The woman sat alone on the train of thought. Knowing nothing about the future, she awaited her destination. People used to call her Sam, but nobody knew her real name. Everybody thought Sam was short for Samantha but that’s another story. This was the last time she would be taking a train journey. It was high time she got a promotion for the work she was doing. She was consulting with an agency, if I’m not wrong. ‘How I wish to take a flight next time’, she mumbled in her head. It looked as if the agency was cost-cutting and tight on budget. I thought sitting right behind her, ‘She looks nervous as if something bad was about to happen’.
My basic instincts were all over the place and I was secretly judging her. A course in studying psychology, had helped me understand the body language of a person and premeditated circumstances it could lead to. My only worry was to write a story for my publishers, so I sketched a plot around this lady.
At first sight I thought she looked ordinary, but after making small talk I realized she was the same lady who had appeared on the missing persons page. She looked familiar enough but with a little small talk I managed to get out a story from her. Apparently, she was escaping to live in country side as her agency had warned her about the mishaps if she did not complete the assignment. My first reaction to this was whether she was working for an intelligence bureau, but then again an agent would never spill the details that quickly especially about their identity.
Seeing nothing coming out of this conversation, I took a nap. When I woke up about half an hour or so, I could not spot her anywhere near the place. I guess my first impression about her was not true. I was perplexed and waited to arrive on her seat. I could hear whispers around me about that lady creepily leaving her seat as if she was hiding something. I was imagining what could have happened, but nothing crossed my mind.
Suddenly, I heard footsteps of someone clad in a burqa coming back, with her hijab lifted. I could not make out at first who the lady was, but later I recognised those brown oval shaped mascara laden eyes. It was the same lady but in a different attire. She sat down patiently waiting. All I could think about was the secret agent story. Unfortunately, she got down on the next station and my story waited completion so I followed her frantically. She pulled out something out of her sleeve. Suddenly, she pulled out her pistol and aimed right at me. I wish I was alive to tell the rest of story. Now, that I’m resting with the Gods I realise what a wonderful piece of fiction it would seem like to my publishers.
By Saumya Rastogi (Editor, Fiction)