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This Man (Part 2 of 2)

Bessie had been here for too long. Everything was white here. Or one could say, nothing was white here. Given that there was essentially nothing present as far as she could see. The scene just stretched on and on to a never ending visual of white. Nothing but just white.
After searching in every direction for a sign of life — or a sign of anything, for that matter —she just gave up and waited. Just like she had always waited for her dreams to end, she waited for whatever this was to end too. Perhaps an hour had passed or maybe a day, when she finally could sense that a change had occurred.
From the corner of her eye, she could see that a man had suddenly appeared replacing the earlier nothing. Turning her head, she was not surprised to find out who her new companion was. She expected him to stay mum, like he always did, but what could she expect anyway, after all that had happened  that day?
Raising her eyebrows, she asked skeptically, “I am finally dead, aren’t I?”
He smiled. “No, I suppose not. But your husband is. Poor chap had gone insane.” His voice was silk and honey. He was not a good looking person, however his presence had some charm, some charisma in it.
Bewildered, she could not say anything. Finally, gaining courage, ” Did you…” she whispered.
“No, no, Bessie, I don’t kill. I only lead.” He answered her unarticulated question. Also, Bessie was not surprised that he happened to know her name.
“Where am I?”
“Where do we meet everyday, Bessie?” He smiled.
“I am dreaming…” she trailed off.
“You’ll be out of it, though. Just like you always are.”
“But who are you? Why’d you ever help me?”
“You are a dear one to me, Bessie.”
“Are you… are you…” she didn’t complete the sentence. It sounded too nonsensical in her head, let alone speaking it out aloud.
“Mother.” He called, his voice painted in affection.
“But you had died! You are my son?” She asked while she tried to see the similarities between his features and hers, or her husband’s…
“You can’t be my son.” She finally said. Reading his face, she knew she was right.
“I am whatever you want me to be, mother. All your life you grieved for your child. So here I am, your son! I am not the one you lost. But I can be your son too.” He smiled. His face looked kind enough for Bessie to think he meant it.
“But why do I see you in my dreams? Who are you?”
“I am the one who leads Bessie, just like I told you. If I don’t lead you, you would get lost inside your dream.” He said mysteriously.
And sure enough, he held her hand, and led her towards a path — a path she had not seen, or perhaps it was never there in the first place. Bessie did not have the strength to think much. She was too tired.
There was more white now — a white light so bright, it was hurting her eyes. And suddenly she found herself staring at the flourescent bulb on the ceiling. Her surroundings were all pale yellow and cream and the air stank of medicines. She didn’t need to see the nurse to know that she was at a hospital.
“You’re awake!” The nurse said softly, sounding like she was seeing an old friend after a long time.
“How did I reach here?” Bessie asked.
The nurse stared at her, confused. “I don’t really know. You fell into a well. This man — we don’t know who it was — found you and dropped you here. Nobody really saw him. He just left a note, calling you his ‘mother of sorts’. We found that a very kind and talented doctor who used to work here is your friend. We called him and he asked us to take your care properly. We wouldn’t have found out anything had that man not left the note.” The nurse finished, still confused.

~

Bessie was allowed to go home after a few days. However, there was no grief left in her. She didn’t know the reason, but she could never again feel the guilt that had always engulfed her heart. She was upset about one thing though — she never really dreamt of her son of sorts again.

~

A psychiatrist was shown the sketch of “this man” by a patient who saw him in a dream.

image

It turned out, a lot more of his patients had dreamt of him too. Since then, thousands of people have turned up who say they have seen him in their dreams. Many dismiss this as an internet myth, but then who knows, we do live in a strange, strange world, after all.

Here is a website dedicated to this man:

http://www.thisman.org/

END OF PART 2 OF 2

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This Man (Part 1 of 2)

Bessie writhed and rolled in sleep. Her dream had taken a dead end. A dead end that just won’t end, even as she vehemently tried to shove it away. She was tired of fighting with her subconscious for so long. She stilled, agonized however, as she waited for the dream to end on its own. It was the very same dream. Action to action, visual to visual.
Bessie was no superstitious old woman. Not once in her life had she believed in ghosts. But lately, she had started questioning her own beliefs. For one, why would she ever see the same dream every time she slept — the dream that had no end, no matter how hard she tried to get out of it? It would never be until just at dawn when she would be able to open her eyes and breath some fresh air. Also, her dream never really made any sense to her. She would see a well, and before she could even know it, she would be inside the well — miraculously alive (and asleep). But the strangest part of the dream was this man, the man that would stand in front of her for the rest of her dream— smiling. With the bushy eyebrows, eyelids that looked like a lizard’s, and a cold stare that would give away absolutely nothing — he would observe her silently. And then after a few hours or perhaps some years as it seemed to Bessie, she would wake up scared but quitely.
Bessie woke up then— alert and confused. Unsurprisingly, it was just after dawn. She heaved a sigh of relief. She lived at a farm in the outskirts of Mussoorie. The place being an escape for her from the dark past of an abusive husband and a child that was lost to an ill fated miscarriage. It had been more than thirty years since that day, when she had found her release and ran away from the abattoir of a house she had married into.
Her years passed in isolation. She had formed a bubble around her being that nobody was allowed to step into. Her grief for the lost child never seemed to end. She always wondered if she could ever get over her disastrous marriage and the poor dead child.

~

It had been another monotonous day for her. Tired as she was, she was afraid to fall asleep in case the nightmare might turn up again. It had just been late afternoon when somebody knocked at the door. How odd, she wondered. Nobody ever came to visit her — not even the neighbors. She had made it very clear that visitors were not welcome.
The farm was pretty big. The owner being a doctor who lived outside of the country, he wanted a person who would look after his property. Bessie, the woman who was in a pathetic state — beaten blue and black by her husband, was helped by the kind doctor as soon as he discovered her. She also needed a place to live at and a job to feed herself, which the doctor generously provided her with.
Bessie walked towards the door thoroughly distracted wondering who the person behind the door might be. As she unlocked the door, fear washed over as she remembered the dream. The man, the man!
The door opened under her shaking fingers. There he stood, smirking. He was here.

~

He had her hands tied behind her back. Old as he was — he was still stronger, much stronger than her. She screamed and struggled under his grip around her. His face remained tranquil and devoid of any emotion. He carried her out of the van and kicked the door close.
The place that she was at, looked oddly familiar. Horrified, she realized it was the same place she had been seeing in her dreams all these days. The well stood less than ten meters away from where they were.
Before she knew it, her voice spasmed into a blood curling scream.
“Why did you come back again? Why’d you did this to me?” She yelled.
“You got me crazy, bitch! I have been trying to find you for more than thirty god damn years! You stinking liar! How could you leave? Where is my son, my child? Where is he?” Her husband yelled back.
“It was not your child!” She screamed. “You are a monster! You can’t ever father a child!”
He froze mid stride.
“What did you just say?” He asked, horrified. “It was…” his legs gave away and he fell along with Bessie.
“Yes, the child died.” Bessie said through a lump in her throat.
Sobbing uncontrollably, he sat on the ground, agonized and torn. Suddenly his head flashed up. “I knew you were a useless piece of filth. You could never be a good wife — but my child… how could you kill him?”
Standing, he violently fisted her hair and pulled her towards the well.
“You killed my son.” He whispered menacingly. “Now you must die.”
Then he swiftly threw her into the well.

~
END OF PART 1 OF 2