It was a beautiful Saturday morning. It was the day he had been waiting for. His parents were out of town and he was already excited about his upcoming party. There was a host of things to do: shopping for some frozen starters, paper cutlery and plates, making a playlist to keep the party going and so on. Even though it was a lot of work, he knew it would be worth it. He had already preordered the alcohol from a liquor company called Dial A Drink. It was about to be delivered at 5pm—just in time for the party. When he first heard about this company, he was quite impressed with the idea of home-delivered alcohol. It had definitely made his increasingly hectic party, a tad bit easier.
At exactly 5pm, the door bell rang. Looking at the clock, he raised an eyebrow and opened the door.
There was no one. He looked around confusedly and shut the door. As he sat down again, the doorbell rang again. This time he peeped through the peephole. It seemed the
liquid courage had arrived, in the hands of a rather strange, disheveled and unkempt young man. He quickly opened the door, feeling rather uncomfortable throughout his interaction. The man on the other hand, kept staring, sometimes at him, sometimes inside the house. He paid the man off and closed the door. Thank god that was over.
He couldn’t wait for it all to start now! After rushing through his chores, he looked around at his house. Everything was in place. Smiling at how smoothly, everything had gone, he switched on the music and sprayed the air purifier.
The clock ticked tirelessly as he waited. Swirling the melting ice in his glass, he saw the Grey Goose Vodka infuse into the chilled water. But the door bell didn’t ring. He heard the faint sound of an ambulance that was increasingly becoming louder. Expecting it to fade away again, he waited, sipping on his drink, savouring the intoxicating elixir with every swig. Just then, the bell rang—Finally!
He opened the door,
There was no one, but the neighbour staring through her open door. She looked perplexed. She said ‘did you ring the bell?
He said ‘No’ and closed the door.
He looked at the watch
It was 10pm.
The doorbell rang again.
Who was this person who’d ring the bell and disappear. He looked through the peephole. His friends were here. On opening the door, a group of six entered together. There were fifteen more people expected. He cracked upon the beers and the sounds of excited chatter filled the house. The music got louder and the he found his speech slurring. There were more people at the party by this point. Some of whom, he did not recognise.
The doorbell rang and he opened it.
His neighbour… she looked angry. She complained of the loud noises and said ‘I will call the police if this ruckus continues.
He apologised but she went on ‘you’ve been ringing my bell continuously too. What is the problem?’
He said he hadn’t rung any bell. But she went on… he got a little angry himself and lost control. As he came back to his senses, he saw she’d gone back to her house and his friends were looking at him strangely. Did he do something?
One of them whom he didn’t know looked disturbed…
Who was he?
May be a friend of a friend? Who knew…
The party which was now a bit awkward went back to slow chatter and sipping of alcohol. The glasses emptied and people got back to being comfortable.
He walked to the window and for a brief moment saw outside and thought he saw the delivery man again, or maybe it was just a shadow. He brushed the thought aside.
As he walked back he got speaking to people but always felt that someone was looking at him, peering at him, and comstantly he stole glances at the peephole.
His eyes closed involuntarily as he stood by his couch. His friends were playing a game of charades.
The next morning he woke up to find his parents sitting by the bed. The house was a mess. The vodka bottles were empty. And his mother was looking down at her favourite statuette, shattered into pieces.
He took a gulp as he waited for them to say something. At last they said, “We got a call from the police and we rushed back. There has been a murder in the building. And you have been called into the police station for questioning. Have you done it?”
“No! Of course not.” He perspired and flashes of all the events came back to him the last evening.
He couldn’t remember one bit of it.
His fear grew and he looked at the vodka bottles silently
“Who committed the murder?”