Saturday, November 3, 2012

Happy Karva Chauth

"Fasting, eh?" Piyush asked, rhetorically, as he sat down at Kangana's table.

She smiled and nodded at him. It was around 11 in the morning and they were in the college library.

"Are you allowed to eat anything?"

"I had a sammich before sunrise. Can't eat or drink till the moon comes." she grinned.

"Aw. I didn't eat anything." he frowned.

"You WHAT?" she gasped, incredulous.

"Shhhh! Keep it down!" he warned her, as many people glared at them.

"You are fasting?"

"Yeah. You're just embarrassing me now." he tried to hide his face behind a particularly thick book.

"You're just scaring me now!" she exclaimed, disbelief writ large in her face.

"Aren't you fasting?" he accused.

"Oh, come on!" she rolled her eyes, "I fast every year."

"Ah, yes."

"For whom are you fasting?" she smacked him with his thick book.

"Ow!" he rubbed his arm, "Um, I don't know if I should tell you."

"Okay, your wish." she pouted.

"I thought you'd know." he smiled, "Will tell you tonight, as we look at the moon."

Kangana's heart pounded against her ribs. Far-fetched thoughts raced in her mind. Suddenly, her entire system had gone haywire. She blushed as she thought about their flirtations, his seemingly frivolous suggestions of dating each other. She always knew they had some sort of a connection, but neither was bold enough to make the first move. Until now, that is. He was apparently ready to take their flirtationship to a meaningful level.

"Helloooooo!" she heard him say.

He was waving his hand right before her face while she was lost in her reverie.

"Back to earth?" he smirked.

"Yeah." she smiled happily.

"For whom are you fasting?" he chuckled.

"I don't know if I should tell you." she winked at him.

"Touche!" he grinned back, his eyes lingering on her face longer than it was necessary.

She wasn't hungry or thirsty anymore as her stomach was full of butterflies. But, she was earnestly waiting for the moon to show up soon.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

"Hey! What's up?" she heard his warm voice over the phone.

"Moon's up! I am on the rooftop terrace, come quickly."


It was twenty minutes to nine. The moon looked hazy and a little red thanks to pollution, clouds and the advent of winter.

She was dressed traditionally, in a red lehenga with a golden blouse and a red dupatta. Her impeccable straight hair cascaded down her slender back, the beautiful henna on her hands visible in the general light from everywhere, her eyes twinkled and her face, pretty and bright as ever.

"Kangana?" she heard him call out.

She turned around and found him standing twenty feet away from her, near the door of the stairway. He was dressed casually in a black tee and a pair of blue jeans.

"Hi!" she couldn't help smiling.

"My God!" he said, as he walked towards her, "You look ethereal!"

"Ethereal?" she asked, amused.

"Yeah, I've learnt new words to impress you." he chuckled. "But, it's true. You look like an angel. There can be Indian angels in heaven, right?"

"With the number of Gods and Goddesses we have, I guess we must be having a separate Indian heaven." she laughed.

"You're funny." he commented.

"And, you're digressing."

"You distracted me." he said, now standing close to her.

"Oh, shut up!" she shoved him, playfully, "So, who's your secret girl?"

"You don't give up, do you?" he sighed, "I was with her on the phone right now,"

He is going to divulge his feelings, after all. Kangana nearly got a heart attack.

"You mean?"

"Yeah. I had called up Nidhi. She didn't seem very excited, though." he shrugged.

She nearly got another heart attack, for an entirely different reason now.

"Nidhi? Your ex?"

"Yeah. The fast was for her. Her happiness, her health. I didn't tell anyone because I didn't want pity or sympathy."

It took her a lot of effort to prevent her tears from falling down, to prevent herself from fainting.

"Are you okay? You don't look so good." his voice was full of concern, "I'm sorry I'm keeping you from drinking and eating with my drama."

"No, no. It's okay." she gave a broken smile.

"No, you look ill. Here, drink this." he said, picking up her little pitcher of water.

"Don't!" she said, sternly, "Only husbands or the ones for whom we are fasting can feed us." she explained.

"Oh, okay. I am sorry." he said slowly, "So, for whom were you fasting?" he teased.



"Yeah, nobody. I fast each year because I like to. But, it's for nobody in particular. I have nobody to fast for and no one who'd fast for me." she tried to smile.

"Aw! One day." he caressed her face.


After worshipping the moon like she did, he gulped down a glass of water and ate the sweets that she had brought.

"Shall we go down, now?" he asked.

"You go ahead. I'm gonna enjoy the weather for a bit."

"Are you sure? You'll catch a cold in that dress."

"Yeah." she smiled.

"Okay, then. But, don't be long." he smiled, "And, thank you, for everything. Happy Karva Chauth." he hugged her before leaving.

Tears blinding her, she made sure his footsteps had faded away before she crumbled down, unable to stand any longer.