He didnt jump, choke or sputter, his eyes grew bigger for a brief moment
"Excuse me?" he said softly "Will you marry Ish... I mean II?" Vandita asked her voice strangely trembling...
He poured some water out for her and some juice of some kind
Mrs Sagar peeked, "How about a half hour" he asked softly
She nodded and left
Shutting the door behind her
"Does she know you are here?' He asked "Why will u respond only if she knows?" Vandita argued JUST LIKE HER SISTER "Did u drive up here to ask me that Vandita?" He appeared surprised " I did R&B" she said looking at him deeply "I was told Hindu Marriage Act prohibits a woman marrying two men" he said blandly Vandita looked shocked "Kya matlab?" "Ofcourse you know dont you, she is marrying Srikanth?" Sree?" he said stressing on the nickname unknowingly... as if it bothered him "Did she say she was?" Vandita asked, SHOCKED out of her wits..
"Yep right here... my office or the conf room across the hallway, one of the two " he said waving his hand carelessly
"she said she was marrying SREEKANTH" Akka looked FURIOUS... and shocked... "Would you like more tea?" he poured some out... "I noticed things about you two" Akka said honestly...
R&B looked away quickly not meeting her gaze
"I see it in her ALL the time when ever you are around or when she returns from your place" Akka was thinking aloud "How can she say she is marrying Sreekanth if you two can give me "couple" vibes she continued "I cannot believe my gut was wrong" she shook her head "When is the wedding?" he asked softly
"Whose?" Akka asked preoccupied, just rotating her English Roses tea cup on its saucer
"II's" he asked...
"U know what? I dont know... I dont..." Akka looked sad "Did she say she loves him?" Akka ashed HIM "I did not ASK" said the man of few words
Akka wanted to ask "Do you love HER? Please tell me you do. I will talk with Sree and rewind everything,
please tell me you love her. Sree is so wrong for her, WHY would she do that" "She told me you dont get along frequently but I didnt... do u get along professionally?"
Akka wanted a confirmation wondered if there was some lie buried in it also
"No we dont" he told her straight on the face... "Oh so she wasnt" Akka stopped ("lying about that atleast")
"Why would she say she wanted to marry Sree?" Akka went back to that
Cleaned her plate of snacks and desserts quietly...
"Do u need a ride Vandita?" he offered softly "No... I am OK I have a car waiting downstairs" "Did Sree say anything to you?" Akka asked in disbelief still
"about what?" he asked kindly
"About her or the wedding?" Akka explained
"Umm... just the usual, life in Bay Area and such" R&B muttered
"Life with HER in the Bay Area?" AKKA WANTED DETAIL, AKKA'S GUT WAS TELLING HER SHE WASNT WRONG ABOUT R&B and II... HOW? HOW CAN THIS BE... "Umm.. not explicitly, but yes... about traffic and the need to learn to drive to be independent" R&B spoke the ...
longest sentence of his life, longest non work sentence
"He said that?" Akka was shocked...
His phone beeped a text... he responded
She still looked at him like "Tell me its a lie" He looked at her like "Its NOT, I am sorry" "Have u thought about how good u two look together?" Akka asked agonized "Not extensively" he said softly HE ADMITTED IT?
SO HE HAS? HE HAS?
Akka had NO plans left, she felt terribly deflated, she wanted to pull a coup of sorts by addressing this fantasy and converting it into a reality
She NEVER expected her own sister to be the chief destructor of the reality...
Is II not really interested in R&B? HOW CAN THAT BE? OH HOW?
"Will u let Bala know I will be sending someone over this Saturday for the PC?" he asked softly
Vandita looked up from her tea, "Oh... haan keh doongi"
"Some one should reach out to him"
"Is Shravu free on Saturday?" he smiled Vandita smiled too... "No he is double, no triple booked" she smiled again shaking her head
"Will 2 work for the driving lesson?" he asked
She nodded indulgently
They sat there quietly for a while... KNOWING R&B means people should love SILENCE
The sound proof room looked like a Zen meditation center, except he had his right ear bud in his ear.
He stood up, and she moved in her chair readying to get up
"Vandita relax" he said
He walked over to the window
He wore dirt brown cargos, and a watered down pink cotton shirt with shoulder straps, and sleeve straps... he wore a white vest inside visbile through the open V
Unassuming casual, quiet, EXTREMELY HANDSOME
"How is Lasya?" Vandu asked
" Awake more" he said as if thats a pretty earth shattering discovery
She smiled openly...
"When is urs due?" he asked
She blushed... "Ummm shaayad end of August, 8th week ultrasound mein batayenge"
"Do u want a girl?" he asked leaning on the wall, one foot up, hands in pockets
"Ya... like Ishita" Vandu said guiltily looking at her cookie plate
If he stared at her conjuring up the vision of a baby Ishita she wouldnt notice it "Shravu is like her, ab uski tarah ek beti bhi mili to, then I dont have to worry, ...
loha lohey ko kaat ta hai na. She is a terror, Shravu is too, I hope the baby will be too" Vandita laughed openly
He saw every word that slipped out of that mouth carefully
"She is too emotional and vulnerable, she wants the world to know if she is upset, she cant take rejection or ignorance"
Akka talked about her sister as if R&B was the suitor.
"and she sulks?" he asked inadvertently Akka looked at him startled... "How do U KNOW?" look
He shrugged raising his shoulders higher than usual...
"Ya... ya..." Akka agreed softly "Ya she sulks" she muttered
"Are u here?" II's text buzzed
"Why?" Akka asked
"Shravu solran "Amma Gurgaon poyirka Amma went to Ggaon" II texted
"Hmm" said Akka...
"Please please please please vaaayen, u havent seen my bigger, nicer cube" II texted 7 pleases
"Sorry" she said to R&B when she was done texting
He smiled... it amused him when people apologized for NOT talking...
He straightened up from the wall, walked with her
"Main chali jaaoongi" Vandita said warmly
He nodded but followed her...
"Ishita isi building mein hai.. 7th floor" Vandita said as FYI
He didnt say anything to that...
He followed her into the elevator, punched 7 and and it slid down...
He opened the door, and TURNED in the direction of the corridor leading to KMPG
Akka looked at him curiously
"Have a safe ride home Vandita" he hugged her
Around a foot or so taller than her... "see u Saturday?" he asked
She nodded... happy? she would see him again? Sad? she wont see him for ever and ever as her sis's hubby?
II crossed from one section of KMPG office to hers, and turned casually to looked at the elevator wait area and saw R&B wave at Vandita, as Akka approached her He got on the elevator, and checked the network barchart and went on Google and typed "Iyer Weddings" and did a thumb tap on "Images"