Chapter 1 Jeevan (Life) To read prologue https://commaful.com/play/anjali/mauth-2/
Our car drove towards the eastern side of our city, the Paheli, it is where most of the underground businesses are run. Mauth conducts it’s weekly meetings and emergency meetings at a bunker.
The bunker has an old cottage like appearance but, inside it has an underground gateway that leads to our base that we call guffa.
As soon as I reached the guffa, I turned towards the L-12. L-12 or the lethal twelve are a gang of the twelve most perilous members from Mauth.
Mauth rules over 12 facets, each facet is called a Bhag. These Bhags run under the guidance of L-12 leaders.
“Why was I summoned?” I shift my gaze from each member to another. They all bow their heads as a mark of respect and then gaze into my eyes, as been taught. We all keep Mahima over all.
Mahima is our code of conduct. Mahima is glory, it is greatness, it is sacrifice, and it is a feeling of belongingness towards other members.
Although criminals, we all follow certain directives, one of them is to preach Mahima over one’s own dead body. “Queen, there was a breach of Mahima in my Bhag.
” Vevaan stepped forward as he spoke. Vevaan has brown compassionate eyes but he is stoic below that mask of gentleness. He is Indian, and has a deep brown tan.
He speaks a perfect accent and is skilled in field work. “One of the new recruits, turned out to be a member of Jeevan. He killed several of our soldiers on field.
He is restrained, should I proceed to carry out karma?”
Jeevan is our rival group. It is a sibling of Mauth. After all where there is life there is death soon to come. Jeevan doesn’t have honour, it kills, it survives, and it is unrelenting.
Its members are taught only one thing ‘once fallen, forever doomed in the field of battle’ and in order to survive they would go to hell and back to kill me.
“Vevaan, prepare the green room, I shall carry out the proceedings.” I tell Vevaan. There is a sudden intake of breath. “Ishi, you don’t need to do this. Vevaan and I will handle this.
” Rohan speaks. I raise my eyebrow to indicate my annoyance. Rohan has been my comrade on the field many times and is well practised with my terms of dealing in regard of breaches of karma.
He has breath taking emerald eyes. He owns an air of confidence around him. “I don’t need to answer you.” I take a pause and then continue, “ Informal greetings are forbidden at a meeting.
” I speak in reference to him calling me by my name. I turn to move towards the green room.
As I leave I hear Rohan speak “The last time she was there, she came out with less of humanity and more of that ruthless beast I can’t fathom”.
His voice is full of self loathe, he blames himself for pulling me into this business.
Whenever I went into the green room he would always sit by the door, knowing how that room changed people, but now I am the queen and I serve Mauth regardless of the things I detest or relish.
Green room is the brush up room, where we polish our security and spook out our renegades by eliminating those who breach Mahima.
We torture people here, once inside a person might as well be better off dead.
I enter inside the green room, a powerful pungent and acidic smells invades my senses. Our prisoner is tied to chains hanging from the ceiling, I slowly saunter towards him.
He will be given continuous dosage of sulphas, with the aid of IV therapy, the poison would enter straight in his veins.
He won’t feel anything in the beginning but slowly its symptoms would begin.
A burning sensation will arise and then his organs would start disintegrating , getting digested, and disassociating into fragments. Once it starts soon the pain will become unbearable.
Within an hour, we are able to extract information effectively.
When our guests are near to being terminated they are left in the alleys so that the word spreads whoever messes with Mauth bring their demise upon themselves.
I am about to start the procedure when his mouth starts foaming. He convulses a few times and then hangs there, dead. He has been given relief pills.
These are fast working poisons and are given to comrades on the field in case they get caught.
These work almost in an hour and are painless, rather a relief than being caught and tortured by rivals.
He had been under arrest for more than 6 hours, so there is no way he could have taken these before. He has consumed them within the hour I had arrived and conducted the meeting.
Prisoners are not fed so there is no way Jeevan could have slipped these in his food or water.
I can’t allow this incident to get out, not only would it provide a sense of security to whoever did this that there task has been accomplished. It would also cause chaos among Mauth soldiers.
Suspicion would directly be on L-12 and I can’t afford lack of trust between fellow members. Going against Mahima is sacrilegious. I need to work on this outside of this group.
I check his wrists, the right one has marks of being strained as if he tried to reach something out of his reach. Green room has no windows through which anyone might slip this in.
Rather this room is underground and impossible to invade unless through the door
Who could have done this? Is Mahima breached or is it someone from the outside? Who would help Jeevan? This couldn’t be a good sign.
. I take out my smart phone and call Lakshya. Let’s see what he says in reference to this. My university friend, Lakshya excelled in forensic science and is a trusted resource.
He currently works in the IAFS, International Agency of Forensic Science.
“Holy moly, Ishu you called? Do I need to get my head checked, or did someone who goes with the name of Ishi recover from a long case of amnesia?
” Lakshya answered with the lengthiest greeting I received nowadays, “Hey, I am sorry! Ok. Not everyone has a job that pays well, and allows you to sleep well.” I reply with a hint of sarcasm.
Lakshya and I were the only undergraduates selected at an age of twelve to join university. We were selected through a special program that searched for overachievers.
Both of us were called child prodigies. He became a forensic scientist at the age of fifteen. While I gave up studies and became the leader of Mauth.
“I wasn’t the one who gave up my life and joined some loco group” He sighed on the phone, he still wasn’t over that.
According to him it didn’t matter that I came from criminal background unless I became a part of them.
When I told him of my decision to join Mauth he was furious, he was so blinded by rage that he threatened to give my secret away to the police. I couldn’t talk to him for days.
After some days he apologized yet still told me I might regret my decision.
Somedays he would go out of his mind and pester me the whole day “Is this the life you want to live? Is this the person you want to be?
” He was my best friend in university and probably the only friend whom I trusted with my life. “I need your help.” I said, “It might come with a free service of killing rats at your house.
” “Don’t you dare bring that corpse anywhere near my house, last time that pungent smell clung onto my skin like a leech. Nope that is never happening again.
” He said with disgust and a shiver I could feel over the phone. “Where do I bring it then?” I inquired, “Abandoned building no. 4” He said with a departing note and the call clicked off. Thankyou