Vikram, Karan and I had become friends on the very first day of college as we stood in the queue registering for a badge, we clicked instantly. Vikram looked a complete nerd and there wasn’t a thing Karan would not pass a joke on, and his jokes were not just hilarious but meaningful too. I don’t know what I was doing between them, neither was I studious nor crazy hilarious. I was just a normal guy who knew was charming but hadn’t thought of testing it.
I realised the need when I first saw her. Yes, that Friday when I kissed the head of this almost going bald guy next to me to have dragged me in the room where she was. These cultural activities made no sense to me when I could experiment my code in the computer lab. I always wondered what would the students be taught in a commerce or an arts stream? But that day was different, I as always was hastily running adjusting my laptop bag when I saw Prof. Shyamsundar walking towards me, there was a wild rumour that he would catch hold of students and give them random assignments that were tiresome and made no sense and I didn’t want to fall prey to this tittle-tattle. I dodged behind the guy with a shiny head and he suddenly turned left into a room, to avoid direct confrontation I turned too and that was it.
I stood behind the door for prof to pass when I heard her the first time, her voice was feminine but not shrill or thin. I tried to turn and get a glimpse but there was silence, I took a step towards the door and she spoke again. My intrigue grew and I turned to see her face, a small group surrounded the chair on which she was standing.
She spoke again, it sounded like she was reciting something, after hanging on her words a bit more yes it was a poetry in Urdu. Poetry isn’t my thing and Urdu well let’s leave it at that. But I had to see the face, I made my way through the group and there she was.
Sheets of paper in her hand, her face beamed with the love for what she was reciting. She wore a beautiful white chudidar with a red duppatta that kept dropping off her shoulder and she gracefully placed it again on her shoulder. Her silver earrings kept kissing her tender neck as she spoke. a bunch of silver bangles clung giving perfect rhyme to her words, I noticed her big black kohled eyes that conveyed more than her words. I gazed at her full lips as they lay over each other every time she paused. I was transfixed in that moment as her words echoed,
“Do you want these?” it echoed again
“hey”she moved her hand in front of my eyes and smiled “do you want the copies?”
I took them as she smilingly handed them to all others around, I turned picked my laptop bag in one hand and stormed out.
I had read that paper she handed me a zillion times by evening, sometimes sitting on my hostel room floor or the parapet of the balcony, on the toilet seat and lying on the bed.
Shayri Exchange it titled.
ज़िन्दगी की किताब से इक पन्ना छूट सा रहा है
मुक़द्दर फिर से कुछ रूठ सा रहा है
पलों को क़ैद कर रिश्तों को रुखसत किये जाते रहे
तक़दीर कभी हमें हम तक़दीर को आज़माते रहे
– Ananya , 2nd year B.Comm, Roll No. 135
That made no sense to me but that paper was invaluable, it had her name on it and the name was beautiful, I don’t remember the number of times I would have said it to myself. I slept thinking about fictional scenarios of our meeting, my first words to her and thinking if she would like my name as much as I did, how would it be to hear Rohan in her mesmerising voice. I started building fiction stories in my mind!
The next morning I was more energetic than ever, I wanted to reach college and meet Ananya, I wanted to know more about her, listen to her and put my charm to test. It was then that I realised my roommate was quizzically looking at my grinning face.
Dressing up was not that difficult, I paired an Ed Hardy black tee, put on a white shirt and denim, a quick look at myself in the mirror, tall, dark and handsome….do girls seriously believe in this shit, swiftly I adjusted my spikes picked my laptop back and rushed to college.
Where do I start, I cursed myself for not having friends in other streams. In my random obliviousness I somehow remembered Vikram having a huge crush on this 2 year B.Comm girl who he had spotted in the library. I rushed to the library and there he was sitting in an angle where he could eye her.
“Can you ask that girl about Ananya?” I blasted panting.
“Shhh” he looked at me.
Why don’t people understand the emergency? I calmed myself
“Hey Vikram, ask your chick if she knows a girl named Ananya?”
“Who do I ask, damn I have never spoken to her. We are still in the first step, talking through eyes, I just know her name.”
I left, this nerd can’t be of any help. Just outside the library I bumped into Kiran, “Hey dude watchout….the shatabdi is at 13.25.”
Kiran, she was the sunrays I was looking for, 5.10, well built with a squeaky voice she was always found among guys giving them advice from love, how to date to what to wear…..famously known as love guru.
“K..kk…kk…Kiran.”I blurted…as she gave me a nasty smile..
“No.that wasn’t deliberate. Ananya.”I paused
“2nd year B.com, roll no. 135 stays alone here in Indore, parents in Mumbai, classy sassy, quite popular among you species ”she looked at me top to bottom paused…”don’t even try”
I raised my eyebrows, I hadn’t heard any of what she said, all I knew was she knew her.
“Please Kiran get me her number !!”
“ok 250 bucks”
“and an intro?”
“500 plus a month of canteen bill!”
“Monday, commerce wing, 2nd floor corridor, 4 pm.”
Meeting Ananya wasn’t far at all!
to be continued…..
Gone are the days of long fiction but the love for it always stays 🙂 Happy Dusshera 🙂