Partho sighed deeply as he gazed at the clouds floating past his window. Most men would have rejoiced at the idea of a vacation in the U.S. east coast. Not him.
“Stuff these into your ears,” Ria, my sister, and his wife said. She handed him two cotton balls from the middle seat.
He lifted his winter ear mufflers, shoved the balls all the way in and pulled his mufflers back on. Partho was prone to illnesses; viruses often announced their arrival in the neighborhood through him.
My association with Partho was from well before he knew Ria, which was why he was a friend before the “In-law.” Close to twenty-five years I have known him. He was always the loner, the silent type. I was his only friend in the high school days when others picked on him. People often judged him as the faint-hearted nerd that never retaliated or even complained. While most teenagers frittered away their time in gossips, fist fights, drugs or girls, Partho nurtured plants, fed the birds, munched on peanuts and meditated. His straight talk had landed him in trouble more often than not.
Months turned into years and years into decades, but Partho’s attitude towards life has remained unchanged. He is still a topper in the subjects of his choice, and even now he can’t get along with people. Decades later, I still wasn’t sure if I had figured him out.
It shouldn’t have been a surprise when I saw him like that. Eyes shut, he sat bolt-upright and cross-legged in the world of his choosing. A rhythmic breathing rose and fell as the flight clambered the heights of ten thousand feet over sea level. The air hostesses stared down at the unearthly sight when she arrived to hand out snacks — peanuts. A few passing teenagers mocked him in muffled tones as the jet zoomed over the Pacific. Partho couldn’t care less even if he were awake.
The plane started to wobble up and down as the boys scurried back to their seats. The seatbelt sign flashed on with a ding. Ria tried to shake him up, but he wouldn’t respond. She wrapped the seatbelt around him. I could make out the butterflies in my stomach as a baby wailed. The plane swayed, shuffling the bags in the overhead compartments with loud thuds as kids shrieked out. A few prayed while others held tight to the seats; not even a frown had crossed Partho’s face. His breath maintained the same rhythm and tranquility. The roller coaster ride ended after five long minutes, and so did his meditation. Opening his eyes, he peered at the covers in the seat pockets. “Don’t tell me I missed the peanuts.”
Join Partho on his vacation to the east coast and be part of the rollercoaster ride ! Set to be released on Halloween, Oct 31st, this release is guaranteed to mistify your world. Check out “Escaped” here.
Who can you trust when no one is who they seem?
Traveling through the US on vacation, Partho has found himself in the middle of yet another mystery that needs his unconventional insight. Aided by his wife Ria, and friend Dev, Partho has joined a bus tour where they stumble upon a lead on a looming explosion. When Partho’s expedition gets unwittingly entangled with the target everyone is looking for—an escaped death row inmate, he has no other choice but to tackle it head-on.
Will their vacation turn deadly before they can solve the case?