It had been a rough day at work, but Deepika was not complaining. She was going home after a gap of one year and nothing was going to spoil her mood. Her train was at 10.30 pm. it was quarter to 9 now. She stepped out of the office campus and hailed an auto rickshaw.
She looked at all the lampposts they passed, golden light spread like a curtain around the city. Cars sped by on either side of them. The lights and the noises did not bother her. She would be home by morning. Suddenly, the driver turned into a small dimly-lit lane.
“Why have you turned away from the main road?” she asked. It was not late, and she wasn’t really worried; merely curious.
“This is a shortcut, madam,” he replied.

He lowered the rexine flap with one swift movement. At the same time, a man jumped into the auto and put a knife to her throat and covered her mouth with his hands.
“Not one sound! Or this knife slices your throat. Clear?”
Deepika was paralyzed with fear. It was a brain-freeze moment when she could not think or respond. She would not have screamed even if she could. She did not even nod. She looked at the bloodshot eyes of her assailant. If she could think rationally at the moment, she would’ve concluded that the reason why he did not cover his face was that he was counting on her fear paralyzing her. This was also why she was being attacked at an hour when the main road parallel to this one was filled with traffic.
But she did not think any of this. She only saw the driver’s grin in the round mirror. She only felt her attacker’s rough hands, and heard his voice when he said to the driver, “You got a good one this time. The boss will be pleased.”
“Haha! If you like her so much, why don’t you steal a little taste before the boss eats her up!?”
“Well, don’t mind if I do!”
Deepika pushed him away with all her strength and clawed at him with her nails. “Arrrghh!! Don’t play, girl!” and the knife was pressed a little harder to her throat. The steel glint kept her voice and screams buried in her throat.
The rickshaw stopped in front of a house and she was ordered to enter quietly. Once again, she did as she was told.

“You!” her voice finally found her when she saw who was standing in the hallway, surrounded by a circle of drunk-looking men.

Mahesh was her work colleague and one of her closest friends. He was a member of the anti-harassment support group in their department and often said men who harassed women were weak-minded ones with low esteem. Seeing him here, as the man they had referred to as “boss” brought out a confused rage in Deepika.
“Look who we have here! Boys, this one’s all yours,” he said with a grin.

Deepika tried to run, but was grabbed by her earlier assailant and another man. She heard laughter around her. She was overwhelmed with rage and fear and disgust. She knew what was happening to her, she felt the pain, yet could do nothing about it. It felt alien, like it was happening to someone else and she was merely watching.

She collapsed.
When she woke up the next day, she found herself in her hostel room, badly bruised. Her phone was ringing. It was her mother. “Sorry, I couldn’t call. Something urgent came up at office, and I missed my train.” She lied.

Later that day, she got a call from another colleague informing her that Mahesh was found dead in his house. He had hung himself.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.



21 thoughts on “Deception

  1. Rajlakshmi August 24, 2014 / 12:40 PM

    The descriptions are so realistic!!
    but umm did she kill him??


  2. Sreesha Divakaran August 25, 2014 / 4:51 PM

    Yes, I had a back story in mind when I wrote this one, which isn't fully formed in my head yet. Hence, the weird end 😀


  3. Sreesha Divakaran August 25, 2014 / 4:53 PM

    That would be an interesting angle, wouldn't it? Care to write a sequel for me? 🙂
    In my mind, it was a suicide. It's a part of the back story which I may or may not publish on the blog.


  4. CRD August 30, 2014 / 4:17 AM

    Why did he kill himself? Or was it the others who had killed him?


  5. Sreesha Divakaran August 31, 2014 / 4:40 PM

    Nope, not the others. I am planning a sequel, but it isn't ready yet.


  6. Shweta Dave September 1, 2014 / 8:12 PM

    Nice story.. Will wait for the sequel Sreesha.


  7. Maniparna Sengupta Majumder September 2, 2014 / 4:57 PM

    Why did Mahesh kill himself ? Or it is just the tip of the iceberg for another big conspiracy or racket ? write it up Sresha..I'm dying of curiosity… 😛


  8. CRD December 20, 2014 / 1:31 PM

    Hey, where's the sequel?


  9. June 22, 2015 / 5:32 AM

    Interesting story. Makes you want to know more about the back story. Have you written it yet?


  10. SHANAYA TALES June 22, 2015 / 5:39 AM

    This was an interesting read. But why did he kill himself?


  11. Sreesha Divakaran June 22, 2015 / 3:02 PM

    No, I never got around to it. In fact, it's been almost a year. I have forgotten what I'd planned!


  12. Sreesha Divakaran June 22, 2015 / 3:03 PM

    I had been planning a story of remorse around that, but I never got around to writing it.


  13. Sreesha Divakaran June 22, 2015 / 3:04 PM

    She did not. She couldn't have cos it was her against a lot of them. Unfortunately, I never wrote down what I had in mind back then. So I guess we'll have to live with this story's ambiguity, unless I think of something else.


  14. Jaibala Rao June 24, 2015 / 5:25 AM

    You could write one now na. Think afresh. Don't leave us hanging with this suspense. Pretty Please 🙂


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