Mahabharata: Epic retold -2

The Sun Sets Early

Yudhisthira looks at me anxiously when I ride up to him. Through the day, messengers have kept him abreast of news from the various fronts. “Not much time left!” he says. “The sun sets early today!”

Krishna Knows About Time

When I look at him, he adds impatiently, “Dakshinayana. Today marks the end of summer solstice!’ I realize why Krishna had summoned the astrologers the night before. At least, he has a more accurate idea of duskfall than any of us.”

Drona’s Formation

Drona has created a formation within the formation, which Arjuna is trying to break into. It is almost certain Jayadratha is inside the second formation. The Panchala princes Yuddhamanyu and Uttamaujas are with Arjuna.

Looking For A Flag

Drishtadyumna too is nearby, engaging Drona’s division, though their battle seems to be taking him away from Arjuna’s forces. Cautioning Yudhisthira to position himself securely and not do anything foolish, I ride back, telling Visoka to find Drishtadyumna’s flag.

Something Is Wrong

The light is beginning to fail when we sight Drishtadyumna’s men. Even as we approach, I sense something is wrong. Cutting through a ring of ground troops, I come to a still chariot. On the deck lies a boy, his throat pierced by a single arrow.

Who Is Responsible?

Kshatradharma, Drishtadyumna’s son. Another sacrifice to the gods of war. From the furious attack Drishtadyumna is launching on Drona, it is clear who is responsible for the death. I rush to assist the Panchala.

A Wheel Will Do the Trick

Two chariots cut across my path. My cousins. Perfect targets for my anger! I leap out of the chariot. Wrenching the wheel of a destroyed vehicle, I send it spinning at the enemy on the left

Bheema In Action

Catching it in his midriff, the Kaurava crumbles against his flagpole like a broken bamboo shoot. Roaring, I jump into the second chariot. When I crush his neck with the metal of his own bow, my cousin lets out a gargling scream. Blood spurts with his last breath.

I’m Good Enough For Two

Two more of the blind man’s sons. I do not even recall their names. How many left now? “Here!” Visoka shouts, driving up close. “We must go to Arjuna quickly!”

Arjuna’s Conch

Fear grips me as we race towards where Arjuna is fighting. The light is almost gone. The battle could end any moment. Before we get closer, I hear a roar. Then, the victorious blare of Arjuna’s conch.

The Dust Settles

When the dust settles, I see the fighting has ended. Krishna and Arjuna, followed by the rest of their contingent, are driving back. At the camp, there is celebration. Yudhisthira and Satyaki embrace the tired but triumphant Arjuna. Krishna is smiling.

Arjuna Breaks The Circle

Yuddhamanyu tells me what happened. Within the cart phalanx, Drona had created a chakravyuha to tuck Jayadratha away from harm. Arjuna had broken into the circle without trouble. Yuddhamanyu, Uttamaujas and a group of soldiers had followed him in.

Om Namah Shivay

***Write ” Om Namah Shivay ” if you ask for God’s blessing on your life today. Please Like, Tag and Share to bless others!


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