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In this first story from the Duckbill Workshop in Bangalore, Vinayak Varma rewrites the abduction of Sita. Our thanks to Vinayak for letting us use this.

The kidnapper looked at the girl who was sleeping in the back of his flying chariot. She looked so sad and sweet and helpless. He laughed a short, bitter laugh. “As if!”

Just moments ago she’d tried to throw him out the back window and take over the wheel.

Before that, she tried to make her pet vulture land on his head and pluck his eyes out.

And before that, she kicked him in the shin and yanked out a clump of his hair.

And before that, she stomped all over his toes and stuck her grubby finger in his right eye.

And before that, she punched him in the solar plexus and tore the sleeve off his favourite tunic, nearly taking his arm off with it.

And before that… oooooh! Ravana’s head hurt just thinking about everything this crazy girl had done to him. In the end, he had to spray her face with a special knock-out potion to make her sleep.

He had no idea what he was going to do with her once they got to Lanka. Part of him just wanted to take Sita back to her silly little hut and her stupid husband and her pesky brother-in-law. Abducting her really wasn’t worth all the trouble it brought.

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