Result of Short Story Writing Competition
Ladies, gentlemen, boys and girls, We are honoured to announce the result of our Short Story Writing Competition and are grateful for this opportunity to congratulate the winners and all those who have taken part in our online contest. Many of you have strived to do your best in order to be one of the winners and I believe that represents the true spirit of our country's young generation.
Although we all know that taking part is a key element in any competition but winning is what makes us push ourselves and achieve our full potential. I am very impressed with the achievements of everyone here today, but I am especially in awe of those of you whose efforts will be rewarded today.
Criteria for evaluation
All the stories were judged on these parameters :
How captivating and engaging your story is for the reader
Characters of Story:
How impactful and realistic your characters are.
Correct grammar for the language you choose to write in.
A lasting impression of your story on the reader
NOTE : (There was no role of Likes and Comments)
Jury's decision will be the last and final decision. We will not answer anyone about why their entry was not selected.
More details are HERE
Mandava was unreal. Ahinya came across a lush green field with wind among the reeds. She felt the gentle touch of flowers in her palm. The lake- spread out far ahead, was shimmering in the sun. The grasses grew upto her waist. A few little steps down, the grasses were upto her chest. A few steps down, she was lost in the blinding maze of tall
yellow grasses. Wind swished like a serpent through the oscillating grass blades. Ahinya stopped, thinking whether to move forward or not. She did, dexterously moving the blades aside and suddenly out of
nowhere she stood before a gigantic monument, red, dilapidated.
She walked upto the two storeyed structure. On the ground above a
platform was a series of pillars lined up like pillars in a hall. It
was dark. What was this monument? No banner. Just an unnamed relic of
Clink. Clink…clink…clink…she turned around and found a local boy
grazing a herd of goats.
“Hey, what is this monument? Can you tell?” Ahinya was eager.
“Ye Dai ki kabr hai. This is Dai’s tomb.” The boy replied uninterested.
“Okay...But who is Dai???” The boy shrugged his shoulder and went on
with the goats; the bells tied to their throat let out a soft tinkle.
The boy vanished into the distance and Ahinya walked upto the angular
stairs. Clueless, she started climbing the steep stone rocks hoping that the ravages of time would provide her with answers. “Dai”, Ahinya
thought. "Midwife", she concluded. She must have been a midwife to lost dynasties, an ancient apothecary of sorts, a surgeon. Perhaps,
she medicated queens. Perhaps, the queens and the women in court successfully gave birth to children in her presence. Was this ‘Dai’ only one woman or a host of nameless women engaged to the same
profession generation after generation? Ahinya’s mind raced along…
She reached on top of the stairs to an open platform. On one side of the platform was a series of broken columns that once bore the weight
of domed roofs above them. A few pillars thankfully stood intact as specimens of architectural magnificence. Between two pillars were two
graves. There were no names – just two big slabs of stone. With the dome broken, they now lay exposed to rain, wind and heat, alike.
The distant tinkle of the goat bells were heard again… Whose graves were these? The size was shorter, lesser than a normal six feet.
Children…Ahinya thought. What happened to them? There have been instances of epidemics in the past. Malaria. The wind grew stronger. Ahinya looked steadfast into their stony coldness. A few dry leaves
brushed over the stones. The sunlight touched the columns splintering itself above the square plots.
On the other side of the platform stood an octagonal room having a similar arched domed roof with doors on all four directions. It was gigantic. This was not a tomb…Ahinya thought. This was Dai’s house!
She lived here! The room stared back at her with hollow eyes. It could also have been her chamber. Ahinya went upto the stone slab beside the western door and looked out across the field. Not a single soul to be
seen. Amazed at her new found discovery she sat down on the slab and looked upto the dome and blurted out a sudden- “Aa!”… The sound rippled through the air, touched the stony mass and came back reverberating a few notches higher. “Aaa…aaa!!” Ahinya continued. An alarm room. One word and anybody can hear ten miles across the ravine.
Ahinya leaned back against the wall and stared out into the stark meadow...
A swish of wind and 'her' lock leapt up. 'She' turned around but before 'she' could comprehend what was happening, a figure wrapped in black caught hold of 'her' throat. Another one tossed 'her' above the
slab and clutched 'her' legs. 'She' grappled with great force. 'She' wanted to scream but 'she' was choking under the pressure of cold
fingers. 'Her' heart pumped all the blood. 'Her' lungs wanted air. 'Her' legs were twitching under pain. 'Her' hands were being held together under great pressure. 'Her' eyes bulged out and 'she'
wriggled like a fish under the weight of the assassins.
"Maaaa…..mother….mother!!!” 'She' tried to tilt 'her' head and saw 'her' sons being dragged out into the adjacent platform. With a sudden demonic force 'she' kicked above the groin of the hooded figure who
held 'her' feet and released 'her' hands free from the assassin who caught 'her' across and dug 'her' nails on the face of 'her' primary assaulter. “Let them go…No…my sons…no!!” 'She' hollered struggling to run out of 'her' chamber. But a brutal kick from behind threw 'her' straight on 'her' face on the hard ground. 'She' turned over, desperate to come up with a fight again but a savage kick, this time on 'her' belly, left 'her' writhing in pain. 'She' heard them-
“Maa…mother!!!”- one more time before 'she' was blinded by a black shroud. 'She' gasped for air within the black sack but the firm fingers came down on 'her' throat and a heavy knee dug itself on 'her' stomach. From within the dark mantle 'she' simultaneously heard one last stentorian “Mother!!!” and the slash of a sword being unsheathed from the scabbard. A quick and clear swish, a wet slash ended their caterwaul. “Nooooooo ….” 'she' wailed, utterly defeated and gave in.
The pain in 'her' throat was slowly becoming intolerable; 'her' heart pumped again, faster and intermittently and then it slowed down; missed a few beats; and staggered… Lubb dubb lubb dubb… lubb dubb…
Ahinya woke up with a jerk. Her friend looked into her agitated face and asked, “Are you okay? We have been searching for you all this
while. How did you come up here?”
“I...I lost my way.” Ahinya replied, her head tossing in the sudden break of profound drowsiness.
“Yes you did. What are you doing here? And how did you fall asleep?”
“I guess I was tired.”
“I think so too. Let’s get back to the hotel.”
Ahinya was walking down the stairs with Agasta before her. Once they had descended the stairs, he halted, looked back at her and said, “You know I heard a story from the manager. She was saying that there was a Dai in this place long back.”
“Her sons were beheaded. Killed and buried without recognition.” Agasta continued.
“What for? ” Ahinya asked faintly.
“I don’t know. Maybe some royal secret she got hold of.” Agasta retorted.
“What happened to you? Why are you answering like this?”
“Nothing… I am just tired. I fell asleep on the slab.”
“Slab? Slab! Slab!!! Why that’s a stone bier! You might as well be
sleeping over her corpse... I mean legends say she was strangulated
Ahinya stared at him blankly. Saying those words was easier than
living through it. She wondered if no one really heard her shrieks or the boys’ cry for help.
In the dark corridors formed by the rows of pillars, the cows and buffaloes were ruminating over straw in the acrid stink of dung and cattle urine.
The Last Person She Expected To See
It was as though moon was crying out of burden prolonged. The nature was getting hoarse. Bleached glints and touches of rains were making the scene out of window a bosom wrenching. Slowly I rotated my head desultorily towards her. She was lying asleep. The white bed was as though trying to embellish her every corner. ECG machine was procreating technical glimmers to show few, unused moments of her life. I was trying hard to perceive if she would show at least feeble
tremors. For six months Preetha had been an inpatient at Global
Hospitex's ICU. A car accident took away a gigantic slice of her memory. I closed slowly towards her. As far I could recall her nose was accurate in inhaling my boring odour. Numerous scratches on her face were bestowing life’s animosity meticulously. Not everyone get this
embroidered misfortune to embark such. A disguised misfortune.
According to the doctors treating her she would be surviving hardly a
week where the roots of my endearing heart claims clearly that far is
not too afar. I permeated my fingers on her prolonged still hands as if I
was touching her heart beating. The table beside her head was holding
her words on pages on it's head. Not many but my favourite. I fetched
for them. Old pages often help us reminisce our hidden mellifluous
moments. I deliberately flipped her pages to travel through treaded
moments. I was conceiving each word and looking her silent face
repeatedly as if those words were protruding alive out of her lips into
my ears. More her pages I was going through, more firm I was on her
palm. Somewhere near the bottom of one of her page I could vividly
“Beloved, if any time I quit my life under the force of nature please you
live our life, breathing cheerfully, every second you will be receiving.
Perform your life to reach our goal soon glitteringly. Beloved don’t even secrete a single tear as they are mine and you don’t have any right to expel that uselessly.”
I pressed her letters and her right palm cordially. I started to flip the
pages again, fast. Time was fleeting paced. For twice my eyes descried
another bunch of her words written long ago.
“Beloved Rahul I request you not to be afraid or upset on my death if
occurs early. It's natural to die, only hearts glean to accept this very
truth. Is this truth so hard to agree?”
This time I gazed towards her. She was still sleeping as if she was much
happy to receive such restful sleep post an aeon. I sprinkled my shaking
fingers all over her face which was already bearing sprawled and
combed hairs since three critical days she was having in her adamant
life. I was about to cease back my arm when I got interrupted by her
“He..Hey…. You are still here. I ..I am able to see things now, dazed.” I
was shocked by her breaking voice. I was hearing those in a fortnight.
Those are the sole echoes of my world.
“Hey Preetha, you are able to talk then. Are you now well in? How…how are you feeling yourself now.” I was about to cry out. I affirmed her
“I think I will be well one day. Where is he?” She inhaled deeply,
frequently. Her ultimate words wrenched my soul again.
“He was …he was there, just went downstairs for medical bills.” I
pretended to brighten a smile.
“Med…Medical bills. I think I am hurting you financially even. I..” I
paused her pressing her left arm cordially.
“You shut up. You are the only treasure we have in this life.” I wanted
her to smile. She gleaned to.
“ Just tell I love him so much. Though I am not enough to be a normal
lover in his life but still I am here always for him. I am in his every
breath.” She was going to utter something but her repeated gasping for air was interrupting her the constant.
“You love moon. Isn’t?” I tried to infuse her suffuse of redolence. She
smiled somehow and slowly moved her eyes towards the window right.
Rain was still raining. I could see glitters of ecstasy on her dried lips. Is
moon so invigorating? So soothing?
“Being selenophile I would endear to tread back on her alleys when I
cease my breath here “ I was going to interrupt her when she pressed
my hand slowly this time. I could reassure that her strength was utterly
declined. “Vivek let me say please. No one knows the horizon of life. We are only allowed to breath our life. But I would be happy, satisfied if you both stay well and focused on your happiness thereby less shedding tears on my absence. Actually everyone has to be absent one day from dear ones. Only some departs early, some late. It’s so strict, determined law of nature. Look how the rains are trying to abrade off dusts of my moon. It’s so ethereal. It’s so mellifluous. Can you store this scene electronically?” I agreed on dawn. I pulled out my phone out to click the scenery in my phone restored. It was really invigorating. I placed the captured shoot in front of her eyes but…she was unable to see then. I perceived ECG machine. It was a perfect straight line like death. I turned off my phone and fetched her face with my both hands. I could sense she was no breathing. I stayed there affirming her face to wish her initiating breath like she talked after a long silence. Her face was as though she was slumbering peacefully. Her eyes were peacefully closed suddenly.
“ I am sorry Preetha for my lie. Rahul is no more breathing. That accident took him few days earlier and today you mercilessly. I am sorry Preetha for cheating you even on the ultimate stair of your life. Sorry. Sorry.” This time I cried warm. No more I was able to bound in them. I tried to spread her a hug but ceased myself. Maybe Rahul had the only right to do so. I moved myself away after planting a desultory kiss on her idle forehead with her hairs on it still. I distanced afar. I touched the window pane slowly. I discerned the white moon with no rains then. Slowly my ears could hear two familiar voices. They were running on the alleys of moon holding hands in each other. I could perceive so on that distant moon. I smiled out of blue. I touched across the window pane softly, slowly as if I was able to touch the whiteness of that moon. Slowly I felt myself growing a selenophile.
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