Joined: 05 May 2010
Kiya bit her lip as she braced herself for the explosion that was marching up the corridor right then. She knocked her ankles on the wooden bench, trying to concentrate on the rhythm and shut out the 'Kiya Gujral!' being shouted from right across the campus. Rhythm, music, this was what she needed to concentrate on. Not the oh-so-embarassing sight of your mother scolding you in front of all your classmates. She could see a group of girls nodding their heads in pity in a corner. Idiots, she thought bitterly, you'll just love seeing the great Kiya Gujral going down, don't you?
Just a few hours back, her life had been good enough. She'd volunteered to identify those stupid pranksters who'd kidnapped that Bozo for Professor Banga. Banga could be really irritating, but he was the one person in the school who thought that she had potential and could even be Head Girl. He was also the easiest one to suck up to. She'd thought that by doing Banga a favor she would redeem herself in her mother's eyes. But that stupid Anirudh Jaitley had just ruined it all by claiming she was the one who had orchestrated the entire plan. All because she had spilled her drink on him.
'I told you !,' her mother fired, her hands going up in the air.'I told you to get your act straight! But you just love putting your elder sister in trouble don't you! Thanks to you, Aanya had to cancel her concert, because she was so concerned! But you-you just don't care about your sister!'
Kiya didn't even bother offering an explanation. She was tired. She'd been waiting an hour for her mother to return from the concert. Everybody else's parents had already come and taken them away, or had sent chauffeurs instead. KD was the only person who was still there after the fiasco.
'Kiya, this is it! I'm changing your school! I think it's better actually if you are homeschooled, just like Aanya.' Kiya nearly puked. Like she was going to complete her 12th with the help of Aanya's fugly private tutors!
The entire time her mother had been berating her, Kiya's attention had been wandering to KD, who was looking at both of them out of the corner of his eye. He had a smirk on his face, like it was the funniest scene in the world. Just wait till that chawl scum father of yours come. I'm pretty sure he'll beat the crap out of you, she thought vindictively.
She wasn't disappointed. Within minutes of Mrs. Gujral's arrival, a police jeep drew up in front of the school and the grumpiest man she'd ever seen in her life marched down the corridor and struck across KD's face. Inspite of herself, Kiya winced. Her mom could be a real pushover, but she never hit her.
'See?' Mrs. Gujral said dramatically. 'This is what those lower-middle class people do to discipline their kids! I've never even raised my voice to you and Aanya!' Kiya nodded her head, immediately feeling guilty. Of course. She could be somebody like Keshav Desai, whose father had probably never given him a smile, let alone the latest cell phone. Her mother cared so much for her, and yet she always fell short. If only she could be like Aanya, who was the perfect daughter.
Mrs. Gujral sighed. 'Well, it's no use now. Let's go home. We'll have a talk with Aanya's publicist and see how we can handle this mess. You'd better do everything the PR guy tells you, understand?' Kiya nodded, feeling relieved. She'd been giving press statements since she was practically born. The reporters loved her. She was sure she could handle this mess.
As they walked by a furious Inspector Desai, Kiya felt the slightest twinge of pity for KD. And yet…If he hadn't made that stupid plan, Mom wouldn't be so angry with me right now. She suddenly felt like crying. Why was it that she never knew what she felt for him? Why did she need to feel anything for him anyway?
Do you think about me? She thought looking at him. Do you ever think that maybe the girl in front of you is not as perfect as she seems? Maybe she has certain responsibilities that would be much easier to handle if you and your gang of friends didn't keep ruining things? But hey, Kiya Gujral is just a spoilt brat with no problems right?
As if on cue, KD looked up and narrowed his eyes at Kiya. She scowled. Of course, he still thought her problems were insignificant. I hate you Stoneface. You're just proof that nobody's ever going to get me, least of all you.
'You're an inspector's son!' Mr. Desai thundered. KD continued staring at the tiles, noting the intricate pattern they made. His brain had always had a fascination for analyzing things, for questioning what was wrong and right, for noticing the designs of the universe. It was the reason why when his peers in the chawl were satisified with playing gully cricket, he had borrowed books from a second-hand library and studied enough to get a scholarship to Royal Academy.
But his father had never liked the fact that KD studied among the elite of the city. And KD knew why. I don't want people to think of you as a thief simply because you come from a poor family. I don't want you to wish for the luxuries of the rich. You an inspector's son, an honest inspector's son. I could have greased my palms and become a commissioner like all my colleagues. But I stuck to what was right, and I want you to do the same.
KD wanted to scream. Right? There was nothing right about thinking that he was good enough where he was. What was life if you just accepted your destiny and sat on your haunches? If you didn't challenge what other people thought you could do? Einstien, Edison, Graham Bell-these were all people who had defied the norms of society and persevered, and that what who KD wanted to be-a somebody.
Not like Kiya Gujral, he thought viciously. She signified everything that was wrong with the world. She was another loser who just did whatever her parents asked her to and squashed all dreams of her own.If KD would have been in her place, he would have done something with all those riches instead of just playing 'Miss-Understood'. But his father would have been thrilled to have a child like her. He stared at her as she received a scolding from her mother, and suddenly felt sorry. My father may be another Banga, but at least he's never forced me to become some kind of superstar.
'Kiya, this is it! I'm changing your school! I think it's better actually if you are homeschooled, just like Aanya!'
KD's mouth dried up with panic as he heard those words. Okay, so Chiclet was an eyesore, but he'd never wanted her to leave. But then, why not? Competition would be reduced, and Royal Academy would be rid of a tattletale.
Inspector Desai had also tried to pull KD out of the school several times, but somehow Princi had always intervened. Now that he was suspended, he would have no choice but to sit at home and study. Not that he minded studying, but two months of additional income from his classmates was down the drain. Nobody was going to come to a chawl to get favors done. He would just have to take up a job at the tea stall. He looked down at the branded sneakers he'd splurged on a week ago and suddenly felt wasteful. He could have used that money to buy the video game he'd promised Chotu.
'Come home now!' Mr. Desai said angrily. 'No point loitering around here.' KD simply shrugged, his face stoic. He had remained quiet throughout the whole ordeal. His left cheek stung, and to his horror, there were tears welling in his eyes as the fact that his father had slapped him finally sunk into his heart.
As he stepped out, somebody thrust a handkerchief into his hand.
'That must have hurt,' Kiya said nonchalantly.
'Thanks, but I'm not crying.'
'Whatever,' Kiya shrugged. A car honked in the distance and she walked down to where her mother was waiting while KD continued trotting behind his father, unaware that the handkerchief was still tightly clutched in his hand.
If you know, handkerchief seems to be a popular motif with Sunshine Productions...(Na Bole Tum-Mohan/Megha) so I thought about how it could be used with KD/Kiya
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