Motorcycle Ghost!

Bablu looked at the dark road ahead and screamed, “Dad! Ghost!”

“Where?” asked his Dad, and stopped his motorcycle. “There” said Bablu pointing to a human skeleton on a motorcycle that stood on the road ahead. Everyone was avoiding him and going the opposite way.

“Is it a ghost or are we simply imagining it?” asked Bablu’s Dad, looking ahead carefully.

“Dad! Let’s also turn and go the other way,” said Bablu feeling terrified. But his Dad kept looking at the skeleton.

He said, “Bablu! I’m not convinced that it is a ghost riding a motorcycle! Let’s go and see the ghost clearly.”

Bablu was feeling petrified but wondered if a ghost could really ride a motorcycle.

His dad started their motorcycle and carefully went close to the skeleton.

“Hello! Hmm.. Dear Mr. Skeleton, what’s the matter?” asked Dad politely.

The skeleton looked up from trying to start his motorcycle and said casually, “Oh, nothing much! My motorcycle had suddenly stopped.”

Bablu was shocked. The ghost spoke well!

“Why don’t you fly and go wherever you’re headed? Ghosts can fly, right?” asked Bablu now when he felt he could talk to a ghost.

“Fly?” now the ghost was shocked. “Why are you joking, son? If I could fly, why would I be riding a motorcycle?” Then he looked at his motorcycle, and said, “It simply wouldn’t start.”

“I see,” said Bablu’s Dad without blinking an eye as if talking to a ghost was usual, and walked to the ghost’s motorcycle. He carefully turned the key, kicked on the pedal, but the motorcycle would not start.

He then asked, “Where are you headed?”
The ghost said, “I’m participating in a play in the neighbouring village. I’m headed there.

Bablu’s Dad looked at the motorcycle and said, “There could be three reasons why the motorcycle is not starting. First, the key is incorrectly inserted, secondly, it has run out of petrol or thirdly it may be dissipating current. I have checked the first two causes,” then he looked at the ghost and asked, “Does it have petrol?”

“Yes, I just filled a litre petrol in it,” said the ghost.

“Why isn’t it starting, then?” asked Dad.

Bablu said, “I think the motorcycle too is scared seeing a ghost and that is why it won’t start!”

“What Ghost?” asked the skeleton, surprised.

“Bablu may have a point!” said Dad. “Look, people are running away after seeing you from afar.”

“But why?” said the ghost confused.

“Look at yourself in the mirror,” said Bablu, turning the rear view towards the man.

When skeleton looked at his reflection in the mirror of the motorcycle, he jumped seeing himself.

“Oh! A ghost!” he cried out and he took two steps backwards.

“What happened?” asked Bablu.
“A ghost!” he said pointing to his reflection and quickly took out water from the backseat and started washing his face. “I look really scary in the dark—like a real ghost! The village did not have a green room, so I got dressed from my home and was going on my motorcycle. But then I did not realise that in the ghost dress, She would look like a real ghost. But how come you weren’t scared?”

“I was scared,” said Bablu’s Dad. “But then I thought that a ghost could not be riding a motorcycle and something else was the matter. So I approached you.”

“Oh!” said the ghost looking sheepish.

Bablu’s Dad said, “Oh, I see the key for petrol supply was turned off. That’s why the motorcycle could not start. Saying so, his father turned the key for petrol and started the motorcycle.
The ghost removed his costume and put it in a bag. He sat on his motorcycle and said, “Thank you so much! I’ll be going now.”

“Where are you going? Don’t you have a play to act in?” asked Bablu’s Dad.

“No, thank you. I won’t play the role of a ghost who got scared of himself!” he said and headed back home.

Bablu said, “Dad, we easily get scared seeing a ghost. Some people take advantage of this and scare us more. Had we been scared and gone the other way, I too, would have been forever scared of ghosts.”

“Yes, Bablu! We get scared and fail to see the truth,” said his Dad and together, they headed back home on their motorcycle.

Bablu was mighty pleased with himself. He had actually met a ghost! He wanted to narrate the experience to his Mom.

“Faster, Dad! I must tell Mom about how we met a ghost today!”

The motorcycle zoomed fast ahead.

The Night Ghost

It was quite late in the night when Jumbo, the elephant was walking home along a deserted stretch of road. Suddenly, a strange-looking object appeared before him.

“I am the Night Ghost!” it proclaimed. “Give me whatever you possess.”

“I am not scared of you. You are so puny, said Jumbo waving his trunk at the ghost.

“Puny? You think I am puny?” asked the ghost enraged. It miraculously began to grow bigger and bigger.

“Do I look puny now?” asked the ghost.

Jumbo fainted in shock on seeing the ghost grow bigger. After some time, when he regained consciousness, he noticed that all his belongings were gone. He was now very scared. He quickly rushed home and fell sick immediately.

On hearing about his condition, his friends came to visit him.

The Ghost of Penupuram

“What’s wrong, Jumbo? Are you feeling unwell?” asked Jumpy, the monkey.

Jumbo narrated the entire incident.

“How is it possible? Ghosts aren’t real,” said Meeku, the mouse.

“I thought so too but ever since my encounter with the Night Ghost, I have started to believe in them,” said Jumbo.

“I think you must have been hallucinating. How is it possible for something to just grow bigger in a matter of seconds?” asked Meeku curiously.

“Yes! That’s why I know for sure that what I saw was indeed a ghost,” insisted Jumbo.

“I don’t believe you,” said Jumpy.

Nobody believed Jumbo. But when the other inhabitants of the forest started having similar experiences, everyone began to fear the Night Ghost. No one dared to venture out alone at night, especially on the road where the ghost was usually seen.

One day, Cheeku, the rabbit fell ill. He asked his friends to take him to the hospital, but they were too scared of the Night Ghost. They had to take the deserted road to reach the hospital which they were afraid to do so at night. Instead, they took Cheeku to the hospital the following morning.

There, Dr Pintu, the giraffe checked Cheeku and prescribed some medicines. He said, “I am glad that you got him here on time. If you had been slightly late, it would have been difficult for me to save him.” Everyone was relieved.

Cheeku was in the hospital for a week. During that time, he resolved to get rid of the so called Night Ghost as soon as he got home.

After a week, Cheeku felt better and was back home. That night, he decided to walk down the deserted road hoping to meet the Night Ghost. And as expected, the ghost appeared before him.

“I am the Night Ghost! Hand over all your belongings,” it said.

“Only owls and bats fly around at night. So are you the ghost of one?” asked Cheeku.

This angered the ghost. “Don’t try to act funny or else I will have to teach you a lesson!” it threatened and started changing its shape.

Instead of getting scared by its growing size, Cheeku calmly took out a bottle.

“What’s this? Going to trap me in that little bottle, are you? I am no Genie. I am a ghost!” it howled.

“No! This is magic powder. See what it does,” so saying, Cheeku blew the magic powder into the ghost’s eyes.

“Ow! My eyes! They are burning! What was that powder?” cried the ghost.

“It was chilli powder. Show yourself and I will give you water,” said Cheeku waving a bottle of water in front of the ghost.

More from Champak: The Sugarcane Ghost

“Ok! Ok!” exclaimed the ghost and immediately removed the costume. And out emerged Baddy.

“Now give me the water!” he said and grabbed the bottle from Cheeku and washed his eyes.

He then tried to escape but Cheeku caught hold of him and produced him before everyone. Cheeku asked Baddy to confess and he did. He told everyone about his plan to dress up as a ghost and steal everyone’s belongings.

“But how did Baddy become bigger than me?” Jumbo asked.

“When Baddy was hiding inside the big black robe, he also kept a balloon hidden along with him. Whenever he wanted to appear to be growing bigger, he would loosen the string of the balloon and it would float upwards lifting the robe along with it,” explained Cheeku. “So that is why it looked as if it was becoming bigger right in front of your eyes, and you were all convinced that it was a ghost.”

“You are right, Cheeku. We shouldn’t have blindly believed it. If I ever come across another ghost, I’ll lift it with my trunk and toss it away,” said Jumbo waving his trunk about much to everyone’s amusement.


One night, Marty, the mole was jolted out of his sleep by a strange sound.


Marty switched on the lights and scanned the room for the source of the sound. He didn’t see anything unusual and the sound stopped, too. So, he switched off the lights and tried to go back to sleep, but then he heard the sound again.

This had been going on for two days now. Marty hadn’t been able to sleep a wink through the night because of the strange sound.

The next day at work, Billy, the goat greeted him, “Good morning, Marty! How are you?”

“How do you think I am? Can’t you see I am fine?” snapped Marty.

“It was a harmless question, Marty. There was no need to snap at me like that,” said Billy offended.

“I’m sorry, Billy. I haven’t been able to sleep at all for the last couple of days. That is why I am quite irritable,” said Marty. He told Billy about his problem.

“That must be a ghost,” concluded Billy.

“A ghost? Are you serious?” laughed Marty.

“Yes, I am serious. Since you are away at work, your house is empty for most of the day. So, some ghost must have made itself at home in your house. You may find this funny but do give it a thought,” said Billy gravely.

Marty started thinking about it. He could not concentrate on his work that day.

“What if Billy is right? What if it is a ghost? What if it harms me?” thought Marty.

Marty left work early that day to consult with Jacky, the jackal, who claimed to be a professional ghost hunter. Jacky’s business had been down for some time now, so he was elated to see Marty.

“I see that you are in distress. How can I help you?” asked Jacky.

“O holy one, I think there is a ghost in my house. It does not let me sleep at night,” said Marty.

“I see…,” said Jacky, closing his eyes as if he was meditating. He began chanting some strange spells.

Jacky then opened his eyes and said, “You are right. There is a ghost in your house, and a stubborn one, too. It will not be easy to get rid of it.”

Marty became scared. “Oh, please! You must help me!” he pleaded.

“I will surely try, but it is going to be a difficult process. I will need a lot of expensive food items,” said Jacky, handing Marty a long list. “After you buy them, take me to your house. I will start the process of getting rid of the ghost tonight.”

“I will get them right away,” said Marty and immediately rushed to the market to buy all the items on the list. At the shop, Marty met his friend Rocco, the raccoon.

“So many food items! Are you having a party without telling me?” asked Rocco.

Marty told him about the ghost in his house and how he approached Jacky to get rid of it.

Rocco smiled and said, “Let me also come with you, just in case you need some help.

Marty agreed. He bought all the items on the list and went back along with Rocco to meet Jacky.

Jacky panicked when he saw Rocco. “Why did he bring along this raccoon? He is going to mess up my plan!” he thought.

Jacky told Marty, “There can’t be too many people when I am performing the ritual.”

“Don’t worry. I will be as quiet as a mouse and not interfere with your ritual,” said Rocco.

“Alright. Marty, I shall be staying at your place tonight, so please make the necessary arrangements,” said Jacky.

That night, Jacky arrived at Marty’s house and inspected it. He then took a bath and had a hearty meal.

“Now that I am here, rest assured that the ghost will no longer trouble you,” said Jacky yawning. “I will pretend to go to sleep now. When the ghost comes, I will trap it.”

Marty was convinced that his problem would soon be over. He gave up his own bed to Jacky and slept on the floor, next to Rocco.

Within a few minutes after the lights were switched off, the strange sound started.


Jacky woke up with a start. He sat upright and looked around the room, holding on to the blanket nervously.

“It’s the ghost again,” said Marty.

They noticed the flower vase moving.

“Oh no! There really is a ghost!” exclaimed Jacky, trembling with fear.

“Cast your spells, O holy one. Get rid of this ghost,” said Rocco casually.


“Are you mad? What if the ghost catches me? I am getting out of here and so should the two of you!” said Jacky, running out of the house.

Come, let’s get out of here,” Marty said to Rocco.

No, wait. Let’s see what it is,” said Rocco, walking towards the flower vase

Marty switched on the lights and Rocco picked up the vase to inspect it.

“So, you are the ghost!” said Rocco looking inside the vase. He then helped a butterfly get out of it.

“How did you get inside the vase?” Marty asked the butterfly.

“A couple of days ago, I flew in through that window as I was attracted by the smell of these flowers. But then I ventured inside the vase and got stuck. When the lights were switched off, I tried to get out unnoticed. But I didn’t realise that the sound of my wings flapping would scare all of you,” said the butterfly embarrassed.

“You didn’t just scare me, you scared the great Jacky as well,” said Marty amused.


Rocco said, “I knew there was no ghost. Jacky just wanted to use your fear to make some money. He had a hearty dinner and would have slept happily, had it not been for our friend here.”

The three had a hearty laugh.

The Sugarcane Ghost

Jumbo elephant loved eating sugarcane. He had planted the sweetest sugarcane plants in his farm and enjoyed sharing sugarcane and its juice with all his neighbours and guests.

One day when Jumbo went to the farm, he was shocked to see sugarcane stalks fallen on the ground. He looked around carefully, but found no sign of anyone entering and walking around the farm.

Next morning, some more of the sugarcane stalks were on the ground. Every night someone entered the farm and broke some of the stalks.

Jumbo started putting a big lock on the door of his farm and the boundary wall around his farm was very high. It was not possible for anyone to jump over and come inside but each morning Jumbo saw that sugarcane stalks were broken.

This troubled Jumbo a lot. On many nights he kept awake and guarded the house, but he did not see anyone going towards his farm. In the morning he found the sugarcane stalks broken and on the ground.

One day, poor Jumbo mentioned this to his friend Jumpy monkey. Jumpy said, “This seems to be the work of a ghost.”

“Why will a ghost break the sugarcane?” Jumbo said, not believing Jumpy.


“If a ghost is not breaking the plants, then is the wind breaking them?” Jumpy replied.

“You have stayed awake the whole night and guarded the stalks. You saw no one come or go, and still the stalks were broken in the morning. This clearly means that it is the work of ghosts, because no one can see them if they do not wish to be seen,” Jumpy continued.

On hearing this, Jumbo got frightened. He started getting afraid to go in the direction of his farm even during the day.

One day Cheeku rabbit came to visit him. Jumbo always offered Cheeku sugarcane juice, but that day he did not do so.

Cheeku found this unusual and asked his friend, “What is the matter Jumbo? You look troubled today. I am also missing the sweet sugarcane juice that you always offer.”

“Don’t mention sugarcane,” Jumbo said, looking sad.

“Why?” asked Cheeku. “You were always so proud of the sugarcane you grew.”

“Ghosts have invaded my sugarcane farm.

Every night they come and break many of my sugarcane stalks. I have stopped going to the farm out of fear,” Jumbo explained to Cheeku.

“Jumbo, you are so intelligent. Why do you still you talk like this? There are no ghosts. They are only exist in our minds and stories,” Cheeku tried to explain.

“If there are no ghosts, then who is breaking my sugarcane?” asked Jumbo.

When Cheeku heard the details, his face became serious. He did not believe in ghosts. “But who is breaking them without being seen?” Cheeku thought to himself and decided to find out.

After thinking for a while Cheeku said, “I am going to spend the night in your farm today and try to find out who breaks the sugarcane.”

“Oh no, I cannot put your life in danger,” said Jumbo who was worried.

Cheeku pleaded to Jumbo and at night he hid behind a tree in the farm.




Around midnight, he heard a faint sound. He could not see anyone. Soon, one of the stalks fell. And after some time another one. Cheeku too started feeling afraid. He was sure there were no spirits and ghosts, but something was there. He tiptoed towards the sound. When he reached close to the spot, he heard the sound of someone chewing something.

Then, he noticed Meeku rat chewing at the base of a sugarcane stalk.

“So you are the sugarcane ghost!” said Cheeku angrily.

When Meeku heard Cheeku’s voice, he tried to run away but Cheeku sprang and caught him. He thundered, “Tell me quickly! Why have you been breaking Jumbo’s sugarcane?”

“I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you. First leave me,” said Meeku, panting.

“Very smart. If I leave you, you will run away,” said Cheeku. Then relaxing his hold slightly, Cheeku said, “Come, tell me now. Why are you doing this?”

“I was living here happily with my family. Then one day Jumbo trampled and broke my house with his huge and heavy feet. I have been breaking his sugarcane to take revenge for that,” said Meeku with a long sigh.

“When did I break your house?” asked Jumbo as he reached the scene on hearing the noise.

“You had come here to take sugarcane to give juice to your guests,” said Meeku. He was frightened and sure that Jumbo would trample on him and break his bones.

But instead of being angry, Jumbo said sorrowfully, “My friend, I must have trampled your house by mistake. I am very sorry and beg your pardon.”

“You called me ‘friend’!” said Meeku, surprised. He could not believe that such a huge elephant was asking for forgiveness and not punishing him.

“Yes, we all are friends. We should live together with love and not take revenge on one another,” said Jumbo. Then after thinking for a while he said, “I will make a hole in the soil with my long and strong teeth. You can make your house in the hole and live happily again.”

“Thank you Jumbo but we have already made a new house,” Meeku said.

“Oh it is nice to hear that!” said Jumbo.

“But what I have done was not right. I should be punished for it,” said Meeku. Seeing Jumbo’s nobility, he felt very sorry for his act.

“Yes, you should get the punishment,” Jumbo closed his eyes for a while and then said, “Your punishment is to taste all the plants in this garden and tell me which one is the sweetest.”

Then Jumbo added, “Cheeku has found the sugarcane ghost. I want to reward him with the juice of the sweetest plant.”


On hearing this, Meeku went in the farm joyfully. After some time his voice was heard, “Dear Jumbo, this plant is the sweetest.”

Jumbo quickly went and got that stalk. He squeezed the juice and offered it to both his friends. All felt very happy.


A Dance for Granny

Sanju was unhappy. Her grandmother had come to stay with her family, and Sanju had to give up her study room for her grandmother to use.

Sanju was upset because it was not just her study room, it was where she spent most of her time listening to music, playing, dancing or relaxing with a book. A lot of her precious stuff was in that room. Now, what was she going to do? Why had Uncle Rajesh left Granny with them?

Granny lived with Uncle Rajesh in their ancestral home. Sanju had met Granny only a few times as her parents hardly found time to pay them a visit.

To Sanju, Granny was an old person, who was ill and confined to a wheelchair. “What would she know about the current generation?” thought Sanju. Whenever Granny tried to talk to her, Sanju would promptly make her escape.

As days passed, Granny kept to herself in the room and spent most of the day listening to music in her old tape recorder. Sanju did not make any effort to talk to her, despite her parents’ insistence, and went to her room only if she wanted to get any of her things.


A Unique Birthday Gift

One day, Sanju was watching her favourite cartoon show, when the music from Granny’s room distracted her. It was a classical song that she was familiar with, as her dance teacher had just taught her a routine set to that song. The song was being played again and again.

“Ma, why is Granny playing that song again and again?” Sanju whined to her mother.

Ma shut her laptop and went to Granny’s room along with Sanju. She knocked but there was no answer. Ma slowly opened the door.

Inside, Granny was sitting in the armchair with her eyes closed. She was smiling and her eyelids flickered as if she was dreaming. Her fingers tapped on the armrest rhythmically.

“What is she doing, Ma?” asked Sanju.

“She is dancing,” said Ma, smiling at Sanju.

Sanju stared blankly.

“Come with me. Let me show you something,” said Ma.

Ma closed the door behind her and led Sanju to her room. She took out a bag from the cupboard and handed it over to Sanju.

“Take a look,” said Ma.

Inside the bag, there were several trophies and certificates from various dance competitions. All of them had Granny’s name on them!

“Granny was a dancer?” asked Sanju disbelievingly.

“Yes, she was a great dancer! But she stopped dancing after we were born. I found this among her belongings,” said Ma.

Sanju rummaged through the bag. At the bottom, she found an old video cassette.

“What’s in it?” asked Sanju curiously.

“Let us find out,” said Ma.

Ma brought down their old video player from the attic. She dusted it thoroughly, connected it, and played the cassette.  It was a video of Granny dancing.

“I can’t believe Granny was so young and beautiful once! And look how well she dances!” exclaimed Sanju.

“Actually, she looks somewhat like you in her dance costume!” said Ma.

Sanju smiled. She was proud of her Granny.

“So, poor Granny imagines herself to be dancing every day,” said Sanju thinking loudly.

“Yes, that seems to make her happy,” said Ma.

Suddenly, Sanju brightened up. “Ma, I have an idea! How about we surprise Granny tomorrow?” she asked.

More from Champak: The Gift

“How do you plan to do that?” asked Ma.

Sanju whispered her plan into Ma’s ears and the two chuckled.

The next morning, Ma wheeled in Granny to the living room which was beautifully decorated. Pa and Sanju were standing near the table, on which Granny noticed a cake.

“What is going on? What is this cake for?” asked Granny puzzled.

“It’s for you Granny! To the best dancer I know!” said Sanju, hugging her.

Granny was surprised.

“But before you cut the cake, here is a special performance by Sanju,” announced Ma.

Granny’s favourite song started playing, and Sanju danced to it.

Granny was overwhelmed with emotion. She laughed and cried, and applauded loudly when Sanju finished the dance.

Granny pulled Sanju into a tight hug and kissed her forehead.

“I love you, Granny,” said Sanju.

“I love you too, my child. This is the best gift ever,” said Granny, wiping away tears of joy.