Gone But Not Forgotten

Budh first came upon her on a moonlight night. Every Wednesday, the merchant visited the temple in the village to give thanks to the divine for his prosperity. On the way back, Budh liked to stop by the riverbank and enjoy the peaceful nighttime scenery. It never failed to lift his heart.

This night, however, a low, droning sound caught his attention. A minute later, he realised it was the sound of a voice, hoarse and nearly inaudible. Hurrying to the source, he found that it was a young woman, half unclothed, covered in mud and lying on the riverbank, nearly insensible. She murmured a prayer under her breath, but did not seem to realise that help had come at last.

Indian mythology

As Budh pulled off his own tunic and tossed it over the woman to cover her upper half, he felt sick. Clearly, the woman had been travelling with a party that had heard about the bandits in the mountains. The woman must have dressed in men’s clothing for safety, she still wore long leggings. The bandits must have suspected, however, because they had torn off her top, exposing her breasts, proving that she was a woman.

Animals.

They must have killed the rest of her party. But how did she come to be here? Budh looked up at the mountain that overlooked the little river. He could see it now. Mad with grief, fearing for her life, surrounded by bandits who sought to rape and kill her, she must have taken the only escape route she could – by jumping into the river.

At the thought, Budh felt a great swell of pity. Taking the woman into his arms as gently as he could, he started to walk back to the village. The elders would know how to help her.

‘I’ll take care of you, I promise.’

She didn’t react, still murmuring her prayer.

Want to read more?
Order the Dark Things anthology and read the full story!

Featuring cross-dressing assassins, were-snakes, gods and goddesses, demonesses and asura kings, Dark Things Between the Shadow and the Soul retells age-old tales from Indian mythology—with a twist. Rearranging myth and legend to create new plots, these short stories will delight lovers of the unusual.

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Image from FreeDigitalPhotos.net, with thanks.

[mood|fractured fairy tales indian mythology tired]
[music| Firework: Katy Perry]

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15 Comment

  1. Anonymous says: Reply

    Awesome story – I think this is the best among all.. so great work and continue this work :)

    1. Thanks so much. You have no idea how good it feels when someone says this was the best (so far) – I always choose to add the words ‘so far’ in my head. =)

      I shall definitely try my best to continue writing this way! =)

  2. Anoymous says: Reply

    This is awesome – best among all. Great work :)

    1. Thank you so much! I’m really happy to hear you say that.

      Thanks for reading, and commenting! =)

  3. braazy says: Reply

    Yep, it’s good. The ending was really very good and the whole story was very “complete” if you know what I mean and the way you described the river and all but without diverting from the main plot was just too good…

    I am almost wishing I could make a short movies with these stories but too sad I can’t, atleast not ryt now… But if I ever do make any short movies, these will be the stories… and it will be called “the vyathaka puranas” \m/ :D

    1. the way you described the river and all

      Hah, I consciously tried to include a little more description in the story. Plus, I needed to tell readers the river was full to explain how Budh died so easily. ;)

      But if I ever do make any short movies, these will be the stories… and it will be called “the vyathaka puranas” \m/ :D

      What else can I say to that except for: yoyo! \m/

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting. =)

  4. Gr8 narration; loved the flow and careful usage of words, and again very Indian. Loved it. Will ensure I am following all your stories now :D

    1. Thanks so much! I'm really glad you liked this!

      The Indian touch was what I was specifically going for, actually. I was tired of reading fantasy stories about werewolves and vampires, or those set in a European kind of setting. I’m glad you liked my small attempt at Indian mythology based fiction.

      You can find the rest in this series here: http://coffee-clouds.com/fiction/the-vyathaka-puranas

      Would love to hear your thoughts! =)

  5. the plot kept building…the twist was marvellous. good work lucy….the curse did seem to work. I thought ila meant earth.. maybe more synonyms.

    1. the plot kept building…the twist was marvellous.

      Thanks so much, ma’am! I’ve always loved stories with twists, so I’m so glad to hear someone liked my own. =)

      I thought ila meant earth.. maybe more synonyms.

      Haha, yes. Prayer was only one of the meanings for Ila, actually, but it was the one I chose for the purposes of this story. You’re right, it does mean ‘earth’, as well.

      Thanks for reading and commenting, I’m glad you liked this story. =)

    2. Thanks so much for the comment and the like, ma'am. =)

  6. Having read this I believed it was extremely enlightening.

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  8. sandya says: Reply

    hey really nice story….

    1. Thank you! I’m glad you liked this. =)

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