Read the first Part here.
I sat for a long time on that bench and chewed a bit of tobacco to simply stop myself doing something more drastic and obvious. Like, maybe, something that would kill me quicker.
I shouldn’t’ve been afraid though. That bumbling idiot, Khurshid had always taken care of his end of the business and there was absolutely no one on the platform. Not that physical presence was absolutely required to tail someone. But it was heartening that there was nobody to hear the grinding of my teeth, the soft cursing that I let out every few seconds and the quivering of my hands and legs.
That happens to me when I’m nervous.
It had been 20 minutes since Khurshid left. 20 minutes since 2 low-level snitches followed, maybe one of my better men, expecting to find something that was sitting inside the pocket of my trouser which would be sitting between the heel and the sock of my left foot as soon as I could do the transfer.
My shoe had pockets of bad areas and it was prudent to remember that while slipping inside a small metallic chip. It could be troublesome to find and extract. It could also break. So, it would be inside my socks rather than inside my shoe, thank you very much.
My simmering anger was replaced by a little bit of respect and a rather large helping of fear. I knew that those morons wouldn’t be able to hurt Khurshid but in a few minutes, they would find out that he was a dead end. I had all but implicated myself in this entire exercise, although I wasn’t afraid of being identified. I take care of these pedestrian details anyway. But even the most imbecile of stalkers would go backwards when detailing a cheat.
I was the first one they would think of.
I wasn’t sure if they’d be perceptive enough to think of the noisy game as a cover, neither was I sure about them reporting it their superiors.
I needed to know where Khurshid lost them.
Of course, he would lose them.
I slid into my cabin a day later, and put on a mug of boiling water on the electric stove and stared at it.
I sincerely believed that it sped up the process.
The liquid bubbled and frothed in anger, while I seethed along the same wavelength as I grabbed the tin box where I housed my filter coffee. My anger was desperately finding a situation wherein it could vent and the only available situation was that tin cup. My anger shot out in the form of a backhand at the mug of boiling water when the tin came out empty.
The mug hit the wall and a streak of grey painted itself upon it, while I cursed audibly and hopped around clutching my right hand as it burnt like the devil.
The recovered memory card had been duly viewed and copied into a more secure medium. The original was dispatched to the client and the copy was put up in a safe place; it was inside of my right sock this time.
Don’t get me wrong; I don’t peek into the business of my clients, but I had nothing on Khurshid after 3 hours and it was unsettling me.
I did the only thing that I could.
I had business with my ancient client and his money. But I had an agent missing and I wasn’t going to stop myself from grabbing whatever I could to stabilise my over-worked brain.
I don’t really know what made me copy the files. I don’t know why there was this intense thrumming inside my beating heart, and it was a nervous feeling to have that, I tell you. I just didn’t think too much of the situation. I was on auto-pilot.
I don’t argue with my auto-pilot.
Later, that night, I was trying to sleep when my phone rang. I jumped at it without thinking and said hello.
“Things took a bad turn, boss.”
Khurshid, at last.
“Why the heck, didn’t you contact me sooner, you bloody asshole? I shouldn’t’ve bothered, but I did.”
At this point, I should point out that it did occur to me that I should’ve first asked him what ‘bad turn’ he was talking about. But I was busy telling him, rather graphically, where he could stick his bloody head and what he could do with his perennially flaccid dick.
And then, before my graphical narrative could reach its logical end, he uttered those words that any PI feared the most.
“They caught me, you know.”
NB: Wrote it at Haji Ali CCD.