Ruins and Ashes
For the past three hours, Sabrina tried to communicate with Damien in various ways she knew. But Damien kept his silent mode on. Her patience was starting to crack, however, she refused to stop her attempts. At this point, she didn’t care if he was a human or not, she was going to break him. But there was the problem - How?
All these three hours Sabrina gained other than his name is that Damien hates that mysterious White-Suit from the core of his hurt. Each time she tried to talk other things, he either growled and scratched her or gave her the silent treatment. He was acting like a stubborn child who won’t open up until someone fulfilled his wishes.
“What the hell do you want?” Sabrina asked.
She wasn’t scared or intimidated, but plain tired and irritated by the tantrums Damien threw for the past hour, not to mention the intense starvation she was feeling. She couldn’t even tell where did she get the courage to raise her voice like this but she continued.
“Here, I’m trying to talk to you like a normal person and you there, sitting like a stubborn ass kiddo? What’s your problem? Why don’t you share it? I’m your doctor, Dammit!” Sabrina was huffing and glaring hard at the black body in the dark corner.
She was hungry, so hungry that she even thought about eating him alive for once if he didn’t help the situation with her. Hunger has the power to make people desperate, very desperate. However, deep down she knew that it’d be her, who could turn out to be his food if he wanted anytime.
Sabrina expected him to growl and rush at her, but Damien only cocked his brow and smirked.
“Stubborn ass kiddo, huh? You have ways with your words, Oldy!” He said, amused.
“My stomach’s burning here, and he only got this out of all I said?” Sabrina was very, very pissed off.
Sabrina opened her mouth to say something but instantly got cut off as a gush of wind blew toward her and Sabrina flew across the room. She dropped down on the concrete with a loud thud and severe pain in the stomach. But that was just the beginning.
Before Sabrina could even open her eyes, she heard an audible crack of her bone as Damien swiftly kicked her lower abdomen. Next, she gurgled blood as the beast grabbed a fistful of her hair and punched her face hard. His merciless eyes pierced Sabrina through his gaze as he kept repeating the whole process with full force and without getting tired.
Sabrina, on the contrary, soon turned into a black-eyed, bloody mess. She felt like a shitty rag doll. When she couldn’t take any more when she thought eyes were getting heavy, just then she heard the metal door open.
Her body almost instantly gave out. She was done, maybe for now.
The sunny day suddenly tuned all stormy and cloudy. Now the sky was roaring as heavy rain showered the office glass clean. James Morton was looking out at the stormy gray sky and the soaking city outside. But His mind was somewhere else. His distance look proved that.
The chaotic outburst that had happened yesterday clearly ruined the year-long reputation of the organization. James couldn’t help but put the blame on the police and Sara. However, even he knew Sara hadn’t done what she was accused of. It was a sick conspiracy of which she was the victim. James had let out a long sigh before resting his head on his hands, eyes not leaving the glass at all.
Sara, Saravi Hussain, The S Girl. This woman had confused him since the very beginning. He’d admit that at first, this one employee irritated him to no end. He was still furious about their first-day encounter. No one let alone an ordinary job employee dared to treat him the way she did. She was a daredevil and wouldn’t stop until she got what she wanted. And, that trait had brought her to this position today where she risked not only hers but the organization’s reputation as well, not to mention messed up the serial killer case.
But somehow between the chaos, James realized that the woman he despised the most had earned his respect which was very rare. She was very dedicated and honest in her job if he ignored the negative sides of her. She proved that she was not incapable of holding her title ‘The S Girl’, one of the code names that only the best of the best employees could possess in the organization. She had the potential to be best only if she was a slight bit careful about her steps and their consequences.
“This girl is truly something,” James muttered while slowly smirking, “But she’s a bad news as well, a very bad news.”
After sighing for the final time, when James was about to get up from his seat, the ringing sound of his phone echoed throughout the room. James checked the caller and raised his brows. He quickly picked up the call and pressed the phone to his ears.
“Good Morning, Mr. Gulapjaam. You’re up so early?” James said as he smiled and heard a light chuckle in reply.
“I’m always an early bird, you know. Good Afternoon, by the way.”
“Hmm... So, what’s up?”
“I know what’s happening there, Mr. Morton.”
Morton stiffened in an instant. Gulapjaam continued,
“How’s the situation now?”
“Damp and soaking at the moment, though, ashes won’t be able to cover up the fire for long. It’s slowly getting out of hand, Mr. Gulapjaam.”
Morton heard humming on the other side.
“That’s why I called you. Since the matter in risking the organization, our boss has decided to take a look at the matter personally.”
“Personally? Wow! that’s rare. He never took his job to the personal level. He's the man of rather distributing the work among his people than doing things himself.”
“And, that’s why it’s very confusing. But can you blame him? His organization is in trouble and he’d sit back there silent? I wouldn’t do that if I were him.”
“Right. So, I guess he’s coming to Dhaka at any moment. When will he be arriving?”
“Well, here’s the thing, he decided that he wants to be secretive about his approach and doesn’t want anyone to know about his presence, except for certain people only.”
“What are you trying to say?”
“He is already there.”
“What do you want?”
“To talk. What do you think I’m doing here?”
“Look, Sara, I’m not in the mood for your sassy attitude.”
“Me neither. So, why bother bringing out that side out of me?”
She smirked and heard a sound of a groan from the other side.
“Sara, what’s your problem, huh? First, you knock on my door, soaked in rain like a dead crow, God knows how did you find out the address, then starting to play words with me? Seriously, woman! Those policemen out there searching for you like a bunch of hound dogs and you here, expecting me to talk to you with ease after all these years?”
“Oh, wow! Is this the best way to greet your school friend, Dr. Ashton?”
“You pull out that side of me, Ms. Hussain. I hate you.” She crossed her arms.
“Thanks for letting me know that. However, I got your address from your hospital. By the way, I love this pink here. So, cute! Totally suits you.” Sara leaned back comfortably on the soft light pink couch.
"Wait! Did you stalk me? God, Sara, you..."
"Before you go any further, I wasn't interested in stalking you, though, you had interested me in something I want."
Sara and her friend Dr. Lima Ashton was sitting on Lima’s living room of her duplex apartment. Unlike Sara’s, this apartment had the color contrast of light pink and brown. The walls were a lighter shade of pink while the floor was polished brown tiled. The middle of the room had a set of the pink couch with a light colored wooden center table. The right the room had two big windows which were giving enough view of the pouring afternoon.
Besides the windows, there was a stylish modular kitchen which was to die for. The kitchen had a deep shade of blue contrasted with the white appliances. Blue was her favorite color like Sara. It showed how much of a cooking lover Lima was. Inside the kitchen, there was a small glass dining table with four matching chairs. After the kitchen and dining space, there was some open space which led to the inside of the house and the light brown staircase on the way. There were three other doors on the left of the living area. Sara didn’t know what was there behind those doors, neither she was interested.
Lima scoffed at Sara.
“What do you really want here, Sara, aside from pinching me with your words?”
Sara looked at her former ex-best friend and smiled softly.
“I know I’m unwanted and you don’t trust me one bit...”
“Don’t remind me of the school time, woman,” Lima cut her off.
Sara ignored her.
“But, I need to know what do you know about Daniel Roger’s wife, Suzan Roger. It’s important.”
Lima scrunched her nose.
“What should I know, you think?”
“You’re getting angry, Limo,” Sara spoke playfully.
“Don’t call me that!”
“Then speak without any further ado.” She talked, suddenly in a serious tone.
“Saravi Hussain, you won’t talk to me in that tone.”
Then she added, “And... I don’t know about the case of Suzan Roger.”
Sara raised her brows, looking at her former friend, observing closely for any sign of lies for the of the moment. Though, as long as she remembered, Lima never lied. At least if that wasn’t deadly necessary. But Sara also couldn’t trust her words so easily. The situation going on made her extra caution about things and peoples, even those she knew. After checking Lima out when Sara decided to give her a green signal, she nodded.
“Your hospital was handling her case. You say you don't know anything?”
“Well, I may not know, but Grammy does. She was handling that case that time.”
Such a blunt answer set Sara off the guard. She didn’t expect Lima to speak so honestly. Lima, though, noticed the look on Sara’s face.
“Look, I know what people are talking about you. At first, I also thought that you were involved in such activity. But then, I remembered how emotional you were around poor people and wanted to help them. So, I thought maybe, just maybe...”
Sara sighed which made Lima question her the obvious question which was on everybody’s mind.
“Are you... Are you really...”
“A spy? Yes. A killer because of self-defense and stuff? Yes. A murderer? Well, maybe not. I hope you got your answers, Lima. Now, I’d like to get mine. So please be a dear and give me your grandmother’s address.”
“You’ll never change,” Lima muttered under her breath, “Wait here!”
“Oh, and please bring me a towel. I’m soaking wet right now, thanks to our dear rain.”
“Don’t ruin my sofa, Hussain!”
Sara smiled sweetly as Lima stood up. Lima, on the other side, huffed at her before disappearing inside her house.
A small smile made its way to Sara’s face as she thought about Lima, her best friend, now former. Both of them were polar opposites of each other in every way. But still, they had been thriving in their friendship until Lima’s boyfriend decided to spread the rumor that Sara was seeing him. The truth was the other way, Lima’s boyfriend had an eye for Sara. But Sara being herself never really cared about him or any other males. However, that incident caused the major crack in their friendship.
Lima being the naive and blind one didn’t believe Sara’s logic that she was never interested any boy let alone her best friend’s boyfriend. That one drama was enough to last long the whole high school year. Thus, both Sara and Lima had split in different ways until now. She was seeing her first time after graduating from the high school.
Sara was so deep in thought that she didn’t hear the sound wheelchair coming in her direction. She only snapped her head up when she saw an elderly woman sitting before her. She had her white hair styled in a bun and was wearing a light green cotton maxi dress. The woman looked at Sara with all the caring in her big eyes as she looked at Sara.
“Grammy, look who paid us a visit? It’s Sara,” Lima said as smiled at her grandmother.
“Sara? Our Sara?” The woman said with a trembling voice.
“The one and only.” Lima eyed Sara.
Sara smiled a warm smile at the woman.
“How are you, Grammy? You’ve grown pretty old, I see,” she said as she took a white towel from Lima.
“I am fine, dear. It has been so long since I have seen you. How are your parents, Sara?”
Sara was drying her head with the towel when those words stopped her in an instant. What would she answer? The regular lie that her mom and dad are well or the truth that they were really not in very good condition. Sara had no idea what her parents were suffering from, but she could tell that they were not well. No one could be well after knowing such a dangerous rumor about their daughter. Sara sighed.
“They are not doing good, Grammy. That’s a part of the reason why I came here. I need your help.”
“Oh, what happened, Sara? Are Ravi and Sabrina alright?”
“I don’t know. I'm feeling like a shit.”
Sara looked Grammy in the eyes.
“Do you know about the news?”
“What news, dear?”
Now, Sara looked at Lima who discreetly looked away. The fact that Lima didn’t tell her grandmother about Sara’s rumor surprised her. Well, since Lima didn’t expose it herself, Sara decided to let it come to light.
“Um... I would like to tell you something. Please, listen to me before assuming anything or interrupting me, Grammy. It’s very important.”
Grammy nodded in an understanding manner, starting to grasp the seriousness of the situation. With a deep breath, Sara started. In the next one hour, the room was completely silent except for Sara’s voice and the ringing sound of the rain on the outside. There were occasional gasps and wide-eyes though. She didn’t hide anything. There was no need to do so. They were one of her near ones, despite the edgy relation she had with Lima. It was time at least some people had to know the truth. However, Sara was grateful that they listened to her until the end.
“And, that’s how I ended up here.” Sara took another deep breath after talking for so long.
This time, the room was full silent. It would remain the same if Grammy had not spoken first.
“This is very serious, Sara. You have fallen into a deep trap. I never thought that the death case of Suzan Roger would affect this much after so many years and in this way, my lord!”
“Grammy please tell me what do you know about Suzan Roger’s death?” Sara asked calmly.
Instead of replying to Sara, Grammy turned to Lima.
“Lima, go to my room and open that wooden chest under the bed. You will see some old files there. Bring back the white one, quick!”
Lima nodded and started to turn back.
“Also, bring some warm clothes. Sara is freezing there.”
Lima smiled before walking to her destination. When she disappeared inside Grammy looked at Sara.
“You are not leaving without lunch, Sara. I don’t care if you had your food yet or not.”
Sara chuckled. “Oh, I wasn’t planning either.”
She paused before she said those words.
“I never expected you’d believe me, Grammy.”
“Trust me, dear, I would not have if I did not know the truth. The Suzan Roger case was one of the most mysterious ones I had to handle in my whole career. That woman did not have a regular death of getting drowned in the water. It was true that they Suzan had fallen into the water because of the car accident. She had scars and scratches because of that. However, they were not the only marks on her body. She had most probably received some claw marks near her arms, legs, and stomach. She did have signs of the struggle because she was still alive when the strange animal attacked her.”
“That means the attack happened right after the car accident, right?”
Grammy slowly nodded. Sara’s eyes narrowed.
“If Suzan was struggling with the attacker then I’m sure Daniel Roger was there trying to escape and protect his daughter. It’s because his target was only Suzan at that time. Daniel loved his daughter, he wouldn’t want to hurt Anita on purpose. That’s why he saved her and left his daughter to die. This whole thing leaves only one conclusion, Suzan knew something which Daniel didn’t want it to be exposed. Thus, he might have killed his wife. Could this mean that Anita knew something too, and she had to lose her life because of that? But then, how does it connect with the serial killer matter?... hmm.”
“Here’s it, Grammy,” Lima said as she approached them. “And, here’s the clothes. Get yourself warmed, woman.” she threw the clothes at her lap.
“What is this, Lima! She is your friend and our guest. You cannot be this rude to her.”
“Friend? Yeah, friend. One cool friend.” Lima grimaced at Sara.
“I’m sorry, Sara,” She said bitterly.
Sara smirked, both at Lima’s apology and thought. However, she didn’t say anything.
“Sara, keep the file and do not open it until you reach the hotel, do not show it to anyone. It is for the best.” Grammy gave Sara the file as she nodded.
“Now, for the lunch, lady, what would you like to have?” Grammy asked with a loving smile.
“What would you like to offer... Lima?”
Sara smiled sweetly at Lima who was silently gritting her teeth through her clenched jaw.