short story

Amaya #6 : Away

“But Amma”, started Amaya.

“No means no. It is too slippery over there, and you will stay inside the house.”, said her mother firmly.

That was the first time she had been prevented from playing in the rain. Her neighbour had had a bad fall the day before, as the continuous rains made the neighbourhood slippery.

She was sad, so much that she was almost at tears. But as she stuck her head to the window, her friend reassured her : Better luck next time.

Another day, it had been the fear of acid rain. How can my friend harm me?, she wondered. She asked. A drop fell on her right eye, and rolled down. She had to wait days, looking out the window, before her friend finally returned.

But all of these were mere temporary restrictions. The real one came when she was sent away to hostel for her higher secondary education. She was absolutely banned from playing in the rain, and the barely got the chance to meet her friend. These rare occasions were followed by sessions where the wardens would scold her so badly that even the drops would shudder.

And then, little by little she got so much into that vicious circle of life, she no longer waited at the window. No longer searched the skies.

short story

Amaya #2 : The Old Lady 

“Amu, what are you staring at?” asked Grandpa.

“It is going to rain, Grandpa.”, she replied.

He frowned at the bright sky. Later that day, the grey corroded the blue sky. It became more grey, as if it were trying not to pour down, till it finally gave in. Amaya had had an incomplete nap, when it arrived.

It declared that this time it was falling apart for an old lady, who lived in a big house. But the house no longer belonged to her, except for a tiny room where all her belongings had been stashed away.

Her two sons lived in the same house, with their wives and kids, but nobody ever came up to check on her. So much that in that corner in the upper floor, she did not have any bed, cot or mat to sleep on. Her sons had forgotten about the bed, and their mother. So she decided to sleep in the wooden cupboard – the only furniture her children let her keep.

The cupboard was as old as the house – which was very old – and had a partition in the middle. It had two beautiful doors with carvings on it. One half had shelves – where she kept her stuff ; and the other half had none – where she slept.

Two days ago, one of her daughter in laws locked the cupboard, not realising the old lady was asleep in it.

What happened next, little Amaya does not remember, for she had returned to completing her nap.

short story

Amaya

She stood there, sky high, a mere window pane separating her from the grey horizon. Lightening shot through it, while she watched drops lashing against the glass. The drops ran all over, blurring the burning city lights. She watched, she observed – confused.

Her cousin sister, jumping and dancing in the rain, called out to her,” Come on Amaya, why aren’t you dancing?”

Amaya loved to dance in the rain. But she would not budge, because she knew that the rain was sad. It was crying for somebody, somebody who could bear no more. Her grandpa often tried cheer her up with paper boats, but they would all sink – every time the rain was sad. She would also fall sick at times.

She was born in the month of the rain, and named after it. She grew up watching the rain, and it never let her down. She danced with it when it was happy, and it showered on her when she was sad. She missed it dearly during summer, eagerly expecting the sudden unexpected showers.

Her first day in a new city, she was lost in the rain. The rain that went on beating against the pane, continuously with a consistent force. For the first time, her best friend had caught her by surprise. It was unhappy, but not exactly sad. For the first time, she could feel its anger.

 

horror fiction, poem

The Lamp Post

On the ground. Was she?

Deep in the hustle, yet

So very out of reach 

From the cracking campfire 

It escaped her every​ memory.

She longed, stretched and reached

But never there.

Amidst the leaves’ rustle, yet

No more could trample them.

Beneath the flood of the lamp post

All that was, among other shadows

Was her silhouette.

©NM