Ankahee Chapter 11

Posted by Shabia Walia on

#storiesbyshabiawalia

Ankahee

Episode 11

Ruhi opened the door, still dazed at who was standing at her door.

‘Hello Inspector Gaekwad,’ she muttered softly.

‘Good evening ma'am.,’ Inspector replied. ‘Sorry to trouble you at this hour but one of your employees got into trouble for drunk driving. He almost killed someone. It was lucky that the person escaped getting hurt and didn't lodge a police complaint.’

Ruhi tried to absorb who it was. She couldn't see anyone with the inspector.

‘Who is it?’, she tried to portray a calm composure when all she wanted to do was slap the person and go back to sleep. She was dead tired.

‘We asked him his name and some reference and he mentioned that he worked for your channel. On hearing your name, I thought I should bring him to you instead of arresting him. We need you to identify him and stand guarantor for him. If you aren't willing, I will file an fir’. Ruhi nodded taking in the information.

‘Fine’, she said. ‘Bring him in’.

Inspector Gaekwad went down and came back with his constable and Suhail.

Ruhi was shocked to see it was Suhail who had almost killed someone. Suhail looked at her apologetically as if saying sorry.

Inspector Gaekwad asked Ruhi if she knew him and he worked for them. Suhail waited with bated breath. He knew Ruhi would identify him and hence had given her name. He was deeply sorry for the mess.

Ruhi after a moment nodded yes.

Suhail breathed a sigh of relief. Inspector Gaekwad got some papers signed by Ruhi and leaving Suhail with her, was on his way.

Ruhi didn't say anything and walked inside. Suhail followed her saying, ‘I can explain Ruhi. I am really sorry’.

Ruhi said, ‘Go to the guest room and sleep Suhail. We shall talk in the morning. I am dead tired’.

Suhail muttered a meek ok and walked slowly towards the guest room. But just before he entered the room he said, ‘Ruhi, please don't mention this to Randeep or else I will lose my job. Please, I beg of you.’

Ruhi looked at him sternly and then seeing his sincere apology nodded.

‘Good night Suhail’, she said and turned towards her room.

She had enough of a long day. She changed into her night pajamas, brushed her teeth, said her prayers and was about to sleep when she again heard the doorbell ring.

‘It must be the inspector again’, she thought and went to open the door. She would now really lose her temper, she told herself. She was really tired.

She was again shocked at who she saw.

Randeep stood smiling at her.

‘Randeep you?’, she said, her voice clearly laced with surprise.

‘Yes, I am sorry. After I landed here, I just realised that maybe I should have asked you before coming,’ he sheepishly offered.

Ruhi sighed not sure what to say.

He stood there waiting for her to call him in.

Ruhi was in a dilemma. What should she do? Suhail was sleeping inside and she didn't want Randeep to know what he had done.

‘Randeep I have had a long day, I just want to retire today. I hope you don't mind’, she meekly said.

He looked disappointed at her words but tried to cover it.

‘Sure’, he said. ‘It was just that I hated going to an empty home so just thought would catch a cup of coffee with you, but fair enough. I will leave.’ He turned to go.

She now felt really sorry for him.

‘Randeep wait. I guess I can spare some time for a coffee’, she offered.

His face brightened up as he turned back.

Suhail must be sleeping deeply and Randeep can leave after the coffee, she thought to herself.

He walked with her to the kitchen and they laughed and chatted as she made coffee.

She did look very tired and he felt guilty for forcing her to stay up.

He finally said, ‘You look very tired Ruhi. I am sorry.’

She smiled. ‘It's ok. You don't refuse your boss coffee even if it's in the middle of the night’.

He smiled back. She looked like a little girl in her pyjamas, not the confident woman he saw everyday in office.

They looked at each other and as she looked at him and tried to take her cup of coffee, it spilt and she twitched with the sting of the heat.

‘Oh no’, he said and quickly held her hand and held it under the kitchen tap. Her face reflected her discomfort but she tried not to show it.

He then made her sit at the kitchen table and kept blowing on her hand to ease the pain. She kept saying she was ok. He asked her for some ointment and she pointed to the kitchen drawer.

As he applied it on her hand lovingly, she kept observing him. He didn't seem like the CEO she worked for. Instead a gentle and kind friend sat in front of her.

He shared his coffee with her and they shared tales of them burning various things as they grew up.

With her, he could smile easily, she didn't judge him, he knew.

As she got up to keep her cup, he followed her asking her if he could help her wash.

She nodded no but he was right behind her and as she turned back, he held her shoulders and looked into her eyes.

‘Time for you to go to bed Ruhi. I have never seen you so tired’. Randeep said softly.

She nodded sleepily and leaned on him. She could have slept there only. He held her close with both hands. He caressed her face idly with her thumb.

How he wished she could sleep like this in her arms forever.

Ruhi realised quickly where she was and then looked up giving him a tight hug before she moved away.

‘I should be going Ruhi. You rest.’, he said.

‘Good night Randeep and sorry I am so sleepy’, she said apologetically.

Randeep turned towards the door and she followed him when the guest room door opened and out walked Suhail.

Randeep’s eyes fell on him as he was shocked to see him emerging from Ruhi’s room.

He looked at Ruhi accusingly as Ruhi closed her eyes in despair. This was exactly what she didn't want.

‘I now see why you didn't want me here Ruhi. I am sorry I disturbed your session with him. You can now carry on’, he spewed bitterly.

Before Ruhi could say anything, Randeep was out of the door.

Ruhi ran her fingers through her hair and looked at Suhail.

Suhail said, ‘I am sorry, I thought it was Inspector Gaekwad again but why did you have to call Randeep here. I told you not to tell him right? I guess being in the boss’s good books is more important than helping a friend, right?’ He said in a hurtful voice.

Ruhi stood there shocked. The two men she cared for had openly accused her for double crossing them.

She wished she would fall into a deep sleep and never had to get up again. She really wished.

…….to be continued

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