The Grip of Infamy. Episode 12. By R. Sittamparam

Episode 12. (Scroll down the Literature section to read earlier episodes of this serialised Malaysian story)   

Thiagu called at Thana’s office the day after the Tamil New Year celebration, on Monday and was enthusiastically greeted by Thivya Chan.

Thana had not arrived yet even though it was way past 10am and Thivya invited Thiagu to wait inside the main office area seating him at a sofa located opposite her table.

She could not take her eyes off the lanky youth looking neat and smart in his dark grey coat, white shirt and black trousers.

Thiagu gave her a smile as he looked up after settling down comfortably into the sofa having adjusted his pistol in the lower inside pocket of his coat, and caught Thivya’s gaze.

So, when do you think your boss will arrive he asked just to tease the visibly mesmerised young woman. Does he think I have all the time in the world to be sitting here waiting for him. Lucky for me there is a pretty face here to ogle at.

Thivya’s face lit up. Well you have made my day as well she replied giggling shyly. It’s a pleasant change for my bored eyes now, to drink the elegance of an unscarred macho face and hot bod.

Well, well. For Thana’s PA to complement me like this. Things must be looking up for me. I won’t tell Thana this. I’m sure he’ll be jealous. He might just ban me from coming here. Thivya, Thivya. My, my, you’re a naughty girl.

Thivya was thoroughly enjoying it and continued with her banter. Don’t tell me I’m the first girl to compliment you. Tell me the truth. You have lots of admirers not to mention girlfriends right.

What’s the use Thivya. The girls I fancy all keep flying away.

Thivya did not know about Nisha but she could sense the genuine sadness in Thiagu’s words.

It made her feel more for him and she cooed, You will find your true love among those who admire you, surely. Can I help soothe your broken heart? Maybe, you could join me for a drink sometime.

Thiagu knew of Thana’s interest in Thivya and on hearing her opening up to him so casually, he cautioned himself against getting too friendly with her. Jealousy was one of Thana’s worst traits and it could seriously spark a vengeful response in him.

Yes, maybe sometime Thivya. You sure your boss won’t mind quipped Thiagu assuring himself the question was merely for the sake of finding out how the pretty secretary really felt about Thana.

Actually he was just following his heart that was strangely moved by Thivya’s overpowering femininity and contagious affection that she had so spontaneously showered upon him.

He was taken aback by Thivya’s curt reply. Why should he mind. I am just working for him. He doesn’t own me you know.

Thiagu was at a loss for words and kept quiet awhile and just before he drew up the courage to continue his conversation after drawing a deep breath, he heard the click of the doorknob and Thana entered the office.

Thana’s predator-like gaze immediately fell on Thiagu in whose eyes and expression he was quick to note the semblance of a slight tinge of apprehension.

Without a word or even a nod of acknowledgment to his personal secretary and first lieutenant, Thana’s gaze shifted instantaneously to Thivya who showed absolutely no sign of concern over his arrival, not even to look up from the paperwork she appeared to be busy with.

Disappointed with Thivya’s indifference, Thana shot an inquiring look at Thiagu as he walked away from the door. What brings you here macchan he quipped labouring with his emotions to appear normal. Come into the office.

Thiagu had also noted the uneasiness in Thana’s countenance and saw a wave of agitation run across it as his boss’ gaze first fell on him.

And he could also see Thana’s look of disappointment faced with the indifference shown him by Thivya.

His immediate concern was whether Thana had eavesdropped on his conversation with Thivya, a consequential procedure Thana would have adopted considering that Thivya was most obviously ignoring his overtures all this while.

Following Thana into his office, Thiagu was sure he would know soon enough the real situation as Thana was given to outright intervention of emotional matters concerning himself.

How long you’ve been waiting here macchan. Sorry, I was caught in a traffic jam. This new driver is not like Sarath. Hope he recovers and joins me soon.

Thiagu could sense what Thana was getting at. Almost half an hour. Luckily your secretary allowed me to sit inside. I wouldn’t want to be in the public eye in the lobby area that long especially with the social media buzzing around me the past two months.

Yes, you have to be careful. So what did Thivya say about me. You know I’m interested in her but she’s a tough chick to crack. Surprisingly very homely and shy. Nothing like her mother

Sittam Param

Writer, poet, dramatist and former journalist. I have passion for art in all its forms hence my involvement in this portal.

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