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  • Reenita Malhotra Hora

Episode 2 - Culture Schmulture

Arya is fed up with his family’s South Asian traditions being the reason he is bullied at school. He just wants to fit in. His Ma tries to help by giving him their family’s copy of the Ramayana, India’s ancient history text. Arya begrudgingly opens it and finds himself enraptured by the stories filled with powerful gods, heroes, demons, and epic battles. He is also reminded of his recent dreams of the demon king, Ravana and what the connection may be between his dreams and his mom giving him the Ramayana.

Despite the feelings of clarity and centeredness that he experiences while reading, Arya doubts the gods’ powers and how they can help him fit in at school. When Elias, leader of The Boys, invites Arya to a Halloween party, he is eager to go, despite Ma’s warnings about the trouble it will bring.


  • [00:01] Previously on Shadow Realm

  • [00:33] Arya and his mom disagree about value of culture

  • [03:34] After reading the Ramayana, Arya and his mom talk about the meaning of the story and characters

  • [07:54] Arya dreams he is fighting in one of the ancient battles in the Ramayana

  • [08:34] Arya is invited to a halloween party by Elias, leader of The Boys

  • [10:08] How to support and connect with The Arya Chronicles

  • [06:00] Next episode teaser


  • Arya disagrees with Ma about the value of preserving traditions and culture

  • Ma gives him the family copy of the Ramayana to read

  • Arya is filled with clarity and peace of mind while reading the Ramayana but doubts how this old book can help with bullies

  • Despite Arya’s doubt, Ma explains how the gods still intervene in the world

  • Arya is invited to Jackson’s Halloween party by Elias, leader of The Boys. Ma sees trouble ahead and warns Arya not to go to the party

  • On the next episode: Arya goes to Jackson’s Halloween party, despite his mother’s warnings.


Shadow Realm was written and executive produced by Reenita Hora. Based on her middle grade novel When Arya Fell Through the Fault, this story constitutes ‘Part 1 of The Arya Chronicles.

An original soundtrack was composed for this story by Kanniks Kannikeswaran (

Audio adaptation by Shane Sakhrani. Audio Direction and Production by Daniel Gonzalez and Gabe Mara.

The narrative for the trailer was voiced by Carnie Wilson (

The podcast features

Recorded at Studio City Sounds and The Room at Melrose.

Chapter 13 uses “Lake Waves Hjalmaren” by Owl

Chapter 17 uses “New Holland Honey Eaters 32x Slower” by digifishmusic

Chapter 18 uses “New Holland Honey Eaters 32x Slower” by digifishmusic

Episodes are available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. Music is available on Spotify.

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Or text it directly to someone you know who’d love to journey through the Arya Chronicles.

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