Location: Siliguri, West Bengal, India
Date of Encounter: July 26, 2003
I was leaving with a friend to go to town. I met someone on the road who told me that Ribhu had died this morning. Ribhu was another boy who lived in our neighborhood. He was about 4 years younger to me and used to call me an elder brother. Their family had moved into the flat above us sometime after we had come to stay here, and since then both families had been quite close. One year before, they had moved to a better and larger flat just a block or two down the street.
I was shocked to hear the news, and just shook my head in disbelief. I used to visit those people sometimes and had gone there only last night around 10. Last night, Ribhu seemed to be down with some kind of fever, and his parents seemed worried. They had told me his temperature had risen in the day time but had cooled a bit at night. I told them I'll just talk to him so he feels better, and drop in later some day. I had talked to Ribhu and he did seem very ill but certainly not fatally ill. I told him he would get better, and be able to leave for his new college education three days later.
All this flashed back and I just couldn't believe it had happened. It took me a long time, when more people told me about it in the evening, that I was able to accept the truth. I got a chilly feeling whenever I remembered my words I had told him last night "tomorrow's your last day…" (what I had told him is tomorrow's your last day of illness, and you'll be well by day after)… however, the irony of my words kept haunting me.
At night I lay in bed with the lights turned off, thinking about childhood, memories etc.
Suddenly I heard a painful groaning outside my window. It happened four times and grew louder every time. At first I didn't pay attention, and it sounded like the backdoor neighbor's loud TV, but soon it dawned that it was right outside my window. I was frozen scared by the unearthliness of the sound and just couldn't think. Suddenly dad came into my room and asked if I heard that awful groaning sound! So he'd heard it too. Dad took a torchlight and went to investigate and I followed him. We looked everywhere. There was no animal or whatever which could have made the sound.
To this day I remember the bone-chilling sound I had heard. It was someone suffering convulsions and not being able to breathe. However, I can't quite define it.
I told it to people and they said perhaps it was the spirit who had come back to say 'bye' before passing on. After all, we had been like good friends. Maybe he had returned to visit his old house where he grew up all those years. Or maybe it was some kind of echo of the dead spirit, sounding off on places that he had spent a long time in.
After that, a few days later I had a dream. I saw Ribhu and I told him how we all missed him and were very sad, and that he should rest in peace.
A few days later I had a second vision of his in my dream and I told him that I did not want him to haunt me or anyone, and that he should be happy in his afterlife and go back to heaven.
After that I never had any more dreams.