Skip to main content

Truth is stranger than fiction

Siddharth entered his grandpa's study. The sunlight filtered in through the translucent flowery drapes and fell on the large mahogany bookcase that was filled with his dadaji's favourite books. The study table was as tidy as he remembered from his childhood. As a curious kid, he'd often wander into the study only to be admonished by the old disciplinarian. Today, however, he had entered the deceased grandparent's sanctuary as a young adult to gather some old business files and in turn, revisit fond memories.


Siddharth Sahani was the sole heir to the famous Sahani group of companies. The young, capable and ambitious youth had heard famous stories about his successful grandfather Ashok Sahani; of how he built the empire from scratch and was such a genuine philanthropist despite being so successful. 

However, as a child, Siddharth loved to hear the stories told by his doting grandfather himself. One particular story always caught his fancy and he'd demand to hear it again and again. It was a story about how three blind men robbed a bank*. They had pulled off an impossible feat that would go down in the annals of crime. The planning and execution would make a classic case for your management studies, his grandpa would add with a twinkle in his eye. He'd narrate the story with the same passion and details as if it were a real story and he a part of it. "Truth is always stranger than fiction", was his oft-quoted line.

Although the duo was very close, there were some things that Ashok preferred to guard about himself. Siddharth always sensed an element of mystery about the older Sahani. But he idolized his dadaji and always sought the latter's opinions on matters of life and career. The business tycoon had only one thing to say, "Life is full of mysteries and surprises. So, be prepared to achieve your goals but always have a backup plan."

As Siddharth rummaged through the old files, his mind playing out snippets of memories in a loop, a newspaper clipping fell off from between the sheets. Yellowed with age, the print was fading off from several portions. Yet, the headline caption seemed to scream out loud and clear,

"Biggest Bank heist leaves the Investigative Agency baffled"

Worn by time, the entire report was not quite legible. Yet, it sufficed to ring a bell, far too familiar.

Siddharth was nonplussed.

Why was this news article safeguarded? Why was dadaji so fond of this story? What did he mean by "truth is stranger than fiction" ?

Some things will always remain a mystery.


*Inspired by this.

Linking this to the first day at Bar-A-Thon


  1. Why..why..why! I want to know the rest of the story.
    You have penned so well. ��

    1. Ha ha ha..Thank you so much, Shalzz. It's all left to the reader's imagination. :-)

  2. Aha! I clicked the link to see what the story was inspired by and was pleasantly surprised....Aankhen!
    Well done, Uma. Will there be a part two?

    1. The moment I saw this prompt, I could only visualize Amitabh saying this in his inimitable style, "truth is stranger than fiction" and couldn't shake it off, so thought I might as well create a post out of it ;-)

      Thanks, Sid. I'm glad you liked it. Part two? let's see :-)

  3. Aah! The truth will shatter and shock him!!
    Looking forward to know more about his predicament and the heist and the journey afterwards!

    1. Maybe, or maybe not ;-) Thanks, Shilpa!

  4. What a great take on the prompt. I've watched that film and loved it. Coincidentally I know an Ashok Sahani. And No his dad was never involved in a heist :-).

    1. I loved the movie too, Tulika. And, of course, it starred Big B, my fav! And, the name was a pure coincidence. LOL!

  5. Now, now...that was something! Especially, that surprise on the inspiration link 😉

  6. Very interestingly written. Leaves the reader craving for more.

    1. Thanks a lot, Onkar. Glad that you liked it!


Post a Comment

Would love to hear from you :-)
Also, please click the subscribe by Email link below the comment form to get follow-up comments to your inbox..

Popular posts from this blog

Cross over- Micro-prose in 50 words

Tread on gently.

It's tough to say goodbye. Even when you know it's desirable. Explain, if you must, but keep it short. Do not mock the tears that might flow out. Don't utter words that you'd regret.

A schism has been formed, but there's no need to burn the bridge.


Caffeinated attraction

Words jostled inside Anusha's head as she snaked her way between the tables to her favourite spot in the cozy cafe. She slid her laptop out, rested the bag beside her on the silver grey cushioned sofa and called for her favourite cappuccino. They made it just the way she preferred: the right amount of milk and coffee, the closest alternative to the filter kaapi her mom made.

Gazing out of the glass window, she sipped her beverage, letting the bitter-sweet taste linger, weighing her thoughts before her fingers could fly on the keyboard to give shape to them. The white fluffs of clouds against the clear blue skies floated gently with the summer breeze and they seemed, to the writer in her, like mischevious sheep that had strayed off the flock.

Oh, well, it's my mind that's straying now. Need to get my act right for my next submission. Anusha willed herself back to the present.

The cafe was Anusha's muse, the mecca she haunted during the weekends for the past three months…

Rotting humanity

Doc, there's an emergency!

The breaking news flashes the brutal carnage. Images and voices float in my mind as I drive in manic speed to the hospital.

Of sirens blazing. Of toys and limbs lying scattered on a carpet of red and brown.

Oxygen! I scream. Pump, harder.

Doc, there's no pulse.

Shoulders slump.

I witness grief fuse into flames that rise up collectively at the mass funeral. The ashes fall lightly on me.

Will the stench of hate ever recede?

*** Written for a prompt at