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'I was thinking, if she wanted your money, this means you're a rich guy. So Mr. Richie Rich, are you a famous rich guy or are you a regular Joe? Actually, never mind; that was a dumb question. If you were famous, of course I'd know since you'd be in the news!'
Angad stood quietly for a little bit as if considering whether he should tell her or not. Finally he made a decision as Kripa looked at him. It would be unfair if he didn't tell her, 'I'm Angad Khanna from Khanna Group of Industries.'
'You are THE Angad Khanna from Khanna Group of Industries? But the press said that you are dead. How are you alive? And how come nobody ever knew what Angad Khanna looked like?'
'The press was not permitted to print any pictures of me. They knew that I would destroy them if they ever did that. They took my threat very seriously,' he said.
'Would you have destroyed them?' Kripa asked appalled by his statement.
'I don't think so. I don't know. I'm very glad they never gave me a reason to behave abominably. My privacy is extremely important to me. Especially because of the field day the press had with my parents' deaths. My grief had become very public and it was a gross invasion of privacy for me. That is why I threatened the reporters. And once I threatened a few people, the reporters got hold of this information from each other. I didn't have to do anything else.'
Kripa pondered what Angad had just told her. She couldn't reconcile what he had just told her to the image she had of him. Then she realized that she was just friends with his image, not with the real person. She recognized that she didn't know him at all. Well, she thought, it was time to be friends with the real Angad Khanna, not the Zaib that she knew.
Kripa knew that the situation was getting very serious, and tried to lighten it. She said the first thing that popped in her mind, 'So if I want loads of money, I know where to go.' The moment she realized what she had said, she slapped her hand on her mouth.
Angad roared with mirth. 'If there is anyone less capable of asking someone for money, it's you! You are the kindest, most considerate person I have ever had the fortune to meet. You took an invalid like me in! Hmm, maybe you knew I'd be some rich guy. I should note that.'
Kripa looked at him and laughed. 'Invalid you were not! Maybe a little lost, but not an invalid. Whether you spoke or not, your eyes said everything.' Kripa lost herself in his eyes. She mentally shook herself. 'Now what? How do you plan to get proof as to what happened to you?'
Angad eyed her. 'Well Ms. Writer, isn't this your forte? Come up with an idea! And anyways, you never finished telling me what your first book was about.'
Kripa snorted. 'You really don't want to know.'
He smiled, 'I do.'
'Oh well, don't kill me then,' she muttered, 'anyhow, as you know, it was based in a hospital. There were many long term patients there. Some were there because of cancer, and others because of AIDS. There were a few patients in coma. It starts with a murder. Every few days, someone gets murdered. Nobody knows who the murderer is, and nobody is safe.'
Kripa's eyes glazed with her storytelling. Angad smiled as he knew how good she was at narrating. Hadn't she made his comatose so much more fun with her antics?
'A female detective is sent to investigate the murders. She goes to the hospital everyday. She meets the patient who is in coma. She can't help herself but be drawn to the comatose patient. She is fascinated by him. At a point, she doesn't know what she is more fascinated with, the case or the patient. She sits with him day in and day out. She leaves him at night to try to catch the serial killer.
Odd things keep happening every night in the hospital. The detective doesn't know what to make out of it. She realizes she needs to catch the killer quickly before the comatose patient is killed. She knows she's irrevocably in love with him.
One night, she goes to visit the patient only to find the bed empty. All of a sudden, all the pieces of the puzzle fit into place. The man she had fallen in love with was the serial killer! She runs to the stairs and finds him about to finish another patient off. He has a mad gleam in his eyes.
She doesn't know what to do. She can't let anyone else die now she knew who the killer was. And she couldn't kill her first love. She ends up shooting the knife out of his hand. Her love turns to her and takes another knife out of his back pocket. The detective stumbles backward and the pistol falls away from her.
The deranged killer lunges at her but she rolls away. He lunges at her again and she manages to grab his hand just inches away from her face. She looks at his face, says I love you to him and plunges the knife in him. Tearstained, she lifts her bloody hands and looks at her love's body and cries in agony. She gets a bravery award for this.'
Kripa focused back to Angad staring at her. She couldn't understand his expression. He cleared his throat. 'Wow, that was good. I can't wait to read it. How did you come up with this story?'
Kripa smiled mischievously. 'You see, you gave me the idea. You were the deranged killer in this book and I was the detective.' Looking at his stunned expression, she burst into laughter.
'Kripa,' he said as he lunged at her. He started tickling her and she started trying to wiggle out of his grasp, shrieking with laughter. He overbalanced at her squirms and they toppled onto his bed. He stopped tickling her and she looked at him wanting to say something. At the expression in his eyes, her smile faltered. She licked her lips subconsciously and dropped her gaze to his lips. With her heart pounding, she leaned forward and then-
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