THE BLACK MIST PART 10 OF 10
“Baba!!” he heard the voice of a young man and turned to face a man his age looking at him with concerned eyes. “Are you alright baba?”
A sense of despair sank in. He realized he too must have aged a few decades overnight, that’s why a man of his age was calling him baba (a respectful term for a father figure).
“Can you take me to the nearest village?” Mitesh asked in sinking voice.
“Sure!” the man held his shoulder and helped him up.
They walked slowly for a few minutes and reached a nearby village. A village he was quite familiar with and fortunately had a few friends.
He shared his story with them. At first they did not believe him but then he requested them to contact Ramprasad, he was a respected figure in all villages nearby, when he showed up things fell in place, his friends heard his story with great attention and believed it.
“What will you do now?” Ramprasad asked him.
“I will go back to home. I don’t have anyone that witch can kill, so I will take my chances from my own home.” Mitesh said. “I just want to rest in my own home! My brain is not working!”
“My home is gone, so is everything, I am staying with my son in Pritampura, a little distance away from here, I will meet you once things are sorted a bit. Do you have money for fare? I don’t think so!” The old man fished out some money from his pocket and gave it to Mitesh.
“I will money order it to you when I get back to Delhi.” He thanked Ramprasad for everything and left for Delhi immediately.
He reached his home exhausted beyond words. The gate of the housing looked like gate of heaven to him.
“Where are you going?” the gatekeeper rudely stopped him.
“To my home..!” Mitesh answered rudely. “Can’t you recognize me? Get your eyes tested.”
“Listen old man it’s not possible for me to let unknown people in the building unless they are invited by one of the owners.” The gatekeeper did not budge an inch away from the gate, stood there blocking his path.
“I am one of the owners, the owner of flat 2C. Something happened …. My hair turned white but my face is same, is not it?” Mitesh asked, exasperated.
“Something wrong Deendayal?” it was his next door neighbor Mr. Jain.
“Mr. Jain!” he sighed with relief, “Please ask him to let me in. I will explain to you later.”
“Do I know you baba?” Mr. Jain asked in return.
“I am Mitesh, your next door neighbour!” he answered. He was close to tears.
“Really…? Then who was the man I just talked with? When I was coming downstairs? Standing outside his flat with his newlywed wife?” Jain mocked. “Deendayal close and lock the gate! Bawla lagta hai (looks like a crazy guy!)”
“Start walking or else I will call the cops.” Deendayal was not that courteous.
Mitesh walked a few meters away from the gate and sat down on a bench under a tree.
He could see his flat from here.
Someone came out to the balcony and turned on the light, as if to taunt him.
It was him. There was no doubt about it- the body he left here last night was standing on the balcony.
A woman came out and slipped her arms around his waist…. It was Krishnamayi. Then she started to laugh, her trademark laughter a strange mixture of yapping of a fox and donkey’s braying. They both looked at him directly and tauntingly.
A hand fell on his shoulder. It was Ramprasad!
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.