9. Earning forgiveness

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Athulya's POV

"What did you think, that you would create chaos in the entire mafia and he would just let you go? Hahah..." The mocking words cut through the tension as I found myself encircled by their menacing presence. My initial instinct was to fight back, but logic prevailed - they outnumbered me, and there was a high chance of backup lurking nearby.

I weighed my options quickly. Starting my bike and attempting to attack while circling them was a possibility, but without any bullets left, it would only be a futile gesture. One well-placed shot from them, and I would be lying lifeless. Panic surged as I realized my vulnerability - I didn't even have my phone to call for help.

"What's the matter, sweetheart? Missing daddy? but we have got someone to speak with you." His taunting voice echoed in my ears and he placed the phone on speaker, exposing me to the familiar, haunting voice that had tormented me for so long.

"Hello, my little chocopie. Enjoying yourself there, are you?" The voice on the other end dripped with malice, sending shivers down my spine. "Consider this a little surprise from me to my sweet little slut. You used to be a means to fulfill my desires, but now that you've blossomed so beautifully, you've become my desire itself. I'll ruin you, your family, and relish every moment of your demise."

It was him. Why now? Why me? Hasn't he destroyed me enough?

Every fiber of my being screamed in agony. I wanted to unleash a primal scream, claw at myself, and pound my head against the tree trunk.

Control. I had to regain control.

"You're stronger now," I reminded myself through gritted teeth.

I was so drowned in my inner chaos that I didn't realised, when with two swift shots, two of his men crumpled to the forest floor, blood trickling from fatal wounds on their foreheads. The remaining men spun around in a panic, but there was no assailant in sight.

Another shot rang out, followed by a pained cry as more of his men succumbed to the unseen assailant's bullets. Chaos erupted as rounds were exchanged, yet the mysterious shooter remained elusive, their target obscured by the dense foliage.

Within mere minutes, he found himself deserted by all but two loyal henchmen, surrounded by the lifeless bodies of his fallen comrades. Now was my chance to strike.

But they were not so easily fooled. Eyes darting warily, they sensed the imminent danger. In a desperate bid to defend their leader, they lunged at me. Reacting swiftly, I seized their necks in a vice-like grip, forcefully colliding their heads together and then against the unforgiving surface of a nearby tree trunk. Dazed and barely conscious, they lay at my mercy, their grip on reality slipping away.

I threw one of the men on ground, placing my heels over his chest, his lips were trembling with fear.I kneeled to hold his collar and hitting his head at ground  twice, and then my heels made their way in his chest.

I was holding the other bastard, but that fool dared to kick in my abdomen. I turned towards him, and gave a powerful kick at the spot where sunlight never enters and he fell down on ground with pain.

"What did you that , you will be a coward and attack her all alone and no one will come for her? Hahaha.. so foolish of you"

I knew this voice, I know who it could be. 

I turned around to find Mystery Man aka Vihan standing there with a gun twirling between his fingers. He whistled casually, his boots planted firmly on the chest of the fallen assailant, while the man struggled to free himself.

"Tell me, how do you want to die? It's your choice, by my hands or hers," Vihan said with a sinister grin. "You see, we are very religious people, and we believe in fulfilling last wishes. After all, who wants to bear the burden of sin? Be quick about it. I'm hungry, so no ranting and wasting my time, or I'll fill your mouth with bullets," he threatened, gripping the man's collar tightly as the trembling victim looked on in fear.

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