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The Apartment

About Bishakha Moitra

An amateur artist, I am a fulltime mother of a six year old. I also have 10 years of sales and marketing experience. Painting and writing are my passion. Writing to me is expressing my emotions, thoughts, opinions and views and presenting it in a way that others can feel the connect. My preferred language for writing is hindi and english. I use “a gypsy soul” as pen name for writing as I believe it describes what I truly am.

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Prologue

Neha and Kunal were a happily married couple staying in Bangalore. They were just blessed with a daughter, who with her cute antics, filled their life with joy and laughter. Kunal worked in an IT firm and Neha was a homemaker. They also had two dogs as a part of their family. Kunal was a doting father, a loving and caring husband. Neha was a dedicated mother and best companion Kunal could ask for. Their life was all what they dreamed ever.

Part 1

When their daughter was only a year old, Kunal got a great opportunity in Pune and decided to relocate. Neha was a little apprehensive about shifting to Pune as she was afraid of beginning a new life in a completely new set up, all over again. She was anxious but Kunal ensured that Pune is a great city, similar to Bangalore in many aspects. He was confident that Neha would adjust very well.

Initially Kunal went alone to Pune, so he could look for an apartment before having the entire family shift there. It would make the start a little easier for Neha. As planned, Kunal joined the new job and started looking for a place which could be comfortable for his family and the pets too. Finally he shortlisted a few flats and zeroed in on an apartment which was located on the 5th floor of a high rise. The apartment was a 3bhk with a big attached terrace. The society was quite posh and cosmopolitan. He shared pictures of the apartment with Neha and she also liked it. So they finalised it. Kunal went back to Bangalore to help Neha in the shifting process. In a week’s time, they were in Pune. In the beginning everything was normal as it was supposed to be. Kunal got busy with getting adjusted to the demands of a new firm; Neha got busy settling the house and getting accustomed to the new locality. She got herself a full-day maid to help her with the household chores. She would come at morning 9 am and leave by 7 pm. So at least Neha had company during the day. Life was slowly but steadily coming in line.

Few days after their shifting, Neha was sitting on the terrace with her daughter playing with the dogs. Suddenly she heard a loud thud coming from the kitchen, as if all the utensils were falling down. At first she thought that by mistake the maid must have dropped some utensils, but the noise kept coming and was louder. She called the maid but suddenly remembered, the maid was out of the house to buy vegetables from the market. Neha went inside to check the kitchen and was surprised to see the kitchen spick and span with all the utensils at their respective places and nothing on the floor. She felt a little weird as she knew that she had heard the noise quite clearly. Neha thought that the noise might have come from some other apartment. She went back to the terrace.

After two days Neha was alone at home in the evening. The maid had taken the daughter to the garden and Kunal was out with the dogs for an evening walk. Usually she used to accompany Kunal but that day was very hot and humid, without any slight hint of breeze. Due to this sudden change in climate she was feeling a little uneasy.

She was in her bedroom, sitting on the bed with her eyes closed when suddenly she heard the door of the guest room getting closed with a loud bang. She instantly got up and wondered whether the maid or Kunal was back. But then, there was no other sound and the house was quiet as usual. She went on to check and found all the doors open; none of the doors were shut except the main door. She was still wondering about the noise when suddenly she heard a knock on the door. It was very light sound as if someone was tapping gently. She opened the door; there was no one. Could have been the wind, she thought, but then she realised it was still as gloomy as it had been! No breeze. There was not even a slight wisp of air. She again brushed away the thought, thinking it must be a misapprehension.

Days passed by. Neha still was not able to adjust in the city. She used to miss her friends in Bangalore. Kunal was trying to set up a new team and prove his mettle in office. So he was working for long hours, not able to devote much time for home and Neha. After their shifting to the new place, Neha did attempt a few times, to get friendly with her neighbours. Either the neighbours were both working, so they were busy or were not likeminded. In fact, to Neha’s surprise, most of the apartments were not occupied.

Neha started feeling lonely and confined herself to the four walls of the house. At her home also, she was never at ease. She had this constant feeling that someone was watching her all the time. It was an eerie feeling. She tried talking to Kunal, but either he was too busy or she couldn’t bring up the topic knowing that Kunal will just not believe her.

There was another change which was quite evident. Kunal and Neha had started fighting a lot among themselves. It would start with a small insignificant thing or misunderstanding and they would start arguing endlessly, resulting in major fights sometimes. The occurrence of these fights started increasing and they ended up fighting now, almost every day.

Neha was talking on phone with her friend in Bangalore one day. Finding her so upset, she suggested her to join some hobby classes or to do some social work. She also assured that she would plan to visit her soon. Her friend asked her not to think much about the house. Probably she was getting all those feelings because she was lonely and depressed and was seeking company! Neha felt, her friend was right. She came to know about an association that ran an NGO for animals and being a pet lover, she thought it was the best place for her to spend some quality time. So she started visiting the NGO and was happy spending time helping in various activities related to animal rescue and ensuring their wellbeing. She also made a couple of friends there.

Part 2

Neha was now spending time away from the house, had made friends and was feeling much better and happy than she was. Yet, whenever she was at home, the eerie feeling of she being watched, was always at back of her mind. Whenever she used to cook, this eerie feeling used to increase. She felt she wasn’t alone in the kitchen. As if someone was walking very swiftly behind her or was standing right behind her. When she turned, she could never see a thing. Many times she asked Kunal or her maid to check whether they had come to the kitchen, but they always replied with a no and mostly used to be quite far from the kitchen area.
The restlessness and anxiety inside Neha started to grow stronger. Moreover, she was not able to talk it out as neither her maid nor her husband heard any noise or had any eerie feeling. She could sense that only the dogs were equally restless, behaving differently at times. They either used to stare and constantly bark looking at one direction or whimper suddenly and hide behind her or under the bed for no reason.

Once Kunal had to be out of town and was to return late at night. She invited her friends for dinner. The friends were supposed to reach at around 8pm. After finishing all her work, Neha was getting ready, when she heard the door bell ringing accompanied by a knock on the main door. She checked her watch. As it was nearly 8 pm so she thought her friends had reached. She called out to her friends from her room, asking them to wait for a few minutes. But the ringing of the bell continued and the knocks on the door increased in intensity and frequency and soon changed to loud banging! Neha was surprised and irritated a little, but anyway she hurried up. She still shouted asking them to wait, as she ran towards the door. The moment she reached, everything went completely silent.

Her cellphone which she had left in her room, started ringing. She thought she would attend the call later and opened the door. To her surprise there was no one at the door. She called out the names of her friends but no one answered. There was no one in the lobby. She thought her friends were trying to pull a prank on her and might have hidden somewhere or gone down by the lift. She checked the lift, it was on 5th floor only and was empty. She checked the staircase going down and climbing up but she could see no one. Then again the phone started ringing. Wondering how can that happen, she closed the door, went inside and picked up the phone. It was one of her friends on the call. They said they had called her before too, to inform that they would be a little late as their car tyre had punctured. She couldn’t believe them and kept asking whether they are trying to play a prank on her. Her friends hung up after saying no to her questions a couple of times, assuring that they were almost still 5kms away from her place and would reach as soon as possible. Neha was not able to digest that she had just imagined all the loud banging and the door bell ringing. She thought there could be some loose wire connection which made the bell ring and the door knocking could be because of the wind, though it was not much windy that day, certainly not enough to bang the door. Later, after her friends came and she had a nice dinner with them, laughing, cracking jokes, she forgot about the incident.

After few days she brought another pup home. It was a husky, who was rescued by the NGO after his owners had abandoned him on road. The NGO was looking for someone suitable who could adopt the pup and Neha volunteered. Now with her daughter, two dogs and a new pup, she got completely busy. With training the new pup and other routine stuff, she didn’t have any time to spare on the weird feeling and uneasiness she used to have.

During the same time, Neha and Kunal’s friends from Bangalore decided to spend their weekend in Pune. They were also a husband and wife and were quite close to both Neha and Kunal. Both of them welcomed the change and were happy to have them over for a stay. The friends came down on Friday evening, were supposed to stay on Saturday and had late an evening flight back to Bangalore on Sunday. They had a great time catching up and revisiting old memories on Friday and Saturday. Neha and Kunal, after many months, were spending time together with friends. On Saturday night they were awake chatting, drinking almost the whole night. Next day, Sunday, everybody was tired and woke up late. Neha had a hangover and was having a headache. She wasn’t in a mood to eat, so she settled for a cup of black coffee. Kunal just wanted to have cornflakes and milk. The other two settled with some half fry omelette and toast for breakfast. Neha started preparing the breakfast and checked the fridge. Luckily she had three eggs stored. She made a half fry and served it to her friend with toast. She put the next egg with one egg sotting on the kitchen counter. Suddenly she heard the maid complaining, “Didi I have cleaned and mopped the kitchen floor just few minutes back, why are you again messing it. Why are you serving eggs to dogs on the floor?” She was cribbing, “Now don’t ask me to clean it again.” Neha was surprised. How was that possible? She hadn’t given anything to the dog. She turned and saw the pup eating a half fried egg and there were bits and pieces of egg all over the floor. She checked with her friend. If he had given his share of half fry to the dog, but no, he was still eating it with his portion still on the plate.

Part 3

Neha was perplexed. She couldn’t understand how it happened. She had counted the eggs and there were only three out of which one she had served, the other was on the pan and third egg was still intact, on the kitchen counter. When she narrated the story to Kunal and her friends, they laughed and told her that it must all be a fragment of her imagination. She must have been daydreaming or due to the headache she might have miscalculated the eggs and didn’t remember making and serving it to the dog. As Neha had a bad hangover, she also agreed – maybe that was true! She also joined the laugh. Though in her subconscious, she knew somewhere something was not right.

They were now almost completing a year in Pune and at their new home. In this whole year there life had changed in many ways and the healthy, loving relationship which Kunal and Neha used to share in Bangalore had gone for a toss. Their fights had increased both in occurrence and intensity. Kunal started spending as less time at home as possible. They almost avoided talking to each other or they would again end up arguing over nothing. Kunal, most of the time, was busy with his work or was in office, he never felt the uneasiness or the eeriness which Neha always felt in the house. The small instances of the door being knocked and banged were now frequently happening. So much that even the maid started noticing those and started feeling uncomfortable. She told Neha that she wanted to leave the job as she was not liking all these. She too had this weird feeling that someone was keeping a watch over her always. Neha somehow convinced her to stay back though now the maid started leaving at 5pm rather than her usual 7pm. Still it was a relief for Neha that she didn’t leave the job.

It was a cold, wintry day in Pune. Neha, after lunch, was resting on bed with her daughter, who was sleeping besides her. Neha had a warm blanket covering her legs. Her daughter woke up and started searching for her milk bottle. Neha got up to give her the bottle which was kept besides her bed. She came back to her position and tried to pull the blanket over her. She realised that the blanket was folded and kept at the bed side. She was taken aback. She was just pondering over this and suddenly the dogs started howling as there was loud banging on the door. The temperature also dropped down so much that she started shivering. Due to all this noise, her daughter also started crying, showing by her little hands as if someone had pinched her on the hand. Neha could see that her daughter was pointing at a red spot on her skin. This scared Neha. She picked up her daughter and her cell phone and wallet and went downstairs. The dogs were still howling. In the meantime the maid came and she told Neha that this was enough; she would not be able to continue working there anymore. Neha herself was so scared she wasn’t willing to talk to the maid, leave alone convincing her to stay back. She just told her to go home. “Come back and we will talk.” Was all she could utter.

The maid left along with her. Neha called Kunal and informed him about things. She also told him that she was not feeling well and did not want to go back to the house. Kunal didn’t believe her but he could sense that she was really disturbed and panicking. He requested her to calm down and come over to his office. He tried wrapping up his work. Neha took an auto rickshaw and reached Kunal’s office. He took her to the cafe near his office. Neha was visibly upset. A warm cup of latte calmed her nerves and she felt a little better. She started discussing everything with Kunal and also told him about maid leaving the work. Kunal was trying to listen to her and understand her but however hard he tried, he was not convinced. This irritated and angered Neha further. She was on the verge of crying when she suddenly remembered that the dogs were alone in the apartment and sun was already down. She got really worried as she knew the dogs were also scared and started blaming herself for leaving the dogs alone in that situation. She told Kunal that she wanted to go back. There was no one to put on the lights for the dogs, but she didn’t want to go back and stay alone in that apartment. They both reached the society and after parking their car, they reached the apartment. The lights were already on in the apartment! They tried opening the door with keys but the lock didn’t open. It felt like the door was latched from inside. Neha got really scared and started knocking the door. There was pin drop silence, she couldn’t even hear the dogs, who otherwise wouldn’t rest till they had been patted and pampered when they used to be back. Kunal said, maybe the maid was back as she had a spare key. They started calling her but no one came and the door won’t budge.

Part 4

Neha tried calling the maid on her phone but it was out of reach. She tried calling the landline so she would pick it up if she was inside. They could hear the phone ringing but nobody picked. Suddenly they heard a click as if someone had picked and slammed the phone. This time even Kunal heard it and he also looked worried. He decided to enter the house though the balcony as the terrace door was never locked because of the dogs. Kunal went upstairs to the neighbours who used to live on the 6th floor, above them. Neha kept waiting in front of their apartment with her daughter. Kunal somehow managed to reach the terrace and from that door he entered the apartment. He first checked on the dogs. They were under the bed in the bedroom and looked very scared. They started whimpering as soon as they saw him. He comforted the dogs and took them with him to open the door for Neha. How the door could be latched from inside when no one was in the house apart from the dogs was a mystery now for both Neha and Kunal.

It was quite late already. Both Neha and Kunal were very tired. Kunal was smoking on the terrace and Neha, after putting their daughter to sleep, joined him. They started talking. Suddenly for no reason, Neha started getting angry and agitated. She started accusing Kunal of not believing her and not spending time with her. She started shouting on top of her voice. Kunal was shocked. He tried to reason with her but Neha was not in a mood to listen. Then in the rage she did something which no one ever expected. She tried to jump off the 5th floor terrace. Kunal, with all his might and quick reflexes, was able to catch hold of Neha and pull her back. He brought Neha inside and made her sit on the couch, got her a glass of water. Both were quiet but Kunal was really worried. He couldn’t help thinking what would have happened if he was not quick enough. They both were silent now. After five minutes Neha asked him, why was he looking so depressed? Kunal was confused. He told Neha what happened on the terrace and to his surprise Neha laughed it out. She said she couldn’t remember a thing and that Kunal was talking nonsense. Kunal had no answers. He started thinking of shifting the house and moving to a different place.

They got a suitable place on rent but it was available only after 15 days. They still fixed it and started packing up their stuff. Now Kunal started spending more time at home as he didn’t want to leave Neha and their daughter alone. It all seemed to be okay now and they were waiting to shift out. One day Kunal came back early from the office and as usual took the older dogs out for a walk. After coming back, he spent some time playing with his daughter and the husky pup. They went to sleep after dinner.

In the wee hours Kunal and Neha both were startled after hearing the whimpering of their pup, followed by a loud thud. They both immediately rushed to see what had happened. They were calling the name of the pup and could trace him nowhere. They usually used to sleep together in the guest room. None of the dogs were there inside. They both went to the terrace to find the older dogs standing on the terrace, trying to look down on the road. The dogs on seeing them, came towards them and looked very scared. Neha tried hugging them to calm them down and Kunal went to check what was it that the dogs were looking at. Still the pup was nowhere to be seen. He saw the most heart-wrenching scene ever, the pup was lying dead on the road. Kunal couldn’t believe what he just saw. The pup was so small that it couldn’t have jumped out by his own even while playing. He told Neha, who was inconsolable. They waited for a little while and as soon as the sun was out they took their daughter and the dogs and went out of that apartment and the society. There was still a few more days before they could shift to the new place. So they decided to keep the dogs with the pet NGO for a few days and themselves checked in to a hotel.

Kunal and Neha couldn’t believe and were still trying to understand what happened with them. Immediately after a day of their staying away from the apartment, they could feel lots of difference. Neha, though still shaken and sad, was not having that eerie and uneasy feeling any more. Kunal was also more calm and was feeling light in head.

They moved out of the apartment completely as soon as the new place was available. Thankfully the new place was nothing like the earlier apartment. Their family life again started gearing up and they started sharing the missing positivity and love and happiness again. Later Neha and Kunal came to know that the apartment where the incidences happened was built on a graveyard. Many other people had experienced similar unexplained activities. That’s why no one wanted to stay there. They could never forget the loss of their beloved pup though, but still were really grateful that they were safe and out of the apartment.

Neha and Kunal were a happily married couple staying in Bangalore. They were just blessed with a daughter, who with her cute antics, filled their life with joy and laughter. Kunal worked in an IT firm and Neha was a homemaker. They also had two dogs as a part of their family. Kunal was a doting father, a loving and caring husband. Neha was a dedicated mother and best companion Kunal could ask for. Their life was all what they dreamed ever.

When their daughter was only a year old, Kunal got a great opportunity in Pune and decided to relocate. Neha was a little apprehensive about shifting to Pune as she was afraid of beginning a new life in a completely new set up, all over again. She was anxious but Kunal ensured that Pune is a great city, similar to Bangalore in many aspects. He was confident that Neha would adjust very well.

Initially Kunal went alone to Pune, so he could look for an apartment before having the entire family shift there. It would make the start a little easier for Neha. As planned, Kunal joined the new job and started looking for a place which could be comfortable for his family and the pets too. Finally he shortlisted a few flats and zeroed in on an apartment which was located on the 5th floor of a high rise. The apartment was a 3bhk with a big attached terrace. The society was quite posh and cosmopolitan. He shared pictures of the apartment with Neha and she also liked it. So they finalised it. Kunal went back to Bangalore to help Neha in the shifting process. In a week’s time, they were in Pune. In the beginning everything was normal as it was supposed to be. Kunal got busy with getting adjusted to the demands of a new firm; Neha got busy settling the house and getting accustomed to the new locality. She got herself a full-day maid to help her with the household chores. She would come at morning 9 am and leave by 7 pm. So at least Neha had company during the day. Life was slowly but steadily coming in line.

Few days after their shifting, Neha was sitting on the terrace with her daughter playing with the dogs. Suddenly she heard a loud thud coming from the kitchen, as if all the utensils were falling down. At first she thought that by mistake the maid must have dropped some utensils, but the noise kept coming and was louder. She called the maid but suddenly remembered, the maid was out of the house to buy vegetables from the market. Neha went inside to check the kitchen and was surprised to see the kitchen spick and span with all the utensils at their respective places and nothing on the floor. She felt a little weird as she knew that she had heard the noise quite clearly. Neha thought that the noise might have come from some other apartment. She went back to the terrace.

After two days Neha was alone at home in the evening. The maid had taken the daughter to the garden and Kunal was out with the dogs for an evening walk. Usually she used to accompany Kunal but that day was very hot and humid, without any slight hint of breeze. Due to this sudden change in climate she was feeling a little uneasy.

She was in her bedroom, sitting on the bed with her eyes closed when suddenly she heard the door of the guest room getting closed with a loud bang. She instantly got up and wondered whether the maid or Kunal was back. But then, there was no other sound and the house was quiet as usual. She went on to check and found all the doors open; none of the doors were shut except the main door. She was still wondering about the noise when suddenly she heard a knock on the door. It was very light sound as if someone was tapping gently. She opened the door; there was no one. Could have been the wind, she thought, but then she realised it was still as gloomy as it had been! No breeze. There was not even a slight wisp of air. She again brushed away the thought, thinking it must be a misapprehension.

Days passed by. Neha still was not able to adjust in the city. She used to miss her friends in Bangalore. Kunal was trying to set up a new team and prove his mettle in office. So he was working for long hours, not able to devote much time for home and Neha. After their shifting to the new place, Neha did attempt a few times, to get friendly with her neighbours. Either the neighbours were both working, so they were busy or were not likeminded. In fact, to Neha’s surprise, most of the apartments were not occupied.

Neha started feeling lonely and confined herself to the four walls of the house. At her home also, she was never at ease. She had this constant feeling that someone was watching her all the time. It was an eerie feeling. She tried talking to Kunal, but either he was too busy or she couldn’t bring up the topic knowing that Kunal will just not believe her.

There was another change which was quite evident. Kunal and Neha had started fighting a lot among themselves. It would start with a small insignificant thing or misunderstanding and they would start arguing endlessly, resulting in major fights sometimes. The occurrence of these fights started increasing and they ended up fighting now, almost every day.

Neha was talking on phone with her friend in Bangalore one day. Finding her so upset, she suggested her to join some hobby classes or to do some social work. She also assured that she would plan to visit her soon. Her friend asked her not to think much about the house. Probably she was getting all those feelings because she was lonely and depressed and was seeking company! Neha felt, her friend was right. She came to know about an association that ran an NGO for animals and being a pet lover, she thought it was the best place for her to spend some quality time. So she started visiting the NGO and was happy spending time helping in various activities related to animal rescue and ensuring their wellbeing. She also made a couple of friends there.

To Be Continued in Part 2….

Neha was now spending time away from the house, had made friends and was feeling much better and happy than she was. Yet, whenever she was at home, the eerie feeling of she being watched, was always at back of her mind. Whenever she used to cook, this eerie feeling used to increase. She felt she wasn’t alone in the kitchen. As if someone was walking very swiftly behind her or was standing right behind her. When she turned, she could never see a thing. Many times she asked Kunal or her maid to check whether they had come to the kitchen, but they always replied with a no and mostly used to be quite far from the kitchen area.
The restlessness and anxiety inside Neha started to grow stronger. Moreover, she was not able to talk it out as neither her maid nor her husband heard any noise or had any eerie feeling. She could sense that only the dogs were equally restless, behaving differently at times. They either used to stare and constantly bark looking at one direction or whimper suddenly and hide behind her or under the bed for no reason.

Once Kunal had to be out of town and was to return late at night. She invited her friends for dinner. The friends were supposed to reach at around 8pm. After finishing all her work, Neha was getting ready, when she heard the door bell ringing accompanied by a knock on the main door. She checked her watch. As it was nearly 8 pm so she thought her friends had reached. She called out to her friends from her room, asking them to wait for a few minutes. But the ringing of the bell continued and the knocks on the door increased in intensity and frequency and soon changed to loud banging! Neha was surprised and irritated a little, but anyway she hurried up. She still shouted asking them to wait, as she ran towards the door. The moment she reached, everything went completely silent.

Her cellphone which she had left in her room, started ringing. She thought she would attend the call later and opened the door. To her surprise there was no one at the door. She called out the names of her friends but no one answered. There was no one in the lobby. She thought her friends were trying to pull a prank on her and might have hidden somewhere or gone down by the lift. She checked the lift, it was on 5th floor only and was empty. She checked the staircase going down and climbing up but she could see no one. Then again the phone started ringing. Wondering how can that happen, she closed the door, went inside and picked up the phone. It was one of her friends on the call. They said they had called her before too, to inform that they would be a little late as their car tyre had punctured. She couldn’t believe them and kept asking whether they are trying to play a prank on her. Her friends hung up after saying no to her questions a couple of times, assuring that they were almost still 5kms away from her place and would reach as soon as possible. Neha was not able to digest that she had just imagined all the loud banging and the door bell ringing. She thought there could be some loose wire connection which made the bell ring and the door knocking could be because of the wind, though it was not much windy that day, certainly not enough to bang the door. Later, after her friends came and she had a nice dinner with them, laughing, cracking jokes, she forgot about the incident.

After few days she brought another pup home. It was a husky, who was rescued by the NGO after his owners had abandoned him on road. The NGO was looking for someone suitable who could adopt the pup and Neha volunteered. Now with her daughter, two dogs and a new pup, she got completely busy. With training the new pup and other routine stuff, she didn’t have any time to spare on the weird feeling and uneasiness she used to have.

During the same time, Neha and Kunal’s friends from Bangalore decided to spend their weekend in Pune. They were also a husband and wife and were quite close to both Neha and Kunal. Both of them welcomed the change and were happy to have them over for a stay. The friends came down on Friday evening, were supposed to stay on Saturday and had late an evening flight back to Bangalore on Sunday. They had a great time catching up and revisiting old memories on Friday and Saturday. Neha and Kunal, after many months, were spending time together with friends. On Saturday night they were awake chatting, drinking almost the whole night. Next day, Sunday, everybody was tired and woke up late. Neha had a hangover and was having a headache. She wasn’t in a mood to eat, so she settled for a cup of black coffee. Kunal just wanted to have cornflakes and milk. The other two settled with some half fry omelette and toast for breakfast. Neha started preparing the breakfast and checked the fridge. Luckily she had three eggs stored. She made a half fry and served it to her friend with toast. She put the next egg with one egg sotting on the kitchen counter. Suddenly she heard the maid complaining, “Didi I have cleaned and mopped the kitchen floor just few minutes back, why are you again messing it. Why are you serving eggs to dogs on the floor?” She was cribbing, “Now don’t ask me to clean it again.” Neha was surprised. How was that possible? She hadn’t given anything to the dog. She turned and saw the pup eating a half fried egg and there were bits and pieces of egg all over the floor. She checked with her friend. If he had given his share of half fry to the dog, but no, he was still eating it with his portion still on the plate.

To Be Continued in Part 3…

Neha was perplexed. She couldn’t understand how it happened. She had counted the eggs and there were only three out of which one she had served, the other was on the pan and third egg was still intact, on the kitchen counter. When she narrated the story to Kunal and her friends, they laughed and told her that it must all be a fragment of her imagination. She must have been daydreaming or due to the headache she might have miscalculated the eggs and didn’t remember making and serving it to the dog. As Neha had a bad hangover, she also agreed – maybe that was true! She also joined the laugh. Though in her subconscious, she knew somewhere something was not right.

They were now almost completing a year in Pune and at their new home. In this whole year there life had changed in many ways and the healthy, loving relationship which Kunal and Neha used to share in Bangalore had gone for a toss. Their fights had increased both in occurrence and intensity. Kunal started spending as less time at home as possible. They almost avoided talking to each other or they would again end up arguing over nothing. Kunal, most of the time, was busy with his work or was in office, he never felt the uneasiness or the eeriness which Neha always felt in the house. The small instances of the door being knocked and banged were now frequently happening. So much that even the maid started noticing those and started feeling uncomfortable. She told Neha that she wanted to leave the job as she was not liking all these. She too had this weird feeling that someone was keeping a watch over her always. Neha somehow convinced her to stay back though now the maid started leaving at 5pm rather than her usual 7pm. Still it was a relief for Neha that she didn’t leave the job.

It was a cold, wintry day in Pune. Neha, after lunch, was resting on bed with her daughter, who was sleeping besides her. Neha had a warm blanket covering her legs. Her daughter woke up and started searching for her milk bottle. Neha got up to give her the bottle which was kept besides her bed. She came back to her position and tried to pull the blanket over her. She realised that the blanket was folded and kept at the bed side. She was taken aback. She was just pondering over this and suddenly the dogs started howling as there was loud banging on the door. The temperature also dropped down so much that she started shivering. Due to all this noise, her daughter also started crying, showing by her little hands as if someone had pinched her on the hand. Neha could see that her daughter was pointing at a red spot on her skin. This scared Neha. She picked up her daughter and her cell phone and wallet and went downstairs. The dogs were still howling. In the meantime the maid came and she told Neha that this was enough; she would not be able to continue working there anymore. Neha herself was so scared she wasn’t willing to talk to the maid, leave alone convincing her to stay back. She just told her to go home. “Come back and we will talk.” Was all she could utter.

The maid left along with her. Neha called Kunal and informed him about things. She also told him that she was not feeling well and did not want to go back to the house. Kunal didn’t believe her but he could sense that she was really disturbed and panicking. He requested her to calm down and come over to his office. He tried wrapping up his work. Neha took an auto rickshaw and reached Kunal’s office. He took her to the cafe near his office. Neha was visibly upset. A warm cup of latte calmed her nerves and she felt a little better. She started discussing everything with Kunal and also told him about maid leaving the work. Kunal was trying to listen to her and understand her but however hard he tried, he was not convinced. This irritated and angered Neha further. She was on the verge of crying when she suddenly remembered that the dogs were alone in the apartment and sun was already down. She got really worried as she knew the dogs were also scared and started blaming herself for leaving the dogs alone in that situation. She told Kunal that she wanted to go back. There was no one to put on the lights for the dogs, but she didn’t want to go back and stay alone in that apartment. They both reached the society and after parking their car, they reached the apartment. The lights were already on in the apartment! They tried opening the door with keys but the lock didn’t open. It felt like the door was latched from inside. Neha got really scared and started knocking the door. There was pin drop silence, she couldn’t even hear the dogs, who otherwise wouldn’t rest till they had been patted and pampered when they used to be back. Kunal said, maybe the maid was back as she had a spare key. They started calling her but no one came and the door won’t budge.

To Be Continued in Part 4…

Neha tried calling the maid on her phone but it was out of reach. She tried calling the landline so she would pick it up if she was inside. They could hear the phone ringing but nobody picked. Suddenly they heard a click as if someone had picked and slammed the phone. This time even Kunal heard it and he also looked worried. He decided to enter the house though the balcony as the terrace door was never locked because of the dogs. Kunal went upstairs to the neighbours who used to live on the 6th floor, above them. Neha kept waiting in front of their apartment with her daughter. Kunal somehow managed to reach the terrace and from that door he entered the apartment. He first checked on the dogs. They were under the bed in the bedroom and looked very scared. They started whimpering as soon as they saw him. He comforted the dogs and took them with him to open the door for Neha. How the door could be latched from inside when no one was in the house apart from the dogs was a mystery now for both Neha and Kunal.

It was quite late already. Both Neha and Kunal were very tired. Kunal was smoking on the terrace and Neha, after putting their daughter to sleep, joined him. They started talking. Suddenly for no reason, Neha started getting angry and agitated. She started accusing Kunal of not believing her and not spending time with her. She started shouting on top of her voice. Kunal was shocked. He tried to reason with her but Neha was not in a mood to listen. Then in the rage she did something which no one ever expected. She tried to jump off the 5th floor terrace. Kunal, with all his might and quick reflexes, was able to catch hold of Neha and pull her back. He brought Neha inside and made her sit on the couch, got her a glass of water. Both were quiet but Kunal was really worried. He couldn’t help thinking what would have happened if he was not quick enough. They both were silent now. After five minutes Neha asked him, why was he looking so depressed? Kunal was confused. He told Neha what happened on the terrace and to his surprise Neha laughed it out. She said she couldn’t remember a thing and that Kunal was talking nonsense. Kunal had no answers. He started thinking of shifting the house and moving to a different place.

They got a suitable place on rent but it was available only after 15 days. They still fixed it and started packing up their stuff. Now Kunal started spending more time at home as he didn’t want to leave Neha and their daughter alone. It all seemed to be okay now and they were waiting to shift out. One day Kunal came back early from the office and as usual took the older dogs out for a walk. After coming back, he spent some time playing with his daughter and the husky pup. They went to sleep after dinner.

In the wee hours Kunal and Neha both were startled after hearing the whimpering of their pup, followed by a loud thud. They both immediately rushed to see what had happened. They were calling the name of the pup and could trace him nowhere. They usually used to sleep together in the guest room. None of the dogs were there inside. They both went to the terrace to find the older dogs standing on the terrace, trying to look down on the road. The dogs on seeing them, came towards them and looked very scared. Neha tried hugging them to calm them down and Kunal went to check what was it that the dogs were looking at. Still the pup was nowhere to be seen. He saw the most heart-wrenching scene ever, the pup was lying dead on the road. Kunal couldn’t believe what he just saw. The pup was so small that it couldn’t have jumped out by his own even while playing. He told Neha, who was inconsolable. They waited for a little while and as soon as the sun was out they took their daughter and the dogs and went out of that apartment and the society. There was still a few more days before they could shift to the new place. So they decided to keep the dogs with the pet NGO for a few days and themselves checked in to a hotel.

Kunal and Neha couldn’t believe and were still trying to understand what happened with them. Immediately after a day of their staying away from the apartment, they could feel lots of difference. Neha, though still shaken and sad, was not having that eerie and uneasy feeling any more. Kunal was also more calm and was feeling light in head.

They moved out of the apartment completely as soon as the new place was available. Thankfully the new place was nothing like the earlier apartment. Their family life again started gearing up and they started sharing the missing positivity and love and happiness again. Later Neha and Kunal came to know that the apartment where the incidences happened was built on a graveyard. Many other people had experienced similar unexplained activities. That’s why no one wanted to stay there. They could never forget the loss of their beloved pup though, but still were really grateful that they were safe and out of the apartment.

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11 Response Comments

  • Aparna Mondal07/06/2019 at 9:25 PM

    It’s scary. I started having goosebumps. Well written story. With you proficient writing you could generate a suspense in us ! Beautiful Bishakha ! Can’t wait for the next episode.

  • Divyanshi13/06/2019 at 1:16 PM

    It was actually very scary , a petrifying tale . The narration of the story was just flawless . Was so absorbed into this suspense thriller. Loved it

    • Bishakha Moitra10/07/2019 at 2:37 PM

      Thank you for the appreciation. Hope you enjoyed getting scared. Keep reading and keep loving.

      Sorry for the late reply as was facing some technical problems with the website.

  • Aparna Mondal13/06/2019 at 2:46 PM

    Gripping story ! Lovely end !! Loved reading it. Looking forward to read many more exciting story from you .

    • Bishakha Moitra10/07/2019 at 2:34 PM

      Your words of appreciation and motivation means a lot. Glad you liked it. Thank you so much.

      Sorry for the late reply as was facing some technical problems with the website.

  • Swetha Amit14/06/2019 at 6:53 AM

    It was gripping and quite spooky

    • Bishakha Moitra10/07/2019 at 2:32 PM

      Thank you so much for reading and liking the story.

      Sorry for replying late as was facing some problems with the website.

  • Boijayanto Mukherjee15/06/2019 at 10:13 AM

    A great attempt at what can be called a quintessential horror episode straight out of some TV-show. Anyone reading the tale can easily see the events unfold before their own eyes. The characters seem to have unparalleled relativity with real life people which makes the story much more believable. Each part of the tale thickens the plot and increases the horror quotient. The concluding part can be called darker, if, compared to the rest with the ending appearing a bit hackneyed and typically over utilized. However, keeping in mind the length and incidents described, every error can be forgiven for the entire plot is incredibly well crafted and gripping. Looking forward to reading more such chilling tales!

    • Bishakha Moitra10/07/2019 at 2:29 PM

      Thank you for reading and liking the story. Your kind words of appreciation means a lot. I am humbled. Keep reading and keep liking.

      Sorry for late reply as was facing some technical problems with the website.

  • NANDANA DASGUPTA30/06/2019 at 10:11 PM

    It was really a scary one, scary enough to give your readers goosebumps! While reading your story one can actually visualize the entire incidents slowly unfolding before their eyes, which makes it all the more believable. Keep gifting us such chilling stories more, lots of best wishes.

    • Bishakha Moitra10/07/2019 at 2:25 PM

      Thank you so much for the read. Hope you enjoyed getting the goosebumps. Happy chilling 👻😄

      Sorry for late reply as was facing some technical problems with the website.

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