“I don’t really get your premise. If they were just female vampires, why do your yakshis target just handsome virgin boys. Why not gorge on anyone at all,” said Neha “In fact I could gladly recommend a pervert or two as a midnight snack for the ladies.”
“Sexual urges, machi,” replied Nair, the self-appointed expert on the subject, taking a large swig of his drink.
“Bwaaaah….” whispered Viru, as a background score, a deep-throated growl.
“They didn’t get it when they were alive, so they want it when they’re dead.” continued Nair, “Some lover ditched them. So full senti, then suicide. But how anyone can jilt these gorgeous women, I don’t know. Long black hair, flying in the wind, large eyes like black pearls, lips as red as kumkumum…”
“And breasts,” whispered Viru.
“Viru, why do you encourage him.” Madan was the sole communist slash atheist of the group.
“And breasts as large as jackfruits, bouncing in the wind as they dance seductively.” Nair stood up and began an imitation, his giant pot belly swirling, hands on his protruding chest to indicate the exaggerated breasts.
Madhan sat with his three friends, on the floor of an outhouse, a stone throw away from his home. Liquor bottles and left over chicken lay strewn on the floor, old newspapers serving as floor mats.
“If I met a yakshi,” whispered Viru, “I would hold her to my chest”
“Ohhhhh” exclaimed the rest.
“And make sweet sweet love to her…“ he continued.
“And be eaten alive just after,” concluded Nair.
“Do you even know how to make sweet love to a woman, Viru,” asked Madhan.
“My yakshi will teach me. We will teach each other. And our love shall thrive to the heavens.”
“No no, yakshis don’t go for such eternal bonds.” said Nair.
“Oho. What else does your Yakshi text book say?” asked Madhan.
“Its not that easy to become an adult Yakshi. You must pass a test” said Nair
“A blood test?” asked Madhan. “For HIV perhaps?”
“Under their blue sun” continued Nair ignoring Madhans taunts, “Yes, their sun is blue. They must slide down a black palm tree made of bronze, three times….”
“Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” said Viru.
“In the nude.”
“Look at this guy”, exclaimed Madhan, “These Yakshi stories are made up by sex-starved bachelor boys like him.”
“I’m starting to think so too”, added Neha, “Why don’t you mallus have anything for women, yaar. Such chauvinists you people are.”
“Eyy..we have gandharvas for you” offered Nair. “Handsome angels that sing to your heart, and give you all the pleasure in the world. In fact, Janice, my love, she used to call me her Gandharvan all the time”
“Shee…”, said Madhan disgustedly, “Can we not hear about your illicit affairs.”
“MADHAN!” A woman’s voice called from outside the outhouse.
“Who is that? Did we summon a Yakshi?” Nair looked petrified.
“Shut up idiot. Its my mother. Hide the liquor. I’ll go out and check what she wants.” said Madhan. A gentle breeze swayed as he stepped out bearing the alluring scent of a flower. Was it jasmine, he wondered. His mother stood at the doorstep, hair tied in a bundle, prepared for bed.
“Ma…what are you doing out at this time” asked Madhan “Shouldn’t you be asleep?”
“Yes, yes. But the Menons called. They said they’re coming tomorrow.”
“Who?” asked Madhan, puzzled.
“The Menons. Eyy, did you forget? I told you so many times. My college classmate from Palakkad. They have a daughter. From Bangalore. Rani. Beautiful girl. Engineer, working in Infosys”
“Oh that. Yes, I remember. Ma…Are you serious. I already told you about this. You’ve even met Neha.”
“Who?” It was his mothers turn to be puzzled.
“Neha, my girlfriend. We want to get married.”
“Who? That North Indian girl?” replied his mother, raising her voice “Who’s sitting there with you while you men drink? Does she know even to grind a chammandi? You want to eat dal all your life? ”
“We’re not drinking, Amma. And lower your voice.”
“I am not a fool, Madhan. And I am very forward that way. But these kind of girls, they will have many boyfriends. You want to be with a girl like that, then I wont interfere. After marriage, when you wonder who is the father of your children, don’t come running to me”
“Amma. Can you stop talking nonsense?”
“At least can you meet Rani? What’s the harm in meeting her? You’ve spent so much time together as children. She was always following you around. You used to hate it so much and love it too. Come on, do it for your mother.”
“OK, fine. I’ll meet her”, said Madhan anxious to get rid of her. “Can you go home now.”
“OK, OK I’m going. Go back to your friends.” she mumbled as she walked back home. “If only his father were alive.”
Madhan stepped back into the outhouse.
“MADHAN, MADHAN”, shouted Nair excitedly, as he entered.
“Idiot, don’t shout. Why is everyone shouting. You’ll scare my mother. She’s already pissed.”
“We have decided. Since you are a big shot communist who don’t believe in yakshis and shit, you can take Neha to the Yakshi seduction zone. Where that Damodaran guy died.”
“Oh, and according to you he met a yakshi and died?” replied Madhan. “Neha, stop listening to this fool. Damodaran had a heart attack. That’s how he died. His wife used to work for my mother.”
“After seeing a yakshi at that age, anyone will have a heart attack, yaar” said Nair. “And they performed an autopsy and the result showed excessive blood loss. What does that mean, Mr Communist?”
“It means you’re an educated fool, that’s what it means. No better than a villager.”
“Come on, Madhan”, begged Neha. “Its a full moon. It will be so romantic.”
“You want to go now?” asked Madhan “Why don’t you take Viru instead, since he is the one who wants to marry a Yakshi”
“So you are scared”, said Nair triumphantly.
“It isn’t fear” said Madhan,“I just don’t see the point of doing something like this. Why should I prove anything to anyone. What’s in it for me?”
“A thousand rupees. Donated with love from Mr. Viru himself.” declared Nair.
“Huh…why me man?” asked Viru.
“Don’t worry, I will pay my share of 100 rupees.” offered Nair.
Viru and Nair began squabbling over the bet, when Neha pulled Madhan close. Her lips curved into a mischievous smile, she whispered, sending a tingle through his ears “And maybe we make out on the bike…and the Yakshi gets a kick just watching us at it?”
Madhan drew a quick breath, and stared hard at her. She bit her nails and looked away, blushing hard at her own impulse.
Madhan turned to the guys.
“Ok, boys. We have a deal”, he said.
Image Credits: Movie “Yakshi, Yours Faithfully”