Pirates of Bollywood – Copyrights, Legal Thriller (Novel), Arjun Chronicles, Piracy – Episode 13
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Authored by Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala
In his profession, success and failure were dependent on patience and presence of mind rather than on strength and skill, and the thick-mustached man knew this better than anyone else. Being a gifted and skilled professional, he rarely let his employers down. Despite CCTVs all over the hotel, being identified was the last of his concerns. The heavy makeup, artificial musculature, adapted body color, and altered posture, he knew, were more than enough to mask his identity. The task at hand was a simple one, but the fact that it had too many potential spoilers worried him. Not a person who relied on luck, he waited, anxiously checking his watch, too often to his liking. After a considerably long wait, the door opened, and an old man entered the men’s room. He walked straight to the urinals and stood there for a long time, before walking to the wash basin. As per plan, the mustached man waited until the entrant opened the tap to slipped out of the closet, his hiding place. On realizing who it was, “Hello,” he said, smiling at the man’s reflection in the mirror. “Is your stomach still upset, sir?” the man asked, eyeing his image, without turning around. “Yes, still flowing. I suspect food poisoning.”
“That’s sad to hear, sir. I wish you a speedy recovery,” the man in blue uniform said sympathetically, stepping out with his mechanized floor cleaner.
Now, it was way past his estimated time and his subject, Khan, had not made his pit stop yet. “Is there another restroom near the auditorium? Was I misinformed about his health,” the mustached man speculated, his patience levels dropping by the second. For some reason, he was not in his element that day. Whether it was the mission or his sister’s health, he did not know. As he was pacing back and forth, his patience rapidly running out, the door opened. Before his brain could register the face of the entrant, Khan pushed him out of his way and rushed towards the pots. It took Khan about two minutes to complete his job, giving the man ample time to plan his act, and Khan, the time to review his rash behavior. Khan’s sense of urgency vanished once the job was done, and he took his own time to wash his hands, grinning at the mustached man, who quizzically gazed at him. Ashamed of the rough treatment he had given the man, Khan thought to himself, “I definitely ill-treated him. My bad manners are superseding my age,” as he walked to the hand drier. “Sorry, young man,” Khan apologized, gathering his wits, managing a sideways glance at the man as hot air rushed onto his hands. Beaming, the man treaded towards Khan, shrugging off any concerns. “No problem, sir. I can understand your urgency. Aren’t you Mr. Khan,” he asked expectantly.
“Yes, I am the old Khan,” Khan replied, very pleased with his ever-rising popularity. “I am Muthu from Chennai,” the man said extending his hand. As Khan took his hand, he felt a tiny prick at the back of his neck. After considering it for just a moment, Khan dismissed it as the occasional tingling of his nerves, which had been on the rise with his irregular medication. “I am here just for your talk, sir,” the man said, diverting Khan’s attention, and opening the door for him.
“Great. I am next in line. Do you want to come with me?”
“Of course! After you,” the man walked along with Khan towards the auditorium.
Though it was not unusual for Muthu to befriend his subjects before action unfolded, he felt a sense of remorse momentarily. Khan was too old and he never enjoyed going after helpless and weak subjects, which had become a little too common of late with his current employer. He realized it was tad too late to entertain any kind of regret. He had already initiated an irreversible reaction and he waited to see its result, for his record, if not per his employer’s directions. As they entered the auditorium, Khan stumbled, and he held him, preventing what could have been a disastrous fall. Amused by the irony of the situation he was in, the man assisted Khan up the stairs, to the stage, before taking a seat in the front row, waiting for the drama to begin.
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ALL EVENTS, CHARACTERS, ENTITIES AND SEQUENCES DEPICTED IN THIS LITERARY WORK ARE FICTITIOUS. ANY RESEMBLANCE OR SIMILARITY TO ACTUAL PERSONS (LIVING OR DEAD) OR ENTITIES WHETHER EXISTING OR OTHERWISE, IS PURELY COINCIDENTAL. ANY DESCRIPTION OF PERSONS, NAMES, MARKS, WORKS OR ANY OTHER INFORMATION PORTRAYED IN THE LITERARY WORK IS MERELY INCIDENTAL UNLESS OTHERWISE EXPRESSLY ACKNOWLEDGED.
Copyright, Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala.
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