The Missing Story
A Short Story
I am not sure what happened to Varun and Aman after that? I tried calling on their mobiles and haven’t been able to reach them. They haven’t returned back after that night. Now, I would be going in search of them to the deserted bungalow to find out for myself. And I am not sure what would happen to me? I have written so many stories, which includes horror stories as well. Now, I am going to be part of the story which I have written for the first time in my life…that is the reason I had warned you before reading this story…There is a cursed legend about ‘Purani Haveli’ that whosoever gets curious to know about it becomes part of its story. Many people have gone missing so far which includes my best friends, Aman and Varun as well.
The legend of ‘Purani Haveli’ goes back to the era of the British rule in our country. It is said that mayor stayed in this haveli with his family. It is also said that the mayor had a beautiful and young daughter in her twenties named ‘Rachel’. There was a village that was on one side of the stream and on the other side was a village. Rachel used to sit under the banyan tree near by the running stream, and compose poems.
During one such days, a village lad had seen her and was mesmerized by her sheer beauty. He tried to propose his love to her, which she declined. Enraged by her rejection, he abducted her with the help of his friends. The mayor who came to know this torched up the entire village in fury. The villagers attacked the haveli and burnt it down along with its inhabitants, by locking it from outside. Rachel some how managed to escape from her abductors who had taken her to the nearby forest.
She was heart broken and devastated seeing that her entire family was burnt down. So she hanged herself to one of the branches of the banyan tree, under which she used to write her lovely poems. It is also said that the village lad who had abducted her and his friends died under mysterious circumstances in following weeks.
It seems Rachel had her revenge. Also the village was cursed, as people started dying of an epidemic that started and devastated the entire village. The village that had once witnessed prosperity was soon in ruins and became a ghostly village with no survivors.
It is also said that during full moon nights one can see Rachel seated under that banyan tree, with a book on her lap and a pen in her hand, still writing her unfinished book of poems…that brings to an end to the cursed legend of the Purani Haveli…
‘So, there ends the so called “Don’t read this story!” Moksha concluded.
‘That was really good one…but is it true?’ asked Gokul
‘Yes, whatever was mentioned about the so called ‘Purani Haveli’s legend is true…also the road that goes through the middle of the jungle has witnessed many accidents. It is also said that those who were killed in such road accidents have turned in ghosts and haunt this road during nights. So, people travel less especially during evenings and nights in this haunted road,’ Anuj said, browsing in his mobile, ‘Now, comes the question what happened to our writer and his friends?’
‘The only way to find that out is if are able to locate his address…’ Moksha said.
‘And I just got his address too!’ Anuj said.
‘Then what are we waiting for? Let’s go and check it out!’ Sahana cried, excited.
They all went to Vishal Varma’s place in Anuj’s Mahendra XUV 500. Vishal’s servant told them the shocking truth which they seemed to know already:
‘Vishal sahib went in search of his friends after the book got published and hasn’t returned back since then,’ Vishal’s servant Manoj said, with sadness filled in his face.
‘And when did that happen? I mean when did he go looking for them?’ Sahana asked.
‘Sahib went two weeks back on Sunday afternoon,’
‘Did you try calling his mobile number?’ asked Gokul
‘Yes, I did!’ He replied, ‘I was getting the message that the number you are trying to call is either out of coverage area or switched off.’
‘Thank you for the information, Manoj,’ Tarika said.
‘Are you guys going in search of him? Please try to find him and bring him back. We would always be grateful to you, if you could please do that,’ He said, folding his hands in respect, with tears overflowing from his eyes.
‘We are not sure whether we could do that?’ Anuj said, ‘Have you registered missing case with the police?’
‘Yes, but there is no response from them so far..’
‘Okay, then, take care. We will get back to you, if we get to know anything about Vishal,’ Gokul said.
‘Thanks a lot, Shahib,’ Manoj said, folding his hands once again.
They all go back into the XUV and Anuj started driving back towards home.
‘I really felt sad seeing Manoj…’ Anuj started.
‘Me too!’ Sahana said.
‘We should do something…’ Moksha said.
‘What can we possibly do? Go looking for him in the jungle, is it?’ asked Tarika.
‘Maybe, we could do that?’ Sahana said.
‘Yes, I think we should go there and find out for ourselves!’ Gokul said.
‘You mean we should go to that Purani Haveli, is it?’ asked Tarika, ‘I’m too scared about these ghosts and things like that!’
‘Yes, let’s go!’ Sahana said.
Everyone agreed to go except Tarika. Finally, Anuj drove towards the road that took them deep into the jungle. Everything was silent and it was a full moon night as well. They only heard the sound of the crickets occasionally. Everyone remained silent and they could hear their own heart beats in that eerie silence.
‘There!’ Gokul cried, point his finger ahead of the car, at some distance, they saw a lady dressed in white sari standing at some distance with a lantern in her hand.
‘I see her too!’ Anuj said.
‘Oh My God! Is she some ghost or something?’ Tarika cried, with her heart beating fast in fear.
‘Could be!’ Sahana said, holding Tarika’s hand tightly.
As the car started nearing her, she started walking towards the middle of the road.
‘What the hell is she doing?’ Anuj cried, slamming his accelerator.
‘Avoid her! You could kill her if she is still alive!’ Gokul cried, holding the steering and pulling it to his side.
The car missed the mysterious woman in white sari by few inches and went ahead.
Everyone looked back and saw her turning and looking towards them, most of her face was covered in her veil.
The car was moving ahead leaving her far behind them. After they covered distance, they found her once again standing in the middle of the road, ahead of them.
‘She is surely a ghost!’ Gokul said.
‘Yeah, you’re right!’ Moksha said.
‘What do we do now?’ Sahana asked.
‘Just avoid here!’ Tarika said.
The wind pulled her veil off; they were shocked to see a skeleton in place of her face. The skeleton had two scary eyes in the sockets. Then flesh started appearing on the skeleton and soon there was a face.
Anuj started doing dim dip headlights. However, she stood there.
Anuj pressed his feet on the accelerator once again and the car rushed towards her. Suddenly, he missed her by some inches. Finally, they reached the peepul tree and he took the turn into the muddy road. They reached the dead end of that road, found a narrow path that lead them into the jungle. They all stepped out of the car with their torch lights on and guiding them ahead.
They saw a car which was out of shape and it had hit a huge tree that was in the middle of the path and another car was parked in
some distance behind it. They found both the cars empty..
‘That should be Aman and Varun’s car!’ Moksha said, pointing at the first car.
‘Yes! I see those creepy words ‘You’ll die!’ on the rear glass of the car.’ Sahana said.
‘The other car should be Vishal’s!’ Gokul said.
They started walking in the narrow path. It was a full moon night and they heard the cry of the jackals at some distance which was followed by the hooting of the some owl. After walking some distance, they could see the deserted bungalow at some distance. They could see it clearly with the moonlight.
‘Where are you guys and gals going in the middle of the night?’ asked someone, from their behind.
They all turned and found a guy standing behind them at some distance.
‘Vishal?’ Tarika and Sahana cried together.
‘Yes, it’s me!’ he replied, walking forward towards them, ‘It seems like you have read that missing story..’ he added.
‘Yes, we did!’ Moksha said.
‘Alright, follow me…in silence..’ Vishal said, leading them behind the deserted bungalow. He stopped at some distance and pointed his finger at a banyan tree beside a running stream, under the tree sat a beautiful girl writing something in her dairy.
‘There she is…my love…’ He said.
‘But she is..is long dead…’ Gokul said.
‘I know…I know..’ Vishal said, ‘But love is something that never dies…’
‘We have come to take you with us..’ Tarika said, ‘Your servant misses you..’
‘Is it? That poor guy! He took good care of me since my childhood days..’
‘Where are your friends, Vishal?’ asked Anuj.
‘They are dead! And I buried them behind the bungalow!’ Vishal said.
‘Dead? Were they both killed in the accident?’ Sahana asked.
‘Seems to be…I found them dead in their car when I arrived here.’ He replied.
‘I think we should leave now. Come with us, Vishal!’ Gokul said.
‘No…I belong here now. She is waiting for me…You people leave now. Do you have that book?’ Vishal asked them.
‘Yes, It is with me!’ Sahana said, taking it and giving it to him.
He went to the end of the book then, ripped some pages which contained the story “Don’t read this story!” and he gave her back the book.
‘Do one of you have a lighter?’ he asked looking at Anuj and Gokul.
‘Here you go!’ Anuj gave it to him.
Vishal lit those papers with the fire, allowed it to burn and then let it go.
‘I think that should be the last copy of the book having this story and it ends here.’ Vishal said, handing back the lighter, ‘Now, you guys leave, good bye!’ He said.
‘But…’ Gokul said.
Vishal was gone as if he had vanished into the thin air like in magic. Then they all found him seated beside her and she was resting her head on his lap. Both of them seemed to be deep love that transcends generations.
They all returned back early next day morning.