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Angel : A Tale of Life, Death and Love


Chapter 5


A handsome, lanky young man of 16 years with a man of floppy silky hair, dark brown eyes and a charming smile walked into the banquet hall as if he owns it; which technically he does. He was hungry. He could have had a princely spread in the dining area of his mansion but he wanted to have his lunch along with the other members residing in the mansion. He loves being treated as a prince the moment he enters the common area. After all he is the son of the King of the house and God for the men. He walked in tossing his head in the air with hands in his pockets. Wearing a pristine white t- shirt and blue jeans he looked every inch the royalty. The moment he entered people chatting, people having their food, even those who dozed off suddenly were jolted to attention.
‘Hi! Samrat babu!’
‘Namaste Babu!’
‘Welcome Babu!’
Resonated the whole area. Samrat smiled proudly and waved his hand at the people around in the imitation of royalty and then he started walking around. Suddenly he stopped reverted by a sight which never happened in front of him. A boy of close to 18-19 years was calmly eating his lunch from his plate on the table right in front of Samrat without paying a least attention to anyone or anything around him. A boy one would call attractive though may be not technically handsome. He has got lean body, serene face, shock of black hair and black eyes and that cleft on the chin and aura of something undescribable around him. An unusual boy in all.

Samrat stared at him. He couldn’t believe someone actually had the gal to ignore Samrat Virendra Thakur. He choose to think that maybe that other boy is either dumb or ignorant or too busy in eating that he failed to notice the prince of the house making his entry. So Samrat thought of correcting the boy and to make that boy understand the rules around the house. You always salute Samrat no matter who you are or what you are doing. People nearby stopped whatever they were doing and started paying attention to the scene that was about to unfold in the room.

Samrat went near the table where the boy sat and slammed his fist on it. The table shuddered at the impact. If Samrat thought the boy would be frightened he was grossly mistaken. The boy was neither scared nor did he even show a least bit of interest at the angry young kid standing in front of him.
He merely raised his eyebrows and said in a mocking tone.
“Any problem? Kid!”

That sarcastic tone and above all being termed as Kid by someone who is no more than two or may be three years older to him rankled Samrat.

“I will show you the problem you insolent pig.” Samrat hissed through clenched teeth.

The boy was not offended. On the contrary he looked amused. He merely gave a lopsided smile and the expressions on his face told more clearly than any words. ‘Oh really?’

Samrat was incensed.
“Do you know who I am?”

The boy simply folded his hands in the crook of his arms and sat back in the chair with supreme nonchalance said in that same mocking tone
“Will it break your heart if I say no?”

Samrat exploded
“You b*****d! How dare you?”

By now the silence spread throughout the banquet hall. People stopped chatting, eating and were jostled to attention. Those who were jut lounging sat up in attention. Everyone was playing the role of a spectator. Curious to see how and where this encounter between the prince of the House and the boy everyone secretly feared, would lead.

The boy merely gave a lopsided smile at the expletive used by Samrat.
“Kid! Why don’t you save the bother and time and just get to the point?”

Samrat was turning red with rage.
“Don’t you dare talk like that to me. You don’t know who am I?”

“Ok” drawled the older boy “Now you got me interested. So go ahead enlighten me. Who are you?”

Samrat announced loudly in a voice full of pride
“I am Samrat Thakur. Son of Virendra Thakur. The King of the underworld and your God.”

If Samrat thought the Boy would jump on his feet and show respect and fear at this announcement he was mistaken again.
The Boy looked amused.

He said in cold amusement.
“Glad to meet you Samrat Thakur. Will chat with you other time. Now why don’t you” He gestured with his hands towards the exit in indication for Samrat to leave “and let me” he gestured towards his plate “Finish my lunch. Unlike you I am busy”.
He gave that mocking smile again and slowly started to reach for the food in his plate.

Samrat was blind with the rage. Nobody ever so much as raised their voice at him in this house. Now he is insulted, mocked and dismissed by a boy, a mere nobody of no standing. He lunged.
Samrat swept the plate in front of the boy with his left hand in full force. The plate slid across the table and fell down on the ground with a clang and the food in the plate was thrown all over the table and the ground.
That got to the boy. He slowly looked up at Samrat. And for the first time in his life Samrat was scared. Looking into those eyes, that intensity of gaze Samrat was paralyzed with fear.
The boy did not waver his gaze. He was looking straight at Samrat in a way which told everyone including Samrat that he is now angry and the younger boy is gonna pay.
He reached for the table bottom with his right hand and simply tossed the heavy table out of the way. The table made a total 180 degree angle in the air and fell by the side upside down.
Then he slowly took a step forward towards Samrat. The younger boy involuntarily took a step back his gaze struck at the Boy’s eyes in fear. The boy who a moment back looked amused and calm is now looking menacing. His face arranged the expressions to a hard mask. He gaze was still intense and still frightening.

“What the hell is happening here!” a booming voice reverberated throughout the hall. Everyone knew that voice and respected its owner. They all slowly turned towards the direction the voice came from and looked at the man the voice belonged too.

Virendra Thakur, the king, the ruler, the God was standing at the door staring at the unfolding scene in the hall. And he was angry. With above average height, stocky and fit, face that is moderately well structured and big eyes that flash fire when in deep emotion he was a remarkable man. Dressed in light coloured kurta standing by the door with his expressions slowly turning to intense anger he glared at the entire room and boomed again.
“Can someone tell me what the hell is happening here?”

No one did. No one dared to.

He glared at the people around again and slowly walked towards the main players of the show. Samrat and the Boy. Both were standing in the same position as they were a moment back.

Virendra thakur or Saabji as he is called by all looked at the upturned table, the food all over the floor, then at the Boy who was now in control of his anger and looking more dangerous for that. Then he looked at Samrat. Before he could ask or say anything Samrat reacted. The young boy raised his hand and pointed his forefinger at the Boy standing in front of him and said in a voice that was slightly stuttering due to fear.
“He started it all”.

To his utter consternation his hand was shaking. The Boy in front of him merely looked at him with no change of expressions. Despite his current state of mind Samrat couldn’t fail to notice the boy was neither looking frightened or even awed by the presence of the great man himself, Samrat’s father Virendra Thakur. If anything he looked as if now he is getting bored.
“He started it all” Samrat reiterated. Then added “He was about to attack me Dad. He is crazy. I tell you Dad this boy is crazy”. He went on speaking fearfully in quick fashion words running one against the other.

Saabji stared at Samrat without blinking for a moment then he turned and gave another look to the boy who by now is openly looking bored. Then Saabji looked back at Samrat again and said in voice that was stern
“Apologize!”

If anyone was expecting anything it certainly was not this. Samrat couldn’t believe his ears.

He stuttered
“But Dad He is the one who started it all. He should be the one to apologize”

Saabji said calmly but sternly
“Give you father some credit for having good sense of judgement Samrat! I can see for myself who is right and who is wrong. The boy who is standing fearlessly and the boy who is shivering in fear.”

Samrat felt a sense of shame.

“Anyone can see who is guilty. So one more time.. Apologize!”

Samrat looked around at the people standing nearby watching the drama, in shame and humiliation. None voiced any opinion and certainly no one came in his defence to offer a counter idea.
He looked back at the Man, his father standing in front of him staring at Samrat in something close to anger and disappointment. Samrat respected his father and feared him. But apologizing to the Boy is something he can’t do. He won’t do.
His expressions turned obstinate.
“I won’t!”

Each one of the spectators was aghast. No one ever disobeyed Saabji. Never!
Saabji’s expressions didn’t change. He said in a smooth tone which he used when in extreme anger
“I think you have not heard me Samrat. I said apologize.”

Samrat started wavering. He was already scared now he was getting petrified. He saw his father occasionally for he stays far away in boarding school. He rarely dealt with that legendary anger. The instances where he did; he never forgot.

“NOW!” Saabji finally yelled.

Samrat flinched. He tried to look in his father’s eyes pleadingly but those eyes were unforgiving.
He then looked at the Boy. Among all those who were present in that room, only that Boy was calm, collected and supremely unfazed. The Boy gazed right back at Samrat. He was not expecting any apologies. Just felt no need for it. He couldn’t bother less with the drama unfolding right before him. His expression said it all. “Fine get over it. I am bored”.

Samrat whispered.
“I am sorry”.

“Loudly!” Saabji said sternly.

“I am sorry!” Samrat almost shouted.
Then unable to take it anymore he ran off from the room. Away from the gazing eyes of the people watching him, his humiliation, his retreat. Some eyes were pitying, some amused. Samrat did not want to look at any of those eyes. His sense of humiliation and shame was too much. He ran.
He ran towards his room, ignoring the voices outside the room.
‘Babu! Why are you running?’
‘Samrat babu slow! Wait! What happened?’

He ran till he reached his room and slammed it shut after him. Then he stopped. He started breathing heavily trying to take in as much as air as possible into his screaming lungs. He calmed down and then he remembered it all. The insult, the humiliation, the sense of betrayal, the shame and above of the Boy who is responsible for this all.
Samrat screamed and started throwing things all around his room. Breaking them against the wall, on the floor with complete and utter disregard to their value or his own safety.
He raged on and on.
Then finally as the storm in his heart reached its peak he broke down. Sitting on the floor against his bed he wept.
He wept till he could weep no more. Then finally wiped his eyes on his sleeves and remembered that Boy again. At that moment Samrat knew he would hate him forever. His hatred towards the Boy was complete, total and absolute. What he did not know that the Boy will not hate Samrat. Hate is a strong emotion and that Boy rarely invested in emotions. He is untouched and uncaring of surroundings, of people. For him Samrat just doesn’t matter. But for Samrat the Boy would forever remain as someone he would hate with passion. Someone who will pay someday for humiliating Samrat Thakur. Someone who will admit that Samrat is to be treated with respect and fear and someone who will be begging Samrat to forgive him.
Samrat took a deep breathe and stared right ahead unseeing, overwhelmed, fraught with emotions.

*****************

Samrat was gazing at the crystal seeing that 18 years old boy of yesterday sitting in the same room broken and emotionally bruised. His gaze was unblinking and heart unfeeling. He slowly kept the crystal back on the table then leaned back in the chair gazing at the ceiling. Over the years whenever he came back to the house he heard the whispers. The whispers of the mysterious boy who is being trained by the best, then whispers of how he is now one of the best and then came the whispers that tore Samrat.

Samrat closed his eyes and went back to that day in the past that haunted him since then and is still alive and burning now.

A lanky handsome boy of 19years was walking by the corridors of his home going out to hang out with his friends. Then he heard two men who worked in the lower rungs of his father’s kingdom talking and laughing. He still doesn’t know what made him hide behind the door alongside the corridor and hear the conversation of those two men. Maybe he shouldn’t have. May be he should have just walked away. The pain would have been less then. But he chose to listen in.

First man said.
‘I told you! Didn’t i? Nobody agreed with me! I told you!’
Second man waved his hand at him and said
‘OK i believe you! Now stop saying ‘I told you so!’. It is getting on my nerves.”
First man agreed.
“OK i won’t say it again, but hey i was right, wasn’t I?”
Second man agreed this time.
‘That you were. But i guess we all knew deep down that boy would do it.’
First man whispered
“No! He is not ‘the boy’. He is Gabriel now!’

Samrat’s ears pricked up at that name. He too heard the christening of the boy, his arch enemy and was none to pleased. And he certainly did not ask anyone to narrate the glorious tale of that boy’s first kill. He chose to assume that it was an easy kill. After all it was the first time. It had to be an easy one.

Second man said.
“Yeah he is Gabriel now. Can’t say i understand why Rana gave him that name. But great man he is. If he says the boy sorry Gabriel will rule who are we to doubt him? And just between us I think this Gabriel soon would reach the heights scaled by Rana himself. Fire! That boy has fire in him’.

There was lot of admiration in that voice. Samrat’s lips curled up in disgust.

First man readily joined his companion in singing that boy’s praises.
‘True! You just have to look at him to know that he is born to rule. In fact” he lowered his voice ‘I think He Gabriel is the true son of Saabji.’

Samrat reeled back in shock.

Second man paused for a second then slowly said.
‘I think you are right. He could be the son of Saabji’.
‘What ‘could be’?’ The first man rallied on ‘I tell you he is the real son of Saabji. The true heir. Now see both have same strength of character. Both have the same world is theirs attitude.
‘Yes! Yes!’ Agreed the second man. ‘Now that you mention it even i feel Gabriel looks more like a son to Saabji than our Samrat babu’.

Samrat was listening in with horror totally shocked to react.

‘Samrat Babu!’ First man said in scorn. ‘That kid have no similarities with our great Saabji. I think even Saabji knows that. No wonder he packed that kid off to another country for studying. I mean studying.’ He asserted the word studying as if it is something beneath his brethren.
‘And’ he went on ‘You remember Saabji brought that Gabriel home here from nowhere. Nobody knows who that boy is or where he came from. Maybe… you know’ he whispered ‘he really is the son of Saabji. I mean like illegitimate or something.’
‘Naayy!’ Second man disagreed.
‘Saabji is not a man like that. Whatever he did or does he always did it openly. He is an honourable man. So no i don’t think Saabji is the real father of that boy. But’ he held his hand up to stop the first man from cutting in ‘but that boy looks like his son and true heir more than Samrat. And yes i feel that even Saabji thinks the same otherwise why would he choose that boy over his own son to train under great man Rana. May be he readying that boy to take over after him’.
‘You said it buddy!’ First man said in admiration. ‘Even i think the same. And i for one would want to work under Gabriel any day than that Samrat. That kid cant hold a knife properly forget handling a gun. Such a sissy’.
He guffawed.
Second man shushed him. ‘Hush! What if he hears you! You dummy! Sissy or no sissy he still is our boss’s son’.
‘Oh what would he do?’ Said the first man still laughing ‘run off to complain about us to his uncle’.
‘Bhanuji dotes on Samrat’ the second man said sternly ‘he will have our heads off if he finds out we are making fun of his precious nephew’.
‘Let’s Go!’.

And they went off leaving a shell shocked Samrat rooted to his spot. He was horrified and in state of disbelief. He slowly walked off to his room like a zombie thoughts whirling round and round his head. He slowly entered his room unseeing anything. He sat on his bed.
‘So that’s why’ suddenly a thought popped in his head. ‘So that’s why, Saabji, the great Virendra Thakur sent Samrat far away from his home and world and brought in that boy to stay here in this house, to be trained under the best: to finally take over’.
Is that boy really the son and true heir of …..

NOOO!!!!

Samrat eyes flew open. He started at the ceiling then looked around the room disoriented. He got up with a jerk from the rocking chair. And keep looking around the room then finally convincing himself that he is now no longer the same 16 years kid or that 18 years old young boy. He now is 26 years man who won’t sit in room and cry or simply sit here and wonder. He is the son of Virendra Thakur. That’s the fact. And it is time to make others realize that He not that Gabriel is and will be the true heir to this underworld. It is his right by birth. Years he spent years under the poisonous shadow of the boy now it is time to come out and reclaim his place. Dark though, reeking with death though this world is his. Samrat’s! And no one will take it away from him. Time to crib and complain is over. It is now or never. He wasted years sitting in the shadows mopping and moaning. He now has to go out and take what is rightfully his and his alone. His place under the sun. As the heir of Virendra Thakur, the king of underworld.


nims1
To be continued……..
—- Candy Lemon [Nimmi] —

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2014 in Fiction Corner

 

Angel [ A tale of Life, Death and Love ]


Gabriel and Samrat…..Samrat and Gabriel…..Read on for the next part of the story

Chapter : 4


“I remember the entire meeting so clearly Sammy. The room was packed to the fullest. Saabji himself was present. But no Rana or that boy in sight.

Then the huge door opened. First entered Rana. You just can’t help feeling his presence and force of personality. He is someone who commands awe and respect. Then entered that boy.”
“No! Bhanu pratap paused.

“Calling him boy is uuummm !he paused again “wont be correct. He would be 21 at that time. Technically just a little above teenager. Not in the category of being termed as a Man. But when he entered all everyone could think of is that: How can someone grow so much in such a short time. By growing I don’t mean physical growth, which off course happened. From 5 feet 6 something inches he now stands at close to 5’11. He was not all muscles unlike lot many of our guys.

He was lean like a blade. A deadly blade I would say. Dark black hair. Not long; no parting just smart style. Slight stubble. Not scruffy. Nopes not scruffy at all. That stubble suited him. A slight cleft at the chin. And that smile; the smile which is always slight. Just a little twist. Black eyes. Not big in the sense big but intense eyes. The same eyes of that 17 years old who could look at you and see through you. The eyes that spoke. A face that won’t be called handsome or beautiful in traditional ‘in your face beauty’ sense but a face that would captivate you. A face that you wouldn’t forget in hurry.

But all this physical appearances aside what struck us all is that change in the ummm!!”
He paused again lost for the words.

He was lost for a couple of seconds and Samrat was waiting with barely disguised irritation. Irritated with the serenading of that man by his beloved uncle and irritated with himself for no real reason.

Finally Bhanu pratap shook his head and went on.
“For the lack of better word i would say what struck us all is that change in the aura around Him. There was a boy 4 years back, a cocky , confidant and fearless standing tall in front of men superior in age and experience. And now there is a Man still cocky, confidant and fearless standing tall among older and experienced men. The only change now is the sheer power that he was radiating. The force of personality, the raw power, that intensity of stare you have to see it to believe it.

There was only Rana before who could radiate such an aura of power. Not even your father!”
He suddenly stopped and stared at Samrat. Then he wagged his finger and said half jokingly and half sternly “Don’t you tell this to your father!”


Samrat gave an imitation of smile.

Bhanu Pratap smiled and continued.
“There was only Rana who had that sheer physical presence which dwarfed everything and everyone around him. But now looking at the Boy turned Man we felt that He won’t be dwarfed by anyone or anything. When he is around He will command your attention whether you like or you don’t. There are men who demand power and awe being loud and there was this Man who would command power and awe just by his physical presence with no word spoken.
That was the change which left us all wondering: How could anyone change so much in such a short time?”

Samrat’s handsome face was turning ugly due to the sheer hatred that he was feeling but Bhanu Pratap lost in the past failed to notice his nephew’s changing expressions.

He then suddenly looked at Samrat and said
“And that was the day when the boy earned his code name which stayed on as his only name.”

With Great difficulty Samrat arranged his facial expressions to show curiosity and asked in such a tight voice that hurt his throat.
“Really! How Uncle?!!”

Bhanu Pratap mistook his nephew’s expressions as eagerness to know the tale. He smiled broadly and ruffled Samrat’s hair again.Samrat bent his head down to hide his expressions from the kind but all knowing eyes of his uncle.
Bhanu pratap then said lovingly

“From a little handsome boy in pajamas who would go ‘Stories! Uncle’ and wont sleep till he heard all the stories of prince, dragons, monsters well past midnight to the Handsome young man sitting right in front of men listening to the old man rambling about past… you haven’t changed a bit Sammy. You are still that sweet, curious and beautiful child of mine”.

This time Samrat could manage a real smile. He looked at the man whom he loved and who reciprocated his love ten folds back and give a sweet and genuine smile.
“Uncle! Don’t call me sweet. It doesn’t go with the image that I maintain. My girlfriends prefer calling me Hot, Dude and all that.”


Bhanu Pratap grimaced.
“You and your girlfriends. I have never seen you going out with the same girl twice.”

“Nayy!!” disagreed Samrat.
“Twice i can manage. It is the third time that i give up.” and he gave that handsome and charming smile of his that he is well known for.

Bhanu Pratap shook his head in amusement. Try how hard; one could not get angry or disapproving looking at Samrat’s disarming smile. Charmer! His nephew is a born charmer. No wonder he is surrounded by all those girls. So many of them that he wonders if Samrat remembers the name of any of them. May be terms like Honey, Darling and all such nonsensical endearments invented by some one just like him.
He smiled again.
Both Uncle and nephew allowed that light moment to stay on for longer smiling at each other. Then Samrat brought himself back from the pleasant conversation to serious one to finish the unpleasant task of knowing about the Man, he would rather not know about but couldn’t help hearing about him more. So he asked the older man
“OK then! What happened in that meeting that day?”

Bhanu pratap took a moment to regather his thoughts, then took a deep breathe and continued.

“So that Boy turned Man entered right behind Rana and we were all dumbstruck to see that sheer presence of him which left us wondering that he looks so much like Rana himself. Same strength of character that shows, Same Aura of power around then, same command for respect from the people around. Actually we all started wondering that who is the better Titan among the two Titans standing in front of us. Rana has years of experience behind him. No One can stand up to him. But the younger Man standing next to Rana looked like he won’t stand down for anyone. He will take anything and anyone head-on.

There was a pin-drop silence around. No one could think of anything to say. Then Saabji broke the silence. He said in that booming voice of his.

“Welcome Rana! Long time ha! So you think your Boy is ready”

Rana gave a sideways look to the Man standing next to him who incidentally was looking supremely bored and gave his rare smile and said.
“Yes Saabji!”
“So you think he is ready for claiming the kill?”
There was no hesitation in Rana’s voice. Actually I detected a hint of pride in it. His reply was.
“Absolutely!”
Saabji smiled; a big smile. He looked straight at the Man standing next to Rana and asked directly.
“I am giving you a job. You think you can do It?”
That Man gave a nonchalant shrug and said
“Off course I can do it. But the question is Will I do it?! So tell me about the job first.”
That voice! As a boy we have not heard him speaking much but now hearing his voice is a shock. What a voice!! It resonates. A deep, rich voice.

And What an answer! We thought: Now that is a direct snub or challenge to Saabji. How will he take it? To our utter surprise his smile broadened. He looked at the Man with something akin to pride and said
“You will do it! No Doubt! Actually I think you may want to do it. It suits your style.”
The Man did not answer back instead he gave a look that said “Fine! Go ahead. Tell me about the job.”
Saabji took a file and slid it across the huge mahogany conference table in the room. It halted right in front of the Man. He reached for the file with his long fingers picked it up and turned it open. He then twisted his head slightly left side downwards and gave a smile.

“Done!”


No other word said.
We all were looking at him and Saabji they way we would watch a tennis match. Back and Forth.
Saabji smiled again and said
“I thought so.”
Then finally Saabji realized people around him have stopped breathing in anticipation and are barely able to handle the suspense. He then decided to enlighten us all.

“The Kill is ” Jogi”.
We all sucked our breaths in as one. You gotta be kidding me. JOGI!!!

“And who the hell is Jogi?” Samrat chipped in unable to sit silent for long.

“Jogi! Bhanu Pratap replied wide-eyed “is the arch Rival of Saabji himself. Equal Ranking in our underworld.”

“You mean this Jogi guy was equal to Dad. I mean someone was actually in the same footing as Virendra Thakur in underworld.”

“Yes!” agreed the older man “More or less equal”.

Samrat nodded his head in awe. Then suddenly struck by a thought he pipped up.
“But why did Dad give the contract on Jogi, his rival to a rank new comer. Why did he not try to finish the other guy off before? I thought Dad hates competition.”

Bhanu pratap gave an approving look to Samrat.
“Good Samrat! So you do know your dad. And i am glad you asked me why Saabji had not issued a contract on Jogi’s life earlier.
Now what makes you think that Saabji didn’t do that?” He raised his eyebrows and asked.

Samrat was confused.


“But i thought…” then he trailed off.

“Nayy!” explained his uncle.
“Saabji never looked upon any competition kindly. He is the God of our underworld and that’s exactly how he wants it to be. One God One Rule!
Yes he issued contract on the head of Jogi. But Jogi was not Saabji’s direct rival for nothing. He was powerful too. Strong, Smart and above all always prepared. He had more protection than the Royal family of England. Always surrounded by toughest and the meanest bodyguards. And his house put a fortress to shame. It was that strongly protected. To kill that guy you have to be a ghost or God himself. Many people accepted the contract. Our best shooters, assassins from other parts, contract killers. Some for money; some as a challenge. No one won. A lot were killed. Some guys who failed where shot by Saabji himself.

Samrat sucked his breathe in.

“And then there were stories, gory horrifying stories of what Jogi did to the killers who dared to accept contract against his head. Stories like he personally peeled a guy like onion, or beheaded a guy and kept his head as trophy in his conference room. Trust me Sammy after a point of time nobody would want to touch the money no matter how obscene the amount is to bring in the death of Jogi. No one! We all fear Saabji; off course we do. But we fear our death more. So Saabji waited. Waited for that someone who would not only take up the contract but honour it and finish it.

So entered the Man.”

Samrat sneered
“You mean dad actually trusted a nobody from nowhere, someone who never claimed a kill before to go ahead and finish off this Jogi guy. You gotta be kidding me uncle.”

Bhanu pratap’s expressions were stern.
“Sam! To till date Saabji can be accused of lot many things but error of judgement is not one of them. He a good judge of people and Rana!” he paused.
“Rana is the best one around. So if he says the Boy or rather i should the Man is ready that means he is more than capable of handling anything throw at him. Anything!”

Samrat didn’t bother to hide his sneer.

Bhanu pratap ignored his nephew’s expressions and went on with the story.
“So the Man smiled a slight smile of his and said ‘Done’ and Saabji accepted that He would carry out the contract on the head of Jogi. We all were sceptical. No one wanted to openly question Saabji or that Man but come’on we are talking about Jogi here. The man who is talked about as someone death fears. How could a Man of just 21 years of age with virtually no experience behind him think of actually killing Jogi. Preposterous! In the hindsight i think we all were in awe and may be a little jealous for the trust shown by Saabji on the Man, who as you rightly pointed out is a nobody from nowhere. And none of us wanted to think about the Man actually succeeding in this mission. We all failed and failed for years and now a Boy who just turned into a Man would succeed. Were would that leave us? Naahhh it was pretty shameful to imagine the situation. Being shown up isn’t exactly a pleasant experience. No one wanted to experience that. But then who would say it to Saabji ‘No sir I will take the job’. No-Win situation. So some of us tried to extract a little mileage from the situation for ourselves by trying to be helpful. So some of the members of the conference stared chipping in with their inputs.
You know Joshi, the pudgy guy who is thought to be The Brains of most of our operations.


Samrat nodded his head in affirmative.

“Yes the same guy. He tried to act all helpful. To be fair he has the knowledge of everything that goes around. He can tell you about anyone and anything. So he very brightly chipped in”.
Bhanu pratap imitated the whiny voice of Joshi.
‘I know exactly how to bring Jogi down.’
We all including the Man looked at Joshi. Seeing that everyone is paying attention on him he went on full flow.
‘You can not attack Jogi at his house. You would need a cavalry. His car is bullet proof and can’t even sustain damage by a small bomb. He body guards are the bloody best. He never uses the same route for his journey to any usual haunts of his. So…’ He paused for the effect ‘So the only option is school.’
We all were confused. Come again School! What school?

Joshi smiled broadly and said ‘Jogi parades as a philanthropist and donates to all charitable organisations. There is this school he is the trustee of. He will be attending some awards function for children there. Being a school we don’t think there would be his usual tight security around. Lot many children and their parents. More public much better for us. Our guy! He paused and looked at the Man and said barely hiding his pleasure and pride at himself ‘can blend in among public there. All he has to do is enter the auditorium, shoot the devil (he smiled) and shoot around, create general pandemonium and when the guards are busy can simply walk off from there.
Joshi finished his plan which incidentally we all thought was excellent and looked around in pride giving a broad smile.

Then he happened to notice the stare of the Man. A look which clearly showed the disgust and that too with such an intensity that Joshi’s smile faltered.
Saabji listened in to the idea of Joshi with total concentration. Then he looked at the Man and asked him calmly.
‘What do You think?’
The Man replied in a voice that was chilling
‘No! Jogi will not be killed in the school.’
Joshi added defensively ‘If not school were else do you plan to kill him. It is impossi…” His voice trailed off under the glare of the Man.
Shooting in front of hundred of kids, creating stampede, hurting bystanders unnecessarily…Nayyy!! I think i can do better than that.”

Joshi clammed up. He didn’t want to risk saying anything further.
But another man made the mistake of questioning the Man.”

“Who?” Samrat asked curiously.

“Apte!” Bhanu pratap smiled.

“Apte dada?” Samrat asked incredulously.

“Yes!” reiterated the older man. “Our Apte, the right hand of Saabji.
He asked the Man .
‘And How would you kill Jogi?’
And then the Man gave a reply which no of forgot to till date.
He said ‘You tell me whom to kill and I will do the job. I won’t ask you why should I kill and I would prefer if you don’t ask me how would I kill.
Why is none of my concern and How is none of your business!”

Samrat listened in wide-eyed.

Bhanu pratap chuckled.
“You should have seen Apte’s face there. Anger, smarting at insult, disbelief.. Pick any one one and you could see it on his face. All we could do is stare and Saabji just smiled.


Samrat had the nagging doubt that he had to clear up. So he asked.
“But Uncle! The shootout in school sounded good. Why would the Man reject it. Or” he added with a sneer “he wanted the credit of planning entirely for himself!”

Bhanu pratap looked down at his nephew.

“Sam you really don’t know much about the Man. So listen in. In our world some of us believe in Honour Sam. Rana and your Dad never did anything which wasn’t allowed by their conscience. Some follow the code of honour some don’t. But you look at that Man and you would be left in no doubt that this one would rather fail than give up on honour. Shooting in front of kids, in front of the family of the victim or hitting innocent bystanders are somethings that are not respected. Off course we don’t condemn anyone as long as the job is done but the way job is done speaks volumes about the one performing the job. That Man was and still is the one who followed these codes of honour.

To till date he never killed anyone other than the person he is supposed to kill. He would hurt without remorse or compassion if someone is unlucky enough cross his path but No! He never believed in indiscriminate killing. So you shouldn’t be surprise that he dismissed Joshi’s idea with such contempt.

Samrat flared his nostrils but didn’t reply. He could find nothing to say. He merely looked on and the older man continued.

“So then Saabji smiled and said ‘Alright! Your game! Your rules! I want the job done. I want that Jogi to die. Not hurt just dead. We clear!’
The Man merely inclined his head slightly and nodded.
‘You can get on the job whenever you are ready. No questions will be asked. You will be on your own.’
The Man smiled at that and then asked insolently.
“Can i leave?”

He probably would have walked off if Saabji said No!” chuckled Bhanu pratap.
But the very moment Rana spoke.
Have you heard Rana speak Sammy” he asked but before Samrat could reply he went on.
“Rana has this deep booming voice with with he said
‘Wait Boy!’

The Man looked at Rana, all expressions of insolence gone from his face.
Rana then said
‘Before you leave for the kill you need a code name.’
Now that surprised the Man. He looked at Rana with a perplexed expression. I think being called Boy for so long he must have never felt the need of actually having his own name. So he looked on.
Rana announced
‘Hereby You will be called and recognized by one name’.
We all held our breaths again in suspense and anticipation.

‘Gabriel!’

And then the Man smiled. What a smile! It just lit up his eyes and transforms the face into fine looking innocent young lad. Illusion! Fine looking; yes. Innocent: No! He nodded again this time in what i think can be termed as joy and happiness or may be satisfaction.
I don’t think anyone else in the meeting, barring me, got the significance of that name. I guess everyone thought ‘Gabriel why Gabriel! Or may be Nice name’.But no more than that. I am sure about that.”

“Ok!” Samrat asked out of curiosity; he has always been curious about that name. “What is the significance of that name? Isn’t that the name of an angel? Why would be He(Samrat grated on that word) be termed as an angel?”.


Bhanu pratap gave a smile which hid a hint of pride in his knowledge and power of guessing and deduction.
“Gabriel is an angel. Actually he is an archangel meaning high ranking angel. Archangel Gabriel has a remarkable position as one of the few cultural figures who plays an important role in more than one major religion. He is referred to in the Old Testament as appearing to Daniel. In Christian tradition he appears to the Virgin and to Zachariah. In Islamic tradition he is renowned for dictating the Holy Koran to the Prophet Mohammad. In fact Gabriel defines most people’s idea of what an angel is. The most potent image of Angel Gabriel is that he announced the impending birth of the Messiah to Mary. He is thought of as an angel of mercy. Virtues like great, might, strength, power are associated with him.”

“Well! How sweet!” mocked Samrat. “Angel of mercy! What a perfect code name for a killer. This Rana guy sure had a wicked sense of humour”

“I am not finished yet Sam!” Bhanu pratap said severely in such a tone that Samrat flinched. His uncle used that tone rarely and only if he thought Samrat should pay attention to what he is saying. Samrat nodded his head.

Bhanu pratap continued.
“However in biblical tradition, he is sometimes regarded as the angel of death, the prince of fire and thunder, but more frequently as one of God’s chief messengers. He is termed as the angel of resurrection, mercy, vengeance, death and revelation. Judea-christian lore he is named as the angel of death”.

Samrat forgot that he has been holding his breathe for long. When his lungs screamed their protest he realized to breathe in.

“Angel of death!” he said in awe.

“Exactly!” Bhanu pratap said with a short wag of forefinger.
“That’s why Rana named that Man ‘Gabriel’ and I couldn’t think of any other name which would have suited him so perfectly.
Or maybe i could” he added after a short pause.

“And what is that!” Samrat snapped.

“Azreal!”

“And who is he?” Samrat asked curious despite himself.

“In Islam theology, Azreal is the Angel of Death who is forever writing in a large book and forever erasing what he writes; what he writes is the birth of the man and what he erases is the name of the man at death. It would have been a great name for that Man.
“No!” he paused and then corrected himself “No! I think Gabriel is more apt. Because he never bothered himself with the history of his kills or targets. He just goes ahead, finish the contract, claim the kill and that’s it. Chapter closed for him. So maybe we can say Saabji is the one who writes down the fate and the death of the victims. And Gabriel is the one who plays the part of angel of death.”

Bhanu pratap stopped narrating to allow Samrat to absorb the moment. The silence was so loud in that room that it could be heard.

After what seemed like ages the older man reverted back to the tale.
“Saabji then dismissed the meeting with hi usual waving of hand and we all dispersed. The Man walked off the room looking taller than the tallest person present there and Rana followed Saabji when he was signalled at by Saabji. ”

“That’s it! Samrat asked incredulously “Meeting dispersed?”

“Yes the meeting dispersed” asserted Bhanu pratap. “What else was there to discuss anyways? Contract was given and contract was accepted. Finish! End of the story.

“So this Man” Samrat struggled with the name “Gabriel finished the job?”

“Off course He did!” The older man shrugged and said that in a tone which clearly meant that he thought the question was stupid.

Samrat pursed his lips and tried not to glare at his uncle.

Bhanu pratap went on.
“It is a saying in our underworld. If Gabriel took the job, the job is done. So think before giving him a contract because once he accepted the contract he won’t give you the time to think again. He goes, hits, kills, and comes back. No fuss, no mess, and no bloodshed of innocents. Just a dead body left behind. In our language we call it a clean kill. If it is not clean rest assured it is not his handiwork. And name is synonymous with Cleans Kills.”

Samrat could taste the bitterness of bile rising in his throat. He wanted that name, fame and reputation for himself. Wanted it so badly. But one thing he never tried to understand that mere wanting is not enough. You need to EARN it.

“Uncle! Get on with the story” He snapped completely annoyed now.

Bhanu pratap was not offended at the tone used by his nephew. He always understood Samrat’s many and varying moods. So he raised his palm in a gesture of peace and said
“Ok Sammy lets get on with the story. So what i was saying is that the question is not whether the job was done. Off course it was done. The question should be how it was done. And that my boy is the story legends are made off.”

“So the meeting dispersed and we all went off back to our daily lives. Life went back to normal or as normal as it could be in our world. Then three says later our world was rocked. Equations were changed, myths shattered and announcement of arrival of the best among the bests Assassin was made and that was some arrival Sammy! What do you youngsters call it! Oh yes! ‘Arrived with a BANG!’ Yes that’s it. Arrived with a BANG! For three days later early morning we all looked at the headlines of the leading newspapers screaming that ‘High profile leading businessman Jogindar Singh dead!’

Bhanu pratap stopped the tale. He said nothing for a full minute.

It took a moment for Samrat to react then he said bemused
“That’s it! Just a newspaper news. Just an article announcing Jogi is dead and no idea about the killer. What the..?” He swallowed the expletive looking at his uncle and then choked out “That’s it. I mean no nothing how he died and how that that..” he struggled “Gabriel killed him?” then added nastily “if he managed to kill Jogi at the first place that is. You guys have no idea how the murder was done and by whom ha?Are you saying that you don’t know the story?”.

“And who says that we don’t know the story” Bhanu pratap replied calmly stressing each word. “Off course we know the story. Everybody knows. Stories like that are written in golden ink in the history of our underworld. So yes everyone knew the story. Heard, talked and wondered about it for years to come.”

“So would you be kind enough to TELL the story please!” Samrat voiced in thinly veiled sarcasm.

Bhanu pratap raised his eyebrows, then smiled lightly and started telling the story.
“Joshi was right. You would need a cavalry to attack Jogi at his house. He is surrounded by the best of the best security personnel and he is suspicious of everything and everyone with a good reason i must say so. He is always on guard. So where would one attack him and most importantly how should one attack him! You get only once chance in jobs like this. No errors and no corrections. Hit, Kill and Run. That was the only thing to do and that was the thing He did.


“He? It was Gabriel!” Samrat asked but it was not a question. He knew the answer.

“Yes!” affirmed Bhanu pratap “It was indeed Gabriel. Who else could be a ghost and devil rolled in one. So yes Sammy Gabriel is the guy who conquered the quest which left so many lesser mortals dead by the sideways. Now would you like to know how he did it?”

Samrat gave a short annoyed nod.

“Jogi always travelled in his armoured car with two jeeps covering him. One in front other at the tail end. Toughest and meanest guards in both the Jeeps and two best guards travelled in the car with Jogi himself. On guard was the driver of that car. Jogi at times travelled along a forest way to reach for the city. A road surrounded by thick forest on both sides. A dangerous forest. That fateful day he was travelling by the same road. I guess was eerie calm place that day. And then the mirage of calm and peace was shattered.
Unseen and unknown to all the poor souls present there; bang came a blast and the jeep in the front went flying in the air. Screaming, burning and exploding and crashed right in front of Jogi’s armoured car. That car being a toughest one survived with out a scratch. Bodyguards poured down from the remaining jeep and started to fan off.

The two guards with Jogi stayed back in the car. It was their job to protect him at any cost. Rest all can wait. So they said put. The others moved out. Generally when a bomb is planted, the bomber stays back to check out his handiwork and this bomb was a remote controlled one. So the bomber surely is around for he has to press the trigger when the target arrived. That was a good thinking but may I add proved unfortunate for all. They entered the forest area and there He was waiting. The devil or angel of death whatever you call him. Gabriel! A predator deadlier than all the predators of the jungle at that time. And he started hunting. Hunting the unsuspecting men searching for him; One by one.

Sometimes with gun, sometimes with knife and then with bare hands. By the time the deadly game of death reached its near end no one was left standing. Only he was left. Standing tall and dangerous as ever.
Those guys of Jogi are trained to take any man anytime but then who is trained to take on devil himself. Poor b*****ds! And when none of the guards came back the guards in the car started worrying. Best course would have been starting the car and running the hell out of there. But I think they were frightened and confused. They have never seen or heard such a silent and complete unknown danger anytime before.

So when they saw a man wearing a same all black gear as them his face smeared with blood they thought it is their own man coming. And so when he knocked on the window they rolled it down. Their last deed of the day. The man was Gabriel and he shot them point blank. They had no time to even register surprise. Jogi meanwhile in the backseat was reaching for his gun and then he made the mistake of looking into the eyes of the killer standing out and looking straight at him. And then all he could do is stare in horrified fascination too paralysed with fear to react. Then same way a deer would look into the eyes of a lion knowing that the death is near; death is coming. Then Gabriel fired. A bullet which took half the forehead of Jogi, his brain, blood and yes his life. A bullet which announced the arrival of the best of the best killer in our world. A bullet which wrote his name as the Angel of Death. Jogi died and Gabriel was born.”

Samrat was expressing myriad emotions none that he could define with clarity. So he said nothing. Just kept on looking mutely at his uncle.

The older man went on
“That was the day the man called Gabriel packed his bags and left the mansion. Saabji paid him handsomely. He even requested him to stay here or near by. But he choose to live on his own and away from this place. From that day he was on his own. He comes here when called for a job. He accepts it if he likes or throws it back on the face if he doesn’t. His game; His rules. One style: Clean kill. And the reputation that lived on: If you give a job to Gabriel; It Is Done.”
He now is the highest paid shooter not many can afford. And even if someone is able to afford him he may just refuse the job if he doesn’t like the look of it or if it is not challenging enough.
You know Sammy! In the underworld every shooter has a code name. Nothing unusual about it. Example Sasha, Victor, Atif, Krish they all are professional snipers and they go by their code names when on job. Say Victor is known as Viper. That’s how it is done. Code name on job and own name outside. But Gabriel is the unusual one here. He goes by only one name. Just one. Gabriel!”
He is the bloody best and he knows it. Our whole world knows it. It is that unwritten rule here; there is nothing he can’t beat. And there is no one who can beat him. When he comes just Give Him Way.”
And then Bhanu pratap stopped. The tale was finished.

Samrat was sitting holding his his whiskey glass so tight that his knuckles turned white. The fiery liquid untouched and sitting flat in the glass. There was a total silence in the room. Bhanu pratap said everything and Samrat could find nothing to say. The silence continued for what seemed like an eternity.
Then Bhanu pratap cleared his throat and exclaimed
“Oh my! Look at the time Sam. Didn’t realize it was so late.” Then he smiled “just like old times eh? Past midnights and our story telling sessions won’t end” he gave a laugh which sounded a little strained. Maybe marathon narration took toll or may be he found the silence of his nephew disturbing.

To break the oppressing silence he then said
“Right Sam bed time!”

Samrat looked up at the older man with blank eyes as if he is lost in some world of his own.

Bhanu pratap reiterated with a smile “It is late kid even by your standards. So off you go. Hit the bed and sleep well. See you in the morning”.

Samrat nodded and go up from bar stool and stared walking towards the door on automation when he was stopped by his uncle’s voice.
“Goodnight Sammy!”

Samrat did not even try to smile. He just nodded and went off leaving the older man staring at his back in worry and concern. He walked off to his room as if he is sleepwalking. His legs took him to the room on their own. Samrat was way too lost in his thought to register the way. He entered his room. A huge room brightly coloured with the pictures of pop icons and cars and bikes adorning the wall. A room fit enough for a prince with a splendid view through its bay windows. The wall on one side of the room was completely covered with huge mirrors. Samrat sat down on the king size chair in the room and reached for fist sized crystal paper weight from the dressing table. He stared staring at the rainbow colours being reflected by the crystal’s facets as if he is mesmerized by the play of colours. He was not. He was just lost in his past. He remembered what his uncle asked him back downstairs near the bar.
“Sam! You ever met that Man or heard about him? I never asked you.”
And he remembered his own reply
“No! I never met him. Just heard about him in whispers”.

He lied.
He met that Man.
He talked to him, he heard of him and he hated him.


Samrat kept gazing at the crystal as if he could see his past right in the reflective surface of the crystal in his hand. In a way he really was seeing his past, for today the past just wants to comes to the present and meet up with that 16 years old boy of yesterday who is now 26 years old young man gazing at the crystal and remembering that yesterday.

nims1


To be Continued….
— Candy Lemon [Nimmi] —

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2014 in Fiction Corner

 

Angel : A Tale of Life Death and Love


Chapter 3 :

“That day a new chapter was written in the book of hell. A new era heralded in our dark world of crime and death. And a new death’s own messenger announced his arrival.”
***************************


“As you know Sam, most of our bodyguards and servants live in this mansion. So Saabji gave a room for the boy to live in here in this very mansion. It was a small room, but a room the boy did not have to share with anyone else. It was his and his alone. I thought at that time it might lead to resentment among others and i guess it did but no one protested openly. And then the training started.”


Samrat with supreme effort controlled his raging emotions and started paying attention to his Uncle.

“Everyday the training went on. Nobody knew the timings. No one had any idea when the boy woke up or slept if he ever did. Each moment that he could account for was spent under the tutelage of the legend called Rana. Sam! It is an honour to spend even an hour in the company of the man Rana. To hear him speak and share his experiences. And here that boy of 17 spent his entire days and nights learning from the master himself.”


Samrat controlling his growing resentment asked “Uncle! Rana is a shooter. Right! OK a great one. So that boy learnt only shooting and survival skills from Him. But i heard that he is good (Samrat choked at that word) in hand to hand fights too. So i am just curious where he picked up his other skills from”.


Bhanu Pratap smiled at his nephew. An enigmatic smile; the same smile of Mona Lisa as if she knows a secret she would like to share but is waiting for you to ask first.

He then replied “Sam! I know you would ask this question.Yes Rana is known for his shooting skills. He is almost a mythological figure in shooting world. No one challenged him in that area. At least no one who survived long enough to tell the tale. But there is a hidden facet of Rana that not many people know about or rather i should only 2-3 people are aware of it. One of them is Saabji Himself. I think that was the main reason he choose Rana to train that boy”.

Samrat was curious. Very curious.

He wanted his uncle to get on with the story in hurry but knowing his uncle Samrat knew that the older man will take his own time. So he maintained silence with effort.

Bhanu Pratap then revealed what Samrat was curious to know.
“Rana is a legendary shooter but more than guns, knifes and any other weapons with him, His most lethal weapons are His Hands”.


Samrat’s eyes widened up in surprise.
“Hands!” he whsipered softly.

“Yes! His hands!” reiterated Bhanu Pratap.
“Rana is beyond lethal in the field called hand to hand combat.”

Samrat asked in awe “You mean he knew Karate and stuff?”
Bhanu Pratap dismissed his nephew’s question in contempt.


“Karate and stuff like that are Child’s play for Rana. That man is trained in all known forms of attack and defence mortal combats. And his knowledge goes beyond what you youngsters could comprehend. Rana even mastered one of the toughest knowledge’s in Indian history of martial arts. I don’t know the name of that martial art form. I guess it is called marma or something. It trains one to paralyse, maim and kill another person with your bare hands. A very old art of Attack and indefensible. And I believe Rana is one of the few men who knew that art inside out. And if i am not wrong he passed on this and all other learnings and legacies of his to that boy.”


Samrat felt a burst of anger inside him. He asked in barely controlled anger
“How do you know that uncle? Rana may not have shared his Knowledge with that boy. After all as you said no one knew about that boy. So why would a man like Rana would willingly share his skills and learnings with a boy he has never heard off before and for all we know who was thrust upon him by Dad and was just a responsibility.”

Bhanu Pratap again smiled.
“Sam! What happened between those two during that training period no one knew. Though we all were curious. After all we are humans. Still no one dared to question either Rana or that boy. And i know that even Saabji never asked for any updates. But I know this for sure that Rana taught that boy everything he knew, everything he learnt and everything he mastered. And i know this like i know my own name and my love for you and my dead sister lad”.


“How?” Samrat asked in a tight voice.

“Because the day Rana accepted to take that boy under his wings, the moment he looked at the boy and said He will be giving that boy a Name when the boy is ready I saw in his eyes that He accepted that boy not as a responsibility but as a challenge. A challenge worthy enough to earn, learn and master his expertise.
Rana was a Master waiting for a student to pass his legacy on. With that boy his search ended!”


Samrat’s rage imploded inside him corroding his heart and guts. A nobody from nowhere earned a legend for a Master. And He; the true heir is cheated out of his rightful place in this world of power and death.
Samrat wanted to scream, shout and break everything in sight. But he knew this was not the time. So he looked at his uncle and asked in barely controlled voice.

“What happened next uncle?”

Bhanu Pratap took a deep swallow of whiskey from his glass. Then inhaled deeply. He stared at the unseen for a long moment.


Samrat was waiting patiently.

The older man started the saga of the past again.
“More than a year passed by. We accepted the boy. His unknown past. His silence.His arrangement with Rana. Though admittedly we all were curious to know more about that boy. And we would have loved to know about the training that Rana is giving to the boy. Still we gave that boy a wide way to just be himself. That calm, silent most of the time, almost invisible boy of 17. We rarely saw him, hardly talked with him and rarely heard him talk. Most of his waking hours were spent with Rana.
Do you know Sam that Rana lives in a farm house that is far away from here?”

Samrat shook his head in negative.


“Yes! Bhanu Pratap said “He lives in an old fashioned farm house close to jungle. Far away from hustle bustle of the city. That boy spent most of his days and sometimes nights there. We rarely saw him here in the mansion. During rare occasions he was here he just used to come for lunch or dinner depending upon the time, sit silently in corner, finish his food and go back to his room. I have never seen him speaking to anyone voluntarily. He spoke when spoken to. Mostly one line answers to our questions mundane questions like how are you and all that. We never asked him what he is learning under Rana or what does he do in his room all alone when he gets any free time.”

But underneath all this acceptance of that boy I could feel some undercurrents of resentments long buried among some young guns in our gang. Older and wiser men knew it was prudent to keep away from that boy. It’s the younger ones who wanted to have a go at the boy who was having the privilege of being trained under a Master besides being someone chosen by Saabji himself. I knew the boy will be challenged soon. And that day came and How!”

Samrat’s eyes lit up. Finally his uncle is going to tell him that part of the story he kept dangling out of the reach of his. He was curious to know how that boy was challenged. Was he attacked and beaten up. Or he defended himself emerging as a hero. Samrat gave a derisive smile at the thought of the boy emerging as a Hero but still looking appealingly at his uncle to continue with the story.


Bhanu Pratap went on with the tale. He had a smile on his face. He knew Samrat was waiting for this part the story the moment he heard the snippet of it. So smiling at his beloved nephew he continued:
“I remember that day so clearly. So vividly! I don’t think i will ever forget it. It was night time. We all were having dinner in the banquet hall of our mansion. It was buffet. We all were eating, drinking, talking loudly. Some of us were drunk, some sober but all were having good time. Then that boy entered. There was a moment of silence when we saw him entering. Then we went on with our discussions, drinks, food and fun. The boy silently went to the food stalls, took a plate, chose whatever he wanted to have and was coming back to a vacant table to sit with his food laden plate in his hand.”


Bhanu pratap then went silent as if he wanted to gather that moment of the past from his memory.

Samrat asked in hushed tones.
“Then uncle?”

His uncle gave him a loving smile then continued.
“So the boy was just walking towards a vacant table in the corner carrying his plate. Suddenly a guy called Rocky simply blocked his path with his foot. Rocky was sitting on a chair and he stretched his foot deliberately to stop the boy from moving forward. Now i must tell you about this character Rocky. He is one of those high on hormones, cocky confident young man of 25- 27years wearing those hideously tight t-shirts to show off his bulging muscles. All brawn no brain. Just a hunk of a raging bull kind of young guy.”

Samrat tried not to laugh at his uncle’s description of Rocky character. He arranged his face in polite expression and looked at his uncle innocently.

Bhanu Pratap was in flow.
“So that Rocky barred that boy’s path. We all started staring at that unfolding scene. All conversations were stopped. The silence was so total that we could actually hear it. We knew something is going to happen at that very night. Something big. Just not sure what. What the boy did was totally unexpected. He very politely asked Rocky to remove his foot so that he can go on. That boy has a good voice. And the way he spoke so politely that was really good to hear. But Rocky took it as a challenge. Maybe he wanted that boy to react aggressively and was disappointed by his polite reaction. So he went on aggressive mode. He got up and pushed that boy placing his big massive hairy hand over that boy’s chest. The boy staggered a little to the back.

He then said again in his very polite tone he doesn’t want to fight and to let him go. Rocky should have moved away and allowed that boy to pass on. But no he was already so ahead he did not want to back down. So he asked that boy loudly what will the boy do if Rocky wont move. The boy simply stared at him. And the way he looked. My!! I really thought Rocky was real dumb not to turn around and run for his life. He sure must have been dropped on his head by his mother when he was a baby. That is if he even was a baby; looking at the size of him”.


Samrat grinned at that.

Bhanu pratap went on with the flow.
“So this giant of Rocky then kept his hand over the shoulder of that boy and repeated again: “What will that boy do if Rocky wont get out of the way. Will the boy hit him?” Then challenged the boy to go ahead and hit him. That boy merely looked at Rocky and then at the hand on his shoulder. Then he reacted.”

Samrat was so engrossed in the tale that it took him a moment to realize that his uncle had stopped the narration. He scrunched up his eyes and looked at the older man in confusion. When he saw Bhanup pratap smiling at him serenely he realized that he is being baited.


Samrat pouted.
And then cribbed “Uncle! Get on with the story!”.

With his boyishly charming and handsome looks and that childlike pout he looked adorable. Bhanu Pratap smiled lovingly at his nephew then ruffled the silky mop of hair of the young man. Then unable to control his laughter looking at how adoring his nephew is looking with irritated frown and childish pout he guffawed.

Samrat wasn’t amused. He kept on pouting. His uncle then threw up his hands in air and said placetingly “OK! Sammy i will get on with the story.”
Samrat’s frown cleared and he adjusted himself on the bar chair waiting to know how the boy reacted.

Bhanu Pratap got on with the story.
“So that boy first gave a look to that Rocky character and then bent his head slightly down and looked at that massive hand of Rocky lying on his shoulder. He then very calmly placed his food laden plate on the table within his reach. And then he slowly lifted his right hand and grabbed Rocky hand which he so foolishly placed on that boy’s shoulder. And then his fingers squeezed that wrist of the offensive hand. We were just watching. But even we could feel the force coming out of that boy’s hand then way his fingers were choking the life out of Rocky’s blood veins.You should have seen the expressions change on Rocky’s face. First it was shock, then disbelief and then the man of his size couldn’t take the pain being inflicted upon his hand by a mere child, a pain so harsh that his legs started buckling. Then that boy calmly removed Rocky’s abused hand from his shoulders, simply dropped it, dusted his shoulders with his fingers as if he is removing some kind of dirt from his shirt and then placed his palm on the face of Rocky and gently pushed him sideways. Out of his way. Rocky was grabbing his hand which had red welts over it which were rapidly turning purple.

He was staring at his hand in sheer pain and disbelief. And when that boy so insultingly pushed him out of his way he simply moved to a side giving the boy his way to move on. That boy simply started walking away. Then Rocky realized what has happened. He realized that he has been so effectively snubbed, insulted and wounded and that boy did not even had to make much effort in doing that. Hell he did not even uttered a single word and delivered a lasting insult.”


You know Sam! In our world though we deliver and receive death, we are not as much afraid of it as we are afraid of failure. We are the men of frail self confidence and fragile egos. We can take blow on our bodies but not on our egos.”

Rocky realized his name, reputation and above all his ego were razed to ground in front of his peers and superiors that too by a boy. A mere boy! He couldn’t take it. So he charged at the back of the boy who was so calmly walking away. It happened so suddenly that we had no time to shout a warning at the boy but we shouldn’t have bothered; for that boy needed no warning. I guess his senses are so finely tuned that he just sensed the attack without actually being able to see it coming since it came from back. He dropped on his knees whirled around and threw an amazing punch at Rocky’s solar plexus.

What a punch! We were standing at a distance still we could see the power emerging out of the boy’s fist and could see veins standing out in his hand protesting against the strain of transferring that force. Rocky staggered. I must say I admired him at that moment for any other man would have collapsed never to get up again for a long time. But this man had a strong constitution. He clutched his stomach and looked at the boy who was getting up from his kneeled position and now is standing tall in front of him. Despite being shorter than Rocky by good 4-5 inches he looked tall and yes! Menacing! Then I saw fear in the eyes of Rocky.

Sam! When a man is scared either he flees or he lashes out with everything he has got. Rocky lashed out. The boy simply parried his each blow and punch and parried with such an ease as if he was finding the entire exercise ridiculously easy. Then Rocky got lucky. He managed to connect his fist to that boys jaw. The force of that blow was so strong that the boy’s head swung to his right with a sharp jerk and his lip was split open at the end. There was a spurt of blood coming from the boys lip. Rocky stood like a gorilla and started grinning at his victory. It was short lived. For what the boy did to him next that was probably the last time Rocky ever laughed.”


Samrat was listening in with complete attention with his big dark eyes wide open.

Bhanu pratap continued.
“The boy first simply touched his bleeding lip with his thumb then brought it in front of his eyes and gave the blood stained thumb a look. Not in pain but in almost detached fashion. Then he looked up at Rocky. And I believe that was the moment when Rocky realized he had made a mistake. A fatal one. Probably the biggest mistake in his life. But there was no going back for him. One! He was way too ahead and second! The boy won’t let him. And then the boy attacked.

Sam! I have seen a man hitting another man angrily. I have seen a man hitting another man strongly. But i have never seen any man hitting another man so carefully. That boy was hitting the man Rocky with such a care and precision. Each blow; each punch thrown with such a prefect aim and precision. He knew exactly how much of pain his each punch will inflict on Rocky. He knew exactly how much damage his each blow would cause. He was not aiming to kill. If he wanted to kill to Rocky, Rocky would have been dead at the first blow. No he wanted to cause maximum damage with minimum effort. And that massive hulk of Rocky could just do nothing. He could neither stop the brutal attack or could try to protect himself. It was as if a gale is simply sweeping away a massive oak from roots and the poor oak simply could do nothing but surrender to the mighty gale.

At the relentless onslaught of that boy’s pounding Rocky was rendered bloodied, broken and bruised. The boy then grabbed Rocky’s collar and pulled the sagging man straight for one more punch. Rocky was too down and out to focus even his eyes at his avenging angel. But that boy didn’t throw his last punch. He unclenched his fist which was ready to throw one more killer punch and released his other hand holding Rocky’s collar.
Rocky dropped down.

Sam! You can understand a lot about a man when he is fighting someone. But you would know more about him when the fight is over and that man emerges victorious. Some men gloat over the fallen fighters; some kick the man who is down. You can ignore the men belonging to first category. Pride comes before fall. You should feel disgusted at later category of those who would kick the helpless victim. They are cowards.


This boy stood over the broken Rocky whimpering at his feet. He tilted his head down and gave him a look. A look that I cannot define. There was no regret but no victors pride either. The close I would come to describing that look would be: The boy simply analyzed the damage he caused, found it disinteresting.
But that moment I instinctively knew that this boy would never kick a man who is down. This one would always believe in Honour while fighting. He will never lose. But even if he ever loses a fight, he would do so with dignity.


The boy did not kick Rocky. He simply turned his back and started walking away.
Sammy! In our world we have seen men fighting among themselves. We sometimes allowed the fight to go on for sheer amusement. Sometimes if the fight go out of hand we intervene and separate the fighting men.
But this fight!”Bhanu pratap shook his head in wonder “This fight Sam we have never seen anything like this. All we could do is stare in horrified fascination. That boy of seventeen looked taller, mightier and above all than all of us standing there. Looking at the broken state of Rocky and watching the boy so calmly walking away it felt like ..”


Bhanu pratap paused searching for the words.

Samrat was listening in wide eyed waiting for his uncle to continue.

The older man struggled for words for some moments then he slowly said.
“Looking at the broken state on Rocky lying on the floor and watching the boy so calmly walking away; it felt like Death himself has came for the kill, touched the victim, then changed his mind and with swirl of cloak is walking away without claiming the kill leaving behind his victim broken and bleeding on the floor”.

Samrat sucked his breath in at that description. Despite the world that he was born into Samrat was not accustomed to the brutality of it. Maybe because he stayed away from this world for long or maybe he is built that way. He never actually killed anyone not with a weapon and certainly not in hand to hand fight. That could be one of his many reasons to loathe the Man because Samrat knew that Man was more capable, more mighty and yes! He belong in this world. Samrat doesn’t belong here.

Samrat shook his head irritated with himself. “I Belong Here. This is My World!” he mentally shook himself.
Then took a deep breathe and looked at his uncle mutely asking him to go ahead with the tale.

Bhanu Pratap was lost in the past world.
“The boy walked away amid the deathly silence of all the spectators who were too horrified, too fascinated and too dumbstruck at the sheer brutality of the entire scenario. No wait brutality is the wrong word.” Bhanu pratap shook his head and paused.
He started clicking his fingers in his search for the perfect word.
“Yes! Got it!” He clicked his thumb and middle finger together.
“Brutality is not the word. Watching that fight was like watching a very violent poetry in action.”


Samrat’s lips curled up in sneer at that description but he said nothing.

His uncle continued oblivious to his single audience.

“It took us full minute to react after the boy left the stage; that room. One moment total and complete silence then there was a rush to reach Rocky lying bloodied on the floor still whimpering. We took to the hospital we have our trusted doctors at.


When the Doctor looked at Rocky he couldn’t believe the extent of damage been dealt to that body. He thought Rocky must have been in fight with couple of hefty roughnecks to sustain that kind of damage. We did not enlighten him. He wouldn’t have believed us anyways.

It took close to 14 hours of operation to patch up Rocky. Right from broken cartilage of nose, to shattered ribs which punctured his lungs, a kidney that probably would not function normally from that day on, to the broken jaw that needed rewiring, not to mention the teeth that bid adieu to their master. Rocky had an extensive and very painful work done on him that too by a master who was just a teenager.
It was clear Rocky would need months if not years to recover fully. And there was that question whether he would be fit for our kind of work. But the most important question was how Thakur Saab would react. Rocky deliberately provoked and attacked ‘His Boy’. So will he punished or was it the time to discipline the boy for the violence that he unleashed.

Samrat looked upon curiously. Deep down inside he wanted that boy of the long gone time to be punished and punished severely. He looked at his uncle in anticipation and asked softly.
“Was the boy punished uncle?”

Bhanu Pratap gave a wry smile and shook his head in negative.
“No Sammy! The boy was not punished”

Samrat’s face fell at that.

“The curious part is that neither the boy nor Rocky was punished. In fact Saabji told Rocky to report back to work when he recovers. And Rocky joined us back too. I don’t think he wanted too though. He lost his face, name and reputation all in the hands of a mere boy but then Sam in our job there is only one way to go: Forwards!! We don’t have exits. You enter this world then you have to stay here. There is no way out. Rocky had no where to go. So he joined back.”

“And the boy?” Samrat asked curiously.


“The boy” replied Bhanu Pratap “stayed in the same room in this very mansion. Same routine, same existence, same aloofness, same secrecy.”

“Why did dad do nothing to punish those guys. He didn’t even reprimand them?” Samrat demanded uncomprehendingly.

“No Sammy! Saabji did not so much as say a word about this incident to anyone. Not to the boy, not to Rocky no one. But I think i know the reason why he bought Rocky back to the mansion.”

Samrat looked at his uncle hiding his disappointment at the way the boy simply breezed into his routine with no reprimand, no punishment, no facing the famous wrath of Thakur Saab. Samrat was curious despite himself to know the reason of the uncharacteristic attitude of his father. Virendra Thakur is not known to be generous to those who broke rules.

Bhanu pratap went on.
Thakur Saab bought Rocky back to the mansion, I am guessing here but i think i am right, to show him off as an example to what would happen to those who would touch the boy. A deterrent to other hot heads maybe. Or maybe he was showing his pride in the work of ‘His boy’ by keeping the creation on whom the work was done right in front of everyone.

Samrat’s lips curled up in disgust hearing that explanation. He hated the fact that his father took pride in that Man from no where, whereas his only son doesn’t remember the last time his father spoke to him directly.
With great difficulty Samrat brought himself back from the world of thoughts to the present to pay attention to his uncle, his most favourite person in the whole wide world.
Bhanu Pratap gave an amused smile.

Samrat not knowing the reason for that smile asked “What?!”


“Nothing Sam! I was just thinking Saabji shouldn’t have bothered to put put danger signs around that boy. Anyone who saw what he did to Rocky; anyone who heard the tale wouldn’t even dare to look at him straight. I am sure from that day on no one even dreamt of touching that boy; forget actually going ahead and tangling with him.”
We are survivors first at the end of the day Sam. And this boy had an Aura of death around him. Who would want to play poker with Death?
No Sir! Not us.”


Samrat was hating the description of the boy who was the past of the Man that he loathed. For once in his life he wanted someone anyone to say something on the lines of ridicule, mockery or scorn about the Man. Someone should say that the Man is a loser, a coward, someone who made mistakes. But no! Every time the Man is mentioned it was in awe, fear or respect. Even his uncle who always called spade a spade and had a caustic remark on everyone albeit in a kind way never ever said a thing in jest or scorn about that Man. In fact Samrat always felt his uncle respected the Man and his uncle is a very good judge of character. Whenever he stated his opinion about anyone, he is always right. Samrat always felt that his uncle should have been a professor of some college. He is kind, wise and understanding. He too doesn’t belong in this world. He is capable of loving for he loved Samrat, visited him in the boarding schools long and far away, always bought him gifts, told him stories, took pride when Samrat won any prize, congratulated when he cleared his exams. In short been Samrat’s Father in every sense of the world; more of father than Thakur Saab was or could ever be.
Smarat brought his mind back to the present and jerked his head up to look at his uncle when he heard the older man mentioning his name.

“Sorry Uncle! Didn’t catch you. You said something?”

Bhanu Pratap smiled lovingly
“Sammy I was asking you came back to the mansion from your boarding school sometimes during holidays in between Right! So have you ever met that boy? I remember you asking me about him couple of times but i was just wondering whether you met him face to face. You never told me.”

Samrat hesitated slightly then shook his head and said said
“No uncle! I never met him; just heard about him in whispers” He did not meet his uncle’s eyes directly while saying this.

Bhanu pratap thought nothing unusual in Samrat’s answer so he continued.
“Yeah that Boy stayed here but he was rarely present and when he was here nobody wanted to bother him by chit-chatting forget being friends with him. Natural for you to miss him. So where was I?” He asked his nephew.

Samrat replied “The boy was not punished and rocky stayed back in the job.”


“Yes! Yes!” agreed Bhanu pratap “So the boy stayed here. His training continued under Rana. God-forsaken times. Early Mornings, past Midnights. The boy had no fix timings to come home. No one wanted to ask him about the training. Heck no dared to so much as look at him straight. And he himself was in absolutely no hurry to make friends. Years passed by the routine continued. Then came that day when Saabji called for a meeting again. Everyone was to report. We have meetings regularly but we knew this one was special. Because Saabji asked for the boy to be present. And Rana too. It happened close to 4 years later. When the boy came in here for the first time he was no more than 17 years. So that would make him 21 now. We were all curious. The meeting was held in our conference room. All seats taken. Saabji took his usual Kings chair at the head of the table. The boy and Rana were not present. We all started waiting for them.”

“What happened in that meeting Uncle?” Samrat almost whispered.

Bhanu Pratap stared at the unseen horizon.


“That day a new chapter was written in the book of hell. A new era heralded in our dark world of crime and death. And a new death’s own messenger announced his arrival.”

nims1


To be continued

— Candy Lemon [Nimmi] —

 
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Posted by on January 1, 2014 in Fiction Corner

 

Angel – Chapter 2 …..


The suspense continues…….On the man called Gabriel………..

smiley face


Samrat was staring at the mobile in his hand in disbelief. “He disconnected my call! That b****** disconnected Samrat Thakur’s call!”

Samrat Thakur; a young man at 27 years of age was blessed with a model looks, a floppy mop of hair he deliberately allows to fall on his forehead almost reaching his eyes. He was handsome and he knew it. But at this time he was angry. Murderously angry.

An older man was standing next to the bar. They were in a mansion. Thakur mansion. In a sprawling room which offered splendid view through its glass windows. But none of the men were interested in looking at the view outside. The atmosphere inside the room was explosive enough to drive out any pleasant feelings like watching greenery and relaxing; out and far away.

Samrat was still staring at his mobile. His eyes still disbelieving.


The older man poured whiskey in a glass filled to middle with ice then went near Samrat and handed the glass to him. Samrat took the glass but it was involuntary. He was still not believing some one had the gall to hang up on him. Not someone. Just one. A man he hated. Hated to his core.

The older man kept his palm on Samrat’s shoulder and said in a soothing voice.”
“Sam! How many times i need to tell you that you should keep away from …” before he could finish his sentence Samrat’s hand shot up. He threw his glass with full force on the floor. The whiskey flew in a golden arc then fell on the carpet soaking it, ruining a very expensive carpet. The shattered pieces of glasses fell on the floor making tinkling sounds and creating prismatic hues in the air while falling down.

Samrat looked at the older man with eyes blazing in anger.
“Why uncle! Why should i keep off that that .. ” he could not find a word vile enough to describe that man.

“Who the hell does he think he is?! He is just a bloody paid killer. WE hired him. He is OUR servant! Just because Dad gave him shelter he thinks he is above all!”

Uncle, the older man was Bhanupratap Singh. A man of medium height, salt and pepper hair and kind eyes. He has the looks of an elderly kind professor.
“Sam! Calm down!” he said in a gentle voice. “Why do you want to even think about him? Just stay away from that man. You know very well that your Dad, my brother in law Thakur Saab thinks of him as our best shooter. Besides Thakur Saab loves him like Son.”

Samrat flinched at that. Bhanu pratap noticed it and placed a hand soothingly on his shoulder again and patted it gently.
“I know Sam! It is unfair. You are the Son of Saab, His only heir, son of the wife he loved; my sister. Yet his affections as a father lie towards that stranger of a man as a son”.


Samrat looked up at the kind eyes of his uncle.
“He loves that Man more than how much he loves me! Doesn’t he Uncle?!” there was lot of hurt in his voice.

His uncle gently nodded his head and kept on patting Samrat.
“I just never understood your father nor will understand i guess Sam! But know this Lad! I love you! You are not my nephew Sammy… You are my son!”

Samrat’s eyes welled up. He manfully rubbed his nose, drew a deep breathe and said.
“I want to know about him uncle. Everything you know uncle. Tell me!”

Bhanupratap knew who the man Samrat wanted to know about for he asked the same question many times before but never listened to his answer. Sometimes he mocked calling it folklore. Sometimes he got agitated. But this time Bhanu Pratap knew Samrat would listen.
There is something in the air today which is beckoning past. Memories of past are rushing to merge with the present to create a pathway to future.

He cleared his throat went near the bar made a peg for himself and Samrat. He came near the young man who was now sitting on the bar chair and handed him the glass again. Samrat took the glass silently and waited for his uncle to start.
Bhanu pratap took a sip from his glass and took a deep breathe then he stared out. As if his old eyes are seeing through the present into the past; old dog-eared memories…neither faded and never forgotten.


*************************************************************************


Bhanu pratap Thakur started the narration of the Man called Gabriel.

“It’s been a long time. Close to 12years back. One day we, your Dad and I went to a hotel. Had some business dealings there. While coming back we stopped midway to meet some gang members of ours. Parked the car near a desolate area and went to a dhaba by the road side. When we returned to our car and opened the door we saw a boy no more than 17 years curled up in the back seat. Torn shirt. Bleeding all over. Too much of blood. On his clothes, his face and yes! His hands. At that time i felt the blood is not his own. At least not entirely anyways.

Thakur Saab just looked at him and the boy stared back. I have seen many grown ups, roughnecks, murderers withering looking into Saabji’s eyes. But this boy, just a wisp of a boy stared right back. No fear No pain.. No emotion at all. They stared at each other for a moment maybe or maybe longer. No words were spoken yet it looked like they communicated something. I don’t know what but i felt silent understanding and acceptance between the big man and the boy who is child yet not a child.

Saabji silently sat in the driver seat told me and the driver to hitchhike back home. I have no idea what transpired between Saabji and the boy. I never asked Saabji. And he never volunteered. Next day He called all the gang members for meeting. There he introduced us all to that boy. I don’t know how to describe that boy. Just a day before i saw him but i couldn’t forget his face. Then there he was standing right in front of me. You must have noticed Sam that man has a very casual devil may care style of stance. He stands with his hands in his pocket head slightly tilted to left and the looks that say ‘Go ahead! Amuse me!!’

He stood in that same stance. Just a boy standing in front of a bunch of tough hardened men. Yet no nervousness on his face, no fear and surprisingly; no curiosity either. For a long time i thought and still think that human emotions, feelings, thoughts are beyond him. I have never seen any other man besides Saabji to hide what he is thinking so well and so totally. Maybe i shouldn’t say this but Saabji can show emotions at times i guess… but this man?! ..And those eyes! The eyes that looks straight at you as if they can see through you.
Saabji addressed us all. I still remember each and every word he said. Each and every scene that played out that day.”

Samrat was listening intently. Just as a kid would listen to his favourite uncle reciting a fairy tale. In this case a macabre fairy tale.

Bhanu pratap continued… “Saabji said meet the new member who will be joining our gang from today on. I want all of you to welcome him. He will make his own place here and will earn the respect that he deserves. So treat him as you would treat any new boy in our ranks BUT remember this ‘This boy is mine’!”
The way Saabji announced that the boy as his own there was no doubt in anybody’s mind that this boy is special. He is off limits. To be treated with respect.”


Samrat’s face fell at that. He failed to remember a single time when Thakur Saab addressed him as his son with pride. In private or in public. What is this about this man that his own father would announce to the world that the Man is his own. And according to uncle Thakur Saab met that Man only one day before. Samrat his own son never received any fatherly pride from his dad his his whole life of 27 years. So he hates that man. He loathes him. How could he not. He had to.
Samrat mentally shook himself out of his thoughts. Those never ending thoughts. He started listening to uncle again..

The older man continued.
“I think even if Saabji has not warned us, nobody would have dared to tangle with that boy. Even at the age of no more than 17 he looked as if he can take anyone head one and emerge victorious. There was something about that boy which warned wiser men to back off. Though i felt men high on hormones; less in brains who take this boy as challenge and may try to break him in. After all who wouldn’t enjoy the kick of breaking down a mighty and proud Stallion? I knew the boy would be challenged or attacked. And i was proved right. It happened and How!”

Samrat’s eyes lit up with curiosity despite himself. Bhanu pratap noticed it and smiled slightly at his nephew.
He said “I will tell you about it soon Sam. First we should proceed with what happened in that meeting”.


Samrat pouted at that but obediently looked at his uncle to continue.

Bhanu pratap continued “Saabji then called up Rana”.

Samrat’s head jerked up at that name and he murmured ‘Rana’ in awe.

“Yes” the older man continued “Rana!! A legend in our world. I know you have heard of him Sam and you have seen him a few times but you don’t know the extent of his legacy. You were in boarding school at that time.”

“Yeah boarding school in London” Samrat muttered in low voice “Always in boarding school. The farther the better. If Dad could have found any place beyond earth he would have sent me there.”

Bhanu pratap could hear the low mutterings of Sam and feel the pain of his nephew. He soothingly said “Sam Thakurji did it to keep you safe”.

“Safe!” Samrat replied derisively “Virendra Thakur, the god of underworld had to send his only son far away from him, his house and his life to keep that son safe. Don’t tell me you believe that yourself Uncle!”

Bhanu pratap knew what Samrat said was true. He himself never actually managed to understand why Saabji sent his heir, his only son so far away for so long when there are men in here who could kill and die to protect Samrat Thakur, Son of their God, Virendra Thakur.
So the older man allowed the moment to pass. And waited for Samrat to calm down and control his pain and anger.


Samrat took a deep breathe. Then looked up at his Uncle as if to say Continue.

Bhanu pratap started narrating the past again.


“Rana!” Bhanu Pratap said “is the first and the finest sharp shooter of our gang. I would say the best Shooter of the entire underworld here. Most respected, most revered and definitely most feared. Not many people will think of challenging him. Not many did. And whoever ever tried to actually challenge him didn’t live long enough to tell the tale or even regret their actions. He in one word is Legend”.

Samrat was listening with total concentration.

“Saabji called Rana to come forward. Generally Rana doesn’t attend meetings. I was actually surprised to see him there. So when Saabji announced his name; he came forward from the shadows near the pillars where he was standing all the while. Rana was giant of a man. He still is of course. Not those bulky bodyguards kinds. He is more like tough, hardened, rock-solid kind of a guy. No one knows his real age. Now he is in fifties i guess. So he must be in his early forties then. Tall, extremely fit and handsome to look at; Rana doesn’t look like a man you could throw your attitude at. But that boy gave him the same devil may care look. And Rana stared right back at him. I swear i saw him giving his very rare and very slight smile. It felt as if Titans has acknowledged each other. Gladiators entered the arena and are ready for the game.”


Saabji looked at Rana and said “Rana! So you have seen this boy. From today onwards his is your responsibility. You train him in everything that you yourself are expert in. You teach him everything that needs to be learnt to survive in our game. And you give him your knowledge and experience about our work, our world. He is all yours. You are answerable to no one. Treat him as his deserves to be treated. Break him if you have to, Kill him if you must but make sure this boy is a worthy successor of yours.


Rana gave a slight nod of head then looked straight at that boy. That boy was returned his stare slightly tilting his head forward. Rana then asked that boy in his deep booming voice that echoed round the room “Your Name?”
That boy simply shrugged his shoulders blinked his eyes once gave a lop- sided smile and saying nothing. He just said absolutely nothing.


There was a pin drop silence around and everyone was staring at Rana and that boy as if we are watching a powerful clash of titans happening silently. No one ignores Rana, his command or question. Yet that boy; a stranger of a boy; was still standing in his devil may care attitude and was staring right back at Rana almost challenging the mighty man.


Rana then nodded his head slightly, gave the younger lad straight and stern look and pronounced
“Alright! So be it! Then from today onwards you will be called as ‘Boy’. Just ‘Boy’! When you are good and ready I will give you a name. And i will be the only one who will decide if you are ready indeed!’

Saabji watched the entire exchange with utter satisfaction and gave the boy a look of pride. He then dismissed the meeting a wave of his hand.
That day on the boy became the student of a legend to start on a trail to become a legend himself.”


Samrat’s nostrils flared at that. His own dad chose a rank stranger; a nobody and gave his the best of the best Guru to learn, to evolve, to arrive. And ignored his only son and sent him off to a faraway land to study and learn. Learn what?. How to read books! OK! So he did his MBA. What good will it does in his Dad’s world where the only language understood is that of guns, violence, blood, money and death. THAT man lived Samrat’s life, took his rightful place and above all earned his father’s pride. He will pay. Someday! Somehow. Samrat will make sure of that. That’s his promise to Himself.


Bhanu pratap continued oblivious to the raging storm in his nephew heart.


Nims


To Be Continued…………


— Candy Lemon [Nimmi] —

 
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Posted by on December 15, 2013 in Fiction Corner

 

Angel – Chapter 1



A gripping tale of death, life and love……

A day in the past:


Standing on the top of 27 storied building he felt a sense of elation looking down. The earth was so far away. Everything looks so small. Insignificant. Vehicles, smaller houses, trees and Humans.

‘God must be feeling like this every time when he looks down’ the man thought.
That made him smile. Just a small twist of lips.

‘All right time to work!’
He opened his briefcase and removed a Remington 700 sniper rifle. 4.08kg of lethal weapon to be treated with respect. Though its maximum range is lesser than its other cousins He loved it. Remington’s the manufacturing unit customises the gun. He customised his weapon to his liking. A shorter barrel, lightweight body and stronger telescopic focus. He will be using silencer, that will affect the trajectory of the bullet. Had to take that in consideration.


He removed the gun, attached the barrel, silencer, the telescope and finally inserted the feed; a 4 round detachable internal magazine. Expected accuracy of the rifle is less but then he loved challenges. Lived for them.
He bought the gun to his eye level then adjusted the stock of the gun on his shoulder. The weight and feel of his prized possession was comforting. He then adjusted the focus of telescope and swooped the barrel down looking for the target. His Kill.

The unsuspecting humans down on ground were moving as per their needs. Some running, some strolling but no one had time to stop by and take a breath.

‘There!’
A man shorter stockier in white kurta trying to move his heavier body in general direction of moving human mass.

‘Looks like he is in hurry’.


He adjusted the focus till cross hairs of the gun were trained on the man’s forehead.He pulled back the safety latch.He then touched the trigger with his finger. The trigger of his gun is crisp. He knows he had to be careful while pulling it. For once a bullet leaves the comforting nest of the magazine; its path is unforgiving. It can’t be recalled back. It can’t be stopped. It will stop its deadly journey when it will hit something. Or Someone.
So He waited for his moment.

There were too many of human bodies who were shielding his Kill. He did not want any bystander to get in the way of his bullet. Not out of mundane feelings like compassion for fellow beings. He has till date never hit anything or anyone unnecessarily. More often than not he used a single bullet for the job. He likes clean Kills. His own words!

‘Now!!’
The man marked by death himself momentarily lost his human cover by moving forward. Just couple of seconds and that’s all He needed.


The trigger was pulled.
The sound of the bullet being released for its deadly journey was hardly audible; its brutal journey was hardly visible; its end: sudden.
And then came death. The man collapsed with a neat circle of bullet in his head, eyes open. He could not even feel when death came calling and claimed him. It was sudden but total. For almost a few serene mundane moments there was silence marred by usual everyday noises. And then someone screamed. Unnatural harsh sound marring the regular day in the life of normal public. People finally noticed the macabre scene of a lifeless man sprawled on the road; blood oozing out of his head. A man who probably was walking alongside them just a moments back. Alive and unconcerned maybe. Now there is nothing but absolute finality that death brings in its wake.
There was sudden explosion of screams. People started running. Here; there; everywhere. Nobody knew where or why but they wanted to put a healthy distance between themselves and the dead man on the sidewalk.
Screams, sirens; running feet and shoving bodies. It was pandemonium.


Job done!
The man calmly stripped his weapon down, stashed them down in his briefcase hurriedly but with care. Then adjusted his tie and blazer and caught the handle of the briefcase with its deadly cargo in his right hand and ran for the fire exit.

He took three stairs at a time and stopped on the second floor. He was not panting for breathe. Calm and collected, he entered the corridor and called the lift. When the lift doors opened he entered and pressed the ground floor.People in the lift never suspected even for a moment that the man standing next to them has just snuffed the life of a breathing human body.
He entered the lobby and calmly walked towards the door. The pandemonium outside was slowly creeping into the hotel. But he kept on walking. No one gave him suspecting glances. With his blue shirt, stripped tie and dark blazer he looked like a business man. A purposeful business man who has to be given way. Yes despite chaos there were ladies who noticed him wishing He would notice them. And there were men who were wondering about this guy who looked as if he owned the world. At 5 feet 11 inches he was tall with a body that was more lean than bulking up. He was not handsome in technical sense but there was that ‘something’ in him that made women give him glances and men give him way.


Without breaking his long strides but not appearing hurried either he entered the road. People were gathering at the spot where the dead body is lying. He didn’t linger. Not in his rules of job.

He walked past the scene of death. He could hear sirens wailing and coming closer. Police arriving. He went near a nondescript ordinary car parked legally in the parking zone by roadside, pulled the keys out, opened the door and entered. He sat in the car for a moment taking the scene in through rear view mirror. Then started the ignition and slowly carefully manoeuvred the car forward. Not speeding but maintaining a reasonable speed he hit the road. Just another day in the job.


Job Done!!

****************************************************************************

Ringgggg!!! Ringgg!!!

Brows furrowed he looked at the mobile ringing on the dashboard. Picking it up he glanced at the caller number.’Samrat’ the name was flashing. He felt a flash of irritation. He slowly stopped the car at the road side allowing the traffic to move on. He then picked the phone.

‘Speaking!’
Hi!hello niceties he had no time for.

“Is the job finished?” a voice enquired from the other end. Samrat’s voice.

His irritation increased.
‘When I take up a job, IT IS considered Done.’ He replied in a voice which would have told better men to back off.

Samrat did not catch up but went on “You mean Ranawat died?”

This time His irritation was total.
He replied without bothering to hide his sarcasm “Yeah bullet in the head has this habit of killing people. So i guess he died”.

This time Samrat didn’t fail to understand His tone.
‘You can’t talk to me that way!’ he rasped.

‘Well i guess i just did Kid!’ He shot off.

Samrat blew up at that insulting parting. He started spluttering “How dare u? Don’t you forget your place! But for us you would be living in the gutters of Underworld. My dad made you. Hell! My Dad owns you.”

At that moment He spoke and spoke in the voice that was chilling;
“No one ever did” He paused “And no one ever Will” that chilling voice continued “OWN ME!!”..
“I do what I want to do. My game! My rules! So take that attitude of Me master; you servant to someone who cares. Coz you know what I DON’T GIVE A DAMN!!”

Samrat barely containing his anger tried to interject “You!! You!!”

“The name..” He calmly said “is Gabriel!”

He disconnected the phone threw it on the back seat and started the car. Under his steering the car smoothly moved forward onto the road.

Nims


TO BE CONTINUED

— A series by Candy Lemon [Nimmi] —

 
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Posted by on December 1, 2013 in Fiction Corner

 

Angel

A gripping tale of death, life and love……

Prologue

Some Love Stories are made in Heaven
Some are Born in Hell!!!
This Love Story goes beyond: Heaven & Hell !!!

Present day  :

Drip drip drip……

“Damn it!! Somebody shut the sound!” the man thought in frustration.
Beep beeeep beeeep…

“Goddamn it! Stop it; just stop this racket! Is nobody listening?”

The cacophony of sound was unrelenting.

“Where the hell am I???”

He tries to open his eyes but fails.
His eyes refuse to obey his command. As if they are welded shut not willing to watch the world around.
He tries to move his body but fails. As if it is made of lead. Solid and immovable.

“No!!” he roared in frustration. “This is not happening. I am the master of my mind and body. They are MY slaves. I command you to obey.”

They replied eerily “No! We wont bow to your command. We don’t recognise you as our master. We are not your slaves anymore”.

And then there was pain.

An explosion of fierce unforgiving pain. An unstoppable pain coursing through out his body hurling, hunting and hurting.

“Agghhhh!” A part of him voiced in pain “I am hurting. Somebody please stop this pain. This pain is hurting my body. This pain is burning my Soul”.

“Haa!!” Snickered another part of him “Soul? What soul are you talking about? You DON’T have a SOUL”.

“Then why am I feeling this pain, this burning, hurting, killing pain?”

The voice asked pitifully.

“Pain??” Mocked the harsher, unrelenting voice “pain is for humans. YOU are beyond pain”

“Yes!!!” Agreed the man.

Both the voices were startled and they stared at him.

The Man continued in a voice that was calm. Deadly calm.

“I am hurting.”

“I am in pain.”

“But it feels good”.

The voices were staring at him in confusion.

“You know what does this pain means??” the man mockingly asked the voices.

They kept staring uncomprehendingly.

“It means…” said the man

“I AM ALIVE”…….

Nims
TO BE CONTINUED

——-A series by Candy Lemon——-

 
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Posted by on October 27, 2013 in Fiction Corner