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Ghostly Girl

Updated: Oct 17, 2023

There was once a lean frail girl who, due to her actions, did not have any friends, nor did any of her peers ever interact with her. She was closed, lonely & broken but hopeful in her own way too. One day, she comes across a companion that sticks with her and truly understands her. Before she’s contented with the state of her affairs, life bumps up something for her.

“Ghostly Girl” by Sharon Mathew tells how life sometimes offers us what we hope for on a silver platter, however, with an ethical cost attached to it. It reveals how it is upon us to decide if we do the right thing and live with it or continue doing the wrong thing for our temporary happiness. Either way, it is we who make our reality.

Illustrated by Hasita Yernati


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This story has been created by R. S. Chintalapati, reviewed by Rajiv R Nair, edited by Sanskriti Sharma & illustrated by Hasita Yernati.



This short story is available in ebook & paperback.


Chapter I


I stood beside a bicycle parked before an entrance. Around me were houses with lawns before them, and I could not recollect no matter how much I tried as to where I was. The nearest sign was out of my sight, and there was no one to ask.

Out of nowhere, the door to the nearest house opened, and a neatly dressed boy in a white shirt, hand-stitched black pants, and polished formal shoes appeared with a rose in his hand.

I hurriedly asked, “Excuse me, could you tell me where I am?”

Not only did he not answer, but it seemed like he did not even hear me. He just walked to the bicycle and drove off. I shouted my question again, but he did not respond.

Looking around, I realised there was no one else and started running behind his bike. As I did, I continued shouting, and he continued his silence. I was losing him, and if he took the corner, I would be left in the middle of nowhere without a soul to answer my questions.

I sprinted but failed to be heard, and when I took the turn, rather than losing him, I saw him fly dashed by a car. I could not believe what I was seeing, and the moment he landed, I was sweating and breathing heavily. With my eyes wide open, I searched for him all around, but all I could see was the window wide open.

Even when the night’s cold wind brought chills all over my body, I kept staring at the moon and thinking about the boy; I told myself, “It’s just a dream, Sakshi, just a dream."


The following day, I woke up late. It took me some time to fall asleep again, and as usual, I freshened up with no greetings at home. My parents have always been disinterested in me. They do the bare minimum and expect me to grow all by myself. I wondered, if they were so uninterested in parenting, why bother creating me, or why did they only choose to do it once? I mean, why don't they do it again to give me company?

Illustrated by Hasita Yernati

Honestly, to date, I don't know my father's working hours and why my mother is so silent. Our house is as quiet as a graveyard. However, it is clean, beautiful and scented every nook & corner. Walking to the kitchen to pick up my box, I saw raw veggies and fruits in my pack, just like any other day.

I was about to leave when my mother, a tall, lean woman whose face was covered with deep dark circles, passed me an umbrella. Paying back a smile, I walk in the rain, wondering if something exciting would ever happen in my life rather than be stuck in this endless cycle.

I come from a small town, and we just had one school. I would have loved to throw away all my friends from high school and make new ones in college, but there were hardly any new faces. Everyone knew each other, and after the many episodes of me being a cranky companion in school, many of my classmates not only walked away from me but even gifted me the reputation that I was a know-it-all.

That attached to my sickening appearance and piss-poor communication skills ensured that I would never make a friend, and with every passing year, that task just got impossible. For years, right from the start of the day to the end of the day, it was just me moving on in life silently.

Shaking my umbrella and shoes as I reached class, I passed through all two-seater benches until the last. Settling down, I awaited another dull day. The rain just made it even worse, but just when I was all out of happiness, he arrived. The boy who lit up almost all the girls in our class, "Vedh!"


It turns out that our beloved college had an admission for Vedh but not a bench. Introducing himself and pointing to the seat beside me, Vedh questioned, “Is this seat occupied?”

When I nodded my head, indicating a no, with nowhere else to go, he had to share the bench with none other than me. And boy, oh boy, the number of stares I got on that day was more than what I had gotten for years.

He was tall, fair, and had a fruity smell lingering all over him. He asked, "Could you please tell me something about this class I should know before shaking hands?"

I honestly wasn't expecting that. I mean, if that is the first thing Vedh would want to know, I did not want him to be lied to. So, I whispered, "Most in this room have two faces. Don't dig deep to see the other face of anyone unless you are truly ready."

He looked at me, a little freaked out. He whispered, "You don't truly mean that, do you?"

I just smiled and stayed silent, recollecting my previous encounters in such discussions. I mean, honestly, this part I never understood this. People come to me for honest opinions and advice & when I give them, they look at me like I'm possessed.

In the following days, Vedh spread across the room and greeted one after another. Listening to their delightful conversations and thundering laughter, I presumed Vedh would move on, and I would be stuck in my place as anticipated. He did. For just the first two days, he sat beside me, and later, he moved on, and I was back to being my best companion.

That did not mean he never spoke to me. We spoke. He was perhaps the only one in class who took my words as they should be and reaped the benefit. I think he said, "You're an odd egg at the sight of it, but when you taste it, you are no different from any others."

For a while, I did not know what to make of it, but the more I thought about it, I started believing the more it encapsulated my personality. As weeks passed, Vedh asked me, "Would you like to play basketball?"

When I looked hesitant, he promised to teach if I was willing to give it a shot. Not intending to alienate the only chance to have a pleasant evening hangout, I agreed, and my Tuesday & Thursday were never more exciting.

I never thought anything could beat my excitement until a couple of weeks later, Vedh asked, "Sakshi, will you go on a date with me?"


If there was one thing I was never prepared for, it was this. I had never even anticipated such an occasion would happen anytime soon, and life threw it at me when I least expected it. So, putting together what I had at the last minute, I wore a black frock, a sleek silver chain with a diamond around her neck and red high heels. Vedh wore a red slim-fit shirt, black jeans and formal shoes.

The restaurant he picked had dim lights, and each table had candles in the centre. Placing the bouquet of white flowers he gave me when I entered, we settled and ordered our starters. While tasting the sweet corn soup, Vedh said, “Maybe this would be the right time to apologise for not continuing to sit beside you, Sakshi.”

While I nodded, there was no need for such an apology. Vedh continued, “However, it was because of this decision that I realised your worth."

As much as I wanted to believe him, my gut told me he was buttering me. However, before the main course was served, he confessed, “As you might have presumed, I have moved in here because my father has recently joined the local steel factory. Unfortunately, that is far from reality. I am studying here only because I wish to leave home & be at peace. So I choose this place where I would know no one.”

Baffled, I asked, “But why?”

"Because I did not belong there, Sakshi. My existence there made no difference to anyone; I am a nobody in a big town & my parents love my elder brother more than anything else."

For once, I felt terrible for him. Beyond all that facade of a personality, he was nothing more than a boy seeking to be loved just like me. Thinking briefly about his last sentence, he asked, "How much do you think my parents took to say yes to send me here?"

Hoping to be kind, I guessed, "A night?"

He just smirked at my response. He whispered, "I know how you feel, Sakshi. I have no one just like you."

I could see him lost, and hoping to assure him, I held his hand. When he looked at me, I whispered, "We have each other..."

After a moment of silence, a faint smile appeared on his face.

How is it so far?

  • Loved it

  • Liked it

  • Forget it

  • Hated it


Chapter II


Honestly, I never thought my life would be exciting, forget interesting. I had not looked forward to attending college in a long time, and everything was going smoothly. I played basketball, laughed and had someone to talk to now. We could share all our insecurities, fears, and dreams with each other without worrying about judgements. There was a tangible bond between us & though it raised eyebrows occasionally, neither of us bothered about it.

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