Story Collection - Chaalbaaz

Rule

It was not what Nishit had expected but he went with the flow anyways. He knew that the amount of time it would take to change the whole plan was more and the effort tedious. Better to just follow along the plan and make a switch at the last moment.

“Tricky stuff.” A voice said in his head. The first time it had happened, Nishit had jumped a few feet in the air. Now, it was a voice which was sometimes a council, other times an annoyance but almost always, a friend.

“Yeah. But no other way.” Nishit whispered. For some reason, this voice wasn’t able to hear his thoughts. He had to explicitly state the words from his mouth. Even if whispered inaudibly, it would work but not before that. He sometimes wondered why it was so.

“May I suggest an alternative.” The voice said with glee. This was a bad sign. Despite all the good things about the voice, there was one major flaw.

“We can try to switch now instead of later.” The voice said.

“We would die if we did that.” Nishit said annoyed.

“And the downside being?” The voice said genuinely confused. The voice was extremely suicidal. This meant that almost all first advice from the voice was risky and dangerous. Nishit had learned this the hard way. Luckily he escaped unscathed from the event, primarily because he was skeptical of the advice during the early days.

“Any other advice?” Nishit asked patiently. The voice went silent for some time and then spoke.

“Don’t make the switch at all. Instead, make the switch irrelevant.”

“How?”

“Credibility is required for the action she’s taking. No credibility, no result would come from her action.”

“You really think that would work.”

“Better than switching.” The voice said seriously.

“We will own the High Tower then.” Nishit said smiling.

“Yes. And we can jump off it too.” The voice said again filled with glee.

Nishit knew what he had to do. To own the High Tower was his biggest dream. And he knew that it wasn’t possible until Minerva left the High Tower. Nishit had been trying to find various methods, most unsucessful to get the High Tower. That was before the voice.

The voice, for all its flaws, was cunning. All its plans (the non-suicidal ones) were spot on and never failed.

Minerva sighed and got to bed. She was tired but knew that she won’t be able to get more than a couple of hours of sleep. She didn’t remember the last time when she had slept without someone waking her up for any of the umpteen stupid reasons.

If there was one thing that Minerva wanted, it was to leave the High Tower and live a life of peace and rest. Unfortunately, the law of the land dictated that the only way to change the ruler in the high tower was to overthrow him or her. Besides, the people won’t let her live in peace if she left the Tower. Enemies would still find her a threat and try to kill her. She wasn’t bothered by the fear of death as much as annoyance of attempts.

“What are you thinking? You are doing the right thing.” Minerva said to her mulling over the events that had just transpired. Nishit was her favorite enemy. While others were toiling for the High Tower, Nishit was actually working for the people. He wasn’t even ambitious before Minerva got into his head. She couldn’t hear his thoughts but whatever he talked about was gentle and made her happy. Nishit was the right heir to her.

Unfortunately, the only way for him to rule over the High Tower was to remove her.

“I hope it works as well as I have planned it.” Minerva said to herself before putting on the blanket. If all went as she wanted, within a year, she would be sleeping as much as she wants without anyone every coming to torture her. It would be Nishit’s problem then.