Friday, December 7, 2012

“Going the distance”- My entry for the get published contest

This story talks about the trials and tribulations of relationships that are seen in the present day scenario. 

It is about a girl who’s the main protagonist and the narrator who is on the helm of a serious decision making part of her relationship. She is clueless whether to choose her career or sacrifice her love. On the other hand, the man who loves her is equally strong with his thoughts. If it’s not always about adjustment there’s also self satisfaction in life. Both refuse to budge from their thoughts. Holding the flag of eternal love for each other intact they proceed on a journey that doesn't have a good end for them. It talks about their struggle with their ambition, thoughts and their constant endeavors to work out the concept that – ‘love can co- exist with ambition’. 

Gone are the times when decisions about relationships were based only on love. Love is not only about sacrifices. Those days’ couples could even elope to be with their love but the present day situation doesn't seem to support blind love.  It is ruled by fact, self contentment, happiness and ambition. On one hand when gender biasing gets reduced, there are additional roles and responsibilities that couples take up. There’s struggle involved in maintaining any relationship. 

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Lost and Found

This story has been published in Yourstory club website as part of Creative writing competition :

“Ouch!! My knee hurts. I can’t walk anymore,” granny grumbled panting for breath.
“Are you feeling good?” I asked in a worried tone.
“Don’t worry I’ll be alright with some rest. Just get me water to drink.”
I had barely walked across the platform when I realized that I had left my purse with granny. I retraced my steps only to find granny walking towards the other direction leaving the luggage behind. I was petrified seeing her walk away without informing me. It caught my attention just in time. I grabbed the luggage and my purse in hand and tried catching up to her.
“A while back she complains about knee pain and now she is walking as if in a marathon,” I wondered within.
The clock displayed 9:00 AM. Exactly one hour for our train to arrive.
I kept following my granny trying to push myself through the crowd and dragged the luggage. I didn’t know whether to run or to just walk in the same pace.
I shouted several times but she didn’t hear. It looked as if she was following someone. I was tensed thinking she might have gone searching for me. I asked few of the fellow people walking around to try stopping her but she was 20 steps away from me.
The crowded platform made things worse for me. My legs hurt but I kept following her and was nearing her. I was quite close. With all my might I put complete pressure on my calf muscles, ran towards her and nudged her only to give her a shock.
“Where are you going without telling me?” I asked in an angry tone.
She looked pale. Her heartbeat had already increased. The hearing aid was dangling around her neck.
“What do you want granny?” I asked putting her hearing aid back.
She pointed towards a man who was ten steps ahead of us.
“Who’s that? Do you know him? Did he steal something?”I asked jolting her elbow.
She refused to speak but pointed at that man saying, “Take me there.”
I put my arms around her shoulder and held her close to me. With one hand to support her and the other hand dragging my suitcase I walked faster.
I was close to him. His hair looked dirty from behind as if he had not bathed over years. His slippers looked torn. I shouted across the platform only to make everyone turn towards me.
He looked back . Seeing me rush towards him he stood still wondering why a normal passenger would call for a beggar with eagerness until one had something to give him. I didn’t have time to guess why granny was following a beggar.
No sooner had we reached him than granny grabbed the over coat he had in his hand. He was totally taken aback by this gesture and I was shocked seeing granny’s behaviour.
“What are you doing granny? You can take some rag picker’s coat like this.” I shouted at her.
It was embarrassing to face this situation. The rag picker was stinking and I couldn’t stand this anymore.
“This is mine,” granny said with confidence, pushing me away. I really wondered from where she got that strength.
She explained to the rag picker in the local language that it was her coat. She turned the coat back and showed us the embroidery.
“This is my work. I had done this. This is your grandpa’s coat. This is your grandpa’s coat,” saying this she almost burst into tears.
The beggar seemed to be reluctant to even part with the only proper clothing he had. After understanding my granny’s intention he tugged the coat towards him.
“Calm down granny. It must be some mistake,” I said trying to take control.
“No it isn’t. It is your grandpa’s coat,” saying this she started rambling through the pockets and took out a small handkerchief from it to show us the evidence.
The beggar looked blank and I was confused.
“I told your mother not to give it to anyone but she still managed to give it to some rag picker. I want this coat back,” granny said with fury.
I was in a difficult situation and almost ten passerby had surrounded us. I tried to take the situation under control. I tried explaining to her but she refused and neither did the rag picker agree. Both were adamant.
He looked diseased and one more moment near him wound make me puke. I didn’t even feel like touching that over coat. It looked dirty. I had to do something. Many asked me but I dispersed the crowd trying to get hold of the situation.
I took granny aside and tried to explain. “There might be many coats like this granny and you might be just imagining about this embroidery. The coat must be at home,” I told her.
She didn’t agree. She was so sure that it was the same overcoat.
“I searched for it yesterday while I was packing. It wasn’t there,” she said with confidence. “I always warn people not to meddle with my personal things. Your mother will never listen,” she said with disgust.
I wanted to laugh imagining the amount of fuss she would create after going home but I had other important role to play.
I was informed by the rag picker that he got it from a washer man. There was no time but to convince the rag picker.
I requested him to give me the over coat in simple words but he didn’t agree. I thought for a while and realized that for a rag picker like him who barely had proper clothing to wear, parting with an over coat would be too much a price to pay.
Finally, I bargained with him to sell me the overcoat for almost 500 rupees. He grinned widely looking at the crisp 500 rupee note. I cursed my fate for this loss and thought how foolish we were to buy some old rag for such a high price.
This feeling was momentary though. I barely could hold the coat near to me but my granny seemed the happiest. She grabbed the over coat from me and wrapped it inside a cover.
“It’s the first coat I ever got for your grandpa and made this embroidery myself. It is very precious to me,” granny said with a relieved look on her face.
I took granny aside while the train slowly parked itself on the platform.
Mom burst into laughter when she heard about the incident.
“Tell your granny that I had not sold the over coat but I had given it for a wash to the washer man. He must have misplaced it and given it to the rag picker,” mom said this and the hung up.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Picture Story

Published in Yourstory Club website :

A lazy Sunday afternoon after a sumptuous meal seemed disgusting when I had been instructed to shift all my old college notes from my room to the attic. Every step I took with a pile of books in hand, I burped.  The puri- chole had started its action in my stomach.
“Get done with this work fast and take rest Anisha,” my mom screamed from her room.
“Yes, I intend to mom,” I muttered with a sigh.
It was high time that I cleared my overflowing college notes and my books from the drawing room before the guests arrived.
With a mask around my nose I barged into the most neglected area in my house- the attic; in the terrace.
I was entering this room after 6 years. This place started making me feel spooky. It looked clean and arranged but the shelves and trunks were covered with a thin layer of dust. No one had time to spend here ever since the time I left.
I had enough energy to open the trunk and dump all the books inside.  In the event of dumping my books at one go I managed to completely fill it and was unable to close the lid. I had to rummage through the trunk completely, take out everything that was dumped, pile them back and stack them neatly.
A small notebook was left behind which certainly didn’t seem anywhere close to my notes. The cover looked tattered with silverfish crawling on it.
Curiosity crept in as I dusted the book.
The first page had something written with an ink pen that had obviously been smudged. I flipped that page only to find the most awesome couple I have ever known- ‘My parents’.
My mom was dressed in a beautiful red chiffon saree draped beautifully around her perfect figure, hair neatly tied into a bun, a gerbera protruding from one side of her hair right behind the corner of her ear and eyes neatly lined with dark kohl. Beside her, stood my handsome dad wearing a baggy pant, neatly combed hair with side partition (which he still continues to maintain) and wearing a white high collared shirt he certainly could have made any girl fall flat for him. It seemed like a picture taken at a studio. I faintly remembered the time when mom had shown me this book. It was their scrapbook with a collection of few of their fond memories that no one could capture.
The second picture wasn’t very clear but had that black and white touch with mom standing with dad and their school friends outside their school premises beside their bicycle. They looked grown up and I wondered how mom would have managed his teenage tantrums. It seemed like a sweet picture with mom’s calm smile and dad’s mischievous grin. It reminded me of the story that mom once narrated as a bed time story.
She could have easily converted herself into the queen and my dad into the king along with their bicycle as the horse and tell me their life’s fairy tales. The mischief that they did, the enjoyment they drew out of riding their bicycles, doubles/ triples and stealing mangoes from the trees on hot summer afternoons was something which I would never experience.
Below each picture there was a date written with the same ink pen that I couldn’t decipher.
The third picture was a group photograph with almost 30 students and one teacher in the center wearing big round glasses. It certainly seemed familiar to me. She was my school principal who was then my parents’ class teacher.
I stood still, stared closely at the picture. There stood, mom and dad in the first row exactly side by side, almost of the same height.  They looked cute together then and in my eyes they still look the same. My mom never failed to have her hair plaited to a neat length and dad flaunted his dressing style always. They were the best of the lot in school.
Through hardships and strong perseverance they had come to that stage. I wonder how mom managed to convince dad into marriage after being just close friends for years together.
The fourth one was the best of the lot. Mom and dad sat on the back of a cycle rickshaw while going to school. It was one of those memorable pictures that my granny had always preserved of her son and her neighbour’s daughter (my mom).
Mom repeatedly told me of the tough times she faced in convincing dad to proceed with the relationship. They hardly exchanged conversations apart from homework and play when they were together. It took my dad 20 years to realize that he did have feelings towards my mom not just as a childhood friend but also as a companion.
The last page of the book was the most touching part which I felt, did make a difference.
It read:  ‘ I like you.’
                    Yours Ramesh
 (The‘s’ and the ‘h’ seemed smudged because of moisture.)
My dad had preserved some selected pictures of their childhood days and had gifted them in the form of a scrapbook to my mom. These snaps had been stolen from my granny’s album and had been gifted as a token of love from my dad.
My thoughts seemed rejuvenated. My heart skipped and jumped with alacrity. I pushed that book safely back into the trunk and closed the lid.
I had re-lived few memories of my parents’ life.
The phone rang with a shrill only to make me come back to reality.
Seeing the caller id picture of Adi and me together I felt we complemented each other just like mom and dad.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Bikini and Me

This story has been published in Yourstory club for CWCI Competition-

6 October, Goa: “So, you sell only bikinis?” a young teenage customer asked me in an excited tone.
I smiled back warmly at her nodding my head. The girl seemed overjoyed and amazed looking at all the contents that filled every corner of my little shop.
“You ask for any kind and it is there. Different shapes, sizes, colours, patterns and prints. I offer customized designs too,” I said showing one brilliant piece of my work.
Tiger prints, beaded, multicoloured, backless, halter neck, strapless, printed and abstract prints. I got the craziest of ideas. I knew the choice of the girls who came in this area. In a place like Goa which attracted many foreigners and young bubbling girls, I started this as a small shop under a thatched roof beside this Kempu beach.
Seeing one girl spending more than 15 minutes in my shop her other friends followed. My happiness knew no bounds when they purchased in dozens. The same story repeated each day. I met new girls, spoke to them, took ideas from them and customized funky bikinis just the way they wanted.
I always roll into my past seeing the gleaming eyes of these girls.
I used to accompany my father when he went fishing. Afternoon school kept me occupied until I found time to play with girls I grew up with. The only sport known to us was swimming and diving into the cool blue sea that always seemed to welcome us. My mother decked me up in those beautiful swimming costumes that she stitched only for me. Those bits and pieces of cloth that she had named as my swimming costume are now the so called ‘bikini’.
Things were not the same always. Sitting by the beach I used to admire the girls who still went swimming without me. I sat on the warm sand at dusk noticing my friends who had grown up just like me. They played in the pool, enjoyed teasing other guys wearing the sarong or flaunting their sexy body with that beautiful piece of cloth which once used to be our swimming costume.
I was enveloped with fear then thinking I could never be one among them. My parents tried their best but I never found my confidence back. Negative energy seemed to have enveloped me. With time, the scars healed.
I just sat in one corner helping my mother with her stitching sessions each day. This fascination took over me and turned into public attraction in a short while.  My thoughts had a new dimension.
After years I can say I am contented.
The article read – Sherin is a Breast Cancer survivor from the past 40 years who has dedicated her life to brighten up the lives of young women.
I threw the last bit of the dry peanut skin, dusted the paper, folded it carefully and putting it in my pocket I headed towards the shop that had a big board “BIKINIS ONLY” written in bold over it.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

My Blue Chocolate

The phone beeped loudly in the quietness of the lazy Sunday morning only to wake me up with a start. I struggled hard to open my eyes, fluttering my eyelids. I felt a sharp pain. My eyelids were stuck.
I rubbed my eyes with pain and forced them open. 

My phone read: 1 message received

Kaushik: Awake?

The digital clock on my mobile displayed- 8:46 AM.

Before I could think there was another message.

Kaushik: Awake?????

 “Just by sending more question marks you cannot expect a reply”, I mumbled to myself.
I was not yet out of the emotional hangover of the previous night.

Kaushik: I think you are deep in sleep. Let me know when you come to the canteen for breakfast. I want to meet you.
Now…….. this message got me curious.

“Why would Kaushik want to meet me on a Sunday morning for breakfast when he would never wake up until lunch time?” I asked myself.

It seemed strange. My brain refused to add on any thought process. I was mentally exhausted arguing with Rishi from the past few days.

I replied: “Yes, I am coming to the canteen. You know very well I will never miss breakfast when they serve Chole Bhature. Errr………..but why are you awake on a Sunday Morning? ”

Kaushik: Just to give you a special gift.

I replied curiously, “What’s that?”

I stopped brushing and looked at my cell phone eager to see his reply.

Kaushik: “A chocolate”. (It was accompanied with a smiley emoticon)
“What!!! You are awake only to give me a chocolate!!!” I exclaimed in the message.

Kaushik: “Yes this chocolate is especially for you on a belated b’day wish note. “
“Thanksssss, “I replied.

He could understand exactly how I was feeling from the past two days. It was more than 24 hours since my birthday had become a belated one still there was someone who could understand that I didn’t enjoy myself so much. It was Rishi’s presence that I missed which couldn’t compensate for anything.

Suddenly, I got reminded of the previous day’s argument that I had had with Rishi. We just couldn’t strike a chord for this note called coordination. Ultimately he made me cry even on my birthday by just not reacting at all.

In this thought process I had swallowed a bit of the foam formed by my paste. I spat it out in disgust, splashed cold water on my face and looked in the mirror only to find my eyes swollen with two small puffed sacs seen on my reddened face.

It was a terrible feeling but I smiled only to keep myself normal. The excited was gripping me more and more and longed to have that special chocolate.

I had reached half way to my canteen when I received another message from Kaushik.

“What kind chocolate do you like?”- Indian or Imported?

Now that the excitement was adding on I was very eager to get my gift. I wasn’t fond of chocolates neither did I have a specific choice if someone gifted me some. It was a funny feeling to be excited for a belated birthday chocolate. After all it would be just a small gesture to make me feel happy and brighten up my mood.

Girls love surprises and gifts. To start a day with something to look forward to was the best feeling that could act as a balm to my aching heart and mind.

Kaushik: Do you like Ferro or do you like Cadbury Dairy milk silk or Bournville?

I replied: “Anything would do as far as I am getting the chocolate to eat. I hope you are not trying to fool me.”

Suspicion crept in as Kaushik was very capable of fooling me. I didn’t want to have any more high hopes or else I would feel even more terrible.

Kaushik : “ Chill!! I won’t hurt your sentiments.”

“One last question from my side and I will be there in 10 minutes to join you for breakfast”, Kaushik messaged expecting I will be calmed down.

I had reached the canteen by then and was devouring those delicious hot Chole Bhature. I felt contented having a good breakfast.

“What is that,” I replied sitting and staring at the empty plate in front of me.

Kaushik: Would you prefer a blue wrapper or a pink one?

“Blue,” I replied with disgust in my face and put my phone down.

Sipping tea slowly I looked around and observed the crowd in the canteen. None seemed as worried as I was then. The excitement of the morning was subsiding down and it was being replaced by worse thoughts of those arguments again.  I was sitting in one corner and thankfully not in the notice of many of my classmates. My puffed eyes would have been surely a reason for unnecessary questions that I always wanted to avoid from gossip mongers.

I couldn’t wait anymore. I dialed Kaushik’s number.

He cut my call after 2 full rings.

I felt irritated because I was sitting there in a terrible mood doing nothing but waiting for some special chocolate that he was probably manufacturing for me.

The next moment I felt some positive energy creeping in. The soothing ginger tea was having its effect on me.
I wanted to forget everything and be normal.

I typed a message to Rishi. On one hand I wanted to share my happiness with him, make him feel I am normal and on the other I also wanted to show him how special my friends were. They could do small gestures just for my happiness.

“You know Rishi I am going to get a birthday surprise from Kaushik…….”

I hadn’t completed typing the message when my phone rang and this message was automatically pushed to drafts.

It was Kaushik.

“Look up girl,” he shouted on the phone. That was all I could here in the chaos.

 I looked up and strained my neck through the crowd and waved at him. He waved back with a smile. That moment I felt so glad that I waited to meet someone with whom I could smile and have a chat at any point of time. I felt lucky to have such friends.

I was back on my seat waiting for him to peel through the queue at the food counter and come towards my table.

The very next moment I was seen cupping my hands on my face just as I had won a beauty pageant.
The canteen crowd was looking in my direction.

There he came along with Kaushik holding a beautiful bouquet of colourful roses in his hand. I was in trance not able to realize what was going on.

Wearing that blue kurta that I had gifted, Rishi walked towards me confidently. He stood there with a triumphant smile. I knew it from the look in his eyes. It was entirely his plan.

Kaushik chuckled and said pointing towards Rishi, “This is your blue chocolate madam.”

 This story has been published in for Creative Writing Competition 2012-

Thursday, June 21, 2012


The envelope read: “To MY DEAR wife and my life partner.”

(The stress was on the words written in bold).

Pritish entered the room expecting an excited Leona but instead he saw her walk past him expressionlessly. She was wearing a navy blue night gown with lace work done on the sleeves with a deep neck line, only to reveal the rise of her beautiful bosoms. It had thin straps to hold on to her body and was perfect enough to make her look sexy even at this hour of the night. Her hair was let loose in a careless manner and with tired eyes she sat on the bed. Pritish found her too inviting even at this hour of the day but he chose to control his urges.

There was complete silence for seconds.

“I am not too comfortable with this idea of a honeymoon trip so soon,” Leona said worriedly.

“I love to travel and explore new places. Maldives is an amazing place to be but……,” she said stopping abruptly.

“….. but…. but what Leona? You still can’t get over Nikhil?” Pritish asked in a stern voice.

Leona looked quizzically at him. She so much wanted to tell him that she had got over Nikhil long back and from the time she had agreed to date him she had not thought of Nikhil even once..

There was silence again.

“Give it a chance dear,” Pritish said in a mellowed tone and went to sleep.

Little had he known that merely accompanying his cousin for consultation would help him find a confident, witty and a beautiful companion like Leona.

Leona pondered over this whole night. She thought, “Nikhil is a closed chapter now and I cannot dare to reopen those pages. Pritish has given me enough time when we were dating. I need time to know him too.”
She wasn’t sure if it was going to work out between them but there was a ray of hope.

Marrying an architect like Pritish Gujral, with a completely different background had been a tough choice for her. At 32 he had already taken over the reins of the Gujral Foundation in Gurgaon. The man who was always on the covers of the industrial news and also managed to make it on Page 3 had actually agreed to marry a young Psychiatrist like Leona Gupta. It was strange but true.

Dating had been easy for Leona. They spoke like friends, behaved normally but on their first night after marriage, thoughts of honeymoon made her feel jittery. Pritish, on the other hand was relaxed and poised.
It was 4 A.M; Leona was still awake. She waited for Pritish to wake up. He was getting ready when he saw his beauty walk up to him. “I just wish I could hold her tight in my arms right now,” Pritish thought.
“Pritish…………… I……. I…. will give it a try.”

There was an abrupt pause.

She smiled faintly and said, “Let’s hurry; we need to pack for the evening flight.”

They reached Malé International Airport by morning. Pritish had booked a small motor boat that took them to Paradise Island in Maldives.

“It looks exquisitely amazing Pritish,” Leona chirped out loudly.

One island only for us! Isn’t it spooky?

Breaking into a crooked smile he said, “That serves the purpose.”

Pritish was a guy who was disciplined yet cool, challenging yet generous, modest and mostly fun loving. Pritish was opiated by his work yet he made sure he arranged this trip. He wanted to make Leona feel comfortable with him in every way.

Maldives was just meant for them. Cool blue water, exotic tropical flowers around, a private villa, a private bar, sapphire lagoons, breathtakingly picturesque surroundings and a beautiful couple like Pritish and Leona. The sparks were missing though.

Pritish wanted to take Leona for some outdoor water sport as she loved it. Snorkeling could be the best of the choices made in Maldives.

Leona had a child like excitement to go dive in wearing the black outfit, long black fins and mask set ready. She looked superbly sexy in that outfit which revealed her curves and her entire figure which Pritish had seen for the first time. She looked like a modern mermaid.

Pritish was a handsome man with closely cropped, light brown hair, bushy eyebrows and strong sharp features usually sporting a calm smile. He was 5’9’’ and Leona came exactly till his shoulder.

Leona caught Pritish staring at him and asked mockingly, “I am sure I am not the first girl you have seen in a swim suit like this. This must be so common for you based on your popularity and extensive travel schedule overseas.”

“I do have seen but not someone so close to me, not someone who is mine already,” saying this he moved close to her.

His reply stunned her. For once she loved what he said.

If Pritish were given a chance he would quit Snorkeling and make love to her. She could feel his breath close to her face. A sudden surge of deep desire swept inside her but she was too stubborn to accept it.

Awkwardly she moved away from him and went for Snorkeling. She felt like a sea animal inside. They went exploring the coral reefs and the wonderful aquatic life.

A sumptuous meal and an exhausting day made them lazy. Leona lay on the hammock wearing a white linen halter top that had been tied in a single knot at the back of her neck and a blue abstract printed straight cut skirt that reached till her knee. Her small silver studded earrings were shining and that delicate silver anklet that adorned her soft feet looked perfect when teamed up with a beaded multicolored necklace. Her long slender legs were revealed slightly from one side to Pritish. He was staring at her as he stood at the entrance of the Villa having an official conversation. For a doctor, Leona was too conscious about looks and knew how to dress perfectly according to situations.

Pritish looked desirable with his six packs revealed underneath the white unbuttoned kurta. Leona thought that his grey shorts looked comfortable and his hair was just fit to be entangled in her delicate fingers. The tanned look on his face due to the day’s activity made him look breathtakingly hot.

He kept ruffling his hair each time he went out of control during the conversation looking at her. Once the conversation was done, he walked towards her and tried to engage in a conversation. She didn’t speak much.

She stood up, came close to him and planted a soft kiss on his cheek and said, “Thanks for taking me snorkeling. I loved it.”

Pritish stood still. The impact of that kiss remained. No other woman had made him feel so aroused or wanted. The sticky gloss was still there .He wished he never were to remove that from his cheek. Feeling embarrassed he wiped it. The kiss was the ice breaker.

They went out to take a look at the sunset by the beach. Pritish offered her a glass of wine while he sat with a beer can. The situation was perfect. The crimson sky with slightly cool breeze, typical of the tropical evening climate made them ease out a bit.

Pritish had already started feeling his passion bubbling inside. They sat close by and enjoyed the silence with a few conversations about the next day’s plan.

Leona’s legs were folded and she sat in a reclined posture resting her body weight on one hand. She didn't realize that Pritish was so close to her until she could feel his warm breath on her ears. He was already moving his finger slowly at each sensitive point, tracing his path from the pinna, to the nape of her neck down her arms. She quivered with excitement inside. The touch had already started affecting her. She made a low moan and removed his hand. Instead, he pulled her close wrapping her by one arm and let her weight fall on him completely. She was enveloped in his arms and didn't dare to look up. There was immense anxiousness inside her. She felt a slight discomfort but it vanished with the magic that Pritish was creating. He made her feel excited and nervous every second he touched her. He could feel her breath harder with her chest pounding. Her stomach was twisting inside . She gave out a small shriek with a shiver and looked lustfully at him. His fingers raced across her lips only to get them parted for a moist kiss. It had been their first passionate kiss.He let her hair loose that was tied in a careless knot. The perfume of her shampooed hair was intoxicating him. His fingers moved to the back of her neck where he released the knot that held her top. It came off in a jiffy. 

They were ready to strike the last chord of intimacy when Leona whispered in his ears, “Not here Pritish.”

Pritish stopped suddenly with a shocking expression that changed into a smile soon and looked at her ebony coloured eyes which had the answer that only he could understand.....

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Monday, May 28, 2012

That impulsive moment

This story has been published in Yourstoryclub website :  <> "

Bangggg!! came the sound as Tina shut the door and stormed out of the car.

"Careful....", Arin shouted. 

Tina kept walking without turning back even once. 

The signal light indicated 35 seconds. 25seconds were not enough for him to get out of the car and grab her hand. She was too fast. Arin kept drumming his fingers on the steering irritatingly as he cursed the traffic and started the engine. 

Tina on the other hand was successful in holding back a few vehicles in a single file as she crossed the road hurriedly. Arin could she her figure disappearing faintly as he drove past the crossing. 

Tina reached bus and enquired about buses that would take her home. She looked nervous. Meanwhile, the traffic on the other side of the road had been cleared . Tina looked longingly at the signal just wishing Arin's car to be still there. She felt that she had taken an impulsive decision. 

The scorching sun was hammering on her head along with anger, nervousness and irritation . She stomped her aching feet twice. Her heels had started giving pain. It was for the first time she had tried pencil heel shoes only to match up to Arin's height. He soles were red. 

" Oh God!!! These pencil heels are a nuisance," Tina muttered to herself. She couldn't justify her anger. It was due to mixed reasons. One reason being Arin's attitude and her impulsive decision to walk out. She was totally out of her mind and couldn't think of anything sensible.

15 minutes went by since Arin had left Tina at the junction . He was nearing his house. He cursed the traffic at every point and also every vehicle that tried to over take him. He looked at the empty seat beside him which was now occupied by her mobile pouch alone. He so wished to be with her again. Their date wasn't complete without he expressing his feelings to her. He had planned more for the day . He just wanted to wait for the right opportunity. 

She had trampled over all his plans. This shattered him, angered him and also made him terribly upset not only with himself but also with Tina.

Tina, that one girl whom he had liked and found sensible after screening 20 good marriage prospects in the past 2 years. Finally, when he started talking to Tina he felt it could work out between them.

He felt as a failure at his very first important step when he had met her just the second time in person. Beads of perspiration trickled down his forehead as he got out of his car park and headed for his room.His mom looked worried looking at his flushed face. Arin shut the door tight and bolted it, tossed his phone on the bed only to make it perch on one corner enough to save it from falling and breaking to pieces. The A.C was switched on and he landed flat on the bed with his head facing the ceiling. 

His head was pounding out of tension. Blood gushed though his veins. He wiped the sweat beads off and closed his eyes. All he could remember was Tina walking away from him.

Tina was still struggling to get on to the right bus. She had walked 1 km by then ahead of the bus stop in search for an alternative means of transport. Haggling with the auto rickshaw drivers was another nuisance in the city. They never gave a genuine deal. 
" How could he have allowed me to walk away so easily in an unknown area like this?" Tina thought angrily. 

" He seems ill mannered and in considerate."

She walked more having just negative thoughts about Arin. Her shoes were making a creaky sound as if they weer not able bear the friction anymore. One more step of hers and there was an extended low sounds due to the friction. Her right foot scraped through a cemented drain cover, her heel got stuck in a small hole due to the loss of cement on the cover. In the event of pulling her stuck shoes out of it she twisted her ankle and fell down due to improper balance. The impact of the fall was too hard to bear. Thankfully it was the footpath and there were no vehicles near by. Her hand hit the lamp post behind shoving off the cell phone to some corner. 

She groaned in pain and her feet ached badly. She cried out in pain and screamed for help. The heat and the sharp pain took a toll upon her.

She woke up only to see herself in a nursing home with her cousin by her side. 

She had become unconscious because of the great fall she had. The auto rickshaw drivers had been kind enough to reach through her ID card and find her cousin's contact number. 

Her throat had dried making it difficult for her to speak. Indicting Anita to get her some water Tina tried to recollect the incident that had happened in the morning. Bad roads, bad shoes and an ill mannered Arin had spoilt her day.If only she was with Arin , she would  never have had to be in the current state. The city had already turned her mad due to the long distance travel, the terrible heat and hectic work schedule. It was only Arin who could have made life little simpler for her. She was too confused whether to proceed with him after just talking and chatting. Meeting him just once hadn't made much difference to her. 

Tina's ankle was wrapped with a crepe bandage tightly. Arin lay calmly on his bed wondering what had gone wrong that Tina had to leave angrily not even giving him a chance to explain.He didn't brood over the matter much. He stretched his hand, got his phone and immediately dialed her number. 

The voice said, " You are not allowed to dial this number".

" What crap!," Arin muttered. 

He tried again. 

"This call cannot be completed."

" Ugghhh......," Arin muttered again.

" This number is out of coverage area."

Arin slammed the phone down again in anger. Now how would he talk to her or contact her?

Tina's phone had been taken by some rag picker who was already celebrating by selling it off in a local mobile repair shop .

Arin tried sending her a message but it was left undelivered. 

Tina on the other hand was searching for her phone and was very upset having not found it. Her cousin immediately blocked her number and applied to for another SIM. It would take at least 2 days for the number to get activated. 

Tina was discharged immediately with some pain killers and instructions for taking care of her swollen ankle. She couldn't touch heel shoes or slippers  for the next six months until her ankle healed completely. 

Tina could remember Arin's  long face as she had attempted to leave the car. 

Arin tried calling Tina again. It was 5 hours past their meeting. There was no answer from her end again. He was irritated . He decided not to speak to her until she tried calling or messaging him. His ego was on its peak. He expected at least an explanation for her rude behavior and the reason for her anger.

Tina's parents were informed and they also felt relieved after speaking to her. As Tina lay on the bed sipping hot coffee she started wondering as to how she would contact Arin. She felt that he certainly had deserved some time to explain . It was wrong on her part to have left like that.

Noticing the worried look on her face Anita asked her patting on her shoulder, " Anything else that is troubling you?"

" Ummmmm... Nothing much. Just worried about retrieving all contacts that I had lost with my phone," Tina said casually.

" Worried about all or only one such contact ?", Anita asked playfully.

" Well........ Yes ...... and...... No also, " Tina said with a faint smile.

" So how was your date with Arin. At least talk about that. It'll make you feel better ," Anita said excitedly.

" Oh, don't even ask how it was. The whole day was spoilt because of him, " Tina said in a very shattered tone. 

" It wasn't after all a date. It seemed like a confused trip with us going around from one destination to the other, looking for some place to talk. He was not sure where we were going. He seemed too preoccupied with office calls each second . We spent 2 hours just in deciding the place for lunch. I thought he would have planned something for the day in stead of just making me go merry go round. Neither did I have breakfast nor lunch and there was no further scope for him to continue the conversation and he couldn't talk more that where- to-go or what-do- you- want- to- do. I gave him few choices like a mall or some restaurant with a large area to sit and talk comfortably but he still couldn't decide. It was not like we were meeting for the first time. He seemed so unplanned and stupid." Tina blurted out everything at once.

Anita looked at her in amazement and said," You have immense capacity to talk even after being in pain."

"Yes, I just needed to say everything as I can't hold this anger anymore. I walked out of the car without explaining him to him the reason."Tina's voice became soft as she completed the sentence. She could feel that her decision had been wrong.

"That was certainly wrong on your part Tina. You should have explained to him the discomfort . It could have helped him. May be he was really nervous and didn't know what to do," Anita said in a concerned tone. 

" In fact I tried expressing my discomfort by telling him that he should have planned well before in stead of roaming around the city and wasting time."

" Okay, what is done is done. At least talk to him now. Take my cell and call him," Anita said trying to provide a reasonable solution. 

" I don't remember his mobile number," Tina said innocently.

"I need to check my mail and find out from old chats where he had shared his mobile number with me. I am too tired now . I need some rest. I shall message him later," saying this Tina went to sleep. The pain killers were doing their job.

Arin was walking up and down in his room trying to re collect as to what exactly would have made her so furious . Was it not planning the day properly, making her go here and there or not talking about the exact reason they were meeting ? He wondered if it could be any of these. He had planned the later half but he didn't know what to do till lunch time. The evening was booked at a roof top restaurant where he could express his desire to proceed with the relationship further as he had started liking her and she fit really well with his choice. 

It was 8 :00 PM Arin, tried calling her again but no use. He had luckily got her cousin's address. 

He rushed out with his car keys , put the engine on ignition and off he went speeding towards her cousin place. He was determined to talk to her openly and also apologize to her. The day was not over and he was not a person who would let go a great match like Tina. 

He reached Anita's apartment. Finding their house wasn't difficult as Anita was a very old resident and the guard knew their house number. 

Arin was welcomed inside by a very surprised Anita. She took him to Tina's room.

He stood there at the door in shock looking at her bandaged ankle. 

She went pale seeing  Arin standing at her doorstep . Before she could say anything more, Arin cut her short.

" Please listen to what I have been wanting to say from morning," Arin said in a pleading tone.

A faint smile cut across Tina's face.