Monday, January 16, 2006

The silent killer !

This is a true incident that happened last year.

Last summer me and three other girls were living in a house in a less populated part of Koramangala. My roomies were out-of-towners while I was a ‘fringe-Bangalorean’ that is my folks lived a little away from the city. In order to cut short the commute time I had convinced my parents that I should stay in the city during weekdays during summer Internships. My parent's reluctantly gave in when they met my other roomies and the landlord who was a nice gentleman. I was maha thrilled to be living alone for the first time in my life, that is if you discount the months before final exams when I usually stayed in the college hostel (but then that was more like being in the Central Jail, without the benefits.) The house in which we all lived like merry bachelorettes was a four bedroomed house, which means we had our own private rooms. My room was slightly bigger than the matchbox size of the other rooms and this was willingly ceded to me to accommodate my PC.

My room mates were a mallu gal ‘A’, a Bengali gal I used to call ‘Chikoo’ for obvious reasons ( she was plump) and ‘P’ a girl from Chennai. I was the only non-techie and Intern in this crowd. From day one, the four of us hit it off quite well. None of those "your-wet-towel-was on-my-bed" and "you-borrowed-my-shoes" frictions that happens to gals living in hostels or sharing rooms. I think having our own rooms was a big blessing.

One day I was very late coming from office. As a drove tiredly into the house I didn't notice that the streetlights were off. There were several empty plots near our house and a huge wooded park sprawled opposite the house. I pulled into the driveway and in the faint light of my bike headlights saw that my roomies bikes were already parked in the driveway. After I had switched off the light of my bike I noticed that it was pitch dark everywhere. Groping my way to the front door I felt around till I found the switch to the light on the verandah and flicked the light on. The verandah was instantly bathed in yellow light and I noticed that the front door was ajar. The house was pitch dark save for the flickering of the TV and there was no movement within. I felt a chill run up my spine. I fished out my mobile from my handbag and called the landline in the house. I could hear the phone ringing but no one picked up the phone. I tried my roomies mobiles with no luck.

Fearing the worst I gingerly went inside the near dark hall. The light switch for the hall near the front door was useless as there was no bulb in the socket. That left the tubelight with its switch at the other end of the hall. As I walked into the dark hall groping my way around I could get a terrible smell. The smell was quite overpowering and I felt nausea welling up within me. Covering my nose with my jacket I groped around till I found the tube light switch and put it on. As the tube light flickered I got the terrible glimpse of a dead body that lay sprawled in the hall. Stifling a scream I rushed wildly out of the hall and into the kitchen. Quickly closing the door to shut out the terrible sight I put on the light switch with a trembling hand. I froze in horror at the sight in the kitchen.

Crockery and cutlery lay everywhere and the kitchen was in a mess. On the kitchen platform were my roomies their eyes wide with terror, mouth open in a silent scream. ‘Chikoo’ clutched a blue plastic packet in her cold hand. It had “Bellona Cockroach Repellent” written across in bold letters....

And judging from the dead body of the cockroach in the hall it was damn effective.
The salesman was right, it was ‘deadly’.

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Trackback: In my absence, one of my roomies had lit the Bellona agarbathi thinking that it was a regular agarbthi. This had caused the cockroach to come out and breathe its last in the hall where they were sitting watching TV. And since all three were terrified of cockroaches they would have fled to the nearest room i.e. the kitchen on seeing the roach in the hall. But to their bad luck the smell of the agarbathi had made the roaches in the kitchen to crawl out too to die on the kitchen floor. This would have made them jump on the kitchen platform effectively trapping them till I came back from work.

I took a broom and gathered the lone ranger in the hall and the other fellahs in the kitchen and put them to their final rest in the drain outside. After a thorough inspection of the house and lots of reassuring my roomies finally climbed down from their perch of one hour.

A’ gets married in May and ‘Chikoo’ in March. Me and ‘P’ the youngest amongst the four are now back with our parents. But this is one incident that we will never forget for a long time to come.

48 comments:

Mind Curry said...

its funny how seemingly trivial things all mound up in your memory and then come back as flashbacks when you think fondly of people you care and love..nice writing.as always.

YldGuy said...

hehe.. now tats a killer!

danya said...

haha...gud post !!! u can be a gud detective novelist...

Geo said...

Good one (as usual) madam...
I think u r tired of hearing the same appreciation again and again. But what to do, I am not as original as you are :_)


Trying out new waters?

lookin for a diff kind of admirers, eh?
=))

silverine said...

@mindcurry: When Chikoo came to give me her wedding invite, we went down memory lane and this was one of the outstanding memories of our days together:)
@theylderme: Thanks!
@danya: Nice to know my attempt at suspence didn't turn out to be a damb squib! :))
@Geo:Thank you Sir Geo! Thou art very kind! =))
This is unchartered territory i.e. I mean writing a suspense thriller. When I was tagged with the 55 word story tag I by Deepa, Adarsh and Preethi I had written the same story, but in 55 words.Check it out!

>|' ; '| said...

=))
i was a sucker for the story(literally, reading with bated breath) till the cockroach was revealed! u r damn good!

anthony said...

Are girls really scared of roaches?? Thout it was only in the movies

Alexis Leon said...

Nice story. Even though, I knew that you were up to something, I never thought that it would be a cockroach :-)

Vivek Panda said...

wow man! uu really know how to write thrillers !! really luved ur post!

Rockus said...

Roaches....ewwww! I thought some 7 foot guy with a hacksaw... ;-)

Anonymous said...

u cn do better :)

JamesBright said...

Very clever post, once again..!

Thanu said...

I also used to be the roach/spider killer when we all girls got together.

Dr. Pissed said...

You got me there.. Literally with the dead guy thing.

Jakkasandra no? I am dead sure... Ironically, even i was also there only.

Vikram said...

My jaw dropped while reading it. Not because of the dead roach though. LOL.

That was some presence of mind to call the landline when you saw your door open.

:)

Anil The Great said...

silverline :

this was a masterpeice. you gripped me till the last para. never knew the teeny tiny cockroach can create such a havoc in minds of girls.
But you seems to be a brave lady, taking charge of the situation.
looks like ur "living alone like a queen-size" days are over. thats bad, i suppose.

Fleiger said...

Hmm... a well-executed murder mystery, I must say. But biological weapons???

We used to work have cockroach-hunts like fox-hunts of the british members of HoL. Imagine 2-3 guys all running after a cockroach clutching cans of "Hit" or brooms in their hands. Sigh... those were the days!!!

silverine said...

@Poison: ha ha guess the write up isn't that bad then!
@Anthony: Yes, they are mortally scared of roaches :)
@Alexis:I like the way you have put it I knew that you were up to something :))
@Vivek: Thanks Vivek!
@Rockus: he he hacksaw? Now that's some imagination!!! :))
@anon: Please leave a name when you comment!
@dreamslittle: Thank you :)
@Thanu: Attagirl!!We are an endangered species...I mean girls who are not afraid of roaches :))

silverine said...

@dr pissed:Me thought your were in Arekere what with JLA and all that!!
@Vikram:I was really frightened when I saw the door ajar. All sorts of horrible thoughts crossed my mind. I had in fact called my brother too and ventured in despite his warning not to. By the time my brother landed up we were sitting on the verandah laughing nervously at the incident. I got a firing later from my brother for disobeying him :)
@anilthegreat: Thank you! Yeah, sadly the queen size days are over.
@fleiger: that must have been some sight...guys running after cockroaches clutching cans of "Hit" or brooms in their hands ROFL :))

Browser said...

Hey, where do you get that stuff you used? Sounds effective - but is the stink that bad? Good post.

laks said...

ha ha ha.. gud one

really caught my (usually short) attention span for a while

kickassso said...

I'd have much more fun killing roaches:D

the last time , i used HIT, but a much, enhanced version:>

put a candle or a lighter in front of HIT or any aerosol for that matter to get an instant flamethrower!
adults, please dont try this @ home!

I picked up this frm the movie 'arachnophobia' and am pleased to say that it exceeds all expectations!

ToOothlEss WOndeR! said...

i hate this.. i wrote a 10 liner, i hit publish, and then it goes abracadabra woosh (pop). where did that go?????

heh heh.. nice post.. i mean it ignited a fire in me thats been lying covered up since i left college. a question i have never been able to find the answer for, a phenominen that defies all logic. i mean atleast all logic that a male brain is capable of processing.

why is that a girl and a roach always seem to have a story together? i mean A girl and A roach, girls and roaches - all the same..

but why roaches of all things? an easily squashableunderyourshoe/letgoable roach?

this is a question i hope to find n answer for before i die, the other one being why i was born at all.. :)

Matter of Choice said...

hehe...as usual the silverine twist at the end of the tale :)
pass on my congrats to A n Chickoo..
ps: do their prospective hubbies know the fear of cockroaches??

Safari Al said...

okay...i almost thought it was some food that you had made and the other three had eaten in your absence.

cockroaches..so you arent afraid of them eh? ever had to fish out one from the bowl of dal you had been eating???

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

woooo hoooo !!!!!

hi ma'm ....

really enjoyed reading this ....

we had a funny incident too ...
mom's sis is damn scared of them roaches ...
she was 17 when i was born , and used to spend a lotta time at our place ...

once , during the rainy season , a c'roach fell down from the chimney ... she screamed , but dad just threw the thing off ...
and then came one more
and then one more
and then one more ...
that night , we had abt 60 c'roaches falling down from the chimney ....

Her face was worth watching ;)))

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

i aint scared of 'em too ... but i dislike crawling things like centipede , millipede etc

Sujay said...

May the soul rest in peace ! LOL!

Gladtomeetin said...

Hey nice one...I was thinking it would be something different in the end, but didn't expect it to be COCKROACH ;-))

Sp^wN_0F_S^T^N said...

LOL!!! n1, as usual...

hmmm! i gota try that, kickassso :D

Sujit said...

Its funny.. but the incident will last for along time.. may be every time you see a cockroach..:p

flaashgordon said...

Well Miss Agatha 'Silverine' Christie, i suspected 'a rat' right from the beginning; well literally !!! Silverine being involved. Esp so when u mentioned the dead body..but the cockroach was quite a surprise !

Didnt u do a postmortem of the cockroach and try to identify the cause of death??Was it arsenic laced agarbattis? Or was it heart attack on seeing Silverine silhouetted against the yellow light?

Cheers
flaash

silverine said...

@Browser: Bellona is good and it is available in most shops.
@Laks: Thank you :)
@MoC: Pray why should prospective hubbies know about their fear of cockroaches?? (explanation demanded)p.s. you are still A's inspiration and she is working on it hard, because of the wedding. Congratulations from her side to you too for the 'inspiring' feat ;)
@Kickasso; that's innovative but I still prefer Bellona! Light it and watch the light go out of roaches lives muahaHAHAHA :)
@toothlesswonder: The same thing happened to me too. So now I copy my comment before 'preview' and 'publish' in case it does the disappearing act. The girl and roach mystery is an enigma that has floored many a guy. It is difficult to explain :))

silverine said...

@safari al:Jeez!!! Are you eating at Puttanna's Hotel ? :))
@Deepa: heh heh that wuz funny!!! I can imagine her ashen face,struck dumb with fear :))Me too not afraid of roaches but can't stand millipedes and other wriggly creatures brrrr
@Sujay: Amen :)
@gladtomeetin: As a gal you should have gueseed that the hero of this whodunit was Mr. Cockroach :)
@spawnofsatan: Thank you :)
@Sujith: Very true!!!
@Flaashgordon: sheesh will I ever be taken seriously???? :)) LOL on that observation on the cause of death :))
I think my silhouette did it with a lot of help from the collective screams of my roomies. The poor roach had no chance =))

Bluefrogtribute said...

Ha ha tat was really funny.. U can leave a comment if i blog which i hardly do. But might just today if i feel like.

iyer education said...

grippin tale actually... but i think the end was a bit flat...

no no no no... not the one where you reveal the identities of the dead body... but the end of the deadbodies...

you shud have given a nice and respectable cremation for the stars of your story rather than just brushing them aside and drowning them in the gutter :)

will visit for more thrillers :)

Anonymous said...

I can see an Arudhanthi Roy in the making. Why not try for something that has more essence?
If so, u could be doing wonders.

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

looks like our minds think alike ...
" Great minds think alike " ... right ????

Densel Mayor said...

very funny to read [:)]

silverine said...

@blufrogtribute: Thank you :)
@iyereducation:Thank you, maybe I should have cremated them with full state honors :))
@anonymous:Thank you for that wonderful compliment. Blogging gives me the freedom to write what I want without any external boundaries or restrictions. That makes it a lot of fun and I get to write what I want. I guess the kind of writing you mentioned is not what I am cut out for, or maybe I am yet to grow into. Let's wait and see because when it happens it must come naturally :))
@Deepa: You are right ma'am!! :)
@Densel:Thank you Densu! :)

Leon said...

Lol.. Aren't you the brave one? :p

So, you are now commuting back and forth everyday.. That must be a pain..

Praveen said...

Very well written as always, nice suspense :), and you did take me by surprise in the end :).

Also, its amazing how these incidents linger on in memory for ever isnt it?

silverine said...

@Leon: Yes, me was the brave one :)) The part about me running to the kitchen was pure fiction to build up the suspense. lol Yes, commuting is a pain but then we have a carpool system so it works out fine now.
@Praveen: I was so terrified to see the door open at that time of the night. But I had a nice laugh when I heard the whole story lol

Lost in trance... said...

what build up! i was riveted!

Intruder said...

"The silent killer!" is my first post after loging into the world of bloggers and i really had a wonderful start.

silverine said...

@lostintrance: it is so nice to see you at my blog :)
@intruder; Welcome to the world of blogging and thank you :)

Rainbow Hopper said...

What puzzles me about women is this...you can go through hours of hell pulling out hairs from the roots with wax, battle extreme pain in labour, smile through trying times every month and fight with your husbands and bosses, but when a incy little harmless roach or a spider is sighted ....shivers run up your spine, you go into panic, run up the walls and for your lives. :)
Ahhh the mystery that is a woman.

Two thumbs up on the post!

silverine said...

@Yohan De Nazareth: Well said. You just summed up the woman :)Thanks for dropping by.