Forty years ago, auditor Joki de Souza disappeared in the sweltering jungles of southern India, during the Hindu festival of Nag Panchami. Whilst pursuing accounting irregularities in the Mansholi estate of the Sarpal Tea Corporation, it is as though he heard a whisper in the dark – enough to raise his suspicions, but not his guard...
In a profession that thrives on precision and complete records, there are curious gaps and irregularities that can’t be resolved. Joki de Souza disappeared, that much is known, but exactly when and how is hidden. Now decades have passed, and time is no friend of the truth.
Joki’s story is pieced together through interviews, scraps of diary-entries, faded sketches in old notebooks and the half-remembered whispers of old men. The Speckled God is a story of deified snakes and dark idols, of the cult of Mother Jakkamma and the dangers of misunderstanding the world’s isolated places.
Marc Joan spent the early part of his life in Asia and Europe, and the early part of his career in biomedical research. His short stories have been published in Hypnos, Madcap Review, Danse Macabre, The Apeiron Review, STORGY, Bohemyth, Literary Orphans, Smokelong Quarterly, Bookends Review, Sein und Werden and Structo. He lives in England with his family.