Friday, 26 September 2014

Circle of Deceit - Chapter 18

This is Chapter 18 of a mystery series in the “Game of Blogs”.  Our team “Kalakaar Colony” is a part of #CelebrateBlogging campaign by Blogadda. You can read the previous chapter here.

Chapter begins ..

Mr.Gupta consoled Tara by gently yet firmly patting her shoulders, even as he was busy on his phone, calling up the echelons of the police force.  

Tara was the apple of his eye, and Roohi, the sweet apple pie.  They defined his very existence.  He wanted to demonstrate to Tara that he shall leave no stone untouched.

In an admonishing tone, he instructed Tara, "Look, we have to branch out.  I am networking you with the Additional Director General of Police - I will text message you the address right away - my driver well knows the Police headquarters, hurry up Tara. Let me go to the newspaper offices and see if I can get a look-out for Roohi released".

That said, he led Tara to one of his chauffeur driven cars and instructed the driver to take her to the Police Headquarters.  



Barely had Tara's car gone past the street bend, disappearing from sight, Mr.Gupta barged into his compact sedan and drove himself out.  

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Shekhar haphazardly parked his car in the hospital parking lot. "Why on Earth do hospitals not have valet parking?", he remarked to himself!

He ran into the hospital lobby and frantically pressed all the 4 elevator buttons. It felt an eternity waiting for the elevators, all the more, because his mood was low. He felt very low. He took to the flight of stairs.

Panting for breath, he barged into the room where he had left Jennifer .. 



Alas, the cleaners were changing the linen and Jennifer was nowhere.  He turned around searching for her .. and caught the eyes of a duty nurse.  "She got discharged", informed a puzzled nurse!

"WHAT?", yelled Shekhar, oblivious of hospital decorum and ignoring the customary courtesy due to a service employee.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
  

Mr.Gupta left the city roads behind .. almost humming, "country roads, take me home!"

Driving past lush fields underneath a clear blue sky, he arrived at the 'Sun & Sand' resort.

Valet parking to his rescue, he flipped his phone screen for a message that had a cottage number in it and headed to the reception; "186", he announced, searching the receptionist's eyes for directions.

The receptionist helpfully said, "Welcome to Sun & Sand Sir, that would be the fifth cottage to the left, enjoy your experience with us." 

"Knock, Knock" .. cottage 186 opened its doors.  Krishna peeped out cautiously through the partly opened door.  Seeing Mr.Gupta, he heaved a sigh of relief and opened the door widely to let Mr.Gupta in, locking the door behind them. "This way Sir", he gestured right.  Mr.Gupta gave a small carry bag he was holding to Krishna and followed the path.

Mr.Gupta entered the room, Krishna in tow, to see Roohi seated on the window sill, her eyes fixated on the distant horizon outside, her legs clasped by her hands .. in a not so comfortable embrace.



Overjoyed to see his apple pie, Mr.Gupta called out gently, "Roohi beta .."

Roohi turned around in a jiffy, as overjoyed herself and rushed into her grandpa's wide open arms.  She hugged him tight.

Mr.Gupta loosened her embrace, beckoned for the carry bag and gave it to Roohi.

A delighted Roohi opened the bag .. to find .. her favorite drawing kit .. a nice, blank sketch pad and colorful crayons. Her eyes lit up and she said "thank you."

A beaming Mr.Gupta said, "You are welcome beta, you go relax, grandpa is here .. nothing to worry."

Roohi flew to the window sill, now with spring in her feet and song in her heart.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++



Tara stopped the driver .. "Any further & I will really be at the Police headquarters", she thought to herself.

She alighted from the car, asked the driver to get back to her father's place and stepped onto the promenade, walking to a corner.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++



Jennifer arrived at Tara and Shekhar's locale, at long last, hopping and taking lifts along the way.

She sighed, "Now, how do I find Aryan Ahuja with just a pincode served up by the electoral rolls?"

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++



Mr.Gupta, gulped the refreshing cup Krishna served him in the living room, actually reflecting on and relishing what he deemed as a 'coup of sorts' they had served together.  He then got up to go check on Roohi, blissfully enjoying her drawing kit. Krishna dutifully followed him.

Roohi was deeply immersed in her drawing.  She did not even glance up to see an approaching Mr.Gupta, closely followed by Krishna.

Mr.Gupta and Krishna walked up to Roohi, taking a position on either side, with Roohi still head down & headlong into her drawing.

Then, their eyes caught Roohi's almost finished drawing ..

Roohi had sketched a young man's face .. no, it was not Krishna!

A triumphant Mr.Gupta shared an understanding glance with Krishna .. the smart man & intuitive grandfather he was, he knew he had Roohi answer his question without even posing her the question, "Who were you with?"




Krishna thought to himself, "No wonder they say grandparents are an ideal ground for grandchildren.  This ought to be a parenting and social lesson."


Chapter ends.

Eager to read the next Chapter? 

Here we go .. Chapter 19

If you want to catch up on all the Chapters of 'Circle of Deceit' in Level 1 (a total of 10 Chapters), here is a recap:

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10

Chapters in Level 2 (a total of 10):

Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20

My team & I are participating in ‘Game Of Blogs’ at BlogAdda.com. #CelebrateBlogging with us.

Cheers :)