Illustrative Content

by Sunil Gera

The villa had been burnt into ashes, yet the smoke willowed out of the smouldering logs. The name plate ‘Sagoos’ hung precariously on a hook; the wooden plate had burnt yet the lettering in brass showed the owners’ name. 

In the ashes there was hot rectangular cast iron frame of the double bed, where in the centre the old couples’ skeletons lay.

Kevin had met his parents a year back in Goa, he could never imagine that it was his last meeting and that they would meet such a ghastly end.

His head ached after seeing the skulls, the ribs, and the limbs, he vomited yellow bile on the floor, his throat had turned sour. He gathered that the lightening had struck the villa. His dad and mom wanted to live in the green acres, away from the hustle and bustle. They could never have imagined their end would come by being struck by lightning. 

Kevin had received the message about the fire from an unknown person, when he was watching a clip at his studio, he immediately left for airport, took the next available flight to Delhi. He reached his parents’ villa by walking from the closest Metro station. The news was so weird, that he had not even considered informing Namita. He thought he would communicate with Sapna, his ex-bodyguard after his arrival at the villa. It was the last local train; he had reached the villa in Delhi’s freezing cold at midnight.

The blaze which had engulfed, had occurred around five hours back.  The fierce spectacle of death and devastation evidenced the saga. While he was yet trying to mitigate the effect of shock, he was struck by a rod from behind, his head became numb, he crouched on the ground. 

Before he fainted, he remembered having been thrown into a pit by three men, who shovelled earth on his body, and he was buried alive.     

He gained consciousness after a few hours; he pinched his body to feel the sensation. He moved his limbs desperately to extract himself out of the lose earth. He felt being almost dead because of the loss of blood from his lower shoulder, yet he kept going, he could finally haul his body out of his loose grave.  Just because the earth was dry that he could still breathe, he thanked his stars for the bonus of extra life he had received. 

Once he had extracted himself out of his burial, he thanked his attackers for leaving him still breathing.

He moved his hands and feet to improve his blood flow. His wallet as well as new mobile were missing. 

It was very early in the morning, he thought if he doddered up to Sapna’s house he would be able to catch her.