It is a story about a girl who recently shifted from Banaras to Pune. Amidst her struggles to settle in a new city, she encounters a strange incident and in her struggles, she finds out a deep hidden secret.

“No mom! It’s still not done! I don’t think I would ever be able to fold these dresses in the right way!”  I shouted on the phone, looking at my new red dress with anguish and frustration.

“Start it all over again Saisha, trust me it’s really easy” exclaimed my mother from the other side.

“Mom, I don’t think I can survive this. I think all this was just a stupid idea! I should have listened to dad and should have done my graduation in Banaras itself. I really can’t handle so much of work on my own and then manage my studies as well.” I started sobbing a little.

“Stop acting like a little girl Saisha! You are a grown up now. How will you be able to manage things in your new home after you get married, hun? Besides you know this very well that the Pune University is much more reputed than the colleges in Banaras. I want you to become something in life. I don’t want you to be always dependent on others just like I was when I was young.”

“I know that mom, but…” I tried to argue.

“There is no scope for a but Saisha. You are a big girl and you need to learn to work things out for yourself.”

“Alright. Now tell me again how do I fold this dress.”

It had been a week since I shifted to a flat in Pune University. However, I was living on my own for the first time and so I was finding it really difficult to carry out the household chores along with the studies. The flat was a 2 BHK and had definite space for another tenant, but my conservative father believed that living with someone else may have a negative impact on me. He thought I would start roaming around with the “bad city girls” and end up drinking or smoking with them. I still find it really difficult to understand him sometimes. But, it does not matter much because I was anyway roaming with those “city girls” after college.

As the days went by I became more self sufficient and was doing cooking, cleaning, dusting, mopping all by myself. I really like to believe that I was good at these jobs. Things were falling into place and I was getting more comfortable in my college until this really strange incident happened.

I was fast asleep, when I heard a noise. A noise which sounded like my name. I felt as if, someone called out to me in a very faint voice. I woke up startled. I looked around and saw that the window of my room was ajar. I got out of my bed and looked out from the window. The street was dead silent except the occasional bark of a street dog and the rustling of leaves because of the cool breeze blowing. I did not clearly remember whether I had shut the window before going to sleep or not. But then I assumed that I must have left it open because the wind wasn’t that strong to push open the window.

After having a thorough look in the street, I closed the window and came back to my bed. I poured myself a glass of water from the jug, kept next to my bed and drank. Having no evidences to support my imaginations, I thought that it would be safe to assume that I was in fact dreaming and with that self assuring thought I hugged my pillow tight and went to sleep.

The next day I had classes till late and then I went to grab a cup of coffee with a friend of mine. I returned all exhausted and went straight to my bed and was fast asleep in no time. But, the same peculiar incident happened.

I heard someone calling out my name and this time when I woke up, I realized that I was not dreaming or hallucinating and the voice was as real as I am.

“Who is it?! I am calling the police!” I shouted.

No one replied. I gathered courage and grabbed the wiper laying on the side of the bed. I went near the window, flunked it open and thrashed it in the air rigorously only to realize that there was no one there. I stood there for a few seconds looking at the silent street and again heard the same voice!


It was like a whisper. It was as if someone was trying to call me or communicate with me in some way. It sent chills down my spine. I froze with fear for a few seconds and then shut the window close, as fast as I could. I didn’t know what to do and I was terrified to the highest level. I went back to my bed with a wiper on my side and the lights switched on. I remained in the same position for the rest of the night as I was too frightened to even close my eyes.

Next day, I thought of telling this incident to my mother. But realized that she would consider it just another gimmick of mine to abandon the city and come back home. So, I refrained from it. I instead narrated the incident to one of my friends who rather than showing some concern started laughing and making fun of me.

“I am not lying Simran! Trust me, I heard my name.” I exclaimed.

“Saisha, are you telling me there’s a ghost or a spirit in your flat? Grow up, you are living in the 21st century.”

“Believe me Simran, I think someone wanted to talk to me about something. I couldn’t sleep the entire night, you’ve got to help me! Please”

“Ok, Ok, calm down. Let me think, what we can do. Have you talked about this to your landlord yet?” She asked.


“Then, let’s talk to him about this. Do you know where would he be?”

“He lives right across the street”

“Good. Then let’s go to him after the class.”

We went to the landlord’s place after our classes got over. I rang the bell and he came out few seconds later. The landlord was a gentle looking, simple man and his innocent and kind behavior was one of the major reasons that convinced my father after reviewing over ten flats. He offered us tea and made us comfortable.

“Mr. Kapoor, if you don’t mind me asking, could you tell me a bit about your previous tenant in my flat?” I enquired.

“There was no one before you, my dear. You are the first one.” He stated in the most subtle manner.

“So, was the house totally abandoned before I moved in?”

“It had been abandoned only for a month. Before that there were people living in the flat.”

“Which people?” I asked curiously.

“Why do you want to know all this suddenly? Is something wrong?”

“Yes, there is something strange happening with me. I will tell you all about it but , first please tell me about the people living here before me.”

“Well, actually my son lived in this house. He, along with his wife and my beautiful granddaughter lived in that house. What happy family that was. But, destiny had something else planned for them.” His voice choked as he spoke and there were tears in his eyes.

“Why? What happened to them?” I was getting more and more curious.

“My son Ravi was returning home one night from his job, when he saw a group of goons molesting a girl. Ravi went up to them and tried to push them away to free the girl. But, one of the goons hit him hard and he fell down. Realizing that he couldn’t fight them alone, he started shouting for help. In a while, a big mob of people gathered around the goons and the fled the spot. However, they got furious and decided to teach him a lesson. They followed him to his home and entered his house with a gun. They shot Ravi and his wife Reena! When I got to know about this , I ran to their house. Someone had already called the police. There laid in front of me the corpse of my own son Ravi and his wife , but, no sign of my granddaughter. I saw my whole world crashing in front of my eyes. I just stood there, looking at my son and realizing that all meaning of life was now over. They were all I had. All I had!” He started crying bitterly.

Both I and Simran were in tears. We felt really sorry for him but couldn’t do anything to reduce his sorrow. After drinking some water he said, “The police stopped finding my granddaughter as they believed that she must also have been killed by them.”

“But what has happened to you my child. Is everything fine?” He asked.

“Yes,” I said, “everything’s alright”.

I didn’t want to burden him more by telling him what had happened, so I simply just came back. Simran had agreed to stay with me for the night as I was too afraid to be alone.

We both were laying on the bed and chatting so that we do not get frightened but as we were chatting, I heard my name being called out again in the same bone chilling fashion but, this time it was not just me but even Simran could hear that! Both of got armed with an iron rod that we had arranged for ourselves and went near the window. As I opened the window, I heard another noise and this one being more clear than the previous one. It felt like a woman’s voice, whispering, “Help her”.

The voice seemed to be coming from a narrow street which connected the society to the open ground.

“Should we go down there to check out?” I asked in a whisper.

“I think we should.” Simran replied sounding confident.

We gathered some courage and stepped down armed with our rods. We started following the source of the voice. We were both trembling with fear. Unaware of what we may face. When we walked a bit further , I noticed a small bulb glowing on the side of the street when we approached the light, we saw a small garage which looked very gloomy that had not been cleaned for years.

“I think this is where the voice was coming from.” I whispered.

“Hey what’s that?” Simran pointed at the object which seemed to move.

“I think there is someone there.”

When we went closer, we found a little girl who was laying on the floor with her hands tied and mouth gagged. We removed the tape from her mouth and opened her hands.

“Run! Run from here fast! They can come back any minute!” The girl shouted. She looked very sick and pale and wasn’t even able to speak properly.

“Let me call the police” Simran said.

As Simran talked to the police, a gang of goons saw us and started charging towards us. We ran as fast as we could and went straight to my flat and hid there. After a few moments, we could hear the police sirens and saw the goons being held by the police and getting handcuffed. Seeing this, we came out of our hiding. More people had come on the street due to the noises which included our landlord, Mr. Kapoor. When he saw us, he came running towards us and hugged the girl who we rescued and shouted, “My granddaughter! Oh dear Lord, what happened to you? Are you alright?”

The girl was the landlord’s granddaughter whom the goons had kept hostage for a month. They had tortured and beaten her and she had not eaten anything for a long time. The police took the goons away and Mr. Kapoor said to us, thank you my dear, thanks a lot. You gave me my life back.

We were really happy to see this, but were still thinking about the voice that we kept hearing every night. We told Mr. Kapoor everything about the noises and he had only one thing to say-

“That was Reena, my daughter-in-law.”