Wednesday, October 7, 2009


The night was eerily silent, it was well past midnight, nothing moved in the graveyard, except the barn owl, that kept moving its head from side to side, trying to follow the movement in the shrubs below, as it perched on the dead peepal tree. The tiny mouse that scampered along, in search of food, would very soon breathe its last. Such was its proximity to death, as the owl finally focused its binocular vision on its kill, almost ready to swoop down.

Just then, He walked out of the graveyard, and opened the old, rusty, rickety gate. He was of medium height, well built, with short cropped hair, and unusually red hot eyes, that furtively looked in all directions, before he quickly set off in the direction of the village. Vengeance was written all over his face, as he carried a large crow bar, and walked at a brisk pace. The owl fluttered its wings, a bit unnerved by his abrupt presence.

He walked as if he was possessesd. He was on a mission tonight. within minutes, he crossed the main village square, passed by the well, across the mosque, and was close to the lone two storey house. His face visibly angry, he clasped the crow bar hard in his hands, as he neared the main door of this old house, freshly painted green recently, on the occasion of ramzan eid…..

On his bed, imtiaz squirmed and turned, and tossed around helplessly, but just couldn’t sleep, he got up, gulped some water, saw the clock struck 2, and hopelessly jumped into the bed, to catch some sleep. He had to wake up early today, and drive down to the district court, 2 hrs away. Today was the judgement day, and he was sure of being acquitted from the charges of murdering his younger brother mushtaq, a few months ago. He smiled to himself, a cunning smile. That evening, he had pushed mushtaq in the old, unused well, just outside the village. He had no intention to share the 40 acres land that his father had left for both the brothers, 20 acres each.He had claimed that mushtaq had slipped inside, as they both stood near the well, discussing their father’s will. Mushtaq’s head hit a stone, and he had died instantly. Imtiaz shaikh was the prime accused, but was on the verge of going scot free, due to lack of concrete evidence.

Imtiaz had also spent well on a good lawyer. As he thought about his dead brother, the way he screamed as he fell into the well, he heard a knock on the door. Imtiaz instantly jumped out of his bed, who could it be at this hour? As he opened the door, he couldn’t see anyone outside. Imtiaz stepped out of the house, and HE was waiting, with the crow bar, before imtiaz could see his face, the crow bar hit Imtiaz very hard, a precise decisive blow on his head, shattering almost a third of his skull, the broken part hanging from his head, the brains splattered out on the wall. There was barely a scream. Imtiaz fell in a heap, and at once, he dropped the crow bar to the ground, and left the place, rapidly walking back to where he came from.

Once near the graveyard, he could faintly hear the commotion at imtiaz’s place, now it was his turn to smile, and smile he did, more out of satisfaction. As he entered the graveyard, the owl noticed him walking towards a grave, the owl was still perched on the peepal tree, the mouse firmly under its claws, breathing its last. At that lonely hour, no one was there to watch him, as he stood just above the grave, and slowly, his body just disintegrated inside, going under the gravestone, gone within a few seconds.

As the owl tried to see what just happened in front of its eyes, its powerful eyes zeroing in on the grave, if only the owl could read, the name on the gravestone said - “Mushtaq Shaikh”!


Chhaya said...

nice inky... but the suspense was gone right after the first para... u might want to lose the graveyard and the red hot eyes reference.. jut show him returning to his resting place in the end..!

IdleMind said...

I like reading when a bhoot does more than scare a childish human mind ... to punish the guilty is a wonderful treatment from a ghost story!

This is what I call as a wonderful reuse of the human soul ... a so-called dead soul that returns to get justice.

Loved reading it. :)

Anonymous said...

wow...ghost story... bhoot uncle, mushtaq came to take revenge... he didn't even scare anyone away... good ghost...indeed...
it was though an interesting read... but i go with chhaya... you broke the suspense very early...

Vittaldas Prabhu said...

Nicely written. To juxtapose the Owl and Mushtaq was a brilliant idea, as it made the environment very eerie which is what was intended. Your description of Mushtaq, his expressions and incomparable attention to details made this story a great thriller. I need talk about the suspense and make it painfully obvious as there have been enough comments on it.

Revenge is sweet!