Monday, February 29, 2016

Team Standings - Freelance Talents Championship 2015-16 #FTC1516

Freelance Talents Championship 2015-16
Final Team Standings

Team # 20 (Behnam Balali & Karan Virk) - 442/600 (73.67%) 

2) - Team # 12 (Frank Heiner & Mark Trump) - 440/600 (73.33%)

3) - Team # 10 (Eric Vasquez & Joseph Andrews) - 431/600 (71.83%)

4) - Team # 14 (Ajitesh Bohra & Siddhant Shekhar) -  424/600 (70.67 %) 

5) - Team # 01 (Giorgio Baroni & Dharmesh Talwar) - 415/600 (69.17%)

6) - Team # 24 (Kapil Chandak & Soumendra Majumder) - 410/600 (68.33%)

7) - Team # 23 (Vibhuti Dabral & Manan Sharma) - 409/600 (68.17%)

8) - Team # 02 (Amit Kumar & Avijit Misra) - 391/600 (65.16%)

9) - Team # 07 (Tadam Gyadu & Ranjana Sharma) - 390/600 (65%)

10) - Team # 06 (Manabendra Majumder and Rahul Ranjan) - 385/600 (64.17%)*

11) - Team # 27 (Deepjoy & Rishav Adarsh) - 385/600 (64.17%)*

12) - Team # 19 (Dheeraj Kumar & Anurag Singh) - 383/600 (63.83%)

13) - Team # 16 (Akash Kumar & Ayush Jha) - 349/600 (58.17%)

14) - Team # 15 (Amit Albert & Rishi Sri) - 348/600 (58%)

15) - Team # 25 (Navneet Singh & Vaibhav Singh) - 335/600 (55.83%)

16) - Team # 26 (Abhilash Panda & Ashutosh S. Rajput) -  323/600 (53.84%)

17) - Team # 13 (Harendra Saini & Ankur Singh) - 321/600 (53.50%)

18) - Team # 05 (Dominik Gutzeit & Kuldeep Gupta) - 299/600 (49.83%)

19) - Team # 03 (Handika Taurus & Vyom Dayal) - 275/600 (45.83%)

20) - Team # 17 (Jorge N. & Ren Taylor) - 243/600 (40.5%)

Participatory / Forfeit Teams

21) - Team # 22 - (Piyush & Neel) (122 Points)**
22) - Team # 11 - (Yohan & Jen) (55 Points)**
23) - Team # 18 – (Andrey & Jenny) (53 Points)** 
24) - Team # 09 - (Rory & Evans) (45 Points)**
25) - Team # 04 - (Jan & Moinac) (40 Points)** 

Team 8) - Ana Rocio Jimenez Zepeda – Amend Aeson
Team 21) - Anand Singh - Yogesh Amana Yogi
I would like to thank all the artists, authors and judges (Pankaj V., Mayank Sharma) for their efforts in this event! :) 

Prizes, Trophies will be dispatched soon!

Best Ranked Indian Artist Mr. Ajitesh Bohra wins a free website.
*In case of tie team ahead in 2 out of 3 rounds gets higher overall ranking.
** Participatory teams forfeit after 1 or 2 Rounds

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Round 3 - Team # 10 (Eric & Joseph) #ftc1516

Parasitic Prison
Team # 10 (Eric & Joseph) #ftc1516

I remember when I was six that everything was very confusing. Now that I look at it, I was so oblivious to what was really going on in the world and worst of all my own home.

It all started a few days after Christmas. It was one of the biggest and whitest snows that the United States had in a very long time. It was me, my brother Andrew who was eight at the time and understood a lot more than I ever did and my mom, Susan. My dad died before I was born and my mom refused to tell my brother and I anything. Apparently his death was so gruesome that not even my own mom would tell us anything. I mean, I get that much, but whenever anyone mentioned our dad, she would stare at me with this loving but very scared look on her face like I was... Some kind of monster.

When I was six, I didn't know that my mom was sick. She always acted normal around my brother and I. We never thought anything of it until the day that she passed away. We had cats at the time who were sick as well, but when my mom got sick, one of the cats felt better and the other one died outside. My mom tried to tell us that the cat died a painless death, but the cruel truth is that it's body couldn't handle the sheer weight of a car tire. That night, she went to tuck me in bed and all of a sudden she fell over and started to convulse. I tried to wake her up, hoping she would, but she was dead. I went to get andrew and he told me to call 911. 

After being on the phone for an hour and a half trying to describe where my house is, I hear a scream. A blood curdling scream that I will never be able to get out of my ears or even perceive. I dropped the phone and noticed that our dead cat had never been dead at all. Quite alive. Instead of the normal, loving tabby cat that we came to love with its brown eyes and brown and tan fur, it was dark like an abysmal black that you only hear about in fairy tales and scary stories. Instead of the small mouth that a cat usually has, this... organism had a very big jawline from the snout to the chest with rows of thick and knife like teeth. Instead of the brown eyes that looked at us lovingly, they were a bright white, a white as bright as the snow that fell outside of our house. The four legged being standing before me had no legs, but a spiny, grotesque tail with a bone colored and shaped barb.

Frozen with fear, I couldn't move. As the cat I once knew and loved was this... Deformed, crippled, terrifying monster that was slowly slithering it's way to me was surprisingly not aggressive toward me at all. In fact, it wanted me to follow it. Although fear was anchoring my legs, my curiosity made me move again. First we went to Andrew and looking upon his dead body, I saw signs of constriction. As I looked ever so closely, I heard a voice in my head. It told me to not be afraid and to look to my left. I looked and the monster that distilled fear in me was staring right at me. I realized that there's more to this monster than meets the eye. The monster told me to follow it again. This time to my room, where my mother collapsed. The monster, using its body wanted me to look at her. What I saw horrified me: laying on her stomach, I noticed a stab wound that was circular, like a spear went through her. Observing it more, the monster drew my attention to the knife in her hand. The monster said that it was intended for me. I asked the monster why she tried to kill me. The monster said it was because of what I was. 

To explain what the monster said, he said that my dad was a very bad, but very brilliant man. A parasitologist to be precise. My mom didn't know about his job or what he did or where he worked at. When Andrew was born, he took interest in him and after a year, he didn't want anything to with him because he wasn't "compatible". Well, when my mom was pregnant with me, my dad would do all sorts of experiments on her while she was asleep. After a while she caught on to what he was doing and found his laboratory in the basement. She found all of these progress reports about me. She was so disgusted that she lit the basement on fire with some detergent and a lighter. The monster also explained that my father was burnt to death, but he survived through all of the experiments he did on himself. Turning him into a advanced parasitoid that can adapt to any environment, society, and theoretically space and time itself. And finally the monster explained that I am his legacy and that the monster was of my own doing.

I was stunned... I didnt know what to say or even begin to think of all this. Before I knew it, everythin went black. I woke up and I tried to speak but nothing came out. I saw what I became, I was in a parasitic prison.


Rating - 129/200

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 431/600 (71.83%)

Judges - Mohit Trendster, Mayank Sharma and Pankaj V.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Round 3 - Team # 17 (Jorge & Ren) #ftc1516

Rating - 41/200

*Story not submitted

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 243/600 (40.5%)

Round 3 - Team # 05 (Dominik & Kuldeep) #ftc1516

Mind Horror

You lay awake, listening to the sounds of the morning; the window slightly open to let in some ambience so you don't feel alone. The odd car or van that passes gives you some feeling of belonging, because in the small hours of the morning, you feel as though you are the only person in the world...but part of you knows that you are not alone in the bedroom.

You left the light on, that much has always been true since your infant days when you begged your mother or father to leave the night light on. You feared That Which Dwells Under the Bed. You always have, because of the noises you used to hear as sleep carried you off to your nightmares. 

Sometimes the dreams were good, but most were bad, and they were caused by the thing under the bed. Wasn't they?

Now, you feel rooted to the bed. You are sure that it is under the bed, waiting for you to swing a leg out so It can grab your ankle and drag you, screaming, underneath with it. Maybe it wants a cuddle? Have you mistaken The Thing Under The Bed for a malicious, devious monster, a monster that really just wants a kiss? 

You look at the wardrobe, sure that you had closed it after getting your pyjamas from it stands ajar, as if something has come out and left it thus; but you know better. You know that The Thing Under the Bed wants you to think that. 

It has done this on purpose, but you are wise to its tricks. 

It hasn't caught you yet, but the morning light is far from the horizon, and there is time yet. Can you wait the three hours until the Sun's rays grace the night sky turning it blue? Can you stay quiet enough so that the monster under the bed doesn't shamble from its place, giggling, snarling and licking its waxy lips? Maybe it won't hurt.

Perhaps you could make it, if you chanced it, to get from the bed, run to the door and get into the bathroom...that nagging need to urinate is bothersome, is it not?

The urge is always directly proportionate to the ability to get to the toilet. Perhaps the dash doesn't seem so irrational now....

A creak, a tapping. It has to be the old pipes, or as mother used to say 'the house settling.' You believe this with all your heart; all your being, but there is that one corner of your mind that screams 'IT'S UNDER THE BED!'


Rating - 104/200

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 299/600 (49.83%)

Judges - Mayank Sharma, Mohit Trendster and Pankaj V. (Shaan)

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Round 3 - Team # 24 (Kapil & Soumendra) #ftc1516

ज़िंदा हो कर मर गया

बचपन के दोस्त देवेन और मोहित, बाहरवीं की पढाई साथ ही कर रहेथे। दोनों का दिमाग कौतुको से लबरेज थे। प्रारंभण से ही गूढ़ और रहस्मयी वाकयो में खासी दिलचस्मी रखते थे। उड़नतश्तरी से लेकर ज़ॉम्बीज़ और सम्मोहन से ले कर टाइम मशीन तक सब पर अनुसंधान कर चुकेथे। दोनों सनकियो की तरह अलग-थलग दुनिया में पड़े रहतेहैं। चाँद पर पहला कदम भले ही नील आमस्ट्रॉन्ग ने रखाहो, लेकिन इन दोनों का दिमाग पूरी आकाशगंगा को चाट आया था। अलौकिक वृतांतों में लिपटे इन मानुषों के साथ हमेशा ही गैरमामूली बाते होते रहना भी एक संयोग ही था। दोनों एकसाथ पढ़नेके बहाने एक-दुसरे के घर रातको रूका करतेथे, जहाँ अज़ीब और अटपटे विषयों पर तार्किक जुगलबंदी होती रहतीथी।

अभी कुछ महीनोंसे देवेन के घर गोपनीय ढंगसे यहाँ-वहाँ  चिंगारी भड़क उठती हैं, घर की चीज़े खो जाती हैं फिर कुछ अंतराल के बाद वापस मिल जाती हैं। दोनों कुशाग्र कुमारों की कौतक बुद्धि सक्रिय हो गयी। गंभीरता से जाँच-पड़ताल शुरू हो गयी। आज देवेन पढ़नेके बहाने मोहित के घर रात में रुकने आया था ताकि आगज़नी की घटनाओं को भेद सके।

मोहित : "इसके पीछे कोई आसमानी ताकत हैं, शायद कोई एलियन या भूत-प्रेत हो, क्या बोलते हों?

देवेन : "मैं नहीं मानता, मेरे ख्याल से ये भविष्य से आये हुए उन्नत तकनिकी वाले लोग हैं जो इस समय (काल) के लोगो के बीच रह कर अपनी नयी टेक्नोलॉजी से ऐसे-ऐसे काम करते हैं जो हमें कभी असाधारण, कभी अज़ीब और कभी-कभी भुतहा लगते हैं।"

मोहित : हाँ, जैसे एक ही रेडियो पर अलग-अलग फ्रीक्वेंसी पर अलग-अलग FM चैनल आतेहैं ठीक वैसे ही एक ही धरती पर एक साथ अलग-अलग काल के लोग एक साथ रहते हैं, यानि हम 21वीं सदीमें हैं, तो हमारे साथ अभी 18वीं और 22वीं सदीके लोग भी रहते हैं बस उनका आयाम यानि फ्रीक्वेंसी अलग हैं, लेकिन कई बार किसी एक आयाम के लोग भूलवश भटक कर किसी और आयाम यानि समयमें पहुँच जाते हैं और इसे ही टाइम ट्रैवल कहतेहैं।"

देवेन : "मैने इंटरनेट पर कई लोगोंके अनुभवोंको पढ़ा हैं जो संयोगवश किसी दुसरे कालमें पहुँच जातेहैं, विकिपीडिया पर भी टाइम ट्रेवल (समय यात्रा) के बारेमें काफी कुछ हैं, जैसे 1950 में न्यूयॉर्क टाइम स्क्वायर पर एक व्यक्ति रोड एक्सीडेंटमें मारा गया, जिसने 19वीं सदीके कपड़े पहनें हुएथे, जिसकी पहचान पुलिस ने  रुडोल्फ फेंटज के रूपमें की जो 29 वर्षकी उम्रमें 1876 से लापताहैं। वो बंदा 1876 और 1950 दोनोंमें 29 वर्षका कैसेहो सकताहैं, यानिवो 1876 में किसी टेक्नोलॉजी की हेल्पसे या भूलवश किसी अलग समय के आयाममें भटक गया होगा और 1950 के समयमें आ पहुँचा।"       

दोनों अभी दूसरी दुनिया और उनके आयामों में खोये हुए थे की तभी ठकसे एक पत्थर आकर देवेनको लगा, फिर पत्थरोंकी बरसात होगयी।  दोनों बाहरकी और भागे।  रात का समयथा, मोहित देवेन सड़कपर खड़े हाँफ रहेथे। 
"इन पत्थरोने तो सिर फोड़ दिया, थोड़ी देर और रुक जातेतो हमें लोग सुबह मलबे से निकालते" पत्थर बरसने की आवाज़ रुकनेके बाद दोनों वापस घरके ऊपर बने उस कमरेमें आकर तफ़तीशमें जुट जातेहैं।
"कौन फेंक रहाथा, कमरा तो चारो तरफसे बंद था? लगताहैं दुसरे आयामसे आये लोगोंको हमारी बातें पसंद नहीं आयी हीहीही। देख, मोहित उधर ऊपर रोशनदान पर लगा पर्दा उड़ रहाहैं, मतलब वो जगह खुलीहैं, चल देखतेहै शायद कोई सुराग मिलजाए।"

"लेकिन येतो बहुत ऊपरहैं, देवेन तू घोड़ी बनजा में तेरे ऊपर चढ़कर देखताहुँ।"

मोहित, देवेन को घोड़ी बनाकर ऊपर चढ़ा लेकिन अभी भी वो रोशनदानके नज़दीक नहीं पहुँच पाया, उसने हाथ ऊपर करके वहाँ कुछ टटोला, "अरे ये क्याहैं? आsssआsssह"

मोहितकी जंगली चीख़के बाद कमरेमें सन्नाटा पसर गया। क़रीब 2 घण्टे बाद देवेनकी आँख खुली, मोहितको झँझोड़ा।  भारी पलकोंको उठाते हुए मोहितने देवेन पर नज़रे टिकाई , "भाई अभी क्या हुआथा, एक पलको लगा की बेहोशी छा गयी और फिर किसीने पहाड़से नीचे फेंक दिया"

देवेन खुद सदमे में था, दोनों उठे, और छत पर चले गए, हवा कुछ बदली सी लगी, शायद सुबह हो चुकीथी।
"देख मोहित! अनुराग अंकल, बंटू भैयाके पापा; ये यहाँ नीचे कैसे?"
"अरे हां, ये तो काफी सालसे लापता हैं। बंटू भैयाने बताया था उस समय अंकल की उम्र कोई 44-45 साल रही होगी, लेकिन अभी तो ये 28-29 सालके लग रहेहैं ठीक वैसे ही जैसे इनके घर इनकी शादीके समय की फोटो लगी हुयी हैं।"

देवेन : "ओह माय गॉड, मतलब की हम कई साल पीछे आगए हैं, किसी दुसरे समय आयाम में,  हम उस कालमें आ पहुँचे जब या तो हम हुए ही नहींथे या फिर छोटे बच्चेथे।"

दोनों नीचे को लपके, कमरे में पहुँचते ही देवेन को लगा उसके पैर पर किसीने कोई भारी चीज रखदी, फिर लगा की पूरा शरीर ही जमीनमें धँसा जारहा हैं, भय-स्तब्ध देवेन की सारी इन्द्रिया सुन्न पड़ गयी। बीभत्स चिंघाड़ों के साथ वो कमरे में इधर-उधर दौड़ने लगा। 
डरा हुआ मोहित नीचेको भागा तो देवेन ने उसे दरवाजे पर पकड़ लिया।
"तु मुझे अकेला छोड़ कर मतजा, मैं मर जाऊंगा"                
मोहितको लगा किसीने गरम तवा चिपका दिया, उसके शरीर से पसीने का झरना फूट पड़ा, छूटने की कोशिश की लेकिन नाकाम रहा। वहाँ जमा किये पत्थर उठा वो देवेन पर फेंकने लगा;अचानक देवेन का गरम शरीर मुरझा गया, मोहितने स्वयं को छुड़ाया और ज़मीन पर जा गिरा। करीब तीन-चार घंटे बाद मोहितको होश आया, सामने देवेन खड़ा मुस्कुरा रहाथा। भौंचंके मोहित के बोलने से पहले ही देवेन बोला "अब अच्छा महसूस कर रहा हु, लो चलो चलते हैं"  दोनों दरवाज़े की तरफ बढ़े।

"रुको, ये नहीं जा सकता" मोहित आवाज़की दिशामें पलटा लेकिन उसकी पलके आप ही चिपक गयी, वो देख नहीं पा रहाथा, चारों और स्याह अँधेरा, पूरी ताकत लगा आँखे खोली।

सामने मम्मी-पापा और छोटी बहनथी, नज़रे फिरायी, मोहल्ले के लोगों का जमावड़ा था, दोस्त-रिश्तेदार सब थे। चौंककर उठा, "पापा ये क्या हैं, सब यहाँ कैसे?"
मोहितको  बताया गयाकी कमरेके रोशनदान पर बिजली का खुला तार था जिसे छूने पर देवेन और मोहित दोनों की साँसे थम गयी थी।  देवेन का क्रियाकर्म कर दिया गया था लेकिन मोहित के बीकानेर वाले ताऊजी का आना बाकि था इसलिए अभी तक शव घरपर ही था। ऐसे मोहित का वापस जिंदा हो जाना चमत्कार ही था, डॉक्टरने बताया की ऐसी घटना को मेडिकल साइंस में क्लीनिकल डेथ कहते हैं।  क्लिनिकली डेड व्यक्ति की हृदय गति बंद होने के बाद कदाचित फिर से लौट आतीहैं।

तीसरे दिन मोहित अपने कमरेमें बैठा तड़प रहा था, "तो क्या में मौत के बाद वाली दुनियामें पहुँच गया था? मैं इसलिए बच गया क्योंकि मुझे जलाया नहीं गया था। शायद देवेनको भी बचाया जा सकता था।  लेकिन फिर बंटी  भैयाके पापा वहाँ कैसे? अगर उनकी भी मौत होगयी थी तो उन्हें 45-50 साल का होना चाहिए था, वो तो बहुत छोटे लग रहेथे, क्यों? पत्थरोंकी बरसात कौन कर रहाथा? आगज़नी की घटनाएं? इन सबके पीछे क्या था? मोहित का दिमाग झन्ना उठा। सवालों का दलदल उसको साबुत ही निगल गया। "कौन देगा मेरे सवालों के ज़वाब, कौन? लगताहैं ज़िंदा होकर मैं वास्तव में मर गया हूँ, क्यों न मर कर ज़िंदा हो जाऊ, मोहितने रसोईं से चाक़ू ले गर्दन पर फ़ेर लिया।

मोहित वापस उस रहस्मयी दुनियाँमें पहुँच गया।
"अरे मोहित तू वापस आ गया, आजा देख अनुराग अंकलने बहुत इंटरेस्टिंग बातें बताई हैं। अंकल ने बताया की ये आफ्टर लाइफ वाली लाइफ हैं यानि मौत के बाद वाली ज़िंदगी। हम मर कर कहीं नहीं जाते वही रहते हैं, वही घर, वही गालियाँ, वही रास्तें।    

मोहित : लेकिन मरने के बाद क्या हम दोबारा नहीं मरते ? और अंकल आप की उम्र इतनी कम कैसे होगयी, अभी आप 29-30 के लग रहे हो उस ऐज में तो हम बिलकुल छोटेथे आपने फिर अभी कैसे पहचान लिया ?" 

अंकल : "बेटा हर इंसानकी एक तय ज़िंदगी होतीहैं जैसे 40, 68 या 84 साल आदि, जिसकी जितनी ज़िंदगी तय हैं उसको उतने साल जीना होता हैं, जिसकी तय ज़िंदगी 50 साल की हैं वो भी 25 की उम्र में भी मर सकताहैं और फिर बाकि के 25 साल उसे यहाँ गुजारने होंगे। मेरी ज़िंदगी 90 साल तयथी लेकिनमें 48 की उम्र में मरगया था अब बाकी के 42 साल मुझे यंहा गुज़ारने होंगे। ये बाकि के सालमें रिवर्स लाइफ जियूँगा। लोग जिस उम्र में मरते हैं उसी उम्र में यहाँ एक तरहसे जन्म लेते हैं फिर उनकी रिवर्स लाइफ स्टार्ट हो जाती हैं, यानि बुढ़ापेसे बचपन। जैसे मेरी डेथ 48 वर्षमें हुयीथी आजमें 30 सालका हुँ यानि 15 साल कम।  धीरे-धीरे में और छोटा होता जाऊँगा और अंतमें नवजात बनकर मर जाऊँगा और फिर वापस इंसानोके बीचमें जन्म लूँगा। आफ्टर लाइफ में फ़र्क ये है की सामान्यता हम ज़िंदा लोगों को ना तो देख सकते हैं नाही उन्हें अपनी उपस्थिति का अहसास दिला सकते हैं। यहाँ हम सूरज की रौशनी को ज्यादा सहन नहीं कर पाते इसलिए रातको जागते हैं और दिन में सो जाते हैं। हालाँकि कुछ बुरे लोग यहाँकी टेक्नोलॉजी का सहारा ले ज़िंदा लोगो के बीच जाने उनको डराने और नुकसान पहुँचाने की कोशिश करते रहते  हैं, लोग इन्हें अक्सर भूत कहते हैं।

मोहित : ओह!!! तो ये रहस्य हैं पुनर्जम, समय यात्रा और भूत-प्रेत का पर देवेन तुम्हे उस समय क्या हो गया था? तुम्हारा शरीर इतना गर्म क्यों हो गयाथा?"

देवेन : मेरा अंतिम संस्कार किया जा रहा था, जलाया जा रहा था इसलिएमें आग में तड़प रहा था और पताहैं तुम्हारे घर पर जो पत्थर बरस रहे थे वो कोई और नहीं तुम ही फेंक रहेथे।

मोहित : मैं? क्या बकवास हैं?

देवेन : हम तुम्हारे घर 3 तारीख की रात को थे, और पत्थरो की बरसात शुरू हो गयी, उसके बाद हम दोनों करंट से मर गए, कुछ घंटो बाद यानि 4 तारिख को हम यहाँ आगए।  उसके बाद हमारी रिवर्स लाइफ स्टार्ट हो गयी  यानि हम वापस 3 तारिख में पहुँचगए और जबमें आगमें जल रहा था तड़प रहाथा तब तुमने मेरे ऊपर पत्थर फेंके थे वो तुम्हारा ही कमरा था। चूँकि तुम मरे नहीं थे इसलिए तुमने जो भी काम किया वो ज़िंदा इंसान महसूस कर सकता था, तुमने मुझसे बचनेके लिए पत्थर फेंके और वही पत्थर रियल लाइफमें हम दोनों को जा लगे।

मोहित : अच्छा ! फिर तुम्हारे घर आग कौन लगाता था, चीज़े कौन ग़ायब करता था। 

"मैं करता था"!  

अंकल आप? लेकिन क्यों?

बदला बेटा बदला ! तेरे पिताजी ने धोखेसे मेरी जमीन हड़प कर मुझे मरवा दिया फिर उसी जमीनमें मेरी लाश को गाढ़कर मकान खड़ा कर लिया। हम लोग इस समय मेरी लाश के ऊपर ही खड़े हैं! 


Rating - 138/200

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 410/600 (68.33%)

Judges - Mayank Sharma, Mohit Trendster and Pankaj V. (Shaan)

Monday, February 8, 2016

Round 3 - Team # 15 (Amit & Rishi) #FTC1516

Termessos : Lost World  of  Art

  “Yes ….. I think 14th would be the most appropriate day.”, said Mr. Siddiqui, the un-awarded director in Mumbai.

“Which 14th ……?” , asked Arohi, the casting director and Mr. Siddiqui’s assistant.
“14th November ……  Children’s day it is…”, he replied.

“So, shall we start the preparations of the play… as it is only four weeks to go….”, said Arohi.

“Come, I will brief  you and start scripting accordingly.”, Mr. Siddiqui said.

It was in the late 90’s in Mumbai, that Mr. Siddiqui who directed Plays, short movies and standalone episodes in a channel used to discover various theatres in the world and their origin.
He found one such theatre, which was in Turkey. The modern day Antalya province in Turkey, which was then Termessos.The theatre was unique and one of its kind as it had a history linked with it.

The city was founded near 71 B.C. and since then the people of Termessos had a sense of art and promoted the culture of celebrating and honoring the work of art. The most unique form of art was the theatre which showcased plays on every Saturday.

The whole week was filled with preparation of the play which was to be showcased on Saturday.

Mr. Siddiqui had come back after visiting the city of Termessos and decided to portray the lost world of art in his play.

“Termessos – was built at the south-west side of the Solymosmountains. Being a mix of plain andmountainairearea ,Termessos was built with the inspiration of art and innovative architecture. It was a beautiful city with a realm of art.”, briefed Professor Siddiqui.

It was 14th November (children’s day), when the play – “Termessos – Lost world of Art” was to be launched in PrithviThetare in Mumbai.

Preparations had started and the D-Day came near. Rehearsals and briefing went all day.

“It was not only the theatre that attracted me in Termessos. It was the overall architecture and the left-out nuances of Art, literature and their culture that excited me.’, briefed Mr. Siddiqui.

“Hey, Fama&Fortuna…..are’nt you coming for the play today?”, asked the senior architect Mr. Berk.
“Yes…. Dadie is coming to lock the temple and then we shall go.”, replied Fama& Fortuna, the two daughters of the temple priest in Termessos.

All was going well with rehearsals in Mr. Siddiqui’s theatre.The tickets were ready to be sold and the bureaucrats along with elite class of the film industry – the directors, writers, poets, musicians were invited.

“The architecture of the city of Termessos was fascinating. They had rock cut tombs along the main road.”, briefed the director.

“The remains in the city told the story of the picturesque view of the famous “King Street as the Termessians used to call it. The street with wide, shop-lined porticoes ran north-south through the city……..   The space between the columns of the porticoes was filled with the statues of successful athletes, wrestlers and people of inspiration.”, the director continued briefing.

“Common… we have this rehearsal of Scene – 26 ……. Hurry up and queue up backstage.”, shouted Arohi – the casting director.

“Is this packed now…”..  “Yes the complete lunch is packed.” ….. “Please count that it should be 117 lunch boxes….  Yes it is.” ……….  “Now push your feets and come fast after delivering this at the theatre as I have to start preparations for the sumptuous dinner.”, the termessians used to prepare food for the artists and the complete unit of the theatre.

There were four different houses allotted daily to prepare lunch and lavish dinner at the end of the day for the theatre artists. Men used to deliver and serve the supper at the theatre.

“Hey…. Step aside … the Architects and the labours are coming.”, said one Termessian to another.
“Where are they going with so much building material” ……  “I guess some new construction is on the cards near the theatre.” ………..  “No…. they are going for the re-construction of the rock cut tomb near the temple, which has cracks now.”, the Termessians conversed.

Art was worshipped and honored in Termessos.  The Architects, labours, painters were paid high respect in the society.

“Many of the modern theatres have been built in the same way. The kind of plays and dedication in performing the plays were all inherited from Termessos in the present times it seems.  It may be Bollywood or Hollywood, they are all inspired from Termessos theatre.”, briefed the director.

Fourteenth November came and the tickets were not fully sold for the first day. Also the bureaucrats and the elite class of the film industry did not turned-up.

It was disheartening for the theatre team but the director looked confident and motivated everyone to perform at his or her very best.

The play started and nearly forty percent of seats were occupied.

“Have you got the stone for the play?” , asked the soldier randomly from a lady sitting in the corner seat in the south east end of the theatre.

“Yes… I have bought one….aaaa …. Where it’s gone……  Oh ya it is.”

The spectators had to buy a stone for the play in Termessos. This stone was specially designed and the name of the play was written on it. It was made in the weekdays by the architects and labours.

No one was asked at the entry for the theatre stone but if anyone was found without the stone, they were punished severely.

“And you… please show me your stone Mr. ….. ?”, asked the soldier.
“Aaaaa.. I had got it…… I don’t know where its gone”, replied the Termessian.

“You should have visited the fortune tellers sitting outside today…… they would have told you that you would have only four fingers in your hand from today.”, said the soldier.

The guy was punished the next day and his limb was cut. This was a strong message in the society of Termessos and this kind of instance was rare.

The play ended and it was good to see that the spectators were clapping.

“Word of mouth will work for us……. Keep walking and work-hard.”, said the Director to the team after the performance.

More than eighty percent of tickets were sold for the second day.

“These were the six temples in the city of Termessos and their chief god, Zeus was worshipped.  The city has the best water harvesting and storage facility.”, the voice over was going on in the play while showcasing the city of Termessos in the play and it continued…
…. “ The theatre was the most eye catching building in the all the Termessos plain. It displayed most clearly the features of the Roman theatre. The semicircular seating area, was divided in two. Above stood eight tiers of seats and below there were sixteen allowing for a seating capacity of some five thousand spectators.

A large arched entrance way connects with the podium. The stage building exhibits features characteristic of the 2nd century AD. A long narrow room is all that lies behind it. This is connected with the podium where the play took place. Under the stage lie five small rooms where wild animals were kept before being taken on the stage.

Every play was portrayed through a drawing book, which was painted and prepared by the famous painters and artists in Termessos. It was sold in the thetare itself on next Friday. ”

The praising and clapping of the spectators grew and the next day the newspapers had a column – “ Termessos – The lost world of Art”.

The tickets were sold out for the next two weeks.

“Sir, the bureaucrats and invited elite people have been calling up for the play.”, said Arohi to the director.

“So………  Let them buy the ticket now. They were invited on the first day only. They should start respecting any form of Art.”, replied the Director.

It was the third day and the ambience was pumping like anything.

“Remember… I told that those architect and labours were going to re-construct the rock cut tomb which had cracks that day…………” ….. “Yaa……” ……  “The same cracks have been found in the theatre and the architects and the labors are re-constructing that to be finished till Saturday and get the theatre ready for the play.”, the people of Termessos conversed in the play. 
The various bureaucrats and invited elite people of the film industry started coming to watch the play.

A beautiful city of Termessos lost its identity and it was the last scene……..

“Why am I shaking so much ………..Ohh everyone is shaking …….Ohhh …..Run ……..the podium is cracking……  let the animals free from the room below the podium…….”

It was a dangerous earthquake that had hit this beautiful city of Art.

The Bureaucrats from the ministry and the film industry decided and announced that the play would be funded to go no only around India but the travel the whole world.

It was the respect for the play of Termessos and the director – Mr. JavedSiddiqui.

The Newspapers headlines read the next day – “Respect for Art – Thetare of Termessos and the un awarded director”.


Rating - 134/200 
(Team Rishi Srivastava and Amit Albert)

Judges - Pankaj V. (Shaan), Mayank Sharma and Mohit Trendster

Total Rating ( 3 Rounds) - 348/600 (58%)

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Round 3 - Team # 19 (Dheeraj & Anurag) #ftc1516

कातिल दिल

रात का सन्नाटा, सुनसान इलाका प्यार करने वालों के लिए इससे बेहतर जगह नहीं हो सकती! ऐसी ही एक जगह है चंदनगढ़ का पुराना किला जो दिन में पर्यटकों के आकर्षण का केंद्र होता है और साँझ ढलते ही प्रेमी जोड़ों का जमघट बन जाता है! ऐसी ही एक जोड़ी है तरुण और तन्वी की!
"हम कब तक ऐसे छुप कर मिलेंगे तरुण? 3 हफ्ते बाद मेरी शादी है!"
" बस 2-3 दिन और तन्वी फिर हम आजाद होंगे!"
"क्या सच में तरुण!"
"बिल्कुल सच! मगर शादी के बाद कुछ दिन हमें बिना किसी आशियाना के गुजारना होगा!"
" तो क्या हुआ तुम्हारा दिल तो है, मैं तो वहां भी अपना आशियाना बना लूंगी!"
इतना कहकर तन्वी तरुण से लिपट गई पर तभी एक खिलखिलाहट ने दोनों को अलग हटने पर मजबूर कर दिया! दोनों हड़बड़ा कर इधर-उधर देखने लगे पर आसपास कोई भी नहीं था! खिलखिलाहट के स्वर अब भी आ रहे थे! इस अहसास ने दोनों की सिट्टी-पिट्टी गुम कर दी थी! तभी डरते-डरते तरुण ने पूछा!
"क...कौन है? सामने आओ!"
"हाहाहा! मैं सामने आ गया तो तुम लाश में बदल जाओगे तरुण क्योंकि मैं दिल हूँ तुम्हारा दिल और ये तुम्हारे दिल की आवाज है!
"क्या बकवास कर रहे हो!"
बदहवास तरुण ने महसूस किया कि आवाज उसके अंदर से आ रही है! भयभीत तन्वी ने भी ये बात नोटिस कर ली थी!
" ये आवाज तो तुम्हारे अंदर से आ रही है तरुण! मुझे बहुत डर लग रहा है! मैं जा रही हूँ!"
तन्वी पलटी  मगर एक तेज चीख ने उसके कदमों में ब्रेक लगा दिया! वो चीख तरुण की थी! वो अपने सीने को पकड़े हुए नीचे गिरा और बुरी तरह तड़पने लगा! 
" तरुण! ये क्या हो रहा है तुम्हें!"
" मेरे सीने में तेज दर्द हो रहा है तन्वी! ऐसा लग रहा है जैसे मेरा दिल मेरे सीने से बाहर आना चाहता है!"
तरुण के सीने में खिंचाव की वजह से एक दरार उभर आई थी! तन्वी की आँखे  डर और स्तब्धता के कारण फ़टी हुई थी! खून से सना तरुण का दिल उस दरार से धीरे-धीरे बाहर आ रहा था! तरुण के शरीर में जीवन का कोई चिन्ह बाकी न था! इससे ज्यादा बर्दाश्त करने की क्षमता तन्वी में नहीं थी! वो उठ कर भागी! पर अचानक कोई चीज उछल कर उसके सामने आ गई! वो तरुण का दिल था! 
"कहाँ भाग रही हो तन्वी? तुम तो कहती थी तुम्हें तरुण के दिल में अपना आशियाना बनाना है! तो आओ बनाओ मुझे अपना आशियाना!"
"नहीं! प्लीज मुझे जाने दो! मैं मरना नहीं चाहती!"
" मरना कौन चाहता है पगली! राजीव भी मरना नहीं चाहता था! पर उसे मार दिया गया!"
"राजीव! तुम राजीव हो?"
"हाँ वही राजीव जो तुमसे प्यार करता था! तुम्हारा दिल जीतने के लिए उटपटांग हरकत करता था! मगर तुम्हें मेरी हरकत इतनी इरिटेट कर गई कि मार ही डाला मुझे!"
" आई एम सॉरी राजीव! मैं तुमसे नहीं तरुण से प्यार करती थी! और तुम जबरदस्ती मेरे पीछे पड़े थे! मैं तुम्हारी हरकतों से तंग आ गई थी इसलिए..."
"इसलिए मुझे रास्ते से ही हटा दिया! तुमने इस दिल का कत्ल किया अब ये दिल तुम्हारा कत्ल करेगा!"
"नहीं प्लीज राजीव ऐसा मत करो! मुझे मत मारो!"
दिल अपना आकार बढ़ाता चला गया। इतना बड़ा कि एक पूरा इंसान उसके अंदर समा सकता था। तन्वी ने भागना चाहा मगर दिल उसके रास्ते में आ गया! तन्वी का शरीर तरुण के दिल से टकराया और उसमें जज्ब होता चला गया! चीख वो अब भी रही थी पर अब उसकी आवाज बाहर नहीं आ पा रही थी! उसका पूरा शरीर खून के तालाब में लाल हो चुका था! थोड़ी देर तक वो छटपटाती रही फिर निर्जीव शरीर दिल से बाहर गिरा! फिर वो दिल एक मानव आकृति में बदला और गायब होता चला गया! राजीव का बदला पूरा हो चुका था!


Rating - 131/200

Judges - Mayank Sharma, Mohit Trendster and Pankaj V. (Shaan)

Total Rating ( 3 Rounds) - 383/600 (63.83%)

Round 3 - Team # 27 (Deepjoy & Rishav) #ftc1516

The marriage was on patchy path but no one had zeroed into the conclusion that she would take such a vicious step!
'Look at him, how shocked he is on her absence since morning, he hasn't even asked for her Mom, where would I find her if he does?' 
He said to his friend, who unsuccessfully tried to console him, the kid was unusually calm!
After a while when everyone was gone, a crooked smile gleamed on his face, standing in front of mirror, his eyes didn't show any guilt but pride. 
The phone buzzed.
"Hey stop questioning nobody suspects nothing! I am the victim." He chuckled. "I'm not! she has eloped how can I be the sinister" he laughed devilishly in real, "in the backyard" laughter continued.
After putting the cell, he turned towards his 6 years old, "You wanna say something? Is it about your mother? You wonder where she went,yes?"
"No" the boy kept looking at his father with the regular affection, the man abolished the eye contact.
"I wonder though, why mom looks so pale and why are you giving her piggyback since morning" The toddler said with supreme serenity.

अंधेरा घिर चुका था और कॉलेज अभी 8 किलोमीटर दूर था,वरुण ने लंबे की जगह छोटा सुनसान रास्ता लेना बेहतर समझा।
"तुझे आरती याद नही आती?"
वरुण- वो क्यों आएगी भला, वो तो गयी बहुत तेज बनती थी, सारे पर कतर दिए साली के। 
"सुना अमर को दिखी थी कहीं"
वरुण- अबे smack ले रखी होगी फिर से, कहाँ से आएगी वो "मर्दानी" हमने मिल के उसे खील खील किया था, याद नही तुझे!
कितना चीख रही थी यार! हह् हमे पकड़वाने चली थी! उसका भाई एक-दो पैकेट और ले लेता तो क्या चला जाता है की नही? जान तो बचा लेती ख़ुद की!
पीछे से कोई आवाज़ न आई।
तू बेकार न डर राहुल, मरे कब वापस आते हैं?"
 वरुण बोलता जाता अगर उसका phone न बजता। उसने देखा- Rahul Calling'
अचानक उसे ध्यान आया उसने तो राहुल को पीछे बिठाया ही नही था!
डरते डरते उसने पीछे देखा कोई नही था!
उसकी हवा ही रुक गयी बड़ी मुश्किल से bike को गिरने से बचाया। 
सांस थामे वो आगे बढ़ा ही था की सड़क के किनारे उसने एक आकृति देखी,वरुण ने कद-काठी का अनुमान लगते ही, bike की speed तेज कर दी,पर वो आकृति उसी वेग के साथ दौड़ी! 
"वरुण" एक गूंजती सर्द सी आवाज़ जैसे उसके दिमाग को चीरने लगी।
अपना नाम सुनकर और उस आकृति की शक्ल देख वरुण का कंट्रोल bike पर से हट गया, वो बुरी तरह लड़खड़ाते हुए गिर पड़ा। 
आरती सी दिख रही वो शक्ल विकृत होने लगी; ठीक वैसा जैसा वरुण ने तेजाब डालने के बाद बना दिया था। 
वरुण उठा और चारो ओर नज़र दौड़ाई पर उसे कोई न दिखा, बेतहाशा दौड़ा वो की सामने से एक साया आता नज़र आया!
"मुझे बचा लो वो मार डालेगी मुझे!"
तो मर जा- आवाज़ एकदम आरती की ही थी, वरुण को अपने शब्द याद आये- मर आरती मर!
"नही आरती मुझे जाने दे देख मैं अब वो सब छोड़ दूंगा किसी को drugs नही दूंगा, please!"
साया गायब था! 
वरुण को कुछ सूझा नही वो पागलों की तरह चीखने लगा!
"आSSS!! मुझे जाने दो!" 
वो फिर आगे भागा, चीख लगातार उसके गले से निकल रही थी, पर कोई सुनने वाला नही था!
वो हांफता-भागता होस्टल पहुंचा और सीधा अपने कमरे मे जाकर एक कोने मे बैठ गया।
अमर और राहुल उसके हर कर्म के साथी जानकारी मिलते ही उसके पास आये!
अबे तू पकड़वा देगा क्या" राहुल ने फटकारा
मैंने कहा था वो आ गयी है" अमर घबराते हुए बोला।
सब वहम है तुमलोगो का तु इसके पास बैठ मैं ताज़ा माल लेकर आता हूँ कश मार सारा नशा renew हो जायेगा, बासी माल लेकर बहक गया है ये"
राहुल बाहर corridor मे आया ही था की सामने कोने मे से कमर तक लंबे बालों वाली एक आकृति उसे गुज़रती दिखाई दी। वो भाग कर वहां पहुंचा पर कोई न था, वो जैसे ही मुड़ा एक जले चेहरे वाली लड़की पल भर के लिए नज़र आई, वो सकपका गया! तेज़ सांसो को किसी तरह काबू करते हुए वो अपने कमरे मे पहुंचा तो एक ladies perfume की गंध उसके नाक मे भर गयी, उसे आरती याद आई! ठीक यही cologne उसने महसूस की थी जब वो आरती के बेहद "क़रीब" गया था।
वाह perfume तो अच्छी लगाई है इसने" उसने कहा था।
"पसन्द आया" एक आवाज़ गूंजी; राहुल की धड़कने उसके कानो मे सुनाई पड़ने लगी!
उसने मुड़ कर देखा, सामने आरती मुस्कुराती खड़ी थी!
फटे कपड़े, उधड़े बदन और जगह-जगह से रिसता खून! धीरे-धीरे वो बदहाल शक्ल और बिगड़ गयी, आरती का पूरा चेहरा फफोलों से भर गया।
राहुल चीखा और टेबल पर रखी हनुमान की फोटो लेने के लिए आगे बढ़ा पर फोटो औंधे गिर पड़ी, जैसे हनुमान जी अपनी मौन स्वीकृति दे रहे हों आरती को! 
दरवाज़ा lock हो गया, अंदर बस राहुल की चीखें गूंजी, पहले तीव्र और फिर घुटी घुटी! बाहर दरवाज़े पर भीड़ जमा हो गयी, लाख कोशिशों के बावजूद दरवाज़ा नही खुला, और जब खुला तो दृश्य देख कर सबकी आँखें फैल गयीं!
अंदर राहुल की क्षत-विक्षत लाश पड़ी थी चेहरा बिल्कुल जला हुआ! अमर और वरुण के तो होश फाख्ता हुए पड़े थे! ये दृश्य उन्होंने पहले भी देखा था, अंतर बस इतना था की पिछली दफ़ा वो 'डर' थे और इस बार 'डरे'।
कुछ देर बाद वरुण के कमरे मे अमर बैठ कर अपनी गलती और उसके परिणाम को रो रहे थे।
रात के 1:30 बज रहे थे की तभी उनके दरवाज़े पर एक दस्तक हुई!
दोनो ने दरवाज़े की ओर देखा तो, 6 फुट दरवाज़े के ऊपर से एक चेहरा झांकता दिखा! 
दोनो की चीख उनके हलक मे ही अटक गयी!
नीचे दरार से आती रोशनी भी पैरों की परछाई से थम गयी!
धीरे-धीरे वो चेहरा दरवाज़े के अंदर दाखिल हुआ!- क्यों वरुण डर गए?" सर्द आवाज़ गूंजी!
"त त त्...तुम तो मर चुकी थी, मैंने तेज़ाब डाला था तेरे हलक मे!"
"उसी दर्द ने तो मुझे वापस तुम तक पहुंचाया है, उसी दर्द से वाकिफ़ कराने आयी हूँ मैं!"
"तो मार डाल न, डराती क्यों है" डर की पराकाष्ठा से फुफकारते हुए वरुण गुर्राया!
"डर?डर जानते हो क्या होता है?
सुनसान सड़क पे बेरोक दौड़ती तुम्हारी motorcycle! न आगे कहीं मुड़ने का रास्ता न पीछे,अलबत्ता कुछ देर से एक गाड़ी ज़रूर तुम्हारे पीछे जा रही है, उसकी headlight तुम अपने rear view mirror पर देख रहे हो, उसके engine की घरघराहट साफ तुम्हारे कानों मे पड़ रही है, की अचानक वही गाड़ी रफ़्तार पकड़ लेती है! घबराहट मे तुम break मारते हो की तभी रोशनी गायब आवाज़ भी ग़ायब! पीछे देखो! मुड़ने का कहीं कोई रास्ता नही कहाँ गयी तो गाड़ी?
डर लगा? लगेगा ही, पर क्या वो सच था? क्या करोगे तुम? भागोगे!
क्या भाग सकते अगर वो गाड़ी अपनी रफ़्तार तुमसे ज़्यादा कर लेती? नही
कुछ नही कर सकते तुम!
चलो माना वो भूत था, या भरम था! डर गए तुम!
पर मैं? मैं तो तुम्हे इंसान समझती थी, तुम मर्दों को! ऐसा डर तुमने मुझमे क्यों पैदा कर दिया की किसी सुनसान डगर से गुज़रने मे मुझे अपने जैसे इंसान से ही भय ज़्यादा लगे! किसी भरम या भूत से भी ज़्यादा जो दिखने मे कहीं ज़्यादा विकृत है, पर डर तो तुमसे ज़्यादा लगता है! ज़्यादा विकृत तुम दिखते हो, जबकी शक्ल सूरत तो वही है तुम्हारी दिन मे भी रात मे भी!
 फिर जो डर तुम अनजाने मे महसूस करो हम हर पल हर समय महसूस करती हैं, अंदाजा लगाती हैं! डरने के लिए सुनसान राहें या रात तक ज़रूरी नही हमें, ये होता है डर।
आरती की सर्द आवाज़ उनके कानों मे पिघले सीसे की तरह पड़ी।
अगले दिन दो और लाशें होस्टल से बरामद हुईं!

का जादा मांगे हम तोसे?
एगो घर, उमा एक कोना,
जरा थोड़ा प्यार, कोई चांदी ना सोना,
तुम का दिए? कोना अंधार का और उमर भर का रोना!
उमर भर भी काहे बोलें!
सुरु ही कहाँ होने दिए तुम हमका!
कभी आगे आये तो भी का मांग लिया तोसे?
रत्ती भर पाठशाला और एक रत्ती भीतर चौखट मा
का का नाही बोले तुम!
कभी कमाल कभी "माल",
तोले हमका जाने कौन कौन काँटा मा!
चाहत रहे पढ़ना एक कालेज हम , पर चाहे टांगना तुम एगो खूंटी मा!
का थी या का है हमरा गलती?
उड़े की चाहत ही तो पाले रहे,
और दराती फेर दिए तुम ई पंखन मा!
हम भी बन सकत रहे तोहार टेक डंटा,
तुम लाद दिए इज्जत-संस्कार का बोझना।
फीर ले गए तुम्ही बईठा के डोलना,
तो काहे ना रखे किये रहे जइसन वादा?
और धर दिए रहे कई हाथ 
जो चाहे हम कछु बोलना।
एगो बात समझ मे ना आवत है हमका,
तोहार माइ भी हम,
बीवी भी हम, बेटी भी हम,
और डायन चुड़ैल भी हम!
डराते हो तुम, जबकी चाही तोका खुद डरना!
एतना भीसन बनाये रखे हो सकल
की डर से जादा हो गए डरावना!
कईसे कह लेत हो मरद खुद का?
ज़बान कांपती नाहि?
जो हाथ तोका सुख दिए!
ओका पर ही कालीख मलते हो
जौन नजर तोसे उम्मीद रखे,
उका मे धोखा बांध दिए!
अब बता डरे तो हम डरे किससे?
भूतन प्रेतन से की आपन अपन से?
हम काहे डरे लेकीन!
डर तो जाओगे तुम जब देखोगे,
जब दीखेगा असली डर का सकल,
जरा झाँको आईना!!


Rating - 136/200

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 385/600 (64.17%)

Judges - Mayank Sharma, Mohit Trendster and Pankaj V. (Shaan)

Round 3 - Team # 07 (Tadam & Ranjana) #ftc1516

Sayri Dam

It was just another ordinary day of their lives. Seven friends Priya, Vrinda, Sachita, Shekhar, Rahul, Ashwin and Aditya like usual decided to go out on a night out tonight. The odds were in their favor. Ashwin managed to get a car tonight and Priya always had a scooty, hence they could travel quite a distance tonight. What college group misses its chances to go out on night stays and night outs?
Excitement ended up in an argument on where to go. They had been almost everywhere in and around the city in the course of the first two years of their graduation already. There had to be a new plan this time. 
Vrinda: “I heard of this dam on the highway; mustn’t be more than 30km. They its secluded and people avoid it during nights. So I guess we could go there. But I am unsure of the way.”
After thinking for a couple of minutes, everyone agreed to visit this place. Priya and Rahul would be on the scooty and rest of them had to accommodate in the car. They picked snacks, food and beer on their way.“This is going to be memorable” said Shekhar. They struggled with google maps and GPS for quite a while but finally they were on ‘the road.’ ‘Sayri dam 17km’ , read the milestone. That’s when the music was turned on and the beer cans were opened. No drinks for Ashwin or Priya tonight, they were the ones driving.
Finally after20 minutes or so they reached a place where a narrow kucha road split into the jungle. There was a board ‘Sayri dam 1km. It wasn’t appropriate to take the vehicles in. The way was muddy and too narrow. Everyone got down and started walking. They carried some snacks and beer with them.
 Sachita;  “I wish we don’t get to meet a wild animal I  here.”
Rahul:  “Koi baat nhi, tujhe kha bhi gya agar. Hum sab toh bch jaaenge.”
Sachita: “Dekhio kahin tujhe kha jaaen. Sabse aage chal bhi toh tu hi rha hai.”
And there it was. It wasn’t very big but it was a perfect location. Laughter and nagging was on. They drank and sung and played. 
Ashwin: “ Thand hoti jaarhi hai yaar! Vapis na chlen?”
Aditya: “15 minute me chlte hain.”
Vrinda: ”OOyye, vo kya hai?” Pointing towards the end from where they entered.
Rahul: “ Tera bhoot!!” As he turned to see. But! But, it was a distorted white figure, looking like a woman walking towards them. Most of them were too drunk to make out what exactly it was. That’s when Ashwin realized what was it.
Ashwin: “ Bhaagoo!!!” 
Everyone got upto their feet and ran towards the other end. They didn’t even turn around to see if the thing was still there. 
Priya: ”Vo dekh vahan light jal rhi hai. Jaldi chlo. Vahan chlte hain!” 
They rushed towards the place. Surprisingly it was a café!! And this café in the middle of nowhere was  open at 1 am. They walked in. A man was sitting on a chair looking at the sky. He turned to them. “May I help you?”
Ashwin: “ Sir, we are students from the city. We found this place quite scenic so decided to sit here for a while. That’s when we saw a white lady like figure rushing towards us. Yahan light dekh kr yahan aagye. Kya hum kuchh der yahan ruk skte hain?”
“ Hahahaha! That’s would have been my sister. She likes to walk around at this hour. Insomnia I tell you!.... Welcome to Café Tantra! We are a new venture. Me aur meri behan chlaate hain is jgah ko. Ap chaahen toh kuchh kha pee bhisakte hain. Varna kuchh der rukna chahen toh ruk jaaen.” 
Their pale face regained their color. They made themselves comfortable and started having random conversation with the café owner. 
Sachita: “ Par aap logon ne ye café raatko kyu khgol rkha hai?”
Owner: “ Ye 24/7 café hai. Aur sach poochho toh mujhe raat bahut pasand hai. Jaise dheeredheere andheraghana hota jaata hai. Sab shaant hone lgta hai. Man krta hai ki bs is vaqt bahr ghoomta rahun.”
Rahul: “ Matlb aapko bhi night outs pasand hain! Haha”
Owner: “ Aisa hi kuchh”
Ashwin:” Yahan kuchh zyada thand nhi hai? “
Owner: “ Haha! Apke liye zyada aur hum sabke liye perfect.”
Vrinda: “ Aapki behan is vaqt kahan hai? Is jungle me unhe akele itni raat bahr nhi rehna chahiye. Agar koi janwar aajae toh!”
Owner:” Vo toh janwaron ka intzar hi karti hai! Aae toh unhe kha jaati hai!”(with a grin)
Everyone: Hahaha!! 
Shekhar:” Ye ladkiyan hotihi aisi hain!! Insetoh jaanwar bhi darte hain!!”
Owner: “Lo meri behan bhi aagyi”
They turned around.
Shekhar: “Aapne toh humari jaan hi nikal di thi! Hume lga koi bhoot voot dekh liya humne.”
Woman: “ Arre bhoot wootkuchh nhi hota. Me toh roz raat yahin ghoomti hu!”
Priya: “ Vaise ma’am, I must admit aap bahut sundr hain!”
Rahul: (To Ashwin) “ Arre hero, tu theak hai? Tujhe abhi toh thand lgrhi thi ab paseena aarha hai?”
Ashwin did not say a word. He was just staring at the ground beneath her feet! Oh wait! No!\
Vrinda: “ Uske per ulte hain!!!”
The woman screamed and turned into a devilish thing from the pretty face she was!! She jumped onto Rahul’s back! Everyone screamed and shouted and turned to the café owner for help who stood there with an axe!!!
They tried running away but something held them! Sachita taking out her holy pendant,” Oh God! Bacha lo!” Both the ghosts moved a step back and everyone ran and ran and ran, screaming! They jumped into the car and drove away. It was a km or 2. 
Aditya:”Bhai Priya kahan hai?”
Sachita: :” Haan! Priya nhi aayi!”
They were pale, sweating and trembling. Also, they had no idea what to do. But they couldn’t leave a friend behind for sure. 
Ashwin: “ Ab jo hua vo hum sabko pta hai, par vapis toh jaana pdega. Hum use aise nhi chhod skte.” 
Everyone started chanting their prayers and they turned back. They reached the jungle again. The plan was to leave Ashwin and Vrinda with the vehicles so that they could be ready to drive away and rest of them would walk in holding each others hands chanting and and showing Sachita’s pendant. Rahul, Sachita, Aditya, Shekhar walked in hand in hand. They were crossing the dam when Shekhar felt that some invisible thing held his free hand. He was scared but could not frighten others. They were all shivering and taking small cautious steps. This seemed to be the longest journey of their lives. It was quiet , all so quiet and dark that the only noise they could hear was of their heartbeats and footsteps. They reached the place from where the café could be seen.
They paused for a minute and looked into each others eyes. They couldn’t believe what just happened. Each eye had a certain appeal. They wanted one of them to say it was just a prank and nothing else. But, no such expectations were met. Sachita took a deep breath and moved over. Everyone held each other tigh and walked towards the café. They went inside. It was quiet and scary. But the owner was missing, the woman was missing and so was their friend. It was around 3 am. Scared and quiet they moved as if a cat. But nothing was found. Shekhar gathered all his strength and shouted her name,” Priyaaaa, Priyaaa….. Kahan hai tu?”

Rahul:” Priya?... Agar ye mazaak hai toh bus hogya dost! … Sab dargye hain ab aaja please. “Priyaaaa…”
Meanwhile, Vrinda and Ashwin thought it had been too long. They decided to go in and help as well. They walked hand in hand as well. They swallowed nothingagain and again, frightened of every single movement any leaf made they walked ahead. They reached the middle of the dam when they saw everyone else was running towards them screaming.
Aditya:” Bhaag! Bhaag! Bhaag.. bhaag bhaaag!”
They ran, without knowing what had happened. They jumped onto the vehicles and drove. It would be 20 seconds roughly when they saw a different scary priya. A girl in a gown without a definitive shape running with the pace of the car looking right at them and smiling……………           


Rating - 129/200

Judges - Mayank Sharma, Mohit Trendster and Pankaj V. (Shaan)

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 390/600 (65%)

Friday, February 5, 2016

Round 3 - Team # 14 (Ajitesh & Siddhant) #ftc1516

The Phone

Journal Entry No. 1

I would have normally typed this out but after everything that I found out today I do not trust technology anymore, so I am writing this down in long hand.

It was a usual day. I was in my office when I received a call from the Police. The Inspector on the other end said that they needed my technical expertise in a case that had surfaced. It was nothing unusual for me, I often help out the police with stuff like this. The idiots the department employs usually are good for nothing and the police often reaches out to people who actually know their stuff after the customary failure of their own Technicians.

So when I reached the police station, they gave me a cellphone and asked me to look into it and find out everything I can from it. Apparently, some kid named Amit had committed suicide in the forest and they had found The Phone beside the body. They said it was routine stuff. The kid was having a bad week, break-up, lost a job, family troubles etc. until he couldn't take it anymore. He had even sent out a suicide message of sorts. They made it clear that they didn't care about the case at all but had to go through the routine investigation anyway.

The Phone was average looking, nothing out of the ordinary. You would not be able to pick it out in a line-up with five other phones. The only thing different was The Phone's firmware name, “Beelzebub”. But I did not pay any attention to it, Engineers do this sort of stuff all the time. They gave me a workstation in an empty room (as I was not allowed to take any evidence out of the station) and I got to work.

I started with the basics first, checking the call records and the message log. The Phone was fairly new, it had been used barely for a week before the unfortunate accident so I decided to read the messages instead of the just getting a print-out and handing it over as I usually do. Luckily, I made an extra copy of it. It is pretty interesting.

Amit: Bro! U wud nt blv wht hppnd! Anuj: What? You finally got laid? Amit: Fuck off! I won a phone!
Anuj: Won a phone? How the hell did that happen?
Amit: I ws in CP whn a rly weird lukng guy came ovr 2 me n chllngd me for a game.
Anuj: Ok?
Amit: Yeah, so at frst I thght the guy ws crazy or smthng and I walked on but thn he went tht if I defeat him, I could win a phone. Anuj: Ok! Was this a Youtube challenge or something like that? Or a Promotional Stunt?
Amit: Maybe! He was dressed up smartly and stuff! He just challenged me to three games of Tic-Tac-Toe and said that if I won I got the phone.
Anuj: Huh! Weird! You sure it wasn't stolen or something?
Amit: Naah! I chckd! Its clean, nvr usd bfr. Virgin IMEI! Anuj: Congrats then dude! How is the phone?

Amit: Fuck awesome!! I'll show you when I see you next!
Rest of the messages were routine stuff. Work schedules and what not. Nothing out of the ordinary, definitely not as interesting as this one in any case. But going through the cache, I found something else interesting.
Because The Phone was fairly new, its cache had never been cleaned. So somehow, it had maintained not only the call records, but it had also recorded all the calls, keystrokes and even video-capped the screen. So essentially, I could see everything that had been done by The Phone; calls, emails, messages, even apps and games. I manually over-rode the memory wipe feature and physically made the memory undeletable. This was not a part of the standard protocol, but I did it just in case the Police needed something else.

I was done downloading all the data onto the Police's computer and was about to leave when I noticed something strange. The number of calls on The Phone's call log and on the phone company's call log were different. This set off a bell in my head. It was simply not possible. I decided to take a closer look and made a copy of the whole thing into my computer too.
The Phone's records matched the phone company's for the first three four days, but after that something strange happened. This is the message string I found on The Phone's memory.

Shreya: I don't think it's working anymore! Amit: What are you talking about?
Shreya: Us. I want to break-up with you.

Amit: Why aren't you picking up my calls? What is wrong with you? Shreya: There is nothing left to say anyway. Don't try to contact me ever again. I am blocking your number. Bye.
Then there were a bunch of calls made from Amit's Phone to Shreya's, who I am assuming was his Girlfriend but all of them went unanswered.
But the weird thing is that this is the message string on the phone company's records.
Amit: I don't think it's working anymore! Shreya: What are you talking about?
Amit: Us. I want to break-up with you.
Shreya: Why aren't you picking up my calls? What is wrong with you? Amit: There is nothing left to say anyway. Don't try to contact me ever again. I am blocking your number. Bye.
I cross checked with the phone company too and they confirmed that it was not an error and they had actually received a request from Amit's Phone to block Shreya's number. There were even about 40 or so calls from Shreya's number to Amit, all of which never showed up on The Phone's record. Similar things happened between his Phone and his boss's phone. He got a message telling him he was fired,
while his boss said in his testimony that he got an email with Amit's resignation. He even had a copy of it.

However, on the day of his death, he got a similar message from Anuj saying
You are a sick son of a bitch. I do not want to see your face ever again. Seriously, fuck off and die.
Now, I am not sure of what happened immediately after this but I expect that Amit set out to meet Anuj and set things right because The Phone's location showed Amit in his car driving towards Anuj's locality. This is when he got another call. I managed to get the call recording and transcribed it as best as I could.

Inspector: Is this Amit? Amit: Yes. Who is this?
Inspector: Mr. Amit, I am sorry to inform you that your mother has met with an accident. She was on her way to surprise you when coming out of the airport she met with an accident. She is admitted in the Isaiah Hospital. Please come as quickly as you can.
End of Call

Now, The Phone's keystrokes show that Amit entered Isaiah Hospital into The Phone's GPS system. However, this is where things begin to get really weird. The path that was recorded in The Phone's screen cap memory is not the way to Isaiah Hospital. Amit drove for about 45 minutes after which he stopped the car and got out.
There are no more keystrokes after this point but there is a final message that was sent out to his mother. So essentially this message was not typed by anyone at all, it just happened on its own. And it is present both in The Phone as well as the network's log.
I am sick of this life. No one needs me, no one would miss me. I am leaving it all behind. Bye.
The next time The Phone was switched on was on the Technician's desk.
There are too many gaps in the story. I do not know who the man was that gave Amit The Phone, I don't know everything that happened to Amit. I don't even know why did The Phone's memory behave the way it did, giving me the entire story. But what I do know is that there is something out there. Something I can not explain. Not a hacker, not a network glitch. Something far more sinister.
I tried explaining it to the Police but they didn't believe me. I don't blame them, I don't believe myself. Sometimes I think this is all an extended nightmare and I will wake up and the world would all be normal again and Amit would be alive, or I would find out that he never existed at all.
But then I got a visit from a Hawaldaar summoning me to the police station. Apparently The Phone has gone missing and I am under suspicion for stealing evidence. I have kept all the doors and windows of my house locked ever since. Them finding The Phone in my house would make me a criminal. I know that phones can't walk off on their own but I don't know what I know anymore either.
Its somewhere. Maybe on its way to here. Maybe somewhere. Maybe somewhere else. Passed on to another random stranger. Passed on by another nameless face. Maybe it still looks the same, maybe it doesn't anymore, maybe I have it in my pocket right now and I do not know it. Maybe the police inspector has it right now and he doesn't know it.

So this is why I am writing this all on paper, using a pen, the old fashioned way. It's all around us, its nowhere and everywhere at the same time. Maybe the next call you receive was never made, maybe the next message you type was never sent, maybe the next message you send was never typed. How would you know? Would you know? Would you want to know?


Rating - 145/200

Judges - Pankaj V. (Shaan), Mohit Trendster and Mayank Sharma

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 424/600 (70.67 %)

Round 3 - Team # 02 (Amit & Avijit) #ftc1516


In Treta Yug, Kalush, a vampire in the army of Ravan had a dream of establishing vampire kingdom in Lanka. After Lord Ram killed Ravan, he gave up hope.
His siblings Alwar and Ragini took him to the house of Yavakri, a man who was taking care of their injured brother Kalp.
Kalush saved the life of Yavakri. Lord Shiva showed Kalush, the future where he would have his vampire kingdom.

Now the story continues:

Treta Yug – 7292 BC:

In the cottage, Ragini was helping Sushila, Yavakri‘s wife with cooking. Kalush returned after chopping some woods for a yagna that Yavakri wanted to perform.
A pigeon perched in front of Alwar. Alwar took the note tied on the foot of Pigeon. He told Kalush after reading it, “Some Anti-Aryan scholars accused Ram of Brahma-hatya because Ravan was the son of Maharishi Visharva! Ram has bathed in a river to cleanse himself, of the sin of Brahma-hatya! People of village close to that river have named the village as Rameswaram!”
Kalush was impressed.
Yavakri started his yagna. Alwar and Kalush guarded the yagna.
During yagna in progress, some demons attacked Yavakri. Kalush and Alwar fought bravely. Within minutes all demons were dead.
Seeing this, Ragini suggested, “Kalp has recovered! We should leave this place! Demons, taantriks (sorcerers and witches) and wolves can turn their attention to this area as long as we are here!”
Brothers agreed. After thanking Yavakri and bidding adieu to him, four vampire siblings left.
Alwar asked Kalush, “Are you going to win all the battles in future as per Lord Shiva?”
Kalush replied, “Pretty much! Because my kingdom will exist in Kaliyug also! And I will have worthy opponents in Kaliyug also!”

Kaliyug – 1442 AD:
In Transylvania, there was a practice hall for sword fight where Count Vladivostok or Vlad as his close associates called him was fighting alone with three swordsmen. Vlad defeated them.
His Chief Minister Vasile Ceausescu arrived and said, “Your Majesty! Domnisoara Zhestakova is arriving in five minutes!”

Vlad left the room with minister. The defeated swordsmen looked on while he left. Spanish swordsman asked the Transylvanian swordsman, “He is a dangerous fighter! Howcome?” Transylvanian swordsman replied, “That is why his enemies call him Dracula which has been derived from the word “Dracul” that means devil! He was born in Vladivostok and hence, he got this name! Born in 1422, Vlad became our king at the age of 20 after his father; our previous king was killed by some werewolves!”

Outside the royal castle, Vlad and Ceausescu saw the arrival of a horse carriage. The door opened and Ukrainian aristocrat Alyona Zhestakova came out, followed by her maid Galina.
Count Vladivostok kissed the hand of Alyona saying, “Welcome Domnisoara Zhestakova!”
Alyona replied, “Call me Alyona! It is honor to meet you, Your Majesty!”

Mesmerized by her beautiful eyes and face, Vlad said, “Call me Vlad!”
Vlad and Alyona had breakfast together and then on two horses, they left to see the scenic forest. Alyona was thankful to Vlad hosting her. Vlad asked her, “Why did you wish to leave Ukraine?”
Alyona replied, “Last year, Haci I Giray founded Crimean Khanate! Tarjan tribes against Haci created problems in Kiev! My father was a doctor who once treated Haci! After my parents were killed, Haci sent me here!” Vlad said, “I should be thankful to Haci! We have something in common! My mother was a Ukrainian!”

The two spent the whole day together and bonded well. While they were returning in the evening, Vlad heard some sound from the bushes. He realized that wolf-men were around. He shouted to Alyona reach castle.

Alyona did not want to go but she was bound to obey the orders of Count in his kingdom. She sped off. Vlad fought the wolf-men attacking him. Alyona was weeping, feeling guilty. By the time she reached palace, she broke down. Galina consoled her.

Minister Ceausescu said, “Be calm Domnisoara Zhestakova! Count Vostok is invincible!” Alyona started wiping her tears when she saw Vlad arriving on the horse. She wanted to run and hug him but in front of everyone, she controlled herself.

At night there was a party in the honor of Alyona. Dancing with Vlad, Alyona said, “Today, I felt that as long as I am with you, nothing can harm me!” Vlad replied, “You are my guest! Your safety is my responsibility!”

After the party, when Alyona was sleeping in her room at night, she heard a strange sound. She opened her eyes and saw a skull flying in the air. Blood from skull was dropping on her bed sheet. She cried, “Vlaaaad!” Soldiers came running with flambeaus in their hands. Vlad woke up in his room. Wearing a robe, he came running. Skull had disappeared and except Alyona, nobody had seen it. There was no blood on bed sheet. Vlad consoled Alyona and helped her to gain composure. After he left, Ceausescu said, “Perhaps she is gone insane!” Vlad said, “I refuse to believe that!”
Next morning, Vlad asked Ceausescu about some spells from different parts of world that could bring supernatural advantages. With complete report, Ceausescu told Vlad about a vampire called Kalush who was secretly ruling a city of seven islands (modern day Mumbai). Vlad wanted to know how Kalush became a vampire.

Ceausescu told a story to Vlad:


Treta Yug – 10, 0032 BC

Thousands of years ago, Kalush was born to a warlord called Prajwal and his witch wife Aastha! In Aryavarta, witches were known as Taantrikas. Sorcerers were known as Taantriks! Prajwal conquered various tribes and ruled them!
On the day Kalush was born, there was an earthquake in the area ruled by Prajwal. A priest named the baby “Kalush” (blot), saying that earthquake came as new born baby was the human form of malice. Enraged Prajwal killed the priest.
Demons led by Kroorasur wanted to kill Prajwal! Prajwal was a devotee of Shiva! He was performing a ritual seeking blessings of Shiva to conquer demons! An attack from demons resulted in the killing of Hridayesh, the youngest son of Prajwal!

Enraged over death of brother, Kalush planned a ritual to gain supernatural powers to kill demons! Kurupa, demoness in the gang of Kroorasur abducted Aastha and reached the spot of ritual, taking her form to start the ritual! She tricked the sons of Aastha performed a dark ritual of turning them into vampires. Her intention was subjugate the army of Kalush by enslaving them and giving them human blood as a salary. Along with some soldiers of Kalush, Kurupa (in the form of Aastha) turned Prajwal, Alwar, Kalush, Ragini and Kalp into vampires.

Meanwhile, Aastha freed herself from the captivity of demons. Reaching the spot of ritual, she exposed Kurupa. Kurupa tried to flee but was captured and ended up being the first “blood pack” for all four vampire siblings and their father.
Aastha knew various immortality spells. She did not want to lose her powers as a witch by becoming a vampire. So she did not become a vampire but her family became the first vampire family of Aryavarta.

Kaliyug – 1442 AD:

After hearing the story from Ceausescu, Vlad met Miruna Eliade, a witch loyal to him. He asked whether it was possible for him to posses the vampire abilities in human form as he wanted to kill the werewolf pack that killed his father.
Miruna confirmed that it was. First she designed a mystical sign on the ground and put the deadbody of a man killed by the bite of a bat.
On another mystical design, Vlad stood. Chanting the spell, Miruna cut a bat with knife and made the blood drop on the dead body.
Winds started blowing. Closing her eyes, Miruna chanted:
Evocatis naturae viribus, concedo supernaturalis vires sanguis suckin meo regi ultori
An aura appeared on the dead body and another aura appeared around the body of Vlad. Vlad felt powerful. Miruna chanted another spell.
Sum rex ab eo erunt immortales. Nihil in hoc mundo occidatur.

After the spell was over, auras disappeared. Miruna told Vlad, “According to your stars, strong possibility of death is in 1462! But now that can be evaded!” Vlad asked, “How?” Miruna replied, “If anyone kills you now, you will not die! Instead, you will become a vampire! Right now, you have the physical strength, speed and hearing ability of a vampire! Once you become a vampire, you will get many new powers!”

Vlad returned to castle. He was told that Alyona fainted and was not waking up. Doctor checking on her called her healthy. Vlad suspected witchcraft. Writing a note to Miruna, he sent it via pigeon. He left for forest to test his new powers. Miruna‘s spell worked. Alyona was waking up. She had dream of Vlad getting stabbed. Once awoke, she ran looking for him and saw Ceausescu following her with a knife. In the other direction, she saw Galina who was now aligned with Ceausescu.

The two abducted Alyona and took her into a dark location where a witch called Lenuta Dumitru was performing a dark ritual. Alyona was tied up for sacrifice. Hearing her cries from a distance, Vlad reached there with superhuman speed. Seeing Vlad, Lenuta raised her hand and chanted:
Tenebris potentiis naturalibus non possim te mei estis
Vlad fall on his feet, trying to get up. He felt agonizing pain. Ceausescu said, “I formed an alliance with wolves to kill your father! We tried to kill Alyona as grief would have weakened you! Then I would rule with my coven of witches and my queen Galina!”

Ceausescu chanted:
Naturae viribus dominari permittas evertere regnum rex
Vlad was not an ordinary human now. He threw a knife stabbing Lenuta. Using his speed he ripped of the head of Ceausescu. After that, he stabbed a shocked Galina with his sword.
He freed Alyona who was sobbing. Tightly hugging Vlad she said, “I love you Vlad! Only you can protect me!” Looking in her eyes Vlad replied, “I love you too Alyona! Will you marry me?”
With tears in her eyes, Alyona shook her head in a “yes”.

(For now)


Rating - 142/200

Judges (Round 3) - Pankaj V. (Shaan), Mayank Sharma and Mohit Trendster. 

Total Rating (3 Rounds) - 391/600 (65.16%)

*Final team ranking list after the announcement of all Round 3 Results.