There is no warning rattle at the door,not yet.Is he still in there ?
I held my breath and sank deeper into the closet,speculating on what he would do to me when he found me out.”Oh Jesus” I prayed helplessly,”help me out one last time and I promise to go to the church every single Sunday for as long as I live…”.
My heart was fluttering like a little bird and my hands were shivering. Did I hear something?
In between my panic attacks I felt a rush of anger towards Anita. It’s been almost an hour and a half, where was that wretched girl? She was supposed to warn me once it was safe.Is she standing in the garden gazing at the black birds playing in the puddle of water, oblivious to the surroundings? Or has she lost herself in a damned book? Oh God, how could I ever trust that stupid girl with something like this!
It was very stuffy inside the closet and I was sweating like crazy. It was a bad plan, I should have trusted my intuition.But Das had insisted that it was safe. The inside of the house looked nothing like he had described. Bastard! He was making it all up.Was he lying when he swore that the man was never home on Saturdays? And what a fool was I to fall for his stories. I imagined him,sitting with his good-for- nothing friends near that old park, blowing out smoke rings ,laughing over my stupidity. Let me get my ass out from here, I will strangle him till he coughs blood.
My father’s ring was somewhere in this house. I did not care about my mother’s jewelry, but the ring… it was the only thing that he had left behind for us. I would have never let my mother sell it, had I known.It was quite typical of her to not tell me anything. I know that the bank is demanding an immediate pay back of the loan. But she had no right to snatch the only token of memory that I had of my father.
I am not a thief, but I need the ring back. Conveniently,the house had a broken back window that was never repaired,The plan seemed simple enough -sneak inside through the window when the man was away.Anita, my sister, was supposed to be on the watch. Das ,who did few odd jobs for the man,had reassured that the man never locked his cupboards and that he would be away till Sunday.Was that his idea of a joke, pervert!
We did see the man leaving the house in his car, I had easily crept in to the house through the tiny creak in the window , though the scratches on my arms still burned. Once inside I found all the rooms ,except the kitchen and the hall, locked.I was still looking around when I heard Anita’s panicked whisper from outside the window. “He is here..hide….”.My heart almost stopped.I should have quickly slipped out right then. But I thought that he had come back to fetch something.I asked Anita to rattle the window once he was gone again.But that was ages ago!
I was still debating on whether to get out when the door flung open. There I was, exposed and helpless, before a giant of a man. I started blabbering excuses that I had carefully thought of which the guy barely listened to. I noticed Anita standing in the hall, a look of pure terror plastered on to her face. She was shaking like a leaf, had she confessed?
“So you want to steal my stuff ?” He asked in his thunderous voice, confirming my fear. I looked back at Anita, my eyes filled with hatred. Then I saw her torn clothes,her bruised lips…what has this monster done to my little sister? She looked away as my eyes met her’s. “Here..” the man tossed the ring in front of me..”take it and get lost…” , he wore a wicked grin..”and never mention this to anyone…I can get you little thieves arrested for breaking in….got it..?”.He turned away and walked past Anita, patting her shoulders as he did. I could see her recoil in fear.
I looked at the ring on the floor.It had suddenly lost it’s charm.I walked towards my sister without bothering to pick it up.