Monday, February 7, 2011

Lost Wisdom - Chapter 7 - Deja vu



Goutham was sleeping on the boat, totally exhausted, completely forgetting the danger that surrounded him. Suddenly he heard some one whisper.

"Come..."


He tried to open his eyes, but could not. He tried very hard, but it was difficult. He thought for a second if it was his imagination. But he heard it again



"Come to me..."

This time he was sure it was not his imagination. He got scared. Twice he was saved by sheer luck. Will he escape this time too? He did not know. His heart was pounding fast. And then, he heard the voice again.


"He has to light it..."

He was not sure from which direction he heard the voice. It was like as if the voice came from all directions. Suddenly he heard someone scream.


"Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh"


Goutham woke up with a start. He was heavily breathing. Only after a few seconds did he realize that he had been dreaming. But he could not remember the dream. He was not sure if the scream was also his dream or real. He hurriedly looked around. Instantly he realized that it was Jessi who had screamed. Mona and Tilak were consoling her, but she was very much hysterical. Goutham could not wait any longer. He dived in the ocean and swam towards them.



He did not feel anything until he covered half the distance. Suddenly he felt someone was following him. He turned back but found nothing. Just then he heard Mona shout.

"Goutham, are you crazy? Why did you jump in the sea?"


Goutham did not reply. He just signaled her to keep quite. He continued to stare at the sea. At a distant he saw something move towards the boat. His eyes started to pain, as he was straining them too much. He closed his eyes for a second, and when he opened, the boat was gone. The creature had pulled the boat towards the depth of the sea.


"Goutham, please come here" shouted Tilak.


This time Goutham listened to Tilak. He swam as fast as he could. He reached the temple terrace in a few strokes. As soon as he was pulled inside by Tilak, Mona slapped him hard.


"Dont try something stupid like that again" She was crying as well as smiling. Goutham nodded his head and turned towards Jessi. She was just staring at the sea. Goutham asked Mona.


"What happened to her?"


"We dont know. We were fast asleep, suddenly she got up screaming. She must have had a very bad dream"


He went towards Jessi, held her hands and called her.

"Jessi..."


She did not turn back. She was still staring at the sea.


"Jessi, what happened?"


"It was....him"

"Him? Who?"

"He will come back"


"Who will come back?"


"-----"


"Jessi, I need you to look at me"


"------"


"Jessi please, just look at me"


She turned towards him. She just smiled and said


"He will never leave me"


"Who is that 'He'?"


"If I told you, you would not believe me"


"Try me"

"-----"


Goutham glared at her for sometime. He thought it was best to leave her to herself for sometime and joined Mona and Tilak.


"What did she say?" enquired Mona


"Nothing, she just says some one came"


"But...we are in the middle of the sea. Doesnt she realize it was just a dream"

"Never mind her. She just needs some time. What are you people doing? Have you figured out some way to escape?"

Tilak stared at Mona hoping she would explain the current situation. But she looked the other way around, avoiding Tilak. He understood and explained to Goutham why they could not be saved.

"So...that is it? We die and all ends here?" asked a furious Goutham


"No...not like that. I did not expect this. I..."


"Oh yeah..." He was about to say something when Mona barged in.


"Dont you both realize that you are doing nothing uselful here? Please, please dont fight. I need you both"


Instantly both Tilak and Goutham fell silent. Mona used this as an opportunity to divert the topic. She quickly grabbed the wax tablet she had in her bag and continued.


"I found something about this"


"What?"


"See, if you want to hide something and if you want no one else to find its location, what would you do?"


"What is this about?"


"Answer my question first and then I will explain"


"Hmmm...I would hide it somewhere and keep my mouth shut"


"Exactly!
Yesterday morning when Sarala mam showed us this wax tablet, she was so sure that it would reveal the exact location of the nine books. But it contained just a warning not to continue. Does it make any sense"

"What do you mean?"


"If they never wanted us to find it,
why should they leave us a warning asking us to refrain from searching? I suspect there is something more in the message, which we did not care to look. We must have missed something"

"What do you think we missed?"


"That was what even I have been thinking. They left us a warning, agreed. But why use a wax tablet to do it? They could have used a stone or rock, isn’t that more sensible? But they used something which never reached
India. Even then, they could have written the message on the wood, why take all the trouble to write it on wax?"

"Wait...what did you just say?" interrupted an excited Tilak.


"Why?"


"Oh wow...you solved it Mona. Come on, give it to me"


She sensed that Tilak was not listening to her. She just handed over the tablet to him. He examined it closely, then took something from his pocket. It was a lighter. He picked a
pocket knife from his bag and started heating it with the lighter.

"You said you
quit smoking" asked Mona

Tilak chose to ignore that question. When the knife was hot enough, he started to cut the wax with it. Slowly scraps of wax started to break.


Goutham did not like this idea. As much as he wanted to escape, he did not care for the 9 books. So he quietly left them and moved towards Jessi.


Jessi was still staring at the sea. The dream was still playing in a loop inside her head. Goutham sat next to her and spoke in a calm voice.


"Jessi, I know you are facing too much to handle. But I need you to tell me what happened in your dream, please"


Jessi remained silent for some time. And then she started telling what happened.


She had been sleeping. Suddenly she woke up when she heard some voice.


"Come..."


She was scared to look around. But the voice was so close, she realized it came from behind. She slowly turned back, only to find Riyaz.



Oh....Oh my God...I can’t...I can’t believe this. Is it really you? Where have you been?"


"Come to me...."


"What? I am so scared Riyaz. Please tell me what is going on"


Riyaz pointed at Tilak and said


"He has to light it"


"What? What are you talking about?"


And suddenly she heard a buzzing sound from the sea. It was as if something was coming out of the sea. She looked around desperately for an escape. Tilak and Mona were sound asleep. Why didn't they hear anything was her immediate thought. She tried to wake them up but Riyaz caught hold of her and stopped her.


"Why are you doing this to me" cried Jessi. And then she saw them - Spiders. They were swarming from the sea. They were all around her. They were climbing on her. She could not take it any more and then she screamed.


Jessi's body shuddered every time she thought of the dream. Goutham had to hold her tightly. But he was thinking about something else. He felt like he just had a Deja vu. He remained with Jessi for some time holding her hands.


"Goutham, I need some privacy, if you don’t mind" she pleaded. Goutham understood her feelings and joined Mona and Tilak.


They were still busy with the wax tablet, trying to remove the wax.


"Tilak, I don’t think this is a good idea"


"And why is that?


"We already lost one of our dear friends. Don’t you understand?"


"---"


Suddenly they heard some noise and turned towards the sound. Jessi had dived in the sea and was watching them, only her face was above the sea.


"Don’t even think of saving me. Only you will lose your life in that process" said Jessi in a calm voice.


"Jessi please, just come back" pleaded Mona


"No. I cant. I need to go. He called me"


"Who?"


"Goutham knows. Just one more thing" She turned to Tilak and continued "You need to light it".


Tilak stared at her in disbelief. Jessi was ready to go down when Goutham interrupted.


"No Jessi, you need not go. Believe me"


Jessi smiled at him weekly and said "I am sorry, but I have to go"



"No you don’t"


Goutham extended his arms and his eyes pleaded Jessi to come back. He was buying as much time as he could. He was slowly moving towards Jessi. He did not want to scare her by moving quickly towards her. So he moved inch by inch, and he had to do that without her knowledge. So he continued talking, just to divert her attention.


"While you were telling me about the dream, I had this strange feeling that I have already heard it. May be Riyaz tried to convey something important. For that I need your help. Without you, we would not be able to make it"


Goutham had moved much closer to her now. She was just one feet away.


"But Riyaz said I had to go to him"


"He is dead. Whatever you saw was just a dream. We need to find out the inner meaning of the dream, do you understand"


She was just few inches away. If only he could catch her, she would be safe. Goutham was getting more tensed with each passing second.


"---"


"I know how you feel. But I need you to trust me on this, please, would you?"


Jessi thought for a while. She then made up her mind. She extended her hand to grab Goutham when suddenly she felt something catch hold of her legs.


"Oh no..."


Goutham immediately realized what had happened. He tried to catch her quickly, but he was too late. Whatever it was that had caught Jessi, was too fast for him. It pulled Jessi into the sea with great force and speed.


The last thing he heard was her cry for help which he knew would torment him for the rest of his life.

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