About The Author-
Boby Narayan holds MA in Sociology and English, MBA (HR), LLB, PGDIM, PGDHRM, DIM, DLL. He is at present working as Assistant Registrar in National Company Law Tribunal, New Delhi. He has been working in various organizations of Govt. of India. With a rich experience of 18 in various fields, he has achieved various feat in governmental organizations. He is a Research Scholar in the field of Skill Development. He has co-authored three books and two e-books. He has published one research article UGC-Care list journal. He has attended more than ten International Conferences as a paper-presenter. Apart from research work, he is a short story writer and occasionally writes poems in Hindi. By nature, he avoids lavish life.
SHORT STORY- DEVIL’S NIGHT
It was the darkest of the night as if a Devil has entered the capital city and ‘yes’, the same was felt when there were no lights in the entire city except those of few vehicles plying in the streets. The black Angel’s wings were unable to protect the earth and the Devil, named Vishammad; quite like Sabbatic Goat, first took shelter at the rooftop of a Masjid and then went to the quarter of the priest. Frequent loadshedding and no-moon day was an added irritation to the people which helped him to take a walk in the area. The stars too have gone somewhere else, may be in another universe.
Krishna suddenly stopped at Lajpat Nagar as he saw a girl standing just about 10-15 metres from the bus-stand; though few vehicles were plying on the road and few people in the bustand, the girl was standing alone with a vanity bag. Seeing her alone, he offered lift.
She refused but he insisted. She left the place and started walking quickly along the traffic intersection with red lights enable to cross one side. During the night the red light serves the pedestrians as a rescuer, which is in some way safe and alright when one has to cross the road as people remain vulnerable to accident and the roads become death traps after midnight. There, unlike the other days, were not many tourists, young/old couples, groups of students and even families walking around even late at night, a scarcity in crowd counting was felt.
Rejection made him angry, frustrated. He returned with a deserted heart but decided to fight back the next day.
Krishna shortened his name from Krishna Murari Dubey. His father Radhey Shyam Dubey, a religious person as well as an established astrologer, decided this name after consultations with other renowned astrologers. Radhey Shyam built his empire through TV channels and Youtube programmes apart from being a Temple Manager. After completing MCA, Krishna joined an MNC in Greater NOIDA and was in search of a monochrome beauty.
It was the softness that called body and brain to rest and let the heart go to its steady rhythm but that night, Krishna could not sleep properly. Aspiring for one promise of life awaiting the return of the sun; next night, he again halted near Lajpat Nagar Metro Station and took two ice-creams. Then slowly went near the girl; and extending one ice-cream towards her, he said desperately:
- May I know your name?
Betwixt quiet a good number of people, she got a sudden jerk. But without much hesitation, she asked:
- Why? Who are you? What do you want?
- People call me Krishna. May I know your name? You are the beauty I was looking for.
- Radhika, Radhika Pandey.
- Will you marry me?
- What! But I don’t know you? What do you do? When? Where? At this juncture? Night?
She took the ice-cream and waited for the reply. Strangers generally don’t have stock of words to exchange in their first meets. Most of the time, they looked at each other as if to know the language of heart; and thereafter, spent the night walking along the road in deaf and dumb. The sadness of the sky stopped Vishammad to interfere in the angelic matter.
Soon they were interrupted by the police-patrolling team and taken to thana. Bribing the police, they came out. Krishna asked: Where would you like to go? Pubs, discotheques or eating joints?
Radhika, with a stammering note, replied: I don’t know.
– OK. Let’s go to The Electric Room. We can enjoy there till 5.
Krishna married Radhika with a short version of formalities and thereafter he broke the news to his mother, Savitri Dubey. For few minutes, she didn’t respond; and then said:
- Please come home. We will accept your choice.
Radhey Shyam was away in the temple. He was an expert in yelling out demons from human body, was busy in performing Tantra-Mantra for eradicating a ghost from a girl; the very moment his phone rang, Savitri Devi conveyed the message to him. He asked the father of the victim to come another day for her purification.
He left the temple and so did Vishammad along with him in his car and enjoyed the potholes jerks. Indian roads mostly similar to pox-stricken cheeks and are always loved by devils, hence he came down and walked along to see whether his disciples are on perfection but actually as he too was in search of Sirin, the Egyptian beauty who Vishammad believed to be somewhere in Delhi.
Both of them were very much afraid as Krishna didn’t return the day before; apart from that he switched of his phone. Hearing the news of his son’s deed, Radhey Shyam was very happy as if his son had done a remarkable job and achieved the lost glory. As a boy Krishna was very shy even in his college days which marked an impression that he won’t be able talk to girls and the notion was destroyed.
One the way he stopped near Agarwal Sweet Shop and purchased almost the whole shop but with his hard-earned money. A little bit of decoration & lighting was done. However, no relatives were invited. Neighbours in Delhi are equivalent to foreigners.
It was late evening. The Dubeys with curious eyes, watched from the Balcony and they began to clap as soon the newly wed got down from the bike. Radhey Shyam saw the Devil, who was watching from a Neem tree and decided to fight him. Very next moment, Radhey Shyam got down through stairs and soon after, left the house. The newlywed couple entered the house and touched the feet of Savitri who was standing in the balcony, but her eyes were searching for her husband. After few minutes both entered his room.
Savitri was unable to understand the sudden sprout of the moment and she began to search the entire house from first floor to fourth and then came down; but there was no trace of Radhey Shyam. She shouted but Krishna didn’t adhere to her calls. He knew about his father who had less affiliation towards the family and most of time moved for outing at night chasing the ghosts. After all it was his nuptial night. Krishna asked his mother to calm down. The sky too was in black tranquillity as if married to a poetry of stars. Night didn’t come as a reward of sorts, a restfulness above to calm the soul. Without getting any clue she began to curse, the newcomer, ‘what a bad luck she has brought along with! But it’s my son’s fault’.
Even after two days, Radhey Shyam didn’t return. At last, he was traced at his sister’s house.
- Preeti, you should have informed us. Said Savitri in a complaining voice.
- How can I know that he has left the house without informing?
- Okay. I am coming.
On meeting Radhey Shyam, Savitri Devi cried for a moment. Rubbing the tears, she asked:
- Why did you leave all of a sudden?
- I can’t stay there anymore.
- She is a call-girl.
- How do you know?
Radhey Shyam did not reply. There was utter silence. The silence created doubt. Without finding any solution, she asked Manoj, brother-in-law, to interfere.
- Hello, Maharaj! What happened? What is the matter? Let me know.
- Jijaji, what to tell. Many a times I took the girl to the hotel. She charges 10 thousand per night.
- What nonsense! Now what will happen, If your son could know about this?
- Before that I will kill her.
Manoj did not reply. Preeti exclaimed, ‘Oh! No. Then she ran towards Savitri and narrated the matter to Savitri which rumbled her. With hottest of the hottest temperament of her life, She shouted:
- You rake! Wrencher! Scoundrel, that is the reason why I got STD and suffered for months. I am no more living with you. I am going and don’t show me your dirty face.
The uncontrollable anger made her throw the mobile on him which got cracked. She didn’t pick up decided to not to visit that house again. Before leaving, she told Preeti, “I am going to my father’s house. We expect God to provide us with smooth sailing, but God sometimes comes in and with a tempestuous storm, wearing a mask of the Devil, the destroyer of life and love enters established norms. My husband is a devil with that mask.”
None of the Devils discriminate; irrespective of caste, creed, or religion; his disciples follow him without changing the path of misdeeds, some of them wear white kurta with cap, khaki or white or blue-collar shirt but most of them are without any particular uniform. The rich follow him most and in fabricated way. But people across all societies have developed the idea of a devil as an anti-human force that can hide itself within society and it’s not his fault while all almighty figures have failed venerating a demon present in the society.
Preeti felt ashamed of his brother. Manoj calmed Savitri but asked Radhey Shyam to leave the house immediately. When Radhey Shyam had left, Savitri also left for her matrimonial house.
Krishna was very much worried from the newly developing situations. His father, and also his mother, none was traceable and even the nuptial night was a devastating one. It was premature ejaculation. She didn’t meet the orgasm. And the next day, soon the quarrel turned into fight.
Taking some Shilajit tablets, he again tried but the same problem. Now she kicked him and spit on him. With disgrace, he came out of the room and spent the night in the balcony in distress, frustration, and feelings of shame; the guilt or anxiety caused further neurological disorder for the moment.
In the morning, Radhika left. Krishna did not stop her but felt a sense of relief from desperation. With the concerns of Preeti, Manoj came to meet Krishna as Radhey Shyam had announced to kill her. There they found Radhey Shyam had not arrived since the day of wedding and expressed their concerned about the girl. Knowing that she had already left and the reasons behind, they sighed a sense of relief as for the major crime was evaved; rest of the problems would soothe with the time and soon, they left.
While returning from office, another colleague accompanied him. Vishammad was already waiting few yards away from the bus-stand. His wet disciplines give most revenue to the government but are the most hatred one. They got down at Lajpat Nagar and went to a pub. There Radhika was already dancing with another guy.
His friend asked: Scotch?
Krishna said: when we are just partying for getting drunk, Cheap whiskey bottles we should completely resort to. That won’t burn a hole in your pocket but give you the kick you wanted to dance the night away.
With the intoxication level reaching its peak, Krishna suddenly saw Radhika was going out talking with mobile in her ears. He also ran behind her towards the bus stand. To his utter surprise, Radhika was talking to someone in the car.
His friend too came out and joined him. And then asked, “What are you looking at?”
Then closely looking at his eyes, said, “That girl… Oh, no! She is bargaining. Don’t waste your time. Here you will find lots of such items. Most of the astonishing acts are given completion on the roads. Let’s go somewhere else and enjoy the Devil’s night.”
Krishna peeped at the number plate. He fluttered his eyelids and chafed them. Sounds very familiar; it was quite known! Then he punched downwards. It was his father’s car. Before he could think of any other thought, she entered the car. Soon it vanished into the heart of darkness. Vishammad flew away being happy with the existence of evil, in majority, in a divine earth defeating the God’s purpose.