There was a farmer living in a certain village with his wife and a son. He married late and was glad to have a son at last- to inherit his land. One day he went to the nearest town to buy new seeds for his crops. On the way back, he came across robbers who robbed him of all his possessions and beat him up for the resistance he put up. People brought him to his village with inflicted injuries and blood soaked clothes. As a result of severe injuries sustained, he lingered on for some time and then died.
His wife could not bear his loss and completely broke down and took to bed where she died too after a year. The son was left alone. Suddenly he had lost everything and with it all his hope. He could not dare to look at his house and at his fields. He stayed away from the village for a while, with a distant relative. He thought about his life again after some interval and came to conclusion that he had to start anew however difficult it may be. No one was going to feed him or house him forever; he had to face the music himself alone now.
He went back to his home and with the help of neighbours, began to till his land and do other necessary chore connected with his farm and the house. He felt alone in a terrible world. He tried to run away from this problem by going to friends’ houses in the evenings but felt he was not always welcome in their homes as he was in their way and they needed their own privacy. One day he consulted a friend about any solution to his problem of loneliness and the friend confided in him that the loneliness was a common lot of humanity and most people solved it by marrying and having kids, as to have a companionship of their own.
Soon he was in search of a wife but did not have much luck in finding one. He approached a matchmaker in a distant village who advised him that he had a nice girl in mind, in a certain village but would charge him five sacks of wheat. Though it was a high price to for him pay at once but he persuaded the matchmaker that at the following harvest, he would provide him with all his dues.
The matchmaker accepted his terms and invited him to come and visit his would be bride on a certain date. Duly prepared, attired in new clothes and with hundred rupees tied in a handkerchief, he accompanied the matchmaker. He was shocked to see the girl. She was built like a horse towering above him and with a suitable ugly face to go with it. He took the matchmaker outside the room to have a word in private and conveyed his horror at the ugliness of the woman. The matchmaker told him that it was the best he could do with a meagerly sum of five sacks of wheat. A beautiful woman will cost him nearly fifteen sacks more.
The farmer’s son thought about but could not afford- his loneliness and fifteen sacks of wheat He could easily die through starvation or from his loneliness and so reluctantly accepted his terms. He paid hundred and one rupees to the girl’s parents as a sign of contract and fixed the marriage six months hence.
He married the girl at the following harvest after paying the matchmaker five sacks of wheat. Soon loneliness helped to overcome his dread of his wife and her ugliness. She was not a great cook either or a good housekeeper and was lazy and shirker for any hard work. He ignored all her faults and even developed a sort of love towards her.
Months went by and his wife’s behaviour began to worsen as she became lazier and lazier. She did not bring his mid-day meal to the fields as other wives did and when he came home there was nothing cooked for him and he had to wash all the dirty dishes too but did not say a world for fear of causing a row in the house. Soon whenever he came home, he found his wife entertaining all her friends from the village. She prepared sumptuous meals for farmers’ wives, went with them to the nearest town to buy trinkets and bangles to adorn her and was becoming a financial burden on him as well.
It seemed that he had exchanged his loneliness for a great deal of headache and financial loss. A drift began to appear among the couple and soon they were sleeping in separate beds. People in the village thought a great deal about his wife as a generous ladies who provided support and good meals for the farmer’s wives but unfortunately they did not had high opinion of that farmer’s son. It seemed that she was telling tales of being starved and ill treated by her husband. He could not even share his burden with other farmers as nobody listened to him anymore or heeded his pleas of sympathy.
One day he told his wife that he no longer wanted to live with her and that she should clear out of his house and that he would pay a certain amount to her in exchange for leaving the house to live apart. She became furious and violent, screamed and attacked him physically. His weaknesses was exposed that he could never hit a woman or attack her physically. This encouraged his wife a great deal who towered over him and released volleys of fists and abuse all over him. His face had too many cuts and his eyes became swollen. Somehow he managed to conceal it from other farmers for fear of ridicule, as being the hen pecked man of the village.
He felt belittled and humiliated in his own house and even begged her to leave the house.
She told him that it was her house too and she had all the rights of possession and if her husband was so keen to dissolve the marriage, he should leave the house to her
Solely and simply vanish. That was a real blow to him; he became agitated and full of bitterness and could not sleep properly. He brooded at nights and began to have nightmares and sleepless hours. He simply had to do something about it.
He heard about a sorcerer few villages away and wanted to consult him about his troubles. He had to spend a night traveling to his place and back and when he told his wife about seeing a friend in a distant village, she was delighted as she was going to invite all her friends for a big party and whole night of singing and dancing
He arrived at the sorcerer’s house and disclosed to him all the troubles about his wife’s indulgences and her behaviour towards him. The sorcerer dealt with both black and white magic and told him that to cast a spell on his wife was going to cost him three thousands rupees for the kala jadoo or ten thousands rupees for the white magic. He opted out for the kala jadoo as it was cheaper and seemed to be more revengeful. Further the sorcerer gave him tree choices of either turning his wife into a parrot, cat or a sow He considered and visualized each of these possibilities and began to laugh within himself about the sow’s choice. That seem to be the right choice as pigs are normally gluttons and there were plenty of left- overs in his house and in his field. He gloated over about his wife’s appearance as a sow and this lighted up his mood.
After the second harvest, he had enough money to pay the sorcerer the money asked for.
The sorcerer prepared an amulet with strange hieroglyphics on it and told him to put it underneath her pillow or under her bed. Secondly he gave her some powder to put into her drinks, a spoonful at a time. He returned from his journey in a happy mood and began to carry out the plan. He had the amulet under her pillows and began to administer the powder in her drinks night and day and waited for the results to materialize. After a week he noticed some strange things in his wife. Her lips began to be get smaller and were getting shaped into a snout like formation. He was delighted with the result.
One day when he woke up in the morning, he found a big sow grunting and sleeping in the bed next to him. He let a squeal of delight and the sow reciprocated it. So the miracle had happened and a great weight seemed to have been lifted from his mind. On his return from the fields, he brought plenty of rotten vegetables and other left overs from the fields, which he fed to the sow She was so pleased. He also gave her all stale food left from the last night’s meals, which she ate happily grunting with joy. Neighbors and her friends asked for the reason of his wife’s absence and he told them that she has gone on a pilgrimage to the distant hills and was going to visit all the holy places there. The neighbors admired his wife’s piety a great deal
The farmer was happy with his life and with the sow and who was spending most of her time in bed and became angry and squalled whenever he came near the bed so he left her alone to her business. At night the sow roamed about in the house and especially the kitchen in search of any scarps. Soon she began to get more adventurous and began to go around to the neighbors’ houses and where she was given much stale food, which she ate, grunting with delight. She became the village pet and a due credit was given to the farmer for bringing such a cute pet into the village.
Days went by and the farmer noticed that she was getting fatter and bulkier and he inscribed this to the enormity of the food she was consuming. One day he noticed her udders getting bigger and more erected and he looked for the reason and suddenly realized that she was pregnant. My God what was happening, it was horrific. She might give birth to a litter of baby pigs, may be ten or twenty, to which the sow was fully capable of. And suppose those little piglets tried to take revenge on him for their mother’s humiliation brought about by the spell. It would be a hard task to live in the house surrounded with all those pink snouts scurrying around, grunting and squeaking.
That was not the end of his nightmare. Suppose the spell wears off and those things turn back to humans, he would have his house full of horrible babies and surely they were going to attack and bite him or even consume him while he was asleep in his bed.
Before the things got worse, he must leave for a safe place in distant country. He sold his land secretly and then fled to a distant land, thousand miles away and left the house solely in charge of the sow.
Durlabh Singh © 2013.
© Copyright 2016 Durlabh. All rights reserved.
Short Story / Fantasy
Short Story / Humor
Short Story / Humor
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