Khanak carried out her morning ritual religiously. She woke up again at six, rubbed her eyes to wake them from slumber, switched on the bedside table lamp she had and slipped on her furry pink slippers.
As she stepped forward to open the door she felt as if she had stepped onto something just at the foot of the door. Stepping backwards, she rubbed her eyes again to clear her vision. The thing she had stepped on seemed like an envelope.
Her eyes shot open at their own accord. She rubbed them again nonetheless, just to make sure she wasn't hallucinating.There, lying right in front of her, was a beige envelope.
But how could that be?
She quickly bent down to pick it up again as if touching it was the only way to make her believe it was indeed an envelope similar to Shaantanu's.
Of course silly! Beige envelope tou koi bhi use kar sakta hai, she reasoned, giving a slight pat to her head.
But once the envelope was in her hands and was intently read by her now vigilant gaze there was no mistake. It was a letter by Shaantanu. But that wasn't it. There were two envelopes! Two envelopes tied by a ribbon.
Haye bhagwan jee. Pehle tou khat nai likh rahay thay ye, aur ab do do!
Per pehle kon sa parhna hai?
Shayad ribbon isi liye baandha hai ke tarteeb se parhoun mein.
In a flurry, she opened the ribbon and took out the first letter.The first two words made her heart skip a beat.
Though my father and I share one of the greatest of rapports in my opinion, I do believe that we have very different relations with our respective fathers as you have very aptly pointed out. Since we are in "honest mode" as you have called it, I would like to tell you that I'm ready to talk about our lives and current positions frankly, provided that you promise me to do the same.
I think I made my position clear on this matter the first day we met. Women have had no seemingly significant role in my life and neither have I foreseen any woman having such a role in the near future. Marriage to me seems like a contract, a compromise, and I do not wish to burden myself with such a responsibility. And that's the exact thing that astonishes me about you. You have grown up in London and would have heard of far more material marriage than I would've. You would have had male friends and female ones who do not believe that marriage has anything significant to offer than any other relationship between a man and a woman, be it emotional or financial. Then why do you believe so strongly that in today's day and age that marriage can be a contract of hearts, not bound by words?
I do not wish to alarm or offend you Khanak, for in my interaction with women, I have found you to be different from the rest. I do not know how well I know you and I'll betray a promise I made to myself by telling you I think I have probably met a woman with more substance than lipstick and mineral powder. But alas, Khanak, that is my instinct. And I do not live life on instinct. As I said so earlier, I am not influenced by women.
So, as I was saying I do not wish to offend you but even though a few weeks have passed since our face-to-face interaction, I have not come to believe that I need a life partner at this time in my life. Though I believe you when you say you are well-equipped to face criticism, I would like to make it clear that this lack of faith in women has not been strengthened by you. You are a great person I am sure but I'd just like to tell you that it might take me a long time before I can come to terms with the fact that such a woman can exist.
I agree with your proposal at giving this match a chance. However, I cannot promise a deadline for which either of us will come to realize a concrete answer.
Until then, I wish to learn more about you.
Khanak did not know what to make of the letter. It was cold yet honest. Crisp yet numb. It reeked of suspicion, yet smelled of yearning. She did not know what Shaantanu wanted from her.
Did he think this alliance is so rotten that he could put it in no simpler yet comforting words?
Comforting my foot! Does the pompous man even know what he's putting me through?!
Tears rolled down her eyes as her mind raced ahead of itself.
Mana hi karna tha tou baat kyun ki?
Khat kyun likha?
Ye drama karnay ki kya zaroorat thi?
Itna shak hai inhein auratoun pe tou pehle kyun nai bataya?
Aur ab kyun bata rahay hein?
Aur inhein kaise pata ke mein faraq houn?
Bas meethi zabaan laga rahay hein!
He thinks I'm fragile and wo mera dil nai dukhana chahtey.
Par unko dekh ke lagta tou nai hai ke unhein khud ke elawa kisi ke dil ki koi parwah bhi hai.
Dil hai bhi kya unka?!
Apni hi duniya mein khoey rehtay houn ge.
Sab jhoot hai. Koi fikar nai hai inhein ke Sunil uncle kya chahtay hein.
More tears fell down the rim of her eyes, clouding her vision, as she slumped down to the floor.
Idiot hai tu Khanak.
Iss aadmi se lagao kar baithi.
Jitna bhi tu ne khud ko roknay ki koshish ki akhir din bhar unhi ke baray mein hi tou sochti rahi tu.
Aur inhein dekh. Bol tou ayse rahay hein ke baat kar ke bohat bara ehsaan kar rahay hein ye tujh pe.
Ghamandi na houn tou.
When her vision was sufficiently clouded and her head started to ache, Khanak realized the pain she was adding on to herself. Wiping her tears she made a resolute decision.
Ab mein inhein do kauri ki bhi jaga nai doun gi apnay zehan mein.
Khat se baat karni hai na inhoun ne.
Ab meray aglay khat ka intezaar karein Mr. Shaantanu Khandelwal. Ap ko beshak apnay Ada Bai ki fikar na ho, magar mujeh apnay Ada Bai ki hai. Aur ap ki is soch aur casualness ka sabak tou mein aap ko sikha ke hi rahoun gi.
Superficial lagti hein na aap ko auratein? But I am a great person?
Ab aap dekhna mein kitni great houn!
Wiping the last of her tears, Khanak proceeded to unfold the second letter.
Snail mail bohat slow nai hai kya?
Frankly speaking, I think it is one of the more emotional updates so far. How did it go guys? Thumbs up or thumbs down?
Edited by ABlank90 - 23 June 2012 at 3:28pm