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.

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

poem

Knowledge Behind Bars

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This room is a cube, imagine.
Thinking beyond that cube is a sin,
I wonder why they do what they do
Like they say for those who
Want knowledge sincerely,
Or those who make them wealthier regularly?
What is shared here, wisdom or just shortcuts;
Deals that destroy your very guts?

The dusty corridors the ghosts abandoned,
In the midst of chaos, they leave you stranded –
Against their promises and assurances.
They’ll only widen your differences.
The deities of the orthodox world they built,
The course of the river never in the hands of the silt.
Your life defined by their rules, and terms.
Your thoughts, and food infected by their worms.
The seed of fear they will have sown,
And since then you shall never own,
That life you thought was yours,
Those choices you thought were yours.
Your true self , never again will you find.
For once in, you’ll be trapped in your own mind.

They’ll feed you sciences from beyond the stars,
But what use of such knowledge behind bars?

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Alone

The Room

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It is two in the afternoon, the sun in its full voltage. People are all over the streets having lunch, going back to office, traveling and barbequed street vendors selling food.  Her mother is in the kitchen serving lunch. Her mother walked up to a door, and slid open a small compartment that formed a rectangular hole on the door. Her mother placed the food inside and closed the door.

There was a lot of noise: the horn, the vehicles, laughter, and chatter. But she was thrown away, the light screaming at her, burning her down. She kept her palm on the floor right on time to stop herself from falling off the bed. She was breathing heavily, and stayed like that – hanging in mid-air supporting herself on her hand. She rolled back into her bed and laid there closing her eyes.

But it didn’t make any difference, whether she had eyes closed or open. The room was dark, the tube lights had been removed. The windows sealed shut, and painted black, and thick covers that cut her off from the beautiful trees, and the world beyond it. Nothing from the outside world could ever think of passing these barriers and entering her room. Ever since that day, she had shut her eyes to the world. She was afraid of the light. She noticed her lunch at the door.

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Her parents, on the other hand were worried for her.

What do they do that she will come out of the darkness? Who will marry her? Who will look after her if something happens to them? Their questions were soon answered.

One day she decided enough was enough. No more of this misery, I shall end it once and for all. I cannot drag people who care for me into this misery. No.

So she finally gathered courage, stood behind the door for about more than an hour hesitating. She opened the door slowly – there was nobody around. Her father was at work, and her mom on the terrace. She walked out of her room, squinting. She took the challenge to another level – she decided to go outside. She went out the door, felt the earth against her feet. The wind welcomed her, and danced with her hair. She stretched her arms and walked forward to embrace light. She was no longer afraid of light anymore. All around her there were lots and lots of light. She never had to be afraid ever again.

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horror fiction

Candlelight Dinner

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Ding dong.
The bell rang, slicing into the silent night — announcing visitors. Red straightened her dress, and opened the door. Outside stood the love of her life, hand in hand with his girlfriend. They were engaged.
Jake and Sue walked into her house, and she clutched her dress.
Patience.
She managed to relax a little, and put on her smile – which he should have cared about. The three walked into the valentine themed terrace, lit just enough.
Red fought hard to stop the tear from falling off her lashes, thus revealing her true feelings. She turned around just in time to erase it off her eye.
What  is it? 
It’s Sue. I asked her out and she said yes! 
Oh. That’s…. that’s great news!
” Thank you so much for inviting us over for dinner, you have a wonderful place! “, said Sue.
” Ahhh.. well, that’s what best friends do, right Red?” asked Jake.
She simply smiled at him, and poured wine into their glasses. She went on to serve them dinner.

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What? You proposed to her?
I know right? She said yes! We are going to get married soon.
Wha-a? Why? I mean…, are you sure about this? 
Of course I am! You know what, I’m madly in love. So much that I cannot live without her. 
” I can’t believe that you made all this! Everything I just had was too tasty to have been cooked by you. When did this transformation take place?” asked Jake, patting his tummy.
Ever since I came to know you loved to cook.
” Jake! Come on, don’t be rude. She has put in a lot of effort to make it special for us.” scolded Sue.
Not for you, only him.
“No it’s fine, I’m quite used to his tantrums.” said Red.
Don’t worry Sue, I’ll take care of him for you. You just focus on having a good time, since it’s going to be your last.
“See, she doesn’t mind”, replied Jake.
Red stood up to get dessert, knocking over the bottle of ketchup – the red liquid staining Sue’s white dress. Sue feared the stain would be quite stubborn.
Red was in the kitchen. She apologised,” Oh no, I’m so sorry. The bathroom’s on the right.”
Phone ringing.
Jake! Where in the world have you been? I’ve been calling you for more than an hour. You were supposed to help me move into my new house, remember? 
What? Hospital? Are you alright?
Oh. Sue.
Is she fine? Nothing serious? Ok.
No, no. It’s ok. I’ll sort things out myself. Beep.
Silence.
Sobbing.
I can help, perhaps?
Silence.
Who’s there?
Red couldn’t see anybody in the darkness, but she could sense somebody near her.
That doesn’t matter. What matters is that I may be able to help you, though that was not my initial intention.
What do you mean? And what if I don’t want your help?
I mean I can help you get rid of her, your friend’s friend; Sue. And if you don’t want my help, then I shall be forced to get rid of you.
A thoughtful pause.
What do you want? 
Well, I require somebody young, around your age, to complete what I have begun.
It’s a deal.
” I’ll take you there Sue, come on. ” said Jake, holding her hand. They disappeared down the hall before Red could stop him.
Oh no. What have I done!
Can’t live without her? Why, what will happen to you? 
I would rather die than lose her!

Well then.

Die.

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horror fiction

Goodnight

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Things been dragged.
Thrown around. Thud. Thud. Thud
What was going on upstairs?
It was already so late, and you wonder why people living upstairs can’t get any sleep. This happens every night, since they moved into the apartment. Your mum puts her arm around you, and you coil toward her. Silence.
Thud. Thud. Thud.
The noise got louder each time. The dragging becomes worse, somebody is running up there. You turn and toss, suddenly realising the fan is not working. It becomes dead silent, the fan is still, since it makes that moan whenever it is on. It’s cold, but still you are sweating. You wipe your forehead, but you continue to to sweat. You finally decide to wake up, and open your eyes – placing your hand on your mum’s to keep it aside.
Freeze.
Your mum is on mid-air, inches away from your face, blood tripping from every part of her.
” goodnight my baby “