Waltz with the Devil

Hello My Friends,
This is an account of the most peculiar incident to have ever happened to me. And I’m pretty sure, that no other human being would have had an experience like this.
Oh, how rude of me to not introduce myself. I’m…. well, let’s just call me Narrator for the time being. Now without further ado, let’s begin our story:
The thing about me is that, I’m not like those other perverts. Neither do I lust over the female body, nor do I crave the basic human need, as many of my deranged fellow beings do. No.
I’m just a great admirer of the female form. It’s symmetry, it’s grace, indeed the Almighty did a fine job. And every time I come across one that has astounding aesthetics, I like to preserve it. I like to glorify the Gods’ work. Pay a homage, if you will.
And preserving them in amber was only natural. Brings the best out of them. An envious collection I have. Someday, I may show it to the world.
Anyway, one fine day, your humble narrator was on one of his usual recces, to Jim’s bar, albeit a little late in the day. 2 a.m. to be precise. Jim’s was the local watering hole and I usually find my goddesses there. I really didn’t have much hope for that day really. Firstly, it was very late, and from what I’d heard, Jim just lets the tap run for the regulars.So, if anything, free beer was in the offing. I entered the dimly lit bar, and found no one. But to my surprise, the karaoke machine was playing.It was a grim setting. Even for a cold man like your narrator, the atmosphere was a bit unnerving. That’s when I saw her. In the dim neon lights, I could make out, a woman, sitting at the end of the table. And boy, was she pretty. I didn’t even think twice before I slid a chair was sitting next to her.

“Hey, come here often?”

“Used to. Just a passing traveler today. What about you?”

“Regular. Got off late from work. Well, a pretty lady like you shouldn’t be hanging around so late in the night. Lot of pervs out there.”

“Well. A handsome man like you shouldn’t either. Ladies are wild these days…”

“Ha ha. I like you. But seriously, aren’t you scared? It is really late and this is not exactly a people friendly place…”

“Nah… it’s okay. Also, I wouldn’t have the pleasure of meeting a man like you if I wasn’t a bit adventurous.”

“Ha ha.Well put. Excuse me, I’ll be back from the loo.”

“Sure.”

And that friends, was the last of that lady, that your humble narrator saw.
I made the loo excuse to get out of there. That’s because something did not feel right. I knew the moves that I make to get a woman to come with me. That night, for the first time, I felt that the moves were being put on me. I was tempted to play along, I really was. But I managed to control my urge, and left. Our little waltz was over.
But the shocking part, my friends, came the next day. I walked into the bar at lunch, to see a bunch of people gawking at the local newspaper. Intrigued, I asked a by stander about all the commotion. He replied, “It’s about this woman, who goes around killing men. Yeah, she takes them home, and mutilates them.She was reportedly seen around our town.Stay safe man.”

After the crowd cleared, I took the copy in my hand to take a look at this distinguished lady myself.
Well. What do you know….

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

A Writer’s Weapons

Yesterday, I came across this very intriguing Japanese folk story.
It was about this person. His neighbours and people across the street were always afraid of him, because of a very peculiar thing that happened every day. As a perplexed neighbour describes, “Every night after the Shyuske returns from the fields, a terrific, blood curdling scream bellows out of his house. Every night at exactly 12. Whenever we ask him about it, he just stares at us in utter silence and with dead cold eyes. We have stopped asking now.” . Weird Indeed.
Shyuske’s cousin Kintaro visits him one time, and on his first day, he comes across this story from the village people (village people. Really?). That night, after dinner, Kintaro anxiously waited for the clock to strike 12, to understand what really happens to his brother. Precisely at 12, Kintaro saw something very weird. All of a sudden, his brother started making these weird, loud noises standing by the window and after a while he stopped and went to  bed.
The next morning, curious Kintaro asked his brother about the events of the previous night, to which Shyuske smiled and replied, “The last owner of this house told me how this was a bad neighborhood. Most of these people living here are into bad things. They harassed the poor guy a lot. But I have to live here because this is closest place to the fields. So I came up with this plan. They will not fear police, but no one dares to mess with the supernatural.”

What a great story. Opinions will vary from school to school but what struck my fancy was Shyuske’s intent. He was absolutely clear about what he wanted to do and left no stone unturned to find a way and implement it to the tee. For me, this is very essential to writing. A writer with clear intent writes the cleanest stories. Intent gives purpose and direction to writing. It helps the reader to latch on to your train of thoughts and see things from your perspective.The next story is also very interesting and has actually happened.

There was once a man who chewed paan (beetle leaves) everyday. He would always have a paan in his mouth.And there was one more thing that he’d do.
Everyday, while on his way to work,the man would spit out the remaining paan on a giant stone. He kept doing this for years and gradually the stone turned red from all the paan spit.
One fine day, our protagonist was on his way to work when he saw a huge crowd in front of the stone. To his utter surprise, people were actually worshiping the stone! They thought it was a blessing from some deity. Men were donating wads of money, women had brought their children along to seek blessings of the lord.
The man was bemused. He did not have the heart to reveal the truth.

What this story shows us is, packing is important.It’s just not a great concept, but the way you write it, that makes for a good read. What would ‘The Fog Horn‘ be, but only a great idea, if it wasn’t for Ray Bradbury’s piercing documentary. ‘The Raven‘ would be a drab poem, without Edgar Allan Poe’s grim and dark portrayal of themes. The relic that people were worshiping was just a stone, but the red colour made it a reincarnation of god himself. That’s how strong proper packaging can be.

So there you go. Intent in writing, and proper portrayal of your intent. Those are two of the greatest of writers’ weapons. Armed with these, you can create magic in the greatest theater there is- the human brain.

Oh, and the first story, I just made that up. Wanted to make my intent clear.

Pulp Fiction of a Different Kind

The CashBack
Meher was elated. Finally, it was her turn at the payment counter. She had never expected the line at the Mall to be so long! She cursed her roommate for giving her that cashback slip for the store. “No cashback is worth this!”, she thought.
She dumped all her stuff in the counter and waited for the clerk to pack it up.

“That will be 600.”, said the clerk.

Meher: “It’s okay, I have this 50% cashback slip.”

Clerk: “Okay, let me see. I’m sorry Ma’am. This slip seems to have expired. This won’t count.”

Meher: “What! Hey, this expired just yesterday. Come on, you can make an exception, can’t you?”

Clerk: “I’m sorry Ma’am. You have to pay 600/-“

Meher: “Mister, I have been standing in this godforsaken queue for over an hour, waiting for this damn cashback. Hell, I don’t even like this top all that much!”

Clerk: “Please calm down ma’am. I’m only stating the rules.”

Meher: “You and your dumb rules. I want my cashback!”

Clerk(whispering): “Man, what a cheapo…”

Meher: “What did you say! I’m not giving a bloody buck for this top and I’m talking to the manager! Give me my stuff!”
And with that, Meher marched off to the manager’s cabin. She had waited too long to give up on her cashback offer.

The Coupon
Rita was standing in the line. She sighed. It was like wasting five precious minutes of your life! Waiting in a Mall counter line is absolutely the worst kind of boredom. She was brought back to earth by yelling of some kind. Apparently, this lady in the front of the line was going Hail Mary on the poor clerk, all because of a cashback slip.
“Wow, that girl sure does love a good fight, doesn’t she?”, Rita thought to herself. She wasn’t the fighting type.
She took a glance at her purse. It was there. The “Buy One Get One coupon“. “I’ll show the coupon, but if the guy disagrees, I’m gonna leave.”, she thought to herself. After twenty minutes of drama at the counter and then some, finally it was Rita’s turn. She put her stuff down and slowly slid forward the coupon towards the clerk.
The clerk took a hard look at the coupon, and then a look at her, and then said, “You may take a second pair of jeans Ma’am.”
Rita was glad she didn’t have to go through an ordeal like that other girl.Thank God for a valid coupon!

The Bargain
Rahul was exhausted. Today was not going well. As if it isn’t bad enough that he is working part-time at this stupid mall, people also yell at him for stuff he can’t do anything about!
He couldn’t believe that people could fight tooth and nail for a cashback! And all this arguing and reasoning had left him feeling tired.
And now this. A pretty lady, not a loudmouth like the last one, standing in front of her, with a coupon, which was also past it’s expiration date.
“Just my luck.”, Rahul sighed.
He thought hard, but decided against fighting over it. He let her use the coupon. “The last thing I need is another yelling match.”, he thought. He will handle his manager later.

Finally, his shift was over. His TV and bean bag were calling him.A glass of beer, some snacks.Heaven. Then, suddenly;
*Tak Tana Na Na Tandoori Nights Tandoori Nights*
His cellphone rang, breaking his chain of thoughts.It was Riya.

–CLICK–
“Hi Jaanu, when are you coming back! I have great news!”

“What is it?”

GFY Mall has this great offer, 50% discount plus Get One Free offer. It’s a total bargain! Come back soon and we’ll go. Our two month anniversary is close anyway.”

“Ufff…”

“Did you say something jaan?”

“Na na, I’ll see in an hour. Be ready.”
–CLICK–

Rahul sighed, “Just my luck.”

This post is a part of the Shop, only to Save More! Activity by GoPaisa.com in association with BlogAdda.com.

Odd Job

I still have nightmares. Some days, I’m stifled with such nauseating feeling, that I almost throw up and I barely eat. I need to get this off my chest so here it goes:

I was 14, young, and had newly discovered that money buys trading cards and other cool stuff.
That summer, me and my pals were gunning for bikes. So all of us were running around the neighborhood, searching for odd jobs. You know, lawns that needed mowing, cars that needed washing, that kind of stuff.
That’s when I stumbled upon this poster, about a house on 8th, that needed painting.
“50 bucks for a paint job”, it said. I immediately picked up my bike, and stormed down to the place before any of my friends could.
I reached the address to find a little house, weed growing all around. I distinctly remember the house, those curd covered screens, pale yellow window panes, and that weird smell. That hint of a stench that doesn’t chase you away, but in retrospect always warned you about a terrifying little secret that lay hidden in it’s confines.
I met Mr.Stevens, the owner. Well met will be a strong word. He appeared out of nowhere and scared the shit out of me…
Next few days were routine, Mr.Stevens with is hammer and nail, and me with a bucket of red paint and that huge brush he gave me. The only odd thing about the job was that brilliantly red paint and how Mr.Stevens would never let me leave his sight.Anyways, he was an old man, and the pay was good, so I did not complain. We would talk about baseball and how it took ages to paint a wall. He had his quirks but the old man was just fine.
We got along, I got over the smell, and we did the entire place in a week. And that was the last I saw of him.

Everything was done and dusted and I got on with my life, until that day.
That fine Monday, around 2 weeks after the summer holidays were over, me and the gang noticed a big crowd outside Mr.Steven’s house. And there was police. We were too scared to enquire ourselves, and got the hell out of there.
Later I found out, that they had arrested Mr.Stevens for multiple homicide.Police found almost 30 people, all in his basement.
Oh, I almost forgot, on the last day of my job at Mr.Steven’s, in my haste, I brought back the paint brush to my place. I had been meaning to return it, but never had the chance. Its still there in our garage. I never could return it, and I never had the courage to see it again.

Why so?

You see, the police report also said that Mr. Stevens killed all those people for a reason.

 He drew their blood, and used it to paint his house.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

A Thousand Words

20th June 2020: It had been 8 years. M was perusing through the photo album, when she came across that photo again. It was a nothing sort of a picture really, except for the earrings.Memories engulfed M as she spiraled into her own thoughts …

Ryan had always been a bright kid. Good at studies, pretty decent in debates, he was a kid on the right track. His parents loved him and so did his friends.
It wasn’t until he was 19 that his parents found out that he was gay, and to them it was nothing. To them the term meant nothing, for doesn’t love differentiate. For love is not a disease.
But society is a funny thing. Contrary to popular belief, it is the society that chooses the man and not the opposite. And the man rejected by society is a man without an identity, a man who is not given the right to lead a peaceful life.
A man rejected by the society has no where to go.

20th June 2012: It was M’s birthday and F had decided to for go for glory. Ryan was in on it as well, although he seemed a little gloomy. It had been a full year since all the teasing and name-calling had started, but today was his mother’s big day, and he was determined to make it special.
The night went very well, and Dad had been declared a success. After the party, Ryan came up to Mom and gifted her a pair of brilliant blue earrings.

“I want you to have it.”, he said with a smile.

M’s eyes filled with tears.She had always pestered F about those earrings. It was then that in the spur of the moment, Ryan placed the earrings near the half eaten cake and snapped a quick photo. And that was that.

Who knew that this sweet memory would become a remembrance of a time so ghastly.

It was 7 days after M’s birthday that they found Ryan hanging from the drawing room ceiling.He gave in.
The society had done its job, getting rid of the incoherent. Getting rid of a bright child , a good son and a soulful human being.

There are so many Ryans out there, so many waiting to be saved. So many, who have a story to say. So many, who just couldn’t.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

Malay Ahead!

Malaysia. Well, a place that you see so often on telly and a place you so often you think of as “Breathtaking”, is a place you will most likely add to your “Must Visit” list.
With the Malaysia tourism ad ingrained into our minds (*High-Fives Malaysian Tourism Board*), its no wonder that everyone has dreamt of some or the other select place to go once they arrive in the land that is “Truly Asia”. Below is a list of a few things I would like to do, if the admittedly bold dream of going to this awesome place ever comes true:

Running Around Trees: As an Indian, running around trees comes naturally to me (stereotype much?). So Pahang was definitely a choice. Picturesque tea gardens and awesome Cameronian Tea await anyone who gives these mystical hills a visit. Also, I hear they have some killer scones up there. Absolute Zen.

Beach beach beach!: From the pristine hills of Pahang, we continue our search for the ultimate relaxation. Behold, the Tioman Islands. This place has got the lot- it has volcanic peaks, golden sand beaches, waterfalls, you name it. Such beautiful environs can hardly be given a miss. Definitely on my list.

The Taste Buds Are Next: I’m a foodie.That means pesto sauce runs through my veins. So my next must see Malaysia place is dedicated to my taste buds. Penang is a place for great street food with some of the best Malay food on offer. No reason not to go there. Also, the place is a cultural melting pot, and hence coined as a world heritage site. All the more reason to pay Penang a visit.

Blue hai Pani Pani: Sipadan Island has been touted as the best diving spot in the world and has been coined the phrase “untouched piece of art.”. Enough said. (Box checked.)

In search of Nasi Lemak: The foodie in me rears his head again as I head out in search for the perfect Nasi Lemak. Perfect dish hunting provides for hours of fun, wandering around and ultimate bliss when you accidentally bump into this little piece of heaven.

Cave in: Malaysia is blessed with some beautiful, old and grand caves. Be it the Hindu temples of Batu caves with its droves of worshipers or the ancient burial grounds of the Sabahan Caves, adventure is guaranteed. Going to Malaysia and not seeing these caves would be a sin!

All of that and loads of roaming around, food, and amazing people.That about sums up Malaysia for me. The M in Malaysia stands for Merry and that’s exactly what I’m going the make there.Cheerio!

I am participating in the MalaysiaJao Blogathon Contest in association with BlogAdda.com.

Ninth of November

F: “Hi, Ryan.. You there?”

R: “Yeah. Please stop calling, I’m in class and moreover I don’t want to talk to you.”

F:”Listen Son…”

R:”You’d lost your chance to talk when you left us…So please stop.”

F: “I know, but hear me out…take care of Mom.”

R:”What??”

F:”Take care of Mom and do good in College. Never worry about the money.I have taken care of it.”

R: “What are you saying?? You’re making me nervous.”

F:”Listen…turn on CNN.”

R: “Wait…. okay it’s on now.What on earth is happening!”

F:”I’m in one of those planes.”

R: “Dad… stop kidding. This isn’t funny.”

F:”I’ve gotta go. They’re taking away our phones. We don’t have much time anyway… Listen, be calm and do good in life. And be a better person than your Dad. 🙂 . Okay?”

R: “But Dad.. “

5 minutes later…

R: “k…”

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.