Chapter Eleven : Conclusion ?

Adi's pov:


It has been Months since our visit to mum's grandfather's country house, it was a trip that changed all of our view on possibilities. On this day last year if someone had asked me about my experiences about supernatural, I would've said, that I don't have any such experiences. But after our expedition to palace of Haragovindgarh now I have enough supernatural experience on my share to last an entire life time.

The Sacred Idol of Durga Maa now has been founded at new temple built at Moon's house.

Of all the things those were found in the palace we took three things, Vijay's MaanasShastra, The Lost or hidden Idol of Durga Maa and an bracelet that we found in aa chest of iron near the back garden. Rest of artifacts from the palace were handed over to department of archaeological survey.

The bracelet was designed and crafted by Vijay Prakash to be gifted to Sujata. It was some kind of protective gear made of a very light metal. I don't have enough knowledge I'm metallurgy to know which metal was used. When I first recalled it I was shocked, Vijay actually stooped so low that he crafted only one pair of protective bracelet! Only for his lover? Then what about rest of his family? Weren't they worthy of same protection too? Then after few days of hating my past self I recalled that Vijay crafted this one and on completion he set to return to Haragovindgarh, he'd decided to craft rest of them after his return to palace. But alas, when he returned he found him world torn to shreds.

We discussed the situation with our families. And at last Nanda Auntie and Ashoke uncle, Moon's dad decided that it would be best way to honour their daughter's family from pastlife to worship the Idol. Though both my dad and Ashoke uncle were having trouble in believing on the theory of past life. As most of the sane and logical people will have. But then again there's the old saying, Only a fool sees the world through a keyhole! So when our mothers reminded them of that saying both of them stopped arguing. Though dad grumbled once or twice about missing a good adventure!

It is quite amusing when people say we had a good adventure, but at some point both of us had our life at stake. But no need to remember those troubling memories. Today is a pleasant day. It is Moon's 17th birthday. And right now I am on my way to their home. Half an hour ago Ashoke Uncle called my dad and asked him to send me over for some help. So I'm on my way to there. My parents along with my little sister, Tinni will arrive later.

When I arrived, I found Ashoke Uncle in front of gate already in his car. He told me that he needed my help with some final moment marketing.

Third Person pov

Half an hour later

Sunetra was getting prepared for the puja that was to be held today. It was first time in years when such a elegant occasion will take place in her home. Till last year her parents used to take her to temple on her birthday to pray but, this year after they found out the Idol from old Palace of Haragovindgarh her parents decided it would be best to worship the said idol.

Right after returning to Kolkata they had contacted respective authorities. The palace was now a site under scrutiny of Department of Archaeological Survey. Most of the articles from the palace was taken to various museums and the palace was being repaired to be endorsed as one of the historical monuments of the country.

Though at first people were afraid of entering the palace but later they assumed that curse of the palace was just a myth.

Sunetra's pov:

My nervousness was steadily increasing. Until last year the day of my birthday had been an extremely personal occasion, only our close relatives and family friends used to attend. And today here I'm, getting prepared for a huge Pooja that was held because of my birthday. Well to be truthful it was not for my birthday but because we needed to found the holy idol of Maa Durga here in the temple at our home was the reason of this huge arrangement. But people knew the pooja was held because if my birthday and I'm now feeling that I'm going to mess up everything!

"Dearest, nothing will go wrong. Don't panic my little sister" Sohini Di's musical voice drifted through my room.

I whipped around and there she was, my elder sister from past life in all her glorious beauty, the crown princess of Haragovindgarh. And She looked like one today, in her magnificent Saree, though it was shame that not many people will be able to see her.

I twirled around in my clothes, "Didi do i look good?"

"You look amazing sister, really! I'm sure my brother will be at lose of words." She finished with a smirk.

"I'm feeling very self conscious all of sudden Didi. Mum invited most of my classmates from school. And none of them are my friend. What if I make a fool of myself in front of them? " I said, though it sounded like whinning to my own ears.

"Don't fret sister , you'll do all right." She replied with a reassuring smile.

I noticed her eyes were sparkling with unshed tears, "Why are you crying Didi? " I questioned her.

" I'm just happy knowing how beautiful my little sister has become. She already has her knight with magical weapon wrapped around her finger , who's right now trying to do something your father asked him to do." Didi replied, looking over out of the window that faced the garden .

A single drop of tear rolled down her cheek, "I'm here today to bid good bye to my new family. I'll go to meet Maa and Baba after so long, that if they already haven't been born again. "

Didi paused for a moment, then she broke down giggling, though tears were still streaming down her cheeks, "I even don't know if they'll appreciate what i did about the palace. Dumping so much responsibility on you and Adi. I endangered both of your lifes. You're alive today only because these bracelets you are wearing ." She finished holding my hands.

I always had problems when my beloved ones cried in front of me. A hurting lump was forming inside my throat. I could feel it. I rushed to hug Didi but I couldn't, she wasn't solid anymore. As my hands flew through her form I felt as if i had dipped my hands in cold vapour.. Her form was gas like but it was cold, though it also had all the features Didi had on her person.

"You can no longer touch me my beloved sister. My form is disintegrating. After today none of you will no longer able to see me. That's why I want to say my good bye while you all can see me."

I was still crying sitting on my bed when I heard Mum calling my name from downstairs. It seemed the time had come, the puja was about to begin.

"Two minutes Mum. I shouted out."

Adi's pov

Moments later

I heard as Nanda auntie called Moon. The pooja was about to begin. I was sitting in the row behind the seats for Moon, Nanda auntie and Ashoke uncle. As my eyes rested on his back I remembered our discussion from our 'last minute shopping trip'.

I couldn't believe my own ears this morning at first when Ashoke uncle asked me what were my intentions towards Moon. I was out of words and afraid also. All of my elder cousins once or twice had shared their first experiences on such interrogations. And according to me each of those first interviews had ended horribly for them.

I was thinking how to answer the question when i felt the temperature drop. A hand firmly held my shoulder and shook me.

"What happened Aditya? Anything wrong son? Are you feeling well? You're sweating so bad, even while the air-conditioning is on." He asked me. Ashoke uncle never used my shortened name like others did.

"Uncle, Moon is my best friend, has been so since i was four. All I want is her happiness."

"Do you like her more than a friend should?" He asked with a straight face, his eyes boring into me.

"I think I do." I said in a small voice.

"You like her more than a friend because of your memories from past life? Aditya answer clearly, I won't play word games. " he said in a calm but demanding voice.

"No Uncle, it has nothing to do with our past life. I like Sunetra, not Sujata. I like you'll daughter with whom I grew up. Not the princess of some forgotten kingdom. And I'll never force her to like me back that way. I hope some day we will be more than best friend. Perhaps she'll be my girlfriend and we'll date . But if she chooses someone else I'll support her fully."

I paused for a moment, "Just because my past life memories say we were betrothed doesn't mean that's our destiny. I will never quit being her best friend. If she goes out with someone else that's fine, that is if the boy is good to her and treats her like she deserves to be treated. But if someone hurts her somehow, then I don't know what will happen to them. "

All my recollections of morning went out of window when Moon entered the Room. My breath got hitched in my pharynx as my eyes found her. Today she had a sky blue saree on which has small blue flowers on them. I was pretty sure her tormentors from school had their jaws hitting the floor! As Moon neared I noticed she had big puffy eyes. Why was she crying? Did someone teased her? Or did somebody said some thing bad to her?

She took her seat right in front of me. And soon the House was being bathed in chants of holy mantras.

Third person pov

Later in evening

It wasn't until late evening when every guests had left and Adi managed to confront Sunetra, "What is it Moon? Why are you looking upset and why were you crying before you came down?"

"That would be because of me brother." Sohini answered as she materialized in the room. She was looking more pale comparing to how Sunetra saw her during morning.

"Sister please call everyone." Sohini said to Sunetra. Her voice now sounding like as if it was coming from far distance.

One by one Ashoke, Sunanda and Anuradha entered the room, Anuradha had a sleeping Tinni in her arms.

Sohini waited till everyone was comfortable, " All of you know, that My reason to stay behind has been fulfilled. Now it's time to take my leave." She paused for a moment hesitating, then she continued looking up at the parents, " I know you are not entirely happy with me. I understand what I did was pretty much wrong. I dumped huge problems on those whom I call brother and sister. I know my own parents would've never approved of my choices ."

Sohini sighed, (actually it appeared as if she sighed, considering she is a ghost) "I am grateful you.." She continued addressing the parents, "supported them when they needed your support. Only reason that had me bound to this plane in now gone. It's now time to finally say good bye." Her eyes were sparkling as if they were full of tears.

Sunetra choked back a sob as she clung to her mother for comfort. But she kept crying.

"Please my dearest don't cry so much, it hurts knowing I am one hurting you." Sohini tried to soothe Sunetra, but she couldn't touch her, instead her form faltered. She turned to face Adi and Anuradha.

"Time has come mother, brother. At last I'll see my parents again. It was my best time in past several centuries that i spent with you all. I'll miss you."

Anuradha smiled sadly, they all had become fond of Sohini in last few months. Despite the fact she had endangered their children's life. But they couldn't blame her or shun her away. The girl was barely in her late teenage when she was murdered . Besides all her life she had been taught to look afrer her subjects. She had done what was necessary to free her subjects from astate of denied afterlife.

Adi was at lose of words. He couldn't understand how should he react. The part of him that was influenced by Vijay's memories wanted to cry, throw tantrums, break things. Yet another part of him was happy, at last aftrer centuries Sohini will see her parents. He knew he wouldn't survive without seeing or talking to his parents for that long.

As he couldn't compose fully sentence to express his thoughts he only nodded when Sohini informed him about her time to leave, he felt pinprick of tears at the corner of his eyes.

Sohini addressed Adi, "Brother mine, the knowledge you have is now lost. Use it well, use it to protect those who can not protect themselves. Keep our family safe, I'll be watching over you. And, before I forget, I'll suggest that you forge a couple of more protective gears for your family, they'll need it. "

Sohini paused for a moment, she was looking at Adi's eyes when Adi heard her voice in his mind, " The rumors about the curse of the palace started when some scavangers came looking for a weapon that was unimaginable, which morphed as per weilder's wish, we overheard them and we had to take action to prevent them from taking it away. That's when we started haunting the palace. What I'm trying to tell you is that, there are people out there who know about Maanashastra. And they will come for it. So it's now your duty to protect it and your dear ones. Use your knowledge from pastlife to protect yourselves. "

"I never was good in saying good bye. So please don't mind if I have said anything wrong. I'll miss you all. I'll ask for your forgiveness again, remember me.." with those last words Sohini's form disintegrated fully, where she stood a fist full of Parijat (Night Jasmine) was left.

Sunetra broke down weeping, clinging to her parents. None of the occupnts in the room said anything, Adi bent down to scoop up the flowers, his mind was racing, trying to process the information he just received from Sohini. His best friend's sniffing brought him to present. He walked to Sunetra with his hands full of flowers. He softly called her name, then showed her the flowers.

Sunetra unwrapped herself from the tight embrace she had on her parents, she took a handful from his hands and then held his free hand, she led him to her room.

Adi's pov

Moon led me to her room, she was still crying, I was feeling like something was trying to suffocate my breathing tract, some invisible force was squeezing my heart. I wasn't sure why was I feeling like this, because Sohini Di left us or because of Moon's tears.

On the west side of her room there was a desk, where Moon used to study, today on that desk there was a portrait, a smiling young girl, in her late teens, it was Sohini's. Moon painted it during last few months. Reaching the desk we laid the flowers in front of it.

"I'll miss you everyday Didi." Moon whispered to it.

Miles Away, in another part of country

Third person pov

A man in his sixties sat in his study, he'd an extensive report in his hand, it was about a palace of a forgotten kingdom. The one about which he'd heard tales since his early childhood. His grandfather used tell him those stories, the ones run from generations to generations from centuries ago. A tale about a fallen kingdom, a prince and his lost weapon. His ancestors tried to get their hands on it from time to time, but failed miserably due to the curses on it's resting place.

His grandfather used to say that the weapon was a work of art, it could morph between sword, bow and battleaxe . And it originally looked like a ordinary cylinder. He was wide eyed little boy back then, he was astonished, amazed.

He realised it when he was in his early adulthood, that weapon was the ultimate key to change the world. One who had it's mystery in his hand was bound to be undefeatable except may be when facing nukes. The features his ancestors used to blabbermouth about were only teaser, no inventor would ever show off all secret aspects of his weapon in public, it's just never done. He deduced the weapon could morph into any weapon of weilder's went once to get the weapon, but couldn't get more than five steps inside the palace compound. He was thrown out harshly by some invisible force. It took a whole month to get himself out of the hospital. So he decided to wait for the perfect opportunity to get the weapon like rest of his ancestors did.

Today decades later, his agents in archaeological survey managed to send him a file with all official records on the palace of forgotten kingdom of Haragovindgarh. As he read through the file his mind started to race, if the people from archaeological survey can access the palace now it only means that either the curse has ended, which actually never happens, so the next possibility is the reason behind of those incidents have been moved from the palace. Now all he have to do is find out what actually happened in there, as the people in survey have not mentioned any name when in came to about the identity of the person who accessed the palace first. If all of his calculations were right, then the shape shifting weapon of lost legends has left it's final resting place.

And for what ever cost he'll be going to make it his own.

A/N: Well this is where I am finishing this one. I'm planning for a couple of sequels of this one. But I haven't started on them yet.

Yes I know probably all of my readers saw it coming. Now a plot which was weaved by a seventeen year old hormonal male (at the time of the first draft) has to be predictable

And for those who are having trouble imagining the characters, with the respect to your gender place yourself in the character and place your boyfriend or girlfriend in the other role. I know for those who are from other countries and from different cultural backgrounds will have a hard time understanding all the references littered around throughout the story, to you my friend I solemnly apolozise. I did not made up those references, I'm not Tolkein or JKR.. I just tried to create a story with some concepts and legends (minus Maanashastra) already in place since past thousand year in my country.

Thank you for reading -The94thRiverII (THENAMEOFARIVER on ff dot net)