The Window shut with a thud, Ananya seated on the arm chair opened her eyes startled by the noise. She realized she had fallen asleep with the book in her hand, Jagjit Singh’s ‘tere khushboo main base khat main jalata kaise’ still softly playing in the background. She got up to open the window when Rohan’s picture fell from the book. She picked it up, opened the window and got back to the chair. She adjusted the blue satin gown as she placed her feet on the table and drew the shawl closer around her. Rohan’s picture was the one he has sent before leaving for Iran on a business trip last year. She had a closer look at the picture and a smile broke on her face seeing his baby like eyes behind the glasses. He preferred to wear a white tee with checked shirt and denim. Smile was rare but with Ananya around it never receded. He dressed simple but classy; he was more European than Indian when it came to dressing. It was less than 24 hours before she could see her love face to face, Ananya cuddled in her chair went to sleep thinking of the moments spent together.
For Rohan being behind the wheel with Ananya by his side was no less than heaven. He couldn’t contain his happiness; he did not want to leave Ananya’s hand even while driving. He would softly hold her hand and place it on his thigh managing to drive with one hand. “Rohan please will you tell me where are we headed, you have just been smiling and hiding it from me and will you please leave my hand I got to show you all my lipstick shades” Ananya said in a chirpy tone. Rohan kissed her hand “Yes wifey as you please, we are today going to fulfill all the promises I made to you sweetie.” Adjectives for Rohan were rare but if he would be really happy he would address her with wifey, jaana, honey, sweetie…it was just endless. They talked all about Iran as Ananya tested her lip stick shades on Rohan’s hand and got a nod on each being good or bad. Rohan parked his car outside Delhi Haat. Ananya gave a puzzled look. Rohan then said that they were there to shop for all that he has promised her. Ananya remembered the conversation when Rohan had got his first salary and said ‘Ani, this I got to give to dad but I promise I will buy you each piece of Indian accessory you desire and winked and continued saying ‘the more you wear the more pleasurable it will be for me to get you off it.”
Ani’s demands were small but very close to her heart. She quickly hopped off the car and they entered the market hand in hand. He would wait outside the shop patiently looking at Ani choosing earrings, payal and bangles. She tried the green bangles and peeped outside the shop at Rohan who was smoking his cig, she held the bangles on her fingers and gestured if he liked them. He smiled and that said it all. She got all of it packed and removed Rohan’s wallet to pay, the shopkeeper gave it weird reaction looking at the gents’ wallet come out of Ani’s big hand bag. She gauged what was happening and in a manly tone asked how much…and then burst out laughing as she settled the bill. That day Rohan drove for 8 hours around Delhi to shop, he also took her to Palam Vihar to show the apartment he was looking forward to buy and promised Ani to get her out of the complexity she was in; the dreams in their eyes were larger than life and as some put it quite unrealistic.
A cold hand on Ananya’s forehead got her back to the real world; in the past three months since Rohan had stopped speaking Ananya’s life too had stopped. Ananya’s mom had realized where her daughter’s happiness was but that wasn’t of much help. She approved of Rohan but the circumstances never allowed them to be together. She had done all to move on, counseling sessions and medication too had not helped. Ani’s mom sat next to her and kissed her forehead, ‘did you sleep well Ani…” the background nazm played, ‘dafn kar do ham eke saans mile, nabz kuch der se thami si hai…aaj phir aapki kami si hai.’