A Mystery Man
A Mystery Man20 mins 429 20 mins 429
A boy got killed…but the case was closed as a suicide attempt…
There were two boys named Abhilash and Atharv. They came to know each other in college. They were in the same class. Their friendship grew as time passed away. There was one thing common between them that they never cultivated a friendship. They were very different from each other but few things were similar like they liked to spend their evening out of the door everyday…
So, they always used to spend time, especially on the beach. Atharv was a silent person mostly but when it comes to sharing Abhilash was the only person he ever shared his things because he liked to keep things within himself mostly whereas Abhilash always believed in practical rather than Maya (illusion). He always talked in a 'philosophical' manner that gave his meaning deeper and that's what defines him. He had a strong belief for mankind…on the other side of him was self-pity …He had so many shades…and that's the way he liked… They never (Atharv and Abhilash) shared their family background and never talked about that… So, all these things were going smoothly, until one day they spend more time, unlike everyday… After that, they had to come to college and it was late so they decided to go to their home and meet the next day at college. On the next day, Abhilash decided to go to Atharv's house because he didn't come to college. His cell was ringing but he wasn't picking…
Abhilash was quite worried, to make sure he was okay he decided to go to his home… As he reached his building (because he was living in the flat) where he lived, he found a crowd beneath the building and the police… He was stunned, he tried to know what was happening there… He thought it might be robbery and that's why the police so he took a few steps to see…but it was hard to look…but somehow he managed to peep… It was unexpected what he saw… There was a boy lying with his back and bleeding, because he never saw a corpse…or dead body before, not in real life at least, so he decided not to see again. It was scary so he turned his back and started moving but then he stopped like he remembered something horrible. So he turned and tried to see the dead body but it was very difficult to even stand there. One could see the fear in his eyes, his lips were busy in praying, saying "no, no, no, it could not.”
Abhilash never prayed, not for anyone but for the first time he wanted to pray and his lips were praying from his heart …(deep down he knew it was him) and that’s why he didn’t dare to look again… All he wanted was to get him back… So he went to the mosque… That was the first time he even went to a mosque or religious place…He believed that power or energy we worship is human…That resides in human…You do help others always, the people who are so close to you and to yourself…when you are in trouble… That was his belief… but that day…he went…and prayed to get him back…(rebirth) which must not be possible… He was weeping…after knowing that he was wishing for something which was not possible…and then he went to the place where they used to spend evenings mostly…(on the beach)… He sat there for hours…thinking something and feeling regret about something ( like he has done).
He was murmuring something, again and again, that would he ever be able to forgive himself…? It was too cold out there and dark too…Abhilash never spend so much time alone before but now might be loneliness would be his word… After that, he went to his home, that night it was hard to sleep precisely coz his friend was no more… Something was haunting him… As he closed his eyes his fear grew more and more so that night he didn't sleep at all…
Next day he had to go police station… He walked because the distance between the police station and his house was not more than half a kilometre and he prefers walking instead of the vehicle… So he walked… After reaching the station he had to wait... He waited and waited and he slept.
"Hey boy, wake up. This is not a place of sleeping." He woke up in shock like he was scared. He looked around, figured out he was in the police station, they called him and he slept for how many hours? He watched his watch it was 2 pm.
"Okay sir," he said. "Let's come then (policeman)."
Senior officer: "You okay, boy?"
Abhilash: Tears trickled from his eyes, something was choking him but he managed to say that he was fine…
Senior officer: "Are you able to give your statement Abhilash?"
Abhilash: He did not think and said, "yes Sir…"
The investigation goes on, police asked so many questions to him about Atharv…
Abhilash got to know one thing that Atharv never had a family….he lived in an ashram…and that is why he never told him…
Police did not find him guilty or suspect so permitted him to leave.
Police officer: we will call you if required and you have to come, understand?
Abhilash: yes sir….can I go now?
Police officer: yes you can…
As he went out of the station he seemed to be in relief in that entire trauma… He was walking towards his home thinking all that. Suddenly his eyes got stuck on a figure from behind… Atharv? How could he? He was walking and going somewhere? The distance between them was around 30 mm … He could sense him…that's why he knew it was him…
So he decided not to think and follow him, after some time Atharv stopped so Abhilash also stopped. He looked around and found that he was on the beach, where they used to spend their evening. (By looking beside the sea) Abhilash noticed that he was standing in the sea, the seawater was around his knee at least… He was horrified and ran to stop him… Atharv tilts his head as he just looked at Abhilash by not facing him actually and drowned in water…"Hey No!," Abhilash said and tried to stop him but before he could do he was gone… No sign of him… He looked around (to figure out by him taking a few steps in the sea). He fell and flooding into the water and he didn't know how to swim.
One man came and rescued him by getting him out of the water. Abhilash was somewhat unconscious but after getting into consciousness he saw people around him and he was laying on the ground (sand).
Someone asked him, "You okay boy?"
He gathers all his power and sits up and said, "yes um…thanks…"
Again a question, "What were you doing?"
"I saw my friend; I followed him. He was there." He(Abhilash) pointed towards the sea and said," he was there and then drowned in the water. I went there but…he faded…"
"We didn't see anyone there…it's okay, just go home…"
He(Abhilash) understood that they didn't believe so he stood up and walked towards his home… He was all wet… Abhilash was confused about what was happening to him… He didn't believe what he saw, it was too real, felt so real, he seemed to be confused about everything but he tried not to think about it. It was getting dark and that day he didn't go to college but that's not important. "ABHILASH" A VOICE TOUCHED HIS EARS" … It continued like whispering… He looked around but found no one, it was fascinating that anybody would love to hear that… so he followed that voice…
A truck stopped just in front of his face, he got into consciousness and saw he was in front of the truck. He froze… then a man came out from the truck. He was furious. He (truck man) shouted by saying what was he doing, was he going to suicide? Abhilash all managed to apologize to him …and went. He was still shocked knowing that he was in the middle of the road… He ran and ran and reached his house. He turns on the lights, lie down on the sofa, and started sobbing and screaming. He won't be able to understand anything, how could he saw something which already existed, Hallucination? He murmured but what about that sound… How he was on the road and he didn't know how he could be unconscious something was eating him deep down… He wanted to sleep but he couldn't because whenever he closes his eyes something haunts him, he was helpless… (After two-three hours) then he heard something (someone talking, whispering) words were not clear but the sound was… He stood up and followed (all he had just voice in his head). His cell was ringing. He stopped (something interrupted him)… knowing that his cell was ringing he took out his cell and found it was a spam call… As he put his cell in the pocket he noticed that he was standing on the edge of the terrace, his heart was now in his mouth… Just one more step and he could have fallen, what if I fell? Why I was here? I am supposed to be on the sofa right now then what I was doing here? He looked down yanks he steps back.
Then his eyes captured a figure like a man on the other building, (because there was the light that is why it was easily visible). Abhilash noticed he was wearing Atharv's clothes or it was like that? And he was going to jump… Abhilash tried to speak…but nothing was audible… The man from another roof looked at Abhilash… and before Abhilash spoke he jumped from the building… His (Abhilash) breathing stopped for a second. He peeped down but found nothing neither heard… It was complicated but he saw… He turned, decided to go downstairs but he noticed someone sitting over the water tank, an animal? Or man? It was complicated, hunched back, horns on head, black all over like shadow. A FEAR..? It was not visible. Abhilash then took out his phone as he turned on the flashlight. It looked like Abhilash ran away from the stares and this time he didn't go into his room. He went downstairs and saw guard wasn't in his place so he ran from there. He stopped after such exhaustion… He was breathing heavily; he was too far from his home now. It was too dark and silent all over. There was car parking on the side of the road but no one was there. After a while, he saw a vehicle coming towards him. Hope filled in his voice and he moved his hands…to stop the vehicle after getting closer to him (it was a minibus white in colour). Two men came out from it in hurry and looking at Abhilash (they were dressed in white cloth) then one of them asked, "what is it, boy? Is he hurt? What are you doing in the dark and alone?"
Abhilash: "Someone is after me; he will hunt me down" (speaking in fear)
Busmen: "Who is behind you boy (curious)?"
Abhilash: "I don't know what it was, a shadow," he murmured
Busmen whispered something and said to come with them so that they can help him; Abhilash went into the bus with them, the hope of getting some sort of help so that he could come out from all that shit…
Busmen: "Okay now, relax. You are safe, tell us about everything that happened with you."
Abhilash: "I was on the roof and I saw a man jumped from the building but there was no sign of him and then I saw a shadow structured like a man? No, it was a mixture of man and animal. It was after me so I ran from there…"
Busmen: "How did you know he, I mean it, was after you?"
Abhilash: "I know because…" and then he stopped and finished the sentence by saying "I just know…"
They were all silent, no one uttered a word…After sometime:
Abhilash: "Thanks for your help, but where are you taking me?"
Busmen: "We are taking you to the safest place, where people like you live."
Abhilash: "What do you mean people like me?"
Busman: He meant it's an asylum."
What kind of asylum? Abhilash thought but he didn't ask, finally, the bus stopped. After coming out of the bus, he saw a building with two-three flours and a board hanging on building written something in capital letter MENTAL ASYLUM… Abhilash's face stunned. He didn't expect that.
Do they think I am mental? But I am not? Said Abhilash to him but didn't ask them, they took Abhilash in the room inside the building. There was a lady doctor inside the room. The room was all white with a single bed with a white bed sheet and pillow. Then there was some brain and hypnosis chart and there was a large window that consists of white curtains. Why everything is so white? (He thought) Lady doctor stood up and asked him to wait to hear by pointing towards the sofa." I will come in five minutes," the lady doctor said. She went outside. After five minutes she came inside and sat on her chair and asked him to sit in front of her by pointing at the chair…
LADY DOCTOR: "Okay Abhilash, let me introduce myself… I am Neha, I do take care of patients here… What about you?"
ABHILASH: "Sorry to say that mam but I am not a patient (he had too much in his head but he stopped after saying that)"
LADY DOCTOR: (she smiled) "What is the work of a teacher? It is to give a lesson to his/her students, that is his duty and discipline to give what a teacher has (knowledge)."
ABHILASH: "Okay (all he said)."
LADY DOCTOR: "Now I am gonna ask you a few questions, just answer me honestly okay?"
ABHILASH: (there was so much going on his head but all he managed to say) "Okay."
LADY DOCTOR: "Good, now tell me everything about what's going on with you…"
ABHILASH: (how the hell she could help me? With some shitty medicines?) He thought then he said okay and told everything that was happening with him like he told the busmen…
Listening all this she was writing something on a white paper after he finished with all his details.
LADY DOCTOR: "Abhilash…sometimes what we see is not real and that is called hallucination…created in mind that could be because of fear, anxiety, agony, chaos, or a mixture of all these things and that creates hallucination which can be in the form of a ghost or anything depends on what things influence you…and all this create mental trauma… in short, this could be dangerous if you will not take precautions."
ABHILASH: "What kind of precaution, doctor?"
LADY DOCTOR: "Abhilash, you need to take medication and for that, you have to stay here."
ABHILASH: "What? I mean to live here? For what time?"
LADY DOCTOR: "Until you overcame…"
ABHILASH: "Overcome from what? I don't need any kind of medication because I am okay. I am not ill."
LADY DOCTOR: "We will provide you with all kinds of facilities all you need to stay here Abhilash."
ABHILASH: "I think you didn't hear me okay… This is because my friend is no more…and I think it's normal to be in condition like that… I am normal…now if you did, will you excuse me. I just want to go from here (because I don't feel good here)." He murmured…
LADY DOCTOR: "No, you can't…"
ABHILASH: "What? Why not? I told you mam (then something happened to him and he fainted)."
Next, he remembered when he opens his eyes, his eyelids felt like too heavy but he opened his eyes and found himself on the floor, something was hurting him. He got brushes…that room was different from another one… (Where am I?) He asked to himself, he tried to stand up by gathering all his power. He noticed the room filled with very dim lights (zero watt bulb), it was a small room with a small window which was very high to reach. He was not able to understand how he got here, how he got brushes and then he heard the clatter of footsteps. "Hello," he said. "Someone please open the door. I am suffocating…" After that, someone opened the door…
A MAN: "What is it, boy? You didn't sleep yet?"
ABHILASH: "Can I ask you a question of how I got here…and why I am here…? I am not ill…believe me, please!"
A MAN: "It's not up to me… I don't know how you got here but (then he looked around like in caution) and said that's what they do… a business."
ABHILASH: "A business? What kind of business?"
A man: That's all I could tell you. I am a servant here, work for living… (He speaks in a hurry)."
ABHILASH: "Okay, just one last question. When I will get out from here…?"
A MAN: (SPOKE IN LESS VOLUME) "You might never come out…"
Saying this he went…
Abhilash was shocked after hearing that…
He lied down in his bed. The word of that man was haunting him (you might never come out…It's a business…that's what they do…) Then he tried not to think about it and closed his eyes… (So he managed for some time)
Abhilash was standing in front of the door (red). It was hard to define the place he was in because of darkness, just enough light to define the gate and himself… Nothing was visible so he took his cell and turned on the flashlight to see around but nothing happened (it was like darkness swallowed the light because of its intimidation) like a black hole? It was impossible to see anything so all he had to go inside the room that was the only option left…So Abhilash opened the door and went inside. There was water all around ( above his feet) and few bulbs of low voltage as he was moving and watching around(like he was searching something). Abhilash heard something( someone talking). He walked little fast in search of that, he was quite at the distance. He saw two people sitting on the bench( red) and busy talking. So Abhilash went little closer to see their faces. They were facing each other as he went a little closer. Abhilash saw one boy exactly look like him or it was him? Was talking to Atharv… "You will do exactly what I say…" (Abhilash heard) a boy was saying to Atharv, "NO!" Abhilash screams…
"It's already done…" (A boy said by turning his face toward Abhilash and smiling) Abhilash took his step back and turned around to run but then he saw a wall and something was written on it. He went so that he could see that clearly, "Sometimes YOUR MIND REFLECTS THE MEMORIES YOU BURIED IN YOURSELF."
NO! NO! NO! Abhilash screamed and woke up…sweating like he was burning, his cloth was all wet like he bathed and the heartbeat was fast enough like he was running… He buried his head on his knees and he lifts his head and noticed a ray of sunlight was touching his feet (which was coming from the window) but he didn't get relief seeing that… His face was ashened like a corpse. It was like he was still in that nightmare… in the darkness… and these lights are illusion… deep down he knew he was trapped in his bait. Might be he will never come out, not from the outer prison but from the prison he built in his soul…
He ended by saying things, ended where it all started, as a circle so the world is…
10 years later a piece of news comes that a man ran from the mental asylum and his name was Abhilash…and he didn't get caught.
That's the end of the story… (Father said).
SON: "That the Abhilash faded?"
After thinking of something Abhimanyu( boy) asked,
SON: "Okay but father Abhilash had a nightmare in an asylum that he saw himself talking with someone but how he knew that another one would be Atharv? I mean you said in your story that deep down he knew or he could feel that it was him...Before seeing him?"
"Come downstairs dinner is ready; hurry up both of you (Female voice)."
SON: "Okay mommy!"
FATHER: (By watching time on his wristwatch. It was 10'o clock) and looking up facing him he answered: "He was seeing what he already experienced. Isn't that what the story tells?
Let's get down for dinner. It's late…" (Father said).
All three were eating their supper. Abhimanyu was thinking: My father is philosophical in every way… Nobody could judge him by seeing his face. It's difficult to know him so do I but that's the way he likes to have shades and he always said that there is nothing wrong to lie, hide things…until you hurt the others…neither he did…then a voice intruded.
FATHER: STOP IT (he speak in a low voice eating his supper).
SON: What? (Speak in hesitation).
FATHER: You know what…I guess…
Looking down, he started eating. "Okay," Abhimanyu murmured.
MOMMY: "What's going on between you too (smiling)? I am not able to understand your conversation."
Abhimanyu didn't hesitate in speaking because it was the mother's question. Father won't say anything.
ABHIMANYU: "It's um…father narrated me one of the stories he wrote and I was thinking about that…"
Father glanced me like he knows that I was thinking about him… but how did he…anyway, it's not new to him. He just understands me better than anyone I think…
MOMMY: "WHOA! That's news… (Looking at her son) seems like you liked it…"
SON: "(Smiling like it was more than like but all he said) Yes."
MOOMY: "I see…what was the genre?"
SON: "err…Suspense thriller…"
Hush now! (Spoke uncomfortably then hiding his feeling) eat.
ABHIMANYU: Watching him, he knew something was disturbing him, that's what I could tell but I know he won't share…
After dinner, he decided to ask a question to him but didn't find the guts to do so…. After thinking so much he decided to ask by gathering his confidence. He went to his father's room. Before getting inside he knocks like he always used to…but he didn't get an answer he knew where he could be. Abhimanyu went on the roof (because he knew that he like to spend time alone and silently …by seeing his father was staring at the moon or stars? Lost somewhere (in his world) Abhimanyu thought, he didn't want to disturb him so as he turns around to go, he is stopped by hearing his father's voice…
FATHER: "Looking for me boy!"
SON: "(by facing him) Err yes (he murmured)."
FATHER: "(turning around and facing him he smiled) Wanted to ask a question, is it?"
SON: "(he glanced in amazement instead of it was not known but every time how he does that?) Yes."
FATHER: "What is it?"
SON: "You didn't mention about Abhilash's family…?"
FATHER: "That's because he never revealed that…"
SON: (so do you) he thought. "But why?"
FATHER: He thought something and then asked, "why you hide things?"
SON: "I never did."
FATHER: "Come again…look at me…"
SON: He was silent for some time but then he remembered what his father said and asked, "but the question can be answered for the question?"
FATHER: "Sometimes the question is the answer to the question…"
Abhimanyu understood what his father said…
"Just one last question, how you always understand me? I mean, what I feel instead of what I don't tell or express…?"
FATHER: "The same way you understand me…"
Abhimanyu was surprised hearing that…sometimes I feel I don't know my father and…
FATHER: "It's okay son, not knowing me the way you wanted, it's just not up to you (He murmured). Knowing is not important, understanding matters…"
FATHER: "Anything else you wanted to ask (suddenly changing his reaction)?"
SON: "(he had so much in his head but he didn't ask so all he said) No father…good night."
FATHER: All he said, "sleep well…"
Abhimanyu went to his room after closing the door behind. He lay on the bed (without switching on the light). He was thinking about all his father said…
When he asked me why do you hide things it was like he was telling about him…I felt it…? I don't know him. He didn't tell about his childhood and his family like Abhilash but I understand him and that's why I could feel him whenever he lied things to mommy and me. I could smell his fear, anxiety…but I don't know why does he fear….from what… Sometimes I get scared of him and his shades but then I remembered how much he cares for me and loves me… I have seen goosebumps all over his hands when he was narrating the story and fear in his eyes… I didn't understand for what. Well, he is a damn writer and that's what the writer does, live in the character, he changes his thoughts by saying that.
Why was he saying sorry…to whom…? He never said that (Abhimanyu heard when he saw his father was on the roof) and for what reason? There was no one, he was alone…
I don't know what makes him scared. Might be he is protecting his family by hiding things… I won't interfere if that is so. He was scared, and why did I compare him with Abhilash? Abhimanyu's face gets darkened. He changed his thought by saying that he is my father and I always want to be with him that's all…and then he closed his eyes (something was haunting him…) to find some peace and remembered his father said sleep well)but he didn't understand what he meant… Comparison of his father with Abhilash's character, was that just coincidence? Was that?
SOMETIMES OUR MIND CREATES DELUSION WHICH ACTS AS A (VIRTUAL) SHIELD FROM TRAUMA…