Aarav slowly peeped his head and saw that the house too was the same, rummaged . He reached the hall, but no sign of his mom. Finally when he stepped foot in the kitchen , blood touched his feet . He stepped closer and saw ....his mother , Aarohi was on the floor, lying .
“Mom! Mom !Wake up!” No response . He was scared as hell. He lifted her up and called the only person that came first to his mind.
“Megha! There’s a problem.”
After fifteen minutes , Megha came along with Pranay.
“What the hell!” was the first thing that Pranay said when he saw Aarav’s mother.
Megha started healing Aarohi . And finally after an hour , Aarohi woke up.
“Mom , are u okay? What happened ?”
“Yeah, but my head hurts. The food and sales conference ended a day early , so when i came home , everything was a mess. But the moment i entered the kitchen , i heard a growl, and ...a woman wearing a hood , with weird markings on her face , she and....a creature....a dog or something like that, it was the thing that attacked ....”
“When did u come home, Miss. Aarohi?” Megha asked .
“Last night...but who’re you?“Aarohi asked.
“Yeah, mom i forgot to introduce you. This is Megha , one of my clanmate , and ofcourse, you know Pranay. But are you okay?“Aarav asked her .
Aarohi nodded , but Megha was staring at her face , she asked,
“Um..Ma’am ...have i seen you somewhere ? You face looks familiar to me...You’re Indumati right ?”
Aarav was shocked , Aarohi was taken aback...she said,
“No...Indumati is my sister, but...how do you....”
“Never mind ...not important right now...i’ll help clean up the mess.” Megha said and headed back to fix the house ., Pranay smiled at Aarohi went to help Megha out.
After the house was back to normal , all of them were on the dining table having lunch, then Megha spoke, “Aarav we need to hurry, don’t forget we have to go...”
“What? Megha are u serious ? Do you really think i would leave my mom alone in this state and go to some stupid ceremony?“Aarav protested.
Aarohi was clueless , so she asked them,
“Uh...Aarav , have you forgotten to tell me something?”
“About that...” So Aarav told her everything about the friendly match that had turned deadly , about how the masked man saved him , and how he ended up getting the credit , so he was getting awarded for his bravery.
“Aarav...all of this happened and you didn’t even think of telling this to me? I know i’m being a bit selfish, but you have to take the award, also , you’ll get a chance to see our world.“Aarohi told him.
“But mom, i cant imagine you being hurt , how can i leave you?“Aarav said.
So Pranay suggested, “Aunty, why don’t you come with us? It’ll be fun!”
Aarohi laughed and shook her head , she said, “I cant keep my foot there . I’m banished from leaving the mortal world ...”
“What? But why? Isn't it the place you were born? “Prany asked her.
So Aarohi ended up explaining her love story , about how she had fallen in love with a mortal and ended up being banished. But she spared the part about her memory , about The Priest and some others important details about Aarav.
Megha had tears in her eyes after hearing to Aarohi’s story , but deep down she was angry that someone as kind as Aarohi was banished for just the reason of falling in love with a mortal . She said,
“Miss.Aarohi, if that’s the case, then why don’t you stay at our clan house , permanently ? Because ...now that this location is disclosed , this wont be the first attack.”
“Mom ,Megha’s right.”
Aarohi smiled and said, “How kind of you , Megha .I can stay there till things get back to normal . But not permanently . This is the only place where i have memories about your childhood , about your father , about us. I don’t want to abandon them just because of fear about someone...”
But little did she knew, that she won’t see Aarav for a very, very long time after this.
At six in the evening , the clan was waiting in the hall with their bags ready . They had decided that Shiba should come along with them. Aarohi had brought what all things she needed for a week’s stay. Megha had looked to it , that the protection spell and concealment charm was intact around the house .
The boys each had just a backpack around their backs . While the girls ....
“6 bags ?! Reva how long are u planning to stay ? And Shiba why do u need 3 bags ?Megha you too? 5? Seriously? ” Aarav said .
“Now, now, Aarav , girls require more things and care than boys ...don’t go all shouting at them.” Aarohi said , “And now like a gentleman help the beauties out and behave yourself when you go there . And don’t forget to clean your und....”
“Mom mom stop it! I know, okay? I’m grown up , I’m 17 ...” Aarav said feeling embarrassed .
“You’re mother is quite more intelligent than you are Aarav...” Reva said ,“Now , as she said pick these bags up , boys...please.”
“Great..” All the boys said . Mayank picked up 5, Aarav and Pranay 3 each , rest were taken by the girls. While they were leaving , Aarohi placed a kiss on Aarav’s forehead and bid them goodbye.
After heading out, Aarav asked them,
“So how exactly do we go there? And what the hell have you filled these bags with , Reva? Boulders? Megha can't you use one of your stones to carry these? And Shiba don’t climb on me , I’ll collapse...“. Shiba was trying to climb on Aarav’s back .
“No , rune magic should not be used for selfish needs” Megha replied .
“Why , Aarav , cant you lift such light weighted bags? Baby boy ?” Reva teased him.
“We have to meet someone first, then we go .This time we are being helped by , Samana , and she stays in....” Mayank said while checking a paper , “...Janata nagar”
“WHAT? Mayank...are u sure , that’s the place?“Pranay said looking shocked. Even Aarav was shocked .
Reva asked, “Why, what about that place ?” She asked Pranay. Pranay was hesitating to tell , so he said, “Aarav , tell them, buddy , will you?”
“Not in hell! I’m not telling a word.“Aarav said raising his hands in retreat.“Pranay, you were the first who spoke , so go on...”
“ I wont , but I can help you. Hey Shiba, lets go in the front a bit, I need to show you something...” Pranay said and took Shiba out of hearing sight.
“Great! Why exactly are u guys hesitating so much? Is that area haunted ?“Megha asked him.
“Alright , if u really want to know, then...its..the red light district of the town.“Aarav said looking away from them.
The girls were shocked to hear , so they didn’t speak anything until they were close to Janata nagar .Mayank was busy checking the map , so he didn’t care what the others were speaking , he simply went on and others followed. Finally they reached a colourful building. Aarav finally , fed up of the silence , turned to the girls and said.
“Guys , I don’t think , you people should come in , you know what I mean to say right?”
Pranay joined him, “Yeah , I guess , Aarav’s right. How about we first go in, me and Aarav . Mayank will stay with the girls , Okay?”
Finally Aarav and Pranay went in . Pranay said, “Dude , this place makes me nervous ...”
They checked at the counter and a lady was sitting there at the reception , talking . She was saying,
“Hey, babe , u know what ? We should try the handcuffs , they turn me on so much . I’ll call you back. Boys , are u even adults?“She asked them as she hung the phone.
“Actually, we aren’t here for that..” Aarav tried to say. But the woman said, “Listen , boys, I know I shouldn’t say this since its my business , but you know ,this isn’t where you should be at this age...”
“Hey, we told you are not here for that reason. We need to meet Samana...“Pranay said.
“I knew you boys were sick for lust, but that woman is a beast, think again...“She said giving a weird smile.
“ If u really cant understand , then listen...we are here for Samana , and its our choice what type of woman we like , just tell the room number , we can’t wait.” Pranay said , frustratingly .
The woman said, “Woah, desperate are you? Anyways , room number 47, its on the second floor . By the way , are u sure she’s agreed for a threesome?”
“Yeah , she agreed okay? Any problem?“Pranay said and headed towards the corridors.
Aarav followed him and when they were far away from the reception counter , Aarav said, “What a pain !”
They walked down the corridors which were lit by dim red lights . Bed creaks could be heard ,weird noises , loud moans and much more . The boys looked at each other and made a run and didn’t stop till they reached room number 47.
Aarav knocked , and a woman’s voice spoke , “Get lost ! I attended a customer just half an hour ago , give me some rest you bastard...”
“Actually, were here to go to the door of split . One of our clanmates had called you earlier ...”
The door opened and a young woman , with a bold figure stood in front of them . She said, “Oh! Sorry, follow me...” She came out of the room , and they followed her , retracing their path.
“Hope the receptionist didn’t trouble you .She’s not one of us , so she doesn’t know anything about me .“She said .
“Aren’t you in any clan?“Aarav asked her.
“No, were like drivers , our only work is transportation of goods and people from here to there . Looks like you’re new ...Hey , Shirly....”
She said as they reached the receptionist again. The woman looked at Samana and winked at her, she said, “Samana, don’t forget! We had a deal tonight.”
“Yes ofcourse“Samana said as they left the building and headed towards the others. “Gross !that woman’s so boring . She only uses the mouth, are u staring at my ass?” She said as Pranay was trying hard not to stare at her back.
“What? NO!” He said .
They finally reached the others and the woman withut stopping said , “Follow me ...” and everybody followed her . She took them to an empty street near by and turned to them . She bowed to Reva and took out a purse and opened it , she said, “All your bags in here.” Aarav took a moment to realize what she was saying , one by one they started putting all the bags inside the purse. The moment the bags would get close to the purse, they would get sucked in it . After all the bags were done , she handed over the purse to Mayank. She said, “Now stand back and form a queue...” They did.
She pulled a small brown coloured pouch , and took some powdered substance out of it . She threw them on the floor and suddenly a flame burst out . ” Now one by one ,get in. Big boy , first you.”
Mayank got in , and then everybody followed . Finally holding Shiba’s hands Aarav got in , then Samana came after him extinguishing the flame behind her .
“This place never stops surprising me!” Samana said .
True as it was , Aarav couldn’t believe his eyes .
“WELCOME TO THE DOOR OF SPLIT”