Thursday, 15 August 2019

Short Story 2019 Longlist, Vikas Sharma

The Princess Albenda-dreams come true

Gayatri Devi was a simple minded and kind hearted lady. Her husband, Mohanlal worked as a clerk in an office in New Delhi. His income was not good. Gayatri Devi was helping her husband by sewing clothes.They had one daughter named Sunanda. They wanted their daughter to become a doctor.

Gayatri Devi was not much educated but she was very active and intelligent. Her husband had a computer at home and asked her to learn it. She took a lot of interest in learning computer. Just in few days she got an expertise in computer. She started teaching computer at home after her household activities. She also liked internet surfing, free astrological tips and horoscope.

Once she was checking emails on her computer. She found an email which read as-

"I am Princess Albenda, a 21 years old girl. My mother died when I was only five years old. My father was a great politician in Kingdom of Nigeria. He was shot dead by enemies. My relatives are also my enemies. Now I am alone in this world and not safe. I am an innocent girl. I beg before you to save my life."

Princess Albenda



Reading this email message Gayatri Devi became emotional and lost in her past memories. Picture of her daughter came to her mind. Two years back, her daughter Sunanda was kidnapped by the terrorists. One day Sunanda escaped from the cell of terrorists. Anyhow she managed to make a call to Gayatri Devi and told about what had happened to her. Before Gayatri Devi could do anything, next day she came to know that her daughter Sunanda was killed by the terrorists.

She worked very hard to earn for her daughter's studies. She forgot all her desires for the sake of her daughter. Her daughter's death spoilt all of her dreams. All these memories made her upset. After her daughter's death she was planning to purchase a house but.......

Suddenly someone knocked at the door. She went to open the door. It was her husband outside. Today he came back home before his office time.

After her daughter's death, her husband went in depression. He could not concentrate on his work and started coming back from his office at any time before his office time. He developed a habit of drinking wine which affected his liver badly. Doctor advised him for an operation but he was not having enough money for the operation. Gayatri Devi was trying her best to collect money for his operation. The money she collected for her daughter's studies was also not enough for the operation of her husband.

When her husband entered in the house, she shouted at him, "Today again...... You must not drink wine. Your liver is badly damaged. Why don't you understand ?"

Husband was intoxicated and said, "Don't worry dear. Give me wine. I will be fine."

At night she shared the story of Princess Albenda with her husband. She reminded her husband saying, "There was no one to help our daughter when she was in trouble and devils (terrorists) killed her. We lost our daughter and could not do anything for her. We must help this innocent girl."

Next morning her husband shouted on her and asked her not to read such emails. She kept quiet before her husband that time but the whole night she thought about it.

Her husband went to the office. She could not stop her emotions and decided to help Princess Albenda. She sent one email to her which read as-

"I am a mother. I had a daughter of your age who was killed by the terrorists. I look my daughter in you. You don't worry my daughter. I have a mother's heart. I can understand the feelings of a daughter in trouble. I am ready to help you. Tell me . How can I help you?"

Gayatri Devi



Next day when Gayatri Devi was working on computer. She found an email from Princess Albenda which read as-

"Thanks for your kind response. You are truly a mother. As you have understood that it is the most difficult thing for a girl to survive in the world alone. Your words encouraged me a lot . Now I am not feeling lonely as I have got a kind mother like you. I take you as my mother and want to call you as mom. Dear mom, I want to share one thing with you that my father left two million dollars for me. I am not safe in my country so as my money. Now I want to leave my country and looking for a business partner in your country to invest my money. Please find a suitable business partner for me. I want to send my money in your account which I will collect from you later on if I could save my life. In case I fail to do so and enemies kill me, then kindly use my money to make a trust for welfare of orphan girls like me. My only dream in life is to help all needy girls and provide them with a safe shelter. Send your account details to me. My email ID is dreamscometrue@albenda."

Your daughter

Princess Albenda



In evening, her husband came back from the office. She told her husband that the girl, Princess Albenda had two million dollars and wanted to send that money in her account. Husband was a greedy person. He was very happy to know about two million dollars. He immediately allowed Gayatri Devi to help that girl. He said to her, "Gayatri, I felt very bad after I shouted on you unnecessarily. You were right that time. We must help that innocent girl. Our help to that needy girl will give peace to the soul of our lovely daughter Sunanda."

Gayatri Devi sent all her account details to email ID dreamscometrue@albenda provided by Princess Albenda.

She wrote, "I am sending all my account details required by you. Your money will be safe with me. You take care of yourself only. I have very good plans for your business . We will also start a trust for orphan girls. I have a very nice name for the trust. The name is 'Sunanda Heaven for girls'. I hope you would like it. Eagerly waiting for you."

Your mom

Gayatri Devi



After two days Gayatri Devi got a phone call from unknown number. The man who made that call asked her to check her email urgently.

She immediately switched on the computer and checked the email inbox. There was an email message from an unknown email ID.

She stared at the email message on her computer. Her mind was racing so fast that the words blurred together and no longer made any sense. Just three lines, but enough to make her life- the life she'd worked so hard and sacrificed so much to build- begin to crumble around her.

It was an email from Princess Albenda which read as-



My dear foolish mother!

Being emotional and greedy is dangerous.

Your account balance is zero now.



Thanks for timely help.

Your daughter

Princess Albenda



After reading email message, she was totally blank. She was deeply shocked to know that the account balance was zero. Initially she started saving money for her daughter's studies. After her daughter's death she was planning to purchase a house. Later on because of her husband's illness, she had only one reason for collecting money and that was the liver operation of her husband. Now her hopes were shattered poorly. She was mentally shaken and broken thoroughly. She could not believe on it for a long. She started weeping very loudly.

After some time she controlled herself. Her husband made her calm. Soon she understood that she had been cheated by Princess Albenda.

Both the husband and wife went to the bank to know the fact. Bank officials confirmed that the account balance of Gayatri Devi was actually zero and it was a fraud done to them. They started quarreling to the bank officials. Husband threatened bank officials that he would give a complaint against them to the police. Bank officials said to them, "It was your mistake not by the bank. Why did you give your bank account details to an unknown person?"

Then both husband and wife started blaming each other for that loss. After few minutes, the bank manager came and told them, "Someone tried to take out money from your account. But because of the alertness of our bank officials, we could stop that transaction. Your money is safe in our bank."

Husband and wife asked bank officials about the email they got for zero account balance. The bank manager said, "That email was sent by our bank to teach you a lesson. You are very careless. Are you not reading cases of such frauds in newspapers everyday? These cheaters make people emotional, give them various types of greeds, get their personal informations and cheat this way. You must not trust on these fraud email messages. You must not be emotional and greedy. The email ID dreamscometrue@albenda is totally fake. Your dreams can come true when you are honest, work hard and use your mind in the right direction. So be aware in the future."

Both husband and wife were happy to know that their money was safe. They took an oath not to believe on fraud emails and to aware more and more people about these frauds. They thanked the bank officials and came back home happily.

The same day Gayatri Devi got one more message from email ID dreamscometrue@albenda which read as-

"My dear mom, I was going to deposit my money to your bank account but on the way enemies snatched all the money from me. They left me alone on the roads to die of hunger. I don't have money even to buy food for me. Kindly send me some money urgently otherwise your another daughter will also die soon. My bank account details are Princess Albenda, account number-1234ABCD , Bank of Albenda, Nigeria.

Your daughter

Princess Albenda



She showed that email to her husband. Both of them laughed a lot at the email. Her husband asked her to give a reply to that email to have a fun.

She wrote, "My dear daughter, it is very hurting to know about you. A mother can not see her daughter in pain. Don't get afraid of anything. Your old mom can not come to you but I am sending my precious treasure of advice for you which will help you get rid off all your problems. Dishonesty and greed are your biggest enemies. You are a clever and intelligent girl. If you take yourself as my daughter then kill these enemies as soon as possible. People who are true by their souls and don't tell lie, definitely get their dreams come true. So be honest, work hard and never cheat the people. I will be proud of you."

Your mom

Gayatri Devi

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