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Crime Fiction Christian


Satish was very much upset that day. He had found a heart-shaped chocolate box in the corner of his study room. He was wondering who had sent him this box. That too on Valentine's day, last year. And he was not aware of it. He was perturbed that he had not even acknowledged the receipt of such a gift on the special occasion of Valentine's day. He tried to recollect where he was on the last valentine's day. He remembered that he was busy with the installation and implementation of the computer system at the client’s place in Amravati. He recollected that just before the pandemic, he had gone to Amaravati with his team of 4 engineers. They had finished their work and they were getting ready to get back to Mumbai. But in the first week of February only lock-down was enforced and to curb the spread of the pandemic all the channels of transportation were canceled. The services of trains and flights were called off. He was forced to stay in Amravati only. He and his team used this time to complete the installation of the hardware and the application software too.

After a month or so, he got the information that his brother was infected by the Covid-19 virus and was admitted to the hospital. Satish somehow tried to reach Mumbai but could not meet his brother before he left on the eternal journey. Due to this mishap, the news of the arrival of the heart-shaped chocolate box did not reach him.

When Satish opened the box, he found a note waiting to be read. He quickly read it and he was distressed. The chocolate box was sent by Vidya.

He had met Vidya in many conferences. She was an Engineer working for a multi-national company. Satish had heard from other friends that she had resigned from her present job and would join the new company by 15th February. Since he had developed a soft corner for her, he wanted to see her alone. But before he could meet her to know more about her, he had to rush to Amravati for the installation of a big computer system. Vidya too was smitten by Satish. To mark the beginning of their relationship, she sent Satish a heart-shaped chocolate box on Valentine’s day. 

When Satish was back from Amravati, he was distressed that Covid-19 had taken away his younger brother. A couple of months passed in despair. When he came to terms with the reality, he remembered Vidya. He tried to get in touch with her. He got only information that she had resigned from her job. But he could not get her whereabouts. Since she did not keep in touch with him, Satish was unhappy.

He repeatedly remembered how they met in conferences several times.

 There was no communication between them during the entire last year. Since Vidya did not contact him further, Satish had concluded that she did not have any interest in him.   

 Now, seeing the chocolate box, Satish was astonished that Vidya had taken an initiative and sent him the greetings for Valentine’s Day. Satish kept wondering why none of his family members could inform him about the chocolate box. He blamed his fate that Vidya’s gift on Valentine’s day with a clear signal about her special feelings for him had got ignored, due to the mishap in the house exactly on the same day. He was so disturbed that he could not think of anything else but Vidya.

“Now, where would she be? How should I get in touch with her?

In the absence of my response to her greetings, had she concluded that I was not interested in her and so, had she chosen a different person as a life partner? Simply, I am the victim of a stroke of fate.

Anyway, now I must quickly find out where has she joined? Must try to explain to her how the Valentine’s Day gift did not reach him till the day before. If my luck favors me, she might take a positive look at it and continue the relationship with me. I would be very lucky.  

But if she has already put me off from her dictionary, I must seek pardon and must try to forget her.”

A few days later, Satish had to go to Ratlam with his team of Engineers to carry out computer installation. And one evening in the market, Satish spotted a lady who looked like Vidya in the newly built market in Ratlam. He was very happy to find her a few hundred feet away. He increased his pace and tried to stop her. Unaware of Satish, the lady moved quickly and was lost in the crowd. Satish tried to call out but could not draw her attention. He was wondering whether she had shifted to Ratlam. He was curious to know whether she was married to a person in Ratlam.

The thought of her getting married to a person from Ratlam disturbed him very much.

Satish could not get any further clue to her being in Ratlam. Later, Satish did not meet any lady who looked like Vidya.

After 15-20 days of work, Satish and his team returned to Mumbai. A month later, Satish and his team had to go to Ahmedabad. The entire team was busy completing the work of installation and training the client.

After the day's hard work, Satish decided to take a stroll on the bank of the lake in the city. A lot of youngsters in groups were dawdling in the open area near the lake. The cool breeze was making the environment pleasant. After the confinement of more than a year then, everyone was enjoying the fresh, cool air. Satish was relishing the open atmosphere.

And suddenly, Satish was shocked. In a group of youngsters, one lady just looked like Vidya. Though so much time had elapsed after their last meeting, he still had not forgotten her. And he wanted to meet her at least once to seek pardon from her for his not acknowledging the Valentine's Day gift. He got alert and tried to approach the group. He followed the group. When at the crossroad, the group went on the other side of the road and the signal turned red. He could not cross over. Meanwhile, the group got into their vehicles and left the place. Satish, held at the other side of the road, was helplessly watching them leave the place. Once again, he missed the chance to meet Vidya. He was wondering, “does this mean that Vidya is in Ahmedabad?”

Satish was extremely sad.  He was confused. How was it that he could not forget her so far? Was he really in love with her? He had not given up everything for her like a filmy hero. But he still adored her and he spotted her in different cities.

For the next 2-3 days, in the evening Satish visited the same place, wishing that he could meet Vidya at least once. But it was not efficacious.

After 4 days, when their work was over, the entire team returned to Mumbai.

Even though the job was successfully finished, Satish was lost in thoughts of Vidya.

“When can I see her? I want to tell her that I loved her. Though I had never said in explicit words, I loved her, pure and selfless. It was destiny that I could not see her gift soon after it reached me. No importance for the gift. But that was an indication of the special feelings she had for me. My self-effacing character could not open out my feelings to her.”

Next month, Satish had an assignment of installing a computer system in Kolhapur.

The team with Satish as their leader reached Kolhapur, with their equipment. While opening out their packages, one of the members said,” Sir, do you know one Ms.Vidya, who is also a computer Engineer, hails from Kolhapur? If we meet her, we will have to go for dinner at her house. She was my colleague in my previous organization.“

Satish, concealing his interests in her, said,” Is she from Kolhapur? Do you know her contact?”

“She resigned last year. She was supposed to join CWPRS in Vishakhapatanam. But after 5 months I checked up with my friend who also works in the same department where Ms.Vidya was supposed to join. He said they were waiting for her. But she did not report. Maybe she had chosen some other organization. CWPRS waited for three months, but since she did not report at all, the post was filled by another candidate. So, I don’t know where she has joined.” The colleague explained.

Satish was again disappointed that he could not get any information about Vidya.

After working on the installation for 5 days, other specialists took over their tasks. Satish relieved a bit, took a walk on the Rankala Lake in the evening. He was hoping that he would meet Vidya at the lake. Watching every person passing by, he did not want to miss Vidya at least here.

Many groups of youngsters were passing by. But he could not find Vidya. Disappointed, Satish was about to leave the place. And he saw Vidya approaching him. Thrilled, he was extremely happy. Hurriedly she came and said, “Ay Satish, what are you doing here?”

"I am waiting for you," Satish said.

“Come on, did you expect me here? “

"At least, was hoping to see you. I am so glad to meet you. I have a lot to talk to you," Satish reeled off.

“Satish, I am here with all my friends. “ Vidya uttered this looking around.

“Where are they? “ Satish.

"A little further. We just passed by. I was surprised to see you here. But I wanted to see you alone without anyone knowing about it. I don’t have much time. Can we meet tomorrow at Panhala at the Paavan Khind?”

“I don’t know the place. But I will find out. What time?”

“Around 5 in the evening. From there, we will walk up to the Bajiprabhu Point,” Vidya.

“Yes, sure. I will be at Paavan Khind at Panhala. See you.” Satish said.

“See you, then.” Saying this Vidya rushed back to join her group which Satish could not see.

Satish was extremely happy that he could meet Vidya. He was not clear about her marital status and did not know anything further about her. But she was going to meet him the next day. He was thrilled.

The next day, at sharp 5 he reached the Pavan Khind of Panhala. In five minutes, Vidya arrived. The same smile on her face that had impressed Satish.

“So nice to meet you, Satish. I was waiting for this for so many days.” Vidya said.

“Let us start going to Hirakani Buruj. A wonderful point to watch the entire Kolhapur and the surrounding area. “ Vidya added.

They started walking. Satish tried to look out for the Mangalsutra around her neck, the symbol of a married lady. But he could not notice anything like that. He was relieved. But he did not dare to touch her hand. He was careful to keep a safe distance from her to honor her pride.

“So, you wanted to tell me something," Vidya said.

“Yes, Vidya. I seek pardon for not responding to the gift for Valentine’s day last year. It so happened that ……" Satish told her the entire happening a year back.

 “I came across the chocolate box just a few days ago. I hope you will understand and pardon me for this horrendous behavior. I want to tell you that I too love you.”

When they almost reached the cliff of Hirkani Buruj, Vidya came closer to Satish.

“Don’t worry about it, Satish. I am so delighted that you also loved me. I was so eager to hear these words from you. I am extremely happy,” Saying this Vidya extended her hand to hold Satish’s hand.

Satish was surprised. He was exhilarated that Vidya too loved him. But he was startled to feel her hand too cold. He was shocked. He could not utter a single word.

"Let us sit on this rock watching the sunset. I want to narrate my story."

They took a place close to each other. Satish was impatient to hear her story.

“Before you went to Amravati, I had planned to meet you and wanted to know about your feelings about me. I had received the appointment letter from CWPRS, Vishakhapatanam. If you also had the feelings same as I had about you, I would not accept the offer and not go out of Mumbai. But since we did not meet, I decided to accept CWPRS job. I was finding it very difficult to leave Mumbai without talking to you. I resigned from my job and went to Vishakhapatanam. I checked into a hotel. I was not feeling well. Ignoring body pain, running nose, etc. I sauntered on a deserted road. And all of a sudden, I had breathing difficulty and I collapsed. I was afraid that the Covid-19 lurking in the atmosphere had trapped me. I lay there unconscious for more than an hour. When I got conscious, I was on a ventilator in a hospital with attendants in PPE kits.

I realized I was a Covid-19 victim. No one knew me. I did not have any identification on me. In a very short time, I left this world. I was cremated as an unidentified person."  

Satish was horrified. Now he could relate to her cold hands.

“Does that mean, we can never meet again?” Satish said in a choked voice.

“No, Vidya, I cannot bear this shock," Satish murmured. He could not control his sob.

“I was trying to get in touch with you. I tried meeting you in Ratlam, then in Ahmedabad, and now, here. Now I am satisfied after hearing those words from you.

Satish, hold my hands and embrace me. “ saying this Vidya stretched her both hands. Satish held both cold hands and embraced her with affection.

"I love you, Vidya," Satish said loudly.

Separating herself from Satish, Vidya went away from Satish. Satish kept watching. Slowly Vidya went down the valley and disappeared.

The dogs in the far-off fields started whining.

Satish quickly came to the Paavan Khind and took transport back to his hotel.

February 17, 2022 20:56

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1 comment

Vanshika Datta
01:38 Feb 22, 2022

Many people, like Satish, are never able to meet their love forever. It's the sad reality of life. Though, life goes on. But atleast he told her whatever he had inside him at the end 🙂


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