Shaadi ho to aisi

2 May 2011

‘Just about eight months to the wedding. I want to start sending invitations to my guests from now itself. I want them to block their calendars and all that. It’s not too early no?’, he asked.

‘No, no. Not at all.’ Yum replied. ‘In fact, I have a nice idea myself about a style of invitation that no one can forget. If I may?’

‘Haan haan, bataao bataao’, he was curious.

‘How about getting some such personality to record few inviting words on camera, to whom the world listens to? And then sending these video-cds or may be even a link to an uploaded video to your guests?’, inquired Yum.

‘Sounds interesting. But that some such personality could be?”

By evening, he got his answer. Yum had arranged for the personality to start recording his first marriage invitation video. The video became a viral hit overnight.

9 June 2011

Still a few months before the marriage, he realized he hadn’t figured out what gift to gift. To his darling son on his wedding.

‘Dear Yum, what gift to gift?

‘A kickass live painting?’, Yum’s response was swift.

‘Hmm, good stuff’, he was pleased. ‘Who?, he asked.

Yum looked into God’s eyes. And winked. With a smirk. God winked back.

As the white haired painter painted his son in the evening, the son felt so proud of his father, you could see tears of love dripping through his eyes. And oh, how so beautifully did the painter in white hair capture them.

14 August 2011

Two months down the line, it was time to officially meet the ladkivaalas, the last time before the wedding night itself. ‘Can we have someone who can add some charm to our coterie?’

‘Sure, leave that to me.’ Yum assured. I know just the man who would be apt for this.

Yum arranged for the man who was apt for it. As the guests were seated at the ladkivalon ke ghar, and men and women chit chatted, the apt man spoke the apt line.  ‘Hum to bus itna chahte hain ki baraation ka swagat Paan Paraag se ho’.

5 October 2011

‘Do you think it would be a good idea to have someone on board, who can help the wider public have online access to my son’s wedding? Through phone apps and stuff like that?’.

‘Sure thing’, Yum agreed. ‘And I think I have just the right person in mind for this jobs’. Yum and him laughed together at the Pun. Within five days, the marriage app was the most downloadable stuff on internet.

10 October 2011

The last function before the marriage ceremony could commence was a Gazal night where the who’s who of town were invited. Those who couldn’t, followed up through live streaming on their i-phones and i-pods and i-pads. Once the night was over, they understood why back there on earth, they called him the Ghazal king.

03 December 2011

The wedding night. Finally. Only when the baraatis started dancing around the dulha seated atop a ghodi, did they notice who the old dancer was, dancing with them. Singing and dancing with joy. With life. The old dancer brought through special invitation to shake a leg with each one of them.

Pal bhar ke liye koi hume pyaar kar le. Jhoota hi sahi.

The right thing

The shop looked bigger. It didn’t seem to have expanded physically but it did look more spacious. May be it was because of the now lighter coloured walls. Not many years ago, these very same walls had nothing but a ragged covering of grayish brown raw plaster. Now all the sides were yellowish-white while the ceiling radiated a shade resembling the noon-sky.

The tea arrived. I didn’t look up at the boy who brought me the beverage. I didn’t look at anyone or in any direction in particular. As the boy moved to other customers, I picked up the thick glassed tumbler, inhaled the aroma of the tea-vapours and then gently took a sip, with eyes closed. Finally I could recall where I had seen the doctor last. He was the one – shit! I continued sipping.

***

‘How is it’?

‘Too sweet’.

‘Again? I hardly added any sugar today’.

‘But you added something else – an overdose of love’.

Like always, she blushed. Like always, I kissed her on the lips and returned to my tea and newspaper.

‘You should stop doing that now. Ahmed is growing up real fast’.

‘Parents kiss in front of their kids in US’, I protested.

‘This is Mumbai. Here they beat up couples holding hands in malls. They won’t raise their hands against a drunkard raping a kid but they would thrash educated people in love with each other, telling them it is against the Indian culture’. No one does the right thing these days’.

She might have had a point but she had drifted away. I didn’t want to answer her. I returned to my newspaper. A small news in the seventh page was about a doctor who had been kidnapped and killed. He was the same doctor who was there during my boy’s delivery.

‘I think I will visit my old shop soon’.

***

‘Ah, you are back so soon’.

Sardarji smiled. This time he had a brief-case with him. ‘Oh yes, I wan’t to get it done today itself – it’s a lucky day’.

Papers were signed and the deal executed.

‘Thank you. And please be in touch. Mumbai is a crowded city but believe me, people there are the loneliest. Sometimes you might miss your old tea shop. So whenever you are in town, feel free to drop by’.

I could have smiled back without replying but I felt like replying.

‘I have a new life to begin now and I wonder Paji if I would even remember I had a tea-shop once. But if I do, I am sure I shall drop by. That would be the right thing to do’ – with that I headed towards home.

Ten years ago, they had tried real hard to take over the property but they couldn’t. No one could figure out from where did a twelve year old kid arrange for enough money to bribe the police. The fact is, the police didn’t care a bit about the source. They cared about the money and that they had. So they saved me from the wolves and the wolves couldn’t do much about it. The riot had died down about a week ago – it was not the right time to re-start it and with the cops on my side, it made sense for them to give up. They gave up.

When Ahmed died, I was mad not just at the hindus but also at the police. I wanted to kill them all. But first, I wanted to kill the guy who had started it all. I returned to the burnt shop, so that I could find him. I never found him. I wondered what he would have become by now – a politician? A laywer? Or may be a doctor? But I knew what I had become – I had become a businessman. Instead of killing the police, I was bribing them.

When I had returned to the shop to take revenge, taking revenge had appeared to be the right thing. When I stole money from a temple to bribe the police so that I could not let Ahmed’s shop go away to the hands of hindus, it had appeared to be the right thing. Four years down the line, I was not sure what was right anymore. Four years down the line, things were back to normal and I was a successful businessman. I had my own tea-shop that served hindus and muslims alike.

The year I turned twenty, I married a hindu girl. Yesterday, she gave birth to my boy. I can’t tell you how happy I felt when the doctor gave me the news. I think I have seen that doctor somewhere but cannot really recall. Anyway, you should see Ahmed someday, he looks so cute. When he grows up, he shall always do the right thing. Tomorrow we are moving to Bombay.

***

Here I am, at the railway station, wondering if I should leave this town. Hindus are killing muslims, trying to teach the miyas lessons they would remember all their lives. It is but obvious that the government is not interested in doing much about this mass murder. What is more disgusting is the ubiquitous observation that the government is instead promoting the riot from underground. The government wants us dead.

It had all started in front of my own eyes a mere three days ago at Ahmed’s shop. Ahmed was a good guy who had adopted me and given me home and work and a muslim name.

Three days ago, in his shop Ahmed beat up a guy who must have been not more than twenty. The guy had been teasing a younger girl sitting in the adjacent table for the past ten minutes. Ahmed did not start off with physical assault.  Initially he was polite and all that but the guy didn’t seem to be in the mood to behave. Finally when Ahmed couldn’t take it any longer, he landed a slap. It was a hard slap. Blood oozed out of the mouth of the young man. Before he fled he abused Allah and his men.

‘I know that girl – she is a hindu’.

‘So’?

‘He was abusing Allah when you were thrashing him. He must have been a hindu too’.

‘Are hindus allowed to eve-tease women’?

‘How does it matter? Let them do what they want to do as long they don’t interfere with us. Why bother’?

‘I didn’t know whether you were borne to a hindu or a muslim when I adopted you kid. Why did I bother to do that‘?

I didn’t reply. For the first time it occurred to me that I might not be a real muslim, so what if I had a muslim name. Ahmed never bothered to teach me anything religious – he only taught me the importance of hard work and the courage to do the right thing. Ahmed had always done the right things. To Ahmed it didn’t matter who my real parents were. To Ahmed it didn’t matter who was teasing whom. There were certain things that were right and certain things that were wrong. To abuse a girl was wrong. To fight for the girl was right. Ahmed did the right thing by slapping that guy. The hindu guy.

The next day, they killed Ahmed and torched his shop. They had had tea there for the last eight years and one fine day they killed the owner of their favourite tea-shop and burned down his shop. The life of the adopted kid was spared after an inspection of his penis that showed no signs of Islam. But I was beaten up and told to keep my mouth shut if the police enquired. The police never enquired. This agitated the muslim friends of Ahmed who gheraoed the local police-station and demanded action. A hindu constable was minorly hurt. That’s how the riots began.

Since the last three days I have been running from here to there, occasionally making my way through heaps of smelling corpses and litters of blood-stained skin.

The train on platform number 1 just left. I have decided I won’t run anymore. I don’t think I can run anymore. Running away is not the right thing to do. I will do the right thing.

Milk

She wore a cotton kurti that was green over her bosom and orange over her belly and waist. She also wore shades that belonged to a totally different era – she must have picked them up from her mom’s collection. She took off the shades almost as soon as she closed the door. Her face was unattractive but the same won’t be true for her eyes for the two black dots floating inside a white sea were no less beautiful and cute than a pair of gold-fish trapped in a water filled flask. She smelled of milk. The smell had been rather strong – making him wonder if she had just taken a milk-bath. She probably believed that rinsing her bare skin with something as white as milk would make her fairer.

Lost in her smell and her eyes, he noticed her lips only when they had come real close to his own. Before he could do a mental analysis of the exact shade of the lipstick that she had applied, their lips were locked. For the first few seconds, it felt just like eating Milkybar although it had been long since  the last time he actually tasted one.  He was used to chocolate. Nothing at the moment however, suggested that he was going to get anything else but a dip in pure white milk. Once the kurti and whatever else she was wearing below it, were gone, it was all white inside, adding in turn to the milkiness of the moment. The undergarments were not just white, but were certainly new as well. He already knew he wanted to call her gaay as his left hand started working over the breasts and as the shining white milk-smelling bra hung by the tip of the forefinger of his right hand. He couldn’t remember the last time he wore a white undie – probably never. As he let the piece of cloth drop off his finger, he knew he would ask for a white one the next time he would go to buy one.

Probably if she hadn’t insisted, he would have spent the entire night, smelling her breasts and playing with them. He wasn’t sure when that last piece of clothing had disappeared from her brown body. He wasn’t even sure about the separation of his own body with his dress. He was too lost. Probably it was one of those nights when his mind floated beyond sex. More than the desire to penetrate her, he wished he could paint her white from top to bottom. He really wished that. But it was mean of him to leave her unsatisfied. He cared for her. He probably loved her. And so they had sex – he still lost in the milky odour that radiated from her chest, his eyes closed – trying to see her as a white marble statue in the darkness of the shut eye-lids. The orgasm felt like a powerful bomb blast – throwing shattered particles of the white marble in all directions. Gradually, he fell asleep amidst the bits and pieces of the white stone, some around him and some over.

When he got up in the morning, he knew one thing for sure – drinking two liters of milk everyday was certainly not a solution to stop night-falls.

Madly in love

He could have a look at her whenever the door would open. Usually the door never opened for more than few seconds. Whenever it did, one could notice the smile on his face and the spark in his eyes.

She was gorgeous. He especially liked her legs. They were smooth and beautiful. They shone in the filtered rays that entered the hallway through the blinds. She stayed in a big room, separated by his, by a narrow white door. Her room was way bigger than his. He had seen her entire room only once. That had been the day when he had first visited the house. His room wasn’t yet ready and so he had to spend the day, the entire day in her room, seated in one corner. That was the first time he had seen her. He had been left awestruck by her beauty. None of them had exchanged any word. He was sure, she had liked him too.

Later in the evening, some strangers had escorted him to his small room. That was the first time he had crossed the door. Ever since, he had been forced to spend all his time in his room. His room for life. It was neat and clean but it was small with a smaller window that remained closed most of the times. Ever since, his moments of joy were nothing but those few seconds when the door would open and he would get to see her. Sometimes even that didn’t happen. She was nowhere to be seen. But most of the times, she was right there. The beautiful she.

She never came to his room. Everyone else did. Call him pervert, but he had easily managed to see the residents of the house naked. Once he also got a rare opportunity to watch the land-lady and the land-lord having sex. He was so turned on by the act that he kept wishing for it to happen again. He kept wishing that for several days. Sadly, it never did. The couple had probably realized that he had seen it all. They never talked about it. He continued his peeking act but soon got bored of watching them. It was she who he really cared about. The beautiful she.

In a way, he was needed more in the house than her. So what if she was beautiful and would often receive a compliment from some guest or another? He knew he was more important. No one ever talked about him or ever praised him. They all took him for granted. Probably because he was too nice. But then, he didn’t know how else to be. He was in the house to perform his duty, and that he did. It was true that everyone offered him nothing but shit. He never complained. He could take any shit with a smiling face; with the same smiling face that he exhibited every time he got a chance to admire her grandeur, through the only door that separated their rooms.

The poor commode knew he was madly in love with the teak chair that lived in the hallway.

PS: A western style toilet is also referred to as a commode.

A leaf fell down from a tree above

Darkness was approaching. He didn’t move. A leaf fell down from a tree above. His eyes followed the path traced by the falling leaf in the cold and wet air. It wasn’t just the air that was wet. He was wet too. It had been a life time. He just hadn’t moved from that broken bench that he had occupied earlier in the day. It had rained couple of times in the day. Many leaves had fallen since then. He had tried not to miss a single on of them. The leaves reminded him of something. Someone. The falling leaves.

It was dark. The unattended park had no neon lamps to boast of. The only light that was to be seen came from a far off pan-shop. He couldn’t see but he could figure out that now, he was the only soul left in there. Sitting on the same broken bench. The dark green color of the bench was nothing but pitch black. So much like his life. Black. His eyes could follow the leaves no more. The leaves continued falling. He focussed. He could listen to them. Falling. And then it started raining again.

It started with a drizzle but picked up soon. His slightly dried up body was getting drenched once again. He didn’t mind it. He wanted it. He wanted things to change. He wanted things to happen. He wanted the cold water in the cold evening to touch him and whisper music in his ears. He wanted to be away from civilization. He was away from civilization.

The thudding sound of an engine came from somewhere. The intensity increased, stayed constant for some time and then stopped. A motorcycle. He could also listen to two men talk. Like a crocodile, he acted. He suddenly had cold metal in his hands. He suddenly was looking through a lens. He was looking at the men. The unaware men. Infra-red. He was fast. Bang. First shot. Bang. Second shot. A leaf fell down from a tree above.

Snap

him: It’s insane.
her: Yes, I know.

him: How is it even possible?
her: Calm down. Just accept it. It’s possible. It’s happening.

him: I think I have gone mad.
her: Insane and mad are one and the same.

him: Shut up. Oh no, had you not spoken, I wouldn’t have been reacting the way I have been anyways. It’s too late to ask you to shut up.
her: So you don’t mind if I continue talking to you?

him: It’s just insane.
her: Why are you so boring?

him: I don’t mind being boring, but please someone tell me that I am not mad. I don’t mind being an asshole or a drop of any asshole’s cum shot, but I don’t want to be a mad man who can listen to a mother fucking mosquito speak!

She was good looking and small. And she was a good sucker. Fluttering her wings, she roamed around. She roamed around and flew from one place to another in search of blood. Human blood. She needed blood to survive. It had never been difficult to find giant sources of blood. They were everywhere, the so called human beings. She had seen so many of her friends being brutally murdered, in hot blood. She recalled the million times she herself had escaped death by a fraction of a second. She was smart. She knew how long was long enough to keep sucking. She had survived so far and she was pretty sure of a long and happy life ahead of her.

It was a cold night when she was enjoying a feast. His blood tasted different. She immediately developed a liking for his blood. It was just awesome. She had never tasted anything like that before. It was smoother than honey and classier than wine. She knew she had to keep coming back to this guy. Before leaving, she had a glimpse of his face. He was sound asleep. He looked like a guy who would never kill a beautiful creature like her. At least she thought so. It was getting late. She left the place.

her: You speak bad words. You hurt me. I am a female by the way. At least be technically correct while abusing me. I cannot fuck my mother, or anyone else’s mother for God’s sake.

him: You know what? Let me just assume that I have actually turned mad. Because if I don’t assume that, I’ll go mad anyway.
her: You make sense.

him: I do? Ah, finally something’s making sense here! Alright miss mosquito, why the fuck did you even try waking me up? I could have killed you even before you got the chance to start talking? Or are you some super-mosquito who has come from some other planet to save all the mosquitoes of planet earth from the evil human race?
her: Can’t you talk like a decent guy for a second? You want to know why I woke you up? Alright, listen then. It’s been ten days now that I have been sucking your…

him: Sucking my what?
her: Don’t even think about that you horny soul.

him: Eh, I am sorry, I got carried away. I guess I totally forgot that there are other things worth being sucked in me. (Giggle) So you have been sucking my blood since ten days now. But did I ever stop you from doing that? I still don’t get you. Why did you wake me up?
her: You are not even letting me speak.

him: Alright, carry on. I’m listening.
her: Hmm. Well, usually I treat all humans alike. I need them for my survival. They are my energy sources. I need them. But I found you very different. I mean it wasn’t really you when it started. It began with your blood which by the way is the best thing I have ever had in my life.

him: Thanks for the bloody compliment.
her: Heh. Very funny. Whatever. So yeah, though it began with your blood, gradually I started liking you as well. I have this habit of sucking people and leaving them before they realize the pain. I am pretty good at it. In your case, I tried changing my rules a little bit. Even when I knew, it was time to leave, I kept devouring some more blood. Man, you are good. You never even moved once. This was more than enough. I realized I was totally in love with you. I realized I had to let you know about this. And here I am. Finally talking to you.

him: I am speechless.
her: Can I kiss you?

him: What the…
her: Alright, I understand that you can’t even make out my lips from my vagina. I am sorry, I shouldn’t have asked that. I really am sorry.

him: Hey it’s okay, don’t say sorry now. I guess you got carried away. I mean I still am speechless but I guess I should at least say thank you.
her: Thank you?

him: Well, yeah. I mean it always feels great to know that someone out there loves you. Doesn’t it?
her: Yeah it does.

him: Hmm.
her: Hey tell me one thing. Do you like, like me?

him: Eh. If hundreds of your sisters come around right now, I won’t even be able to figure out which one is you! How can I like you?
her: What if you had been blind?

him: But I am not blind.
her: Yes, I know you are not blind. But what if you were? Would you have liked me then?

him: I don’t know. I have no idea what liking means to blind men.
her: What does it mean to you?

him: I know where this is headed to. I could see that coming. Look, I am a straightforward person. Looks matter to me, alright? I don’t know what I would have done if I could not see, but when I can, I know who are likable and who aren’t. Period.
her: So you don’t like me because you don’t find me beautiful?

him: Beautiful? Look who is talking about beauty to me! A mosquito. Was that supposed to be a joke or something?
her: Is this all about beauty? Don’t you think there are other things that are beautiful? Like feelings? Like love?

him: You are smart. It’s difficult to win with you. But that still doesn’t change anything. I am happy to know that you love me but sorry, I don’t see how I can ever look at you that way.
her: What if I tell you I am actually a girl? A beautiful girl!

him: I would go back to sleep.
her: Alright listen, I am a girl. I mean, alright, I am not right now but I indeed was one, not long back. Don’t ask me how and why it happened but I was turned into this nasty creature. And the way it always happens, I was told about the only way I could turn into a girl again.

him: Fuck, this is getting interesting. Fuck, Fuck, Fuck. You not kidding me, are you?
her: Fuck you. What makes you think a mosquito can speak otherwise? Are you like totally dumb?

him: Ah, ok. Fine. I believe you. Fuck man, this is crazier than my wildest dream. Tell me how you can turn back to a girl. But don’t tell me I have to kiss you or something. I mean, I can understand kissing a frog, but a mosquito! Naah, not happening. Nice try.
her: No, you don’t have to kiss me.

him: Cool, what do I have to do then?
her: You just have to snap me off.

him: Snap you off?
her: Don’t jump off. I was told that I would find only one person who could listen to me, and if that person agreed to snap me off, I would turn back to my old self.

him: Are you sure? What if you die?
her: Don’t irritate me. Just do it.

him: Alright baby, here you go.

SNAP

Tiny droplets of his own blood left red stains on his palm. He looked at the squeezed body.

Just another morning

I got up some time ago. At five in the morning! I got up because I saw weird dreams and started feeling restless. I had slept at some time after three. And I am still restless, though not very sure why.

I decided to write a poem. Couldn’t. I typed. I deleted. I typed again. I deleted again. Nothing! It happens with everyone at times. Right? Say right. Vatsap?

May be not a poem. The craziest blog till now at least. Something!

Early morning

She was up, just ten seconds before the alarm clock could blow. She wondered sometimes about the use of setting the alarm clock, when she always got up on time anyways. But then, it had become a habit, setting up the alarm before going to sleep and then getting up a li’l before five in the morning to switch it off, even beofore it could make any sound.

She loved getting up early. It was so refreshing, and gave her immense strength.

In half an hour, she was out on the road which was still wet with dew. The breeze was icy cool, and made the early morning bed-departure routine worth following. She was happy to have her house opposite a beautiful and huge park where lot of other early risers would reach hopping in their shorts and canvas shoes. Soon like most of them her age out there in the park, she was jogging.

In about five minutes, it started drizzling. Cold freezing drops of a compound commonly referred to as water soon gained intensity, and before anyone could find a shelter, the drizzle had already turned into a heavy downpour. She was all wet. And what the hell, the water was just too cold. She started running fast to reach the nearest shed, which was aleady enough crowded with people. She ran faster, lost balance and fell down, felt the pain, let out a scream and then finally opened her eyes.

‘I am sorry, I had to kick you out of the bed. Hope it didn’t hurt, did it? But this was the only thing I could do, when even a bottle of ice cold water couldn’t wake you up. It will be 365 days tomorrow, when your attempt to get up at five in the morning will fail. Anyways, go have a shower. It’s already nine you lazy girl.’

Tring Tring

She realized that her cell-phone was ringing. Before she could press the receive-button, the call got disconnected. She checked if the number was saved on her cell. Yeah, it was. It was a missed call from none other than ‘B’ himself! He called finally! He is back!!

As she waited for his call so that she could pick up this time, her mind drifted back in time. B had been everything to her and this was so not a very long time back. She adored him as a person, loved him as a friend, respected him for his principles and deep within her she also had a liking for him. She was not sure if it was love or anything, but then she couldn’t deny the possibiliy too. She didn’t know what love was after all!

Things were going on fine. They met regularly and they often watched movies. They used to have fun in the beach followed by coffee in restaurants. And then suddenly, one day B had to go out of town. He never gave a reason. She tried to know where he was going to and what for, but he just didn’t tell. And he left.

It had been almost an year now. She had no clue where he was, how he was. He never replied to any e-mails, his cell was always unreachable and the permanent phone no: or address was unavailable. She had almost given up on him. Yes, she had almost forgotten him, when suddenly today she saw his missed call.

The cell was ringing again. It was him. She pressed the ‘receive-button’. And as soon as she pressed it, there was a blast. A pretty powerful blast which should have shaken structures even five miles away! She was blown to pieces. The entire office space was reduced to steel and concrete skeleton and the building had collpased and was kissing the earth.

Yes, he was back for sure!

Freedom

And when the sun had set, she came out of hiding. Two hours! It was impossible to do what she was planning to, in such a short span of time. But then this was all the time that she had, and she knew she had to do it. This was the only thing she could do to free herself. Only time could tell, how this freedom was going to be like!

As she slowly and cautiously crouched along the railing of the terrace, she rechecked her possesions. The weapon was in place, and so was the letter. The typical sound audible to her on her earphone indicated that the miniature video camera attached to her head gear was still operational. He will feel proud of me when he sees the video!

She reached the main door on the terrace which lead downstairs to the seventh floor of the building. Action time now!

And then suddenly, out of nowhere a spot light fell on her. She was caught by utter suprise and reflex made her jump away but it was too late. Whop! Whop! Two bullets from a pistol, landed straight at her heart. And there she was, dead on the concrete.

Freedom!