It is a kind of clattering noise which wakes up Bhudharbabu. Without opening his eyes and holding his breath he wants to figure out what it is. At first it occurs to him that that the electric fan overhead at times makes a rattling noise. Opening his eyes he peers up into the darkness. Next it seems that the noise is coming from under the cot. Rats? Under the cot it is a hole cluttered with a motley assortment of old utensils, boxes and trunks, tins of rice and wheat. Rats have the run of the place and when they collide with a tin or trunk, such collision produces a variety of noises which disturb Bhudharbabu in his sleep. Due to aging, acidity and indigestion, he sleeps only in fits and starts these days. Sleep is not easy for him to come by. And if it is disturbed, he is likely to spend sleepless hours on end.