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Ripped

by | Aug 28, 2021 | Fiction, Uncategorized

Ripped

Characters- Husband, Wife, The men

As husband and wife find themselves at crossroads, both literally and metaphorically, after many wrong turns, and clueless as to how to reach the town, they question themselves as to why they are travelling in the first place.

It has been 5 years since the their marriage, both loved each other from their college days and decided to lead a happy and lovely life. However, from a year and half, things have been rough between them. Many said to consult a marriage therapist who can help them both to rekindle their love life, while others said why spend money on those people, ‘’conceive a child’’ all your problems will go away, your child will unite you both, besides it costs nothing!

They anyway consulted a marriage therapist and who told them to take a break from their monotonous lives and go on a trip. Wife was pretty excited as she had never been on any trip for a very long time, husband on the other hand decided to “give it a go” if it solves anything.

As they are stuck at crossroads, husband says “We should have never come for the trip, moreover to some old relative’s town of yours where you weren’t even born, you don’t even know what the place looks like?’’. Wife replies “You clearly didn’t want to come to the trip, so why can’t you say it on my face.” Husband says “Now, wait a minute! I never said no, I only asked you why you chose this place! See, we still have time, we can turn back and go to our house and we will find some nice place to go.” 

As they argue, a man comes from one of the roads and wife points to him and tells her husband to ask him. Husband gets down from the car and asks the man about the town, the man says “Yes, it’s this way, the way I came from,” husband thanks him and gets into the car and tells his wife that he has found the way. Husband murmurs “It would be so great to find a way in life too..” , “What?’’ the wife says, “Nothing” says the husband.

They enter the town and find it very dark with very little light around, he stops in the middle of the road where they can see few houses and shops around them. Husband gets down and goes to the store where he finds a group of five men and a bartender. He introduces himself and asks about the address, meanwhile the men get up from their seats and intervene and ask “What’s the problem?”

“Nothing this man is trying to find out this address,” says the bartender. The men look at it and say that it is located towards the right of the end of the road. The husband thanks them and comes out. The men stare out of the window and look at the car and the wife and a sort of confused and strange expression forms on their faces.

“We found it, come on let’s go” says the husband. “This is so weird” says the wife. “What?” the husband replies.

“There are only men everywhere in this town. I didn’t see a woman till now.” 

‘’So what? You haven’t even seen the entire town, how can you be so sure? Anyway, they must be in their houses… like always’’ says the husband.

“Now, what do you mean by that, huh?!. How can you even talk like that,” says the wife.

“OH! Now, come on don’t start it again! Remember, we came to have a good time and forget about everything in the past” says the husband. The wife replies “Yeah, I always start, don’t I? It’s always me who shuts up and you go on rambling that it’s all my fault.”

As they reach the house, they get down and are surprised as to how big it is from the outside. Husband realises that the power fuse is off and goes to the storage room located outside and switches it on. Upon entering, they find the house dirty. For the next few hours both work together by cleaning the house and finally retiring themselves to bed. As they lie in bed, wife says “I still find it strange that I didn’t see a woman till now, there is something strange with this town.’’ Husband doesn’t reply. 

Wife pushes his hand and says ‘’Are you listening”’, “’What?… oh come on now, just sleep it’s been a long day and you are tired”’ the husband says in a drowsy and sleepy voice.

The next day, Wife goes out of the house to get some groceries as she realized that there was nothing in the house. She exits and goes down the lane, the five men are situated near an old and broken building which looks little burnt on the outside. They constantly look at her and she glances at them, and then hurriedly enters the store. She lists out her groceries and asks the man who is also the bartender. “You see, I haven’t even seen a woman since I entered this town” says the wife.

” What? Women? Well, they are history now, aren’t they?” 

“What?.. Who are history?” the wife asks in a confused manner. “Please just go, I am not feeling well,” says the bartender. The wife exits the store and sees that the men are still at the same place and as she walks, they suddenly get down together and brisk walk towards her in a weird pattern.

The wife gets scared and starts running as the thumping sound of their boots come closer and closer. She breathes heavily and starts running faster as she hears whistles and marching sounds behind her.

The wife blasts into the house with fear and sweat on her face. ”Well, where were you? You had me worrying” says the husband. “They… followed me… outside…,” she says with a broken and trembling voice. ‘’What? Who?’’ the husband goes outside and finds no one.

“There is no one here, where did you go anyway?’’ he asks. “To get groceries” she answers him. “You could wake me up, I would have gone.” She stays silent and numb  and after sometime goes and hugs him but he just pats her and moves away.

Few hours later the husband goes out of the house for a stroll. When he reaches the main area, he finds those five men near the same old building. He moves past them and explores the town. He finds most of the houses empty and as his wife said, he didn’t find any woman in the town, not even a child too. He finds this strange and absurd and decides to head towards home, as he is walking, he finds that the five men aren’t there at the same place. Husband stops for one second and then rushes back to the house and yells out to his wife. He doesn’t find her anywhere in the house, he goes out and finds her in the storage room.

“What? Why are you yelling? Look what I found, a shotgun, it’s very old and there are some tools here,” she says. He sighs and goes near her and hugs her. He felt very good but she stands in an awkward position not knowing why suddenly he was hugging her. 

The next day, wife decides to prepare a big feast as they are about to leave. Husband goes out just to take a walk around. When he enters the main area, he sees the bartender guy in a tensed and hurried state, packing his things up.

“Hey, what happened? Are you going somewhere? What’s with the packing?” Husband asks. “It’s over, they have conquered, it’s no use … I should have left back then, I am a fool an idiot, being in this place of damnation, hopeless causes… They fought for hopeless causes, they invaded and now here we are…” the bartender rambled in anguish. “What? Hey are you okay?” husband asks. “Oh yes, I am, that is why I am leaving this place, you too leave okay? It’s not good to stay at such places.” He gets into his car and leaves. Husband is puzzled and he felt alone in this town as there was hardly anyone. As he turns and decides to go, he sees those five men again, as if they are preparing for some war. He ignores them and heads to home. 

The sun sets and darkness lurks, husband reaches near the house, suddenly turns around and in distance finds out that those five men are heading towards the house. Perplexed and confused, he rushes back to his house and yells for his wife to lock all the doors. He goes to the store room, picks up the shot gun, the bullets and the tools available there and then rushes back to the house and locks the main door. 

“What’s happening?” the wife asks. “They are coming… those five men…” he says in a trembling voice. He sees one of the men standing in front on the main door, doing nothing and just staring. He runs to kitchen to sees through the window, and finds another man standing there. He goes upstairs and finds through the bedroom window that a ladder is against it and a man is climbing it and another man beside the ladder. Husband ducks and hides beside the window and just as the man enters, he stabs a sharp tool in his knee and kicks him onto the other side and then shooting him with the shotgun. Husband takes deep breath with sweat pouring all over him, the man near the ladder hears the sound and rushes towards the main door. Meanwhile, two men enter the house and both surround the wife and she starts running. Both start chasing her and one man catches her dress and pulls her back and she suddenly falls on the floor and a she starts yelling out, husband hears and goes down. As one of the two men confront him, he suddenly points the shotgun which he was hiding behind the pillar and shoots him and then, the other man drags the wife with him to the kitchen ripping her dress in the process. Suddenly, the power turns off and a sound of a gun is heard, husband rushes to the wife and finds the man on her lap with blood pouring out on her. He pushes him aside and both realize that one last man is present in the store room who cut out the fuses. Husband sees him through the window and shouts “Hey, who are you? I have a gun, don’t come near just get out of here.”

“I should get out?” he laughs maniacally. “Who came to whose place, huh? You came to our place, right? So why should we get out!!!” he yells in anguish and suddenly, a hand comes breaking the widow holding the husband’s neck, the wife takes a knife nearby and stabs continuously onto the man’s hand. He shouts in pain and then shouts again and runs towards the main door. As he barges into the house with pitch darkness around, a white light is thrown on the other side, the man goes towards it and then the husband comes from the other side and shoots twice behind his back. Husband goes towards him, turns him to the other side and picks up his phone. He goes to his wife and both sit down, in the midst of the dead bodies, both soaked in blood. The wife lays her head on her husband’s shoulder and starts crying, feeling that they are safe but still in fear and paranoia, both hug each other this time… truly.

THE END                   

 

Author Bio

Kaarthikeya Yelury

Kaarthikeya Yelury is a student of BA (Mass Communication) at St Mary's College (Batch of 2020-23)