The Scribbler’s Orchard: PART 28

Do you want to see your evidence?” Acharya asked and then he ordered his men to bring Shekhar, Tara and Jennifer to the rituals room.

Arjun stood there unmoved waiting for the right time to attack. Shekhar, Tara and Jennifer were brought to the room. On seeing Shekhar, Roohi ran to him and hugged him. Shekhar and Tara lost their nerves, they wanted to hug their sweet child back, but their hands were tied, so they stood helpless and hopeless.

Acharya let out a loud laughter again. “Do you have any other evidence Arjun?” he roared. “Even if you have, I do not mind because with this sacrifice, I will become invincible.”

“You will not be invincible by human sacrifices, Mr PM” Shekhar raised his voice. “You shall never be powerful. You were the Honourable Prime Minister of India before a couple of hours, but no more, Acharya” Shekhar laughed, “Do you think that I handed over the original photographs to you? Am I that dumb? Is that the only evidence we had? Do you think so? If yes is your answer then you failed miserably.”

“The photographs revealing the true face behind Kochi’s Political Leader murder, the video showcasing Ahuja and your conversation revealing the plan of sacrificing Ismail Abdullah in his place, the audio recording of your plan to bomb during the Ganesh Chaturthi festivals, the photographs of Cyrus and Roohi’s abduction in a van owned by a private sector that is registered to your real name, and finally, the video recording of our conversation couple of hours ago that went live on Tara’s channel.”

Acharya stood his ground. Shekhar continued, “We live in a Nation where media can go anywhere. You forgot that. Check the news channels Acharya. Your fake face is unmasked an hour ago!”

Acharya smiled at Shekhar, “That’s impressive, but not enough to defeat the invincible.” He ordered his men to set the Tomb on fire, so that nobody escapes from here.

Arjun was quick enough to order his team to break into the Tomb. Arjun’s Team was well equipped, though they suffered minor injuries, still in less than two minutes, they managed to shoot down all the goons. In the meantime Arjun set Shekhar, Tara and Jennifer free.

Arjun took his revolver out and said, “Be a good man. Your cooperation is the ticket for the rest of your life.”

Acharya appeared unruffled. “I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be. There is only one God out of which all life is born, and that is the Fire,” he raised his arms upwards closing his eyes. “Let the Glory be to the true God!”

He looked at them furiously. “It’s not easy to defeat the mighty Acharya you little prick.” He let out a loud laughter again and then he jumped into the fire sacrificing himself to the God.” Roohi without her knowledge shouted, “Nana-ji.”


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The Scribbler’s Orchard: PART 19

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Everything was set ready for the rituals to start. Acharya sat before the fire, he being a worshipper of fire believed that human sacrifice would get him all he wished. Mr Ahuja was there with Archarya and they were waiting for the clock to strike twelve.

Acharya said, ‘The time has come. Bring him now.’

Ahuja’s men brought a hooded man, hands tied on back, and both the legs were locked with an iron chain. He was made to sit into a pit next to the fire and his hood was removed.

‘Ismail Abdullah…’ Acharya laughed loudly and then continued, ‘The face of the nation, now to be sacrificed to fire, for the good of the bad.’
Ismail Abdullah lifted his hand up, raised his head and prayed to God, ‘Allah, let the peace prevail in this world!’ He looked into Acharya eyes first and then Ahuja and the goons there and said, ‘I promise on Allah that none of you will escape from the eyes of people. They’re watching you.’ He laughed pointing Ahuja’s men.

Acharya and Ahuja confusingly looked at the men standing before, shouted in unison, ‘Who’s the black sheep?’

Abdullah laughed again and said, ‘Before you find him, he will kill both of you.’ Irritated Acharya ordered the goons to set the pit on fire. They heard a gunshot outside, followed by one more and many more, which created confusion amongst them. Ahuja ordered his men to take away Abdullah. Acharya ordered to set him on fire. The goons just stood there confused. Ahuja kicked the ritual powder into the fire in frustration, which let out heavy smoke and the whole area became invisible to naked eyes.

Arjun and his team, entering the ritual area, ordered all of them to hands up, but because of the heavy smoke, they were unable to see anyone there. He heard someone shouting for help. He fired a shot to the rooftop and said, ‘Do not move. Stay, wherever you are. Otherwise, I’ll shoot all of you.’

They heard one more gunshot. It was not from Arjun. He stood puzzled waiting for the smoke to be cleared.


Shekhar and Jennifer, who were waiting for Arjun outside of Ahuja’s residence, spotted people dragging Roohi into a van. They saw Cyrus on a stretcher lying half-conscious inside the van. Quickly they locked the door and the van started.

Shekhar started to run towards the van shouting his daugther’s name, but a passing car did not allow him to do that. Jennifer luckily clicked photographs of the van, the goons, Roohi and Cyrus.

Shekhar broke down into tears. Jennifer tried to pacify him. And they heard a gunshot from inside, which terrified them.


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The Scribbler’s Orchard: PART 6

To read previous parts follow the links:
PART 1 | PART 2 | PART 3 | PART 4 | PART 5

Cyrus…Tara recalled speaking to a stranger on phone. She corrected her tone, ‘Rohan, can we meet at my place?’
‘Ma’am sure, can we meet today as in a day I’m getting married?’ Rohan conveyed his point.
‘Shekhar Dutta, The Orchard, No…’ Tara gave her address and requested him to come in half-an-hour and left for her home.

Shekhar was almost done with his post “An analogy of me” capturing his beautiful days with the cutest flower – Roohi – all that happened till that last hour. He clicked on Publish and tweeted to his million followers. He knew the power of pen.
‘…Roohi’…he cried instantly. The doorbell was ringing, with urgency. He looked at the wall clock. Quarter past two in the afternoon.
‘It’s not Tara. She will be back only by five.’ He thought for a second…‘Roohi…’he rushed to open the door.

Tara was standing, tears frozen in her eyes. She told Shekhar about Rohan and Cyrus. Scratching his beard, Shekhar was thinking of someone who could help them at this situation. “Arjun”, a young police officer who won a gold medal for his bravery in last year New Delhi Bombings. They saw Rohan entering the gate.

Rohan’s lips curved a little, but his worried face conveyed his pain. ‘Tara?’
‘It’s better if we go inside.’ Shekhar said in a grave voice, Tara and Rohan followed.
Rohan narrated the entire episode right from the moment Cyrus landed in Mumbai, handed over all the proofs to Shekhar and pleaded them to save Cyrus.
Shekhar and Tara thanked Rohan for his help. Rohan left the place.
‘Are you going to let this information out?’ Tara asked.
‘Arjun…’ Shekhar took his mobile phone out.

‘Arjun,’ Shekhar said.
‘Hello uncle! How are you? How’s Tara aunty and my little angel?’
‘Arjun…I need your help badly to save Roohi.’
‘Roohi…What happened to her uncle?’
Shekhar narrated the entire episode to Arjun.
‘This is something cruel uncle. Moreover this involves lives of many innocent people. It’s time to play my game.’ Arjun said.
‘I trust you Arjun. I want my daughter back.’ Shekhar paused, after a minute he continued, “I’ll forward the recordings to you. Also, I’ve got something interesting for you. We’ll talk about it in detail tomorrow.’

Jennifer called Shekhar on his mobile phone.
‘Mr Dutta, I’m in Mumbai. I need your help to get out of this sticky situation.’ Jennifer said.
‘Tara will help you in this regard. Moreover, it all started because of me. I will put an end to this.’ Shekhar said firmly and gave the phone to Tara.

Arjun faxed Roohi’s photograph to the head office. He ordered his team to find Roohi.

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