The Evil Spell is a short story for children by Zeenat Iqbal Hakimjee In the year 1907, there lived a witch in the village of Brooklyn, or so it was said. The house in which she lived was called the haunted house and the villagers, be it even the bravest of men in town, were scared of going near it Spooky tales were told about the house, "Hey Sara, my brother was telling me that his friend heard sounds from the house God knows how true is that?" said Hazel, a villager. Unknowingly, people did stroll by the haunted house unaware of the stories told about the house and its spooky atmosphere, only to find windows and doors swinging to and fro. Terrifying shrieks could be heard from within and sometimes one could hear the howling of a wolf coupled with hooting of an owl. The story ran such: Years ago there lived a very, beautiful young woman, Sandra, in this village. Her beauty was compared to the beauty of the moon and poets wrote poems about her many suitors, whom she would turn down because she was in love with Jack, a really handsome and rich guy from a nearby village. However, Jack did not turn out to be as faithful as Sandra thought him to be, and he ditched her in order to marry another female. Sandra could not bear this, so she sought revenge on him. It was then that she became evil. So evil that she came to be known as the witch. Rumours started to spread about her all around. "I am so sure she would have untied unruly hair, long pointed nails, and a crooked nose. Exactly like a witch!" said Gertrude to Jane Children would throw stones at the windows of this house and to their thrill, I shadow would be soon running towards them. Before ill could catch up on them, They would run, run for their lives. One day it so happened that a girl, Sabrina, who had I strolled near the haunted house with her friends, was captured by the witch, though her friends managed to escape. When she returned to the village, she could not speak. The witch had cast a spell on her. She was an example for the villagers that they would stop going to the haunted house and bothering her, or otherwise face the consequences. Sabrina had a very pious grandmother and she tried hard to break the spell, but failed to do so. She prayed very hard but even her prayers were not I powerful enough to break the spell cast by the witch. "I feel so sad to see Sabrina so silent," said her mother to her friend. She was a child with a sunny disposition," said the friend. No stone was left unturned. Various means were tried to break the spell. So much so that somebody suggested, "a fortune of gold coins should be offered to the witch they went to the extent of calling the village 'priest to help them break the spell but that too in vain. The priest though had a suggestion, "Take some holy water and sprinkle it on the witch. You will definitely break the spell then." However, even this did not work and certainly did not break the spell. Sabrina had now grown into a fair maiden but she was silent as a stone. One day her grandmother came with the news about a wizard in a nearby village. It was said also. This might prove to be of some help. They tried to contact the wizard but he "refused to meet anybody, without giving any reason good enough. One day while Sabrina was sitting in her backyard peeling fruit, one of the apples slipped from her hands. To her surprise she called to her room. She could not believe that this was happening. She had actually called out to her mom. She tried again and yes! There it was - the word mom! Her mother heard her, not believing her ears at first. She ran out and hugged Sabrina. It was time to rejoice. Her mom asked her dad to get as many sweets as he could. "I may distribute them in gratitude of the mercy God has shown us.” As they sat together one day, happily, now that Sabrina could also speak, her grandmother explained. "Yesterday I met Mrs. Anne. She told me that the spell on Sabrina was broken when the wizard visited the witch. A woman's ego matters to her the most. The witch's ego had been deeply hurt when she was ditched by Jack. When the wizard visited her, they had a long talk and she realized that it was unfair to make the villagers' life miserable because of her own miseries. It was then that she broke the spell.1' She further explained that in reality there is no such thing as a witch or a wizard. It is pure evil in a person that reveals itself at one point or the other.