Fantastic Friday Fiction – II
It’s Valentine’s Day this Sunday and there’s an overdose of love-shove everywhere around me. The FM channels are talking about how you have a chance to date the Radio Jockeys if you win some contest; night shows are continuously airing love messages by the listeners to their loved ones; newspapers are carrying full-page advertisements about Valentine’s day gifts; a movie by the name “Valentine’s Day” has released; the network service provider is sending me 10 messages every day urging me to download love quotes and I have to write a Valentine’s Day card for the 20 year old girl who helps my mom with household chores. She has decided to surprise her boyfriend with a real card and it’s now up to me to write nice lovey-dovey messages inside it on her behalf! All this hullabaloo about this one day sometimes makes me wonder whether I am missing out on much.
Just to feel Valentine-ish, I decided to write a love story as Fantastic Friday Fiction – II. The last edition on the theme ‘murder’ can be found here.
“I hope you plan to tell him this year; after this you don’t know whether you will meet him again or not,” Piya told me in her I-know-what-you-are-thinking tone of hers.
“What if I don’t tell him at all?” That was my intention all this while.
“Then you are the biggest fool I will have the misfortune to have known”. That’s Piya, blunt and straightforward. “Listen, you are smart, intelligent, with a mind of your own, a magnetic personality, quite good looking and to some extent, hot. There’s absolutely no reason why he will turn you down.”
“Now I wish he was paying me all these compliments and not you,” I gave her a mischievous smile. “What’s the matter? I have never heard a woman saying all these to a fellow woman unless…”
Piya cut me off and continued. “It’s not that you are proposing. You only want to know him better and so you just want to go out with him. It’s a perfectly reasonable thing to ask.”
“There’s nothing much to know about him. I already know every single detail about his life, nature, character, likes and dislikes…”
“Third person news and gossips, college mag’s interview and social networking sites are not indicators of a person’s real character. What if he picks his nose or spits while talking?”
“SHUT UP, you idiot,” I aimed a pillow at her, but narrowly missed.
This was final year in college and my last chance to express my feelings before the guy I was in love with. It’s been three years and till date, I have not managed more than a casual and friendly “hi hello” with him. I took up the same optional papers so as to be in the same class with him, participated in the same co-curricular activities for a chance to speak to him and even managed to be in the same college group committees. But the otherwise smart, smooth talker, friendly and talented me failed to be noticed by him.
I had numerous guy friends and occasionally went out with some of them. But they were great as friends, but could not be my boyfriend. I could have buddy-discussions with them, but not the kind of intellectually stimulating conversations I was sure I could have with him. I stopped casual dating, learnt to say a firm ‘no’ to the boys who asked me out and started waiting for that one opportunity of going out with him. Except Piya, no one knew why I was single and yet not ready to mingle.
In my final year in college, I made a new year resolution, which was meant not to be broken at any cost. Piya made matters worse by sending me all those chain mails, advising to speak up before its too late in love, with the aim to keep reminding me of my resolution. I hoped to get an offer in the same office as his, so that I could prolong my wait further, but unfortunately, we did not get offers even in the same city. Our days together (I mean, in the same campus) were numbered.
“Did I tell you my aunt is psychic?” Piya told me one day.
“ What does that mean?”
“She can predict future to a great extent, and they always come true. She hardly predicts for any body, but if she does, it’s bound to come true.”
“But its no fun to know the future; life is so much beautiful because of the unknown future. I will hate to know what’s going to happen to me, let’s say, tomorrow.”
“But what if you know today that he is going to kiss you tomorrow, then may be you shall brush your teeth for extra 10 minutes.”
This time I managed to hit Piya with my pillows. “Stop your stupid jokes.”
Suddenly Piya said, “Let’s meet my aunt. Let’s see if she predicts anything about your non-existent but soon-to-be happening love life.”
Despite being the staunchest non-believer, I landed up with Piya at her aunt’s doorsteps, just a week before Valentine’s Day. It was all because of my insecurities about him. I was planning to suggest a meet-up (mind you, not a date) on that Vday and was really scared about his reactions. Just to give myself assurances, I finally agreed to meet the psychic aunt of Piya.
“You are looking for love,” was her first comment.
“Wow, aunt, you are bang on, as always,” Piya exclaimed. “Please say whether she will find it or not.”
“In a weeks’ time.” “Really?” I was speechless. Does that mean something will happen on Valentine’s Day? Will he admit that he also loves (ok, ok at least likes) me?
The initial excitement gave way to hesitations. What if this prediction of hers does not come true? May be Piya set her up to say this, as an ultimate push. It was too good to be true, which meant it was not true.
After two days of sleepless nights, I got fed up and decided to tackle the issue finally.
Me: “Hey, how are you?”
Him: “Hi, I am fine; how are things at your end?”
Me: “The usual. I still can’t believe that college is coming to an end.”
Him: “I agree. Life shall never be the same once we are all working.”
Me: “Oh did you know that the band “Shakti” is playing this Sunday at Kala Mandir? I love their music.”
Him: “Whoah! Really? It’s my favourite band, too. I absolutely love their music. Do you plan to attend the gig?”
Me: “Yes, I want to. But I am doubtful about tickets. I heard they are already sold out.”
Him: “Don’t worry about tickets; I have a friend who is into event management. I can get at least two tickets out of him. Thanks for giving me the info.”
Me: “Ok, great. So shall we meet on Sunday, then?”
Him: “Yes, see you then.”
We actually did not have this perfect conversation. I had rehearsed it a number of times, with a different set of ready answers for different responses from his side. There were some minor glitches. For example, he asked me which one of their tracks I liked most and I unfortunately named the one track which he thought was their weakest composition. In my excitement, I blurted out that I find their lead vocalist very cute, which I am sure was not true and a major blunder. When he expressed his interest in the gig, I asked the stupidest question ‘Will you come with me?’ which was pathetically direct and smacked of my feelings for him, which was not meant to be expressed in the initial stage. He raised his eyebrows at that, which surely meant that he smelt some rat in my casual-just-a-meet-up attitude I was desperately trying to portray. But the end result is what mattered the most – he agreed to attend the gig with me!
“Wear dresses, they are flirty and feminine. Plus, you seriously need to tone down your personality; guys get intimidated by it.” “Its not a candle-light dinner, yaar; just a band playing. I think I should wear denim.” “Ok then, wear this top of mine.” “No way, its too revealing, he will get the wrong impression.” “No, don’t wear that kurti; you will look like a behenji.”
After a two hour long argument with Piya, I was finally ready to meet him in my kurti, denim and sneakers. Piya was muttering darkly how I have ruined my otherwise hot figure and that he will never think of anything beyond platonic friendship after seeing me dressed thus. I suddenly had immense faith in the prediction; I shall get my love today, no matter what. I just had to be myself and not pretend to be anyone else. I knew he shall accept me as I am.
But someone rightly said Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. I had never felt so humiliated in my entire life, while standing outside Kala Mandir, waiting for him to turn up with the tickets. The show began and ended but not my wait. I was blinded with tears when I started walking back. I kept thinking of how to face him and what to say. And that was when I was knocked down by a speeding bike and received this injury in my leg.
Shivam was staring at the mark of the deep gash on my left leg. “But.. but.. what happened to that guy? Why did he not turn up?”
“When he later visited me in the hospital along with rest of the class, he told me that he completely forgot that Sunday was Valentine’s Day and that he had already fixed plans with his girlfriend.”
“That means that psychic aunt was after all wrong.”
“Of course not, Shivam, I met your father that day. He was the doctor who operated on my leg and saved it from being amputated. He was the one who visited me everyday for the one month that I was hospitalised and gave me courage to fight the pain I was suffering, both physically and mentally. I shifted to Mumbai for my job, but kept in touch with him. It took both of us just six months to realise that we are meant to be together and that’s how I did meet my Valentine that Valentine’s Day. Psychic aunt was always right.” 🙂
“No wonder you never wanted to tell me the story behind that injury of yours, mom. Some Valentine’s Day that was!”
I smiled at my son and said, “But it actually turned out to be the best Valentine’s Day for me. I realised that my emotions are not meant to be wasted on the wrong person.”
The phone started ringing. “It’s dad… Is he calling from Korea to wish you Happy Valentine’s Day?” I laughed at his incredulous expression and shooed him off before answering the phone.
One a different note, this article says how the security measures proposed to be taken by the Maharashtra Government, like installing CCTVs in halls will deter the couples to watch “My Name is Khan” this Valentine’s weekend. Shiv Senas always manage to somehow upset the lovers 😉 Pyaar ke Dushman!
Photo Courtesy: Google Images
Inspiration: Psychic aunts of Facebook predicting love, life and more
Disclaimer: Its pure fiction and any resemblance with any person, living or dead is purely their good luck.