This is a second part of the series: The Goregaon Girl. If you haven’t read the first part, click the link below:
At this moment, I was travelling in two different trains. One carried me physically away from the girl; and the other, train of thoughts, was pulling me back to her. Without having second thoughts, I pulled the chain that said “For emergency”. No sooner could I hear the screech of the metal wheels against the tracks, I was off from the moving train with all my luggage, rushing towards the girl.
I remember why I pulled the train, I nodded to myself. The reason was crystal clear in my head. There was a story behind it.
As my footsteps approached the girl, a sense of familiarity clouded the girl’s eyes. My soft footsteps relieved her from the bitter and incessant tears. I began bombarding a series of questions with a concern to help her.
“Who are you? Why are you crying? Are your parents around? Should I call for help?”
Her tight grip around her bag was an indication that she was terrified and scared. A brown sling bag was the only thing that she owned. I nodded in despair, too early to ask her this. I unzipped my rucksack to find a water bottle and offered her to drink some water. She grabbed it and gulped 4 – 5 ounce of water.
The water gave her parched throat some energy and confidence to speak.
“I don’t know how I ended up here”, she looked with her frightened eyes. I held her palm giving her the feeling of empathy that everything would be alright.
She trusted me.
“Are you hungry? Do you want something to eat?”
Before even completing the question I received a firm “Yes” from her. I took her to a nearby eatery where we had some tea and some biscuits. In the meantime, I inquired about her name and where she belonged from and how did she end up here alone in the station.
“My name is Ananya. I swear, I really don’t know how I ended up alone on that platform this morning. The only memory that I remember is sleeping on my mother’s lap on a full moon night after she fed me morsels of curd rice.”
I wasn’t buying this explanation from her.
So I asked her, “Can I check your bag for a moment? May be it can help us lead somewhere.”
She passed her brown sling bag to me. As soon as I received the bag from her, I scrutinized every pocket of the bag for any clues.
An empty water bottle, a soft toy and a general train ticket from Rameswaram to Mumbai was retrieved.
“A ticket from Rameswaram? Are you from Rameswaram?”, I asked her in surprise and confusion.
I was startled, scared and confused. What needs to be done now. I felt like a hole in my heart. I gasped for every breath. “Fuck! Where is this leading?”, I whispered to myself.
Will Karthik lead Ananya to her destination? Why did Karthik pull the chain of the train? What was his story? Will Karthik find out how Ananya ended up in the platform?
Will Karthik risk his life of going to Rameswaram to find the true story of Ananya?