Iswaran the storyteller

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Summary of the text ‘Iswaran the storyteller’.

The story revolves around a young man named Mahendra, who works as a junior supervisor for a firm that provides supervisors for construction sites like factories, bridges, and dams. His job requires him to move from one construction site to another based on his head office’s orders. Despite the constant relocation and challenging conditions, Mahendra is a bachelor with simple needs.

One significant comfort in Mahendra’s life is his cook, Iswaran. Iswaran is not just a cook but also a loyal companion who accompanies Mahendra to all his postings. He cooks delicious meals, manages chores like laundry, and entertains Mahendra with captivating stories. Iswaran’s storytelling talent is exceptional, and he can make even mundane incidents sound thrilling.

Iswaran possesses a unique skill – the ability to find fresh vegetables and ingredients in remote areas where there are no nearby shops. He can whip up mouthwatering dishes with these ingredients in no time, impressing Mahendra.

Their daily routine involves Mahendra leaving for work after breakfast, carrying some food with him. Iswaran takes care of their living quarters, reads Tamil thrillers, and indulges in imaginative storytelling, adding suspense and surprise to his tales. Mahendra thoroughly enjoys listening to Iswaran’s stories and finds them to be a source of entertainment, compensating for the absence of a TV.

One day, Iswaran asks if he can prepare a special dinner for an auspicious occasion. Mahendra agrees, and Iswaran serves a delightful meal. However, Iswaran unexpectedly shifts the conversation to supernatural stories. He reveals that their current workplace was once a burial ground, and he often encounters skulls and bones. He goes on to describe a horrifying female ghost that appears during full moons, sending chills down Mahendra’s spine.

Skeptical, Mahendra dismisses Iswaran’s supernatural claims, suggesting that it’s all in his imagination. He advises Iswaran to get a medical check-up and goes to bed, thinking Iswaran would sulk for a while. However, the next morning, Iswaran remains cheerful, defying Mahendra’s expectations.

Despite his skepticism, Mahendra begins to feel uneasy and starts checking for dark shapes outside his window at night. He avoids looking out when the moon is full, fearing the ghost Iswaran described. One night, he is awakened by a strange moaning sound near his window. At first, he attributes it to a cat but soon realizes it’s something more sinister. Overcoming his fear, he peeks outside and sees a dark figure holding a bundle. Terrified, he falls back in bed, sweating.

As he regains his composure, Mahendra convinces himself that it was a trick played by his own mind. However, the next morning, Iswaran greets him with a mischievous grin, reminding him of the ghostly encounter. This sends a shiver down Mahendra’s spine, and he decides to leave his job and the haunted place.

In this story, Mahendra’s life as a construction site supervisor takes an unexpected turn due to his cook and storyteller, Iswaran. The tale combines elements of adventure, horror, and suspense, making it a memorable and eerie experience for Mahendra, who eventually decides to leave his job to escape the supernatural occurrences.

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