When my mother was a little girl she wasn't very sociable like her brothers and sisters. She didn't have many friends and would prefer to spend time by herself, or at home. She did have some friends. Amongst them, she was good friends with one particular girl. Usually they would play with each other at all day and usually in front of either my mother's home or the girl's.
One day, things changed.
If I recollect correctly, the girl was asked to go get something from my mother's home, maybe some ingredient or something. I am not particularly sure. So, she did as she was told (I forgot who it was that asked her to go). What was supposed to take 5-7 minutes was taking longer. The immediate thought was that the girl got chatting to my mother and it was probably why she didn't return as quickly. After about 20 minutes since she was sent, her mother went to my mum's home. When she got there, she asked if her daughter came by. When the reply was no, she started to worry. What could have happened? Where could she have gone? These thoughts ran through the girl's mothers head.
It was then that my grandfather and other adult men went looking for the girl. The mother was worried and was being calm and comforted by my grandmother. The men were looking everywhere and eventually one of the men found the girl standing by the river. When he called out to her she didn't respond or turn around. The man found this weird. But when he got up to her and said to her that he was shouting, why did she come here and that her mother was worried, the girl still didn't respond. He then grabbed her and turned her around. It was at this moment the girl collapsed.
He had carried her back home. Saying the mother was relieved would be an understatement. The next day the doctor came to check up on her. She was physically fine. They had asked her what happened and she said she was on the way to my mother's home when she heard someone call her name. She had thought it was her mother and when she turned to see where it was coming from. Then she turned to see it but doesn't remember anything else.
For the next few days, things went on as normal. The girl came over and played with my mother, and nothing was out of the ordinary. Until one day, around dusk, the girl's mother called out to her to her. The mother thought the girl was in her room. When no reply came the mother, annoyed by not having a response went to her room only to find that she wasn't there. She looked throughout the house but the girl wasn't there.
My mother was in her room at the time. She was reading a book or playing with a doll. I forgot which. It was at this time she heard someone call out her name. At first she thought she imagined it. Then she heard it again. It sounded familiar. So she looked out of the window to see her friend, the girl, standing outside. The girl again asked my mother to come out and play. My mother, being young wanted to go out.
As she was going to the door, my gran asked her she was going. My mother told her that her friend was calling her and she was going out to see her. It was then my gran stopped her. Remembering what happened a few days before around the same time to the girl before and, typical of people from the rural areas of Bangladesh, being superstitious, she didn't let my mother out of the house. It was then the girl's mother arrived. A little frantic she saw her daughter and said angrily to the girl why she had left home at this time on her own. The girl didn't answer. Instead the girl was still facing my mother's home, waiting for my mother.
Seeing the girl not responding, the mother got angry, she pulled the girl's arm in order to drag her home (and probably beat her) but the girl pulled her arm away. She gave a look that frighten the mother, and said in a deep, growl like voice to not be touched.
My grandfather came out of his study and asked my gran what was happening. My gran filled him in and he went out. Seeing the girl and the frightened lady, he said that it is too late for Shelly (my mother) to come out to play. That she should go home and come back in the morning. The girl, hearing this, turned back and went home. My grandfather escorted the mother home while they followed the girl.
This would happen throughout the following months. The girl would come and call out to my mother to come out and play. At first it used to be around dusk. Then she use to call at other times of the day. My gran, fearing for my mother's safety, never let my mum play with the girl anymore. Usually though, the girl was herself. They manage to differentiate between when the girl was normal and when the girl wasn't due to the way she would talk or act. The way she use to call my mother, differed slightly between the two states, so those who knew the girl could tell the difference.
It was decided by her parents one day to take her to someone who could help her get rid of whatever was controlling her. So the girl's parents took the girl, along with some men from the village to go see, what you might call an exorcist. To get to the exorcist's residence they had to travel quite far as he was in a different area of the country. At first they went to a train station. So far the girl was her normal self. It wasn't until they got onto the train that they saw something change. The girl started growling. Then the girl wanted to get off the train so two men from the village grabbed her and held her in place. The girl started to struggle and the men holding her were having trouble holding on to her. They called the other men and the father to help them. You then had 5-6 grown men, trying to hold down a little girl and struggling to do so. They shouted for other people to help out. Some people watching were too scared to help. Two or three other men went to help. The girl was violently thrashing round trying to get loose and the men were struggling to contain her. The further the girl was from their village the more the girl struggled. Then suddenly it stopped. The girl returned to normal. The men were shocked by this. But they were wary and kept 3-4 men beside her until they reached the exorcist's home.
When they got to the exorcist, they had told him what had happened and all the acts since. The exorcist said that the thing, a jinni, possessed the girl was probably bound to the area. It was the reason why it struggled so hard on the train. Because once the girl leaves the area, it would not be able to control her. He also said if the girl returns, it will be able to possess her again. Asked why it always called out to my mum, the exorcist said it was probably my mum it wanted and as my mum and the girl were friends he took over the girl when it saw an opportunity. Why it wanted my mum? I don't know. She didn't find out either.
When the girl returned to the village she was back to herself for the first few months. But then the possession returned. It was due to this that the girl and her family moved away from the area. And none of the children were allowed out at dusk or at night.