Ajay looked up the cob-webbed staircase and coughed. He pointed his flash light and started climbing. He was aware that any creepy crawly creature would jump at him or wind itself round his legs any time now, but he was beyond all that. He was on a mission he had to accomplish at any cost. He climbed six stories quietly and finally emerged onto the small balcony-like open space that looked out at the city lights. After all that dust, the fresh air was life saving. He patted his back for having discovered this vantage point for himself.
The brief was simple. "Get the celebrity."
He unpacked his bag and brought out his equipment. He quickly checked and cross-checked if he had it all there. Then he holstered himself onto the ledge of the sit-out and waited. It was dark around him, and there weren't a lot of houses higher than this one. Good.
The Spiritz bar was bang opposite this building and he had a clear view of the entrance. He had earlier received a tip-off that Abhimanyu Saxena and his ex-girlfriend would be partying at the bar later in the evening. This was his do or die chance to get the guy. There was big money here, and he just couldn't afford to screw it up. Not with his track record.
He knew that Abhimanyu didn't venture out without his security, what with the current scandal he was in, but he could handle that. The building was so desolate, it would take them a while before they could get to him. And he had his escape route all planned out a couple of trips before. Now, all he had to do was wait.
It was close to 1 am when the couple walked out, she sloshed and hanging onto one of the security guys, and him not so sloshed, but a bit, nonetheless. Ajay smiled and took position, fixing his telescopic lens on the couple. He fixed his eye on Abhimanyu, when he saw a red stain appearing on the celebrity's chest, the size of a pea and then spreading. He took his eyes off, and looked across the street. There was commotion, of course. He didn't understand. This wasn't his work. He quickly darted his eyes around to rooftops of other buildings. Below, the security guys were already pointing to his building and shouting. Man, he'd better get out of there. He stuffed everything back in his back-pack and ran to the staircase. The water-pipe from the terrace, that was his escape.
He pushed the door of the terrace open and barged out, only to run into another figure who was running in. Both bumped into each other with such force, neither knew what was happening. Somewhere in the melee there was also a short cracking sound, like someone's bone snapping as they both went down on the floor, all hands and legs. Ajay realized he was on top of the other guy and scrambled up to his feet. The other guy lay still.
With his hands trembling, he shot his flash light at him. There was a gaping hole in the neck and the head was now in a pool of blood and flesh.
Despite the shock, years as a photographer made him pull out his camera, as he steadied his hands to capture the shooter. Then he thought, 'what's the bloody point?'
He rushed to the water-pipe and slid down into the darkness.
For the life of them, the cops couldn't figure out why a contract-killer would bump himself after shooting a celebrity. Conscientious guy, they thought.