. All his troubles run through his mind. Opening his eyes, he sees Dinshawji standing before him, and slams his fist down hard on the desktop. Dinshawji wonders what he has done wrong. Gustad will explain outside, after work. Gustad accomplishes nothing all afternoon, thinking about Bilimoria as Cain and Abel, and Sohrab as Absalom (remembering Malcolm's Christian stories, long ago). Gustad begs Dad Ormuzd to show him what is left for him in life.
Dinshawji's breath is unbearably foul when he meets Gustad at 6 PM. Gustad keeps him in suspense as they walk to the restaurant. Finally, Gustad tells him about his talk with Laurie, concentrating on the secret service aspect. If that reaches Madon, they are finished. If Dinshawji stops his harassment immediately, Laurie will not go to the boss, so he must stop joking about everyone. Gustad will spread rumors that Dinshawji's health is declining. Thereafter, Dinshawji is grave and fragile, and is not playing a role. Gustad feels awful about confiscating his friend's mask.
Dilnavaz is nervous about a strange, barefoot fellow who arrived earlier and said he would return at 9 PM. Gustad tells his wife that he asked the man to visit in order to fix the stinking wall. The pavement artist is interested in the project because police have been harassing him. The artist is impressed with 300 feet of smooth black stone, which will attract many visitors daily. He begins a quick sketch, but is offended by the stench. In the shadows is the soft hiss of someone relieving himself. Gustad chases the offender away. Gustad says that no one will do that once the wall is adorned with holy images and promises the surfaces will be washed clean by morning.. The artist says that the iconography of Hinduism alone could cover the wall, but that he also draws upon the Sikh, Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Zoroastrian, Buddhist, and Jainist traditions. He has a B.A. in comparative world religions, as well as one in art. At dawn, Gustad slips the street sweeper five rupees to wash down the wall with a wire brush.
The first drawing is of Trimurti, the Hindu gods of creation, preservation, and destruction. Gustad would have preferred Zarathustra, but realizes most of the vile urinators are Hindus, so this is expedient. When Gustad comes home, a crucifixion and Jumma Masjid are joining the gallery. The artist intends to work all night and will shoo off any transgressors. Moses and Ganpati Baba are complete by dawn. Over the next few days, as the wall fills with gods and holy people, the mosquitoes disappear along with their lost breeding ground. The artist changes, too. His cycle of arrival, creation, and obliteration has been interrupted. He likes the neighborhood and the vast wall he has on which to work. Life has become confusing.
Chapter 12 Analysis
The heart of Chapter 12 is Laurie's complaint about Dinshawji's provocative behavior. She intends to resign rather than face colleagues who laugh about her first name meaning "penis." She will have to explain her leaving to the manager. This is bad enough -- poor girl and poor Dinshawji, who will lose his job and pension -- but it also threatens the deposit scheme, because foolish Dinshawji has been boasting about being a secret agent in service of the guerrilla movements. Laurie laughs it off, but the manager might not, and could launch an investigation. Gustad confronts Dinshawji and demands he set aside the mask of mirth that has been covering his declining health.
Life's difficulties are helping Gustad understand Mrs. Pastakia's tiresome blathering about migraines. Gustad calls out to the Parsi god for help. All the gods and holy ones worshipped in India come to his aid through the crayons of the sidewalk artist. Gustad has convinced him to cover the black wall with holy pictures. These, Gustad figures, will end the use of the structure as a public urinal. It works. The mosquitoes disappear, too. One torment is removed from Gustad's life, but is transferred to the artist, who is now ill at ease with his non-transient situation. The artist has a degree in comparative religions, so the reader can expect lists of names, events, and places. Few of the details are crucial to the story, however. Those that are important are well developed. The rest can be glossed over.
Chapter 13 Summary
On the day of the 51st bundle, Roshan feels better. As Gustad hands Dinshawji the money, he notices a swelling in the quiet man's abdomen. Dinshawji drags himself about now, and disappoints everyone awaiting his humor. Gustad suspected cancer during Roshan's birthday party. Now he is ashamed to think about what will happen to the deposits if Dinshawji cannot work. Gustad's spirits rise when he sees the pavement artist working happily and pointing out a floral offering before his drawing of Saraswati. Passers-by have left enough monetary offerings the artist to afford new clothes and shoes. Dilnavaz is hushing the children playing in the compound. Gustad hurries to learn why. Roshan's diarrhea has returned. The bridal doll's dress looks funereal, sending a shiver down Gustad's spine. He will go to the doctor alone to demand reference to a specialist. He and Dilnavaz again fight over boiling water.
In Gustad's absence, Dilnavaz intends to report Roshan's mystifying relapse to Miss Kutpitia, but the doorbell rings. Dilnavaz does not recognize Dinshawji, so greatly has he changed. She is in no mood for any silliness, but sees Dinshawji is somber. He is carrying a newspaper and a bulky envelope. He asks for Gustad. It is very important. Dilnavaz invites him in, seats him on the sofa, and sends Tehmul to stop to call Gustad back from the bus stop.
Roshan sits next to the man who made her birthday celebration glow. Dinshawji hopes he can feel funny again for her. Tehmul is too late to catch Gustad. Dinshawji steadily grows more distressed and timorous. Tehmul begs Roshan to let him touch her doll, but is sent away. Roshan sings school songs for Dinshawji, much to her mother's surprise. Dinshawji continues playing games with the delighted little girl until Roshan tires and goes to bed, without her doll. The visitor's anxiety returns.
Gustad is confrontational when he reaches the clinic. Standard remedies are not working. He needs to talk with Dr. Paymaster. The doctor is in an ill mood at the end of a day spent trying to convince his foolish neighbors that democratic processes will eventually force the municipality to meet their demands. There is no need for sinking to the rowdyism of the ruling party and organizing a demonstration. He wins them over only to be stymied by the gas utility. Paymaster growls about everyone thinking he is a doctor, and gives Gustad a new list of pills. Gustad then growls about how doctors think everyone else is stupid.
Limping past the House of Cages, Gustad is stopped by Peerbhoy, who sells him a remedy for leg pain. Before getting on the bus, Gustad spits out half the potion, which makes his mouth feel funny. Outside Khodadad Building, he gets rid of the rest. The numbness has spread to his mind. He is surprised to see Dinshawji. Dilnavaz is disgusted by traces of the paan. Gustad reports that the doctor wants to put Roshan in the hospital, where everyone knows things get botched. Dinshawji agrees. You go there only when you are ready to die. He had gone to Parsi General only when his wife had taken the doctor's side. Bed rest at home would have done more.
Dinshawji shows Gustad an article reporting that Jimmy Bilimoria has been arrested for fraud and extortion and that he has confessed to impersonating the prime minister to get the chief cashier of the State Bank of India to release 60 million rupees to "Bangladeshi Babu," the accused's alias. The money was to aid the guerrillas in East Pakistan because the bureaucrats were dragging their feet. The newspaper writer editorializes about how this raises grave questions of whether or not Mrs. Gandhi does this sort of thing regularly.
Gustad is stunned. He assures Dinshawji that he would not have put them both at risk if he had thought this possible. Bilimoria has been lying from the beginning. Dinshawji says calmly that they must decide what to do with the money. They should stop making deposits and ask Ghulam how to handle what is already in the account. Dilnavaz again suggests going to the police. That is too risky, Gustad feels. Peerbhoy has told Gustad Ghulam dropped by today. Gustad will seek out that dangerous man tomorrow. They do not yet know the whole story. The reporter has raised some valid questions. Dinshawji leaves. Tehmul approaches, begging to touch the doll. Gustad has no time or compassion tonight.
Chapter 13 Analysis
Chapter 13 breaks open the story. Bilimoria has been arrested for fraud and extortion and has confessed in detail. Indira Gandhi's arbitrary use of power has again been called into question. The Nobles and Dinshawji are affected. Sickly, old Dinshawji brings the news. Municipal politics are also heating up, we learn as a frustrated Gustad visits the dispensary to demand something that will actually cure his daughter. Dr. Paymaster, it turns out, is a political activist, trying to use the political system to get results before mob demonstrations become unavoidable. Talk about hospitals benefiting only the dying is ominous, given the tumor visible beneath Dinshawji's shirt. Tehmul is still obsessed with Roshan's doll. Clearly, it is not the minor motif it earlier appeared to be.
Chapter 14 Summary
On his way to Ghulam, Gustad sees a man striking a little girl, and restrains him. The man complains children have been harassing his customers all day. Gustad purchases a bottle of milk for the little girl, who shares it with her brothers. Gustad orders three chocolates for them. They do not know how to show their gratitude, but eventually fade into the crowd. Peerbhoy asks Gustad about his leg and tells him that Ghulam is on the top floor. The smell of the brothel is nauseating and the women gross. The rooms into which Gustad peeks are sordid.
Ghulam is expecting Gustad. Ghulam has lost his bandage and has grown a full beard grown a full beard. He is polite and courteous as ever. Over a desk hang framed pictures of Gandhi and Nehru. Ghulam confirms that Bilimoria is in jail, but refutes everything else as lies. Gustad demands an explanation for the money and decapitated animals. Ghulam says that RAW has no time for rats and cats, and that Bili Boy has enemies. Bili Boy will explain the money in time. He needs Gustad's trust and help. There is no sense in being upset with him. Bilimoria's life is in danger.
A scuffle in the back alley interrupts Gustad and Ghulam's conversation. The troublemaker is unmistakable: Tehmul is trying to get inside the brothel to touch the women. Hydraulic Hema has Tehmul by the ear. The whores are taking turns tormenting him. Gustad and Ghulam both intervene. No one is willing to accept Tehmul's rat bounty money and let him do what he wants. The rumor is that crazy men are hung like horses, so no one wants to get hurt. Ghulam sends the women back to work. Peerbhoy agrees to watch Tehmul until Gustad can take him home.
Gustad and Ghulam finish their business. Noble must withdraw the money already deposited so everything can be returned. Better to break the banking laws than have bones broken. Bili Boy, who is being tortured, confessed only to spare his friends the same trouble. The men have 30 days to comply. If Gustad fails, things will go badly for all of them. Ghulam will be at the House of Cages every evening. Gustad leaves worried and frightened. Tehmul is gone, but Peerbhoy has given him a paan to reduce his juice consumption.
Miss Kutpitia needs to examine the lime talisman to explain Roshan's relapse. Roshan has received a full dose of the evil eye. The old sorceress gives Dilnavaz two chunks of alum for a new potion and returns the lime rosary. The children must stay indoors during the full moon. Dilnavaz memorizes her new instructions and asks whether Sohrab will ever return. Do Tehmul's nails again and add a lock of his hair on the day after the new moon. They will not yet discuss the final remedy Miss Kutpitia once mentioned.
Dinshawji advises Gustad to comply with Ghulam's demands. They will withdraw two bundles a day. Dinshawji is strangely confident. Bilimoria's dubious confession has the bank buzzing. It sounds fishy. Dinshawji's observations, cool courage, and good sense impress Gustad and he regrets misjudging him as a buffoon. Halfway through the 30-day period, Gustad finds his plants hacked to the ground. Bilimoria loved the vinca, so it must be a reminder from Ghulam.
Dinshawji accelerates the pace of withdrawals to three bundles a day. They finish five days ahead of schedule. Dinshawji waves off any need for thanks. No sooner does he expunge all trace of the fictitious account, than Dinshawji collapses and is rushed to Parsi General Hospital. Gustad rides with him. The patient says that when he felt the end approaching, he accelerated the pace. Dinshawji is chipper, singing an off color take off on the song "Home on the Range." His humor can once again flow freely.
Gustad asks that Miss Kutpitia's phone number be listed next to Alamai's. Heading back to work, Gustad sees a monarch butterfly, which reminds him of Sohrab.
Dilnavaz follows Miss Kutpitia's instructions carefully. Alum blobs bubble on the hot coals. Roshan watches before going to bed. Miss Kutpitia is delighted with the results. She asks Dilnavaz what the blobs look like. Dilnavaz's first guess is nuns' habits, but surely, those godly women could not want to harm Roshan. Miss Kutpitia is disappointed until Dilnavaz sees an animal snout. Rabadi has motive.
Gustad questions a new fragrance at the wall. Devotees are burning incense stick before favorite gods. It is a very good location, and the artist is wearing fashionable new clothes, but is still barefoot. He plans to change from perishable crayons to permanent oil and enamel. He offers brief hagiographies of several figures, including the story of the miracles at Mount Mary. Bamji drives up and rejoices that the wall has become pisser-proof, although some neighbors are grumbling about the ecumenical selection. The more the merrier in a secular society.
Roshan is sobbing on the sofa. Her doll has vanished. Dilnavaz objects that she never leaves the door open, but remembers rushing to and from Miss Kutpitia's apartment. Gustad promises they will find the doll, by miracle if necessary.
Chapter 14 Analysis
Chapter 14 sees Gustad seeking out Ghulam to find out what is going on in Bombay and what he and Dinshawji must do. They meet in the whorehouse. Ghulam reveals that Bilimoria has been tortured, and has made a false confession to shield his friends. They have 30 days to restore all the money. Dinshawji shows great resolve and courage in withdrawing the money five days ahead of schedule, then collapses and is rushed to the hospital. Clearly, his days are numbered, yet the buffoon is redeemed. It is good to see Dinshawji's sense of humor return. Gustad leaves his side with a heart open to kind thoughts about Sohrab.
The wall is becoming a place not only of pilgrimage, but also of some sectarian division. New treatments are tried to pull the evil magic out of Roshan. Her doll has disappeared. Tehmul's sexual frustrations are rising, as shown by the ruckus he raises at the House of Cages, when he desperately seeks entry for a little fast rubbing.
Chapter 15 Summary
Gustad is angry with Bilimoria when he delivers the money to Ghulam. Ghulam says that people at the very top have taken an interest in the case and that their mutual friend is in danger. Bili Boy wants Gustad to visit him in prison in Delhi, and will explain the complicated story in person. Gustad suspects another trick, and agrees to only think about it. The neighborhood around the House of Cages smells like the black wall before its transformation. Gustad wonders whether Dr. Paymaster and his colleagues are getting any satisfaction from the municipality.
Tehmul is waiting for Gustad in the compound, bearing a letter from the landlord. Tehmul thanks the tenants for signing the petition and promises to keep them informed of developments. Gustad takes a copy and tells Tehmul to distribute the rest.
Dinshawji shrinks in his hospital bed throughout October and into November, but the tumors enlarge. Gustad visits as often as possible, telling stories from the bank. Reading the note from Bilimoria, Dinshawji advises Gustad to go to Delhi. Gustad helps his friend eat dinner and eventually take over feeding him. Dinshawji is apologetic for taking Gustad's time. Gustad wonders how his friend manages when he is absent; for Dinshawji's wife is never present.
A new strict diet ordered for Roshan requires Gustad to visit Crawford Market weekly. The cost of her medications grows worrisome. Dilnavaz sells gold wedding bangles and delivers the money to her husband, too late for him to object. One Sunday, Gustad runs into Malcolm, who has given up on a career in music and is now employed by the municipality. They talk about Gustad's troubles. Malcolm asks whether or not Gustad has ever heard of Mount Mary. Gustad is startled to hear the name so soon after being told the story by the street artist. Malcolm assures him that the stories are true and that the Virgin Mary helps people of all faiths. Malcolm suggests a pilgrimage that afternoon. Gustad agrees. This is clearly pre-ordained. Riding home on the bus with his meat purchases, Gustad sees hatred in the eyes of a fat Hindu woman.
Overcoming guilt, Gustad lies about visiting Dinshawji, and heads for the train station. An old woman ties to sell Gustad and Malcom candles for Mount Mary, but Malcolm sends her away. Better prices can be obtained at the shrine. A taxi driver also tries to sell them sacred supplies, but is turned down. Both vendors are resentful. Outside the shrine, large inventories of wax body parts are displayed, suitable for treating any ailment. Gustad pictures himself lying in Bonesetter's clinic. Malcolm explains the procedure, recommends Gustad pre-pay for his miracles, and helps him pick appropriate effigies. Malcolm explains that Gustad must personally pay the bill for a cure to occur. Gustad and Malcolm move into the hot, crowded church. Gustad follows his friend's lead, imitating his postures and gestures. Malcolm assures him that sweeping aside half-burned candles is proper form. Malcolm draws Gustad's attention to the central icon and tells its miraculous story. Gustad prays for Roshan, Dinshawji, and Sohrab, but does not bother about his own hip.
The old friends sit a while on the shore, talking about the old days, and particularly the music that always filled Malcolm's home. Musical pieces and books always end before you are ready to let them go. That is life, just as is the terrible international situation. Gustad sits on the beach a while after thanking Malcolm and watching him walk away. He feels tranquil. As the sun sinks, Gustad remembers his grandfather's workshop, his father's carriage, and the wonderful family parties that always went on after he was put to bed. Tears are scalding Gustad's eyes. He will not allow them to flow, even though the sea would swiftly swallow them. Walking home from the station, Gustad has stories to tell Dinshawji tomorrow, to make up for missing today's visit.
Chapter 15 Analysis
Chapter 15 takes Gustad to the Christian shrine at Mount Mary, where the Virgin Mary is said to perform miracles of healing for people of all faiths. His old Catholic friend, Malcolm, whom he happens to meet in the market, guides him. Gustad's earlier reluctance to compromise his Parsi practices is overcome by having heard about the shrine from the street artist. Surely this must be ordained rather than just coincidence. Gustad, who consistently puts down his wife's superstitions, has run out of rational options for Roshan, Sohrab, and Dinshawji. Gustad's heart is softening. Tears almost flow. Clearly they will have to flow before Gustad's spirit can be free. Surely the lie about visiting Dinshawji cannot go unpunished.
Chapter 16 Summary
Ghulam appears at the Nobles' door while Gustad is, supposedly, at the hospital. Dilnavaz barely conceals her hostility, but allows Ghulam to sit on the sofa and wait. Tehmul announces that there is an urgent phone call for Gustad, but Dilnavaz cannot leave the visitor alone. Gustad arrives, confers with Dilnavaz, and approaches Ghulam, while Dilnavaz goes to Miss Kutpitia's. Ghulam apologizes and promises this is the last time. Ghulam produces a newspaper article, which reports Bilimoria's request for retrial has been denied. The official charged with reviewing the evidence has been killed in a car accident, and his replacement concluded the matter rapidly. Sentencing is to follow shortly. It had been Bilimoria's last chance, says Ghulam. They will finish him off. Gustad tries to sound hard, but Ghulam presses gently on, stressing their old brotherly love. Gustad accepts a train ticket.
Dilnavaz is surprised to find the men chatting pleasantly as Ghulam prepares to leave. She is suspicious of the arrangement. Dinshawji has died an hour ago. She had thought her husband had just been at the hospital. When Gustad explains the trip to Mount Mary, and Dilnavaz realizes she and her husband have reached the same point by different paths. Gustad laments that there was no miracle for Dinshawji, and refuses to be comforted. By silencing his friend, Gustad hastened Dinshawji's death. Dilnavaz encourages Gustad to let his tears flow, but he defiantly holds them back. Roshan is happy to see them embracing. They are surprised that she remembers every detail about Dinshawji at her birthday celebration, but are upset when she suggests she too will die. Gustad sets out for the hospital. Cavasji and Mrs. Pastakia are both screaming in the compound.
Visiting hours are over, but a nurse admits Gustad to see his friend's body. Dinshawji was heavily sedated at the end, and alone. All the tubes and wires are removed. Soon the vultures will dismantle his bones, and he will exist in memory alone. When Gustad and Dinshawji's other friends are gone, what then? Gustad thinks of topics he wishes he had shared with Dinshawji.
The widow Alamai appears, tall, stern, and scrawny, and casts Gustad a withering look. Gustad almost smiles when he thinks of the Domestic Vulture picking clean Dinshawji's bones. Instead, he offers condolences. A pasty-faced young man bursts in frantically and is hushed by his Auntie. Nusli pouts at the scolding. Alamai introduces Pappa's best friend to the nephew she and Dinshawji raised as their own. The Tower of Silence is dispatching a hearse, so Gustad offers to ride along to calm Nusli.
Drained, Gustad goes out to walk the dark hospital grounds. He remembers a family vacation when he had been eight. His mother had tucked him into bed behind mosquito netting. Her smile through the thin veiling was the same as he remembered it being her 10 years later, as she lay dead. The hotel manager, a friend of Gustad's father, had served a special dessert in an edible bowl. To Gustad, it had symbolized the end of vacation, and he had refused to eat it. Later, the bowl became for him a symbol of the bankrupt bookstore. Gustad gives in to sleep.
The hearse's horn wakes Gustad. He hurries to the lobby. Alamai is angry Gustad was gone so long. Gustad fights resentment. The attendants are sorry, but they cannot transport the deceased's trunk to his home. They just go straight to the Tower. Gustad comforts the cringing, terrified nephew. Alamai's hypocritical tears disgust Gustad. At the gates to the Tower, the tears turn to great sobs. Gustad thinks how Dinshawji would enjoy watching the Domestic Vulture carrying on like Tom Jones over Delilah.
Alamai has failed to arrange the level of funeral service Dinshawji is to receive, so Gustad asks the disdainful driver to return to the office. Impatient with the widow, Gustad helps her focus on practical matters, such as if there is to be one day of mourning or four. The funeral will be tomorrow afternoon. The clerk promises to submit the obituary notice to the newspaper.
Gustad and Alamai return to the van and proceed to the verandah where the body will receive a final bath of ritual purity in gomez, bull urine. Alamai demands they substitute warm water; for they are modern people. Gustad is embarrassed and takes Nusli off to do his kusti. Alamai is angry with Nusli for forgetting his prayer cap. Gustad makes peace by covering the boy's head with a folded handkerchief. Gustad is near patience's end with the widow.
The body is brought in, clad in white, face and ears uncovered. A priest lights an oil lamp and prepares frankincense. Nusli fidgets through the silent prayers and is thumped soundly by his aunt. The dustoorji's voice reminds Gustad of Nat King Cole, rich as velvet. Light flickers across Dinshawji's face as prayers slowly fill the dark room. Gustad falls under the spell and forgets everything else. Music soothes him. The words of the dead language he has mouthed without comprehension all his life come alive tonight. Verses from the Avesta mingle with sounds of the night. Gustad understands everything.
Dilnavaz is asleep on the sofa when Gustad comes home at 11:30. Gustad narrates the evening's events, but stops when he comes to the prayers, feeling foolish at how they moved him. Dilnavaz pushes him to explain. He replies that prayer is powerful enough to put a smile on a dead man's face. He hopes that will be the scene when he dies.
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