“Throw it away Charu! It might bite you!” screamed David running away from the beach back to the safety of his home. “Charu, it might hurt you, please throw it away.” He looked back and there was no one around. But the deserted beach looked strangely lit with a pleasant golden light. Strange it was as the afternoon sun was shining bright! David got scared and ran away.
David was all of 9. Charu was his best friend. They studied in the same class and were neighbors. Their parents were good friends too and they rarely bothered the kids when they played on the beach. They trusted the sea like their own mother. Sea was God to them, providing them a never-ending supply of food.
David got scared. They were playing when Charu found something strange on the beach. Though it was only a handful, it looked horrifying! It made a strange yet familiar sound which David tried to recognize. He hoped Charu had thrown it away and reached home safely by now. He dozed off in the corner of his room, hiding behind the cot.
“These kids you know! Leave them alone and they will keep playing day and night! Let me get Charu and David back home” David woke up hearing Charu’s mother telling this probably to his mom. He got really scared now. “What happened to Charu? Was that a monster? Did it just open its mouth and eat Charu?” David closed his eyes tight and started mumbling something.
“It looks a little scary but it is soft and mushy, come, David just touch it!” Charu didn’t turn around but called out to David. A sudden flash of light made her blink. She got scared for a moment but the soothing familiar sound of the ocean brought a strange calm to her face. It was so mesmerizing that she felt as if in a trance and floating away with the wind. Charu had no clue how long she had kept her eyes closed. But a cold breeze woke her from the trance and that’s when she looked around.
Charu was startled! There was no beach, no David and no light too! In fact, it was pitch dark and silent.
Charu yelled on the top of her voice but was startled to see two glowing tiny figures near her just as she started. They seemed to be startled too, by Charu’s squeal! She stared at those tiny glowing figures that seemed to be coming closer to her. Charu mustered up all her courage and started yelling “David, catch them, they are coming to catch me, look this side, they are just in front of you. Catch them before they find you.”
But her trick didn’t seem to work! The two glowing figures were quite close to her now. Charu stared at them. Actually, they looked cute! They didn’t have ears or nose or even a mouth! But they had 2 round eyes, big ones, and no legs or arms. They were floating in the air. One was green and the other was purple. They looked like two colorful balls with two big eyes each starting at her. And then she heard that sound again. This time, she realized, it was not the sound of the ocean, it was someone asking her to come closer. She found it very soothing and fell into a trance again.
Charu was floating along with the two tiny figures in the dark. She couldn’t see much, with the light emitting from the figures. But they took a turning and bright light fell on her face, making her blink again. She was probably inside a cave, by the seaside. When she came out, she couldn’t believe her eyes! A magnificent palace stood in front of her.
Charu eagerly looked to see a mermaid! But there were more ball-shaped tiny figures floating around in various colors. The snow-palace was very colorful from the inside. It was nothing like the mermaid’s palaces she had seen in the fairy tale books. She tried to catch one of those figures to feel it so that she could tell David when she went back home. But they could sense her trying to catch and not once could she get hold of them! That’s when she heard that sound again! It was clearer now.
“Charu, come closer to me. I want to see you” The voice seemed to be that of an old lady. When she stepped closer, she was taken aback to see a lady who resembled her mother, but she was definitely much older. “I won’t hurt you. I am your grandma. This is where I live now.” Charu stared in disbelief! Grandma?!! But Amma told that she was dead and went to stay with God! Is this where God lives? Am I dead too? And a dozen more questions came into her little mind.
“Charu, come closer sweetie. Let me hug you.” That was the warmest hug she had ever experienced in her life. The old lady smelled just like her mom. Charu tried to smile, though she was a little hesitant. Her grandma told “Charu, this is a different place! Not like our earth. But this is not the heaven we have all thought about. Here, they bring in only a few people who die. Though I came, I could not find anyone whom I know! I was told that they picked me because I was Sea God’s favorite! There’s a mountaineer, a biker, a fisherman and a few children also living nearby. But you humans cannot see them! I was very adamant that unless I see my little angel, I wouldn’t help them in their mission. You see they are trying to bring up blobs like we bring up children in the earth.” Saying this she hugged her again.
Charu had only heard about her Grandma. She fell in love with her in between those hugs. Grandma gave Charu a few toys though they looked quite strange! She asked if she could get one of those blobs back home, to show David. Grandma was not sure. But she tapped some buttons on a strange thing that looked like a remote. A few colorful blobs gathered around. Grandma asked her to choose one. She chose a Red blob!
Grandma tapped some more buttons on that remote thing and gave her another warm and tight hug. Her eyes welled up! They bid goodbye, never to meet again. Charu was to return the blob to the beach after a week. The next thing she knew was the bright light and she was on the beach again. The sun was about to set. She saw a group of men and women a little farther. They seemed a little frantic as if searching for something! She could hear her father shout out to someone to bring the oars. She ran towards them in joy, carefully hiding her blob.
People were shocked to hear her story. But no one took it seriously. They all thought Charu slept off and was sharing her dream! But her mom seemed a little worried. She knew that Charu had never seen her Grandma and yet could make out that Grandma looked exactly like her mom. But the story definitely didn’t make any sense, so she brushed off the idea of talking to her in detail.
Back home, Charu waited for the next day to meet David. He couldn’t believe the story too. But when Charu showed him the blob, he was shocked. It looked exactly like the thing she found on the beach! The blob looked at both David and Charu with its big eyes. Though it couldn’t make out anything they were talking, it kept staring.
Though David told her to keep the blob as their pet, Charu didn’t want to take a risk. Though she loved her Grandma a lot, having to go away from her parents and David scared her. After all, they were Aliens and what if they kidnapped her again! They went to the beach to leave the blob there.