The villagers told many stories to Meena, along with Rohu and Banu’s undone love story. She was rather intrigued to know what happened next with them, did Rohu took the plunge and sacrificed her life? Or like any Bollywood story, Banu could save her at the last minute.
Around midnight seniors decided to call it a day without giving rest to her curiosity. She couldn’t sleep that night; the snippets of this fascinating story kept her imagination on high alert. Picking up her journal, she started writing about the haunted love story.
Engrossed with the story, she heard some ruffling sounds outside her old tattered hut. The sounds made her nervous, it could be anything, a tiger, hyena, wolf or any other wild animal. She picked up her flash light and started following the street lights, thinking to be in the center of the village would be safe. Meena had hardly crossed 100 meters distance on foot, when she sensed someone was following her.
Imagining all sorts of wild animals ready to pounce on her, she ran towards the main street right across the village chief’s home. Sprinting towards the porch, she glanced back to find pair of two feet following her. This relieved her tension and she stopped to ease down her heavy breathing.
She turned back and saw a young girl in her early twenties looking at her with immense curiosity. “Hey, what are you doing outside so late in the night?”
“My name is Meena, I am a guest here, were you here at the time of campfire when elders were telling me about Rohu and Banu?”
No reply, but the name made her eyes twitch. She looked towards the jungle and pointed to a cliff.
“Do you live there? Isn’t that too far from the village?”
Girl just nodded her head in NO and started walking towards her pointed direction.
Meena followed the young girl, she picked up a bamboo stick from a nearby bundle, if any wild animal attacks that will come handy. They walked in silence for 20 minutes to reach the cliff’s landing joint.
The girl looked at Meena with lucid eyes showing her a point where two graves were etched among the shambles. She switched on the flashlight to take a better view, the markings took her breath away, they were the graves of her story’s protagonists.
She looked up to ask the girl about these graves and story ahead, but she wasn’t there anymore. This sudden jolt of disappearance made her insides churn out of fear. Did she just follow an apparition? Was it the spirit of Rohu?
Giddiness of sudden adrenaline rush made her light headed and she lost her consciousness. It was only in the early morning hours when villagers found her sleeping near the graves of two eternal lovers.
“How did you find this place, beta! This is deep interiors of the valley, outsiders cannot travel this far even with their fancy devices?” asked a villager.
She hesitated, “I don’t remember, baba, someone brought me here, ummm… I think a young girl.”
A sudden mumbling and hushed exchange of words made her nervous, she looked at the their scared faces and asked, “what’s the matter, please tell me?”
“You need to leave this place now! You must come with us, and then we will leave you to the nearby city!”
“But, baba, who was that girl? Why are you asking me to leave?” she argued.
The sarpanch replied, “you have not met any girl yesterday, beta. It was the spirit of Rohu who scours this region in search of her groom Banu.”
She is a modern-day girl who believes in technology, computers, and science. Ghosts, spirits, Dracula or vampires she likes them but only in books But, then what happened in the night still needs to be untangled.
Gaining her composure, she asked “lets complete what we started, and then I will leave this place.”
They went back to the village, after cleaning up she had her breakfast with the chief. He narrated her the next part of the story – Rohu decided to sacrifice her life, and jump off the cliff. When Banu learned about her intentions, he tried to convince her. He vowed to save her from every evil and promised to neve leave her side.
When the general’s men came to pick Rohu, they were informed about the marriage by the villagers. This made the young general very angry and he implicated Banu in a false case, to imprison him.
While he was taken to prison, somehow he overpowered the soldiers and fled to this very cliff. He went into hiding, to save his life but Britishers spread the false news that Banu fled leaving his young wife alone.
Rohu, couldn’t tolerate this news and she committed suicide jumping from the same cliff. When Banu learned about the fact he challenged English general and was killed by multiple bullets.
The post is written as part of #A2ZChallenge & #BlogchatterA2Z. To read the previous post, please click here. My theme this year is Short Love Stories.
Disclaimer – This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental. Reader discretion is advised.
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