Truth Or Falsehood

  • 30 Sep - 06 Oct, 2023
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Fiction

Here I am today, at the centre of the sea, on the boat, seeing water all around me. It is about to get darker and I’ve been told that it would take less than twenty-four hours to complete my journey. I had calculated my time, distance and most importantly my speed accordingly.

While I was rowing the boat through the oars, I was remembering the words. The words that hit me or influenced me anyway. First of all, I remembered the words spoken by my father:

Who the hell is she compared to us? She belongs to that criminal landlord Hector’s generation. They all were evil criminals. I will not tolerate any such person under my roof. Get her out of my house. Or Gabriel’s going to kick you both out.

I was deeply hurt because of these the first time. The next words I remembered were also spoken by my father the same day:

Once you break your relationship with this family, then the doors of this house are closed for you…Forever.

Then I remembered my promise that I had made few minutes later that day:

I’m leaving this house today. But I promise you that someday I’m going to return and teach this family the true meaning of…Peace.

As I was rowing the boat now, I told myself:

You gave your word. You made an oath. You better be able to fulfill it.

Then the positive person from inside me whispered:

I will. I can. I know I will fulfill my promise. Even if I won’t be able to find the truth about Octaland tragedy, I shall definitely teach my father and my brother the true meaning of peace.

The next words that I remembered after these thoughts were spoken by my mother:

You are the son I have always been proud of.

As I was rowing, I spoke out loud as if talking to my mother:

I’m going to make you even more proud. I shall give you a real reason to be proud of me.

It was getting darker and I started moving my hands quite faster despite I was really tired and my arms were getting really painful. The wind was also blowing really fast and it was getting colder.

Two hours later, it was completely dark and the only light was the moonlight. The stars were visible. According to my calculation, the time remaining was ten hours. So I stopped anyways and gave my arms a little rest. I kept the oars inside the boat and drank a lot of water. After few minutes, I ate some food just to give myself a little strength.

As I was feeling really sleepy so I lied down on the boat fixing one hour alarm. I gave myself proper rest which my body deserved.

 Meanwhile at Tom Collins’ house, he was sitting in the living room reading the newspaper. His brother came inside that room and said:

“Aaron has left for Octaland.”

He left the newspaper and looked up at his brother with his eyes wide open. His brother continued:

“He might find out the truth if he really makes it to the island.”

“Don’t worry…He won’t. He shall die quite soon. Sooner than we think!”

“What do you mean?”

“What I mean to say is that Aaron does not know about the dangerous waves of the sea. And he won’t be able to survive the temperature of the night.”

As a matter of fact, I was doing just fine. I had gained some energy after a little sleep and now I wasn’t too far from the island. I was rowing and rowing until I could finally see some sort of dry land with trees. Despite it was too dark, I could see the trees in very small size. This was most probably the Octaland.

Oh God, please. I uttered as I got closer to it. Please be it Octaland.

The person who had lent me the boat had also given me a picture. This picture was the image of the trees of Octaland, it was captured at the spot where I was most likely to land.

The wind was getting cooler and it was a little unbearable for me now. I looked up at the sky and realised that it was getting lighter. The sun was about to rise up.

And within minutes, I almost got closer. Closer enough to realise that I had arrived at the right location, which was my destination. The place we all claim to be ‘Octaland’.

Back at Tom Collins place, he stood up and spoke:

“Aaron’s marriage was a setup. It was my setup. A trap. I did what I was meant to do!”

“Setup? What kind of setup?” his brother asked.

“This marriage would have such consequences. Who knew? Nobody except for me.”

“I’m sorry, I don’t really get you…”

“It’s very simple. I had to make their life a disaster. And there was no other way besides bringing a marriage between the two rival families.”

“Oh, now I get it! So you got them married so that Aaron would get into a miserable situation.”

“Not just Aaron…the entire family.”

At the coast of the sea, I stepped out of my boat and landed on the sand. The moment I landed there, I held the boat tightly with all my strength as it was still on the water. I pulled it towards myself, so I could place it over the land.

As I had done it and I was sure that the boat would not flow away, I turned and looked at the trees of the island. I exclaimed loudly:

Finally, I’m here at the Octaland.

Then after few seconds I spoke:

I’m not so far away from my mission now. I’m sure that I shall be successful with my mission.

I turned back towards the boat and gathered all my stuff together. Now I had to go on the island but before that I had to hide my boat.

 Eight hours later, I woke up. I found myself sleeping on the boat. I had hidden this boat somewhere around the trees. As I got up I realised immediately that my first task was to find the people who could guide me towards the library that I had come for.

I carried my bag and walked straight towards the roadside. A small part of this island was made like an urban city. There I could see some people walking at the road side. I rushed towards them.

The moment I got there, I kind of felt that these people were not quite educated. Their attitude and talking manners were not quite appealing. But I did not let that get in my way. I had to stay focused on my task of the day.

Meanwhile back in my old city, my mother was sleeping while she heard her cell phone ringing. She answered the call seeing Lindsay’s caller ID:


“Hi, how are you?”

“I am good. What is it dear?”

“Aaron… He has left for Octaland.”

“What?” my mother asked getting kind of shocked. “Left for Octaland? What do you mean left for Octaland?”

“He went yesterday through a boat. He has gone for a personal visit.”

“What for?”

“He wants to find out the truth. And there is no other way besides reading the books kept in the old library.”

“Oh, my God! Is he insane? Has he gone totally mad?”

“No mother, please don’t think like that. He has left for a good purpose. I’m sure he will return with something positive.”

While at Octaland’s roadside, I met someone really dark skinned and aged. I asked him to guide me to the library that had books written on Gabriels’ and Hectors’ history. So he answered:

“There is this office, it is few streets away from here. There you can find someone who shall guide you properly to that library.”

“Can you please tell me about the location of that office?”

He instructed me and I listened to him paying complete attention. As I understood the location, I thanked him and left for it.

Ten minutes later, I had arrived at that location. I went inside the office and while looking at the old woman seated by the desk, I said:

“I’m here for the library.”

She looked up at me as if I had asked for something really unusual. She uttered like an illiterate person:

“Excuse me?”

“I’m here for the library that has all the books written by Gabriels and Hectors…”

“Oh Tribianis!” she spoke as if getting seriously annoyed. “I hate those people. They were really mischiefs.”

“Yeah, I know. Can you guide me…Please?”

“Okay,” she answered waving someone.

I looked at the guy she waved at. He was a short heighted strange looking man. The old woman said to me:

“He knows that place. He shall guide you there. But we don’t offer this service for free. You have to give us something.”

“I’m sorry but I don’t have any money.”

“There is no such thing as money here” she claimed loudly. “I meant something that can be of some use to us.”

I took out a large torch from my bag and showed it to her saying:

“How about this?”

My brother Gabriel was lying on the bed in the hospital. Lot Hector who was standing next to him said to the nurse:

“Take good care of this fellow. And don’t let anyone know about this. He must be kept as a secret here.”

“No problem sir!”

 Several hours later, while I was all tired up, I finally reached the library with the short heighted guy. I couldn’t stand my legs as I had been walking for more than three hours, non-stop. The short guy said to me:

“Here we are. Now give me my due!”

I took out a food packet from my bag and handed it over to him. Honestly, I was not prepared for this kind of barter system.

Anyways, I walked towards the mansion which appeared to be a really old building. I prayed:

Oh God, I hope I’m at the right place.

As I got a little closer, I saw a security guard holding a gun in his hand. He stood up as he saw me and asked:

“Who are you? What do you want?”

“My name is Aaron Tribiani. I’m Gabriel’s great grandson. I need to visit the library.”

He spoke after a little thinking:

“…Ah, Gabriel Tribiani, I see. So what are you here for?”

“I’m here to read the books written by my ancestors. I really need them.”

“You look educated. Have you come from the big city?”


“Wow, can you get me a job at the big city? I wish to settle there.”

“Sure,” I lied spontaneously in order to attain what I came for.

“Wow, that’s great. How may I help you?”

“I need all the details about the books kept in this library. And secondly I might want to buy them.”

“Sure, no problem!” while saying this I realised that I had to keep my word on this.

So anyways, he led me to the library’s door taking out the set of keys from his pocket. I was kind of excited but I also felt that I shouldn’t leave this man hanging with false hopes.

Next minute, he unlocked the library’s door completely and opened it for me. The two of us entered inside. I took out my emergency light and also turned on my phone’s torch. This place was short of electricity. The guard pointed his finger towards the shelf and said:

“Those are the diaries written by Tribianis!”

Then he pointed his finger towards another shelf saying:

“And these notes were written by Zion Cesar and his family members.”

“I see!”

I walked towards the shelf that had diaries of Tribianis.

Let me stop here and share an interesting fact with you. Throughout this time, I had been thinking that it might take more than three to four days to resolve this Octaland mystery. But surprisingly, the Octaland mystery was resolved within three to four hours. It was really shocking though, but the pieces of puzzle were put together quite easily.

Anyways, as I walked towards the shelf, I saw too much dust but it didn’t bother me and I just picked up the diary written by Gabriel Tribiani himself. The guard took the book from my hands and cleaned out the dust through his handkerchief.

Anyways, we cleansed plenty of hand written diaries together. And I gathered all of them together. The guard also suggested that I should read notes written by Zion Cesar and his family. So, I did after he cleaned the dust out of them.

For a whole five hours, I was all alone in the library now. There was no electricity at all so I simply tolerated the heat and used my phone’s torch for reading the diaries and notes.

First of all, I read two diaries written by Gabriel and then one big journal written by Hector. Their personal lives were clearly before me now but strangely they were not what I expected.

But when I read Zion Cesar’s notes, I understood the entire game of Octaland tragedy. Zion Cesar’s notes were the actual mystery solver.