“Aaaaahhhhhh” I yelled at Shailly “run”.
She didn’t need the warning. We dashed outta the house in a jiff and kept running until our eyes could scan some human existence in that place. Finally after much panting and sweating, we sat on a two-seater swing and looked at each other in horror. It was the scariest and the weirdest thing to happen to me EVER. And Shailly is one of the most not-scared (sorry couldn’t find another word) girl in the world. If she can get scared in a situation like this, I most certainly can. And I get scared of even an almost invisible fly. Go figure!
We waited with anticipation for Shikha, Poonam and Sejal to return so that the chill and horror running down our spine could warm up and our superfast heartbeats could return to normal. Every two seconds we would scan the garden for some sign of some supernatural power or some lady in white sari with a candle in her hand or some kinda ghost. Finally – thank god – the girls came. So did those guys who were creating a ruckus outside our room just before all the weird stuff started happening. We ran towards the girls as if they were some kinda life support or something. Shikha looked at our faces – Shailly’s face looked like it had frozen in the act of screaming and mine was tear-stained. She looked alarmed. They ushered us into our room (which was very hard considering how we kept shouting “no, not in there” into their ears) and made us to have some water and asked us what the matter was.
It took us almost 15 minutes to cool ourselves and narrate the story. It all started after Shailly and I came back from the sangeet function we were attending. We both had our periods and our stomachs were aching badly. Actually, I was done with them days ago but Shailly’s hormones are weird and her periods last for almost 20 days before they finally subside. I had made a lotta fun of her for that and she had just said, “you wouldn’t laugh if this would happen to you. I’d just keep my fingers crossed until the next time you get them, and then you can enjoy your next 20 days of this!” back then, I had just laughed at her peeved retort but what did I know that it would come true so horrifically? I did know actually. Shailly was famous in our group as a “Black tongue”. Whatever she says whenever she’s angry or peeved comes true. Like the time my fingernails had grown so big that they looked awesome and hers had just broken that afternoon and I was flaunting mine maddeningly at her and she got irritated and said that my fingernails would break the very next morning and THEY DID! And the just this evening when we were getting ready for the sangeet and I was admiring my newly purchased heels in the mirror for an hour until she got angry that I was causing everyone to get ready in front of the bathroom mirror which is so small, you can just see your face and asked me to excuse coz I had caused a jam in the bathroom. I had defended myself by saying “I need to see how they look. They need to match with my dress you see. How will I look if my heels are brown while my dress is blue?” and she had said “but your dress is brown too” through gritted teeth.” And I had said “so what!” and she said that if I don’t stop staring at myself in the mirror and let her get ready, I’m going to fall down in the sangeet coz of my heels; which totally happened! EMBARRASING! She had laughed herself hoarse when that happened. Luckily not many people had seen it except a group of oldies who I’m not sure can even see properly. But still! And also yesterday night when we were getting into the bus to go to Silvasa and Shailly had said “what would happen when we embarrass ourselves in front of these hotties?” and we did!!!! We were asked to change buses 5 TIMES until they were happy with where we were seated! So you see now how irritated I was when I was in Silvasa attending a wedding and I was supposed to be enjoying myself but all I have to do is suffer the never ceasing stomach ache coz Shailly had done some jiggery-pokery on me?
Shailly started narrating the story. “We just came in and started changing into our clothes and these guys (she pointed at the window towards the guys sitting on the swing outside our door in the garden) were shouting so much our heads were aching. Jitsy had gone in the bathroom to change and it seemed like she had fallen asleep. She was inside for almost half an hour –”
“I was trying to remove my makeup” I said defensively. No one listened to me and she continued “so Jitsy just comes out of the bathroom and suddenly the noises outside go dead! I mean everything goes super silent. I go to check out of the window and see that no one’s there in the garden, not a living soul.” Yeah, it felt so creepy that time. The sangeet was happening in the other end of the resort and everyone was there. Our end was totally deserted and it looked like an episode of Aahat just waiting to happen.
“So, Jitsy comes outta the bathroom in her bathrobe and says she has forgotten her lingerie in her suitcase and starts searching. I’m looking outta the window where these guys had disappeared and wondering where these guys have gone to in a sec when Jitsy says she’s not getting it –”
“I searched in my luggage but my lingerie bag was missing. My make up box was open and all the content was strewn across my suitcase. I searched everything thrice. Shailly searched her bag. We both searched all the other bags but it wasn’t there. And the funny thing was that no one’s money was gone. All our purses were where they were supposed to be. This scared me so much. But Shailly was like its no problem and she was like lets search in the bedroom. So we go into the bedroom and start searching. It’s 11.30 in the night, I’m having my fucking periods and I’m in dire need of lingerie which are missing, I’m in my bathrobe searching for them in the bedroom and suddenly we hear this creepy blood curling noise and – ”
“It was just wind beating against the window.” Shailly interrupts.
“It was still creepy.” I stated. “I sounded like the background music of some horror movie. You shouldn’t have opened the window.”
“But then the voice went away, didn’t it –”
“Yeah but –”
“Oh shut up you two and say what happened next.” said Shikha.
“Ok. So we were searching for the my lingerie and suddenly all the bottles fell of the side table.” I continued.
“And Jitsy screamed”. She rolled her eyes. But then, she got a little serious and added, “but it looked so scary, mind you. All’s still and silent and the bottles fall on their own accord. It scared me too. But unlike her (she pointed at me) I kept my cool.”
“Yeah. That was until the –”
“SHUT UP BICKERING AND CONTINUE!” shouted Shikha, Sejal and Poonam together.
“And then we were just examining the bottles when all of a sudden, behind us the curtain-rod broke. And the curtains were falling of it in slow motion.” said Shailly, scared. “And this time Jitsy actually shrieked and we ran outta that room and locked it from outside. She wore the same lingerie, put on her clothes in top speed and just when she was putting on her t-shirt, the bedroom door started shaking.”
“It was coz of the wind, stupids!” said Sejal.
“But it all looked so spooky then” Shailly defended us. “That’s when we lost it completely. We ran outta the house without even locking it and when we get out, we see that this place is totally deserted and it looks all the more haunted. And there’s trees and stuff all around.”
“We kept running for some time until we saw some elderly couple sitting on a chair in the garden. So we hurried towards them and settled on a swing just besides them.”I said, shivering. “We kept staring at the room from our seats which looked so ghostly with its lights on between hundreds of dark rooms. And we’re waiting for you’ll to come since half an hour and, and…well, that’s it.” I finished a little lamely.
“That’s it?” asked Poonam, looking disappointed as if the horror didn’t match up to her expectations. She exchanged looks with the other two and they started laughing. I looked at them with disgust. Here I was – lingerie-less and scared; and all they feel like doing is laugh? Shailly and I look at each other and back to my suitcase and then she says, “You’ll think its funny, don’t you? Then how do you rule out Jitsy’s make up box which is totally messy? You had packed it yourself, hadn’t you Shikha?
“Yeah, but it must’ve have blown due to the wind.”
“Yes, of course! How stupid of us. How could we not realize the wind entered Jitsy’s locked bag and blew everything inside it. So very STUPID.” Shailly said sarcastically.
“Listen. You guys are just blowing it outta proportion. Jitsy’s lingerie must be here somewhere. She must’ve misplaced it. Wait we’ll search” said Sejal. And off they went; searching every nook and cranny of the room (Shailly and I were so scared that we couldn’t even get out of the bed). Half an hour later they finally gave up and started discussing our story.
“The funny part is that the money is not gone. How can that be possible? I mean, even if someone has sneaked into the room, why didn’t they take the money?” asked Poonam.
We all just shrugged.
“Oh forget it.” said Shikha. “I’m goin to sleep."
Sejal and Poonam said in unison.
They got up to go into the bedroom and just then, the bedroom door began shaking, again!
Shikha, Sejal and Poonam, all screamed together and ran towards our bed and buried themselves beneath the blankets. Shailly and I had already hugged each other due to fear. All five of us were sitting there, staring at the shaking door with bated breath as if expecting a hand to reach out towards us through the door. Finally, everyone of us crammed ourselves on the same bed, not daring to even get up and change and gradually, one by one, each of us fell asleep there itself, on top of each other, representing some oddly distorted pyramid!
We got up next morning, all the last night’s horror lost in laughter over breakfast. We finally decided that my lingerie must’ve lost somehow and all the horror was just our imaginations running wild. We laughed at our own story for so long, our (my already paining) stomachs hurt.
But the next day, even though we had all discussed it to be imagination, none of us hovered around the bedroom door and we kept it shut until our stay was over. :D