The train was trundling down the track amid sheer darkness with a long irresistible horn. It was a cold foggy night and that incessant noise had triggered turbulence in its serene ambiance.
I peeped my oval-shaped head out of the window to catch a glimmering light standing tall in the abyss darkness. That light slowed down the pounding heart in my chest. But as the train crawled along it judders past the light. Now it was never-ending darkness covering my sight so I drew back my head and rested it back on my seat.
‘Hey, when it will reach the Nagpur station?’, a ruddy-faced passenger asked me.
‘Probably 1 in the noon tomorrow’, I replied.
I checked my phone and it was a quarter past 10 so I had to bear another 15 hours of this hauling journey.
The day was already a tedious one before and this journey was making it worse. I hadn’t smoked weed in a coon’s age and every nerve of mine was craving for the blunt. But it was illicit to smoke here so I tried skewing my thoughts away from it. The compartment was filled with rantings of co-passengers complaining about its slow trotting pace.
Just then I heard a long sigh from a girl sitting beside me – ‘Not again’, she cried. The train had stopped somewhere in the desolate land probably waiting for the signal.
It has always been a customary thing for our trains to take a halt anywhere anytime.
It was 11.15 pm and a chubby kid was relentlessly eating a cheese roll to which I was drooling over like a little puppy. I wanted to snatch that roll from him but then his mother cast a stern look at me. So, I swayed my eyeballs away towards the window. I was gazing around the compartment hoping for some small talks with the fellow commutators when I noticed a lone diary lying down. It was a blood-red color dilapidated diary gazing at me as if it wanted me to turn its pages. I looked around probably for its owner but couldn’t find one so I picked it up with some ill at ease.
I turned some pages with jittering fingers of mine. I was thinking the owner might punch me on my obnoxious nose if he catches me red handed reading the diary. But neglecting the consequences I kept on turning the pages till my eyes paused at the word- ‘Murder’.
The paragraph ran as follows:
26 November 2016
I got back home opened the front door from my latchkey and walked in languidly. It was just another day of loafing around the streets pondering over the latest traumas. We are in deep waters surviving on fringes with a ghastly secret buried inside. That secret is fluttering like a caged bird writhing to fly. There is the poison inside my throat which is killing me day by day. The poison of my heinous crime which I really need to vomit out, but that poison can burn our lives. So, I decided to keep it buried until I escape this hell.
I hung my overcoat and strolled in.
‘Abhinav, you there’, I cried
I didn’t get any answer so I walked towards his room. The door was wide opened and Abhinav was sitting on his arm-chair with his head fallen sideways. There was a sharp-edged dagger lying on the floor submerged with the blood. The same blood was pouring down from my friend’s neck. I sauntered towards the body. He was dead, dead as the door-nail. The countenance on his face suggested extreme shock. As if someone had attacked him out of the blue.
I was reeling with the shock when I noticed Sophia slouched against the wall. She was undressed and traumatized. But what was she doing there in my friend’s room? I asked her with intense gravity in my tone. She replied something in broken words that I don’t remember. Her face looked pale and white, white like a cheese. She was sobbing bitterly but didn’t run to hug me instead she ran away from me. I don’t know why. Maybe she was mad at me because I had broken her favourite vessel.
But who killed Abhinav? Is it my girl Sophia? But why she would kill my best friend. Maybe she killed him for the money. All these thoughts were rankling across my puny head when I saw my palms covered in the blood and stains around my t-shirt.
‘Will you please turn off the lights’, said an old man from the seat above my head.
I turned off the light and closed the diary with heavy stomach.
Nishant is an engineering student who loves to read and write mystery thrillers.