The hearing for the case was kept in a special court at Kannur the following week. O.G felt pity for Kannan who had become pale and thin in a week. The interrogation began and Kannan told the judge exactly what had happened according to him. The other witnesses were called in. Janu admitted that she knew nothing of what occurred that night as she had been unconscious from a drunken episode. Next Saraswathi was called to the stand and as she got up, O.G pressed her hand reminding her to be strong.
“The boy here claims that there was another person or thing, as he calls the vampire or hooded creature at the time of the incident and he was only trying to save you from it. What is the extent of truth in this statement?” asked the judge.
Saru took a long deep breath before she answered the question.
“Your honour that night there was no one or nothing in my room and no one was trying to kill me. I am sorry but my son…..my son must have just imagined it all, perhaps being frightened by the thunder and lightning that night.”
The world suddenly came to a standstill for Kannan. He only wished he could die too for his own mother had thrust him in the direction of the gallows. He continued to stare at her blankly, still finding it difficult to fathom what she had said a few moments ago. Saru however had diverted her face probably to avoid making any eye contact with him. She knew something and she was hiding it.
A lot of things followed, there were more questions, witnesses, and even the judgement was passed but Kannan was unaware of everything for he was in a state of complete shock and disbelief. The police came and took him away and as he left the court room he strained to catch one last glimpse of his mother but she had buried her head in her hands and was silently sobbing away.
Now that he was outside and being led into a police jeep, Kannan snapped back into reality.
“What happened? Where are you taking me?” he asked nervously.
“So did you not hear the verdict? You have been sentenced to one and half years of imprisonment but considering you are a minor, you will be taken to a reform school on the outskirts of Kannur but it’s not going to be any different from gaol. They have people there who know how to straighten imbeciles like you” said a fat constable almost sadistically.
Kannan began to cry, he was now very afraid, very very afraid. It was as if he had fallen into a deep dark ocean of nightmares, each getting worse than the other as he sank deeper and deeper into an abyss.