THE BLACK MIST PART 3 OF 10
A shudder ran down his spine.
It really looked like darkness itself. It was rolling, churning and pulsating like a living thing.
He was more curious than afraid. His Delhi schooling and UK college days prevented him from believing the witch myth, he thought someone must have heard the stories and have created this thing to scare the superstitious villagers off the village to rob. The villagers were quite prosperous. They will be able to plunder more than a Lakh rupee worth furniture from his home alone.
A sharp shriek emanated from the darkness and pierced the morning sky. He shouted, “Anyone there?”
A monstrous roar of laughter replied him.
Neither the shriek nor the laughter sounded emitting from human throat. A tinge of uneasiness started to seep in.
He quickly took a few shots and returned to the village. The village was on move. It looked like a gypsy caravan. Everyone was packing or was already on their way to their destinations.
He called up his friend Rajan in Delhi, a freelance journalist.
“Come down here, I have something for you, a lifetime catch!” Mitesh said and did not share anything else, he wanted to see Rajan’s face.
“I will be there by evening with my team and equipments.” Rajan said.
“Make it by twelve. At the maximum!” Mitesh checked his watch it was quarter to seven in the morning. “Don’t take it lightly. You will be thanking me when we are done! Bring food too, all my servants are gone.” He told him before disconnecting the phone. He returned home in quick steps.
The servants were gone for good! Most probably on their way to their destinations already.
The servants were gracious enough to leave him his lunch, which will serve as his dinner too if refrigerated properly. In case Rajan forgets to bring food or misses the appointment. He quickly did the necessary and returned to his room with a teapot filled with tea.
He sat on the balcony that gave him a full view to the direction of the temple. From his end it was blocked by some hillocks after a long stretch of trees, groves and bushes scattered on a wavy piece of land.
It was eleven in the morning. He was sitting there reading news on internet when someone coughed, he turned, it was Ramprasad, dressed up to boots, “You are not leaving?” his face was dark.
“I will leave tomorrow morning. I promise!” he answered.
“By that time you will be dead son! Did you not hear when I told you that the mist will be here by morning?” the old man asked rudely, visibly irritated.
“OK, in that case a group of my friends are coming, they will shoot the mist and we will all return before evening, before four in the evening.” He answered, moved by the old man’s affection.
“You never keep your promises son.” The old man was morose now. He liked Mitesh a lot, and he seemed confident that Mitesh was inviting a ghastly death by staying back. “Come with us! You can come back after a week to see if I was true or not!”
“I will pack up the things I can’t leave behind and leave in afternoon uncle.” He repeated gently.
The old man left when he realized that Mitesh is hell-bent to stay.
“God save you my son.” His eyes were moist. Mitesh felt a little sorry but he knew they will be sitting together again, very soon. Listening to his folklores over cups of teas and plates of snacks!
BLACK MIST AND OTHER STORIES
This book is for people like me who enjoy a good spook and chill like a daily cup of tea, coffee. The title story is the only story that is common with the previous edition of this book, others are new. This year the book will contain stories of various spooky/fantasy tastes. This year the stories are not much dark though. A mixed platter of fantasy and eerie stories for you! Don’t forget to share your views after reading.
WORDS LEFT BY READERS (For the previous version):
This is a collection of stories of distinctly Indian flavor, dealing with often dire
supernatural beings of a spiritual nature. Below I briefly note each story:
The Black Mist:
Mitesh has a new real estate purchase in an abandoned village, and a dire legend
surrounding the locale, of a witch out for blood and souls. It doesn’t end well for Mitesh at all . . . I liked this one, a nice start for a collection of this sort.
Ritwik and his family have moved into a new home . . . one with a dire history, and a mysterious intruder who enters the home even with the strictest security measures. They soon discover said dire history, ending on a terrifying note.
Sima is seeing ghosts while incarcerated under a life sentence in prison. Jailed for
serious criminal offenses, only she can see her ghosts, the ghosts of her victims,
though her jailers think her mad. The ghosts, though, have a purpose of their own!
Chinmayee and Pradyumna witness slaves and their drivers in Mughal dress. They soon discover the secret of the town’s history, reenacted by the ghosts of the past!
Don’t Waste Our Time:
Death’s deputies are going nuts. Induced near death experiences in recreational test subjects are causing problems with the reaping of souls. So the Reapers have a clever plan, one that puts a damper in these would-be tourists of the afterlife…
Jewels of Madhulipi:
Bidisha comes to live in a haunted house, with a persistent ancestor spirit who has something important to show her. This one has a more pleasant ending than the previous, but fits the theme of the book well.
The College Trip:
Prema brings home a souvenir from an outing with fellow students, an evil souvenir, a passenger of sorts that makes her very, very ill. This one too ends on a happier note, concluding this collection with the defeat of evil and the triumph of life.
4.0 out of 5 starsPerfect for Halloween
ByKevin Cooperon 24 October 2017
Format: Kindle Edition
If you want a fresh read for Halloween, but don’t have the time to get into reading a full novel, I would definitely recommend this book of short dark fiction.
Sharmishtha Basu has a unique approach to dark fiction and things tend to begin, en media res in a very masterful way. I particularly liked Black Mist and found myself fully engaged with it. As with most short stories, there isn’t a lot of room for character development, But Sharmishtha’s storytelling technique more than makes up for this problem.
Now the grammar is not perfect, (Seriously, with the constant changes to it, whose is?) but I also have to take into account in this case that English is not this author’s first language, hence the four stars.