The Devil & his consort
R&B glanced at her, did not pause or look at exchange any meaningful message with her,
she wore a black and white kalamkarti kurta with a Nehru collar and a white churidar, her hair braided up higher and wore a black kajal bindi like an arrow
Ominous sign? Maybe... She saw his watered down pink cotton shirt as thin as muslin, reflecting the white vest underneath... he could be wearing a garbage bacg and he would look sexy, carelessly tucked in at some places and left out at others as if tucking it all in would be too much work
She told herself
"EPPO VANDEY? "when did u come?" she ran to hug Vandu Vandu hugged her stiffly, turned and saw the elevator door close on a inscrutable R&B, he had both his ear buds on now "A while ago" Akka muttered
"Let me show u my cube ka" she dragged her
Found an attendant in the marble hallway, "Akka ke liye chai laaogey kya please, nahi ruko Perk se milkshake... aao mere cube mein"
"No kanna I ate veggie puffs, pastries, cookie and some almond dessert" Aka said SMUGLY "Where?" II asked annoyed "R&B vaangi kuduthan he bought stuff" Akka said II turned red "Why did u eat with him when u were coming to see ME" II was offended "I didnt come to see u" Akka said as they entered her large-r cube... with emails and reports stacked everywhere.. and two huge 27 in monitors and her Apple iMac open and glowing at a distance... Shravu and her pictures everywhere...
Her Grad school commencement photo, both IIM and GT... and some goofy Madurai pictures and Delhi winter pictures in bed with Appa watching Sun TV
A wall had lots of pictures...
Akka browsed... not talking...
"Idu eppo eduthadu?" "when was this taken?" she asked
"2012 June Madurai trip" II said cheerfully
"II found her purse and handed the guy Rs.500, do vanilla milk shake" she smiled
"Bhayya mere waale mein zyaada whipped cream" (YA II IS NOT A FUFU fat free milk free calorie free sugar free chick)
He smiled and left...
"Lunch enna kudutha Amma?" Vandu asked "MMM... shimla mirch paneer and roti" II said "How are u feeling ka" II hugged... "Akka looked at the pictures and and asked "Nee avan kitta sonneya nee Sree Kalyanam pannikka poren nu?" "Did u tell the guy u will marry Sree?" II dropped the cordless mouse... "He told u that in the elevator?" II asked sarcastically Akka turned, her eyes were bloodhsot... Akka didnt get angry much... errmm... a lot with Bala and a ... lot-er with Shravu... but with II... she adored II But today II will get a taste of Akka's gussa "No I asked him if he will marry you and he told me taking two husbands is illegal in India" Akka bit out each word II was a glorious red
"Marry ME?" II croaked
"Well he cant marry ME ille? Bala will kill him" Akka joked without smiling
Bally walked in
"arey wah Iyer ke cube mein visitor?"
"Yeh le yaar I looked at Dilshad Garden system reports nothing jumps out at me, East ka pehla showroom hai na, installation ke liye... so anyway Ashwini is all upbeat, tu bhi check kar le"
He left a stack of paper reports
Turned to smile at Vandita... II was still red and almost choking...
Her mind channeling that image of her as an Iyer bride from four? five Sundays ago...
when Appa was talking to her in her room and she was putting press waala clothes away...
she felt R&B's fingers on her toes, as he pushed the tuby mettis/toe rings on her long toe, his hair slipping to his forehead, bending down at her feet...
Her other hand held in a scooped grip... firm grip... like he will never let her go... she would carress
that toe with the big toe when he would be done, or think he was done, only to find his fingers with it... she choked... gasping for air
"Hey, Vandan? Vandu?" Bally gushed
Vandita composed her expression and smiled half heartedly
"U must think its a 21st century tech firm, aur dekho ek poora ream paper ka chhodne aaya banda" Bally laughed "Yahan hum KUCH kaam 18th century mein rehkar karte hain" "Baldev Gupta" he said
"Ofcourse I met u at Ankur's sports meet, Shravu was in cross country, yaad hai inter school?" Vandu recalled
"Oh teri! U have a great memory, Suman se kabhi nahi milna please, meri yeh aapse request hai..."
"Yaad hai KV IIT mein hua tha meet" Vandu continued
He held Vandu's hands and looked at II "Dekh Iyer ise kehte hain memory"
"II nodded fearfully... afraid whats coming after Bally leaves...
AYYO NANNA MAATTINDE, AKKA WENT AND ASKED THE GUY TO MARRY YOU
RAKSHASAN!! HE TOLD HER HE "WOULD" IF II WAS NOT MARRYING SREE
RAKSHASAN... LIKE HE EVER PROPOSED TO ME...
NOT ONCE HE HAS SAID ANYTHING TO "ME"
HE TELLS AKKA I WUD HAVE MARRIED HER IF SREE WAS NOT...
HOW ABOUT TELL AKKA "Well I cant marry her because I cant take a wife to Paris to the house my GF is IN"
She felt sad and teary... HOW DARE HE...
"II to Mars mein rehti hai aajkal, Good to meet u... aaj Ankur ka cast utar raha hai,
Suman mujhe woh cast chadha degi main chalta hoon, le jao isko ghar, office mein padi rehti hai 70 ghante hafte mein" Baldev ordered Vandita
"Haan ghar le jaakar iska keema banane aayi hoon main" Akka said bluntly
"Iyer log keema bhi khaate hain?" Ballya sked
"Majboori mein keema... falooda sab khaana padta hai" she smiled
"Oh BTW, suna hai aap isko phir maasi bana rahe ho?" Bally asked returning
Vandu smiled shyly... "Congrats, khaana mithai, kuch nahi aaya Iyer ke ghar se"
Akka took her phone out and asked for his number, texted her address and said she will call suman for dinner over the weekend
Baldev gave II a "look"
"Shaadi karo aur jaldi se have babies, I need dinner and lunch invites kiddo" he tapped her head and waved and left
"Karegi na shaadi sapne mein to a man who she doesnt like.." Akka hissed
"WHY DID U ASK HIM TO MARRY ME?" II shrieked
"WHY? Do I have toa sk u EVERYTHING?" akka demanded
The attendant brought their milkshakes, she let him have the change
Akka said, "lets go to an empty conf room, they found one in the center island... a 4 seater one... Akka shut all the blinds and the door and leaned on it
"ETHANA POI ISHITA?" "Why SO MANY LIES?"
II leaned on the blinds... red and ashamed
YOU DID NOT LOOK AT Sree yesterday... OR THIS MORNING (his flight was cancelled he didnt
leave until Noon so he came by in the morning too, before II left for work from Akka's house, will update on that later)
R&B sticks to u like GLUE when u come to Munirka... have u noticed the way he LOOKS at you? or u think everyone is blind?" Akka demanded
II mumbled shocked
"Are u two dating?' akka asked
"NOOO DID HE SAY THAT?" II demanded
DO NOT ARGUE, AND DO NOT BAD MOUTH HIM" Akka hissed
" Did he say"
"Shut up Ishita... uve been seeing him havent you?" Akka asked
"NO I HAVE NOT... NOT ONE DATE AKKA" II expressed grief... despair HE HAS NOT TAKEN ME ANY PLACE ROMANTIC HE HAS NOT
LOOKED AT ME LIKE I AM THE ONLY ONE, HE NEVER BOUGHT FLOWERS FOR ME HE SENT ME A BUNCH OF BOOKS TOLD ME HE WANTS TO MAKE LOVE TO ME IN WRITING... IN WRITING
SLEPT IN MY BED... ATE ALOO MATAR...
"Not one date na... uve seen him outside of dates?" Akka asked
"A couple times... when I went to pick Shravu up" II said
"Ayyyoo Kanna... why did u create this house of cards... he came home didnt he when Periappa had an AIIMS apptt?" Akka asked
II began to cry... and nodded
Akka went up and hugged her
"he was really mean to me at work... and he came to apologize"
"Shhh... shhh" Akka consoled... cajoling her "No kanna... no da" please
"He is a devil.. he is a rotten devil" II ranted
"Did he spend the day with u?" Akka probed
II nodded deafeatedly, savoring the best Saturday of her life
"Shhh...u told him u will marry Sree? Why? Did he ask u to marry him?" Akka asked
II turned crimson... "Noo" "Noo" "Not once" she mumbled sobbing
"WHY DID U SAY U were getting married?"
"Because he is a dog.. he has a French girlfriend... some say she is older, he has a on again off again or an OPEN (air quotes) relationship
and that he is a nomad and will never settle down, and doesnt even live in India,
since he cannot live without sex I am his sex toy" II sobbed into her Akka's shoulder
Akka froze in shock
NO... SHE IS WRONG R&B IS NOT LIKE THAT... Ishita thinks like THAT about him? Akka's gut was not willing to hate him...
Akka held her face and asked
"When did he tell u that?"
"HE DIDNT" II sobbed, his sister did
"SAM? SAM DID?" akka asked
"Ille Manny" Ii sobbed
Akka looked confused...
"His other sister Manny"
"she TOLD YOU?" akka asked
"No she told Tan... Tanmay at the baby's party she said wiping her tears,
The whipped cream had watered down, she just drank the leaking milkshake furiously giving herself a milk moustache
"IS THAT WHY YOU GOT SO SICK?' Akka asked dumbfounded
Akka sat down... "Thats why u did didnt u? The Doctor asked me if u are in a relationship" Akka recalled
II blushed gloriously
"Is it physical?" Akka asked seeing her go red..
Akka reached for a spot on her ear tip and didnt touch... just let her shocked finger drop
"You have love bites" she said staring at her shy sister
"I mean... no... I mean... yes... but not... I mean.."II fumbled and stumbled and gasped.. "Akka I am unable to think straight" she begged
"He knocked your socks off?" Akka asked startled...
"I feel unsteady and light headed when we fight... he is very persuasive" II said HONESTLY
Ii stood up turning away hiding her face and ear, letting out a lock over it
Akka walked behind her... turned her around...
"So it is him... thats been causing u to be so deviant... and a compulsive liar... did HE send the silk pouch to me?" she asked
II nodded feebly... sitting down
Akka wiped her tears and held her face...
Akka looked baffled "Ayyo he is a devil" "isnt he?"
II's heart expanded in her chest 5 times the size, choking her...
"Why are u trying to hurt him so mercilessly?" Akka whispered on her face held in Akka's hand
"Because I hate him" II said, as if any other answer would be like baring it all and she wouldnt even bare it ALL to HERSELF
"Thats what I thought" Akka said... letting go of her face
"what a mess kanna" Akka fumed... "Your Rakshasan is the proverbial devil" "AND U ARE HIS CONSORT" Akka said angrily