Thirty Five

“That’s good,” Bakula said, watching Vasushena with a keen eye. Vasushena had cleared an area in the forest so he could practice with the weapons. He was a fast learner, and Bakula knew there wasn’t much more he could teach him. Everything else was practice and experience, and those were things that none could teach. … More Thirty Five

Thirty Four

Pandu sat in front of his hut watching his sons. They had taken their first steps a week back, and now it was as if they could not stop exploring every angula of the compound. The dasis were always with them, but at a discreet distance. A few falls or scraped knees were not going … More Thirty Four

Thirty Three

Sakuni was pacing the room agitatedly. Dhritarashtra thought of telling him to stop. The sound of the footsteps was irritating, but he kept quiet mainly because he could understand the man’s agitation. If he weren’t afraid of bumping into furniture, he would be pacing the room too. This was not the familiar contours of his … More Thirty Three

Thirty Two

Bheeshma was standing in his room, eyes closed, hands spread out, head thrown back. Even with his eyes closed, he was aware of everything that went on around him. He could feel the breeze that came in through the balcony, the rustling of the curtains, the flickering of the lamps, the spluttering sound as an … More Thirty Two

Chapter Thirty One

Vasushena knew there was something odd about the broken arrow. And there was something odd about the place too. He’d not been there before. He’d never been this deep, but he had a powerful feeling of being watched. He did not know if it was some animal, perhaps a wolf or a lion or a … More Chapter Thirty One

Chapter Thirty

Bakula woke suddenly, and was alert the next moment. Something had caused him to wake. He looked around, but all was still. He could tell that the sun was about to rise. He had to get a move on if he wanted to make the cave before sunset that day. He wasn’t certain he would. … More Chapter Thirty

Chapter Twenty Nine

The forest was dark and there were no visible paths. The trees grew so close together even daylight could not penetrate the canopy of leaves. There was barely enough gap between trunks for a man to pass through, and the ground was a network of crisscrossed tree roots, sticking up every which way. The man … More Chapter Twenty Nine

Chapter Twenty Seven

Atiratha sank on to the floor of his house wearily. His shoulder was stiff and aching, and he tried to rotate it to alleviate the pain and stiffness. The whole day had been spent in driving around various members of the royal family to all parts of the city. The whole Kingdom was rejoicing, but … More Chapter Twenty Seven

Chapter Twenty Six

Sakuni sat near his sister, fuming internally, but calm outside. It had only been a week since the sage had deigned to allow him and the King to visit. Gandhari had given birth to eight babies, the sage had told them. The strain of the pregnancy was what caused the queen to nearly miscarry. The … More Chapter Twenty Six

Chapter Twenty Five

Kunti opened her eyes slowly. She had drowsed off during the middle of the day. Again. She grimaced as she sat up. The shadows had lengthened, showing it was almost evening. She had felt tired and had meant to lie down for a moment. But the sleepless night attending to her infants had tired her … More Chapter Twenty Five