Joined: 11 June 2008
Once again Geet was left behind shocked by his words. They had been a reality check for her. And she was unable to swallow them...
Nik's words kept echoing in her head. His words like 'selfish', 'Immature'' ,'Powerful', 'peer pressure', kept coming into her mind! She couldn't figure out where his anger was stemming from.
What had she done that made the show possible? It was ridiculous.
How could the show's success be dependent on her? Impossible!!
Nik didn't know what he was talking about. She barely hung out with enough people. How could she cause peer pressure?? Just because she didn't show up for practice he was accusing her of anything and everything. This line of thought was annoying her, no end. His accusations weren't making any sense with her.
She walked to her jeep in the same line of thought. Nobody had ever accused her of anything, much less being immature and selfish. Sure she was popular in college, but people followed Sid more because of his Casanova image. And Mayank had his share of admirers...but she ' no one aped her...did they? She couldn't remember as such. Nik was new in college. How could he make such value judgements in such a short time. It was all rubbish. She didn't believe it a bit.
Sid was already in the jeep, listening to music. He seemed lost in thought , however.
She started the jeep and sped home. Both were lost in their own thoughts...Sid , on his conversation with Raina, and Geet , mulling over Nik's outburst.
She had decided to ignore his accusations, but they kept coming back to her. She couldn't get rid of the idea that she was selfish or immature. They reached Sid's home and she stopped the jeep. Sid got off.
''Chal kal 9am, right?''
''ok...err, Sid...tujhe lagta hain ki show hamaare wajah se hit hoga?''
''Obviously...hum hain toh hit hona he hain,'' he said
''Sid, main seriously bol rahi hoon.''
''Toh main bhi serious hoon naa...we're the rockstars ,man.'' He replied laughingly.
She gave up. Sid would always be Sid...
''Chal see you tomo,'' she said
THE NEXT DAY.
Raina walked to the computer lab. Sid had messaged her to meet him there. When she entered the room was dark and the LCD projector was turned on. Sid was sitting on the table. When he saw her he smiled and beckoned her.
''Why did you call me here?''
He stood up and came close to her.''Kal ke chat ke baad, mujhe laga that you were in need of some encouragement...so I pataoed the professor to let me borrow the room for a while.''
''To practice here?''
''Abhi LCD projector on hain toh kuch dekhenge naa.''
''Come sit.'' He made her sit and sat next to her.
He moved his laptop and turned on a video.
Raina watched in a daze..she took in all the movements. The video was of two crippled dancers who were doing a contemporary routine. However what hit her the most was that the girl was missing an arm and the boy a leg. Still, it didn't seem to affect them. Not once did she see fear or hesitation. She had tears in her eyes by the time the video was over.
She turned to face Sid ,who looked horrified at her tears.
''Oye tu ro rahi hain , phir se? ''
''I'm not upset, you idiot. I'm touched. And really really ashamed. My excuses seem so shallow.'' She wiped her tears, and turned to face him. She looked in his eyes and smiled.
''Thank you Sid. This was the best surprise, ever. More like a reality check. But I needed it. It was something a friend would do.''
He looked affronted, '' I thought we were friends''
She smiled ,'then I can definitely give a friend a hug.' She leaned forward and put her arms around him. He smiled and hugged her back.
Geet reached practice early. She started her warm up and waited for Nik. His comments had given her little sleep. Still, she was determined to reach before him. She had finished warming up by the time he reached. He just looked at her in acknowledgement. She practised her steps while he warmed up. They didn't utter a single word while they practised. Almost half of the routine was done and there was still a month to go for the show.
Once they had finished practice, they quietly packed up. She went and changed in the girls' locker and went looking for Mayank. She found him on the pavilion, holding an impromptu meeting with a few other juniors. He was busy so she waited idly on the step. Mayank noticed her boredom and asked her to help him. She checked all the tasks that were to be done. The juniors came one by one and checked their lists with hers. It was dusty and she was sweating. She constantly wiped her brow and face. Out of nowhere a hand appeared and offered her a wet wipe. She turned to see the smiling face of a junior.
''I know, even I can't bear it.''
''Do I know you?'', Geet asked politely.
''Err, I don't know. Hi, I'm Nishi'', she gushed and extended her hand.
Geet..smiled and extended hers, '' Hi, I'm G---''
''Geet !! I know. Who doesn't know you. You're like the college rockstar. Well, errm everyone's in awe of you , I guess. '', gushed Nisha happily.
Geet turned in her seat fully and took a look at the girl. She was dressed in cargoes and a vest with sport shoes. Her hair too seemed permed and she had worn only one earring on her ear.
On the whole her outfit resembled Geet's. Her image hit Geet in the gut. If one had seen the girl from behind, they would've thought it was Geet.
She looked around. She couldn't remember the annual programme ever having so much of excitement ...as far as she could remember, the show was always something the rest of the students skipped. She knew she did. Sid, Mayank and she mostly had a night out or they went camping. How was it that this year there was such an uproar and fuss about it?
The junior were hovering around Mayank. They eagerly took his orders and completed the work in time. She looked around more...the outfits resembled Sid's dressing style. She saw shoes the same style that Mayank wore. Her style of cargoes looked common too.
Nishi was saying something. She turned her attention to her.
''Did you come early today? I noticed your Jeep is parked in the 1st spot.''
Geet didn't know how to reply. . Nik's words rushed to her mind.
She was dazed and shaken. Had she been living in her own ivory tower all this while to never have noticed all of this? She couldn't remember being that popular. She sat for an hour just chewing over the events of the day.
Nik's words came back to her! .
''It is a big deal. The success of the show depends on you. The mere fact that you're performing ensure a packed hall. Have you any idea how much power you have? People aspire to be you, they follow you...YOU create peer pressure unknowingly. But your completely irresponsible about it. YOU have a gift like none others...but you choose not to use it..not to share it. I find that extremely selfish and immature. And the more I think about it, the angrier I get. I don't respect such people.''
Only one question haunted her ...Could he be right?
Gaurav Khurana: Maan, dignity and honour is something you shouldn't let go of. It's what defines us, Khuranas.
Daadi: Maan,don't let you pride blind you. Humility is what makes a man. How a man treats a person lower in status than him, shows what he is made of.
Heya Fellas - so ...what do you think about it? boring update? or too much? kuch toh bolo na.
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sunitasth1, -Jyo-, -Veritaserum-, mrk-1, lovelycutietedy, drdee142, Shalve, chsweety22, --Ratna--, Downhill,
Joined: 29 June 2010
Joined: 11 June 2008
Gaurav Khurana. Life hadn't come easily for him. When his father had set up Khurana constructions, it had been a small firm. Tejpal Khurana had been hardworking, but his early death had pushed the burden on Savitri Khurana's shoulder's. Since Gaurav was still young, she had managed to keep the business afloat till he was able enough to handle it. Gaurav had then brought the business back to life and given it a new lease of life. True he did face a lot of ups and downs, but he did revive it. His mother gave him handy advice and a helping hand. Success led to happiness in the form of his wife and children, but tragedy struck when his wife died giving birth to Vicky.
Life however went on. His business and his children were what drove him. His favourite was Annie. Her docile nature and quick wit reminded him of his late wife. Maan had taken after him in his temper, while Vicky had taken after him for his passion. He knew that once Vicky had decided on being a dancer, nothing would sway him. Maan, despite being a good dancer, had the mind of a businessman. He just needed to be honed.
At the moment Gaurav needed his son's opinion. He knew what decision he needed to make, but he still wanted to hear Maan's opinion. He called him now, from the party he was attending to meet him at KC.
Maan came immediately.
''What's going on Dad?'' He asked calmly.
''Maan, the Malhotras want to change the clauses of the deal papers. I want you to have look at them first.
Maan sat down, and went through the papers.
''Dad''. He said once he'd finished. ''These clauses will cause a lot of labour problems, and it's going to cause losses for us.''
Khurana Sr. smiled looked proudly at his son.
''I was hoping that you would notice it. A keen eye is needed in this business world. Anybody can take you for a ride. You have to be vigilant at all times. They don't call it cut-throat business for nothing.''
Maan listened carefully and weighed his father's words. This was not his first piece of advice. His dad kept advising him from time to time and Maan stored these bits of knowledge. He knew that they would come in handy.
''Still Dad, they are the Malhotras. Will we get such a big deal again? Our firm is quite small as compared to theirs. We can do as they say for a bit right? It's just project.'', asked Maan with uncertainty.
''No, Maan,'' he replied firmly.
''But Dad, Malhotras. It's a big deal here.''
''I know, son, but it's at the cost of our dignity and value as a firm.''
''Dad, with such a big firm, isn't it more important to keep them happy?''
''Maan, it's pittance that we're getting for our services. I am not against the deal, but the newer clauses don't sit well with me.
''Dad don't make this an ego issue, please.
'' Maan, dignity and honour is something you shouldn't let go of. It's what defines us, Khuranas. If we do the deal, then it'll be according to the original clauses. It's not about my ego, but about my dignity as an entrepreneur and boss. None of my staff will do for anything less'.
Maan looked up at his father and realized what his father was saying. It was a piece of advice he remembered for the rest of his life. It added something to Maan..made him a little something more.
The phone rang and Gaurav answered it. He spoke to the receptionist and asked her to send in the visitor.
A middle aged balding man entered the room. He was dressed well and had a superior air about him.
Mr Khurana rose and greeted the gentleman.
''Hello, Mr.Patel, how are you?''
''Hello, hello Gaurav. Hello, beta,'' he said turning to Maan.
''Hello, Sir'', Maan replied with a small smile.
His entry was not something he was happy about. Mr. Patel was a few years senior to his father. He was in the same field as the Khuranas were and often visited them. Maan didn't like his interference in their business and his father's trust in him. Mr. Patel was degrading in his attitude towards Gaurav and Khurana constructions , but Gaurav seemed to trust his advice and opinions. However, his condescension towards the Khurana's kept Maan's guard up with him.
Gaurav was explaining the clauses of his deal with the Malhotras to Mr. Patel. Maan disapproved, but there was little he could do about it.
Mr. Patel went through the papers. He seemed to be going through some kind of thought. Finally he kept them on the table and looked at Gaurav.
''The new clauses seem ok. Go ahead.''
Maan interjected. ''But, Mr. Patel, the clauses will cause us labour problems.''
''Maan is right, Patel saab''
Mr. Patel looked a little annoyed.
He weighed his words and spoke to Gaurav. ''Gaurav, dekho, mujhe iss business main 15 saal ho gaye hain. Kabhi kabhi you have to make such sacrifices.
Even though he was making the same statements that Maan himself had made, Maan had now bought his father's argument. He therefore did not believe what Mr. Patel said. His guard already being up, he came up with counter arguments to interject in the conversation.
Gaurav seemed to believe what Mr. Patel was saying. This was getting Maan irritable, but every time he tried to interpose, MR. Patel cut him off and made him feel like a child.
Finally after a lot of time, Mr.Patel got up to leave. Gaurav seemed convinced by what Mr. Patel was saying and he had a stressed look on his face.
''Think about what I said, Gaurav,'' Said Mr. Patel before he left.
After his departure Gaurav looked pensive, like he was considering Mr. Patel's advice. Seeing this Maan became agitated and wondered if he father had been brainwashed.
''Dad, please tell me your not re-thinking your advice to me!'', he said in exasperation.
''Son, I can't well ignore what Mr. Patel said. ''He does have a lot of experience''
''Dad, I know he's a good friend of yours, but I just don't trust him. My instinct tells me he's up to no good.''
''Maan, how can you say that. When I was new in the business he helped me out so much. I owe that man for the support he gave me''
''Oh, come on Dad, you know it as well as I do...the advice he gave you at that time was beneficial for him more than it was for you.''
''Maan, I can't understand your dislike for him. He's always helpful. Don't you trust my trust?''
''I trust YOU dad, not him. And so I have to say that the 1st decision you made was right. We cannot afford to let go of profits and have labour trouble in the same go. Please stick to your original decision.''
''Give me time to think about it Maan,'' Said Gaurav, quietly. He didn't know what to do...both the options seemed confusing in retrospect.
He decided to think about it after going home and discussing it with his mother.
Savitri Devi: Gaurav, kyat um itne losses paana chahte ho?
Gaurav: Nahi maa, par itni badi deal apne haath se jaane bhi nahi de sakta, aur mujhe jhukna bhi nahi hain.
Maan was standing in the background listening to the elders speak.
Savitri Devi asked for his opinion.
''Daadimaa, I don't think Dad ne yeh deal karni chahiye. Maine bhi yahi kaha ki iss deal se humaara hi nuksaan hain, but Daadi it is a big offer. It'll get us recognition.Still, despite all of that, I say we do the deal on our previous terms and dismiss the newer clauses!''
Daadi observed Maan as he spoke. She saw a proud young man who was voicing his opinions based on what he had deducted for himself. She was pleased with what she saw.
Savitri Devi: I think he's right Gaurav...both of you are , but ultimately it's your decision Gaurav. You don't need to do it today. Sleep over it and think. Then decide tomorrow.
Gaurav: Ji maa, I'll do that.
He turned to Maan.
''Come on , son, let's get this discussing, and let Maa rest.''
''Dad, why don't you go ahead, I need to speak to Daadi.''
After his father had left, Maan sat near his Daadi's feet. He didn't speak much. She sensed his mood.
''Something wrong Maan. It's not the business deal is it'', she asked intuitively. Maan was the quietest of her grandsons. He never emoted much, but just kept his feelings to himself. She , however understood him well.
''Anita, Daadi...she's already dating someone in the US...she was never serious about me. ''
''To be honest with you Maan, mujhe woh aapke layak nahi lagi. She wasn't very grounded. It's good you found out about her in time.''
''I know Daadi, but I felt that I shouldn't have actually given her attention in the 1st place. She was a nobody and she is known everywhere now, because of me."
''Maan, don't let your pride blind you. Humility is what makes a man. How a man treats a person lower in status than him, shows what he is made of. Don't think that just because you are Gaurav Khurana's son, that you are some big celebrity. You are still nothing in your own right, and I would hate to have any grandchild of mine with false pride...Treat ever person you meet as an individual. They might not all be good people with your sense of values, but that's how you'll learn to judge people and the keep your friends.''
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sunitasth1, -Jyo-, drdee142, -Veritaserum-, Shalve, --Ratna--,
Joined: 11 June 2008
Chapter 10 - A slice of Humility
Geet's world had come crashing down around her ears. She couldn't believe her eyes not could she believe all the information that she had put together.
All these years had she been so lost to the proceedings of the world around her, that she didn't see how important a role she had come to play? Or was she responsible for influencing people unknowingly. She was feeling ashamed of herself and really embarrassed about how she had treated Nik. He was right. He had always been right!!
A new kind of respect grew for him in her heart. She looked up to him for being right...for seeing her for what she was and not being afraid to tell her. She wanted to make a change and prove she was worth something...not some high society spoilt brat. She wanted to prove herself to him, and make him see that she wasn't all that bad.
A small voice in the corner of her head troubled her though. Why was she doing so much to prove herself to Nik? She'd never done that before. Why now? Why him?
She dispelled these thoughts as unimportant and tried to figure out how to make amends. She had messed up big and she wanted to make it better soon.
The following day Geet was 1st in college. She had warmed up in time and had her steps ready to the T.
Nik came and he was surprised to see her in the middle of dancing...he didn't disturb her, but just watched. She had become even better, if that was possible. Her hand movements were clean and all her lines were sharp and beautiful. For a moment Nik wondered if she should do the routine on her own...if he'd spoil it by his presence...but a desire came over him. - a craving to perform with her, a longing to be with her when she created magic...Oh it would be magic!...He knew he wouldn't be noticed much; that Geet would steal all the spotlight,...but the mere thought of basking in that moment of her crowning glory, made him greedy. He didn't know why, but Geet attracted him, made him want to be with her.
He stared at her dance...the serious concentration on her face, the sparkle in her eye, the lift of her hair as she twirled and did a handstand. He warmed up eagerly to join her...he was about to smile and talk to her when their previous conversation rushed to him.
It stopped him in his tracks and he looked at her again. Why did her indifference towards dancing annoy him so much? Why did it hurt him when she paid no attention to her God given talent.He knew she enjoyed dancing. Her body language was proof enough! He was sure that she was one of those creations whose creation was given a lot of thought...that a divine power had blessed the mere thought of her existence - and she was completely oblivious of that fact!
He watched her more...She hadn't noticed him as yet. He watched more - shamelessly. Her expression was strained as she did a complicated bit of the routine. She did the steps again and again, but left out those that she had to do with him. There was a determination in her face that he hadn't seen earlier, still...Nik was eager to see something more. What was it? He couldn't understand. He watched her practice again and again...he shut his eyes to imagine how he felt while doing the steps. Even as he imagined the steps in his mind, he felt a surge of happiness. The steps he saw in his mind, made him think of more steps relating to them. He could see the both of them performing to several potential routines...all diverse to each other.
He opened his eyes to look at her again...she still had that closed, strained look on her face...and for the first time he saw - pain!! He had seen it on her face many times, but he had never realized it.
Realization hit Nik!! Geet; even though she was an exceptional dancer, didn't dance with all her heart and soul. Something troubled her. That something was what hampered her performance...he was sure of it.
The urge to find out, rushed through him. It went though him like a bolt of lightning. But at the very next moment he remembered what had transpired in their last encounter. How could he talk to her??. He was upset with her, but now, he was curious too ' and he had no clue how to approach her to get answers.
Nik, took a deep breath and walked towards her. She stopped dancing and looked at him. Was it just him, or did she seem uncomfortable? She seemed quieter than usual. What was going on? He was puzzled, but he didn't say anything.
He turned towards the music system and played the music again. They danced quietly, without speaking. It was near perfect as that knew the steps well...only the lifts and jumps needed practice. Nik, sensed an unquiet in her. It was different from the day before. She was subdued.
He didn't see the pain in her eyes, now...rather a hesitation and tumult.
Geet's mind was indeed in pandemonium. She wanted to apologize, but she was afraid of Nik scorning her. She knew he wanted the show to be the best. He seemed to be like that...the mind who gave his best shot in whatever he did. And she was willing to put in her best...no matter what...forget everything of the past...at least she would try. Her guilt was weighing heavily on her mind.
Seeing her in deep thought, Nik himself was getting confused. She wasn't showing him the cold shoulder neither was she doing anything to show she acknowledged him. He was a little sorry for how he'd spoken to her, but he believed in what he had said.
Geet, slowly made up her mind to speak to him.
''What on earth is wrong with you Geet''. She asked her self. ''It's just a guy you have to apologize to. No big deal...open your mouth and say it. Whether you get forgiveness or not, is not up to you...isn't that What Nani says?''
She turned on her foot and opened her mouth to say something, when Mayank barged in with a sheaf of pages in his hand.
''Dude'', he addressed Nik.'' We've got work man, come on lets go.''
Mayank: Look managing the entire show singlehandedly is not possible, plus Sinha's asked me to get some info from you.
Nik turned to look at Geet and saw that she was fiddling with her phone.
He turned to Mayank and whispered,''Dude, I wanna help, par yaar after days Geet is working hard and I don't want to break the flow of steps.''
Mayank stopped writing whatever he was doing as the words registered in his head.
''Wait a second...Geet?? Working hard??? For dancing??''
''Err yeah...why are you so shocked?''
''Man, Sid has got to see this. He'll be ecstatic!'', Mayank gushed...he picked up his phone and called Sid to the practice room immediately!
Sid rushed in and they both sat in a corner and pretended to work on Mayank's material. They watched discreetly while Nik and Geet worked on a few steps.
Both seemed happy about something, However their presence seemed to be disturbing both Nik and Geet and soon Nik, came to Mayank and asked him to tell him about the work they had to do.
''Yeah, the work...'' Said Mayank, remembering why he had come. ''Nik, we need decorations and we need to find out if the banners and invites have been printed right or not. So if you could go.''
''Right, ok I'll do that. Just give me the address and phone numbers. I'll give you a call from there''.
Geet spoke up suddenly and said she'll accompany Nik.
Nik looked at her in surprise since she hadn't spoken to him all day. The real reason behind this was that Geet wanted to apologize to him, and figured that they'd be alone so she could do it in peace.
''Fine, let's go, '' Nik said.
''Let's take my jeep'',she said a tad haughtily.
Mayank interrupted,'' err. Geet uss area main teri Jeep nahi jaa paayegi. It's too narrow and very crowded. Tu traffic main atki rahegi.''
''Mayank, yaar yeh kaam toh late khatam hoga,naa...how'll I get home. I'll have to come all the way back n them go home...no ways. I'm taking the jeep.''
''Why don't you and Nik, go on his bike. Mayank will wait till Raina and I finish practice and he'll take my car, while I'll drop your jeep off at your house.And Nik will drop you home'', said Sid
The idea appealed to them. They left.
On reaching the business centre and shops, they tried to finish the work as quickly as possible. Get tried to find ways in which she could start the topic to Nik, but neither of them managed to open their mouths. The traffic was heavy and the roads were crowded so she kept shut, waiting for the appropriate time. It was late evening by the time they finished and Geet was tired, hungry. Her not having said anything to Nik, increased her irritation. The two walked in silence towards the parking lot, when a man, pinched Geet's behind slyly and gave a sleazy smile and cheap comment. Before Nik could turn around and do something, Geet had pulled the man by his hand to face her. She pulled him down by his collar and rammed her knee in his face. She turned and kicked him hard in his crotch while he doubled up in pain. Nik, tried grabbing her by the waist, but she pushed his hands off and reached out to hurl abuses at the man and continue punching him wherever possible. Nik, ran and grabbed her by her waist and pulled her off. He carried her off, while she struggled to get his hands off her, still shouting at the man. A small crowd had gathered and the man on seeing this ran off. His face was bleeding and he limped.
Nik didn't let go of her till they reached the bike, where he held on to her till she calmed down. He finally let go of her.
''Geet, relax will you. Woh toh bhaag bhi gaya. Yaar, tub hi naa...you're spitting fire, you know that?''
He looked at her warily. This new angry intense side of Geet had caught him off guard. He hesitantly lifted his hand and patted her shoulder. She was still panting. She turned to look up at him. Her eyes were masked with anger. Suddenly she pushed him backwards.
''Why did you drag me back? Thoda sabak toh sikhaane dete...******, **** ******.''
''Whoa slow down, Geet. Yaar gussa toh mujhe a raha hain yaar. I'm the guy here. Maarna peetna toh mera kaan hain na. Tu mujhe complex de rahi hain.''
Geet turned her face away. He breathing had returned a bit to normal.
He spoke again, ''chal ab hass de...itne joke maar raha hoon.'' This new avatar of Geet had shocked him, but he wanted her to calm down soon. Humour seemed the fastest way.
He poked her lightly.
She turned to face him, he hands on her waist.
''I'm cheezed off. I've been trying to apologize all day to you, but I don't get an effing chance... bloody hell.'' She kicked a bike in frustration. He pulled her away in alarm. Sheseemed to be intent on dropping bombs on him all day. First the dancing, then the fight, and now this.
''Well say something, will you...am not gonna say it again.You were right...about every.damned thing. I'm sorry and I'll dance if that's what you want, and if it gets us a good show.''
''What about what you want? Do you wanna dance?'' thought Nik. But it didn't seem the right time to question her. Not when she was in this mood.
He smiled and said, ''relax babe. It's ok. It's all good...chal lets go. It's been exhausting and tomorrow we've got lots to practice. Plus Sid and Raenz ka dance oversee karna hain.''
He started the bike and waited for her to hop on. When they reached they bumped into Sid and Mayank who were just leaving. Geet hugged them and said she was sleepy and left. Nik hung back to speak to Mayank to update him on the work. Sid came up to him, ''Geet ko kya hua hain? Tune kuch keh diya kya usse?''
''Err this random guy pinched her butt and said something cheap to her, while we were coming bac-''
''Uh-oh'', said both of them in unison. The looked at each other seriously
''Is the guy ok? Police-shulice toh nahi aayi naa'?, Sid asked in a worried tone.
That sounded odd. ''Shouldn't Sid be asking about Geet?, thought Nik.
Nik looked at both of them, surprised. Mayank looked at his expression and explained.
''It's Geet!! we've known her since school. Koi usse chede aur woh usse chod de? Uss khotte ko kitna dhoya usne?''
''Not much, tang pakadke bhaga woh. I'm surprised I got her to calm down.''
''If you did, well done!!'' said Mayank appreciating.
''Anyways, I gotta go. Sid, we've gotta finish that last bit tomorrow without fail.''
He started the bike and sped home.A lot was weighing on his mind and he needed to think.
Precap: Geet's confession...Nik meets Nani!
The following 6 member(s) liked the above post:
-Jyo-, drdee142, -Veritaserum-, Shalve, chsweety22, --Ratna--,
Joined: 11 June 2008
CHAPTER 11 - The Hurts We Hide.
He started the bike and sped home. A lot was weighing on his mind and he needed to think.
Something somewhere didn't add up. What Nik had seen of Geet today was startling. He knew she was a tomboy, a person in her own right, but all that aggression seemed out of place. Nik wanted to know the reason behind her behaviour. Her anger while she beat up the guy didn't seem rational. Or was it just a personality trait? He desperately wanted to question her, but HOW... was the big question?
The next day, having slept over it, he decided to confront either Mayank or Sid.
But it was not meant to be. Geet was early again. He practiced and started a few new steps n lifts. Since it was a faster routine, he kept making her do the steps again and again, but she picked them up well.
He stepped back and asked her to do them alone. He just quietly observed her. Though she hid it, it was there ' the pain, underlying all her movements. He couldn't bear it - It was cutting him, irritating him. He couldn't fathom why she did what she did. The curiosity was blinding him, he couldn't concentrate, neither could he give her inputs about her steps.
Finally, he broke.
''Stop,'' he yelled in frustration.
He held her by the hand and made her stop. She jerked her head to look at him.
His frustration was making him rude and he spoke offensively.
Running his hand through his hair in frustration, he shouted,'' what? Huh? What is your problem? What is wrong? I thought everything was ok , right? Why aren't you performing? Why only the dance. You're not enjoying yourself...What is it, Geet?'', he bellowed.
She looked at him first confused, then hurt and finally stunned.
''What are you talkin ab-...''
''Don't pretend...anyone can see that you're not enjoying yourself. What is it? What is hampering your performance. Either you're in it for good or just-just stay out Geet. What is wrong with you? '' He grabbed her by her shoulders and shook her.
This was probably the wrong move to make. Geet looked at him; pinning her hands down, and shoved them off her, angrily.
''Damn you!!,'' she spat in his face. ''Look, Nik, you can't have everything. You wanted me to dance , you got it. I had warned you earlier ' you didn't listen. It's not my problem, Geddit?''
He toned down his voice, and said sneering, '' This is not your best performance Geet...come on, who are you kidding? Me or is it you? What is it that's stopping you. I can see it in your eyes. Come on tell me''.
Her face contorted angrily and she leaned towards you and whispered fiercely ,''***k **o, Chopra. Why can't you let well enough be alone??''
Saying this she stomped out, banging the door behind her.
Nik, stared after her for a few moments and then ran behind her. She was nowhere to be seen. He cursed himself, and ran calling out her name. How did she disappear so fast? On a hunch he looked into the closest empty classrooms! He found her in the second one he peeped in.
What he saw shocked him. Her head was in her hands and she was crying. Geet Handa, who wore cargo boots, drove a jeep and beat up eve teasers - was crying her heart out! He rushed in to her and held her wrist, appalled that he had caused her to be so upset.
''Hey, hey...'', he said softly. ''Geet, don't cry, yaar. I'm sorry. I shouldn't have spoken to you like that. Look, it's ok, ...you don't need to do anything, ok. ''
She continued to cry. He swore and punched his fist in the wall. ''Damn, it's all my fault,'' he cursed.
Upon hearing his words, she abruptly stopped crying. She looked up, and said quietly, ''it's not your fault...it's mine. ''
Nik turned to face her in surprise. He opened his mouth to say something but he didn't know what to say.
She was looking at the wall, lost in thought. Tears had begun to run afresh from her eyes. She seemed to be remembering something...she frowned thinking about it.
After what seemed like ages, she realized where she was and she spoke.
''Nik, there was a reason why I didn't want to dance with you. It's true, I used to dance...I loved dancing. So much so that it was what began my day and what ended it. But I forgot what was important...and it cost me. It cost me my mom. My best friend...And it's my Fault!!'' Her voice broke on the last word and she ran out of the room crying.
Nik ran after her, only to see her jump into her jeep and speed off. He cursed himself, and ran to his bike and followed her. She was driving fast and very rashly. But she only stopped once she's reached her home.
Nik parked his bike haphazardly behind her jeep and ran after her into the house. It was a big mansion tastefully decorated.
''Geet, please wait!'' he shouted after her.
She didn't stop, but ran up the stairs.
''Geet'', he shouted again.
An elderly woman, dressed in an off-white salwar kameez, came out of a room, and looked questioningly at him.
He felt awkward as he realized he had barged into her house and shouted out to her, without so much as an invitation.
''Namaste, auntyji'', he said politely, to her questioning gaze. ''Main , Geet ka classmate, Ni-''
''Tum , Nikhil ho, hain na?'', she said smilingly. ''Main Geet, ki Nanima hoon. Baitho, beta''
''Ji, Namaste,'' he said again, taking a seat. ''Ji woh Geet, err...''. He wondered what to say. How do you tell a person that you had made their grandchild cry. He felt guilty enough. Luckily she spoke, covering up for his confusion.
''Tumne Geet ko naachne par majboor kiya,'' she said, looking at him.
''Err...that doesn't sound very nice. Wow, guess who's cheesed of with me , too'', he thought. He wondered who told her. His uneasiness, was clear on his face.
''Don't worry beta. Main khush hoon ki Geet phir se naach rahi hain.''
''Er, aunty sorry par mujhe nahi lagta ki woh ab dance karegi.''. He explained all that had occurred in the last few hours.
Nanima, listened quietly, her face growing distressed by the minute.
She thought awhile, sorrow etched on her lined face. She looked at Nik and gave a sad smile. ''Mujhe laga tha aisa kuch hoga. ''
Nik's pent up curiosity got the better of him.
''Auntyji, agar aapko mere poochne ka bura na lage...Geet ne aisa kyun kaha 'ki uski galti hain?''
Nanima seemed to have been expecting his question. She weighed her words.
''Nikhil, tumne woh cheez kar dikhayi jo kisi ne nahi ki, inn 7-8 saalon main. Kya tum jaante ho ki Geet ke mom abh iss duniya main nahi hain?''
Nik vaguely remembered Raina saying something like that.
''Geet jab school main thi, woh badi chulbuli thi. Ek lauti beti thi, aur sabki laadli. Shaitaan thi woh...par woh sirf uski maa, Rano ki baat maanti thi. Their bond was so strong, that only Rano understood her completely.
Dance was Geet's passion as a child. If there was music, Geet danced. And everyone pampered her passion. She danced in school, at home, and Rano indulged her like no one else.
However, we soon realized that it was hampering her academics work. Rano tried to make her understand and make her concentrate on her studies. But this never worked. Geet didn't pay much attention to her even though she loved her more than anybody else.
Geet was 12, when Rano fell very ill. It was pneumonia and she was weak. It was the biggest scare for Geet. However she recovered sooner than we expected. She was still weak, but we told Geet that she was absolutely fine. Geet had been specially selected for her school's centenary celebrations. She was going to perform...probably the biggest event she had faced, in her life. But rano was unwell, and she couldn't see her perform. Rano had never ever missed a single performance of Geet's and Geet was adamant that she watch this one too. Rano was too unwell and Mohinder was stuck with business calls. The night before the show, Geet made a huge fuss about her mother attending the programme. Mohinder was going to be out of town and so it was only Rano and me who were there...to cut it short, beta, Rano drove herself to the show, but she never reached because she met with a fatal accident.
Till this day Geet blames herself for it. For her mother's death and she had never danced since...that is till you forced her to. I know why Rano went for the show, though,'' she continued , crying now. ''Watching Geet dance, was Rano's pride and joy. Seeing her happy, made Rano happy. It was what she lived for. How then would she not go for her show? But Geet didn't understand this...Life was never the same for her. She lives in guilt every day. She comes home late, drunk. She thinks she's living life, on the edge, under the illusion that she's actually living. She acts tough with her big jeep, and manly clothes and her attitude, but she can't fool me.
Mohinder was shattered after Rano's death. Father ' daughter's relationship was worn out too. He's immersed himself in his work. If we need anything; we ask, he'll willingly give, but the bond that he shared with Geet has almost diminished. We don't acknowledge it, but it was Rano who held the family together. I don't know how they will survive after I'm gone. ''. She started crying in earnest.
Nik got up and sat next to her. He held her hand.
'' Auntyji, I'm so sorry. I had absolutely no idea. I didn't know how big a hornet's nest I've stirred up. ''
''No beta, don't apologize. The mere fact that Geet is crying and confessing all this, is very good. She's never cried since her mother's funeral. Go, talk to her. She must be in her room. It's the last one up the stairs.'', she said wiping her tears.
Nik, got up and hesitantly and climbed up. On the landing, he stood for a minute, absorbing all that Nanima had just told him. He had no clue what to say to her.
After a minute, he walked into her room. She was sitting on the floor on the foot of her bed, he head on her knees. He hair covered her face, but he could see that she was still crying, though not as much as before.
He sat next to her. Geet felt his sympathy. It calmed her down. They just sat quietly. Nik didn't say anything to her, he just gave her time to calm down.
Slowly, her crying stopped, and she wiped her eyes. It was still. Nik turned to find Geet looking at him. He smiled and squeezed her hand. She gave a watery smile, back.
''I'm sorry, Geet. I had no idea...'', he trailed off.
She was quiet. There was sadness imprinted on her face, again.
''You know , Geet. My parents too, died in a car crash. ''
Geet turned to look at him, in surprise, but he was looking at his hands. Playing with his watch.
He continued. ''I was much younger than you were, but I grew up quick. When Chachu(uncle) and I heard about their accident, we were rushed to the hospital. Mom had died on the spot, but I think Papa had held on just to see me. He could barely talk, it was just a hoarse whisper. His entire body was covered, because of the wounds. They didn't want me to see it.
I remember moving to sit on the chair next to papa, but he had made me sit on the bed, next to him. His hand had been bandaged and he'd held my hand...I can never forget that look in his eyes. He knew he was going to die. The only thing he said to me was, 'I'll be watching, beta. I don't ever want to see you give up or not follow your dreams. Do you understand?''
I didn't see him die, but it was pretty much soon after.''
He paused. ''I guess what I'm trying to say is that, your mom must have felt the same, right? Wherever she is, she must know what you're up to. How happy must she be, seeing you the way you are?''
Geet had tears in her eyes again.
Chapter 12 - All's fair in love and lust.
The following 6 member(s) liked the above post:
sunitasth1, -Jyo-, drdee142, -Veritaserum-, chsweety22, --Ratna--,
Joined: 11 June 2008
All's fair in love and lust.
It was late evening, Nik was pacing the floor in his apartment. Guilt was eating into him. He wanted to know how Geet was, but he didn't want to call and pressurize her or make her feel uncomfortable.
He was hoping against hopes that she would call him.
Just then his phone rang. He leaped on it eagerly to answer it. It was Sid. He answered dejectedly.
''Haan Sid bol.''
''Nik, tu free hain?''
''Chal yar lets go out''
This was strange. It was the first time Sid had extended a hand of friendship towards him. He was cautious.
''Only both of us?'', he asked?
''Nahi yaar, Mayank bhi hain na mere saath. Chahiye to Raina ko pooch sakta hain.''
''Err ok.'' Nik replied, not really hearing Sid's reply.. Maybe it was a good idea to just get out and stop thinking for a bit.
''Achcha , toh phir tum dono jaldi aa jao...Thousand Suns Disc main milte hain. Ok''
''Err, dono, kaun?''
''Tu aur Raina.'', Sid said happily.
''Err, I don't think she'll be comfortable with 3 guys. Let's leave it.''
''Arre kyun nahi hogi comfy? U cal her, man.'', Sid said indignantly.
They net up half an hour later at the club.
''Raina kahan hain?''Sid asked, eagerly; searching behind Nik..
''I called her, but she's busy. Said she'll drop in later if she's free. She might get a friend; they were completing some psychology experiments.''
Sid's face fell. ''Ok lets go in.''
They got drinks and headed to find a seat. A sofa was empty so they plonked themselves on it.
After a while a guy came and sat down next to them. They shifted to make room for him and continued chatting.
Vicky Khurana was lost in thought. He was sitting in probably the most posh pubs in Delhi, but the noise and chaos didn't reach him. He had to get in touch with the right people and make his move at the right time. He knew his friends were there with him. Zakhir, Nida, Sneha...he wished Annie was there too..for moral support. He was here with a one point agenda.
Starting a dance company was mean job, and even though he had his family's support, he wanted to do this one, on his own. Today was the recruiting day. Which was why he had chosen a disco...dancers came there to be themselves and he could pick and choose the good ones. Convincing them would be a task, but her was not known as 'Vicky The Sweet Talker' for nothing.
He saw Maan walk in with his friends and sit in a quieter spot. Maan saw him and nodded in acknowledgement. Vikcy looked about for his friends. Zakhir n Nida were playing something on his cellphone. Sneha was missing...he assumed she was in the bathroom. It had been a week since he'd met her, but it was sparks when they 1st met. She was beautiful and she adored him. She liked his friends too. Still, it was too soon to tell.
Vicky turned around, fiddling with his drink. He looked towards the dance floor. Not many were dancing. He got up and went on a search for the DJ...luckily it was a friend. He requested him to play the popular tracks. It worked...the dance floor filled up. On returning to his seat on the sofa, he found it was occupied by 3 more guys. They realized he wanted a seat, and shifted a bit for him. Vicky took a seat and kept a watch for dancers.
Maan was about to leave the mansion. He was on a secret mission. Nobody knew what he was upto, but it had to be done as soon as possible.
Just as he was stepping out, Daadi stopped him.
''Beta if ur going via the Handa mansion, can you drop me to meet Vidya?''
Vidya was Savitri Devi's closest friend, Mohinder Handa's mother in-law.Maan knew Mr Handa by name; he knew Vidya aunty, from her visits to the Khurana Mansion, but apart from a formal hello, every time their paths crossed, he didn't know much.
''Ji Daadi, main car nikalta hoon''.
Maan dropped her to the Handa mansion and drove to the disco.
He knew Vicky was there for some work of his and so was his latest girlfriend, Sneha.
Sneha!! His guard had been up ever since he'd met her. She flirted with Vicky shamelessly and seemed to wrap him around his finger. There was something he couldn't place his finger on, and he wanted to find out what that was.
A couple of days after he had met her, He ran into Adi, his closest friend. What he heard from him didn't please him a bit. Anger bubbled up inside him , and he resolved to square it off with the girl.
Maan drove quickly to the disco. He saw Adi waiting for him. They entered silently. Maan saw Vicky was already there. But Sneha wasn't with him. That made his work easier. He nodded to Vicky and sat in a secluded spot. His eyes searched Sneha. He finally spotted her , talking to a girl. He walked towards her as discreetly as possible. They were deep in conversation; Sneha's eyes were moving animatedly as she related something.
''...he's like makkhan yaa. I told the guy to come, I think we've reached that stage and I can work my bit. Once in the tabloids, n then life should be easier. I can move on to bigger and better stuff, huh?''
Her friend giggled.
'Maan moved discreetly to the opposite side, where they couldn't see him, but he could hear them. Sneha's phone rang and she answered excitedly,
''Hey where are u? You're coming naa, I dressed my best yaar. N the pics better be good.'' She hung up
It was time to act. Maan walked up to her. She got flustered looking at him.
''Err...hi Maan, how're you? Good to see u.'' Her unease was visible.
''Hi Sneha. How've u been? What are u doing here?''
''Errr... you know...'', she said sweetly,''Just clubbing. Vicky's here too somewhere.''
''I know he's here...and it's good he's not with you. You see Sneha, I came to the club just to meet you.'', he said smoothly.
She looked at him in surprise and with a hint of fear. Her friend excused herself.
He got right to it.
''I know what you're up to and I know how it'll affect my brother. Make no mistake, when it comes to Vicky, you have to deal with the entire Khurana clan. So before you use my brother to become famous and be pasted on the page 3 tabloids, think again. Cause, using his fame to be famous yourself, can lead to me using my fame to spoil your image and make u a fashion circle wastrel. Get it?? This is my first and last warning. You don't want me to live up to my words.''. His anger was clear in his bloodshot eyes.
Sneha's face turned ashen, as she knew she had been caught. Her expression turned flat. She sullenly faced him, and turned to leave.
''I'm not done yet.''. he stopped her.
''You will tell ur journalist friend to ditch the plan, and you will break up with my brother, in a very nice manner, today itself!!
Am I understood?"' he asked menacingly.
One look from him was enough to convince her.
She nodded and left.
Vicky was getting bored. There was a dearth of good dancers. The club didn't have any good dancers, or any potential ones. He wondered if he had strategized in a wrong manner? The guys nearest to him were deep in conversation about some latest bike. One of them was doodling on a napkin with a pencil. He sighed.
Just then a movement caught his eye. A girl and a boy had walked up to the trio next to him. The boy had straight hair, falling into his eyes, and he wore a sleeveless shirt and 3/4th pants. The girl was short and dusky, and slim. She wore a white top, that exposed her neck and arms. It was a frilly, girlish top with layers on it and pink shorts. Silver slippers completed her ensemble. She had a bag slung across her shoulders, that clashed with her entire look. Her hair was open save one pin, holding her hair to one side while the rest flowed in waves. Feminine - was the word that sprang to his mind.
The boys looked up. The guy with the drawing looked confused as though he didn't recognize them. The muscular guy's jaw dropped and he looked like he'd been punched in the face, while the thin tall one smiled at them, evidently very happy with their arrival.
''Raenz!!,'' he said happily. He clapped the boy on the back and pulled up chairs for them.
Nik looked up to see that Raina and Ayush had made it. Mayank looked relieved at recognizing her, but he seemed dazed. Sid looked stumped. He looked Raina up and down, like he had never seen her before. His eyes zeroed in on Ayush next and they narrowed.
He watched as she hugged Nik and said hi to them all and sat down. She introduced Ayush to them.
''Where's Geet?'', she asked animatedly.
''She's got a headache,'' answered Mayank and Sid immediately in unison.
''O ' k,'' said Raina, with an awkward smile.
Ayush, Nik and Raina started discussing the experiment.
Sid was watching Raina and Ayush's interaction. He was glaring at him, something that didn't go unnoticed by Mayank. Sid, got up to get another drink. When he returned, they were still discussing, and Mayank was still doodling. He decided to butt in.
''So Ayush where are u from?''
''Err Sid, he's from our college.'', Raina answered '' We study psychology, together.'' She gave him a what-is-wrong-with-you, look.
That irritated him more.
''So ur into psycho,'' he said sneeringly, making it look like he was cracking a joke.
''Yeah'', Ayush answered '' Haven't seen u around man'', he said to Sid, referring to the Psychology lectures.
''That's probably because you don't hang with the cool gang, Ayush,'' Sid replied challengingly, his haunches up.
It was getting uncomfortable, and Raina was looking mad, so Nik stood up and asked her to join him on the floor.
Raina looked relieved and got up , gladly. Ayush left, to get a drink.
They salsa-ed with ease and laughed, enjoying themselves.
Nik twirled her and lifted her with ease. After the song changed they called the others to join them. Mayank stayed put, as did Sid, making a sulky face. Ayush joined them - it was either that or face Sid's glares.
After a while Nik, left the two to dance, while he went to the bar. He was unable to get rid of his guilt. Dancing and laughing with Raina was one thing, but he was unable to get Geet out of his mind. He was worried about her, but he had a distinct impression that Sid and Mayank were worried even more. Still, their answer to Raina made him think they knew what was up with her and why she was missing. All the dots connected him to one common factor. Naanima!! He had got his answer to how she had known about him.
He sat mulling over Geet and how he was to approach her when they next met. A guy came and sat on the bar stool next to him. He looked at him and smiled.
The guy raised his drink at him and said, ''Hi, I'm Vicky.''
''Nik', he replied.
''Yeah ' you frequent this place?''
''Yeah. Umm, I saw u dance. You dance quite well. ''
''Thanks. It's my passion.''
''That makes two of u'', replied Vicky. 'Look I'll cut to the chase here. I saw you dancing back there. The reason I'm talking to you is that I'm starting a dance company. It's a troupe that'll showcase talent as well as teach dance. So it's like a job offer. I think you've got talent and you should share it. What say?''
Nik looked interested. ''So are you offering me a job.??'', he repeated.
''Yeah you can think of it like that. But it'll be only after business starts picking up. It'll be like we're performers for the first few months.''
''Yes. I'd love to.''
''Great, here's my card,'' said Vicky, all smiles, now.
''Thanks, I'll give you a call.''
'No way, Siddhant Arora doesn't fall for Geeks.', he told himself.
He wasn't into her...but that was until he saw a pink tongue flick out and lick the lollypop.
lollipop lollipop, Can I be that lollipop?
The following 3 member(s) liked the above post:
-Jyo-, drdee142, --Ratna--,
Joined: 11 June 2008
Can I be that lollypop??
Sid was not having a good time. He had been very happy with himself, till Raina had entered the disco...tagging that ape Ayush with her. Having studied with her all his life, he had never considered Raina worth any attention. But off late, she had been toggling his mind vigorously. Not only had she shown a humane side to her strict demeanour, but ever since they had started dancing, he had seen how intelligent and sweet natured she was.
And now, this evening, when he least expected it, she had shown up in that new avatar. It had hit him in the gut. He had never expected a sexy side to Raina. He was having a hard time taking his eyes off her.
Mayank was busy sketching things in random, and Sid was identifying what each picture was. It was an old game that the trio used to play. Mayank would sketch random objects or parts of an object and Geet and Sid would identify what part it was , with their surroundings. But, his attention was taken up by Sid's absurd behaviour.
Mayank was watching Sid turn grumpier by the minute. He watched him as he glared at Raina and Ayush, while they danced. Sid was so busy being annoyed with them, that he didn't even realize that Mayank was staring at him, amused!
Raina and Ayush finally came back and sat next to them.
Sid shifted away from them, his temper getting the better of him. He looked like he was the least interested, but in reality he was acutely conscious of every movement that Raina made. The way she tilted her head; shifted her hair to the front of her shoulders, leaving her back exposed; hang her head behind, trying to cool off the sweat that was making her slim throat glow.
Ayush was saying something. His ears pricked up.
''I'll leave, I still have some errands to run. Do you want to wait?; he asked
'No you go ahead. Nik will drop me home.'
Sid turned to see Ayush leave. He wondered why his mood seemed lighter all of a sudden.
''In fact'', he wondered, ''why had he been grumpy after all?''
He tried to ignore that and be nicer.
''Raenz, do u want a drink?''
She shook her head. ''No, I'm not in the mood''
She lifted one leg to cross the other one. Sid couldn't stop staring at it. It was sleek and shiny and her feet had shocking pink nail polish on it, which seemed to be doing funny things to his throat. He swallowed after a lot of effort.
He realized he was staring and mentally shook himself.
Sid, what are you doing. Tu pagal hain, Raina ko lech(letch) kar rahah hain...dude she's a geek man.
Raina had opened her bag and pulled out a big flat lollipop.
Sid looked at it and smirked to himself. Which sane sexy girl did that, he asked himself.
'No way, Siddhant Arora doesn't fall for Geeks.', he told himself.
He wasn't into her, he said to himself again...but that was until he saw her pink tongue flick out and lick the lollypop lazily. It swiped across it and disappeared.
Sid caught all of it and all sort of rational thought seemed to dissolve.
Mayank watched , as Sid's eyes flicked from Raina's legs to her back, to her mouth with a wistful expression. Any person looking at him would have thought that he wanted to be that lollipop.
It was time to distract him and give him a reality check, before he made a fool of himself. Mayank quickly sketched a picture and asked Sid to link it.
Sid took one glance at it and absentmindedly opened his mouth to say, ''Raina's legs''...but caught himself right before the words popped out of his mouth, realizing what he saw.
He turned furiously to look at Mayank, who was shaking with laughter.
His glare stopped Mayank's laughter, but he gave him a questioning look
Hope you liked the update. Just a short one.
The following 5 member(s) liked the above post:
-Jyo-, drdee142, -Veritaserum-, chsweety22, --Ratna--,
Joined: 11 June 2008
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