The Oberois’ were shifting into their new pad. Ashima, the young architect and also the newly wedded wife of the owner Harsh Oberoi had taken pains to make every nook, every corner of the home decorative. Beautiful pebbles of various hues were arranged in different forms and shapes, encircling the grotto in the garden. Ashima had specially made a pair of cairns on either side of the fountain, with small pebbles, which made the sprawling garden look explicably opulent.
Tuesday was the house warming ceremony. Harsh Oberoi, the criminal lawyer was not only the richest but the most sought-after attorney for any crime hitting the city. He was known for his vigorous and persuasive orations in the court which could make any lawyer tremble in his knees. Every case that he argued made history, for the mighty and fiery facts that he put forth.
The couple walked hand in hand, amongst distinguished guests, celebrities and family; the paparazzi was quick to capture the occasion.
Ashima who was dressed in her golden lehenga choli was escorting the spouse to the well laid lawns and to the fountains which were sprinkling iridescent water on the bodies of cairns giving them a rainbow hue.
As they approached nearer, Harsh’s expressions started changing from that of an innocent, carefree, smiling, handsome guy to that of a petrified mouse who had seen a cat. He started trembling and sweating hard. His pulse raced and he felt dizzy asking for water. In a few seconds, he was unconscious. Instantly an ambulance was seen blaring its sirens carrying the hunky Oberoi to the nearest hospital.
There was a panel of specialists discussing the case of Harsh Oberoi. Though the provisional diagnosis was “Petra phobia”, the fear of rocks, it was necessary to know the origin in order to cure him. He had been shifted to the room after a brief stay in the ICU whilst his vitals were restored.
Dr Jacob Mathews, the psychiatrist ordered a narcoanalysis test. Dr Kashyap, the anesthetist, Dr Tripathy, the forensic psychologist and nurse Annamma all were in the theatre while Pentothal sodium was being injected to bring Harsh to the hypnotic stage. A questionnaire was made and was being asked one by one as Harsh was answering them uninhibited.
Are you afraid of rocks?
C’mon Harsh answer me why?
Say clearly…what Ish?
“Ishita …Ishita died in the gorge…. As I pushed her, her head hit the adjoining rocks and she died…She was pestering me to marry her and was threatening to go to the police for raping her ….My father who is very influential saw to it that I escaped unscathed. Her death was dismissed as an accident.
Handcuffed, Harsh was going to the lockup.
Ashima cried loudly…. “You scoundrel !! you killed my friend….I had known this but had no evidence. That is why I used those cairns in our home to bring the truth out” .
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