Voices from Hell: My Experience in Mussoorie, India

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By Rahul Gladwin | August, 2005.

Disclaimer: This story is pure fiction. Any resemblance to actual persons or places is coincidental and unintentional.

a view of Mussoorie

Above: A view of downtown Mussoorie, India

A few years ago, I had decided to spend my winter vacation in Mussoorie, a lonely hill-station in northern India. Mussoorie, which is a small-town community, is known for its haunted streets and temples dedicated to Satan, locally known as 'Maha Kaal.' Nevertheless, Mussoorie is a magnet for photographers, who are attracted to its foggy mountains, winding paths, and beautiful culture. I found Mussoorie to be a tranquil paradise; a place, where I could spend my time away from the ceaseless hassles of urban life. As you know, I'm greatly intrigued by Indian history and folklore. As an engineering student, my life in the States was nothing but work and study. I guess that could justify my month-long trip to India.

The chilly mountain air was crisp and clear, a light breeze swept through the eucalyptus leaves, and a full moon added the necessary charm. It was midnight and I had just left the local tourist club, which was the only club in Mussoorie. I soon found myself facing a steep and empty street which was dimly lit, as some of the streetlamps weren't set alight. Having realized I wouldn't be able to find a ride to my hotel at that hour, I decided to take a shortcut through the woods; needless to say, my hotel lay only a mile away from the club and I thought I'd enjoy a quiet, half-hour walk up the narrow mountainous path.

Having steadily clutched my briefcase under one arm, I began climbing up the pathway, which got steeper as it veered deeper into the forest. The town lights became a distant haze whilst black nothingness lay ahead. At about half way from the hotel, an uncanny feeling overcame me as my surroundings immersed in a menacing calmness. Additionally, the moonlit sky was blotched by the dense overhanging foliage and surrounding thicket, which rendered the forest pitch-black. I sure was glad to have been carrying my handy flashlight as I looked forward to the end of this grueling climb. While briefly pausing to catch my breath and wipe my sweaty brow, a shiny object caught my eye up the dark hill as it reflected light from my flashlight. I grew perceptibly curious and hurriedly teetered onwards. When I drew closer, the mysterious object turned out to be a porcelain cup lying at the edge of the mountain path. I disconcertingly picked it up and closely examined it under my flashlight. The black porcelain cup, apparently in mint condition, was marked with mystical images and writings on its edges and on the inside. The aberrant illustrations appeared to be portraying a Satan-worship ritual with instructions written in Sanskrit, the language of ancient India. The cup was so dauntingly beautiful and mysterious that I simply could not throw it away.

It was half hour past midnight when I reached the hotel. Dead tired after a really long day, I placed my mysterious find on the dresser, leapt into bed and fell asleep. Something woke me up very early in the morning. I had a feeling that something or someone was tugging on my neck. The digital clock on my bedside table displayed 4:05 am whilst the whole room was immersed in an eerie red light. I then saw the same porcelain cup hovering in mid-air, right above my chest! Terrified, I tried to move, but my body seemed paralyzed. Furthermore, I could hear ghoulish chants and music emanating from the cup. Soon, a pair of large, wringing hands materialized right before me and stoutly clutched my throat. I could barely breathe, yet, was fighting an invisible entity. Then, another pair of oversized hands materialized and began punching me all over my body with bone-shattering force. I felt a very heavy mass being placed on my legs, then my upper body, and heard my bones cracking due to the weight. The brutal beating finally ended after I, using every ounce of energy, managed to toss and turn, and fall off the bed. Both the pairs of giant hands broke free and vanished into thin air. My ribs and legs were crushed, and I was in excruciating pain. With final bursts of strength, I dragged myself to the hotel room door, opened it, then fainted in the doorway.

I found myself back in bed when noises of people awoke me the next morning. Someone might have been at the door even though I didn't see anyone enter. My hotel room seemed perfectly normal, yet, I sensed an air of melancholy and distress. Had I dreamt that harrowing experience last night? My mind was in an utter state of ambivalence, and my thoughts were jumbled and doleful. As I lay despondently in bed, faded memories of a distant lifetime flashed before my eyes. I remembered my early childhood and the time when my parents bought me my first bicycle. I also remembered how I loved my grandparents and how I hadn't been in touch with them for so many years. I blinked at the moisture that was clouding my eyes and felt my stomach knotted in languish. As I gathered my conscience, I saw the black porcelain cup still perched atop the dresser, and also heard hushed whispers near my hotel room door. I then heaved myself out of bed and falteringly walked toward the hallway to the place where I dreamt I fell the previous night, and there lay on the floor - bruised and battered - my bloody corpse.

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