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The Night of Falls

Updated on February 10, 2022
Was it a trap?
Was it a trap?

Was It a TRAP?

The color of the horizon changed from yellow to orange, from orange to red , from red to purple and then from purple to the midnight blue. The evening has lazily glided to meet the cozy night. Lying in the sheer lightlessness Probal was trying to join dot, one dot after the other to form a picture of his life, which now has pushed him to the deepest corners of nothingness. A failure writer, that’s now what her friends call, Probal has tasted perhaps all the bitter truths of life.
Tomorrow is yet another day to try another publisher. Clutching the pillow for once Probal wanted to forget his worries tonight.
“Your novel fails to attract the readers, it has no twist in it”- the publisher handed over the manuscript back to him.
“Sir this novel talks about the million hapless who are forced to give up living each year in India and ….
Ratan Saha, the publisher of nobin probin, one of the famed magazines didn’t let Probal finish his sentence… Look Mr. Sen, I am a businessman so I am aware about the likes and dislikes of the readers. Your novel, has no x factor in it to generate money for me! Do you understand me?”
I understand.. Probal’s voice almost faded away as he slowly gathered himself while swallowing the insult of another rejection.
“It is only stunts what they want you know.. No basics and no storyline .. “ Probal almost shouted over the phone while talking to Piu.” I am tired with all these , I guess I need a break, Piu. I am going to Delhi  next week to rejuvenate.. wanna join me?” – Probal asked.
“ No not this time. .. Mom is not well so can’t leave her on her own.” You take care and come back with a fascinating story to tell. Let the publisher knock your door. I wish you success”-
Thanks Piu….. Love u ‘

Rajdhani has taken up its pace,. Sitting atthe unruffled AC two tier coupe Probal felt a sudden chill. It’s often good to be alone, to be with one’s own self, to reinvent!!
Probal tried to settle down; he so very much detests this all closed train journey.. Delhi is indeed not unknown to Probal, in fact he grew up there and perhaps this is the reason why he so very much wanted to be at Delhi to craft out a storyline, perhaps to create his masterpiece.

Delhi has changed yet again … no matter how many times he comes, the initial feeling each time remains same- Delhi has changed, has become even more beautiful!
Excuse me I have a booking for a single bedroom for 4 days. Probal asked at the reception of the cheap hotel located further down at Mayurvihar
Haan ji sir ji …. The Punjabi manager appeared to be extremely caring as he showed the way towards the room across the hallway to Probal. Quite a neat hotel room, larger then expected, the room is pretty airy with a stunning combination of mauve and pink. Probal lied at the soft linens with his eyes locked outside the window, gazing aimlessly the grey skyline merging with the horizon.

Knock Knock ! Probal hears the knock at the door

Who is there ?

None answers ..yet another knock at the door .. KNOCK KNOCK

Probal opened the door and to his surprise he finds a middle aged man standing in front of him. The man should be above sixty, medium built, dark complexioned. His salt n pepper hair made him appear even older than his actual age.

Yes , how can I help you? Probal asked .

I am Banshidhar Nandi. I heard that you are a budding writer so came to meet you. Am I disturbing you?

Probal feels good when somebody calls him a writer it makes him feel high, make him feel wanted! O not at all ! Come in please.

Probal left the door ajar as the man slowly made his way towards the couch. So what are you writing these days ? the man asked while settling down slowly.

Probal sat facing Banshidhar, and said .. nothing till now, trying to find out an interesting storyline. Let’s see what happens!

Ha ha ha … the man laughed a pitiless hoot and said ... ‘ what has happened to this younger generation I do not understand, they always sound so low in confidence level , far .. far different from our generation!”

Its not that Mr Nandi but its indeed painful to experience rejection time and time again.

So what brings you here in Delhi ? Probal asked

Stories ! The man narrowed his eyes as he replied

Did not get you! Probal sounded perplexed

I am also a writer  like you , but the only difference is I am an established writer! The man closed his eyes as he replied.

I have never heard your name nor have I seen you in any of the writer’s conferences. Do you carry a pseudo name? Probal asked .

Well, my pseudo name is ‘dreamweaver’, however none of my novels has yet been published. The man replied.

But you said that you are an established writer already right ? Probal asked while unveiling his confusion.

Yes. I am an established writer. Ha ha ha … you confused right ? the man leaned forward as he asked this to Probal .

Yeah kind of. Am not being able to comprehend you, I guess. Probal replied.

Okay … the thing is , I have written a novel , a dark mystery novel, named ‘at the night of falls’. I have already forwarded a copy to the famous publisher and the publisher has liked my manuscript. However they asked for few changes and I have done that ! Now its time to hand it over to then and to relish the taste of success ! what say huh? The man closed his eyes as if he has started dreaming about his success.

O okay that sounds interesting ! Probal’s voice sounded hoarse.

Yes , interesting indeed and more to it the publisher has never seen me till date and it is only the storyline which has impressed him. Mr. Nandi said with a tinge of self pride.
Is this the novel? Probal looked at the big fat file that the man was carrying and asked
Yes . this is my story ! You can read it and tell me how you liked it. After all it is my privilege to let my novel reviewed by a budding writer before publication. The man added.

I would love to read that. Probal said .

Okay so here you go young man . Keep it with you. Now I am taking off and will meet you tomorrow for lunch at downstairs. Carry the file there and tell me how you liked the novel. Mr. Nandi said.

Surely! Probal said and opened the door.

Its pretty cold tonight. Probal ladled the single jar of wine and opened the manuscript of Mr Nandi. .

It is a so matured write up. Every page creates the air of suspense while captivating the reader to flip through the next page ,.. and then another and then the other pages, till he reaches the last page! Fascinating is indeed an understatement- Probal thought to himself as he finished the last line!

It is late night and Probal tried to sleep. Yet the shivering cold did not let him sleep.

Knock knock.. Probal heard the knock at his door.

Who is that ?

Sir ji its me . Probal heard the manager outside the door.

Hurriedly he opened the door and found the manager standing

Whats wrong Mr. Kampani ?

Sir ji the man who was there in your room this evening has just died of a heart attack

What ? Probal was shocked

Yes sir he has just expired and the ambulance and police are here.

That’s sad indeed. Probal swallowed as his mouth went dry.

Sir I just came to tell you that it’s very cold so if you would need any additional blanket please call me as there is none available for room service tonight. The manager said.

Okay .. thanks .. Probal locked the room and tried to sleep. Now sleep appeared to be just a four letter word for him. A strange desire whirled around his mind while making him restless. It is the undying desire to be famous overnight, to taste success made him impatient! Probal sat on the bed and once again held the manuscript of Mr. Nandi. He smelled the manuscript and closed his eyes. Perhaps he tried to smell the stench of success.

A nasty plan cropped up in his mind which can fetch him name, fame and recognition. Banshidhar Nandi has never visited the publisher yet his manuscript has been approved for publication so why not to proxy just his pseudo name ‘dreamweaver’ and experience his luck!

Hello am I speaking to the eminent publishing house, ‘Books for you’? Probal asked over the phone.

Yes you are the operator answered

Okay , I am the ‘dreamweaver’, if u remember my latest novel has been approved…
Probal could not even finish and the operator transferred the line to the concerned department

A very warm voice greeted Probal’ Hello Mr, dreamweaver, I have been waiting for your call since last two days. So when do you want your novel to go live?

As soon as possible and also I want to meet you personally and reveal my name also – Probal said

That is indeed my good luck. Come to my office whenever you feel like..
The next few weeks as if glided away midst thousands of press conferences , the novel created ripple in the market. Each of the dailies each of the mags only talked about one novel, ‘the night of the falls’

Probal became famous, and a renowned mystery writer. Sitting at his new flat at the Ballygunge place Probal tasted success. Probal has finally bottled success in his Chivas Regal, he has delineated success in his new Swift car and new 1200 Sq ft posh apartment! Happy I am ‘ Probal closed his eyes as he gulped the last drop of Chivas. The white patina of the crystal whisky glass flashed in red luminance of his living room.
Few more interviews next week, two more inauguration … Probal scheduled his busy weeks while savoring the sepia drink.


Months passed and dreamweaver became a name in the mystery novel world. Probal was driving back home while his cell rang.

Hello ..Am I speaking to Probal Sen, the writer of “the night of the falls”? A heavy voice asked

Yes you are. Probal answered apprehending a regular call from the writer’s guild
Okay. I am Jotileshwar Banerjee, CID inspector I would like to meet you in person

The very word CID made Probal almost numb. Gathering himself he said. Sure sir I am driving back home you can meet me anytime.

Thanks .. see you at your place after 6.30PM

Okay, Probal hung the call yet the call remained at the back of his mind

What the CID dept has to do with me? Perhaps the man liked the novel so wants to meet me! Probal thought it himself.The click struck at 6.30 and Jotileshwat Banerjee, the CID inspector entered .

Hello mr sen !
Hello sir!

So , you are now quite a name right ? the man asked looking straight at Probal’s eyes.

Probal smiled back.

Could you tell me Mr. sen how do you know about all the murders which you have penned in your novel so well? The inspector asked.

Ha ha ha .. I do not know any of then I am a writer so I imagined. Probal answered while keeping his composure.

O really ? you imagined!  then how these uncannily resembles with the record of the serial killer whom we are actually looking for? The inspector voice almost turned into a whisper.

What are you saying inspector! How can that be possible! I just read few of the murder cases in the paper and perhaps these have reflected into the novel and so you might have been thinking like that! Probal said

Hmmm .. I also initially thought so until I went through the paper cuttings to cross check.

The news paper has no reference of the frozen lamb leg which your murderer uses to murder every beautiful female and it is only recorded in our top confidential files! Do you have any answer Mr sen?

Probal is sweating the whole world as if swaying infront of him.

I think you should come with me for further interrogation Mr sen . The inspector almost commanded.

Probal sat at the police jeep. The jeep started. Crossing his known streets the jeep moved on further. Shivering in fear Probal waited for his destiny! He wanted to shout out loud “I am not the actual writer of this novel’! But he could only mouth a strange groan! The jeep moved forward wounding the silence of the evening.


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