By Neel Anil Panicker
That morning as Ragini stepped out of her mud hut by the village and made the ardous two kilometre long climb up the forested hill, for the first time ever, her mind was assailed by doubts. Missing was her usual effervescence, missing too was her trademark buck toothed smile that she offered to one and all, missing too were the usual bunch of magnolia flowers she carried with her, safely tugged in the inner folds of her worn out saree, an old yellowed cotton one that clearly had seen better days.
Many a time in the past six months she had been tempted to buy a new one. ‘Get some new dresses. You look like an old hag. What’s happened to you? Look at how you’re carrying yourself nowadays’, her septuagenarian mother-in-law would admonish her, an event that by now had become an almost daily ritual.
“I will, Nan, I will,” was all she would reply as she went about her daily household chores.
An hour later she arrived at the clearing, and gazed at the monolith oblong stone that stood upright, its face, vermillion smeared, the tongue glistening a shiny black.
She extricated the gold bangle from her saree fold and laid it at the deity’s feet.
“Oh Lord, this is all I have. All these years I’ve been good, done nothing wrong. But my husband’s still in the clutches of that woman. Give him back to me, quick. Do that, else, or I’ll bathe you in her blood”.
©neelanilpanciker2018 #fiction #ThursdayPhotoPrompt #shortstory #250words