Washing his hands after dinner he noticed his mobile vibrate. A message beeped,
“Everythingready!! The road is set!! See you at 11.00 PM sharp “
His heart raced as he watched his mobile. He had to make his movements fast. He looked at his watch to see the time, there was an hour left for him. Everyday had become a challenge for him since he had started this game, the most daring sport. It meant life and death. But he wasn’t scared anymore. It had started with excitement, pulse racing speed, a desire to be ahead of all but now it was addiction and the sheer need to calm his burning desires.
He stealthily walked to his room and tried to avoid any conversations with the members of his family. Locking the door of his room, he switched on the table lamp and sat in the light that shone from it. The time started to pass and he waited for the final signal after which he would be gone into a different world. Lost in his thoughts, he didn’t notice his mobile beep. It beeped a second time and he stood up astonished.
“Assemble at the Thiruvanmiyur signal in ten minutes”
He took the keys of his vehicle and checked to see if everyone had slept at home. He walked to the door when he remembered he had forgotten the most important thing.
“I forgot to kiss Trishu”, he thought. He walked into his sister, Trisha’s room and kissed her on her cheeks and ran to start his bike. “His bike”, was the instrument in this game. He rode fast as being late would cost
him his life.
Far at the Thiruvanmiyur signal there were members of RSR (Royapettah speed racers), boys in the age group of 18 – 25 stood with bikes making the loudest noise as possible and that were made to race. He reached the signal on time and joined the rest of the group.
The road was dark and lonely. The streets lights were bright and the wide road was an advantage to race in a spree. 10 bikers stood across the lanes. 5 in each group competing with the other 5 in the other group. The entire city slept when these bikers woke to play the most dangerous sport. Brakes were not meant to be taken, gear was the key and the accelerator was epochal.
The bet was made for Rs. 50000 and the “winner would take it all”. The race was a 12 km one from
Thiruvanmiyur to War memorial. Three signals were given after which the race would begin. The first signal was given and the bikers started their bikes. The second signal was given and the accelerator was raised to the most formidable limit. The third signal and the bikers set the road on fire.
He was always the king when it meant to race. He had been trained better than the rest because he had the potential to be the best. He was the lead and when he raced he felt the road was a magnanimous mystery which had many unfolded secrets. His eyes were blind to any disturbances and disturbances meant just anything and anything that would make him use something that he hated, “The brakes”.
There was a style in which the entire team rode; it was a zig-zag fashion and not a linear one. This style was maintained to divert the opponent and anyone who missed the fashion ended up giving his life. Sparks of fire were emitted from the bikes which was a sense of pride for every raced.A myriad of images gazed in front of him when he rode and the road was his fantasy. When he rode, he rode with a zest and passion as thought he was born to rule the roads.
The destination was not far and he had already decided in his mind that he would make it and victory would be his. As the finish line approached he was sad that his drug would come to an end and he would have to wait till he would hit the roads again. He cherished the last minutes of his celestial journey which he finally won. He raised the accelerator in his right and held the clutch with his left hand and watched as the opponents stared at him and his charisma.
He picked up his cash that he had earned and walked towards Jerry, his mentor and his master. For Jerry, he knew his “bishop” would win the game for him. Jerry hugged him and paid him for his win. His mission accomplished, he knew he could rest in peace.He drove back home and opening the door of his house, he stood astonished as there was someone waiting for him. The person who according to him should have been the last person to know about his late night mystery was standing in front of him with inquisitive eyes.
“Vikas anna, would you please oblige and tell me where were you so long at this hour of the night?”, Trisha his sister enquired with gleaming eyes.
“Trishu, I had some important work outside. Listen just let this be between us don’t take it to Dad and Mom”, pleaded Vikas.
“Okay anna, I promise I wont tell it to Dad and Mom, but on one condition that you have to tell me truth about your whereabouts”, Trishu played her card right.
Vikas thought about the deal, it was a difficult decision to tell everything to the person whom he loved the most. His sister had always been his life since she was born. But racing was none the less important to him. When he weighed his love for both of them he realized that he could give up all his aspirations to the girl who sat in front of him.
“Trishu, I was street racing!!!”
The words hit harder than a thousand bells rung together. “Anna, are you kidding me, I knew biking and bikes were your passion, but does that mean you can risk your life and others too?”, Trishu reminded.
She glared at him and walked off to her room. Trishu was more than his little sister. She meant more than anything in the world for him. He had waited for 7 long years for her to be born and ever since she was his most important responsibility.
Vikas sat in the porch of their house and focused on what Trishu had just said.Many a time he wanted to give up this madness, but now racing had entered his blood and veins. He gazed around and his eyes fell on his bike. His thoughts ran back to the time when he was 15 years old. He had watched Sashi his neighbor race the bike and ever since then he wanted to own one. He waited till he was 18 to get a license and even scored well in his engineering exams as this was the condition put by his father if he wanted a bike.
It was his 18th birthday and the day his dream had come true. Trisha had tied his eyes with a scarf and led him to the porch where he now sat. She had screamed in his ears, 3….2……………….1 ½……………..1…. and pulled the scarf from his eyes. He couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw a Stylish black and blue Yamaha R15 standing in front of him. He walked and knelt beside it. He touched it as though it was a new born baby. He was going to cherish it for a lifetime. And since then his bike had been his all, his love, his life and his passion.
“Vicky, you ride really well, why don’t you show your skills to my friend, he loves bikers”, Sashi suggested to Vikas. Sashi had always been an inspiration to Vikas when it came to bikes. Sashi introduced Vikas to Jerry. Jerry had heard a lot about Vikas and wanted him in his group in any cost. Jerry owned the RSR group and he was always in search of bikers. He showed Vikas a whole new world of biking and Vikas was overwhelmed and decided to drive for RSR.
He got his bike sophisticated with a lot of essentials from Puddupet the land for bikers where they enhanced the ability of bikes and gave them extra effects. Vikas had done well from the very first race and had held a special place in Jerry’s heart. He was Jerry’s right hand and his trump card as well. Ever since then there was no looking back for Vikas. The roads and his bike had become his life.
The next morning Trishu behaved a little abnormal with Vikas and this hurt him. 6 months back Trisha was diagnosed with leukemia and Vikas had almost died when he had heard the doctor say this. He knew it would give her more pain if she had heard her brother woke up every night when she slept and risked his life on the streets. He gathered courage to speak to her and end the silence.
“Trishu what is wrong with you? Why are you not speaking to me?” he enquired.
“Anna, dad and I met the doctor yesterday, he said my chances for survival are vey meager. I don’t know how long am I going to live. You are all I can leave for maa and Paa, but instead of being responsible you are ruining your life on the streets” , Trisha spoke without a pause.
“You have to promise me Vikas anna that you will give this up and never take up this dangerous game again”
Vikas took time to reply and again the love for his sister outdid his passion and he promised to give it up for her. At the beginning it had been difficult for him to forget his addiction but he slowly started spending more time with his family and came out of the death hole. He had almost forgotten everything when one day he received a call from Sashi..……
What could the call have been? Will Vikas go back to the streets? Will he break his promise?......
To be continued……….