A Night of Stories
A Night of Stories
The evening was rushing over the setting sun; the winter noon was soon getting violent with the winds blowing away all the leaves around, everything was getting dark,
“What does this even mean, why would anyone want to read this, I asked for a paranormal activity article something which will make the people want to read it! ” “Sir this is also something people should know it’s really something to think about...” said Ansh, interrupting him his boss who was already mad at him said, “ listen here we can’t always sell the paper on facts, people believe myths more than the facts if you can’t give them that, then I’ll have to find someone else for that!”
Ansh had his head wrapped up in that entire conversation he had with his boss, “I started writing because I wanted to convey something important and true through it and now when I have the platform I’m not allowed to do so, what am I supposed to even write about? spirits haunting zoos?” he thought while walking back home, it was dark now, an impending storm has already started knocking on the door of the dark evening. Ansh was already late; he didn’t want to get stuck in the storm he started walking faster.
The storm picked up speed and to top his problems Ansh was stuck in the middle of a storm. He desperately looked for a place to take shelter before it started to rain as well,
“You stuck here young man?” a considerably aged man in his sixties stood behind him, “Yes sir…” “The winds are pretty wild tonight why don’t you wait here at my house for some time, till the storm dies down?” “Thank you, sir, I hope I won’t be of any trouble, I’ll leave as soon as this dies down…” the man smiled adjusting his glasses “Don’t worry about that I hardly have any company around…”
Saying this they walked to the house, it was a warm and comfortable room, the house was pretty spacious, Ansh wondered how he never came to that area before. They both sat on the sofa, and started talking. “So returning from work?” “Yes, sir I work for the weekly news…”
Ansh stopped midway while saying this, he remembered how he was almost on the verge of losing his job, seeing him stuck in his thoughts the man said: “Got some problems there young man?” Ansh looked at him, he had a kind smile on his face, it almost reminded him of his parents “I don’t know if I still work there,” he continued leaving a sigh “it’s just getting difficult day by day sir, no one really wants the facts says my boss..huh” Ansh said with disappointment all over his face
“Well what does he want you to write about?” the man asked. “Some hocus pocus the public believes in, something Ghouls and spirits…” “So you think that is all hocus pocus?” Ansh smiled “See, even you believe in this, when do we even talk about real issues when this is stuck in everyone’s minds, I guess he was right this job isn’t for me…” “Wait there are different kinds of truths in this world, what you might believe in is your truth, what even makes up facts to some extent it’s just people’s belief. See young man it’s a very thin line that separates myths from facts, at least that is what I have learnt in my life I had…” as Ansh quietly looked at him, he said “ By the way I am the Late Ravi Kumar, I was killed in a home robbery around six years ago in this same house we sit in ..”
“What, sir are you being serious?” Ansh didn’t want to believe him and tried laughing it off “ It was not just the robbers who had injured me but only if someone could have come and help me I wouldn’t be here…” the man smiled, Ansh was getting really uncomfortable, “ I think I should go now..”
“This early, you haven’t even met the rest of the “hocus pocus”….” Just as he said that the lights in the house flickered it was like the power went out, the wind whistled louder outside.
“Sir! Are you there?” Ansh called out for him, there was no answer, he mentally cursed himself for even entering in that house, he desperately searched for the door.
“Arre bhaiya you searching for something, just call me na I know everything around!” a little boy’s voice came from behind, Ansh almost lost his balance, “ Who, who is it?” “ Bhaiya don’t be scared it’s me Emad- I live here…”
“How did you come here?” Ansh was so confused
“ I live here for a long time, before that I used to live with my parents in my village, and one day my parents brought me to the town where I had to work for a Shopkeeper, he hit me a lot and always made me work.. but I wanted to go to school..” he stopped,
“What happened after that ?” the faint lights from the streetlights shone in the room “I ran away, I had no place to live and went hungry for days, I was even chased, they thought I was a thief, I just wanted a place to sleep in, so I went and slept under a tree, the next time I woke up I directly walked here, I didn’t even need directions.” Ansh stood stunned; he didn’t know whether to feel scared or sad.
“Can you show me the door to outside, it’s a pretty big house and I can’t really find the directions..” “Sure just follow me” Emad said happily, his own story didn’t make him sad anymore, he was free now.
Ansh walked slowly behind Emad who continued talking, “Are you not staying with us, I thought you would, like this new didi here, it hasn’t been long since she’s arrived here..” “Didi? Is she here as well, how did she come here?”
“Chotu talking about me?” a gentle voice spoke in front of them. In the faint light from the windows, Ansh could see a sari clad figure standing in front of them, she might not have been more than eighteen, he wasn’t scared anymore “Are you staying with us ?” the girl innocently asked, her voice crystal clear and face still hidden half in the darkness.
“Arre no didi he is just searching for the door. He was just asking about you..”
Ansh tried to stop him, the girl continued “ I was the youngest of six kids in my family when I was sixteen I got married, they said they couldn’t bear the expenses anymore, I was not even asked…my husband was a monster he tortured me in every way he could. One day I couldn’t take it anymore and jumped in the river that flowed from our village…” there was utter silence Ansh was disgusted, how was it fair for a young girl like her to endure that.. “Don’t feel pity for me sahib, you can say I was the lucky one, most of the others have to live through it and endure forever..” saying that the girl or rather her shadow just disappeared, Ansh could barely walk, Emad was no where around."Was he dreaming?" he thought, even though it felt like a dream, the painful stories weren't a dream.
Ansh tried to walk further away but couldn’t find the door, “You’re searching for the door?” a man almost the same age as him, stood straight in front of him- he could clearly see his face,
“Are you..you a gho..st too?” words clearly failed him. “I searched for the door too when I came here, but soon realized this place is much better than where we live in..well just walk a little further its right there..” the man pointed straight in front of them.
“Who are you?” Ansh asked, “No one, I don’t answer that anymore, my name is the reason I am here..” Ansh stood confused “ They were fighting and burning things I just went to see what was happening, they didn’t spare me and I lost my life in that riot, which gave no one anything except for destroyed lives.”
Ansh just stared at him, he was not confused anymore, he knew what was happening, what happened and all of them that lived or rather … He didn’t know what to call that anymore.
“Still sure you want to leave?” the man asked Ansh nodded and quietly walked out, the storm had died down. He had got his story; he walked home thinking about all of them in that house and all the others the house waited to welcome.