The Cosmic Void

“Antha Chocolate puthussa?evvalon?” 30 rupees. He didnt quite like the way his pocket felt empty,and Chocolate was a luxury he couldn’t afford. But then,his daughter meant the world to him. No suffering was too grave to forgo looking at that lovely,lovely smile..It was a million dollars.

 ***

She loved chocolates. The way her eyes lit up each time he surprised her with a bar of chocolate, such occasions were few and far in between, sent him into raptures of joy, and for once made him feel truly contented and free from all trials and tribulations life threw his way, and life was certainly very liberal in that respect, a village barber struggling to sustain his own offspring, his bundle of joy, problems were aplenty. He barely scraped through each month, and then it was a whole new month of uncertainty, toil and frustration. There were times he felt glad that…

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Inside Out

Roof tops, her favourite haunt. She had learnt from the best. Though, there were always things that could be improved upon. This was their world, which loomed below her. This is no tale about charming men with leonine manes prowling alleyways or the same men revealing their grotesque carnivorous faces to unsuspecting victims. She was none of those. She was just a voyeur. A voyeur who has mastered the art so well, that the only way forward was to capture those beauties. Shedding the passive observant role, she took part in life actively. Eyes cast around the perimeter where each red bricked chimney mirrored the ones surrounding it. She was hunting. It was getting tougher for them all these days. There were certainly many others waiting to pounce right away as she circled her new territory. A house was becoming absolutely necessary. It was certainly time for her to fly off the nest as most homes cannot stand the presence of two alphas.

She had no troubles talking to people. Human beings loved all the attention they got, especially from the raven haired beauty that oozed radiance. She watched them all first, a lesson learnt that from her father. His work was of precision, of vigilance, of subterfuge. Shadowing him she stepped into the world of voyeurism. She was trained young, like many other little ones in their families. They watched, just like vultures eyeing carrions. Her mother pointed out how father kept all his tools in the contrabass case. His methods were drilled into her impressionable mind. First they had to lull the prey into false security, and then their venom was shot right into the human pores. With an inert body at hand all they had to do was flay the tender skin and choose the best cuts. The best days in their lives were when her father came home with a heavy case. Laid out carefully in the case would be the hide of the finest specimen found in the streets of London. Each line she saw on their faces, the scent of fear that still permeated from their languid body and the taste ever so divine that drove them to such extents were never forgotten.  Like dark enclosures etched with the cave man’s drawings many more humans awaited their discovery. She too hunted them each down with great pride.

Although, it wasn’t obvious to anyone that behind every bewitching smile she bestowed and every favour she did there was towering tab waiting to be collected. To them she was the young lone female with all but her music for company. Humans believed in whatever that kept their world stable. This was precisely why they never questioned why the contrabass was never heard playing even though she seemed to lug it around everywhere. No one ever entered her house. They would’ve found the damp smell in the room strange. They might have found the pond in the living room quirky. Why, they might have even found the creepers clinging to the walls beautiful. But, they would never know. When the neighbours’ son didn’t return from school no one suspected the lone female with her face brimming with innocence. How could they when she was kind enough to bring over the most delicious cottage pie for the deceased’s family? Nor did they have doubts when the old lady in the house opposite disappeared without any trace. A young woman would certainly have nothing to do with the exuberant cocker spaniel found dead with its throat slit. The thrill she got out of killing right under their noses was certainly going to her head. Her pride was reaching its limits. With pride came fall and it did seem that it was just around the corner lying in wait for her. As hunger was the clawing monster that tugged every string of her plotting brain, it sure did cause her slip up every now and then.

Each house was being canvassed by the police. Questions after questions were being repeated. No one had any answers and the one person who did was in no mood to give any. She had stored enough food for months ahead, yet the monster didn’t like lying low. When you start considering hunting as a sport, a day away from it becomes excessively irritant. Kids were easy enough, so were overpowering the elderly. What she needed was young meat that would struggle against her strength. Food which would put her raging mind to rest. Her methods now were much cruder than the ones employed by her father. He killed them while they lay unconscious as his venom spread thoroughly.  For her, it was an all-consuming carnivorous ritual. She killed to conquer. It is precisely when you forgo the purpose of your abilities that you make mistakes. She was about to make one, a huge one.

She knew this wasn’t her game but she needed the change. The old woman she killed last didn’t even scream out as the claws ripped along the trembling vocal cord. The overworked heart stopped beating before that. She was put off by the faint musty smell and the dry skin. The body shall be pushed through the pond into her world after a few bites. There would be others who’d be more than happy to receive it. Her Aunt Esk sure did stock up on all the octogenarians. She remembered seeing those bodies lined up like terracotta soldiers. She never wanted to turn out like that. She lived for the present that kept pulsating vigorously with each passing moment. Every person she hunted became a part of herself. The faint scent of orchids you smell if you ever came near her was from the little girl she once met in an alleyway years ago. Oh, and the raven tresses that keep cascading, was courtesy of a beautiful young woman encountered on the tube. Why, even the tattered contrabass case she carried had belonged to the man who busked in the underground tunnel at South Kensington Station. She was only a little girl, at heart anyway. While humans walked around showing off, the green-eyed monster on her raged. It made her do so many things, so many vile but exquisite things. She had hoped to gain the old lady’s peace from the last kill. Such abstract concepts didn’t seem to transfer so easily.

Mistakes will be made at every new attempt. That’s why you needed to experiment countless times. She was about to try again. The cheerful woman brimming with life had caught her eye on day one. While the happiness seemed infectious, there was only so much that could be shared. As she crushed the cookies brought over and listened to the incessant talks about her adorable son, all she craved was for the joy bursting through the seams. She wanted the inside, out.  She knew she’d need that blissful porcelain skin as her hands brushed against her jovial neighbour. Most importantly, she knew that the monster jumped up with joy encountering a new prey. The thought of waking up with a mind at ease and a smile on face played intricately beautiful symphonies in her heart. She had started noticing how no one talked to each other. Even her smiles were spurned. She knew this was to be her last hunt here. Vigilance and hostility were slowly enveloping the hearts of the inhabitants of this quiet suburb.

She crept along the wall towards the back of their house. The cold air sent a chill through her. She longed for a fire, strong enough to burn down her desires. The quietness irked her and was slowly diminishing her resolve. It was so unlike the street. The ambience was adapting itself, similar to the time when she lay quietly on a hunt. This silence seemed almost too well constructed. It couldn’t have been any quieter as she helped herself in through the window. She was agile and the darkness posed no trouble, but the unnatural regularity in the prey’s breathing baffled her. She found her way easily and pressed her palm violently against the woman’s mouth. The glaring lights went on abruptly and it shimmered of her sharp fangs. There were too many eyes glowering down on her. In their eyes she saw treachery reflected. The first stone was cast. They had caught her out.

As she fled the room, they chased her into her own lair. The eyes said it all. There was revulsion, there was disappointment and there was pure burning anger. She knew they would tear her to pieces. She knew she had to escape. She needed to the rush to the pond, into her world; into the safe haven. They were all around her. Closing the doors on their faces wouldn’t help now. The house was in flames painting a dominant picture over the quiet sky. Smoke found its way through to her slowly. She felt slight splashes of water as the house tumbled down brick by brick.  There were ear piercing screams. Screams that caused your heart to ache with melancholy. Charred remains of a body were found. It was enough to calm their inflamed hearts. No one wanted to be on the desecrated land a minute longer. No one wanted to turn into a monster. They let the fire burn until the remains were no more. They slept peacefully, their losses avenged feeling quite warm.

*

Somewhere a few miles down emerged a raven haired beauty from the slow moving Thames. As the water trickled down her slender frame the rays hurt her singed arms. Clear water weaved its way through her, leaving debris on the surface and what could be a scar was no more. She shook her long tresses and walked along with a resolute face. Life on earth had its pitfalls but there were always scores of opportunities here. The bell tolled on the shop’s door and she walked out with a new contrabass case. If you looked carefully, you could see the smile that sets the tabs towering. As humans believed in whatever that kept their lives stable she had many more chances to transform them, inside out.

 

 

For a tale along the same crooked path, do read On a 9 to 5 Day. Thank you! :)

Inside Out