Sunday, September 30, 2007

Ramesh And The Costly Mistake (Part 4)

I glanced at my wrist watch. “It’s five-thirty, now,” I said. “How much longer do we wait?” “I don’t know,” replied Sanjeev miserably. “Do you think anything else will happen now?”

I glanced out of the restaurant window and then stiffened. “I think something’s happening right now!” I hissed. Sanjeev jumped…

A large white car of foreign make had drawn up in front of the antique shop. A blond-haired foreigner got out of the car. He paused only to straighten his clothes and then walked into the antique shop.

Sanjeev and I stared at each other, with obviously the same question on our minds. Was this foreigner that other customer whom we had been watching out for?

We said nothing to each other and continued to stare out of the restaurant window. The minutes ticked away with agonizing slowness. Then, suddenly, the foreigner came storming out of the antique shop, his face red and looking very angry. Slamming the car door behind him with such force that the impact could be heard even inside the restaurant, he drove off.

I drew a deep breath. “Well, what do you make of that!” I exclaimed to Sanjeev. Something funny is going on inside that shop! I hope Ramesh hasn’t got involved.”

Sanjeev looked worried. “What do we do now? We can’t sit here forever.”

“You’re right.” I came to a decision. “I think we should also snoop around the back of that shop. We might find out what’s happened to Ramesh.”

Having paid the bill, Sanjeev and I left the restaurant. Deliberately not looking at the antique shop across the road, we quickly walked down to the end of the street. Then we crossed the road. Once across we rounded the corner and soon stood at the mouth of the dark alley that led to the back of the antique shop.

“I’m scared,” said Sanjeev.

So was I. “Don’t be silly!” I exclaimed, though not very convincingly. “There’s nothing to be scared of.”

Sanjeev grabbed my arm. “Oh, yes, there is!” he hissed. “Somebody’s running towards us!”