Caution: The following story is not meant for weak and timid mind. Readers discretion advised. If you get disturbed on reading the story, please stop reading immediately.The day was nearly ending and I sat in the staff room closing my books for the day. Prof. Despande and Prof. Shantaram sat opposite to me discussing the latest evening news hitting the town.
‘Four victims in past two months, Mrs. Despande,’ said Prof. Shantaram.
‘I know, all girls. The serial killer is out there killing girls, we need to be careful,’ said Prof. Mrs. Despande, ‘I have asked my husband to pick our daughter from class and then me. No one leaves house alone.’
Prof. Shantaram exclaimed, ‘Tsk Tsk Tsk, the papers are saying that police has told every girl to stay indoors on a full moon night. The person seems to be killing the victims on a full moon night only.’
‘Should be one of your subjects, Prof. Pandhari,’ said Prof. Shantaram looking at me. Obviously it was a physiological case, which was my subject at the university.
‘The criminal must be suffering from Dissociative identity disorder, it is a psychiatric diagnosis that describes a condition in which a single human displays multiple distinct identities or personalities , each with its own pattern of perceiving and interacting with the environment,’ I explained, ‘a certain thing or an event can trigger the killing personality.’
‘Yes, you are right, I think we all need to get going Prof.’ said Prof Mrs. Despande nervously glancing at the clock. Immediately we all dispersed from college and left for home.
My house was very close to the university so I choose to walk. Holding the newspaper in one hand and the bag in another I stepped into the dark lanes of the city. No body was on the street, no body. Everything was dark, as if some dreaded spell was cast on the city. As I walked down the street, a thought came to my mind, maybe in some corner of the city the killer was also walking, isn’t it? How does the killer look like? What it a male or a female?
Can it be some female doing the murders? The thoughts send shiver in my bones and my body shudders.
Engrossed in my thoughts as I crossed the park, I see a soul sitting on the bench of the park, as distant as it is. She is a crying lady, what is she doing here? Doesn’t she know about the killer? I wonder. What if she is the killer?
The last thought hit hard and I take quick paces towards my house. Just around the corner I see the shadow of a lurking man, who is he? is he the killer?Immediately my thoughts race towards the woman crying on the bench, what if she was unsuspecting victim? Should I go back and warn her?
Now, I am in a mortal threat as she is right now, but is this mortal threat going to make me a weak mind? Will I not save this innocent girl? I decide to save her. So wonderful is human mind that once the decision is made, fear automatically vanishes. My legs take strides towards the girl on the bench, a corner of my eye spots the lurking shadow move with me too.
I see the girl again and shout for her, ‘Hello, madam’ she looks up and starts wiping the tears. She is holding a letter in her hand and has lots of suitcase around her. Has she run away from her house and is left here in the open by her boyfriend? Yes, as a professor of physiology my mind analyzes her immediately.
She glances at me mutely, I tell her about the killer and ask her to go home, she simply glances at me. Oh my, is she mute? Handicapped? Is she deaf?
I hand over the newspaper to her and she glances at the news, immediately fear grips over her face and she nods her head and starts crying. I glance around the place, I see the shadow lurking near the gate of the garden. He is still around, is he waiting for her to be alone? I better not find out.
I start walking from the place and signal her to come along. She has no choice, she has also seen that shadow. She follows me to my house, I am really afraid now for the old thoughts come back. What if she is the killer?
I increase my walking speed, she also increases her walking speed. A few blocks behind us, the shadow also increases his walking speed.
As I secure the door of my house, I feel safe. The girl is afraid and is sitting on the couch looking around. What should I do? I decide to call up the cops so that I am free of her responsibility. A hot cup of tea will lighten the tension a bit.
I am not that organized person, you can see all the things spread around the kitchen. I pick up the knife to place it on the rack, the moon light reaches me from the window. How beautiful a moon seems on a full moon night, pure crystal white.
The purity of the moon can be compared with the chastity of the woman, but not all woman are pure. No, his wife wasn’t, wasn’t she? She betrayed his love for others? How could she? She needed punishment, didn’t she? Yes she did. God did punish her, didn’t he? Oh yes, God did punish her… punishment was necessary.
Suddenly multiple things occur at the same time, the shadow has somehow entered the house and the girl screams. Bullet is fired, and the knife from my hand drops on the floor.
How did I come in the drawing room is my question? I look around me, what is happening? The person is standing on me, with handcuffs in his hand. He speaks over his walkie talkie, ‘Killer is secure, all teams fall in.’
Killer? Who me? ‘No, no there is some mistake, I was saving her from the killer… I really was’ I shout.
The next day, the city had only one news that made popular, the serial killer was finally caught by undercover cops. Prof. Pandhari was diagnosed by dissociative identity disorder and was sent to mental hospital for treatment.