Episode 2 – The real secret!
Fatty called his wife while getting down from his flight back home 2 days after the con job. He had already gone through his wife’s intriguing questionnaire for a quite a few times now and was ready to iterate the whole story from any vantage point possible.
“Honey, I just landed! I should be home in half an hour.”
“The insurance people came in today. I don’t know where are all the documents they were asking for! So, I called them tomorrow when you are home so that you can handle this and get us as much money as possible to repair our savings account which was more than enough a few days ago but has hit rock bottom suddenly owing to a doppelganger of yours who followed us for weeks and broke into our home and stole the key and robbed our life savings the day you left for your business trip!” She started softly but her tone went from a lullaby to a death metal vocalist gradually delving into told details.
“Honey, you still think it is my mistake? How would have I known that this doppelganger is going to rob us? If I ever was able to find this guy, I would tie him upside down and torture him unless he gives our money back!” Fatty calmed his wife down.
“The police will be back for questioning today evening. They want to talk to you personally.”
“Oh I am ready for any questions that can help catch this Bastard!”
“Honey, subtle with the language! We belong to highly educated families and it is not in our blood to use such gory words!” She said instructively.
“Oh I am sorry darling! I just am so angry at this! I just want our savings back as bad as you do!”
“We will fight together to get our money back!” She hung up gently.
2 weeks later
“Honey, wake up, the Police is here!” The wife was trying to wake up Fatty as the cops waited outside.
He woke up with a mix of scare and excitement “Have they found anything?”
“No, but I called them to discuss the progress, if they have made any!”
“Hmm, that is wonderful of you darling! I will just wash my face and be outside in a minute” He jumped out of the bed and ran to the bathroom.
After 15 minutes, he walked outside. His wife was already talking to the cops.
The cop in the front came a little closer to him “I am sorry to inform you that we have not been able to track your money yet!”
“Oh” Fatty made a sad face.
“Nobody saw anybody break into your house that afternoon as every neighbor was at work. We tried the street kids, but nothing! Bank Manager was very confident at first that It was you who took out the money. But last week, he came to the station and told us that he is not confident anymore as he was before because he came to see his own doppelganger recently and was amazed to observe the facial and structural similarities without any relationship among the families. He has grown doubtful and changed his decision to testify against you. Your office told us that you were working that day and left just in time to catch the flight for business reasons. I have the final report filled out and sent to the insurance company. I hope you recover as much as you can!” The cop was looking directly into Fatty’s eyes now.
Fatty kept the perfect sad face perfectly “this is ridiculous. The only thing that makes me feel a little better now is that the Bank Manager finally realized that doppelgangers could look so similar.” He looked at his wife intensely and continued “But we will have to build all those savings back again from nothing!” He took a pause and looked into thin air now “We will get there, We will have to get there again!”
The cops had started walking away already. He looked into his wife’s eyes, held her pale white face in his hands and said ” Please stop worrying, money will come back, but all I want you to be is happy with whatever we have now! We will work together and get everything back again”
His wife looked into his eyes and smiled ” Sure honey, you have kept great strength while the cops suspected you until now! Even I had started to suspect you for a bit but you proved everybody wrong! We will earn the money again, but I trust you more than ever now!”
She hugged him tightly resting her head on his shoulder. Fatty could finally smirk gloating in his own new world. A secret new world of excitement. But he still was not sure how the Bank Manager changed his statement! and how the work people confirmed his presence in the office that day when he was at home! He was too scared to talk to anybody in the office about this and kept his silence owing to the fact that he was out of the puddle now.
2 days later
Fatty came back home from office and saw his wife sitting at the window asphyxiated to the view outside.
“Hey honey, what is it that has your attention in its grip?” He turned her face around towards himself to find her forehead strained with all kinds of lines crisscrossing.
“Why are you so stressed? I promise you we will save the same amount of money in a couple of years from now! We just have to wait longer to have kids now! Please relax! The rental insurance has paid us enough money to start a good investment. I have fixed our meeting with a financial consultant. He will guide us with the investment. Please try to relax a bit!”
But she kept looking into his eyes with the same look for a moment more before she started speaking ” I think it is about time I told you!”
Fatty’s eyeballs started to pop out of his sockets just imagining what she might have to say ” Was there more than money in that locker? Because somebody wiped it out! Was there something more valuable than the money in the locker?” He started blabbering in stress!
She put her hand on his mouth, took his face in her hands, made the most apologetic face she could “I have to tell you something. Please listen to me carefully! 3 years back, when we were a few months away from getting married, I won a lottery ticket. It was worth 1 million dollars. I got the money through a check with the tax deducted, but did not know what to do with it.”
“Why didn’t you tell me about this?” Fatty’s voice and heart had lost their pitch and confidence.
“At that point of time, I thought that if I told you about the money, you would stop working and become lazy! I swear to god almighty I had no ulterior motive to this! Just the fact that you would stop being productive scared me to death!”
Fatty, being a reasonable person, looked down for a while pondering on the time when he was about to get married. He kept looking down and said nothing.
She looked at him for a moment, put her hand on his shoulders, and continued ” I know it was a mistake! I was only trying to find the right time to tell you! To share this great joy with you! But those thieves took that away when they robbed the locker.”
“Okay, how was this money represented among the other cash in the locker? I mean was it a check? Or what was it? I have been to the locker even alone a few times and I never noticed anything odd in our savings money?”
“It was in the form of bonds. Do you remember we bought some bonds when we got married to kick off our married savings? I had kept these in the same envelope.”
Fatty kept looking down. His face had started to frown now. “I will go and walk over this for a while!” He took her hand from his shoulder and put it in her own lap looking into her eyes with disappointment.
She calmly said ” I am really sorry my love! I should have told you earlier! This is all my mistake!”
“It is not your mistake. It is the just the ‘not trusting’ part which bothers me” Fatty stood up and started walking towards the door still looking down. Soon he faded into the bright day through the door.
Fatty walked for 2 minutes exactly when panting came back to give him company. He found a bench in the park and sat down. He started to think.
“What have I done!? I have put my family’s future at risk! I have lost so much money! It takes a lifetime to earn this much! I do buy her reason for a bit for not sharing this with me, but, how can I trust her when I am not able to trust my own instincts anymore! Loosing the savings money did not hit me with even a subtle pinch to my consciousness! I do not have any choice but to trust her now! I am myself not to be trusted!”
Thoughts came and went to him like cars at a traffic light. All kinds of accidents were taking place in his case though!
3 weeks later
It was Sunday. Fatty was cleaning the garage while his wife had gone to the salon. Looking at the junk in the garage, he was already tired. He had just finished taking all the boxes out of the right hand corner, and there were still three more corners to go.
“I do not know why everything is cornered here” He said to himself.
Just then, he found an old box. A box he had gifted his wife a month before the marriage. The box had chocolates, flowers and the engagement ring! A tear came down to his cheek!
“I am such a liar and a cheat!” He sat down on the ground with the box in his hands.
“But even she did something without telling me! I think we are even! She will never find out about this robbery! I am safe!” a smile appeared on his face again.
He took the box and brought it inside the house to clean it. As soon as he opened the box, He found a bunch of letters.
“I never wrote any letter to her?!” He started to jog his memory.
“Well, she did tell me that there was this pen pal of her who stayed oceans away. Maybe these are those letters. But why would she store them in this box? Okay, maybe I am overthinking! I should totally read them!”
He took out the letters and kept them on the table in front of the television. He went to the kitchen to make himself coffee.
“I have already done enough damage to this family! I should totally stay away from getting into any kind of trouble anymore. I should rather keep these letters back in the box and keep them back in the garage. I will gently remind her about this box today. It will be so good to reminisce the lovely moment we had together when I gave her the box rather than talking about some random stranger she used to write letters to. Yes! I think this is a better idea! ”
He took the coffee, went back, picked up the letters, put them back into the box, and shoved the box back into the right hand corner of the garage into its original place.
Just then, his cell phone rang!
“Fatty, how is life my friend?”
It was Taller and It took Fatty a split second to recognize his voice.
“Why have you called me? You should totally stay away from me! I helped you once! I am not going to help you again! We have nothing left here to be robbed in the first place!”
Taller cut him off ” I just called in to check if the things had died down a bit. I have a lot of other work to take care off in the city and I need to make sure no one waiting for me with any kind of trouble”
“Everything is calm now! I absolutely have no idea how the bank manager and my fellow colleagues chipped in on this! But I have let it all go now! I am at a happy place and want to stay here! Please do not call me again!”
Taller just wanted a straight answer “Define Calm”
“Define calm you fat idiot! Is the investigation still ongoing? when was the last time you spoke to the police? What did their final report say? ”
“No No No, the investigation closed down 3 weeks back. Police’s final report has a doppelganger being looked into. But since it was me who was at the bank, the sketch drawn is exactly me. So they could not find anybody exactly like me, because it was me!”
“hmm, sounds good! thanks for the latest updates!” Taller hung up at this instant.
Fatty was in a bad mood now “I hope he never calls again!”
But then he thought “I could have asked him about the bonds! But that would have made things worse I guess!”
He went back inside, started sipping on his coffee, and reading the newspaper. He loved to read the editorial page.
Today’s special editorial was “How to not make a mess of the common human dark and complex behavioral anomalies!”