Continued from here
Kanishk closed his eyes and drew breath sharply. It was like someone thrust a knife into him and twisted it around. He whooped. “I am in love with you”….”And I do not even know how you feel”….he repeated these words.
“Damn right girl, you so do not know how I feel, how I’ve felt all these years”, he thought.
“Varsha”, he spoke the name out loud, carefully pronouncing it. He’d never really liked the name; he felt it sounded way too harsh for a girl like her. He smiled as he visualized her. Delicately beautiful, soft brown eyes, shoulder length wavy hair. When she wasn’t in their boring school uniform, she loved to dress in ethnic Indian clothes. She loved wearing skirts and loads of kajal. While the other girls in school routinely got into trouble for experimenting with ugly black nailpolish, she got into trouble for wearing lots of kajal.
It was funny, he mused how he recalled the kajal of all the things.
Kanishk had been the quintessential good boy in school, one who was liked universally by the teachers and his classmates alike. He did well at his academics, was a strong debater and was moderately good at sports as well. The problem was girls of that age didn’t go for guys like him. They wanted excitement; they fell for the bad boys, the ones who talked back at teachers, the ones who sneaked in cigarettes, the ones who had bikes on which they could speed, those who congregated at the beach each night. They had no use for boys like Kanishk who were for sure “good friend” material. Varsha and Kanishk were good friends, he bailed her out often as she always told her mother that she was with Kanishk studying when in reality she was out with her boyfriend Navin.
Funnily enough Kanishk was excellent marriage material now. He had gone on to study at IIT and then graduated from IIM Ahmedabad. He now worked with an investment bank based in Hong Kong, but had requested that he be relocated to India. He was now transitioning out his responsibilities at Hong Kong and working partly with the India operations. He was in a brief relationship with a classmate from B school, but his heart was never fully in it and they broke it off soon enough. Varsha had spoilt him. She was the yardstick he measured women by and no one measured up.
He was never comfortable with Varsha’s relationship with Navin. Apart from the fact that he was in love with Varsha, he knew that she was way too good for Navin, she deserved better than him. He continued making excuses for her against his will because he still wanted to remain her friend, hoping that one day she would realize how he felt. But one day he found Navin cosying up with another classmate and he could take it no longer. He told her what he saw and the move entirely backfired. Varsha accused him of being jealous of their relationship and things were never the same again. School ended and they went their own way. He did hear from common friends that Varsha and Navin did break up eventually.
They met once at a theatre. It was a strained meeting, they exchanged email addresses and scurried away, eager to break the awkwardness that seemed to have taken over their once easy camaraderie.
And now this.
(To be concluded)
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