Chapter Three


Jay parks his car in the basement parking and walks towards the office. His heart starts beating faster as his nervousness increases. He shows his office-id card to the guard outside. Getting a nod from the guard he pushes the door open. In front of his eyes were abundance of cubicles where he could see several people furiously typing on their computers. Some were thinking with the pen in their mouth while some were running to and fro from different cabins. He slowly walks towards receptionist. “It’s my first day here, whom am I supposed to see first?” He shows the receptionist his ID card. She smiles and takes the card and taps on a scanner which then pops up Jay’s information on the computer screen. “You should Mr. Sanjay Arora. He’s the Head manager here and since you’re working on a secret project, he’d be the one to guide you around.” She smiles as she returns Jay his ID card. “Where would I find him?” Jay wears clips his ID around his belt hoop. “ Last cabin to the right.” She gestures and gives him a smile. It wasn’t abnormal for Jay for girls be smiling sheepishly around him. Parnika used to do that all the time hence he didn’t bother about her and walked towards the cabin.

He knocks on the door twice and a voice says, “Come in!” From Inside. He opens the door to find sea of cable wires around. Between those wires there were two men standing. One who was constantly busy on his phone where other was working on the cables. “Hello! I was asked to see Mr. Sanjay Arora.” Jay enters the cabin carefully avoiding the tripping hazard. “That’s me, and what do you need me for?” The person busy with his phone asks Jay without bothering to look at him still busy scrolling on his phone.

“Uhm, It’s my first day here. I was informed that you’d show me around.” Jay’s nervousness wasn’t getting any better. He continued to wonder about what’s wrong with all these cables being spread about room like inedible spaghetti in large plate. “Ah, don’t bother. There was a power surge and it short-circuited the wirings and hence I am here trying to catch up with work on my phone.” Sanjay gets up from the couch slipping is phone back in his pant’s pocket. He walks towards Jay and pulls his hand out for a shake. “Hi, I’m Sanjay but you can call me Deb. Also, I know you Jay but seeing your facial expression I don’t think you remember me, do you?” He smiles as Jay still wonders Where have I seen him before? “Let me give you a hint. UltraAI Competition, Bangalore?”

Jay wonders for a while before a bright smile appears on his face. “Oh yes, I remember you sir. I’m so sorry. I thought you’d be in Canada” Jay rubs back of his neck. “Oh yes, I was in Canada but after that AI project of yours I had an idea in my mind that I wanted to work upon. I pitched the idea to my seniors and they got it approved. So here I am and you will be working with me on it.” Deb hands him a file carefully trying not to get tripped with cables. “I think we should work somewhere else and let him finish his job?” Jay takes the file. “Ya, I think we should move to your cabin. Let me take my laptop.” Deb arches forward and grabs his laptop bag from the table.

Sanjay walks him to the cabin adjacent to his he gestures Jay to open the door. “That’s your cabin my young man.” Jay moves ahead and opens the door. A huge smile appears on his face as he walks in and looks at Sanjay. “Yes young man, He will be working with you as well. We had been observing you and your projects after your UltraAI event. We decided to contact your college and take your project to an advance level. So we took over your project and your team. Hence you’d be continuing it here for us with your team. Are you ready?” Sanjay takes the file from Jay’s hands and opens the Non-Disclosure Agreement. “Since we don’t want anyone else apart from this team to know, you’d need to sign this NDA so we can begin with the project as we want this to be one of the main features in our device.” Jay reads the agreement and looks at Hitesh. Hitesh nods and Jay places the file down on the table as he signs the NDA.

Hitesh and Jay together had designed an AI to predict the best investment option for anyone according to their profile. It was so accurate that it had attracted a ton of attention during the UltraAI competition held in the Banglore last year when they were still in college. They had no idea that their fun project would be the reason for them to land upon a job.

They were discussing about the project when someone knocked on the door. Door opens and a beautiful girl enters. She comes and hugs Sanjay at his waist who wrapped arm around her and kissed her forehead. “Jay, Hitesh, meet my only daughter Shriya. Shriya, these are the two young lads I was talking about yesterday.” Shriya extended her hand for a shake towards Jay. She had the same smile which he used to see when he met any girl for the first time. But it was a confident one. “ You guys would be working together on this software as I want it to have best of the both sides, finance and technology. Shriya is a Master in Economics and she’d be guiding you with the financial aspects that we’d be requiring in this software.” Shriya stands beside Jay such that their hands rub. “So, I’ll leave it to you guys. I have a meeting now.” Sanjay grabs his laptop and leaves. Jay notices a smug smile that’s been blooming on Hitesh’s face. The cabin had a nice ambience to it. White washed walls with brown leather couch and glass top table with two laptops on top of it.

Shriya takes one laptop and hands it to Jay.” These are for you two, you’d work on these machines. We have taken care of all technology based requirements beforehand. Right Hitesh?” Hitesh looks up from his phone with a jolt and nods. “What’s your field of study?” Jay asks checking on the new laptop that he’s been given. “I am a Master in economics and accounts from cambridge.” Shriya smiles as she sits beside Jay. “Dual degrees eh? Quite impressive. So you must be having plans for this project right?” Jay looks at her and catches her weirdly staring at him. She shakes her head and pulls her laptop from the bag.

Jay’s phone rings as the caller id display’s ‘Pari’. “Hey! What’s up?”, Jay excuses and walks towards the window. “Hey, its lunch time. Did you like it? I made your favourite Palak Paneer for you.” Parnika’s voice felt so cheerful, it always used to enhance Jay’s mood. “I haven’t got time to eat yet.”

“Ah, first day at office and you forgot to eat? Wow great Jay!”

“ It’s not like that Pari. Can you imagine who’s with working with me?” Jay’s excitement was on another level.

“Uhm nope. You tell me first why haven’t you had your lunch yet?” Parnika again was using one of her fake anger voices on Jay.

Don’t worry baba, hu Khai lais. ( Don’t worry dear, I’ll eat.) Hitesh is here, do you remember him. We used to study together. Remember how we used to team up against you and Khushi in pillow fight during sleepovers?” Jay dives into old memories as he tries to express how happy he was to reunite with his best buddy.


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This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Copyright © 2018 by Dhawal Joshi

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law.
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