Nosy Parkers do have their Uses- Flash Fiction

by Chandrika R Krishnan

After catching his wife and her paramour in flagrante delicto, all Shantakumar did was throw the man’s clothes over the tenth-floor balcony.  He watched with bemusement as the clothes floated down as if in slow motion and landed long after their owner made a splat on the concrete far below.

The security ran, blowing a shrill and hysterical whistle. Late walkers and pet parents ran to the body, but most averted their eyes, more accepting of his broken head than his nakedness. Shantakumar leaned over the balcony, horrified all this while whispering like a cracked gramophone, “Surely, I didn’t!”

When ShantaKumar’s parents named him thus, they didn’t have an inkling that he would live up to his name. He was the nicest, gentlest, and calmest man walking on the earth. But, his beautiful and wilful wife, who soon grew tired of twisting him around her bejeweled fingers, looked for more exciting ventures.  Shantakumar, over a period, realized that he had lost all love for his wife but tried to keep a semblance of a home for the sake of his two-year-old princess. On the day he returned to see his little girl crying outside the closed bedroom, hungry and scared, he felt an ice-cold rage overpower him for the first time in his life. He had barged into the room, collected the clothes thrown haphazardly over the chair and dresser, and walked to the balcony but not before experiencing satisfaction at the man’s manhood shrivel and go limp.

An hour later, he sat hugging his sleeping daughter as he heard his wife vigorously embellish the truth to the inspector of police and tell him that she saw her husband pushing the man over the balcony. Listening to her, he wondered rather dispassionately what he had seen in her.

Despite turning pale at the thought of his baby being labeled a murderer’s child, he reiterated quite softly, “I don’t think I would ever be angry enough to kill someone.  I had turned away after throwing the clothes, and the next minute, he was over the railings, arms flailing. For the life of me, I don’t recollect ever being near him.”

It was close to midnight when the superintendent of police walked in and called off the investigation. Pointing to the mat on the balcony, he said it was an accidental death of slipping over the mat. He requested Shantakumar to come to the police station the following day to sign the requisite document and closed the door after him.

Shanthakumar stepped onto the balcony, wondering who Ms. Asha Shri, the star witness and his savior was. A sudden movement from the apartment blocks opposite his own caught his eye.  As he raised his hand in thanks, the wheelchair-bound woman would spend the rest of the evening watching her neighbors for lack of anything better to do.


Borrowed Word: in flagrante delicto – Borrowed from Latin and it caught in the midst of sexual activity

Paramour: French Old French par amour (“for love’s sake”)


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Aishwariya Laxmi June 10, 2023 - 9:28 pm

The Latin phrase is a delicate way of putting something that could have sounded crass otherwise! Nicely written.

Chandrika R Krishnan June 11, 2023 - 10:50 am

Thank you Aishwariya.

Sapna Deepak June 12, 2023 - 8:19 pm

Well penned….enjoyed reading…kudos

Ganga Uthappa August 22, 2023 - 7:10 pm

Great read, always holds my unwavering attention.


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