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A Peculiar Tale

A Peculiar Tale

6 mins 3.7K 6 mins 3.7K

The 4th semester’s final exams were just in a month, so I decided to rent a room to study hard. I told my college friend, Niyati, to help me to get a room.

“Sure…” She said, “I’ll tell my Mom. She’ll find out nearest to college.”

“Thanks, Niyati.” I gave endearing smile.

“But… Amaya. I don’t think it’d be a nice idea. I mean, you know how it’s very unsafe for girls to live all alone at an unknown place.” She said being concerned about me, which warmed my heart with emotions.

“I’m so glad you thought about me. But don’t worry dear. I’ll be safe.” I said with a genial smile.

“Yeah, but… If you don’t mind, then live at my place. It’s safe and you will not need to worry about food to eat. My mom knows you’re my good friend. We’ll assume that you’re our guest for a month.” She expressed her gracious nature.

God… I was so happy then. It was just perfect. Even though I hesitatingly asked, “Are you sure, Niyati…?”

“Damn sure…! After finishing college we’ll go to a hostel and get your stuff. From today you’re living in my Home.” She said merrily.

“Oh… Thank you soooo much Niyu…” I excitedly hugged her in a tight embrace, “That means a lot to me.” As I detached from the hug, I gazed at her with doe-eyes, “You are the best friend ever.”

She smiled and said, “Don’t thank me too much. My little selfishness is also in the invitation—so you can help me with my poor physics.”

We both burst out giggling like little girls.

*

That night Niyati’s parents warm welcomed me as I entered the main gate. Her loving mother rebuked me in her sweet voice as she knew my idea of renting a room somewhere else. She made me feel like I was one of her close family members. I felt home there as I settled in Niyati’s room with my stuff.

Niyati and I used to study late at night. After too much study, we would go out to get some fresh air and have an ice-cream or chat-masala at Local Park.

*

On one usual night around 11 PM, we were returning from the ice-cream stall. At Local Park, there was always few old people sitting on the bench and gossiping. So we never had any fear of walking alone in the dark through the park.

That night we were returning the way back home, and I felt a little hesitation to go through the park, as it was darker than usual and there wasn’t anyone sitting on the bench. I was kept looking around fearfully. Niyati noticed my uneasiness –

“Hey, what is it?” she said, holding my hand to get my attention.

“Niyati. I don’t know why, but I am feeling foreboding…” I told the truth.

She laughed like I had cracked some kind of funny joke.

“Chillax Amaya. Exams are coming near that’s why you’re feeling fear. Don’t worry.” She said with mild laughter.

I knew it very well that the feeling I was getting wasn’t about exams’ nervousness. But anyhow, we kept walking through the park as that was the shortest way. As soon as we entered the park, I heard someone’s footstep noise from behind. I quickly turned my gaze. There was a man who was quickly running towards us with Iron rod in his hand.

“Oh God Niyatiiii… Runnnn…. That guy is coming to kill us…” we both ran as fast as we could—clenching our fist. Niyati looked back to see him, but to her surprise, the man stopped chasing us.

“Amaya. He stopped running… look… I don’t think he’s chasing us…” she said breathlessly—though we were still running.

After a few seconds, we stopped running as we were exhausted and looked back again to see him. My throbbing heart jumped in my mouth as I saw him again running so fast towards us with an iron rod.

“Oh my God… Runnnn… or He’ll kill us…” this time we both ran as fast as we could without looking back. While running she was crying and praying so hard. As we reached home, we felt so much relief. We quickly got inside the gate and sat exhausted on the marble bench to gasp our breath. Our body was bathing in sweat-rain. We both decided that we’ll never ever go out at late night after then. We didn’t say anything to anyone that night and went to our room.

No, that wasn't the horror part. A few days later, I saw the same person in the newspaper. There was written that he was arrested for a raping and murdering women. I was shocked! I told Niyati about the news. As she read the news article, she broke down into a silent cry. At that moment I also couldn’t restrain myself from crying.

“Amaya. You were right about what you’d said. I’m so sorry I didn’t believe you.” She hugged me and I caressed her back softly. “He could've killed us too that night“, I nodded mutely. My tears were falling on her shoulder. We hugged and cried for a long while and console each other.

As our mind came at ease, Niyati asked me surprisingly, “Amaya, that night he could’ve killed us, then why he didn't do anything? Was he just playing around to scare us like that?”

“Yes… We could’ve been his prey too. I don’t know why he did stop?” I said musing.

That night we decided something we never did before.

*

Next day we went to police station to report that incident and witnessing him with an iron rod and running toward us to murder. A police officer brought him in front of us and asked, “Do you know these girls?”

He looked to us and nodded.

“Had you planned to hurt these girls too that night?”

He stared at me and nodded. “Yes. Every day I was observing them and planning to kill them with my iron rod. This little bitch had risen voice against me. I wanted to crack her skull first and then rape her.”

I was shaken to my core the way he was looking at me and saying. By his every word my heart was stabbing and bleeding. Nobody had ever said something disgusting to me. I never scared that much ever in my life. I instantly broke down into the cry.

“I wanted to kill them, but there were so many people with them.” He clenched his jaw.

“What…??...” Niyati Shocked, “Nobody was there! We both were alone walking there.”

“You were alone before, but as soon as I was approaching you, few people came and threatened me to leave you. They were weird. By then I had to go back, but then I saw you stopped walking, so I started chasing you again, and then suddenly more people came from the dark and screamed to leave them. I was surprised how come so many people appeared at once and that too such late night. I threw my iron rod to one of them, but it lingered in the air. I got scared seeing such supernatural thing. They all shouted and the iron rod blew at me. They told me in rhyme that they would kill me if I don't leave them alone. So, I just ran away from there.”

We both fell in huge shock what he’d said. That was even more shivering than what happened to us that day. By then we knew that who all those people were in the park—sitting on a bench at late night. There isn’t always bad ghosts, there are good ghosts too. Maybe angels who know!!?

That night we both went there at the park to thank them, but we couldn’t find anyone. Even though I muttered under my breath, “I know you must be here somewhere. We want to heartily say thank you.”

We stood there for a minute. Orange lamp-post light shimmered on and off twice. We looked at each other in surprise and smiled.

***


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