At Beyond the Box, we are constantly thinking of ideas to give something unique, refreshing as well as challenging to our community of writers. Two to Tango was one such endeavour to encourage the participants to work along with another writer as a team and bring about a creative synergy. 66 teams participated in this one-of-its-kind contest and the winners were chosen by an eclectic jury panel comprising of prolific authors Ramendra Kumar, Shilpa Suraj and Apeksha Rao. Below prompt was given to the writers and they were asked to narrate the same story from two different points of view.
Prompt – Write a fictional story in which a character’s life undergoes some kind of major change due to a lost mobile. Feel free to creatively interpret this concept in any genre of your choice.
The winners in the Kids’ category were Malishka Vemu & Arianna Thomas (Team 52). Enjoy their story!
Story Title: TOO LATE
Point of View #1 – Kiann’s POV
By Malishka Vemu
I walked towards the station – my head bent down. With each step I took, the need to return to my house began to grow ; the convulsive shaking in my legs began to grow ; the cold spine-chilling feeling of pure terror began to grow. The images of the past few nights began flashing in my mind; if he found out what I was about to do, the consequences would be severe.
Despite the quiet of the night, I could hear his harsh voice yelling profanities in my ear. My heartbeat quickened as the station grew nearer. “This is it Kiann. You’ve made it this far – there’s no backing out now.” I whispered, encouraging myself. I know my story seemed far-fetched, especially since it was against the well-acclaimed Judge Mathias, but I hoped at least one of the officers would believe my story.
When I ultimately arrived, in spite of my racing heart, I felt this inexplicable relief of finally having a chance at freedom. I reached for my phone, my only proof against the monster, when I heard someone say –
“Get it done.” It was him. The one and only Judge Mathias, discreetly slipping some money to the clerk. He turned his head in my direction.
I bolted – fearing for my life, hoping that by some miracle he hadn’t seen me.
The tears that had been threatening to fall, cascaded as I prayed for my safety. I kept on running until I saw the familiar brick road, ignoring the burning in my lungs. I ran through the gates of ‘Mathias Mansion’, my house and so called ‘HOME’.
Darting into my room, I gasped for air. I reached into my pocket, expecting to find my phone. My face contorted into a look of pure horror as I realised I had dropped it in my haste.
Twenty minutes later, I heard his shoes pound against the hardwood floor. I hoped that he would just pass by my room. My prayers were in vain, when I heard the familiar swish and crack of his infamous belt.
Point of View #2 – Officer Gupta’s POV
By Arianna Thomas
I patrolled the police station, and bid Judge Mathias goodbye, as he returned home. He was a true implementer of justice and many officers, including myself, looked up to him. As I was lost in thought, I felt someone brush against me. It was a young boy and he was sprinting away; his face pale, as if he had seen a ghost.
“Is everything alright?” I called after him, but he didn’t hear me. I tried following him, but halted when I saw a phone fall out of his pocket. The boy showed no signs of stopping anytime soon, and so the responsibility of returning his phone fell on my shoulders. I picked it up and opened the photo gallery, to hopefully find an image of the owner. To my surprise, the gallery was empty except for a video. I pressed play.
“You’re late again.” I gasped in shock. On the screen was none other than Judge Mathias, a dark look in his eyes, quite the opposite of the smile he gave me a few minutes earlier.
“I’m sorry Father.” The boy who ran past me replied. Father? This revelation shocked me. No one knew that Judge Mathias had a son.
“Mere apologies have no meaning Kiann. You should know that by now. You must be punished for your actions.”
“Yes Father.” the boy replied, bitterly. There was a sudden crack and the boy howled in pain. Crack
Another followed. Blood stained the back of his shirt, as he cried.
I switched off the phone, shaking. I was aghast that such a respectable man, with his pristine reputation, could mercilessly beat a child, especially his own. I left for the Mathias Mansion at once.
As I arrived at the front door, I radioed my team for backup. I banged on it and shouted –
“MUMBAI POLICE ! OPEN UP!”
I grieve…globally 57,000 children die as victims of abuse. I was late…yet another child, Kiann, slipped into the clasps of death.