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48. NEW CASE (4)
Ajay was trying to throw the pencil in his hand in the box. It landed with a clatter in front of him. Sparing a look at Aaryan, he retrieved it.
Deepika was sitting on her chair, looking at the photographs pinned on the board.
Shotgun was still in the lab, but Rajashree had arrived a few moments ago from there.
Deepika glanced at her closely. Wisps of hair had escaped from Rajashree's neat braid. Her cheeks were flushed with rage. When Shotgun came, Rajashree threw him an angry look and concentrated on her pad.
If Aaryan had observed this entire exchange, he kept silent. Discarding his coat, he was pacing in front of the table, shaking his arms.
Finally Shotgun said, "Aaryan, humne crime scene se liye evidence ko analyse kiya hain…Par kuch khaas nahi mila. Fingerprints hain, Shantanu aur Shikha ke, but nothing special…"
Aaryan stopped his pacing briefly. "Ajay give me some good news, man…"
Ajay threw the pencil in the third time. He missed it.
"Actually Aaryan, maine uske office main uske employees se baat ki thi….Wo bhi bata nahi paye ki uski dushmani kiske saath thi."
Aaryan paced dejectedly. "We have no leads."
Deepika interjected. "Neha, tum uske family se baat karo, shayad kuch mil jaye. Shotgun, we will go over the autopsy the second time.Waise bhi raat bhaut ho chuki hain, hume ghar chalna chahie."
Everyone nodded slowly. Picking up their notepads and pencils, they ambled to their respective workplaces.
Only Aaryan and Deepika remained. She inspected him as he still paced.
"Aaryan, calm down. Mujhe lagta hain, kal hume kuch aur lead mil jayega. Presently we are staring at a brick wall."
"Ghar jaa rahe ho na?"
He turned to look at her, his eyes twinkling. "Tum bed issue karne waali thi na mujhe?"
She glared him wordlessly.
"Accha baba, aise mat dekho, main dar jata hoon. Jaa raha hoon."
"Kabhi toh sudhar jao."
She nodded her head, walked towards the cabin.
He looked at her go. Ah! What would he do without her!
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49. NEW CASE (5) – AN UNLIKELY INTERROGATION
"So…What's up with the girl?"
"Wahi..Maya, Sona, Mona..kuch toh."
He stared at her for a moment and then went back to his work. "We're friends."
She'd been trying to weasel this out of Shotgun the entire day. Last week had been a true surprise truce– after the movie and dinner, she'd thought that their temporary enemity had disappeared. But in the morning, Shotgun had overheard her talking to Pankaj and had transformed into a cold, stoic person she didn't know.
He smiled suddenly. Shotgun without a smile was quite good looking, if she said so herself, but add a smile to that face…and he was handsome. "Maine kaha na! Hum lad kyun rahe hain is baatpaien?"
Confused about the revelation she just had had, she shrugged.
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50. NEW CASE (6)
Deepika turned out to be right. They did get a new lead.
Myra Shroff's dead body.
Aaryan looked at the body with barely concealed disgust and anger.
She was still in her night clothes, her hair askew and her limbs bent at awkward angles on the large red living room carpet of her own house.
He bent down near Shotgun, who was examining the body. "No sign of any external wound."
"Zeher?" Ajay asked, looking under the carpet. Shotgun threw him a 'but obviously' look before turning back to Aaryan. "Shayad. Autopsy ke baad hi pata chalega."
"Theek hain. Body move karo." Aaryan confirmed.
"Sab kuch preliminary hain Aaryan, kuch keh nahi sakte. Autopsy hone ke baad hi kuch pata chalega."
"Just a minute."
All looked up at the newly-arrived Junhui.
"Kya ye wahi Myra Shroff hain jo Focus main-"
"Yeah," Aaryan said, irritated. "Case file padh liya karo kabh kabhi."
She paled and sat down, chewing on her lip thoughtfully.
"Theek hain. Ajay- Junhui tum log Myra ke gharwalon se, doston se uske bare main pata karo. Neha, tax files, accounts….you know what I am talking about, right?"
Neha gave a sly smile that did not go unnoticed by Deepika.
"Deepika, Shotgun-Rajashree. Autopsy." He clapped his hands together. "Get to work guys."
Everyone nodded and headed off. Deepika paused till everyone had left.
"Kuch ulta seedha mat karna Aaryan."
He smiled, hanging his head.
Deepika just nodded exasperatedly and went off towards the autopsy room.
Aaryan walked over to Neha and said lightly, "Neha, find what you can about both Myra and Shantanu. Just…"
She patted his arm. "Tum chinta mat karo. Jao."
He smiled at her gratefully.
Aaryan paced thoughtfully. This case was getting more and more complex with every passing minute. With Myra's friends, family and colleagues, they had drawn up a dead end. She was a simple girl of reserved nature. There was no boyfriend, the family lived in Varanasi and she had no close friends.
There was nothing about her which could be the possible motive…
Unless she possessed some knowledge…that she should not have.
Deepika walked in, her face ashen.
"Aaryan…Mere saath aao."
He followed her curiously. He had seen her this agitated only once or twice – in a case where they had discovered a dead body in a barrel of sawdust. Of course Deepika had been perfectly justified in her agitation. The girl who had been murdered was pregnant.
Hoping that this was not the case in the present scenario, he followed her quietly.
"Time of death raat ke 3 baje ke aas paas hain. I will give it a window of two hours on either side. Aaryan ye bruises dekh rahe ho? She was punched, I think…."
Aaryan looked closely at the purple bruises under the harsh light. Myra's innocent face was placid in her death.
Deepika's voice rose a few decibels. "She was beaten up, Aaryan."
Aaryan looked up in shock.
"But I think we have found partial DNA."
"Which means the man left his mark."
Deepika nodded. Aaryan's lips tightened as he looked at the body on the table.
Deepika's eyes were flashing fire.
"We have to get to him."
Aaryan looked into her eyes, his jaw clenching. He touched her elbow lightly.
"We will." He breathed.
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