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He always had a mysterious grin on his face. Living in an apartment in Mumbai, all alone and barely walking out of his space in daylight made his neighbours suspicious about him.

Once, the IT executive who lived right opposite to our mystery man’s apartment peeped in to spy what’s happening inside and unfortunately he was caught by our angry young man who never liked someone trying to disturb his privacy. Beat him almost to death. And then no one has seen this IT guy ever around the place; he was gone.

Every weekend a bunch of guys rush into his apartment with beer bottles in hands and ‘The Hotel California’ in their lips. They shout and scream in joy. That’s when people realize there is this young mysteriously odd man lives in their flat and they should be bother about such a neighbor who could be a danger someday.

And that’s when our beautiful girl who was very stubborn, decided to buy the apartment the IT guy left. She shifted her space from Indore to Mumbai as part of her Journalist job. She heard much about the man who was her neighbor but she has never seen him and was not even interested too.

But one day they met. They collided, their eyes caught each other’s and she smiled. He shouted.

“Can’t you see? Idiot.”

“I’m sorry” she was never used to say that though.

When he was about to walk away, she stood in front of him blocking his way to just simply smile and say “ I’m Natasha and you are?”

He didn’t reply.

Days passed. Natasha used to work late night and he always used to go out at midnight. No one knew where he was going. But they saw each other every night. She smiles and he never pays a heed.

One day; he was sitting on his couch in his living room and suddenly Natasha fall on to the floor through the main door which wasn’t locked. He ran to her saying “What the fuck?”

Natasha was unconscious. She was breathing heavily and moved her hands to convey to him that she had asthma and she couldn’t breathe. Even though he was much angry to be having such a trouble on his head took her in his arms and ran to nearby hospital. She was admitted and he took care of her until she was discharged.

They came back to their places. She took leave from her job. He continued his routine; going out at midnight and partying at the weekends with his peer group. She obviously had a crush on him as every girl would have on her savior. All she wanted was to talk to him but she never got a chance until one day one of his friends, may be, and showed up on a midnight in his apartment. But as usually he was out and this guy left, leaving an envelope on the door lock. Natasha, who was looking for an opportunity to bump on him, took the envelope and waited for our man to arrive. Nearly at 2 in the morning he came back. Natasha ran to him and handover the envelope.

“Someone left this on your door. I took care of it” She smiled.

“Who the hell are you ha?” he shouted at her for bothering about his stuffs and smashed the door on her face.

Natasha was upset. She walked here and there in her room. She couldn’t sleep and didn’t even go for job. That afternoon she heard a knock on her door. Surprisingly it was him with a feeble smile on his face.

“I’m sorry” he said and it was clear that he said sorry for first time ever in his life.

“I was a bit disturbed. That’s why…” he scratched his head.

“That’s okay. Come in and suit yourself friend” she blushed.

He walked in, looked around and then to her face with a smile he never gave to anyone but her. They became friends. And he started changing with her presence around. Other people in the apartment started seeing him in the daylight and that too with a broad smiling face. They all were surprised to see him in such a joy and positivity. She often visited his place; sometimes on the weekend parties and sometimes alone. When they were alone, she would sing him songs and dance along with him. She wished for a kiss but he never crossed the limits. They went out; to the beach where they played with the sand and ate ice-creams like kids; to the theatres  to watch SRK movies and scream in joy together like friends; to the sunset where they would hold their hands and she would rest her head on his shoulder like lovers.

That’s how they became to each other. He was hers; she thought that was forever. Until she fall sick like hell again. Asthma caught her. She had him beside, every minute holding her hands and giving her strength to come back.

“It’s hard for her this time” doctors said.

He came to her and sat beside the bed. He saw her trying to breathe through the oxygen mask they gave her to survive. He held her hand.

“I’m sorry baby. I’m helpless”

He knew, even though her eyes were closed she is listening him; every word of him. He went close to her ears and whispered something only she heard. Slowly she opened her eyes and looked at his face in terror. He put his hands in the jacket he wore and took out the envelope she handed over to him that night. And took out a photograph and showed it to her. Facing to him was written ‘Kill her, you have 25 days time’

But it was easy on the 13th day. All he had to do was to take off the oxygen mask and walk away with the mysterious grin on his face.

~UmA~

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