She sat on a cosy sofa in the drawing room that looked elegant with its traditional furniture. One look at the artefacts around was enough to interpret the sophisticated tastes of the owner. The Saharanpur furniture in the far corner of the room was beautiful. The carpet on the floor was so soft that she wanted to dig her toes in, and the cosy sofa she was perched on had beautiful floral tapestry fabric.
While she was looking around the room, Raj interrupted her thoughts and said affectionately, "You must have something, as this is the first time you have come to our place." She was offered a wide choice of beverages out of which she chose to have fresh lime. Raj instructed Sheela to get it and then turned towards his guest.
"So Grace, what do you do? I mean are you working or still studying?" he asked her.
"I am doing my PhD in marketing, uncle. I plan to take a job soon. I have applied to several places," she lied easily.
"Good!" There was an awkward pause. "How long are you here?"
"I will be here for two days only, uncle. I plan to leave soon as my professor has called for some revisions." She then tried to probe a bit. "When is Sneha returning? I would have loved to have met her." She was smiling by now.
"I don't know much about their plans… He wasn't of any help here. She got annoyed and had to control herself. She was in desperate need to know of their plans! But the old man was trying to be clever. She was certain that he was being devious.
Raj was unaware of Sneha's and Rohan's plans, as he hadn't even asked them. He knew they had gone to Langkawi, but didn't know when they would return. He didn't like to interfere in his daughter and son-in-law's personal business.
She couldn't think of any way to get the information from Raj. She really wanted to know where they had gone. So she asked further, "Where have they gone?"
Raj didn't like her persistence. "Where are you staying, Grace?"
This was unexpected, and since she didn't want to reveal the name of her hotel, she mentioned some other hotel, which Raj didn't know whether or not existed.
She chuckled silently. "I was wondering if I could invite Sneha for lunch tomorrow. It would be great to catch up with her."
"Oh! So sorry dear! Sneha won't be returning from Langkawi in the next two days. But I'll definitely let her know you were here."
The conversation turned towards other, lighter topics, but, sensing that things may be taking a wrong turn, she needed to wriggle out of the situation. She quickly finished her fresh lime and excused herself on the pretext of visiting her relatives.