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Friday, September 26, 2014

The Scibblers Orchard: Part 17

The Part before this story is here: Part 16 :

As Arjun reached his police station after barely sleeping a little and found each national newspaper on his desk roaring "Ismail Abdullah: Head of All India Muslim League Kidnapped", "The Man Behind Peace With Muslim Nations Disappears”, “First the PM and Now Ismail Abdullah, the Police has No Answers". He kicked his table, they were not wrong for it had been 6 days and not a clue about the Prime Minister was found apart from that one of his kitchen staff had drugged everyone in the security, the last supper, he made. It was an inside job and the man had fake identity, but that was a dead end and now this. As if that wasn't enough there was another one, what did they want? No sooner could he gather his thoughts his mobile phone started ringing, it was his team following the car where Rohi’s bag was found.

Shekhar Dutta was just amazed at another kidnapping. Already there had been one murder and two kidnappings and no news about the Prime Minister and now this. At first he thought it was some terrorist organization, his experience as a journalist could only suggest that because as far as history went only terrorists would dare such a feat, but this was more much more. The Prime Minister was loved by all, after a long time there was a leader people had selected by majority for he had tolerance and respect for every religion, why would anyone wish to harm him and if they were indeed terrorists why had there been no demand yet? 

As far as Ismail Abdullah was concerned, he was the most peace loving religious Muslim. As far as his story went he had only and only sent out messages of peace and been very active on the Prime Ministers mission to establish good relations with each and every Islamic nation. It was the combined effort of the PM with him that had led to better relations with the most difficult to achieve nations like Pakistan. So could it be some other fanatic group from one of these nations? There was just too much happening to focus and write; there had been no news about his darling daughter yet.

At the very moment his thoughts were perturbed by a door bell, it was Arjun. He requests Shekhar to go to spot where the Police had been surveying the abandoned car on Juhu beach. All they found was a ribbon, which Shekhar confirmed was Roohi's. The forensic team now searched for fingerprints or any other evidence. The car's papers were all false and it was not on Ahuja's name, though Shekhar was sure it was his, they need more proof to get a search warrant to this man's house. 


Acharya was sitting in his room. Its darkness a symbolic of the state of people's minds he thought. He burnt a candle. The flame reminded him of his family house, how each day he and his mother would light up the lamps of his temple. A practice he continued even after he became a father. He was closest to his mother and happiest with her. She was a religious woman and so the quality came naturally to him. There was not a single festival or an occasion Natural it was, wasn't it for the only son. His mother loved him most in the world too and was very proud of him. And why wouldn't she be? He had successfully handled his business after his father and made it reach new heights. He spun the millions that his father had made into billions, a feat not achieved by anyone in their families. Life seemed at its happiest with a successful marriage and a lovely little daughter he had. But can life be so perfect so easily? 

One day the dream broke and his mother was detected of leukemia. He wanted to do everything to save her He took her to the best specialists in the world and tried everything in the world possible for her treatment. He also appeased every God in every religion and every temple, Gurudwara or Mosque. He went to each place he thought God is and will give him back his mother's health. His focus was completely lost on the business and his partners took advantage of that. One day he was left with no money, not a penny to buy his mother's expensive drugs. What else was left to happen then, she left him. He was shattered, the grief was beyond anything he had ever felt. He felt cheated not for the loss of money but faith, the Gods he so lovingly prayed to, so regularly had all snatched away everything he had. It was then for the first time his mind asked for greater truths. "Was there any happiness at all or it was a myth?" "Was there anyone who would not leave you and love you for life?" Many said God will do right one day, but then God's had lost their chance with him, so he left home and went wandering. That was when he started feeling that he would find his answers. He worked for 3 days a week to fill his hungry stomach and the remaining three he spent in a library trying to read journeys of men similar to him. He read the life of Asoka, who was betrayed by his victory; that intrigued him to read more about Siddhartha or Buddha, who was illusioned by happiness that a mere glimpse of sadness broke him but the answers to his questions were nowhere. So he went into earlier times when Man had started worshipping elements of nature. He couldn’t find much on this and so he decided to travel to get to his answers.

He travelled the country far and wide where he had lost all sense of time, space and location. He had walked into the dense woods in search of food unknowingly. It was growing dark and all he had managed to get was wild berries. He was hungrier and needed more but wasn’t adept at hunting. He then saw fire and heard some chanting. He walked in the direction trying to get a sense of it all. He found a bunch of men and women barely dressed in leaves chanting around fire. Their faces shone brighter than any he had seen. When he went near them to ask for food, they fed him with whatever he had, they cleaned his bruises from walking in the forest, thorns etc. and then began talking. They were the kindest people he had met in days and they told him, they too like him had given up on the world; each one had travelled to the forest and met their leader who was the first enlightened one. They believed like the ancients in the worship of Fire, which was one true God. He now thought maybe he had found his answer. After spending six months there he decided this was the truth of life. This is what the world had to learn. There is only one God out of which all life is born and that is Fire, and it was time for him to spread his message far and wide.


Arjun heard back from the forensic team. The fingerprints didn’t match anyone with criminal records. They were all now at the orchard. Some of his people in civilian clothes were keeping an eye on the place. Jeniffer had also come there hearing about the car. There was no evidence against him, and Shekhar began to break. Tara wasn't there to soothe her husband but went ahead with her work saying that was the only thing that kept her sane in tough times. He was fine with it but at that minute when Roohi's kidnappers had left no clue he felt just too lonely and really wished he could hug someone.

Arjun couldn't see his favourite person Shekhar in that state; he was worried more than anything else of what could happen to Roohi. He couldn't give them more time, if Ahuja was a suspect they had no option but to break into his house and survey and all of them agreed to the plan.

The next moment they were standing at Ahuja's door.
Read the next part of the story here:

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