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  • Sanika Gujarathi

THE ELDRITCH TERROR




I do not believe in ghosts, but the tinkering of the bottle I keep on my nightstand was indeed peculiar. I had retired to bed after an exhausting day. My parents were out of town, and being all alone, I felt a bit uncomfortable. Usually, I had no trouble being by myself, but that night felt odd. In the middle of the night, I heard a loud sound which awoke me with a start. I grasped for my phone, to turn the flash on. Hesitantly, I called out, “Is anyone there?” and simultaneously flashed the light in the direction of the sound. Wide awake and alert, I slowly made my way towards the switchboard. Turning on all the lights, I went around the house, to find everything in its place, nothing amiss. I heaved a sigh of relief and sat on my bed, trying to fathom what caused the loud thud that I had heard. Just as I was convinced that it was my mind playing tricks, the bottle started quivering again. I sat up, worried. The tentacles of fear gradually started grasping me and I pinched myself to ascertain if I was hallucinating. That was, however not the case, for I was completely in my senses.

The tinkering stopped, and I exhaled a sigh of relief. The very thought of a ghost in my room made my heart palpitate, but my mind refused to accept it. I had read about many scientific reports, which had dispelled the hypothesis of ghosts, but the films and serials portraying them as real transcended the boundaries set by the articles and left me with a sense of foreboding and consternation. Sleep was miles away from me, so I kept the lights on and stayed awake. A little later, challenging my resolve to be brave, the curtain rod on the window gave way and came clanking down with the curtains. I sprang to my feet and rushed towards the window, looking out to see nothing but darkness. By now I was exasperated and hysterical with fear and apprehension. Glancing toward the clock, I saw the needle indicating 3 AM. There were still three more hours left for the sun to rise. I prayed to whatever higher power was listening, to get me through the ordeal and save me from the clutches of the ghost, which according to me was haunting the place.

The next three hours were excruciating, I sat on the bed occasionally dozing off and waking up with a start. I was glad to see the first stream of sunlight light up the room at dawn. I got up and stretched my limbs. Venturing into my parents' room, I found splinters of glass strewn all over the floor in the room. A closer look revealed the remnants of a bulb that had fallen the previous night and seemingly caused the crash, which sent a shiver down my spine. Switching on the TV for the morning news, I realised that Mumbai had experienced a mild earthquake measuring three to four on the Richter scale. The words of the journalist did not seem to register, for suddenly the truth of the phantom events dawned on me.


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keshav.garodia
13 ene 2021

An enthralling story!

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