Excerpt: The Ghosts of Gurugram

Tara had an uncanny feeling that she was being watched and it wasn’t just the woman. She noticed a pair of bright, golden-yellow eyes staring at her from the darkness in one corner of the room. Good god, what on earth was that? She couldn’t control the sneeze any longer.

Aaaaaaaahchooo!

Sharma the agent, sitting quietly beside her all this while, nearly jumped out of his skin. “Are you okay Madam?” he enquired, looking at her in surprise.

“Yes, I’m fine. I’m sorry Sharmaji,” Tara mumbled apologetically, rubbing her nose. The woman continued looking at her disapprovingly.

“Meaaaoww,” the owner of the yellow eyes, a fluffy black cat emerged from the shadows and padded across the carpet casually to where Tara was sitting. Tara stared at the creature warily. She wasn’t very fond of cats. They were unpredictable beings, cats.

“What’s the matter?” the woman asked sharply, following Tara’s glance to the spot on the carpet where the cat had seated itself and was now licking its tail.

“Erm … nothing Aunty,” Tara didn’t want to annoy the landlady by mentioning the cat. People were usually bat-shit crazy about their pets and she didn’t expect this woman to be any different. She was weird enough as it is.

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