I apologize for the delay. School is just…UGH!
Anyway, here is the sixth chapter. Hope y'all enjoy it :)
An out of the ordinary day
Aryan Bedi banged the car door right into his brother's disorientated face, muttering nonsensical words in an ominous tone. As Dhruv reached for it, his dad placed a strong hand on his shoulder. He didn't turn around, scared that the bitter disappointment on his face would be clear as day.
Dhruv: Ji papa?
Mr. Bedi: (Emotionless) Remind your brother of our conversation this morning.
Sighing, Dhruv obediently nodded, making a mental note to absolutely not remind Aryan of conversation. He knew too well, an angered lion needed reassurance, not something to fuel his anger. He sat in place for approximately five seconds, then hastily made his exit from the car, unwilling to stay in the company of his father any longer.
The car zoomed across the driveway, and onto the road, as Dhruv ran up to catch his brother. Aryan was moodily stalking to the school building, gripping his guitar tightly in one hand, and his schoolbag in the other. Taking a deep breath, Dhruv playfully slapped his brother on the back, planting the big, bright smile on his face.
Aryan looked back, staring at his brother's big, black eyes, filled with understanding.
Dhruv: Aryan, papa is sorry for what he said today.
Aryan shrugged off his hand, scowling. The warmth he had been feeling only a few seconds ago vanished rapidly. Dhruv always the goody two shoes, the string that tied their family together.
Aryan: No he didn't. Stop trying to jump into damage control mode.
Dhruv: Aryan, I'm serious! He really-
Aryan: Dhruv, shut up! And stop trying to make dad look like an angel.
Aryan resumed his fast paced walk into the school building as Dhruv desperately tried to get his attention.
Dhruv: Aryan! He only wants the best for you!
Snorting in contempt, Aryan kicked open the front door, stomping in. Sighing helplessly, Dhruv trudged in behind his brother. There was a lot of work to be done before the end of the day.
—— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——
Smita: Ok guys. Before you go, I have a project for all of you!
The class groaned unanimously, each face marked with an expression of misery, melancholy or distress.
Smita: Hey! It's gonna be fun! I promise!
Tammy's eyebrows perked up at the word 'fun'. In her past experiences, Tammy had realized that the music teacher's definition of fun, and hers were miles apart.
Smita: It's simple…all you have to do is pick a song, and you can sing it, play it on the piano, guitar or any other instrument.
A handful of faces in the class brightened up in the classroom, including Aryan's, who was clutching a big black bag very possessively. Most people knew it was his guitar, and the others just guessed.
Smita: And you have until the end of this semester for this project.
The bell pierced through the classroom, and the kids clamored near the exit, waiting desperately to be let go.
As Tammy and Aryan followed the slow procession, Smita called out their names. Unsurprised, the two nonchalantly walked up to her oak desk, which they had become a little too familiar with.
She beamed at her favorite student, and his soon to be pupil.
Smita: So, today is the first day of your tutoring…aren't you excited?
The two muttered something incoherent, their expressions perfectly portraying misery and unhappiness. Smita was surprised to see Aryan's melancholy frame, but brushed it aside to focus on the main task.
Smita: Ok…well…you two will meet here every Friday after school, and don't try to bunk this, because I have a camera (points to a tiny thing with a tinier lens) and I will be checking on you two from time to time.
Tammy muttered darkly, unhappy to be chucking her master bunking plan. Smita cleared her throat, catching the attention of her two students, who were looking anywhere but at each other.
Smita: Well…you can go.
Nodding their heads, they picked their bags, and exited, believe it or not…together
Tammy: Bloody sadist! If I don't make a Chinese dish out of her soon, I swear I will-
She glanced at Aryan, surprised that he hadn't interrupted her, or shared some wisdom with her.
Tammy: Hey Casanova, has your dog died?
Aryan glanced at her, his brows furrowed, a completely lost expression on his face. He tried to grasp the meaning of her words, and the way she rolled her eyes.
Tammy: Earth to fake heman! Hello!
Aryan: (Snapping back) What's your problem?
Tammy: My problem is that today…you're not acting normal. Na hi tumne mujhse argue kiya…na hi koi Gandhigiri spread ki…what's up?
Aryan: I believe that's only my business.
Tammy: No. It's concerning me. If you have a new plan to become friends with me, warn me ahead of time.
Aryan stopped abruptly, glaring at Tammy with big, red eyes. She failed to notice the tear tracks on his cheeks, as she, in turn, was boiling up a volcano of anger.
Aryan: Listen you brainless cupcake, not everything in the world concerns you.
Tammy: The past few weeks, everything YOU have done has concerned me.
Aryan: Look, I'm not in the mood to argue with you wacko so-
Tammy: Well, I am. You know, jab tak tumhe insult na karoon, my day feels…(sighing, dramatically) incomplete
Aryan walked away, muttering enigmatically under his breath. If only he could get some tape to shut the artistic freak's loud mouth…
Tammy: (Offended) HEY! Don't walk away from me!!
Aryan: (Shouting over his shoulder) Stop following me and get lost!
As he disappeared around the corner, Tammy slung her bag over her shoulder, an expression of perplexity on her face.
"What's wrong with the reincarnation of John Lenon."
—— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— —— ——— ———— ——— ——— ———
Dhruv: Aryan! Will you just listen to me?!
His brother turned to face him, a bitter laugh emanating from his dry, unsmily lips.
Aryan: Why Dhruv? Taki tum dad ki tareefon ka pul banayo? I have much better crap to listen to.
Dhruv sighed, running a hand through his sweaty yet soft hair.
Dhruv: Why can't you understand. He's our dad.
Aryan shook his head, his face expressionless, as he tried to explain the situation to his brother, yet again.
Aryan: He's your dad. To me, he's nothing.
Dhruv: Okay. Fine. Whatever. But talk to me, please.
Aryan: No. You'll start with dad again.
Dhruv: Aryan, please-
Aryan: Dhruv, don't. I'm mad at dad already, I don't want to be mad at you too.
Dhruv: You have to-
Aryan: Keep on talking, and I'm sure to bang your head against something…possibly dad's.
Aryan glowered at his brother, challenging him to say something. His brother hung his head down, gracelessly accepting defeat. Sighing, Aryan walked away, casually humming a tune to one of his favorite songs.
…?: Well…that was weird…
Dhruv turned around, shocked to see a tiny Shreya staring at Aryan's withdrawing figure. She had an eyebrow cocked up, which just made her perfect face look all the more cute.
"Oh right, you like Shreya…"
Brushing that thought aside, Dhruv smiled warmly at her, getting ready to go.
Shreya: What's wrong with you two?
Nervously, Dhruv pulled at the collar of his shirt. He gulped as her enormous green eyes stared at his face.
Dhruv: Uh…dunno…got to go, I'm getting late for class.
Hastily, he turned around, unable to lie further to those eyes.
Shreya: What is it with you? Every time Shreya tries to talk to you…you have to go to class…
Shreya: Ek do baar toh theekh hai. But every time. Tumhe Shreya se kya problem hai? Did Shreya do something wrong?
Dhruv eyed her heart shaped face, surprised at the look of distress on it. He bit his lip unsure of what to say.
Shreya: I've got time, and I know you do too. We have the same Spanish class.
Smiling a little, she patted the seat next to her. Sighing, he reluctantly sat on it, unsure about where to begin.
Shreya: So, what's your problem with Shreya.
"She's mad about you dude!"
Dhruv: It's just that…I…my friends…um…well my friends told me you like me. I'm sure it's not true, but just in case I didn't want to-
She started laughing, and it was nice. Her laugh. It was melodious and quirky and…
"Of course you like her…"
Dhruv blinked. He felt this urge to just...wrap his arms around her, but all he could do was stare.
She eyed him after a while, amused at the way he stared at her.
Shreya: (Grinning) What?
Dhruv: Nothing, it's just…(blinking into realization) Nothing. Why'd you laugh?
Shreya: Because you're really dumb! Of course Shreya likes you!
Dhruv: Oh…um…I'm sorry, I'm not really-
Shreya: Shreya knows…and you don't have to. It's completely your choice.
Dhruv: Oh, well that's…nice…
Shreya: But Shreya just wants to be friends. Is that too much to ask?
He glimpsed at the way her beautiful curls framed her face, making her look very pretty. And the way she clasped her touchably soft hands over her equally soft, folded legs.
Dhruv: (Sighing) No. It's not.
She smiled, a big, bright, lip glossed smile at him. Any guy would feel the urge to kiss her.
Shreya: Great! So we're friends from now on?
Dhruv: (Nodding, a little lost) Yup…
Shreya: Good. So, you want to tell Shreya what's up with Aryan?
—— ——— ———— ——— ——— ——— ——— ———— ———
Aryan: Yeah. So I'll see you tomorrow babes.
The girl who was clutching at his shirt eyed him suspiciously. Although, the smile on her face was hard to miss.
Girl: For sure?
Aryan: You can count on it.
Nodding contentedly, she walked away. Aryan flashed his famous grin, feeling more like himself than he had all day. He stroked his guitar case as he made his way to Smita's classroom. A part of him was happy to escape going home for a few hours. The other part was not sure about whether he wanted to handle the freaky artist chick.
He stopped five metres before Smita's classroom door, shocked at the sight in front of him. Tammy, was chewing gum as usual, peering at a small book, with earphones plugged into her ear!
Aryan: I thought you hated music.
She glanced up at him, moving her tongue around her mouth, probably because of the gum.
Tammy: I'm not listening to music.
Aryan: (Rolling his eyes) I'm not stupid. Of course you are.
Tammy: No I'm not. And you are stupid.
Aryan: I can see the earphones.
Heaving in a deep breath, Tammy pulled the earphones out of her bag.
They were not plugged in.
——— ——— ————— ——— ——— ———————— —————
Shreya: It was so much fun today!
Dhruv chuckled, creating creases around his eyes. Shreya religiously ignored them, as well as the urge to plant one on him at this instant.
Dhruv: Yeah! Though I'm sure Mr. Batra thinks completely differently.
Shreya: Yeah well…it's allowed once in a blue moon.
Smiling Dhruv picked up his bag pack.
Dhruv: Listen, I really had fun today.
Shreya: Shreya told you na, Shreya did too!
Dhruv: Being friends was the best thing you suggested.
Shreya beamed at him, and a few thoughts screamed in Dhruv's head. He'd become quite familiar with them through the course of the day.
A black limosine honked loudly from outside, and Shreya picked up her bag as well, looking wistfully at Dhruv.
Shreya: Bye. See you tomorrow.
Dhruv: Yeah…see you.
He extended his arm, making her eyebrow cock up high. What he really wanted to do was hug her, but he knew that would put him in a very awkward position.
Shreya: Hey! That's not what friends do!
He didn't know when it happened, but when it did, he reacted almost immediately to it. He felt her soft hands wrap themselves cozily around his neck and closed his eyes. His hands automatically wrapped themselves, ever so gently around her thin waist. It was a brief hug, but very pleasurable for both parties.
He grinned down at her, as she withdrew, her face a little dazed.
"Just from a hug." She thought, as she warmly returned his smile.
He watched her back moving further and further away from him, the silly, soppy smile still planted on his face.
"So no one told you life was gonna be this way…"
Many students glanced at him, shaking their heads bemusedly at his chosen ringtone. Sighing, he flipped open the phone, ignoring the caller name.
Dhruv: (A little irritated) Hello?
…?: Is Aryan coming home beta?
Dhruv: (Sighing) What do you think ma?
Puja: (Dhruv's mom) Well, I guess it's better if he doesn't.
Dhruv: Yeah. He's going to stay at school for a couple of hours.
Puja: (Surprised) Really?!
Dhruv: (Chuckling) I was shocked as well…but yeah…
Puja: Well…that's good, I suppose.
Dhruv: (Frowning) You ok, ma?
Puja: Yeah, I'm fine.
Dhruv: What's wrong?
Puja: (Sighing)Nothing beta. I have to go, the car will be there soon.
Dhruv: Ok. I'll see you soon.
As she hung up the phone, Dhruv wondered what could possibly be wrong with his mother. He knew he would never be able to spit it out. Aryan was usually the one who was able to do that, Dhruv provided the shoulder. Sighing, he quickly texted Aryan, hoping his brother would once again, be able to save the day.
——— ————— ———————— ————— —————— ———
Tammy: So, what's the problem?
Aryan looked up from his copy of Piano Pieces for Beginners, his eyebrow raised up high. Surprisingly, he was taking his job as a music tutor very seriously. After all, music was the only thing he was so passionate about.
Aryan: I don't have a problem.
Tammy: (Rolling her eyes) Please! You totally have a problem! Now spit.
Aryan: (Sighing) Even if I do, it's none of your business.
Tammy: Look, I told you, arguing with you makes my day complete. Well…you and a bunch of other people.
The two teenagers glanced down at Aryan's phone. Thanking whoever had texted him for perfect timing, Aryan grabbed at it. Something's wrong wid ma. Pls fix it. –Dhruv
Aryan muttered under his breath, a frown forming on his face. He rapidly texted his brother back, and turned to face problem number one. He'd quickly decided that he would deal with his mom later.
Aryan: Listen, I really don't…why are you staring at me like that?
Tammy: Is it your mom who's the reason for the cloud of utter doom hanging on your generally happy and annoyingly cocky personality?
Aryan silently debated whether to bite back or just answer her question. He found it simpler to answer her question.
Aryan: No. It's not.
Tammy: It's your dad, right?
The look of shock on his face answered three or four questions for Tammy at once.
Tammy: Ok..so that's clear. What did he do?
Aryan: How'd you know?
Tammy: I asked you first.
Aryan: My life you're asking questions about.
Tammy: (Shrugging) I just did…
Aryan: Okay. Well, then, my dad just did something.
Tammy sighed in frustration. The boy could so easily get on her nerves. He grinned, satisfied to see her annoyed at his expense. He liked seeing her annoyed, it always made her look more attractive.
He bit his lip, as if he had said the thought aloud. Even thinking it was tabooed. He couldn't feel attracted towards her, she was just…somad!
Tammy: Dhruv told me about what happened today…so…
Aryan: (Muttering) Us Dhruv ko toh main-
Tammy: Don't worry…your secret is safe with me.
Aryan: Whatever. Can we get back to work.
Tammy: Not before you answer my question.
Aryan sighed, glancing at her gorgeous jade eyes. There was so much sincerity in it…plus, he didn't know a way to shut the wacko up.
Aryan: (Sighing) Ok. He won't let me go to music camp.
She giggled, surprising Aryan…in a pleasant way. They were soft, her giggles. Soft, feminine and somehow different. He really liked to hear her giggle.
Tammy: That's it?
He frowned, suddenly realizing who he was so stupidly smiling at.
Aryan: What do you mean?
Tammy: I mean, you can go next year. Geez! Don't act like a spoilt brat!
Aryan: Forget it. You won't get it.
He turned back to his book, his lips pursed, and one hand curled up in a fist.
Tammy: Fine. Fine. Don't pout.
Aryan: (Defiantly) I'm not pouting!
Tammy: (Laughing) Of course you are!
He glared at her, making her feel unusually uncomfortable.
Tammy: Don't look at me liked that.
Aryan: (Not lowering his gaze) You just don't seem to understand.
Tammy: Then explain it to me.
Aryan: He broke his promise. He promised me I'd get to go this year, if I got good grades in Science.
Tammy: (Surprised) And you did?!
Aryan: (Scowling) Believe it or not, yes.
Tammy propped herself on the base of the grand piano. Aryan winced. He hated to see any instrument disrespected, or sat on. He especially hated the sat on part.
Tammy: So…he broke a promise, no need to get all melodramatic about it.
Aryan: It's not that simple. You see…he wants me to lend a hand in his business.
Unconsciously, he propped himself on the piano as well, resting his hand on the top part, where the mechanisms were.
Tammy: So…tell him that you don't want to.
Aryan: If only life were that simple. I think he only wanted children so that we could help his business.
Tammy giggled again, and this time, Aryan noticed her face more carefully. Her drop dead gorgeous eyes lighted up, and her skin glowed brilliantly. Her lip balmed lips shone in the light, her pearly white teeth standing out due to her dusky complexion. He had this urge to kiss her…really bad. He probably would have, if the thought of getting kicked in…well…you know what wasn't looming in his head.
Tammy: So, you're chickening out?
Aryan: No. I'm chosing to not waste my time. He ignores me more than he ignores mom. I'm sure he doesn't love her, and completely sure he hates me.
Tammy: No he doesn't! He's your dad!
He laughed bitterly, shaking his head at her naivety.
Aryan: He hates music because I like it. He hates processed food because I like it. He hates anything I like, and forbids me from doing it…therefore…he hates me.
Tammy bit at her thumb thoughtfully. He stared at her, a little amused by her unladylike action.
Tammy: So…this is more of an ego tussle…
Aryan: Well…(thinking) yeah….partly, but it's also the fact that he won't understand that I can make my choices too.
Tammy nodded her head, jumping off the piano.
Tammy: I get your point, but I also think he's not that big of a villain as you think he is.
He grinned at her, and she suddenly understood why all girls went weak at the sight of his famous grin. Of course, she didn't go weak kneed, but she understood the reason for several girls.
Aryan: Listen…I really appreciate you trying to help me. It's really, very nice.
She beamed at him, showing those pearly whites again. He felt something crawl under his skin. It wasn't a nasty something, just a…different something. He liked it…almost as much as he liked her smile, which he had been gazing at for quite some time.
Tammy: (Confused) What?
He blinked, suddenly realizing that he had been staring. He quickly looked away, and nervously tugged at his shirt.
"Is that a family habit?" Thought Tammy, intrigued at his poor way of hiding his nervousness. She had also seen Dhruv do it when the teacher asked him a question he didn't know the answer of.
Aryan: You have a nice smile.
She stepped back, shocked at the sudden outburst.
Tammy: Um…thanks…you have a nice…guitar…
He shuffled his feet, unsure of what to say.
Aryan: I…I have to call someone.
Tammy: Yeah…me too.
They both grabbed their cell phones, heading for separate corners of the room.
——— ——— ——— ——— ———— ——— ——— —— ——
Karan: (On the phone with Tammy) What do you want?
She gulped from the other side of the line. Karan shook his head, annoyed at his neice's cunning way to talk to him.
Tammy: I…I just wanted to talk.
Karan: We can do that at home.
Tammy: No! No we can't. I know you'll ignore me.
Karan sighed loudly. Ignoring his girls had been much harder than he had thought. But he was a strong person.
Tammy: You won't even look at us. We really don't deserve that mamu.
She was right. He didn't look at them. He wasn't that strong. If he had even glanced at their sad little eyes once, he would have broken down. Experience had taught him to not stare them in the eye when he was angry with them.
Karan: (Sighing) Fine, talk.
Tammy glanced at Aryan, just to check that he wasn't listening. He seemed busy with his own conversation, as he ran a hand through his hair.
Tammy: I'm…I'm really sorry.
Karan didn't reply. He just stood in the middle of his makeup room, clutching his phone as if it was his kidney. He could hear Tammy's loud, nervous breath across the line, but wasn't aware of anything else.
"Did she just say sorry?!"
Tammy: (Concerned) Mamu…?
Karan cleared his throat, hoping his voice wouldn't betray his happiness.
Karan: Well…what you did was unforgivable-
Tammy: I know! I know! I really shouldn't have done that. And I realize it now, and I also realize that you are the most amazing mamu I could ever have. Please, please forgive me. I can't stand not talking to you. I'm so, so-
Karan: (Smiling) Tammy! Take a breath sweetheart!
She could almost feel his smile, which in turn, made her beam radiantly.
Tammy: So..am I forgiven?
Karan: Yes, of course you are! You have no idea how hard it was to not talk to you.
Tammy: Thanks mamu! And again, I'm so sorry, I promise I won't-
Karan: (Laughing) Okay. Okay. I got to go. See you at home.
Tammy: (Smiling) Yeah…and mamu…
Tammy: I love you so much!
Smiling, she hung up the phone, dumping it in her bag. Things were going back to normal.
——— ——— —— —— ——— —— ——— ——— ———
Aryan: (Irritated) Mom! Mom! I'm fine! Now what's wrong with you?
While Tammy was quietly talking in the opposite corner of the room, an annoyed Aryan was whispering loudly to his mother.
Puja: (Sighing loudly) I'm fine beta.
Aryan: (Rolling his eyes) Please mom! Don't act super filmy.
Puja: I'm not! I'm completely fine!
Aryan ran a hand through his hair, sighing as his mom droned on about how he should be more respectful to his father.
Aryan: Yeah, yeah…bla bla bla. Tell me your problem.
Puja sighed, amazed at her son's will to persevere.
Puja: I have no problem beta. What time should I send the car?
Aryan: (Annoyed) Fine! Don't tell me! But I'm coming home soon, and I'll spit it out of you.
There was a momentary silence on the other line, as Puja contemplated whether to tell her son or not. She decided it was better to have only one angry man in the house (her husband) and spilt it all.
Puja: Fine, fine you win.
Aryan: (Grinning) As expected.
Puja: Your father's going away on our anniversary.
Puja: (Sighing) Yes. It's been twenty years, and we haven't celebrated one anniversary together.
Aryan: He's such a bas-
Puja: (Sternly) Don't you dare say anything against your father.
Aryan: You are so sati savitri.
There was another silence, longer this time. Aryan glanced at Tammy, who was shredding away her thumb, a frown etched on her forehead.
"Is that a habit?"
Puja: Aryan? Aryan? ARYAN!
He blinked, nearly dropping his cellphone.
"Second time today." He thought, as he tore his eyes away from Tammy, with great difficulty.
Aryan: What mom?
Puja: You're with a girl, aren't you?
Aryan: No…no I'm not.
Puja: (Sighing) I suppose I'll talk to you later.
Aryan: No, mom-
Puja: No. It's okay. You go enjoy yourself. You're young and not tied down. Explore life and-
Aryan: (Irritated) MOM! She's also making a phone call.
Aryan: Anyway mom, don't worry, you don't need your husband to celebrate. You have me and Dhruv.
Puja: (Chuckling) You're right. I have you two. I need to go. Should I send the car in half an hour?
Aryan: Yes. And mom?
Aryan: I love you a lot.
Smiling, Puja Bedi hung down the phone receiver. Straightening her sari, she headed towards the kitchen, ready to instruct the cook for dinner. After all, she was a mother, and didn't have time to worry about silly things like her anniversary.
—— —— ——— ——— ——— —— ———Ok. So here it is. Finally done. Hope you guys like it...
Do you guys think its too fast paced, because I dont want it to move at snails speed, plus, I need to finish a few things before the story moves on the good part…
Do commet and tell me what you thought