Gautam unravelled…

Chapter 10

(Gautam’s POV)

I love you…’ her words kept ringing in his ears as he kept hitting the hanging punching bag in his private gym. He was drenched with sweat. He didn’t know how long he had been here. Preeti, of course didn’t have to know that he was here. The gym was in the basement of his home. He had rushed here after her declaration earlier in the night… actually he had run. Run away from the most beautiful thing in his fucking life. Run away from his only chance at permanence, from his only chance at redemption. No… he couldn’t sacrifice her as well. Anyone remotely connected to him was destined to get burnt. Preeti was so innocent, so trusting it got tears in his eyes. He felt human around her. But the truth remained, he was a beast. He had abhorred himself, his life… till she came along… actually re-entered. He just couldn’t help himself around her and he let the tsunami of emotions take him along… Now though it crushed him he had to pay the price. It was duty Vs love and he had no option but to choose the former.

 He still remembered the mission twelve years ago. It was by accident that he had stumbled upon the gang’s plan. He had tried his best to keep vigilance as expected of him but somehow he had missed this planning happening right under his nose. But as soon as realisation had hit him he had rushed to that alley. Her brother and that driver were already dead. So he had rushed inside obscuring himself to save the third passenger from the car. But what met his eye as he reached the room was something unexpected. It was a young girl, a teenager about to be violated by the monster. He couldn’t let it happen, not on his conscience. He had thrown off the monster that was hunched over her about to claim her. He had rained blows on him till he fell unconscious. The others came to overpower him but the idiots didn’t know whom they were against. They were no match for him.  His training was strictly to avoid personal involvement of any kind with the victim. But this was his first rescue operation that too unsanctioned by his mentor/boss. He would want his hide but when they got to know he had save the young girl, they would forgive him… wouldn’t they. He had hoped so.

He had thought the monster would abide by his warning and go away. But it didn’t happen. The monster reached the hospital where she was admitted to finish her off. Her ridiculous family had left her alone in the care of the hospital staff. Fortunately he had arrived on time and completed the job. The monster wouldn’t trouble anyone now. The body even if they found it would be unrecognisable. He was answerable to his mentor but he knew he would understand. The girl was safe now but he had to kill unwillingly this time… He was a trained operative and for last six years had been following orders to the T. But this time the lines were blurred.  He was not up against any social predator. The monster was a known entity… hell they had grown up together, was of the same age. Both had striking similarities in built but two major differences. He followed rules whereas the monster didn’t. He had brown eyes whereas the bastard had blue. He had used those blue orbs to gain trust of unsuspecting prey many a times. He always got away with it. But sadly this time Gautam had to do the job of eliminating someone who had once been his friend. Someone, who had trusted him to have his back. That monster was his mentor’s son…No one else knew about the disposed unrecognizable body in the heart of the jungle.

His mentor was the only one who knew what had happened to his son. Their relationship had strained though the mentor didn’t try to show. He was asked to subtly leave the organisation. After spending ten years of his life he was asked to just pack and leave. That his mentor trusted him not to reveal anything about their organisation itself was something important. He would take all their secrets to his grave. He later heard that they had shut shop.

 But he had his mountain of savings and had spent the next couple of months visiting the girl in the hospital. He had helped her heal at least from the physical injuries but the mental scars would remain… who better than him to understand that. He had kept a watch on her. He had found out who had ordered the hit on the car that day. She was just collateral damage. He had also heard the father in the hospital that first day. She had no one to turn to. The archaic household…oh he knew enough about those kinds, was pathetic for her state of mind. He didn’t know why he did what he did. But till she was in Alwar he only had two tasks cut out for him. First, to watch over her and second, developing his business. For the later he had taken over partners. Money could do anything. But for the first job, he did it on his own. He could have appointed someone else but he couldn’t tolerate anyone ogling at her. Preeti had blossomed into a beautiful young woman before him and he had difficulty controlling his libido when she was around. Of course she never knew. She occasionally turned around and checked but she could never find him. Then she had left Alwar. He should have been relieved because that’s what he wanted wasn’t it? In fact he had seen to it that she got that job and later the house in a safe location. He should have been done by now…No more responsibility…

For the next four years he put his heart and soul into his expanding real estate and restoration business. His old contacts ‘helped’. He had opened up work avenues for a lot of people in and around Alwar. He even got a government grant for restoration of ruins which he had thought would hopefully help him achieve his goal someday. For his ‘mother’… His ‘mother’ Romila Devi, the lady who had single handily brought him up along with that monster and a younger sister. She was the mentor’s estranged wife but the only parent he knew. Though she never showed any maternal emotion, she was still better than his birth mother. At least she gave him a place in their life. She had always known about her biological son but had never questioned or doubted or blamed him. She had a sole aim in life. To acquire the Gagorn fort in the Jhalawar district of Rajasthan. He owed her that one. He had tried for years but couldn’t get through the red tape and the stringent conditions put down for acquiring the ruined piece of heritage.  She was an intelligent but an opportunist woman. She didn’t even blink when she had been told about her son’s death. He had done it himself and cried holding her hands. But she had just looked with her lifeless eyes and said, “Just get me Gagorn.” He had been at it for the last twelve years…

One fine day four years after Preeti had left Alwar he craved to see her. He knew she was doing well for herself and was proud of her. But he longed to have a glimpse of her and so he landed in Mumbai on pretext of work. He saw her at work and couldn’t take his eyes off. Her pictures did no justice to her beauty. She was very hardworking and kind-hearted as he saw her interacting with her subordinates. He was a goner right then. He purchased a house at a little distance away and established himself in Mumbai. He felt guilty for having to ignore his moral duties back home but the pull here was stronger.

He had a major shortcoming… his strong libido. He was insatiable. For years he had a few women whom he used, to relieve himself but they all knew what was on the cards and he treated them well. Often they had financial troubles from which he helped them out. He had stopped soliciting them after Preeti left Alwar. It was as if she had taken a piece of him away with her. He loved kink and experimenting with it. A couple of those women had agreed and he had tried the red room at his Alwar bungalow with them. But he realised he had built it with Preeti in mind and no one could hold a candle to her. Even in Mumbai, he had the red room installed to explore his fantasies but he had restricted himself to self-stimulation for relief. In fact most of the times, the room was unused. He couldn’t get himself to go in there without Preeti’s eyes flashing before his eyes and clenching his heart. He only wanted one person on earth and that was his doe eyed beauty. He knew it wasn’t right for him to lust after the unattainable but could he explain that to his heart?

And then his mother had called. Her dream for conquering the Gagorn fort was going to get fulfilled. He would do anything for that but her conditions for that chilled him to the core. He couldn’t refuse her. But before returning to Alwar he once had wanted to see Preeti. He didn’t know he could be emotional as well. It was pouring heavily when he had visited her work place that day.  His heart was galloping and he didn’t even realise he was crying till he felt moisture ion his cheeks. He couldn’t believe that he had it in him… he had never ever cried. Not when his birth parents had abandoned him at the tender age of four years, not when his was forcefully taken out of college at twenty one, not when the mentor flogged him to ‘improve’ during his training years, not when he had to kill the monster who happened to be his friend… But today the thought of moving away from Preeti was killing him inside. He had never spoken with her after the hospital scene twelve years ago and she didn’t even know him. As always he didn’t have a choice and he had to leave soon. But the stonehearted man in him had softened.

He had retreated to the elevator and when it was about to close Preeti had barged in. Was it destiny at play? The lights went off and she recognised him…

Today as he punched the bag over and over his knuckles getting swollen, he wanted to get rid of the emotional turmoil. These few days with Preeti were the best of his life. He didn’t deserve her at all but when she had held his hands and looked at him with her eyes full of trust, it was his undoing. Years of subdued feelings and cravings surfaced upwards and he went with the flow. When he saw her day before yesterday in the black dress in that hotel room he had lost it totally. He was 43 years old and a man with tremendous self-control. But these days it was like she held the strings of his heart and each moment spent with her were tightening the noose for him. He had to let her go before he reached a point of no return. He didn’t deserve her at all… His heart was shattering. The pieces scattered all over and he couldn’t collect them…

She didn’t know…his life was a charade. His life was a duality governed by the balance of light and darkness, with the capacity for both good and evil. How could he explain his life to her? Her soul wouldn’t withstand the truth of his life; the truth of her family…No he couldn’t destroy her. He loved her. Yes… he wiped his tears with the bruised fists and declared to the empty room. HE LOVED HER…

Copyright Disclaimer: All content posted here is a work of fiction and original work based on the author’s imagination. There is no intention to disrespect any person or faith. Any resemblance to any person living or dead or any community is purely coincidental. No part of the content can be copied, reproduced or posted anywhere else either entirely or in parts, without the consent of the author.

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