Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Murder In Beltour | Chapter 08 | Ruchi

Dev and Sunanda were sitting in her office. Sunanda was looking at Dev closely. Neither of them spoke, and yet it seemed like Sunanda was waiting for Dev to tell her something. When he didn’t, she broke the silence finally.

“So, he didn’t ask you to deliver the message to her?” asked Sunanda.

“No, I was supposed to initially, but then the plan changed. Yash was going instead of me. I don’t understand why he quit me, but I know that they were planning an attack on The Period,” said Dev.

“Are you sure?” asked Sunanda, looking down into her notepad, and doodling frantically on the top right of the page.

“I volunteered to be a part of it, and was rejected. I came here hoping there is a chance to save The Period from him, but the whole thing has gone haywire. Why would he kill Ruchi?” said Dev, in a tone of complete perplexion.

“There is something amiss, Dev,” said Sunanda, in a voice barely more than a whisper, as she mechanically thickened the outer linings of her doodle.

There was a curt knock on the door, and Raghav, the boy at the desk,  entered. Sunanda looked up at him.

“Miss, there are two girls who have come to see you. Shall I send them in?” he asked.

“Two girls? Not now, ask them to take an appointment for tomorrow,” said Sunanda, dismissively. But, as Raghav was about to leave, she called him back. “What are their names?”

“Saira, miss, I asked only one of them,” said Raghav.

Sunanda and Dev exchanged glances, and Raghav waited patiently near the door.

“I should leave,” said Dev, getting up from his seat.

“No stay, they don’t know much, you’ll be safe,” said Sunanda. Dev, after a few moments of thought, dropped back into his seat.

“Send them in, thank you Raghav,” said Sunanda, closing her notebook.
Raghav went out, and sent the two girls in. Saira and Diya entered the office room. Dev glanced at them, with a brief smile.

“Yes, how may I help you, girls?” said Sunanda, putting up her tight smile again that said get straight to business.

Saira and Diya each picked a chair and settled in comfortably, to the surprise of Sunanda. She raised her brows at them as if to ask them the question again. Diya let out a full, long breath, and then looked at Saira. Saira was staring at Dev.

“Who is that?” asked Saira. “We need to talk in private.”

“Yes, please meet Dev Som. He is my assistant, and he works on every case that I do. Everything you say is confidential, so feel free to go ahead,” clarified Sunanda.

“We know the boss killed Ruchi, and so do you,” said Diya.

Dev and Sunanda exchanged glances. “Is that so?” said Sunanda plainly.

“Why aren’t you being clean about this? We know you worked for the boss, are you covering him in this case even though you don’t work for him now?” asked Saira bluntly.

“Excuse me, girls, if you are here to question my credibility, please show yourselves out. You can address whatever your concerns are about me to your University,” said Sunanda, her tone slightly off, yet her face keeping up the tight smile.

“We have something that you may like,” said Diya.
“And, what is that?” said Sunanda.
“A threat message, for Ruchi from the boss.”

Sunanda at once became alert and active. She whisked open her notebook. “You have the message?” she asked eagerly.

Saira handed over the ripped package with the file and the note on it. Sunanda grabbed it from her before she could even extend it completely. Dev looked tensely at Sunanda, in anticipation.

“Be energetic like the outstanding, unique Redshank. Mornings are better in the balcony. Boss,” Sunanda read out loud.

“The Period?” asked Dev.
 “Or the boss, we can’t discard that,” said Sunanda.

Saira cleared her throat loud enough to get their attention back to her. “Sunanda, can you please tell us what that means to you?”

“Ruchi was supposed to meet someone in your playground in the morning of the fire,” said Sunanda softly.

“What, it wasn’t a veiled threat?” asked Diya. Sunanda stayed quiet, but Dev answered.

“No, it is a part of the series of instructions for something. Ruchi worked for the boss, too.”

*

Read Chapter 9!

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