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[Independence Day Special][Short Story] Pis-Aller

"He that studieth revenge keepeth his own wounds green, which otherwise would heal and do well"-John Milton
He was in his nineties now, slow, fragile and nearing death. Still, every day he used to wake up at 6 in the morning and stare outside the window, blankly. They said when he was young, he was agile, healthy and quick, no one knew what his profession was, but he did retire rich at the age of fifty-five.His only son used to visit the old rooms twice a day,
'Baba, I request you again. Come with us to the big house. What is there in this dump?' his son used to question.


'I can't leave now, there is one final task left son,' he used to smile, 'One final task.'
Baba had sent all the furniture from the room to the new house but kept himself a bed and the jewel beaded box.
'No one has ever removed the box from under the diwan since last 20 years, baba,' the daughter-in-law use to question, 'Don't let the servants, but please let me clean …

Sharukh Khan and Cheese Sandwich

What do you do when you reach ‘Mannat’ i.e., house of Sharukh Khan on Bandstand Mumbai???

I had this dilemma this Saturday. You see, on a very hot afternoon I was to reach bandstand to meet someone. I sat in the bus very hungry for the train journey from pune-mumbai was completed in just one vadapav. (Arey, its Ganesh Chaturti, can’t have omlette and I don’t like cutlet and unfortunately the menu card ends over this menu in trains!!!)

So here I was sitting in the bus with Dipu of course, and the conductor tells me about band-stand and lo, I get down there. And there I see it, I see my ‘Mannat’ getting complete, I see a hawker selling Cheese sandwich…aah…blessed soul I am.

Dipu happy that she saw raging sea just opposite to Cheese Sandwich and suggest we take the sandwich on the rocks to eat. Well, frankly I see nothing else that the mouth-watering cheese and hear only the stomach rumbling. Then a van from NDTV speeds by and comes to halt on opposite side,

Hey, Something is going on here. Lets see we will come on TV,’ I suggest. (Yeah, desperate but hey you don’t get to see live action always right??)
The van stops opposite and guy starts filming something outside a bunglow called ‘Mannat. Lands end’Mannat Lands End: the doorway sign (Who wants to live at lands end?? :P)

‘Hey isn’t that Mannat? The bungalow of Amitabh Bacchan or something?’ I ask curiously (No offense Shahrukh, but hey, I got so many important things to remember, right? Like the alternate Id’s of Superheroes? Or even the festival prayers? and yes, my name also???) The bungalow is exactly where the bus stop is, where the bus dropped us.

‘Mannat?’ she asks, ‘Where?’

Now, if I was any wiser, I should have sensed trouble (Like wolverine maybe, sniffing..) then grab her hand and catch the moving vehicle and speed off from the street, like they do in movies, but no, that was a dream sequence, in reality I acted dumb, ‘There behind you,’ I point out.

‘OMG,’ she shrieked.

‘What? What happened?’ I could not complete…for her answer was drowned by the ragging traffic around as she crossed the road and was on the other side almost instantly. Clumsy me, but I had a cheese sandwich to order.

As a good boyfriend I had to follow her unless she falls into trouble in this unknown city (baah…my cheese sandwich.)
The bunglow and the bus stopNow as a true and very nice Shahrukh Khan fan she crossed the road and started enquiring to people, is this really the house of Srk..yeah…(You see I just miss the ‘R’ in SRK..I have S & K but nobody asks for me so much…baah)

So she innocently and cutely asked me… ‘Is it ok, if we wait here for a while?’

Now, if she had asked me to cut my head off with so sweet and cute voice, I would have readily agreed, so of course…I agreed.

Then came the long wait…(actually not long, for there was some moment near the bungalow, the Big guys secretary and the security guard moved out, but I was hungry and a minute was long enough for me)

Eventually… or was it a millennium?? i do not know…hunger over took over my willingness to be a good boyfriend and I was actually pulled towards the Cheese Sandwich cart. My lovely cheese sandwich!!
So the sandwichwala grilled me a delicious mouth-watering cheese sandwich (for 20 bucks!!! how mean) with extra cheese (woo hooo) and I carried the platter across the street only to find the black BMW in tinted glass drive by.

‘Where were you? He just drove by, you missed it!!!’ she exclaimed. 

I showed her my cheese sandwich and she said…’Oh God….tu bhi na..’ as in ‘You are…’

But the first sandwich entered my mouth and I felt… blessed…truly blessed.

So what I missed Shahrukh Khan? Watching him would not fulfill my appetite right???

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