The Agents of Unknown Agencies

The Gothenburg Tales

Kovuuri G. Reddy
2 min readOct 1, 2020
The Agents of Unknown Agencies by Kovuuri G. Reddy

The tips of her hairs, flowing down to her shoulders, were coloured in blonde, possibly the darker hairs were also coloured.

(People past their thirties are having grey hairs in the digital age of information, disinformation and misinformation due to stress or genetics or both. Most people hide their greyness in the hairs, young or old, man or woman, or non-binary.)

Her eyes lids were too dark on her fair face for they were touched with antimony the kohl.

At the bus stop, she was the only one to board; she got in, and scanned where to sit. There were hardly any passengers perhaps due to coronavirus pandemic, or, because of the nature of her rendezvous except that she had never met him before. Those who were there were an oriental, a Caucasoid and a Latin American.

Closer to the doorway, she sat on a seat in front of the Caucasoid man, who looked aloof, and ailment-faced.

The chocolatey perfume wafted from her. The Caucasoid inhaled her deeply closing his eyes, while exhaling he opened his eyes, and his eyes fell on her mobile phone.

She was checking the relentless feed on the apps, which spread over screen after screen after screen; she texted a message.

The Caucasoid noticed her script: Arabic. ‘There is hardly any Arabic feature or culture in her,’ he inferred. ‘Except for the hair and the colour of the eyes, Middle Eastern denizens are similar to the Westerners, complexion-wise. She is so westernised.’

Arabic language and the cosmetic usage of kohl were stubborn to recede from her: They were her only remnants of that earlier life.

She sensed the guy behind her was assessing about her, or peeking at the screen of her mobile phone. She turned her head: their eyes met, a startling-surprising stare from one another. She changed her position, and turned on the app of mirror to see the faces of the passengers behind her. She received a message from the one whom she was supposed to meet; she responded.

Presto, the three passengers checked their phones. She pressed the buzzer to alert the driver to stop at the approaching stop where no one waited.

Rolling the tips of her hairs with her right hand and smelling them, she stood by the door to alight, sooner. Surreptitiously, she glanced which one was the one for rendezvous. The three were on their feet: Up, preparing to get down along with her.

Unaffected, she revved up, to present herself at the riverside casino of Gothenburg.



Kovuuri G. Reddy

Independent journalist; short, short story writer; living in Sweden. Worked as a broadcast journalist and teaching journalsim and media in England and India.