We were classmates from 7th standard till 10th. Four long years: enough to give you plentiful memories you’ll take years to forget. She was a bench
partner in class 7th, then became a friend….a very good friend….soon we were best buddies. Our school–bus too was same and we always used to sit together. She was awesomely beautiful but it wasn’t the beauty that I fell for.
The air would be different for me when she was around. She belonged to a very strict Muslim family though. Once I’d gone to her place to collect my note-book and her mother gave me a very nasty look. Theirs was a family of inherited intelligence. Her grand-father was a scientist, mother a doctor, father an
engineer and elder brother an astronaut. We were also well-off at that time as papa was still there…”.My voice choked.
“Are you ok Niks?’ She brought me a glass of water.
“Yes”, I said. “Once a wicked brat had commented- VARSHAAN, MERI JAAN. And I had
beaten up the guy with an iron cane. I was suspended from school for 2 weeks. I cared for her this much!! As she had it in her blood, the girl was exceptionally well in studies. An all-time Maths topper and science was her favourite subject. IIT was her dream. I wasn’t bad too but always stayed behind her by a few marks. She was my motivation, my zeal to work hard. I won’t go into much detail as I don’t want to remind myself of the dreadful past again and again. It makes me feel nostalgic Mitali, I hope you understand. Else I could have written beyond 5000 pages about her in a similar Archies diary.” Oops, I shouldn’t have said the last sentence. I’d inadvertently hurt my Mitsu. “Everything was fine until….until the Best of Luck Party in 10th standard.” , I continued.
“ Aaja mai hawaaon pe bitha ke le chalu, tu hi toh meri dost hai…”- my cell drove me out of reminiscence and I was back in the present.
“Hi Mitsu, I am damn nervous!”
“Come on Niket, Be a MAN! My parents will gladly accept you. A handsome CA, loving, caring, salary package in lacks- Not Bad !”
“But not very Good either..!”, I retorted as she cajoled me to stay calm and confident.
“ Chalo, I’ll hang up now. A lot to be done to welcome the Param-Pratapi Tejaswi son-in-law of Mr.Saket Mittal. See ya! Take medicines!” ,said Mitsu.
“See ya. You too take medicines!! ”
Take Medicines – Yeah, that’s our cute little code-word to convey “Love You” in public. We, the Chartered Accountants, are too good at manipulations, aren’t we??
I looked around. It was 12.30 am. The old man was snoring loudly. The young couple – still lost in each other!
I, too, again got lost in my reminiscence.
“Why, what happened that day- on your Best of luck party?” , Mitali had asked.
“I proposed her. And that was probably the last day or rather the last time when we were together. She left the place silently. Silence hurts more than harsh words. I would have felt much better had she rebuked me, chided me or enumerated the reasons why I didn’t deserve her or had simply said something silly or insulting. But she didn’t utter a word. And then she left my life silently too. She seemed to be least interested in me or my well-being. When dreams shatter, they make no noise. But beneath the superficial silence, resides a wrenching heart. Mitsu, a heart-ache is more painful than a heart-attack. She threw me out of her life as if I were her torn-out Barbie doll. Mitali, good memories hurt more than the bad ones. When we compare the good memories with the present, we feel nostalgic. We feel that it’s all over now and the happy moments spent together will never come back again…ever.. The bad ones make us feel comfortable; make us feel we are in a better position now .”
“And that’s why you’ve made it a point that whenever you are reminded of her, you’ll recall only the bitter memories. That’s the root cause of your hatred, Niket!”
“What else can I do? Recall the good ones and cry like a kid. There’s no point arguing with me Mitali. I am adamant on my views. She had always meant more to me than what I had meant to her. I’ve been hating her since then. And I’ll hate her till my last breath!”
“What happened after 10th? I mean you guys neve…”
“ I changed my school. I simply didn’t want to face her everyday. But Mitsu, believe me, even changing the environment doesn’t help if bitter memories accompany you everywhere. I would avoid every common friend’s party, get-togethers and re-unions lest she would be there.
Later I got to know she had changed the school too. She’d secured 93% in 10th boards and in a newspaper interview had announced to take up Science stream and prepare for IIT-JEE. Who knew which Coaching Institute she’d be joining- Gupta Tutorials or Rankers’ Point or Chaitanya Academy? And according to Murphy’s laws, if you strongly wish that something should not happen, it will happen!! So chances were more that we’d land up in the same institute, if I took Science. Even if the institutes were different, the IIT and PET examination centres would still have been the same. Then and there I decided to choose commerce and wiped out all possibilities to ever meet her in future.”
“ That’s terrible on your part, Nik! You took your career decisions so vaguely. Anyways, she cracked IIT-JEE, didn’t she?”
“ Nope, she definitely had the brains and dexterity to crack it but don’t know why she couldn’t. She completed her engineering from GSITS, Indore. And currently, she’s an IIM-Lucknow student. You know I’d cried for 2 days when I came to know this. It’s difficult to digest the success of someone you abhor.”
“That’s weird, Niks. You should have felt happy. I wonder you ever loved her! But how come you know so much about her? I mean both of you are not in contact since years and ..”
“ A fake orkut profile whose recent visitors’ option is disabled. I often peep into her scraps, communities and …”
“ What’s the email-Id?”, Mitali asked.
“ Why? What will you…”
“ Tell me the ID and Password, fast!” , there she hypnotized me again.
“firstname.lastname@example.org PASSWORD- gotohell**123”
“ samajho fake profile deleted!”, smirked Mitsu.
“ Don’t do that, please…”
“ I Will do that. This needs to be done if you really want to get over the past. No more arguments!”
Silence entailed for a few minutes. Finally, Mitali spoke in a rather serious tone “You know, Niket. Every girl wants to be the first and last one in the life of her Prince Charming. I won’t lie. Yes, I am hurt, badly hurt. Feel like crying for hours. I hadn’t expected the best day in my life to be like this! I envy Varshaan, but pity her at the same time, owing to the copious amount of hatred your heart stores for her. But..”
“You’ve lost Mitali, Niks. You’ve lost her forever. And you’ve lost a beloved and a very good friend for the second time”, I said to myself as my mind rebuked my heart for telling the truth. But no relationship can be built on the foundation of falsity. I had to tell her this!
“ But,I still love you! Can’t let you go for trivial reasons!” I was shocked when Mitsu said this.
“ I love you toooooooooooooooooooo….three…four…”, I replied .
“ But promise me one thing -that you’ll do whatever I tell you to. I will take you out of this hatred pool. Gimme some time and I’ll bring your life back to normal rails.”- Mitali
“ I promise solemnly. I promise. You know Mitali, there’s one more person in my hate-list…my dad..”
“ Yes. He was an addicted drunkard. a feelingless man devoid of human emotions. Soon he lost his job and became a good-for-nothing bum. He’d often come home late, beat up my mom mercilessly and snatch her hard-earned money for buying liquor. He succumbed to this dangerous habit. I wonder why my mom still weeps for him. I just hate him and am glad that he died.”
“ Shhh….don’t utter such inauspicious words for a dead man else his soul will wander restlessly in pursuit of peace.”
“ These Fetters of Hatred don’t let me give my 100% to anything I do- career, relationships, peace of mind. They’ve sabotaged me. I am sullen….sulked. Is it possible to put an end to this torment? Well, Mitali, time may heal wounds. But you cannot deny the fact that the wounds do leave scars.”
“ The best we can do is : stop noticing the scars. We cannot control all the events that happen in our lives, but we can control how we deal with them. Come on, Niket. Everything is possible in this world. I know it’s easier said than done but it’s not impossible altogether.”