The Captive Episode 11
The Captive Episode 1111 mins 16.6K 11 mins 16.6K
STORY SO FAR:
The investigating officers so far has found no lead of the other two abductors. However, they have decided to dig the ground of the abandoned house and the surrounding properties to find any bodies buried there. Also, Kruthi undergoes a memory retrace to help her remember the details. Read further below:
Madhuri broke the news to Kruthi in the nicest possible way about Nishant, but when it comes to death, there is no nice way. Kruthi did not cry, she already knew that Nishant was dead long back. She felt relieved that his dead body was found, and that there would be a proper burial for him. She looked stronger than ever, and it was good to see her getting stronger every day.
“Ma, you should be with aunty now. She needs you more than me.” Kruthi told her mother who simply refused her. Mrs Shah did not want to leave her daughter alone.
“Don’t worry Mrs Shah, we have security here. And I will be here mostly through the evening. You can be back by night fall.” Madhuri suggested.
Kruthi looked at her mother with hopeful eyes to which her mother yielded. That was the least they could do for Nishant’s family. They owed them at least that much. Kruthi wanted to be with Nishant’s mother. She was her second mother, but she was yet not fully recovered to be discharged. Kruthi felt awful about it for not being with Nishant’s family when they had required her the most.
Just as Mrs. Shah was leaving the room, Madhuri broke another news to the mother and daughter, “There was a reporter lurking at the crime scene, and she had information about Kruthi. Very likely that they will broadcast this evening or as we are speaking, it is getting broadcasted on the television.”
“No.” It was a scream from Mrs. Shah. “This can’t be. They can’t show her name and face.”
“I am hoping they won’t. I have alerted our public relations and media team to get in touch with the news channels. Don’t worry they are experts. They won’t allow Kruthi’s name to be out. But you never know. There is always a possibility…”
Mrs. Shah was horrified but Kruthi was calm. All she bothered, for now, was the memory retrace session that was about to take place any time now. She was a bit scared but determined to go through it because she wanted to remember every minute detail, every speck, every dot and every link that can help the team to catch the other two criminals. But according to Madhuri, they will be able to catch the second killer soon, and while she was here, her team was busy checking the records, digging the corpses and interviewing suspects.
“How many did you find?” She asked Madhuri and gestured her mother to leave. Mrs. Shah kissed her daughter on her forehead and left for Nishant’s house.
“As of now, seven. And there are more,” Madhuri sighed.
Kruthi closed her eyes for a brief second and opened them. She took a deep breath. She didn’t know how to react. So many! Blood curdled in her veins, and her shoulders and neck stiffened. Pure rage replaced the pain in her eyes.
Madhuri took Kruthi’s hand in hers, “Don’t worry. We will find them.”
Just then Dr. Lavleen entered the room. She was over forty years but she looked in her twenties - bright, pretty, smart, vivacious and full of energy. She looked like a model, tall and slender with her bangs covering her forehead. She hugged Madhuri. From the hug, it was quite evident that both of them were friends out of their professional relationship. Dr. Lavleen shook hands with Kruthi and sat down on a chair next to her.
“My. My. Look at these charts. Good, you are recovering. But before we start I want to tell you it could be painful, you know, just think of a glass jar which is full of black and white plastic coins, and you have to spot a grey one. You cannot open the lid, and you cannot break the jar. So what you will do? You will shake it, turn it and toss it until you are able to spot a grey one amidst the black and white ones. It will be the same. You will toss and turn and shake your entire brain, and yet we might not find the grey coin we are looking for. And all those memories will resurface, more alive now and tormenting.”
Kruthi did not speak anything. She just nodded. Dr. Lavleen poured water into a glass and slipped a tablet inside the glass and stirred it dissolving the tablet instantly. She came back, and gave the glass to Kruthi and asked her to drink it.
“Do not worry, this is just a tablet that will soothe your nerves, calm your mind.”
Kurthi drank the glass without a doubt and gave the empty glass of water to Dr. Lavleen. Dr. Lavleen smiled at her. She had liked the girl the moment she had entered the room. She was a bright, beautiful, intelligent and strong girl.
Madhuri’s mobile beeped. “Mobile on silent mode, M. I don’t want any disturbance.” Lavleen sulked.
Like a child who was reprimanded for not listening to the teacher, Madhuri kept an innocent face and said, “yes mam.”
‘Any latest news?’ Kruthi asked.
‘The count is now 9. And they are expecting about six more. The team will not stop until they dig out these six bodies.’
Lavleen was taken back. She knew there were bodies but 15 was not the number she had expected.
“This is big.” She muttered glancing at Madhuri.
“All the fourteen women?” Kruthi questioned again.
“We can’t say it now, sweetie. It is fifteen.” Lavleen answered the question before Madhuri spoke. “If the corpse was too much decayed, it was difficult to say whether it is woman or man until elaborate tests are conducted.”
“The fifteenth was my boyfriend.” And as she said this, Kruthi’s eyes looked empty, devoid of life.
This was the right time to begin. Lavleen had purposely said fourteen hoping Kruthi would react exactly this way.
“Now, close your eyes, relax, lay down.” Lavleen adjusted Kruthi’s bed so that Kruthi can sleep, and then she gently caressed her forehead. “You will at all times listen to my voice and follow my lead and answer the questions that I ask. You will not think anything more than that or go beyond that.”
Once the instructions were clear, Lavleen started the process. Kruthi looked relaxed and had her eyes shut. Dr. Lavleen spoke in a low mesmerizing voice, keeping her tone steady and flowing and in a constant rhythm.
“You are in that old house. Your head is heavy. You are slowly opening your eyes. What do you see Kruthi?”
“A bright light. Nothing else.”
“Do you hear anything?”
“Metal sound. I move, and the metal sound feels heavy in my ears.”
“Ok. Think that you are in that room now. Your heaviness has gone away. Your abductors are in front of your eyes. What do you feel?”
“I feel anger, pain. I feel like punching them. But the metal chain stops my movement.”
“How many were there?”
“I saw three masked men the first time.”
“Did anyone speak to you?” There was no answer.
Dr. Lavleen asked again, “What was the first thing he spoke to you?”
“You beautiful piece of shit.”
“Tell me the details Kruthi.”
“I am scared. His touch reeks of hatred for women. His breath is on my face, evil and malignant. Every cell in my body starts to tremble. He drops his pants and forces into me from behind. Pain, searing pain, I can think of nothing. Just the feeling of being raped and feeling an unknown person in me was enough to make me numb. I did not scream, just silent tears, I bite my lip hard on his last thrust and taste blood in my mouth. He then laughs, a virgin. Wow. And then he smokes a cigarette and gestures the other man, all yours. And then there was more pain, more humiliation. The third one looks and stares at what the other two are doing and does himself, twice.”
Tears rolled down her cheeks snuffling in between.
Dr. Lavleen probed into the analytical side of her mind trying to avoid her emotions, “How was his voice like? Did he use a perfume or something?”
“No. His voice was very manly, commanding and ruthless.”
“The second one?”
“His voice was uneven, highly accented, someone from the north from the villages. Very temperamental and angry.”
“Did anyone of them wear a particular scent or something? A signature perfume, a bracelet. Kruthi, try to remember what you have seen or what you have heard?”
“I can’t remember anything. Just voices in my head. Sometimes, my head feels very heavy, all blurred out, just sounds, meaningless sounds. The light from the bulb always strains my eyes. There is no window in the room. Days and nights seem alike. They come and go. The shorter one brings me food and water. The room is now full of the stench of my blood.”
“Why did he beat you, Kruthi. What happened that day? Was he angry with you?”
“Boss was not angry. He was angry.”
“Boss? Who is the boss?”
“He is the boss. The other two called him boss.”
“Tell me about the boss?”
“He is angry. I don’t know why. He punches me in the stomach very hard, twice, without any reason, until boss comes and pulls him over. ‘Are you going to kill her or what?’ Boss asks him, but he is still angry. Blood starts to flow from my mouth, my stomach aches, the short man comes to soothe me rubbing the blood from my lips and offering me water. He then comes back and knocks the glass of water away, he pulls me by my hair and punches me again in the stomach. I spit out some more blood. Boss controls him, ‘Enough, already you have created a lot of mess for me to clean. Don’t mess it more. Leave her alone.’ He does not want to leave me alone. He slaps me again. ‘You like her more than me. You can’t. She is just a toy for you. It is me whom you like.’ Boss hugs him and tries to calm him. He takes him out of there and asks the short man to give me medicine. But he is in a mad state of anger. He kicks me again in my stomach, on my back, on my thighs, all over my body. The other two try to control him and finally succeed in dragging him outside the room. I can hear voices from outside. His shoes were very heavy, they tore my skin on various party of my body. Before he left he beat me one last time with the metal chain on my thighs causing my skin to rip off and blood to flow.”
“How were his hands? Was he wearing gloves? His shoes? Any brand?”
“His hands …..there is some mark on his wrist…?
“Try to focus? What is the mark? A tattoo?”
“A wound, a scar?”
“A dagger in green ink.”
“What did the boss call him?”
“And. His name Kruthi, what did he address him?”
“Yes. Birju. But the boss did not call out. The short man had called his name asking Birju to stop otherwise I will die. And he had said, let her die. I want her to die. I want to see her in pain. I want to see fear in her eyes. I want her to beg for her life.”
Tears rolled drenching her cheeks and tripping on the blanket. Her pulse was unstable. Dr. Lavleen stopped the session. She asked her to relax and made her sleep. The medicine effect would wear off in the next one or two hours. It was best that Kruthi slept a while. Trauma was not good for her.
Dr. Lavleen and Madhuri left Kruthi with a nurse and walked straight to the hospital canteen to have tea. On the Television a reporter was speaking into the mike, “Six dead bodies have been found in Tarthan Nagar, east of New Delhi, 100 Kms. from sector 50. The property belongs to late Atul Shrivastava who does not have any heir.” The scene changed showing a distant view of an old house. “This house has been abandoned from several years. The police investigation team is still carrying out its operations and they expect nine more bodies to be unearthed. ” There was no mention of Kruthi for now.
They sipped their tea quietly, and Dr. Lavleen spoke for the first time after the session, “She did well. I guess you have the name now.”
“A name and a mark. That does not help with anything.”
“So, you were expecting address of the killers.” Dr. Lavleen smiled smugly.
“No. But some other important clue or link. Looks like this boss is the Alpha of the group.”
“He is. The other two are his followers and they could be deeply gratified to him or indebted to him, could be their hero. But definitely, the alpha controls both of them. You need to find a connection between all of them.”
“Couldn’t find anything in Pastor’s mobiles, or office, or home or telephone records. I don’t remember seeing this Birju name anywhere.”
“Can be his nickname or an a.k.a. Quite possible that all of them have their nicknames.”
“She also said his accent was heavy, and like a person from the core north from the villages.”
“Yes. A tattoo of a dragger in green ink, the old ancient tattoo system of India where they used a needle and ink.”
“At least you have some information.”
Her phone beeped again. The count was 13 now. This case will receive national attention now, and it will become more and more difficult to conceal the information.
Kruthi’s words kept gyrating in her mind - the dagger, the mark, Birju, Boss, the beating, and this Birju had messed up something which they were trying to fix. She had a few pieces of the puzzle but she needed more. She hoped the investigation with the property owners would lead to something concrete. It was already evening, and Saran and Dhananjay must have lined up the suspects in her office. As they left, the television flashed the live update of the body count as 15.
TO BE CONTINUED.