It is 7.00 PM.
Anisha unlocked the room door, threw her handbag and collapsed on her cot. The empty bed next to her showed that Neeta is still not back to PG.
Day was long and creepy for her. Headache was troubling from past 1 hour has become verse now.
She needed a coffee but more than that she needed someone to talk.
2 years back Anisha came to Mumbai. Coming from a small town and a middle-class family, Mumbai was not welcoming to her. Neeta, friend of Anisha who is also from the same town made her come to Mumbai so that she can earn money and help her family.
After finishing degree Anisha wanted to be a librarian which was her childhood dream. Reading books is her favorite hobby. Having read all the Harry Potter series she was fascinated by J.K.Rowling. She wanted to write, create characters and stories like her.
However, her family condition was not good enough to pursue her dreams. Her parents were struggling to raise 4 children. Anita being the eldest one is 10 years elder to Anisha. She was married 7 years ago but her husband died in a car accident after one year of marriage. Then Anita left her husband’s house and settled here. Ankush, Anisha’s elder brother never acted responsibly. His flop business ideas were not helping either him or the family. Ankur being the younger kid of the family is in college now.
Somehow Anisha finished the degree with the help of scholarships and student loan. Then it became her responsibility to look after the family. Only family income was father’s xerox shop which he is running for many years.
Anisha shared her problems with Neeta. Then Neeta spoke about her high salary, benefits, work environment and suggested her to come to Mumbai. Anisha threw her librarian dream and decided to go to Mumbai to work in Neeta’s company.
Neeta’s Boss hired Anisha based on Neeta’s recommendation. It took time to adjust to Mumbai’s glorious life. Financial state was slowly getting better. Anisha was helping family along with paying her loan EMI.
Anisha couldn’t tolerate headache anymore. She got up, went to the kitchen, boiled milk and made herself an instant BRU coffee.
Coffee relaxed her a little. Her lipstick mark on the coffee cup took her back to thoughts.
She remembered how Hemanth invited her for a coffee. Her boss! Somewhere around 40’s Hemanth is a married man with 2 kids. During the last family visit, his kids came to the office and little Riya was very cute.
Very few times Anisha spoke to Hemanth, that too related to the work. Thinking that it is just a coffee Anisha decided to go with him after office. As per Neeta’s advice, she put on some lipstick & Kajol to look better.
She was waiting for him in the parking lot in front of an elevator as told by him.
‘Sorry I was not able to find my car key‘ he said as he stepped out of the elevator.
She didn’t say anything.
Anisha was trying to find out the reason for this meetup. She was never close to anyone in office except Neeta to go with for coffee or a dinner. Her appraisal was coming next week. The boss might be wanted to talk about it. Again he could have done that in the office itself, what is the need for a meeting outside office. Anisha couldn’t stop thinking even though her boss tried to talk to her in between.
They reached the spot. Cafe was next to the beach, calm and peaceful. Hemanth ordered 2 coffees without even asking for Anisha’s preference.
‘Neeta was talking about your family. I feel very pity for you’ he said.
Anisha got irritated about Neeta now. ‘What is the need to tell others about all personal things about me’ she thought.
He waited for her reaction and then continued again.
‘You look nice with open hair. Takeout that clutch’
This is heights! Anisha was uncomfortable now. Finally, she spoke.
‘Sir.. can I know why are we meeting here?’
‘Oh sorry! Let me come to the point. You might have already know about my status. I have enough bank balance, own house, prestige to carry myself throughout this life’
‘My wife died 3 years ago. That time I missed her. She left a void in me. We shared a happy relationship hence I didn’t want anyone else in my life. Though many insisted to marry again I dropped that suggestion. But now my kids are suffering. I try to be a mom & dad but I’m feeling it is not enough. They need a mother at this age’
Anisha didn’t get why he is telling all these things to her. She couldn’t feel anything other than sorry for him.
He was quiet for some time. Maybe he remembered his wife. The waiter brought the coffees and kept on the table in front of them.
Hemanth took a sip and asked her to take her coffee.
‘I know this is all looking weird to you. But I didn’t have any other option. I have decided to marry. Neeta knows my story, she is been like a friend to me, when I told her this she said it is a right decision and promised me to look a girl’.
Anisha frowned. Girl? Is he gonna ask me for marriage? she was scared now. What if he asks me.. What I’m supposed to say.. If I say no my job will be gone. This year Ankur college fees have been increased. From where I’m going to bring money if there is no job. This Neeta wants to enjoy the show by trapping me with the boss.
Oh God! Anisha thought.
Looking at her expression Hemanth smiled and said.
‘I can guess what you are thinking. But don’t worry. Today I’m here to ask your sister for marriage. I haven’t seen her, I don’t know what is her opinion about second marriage but I want to try. Don’t think I’m doing this for sympathy. I can feel her feelings and I need a mother for my children’.
Anisha was shocked! she couldn’t speak anything!
Why I didn’t think about Didi. I never asked her how she is surviving her lone life. all I do is send her some letters once a month because she likes the way I write. But I never thought about her second marriage. We all decided that her life is ended after Jiju’s death. We just took her for granted.
‘Sir.. I don’t know what to say’
‘I misunderstood you when you asked me for coffee. To be frank I was thinking about all the bad things about you till this moment. I’m glad that you are thinking about my Didi. If she agrees I’m sure she will be happy again. I will try my best sir. I will speak to her’
Anisha said happily and after some time they left the cafe.
Now Anisha’s headache was how to make Didi accept this proposal. She was happy and also she was scared of her didi missing this chance. Her instincts told her to write a beautiful letter to convince her didi.
She tried 2-3 times and threw the paper into the dustbin. Finally, she came up with a beautiful letter. She explained how handsome her boss is, his sophisticated behavior, intelligence and didn’t forget to write about his cute kids Riya & Rihan.
Anisha folded the letter to put it in an envelope. Tomorrow’s first task will be posting this letter to Didi. Anisha was sure that Didi will listen to her and agrees to see Hemanth. She thanked Neeta and relaxed with a happy sigh.
‘This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda. The competition was to write a story using the objects from the given image. This post has won WOW badge in the competition‘.