Monday, March 16, 2009

In the Horror Jungles - "The BAJUS" Part 1.

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He shuddered from time to time as he described it. The horror of it was absolute. The man was shivering and this was after he'd had 2 full pegs of local wine and more than an hour to relax. The man was around 55 of age and he was shivering like a leaf.

N e p a l.
Outskirts of village Ghale Gaon. 205 kms northwest from Kathmandu. The nearest Roadhead at Khudi.


The man's elder son, Agni, was not merely surprised..he was shocked at his father's condition. He had known him to be a power house of a man. The word 'fear' had never found place in his dictionary. Yet here he was, doing exactly that.

A few pegs of local wine had him relax a bit and a bit of coaxing later, he began telling us on the events of his journey back home.

Deep jungles in Nepal are common place. Distances between villages are lengthy with almost no visible roads to walk on. kukri knife and a long thick stick are the usual weapons for self protection against sudden attacks by animals and thieves. People do not venture far from their homes after 6 in the evening.

Wild animals and thieves, though, are not the primary reason for not venturing out at nights..or anytime of the day in deep jungles. Something else is. Especially near Ghale Gaon. STRANGE things have been known to happen to people who dare to..or are by some unfortunate circumstances left out in the open.

The jungles are rumored to be inhabited by something.......Unknown. It seemed more than one.

The unknown, in the course of time, gained popularity as the most feared...and were christened by ancient old men as the dreaded BAJUS. This name, made grown, experienced men shiver in their skins.

No one could tell what the BAJUS looked like, the description had always been vague but who ever thought he had seen them swore on one thing......

The Bajus could change themselves into different shapes and sizes almost on thought. Two of the shapes that were often described were those of trees and smiling clowns.
The fixed smile that stretched across the face in a most inhumanly and a disturbing manner.

As to who or what the Bajus were...no one knew !!

Agni's father had gone to the village for some chore of his in the morning and was supposed to return before night fall. Somehow, he had lost time and later realizing it was going to be late...had hurried to reach the safety of his village as fast as possible.

He had left the place of his work by around 8. The distance between that place and his own was a good walk of 2 to 3 hours. The road in between..one made by people's feet going through it often..was barely visible..but straight enough to lead the way.

Pleasant evening had converted into tasteless night and the jungle made it seem more frightening than it really was. Agni's father walked through the forest at a faster pace. He was not afraid...only in a hurry to reach home. He had been through this road a number of times before.

With Kukri and the long stick in his hand, he went through shrubs and small trees through the beaten path...following it religiously...never faltering. The thicket was long that didn't seem to end.

The night was complete. One could hardly see. The only noise he could hear was that of his own feet crumpling the leaves and small twigs that broke as he walked over them. He could hear himself breath.

He kept on walking until he came to a big clearing. From this point on..he knew it was a straight road ahead. He knew he had left the most dangerous part behind...the depth of the jungle. He could actually see the road ahead in the clearing..long and wide...as far as his eyes could see. At least now he knew he would be walking in a clearing and he will be fore-warned in case of any wild animal attack.

It was like a man-made road, wide enough for 4 men to walk together side by side to cover it's width. In fact, this was the part of the jungle that showed intrusion by man....a single dim street light placed on the side of the road...tied by a tree somehow. The light hardly managing to spread itself more than 1 feet on either side.
But it was a source of hope..encouraging a passer by such as Agni's father to think he was going to make it to his destination safe and sound.

Agni's father had barely emerged from the jungle thicket onto this road when he stopped short in his tracks.

Far from where he was..straight ahead, beyond the street light..he thought he saw a figure appear and at the same instant, a tree disappear. The disappearance of the tree was a mere nano-second flash. But he HAD seen that. or had he? Or was the darkness playing tricks with him??

The figure was bathed in darkness. Only the outline showed. Confusion and fright took over Agni's father almost immediately.

Agni's father was on the left side of the road and the figure had seemed to be on the right of it. "He could be another passer by like me", was an immediate thought. But why wasn't the figure moving?

Agni's father resumed his walk..slowly..step by step, keeping his eyes on the figure ahead. As soon as he moved..he saw the figure move too. The figure moved just as slowly..step by step...just as cautiously.

Agni's father's head rang an alarm. The intuition was strong. He stopped walking. The figure stopped too. The alarm got stronger.

Clutching his stick harder, he took another step. The figure reflected the move. Agni's father decided that he might as well keep walking cautiously since maybe that person was just as cautious as him..maybe even afraid. And that was he precise reason he seemed suspicious.

As he walked slowly, he saw the figure move in the same pace. The figure was approaching Agni's father in slow steps. He still could not see the figure clearly. The distance between him and the light was just as much as the distance of the figure to the light, on the other side.

As he kept walking..he realized something that made his mouth go dry, eyes widen and STOP immediately.
The figure was reflecting his every move. The figure moved at the same time, at the same speed with one tiny difference.

While Agni's father walked straight on his side of the road..the figure WAS NOT doing the same thing. Slowly and surely, the figure was inching his way towards the middle of the road.

That only meant one thing. The figure, in a few minutes, would be on the same side of the road as him and in another few, directly FACE TO FACE with him.....

Agni's father panicked. He went on high alert. His life might be at stake. He had to save himself...there was no question about it. This was NO innocent passerby. This was exactly what  they had warned everyone about. This was none other than a - BAJU and tonight, Agni's father was its TARGET.

He made an immediate stop and saw that the figure was almost to the middle of the road now and had reached near the light lamp.

He could see that the figure was dressed in all black from head to toe. Nothing of his could be seen..nor hands.. nor feet..nor face. The face was covered in a black hood.

Something else grabbed Agni's father's attention..something other than this figure..Yes..he had heard something... A voice.. what was it??

It seemed like...a very low pitch 'hmmmmmm hmmmmm hmmmmm' at short intervals....

The figure..moved...

This is what happened next...

8 Spoke their mind: yep, makes a difference !!

nups said...

hey anand
i din read this post yet.. i m so caught up in the Krishna one till nw.. i posted a comment on it pls read n reply ... will wait

Inspiration said...

Nice narration... but why its incomplete... i could actually visualize the whole scene.. but suddenly it was a scene of some series in Television saying "To Be Continued"

Cheers,
Jayashree

PS: THank you for visiting my blog.

Anand said...

Hi Inspiration...If u cud visualise it, I seem to have come close to wot I aim to achieve in my style of narration a bit..

Scene of some series. haaha..Nahh Im coming up with the concluding part sooner than u can say.. Boo !!.
:-)

1000 bucks for your thoughts?

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