“By the way tell me one thing! Why is that room closed,” he asked pointing towards the room which is locked with a big lock currently.
“And not to forget why is it that from whosoever Khushi asked about that room, instead of giving an appropriate answer they shrugged the topic?” he added after a hiatus thinking about the time Khushi had told him the same.
At this silence spread in the room while Arnav along with Khushi waited to get the answers to the budging questions in their head.
After a silence of almost five long minutes when Arnav seems to realise that they’re not in a mood to answer their question he said a little irritated “Now please speak up! We both are waiting for the answer and yes, don’t tell me that this is also related with this whole drama.”
“When you’ve guessed it correctly and are also not interested to understand our view-point, then what’s the need of saying anything?” Rudra said not liking the way as to how Arnav and Khushi were shrugging their beliefs, treating them like nothing.
“So that we can know that in what more misconceptions you guys are living,” Arnav replied.
“These are not misconceptions but the truth brother,” said Abhishek.
“Then care to share the so called truth,” said Khushi.
At this silence spread in the house but it was soon broken by the eldest member of the family- Narmada Devi.
“If you’re so eager to know the truth then okay, I’ll tell you, but I hope that even if you guys don’t believe in all this you both will at least care for our sentiments,” said Narmada Devi.
“The room which you’re referring was the room where the centre of all the problem lies as that room is haunted by a spirit and to prevent that spirit to come out we had locked it from a vestal lock spell-bounded by holy utterances to prevent that spirit from coming out. Not only that but these lockets are also given by our guruji to prevent us from that spirit,” she added after a hiatus.
While Arnav and Khushi shared a look among themselves after hearing the words uttered by their grand-mother and then looked back towards them in disbelief.
“I can’t believe that you guys even after living in twenty-first century are thinking like the people of nineteenth century. People like that guru fooled guys like you who believes so much into all these superstitions, so that they can get some pelf for themselves in the name of different things. And Abhishek you? Can’t believe that you- the youngster of today’s generation let your hard-earned money go in the pockets of such people,” Arnav said not understanding why these people are not realising this simple truth.
“Don’t call our guruji with such words Arnav when you knew nothing about his knowledge. And upon the truth of that room then he needn’t fooled us when we ourselves have realised how dangerous it can be for us,” said Rudra.
“Not only realised but faced too papaji,” added Roshni with a scared voice as if she was living that scary moment now.
“What has happened that you’re getting so scared?” asked Khushi confused upon hearing Roshini’s voice filled with dread.
“What happened? You should ask what hadn’t happened bhabhi,” said Roshni then taking a deep sigh to calm her nerves she added “When I’d come here and maaji hadn’t given me this locket I used to hear weird voices, making me almost mad. And if that wasn’t enough then due to that spirit papaji had nearly lost his life and I…” she sobbed remembering all the old days which had been nothing less than a scary dream which she never wants to even imagine in her wildest dream now.
“Shhh! Calm down dear! Calm down!” Narmada Devi said hugging and consoling her daughter-in-law.
Making her sit on the sofa she gave her a glass of water to calm her nerves and turning towards Arnav and Khushi said “See her! Do you think that she is building the castles of stories and telling you? Or do you think that she is acting all this? Or do you think that her sorrow is fake? Tell me,” she asked a bit angrily.
This time both were speechless. They don’t know what to say? They know that their family will not fake all this, but at the same time they knew that all these things were nothing but mere superstition.
Sighing! Khushi said “Okay! We’ll not comment on this matter as we both are standing at two different poles from where we can never come together but then if what you’re saying is even one percent correct…”
“Khushi! What are you saying?” Arnav interrupted her in between at which she showed him her hand and blinking her eyes assured him that she knew what she is saying making him stop from saying anything further and then continued.
“If this is so daadiji then why have you guys been living in this house? Why hadn’t you guys moved out to a safe place? After all who will want to live in this haunted house?” she asked making the silent to spread its wing in the house once again.
No one was able to say anything while Narmada Devi sat on the sofa with a thud and looked around the house.
Taking a deep breath she said “You’re right Khushi. No one can live in a house which is haunted, but it wasn’t easy for us. First of all it is our ancestral house- a house where I’ve come after getting married to your grandfather, where I’ve become a mother, mother-in-law, grand-mother and grandmother-in-law. So many memories are connected with this house which never let me to separate myself from this house. But still when I came to know that this house has become haunted I decided to move out of here for the safety of my family and we did. Yes dear! We did tried to move out of this house but….” She shuddered remembering the events.
“But what?” asked Arnav.
“But nothing works out dear. Things started getting worse. As soon as we decided to move out Rudra got into another accident and if that wasn’t enough Roshni too lost her first child.”
“But these are normal things why are you relating all this from spirit and all?” Khushi asked.
“Okay! Maybe for all these things you’ll say the same but about the voices and screams we used to hear every night?” Roshini asked.
“Well! It can be your imagination too,” said Arnav.
“And most important thing which is still confusing me is the point that if you can happily live in this haunted house then why not outside?”
“To answer your this question, I would say that at first we tried to move out from here though maa was depressed with the thought of leaving this house but then she knew that it was required too. But when we couldn’t move out as unusual things started happening then we went to our guruji and he finds out that the source of all this is that room and thus he locked the spirit there by that lock which is spell-bounded by all those holy utterances and also gave us lockets for our protection after which we decided to stay back as per maa’s wish to live and die in the same place where she had come after becoming the daughter-in-law of this house,” said Rudra.
“I can’t believe it,” uttered Arnav shaking his head in negative.
“Believing or not is your decision which we can’t force but that will not change the truth,” said Narmada Devi rather angrily and left from there towards her room.
She was soon followed by Rudra and Abhishek while Roshini too joined them but not before saying “Just because you guys think it as a rubbish doesn’t mean that it is rubbish because sometimes reality is far away from logics.”
After all left from there Khushi and Arnav too went back to their room. Entering inside Arnav went towards his cupboard, opening it he took out his suitcase and starts stuffing his dresses in it.
Upon seeing all this Khushi hurriedly went towards Arnav and placing her hand on his shoulder she asked “Arnav what are you doing?”
“We’re leaving from here as soon as possible,” he said while continuing what he was doing.
At this Khushi holds his hand and make him sit on the bed, and herself taking the seat beside him asked “But why Arnav?”
“Don’t you know?” he asked angrily.
“No! I don’t.”
“Khushi! These people will not understand that they’re believing in nothing but superstitions and I don’t want to live in such a place anymore,” he said.
“Leaving your family to believe in this nonsense?” she asked.
At this Arnav look sideways.
Khushi turn him to face her and cupping his face said “I know that what they’re saying is unbelievable. I too don’t believe in all this. But Arnav leaving from here isn’t the solution to this problem.”
“Then what should I do?” he asked in frustration.
“Stay and fight back,” she instantly replied.
At this Arnav looked towards her while she nodded in affirmative and said “Yes Arnav! Let all of them know that there is nothing called spirit exists in reality and one more thing…”
“I think your uncle (mamaji) who had stopped you from coming here, I think he too believes in all this resulting in the restriction he put on you to never ever come here again. And maybe Arnav you could know about your mother’s death too,” she said stroking the back of his hand.
“I had never think from this perspective Khushi. Maybe you’re right. Now I ‘ll stay here to bring the truth behind this fake haunted story and also to unravel the mystery behind my mother’s death,” he said determined while Khushi squeezed his hand showing her support to him and then leaned on his shoulder.
After that rest of the day nothing much happened. Everyone remains in their room, none wanting to starts a verbal fight for the contradiction in their thought-process. The only time they came out and sat together was when all of them were called for dinner.
Dinner was a silent affair as none spoke to another. Though at the end before leaving to his room Arnav had conveyed that if they don’t believe in his vies then neither do he and that’ll remain so but they’ll be staying here for the time-period they’ve come, with that said he along with Khushi had left from there.
It was past mid-night, both Arnav and Khushi were in deep slumber being tired of today’s events when Khushi heard some faint voice calling out to her. At first she ignored it in her sleepy state of mind but then when the voice continues to call her she sat straight on the bed rubbing her eyes.
I need you!
Hearing someone calling her Khushi looks here and there to see if someone entered inside there room, but upon not finding anyone she got confused, so she focused on the voice which she found was coming from outside of their room.
Confused she looks beside her to find her man comfortably sleeping as if he didn’t heard anything.
“Wow! Mrs. Raizada what a husband you’ve got who is sleeping comfortably while here some idiot is disturbing his wife’s sleep. Normally he’ll get up even with a small noise and here today when someone is calling out for his wife in the mid-night, then see he is sleeping selling all his horses,” she murmured in annoyance and then looking towards the wall-clock she muttered “Who the hell is disturbing at such a time? Should I wake up Arnav? Ugh! No! I think first I should myself see to it,” saying this she got out of the bed and move towards the door.
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