Updated: Nov 14, 2022
Filled with an insane desire to meet the devil, a middle-aged man nicknamed Omniseeker is suggested to visit a place called the Child’s Wail. A fancy name for a burnt orphanage. For once, it is not a hoax.
“Omniseeker” by R. S. Chintalapati explores the story of a deviously desired man who meets a bitter end seeking a being that is nothing more than a side within mortals.
There I was, at last, the place where the devil indeed resided. They called me the Omniseeker, the nickname I have earned, searching everywhere to find the devil. I dug graves, sealed dead bodies without burial, performed black magic and even donated myself to be possessed, but nothing worked. The nemesis of the divine never greeted me. Everywhere I went, it hid in the darkness until I met an older man after burying a dead body in the nearby forest one day.
This older man, who decided to waste his last few years meditating, heard my desire and adored my passion. He told me to visit an abandoned orphanage called the Child’s Wail and promised me the devil awaited for everyone. It was nothing but a fancy name for a burnt orphanage that killed more than thirty children, and now the place is abandoned because visitors heard a child crying every night. I suspected it to be nothing more than a hoax from what I had seen.
So here I am, standing before the burnt two-storage building covered in darkness while being pointed the way by the moonlight. The building was undoubtedly haunting, but I heard no calls so far. Approaching the nearly open door, I entered the pitch-dark home to witness the magnificent evil that not only shows itself to some but calls to everyone who visits her.
The air smelt of burnt flesh, and beneath my boot, I could feel the bones of animals and humans alike. For once, I couldn’t control my excitement. After nearly spending years searching for the evil, here I was, a few steps from it. Covering my nose, I slowly paced forward before turning on the red light I carried everywhere, and for about a while, I heard nothing until I heard a child cry faintly from the first floor.
A smile appeared on my face, and pointing the light ahead, I took the stairs listening to the cry. With every step, the cry faintly disappeared, and when I reached the first floor, I saw a child who looked no older than ten, weeping, surrounded by dead bodies half-eaten.
Looking at me, the child calmly asked, “Can you please help me leave?”
Observing the carcasses, I asked, “Who is holding you?”
Looking at me as blood tears slipped on her cheeks, the child, in a shrill voice, replied, “The Devil!”
With a broad smile, I asked, “Where is this devil?”
As she stayed silent, looking into her completely white eyes, I asked, “I want to meet this devil.”
The child replied, “It’s within me. It made me burn this home with my friends in it and it feeds on them through me.”
Reaching the child by stepping on the half-eaten bodies, I finally saw the child’s face before I asked her, “Can you show her to me?”
Gawking at me, the child curiously asked, “Do you really want to see the devil, Omniseeker?”
Noticing me for a moment, the child opened her mouth filled with teeth like needles before saying, “I’m the devil, you fool!”
That was the last line I heard before being knocked down. However, I lived the next fortnight devoured one piece at a time every night by being punched by a thousand needles every bite.
This anthology is available in paperback & ebook.