Rang Badalti Odhani


Rang Badalti Odhani
Rang Badalti Odhani

SS: Freedom Hearts- Part 2-pg 3

rooj-i IF-Sizzlerz

Joined: 09 January 2007
Posts: 13493

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 2:17am | IP Logged
Hey guys,

So I wrote this SS for a competition on another forum. I only changed the name of the characters here but the story is the same. 

This SS somewhat based on true story and it is told from Khanak's POV.

It deals with friendship and trust and of course insecurities issues. 

It is based on a true story of a friend I know. 

The past and life of Khanak is the true story but the present that the story is taking place is figment of my imagination...Tongue

It is divided in 2 parts...I hope you enjoy the first one!

Do comment afterwards!


Freedom Hearts

Part 1

"Good Morning Lauren! How are you today?" Khanak greeted the office receptionist as she stepped out of the elevator.

She caught up with her receptionist like she always did every morning.

"Good Morning Khanak," Lauren responded with equal enthusiasm and stretching the "A" in Khanak's name, "I'm good. A bit chilly today though."

"Yeah, I know what you mean. New York's wintery weather is the worst season of the year and that is why I have this," Khanak held up the hot chocolate in her hand to indicate her choice of way to keep her warm, "to keep me warm during the morning."

Lauren smiled at her, "Another hot chocolate, I presume."

Khanak gave a wide smile back, "You know it! So, any messages for me so far?"

Lauren looked in her message notepad and looked up, "If you want to count Boss's tasks for you, then none so far. And no new meetings either. But the deadlines await your wise thoughts."

This is why Khanak loved Lauren because Lauren was quick to learn and quick to respond and was always to the point, while still able to keep the conversation light. Khanak laughed at Lauren's dramatic choice of words and headed to her cabin through the office corridor. She greeted various co-workers on her way to the cabin.

Before settling down in her cabin, she walked over to her boss, her best friend's office to say hello and to announce her arrival.

She knocked on the door before stepping inside, she didn't have to but she wanted to because it was a professional gesture, "Good Morning Pooj!"

Puja, aka Pooj, was working away furiously at her laptop, looked up to find the smiling face of Khanak peaking from the door. Puja always told Khanak to just step right in without her permission but Khanak always refused it so Puja nodded to Khanak to step in, while responding to her greeting, "Good Morning Khanak! How are you this morning?"

"Same old, same old, New York City's cold weather, ongoing traffic, and a hot cup of hot-chocolate. You know me, never a day I go without complaining."

Puja stopped her typing and chuckled at her best friend and went around the table to give her friend a hug.

"Now the day has become better but left another complaint for me to make," Khanak returned the hug, a bit disappointedly but still returned it with full heart.

"I know, I know. You don't like me hugging you every morning during office hours, but what should I do Khanak, you have made me a hug freak and beside you always need that warm hug from me," Puja responded to her friend while walking back to her seat.

"Yeah, yeah," Khanak waved her hand in the air, "Don't you get tired of giving me hugs and saying that to me? More over why do you have to behave like friends at work? Keep it professional."

Puja smiled at her friend, "And don't you get tired of complaining? I mean seriously you complain too much. As for other stuff, it is our daily argument so just give it a rest."

"I'll give it a rest, when you start respecting my wishes," Khanak said it as she headed out of the office to her cabin and Puja yelled back to her about the upcoming deadlines as Khanak walked out.

Khanak and Puja's friendship:

Khanak smiled at her friend, she has known Puja since she came to USA. The first day she met Puja, she remembers she didn't have a proper bag to carry her books in; she only had a shopping bag as the accessory. She didn't know anyone in the school and her English wasn't proper either. She had an accent, which went away over the years but not completely. Puja was the only Desi in her class, that too in her first period. She didn't know where to go and she was scarred. She remembered how when Puja asked her name, she meekly answered and didn't say anything after that. She even remembers Annie, who was Puja's friend at the time, trying to be friendly with her and trying to help her. Puja and Khanak weren't great friends in the beginning but as years went by and the more classes they took, they become closer and closer. Today they are inseparable.

Khanak remembers how she was known as the quite, shy girl for a year and a half. Due to her shyness, every teacher liked her and all her peers respected her. In America, eve teasing was quite common with people like her but with her she never had to deal with it or rather she took everything so positively that she didn't give others the opportunity to tease her. She slowly opened up as she entered 9th grade and then in 11th grade, she was quite confident. In college, she left her old, shy-self behind and came to be known as a new and improved Khanak.

During those years, her friendship with Puja became stronger and in 11th grade, they were inseparable. They were in every class together and they joined the same clubs together. They even took the same sport as their extra-circular activity together. They called the last two years of their high school (11th-12th grade) as the tennis years because that is when they both were together majority of the day, from morning classes to Tennis games and practice.

They even went to the same college together; even the orientation was on the same day at the same table. It was like they were meant to be friends and destiny brought them together. As they entered the tough years of college, or so they progressed through the college years, they rarely saw each other due to the different college classes. Puja graduated on time (4 years), while Khanak had to spend an extra year due to change of majors and taking two majors.

Khanak, when started out Undergraduate College, thought she knew what she wanted but as she took different courses, she figured her true hearts desires. She started out as a pre-med student and planned to major in biology but as she took writing courses and psychology courses, she switched her major to Biopsychology Development. While she was majoring in biopsychology development, she also developed interest in writing and decided to take Media and Communication as her second major. When she graduated from her university, she graduated with two bachelor's degrees:  Bachelor of Science in Biopsychological Development and Bachelor of Arts in Media and Communications. As she was taking those courses, she still had pre-medicine as her program but by the time she ended college, she changed her career goal from doctor to a journalist.

Today she worked with her best friend, Puja, as one of the best journalist in NYC. While Puja was her Editor-in-Chief cum the owner of their journal magazine, The Lilly, Khanak was the top journalist there and worked under Puja. They both started out together as partners but Khanak wanted to stay as a writer so she gave Puja full control of the company. Of course Puja insisted to stay as partners but Khanak refused, stating she would rather be a mediocre writer than a boss because then she would lose herself to the world of self-proclaimed, pompous, and egotistical heroes. She needed to have self-control and what better way to keep herself grounded with the help of her best friend, who has been there for here for half of Khanak's life.

That didn't stop Puja from giving the equal shares of the company to Khanak that Khanak deserved. Although, Puja thought she was being discrete about it but somehow Khanak knew the truth and she didn't stop her friend for her friend's sake and instead never thought about this hidden fact.

They had not planned to be in the same field and the same place but they ended up being together. How? They both still wonder.


Khanak made herself comfortable in her cabin, with her Hot chocolate and her iPad. She checked her daily lists of things to do. She marked of the finished things off the list and replaced them with new stuff.

Next she checked her phone messages and then emails. After, she checked her deadlines and articles that were submitted to her from her fellow staff members for review.  All this process took her 4 hours and she did it without complaints and without moving about too much. By the time she finished, she was more than half way done with the submitted articles.

She looked up from her computer to find Puja approaching her, Khanak smiled and went back to finish reading the last article before her lunch break with Puja.

"You know Khanak, you need a break from all this. You have not once taken a vacation, except, to go back to India once for your cousin's wedding for less than a month," Puja complained and tried to be authoritative towards her.

Khanak, without looking up from her screen coolly responded to Puja, "You know Pooj, you need to stop pestering me about my vacation breaks. You can't survive here without me so don't even bother telling me to abandon you because I could never do that."

Puja rolled her eyes to indicate her expression of what-will-I-do-about-this-girl as Khanak continued, "Beside I want to take a long break when I get married so don't tempt me right now because you would regret it then."

Puja chuckled at this; Khanak always knew how to change the subject around. "Ok I give up, again. How long will it take you to finish this?"

"Just a minute more."

Puja waited for her friend there and didn't know how to break the news to Khanak today. She didn't want to but she had to because she was her best friend. As she stood there thinking of ways to tell Khanak, she didn't notice Khanak had already finished and was gearing up to protect herself from the winter cold.

"So same spot today or are we trying that new India restaurant?"

Puja thought for a bit as they started walking to the elevator, "Well we can try that Indian restaurant today, they have both Gujju and Punjabi, just the way we like it."

They bid bye to Lauren before stepping into the elevator.

"Sure let's go to it today, I want to try something new today. I feel something unique and different in the air," Khanak showed her excitement.

Puja smiled in return and the rest of their journey was spent with Khanak talking animatedly and Puja responding to her with her inputs from time to time, the usual interaction. Their friendship was based on that. If Khanak was a Punjabi, Puja was a Gujarati. If Khanak was loud and talkative all the time, Puja was reserved and mellow all the time. If Khanak was involved with public then Puja kept her life private. If Khanak was too girlish then Puja was less. If Khanak loved Red then Puja loved green. They would fight but they would always make up, it was always Khanak to start the fights due to her insecurities but Puja always brought sense into her. They were opposite yet the same and that's what made them strong. That's what made their friendship strong.

They finally reached the restaurant, as they entered the place, it was packed. It seemed that the restaurant had become popular in short period of time. They both ordered their respective dishes, Khanak ordered Punjabi food, while Puja ordered Gujju food. Whenever they were together, Khanak made sure to order at least one Veg-dish for Puja's sake because they shared their food often.

After they placed their ordered, Puja decided to start the conversation and lead it to the breaking news, "So Khanak do you remember the days when in high school you would have crushes on American guys and I actually had a guy asking me out?"

"Oh My God Pooj, how can I forget that? I mean I practically had crush on 3 guys at once and I made the mistakes of telling them and making it obvious. Hehehe. While you, on the other hand, made things look so easy and turned down guys. I can't believe I was such a naive girl back then. I mean why didn't I stop myself? Better yet, why didn't you stop me?"

"Well you never asked me and besides I tried but you, the stubborn head was always making the same mistakes. So I figured you needed a lesson."

"Yeah, some lesson because apparently I didn't learn it the first time around and repeated it again in college years."

This gave Puja the encouragement to push the conversation towards the main topic, "Yea I remember that well. You did the same mistake twice in college, even when I told you not to do it and'" She trailed off as she saw Khanak's somber and thoughtful expressions.

"College reminds me," Puja continue a second later, "I met an old college friend of ours the other day."

"Really? Who?" Khanak was excited, "Wait! Don't tell me. Is it Scottie? I missed him. That kid always had me laughing at him, even when he was making fun of me. Lol"

Puja chuckled in response, "No it's not Scott. He is too busy with his Doctorate, the last I heard. It's someone else, more close to you than us."

Before Khanak could ask her further, their food arrived and they got busy eating it. After 10 minutes, when their stomachs were well fed, Khanak asked Puja who she met.

Puja: "Umm Khanak, look, don't get mad or anything but I met Shaan the other day and he was asking about you."

Khanak had stopped eating when she heard this. Something stirred inside her as she heard that name. She looked down at her plate and back at Puja with pain-filled eyes as she quietly whispered, "What did he ask?"

Puja: "I told him about us and our Magazine Corporation. Apparently he knew it already; he had been following us, rather you, for a long time now."

Khanak looked uneasy but Puja continued.

"Khanak," Puja put her hand on her, "what happened between you two? I know you don't want to talk about it ever, and you didn't tell me full details on it but what happened between you two?"

Khanak looked out the window and slowly took her hand away from Puja's hold, "I don't want to talk about it." She controlled her tears from spilling. She didn't want to remember the painful memories of her and Shaan's friendship, their beautiful relationship.

Puja let it be for a while and Khanak returned to eating her food but in silence this time. It hurt Puja to see her friend in this state, the girl who is always happy and always thinking about others' happiness before her was hurt today.

After a while, Khanak asked Puja, "How is he? How is his mom? Did he say if his mom had that eye operation?"

Puja smiled inwardly because she knew Khanak did care about Shaan, "He didn't say much, except how he had become the successful lawyer, the dream his dad wanted and he achieved. From his talk it seemed that his mom is doing ok but he didn't give me specific details on his family much. Beside we only met at a function and I didn't get the chance to talk to him. But I did'"

Puja trailed off as something or someone caught her attention. The person was heading their way.

Khanak looked up from her food, "But you'what, Pooj?"

Before Puja could answer her, Khanak heard a familiar voice behind her that she hadn't heard in years, "Hi."

Khanak dropped her fork and was too shocked to respond or turn around. The person brought back years of painful and joyful memories


Comments please!Embarrassed

Next part has lots of Shanak in it!Embarrassed

Edited by rooj-i - 25 January 2011 at 6:33pm

The following 19 member(s) liked the above post:

IluvYashranMissPunjabishanakrocks1roadsidejunkeyangel_9iluvmanarrafia 24-shamima-saaazpriya_cool_123Ashi22OlicityFanFanaahisomersSPN_JD_Addictedbones88adventure_gurl-Deepali-shanakyasharan

priya_cool_123 IF-Rockerz

Joined: 01 October 2010
Posts: 7621

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 2:28am | IP Logged
hmmm... nice one.... i liked your descriptive style.... feels real.....

The following 1 member(s) liked the above post:


angel_9 Goldie

Joined: 12 November 2010
Posts: 1476

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 2:38am | IP Logged

Rooj loved the ss part very well written..............ClapClapClap

i cant wait for next part so update soon.....

The following 2 member(s) liked the above post:


IluvYashran Groupbie

Joined: 25 November 2010
Posts: 98

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 2:57am | IP Logged

hey rooj  gr8 workClap...n waitin for d next part...Day Dreaming

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SPN_JD_Addicted IF-Sizzlerz

Joined: 23 March 2009
Posts: 13949

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 3:29am | IP Logged
Beautiful Rooj.Can't wait for the next part as to what happened between them!!I love stories like this.Loved it

The following 2 member(s) liked the above post:


togepe30 IF-Stunnerz

Joined: 12 July 2005
Posts: 31409

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 3:49am | IP Logged
Wow !!! Too good..!
Post the next part A.S.A.P....
Wats the point in tadpaoing us when you have already written it ...Hehehe !

The following 2 member(s) liked the above post:


OlicityFan IF-Rockerz

Joined: 31 July 2010
Posts: 6214

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 4:13am | IP Logged
ooohh......waitin for the nxt one!....
loads of shanak???...WOW!

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bones88 IF-Stunnerz

Joined: 14 August 2005
Posts: 27369

Posted: 25 January 2011 at 5:08am | IP Logged
Beautiful RoojHugloveeed itHeart brilliantly writtenClap can't wait for the next part.

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