Started at (K)nighted Men-Part 1

Contd from No more charades-Part 4

She stared back at him. The softer tones of his face could still be visible on the hint of lines here and there. The lilting eyelashes mocking his sterner ways. What had he done to extract this reaction early morning? She wondered.

“I only wanted to buy you some tomatoes for the evening soup,” she whispered.

He suddenly moved very close to her and grabbed her by the shoulders before speaking in that deep threatening voice, “there could be no evening if you haven’t done it right.”

***

“Mr. Salim, we have gone through the entire routine a lot of times. I was home by seven. Yes he called me at eight, we had a minor argument one which Mala must have already updated you on and then I decided to call it a night. Now if you please excuse me I need to pick up my laundry before the shop closes,” she replied rather haughtily

Inspector Salim on his part waited a good two minutes befoe speaking. Waiting for the lady to reach the final frontier- the front door.

“Ms. Malini,” he called out.

She stopped short with a jerk and turned.

“Call me Mrs. Malini. My divorce is still to be finalised,” she snapped.

“Oh yes, about that. Is it true you have been living separately with your husband for now three years?” he continued in that rather bored fashion.

“Though it is my private matter but since you asked I would like to correct you its now been four years,” she replied, swinging her bag once again on her shoulder to indicate the point of departure, from conversation and room.

“My bad. Now will I be okay in assuming that Mr. Rehan had nothing to do with the estrangement with your husband as such?” he asked, this time raising his head to match that piercing gaze from her eyes.

“It would be okay in assuming so. I met Rehan a year ago at a party and by then my divorce had already been filed in courts. Now I can sit and chat all day, but like you can see I do not have the time to entertain you. Goodbye,” and with that one swift movement she walked out.

Salim stayed back and thought of her more. How gracefully she had walked in and out. Despite the last couple of minutes which in his opinion still managed to go pretty fine, given he did at some point accuse her of having a motive.

“Ramlal,” he called out almost as if he reached a Eureka moment.

“Have you heard of a Ms. Sudha before?” he asked staring up at a rather confused constable who seemed to have seen better days, at least better sleeping days.

***

Sudha looked up to watch her husband flinch under the weight of his burden. He had sinned. He had probably sinned more than he would like to believe. But still the idea of seeing him be wrong in any aspect never crossed her mind.

What choice did he have? She thought to herself.

“Sudha, think again. Are you sure you absolutely made no mistake?” he asked again, this time with a hint of desperation rather anger in his voice.

Contd at Spoiling a perfect plan-Part 6

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