11, Sky Heights: Chapter 14

Chandni was lying on the bed in her bedroom and was switching the channels on the television. She called in sick and cancelled shooting for the day. Since Nisha’s death, Chandni wasn’t in the best of her spirits. Even when she was in front of the camera, performing a scene, it required more retakes than usual.

While surfing the channels on T.V., she stopped for a moment on the ‘News 365’ channel. An exclusive story about a corrupt politician caught red-handed while taking bribe was being telecast. It didn’t catch her attention. Just as she was about to press the remote button to switch the channel, her eyes noticed the breaking news-strip running on the lower side of the screen. When she read it, she immediately sat upright and kept staring at the T.V screen for a few minutes. The breaking news-strip read: ‘Nisha Narang’s best friend, Mohini Sen shot dead in her car today morning’.

Chandni composed herself and picked up her cellphone and called someone. While the call was connecting, she surfed through the different news channels for more information about Mohini’s death.

***

The Hindi Film Industry shook with the news of Nisha’s death. The gossipmongers discussed only ‘the life and death of Nisha Narang’ as if they had nothing else to talk about. There were waves of sympathy as well as fear within the industry as a consequence to Nisha’s death.  Just when everyone was accepting the fact that Nisha was indeed murdered, one more piece of shocking news had made them all anxious. Why would someone shoot Mohini Sen? Everyone wondered.

Meanwhile, the pressure to crack the case increased on the police. This was a high-profile case and if they did not do their job efficiently, then the police would be portrayed in a bad light. With Mohini’s murder, the case had become even more complicated.

When everyone was giving their theories about Mohini’s murder case, Chandni was sitting near the mini-bar inside her bedroom and make herself a peg of vodka. She took a few sips of the drink when there was a knock on her bedroom door.

“Come in”, Chandni said without looking in the direction of the door.

A handsome young man entered the door and almost ran towards Chandni. She got up from the chair and embraced him. He kissed her all over the face and said, “Oh! Darling, I missed you!”

“I missed you too, love”, she whispered.

“It’s been so long…” the handsome man said and both of them kept talking for ten to fifteen minutes. Their conversation was about Nisha, about their love and about the Film Industry. Then Chandni said, “Anyway, let that all go. Will you have a drink?”

“Sure, you know my brand”, the man smiled and said.

Chandni was drinking a lot of alcohol after what had happened in the last few days. She felt that it was easy facing the reality with alcohol running in her blood. For a few seconds, she was lost in thought as both of them were drinking. Looking at the stress on Chandni’s face, the man went near her, slid his hand around her waist, pulled her closer and whispered something in her ear. Chandni blushed on hearing what he said and her stress vanished. She looked towards the open door and smiled. The man got up, locked the door from the inside and held her in his arms.

He kissed her on her lips as he caressed her back. She played with his hair and put her hands on his shoulder, it was a beautiful moment for Chandni. She loved a man’s touch and it made her feel young again. He undressed her and watched as the silk gown smoothly fell down on the floor. Chandni loved the smell of his body and it often aroused her. She closed her eyes as he explored the assets of her body, pleasuring her. For her, it was heaven on Earth.

***

“Did Nisha ever tell you that someone was threatening her?” Rashmi Mathur, the city editor of ‘Daily Times’ asked Karan Khanna. She had come to the point after asking him random questions.

“No, Nisha did not fear anyone. She was a sweet girl, why would anyone have any kind of rivalry with her?” Karan answered.

“Okay, for once we believe that she did not have any rivalry with anyone. But what if someone else had intentions to harm her out of rivalry?”

Rashmi Mathur was a journalist known for her arrow-like questions that would often make the other person uncomfortable or angry. She was interested in power, more than money. In the past she had written many articles that exposed many secrets of the Hindi Film Industry, the Parliament, the politicians and about everything that had the potential of shocking the world. She had refused all the offers of bribe to not print a story. She was daring and was feared by many power people.

Rashmi was single. But there was one person she had feelings for – actor Omar Hassan.

“Who can think of her as an enemy? I don’t know…” Karan began thinking on it. In a few seconds, there was a sparkle in his eyes. He told something to Rashmi and when she heard it, she was taken by surprise.

***

Ranjit Wadhwa’s world shook when he read Rashmi Mathur’s exclusive report on the front page of ‘Daily Times’. He started sweating in spite of sitting in an air conditioned room.

Rashmi Mathur had ‘targetted’ many influential people in the past and exposed their links with the underworld or about their off-shore accounts where their black money was stored. Her articles were penned down with sharp use of words and were shamelessly written, without bothering about the reputation of a person. This time Rashmi Mathur’s target was film financer Ranjit Wadhwa.

Her exclusive report read: ‘Nisha was being threatened by the underworld and film financer Ranjit Wadhwa!’

To be continued…

Read previous chapters here: 11, Sky Heights Chapter 1-13

Aashu Patel
Aashu Patel

Aashu Patel is a writer, who has written on a variety of genres ranging from crime to inspirational. 40 books written by him are published. He has worked as an editor of many leading newspapers. He has written many novels. Well-known film director Tigmanshu Dhulia is making a Hindi film based on his English novel 'Madam X'.

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