She was vehemently trying to connect with her family but the line went dead. In utter disgust, she left the receiver dangling from the table. Her mobile was nowhere to be found. She was sweating heavily in panic. The fashionable clock in the living room showed 3:20 am. Distressed, she couldn’t comprehend a microsecond of the last twenty minutes. She started analyzing the happenings in mind to solve the puzzle.

A slow but continuous humming sound had waked her up. She checked the time. It was 3 am. She followed the sound to find out the source. She left her room and reached the shadowy corridor. To her bewilderment, other bedroom doors were sprung open. She looked inside to find each room empty. She ran downstairs, searched every corner of the house but could see no trace of her family. A few perplexed moments later, she started calling them aloud. Her voice reverberated in the empty house. No one replied. Tangled with fear, she tried calling them. Now, disappointed and anxious, she was standing beside the dangling receiver. Each way of communication was damaged.

Shivers crawled down her spine as she reached the main door. It didn’t open. She had become a hostage in her own house. Suddenly, she heard a giggle upstairs, followed by a thud. Though her curiosity pushed her to follow the noise, her body didn’t respond. Her feet refused to move. The giggle continued. She could also hear voices whispering. She was unable to interpret a tiny bit of it, though, she tried meekly. She felt numb as she was about to lose her consciousness. Just then, a heavy knock at the door jolted her back. Her heart started throbbing audibly. Could it be her family? The fear-stricken soul approached the door with trembling hands. This time it did open. It was Rohan, her brother, at the door. In the blink of an eye, she clutched him and started crying profusely. She couldn’t even breath. He was trying to console her. A few suffocating minutes later, her crying concentrated to sobbing.

She started explaining and exclaiming. Then she looked at Rohan. In sheer horror, her voice got choked up. Suddenly the lights of the living room started flickering. An obnoxious smell of rotten meat filled up the air. In the flickering lights, with her welled up eyes she saw, Rohan’s face was deforming as if, his facial skin was melting slowly. And then,

‘To be continued’ appeared on the screen. “Please, not now”, shouted Rubina in utter disappointment. She was keen to know what would happen next. Now, she will have to wait an entire day to watch the next episode, which seemed to her like an eternity. “Oh, these directors do know how to torment the viewers”, she muttered and switched off the TV in anguish.

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Written by Anwee Mazumder

Since her childhood, she has always been into reading and writing. Holding two Masters, she has served in the corporates for almost eight years as an HR Professional. Now a full-time mom to a two-year-old super active toddler. The turns of life have certainly made it almost impossible for her to pursue her interests, but she is determined to take writing seriously.