By: Keyur Seta
This post is a part of BlogAdda’s ‘Game of Blogs’ story writing contest. For the previous part, click HERE.
The seashore in front of the Haji Ali dargah had a disappointing look of emptiness due to the low tide. A passionate writer that he was, Shekhar started linking the waterless seashore with his life without his beloved Roohi, as his car passed through the vicinity to reach Mr. Gupta’s place in Walkeshwar. It soon struck him that since every low tide is followed by a high tide; will the same be reciprocated in his life too?… He had no answer to this question; at least as of now.
Before reaching Walkeshwar, Shekhar’s car had passed through Mahalaxmi and Babulnath temples that fall in the way. Needless to say, he sincerely prayed, while driving, at both the places for Roohi’s safety, just like he had done at Haji Ali. Threat of a terrible tragedy instantly transforms you into a believer in spirituality or some higher power.
As Shekhar hesitatingly entered the main gate of Gupta’s bungalow, he realized that the place has retained the same royal touch, including the name plate with the words ‘Shanti Niwas’ inscribed on them. The richness of the place was enough to make him recall Gupta’s many insulting words. But thanks to the gravity of the situation, the past incidents didn’t have much effect on him this time, so much so that he was just about to break his vow, which he had taken years back, of never entering this place ever again. Naturally, the safety of his daughter was many times more important than his vow or ego issues with Gupta.
When Gupta’s servant opened the door, he didn’t recognize Shekhar for obvious reasons. But he led Shekhar to the drawing room after the latter cleared the air about his relation with Gupta. As soon as Shekhar entered the drawing room, Gupta and Tara were taken aback to see him here. They didn’t say a word and neither did Shekhar. Tara was looking at Shekhar with questioning eyes but Gupta ignored him after some initial eye contact. As Shekhar had the vital information about the kidnapper, his awkwardness vanished soon and his mind returned to the important job at hand.
Coming straight to the point, he told Tara, “I have found some vital clue about Roohi’s kidnapping.” Shekhar’s words added to the intensity of the situation. The situation now forced Gupta to look at Shekhar and pay full attention to him.
“What clue?” Tara asked with a serious, expressionless face.
“Wait a minute,” he said and started removing his laptop from his bag. After few moments as the machine got into action, he went into the images folder. All this while, Tara and Gupta were battling their growing anxieties. The tinkling sounds of the chimes due to the sudden winds added extra tension to the situation.
Finally, the time to end the suspense arrived as Shekhar turned the laptop towards Tara and Gupta and said, “Look at the person at the top-right corner.” Tara and Gupta tilted their heads forward to gape at the man in the background in the picture and were speechless. This was followed by an explanation by Shekhar as to how he came to know out about the kidnapper from the photographs clicked by Jennifer.
The daughter and father were stunned by the turn of events. But the effect of the revelation was tremendous on Gupta and it clearly showed. In fact, he tried hard to hide it but struggled. This ensured an eerie silence in the room for almost half a minute against the sound of the chimes. Confused, Shekhar was about to speak but he was stopped by Gupta’s ringtone, ‘Govind Bolo Hari Gopal Bolo’. Despite it being a religious song, it astonished the three of them.
Gupta answered the call as soon as he saw Krishna’s name on the screen. The ringtone and the name on screen was an interesting combination but Gupta was in no mood to notice it. Pretending not being able to hear the other person, he moved into the corridor leading to the bedrooms. Krishna narrated how someone else had also kidnapped Roohi and how he was still able to get hold of her somehow. Gupta was hugely relieved. After finally breathing properly, he asked, “Is she alright?” As he got the answer in the affirmative, he hung up and asked Krishna to wait for further instructions.
But his relief soon turned into rage thinking about the other man who had kidnapped Roohi first. Standing at the same place, he thought, how can anyone dare kidnap his darling granddaughter? ‘I will make sure that the person pays for this’, he said to himself.
Who else had kidnapped Roohi?
To find out what happens next, click HERE.