I knew an old lady once who was not really well known for being quite kind. I had heard stories about how she had been a monster-in-law to her son’s new bride. She had then one day kicked them both out with just the clothes they were wearing because the son had sided with his wife and not her. There were tales of her constant bickering with her neighbours over trivial matters like why the mango from their tree had fallen into her garden. But you can hardly blame her for her disagreeable nature. With 8 kids to look after with a husband mostly away, she had a lot to worry about all alone. She, however, was well known for her delectable rice porridge and fried rice. I had heard from others that she made the porridge so thick that you could overturn the bowl but it won’t fall out.
Many called it karma when she was found nearly dying all alone in her home with no one besides her. Her children were all married and settled in cities far away and no one in the neighbourhood missed her much to bother. When one day the maid could not get her to open the door, she was the one who created a furor. The door being too strong to breakdown, they had to make a hole in the wall to bring her out. Life had nearly left her when the daughter-in-law whom she had one day unceremoniously kicked out, was able to give her the last sip of water. She gave up her life in her lap. Her children one by one were informed and they came and cremated her and did her last rites. Since they were far away from the holy Ganges, they decided to immerse her ashes in the nearby pond. And even before they can reach the bottom of the pond, the children had divided among themselves all her valuables, her money and had even sold her house.
This is where it gets interesting. A few days back from some common friends we heard that the family which was residing there wanted to sell the house. And why? They were having weird experiences. Suspicious footsteps on the upper floor when all the members were downstairs. The utensils in the kitchen falling down without any reason. They had initially brushed off these as maybe a play of the wind or the activities of the rodents or lizards. But one day the little girl was sitting with her mum when she suddenly cried out, “Mum see someone is pulling me from behind”, but there was no one there. This had nearly rattled their nerves and now they want to get out as soon as possible.
Do you think it is the old lady who could not let go of her material possessions? Or is it just a figment of their imagination? What do you think the end of this story will be?
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