Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Chap 10: It's All In The Mind

Chap 10: It's All In The Mind

"Dreams are broken and hope is lost,
And your verve seems to faint;
You fall down and ask why?
God, why do I have to trod?"

            The night was still young and the weather was considerably below, the view was pristine and ethereal and the sound of the gushing water was mingled with the sound of the raindrops outside the cave, it had been some fifteen minutes that the downpour began abruptly. He sat besides Ada deep in thought contemplating whether to let go or let things be as they are? He eyed her tranquil form, her face radiated calm and innocence.

           He spoke after long, "I'm tired and I've become a wreck, this feeling each and every emotion is eating me up and it's affecting me not only physically and mentally but also emotionally. I very well know this is the past, a past which has done no harm to me or someone else in direct respect yet it doesn't seem to leave me; it comes in front of me the moment I try to move on and let go but yet again I'm trapped in the shackles of my past and it still haunts me. It's just I've spun too many lies and literally lived a lie just to protect myself and now I'm just tangled in this web of deception where I've lost myself. He took a deep breath before continuing further, Love a feeling that everyone experiences in their lifetime platonic or otherwise, it has its own aura. I believed in it from the bottom of my heart and soul though not a hopeless romantic but the one who saw the brighter side of things, even you didn't know about this hid it so very perfectly but then something happened and changed me completely; shattering me into pieces that were seeming difficult to join and made me weak. That was the time I would cry and let out silent tears in the hope of blocking all this from my mind but as they say, Somethings get etched in your mind and no matter what you do it's impossible to erase it out all by yourself. My tears stopped and from then on I became this arrogant self and hid myself deep inside, dreaded to come forward to talk to people including you and started to distance myself from everyone and went miles apart but maybe I never really could go."

            He let out a sigh before moving forward, "This hiding and fearing all of it began whilst I was in fifth grade when I was merely a ten year old, an age when kids play and have fun and frolic but here I was hiding deep within myself maybe not knowingly but unknowingly. If, you remember this is the time when my parents separated, we were small to understand the hidden meaning and accepted all that was told to us and never questioned back. I felt my dad was the best and loved mom deeply, Oh! What a fool I had been to believe in such crap. From then on I was in my father's care, was I really? Days passed by and life moved on once again though not in the usual way but it had. I remember vividly how dad would come late in the night with different girls every different night, but I couldn't muster up enough courage to ask why so? As years passed by I recoiled more into my shell and reduced interaction with others even my best buddies Sameer and Gaurav were clueless in regards to my behavior but none questioned me beyond a limit; you and mom were my only friends whom I could confide in completely (pause) Coming to mom I still remember my birthdays as that was the only time she met me and that would be the happiest day unlike now. Slowly and steadily I started to know my dad and his affairs and since then I don't like him , hate is too strong for a word I can't hate him for he is the very reason of my existence."  

          Zaid looked into her eyes once again and they reassured him, giving him strength to open up.

         "I was fifteen; soon to be sixteen in a matter of  few weeks when my life changed drastically, all the joys and happiness turned into sorrow as vile overshadowed the innocence that lingered. It was an unusual day in many respects, it was the day when I realized my love for you, you will not imagine how happy I was and was waiting impatiently to confess to you and also mom visited me that day and my joy doubled and I was overwhelmed unable to contain my joy, she was the first one to know and was ecstatic to hear this from me and my initial worry of seeing her two weeks prior to my birthday left me as she gifted me a diary to pen down my precious moments who knew it would be otherwise, that the calmness that prevailed was an indication of chaos in the future? (pause) I heard the door knob turn and saw my drunk father, not a new sight but what shocked me was that he was alone and that too home this early and that frightened me as mom was home. It didn't take him time to realize this fact and he started hurling verbal abuses and even tried to kiss her forcefully, not caring that his fifteen year old is in the vicinity, I tried stopping him but my attempts were futile. I guess he had lost his sanity that day and was physically assaulting mom in front of my eyes how could I stand that? I tried to inter-wine and stop all this but all in vain as he was crossing his limits. It was too much for me to stand and I was about to call the police when I heard a thrashing sound, I turned back to see he had jerked my mom away and she crashed into a nearby glass table and more-so the shattered pieces penetrated her forehead and she was surrounded in a pool of blood, I couldn't stand that sight yet controlled the rage that was bursting in me. I tried calling the doctor and kept on caressing her and assuring her that all will be fine but before the doctor could arrive, she went away  in the most unexpected way, the one person I loved from my heart and soul, the very existence of my being had gone forever; leaving me alone in this ruthless world. My most happiest day turned out to be one the gloomiest days of my life."

         It seemed as if time stood still, the clouds were roaring louder and the rainfall didn't seem to stop nor Ada's tears which were suppressed for long as she was too shocked to respond. He spoke yet again his voice laden with choked emotions, "No one knows about this not a single soul; and the guilt of not being able to prove anything troubled me as my father roamed like a free bird and I was rendered helpless. I started hating him more than I did before, I turned rude and arrogant and also started believing in the fact that nothing called as love exists it's mere lust; lust that cost my mother her life. (pause) My father died of cirrhosis three years back as you all know and this is the very reason I didn't even come to attend his funeral nor did any last rights on my part. Come to think of it, I'm glad my mom is no more or else even after years of separation she would have had too fulfill and cater to my father's desires and demands. She was an orphan and didn't want me to be one and so she bared the brunt of her husband."

        Ada went numb listening to all this and tears were still spilling, she was shocked beyond belief and words failed to escape. She hugged Zaid tightly not wanting to let go of him and take all his pain away for she knew it was not easy to forget and let go, Zaid hugged her back he couldn't control himself and broke down in her arms completely.

        They seemed to have lost track of time and place and were in each others embrace for long. She had to be there for him; she couldn't leave him alone this time and has to be strong, not just for herself but Zaid too.

"I know it ain't that easy,
To cry in the night and wear a smile at morn,
I sigh and let out a small plea to the God above,
To help me forget and move on,
And give me strength and trod all along."


Sunday, 5 December 2010

Chap 9: Amour

Chap 9: Amour

"Birds are chirping far away in the woods,
And shadows are left far behind,
The rhythm of heart reverberates loud,
But not a mere soul in sight."

          The November night was silent and peaceful, the air was misty and a chill ran through the air and blew her hair aimlessly and the wind caressed her cheeks. The moon shone brightly in the water beside the waterfall, her petite body glowed in the basking moonlight. The water gushed through the pebbles near the rivulet making a soothing sound and a beautiful smile played on her lips. She remembered her teenage years with Zaid in their special hideout; it was still her hideout and she would come here when she was ecstatic as well as when she wanted solitude. Today too, she was here like always but with an amalgam of so many feelings.
         Back at the wedding everyone was enjoying, the newly weds brimmed in joy and others too were having a ball, amidst all this fun and joy Zaid was feeling restless he needed some space, he felt suffocated and the reason was unknown to him. He excused himself from the crowd and walked the untrodden road, he was lost. Unknowingly he traced his path to "their" secret hideout, in search of tranquility to clear the mess and drain his soul before heading forward in his journey. The place was the same it had been eight years back. He could listen to the humming of nightingale the place looked even more ethereal at night than it seemed in the sunlight; the sound of the water rushing through the rivulet snapped him out to reality. He walked towards the cave, and the sight shocked him she looked beautiful and the moonlight added to the beauty, he was entranced. She looked like an angel descended on earth "his angel" the wind blew and shook him out of his trance. He pondered and finally moved towards her, and spoke in the most subtle of forms.
        "Hello!" for a moment Ada felt she had an encounter with a ghost as she turned pale, it took seconds to register it was Zaid. "Oh My God! You scared me" muttered a shaken Ada. His immediate response was a sorry as he sat down beside her. None of them spoke for a while, words didn't seem to escape and silence prevailed. After what seemed like an eternity and the silence was killing Zaid he finally spoke, "you looking good! Changed a lot, more than I imagined."
         "Time does change people a lot, more than we can imagine and even relationships", replied Ada her voice devoid of emotions. (Pause) Zaid struggled with his emotions and his words died before coming out; finally he let out a sigh and thought it's high time he confront Ada or at least ask apology for his cold behavior and attitude towards her, "umm...Ada I want to say something to you" Ada looked up at this and gazed into his brown eyes and blinked her lashes as if signaling him to continue.
         "I'm ... (Stammering) I'm sorry Ada, I'm really very sorry for each and everything I know a sorry would not suffice yet that is the only word I have to ask forgiveness for my ice cold behavior, my talking rudely to you ignoring you, each and everything that I've done during this month; well just not this month alone but the whole lot ten years. I made you cry, I hurt you, I made you feel low and even went on to the extent of blocking you off my life completely. I didn't realize my untold words and silence was killing you silently. (Pause) I didn't want to see you hurt and your heart to rip and shatter, but what I forgot I was actually doing all that which I didn't want to. (Pause) You were precious and dear to me I feared losing you, I could not bear the pain, he felt his words choke yet he spoke further; I don't know Ada whether my apology was heartfelt or it sounded like me cold but it's the truth that had been buried for so long and it would have been, but I just couldn't stop myself I can't see the one "I love" in pain and that too when I'm the one responsible for it." No sooner did the words escaped his mouth; Ada became still and numb, she could not gauge the situation and suddenly it striked Zaid; he let go...let go of the emotions he held back from years, he regretted; regretted coming here, apologizing to Ada and also saying those three forbidden words, his heart pounded loudly as he felt, he would now lose Ada completely.
Neither of them spoke, Ada was still in a daze "Had she heard right? Does he really love me? If yes then why did he hide it? And kept on running away from me and the feelings?" Several questions started looming in her mind and yet her heart bubbled, she was joyous and tears flowed down her cherry cheeks and a smile played on her lips and she hugged Zaid tightly. Zaid was dumbfounded he didn't seem to understand what was going on, his eyes wide open with shock, delight and fear too!
            She slowly parted from him and stared into his eyes and he stared back, suddenly the eye lock broke and the smile that tugged Ada's lips vanished and she looked away. She wanted to say so much, question him, ask him every possible thing she could but she was numb by the sudden confession. She didn't want to lose him though she didn't have any right over him nor did they have a relationship yet she felt close and near to him and couldn't take in him leaving her all alone once again, she would die yet words failed to escape and sentences broke even before they were spoken. After a debate with her conscience whether she should speak or let the silence prevail between them, she chose the former and started speaking; her voice soothing and soft.
            "You were my best friend, a friend whom I treasured dearly and kept close to my heart. A friend who was with me in my growing years, who understood my silence and never mistook my talkative self. I felt like a free bird when I was with you and over the years this friendship turned into a beautiful relationship. Yes, I fell in love with you but did not acknowledge it. At first I brushed off my feelings and named them nothing more than infatuation (Pause) and months went by but, then a time came when you started avoiding me and reduced our interaction, and my feelings just grew stronger and it was then that I realized that this was not mere attraction but love. Yet, you didn't sense the change or perhaps I never did show and the feeling just grew more with the passage of time. People say when love is not returned and is one sided it fades away sooner or later but with me the opposite took place."
            She was silent for sometime listening to the tinkling sound of the waterfall before she resumed speaking again, "I do not know which side of you I enjoy the most and feel close too but I treasure each side just as I have treasured our past years. (Pause) You have something Zaid, something beautiful and secure, something different from the other men I've come across, maybe it's your personality or just my perception. I see you as a kind hearted and a caring man though at times you don't show this aspect of you; you are the most peaceful man I know, an angel to me who I know will be with me' no matter what happens, no matter how much ever we argue or disagree, deep down my heart I know you do care and nothing can change that. (Pause) I believed and felt this even before and today I know you do care!"

Chap 8: Soiree

Chap 8: Soiree

      The whole household was busy with chores and was stirring up with the last minute preparations, finally the big day had arrived and joy and happiness lit the home. Everyone was running here and there and the hustle-bustle left everyone panting. Old melodious wedding songs were playing, guests were chattering and the bride and groom were nervous in their respective homes and looking forward to the evening!
    The evening was cold due to the light snow fall and mist shrouded the way, the colourful lights illuminated the background and added a touch to the serene place.
    Gaurav was seated in a shimmering white car, unlike the traditional horse being led by Sameer and zaid and accompanied by some other local friends and the Khanna family! Zoya too joined them as she was from both sides. He looked handsome in his golden sherwani with cream patchwork, a white shera covered his face he moved it aside and gazed outside in the hope of seeing his beautiful bride and was caught off guard by zoya while he was busy blushing.
   Preet sat quietly dressed in her bridal attire in her bedroom as her friends and cousins joked and giggled around her adding to her nervousness. She looked around and took a last look at her bedroom and memories of her younger self flocked her mind, and she blushed deeply the day she dreamed off had finally arrived, she was getting married to the man of her dreams, the love of her life! Her heart thudded impatiently with excitement and jitter waiting for him to arrive soon.
  A moment later, distant sounds of wedding band was heard and Muskaan and Ada left to greet them as Preet adjusted her ghunghat taking one last look of herself as a maiden!
  Preet's parents greeted the groom's family and friends, flashing smiles. Gaurav descended from the car and walked towards Geeta, Preet's mom welcomed him with an Aarti thali, he moved his sehra aside and bowed his head so as to take blessings from her, she smiled and led him inside.
  Preet's father Abhinav greeted Prachi and gaurav's family and friends and took them inside the wedding hall where the ceremony was to take place, soon everyone got seated. Gaurav waited eagerly at the alter and looked sideways every now and then to get a glimpse of his lovely bride, and Sameer and zaid pulled his leg and teased him to glory yet gaurav remained unfazed and grinned!
 A couple of minutes later Preet descended down the stairs with Ada, Zoya and Muskaan on her sides, Gaurav almost leapt with joy seeing her ! She looked stunning in her heavily embroidered gold lehenga, heavy gold neck less and earrings adding to the beauty. He gulped unable to gasp her image into his heart.
  Zaid on the other hand was feeling the same on seeing Ada, she looked breathtakingly beautiful in her baby pink chiffon saree with silver embroidery and crystal work, a vision of ethereal beauty. He could not keep his eyes of her! She too noticed him and felt shy and blushed deeply trying to concentrate more on preet rather than him. She stole furtive glances at him from under her lashes and almost stumbled, his warm brown eyes stirred her soul and butterflies fluttered in her stomach at the look, he looked tall and handsome in his maroon sherwani with golden work, he complimented her in every way. She blushed like a young bride on her wedding.
  She snapped out of her reverie when she heard the priest chanting the wedding vows. Soon Preet and Gaurav got up to go around the sacred fire for seven times, they were completed in no time and the priest handed Gaurav a small container of sindoor, he took a pinch and smeared it in the small parting of her hair, symbolizing his commitment forever and then wrapped a gold mangalsutra around her neck and tied the ends. Finally they were man and wife! Everyone wished them a long and a happy married life; they stood up to take Ada's grandma's and their parents blessings.
 They took blessings and finally it was time for the bidaai ceremony and tears of joy and sorrow as separation from parents filled Preet's eyes and she hugged her near and dear ones.
  A lone tear fell from Zaid's eyes too, as he thought he would never have such a beautiful moment with the girl of his dreams! But you never know until the right time comes!

Chap 7: Melancholy

Chap 7: Melancholy   

"It was one of those dark and gloomy nights when she felt creeps and a shiver ran down her entire body, and she trembled like a kid who just had an encounter with a deadly spirit; a ghost....much more frightening and ghastly. Neither could she cry in pain nor sob in peace...her words were muffled and tears  were chocked behind her eyelids; she was unable to utter a word out of fear....her condition was heart-wrenching.
She was not worried about her own self but about her beloved child....whom she loved more than anything in the world, her joys her happiness and even her desire to escape and taste freedom were all secondary in front of her child. She would face all odds, go through worst but would never let anything harm her kid.....she vowed to protect and give her kid a comfortable and secure life. She was helpless but not weak and timid....her will power was far more than anyone could imagine.

          It was a dark and dingy room barely any light penetrated through the small window. The wind blew aimlessly and caressed her hair which were let loose...Her fragile body was recognizable even in the dim moonlight; her waist long hair had lost their sheen and luster...dark circles framed her eyes and blots of blood decorated her lips, yet there was no trace of a single tear nor a remorseful look...she sat there motionless...her innocence had been tarnished and taken away from her a long time back.

         The full moon night, the dim moonlight penetrating her abode and the humming of the nightingale didn't seem to relax her and give her peace; the more she thought of  soothing herself the more ruffled she became. Just the thought of him..sent shivers down her spine ...when he was around she felt horrid and weird and terrible...his words sounded lusty and his touch filthy. He approached her like a feral animal ready to pounce on it's innocent prey. Every time he entered the room it was just for one satisfy his hunger ..for his carnal pleasures. He didn't care about her neither her well being...nor did he care for the fact that she was his wife and the mother of their child....she was trapped....trapped in this deceptive and cruel world where life was worst then hell...and crushed between the palms of her ruthless and heartless husband......
The noise of footsteps were heard again and her heart pounded loudly against her chest and the sound grew louder and louder as it started reverberating in the closed walls of the house...making her recoil more.

          "You filthy little dare you hide yourself away from me?? Why are you shying away sweetheart ?? Can't you see your beloved husband has come to meet you darling !! won't you greet me with pleasure ??", his voice barked
 and she was shaken more to the core
........finally after a few seconds later gathering courage she spoke.....
"Oh! you feral've stooped so very low, that you no longer even have the right and honour to call yourself my husband...I'm just an object for you, ain't I ?? Come to me when desired and then leave me...I'm not helpless nor am i whore as you consider me as...I'm just silent for the sake of my child...not more than that................"                         before she could continue any further there was a sound of thud, he slapped her across her face and engulfed her within his strong arms...and ripped clothes off her with an air of impatientness and wickedness......and her cries and pleas went unheard............."

  Mom! ..... 

Zaid jerked out of his sleep and was panting and breathing heavily...minutes later his breath came back to normal and he pondered over his nightmare....No it was not a mere nightmare but a harsh and brutal reality that his mother had undergone.....his mother loved his dad unconditionally leading her life in forlorn hope that he'll amend his ways and change....yes he changed; but not for better but for worst.....Zaid had witnessed more such incidences as he grew up and they got etched on his  young mind...making him believe nothing called love existed in this world just mere course with the passage of time this veil was uncovered; but yet deep down he had the fear...and he trailed into his thoughts.....
        " I don't trust myself Ada...what if I hurt you ?? what if your pained  after knowing the truth ?? No I can't .....I can't see your heart rip into pieces and shatter ....I just can't admit to you.....yes 'I Love You'  more than you can imagine...more than my heart and soul; but I can't risk our friendship our the friendship we had back telling you..I can't keep our friendship at stake and that's the only reason for my ice cold behavior towards you....I can't let you know my feelings and desires when I know you'll never love me; I'm just a dear and special friend to you.......", sighed Zaid as he finally gave way and let out his long lost emotions...
         But what he didn't know was Ada too loved him unconditionally and he by his cold attitude was himself drifting the love of his life apart.....
All he hoped now was the wedding day to approach soon....three days......they seemed like three years or more so....and then he would leave never to return again...never to disturb Ada's calm and unperturbed life! and let destiny take it's own course.

Chap 6: Longing

Chap 6: Longing

              Two days went by peacefully since the engagement ceremony took place and yet so many ceremonies were lined up all in a very traditional Indian manner; ranging from mehendi, haldi and so many more to come left everyone panting.
           Everyone teased the couple and they just blushed wherein others just grinned and enjoyed to the hilt. Amidst all these wedding preparations and ceremonies one thing was still troubling Gaurav; he had noticed Zaid's behavior over the past few days he didn't seem the same person he was back there in Mumbai, even zoya sensed this abrupt change in her friend though she didn't know much about him and his past life here it still worried her as he was jovial at one time and detached the another. Even Preet and Muskaan were discussing the same regarding Ada and Zaid …Sameer too was startled at his sister's behavior and that started to worry him more than anything else; he was noticing her since Zaid arrived and it was more evident and clear during the engagement ceremony two days back. What could be the matter that it affected them to this extent?? Why do these guys run away from their "so called problem" and not confront each other and sort it out?? Everyone seemed to be in a dilemma ….
              Zaid and Ada could feel the tension brewing between them, no words but awkward silence…they yearned to speak to each other and break the bonds of silence which was drifting them apart; yet none spoke to each other. They satisfied the longing of their hearts by stealing glances while the other didn't seem to notice…In fact it would be true to say they hadn't spoken to each other since a very long time which could be traced back to the time when Zaid left Darjeeling when he was eighteen years old. 
              At times, Ada seemed to act more mature than Zaid though she was two years younger to him; yet today she too behaved indifferently by not giving way to her feelings and long lost desires just like him. This silence and non-verbal gestures were killing both of them silently despite all of this none resorted to verbalization and opening up and resolving the conflict… they waited for the other to break the ice but it didn't seem to happen anytime soon. Over the passing of years both seemed to become cold and strong headed wherein, they were still vulnerable at heart; and could not gather courage to speak up thinking what the other might feel or think….. 
                Deep in the far corner of her room, Ada kept on staring the moonless sky admiring the beauty of night; so peaceful and calm…the pure enchanting beauty of darkness captivated her and gave her a deep sense of belonging-ness and peace within. She didn't feel lonely and creepy at night like most do but found solace as the darkness engulfed her and at last she let her tears spill uncontrollably.….didn't even try to stop them…and slipped into her world of thoughts, "Tears well up in my eyes for a fictional character who is in pain…tears also threaten to spill when my dear friends are hurt and are in pain….but these tears don't well up in my eyes that easily when I'm hurt; it would be an understatement to say that I don't cry…. I do cry; occasionally for everyone but very rarely for my own self…I've merely got used to people hurting me and taking me for granted for my patient, understanding and caring nature…it's not they took me for granted but I let them take subconsciously and then leaving me on cross roads from where I don't know where to go which path to take; I'm stranded all alone…but life has taught me better; more than it should have… I've stopped answering people be it my brother or my best friends and other people who pity on me when there is no need for it I've ignored these people long back and I've moved on with life and I'm enjoying every bit of it… I don't wallow over things like I used to back in my teenage years, nor do I wear my heart on my sleeve…. back then my friends felt I'm lying to them…but no I was not I never have, I was and today too I'm vulnerable to them can't hide my pain in front of my dear buddies; well now they have finally understood I've changed and that too for good! And no matter how much ever I try running away from these feelings and emotions I'm unable too; but with the passage of time I've learnt not to showcase my emotions and heart felt desires and to plaster a smile on my face; so that none come to know I'm still vulnerable and still the same girl at heart though changed a lot…I can't let go of myself …can't bear another heartbreak ", thought Ada as she silently cried not thinking why this happened to her?? She had stopped questioning herself and God a long time ago….but today she was forced to question again…why? Why did he have to come back in her life and behave so indifferently with her?? …it was making matters much more complicated, she sighed and rested her head on the wall nearby ; She needed to be strong, she couldn't lose herself to him…she would gain nothing but pain and sorrow and more silent mute tortures. She had fallen for a man who didn't believe in love; for whom love is just a mere game….girls love him for his looks and money; nothing simply nothing called love existed in his life. Little did she know how wrong she was…the man did believe in love; much more than she did but did not trust and believe his own self and destiny…..
                Down in the drawing room everyone else sat discussing this issue …it was more important than the marriage. But alas! It felt as if they too had given up and were now tired and also had given up hope to reunite the two friends and left matters in the hands of destiny; when the people concerned were not ready to let go and confront they as friends also couldn't do much…how much to try and make them understand to talk to each other, bury the hatchet and embrace the future…but now their thoughts rested only on one thing as to what didn't happen in eight years nor in these three week could not happen in the last week too but then maybe…maybe destiny had some other plans….you never know until the right time comes….

P.S: Zaid is 26 and Ada is 24… not get confused.

Chap 5: Merriment

Chap 5: Merriment
         The whole household was waking up stirring with the hustle-bustle of the engagement, excited guests chattering and children giggling; the whole house was lit in a celebration mode. Preet's parents as well as Ada's granny wanted a full fledged traditional engagement ceremony first and later on wedding with all the pomp. Everyone was in site the bride fretting over her dress and Zoya calming her down, Muskaan bantering with the servants and Gaurav and Sameer were late as usual…Zaid had been out for two days on the pretext of some personal work.

          The day had just begun to rise and the sun sprinkled its soft rays on her lovely delicate form. A sweet smile played on her lips and she was lost in her faraway dreamland with her prince charming. Suddenly, the cold water flushed her dream and she woke up irking. "Bro can't you find just another way to wake up your darling sister??" Ada said, annoyingly Oh! My sweetie I was just taking revenge from you nothing more dear, Sameer added cheekily and went out of the room leaving behind a blazed Ada. Oh! Keep a check on yourself Ada …don't think so such that even your dreams revolve around it, you can't survive another heartbreak dear, Ada sighed as she got up and got ready for the day ahead.

          The cold November evening mist concealed the sleepy hill station; the lights illuminated in the background and added a touch to the serene placid nature. Soon after the couple was standing at the alter gazing each other with nothing but love in each others eyes, soon the stare broke as Prachi Khanna; Gaurav's mom summoned everyone to gather around for the engagement ceremony. The gorgeous couple stood facing each other and shying to face others. On the far right corner of the bride stood Ada watching her friends bond till eternity; oh! How she wished she could be there instead of Preet and Zaid as her companion for life…..she had cherished this dream for long, suddenly she snapped out of her reverie with the sound of claps and she mingled with everyone and later joined her friends in pulling the new couple's leg, of how they used to proudly joke,
"Me and Gaurav?? Falling in love!! Are you guys joking?? We are so very contrasting in nature…"  
and now the same friends were moving ahead to embark on a new journey together; and ada again slipped into her virtual world.

         On the other extreme corner Zaid was busy stealing glances of Ada every now and then, "Long dusky eyelashes rested on her flushed cheeks, a sweet smile played on her curved lips her jet black waist long hair were let loose today and above all, her peacock blue colored sari with silver work and silver chandelier earrings added to the beauty. She looked like an angel descended on earth …so gorgeous and so innocent….a man would be mad not to fall in love with her and despite the fact she was a "romantic idealist" (as Zaid had labeled her) she was a perfect combination of beauty with brains; a blend of both emotional and practical. Suddenly the music brought Zaid out of his starring session." What the hell was I doing?? Checking a girl out and that too Ada?? Am I out of my mind?? What if she comes to know about my feelings for    her?? Oh! Dear lord help me in keeping a check on myself and my traitor heart which always somersaults when it sees Ada. I can't let her come close to me she'll probably hate me more if she knows my dreadful past…yes it's a dreadful full of pretense and deception….she'll be more distant than as of now, I can't be that irrepressible I need to hold on to my feelings for at least one more week or so, like I've been doing for the past two weeks…then it'll be over I'll be gone and I will not return hopefully", thinking all this Zaid drifted back away from his thoughts and mingled with everyone savoring the party.

Chap 4: Dilemma

Chap 4: Dilemma

       A week rolled by swiftly since zaid had arrived and the preparations were in full swing; yet so much was …left engagement in two days time and marriage the next week left everyone exhausted not even sparing the bride and bridegroom themselves.

       Sameer what the hell are you doing here?? Huh watching football?? When you know so much work is pending …..what's with you guys and football can't you not watch that game for a day…???....flared Zoya.     Stop stop calm down Zoya...huh! I don't get it how you girls speak in a single breath..??. Just shut up will u Sameer …I have better things to do rather than argue with you, snapped Zoya. Oh! Miss Zoya is busy other than office work I get it and Sameer broke into laughter which irked Zoya more to the core…go to hell as if I care let Ada only deal with you ; no sooner he heard his sisters name he ran for his life…………..

       Zaid had been watching this conversation from the corner of his eyes and was smiling inwardly seeing Zoya and Sameer fight like kids…it reminded him of his teenage years…he was still lost in his dreamland when Preet nudged him. "Hey buddy you seem to be lost I've been noticing since the time you've arrived???" is everything alright?? Asked Preet as she sensed some thing was fishy here… hmm nothing Preet, just wondering how life has changed …(pondering) Hey I'll catch up with you later got some work , he left and Preet kept wondering what's with these guys ?? from the moment Zaid has arrived both Zaid and Ada had not talked to each other talking is a far off thing they would not even see each other, even Ada seems to be aloof now-a-days and Zaid too. I need to talk to Muskaan or Gaurav; even Gaurav was saying the other day regarding the behavior of these two as Zaid made him realize his love for me (Preet) and he himself is straying away from love and friendship there ought to be something that's making matters more complicated than earlier…was it better these guys were away from each other?? No it was not they need to talk and bury the differences after all they are not sixteen year old anymore, she sighed as she walked towards the kitchen and thought of talking to others later; where Ada and Muskaan were busy discussing the engagement plans Zoya joined then later and the girls continued with their talks.

       Preet did notice Ada in between their talks and sighed…what did happen that drifted the two apart that they don't even talk to each other?? God this is getting more and more complicated day by day…Ada is recoiling in her shell and Zaid's attitude problem… The last two weeks are going to turn out be more interesting it seems, sighing she went back to their discussion.


Chap 3: Surreal

Chap 3: Surreal
flashback in blue
present in brown
        "Everything is a mystery inside a mystery, Unfold it and again it's a mystery." Well this is the way friends and acquaintances described Zaid ….an enigma. The more you tried to understand him and his personality the more you seem to become confused. Not everyone knew Zaid to the core, not even Sameer and Gaurav seem who were his best friends only one knew how he was and now the fear of facing her again gripped him again and again. Standing at the door he traveled back to his past……

        "Zaid what are you up to now?? Ada fumed or rather was very curious to know what her dear buddy was up to, she was tired of his pranks and mischievous nature he was fourteen!! yet behaved childish at times with her so that she listens and complies to his silly demands…….but Zaid was in no mood to stop. He slowly blindfolded her, taking her small delicate hands in his own took her to a place and Ada silently obeyed him.

On reaching he opened her blindfold and she was spellbound by the beauty of the place.

Never in the wildest or the most pleasant of all dreams had she seen such a beautiful place, the view was breathtaking! They were inside a cave kind of place and there was a waterfall and trees and the birds chirping and stones were lying nearby, the water rushing through the pebbles made such a sweet sound...pure soothing music indeed and the sun reflected brightly illuminating the cave. The place was so serene and ethereal. After what seemed like aeons Zaid broke the silence and spoke,

       "Loved the place Ada?" Ada just nodded her head in affirmation it seemed as if she forgot to speak, Zaid continued speaking…"you know I love this place, mom and I used to come here at times and now I come her occasionally when I feel low or remember mom and the best part is this place is so secluded that no one knows about it…
(pause)… you're the first person I bought here… (pause)….you are special Ada; now and forever! Ada could not listen more, tears were spilling from her eyes and she hugged Zaid tightly……"

        Just then the door opened and Zaid came out of his trance and he entered the house. His eyes searched for her and finally brown eyes met the black ones staring at him from a distance, a bubble of joy started forming in his heart but he still had a rough look on his face ….No I can't let loose of myself, I can't afford to be vulnerable and that too at this time…my years of hard work won't go down the drain, I won't melt…I won't become the old Zaid again …never! He thought as he entered the house and was greeted by everyone.

        But it was as his eyes and heart had betrayed him and he scanned the whole room and finally rested his eyes on hers…and was stealing glances from the corner of his eyes noticing each and everything as if scanning her from head to toe and registering her in his mind. She still looked as innocent as ever… there was a light glint in her eyes but then there was something else too like as if she were hiding some pain or sadness deep within, Zaid pondered long enough ….only to be stopped by his sane and rational mind to concentrate on others rather than her and he immersed himself in the conversation with preet and gaurav.

       There was lot to happen …after all full four weeks were awaiting, thought zaid dryly …as he engrossed himself into others.