It Happened One Night – Chapter 2

This just could not be TRUE! Is it just a co-incidence that the two books she manage to lay her hands on recently had to have a character by that name? NIKHIL! Everything was fine till Taslima ended up at that name! Couldn’t there be another name for Swami Nityanand born from the pen of the great Jayabrato Chatterjee? Shalini almost swore at herself for walking down the roads she had promised never to travel again. She had left that city forever, never to go back again-never, for it would drain her a bit too much to see that man in front of his eyes and pretend as if nothing had changed, specially with that lady by his side. She was human after all!

Eight months after that night that changed a certain part of her life forever- she could still see him. Desire burning bright in his dead fish eyes, the look said it all and did the trick most miraculously yet predictably. Some insane stupidity took over Shalini to rekindle her feelings for this man who had no clue about what was going on in her mind and neither did he care. If only she could turn back time and extinguish the blazing inferno that charred her mind and crippled a part of her- forever! And as always she found herself licking on her wounds all alone. She felt horribly small, horribly weak but this was an uncontrollable urge.

Shalini had heard people say that eyes always speak the truth – how desperately she had tried to find anything but raw desire in them that night! And when they kissed, she noticed that his eyes were closed- CLOSED EYES! Then for a moment it had been sufficient to light a million candles all around her – she believed all that she read in Mills & Boon novels – closed eyes during a passionate moment have always implied LOVE! Well, she was sure even then that he couldn’t possibly be in love with her. But a part of her insisted on behaving like a love struck naïve teenager, hanging on desperately to the little things he were murmuring in throes of passion.

She could still feel his touch exploring her undiscovered depths and gradually taking her closer to heaven. There was no intoxication to dull his senses that she had thought of using as a rational explanation of his strange behaviour. Everything was as mundane, as ordinary as any other day, except for the very special union of souls that had an almost meteoric collision and quite predictably left back shattered remnants. Only 1 of them was too strong to leave back any shattered remains –Thought Shalini bitterly. She couldn’t till date come to any conclusion about whether he deserved hatred, dislike or mere indifference for being what he was, for a single night and then strangely for a few more inebriant occasions. But one thing was certain- he still made a difference, and managed to cause an unwanted stir in the beautifully settled life that Shalini had so carefully built.

It was raining outside – as if the Gods, angry at the earth, were lashing out their tongues filled with venom. It reminded Shalini of the mail that had shaken her delicate world of impossible dreams – Nikhil had spewed venom at her in almost the same way for feeling for him! And she could not hate him, Yet she could not forget those innocent expressions that became even more childish when he got high, Yet she could not forget those rare moments of false togetherness, Yet she could not forget the man who blamed her for seducing him that night when he himself knew better than anyone else how true his allegations were. Yet she could not forget NIKHIL!

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