Annie chuckled at her name! Akshay was surely funny. My little son looked like an excited puppy racing here and there. But Geet was nowhere to be seen. Dadimaa went hugging and kissing his grand-children and telling how worried she was. But Vicky was restless…
“Dadimaa…where is our new Bhiz?” he asked. I rolled my eyes.
“What is a Bhiz?” Annie asked curiously.
“Ufff…dumbo! The word ‘Bhabhi’ short form, like ‘bhai’ I took the ‘bhi’ and added a ‘z’ to make it sound cute!”
“Duh” Annie said. Akshay looked at them confused.
Geet appeared in a green salwar kameez and smiled at them. “Hi” she said softly. Annie smiled and Vicky was staring at Geet his eyes fixed on her. Geet’s eyes widened and looked at me. I shrugged and she looked quite scared the way Vicky was staring at her. Annie chuckled clutching her sides and said “Bhiz, you have to get use to it!”
“Bhiz?” Geet said confused.
“Yes Bhiz” Vicky added. “Our new pet-name for our charming and cute bhabhi” he grinned. Geet gave me another weird look and I shrugged again.
“Bhai…our bhabhi is simply an angel from heaven and you don’t even know how to describe an angel?” Vicky looked at me shocked.
I bit my lips and saw Geet looking at me puzzled and thinking Vicky needed the mental.
“Don’t worry Geet, this is our Vicky, all flirty type” Dadimaa said.
“Okay” Geet said but I could say she didn’t sound persuade at all. “Don’t worry Bhiz, I am not mean to beautiful bhabhis” he chuckled. Annie just rolled her eyes and sat down on the couch.
“Waise…bhai, this is how we describe an angel…Beautiful appealing eyes, charming smile, craving lips, angelic face…and…” Vicky was saying when I glared at him to shut him up.
Geet was staring at Vicky in a weird way and she turned to look at me. Annie rolled her eyes while Dadimaa said “Geet, this is our Vicky, all flirty type as I said earlier.”
Geet gave a weak smile but I could see she was not totally convinced about Vicky being just all flirty type!
Annie and Vicky were busy sharing their experience to me and Dadimaa and partly Geet. Annie wasn’t quite opening to Geet and Vicky was busying himself with his lousy jokes. Geet had left. I was surprised to see that Akshay hadn’t notice that Geet had vanished. He usually is Mamma’s boy. He obeys whatever Geet commands; which is very good.
But Annie dragged me to concentrate back to what she was saying. Akshay went running and came back sitting next to me.
A few minutes later Geet came downstairs. She was going in the kitchen, when she started glaring at me furiously. I had never ever seen her in such a state! She was like a fuming bee! I mean, I never saw her angry! And that was completely new for me! She stood there, arching her eyebrows and frowning. Her eyes diverted again to Akshay. I took a glimpse at my son and remained speechless…
He was completely smeared with chocolate; he had already finished a whole packet of chocolate. There were some on his nose, cheeks and his hands were full of melted cocoa chocolate. I now understood why Geet had been growling at me like I committed a big sin!
“Bhai…did you hear what –”Annie was saying when she noticed me watching Geet then back to Akshay. Dadimaa, Vicky and Annie turned and saw an angry Geet with her arms folded to her chest glaring at me madly. Dadimaa tried hard not to giggle but only succeeded by going out of the room. Akshay hadn’t notice anything yet. He was too busy munching the rest of the sweet! “Ahem…Ahem…” Geet cleared her throat but still Akshay didn’t move.
“Akshay…am I disturbing you son?” Geet asked. Akshay looked up at her and stared shocked, he saw that the rest of us were staring at him. His mouth opened in an ‘O’ shape and he gave a small smile. “No, mama would you like some” he said extending his hand which was covered with melted chocolate. He gave Geet his most innocent look with his puppy-face. “You know, papa” he said turning to me and continued “you busy talking…me hungry…tell uncle to give chocs” he mumbled and looked at Geet. She stood there smiling at him and said “come on, let’s go and wash…”
I stared at the duo confused. Wasn’t she just angry now?
“Bhai…Bhiz looks so cute nah, especially when she’s angry!” Vicky grinned. Annie rolled her eyes and asked “Bhai…are you sure that she loves Akshay or is she just trying to impress you!”
“Come on Ann, Bhiz is really nice, you’re getting suspicious about anything!”
“Honestly Ann” I said horrified at that thought “me and Geet never had a proper talk, she lives her life and I live mine! If the only person can convince her it is Akshay and Dadimaa. And Akshay spends his whole day with Geet when Dadimaa was out for her trip” I said trying to control my anger.
“Sorry Bhai” Annie said “I just wanted to know, that’s all!”
I was feeling left out! Nobody needed me so I just moved into my room, alone; as usual. When I reached my room; I received a message from Romeo, my college friend. He had told me to check my email.
Seriously, this Vicky needed mental, yes, he needed it right away. Was he flirting with me? I didn’t know! Maybe it was his nature, he was really friendly. But Annie seemed suspicious about everything. Since I didn’t know this family quite well, I guessed it was better for me to move and go away!
Yeah, reaching my room; I checked my email; I got 5 unread ones and I didn’t believe it. I had nearly tears in my eyes. As promised Rommie, he made all my friends know that I was in India and I got tons of mails asking where I was how I am. Why I got married to Maan and etcetera etcetera…It was nice, I spend time replying to those. Just some minutes ago I was morning over my loneliness and now; even if they were in different parts around the world, I knew they could never forget me, this old Geet that I buried inside of myself!
Later when I reached downstairs, Annie, Vicky, Dadimaa and Maan were busy talking and I found Akshay devouring a chocolate. I wonder why I was angry at Maan and Akshay. But it didn’t last for long as I was smiling and I helped Akshay the next moment!
I wondered what will happened next? What was stored for me?
“Come on, Akshay baby…wipe your hands!”
I wanted to find Geet; yeah, right, the washroom. Yes, she was there, wiping Akshay’s face, laughing with him. Amazing…they look amazing!
“I don’t want you to finish a whole packet next time” Geet warned him.
“Or else…I will be bad mummy then” she finished.
Akshay chuckled and said “you can never be bad even if you want? Can you?”
Geet turned and saw me. She smiled and started to walk. Akshay ran away fearing that I might scold him, such an intelligent guy I tell you!
Geet mumbled “sorry” but I laughed at her. Yes, I wonder why I couldn’t manage my laughter and started to laugh loudly. She scowled and then she realized she had just scowled and turned beetroot. I tell you this girl is superwoman; she has different avatars different time of the day!
I stopped my laughter and said “Geet, I am sorry”
She didn’t reply. “Tit of tat” she replied softly. “Alright, now, listen, I think you should take the first move”
“Huh?” she looked at me confused. She’s so innocent, even her confuse face is like chocolate cadberry! Gosh, I want to eat chocolate!
“I mean you should talk to Annie and Vicky, be open, and friendly with them” I said. “Only then, Annie will be open and friendly with you, she’s very reserved but she is not bad” I said.
“I know…it’s like…they were used of…not me, and being home one day and saw a new face – isn’t very welcoming” I said sadly and hurt.
“Yep, I do agree, but it’s you who should start a conversation, only then relationships would progress with the other members” I said comfortably and gave a pat on the shoulder.
“Remember what your friend said – you’re precious, you must be kept well” I reminded her.
She looked at me tearfully and mouthed “thanks, I appreciate it” she said very slowly.
“No” I said. “I appreciate what you’re doing for me and my son, my family” I said. “You’re doing a lot, even when you’re being ignored” I wanted to bang my head against the wall for saying the last sentence – damn me!
But she smiled. And again whispered “thanks to me, I needed it, and I hope I will be able to rise on your hopes and your support; I will try my best…I pro…” she stated, I know she wanted to do her best, she didn’t want to fail nor let me down. She was happy that I encouraged her; so was I.
“You don’t need to promise” I interrupted “I know you’ll be able to do it, I am confident about you” I said.
She gave me her 1000 watts smile and I smiled too. She left…
I went back…
Was I day-dreaming?
Oh gosh, I wish I was night-dreaming! And this dream would never end.
What rubbish? Night-dreaming?
Heck, this doesn’t exist, see, I talk nonsense whenever I am surprised especially by Maan.
He was laughing out of his head and Akshay ran away leaving me…all…alone…creepy!
And…he encouraged me…he helped me to rise up and make a place in his siblings’ heart. He was so comfortable to talk with!
I scowled at him unknowingly, it just slipped and when I realized I felt my cheeks glowing red! Embarrassing!
He helped me! I like it! He was so right! I wish I could stand on his hopes and kept his word.
So I went to the dining table where Vicky and Annie were arguing and Dadimaa and Maan looked fed up already. Keeping Maan’s words in mind, I sat down. Annie was growling and Vicky was snarling.
“You guys are lucky” I said. Annie and Vicky’s eyes widened in shock and looked at me. Maan and Dadimaa smiled.
“Lucky? How?” Annie asked suspiciously. I managed not to roll my eyes at her! She’s so boring! Maybe it’s the first time, think Geet, think, if you were in place of Annie I think you’d do the same thing. I didn’t mind! I’ll get use to it!
“Can you live without Maan and Vicky?” I asked her. She looked thoughtful and was debating her mind for a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’.
“No” she admitted. “Even if Vicky is the most annoying and boring person on earth, I think I can’t think my life with this dumbo” she agreed. Maan smiled. Vicky looked like he was hammered on his head. “Wow, I thought you hate me” he said surprised. Annie flushed and said “that’s when I’m angry, dumbo!”
Vicky turned to me and asked “Bhiz, you don’t have any siblings”
“Nope, unlucky” I said pretending to give them a hurt look.
Annie looked more thoughtful, I think she’s nerdy types! “Wow, I can’t live without Bhai and Dumbo” she said, I guessed dumbo was meant for Vicky. He’s quite that type!
“Don’t you get bored? With whom you used to tease and play pranks?” Vicky asked. Dadimaa looked shocked “honestly, Geet is a very quite girl, shy, mature and responsible!”
Annie looked at me as if I was abnormal! Maan was giggling in his food, Akshay was day-dreaming, I am sure of Hannah Montana!
“Actually…” I started shyly “this is the point where you get me wrong, Dadimaa” I said flushing.
“What?” Vicky was curious, sly fox; I think I have to find him a nickname – Slide Slick! Hehe…nice one!
“But you didn’t have any siblings?” Annie pointed suspiciously. Oh god, she reads too many detective books or watches many cops’ movies or it’s her sixth sense? Weird! But maybe again, it was all new for her to find me at Riihaa’s place!
“Well, I did have friends!” I said.
“Boys?” Vicky questioned immediately. Uff…yeh larka bhi nah? Annie and Maan rolled their eyes; Dadimaa was gripping on my story like those horror ones of Christopher Pikes! Hey, I’m also a reader when I was in my teens!
“Boys…including girls” I said. Akshay was staring at us as if we were some cartoons comics of his! Gosh!
“Did you play pranks?” Annie asked doubtfully. Vicky was staring at me as if I had grown a horn on my forehead!
“Yes…Revenge if that’s what you mean, when I was in college, my mate, boy…(specified for Vicky, stupido) put those plastic cockroach, you know, in my sandwich, while eating I felt eating a leg…” I paused and everyone got their eyes glued on me.
“Gross” Annie said, her nose, crinkling.
“…when I stopped chewing and see what it was, I got the shock of my life, I screamed, and…Nearly got kicked out of the canteen” I finished lamely.
Annie, Dadimaa, Akshay and Vicky burst into laughter! Maan smiled looking at me proudly. I felt so proud of myself!
“I can’t believe it, you nearly got kicked? What did you do?” Vicky asked.
I noticed Akshay glancing downstairs as if he was expecting a cockroach to jump on him…
Annie was waiting for my answer…hooked…
“What did you do?” Vicky asked Geet his eyes boring into hers. “Well, I ran away to the washroom’and then I planned revenge, easy and simple” she stated. “And what it is?” Annie asked. She’s way too suspicious this girl!
“Primo, I made one of my mates, Ghost we called to distract the one who played a trick on me. Secondo, I knew that Snowy, (he was as white as snow, so we nicknamed him Snowy), was scared of spiders” Geet told them her eyes shining.
Annie was really shocked “you didn’t put a real spider on his food! Yuck” she said crinkling her nose. “Of course not” Geet challenged, she looked like an eighteen student with a mind full of pranks. Vicky was staring at Geet obviously thinking how his angel could turn into a beautiful devil! Ha!
“Since we were going to have our Business class next, I had managed to go through his bag, dumping the fake plastic spider into his bag!” “What!” Annie cried. Everyone was waiting for Geet to continue her story. “And what ‘ the teacher came, Snowy was going to remove his B book when he…jumped on his chair, clutching his clothes fretfully and screaming like a little girl” she finished. “I…can…i-imagine this” Vicky giggled. Annie smiled. “He kept screaming like a lunatic that the teacher had to stop the class and make him calm down and we were always teasing him about the spider and he never got on my back again, believe it, every time he kept checking in his bag as if the spider gonna pop from there…and I used to blackmail him to do my Business homework or else I would put the video where he was screaming on Youtube” Geet sighed lost in her thoughts. Surprisingly Annie added “that was a real cool thing!” Geet smiled at me, pleased.
I had been talking some business matters to Annie who seemed to be interested rather than Vicky who kept yawning everything second. Geet had gone out with Dadi. Akshay silently slipped next to us with something in his hand which I couldn’t make out what was it.
“So Bhai…which college should I join?” Annie asked. Vicky was not interested in college but he chipped in “mix one, where there are tons of cute chicks” Seriously, one of these days…
“Mama!” Akshay exclaimed loud. “Mama has gone out with Dadimaa” I retorted. “No, no, Mama, here” he told me waving a photograph. “Lemme see” Vicky said snatching the photo and stared at it his mouth wide opened in wonder. “Bhai, why wasn’t I born some years earlier, I would have married Bhiz” Vicky said pleased. Annie snatched the photo and stared at it without blinking. I peered a little and realized why everyone was shocked. First I didn’t believe it was Geet, but who can change the fact anyway, not even me!
Yes, Yes, it was Geet, but in a different style. On the photo, she sat on a chair, giving an innocent smile while her hair brushing over her shoulders in a green kurti and blue jeans with basket shoes.
Behind he there was another girl; a brunette with sparkling green eyes who was smiling but was not as perfect as Geet looked. She was outstanding. I guessed she must have been 19 at that time. At the back of the photograph, in cursive letters were written “Sugar and Piggy”
“Sugar? Piggy?” Annie read amazed. “Sugar is Geet’s nickname” I said. “How did you know?” Vicky asked me grinning. I frowned and said “One of her friend met her and went on with a list of weird names including Piggy, so Piggy must be the greened eyed.” “Cool” Annie said taking another photograph. As she was looking at them, I kept glancing too, not that I wanted to look at them…
In one, Geet was bone-crushed with two boys and two girls. She was wearing above-knees black khakis and a lilac T-shirt matching her lilac slippers with her silky black long hair clipped with two butterflies clip; and grinning wickedly. Hey, wait a sec; am I a fashion designer or what? Annie turned the back of the photo and read: “Sugar, Alien, Monkey and Ghost” she giggled as she read the name ‘Monkey’. Monkey must have been one of the boys because Annie had been staring at one dreamily.
Vicky had a package on his hand and asked “what is this?”
“Stupid, open it” Annie grumbled. It turned out to be a CD and was titled ‘The dressers of Snow-White ‘ video by Romeo’ Vicky had read. Romeo name clicked in my brain and I remembered the funny guy at the boring party. Before we could say anything, Vicky went putting the DVD on. My mind raced to something “Akshay son, where did you find these?”
“On Mama’s bed, I took without asking, hopefully Mama won’t be angry” he said shocking me. Nobody reacted because they were already focusing on the screen. A voice boomed
“Hey, I’m Romeo aka Rommie” it said but we could not see any face. “Shut up, Romeo” another voice said. “Hey, I’m Lyndie but that doesn’t matter, what matters is how we are going to transform Snowy into Snow-white!” she said. The camera focused on Geet, she was wearing a pale yellow kurti and white jeans with white slippers slightly heeled. Don’t’ blame me ‘ I don’t know anything of fashion! “Hey, I am Geet!” said a grinning Geet and made a funny face arching her eyebrows “see, I could this cool idea to make Snowy looked like Snow-white, which is totally perfect, we will use blushes, make-ups and anyway, Piggy is here to help us ‘ Greek of Fashionita!” The screen went on a boy cuddled on his big Chemistry book and was snoring lightly deep in his sleep. And the next moment Piggy aka Lyndie was busy painting Snowy’s face with some make-up. Geet had been choosing which eye-liner to put like a funny teenager. The video was on how Geet, Lyndie and two more girls were painting and making a new person out of Snowy.
Geet came back standing in front of the camera “and here is our Snow-White” she said giggling. Vicky burst into laughter, Snowy was worth to watch, he did look like a girl cuddled into his sleep. Geet had got the brilliant idea to cover him up with a blanket ignoring his big muscles and hairy body.
Minutes later, Piggy was waking Snowy up. Geet was trying hard not to giggle. “Hey James, you felt asleep” another girl said. James blinked his eyes and believe it, he looked like a girl! Yes, he did! Then the next minute Geet burst into giggles and ran out of the room. James aka Snowy was so confused that we broke into laughter. “Hey Rommie, what are you taping?” James asked the camera-man.
Someone chucked James a mirror; he looked at himself and “AHHH” he shrieked so loud that the camera must have fallen off Romeo’s hand. And the video showed the other girls running from the room and James saying or should I say screaming at the top of his lungs “come here you bonkers!”
With his eyelashes like a girl, lipstick and clipped wig he looked terrific! I mean he was trying to yell at the girls but it turned out to be as if someone cracked a hilarious joke. He was red with anger plus with his makeup’he looked…eerie! We were laughing out of our heads except Akshay because he did not understand anything. All the speakers had a fluent and strong accent!
I glanced through the shopping mall and saw a little girl trying to wear a blue wig. I winced remembering an old incident in college where I was nearly put on Youtube. I was being filmed while singing crazily with my friends. And it was all Snowy’s fault. It was a payback for the spider! Well, I thought so!
I was really happy that Annie was finally getting along with me, thanks to Maan. She had laughed so much for the spider that she said I was ace. I finally got it that she was those girls who liked to hang around cool ones. Then Dadimaa asked me to accompany her shopping; Annie was too tired to join and Akshay had told her that she was lazy which made Vicky tease Annie more. I giggled at the make-up incident which nearly turned to be a disaster.
Start of Flashback
Geet ran out of the room. The next person was Anjali, she was running and she stopped to take a deep breath. “He’s going to kill us” Geet said mockingly. “He was ace” another voice said. Piggy had joined them and Alien was coming.
“Come here you bonkers!!!” James yelled loud. “Quick” Anjali said like a fanatic “he’s changing and he’ll come in a minute!” “Let’s run in the classroom” she suggested.
“No!” Geet interrupted “he’ll find us there, let’s go in the dance class, it’ll be empty anyway” Geet mumbled and sprinted off the corridor.
“This way” her friend guided “we don’t want to have a detention, do we?” she finished. “Yeah, if Principal finds us here, we’re dead, yeah breaking rule number 4” another one added. “Jam it Brainy” Geet said hotly and paused for a rest.
“I am hot!” Geet said sweating. Another lad who had heard them looked at her grinning and said “sure sweetie, you’re” and winked and got yanked by another guy who also winked at Geet who scowled and Anjali frowned “If BT hears this…”
“BT doesn’t know me, I am crazy for this BT…I wish he knew me though” Geet mumbled quietly.
“I know you feel low, he got engaged to some Riihaa Mehta” Anjali said dropping on her knees. “Come on, we’re nearly to the dance class, lazy-bone” another mate said and they started to plod in another direction.
They were all seated on tables in the dance classroom. The class was enough big for dances like ballet and salsa.
“Have you heard that crazy stuff song?” Anjali exclaimed.
“Yeah” Piggy said and started off singing the first line. Each of them took turned to sing and lastly was Geet.
Geet giggled and sang; but half of it was fits of giggles.
And then they felt as if someone had snorted! They turned and saw James with his camera filming them.
“Now I’m going to put this on Youtube, same as you threatened me for the spider” James smirked and said warily “Girls Spoils Brianna Cover” he said and snorted. Everyone looked pale and panicked. Geet went red. “No way” she said and walked over James, stamped on his foot. He howled in pain grabbing his leg and jumping as if he got an ant in his pants. But the time was enough for Geet to snatch his camera and delete his video.
If James would have really posted this on the net…
End of Flashback
I giggled seeing the wig. I had used a blue wig for making Snowy, Snow-White. It was a tit for tat, if James would have posted this video on the net, I would also have posted him and his spider. Yeah right, you heard it, Maan was going to get engaged to Riihaa Mehta at that time!
I snorted but immediately turned it into a cough. “Geet, do you like this?” Dadimaa asked pointing to a green salwar kameez which was really beautiful. “Well, if you’re thinking about Annie, I think you should try jeans and tops” I advised. “Arrey pagli, for you” Dadimaa said smacking her forehead and I gave her a little smile. “Thank you” I said and gave her a hug. She patted my back and said “everything will be alright”. I gave her a watery smile.
I reached home stumbling with all the shopping we did. Maan was at office, Annie was scoping through a magazine lost in her world, and Vicky was listening music on his ipod. It was nearly eight and Maan was nowhere to be seen.
Does he care to come home earlier? No
Does he know that someone or people are waiting for him? No / Yes
Yes might be for Dadimaa, she’s fond of him. I wish Maan would tell me everything; about himself, so far he only spoke about Riihaa, being hit in an accident and stayed in coma for two months and passed away. It must have been painful for her and painful for him to tell me and more sorrowful is that he couldn’t take proper care of Akshay, he didn’t know that I knew this. But still, I knew it was not all, something was missing, and I wanted to know it. I wanted to share it. Somewhere, somehow, in a corner I could feel sympathy but sometimes I wondered whether I too was feeling the same type of being…
I knew that the great MSK could not be rejected but I had a strange feeling. All these hatred, I kept it inside my heart, buried. Well, that’s what I thought. Only few people knew about me, two of them were already dead, and the rest were in different corners of the world…What would have happen if two or more people would hate me or my presence, nothing…just it would increase my pain…but luckily Babaji was kind this time it did not happened. Vicky or Annie was going great with me till now. Here I go again’boring myself with these thoughts!
“Hey Bhaiii” Annie said and smiled at him. She made ‘Bhai’ sound like her brother was some sort of don or goon. Whatever. “Hey everyone” he said. Was he tired or what? Working so much, he came home relaxed. How does he do that? No wonder he’s called the great MSK!
And I’m proud to be the Mrs. MSK. Cool or what? In the other way round, I’m not…because it’s just a public image. Inside what’s like, it’s full of endless pains and questions…
“Mamaaa!” Akshay sang giving me a hug, he ran like a lunatic as if I was missing for years…I smiled and hugged him back, stroking his locks.
We were having dinner. “Mama” Akshay said suddenly looking up at me. “You’re beautiful” he said keeping me amazed for a moment and I smiled mouthing “thank you”.
My eyes widened. Was Akshay going to tell…? Nah, he must have forgotten. He’s a kid after all.
“Mama, you look very beautiful in jeans!” Akshay exploded grinning. Geet turned red and gave a wary smile. “I guess so” she mumbled. I pinched Akshay lightly on the arm and that’s what happened.
“Ouch…Daddy…why did you pinch me! It hurts” Akshay complained rubbing his arm. Yes, my son ‘ stupid or what, he really knows how to get Maan Singh Khurana into trouble.
Annie and Vicky’s eyes widened and realized what Akshay was up too. “Woh, Akshay son, err ‘ did you watch your favourite cartoons today?” Annie butted in. Too late ‘ Geet definitely smelt something fishy. Akshay doesn’t understand comic series so he doesn’t watch any and Geet knows that. Annie turned beetroot and Geet was looking at us surprised and confused.
“Mama, you are funny, you paint boy red, blue, and green” Akshay said. Geet choked her food trying to add the facts whether we saw the CD or not. “And mama, the boy…” he was continuing when he frowned. He looked under the table and said “Vivi uncle, why you kick me?” he asked. So Vicky kicked him lightly on the leg and Akshay was making a big fuss! “Yes, mama, you won’t be angry with me if not with Papa, not with me, we watched the CD…you make boy turn into girl…” Akshay finished. I buried my face in my palm, Annie coughed and Vicky was trying to act all innocent. Akshay was smiling nave at Geet, at if he was all innocent, got us into trouble! “Akshay son, who watched the video?” Geet asked. “Me, Ann auntie, Vivi uncle and Papa” he said proudly. Annie coughed her and Vicky was looking for the nearest exit. Geet looked straight to me raising an eyebrow. I coughed a little and quickly added “woh, Annie and Vicky were watching, I just…” yeah right, I never lie and I’m stuck!
Dadimaa was looking at us curiously. Geet looked like she was going to scream out loud instead she blushed red. “You guys are seriously…” Geet started giggling when Vicky added hastily “bonkers!” and they fell laughing loudly out of their heads. I did not, wasn’t it embarrassing? “Gosh, people, this video was when I was nineteen, long years back, still very young” Geet said embarrassed. “Eh, you’re still” Vicky remarked and Annie nodded. “Yeah, yeah” Geet said sarcastically “freckles and all…I’m over twenty honestly” she smirked. “I wish I was born some years earlier, I would have married you for sure” Vicky said cheekily. Geet’s face changed to white. Annie giggled, I managed not to smile and Geet added quickly “err ‘ no thanks” she mumbled, kindly denying the offer. “Why?” Vicky asked “When you’ll get to know me, you’ll change your views”. Annie rolled her eyes. “Because…” Geet said “when I first met you I thought you needed the mental, sorry for that” Geet said shyly. Vicky scratched his head and added “it’s all your mistake Bhiz, I lost my sense whenever I meet a beautiful girl” Vicky said. “Cheek” Annie muttered.
It was stupid! I hated it! How could they watch that video? How could they! It was a silly prank that I took part along with my mates and Vicky, Annie especially Maan saw that. It was so embarrassing! Akshay was a baby’okay? But Maan? At least not him. I mean, for goodness’s sake ‘ I was just…only nineteen, and I was always full of cranky ideas. He could have plainly ignored this CD, couldn’t he? Phew, phew, phew…
2 days later
I was rushing downstairs quickly thinking that the stove was on. Anvesha and Vicky were discussing something quietly. Annie looked desperate and Vicky; bored.
“Puh-lease Ann, I am bored with the same thing, can you get over it? There are many fishes in the sea” he said dramatically. Eh? Fishes in the sea ‘ that means… “No!” Annie exploded “I want that fish!” She sounded like a little girl who lost her doll and wanted the same replica of it. Would it take time till they muck in? Answer: Dunno.
I raised an eyebrow and Vicky stopped complaining as he saw me. And he made that funny move with his eyebrow to signal Anvesha to stop talking. Annie turned around pink and said “sorry for the noise”. “You’re lucky your brother is out” I said nodding my head. Now I don’t know what made me say this but it just slipped from my big mouth ‘ Geet’s Big Mouth…
“By the way, you all have suspecting radar in your blood” I said and hastily covered my mouth. I wanted to pinch myself and they looked startled. “Sorry…I did not mean to say this, I wanted to say something else but it came it a different manner and what I mean was…” now I was confused what I was saying and what I meant? Whoops!
Vicky giggled breaking Annie into fits of giggles. It did not take long for me to burst into laughter. Soon we were three laughing crazily. I stopped and said “stupid people”. Vicky flopped himself on the sofa. “Ahh” Annie sighed. “It’s just…that we did not want…another Riihaa type to brainwash bro and separate us from our Maa ‘” Annie said as quietly shut up. It was something that she should not be saying…at least not to me. Vicky was glaring at Annie and he was getting up for the nearest exit.
“Mujhe kuch kaam…” Annie started to go after Vicky…when I found myself stopping them in a cold voice.
“Sit down here you two!”
My mind raced “why did they left for England when Maan and Riihaa had just got married'” I thought’
“Dadimaa, you here?” I asked. “Adi, you go and check these and do bring the blueprints” I ordered. “S-S-sure s-s-sir” he stammered and went away. “Why are you here?” I asked my grandma. “Bechara, why do you scare him so much” Dadimaa said looking at Adi’s fading figure. I smirked. “As Geet say, you may win the award of Best Temper…” and quickly stopped from saying further. Eh? Geet says a lot of things to Dadi apparently. I find her quite shy. “Whatever” Dadimaa said composing herself. “I came here to talk to you about an important matter”. “What important thing” I questioned. “Since Akshay is three, I expect you can send him to a good school”. No way, I don’t want my son to go to school, I mean, he’s way too young. But Dadi was right, it was the age where most of the children who join a school or a nursery. “Alright, I will find the best institution for Akshay” I said. Dadimaa nodded and said “Annie and Vicky are already going to university, and then what will Geet do alone at home?”
Huh? What will she do? Look after the house. I was going to answer her but she read my mind and retorted faster “then what are servants for?” Ok-kay, where was she getting at? Geet would stay at home some sort of…jobless. Caring for Akshay was her priority. Akshay would usually tell me that he would make his ‘mama’ to smile and laugh. Somewhere something rang into my mind…did she mean that Geet should start working here?
“Yes” Dadimaa said. Is she a mind-reader? “Huh?” “Yes” Dadimaa said again. “That’s what I’m thinking…” “You mean…Geet should…” my voice trailed off…I had plenty of questions…which had to be answered…
Everything raced into my mind. It was like a big briyani. I frowned at the two and waited for an answer. “I am waiting” I said crossly, my arms folded to my chest giving them a mean and angry look, stamping my foot. Annie was looking at her feet and Vicky, at the window. “You can watch the scenery later, Vicky, and Annie, you can check your nail polish later also, if you do respect me, you’ll answer to my question” I said broadly. “We do” Vicky whined. “It does not look so” I raised an eyebrow. Annie looked close to tears and she said trying to restrain herself from crying and said “because it’s all because of Riihaa!” “What?” I said. “It’s all Riihaa’s fault if we went to study in Great Britain” Annie said fixing her heels. I sat down on the sofa and signaled them to sit. “You seriously don’t believe that Riihaa was a bad girl and came to separate your bro from you” I said sarcastically “just like those daily soaps operas?” I asked. “But she did” Annie insisted looking up. “I don’t care” Vicky said still focusing his eyes on the window. I studied his face, I am very good a studying people. “No you’re not” I snapped. He looked at me startled. “You do” I said more softly “you pretend that you don’t, right nah?” he was going to deny but I added “Don’t lie, I know you do, inside of you, you care and love your brother” I said. Annie did look surprise so was Vicky. “Yes, I do” he snapped looking away. Then it hit me, who was I to question them? No-one.
“I am sorry’I think I don’t have the right to question you” I said meekly. Annie frowned and said “no’don’t say that'” she said in a whisper. “She was an evil queen” Annie said brushing off her tears. “I-I-was only thirteen when it all happened” she choked. Vicky gave me a sympathy look. “She still doesn’t forgive herself” he added softly. I put an arm on her shoulder. They were talking a five year old past. Yep, Maan had been married for some two and a half years to be exact. “I was then fifteen” Vicky muttered. “Brother would often tell Dadi about someone called Riihaa and he would often invite her in dinners at home’we noticed that brother was really fond of her and we later discovered that he was going to get married to her” Vicky said. He could burst into tears. They looked really heart-broken. “I know I am bad” Anvesha said choking her tears. I said in a whisper “I was also broken when I heard you Brother was getting married but that still didn’t stop me from moving on!” I said. I am not lying, I did move on but my step mom ruined all! They looked at me surprised but I added “please continue, I’ll tell my history later”. “After Bhai got married” Anvesha continued brushing off her tears “he completely forgot about us; he would spend most of his time with Riihaa outside”. “But that’s what normal young married couples do” I said. Annie looked at me, I shrugged and added “well, I do need time to understand your Bhai” “You already did enough” Vicky pointed out. “Vicky would console me saying that what life was” Annie continued and added “but he even forgot my International Concert! I had won the first prize and he did not even come! The next day I was so low that I never mentioned about it, Dadi was ill, Riihaa was always following Bro like a lamb!” Annie snapped as fresh tears came out. “He even forgot about my results'” Vicky added bitterly “I started to fool around in college then, feeling left out, Dadi was already taking care of us, we simply couldn’t add our troubles to her”
I held my breath as I knew what was coming. The decision’, the same decision that made them left their house’ “So one day, I was so pissed off that I told brother that I wanted to go to England for studying in one of the best college” Annie said. “And I also agreed, quite pissed off with Riihaa” Vicky said as he spat those bitter words. “Brother was against it at first but Riihaa said ‘ oh the kids want to study, let them” Annie mimicked Riihaa’s voice. “I simply hated her, she convinced brother with one sweet sentence!” “But, we did feel bad when we heard she died! We were having exams at that time, we really felt sorry for our brother, we didn’t like Riihaa but not so much for her to be’to be’dead” Vicky replied looking outside, ignoring my stare. I sighed “I guess, it was already too much for you all” I said. “Move on to your rooms” I said shoving Annie a little forward. They were surprised as I didn’t ask more questions. “Huh?” Annie asked confused. “Sweetie, I said; I think it’s already enough for today, neither you nor your brother and Riihaa was at fault, you were right from your view also” I added. “Your brother wanted to spend the best time with Riihaa, and he did, today, all he got, is Akshay and her memories” I added ignoring the pain in caused to my broken heart! Then I remembered Annie’s fishes “by the way, go and take a rest, I’ll come around questioning you later! Gosh I sound like an old cop!” I said pulling a face. Vicky giggled and said “you are funny Bhiz!” I chuckled, Annie smiled weakly. “Come on, forget about it” I said and winked at them. They were so surprised that I chucked a cushion to Vicky. He ducked and sprinted upstairs leaving Annie screaming at her top of her lungs “Dummy!”
Anvesha gave me a grateful look and said “thank you for understanding us, I wanted to tell Brother these things, but he will never ever talk to me” she added. As she moved upstairs, I called “Annie, if you tell him and explain, he won’t, as far as I came to know your brother'” and my voice trailed off. She smiled and squeezed my arm “why are you so good?” I grinned.
“What?” I spluttered. “What are you talking?” I said furiously. “Geet and office, no way! What will my staff think?” “What will they think” Dadimaa shot up, her eyes puffed with anger. “I mean” I said more calmly “she does not know these work” “Oh really, she’s more capable of this silly billy Sasha!” Dadimaa said. “I don’t want her to take Riihaa’s place! Why she should come here anyway?” I shouted back in a fierce tone. I knew Geet was really okay but there is not any place for her in my life! Dadimaa looked at me in horror and then she whispered painfully “I never knew you were such an ingrate!” she said. “What?” I retorted confused. “I never knew you were so selfish, you only think about yourself, have you ever seen the poor girl’s pain?” “Have you ever seen my pain?” I shot back. Dadi shook her head in disgust “alas Maan, I have to say that you are a really dweeb. I have always understood you Maan” she mumbled sorrowfully, she was obviously hurt with what I just said. I felt so lonely but nobody ever cared! “You needed time, I gave you, but you forgot ‘ Riihaa left and she’s not coming back! She can’t come back!” Pools of hot tears were forming. “She won’t Maan, she can’t, you have to live your life, your present, think about your future not the past’I know it’s though but it’s not impossible, take your time'” “I am sorry” I mumbled. She gave me a pat, she had forgiven me but the pain was still visible in her eyes “You feel lonely, nah, do you know it ‘ Annie and Vicky know it, I know about it…and…Geet also knows about it, son” What? I looked at her perplexed. She read my mind again. “Do you know last night Vicky came to talk to me about you, why you changed so much? I overheard Anvesha telling Geet that sometimes she’s afraid of talking to you, did you ever know?” I stared at her open-mouthed. “How can you keep living in your past when the whole world is moving…Dear, you got to live, at least not for you, for your baby…” “I guess so” I said in a low tone. “Talking about Geet, did she know all these?” I asked confused. Dadimaa nodded and said “yep, she does, though she never says anything, her eyes say it all, her sorrowful eyes full of endless emotions…I never ever ask her about herself but it looked like it was not a bright one…Geet knows that you still love Riihaa…she knows it all but she will never say anything…she’s just modest…though you should not take this as an advantage, she is making lots of effort of your Maan, just for you and your baby ‘ she is trying to keep this family happy…have you ever notice how Vicky love teasing her and Anvesha ‘ have you seen Annie talking to her so enthusiastically…I know something about her ‘ that she was a broken girl…who lost everything she had…” I looked surprised’again. “She didn’t tell me more…” I sighed so did Dadi. “I am sorry again” She ruffled my hair and said “but don’t say these things again…they hurt” I whispered “I know…”
You can never live in the past, look ahead of you, you have a future and you have a present to live…
I had my little 3 year old baby to look after; two siblings, one Grandmom and one girl whom I still did not know how to call? A Goddess as she keeps changing and surprises me every time or the-name-which-she’s-related-to-me? I worked till it was time for Akshay’s bed night story; another story! But it was late, I was busy wrapping another work that I completely forgotten about him. Damn me!
I reached home and frowned. I hated this sight. What was she doing anyway? What did she need to be all pious? Can’t she get it – I am trying my best but still she’s like pushing me. Once again I was wrong because she smiled and her expression turned bitter. She gave a little chuckle which made her eyes looked lovely and innocent. She brushed off a lock of hair and concentrated hard. She was reading a novel. Hmm, quite good hobby. And then she gave a small shriek.
“You?” she said startled. “Me?” I raised an eyebrow. “You scared me to death” she mumbled as she put a bookmark in her novel. “I was reading this” she said gesturing to her book “and waiting for you” “Why?” I asked coldly. She gave me a hurt look with her eyes and said “you can’t let the poor servants do this every day from dawn to night” “So you even sympathize the servants” I asked. “Oh puh-lease, Maan” she said. “By the way, I assigned Akshay to one of the best nursery” I said. “Why?” her eyes shot up in surprise. “Why?” I repeated. It was obviously a dumb question. “Oh’yeah…time flies so quickly” she muttered. Time to fly so quick that you don’t have even a second to think. “So you are coming with us tomorrow for his first day and his admission” I replied raising an eyebrow. She was in cloud nine. “Really?” she said surprised. “Yep” I said still amused. “Thanks” she said. “Why, you are his mom, nah?” I replied, well, it was true! She smiled again and said “you know it, thank you”. She turned to leave, talking to herself mouthing “thank you Babaji” when I interrupted her thoughts “Geet, one more thing, tomorrow you’re joining The Khurana Constructions” I added with my most serious face. “Huh?” her face was so puzzled. “You are joining the KC, what are you going to do at home without anything” I added repeating. Her face changed to a sad one and mumbled “Dadimaa asked you, nah? And you’re not happy with it, leave it, I will convince her that I won’t come” Huh? Why everyone has a telepathy system! She moved to go upstairs and I said coldly “nope, you’re coming, Dadimaa always says that you’re good at any work” I said raising my eyebrow. She turned to look at me with the most amused and innocent look “will you be able to do it?” I said smirking. “Are you challenging me?” she asked shocked. “No” I smirked again. She grinned; I noticed her teeth were perfectly white. She giggled and said “I am coming then” and gave her novel another look, “I don’t think I am ever going to complete this today” and entered her room…
Wow, she surprised me today’AGAIN…
I was not getting sleep, don’t blame me! I was flying in the sky, with happiness, slowly…slowly…I felt my eyes closing…Maan, thank you…I –
I woke up with the first rays of the sun. I was so happy. I remembered the Maan, his determined face, with an angry-confused look telling me to come to work at his office as Mrs. Khurana – or did he? And then I remembered about my little baby going to a nursery and will find friends around. I presume I won’t call him my little baby because he is a big child to go to a nursery. Whatever. I took a long shower and took hours to choose a good salwar kameez and brushed my hair looking at myself in the mirror. After three years, I noticed I had a charming smile and innocent eyes. How I would dup my friends or especially the lads to get a place ahead using my little tools…! Ah! I went downstairs and started to prepare the breakfast.
I tiptoed to Akshay’s bedroom and found him sleeping peacefully with his mouth opened like an ‘O’ shape. I giggled and stroked his hairs. “Baby…” I whispered to him but there was no answer. I slowly made him woke up, at first he was angry but then when he saw me, he smiled with his awful breathe! He had not brush his teeth yet. “Mama” he mouthed and cuddled under my arm. I giggled and said “today you’ll be away from home” He stared at me confused and mumbled “huh”, he was still sleepy. “You will go to school” I said. Then he shrieked loud “No!” and jumped on his bed and he started to cry “I won’t go to school, I won’t, won’t, won’t” he chanted. I grabbed his wrist and pulled him to my lap and gently said “why?” He looked at me through his tears and said “teachers are bad” I sighed and said “no baby, teachers are not bad, they teach us and correct us if we make mistakes, and you’ll make many, many friends, girls and boys, it will be fun believe me” I said stroking his hairs. He looked up smiling. “Arghh”, I said, “go and brush your teeth, it smells…” when Akshay chimed along with me “sooo horrible!” and we laughed off our heads.
“Ahem” said a voice. I was so scared that I nearly fell off the bed – thanks to – thanks to Mr. Maan Singh Khurana, the spy! He stood there, leaning against the door, his jaw tight with a serious expression, he looked like a cop and slowly his face broke into an incredible cute smile. I swear I felt my heart had skipped a beat! I tried not to blush while Maan walked to us and sat next to Akshay. “Ready?” he asked him. “Yep! I am going to make friends and bully others” he added happily. “Huh?” I said shocked. Bully? Where this word did came into his vocabulary? Strange. Maan chuckled and said “sure”. I was still looking at both father-son open-mouthed while Maan said “Geet, close your mouth, you surely don’t want to catch flies” Akshay giggled and added “after all, I am Maan Singh Khurana’s son“. I swear, my cheeks were on fire – from where my baby had got such attitude but Maan gazed at him proudly but I was not! “Who told you about bullying?” I asked Akshay regaining my posture. “Vivi” he replied proudly. I muttered something “this Vicky’s squashed brain, I’ll set the right thing out of him, don’t know what he made my child learnt” And the next moment, was more embarrassing!
“Squashed brain?” Maan raised an eyebrow throwing my looks. I stared at him with my eyes widened kilometers broad. “You…you…heard?” I stammered. He stood up and said to Akshay who was staring at us puzzled “baby, go and dress up” and turned to go without answering my question. When he reached the door way he spun and said “maybe I heard everything you said” and left leaving me…flabbergasted!
After breakfast, Dadimaa was smiling like there was a bulb inside her head; just scratch that, and looking at Maan proudly.
Geet…honestly, she’s a unique masterpiece! I love the way she made Akshay understand, I love the way she’s gentle with him, I love the way she smiles…heck, from where does this pop in? Squashed brain? What a name? If Annie learns this, she’ll change her trademark ‘Dummy’. I wonder why I feel that underneath this Geet there’s the real Geet like the one who just mouthed Squashed-brain. We were at ABC Nursery in the cabin of the so call headmistress.
The lady, Nisha, as she told us was cooing how happy she was to have our son in her nursery. She was babbling so much that it was getting on my nerves and to add salt in it Geet was replying to her every annoying question.
“I am so happy to have Akshay Khurana here in our ABC Nursery”
“It is because it’s one of the best here” I said raising an eyebrow. Apparently she did not notice.
“And to know you, Mrs. Khurana” she added. “Thank you” Geet said. “Well, I saw you, Mr. Khurana on TV, you were bagging the next big project of…now what’s the name, RJC, no, KJC…I can’t remember the name, so where I was…” I glanced at Geet, she was so irritating, and who appointed her as the headmistress anyway. Geet smiled and said “yes, that’s true” but I quickly said “we’d like to fill the admission form” I retorted sternly.
“Yes…yes…yes” she chimed and took out the form.
“Father’s name – Maan Singh Khurana” she mouthed and turned to look at Geet, “your name please” Geet looked at me thinking whether she should tell her name or…”Geet Khurana” I said. Geet was still staring at me while Nisha was busy filling the form. “Well, Mr. & Mrs. Khurana, you can check the class where your child would study” she said. We nodded.
Akshay was already excited to enter his new environment. “Bye Mama, bye papa” he said as he kissed us on our forehead and he added to me “I will bully” he joked, we smiled. “I’ll tell them that I am Maan Khurana’s son” he said winking at a horrified Geet as he disappeared inside. Geet stared at his moving silhouette and I said “come on, we don’t want to be late for office” She nodded and looked at me, her eyes filled with tears…Oh, no, I sensed danger – “thanks Maan” she mumbled. Why does she keep thanking me so much, eh?
As we entered the Khurana Constructions, several employees rose up to greet Maan and when the noticed me they added “good morning sir, good morning ma’am” Maan did not answer but he ordered “I want everyone in the conference room now!” Oh-oh. I found two pairs of eyes checking me out, up and down. I heard someone whispering “wow, she’s totally the opposite of Riihaa Madam” My heart sunk; maybe everyone here would expect me to be like Riihaa was. But I was not, I don’t like wearing American dresses and have short hairs…I am Geet, and I am not going to change myself…Maan turned to face the two women behind me, the one that was whispering to the other, “Sasha, Tasha, got it”
“Yes MK” Sasha replied. Maan looked irritated and said “then why are you staring at Geet, go!” And they flew like birds. I looked at Maan in the corner of my eyes scared. “Come on, Geet” he said and pushed me lightly on the shoulder.
I sat next to Maan on his right. “Geet” Maan said in the most serious tone ever “I want everyone to introduce themselves”. What was I suppose to do – stand up and introduce myself to them or just sit there and tell my name. I muttered to Maan “should I stand up?” He looked so startled of my whispers that he gritted through his teeth. “Nope” and signaled some guy wearing a big spectacles. He stood and looked at me “H-H-Hi Ma’am…I mean Mrs. G-Geet Khurana” he stammered, I smiled; he looked like the one who was scared of the MSK. “I-I am Adi” he said. I smiled and I felt very confident, yes, the same Geet who was not scared of anyone and would face the world and knew how to answer back. “Hi Adi” I said smiling to him, in a fraction of second his worry vanished and he smiled back. Mr. Chopra, Mr. blah-blah-blah, to Ms. Sasha and Ms. Tasha introduced themselves. Sasha looked the one who knew how to be MSK’s favourite, from her look I could say.
“Geet will be my secretary, she will assist me in my work” Maan told everyone. I myself was so surprised. Sasha was looking at me weirdly. I hate her from the looks she was giving me, I could tell you. I gave everyone a smile.
“Fine” Maan said “you may go” I raised an eyebrow to Maan as soon as everyone left. He was not the father / brother / grandson; this was MSK / MK, the great Maan Singh Khurana. “Come on, Geet, we’ll start working” Maan said walking to the door, he opened it and waited for me to step outside. “Maan” I said.
“Are we going to fetch Akshay?” I asked. “Yep, we are going” he replied. I smiled and followed him. “Thanks, Maan” I said. He turned and frowned “you know what you do – you make a list, then at the end of the year, you recite it and I will listen” he smirked. I scowled at him…He shook his head in amusement and I followed him, a smile spread wide on my face…
I hate this Arjun. I hate him. To whom shall I talk – Shaina, Neha…or…or Geet Bhiz. Geet Bhiz is the best idea. Shall I phone her? She’ll be with Bhai and if she picks my call, Bhai will be angry with her…I have to talk to her, I simply have…or else, Bhai would kill me…if he only learns…
@1 week later
Okay. So I was working with not my Maan but the Maan Khurana. And my first day was a great experience, an experience of dying with hunger. He’s the great but I am not! I was so hungry. One more thing – I was supposed to be calling my Maan – Maan. Isn’t it just great? Yep, I am having an awesome time in office. Simply outstanding!
“Geet, check this one” he told me flipping another file and engrossed in his work. I stood there and took the file, standing, I started to check. Fifteen minutes later, I handed him the file.
“Yes, Geet, go and bring me a cup of coffee” he said and focused back on the file. Fine. I went and made his coffee. Wait, does he like one cube of sugar or two. So I bought the cubes along with the coffee in a plate to him. Just then Sasha entered the pantry “just great” I thought. “Hi Sasha” I said. She gave me one of her cheesy smile, enough to put someone off his dinner. “Hi Rii…whoops I mean Geet Ma’am” Sasha said. She was doing all these purposely. I did not saw anything, but I managed to stop tears from falling off my eyes. I left. I tried to think of something else like what Akshay must be doing at school.
I thought I saw a figure lurking around the pantry…but again it must be my imagination.
“S-sir, I need to talk to you about Geet Ma’am” Adi told me. “Hmm”, I replied without looking at him. “She’s very nice” he said. Yes, didn’t I know she was very nice? Vicky was always harping how Geet was a great help in his life, how he would read his mind. That afternoon, we had gone to fetch Akshay early, after Geet’s first day working here, when we reached home, Geet went to freshen up, Akshay had fallen asleep in the car, so I dropped him to his room and peered into Vicky’s. He was listening to his loud blasting music in his headphones. He saw me and he grinned. Then he said “Bhai, from where you get these species?” “Huh?” I was so confused what he meant by species? “Bhai, I am talking about Bhiz, she’s a unique masterpiece specie, she’s simply amazing, in our third meeting, she told me how I was” he grinned. “Squashed-brain?” it slipped from my mouth. Luckily he did not hear me.
“S-s-sir, aap…are you listening?”
“Yes…tum kya keh rehe teh” I asked bewildered.
“Sir, Sasha is not doing the right thing”
“I mean, she keeps on pestering Geet Ma’am by pretending that she has mistaken her as…as…”
“As?” I said, Geet never told me anything. Adi looked so disturbed. He meant…as Riihaa. Just then Geet entered with a coffee plate and Adi left. “How many cubes of sugar you take?” she asked. Why she did not tell me anything? But one thing was sure; she was pretty good at hiding her feelings. And pretty too. “Geet, Sasha said something to you” She looked so startled that she stared at me open-mouthed for some seconds. She closed her mouth and swallowed “no” This time I could see plainly in her eyes that she was hiding something from me, because she was restless and felt uncomfortable. I don’t know what came over me and I grabbed her arm and dragged her closer. She was so surprised that she looked in my eyes to question me silently…I think I was holding her hand too tightly.
“You…you are hurting me” she said as she struggled to free her hand.
“I am asking you…did Sasha say something to you?”
“Stop lying and answer me!”
“Y-yes” she stammered and let her hand go. She looked at her toes and tried to restrain her sobs. Great Maan, well done, awesome job. “Are you okay?” I asked. She did not reply. “Geet, if Adi would not tell me, you would remain quiet, and bear the torture” I asked. “Geet, stop bearing all these and learn to answer back” I said. “I-I- didn’t want to hurt you” she stumbled her words. I shook my head and said “Geet”, I said touching her shoulders. She looked at me innocently and wiped her tears. “You are now Mrs. Khurana, you don’t need to fear anyone” I said. I was so surprised myself of what I was saying. Nevertheless, it was the truth. Nobody could change the fact. “Now go and wash your face, you look pretty mess up, okay, we’ll leave for home in a few minutes” She smiled and stopped short and the words ‘few minutes’. “Few minutes – are you sure – you did not mean 1 hour? Because I always notice your few minutes is equal to 1 hour” I glared at her, she giggled and left. Crazy girl.
Adi bhi nah, he’s a nice person, like a brother. At least better than the Gruesome Twosome, I mean Sasha and Tasha. So close, the way he, Maan, pulled me took my breath away, made my heart skipped a beat, made me feel dreamy, made me lost my sense; it was a good feeling…a nice one. He is so nice just like his son. No wonder I fell for him deeply. I gazed deeply in his eyes, he looked hurt…I figured maybe it was because I had to endure people’s gossip because of him and Riihaa. I did not mind as long as he could understand me. I was so happy, in cloud nine; he himself addressed me as Mrs. Khurana. That means, he does not hold any grudge for me mothering his child. Thank you Babaji…this is a blissful happiness…no words can’t describe it.
His looks kill me,
Make me die every time,
I gasp and dream…
Forever this dream mine
We reached home, Annie came crashing onto me. “Bhiz, bhiz, bhiz, I will ask you some questions and I will write the answers down” I glanced at Maan, he shrugged. “Why?” I asked. “Duh” she said excited “because I want to learn almost everything that I need to know about my new Bhiz, come on Bhiz, it’s almost four months since you are here” Annie said. She’s intelligent this girl. She plainly avoided the sentence “since Maan Bhai married you”. Now coming to Annie, as far as I came to know about Vicky, he seemed to suffer from a heart-break and tries to find the qualities of his dream-girl in every girl, not that I asked him it’s just a guess. Now Annie, last Tuesday, she came and told me she kinda had a thing for a lad called Arjun but he would ignore her the more she tried to get his attention. So I suggested her to ignore him. But Annie is very fast, she was pretending to ignore Arjun, and he was getting irritated but Annie is now all crushing over her friend Sameer. She says she likes Sameer more than Arjun. Whatever, I won’t bore you with her love-life just telling you that she trusts me to confide her secrets and I’m very happy with it.
Start of Flashback
“What are you doing?” Geet whispered to her friend. “Shhh” Lyndie retorted. After the class Geet asked “Lyndie what was that, you kept disturbing me in the business class!” she said crossly. Lyndie grinned and said “I found it!” Geet looked startled and asked “you found what?”
“How to impress lads!”
“Rule number 1: If they ignore you, plainly ignore them, if they tries to get your attention, you ignore them, number 2: if you want to go out with them, just be enough friendly with them, 3: if you want a smooch, just tell him he’s nice… (Geet mouthed ‘yuck’) 4: And all the qualities divided the weakness of the lads is equal to the number of percentage this relation can go on!”
End of Flashback
You’d laugh. But I did not need these stupid rules to impress Maan. If he would ever be mine, it’s all up to destiny. Maan slumped down the couch and Annie told Maan to stay here and hear the answers so that he could also know about me. I was blushing crazy.
I giggled and mouthed “Goolgappe” She and Maan raised an eyebrow and I shrugged. “Favourite colour” she questioned. “Red” I replied instantly. Red was my favourite. “Most lovable person” she asked. How was I going to answer this? How I was going to say that her brother was my lovable person. Her eyes shone mischievously as I stared at her numb. I smiled. “Friends?” she asked. “Crazy Clowns Club or CCC” I answered with a giggle, she also giggled and Maan was looking at me weirdly. “Favourite movie?” she asked. “Titanic” I winked and giggled. She giggled. I could see Maan was amused. “Most embarrassing day?” she asked. I giggled and said “when I nearly powered-chillyed my teacher” “WHAT!” another voice cried. It was Dadimaa, she was coming to talk to Maan even he was shocked. I turned red and answered “I had planned it for one of my friends but he came to know about it and exchanged his cup with the teacher but I managed to stop everything in the nick of time” I said. Dadimaa looked amused and turned to say something to Maan. “Oh-kay”, Annie said while Dadi was talking to Maan who disagreed whatever it was. “Favourite type of flowers?” Annie continued grinning wickedly. “Red roses, of course” I answered giggling. Just then two buzzing sounds started. One was Annie’s and one was mine. Who might be calling me! Annie scooted off; I, for instance was sure it must be ‘Sameer’. Whatever. ‘Pinky’ flashed on my screen and I pressed the ‘answer button’. I walked a little far away from Maan and Dadimaa, both were arguing.
“Oyye Pinky, ab yaad kiya Geet ko, hein na? All these days, I was camping on Mars” I started sarcastically before she could speak anything. And I started again babbling or should I say scolding her. “Nahi, nahi, how would you remember me, you are such a busy person, nah? Iss Sania bhi (prologue) nah? Mein uski jaan lelungi, she’s getting married and not any soul decided that it was important to inform Geet, hein nah? Haan, akhir mein kaun hoon? When I and Sania were neighbours everything ran smoothly but now…all of you…are evil, mein tumse baat nahi karungi” I scowled. Pinky giggled and said “Geet, remember I was in NY”. I smacked my forehead “haan, From New York to California to Washington DC to Delhi to Australia, who cares, definitely not me” I snapped back angrily pulling a face. “By the way, did you have a safe voyage, did you eat well, I hope you have not fall sick during your journey”
“Did you know that Rajji’s brother bought a Mercedes in Hoshiyarpur?” Pinky said importantly. “Lucky duck, did you know that Rajji had fallen off the stairs, she’s on clutches” she continued. “Oh my god” I gasped “is she okay now?” I asked. “Yep, you bet, her uncle gave her a laptop!” Pinky giggled. “A PC? Wow, lucky duckling, you bet her recovery was speedy! Chal, tell me why you phoned?” I questioned.
“Why can’t I phone you like that” she pretended to be hurt. “Yes, yes, drama queen, I know!” I giggled. “I was asking, you are coming nah, for Sania’s wedding?”
I gasped “of course I am coming on Sania’s wedding! I met her at the market the other day! She told me…ahh…okay…take care of yourself…eat well…okay, take care…bye…” I shut my cell off and turned to see Maan staring at me…Apparently Dadi had already left, leaving him staring at me…ah…
Oh-kay. “Oyye Pinky…” and “I was camping in Mars” were so absurd. I mean Geet was talking like this. I nearly laughed if Dadimaa and I did not start arguing. And the faces that Geet was making were simply funny. It was hilarious to watch her scold Pinky. My mind flashed to the recent event when Nakul had come and told Geet that someone named Pinky something-something had come to meet her. But honestly California to Delhi? How many times she’d keep surprising me like this? Do I know here well?
Well, Dadimaa had organized and planned at party…at home! Great! I was not even aware of it, actually nobody was. But I couldn’t care less! It was my home, my house and the party was for Annie and Vicky’s return. And I was arguing for not attending it. But Dadi’s great!
“Geet, so how was your trip to Mars” I could not help asking…”I guess, it was very hot, eh”
She stared at me…in utter shock…I smirked…Her face was just like a baby…