Laugh under a veil, my dear!

“I’m very scared,” she whispered softly.

“Don’t be,” he reassured calmly.

They had just recovered from a hearty laughter.

“But, I’m not used to so much joy.”

“Every time they catch me laughing out loud, they send one of theirs to restore balance… I hate to cry.”

“Oh! Then laugh under a veil, my dear!”

A night to forget

He loved her in the abstract. In real, her curves nauseated him. The mere mention of her name sent shivers all over him and he wished he had never met her at all. Had he heeded to his friend’s advice, Sam would not have seen this day. Or lost a precious friend like Tejas.

Many had tried to warn him before. But, Sam was mesmerized, a possessed man really. That doe-eyed girl with the most divine charm around her; only a lucky soul like him could get her, he reminisced.

Sam maxed out his credit cards buying her diamonds and designer clothes. He even calmed his distraught mother who was almost sure that her vulnerable son has been duped in love. He would often tell her, “You will be the happiest mother-in-law in the world, Maa!” Sonia had him all tethered so much so that if she was even pricked by a pin, Sam would bleed himself. In fact, he was even planning on an exotic vacation with Sonia, one that was worthy of the divinity she exuded.

Now, as he squatted on the cold floor this winter evening, he stared hard at the patterns on the tiles. “Weren’t all these fuzzy shapes there before? Why couldn’t I make it out? The writing was so large on the wall, oh! How can I ever wash all this away? His brains clogged up with questions, burning and repenting at its stupidity.

night-couple

He wished he had never visited her that disastrous night. The night he wished to erase from the calendar of his memories. The night she managed to turn him in while he bolted away losing himself. The night he saw her in her real ‘avatar’.

“We may not meet again,” these were her parting words, while she explained why she had to go. She had no tears, only a pair of trembling lips. He didn’t see that for he could see nothing at all. His eyes turned red with hot tears rolling off his cheeks, soaking in the pain of separation.

“We could still exchange letters,” he pleaded. “You know that is of no use, dear. Let us make a night to remember instead, what say?” she tried comforting with a deal.

The love he felt for her couldn’t fathom anything. What ‘use’ is love other than love itself? “Why can’t she be mine, only her and me – isn’t that how it is supposed to be?” he wondered.

So, visit her that fateful night he did and does it every once in a while although in his mind. He wished she didn’t turn out that way – Lust had engulfed her whole being; panting and groaning loudly, she had managed to overpower him. Not one bit the divine image in his mind did she mirror. She was what Tejas had described like. “Sonia is the worst man-eater I’ve ever encountered,” he recalled Tejas warning him one day. She maintained a list of her victims and prided herself in her alluring beauty.

So, while searching for some meaning in those patterns. he weaves another story for that night, after all she was his sunshine girl and he craved for her in the image he had created –

That night, he pulls her up close to his heart and promises to protect her through thick and thin. Sonia cuddles up with him in the sofa, believing every word he says. Together they talk about the moon and the stars and the long ensuing painful separation. They make plans to write to each other and never let go, come what may. Sonia weeps softly as they promise many other things until they fall asleep in each other’s arms.

Alas, Sonia was but a figment of love within him. A reflection of his own whining and all things lost besides the feeling of love. And to be loved.

Now he hazards around strange women. It’s a pity that none have aroused such deep emotions as his sunshine girl had. And it is sad that none ever will. He had lost his innocence and couldn’t turn back the clock. He had forgotten how it feels to love but he could never ever forget that fateful night.

Image courtesy: HD Wallpapers

The long and the short of it…

Jack and Jill
Image source: The Writing life too

It was a quarter past five in the wee hours of morning and the sun had just risen over the Hilimanjharo. Jaikishen was up as usual – she had stolen his sleep. No not Jillian, she was too shy and would rather shrivel up and die in embarrassment than flutter her curly lashes for him. And this was a time when the world knew no barriers, no borders; only places with beautiful names and enchanting hills.

It was poor little grandma who was down with the flu and only the water from Hilimanjharo could heal her. The water was believed to be an elixir although hundreds had died of the dreaded dengue despite having more Hilimanjharo water than blood in their bloated bodies.  Granny had coughed away the entire night that left the rooster a bit confused. He paced around looking worried, hoping to reclaim his lost position.

Jaikishen had his set of worries too. He had to climb a 1000 feet of hard rock, locate the little spring that erupts out a narrow crevice, gather every dripping part of it into his pail and then descend the same 1000 feet, all the while fighting the burning sun. Life is a worry-list; as soon as you tick one, the next one starts prompting!

Jillian did have a soft corner for Jaikishen though, so granny’s cough was not her only woe. The picture of Jaikishen struggling to get to the top coupled with her wild imagery of the rumoured ape-man pouncing on her Jaikishen and tearing him to bits was equally unnerving. She decided to follow him.

He started early to avoid the burning sun and also to get Grandma well soon. He did reach the crevice and was filling his pail when it happened. Rays as hot as fire leapt at him while sweat rolled off him generously. In fact, it could even fill his pail up! Drained out of every ounce of fluid, he conked off with a few day stars fluttering around.

Meanwhile, Jillian wasn’t far behind as she had taken another path; a secret one that meandered around a cool cave but the more dangerous one – the abode of the rumored ape-man.  Love can stake anything! In typical cinematic fashion, no sooner had she emerged out of the cave, set her eyes on him, bringing about a coy smile, than she was stunned to see him fall like a pack of cards. Springing to him, she sprinkled a little of the Hilimanjharo water on his thirsty face and almost as if by magic, he opened his eyes!

God knows what happened next but then they came down singing happily with the birds and the bees. A legend was in the making so Jaikishen tripped over an imaginary boulder that broke his crown and Jillian came tumbling right after him.

What do women of substance feel about Holi?

Once upon a time, oldfox004 was on a secret mission but as usual she forgot her way and ended up meeting prominent women and also got a chance to interview them on their feelings for Holi. So here goes…

Rakhi Sawant – Oh Jessus! i loves the Holi, the rangs, the water, the innocent masti…this Holi tho i love to color my bhaiyya Mikka…he’s so sweet na *does the kuchi-kuchi action

Veena Mallik – Holi? What Holi? Filhaal tho all the mulla’s are labelling me ‘unholi’. But, i love Ash in a very ‘holi’ way, kasam se! *sends a flying kiss

Shweta Thiwari – Arre yaar! I gotta wear a burqa this holi 🙁 If Raja sees me all red and wet…??? I don’t like all this skinshow and all…what will my daughter say?  But, its all OK on TV, no? *kisses her daughter

Payal Rohatgi – I hate Monica, she is so fake yaar! Rahul is like my brother only. I don’t like to play Holi…all that gulaal will spoil my skin na…tho phir kya dikhaungi main? I bet Monica is playing secret holi with him…$^%^&*$ *smirks

Dolly Bhindra – HOLI…HOLI….HOLI…HOLI….$%#&*%^$….HOLI KI THO….%$^(*^&*#$…nobody plays Holi with me 🙁 *makes a horrendously scary face…i disappear in seconds

Yana Gupta – But, you know i love color….and especially colorful undies….shocking pink, neon yellow, electric blue…wow! What ? You asking me about Holi? Oh! I’m so forgetful na…I even forget to wear my colorful undy sometimes..*winks

Ekta Kapoor – Holi? Did you just say Holi? Can you see the big tikha on my forehead? I celebrate Holi with all my staff all year round…we use real blood, sacchi! *poker faced

Sonia Gandhi – Hamara Bharath mahaan desh hain…yahan Diwali, Christmas, Eid ithyadi sabhi thyohaar manaya jaatha hain…Hum sabko ‘Haath’ milakar rang lagana chahiye. ‘Haath’ ne sab ka ‘Man-moh’ liya hain. Bharath Mata ki Jai! Happy Holi! *waves her hand high in the air to no one in particular

Jyothi (Common girl) – Holi is nice holi-day for me. I’ll do a nice oil champi and put some multani mitthi on my face. Mum will make yummy puran poli’s. I’ll take to office tomorrow:) *shakes delightfully

Rani (Street girl) – Hamare liye tho roj Holi hain madam..kabhie yeh mard log idhar color lagathe tho kabhie udhar…bole tho ..koi ijjath hi nahi madam…upar se complain karo tho police log bhi…#$^$%^%$ saala! *deadpan

Disclaimer: All names have been changed in order to protect their ‘Real’ identities. Please don’t be alarmed if you find any resemblance to anybody whom you have happened to hear about even remotely. Happy Holi, guys!

A factual fiction!

After she had put down the receiver…

‘Now who was that?’

‘P… who else!’

She gets ready in 5 minutes flat and rushes to the door.

‘Will be back by elevenish…don’t keep dinner for me’.

‘The same old jeans…don’t you have something that flows?’

‘O Maa, I don’t have the time to wear all that….besides he is out at the gate’.

‘Your ears look bare’.

‘Maa…I can’t choose…besides what’s the need? I could do without something dazzling or dangling for now.’

‘Instead of arguing with me, go and wear something that doesn’t dazzle or dangle’.

She rushes in…

‘And while you are at it, wear a bracelet or something…’

She shouts back, ‘but I’m wearing my watch!’

‘But you have two hands, no?’

‘I give up Maa…what’s the point?’

‘What point? I like P besides who else can tolerate you?’

‘Huh! S is waiting along with P and I can hear them honking….BYE’.

Voices of fantasy

Image source: trialx
Image source: trialx

She had heard them before. They were all there with each a story to tell; stories of wishing wells, stories of magic carpets, stories of talking mirrors, stories of flying elephants, stories of how the sea had turned yellow, stories of a world under the sea and stories about girls who heard voices from the unknown. She believed and so they came. She loved to listen to them. And when she sat up cuddled in her bed or her rocking chair all alone in her room, they would come. An invitation was just not the criteria but they weren’t quite pleased when logic surpassed fantasy. They and she were often amused at the voices of reason outside her room. Skeptical scoundrels!

And then they would begin, taking turns and sometimes pausing a little bit for her. She would jump and clap at the enchanting new world discoveries, she would howl or weep silent tears at losses or separation but best of all, sometimes she would laugh involuntarily. At times like these, they understood. They could feel the joke on her bones; the sick jokes of rational behavior, the stale jokes of believing a mirage and the eternal joke of her hallucinations. But at times like these, the ‘others’ failed miserably.

The others had misapprehensions and weird notions of reality. It is this ‘others’ that sought to destroy her from herself. And they classified the ‘others’ as foes, as the stereotypical villains in their stories. But they couldn’t save her for the only protection they could offer was to come to heal her loneliness, to tell her stories from other worlds, to paint her dreams, but most of all believe in themselves so that she could believe in herself.

And when in midst of a story, she had any questions, they would respond at once without her having to ask. They could read her thoughts just as it generated with an uncanny precision known only to her. They knew her inside out; they could feel the rhythm in her veins, the impulses that soared through her back and forth, the voices of reason losing over the voices of fantasy and the myriads of colorful vibrations that enveloped her form. They would sing or dance or just rejoice at the triumphant voices of fantasy.

But then her doctor would visit and spoil it all.

He had to come every fortnight or else the voices of reason would be forever lost. He injected her with a syringe and some liquid matter coursed through her veins, right to her brain like a shot to them. They at once ducked these liquid bullets of rational illusions. They, the voices of fantasy had to survive, for in their destruction lay her end and that was something they were not prepared for. They wouldn’t let the ‘others’ win. They fought with the chemical bonds in the liquid which would invariably break off. So this war would last for a week and then suitably diminish around the next week.

That’s the time her doctor would visit again as per schedule. The ‘others’ could never win nor could they get rid of her ‘schizophrenic voices’.

Hope against hope?

He always wanted to make it big. He always wanted to leave a legacy. And this bright morning, as he stood outside the hot Mumbai studio, he knew his time had come. The auditions were going on in full swing. Mr. Doyle, the new age Robinhood, was making a realistic movie about his folks. They all knew he should be the lead actor. Who else can dance in shit without raising a stink? The movie was rumored to cater to the world’s elite, the world’s most civilised people. And then the ‘other’ side would know. O how the West was won!

At last his dreams would come true. So, with a pure intention and a noble cause he marched right ahead into the auditioning rooms. He cleared the dialogue rendition and a dance round with some number like…ding ding dinga with much ease. The final round was a personal interview with Mr. Doyle.

‘So tell me, Shera, why do you think you should play the lead role?’

‘Sir, you are making a movie about scum and squalor rising towards change, a movie of hope against hope and Sir, I am the ‘real’ thing. I actually live in those slums. My folks and I have tough lives but tougher dreams, Sir. We want to bring in a change. Who better than me, Sir? You and I shall win the West. Together, we can and we will. The twain shall meet, Sir.’

Mr. Doyle smiled. Shera knew that he had him there. Wagging his tail with sheer excitement, he headed towards his home with his chest held high in the air. Every dog has his day!

The results were out a few days later. Some outsider by the name of Damal would play the slumdog! And rumor has it that Shera has been chained ever since the first day of the shoot, due to a sudden ‘biting’ spree.

Tagged – A Photo Story!

He was frail now, as frail as the grass underneath the bench. He knew his fingers had started shaking again. He joined them tight across his folded knees and began to wonder, “How long?” He was tired and this evening that he sat on the park bench symbolised the evening of his life too. He longed for the night – the night of his life.

Every little wish of a child cannot be fulfilled for want of a slightly higher need and bread was indeed necessary than an admission to kindergarten. So, Anna being the eldest took to the family profession of tailoring. He did the measuring and the sizing with precision but one hardly ever saw a ‘measuring tape or scale’ in his shop. Years passed by, Anna grew up, the only tailor in town to sew the best for the best though he was un-lettered. His siblings were posted in government agencies by virtue of their literacy. So, Anna brought the family a notch above. Bread is good but not better than school.

But, little Anna had a wish – he wanted to go to school, he wanted to read, write and sing just like the children at the nearby school. The wish died as he had grown up. Learning the letters seemed unnecessary and he could fend for himself and his siblings. He improved with every suit and sometimes was even amazed with the precision perfect cutting! Still, he just couldn’t feel the calm – the kind of calm that comes to a man who has found his calling in life. He felt like a light-house keeper, the old man who does his duty, watching endless horizons of black, blue or green and sometimes with the sun playing along, he would be treated to reds, golden yellows and vermillion. Days merged into nights and the horizon would disappear, but the light house never failed to guide the ships that roamed the nights.

Who takes care of the light-house keeper? Well, alcohol did for Anna. He took to drinking like a baby turtle to the sea. He drowned in its many flavors but was awake somehow at the sewing machine. Days merged into nights and slowly into years…Anna had made a name, Anna was the very symbol of sacrifice and hardwork. But, one day he coughed and coughed and spewed out blood – his liver gave way.

His nieces take care of him now; they teach him the alphabets but he cannot seem to have any control on his shaky fingers. He can read and sing but he still longs to write…

Moral: Nature has its own way and takes its own sweet time in fulfiling our desires. Be patient and trust in the forces. There is always an “and it happened” moment some time.

P.S: This is my feeble attempt at meaningful fiction. I am thankful to Kanagu for tagging me with this wonderful idea. I tag all my blogger buddies and request you to weave a story around any photo in your pics folder. Sorry Kanagu, I relaxed the rules a bit. By the way, this was the last photo in my favorite photos folder and it was the fifth!