The Ending

Ever since I published this story, I’ve been inundated with questions – “What happened to Kasturi?”, “Will there be a Part-2?”, “Why is the story open ended?”. People needed closure. But closure brings with it an air of finality. It lets you move on. And I don’t want the readers to move on. I want to leave them with knots in their stomach.

Some have proposed a happy ending – an O. Henry twist. Perhaps Kasturi came home early, started playing hide & seek, hid under the bed & dozed off. Or, she went to a friend’s house, a friend her parents don’t know about. She comes home at 11 PM, since the story ends around 10:30 PM.

Maybe. Then again, Maybe not. While these endings are possible, none of them fit the atmosphere of the story. There are no hooks in the narrative, for comic relief or for an anti-climactical ending.

Is this story really open ended? Even though I didn’t have a specific ending in mind, I knew this: This story doesn’t end pleasantly. Only 2 trains of thought are feasible. Will the main characters of the story know what happened to Kasturi? Will they get closure? Will she be found?

These questions need not be answered, to fit this story together. I’ll leave the reader with these thoughts.


Comments

  1. Quote

    An ending (or rather epilogue?) by public demand / crowdsourcing ! 😉

  2. Quote

    Jass – 😀 Too many people clamored for a clear ending, some wanted a peaceful ending. I thought I’ll give people an idea of an indefinite & disquieting direction this story would take, if it were up to me.

  3. Quote

    The other day Jass (on top) and i were having a discussion about this and he suggested the ‘Kasturi at home hiding under the bed’ angle and i was like “jeeez!! Thats such a lame ending to the story and especially the way it has been written without any suggestion of humor. I was expecting a sort of dark poignant ending” 🙂

    But this is also nice. Kind of keeps the reader guessing and leaves it to his/her imagination to end the story the way he/she wants to!! 🙂
    Now for the Chettiar story! 🙂

  4. Quote

    ah! i liked the story as is!! if it ended on a happy note it would sound like a fairly tale.. i think our minds are conditioned to see a positive ending in any story.

  5. Quote
    Srividya (subscribed) said August 6, 2009, 8:02 pm:

    Ha ha … I thought you have given the ending in this link…. with so much curiorsity, I didn’t even read the comments, I directly clicked this link 🙂

    Good Story!! You wrote this during your school time…. wonderful!!

  6. Quote

    Revs – I’m flattered that you & Jass discussed this story. Yes, there’s no room for anti-climax or humor in this tale.

    I’m mulling over another theme, but I’m hesitant to pen it. Its rather disturbing: not just the plot of the tale, but the fact that I came up with it 😉

  7. Quote

    Ila – Thanks, you’re absolutely right, a happy ending would fit Disney, not this tale.

    >> i think our minds are conditioned to see a positive ending in any story.

    Insightful observation.

  8. Quote

    Srividya – Thanks for your comment & kind words.

  9. Quote
    pk.karthik said August 7, 2009, 2:00 pm:

    My 2 cents,

    Kasthuri…gets lost and she lands in park/Subway where she is chased by some Goondas.She runs and hides in place of worship…A mosquue or a church will add value.She is then saved by a meat selling bhai or a christian Pathariyar…who thanks God for giving a wonderful life..She studies hard and qualifies for IAS.She could have chosen IFS but she prefers IPS as she feels she needs to serve people as well help them from anti socials who seperated her from her family.
    She is tranferred to a place filled with antisocial lead called Manik…..
    Parallel story ….

    Kasthuri’s mom cries in despair and becomes mad….she blames Mani for not bringing her back…her father tries to cure by taking her to all temples and hospitals but she keeps uttering just 2 words Kasthuri,Kasthuri….Mani due to his parents negelcting him takes to drugs and soon gets in bad company.Some thugs to whom he owes money torment him and they lead him to their boss Peter.Peter takes a liking for this kid and grooms him under him…but his other collegues become jealous and they try to kill Mani..who is saved by Peter.Peter dies in this process ,but not before extracting a promise from Mani that he will take up the leadership role…Mani takes up the mantle and is changes his regnal name to Manik and becomes the undisputed king of the small town.

    Soon when Kasthuri and Manik meet there is a clash of epic proportions…Manik tries his best to kill Kasthuri but Kasthuri kills him in end without knowing that he is her brother.She runs into her mother in a Hospital where Manik is taken for post mortem and she realises that she has killed her own brother.She realises he mistake and tries to avoid her parents….But her mom based on a motherly insitincts realises that its her daughter is back and soon becomes sane.

  10. Quote

    @Priya

    It is okie if you leave the story open ended or give it a spicy twist of your usual kind, instead of these two “mokkai” (we-know-this-would-happen) ending 🙂

    Too good a story by an 8 yr old!

  11. Quote

    Karthik – You shouldn’t have killed Mani(k) off.

    Kasturi is about to shoot Manik. He begs her to let him pray. When she hears his prayer, she’s stunned, since thats their “family prayer” 🙂 With tears in her eyes, she calls out – “Anna!”, “Cheta!” or “Bhaiya!”. A startled Manik gets up, realizes who Kasturi is. Shehnai is heard in the background, as brother & sister hug each other.

    The next scene is in the hospital, where their mother – still mad – recognizes Kasturi thanks to her motherly instincts & the father recognizes her from his fatherly instincts. Even the family dog, cat & parrot recognize Kasturi from their petly instincts.

    Kasturi takes a long leave of absence from work. The last scene is in the railway station, where the 3 of them, with dog, cat & parrot in tow take the mother to Kerala for Ayurvedic treatment, so she can recover.

    The End 😉

  12. Quote
    pk.karthik said August 8, 2009, 10:00 am:

    Ha ha ha that was too good Priya 🙂

  13. Quote

    Rupik – Thanks for your comment.

    I’m glad you like the story, open-ended. Which “mokkai” endings are you talking about? I haven’t given any.

  14. Quote

    Karthik and Priya.. ROFL

  15. Quote

    Vamsi – (With a humble look on face) Thanks, we aim to please. 😀

  16. Quote
    pk.karthik said August 8, 2009, 8:53 pm:

    Vamsi –Thanks . No humble look at all ( I am basically humble ) 😛

  17. Quote
    pk.karthik said August 8, 2009, 8:56 pm:

    @ Priya I agree that end should be dark

    The problem with the end probably is that there are 2 unanswered questions. One what really happened to Kasthuri? Did she meet her parents ?Actaully there is sequel to Frank Stockton’s :Lady or the Tiger ” ,Its called Discourager of Hesitancy..Here we know the end but we do not know the path….So probably one such option could be explored for this story.

  18. Quote
    Karthik said August 21, 2009, 7:29 am:

    Nice Post Priya. As i don’t want to leave the ending in null, like everyone I came very eager to read the ending part. Surprised to see the open ending, but i convinced my self that open ending is a good ending as you said. At the age of 8, this is a very great story.

    @ pk.karthik – Good imagination.

  19. Quote

    Karthik – Thanks for your comment & kind words.

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