This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 17; the seventeenth edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton.
“Dude you need to get over her!”
He was talking about my year-long affair with Anita. Yes, affair! It was not a ‘relationship’ because neither of us knew we were in one! We didn’t even break up. It was Farhan a.k.a fatty a.k.a. my-best-friend-who-is-a-mutual-friend who told me that she was seeing other people.
“You really should get out more. The whole world is out there just for you. I’ve been in my share of relationships and I can tell you that a break-up is hard.”
Yeah right! The longest relationship you’ve ever had was for three days and it was with your toilet seat when you had diarrhoea. Big talk from nappy boy!
“Whew! Finally I got you to smile! You see, my man, this is exactly what friends are for.”
Yeah I’m so lucky to have you as my friend. Life would never have been the same if I didn’t have you coming to my place daily at three in the morning eating my food.
“Now go to sleep. You’ve got a big day ahead. I’ll lock the door on my way out, right after I finish this episode.” He said, digging into the Pringles can.
You’ve watched this episode a hundred times, you fat b*****d. If you want the chips, say that you want the chips. Stop beating around the bush.
“Okay, Okay, Fine! I’m going. By the way, why do I have a big day ahead of me tomorrow? I haven’t planned anything.”
“Oh my friend! That is the mystery of Farhan-The great! You’ll see.”
Oh great another day with you – just what I need. On any other normal day, I could’ve put up with all the crap he comes up with but I wasn’t in the perfect state of mind. But still for some unknown, unfathomable reason, I agreed.
“Okay Fine, but nothing stupid. Please. ”
I woke up to the resonating sound of my alarm-clock. I searched around my pillow and my bed-side table where it usually is. Waking up pissed off was pretty common in the past few days. But for very different reasons.
“I’m gonna kill that… Oh! Wait here it is.”
I found the alarm clock by my bed on the floor. Deciding to have a snack before going back to bed, I stepped out into the hallway. I saw that there were shards of broken mirror lying strewn about on the floor along with… (Oh My God!) blood.
“What the hell happened here last night? I’m seriously gonna kill that Fat ba****d!!”
I brushed aside the broken pieces and cleaned the blood using a waste cloth lying around. Cursing him all the way, carried on with my breakfast and entered my living room. I noticed the front door was wide open.
“If I’m robbed, I swear to God I’m gonna kick his…”
My eyes diverted to the piece of paper on the table spread out. One look at it and I dropped my glass of coffee. It said:
“A very pleasant morning, Anoop. Wondering where you fat friend is? He’s with us. If you want to free him all you got to do is
Solve this riddle:
Don’t even try acting smart. Don’t call the police or else you may say your goodbyes to your dear friend. Don’t even try to find me as I live off the grid.
Have a nice day!”
It was signed in a haphazard manner by Farhan in blood. It looked as if he was forcefully made to sign his name.
Petrified, I stared at the message again. It just didn’t make sense. I tried calling fatty’s cell but couldn’t reach him. I called everyone who’s a mutual friend of ours and enquired. There was no sign of him or his whereabouts.
“Dammit! Fatty, where the hell are you and what the hell is this?”
I didn’t know what to do. I wasn’t even sure if I should do anything. I was hoping and praying that this was just another of his pranks and he would pop out from behind my cupboard or from beneath my bed. Needless to say, that didn’t happen. Time flew and so did my thoughts.
It felt like one of those Sherlock Holmes movies. I had to decipher the message. I Googled it, searched it on Wikipedia, asked a couple of my online friends but to no avail.
Should I call CID like they do on TV?
“Dude! Stop joking around and FOCUS!! Your friend’s life is at stake here.”
Sherlock Holmes! What would he have done? Man! I wish I had a brain like his… hmm… or like Chacha Choudhary’s.
“Would you stop it already?”
I looked into the blood-spattered message again.
“…. Don’t even try to find me as I live off the grid.”
“…I live off the grid”
There it was!! Clear as daylight. I had been stupid enough to not notice it. Farhan knew how much I loved mysteries and that I practically worshipped Sherlock Holmes. If only I had the common sense to realise what that fatty had up his sleeve.
Here’s the message that son-of-a-gun gave me:
(The grid cipher is a method of coding your message in such a way that it can only be deciphered by arranging the letters in a grid. The above mentioned message is a 20 letter message i.e (5x4). This method was actually inspired from one of Sherlock Holmes' books.)
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