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#1 The Meeting

#1 The Meeting

A Chapter by Bindass Nemesis
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How we met. How things happened and how it all started. A fun-filled ride with confused relationships.

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It was 23rd March, 2008. Tenth standard boards had just ended a couple of hours ago; we had planned an entire evening full of celebratory booze waiting for us as we reached Niranjan’s house at Prabhadevi.

Baku was busy popping beer bottles. Dheeraj and Ronnie were standing with empty mugs waiting for Baku to finish his pre drinking ritual of dancing with each bottle before opening it.

‘What are you waiting for, Christmas?’ asked Niraj.

‘Come on Baku; stop dancing and fill the mugs or else your pants are coming down.’ said Divyen, as he slowly tried to pull Baku’s shorts down.

‘Ok..Ok.. Stop it.’ shouted Baku and quickly filled the mugs. All of us got their mugs together for our first cheers after our independence from school life. We had finished our board exams, we could smell freedom. No one was worried about college. All we knew was that the celebrations had just begun. As I lifted the mug to take a sip, my phone rang. I kept my mug aside and moved my hand to grab my phone.

‘It’s all over, you spoiled our vacations’ Baku continued ‘Why did you keep the mug down without taking a sip?’ he screamed, ‘Why Amu? Why?’

‘What’s wrong with him?’ I asked Niraj.

‘Baku Maharaj thinks it’s a bad omen to not take a sip before keeping your mug down after doing cheers.’ Ronnie said as if he was the follower of Great Maharaj Bakuji.

‘Hello sir may I speak to Mr. Manjrekar?’ said a voice on the other side.

‘Yes, I am Ameya Manjrekar, may I know whom am I talking to?’ I asked.

‘I am calling from Nirma Detergent Company and my name is Ms. Nirmala.’ she continued ‘We had spotted you wearing a White shirt yesterday for your paper.’

‘Yes I was wearing white, but what happened.’ I was trying to figure out the relation of Nirma Detergent Company with my board exams.

‘Sir you’re the winner of our White in Our Sight Award.’ She said.

‘What award?’ I was clueless.

‘What did you do now? When did you get an award?’ asked Baku as he licked the last drop of beer from the mug.‘

‘Hey Dheeraj, get the next bottle, Ameya won some award so its party time’ he shouted.

‘Baku just shut up for a minute please.’ I said, ‘sorry mam you may continue.’

‘As you had worn the whitest shirt in that school, you are the winner and you have won a Sony TV Set.’ She said as she congratulated me.

I knew there was something fishy, ‘Out of 200 plus students, how did she spot me?’ I started thinking to myself, ‘Can this be true or is it a prank?’

‘Sir would you like to accept this award?’ she asked.

‘Beer is getting warm, can’t you collect your award later.’ Baku was getting irritated, ‘There are no such awards it’s only a new way to make money.’ Said Dheeraj who till now was busy trying to find the coolest beer bottle in the fridge for Baku.

‘Sorry mam I am not interested.’ I said and before I could cut the call, ‘You’re not interested? We don’t want to gift you anything, get lost.’ She added ‘it’s easy to fool guys like you.’ and she hung up.

I was shocked to hear a sales girl suddenly shift gears from talking like a polite and humble person to talking like drunken Baku.

All of us lost our cool. The male ego and brother code had taken over our senses completely; all we wanted now was revenge.

I did not recognize the number flashing on my phone and nor did I recognize the voice.

Divyen then had an idea, ‘Let’s call back on this number and play a prank.’ Before anyone would say anything, Baku grabbed Niraj’s phone and called on that number. The phone was on speaker and after a couple of rings we heard a voice, ‘Hello’ it sounded feminine; Divyen jumped at the phone ‘Do you know whom you’re talking to?’

‘Who do you want?’ she asked ‘You called on this number and you’re asking me?’

‘Whom are you talking to Mayura?’ said a voice in the background. ‘Who do you want to talk to?’ she asked in a stern voice.

‘I want you baby!’ said Divyen sounding like one of those villains from the South Indian movies. ‘You’re the one for me, say yes to marry me or I will commit suicide and blame it on you.’ said Divyen.

‘Are you insane, who are you?’ she sounded like she was about to cry. ‘I know your address; keep your bags ready, I am taking you with me baby.’ Divyen was on a roll.

By this time the female voice on the other end sounded terrified. I pulled Divyen by his collar, ‘Hello, can I speak to Tanya?’ I had recognized the voice in the background, it was Tanya. We knew each other since kindergarten and I also had a crush on her.

‘He spoilt the fun.’ said Niraj and gave me a smack on my head.

‘Hello’ said Tanya. ‘Hey It’s me’ and before I could complete she said, ‘I know it’s you Amu, I recognize your voice.’

I was happy that she recognized me. ‘So how are you?’ I asked trying to control my emotions.

Ronnie hit his palm on his forehead in disgust. I knew I had asked a stupid question but I wanted to hear her voice and I needed some topic to talk about.

By this time I had forgotten that the phone was on speaker. ‘hehehe’ I heard some girls giggle. ‘Didn’t we meet today for the exam?’ she asked.

‘Look at this idiot’ screamed Baku from behind. I gave him a stare, ‘So it seems you are with friends’ she continued ‘I am also at Ketki’s place for a sleepover.’

‘Oh, that’s nice. I will call you tomorrow then.’ I was feeling shy to talk to her on speaker.

‘Ask him.’ I heard someone say something to Tanya. ‘Amu, can I ask you something?’ she said.

Thoughts just started storming inside my mind. ‘Did she see me staring at her during the exam? Did she like it?’ I started thinking to myself ‘No wait, maybe she has a boyfriend and she is going to ask me to apologize for staring at her.’

‘Are you there? Can you hear me?’ she asked to check if the phone had disconnected. I was so engrossed talking to myself that I forgot she wanted to ask me something.

‘Yes I am here; you may ask anything, you don’t need to ask for my permission.’ Baku was on his third beer and was rolling on the floor laughing at my replies.

‘Where are you now?’ she asked to which I promptly replied, ‘We all are at Niraj’s house.’

‘Oh that’s perfect; we could go home together tomorrow.’ She continued without asking me my plan, ‘Pick me up from Ketki’s place; we will be going home together after a very long time.’

‘But you stay in Borivali so…’ she interrupted me, ‘I will take a train from Bandra.’

‘Ok no problem I will call you tomorrow by 12 noon.’ I was happy because I was going to get to spend some time with her after a year.

Tanya used to live in my locality a couple of years ago, we both used to travel together. After our eight Standard final exams, her dad sold the house and shifted all the way from Bandra to Borivali.

I wanted to ask her out then, but I knew she would have said no because she wanted to concentrate on scoring well in SSC Board exams. She was those typical nerdy types, those for whom studies are the only priority.

‘I will ask Anushka and Mayura to leave together, do not ditch me, I will wait at Ketki’s place.’ She said.

‘No I won’t ditch you, bye.’ I felt like telling her, I love you, how can I ditch you!

‘See you tomorrow, Bye.’ and she cut the call.

 

 

After the phone was disconnected, as I turned behind, all were staring at me, I felt like I was a criminal. All had this interrogative look in their eyes.

‘Who all are there with her?’ asked Ronnie.

‘What do you have to do; aren’t you allergic to girls Ronnie?’ Dheeraj was in the game now, maybe he had some secret we didn’t know about. ‘Stop it Dheeraj.’ said Niraj.

‘Is Anushka going to be there?’ inquired Dheeraj.

‘Anuska, Mayura, Tanya and I could here a couple of more voices; they are all at ketki’s place.’

As soon as Divyen heard the name Anushka he said, ‘Let’s meet them tomorrow.’

‘No..No..No we cannot meet them like this.’ I didn’t want my prospective date with Tanya to be spoilt.

Two things that I learnt that day were, if a girl asks you something, never say yes quickly because then she starts taking you for granted; and the other thing was, when you have a date with a girl you like; you will kick your friend in the a*s to make sure he doesn’t spoil it.

‘Why can’t we meet them?’ asked Divyen.

‘I don’t want to meet girls.’ said Ronnie.

‘See this is what I meant, he is allergic.’ said Dheeraj pointing at Ronnie and started laughing.

‘Murkh Balak.!’ we all turned to see where the sound had come from. ‘There are enough girls for everyone tomorrow, we all are going.’ said drunken Baku from below the dining table.

‘What is he doing there?’ Niraj sounded concerned.

‘Let him be there, now tell me if Anusha is going to be there tomorrow,’ Divyen popped a beer and started having it from the bottle itself.

He had been crushing on Anushka since the start of board exams. In our school days we all wore uniforms, but on the day of farewell, we had to dress in formals. That was the day when we started admiring feminine beauty.

During our SSC Board exams, we were allowed to wear casuals, this was the worst decision our school had ever made.

Worst decision because we were no longer kids, we were guys now. Most guys used to sit near the entrance and admire the beauty around.

 

We were standing outside our class, revising notes just minutes before our paper. I saw Anushka climb up the stairs, she was also in my class and she started walking towards us.

Hair flying with the breeze, black eye liner, baby pink lipstick, bright pink top, low waist blue jeans and pencil heels.

No one could stop themselves from staring at her. We had never seen her glamorous side ever before. Divyen was completely swept of his feet.

I must agree that if I would have not had any feelings for Tanya then I would have also been in the race with Divyen.

It was stupid on his part to have fallen in love at the time when he should have been studying. Besides they would maybe never meet again.

I know, I should have disagreed to this idea but I supported him because I saw a chance to meet my first crush Tanya.

‘Call her.’ Said Divyen and passed me my phone.

‘No, I am not calling her.’ I said as I threw my phone on the sofa.

‘Ok then, I will call Tanya and tell her that you love her and you want us all to meet tomorrow so that you can ask her out in front of everyone.’ Niraj sounded serious.

‘Wait don’t call her, I will talk to her.’

Divyen passed me my phone and I called back.

‘Hello Tanya?’ I asked.

‘Hello Amu, I am ketki.’ She continued, ‘What happened, didn’t you talk to her some time back?’ all girls started laughing.

I spoke to Ketki and asked her if we could meet up the next day.

The board exams were over and it was not as if they had anything to do at home.

‘We as in who all?’ she asked which was a bit pig headed if you ask me.

‘We, means mine and your group.’ I said.

‘Okay where? We can’t come too far.’ She said.

‘No problem can you come to the Café Coffee Day outlet near your place at like 10 in the morning tomorrow?’ I wanted to decide a place which was neat and which was close from Ketki’s house.

‘Okay fine we will meet you there.’ She replied and hung up; maybe even they wanted to meet us.

‘We will meet them tomorrow’ I said to no one in particular but I saw Divyen dancing all over the room and on Niraj’s brand new couch.

‘It’s time for vodka b*****s!’ screamed Baku as he entered the hall with Smirnoff green apple in his hand.

Pink Floyd songs were playing in the background as we each had a peg of Vodka. ‘Let’s play Poker.’ Ronnie gave a brilliant idea. Vodka, Pink Floyd and Poker was the best combination.

‘Change the song to Another Brick in the Wall.’ I suggested to play that song because everyone in the house knew it very well.

The chips were distributed and after everyone had put their share in the bank, the game started. Booze without Poker was like Pizza without cheese.

It was the best game for us because after drinking we could hardly concentrate on complicated games like Monopoly or Business.

Towards the end of the night, I had won enough money to take Tanya for a date in Taj and others ran bankrupt.

‘Now no more poker or else this guy will take away everything.’ Said Dheeraj, I felt bad for him as he had lost a lot but come on, in poker you never return the money you win even if he is your best friend.

‘Amu lets play Football.’ Niraj recommended.

‘Okay even I want to play lets go now.’ said Ronnie.

‘Am I that high? Or did he just say football’ Baku with a puzzled look.

It was 12am in the night when we all started playing.

We played for another 30mins or so and then went to the beach to enjoy the cool breeze.

‘Amu, I really like Anushka a lot.’ said Divyen.

After having four pegs of Vodka, that too neat, most people start talking about things, which they avoid talking about when they are in their senses.

‘Divyen, are you okay?’ I asked him.

‘He has lost it.’ said Ronnie.

‘Am I that high? Or did he just confess his love for Anushka?’ Baku was in for another shock.

‘Yes I am Okay Amu it’s just that I can’t forget Anushka, I want to marry her, I want her, by the way do you guys understand what I am talking about?’ he continued talking, ‘I really love her.’ He kept on repeating these lines till Baku interrupted him, ‘Divyen you’re Drunk, You don’t know what you’re saying.’

‘It is funny to hear someone who has had 8 pegs, tell a person who had 4 pegs that he is drunk.’ Niraj said as he passed a fart.

I added, ‘Are you sure? Do you think you’re ready for this?’

‘Divyen you hardly know anything about her.’ said Dheeraj in a firm voice.

‘I am telling you’ll Divyen is drunk, he will forget who Anushka is by morning.’ Baku had a point.

‘I am not drunk, I am serious and I really like her.’ Divyen said in a shaky voice.

For a second I thought he was actually crying.

He stood up, wore Niraj’s Roller Blades and said ‘If you’ll want I can show you’ll that I am not drunk.’ He started skating; he fell even before he could take a step.

‘Am I that high? Or did he just try skating on sand.’ Baku thought he was imagining things.

‘Who skates on sand Divyen?’ Ronnie joked.

‘Why did Niraj get the skates here in the first place?’ Dheeraj asked.

‘Okay I agree I have had a bit too much of Vodka tonight but I can assure you people that I am serious about Anushka.’ He said as he tried to get up.

‘Now don’t try anything stupid over here, we trust you.’ said Dheeraj.

‘Its already one in the morning lets go and get some sleep, we have to meet the girls at 10am.’ I reminded them about our meeting with the girls.

‘It’s so nice over here lets sleep here on the beach tonight.’ said Ronnie.

‘Now even he is acting like Divyen, how will I handle two drunkards?’ said Baku as he shook his head in disgust.

‘Come on guys get up, let’s go home all are drunk and we all need sleep.’ said Niraj.

‘Look at him; he was going to handle us.’ Said Divyen pointing at Baku who was lying on the sand and making sand angels.

 

 

We all went home and were lying in the bed; Baku had one last 60ml of vodka which he called the good night peg.

‘Tomorrow you go with Divyen and Baku to meet them, me and Niranjan are not coming.’ said Dheeraj. ‘Why, what happened?’ I wanted them to come.

‘Tomorrow there’s India Vs Australia match and I don’t want to miss it.’ Dheeraj loved cricket more than anything in this world.

‘Did you hear anything?’ Ronnie murmured, ‘I can hear some noises.’ I woke up and peeped down.

Baku was sleeping down on the left of the bed on a mattress.

‘Niraj, wake up.’ I called out to him in a soft voice. Niraj went close to Baku to hear what he was saying.

‘What the f**k!’ exclaimed Niraj, ‘Baku loves Anushka too?’ Niraj continued, ‘I can hear him say Anushka you’re mine.’

Dheeraj threw a pillow at Baku to wake him.

‘Bloody hell, is this the time for pillow fight.’ irritated Baku continued, ‘My head is spinning, let me sleep.’

‘No, I won’t let you sleep until you tell me why you love Anushka.’ Divyen was hurt, he dint know how to react, ‘How can you love her, I love her.’

Baku had no clue how his secret was out, he thought Ronnie told us about this.

‘You are such a b***h, you could not keep one secret to yourself.’ screamed Baku, as he charged towards Ronnie.

‘Oh that’s why he was inquiring about girls when I had called Tanya to fix up the meeting.’ I recollected as Ronnie locked himself in the washroom.

‘He didn’t say a word.’ Dheeraj tried to advocate peace.

‘Oh so it’s true, you backstabbed me.’ said Divyen as he climbed the window to sit there, ‘You have stabbed me in the back.’

‘It means the same, stop repeating.’ said Niraj in exasperation

‘Do you expect them to talk sense after drinking so much?’ asked Dheeraj.

‘Wait a second, what is the problem.’ I continued. ‘Divyen and Baku both like her and it is fine.’

‘No, it’s not fine, I considered Baku to be a friend, and how can he like her.’ Divyen interrupted.

‘Divyen you are not dating her. You cannot stop others from liking someone you like.’

‘Why don’t both of you’ll try.’ said Ronnie as he slowly stepped out of the washroom, ‘If she says yes to Divyen then Baku backs off and vice versa.’ He added.

‘I will kill you, I can’t share her.’ said Divyen as he went to knock out Ronnie’s teeth.

‘Ronnie just don’t come out of the washroom tonight.’ laughed Dheeraj.

‘Divyen wait, what Ronnie said makes sense.’ I added, ‘You and Baku are friends and I don’t want to see you’ll turn enemies for a girl.’

Niraj continued, ‘So we suggest you both try your luck, let there be a healthy competition.’

‘If she says yes to me then Baku backs off?’ asked Divyen.

‘Yes, but if she says Yes to me, then you better back off.’ ordered Baku.

Ronnie asked as he peeped outside the washroom, ‘Can I come out now? Is everything at peace?’

‘Hahaha yeah come out of there now.’ said Dheeraj as he pulled the blanket over his head.

 

 

Next day we woke up early, I had never taken so much time to get dressed. This meeting was unplanned so we all had to borrow Niraj’s clothes because I had to meet Tanya; Baku and Divyen wanted to impress Anushka.

‘I will be leaving directly after the match gets over.’ Dheeraj said.

‘Okay done no problem, but just keep updating me with the score.’ I said.

‘Niraj, how much is the fare from to Shivaji Park?’ I asked him because our meeting with these girls wasn’t preplanned besides we didn’t have much cash left as we had spent most of it in booze and others had lost the rest to me in poker.

‘I know everything, so just leave, we are already late.’ screamed Baku.

We then took a taxi and reached Shivaji Park CCD before time.

‘Call Ketki and ask them where they have reached.’ Divyen was getting impatient.

I asked Divyen to be patient and to stop acting like a retard as we entered the café.

We ordered some mocktail’s as we waited for them to turn up.

 

 

‘There they are.’ said Baku with a wide smile on his face as he looked at Anushka.

Mayura and Ketki were looking gorgeous like always but for me, Tanya stole the lime light.

Tanya was looking cute; I couldn’t take my eyes off her. She was wearing a blue dress with white polka dots and was looking like a princess.

Mayura and Ketki sat beside me and Tanya grabbed a chair to sit opposite me.

Divyen stood up and gave his place to Anushka and brought a chair for him to sit next to her.

Baku was sitting at the center of the table and was not bothered with the way Divyen was behaving. He had a pact with Divyen; it was Divyen’s day to try his luck and he would not interfere.

Divyen took out a cigarette from his pocket and lit it.

‘He smokes?’ asked Baku in shock to which I replied, ‘F**k, he’s just 15 years old now and has already started smoking.’

Tanya looked at me in shock and asked ‘Amu do you smoke?’

‘No I don’t infact none of us smoke, I don’t know when he started it.’ I replied.

I looked at Divyen, but he was busy making rings with the smoke, he thought that Anushka would get impressed if he would do such things.

‘Why do people smoke?’ asked Anushka, ‘I hate smokers, they spoil their health as well as the health of their loved ones.’

‘Strike one’ said Baku as he kicked me.

Divyen threw the cigarette away.

Baku taunted, ‘It’s a serious misconception in most guys, and they think that smoking makes a man tough and girls like tough men.’ He added, ‘But in reality such guys are nothing but losers.’

‘I agree with Bhavesh.’ said Anushka.

‘Agree with whom?’ I asked

‘Bhavesh’ she repeated as she pointed at Baku.

I was not used to hearing people call Baku by his name.

‘Strike two.’ I heard Baku say.

As the time passed, we started talking about how our papers were, what the plans for future, etc are.

Divyen was busy flirting with Anushka the whole time and after a certain time she had started getting irritated.

After spending three hours in CCD, an abbreviation of Café Coffee Day, we asked for the bill and decided to leave.

The only thing that was going on in my mind was that I had missed my chance of confessing my feelings to Tanya.

During our school days everyone thought that I was dating her, we went to school together.

No guy ever approached her in school, because they thought she was commited, but in reality we were just friends.

I had a crush on her since the 4th standard, since when we used to hold hands and cross the road, maybe she had the same feelings for me but she never indicated that she likes me.

I was just too scared to approach her, I always thought that if she says no then, I will not be able to face her and then because of me this group would fall apart.

I was busy thinking about all this, I even forgot that there was a match going on and also that I had told Dheeraj that I would be calling him to ask the score.

 

 

I heard as we all started walking, ‘Anushka I really love you a lot.’

‘Stop flirting Divyen, it’s not going to help you in anyway.’ She said.

‘Strike three.’ Baku murmured.
He thought she liked it and so he continued with his non sense.

I agree, one needs to praise the girl, there should be healthy flirting. Which girl will take someone seriously if that guy starts screaming, laughing, flirting and acting like a retard?

I caught up pace and started walking with Tanya, ‘So how is everything at home?’ I tried starting a conversation.

‘Everything is good, Mom keeps asking about you.’ She added, ‘Why don’t you come home someday?’

I would have gone to her place every day, I liked her a lot but I was lazy as a sloth.

‘I will definitely come but travelling all the way to Borivali..’ she interrupted, ‘You can only say, You won’t come even once, I know you well.’

‘Why don’t you come to Bandra, we could hang out at Candies, Carter Road or watch a movie at Globus Theater.’ I wanted to meet her, spend time with her but I was not comfortable meeting her in front of her parents even though they knew me well.

‘Mom won’t send me alone so far.’ She said.

‘I will be your pick up and drop service.’

‘Then why don’t you come home to meet me?’ She asked.

‘Strike nine.’ Baku shouted in my ear.

‘What is wrong with you? What strike?’

‘Divyen has no chance boss, he is terrible.’ Baku said with a smile.

I looked behind to see Anushka walk slowly, not showing interest in what Divyen was saying.

Finally the walk ended as we reached City Light signal.

I was supposed to go with Tanya but looking at the state Divyen was in, I knew he needed me more.

‘Bye had a great time with you all and thanks for coming.’ I said as I turned away from Tanya.

‘We enjoyed too.’ she added ‘aren’t you coming with me till Bandra.’

Mayura and Anushka gave me a puzzled look. They stayed in Bandra too but I had never dropped them home.

‘Something is fishy, Why is Tanya going to Bandra with you in taxi when she can get the train from here itself?’ inquired Ketki.

I pretended as if I didn’t hear Ketki.

‘I am sorry but I have to leave with Divyen.’ I wanted to slap him for spoiling everything but after all he was my childhood friend.

She left with Mayura and Anushka in a taxi, I stood there on the road staring at her as the taxi left the signal, wanting to express my feelings and hoping to get one more chance to meet her soon.

I left the place with mixed feelings as I started walking back. I was happy to hear that Tanya wanted to meet me again.

‘It’s hard to wait around for something you know might never happen; but it’s even harder to give up when you know it’s everything you want.’ said Divyen as he put his arm around my shoulder and continued walking.


 

 

to be continued...



© 2016 Bindass Nemesis


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Bindass Nemesis
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Added on January 28, 2016
Last Updated on January 28, 2016
Tags: Friends, Fun, Lighthearted, Fiction, Love, Friendship, Relationship, Girls


Author

Bindass Nemesis
Bindass Nemesis

Mumbai, Maharashtra, India



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