Crowning Glory: Life’s Game

EPILOGUE

Read the Previous Chapter here

And Cyrus lay there, engulfed in a sea of thoughts and office supplies. And not that anyone is complaining.Indeed. His life had changed and how.

Cyrus could vividly remember Roohi’s sobs when she saw her parents being taken away.
It was for the best. But how do you explain that to a child?
You just take good care of her and hope she forgets, although, this scar will remain with her forever. Hopefully, making her stronger.
Tara Dutta had to resign from her post as CEO, which created a mild media flutter. But as it is with most news, this too faded after its time in the limelight. She now serves her term and one has hope for this woman, who was so driven by her desire to succeed , that it blinded her to what was good and what was bad.
Shekhar has been transferred to a mental asylum, after a brief stint in prison. What promise his career held, and how devastatingly has it crashed. Shekhar’s story is a ballad of failed ambitions and broken promises.
As for Mr.Aryan, he was handed over to the Kolkata police and is now paying for his crimes.

Life has been both just and unfair to Roohi. Unfair in the way it has treated her. No one deserves such an unstable childhood. On the other hand though, she always was too young to feel the grief and in that way, it is a saving grace.

What a roller coaster ride has it been! Cyrus had never imagined these people would touch his life in the way that they did.
“Anyways, whatever happens, happens for the best.”, was the best possible conclusion that Cyrus could come to.
“Cyrus!!” , Roohi’s voice tore through the air, thus ending Cyrus’s train of thoughts.
“We made pakoras.”, she declared with a triumphant voice. Cyrus smiled at his daughter, and hoped she never ever has to face the ordeal that she did sometime back.
He looked up. Jenny stood in front of him, with a tray of pakoras in hand and a smile on her face. He felt happy that he had a part to play in getting that smile back to where it belongs. And he was sure he would do anything to keep it there.

Thank you for reading our story. If you are new here, Go to the beginning and enjoy this little tale.

“Me and my team are participating in ‘Game Of Blogs’ at BlogAdda.com. #CelebrateBlogging with us.”

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Crowning Glory : Life’s Game


Read the previous post here

Chapter 10

“Great ambition is the passion of a great character. Those endowed with it may perform very good or very bad acts. All depends on the principles which direct them. “

If people were the epitome of what their names suggest, Tara wasn’t doing a good of it. She looked tired, weary and badly in need of some shut eye. But as it is with most high profile jobs, peace, quiet and rest remain as elusive as ever. The numero uno of Lucky One Media was pacing up and down the whole length of her spacious office, crunching numbers, making decisions all the way.

 In the midst this sea of statistics, came a voice that ripped through the fabric of her thought.
 “Ma’am? Ma’am?”, It was her secretary’s voice, shaky with the anticipation of a backlash for breaking Tara’s train of thought.

 Tara: “What is it?”

 Secretary: “I have a message from Jennifer Joseph, you know, the photo journalist from Marie Claire. She wants another appointment for a photo session at your place.”

 “Ufff, not this again….”, Tara murmured to herself.

 Tara: “Okay, I’ll let you know. You may leave now.”

 A clearly intimidated young woman dashed out, and Tara and her thoughts had the room to themselves once again.
 “Why? Why again!?”, Tara gazed towards the heavens and shot out an array of questions.
She did hope in all earnestness that Jennifer did not notice her awkward behavior that day. But then, she did gawk at the tattoo for quite a while back then.
“I’m a total crud!”, she reprimanded herself.
 It is said that a mind that ponders too much is only better than a mind that ponders too much and is all alone. Tara was in a bad place. She had worries of her own: A past that just wouldn’t give up, no one to talk to and to top it off, a big firm to run.
Grave thoughts came to her like mice to cheese, and almost immediately, she imagined the worst. Her world, which she had so painfully pieced together, and to which she was so frantically trying to hold onto, was shattering to pieces. And all because of a few wrong decisions she had taken when she was too young to take any. What sort of a cruel quid pro quo of life was that?

 Questions and more questions with more profound thoughts concocted a cocktail of despair in her mind, and soon enough Tara looked only but a shadow of her confident self that the world knew so well. Depressed and distressed , she slumped to her chair, as thoughts engulfed her…

                                                                           ********

Shekhar: “Look at all these bundles of joy!”

Tara: “You fit right in…”

Shekhar: “Oh don’t be such a snob, this is a big decision, a big HAPPY decision.”

Tara: “Which I have agreed to.”

Shekhar: “After a great deal of nagging and persuasion that is. Never mind, take a look at this cheeky little so and so! Tugging on my pants!”

Shekhar picked up the little devil that had been shadowing him the minute they had entered the room and put her right on Tara’s face.

Shekhar: “Isn’t she the cutest thing ever!?”

And it was done. Tara was in a hurry to finish up the paperwork for the adoption. Meeting and whole lot of appointments awaited her at work, and this couldn’t  take more time than it already had.
She stood completing the formalities when she saw her husband teaching their would-be daughter how to do the chicken dance.
And at long last, the stiff, grim face eased, and let loose a smile. “Maybe, this is the answer. Maybe, this is my family….”, she thought.

Roohi, they called her here at the orphanage.

                                                                          ********

 Buzzzzzz!

A cacophony of notifications brought Tara back out of her thoughts. She brought herself back to earth, and steeled her resolve. “No. Not this easily. Not after coming all this way.” She decided to allow Jennifer one more appointment, although she had earlier impulsively decided to shun the request, but changed her mind, for that could have led to questions in Jennifer’s mind.
Hesitantly, she pressed the intercom and before her resolve could go away, told her secretary, “Give her an appointment for next week .But only for an hour. An hour and no more.”

For the next chapter,  click  here

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True Darkness

I finished filing my work and was ready to leave for home. As soon as I reach the lift, the lights in the building go off.

My hands quiver, and I go numb all over.
Completely blinded, I reached for the wall and made my way through the hallway.Most of my colleagues had left, as it was very late in the day.

There was an eerie feeling to the place.I was nervous, and pensive beyond all limits. I struggle, stagger and somehow, make it to the cubicle.And in the darkness, I could make out the figure a man.It was him. With my shaky hands, I thrust the knife into his chest, and felt the life leave his body. No one cheats on me and gets away.

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

A Mother After All

A mother’s love is like no other . Everyone knows that. But no one knows it better than I do.Here’s why:

The Tomb of Leeza is a beautiful place, with a bloodied past. A mother is said to have been buried alive by the King, who then took her son away and gave it to his queen, who was without a child. It is said that the king had the mother’s thumbs chopped off and and then had her locked in a small room. Without her thumbs, the mother could never escape. Later, the king built this gigantic tomb around that little chamber, as a remembrance of the mother’s ‘sacrifice’.
Me and some pals took a trip to the place once.It was beautiful and scenic to a point that you felt as if it was hiding something. The blue sky, the lush green grass, and of course, the huge red soil colored tomb. We explored  the chambers in the tomb and stumbled upon the center room. And it was eerie. Dark, dingy and signs of struggle all over. The place reeked of fear and horror. One felt bad for the poor woman, who had her child taken away and was then buried alive.
Our group decided to take off as the place was creepy to death. One by one we made our way out, but just as I was about to get out (I was the last one.), the stick keeping the door open gave away and the heavy brick door slammed shut.
I shuddered with fear. I was in the tomb, alone. My friends tried hard but could not move the door an inch. They said it would take time to bring help, but I knew that no help would come till tomorrow. I braced myself for a night alone.
Time went by. More than anything, the grim environs was what scared me the most. I kept myself busy with dirt-drawing and sleeping.
It was then, perhaps well past midnight, that I heard a faint cry. I curled up in the deepest corner of the room and kept still. The cries grew louder and louder till a point where I felt scared, but also sorry. I was so moved that I began to cry, not out of fear, but out of pity. The cries subsided to soft sobs. I wished I could console her. I cried myself to sleep.Sun rays woke me up the next morning.I was in the company my friends, who were staring down at me earnestly The local police had helped them to open the door. The horror on their faces was palpable. Something was off. I told them the whole story, but to my surprise, no one made fun of me.
Back home,when I looked at a mirror, I realized why my friends were so grim. My cheeks had blood streaks over them and my hair was frizzy. No,it was’t mine. It was as if someone who had bloody hands, had wiped my tears and patted my head.

Delirium

Dangerous wouldn’t even begin to describe the situation that he was in.
Minutes ago, he was cozy in his bed, reading Robert Ludlum on a Friday night. When suddenly, he heard these groaning noises that scared the hell out of him. As the noises grew louder and closer, fear took over and he hid inside the closet and waited. He waited till the groans died down.
He sat down and tried to relax, trying to convince himself that nothing was wrong, that it was just a mouse. It is ironic how death strikes you when you least expect it to.
A GROAN reverberated. He stiffened, and shuddered in fear.
This time, it was from inside the closet.

*Save*

He fixed his glasses. Very nice. Very nice indeed. He patted himself on the back, for the great creepy-pasta he had just written. Small, but packs a punch, he thought. Now he can go and pee. He had been holding it in, in his excitement.
Great stories come in the creepiest of situations. His parents being away and the whole house being dark was the ultimate stage. As he returned from the washroom,  he noticed something weird. The notepad application looked blank. His entire story was gone.
Well, except for one line. As he neared his PC, the line grew clearer, until he could read the line clearly.

‘NICE STORY.’, it said.

*Save*

She finished her story amidst the constant  rattling of trees in the monstrous storm outside. Her penchant for darker themes had bested her again. She grew restless. As much as she enjoyed horror stories, she inadvertently became aware of her surroundings once she has written or read one. She put her dairy on the table top and tried to sleep. She tried hard, but to no avail.
The hand stroking her hair made it difficult. Especially ’cause she was alone in the house that night.

*Save*

He was happy with his layered horror story. This would be a hit in the blogosphere, he thought. Just then, he heard a strange noise coming from the backyard. Amused by how real life can sometime mimic stories, he headed out to check upon the miscreant, probably a mouse. He never came back…

I found this story on his PC, unpublished.Prior to his disappearance, he had gone insane, went on writing weird stories. And he always talked about this figure that stalked him.A figure no one else could see.
We should never have gone to the graveyard that night…

Charlie, if you see this story or stumble upon it on the internet,come back, or give a call man. It’s been 8 years now…

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.

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.