The gallant solders of Keshari tribe believed in their leader, the great Aarya. A brave fighter and a strategic leader. Keshari was a small tribe of around 200 people migrated in to Himalayas from Gandhara.
Under the leadership of Aarya, the tribe not only survived the invasions of ruthless neighbor tribes but also established themselves as a flourishing community. They fought three battles since their arrivals and the victories bannered Kesharis as “the unconquerable”.
The Mathnag tribes abandoned their lands in Himalayas after being defeated twice by Kesharis.
The Bhjangas were however the biggest tribe in those lands and were not ready to give up even after their defeat in the first battles with Kesharis. Neither were they living confined in to their own lands. Their leader Varana was a ruthless and ambitious man. Since their last defeat in the battle with Kesharis, Bhajangas has attacked and conquered many small tribes and grew in strength significantly.
Confident in their huge strength, Varana marched towards the Kesharis land to seek the long desired revenge. The news of the approaching enemy reached the ears of Araya soon enough.
“He has an army of more than five hundred. We are badly outnumbered this time.” Bhairav, the second man to Araya, speaks out his worries.
“What do you suggest Bhairav” Araya asked advise from his best friend.
“We should first secure females, children and aged people and then let’s go and give them a warm welcome” Araya found himself smiling at the audacity of his commander in chief.
In few hours all the natives of Kesharis were secured in to different caves scattered around in the mountain. Twenty six of the best men were selected for the battle and rest were to remain guarding the tribe and in worst case take them to some safe place.
Soon the land of Kesharis was vacated except for 26 warriors and the family of Araya. This included his wife Vilochana and son shiva. Vilochana has refused to hide and decided to eye witness the battle from a high ground.
“Promise me father that you will win and come back to us soon” nine year old Shiva spoke out in his utterly innocent voice.
Araya sat down on his knees and hugged his son.
“I can’t promise this son but I promise one thing that your father will be remembered for many centuries to come” Aryan whispered into ears of his Son. Then he stood up and turned towards his warriors and roared
“Live or die, win or defeat .Doesn’t matter. But we promise in the name of our ancestors that this land will not forget the name of the tigers of Kesharis for several centuries to come”
The roaring of Araya was replicated in the clamors of his 26 warriors. These commotions were easily overheard by the natives of Kesharis hidden in the caves and it tickled their hearts with a feeling of proud.
Araya along with his warriors marched towards the approaching army while Vilochana along with his son started climbing the mountain to gain high ground.
Vilochana could see handful of his army standing against the huge force of Bhjangas on the bank of river Mandakni.
Araya and his warriors were bare above their waist but wore Lion skin below their waistline to the knees. They were trained to fight with swords in both hands.
“Attack” Vilochana heard a faded sound of Araya from miles away and then saw his men storming in to the ocean of enemy.
It was a combat of one against twenty but swords in the skilled hands of Keshari warriors were making victory difficult for the Bhajanga fighters.
Araya’s swords were replicating the speed of light. One moment it was piercing through chest of one and in the next cutting the head of another. When finished with the bunch of engaged Bhajangas, he circled his head to a get an idea of the situation. Only few of his men were still standing rest were all down but a smile appeared on his face when he realized that they have slaughtered more than half of the enemy.
He gathered rest of his strength and rushed towards Varana to engage him.
Vilochana could see only few half naked men standing in the battle field. Rest of all her men was dead.
“Can you see that brave man fighting with so many Bhajangas alone?” She asked her son pointing in the direction of the battle field.
“Yes mother” Shiva replied in bewilderment.
“He is your father”
“How could you recognize him from such distance” The boy asked innocently.
“I just Can” she replied as tears rolled down her chick but the proud heart flashed a little smile on her face.
Araya was completely surrounded by Bhajangas. He has been fighting for hours now and his badly injured body was no more capable in matching his mental strength. He blinked for once to avoid a drop of blood from getting in to his eyes. This moment of deviation was long enough, dozens of swords pierced through different parts of his body. HIs last growl drilled into the hills of Keshari like a thunder.
Vilochana covered the eyes of her son and exhaled the pain in loud screams
The greatest son of Keshari was butchered on his own land.
“I promise that Kesharis will rise again and this time it will be the biggest empire world has ever known” Vilochana assured Araya before setting his ravaged body in to fire. Her eyes have turned red holding extreme anger and pain.
Next day tribe started their journey towards south in their search for a new home, a place far and far away. They kept walking for weeks and weeks till the peaks of Himalaya’s vanished from their sight.
Vast land spread across the boundary of Nagarjuna forest became their new home.
Vilochana was the new leader. She was clever, brave and most importantly she was in rage. Anger is a source of huge energy. She never allowed that energy to fade away.
Setting up a colony near the forest was a dangerous thing to do but Vilochana took the decision based on the fact that forest is always a vast source of resources.
Trees were cut to create boundaries that could keep wild animals away. Houses and guarding posts were constructed. In no time the barren land besides Nagarjuna turned in to a secured colony.
Teams were prepared and sent in search for smaller nomadic tribes who can easily be incorporated in to Keshari. Over the years Keshari kept on growing its strength.
All these times Vilochana never rested in peace. It was her anger that was fueling her clout. All she wanted was to grow Keshari tribe in to big empire.
Under the influence of her mother, Shiva was growing in to a great warrior and leader. He with his handful of men aided many small tribes against ruthless attacks and integrated all them into Keshari. Soon the stories of his bravery started getting popular in the far far lands.
Twenty years passed in no time. Finally it was time for Shiva to take leadership responsibility of the empire. The Ceremony was being conducted in a huge ground. All natives of Keshari were assembled there to see their beloved Shiva.
“Mother, we are ready. This is the time; we should attack and burn those Bhjangas with our 20 years of rage.” Shiva speaks to his mother during the celebration.
Vilochana turned towards his son to get a glance of his face. He resembled his father. After few minutes of stare she took his hand in to hers.
“Come with me” she requests shiva by pulling him to walk with her.
Shiva starts following her mother. She took her up of a nearby hill.
While they sat on the peak of the hill, Vilochana spoke to his Son.
“Do you remember the view from that mountain of the day when your father died?”
“What did you saw that day” asked Vilochana
“I saw my father and his warriors being ravaged by Bhjangas” he replied while his eyes got red in anger with the remembrance of the past.
“Now sitting at this hill, look down at our tribe. What do you see now?” She asked pointing down towards the colony
“I see a well established empire. Thousands of people are living happily inside those secured walls” Shiva replied in bewilderment.
“Twenty years back what you saw from that mountain brought me rage. But now what you see from the peak of this hill is the outcome of that rage. I used all my anger in building this empire.
I am not angry anymore.” She replied with a smile.
“Anger is a powerful feeling. It can be used for both construction and destruction.
Avoiding it is quite difficult but how to use it, is always a choice we have”