He next week’s party was at Suzanne’s place, which was quite far away from Ashish’s office, yet he was the first one to arrive with great expectations. In time girls and boys started flocking in. Almost half an hour went by but Joanna was not there. Ashis
“Can I say something if you don’t feel bad.” Ashish nodded. “You have such lovely hair, why do you oil it so much.”
perhaps I liked your simplicity.” “Thanks a ton,” Ashish said. “I have noticed last week that you were only having that white drink, Nilopher told me it’s Vodka, so I bought a bottle especially for you, the best that I can find, hope you like it.” “Trying to impress me?’ Joanna acted as if she didn’t care but deep inside she was pleased not for the Vodka but for his caring attitude. “Know what? You can never impress a girl unless she herself wants to be impressed.” Joanna never expected such an answer. “Impressed this time.” She had to admit. “Bye.” He waved his hands and walked out of the room hastily. Joanna didn’t expect this as well. “You are leaving so early?” “Yeah, no one likes me here, no one even spoke properly with me till now. I was just waiting for you, as I had to apologise.”
Joanna could easily make out that Ashish was really disturbed from the moment he saw her. He was trying his level best to hide his emotions but failed miserably in his attempt. Something must have happened at the party. Ashish was desperate to leave, Joanna held his hand. “Leave me, I don’t need your sympathy, I am not a doormat, okay,” he said with watery eyes. “Okay, I’m sorry, tell me what happened before I walked in.” He was unable to answer; it seemed like he’d break into tears any moment. “Be strong, boys don’t cry – that too in front of girls.” She barely said it as large drops of tears rolled down his cheek. “At the party, I accidentally bumped into a girl, she slapped me just like that. I am not a pervert, okay.” He was still in tears. “Yeah, I am not as smart as you people but I am smart in studies, I always stood first in my class, okay? If you don’t believe me ask Nilopher and I am a real nice guy okay.” He took out his handkerchief and rubbed his eyes. “Okay, okay, okay, can you do me a favour? Please stop crying.” “I never felt so low before.” He said with his head down. “Thank goodness, you finally stopped. Now one more favour. Can you please walk in with me and tell me who slapped you.” Ashish didn’t want to get in the room ever again, but she dragged him in. “Look, it happened so fast hardly anyone noticed. Why are you stretching it?” “Who is it?” Joanna was not the one to back out.
He pointed to the girl who was drooling on every handsome single guy. She went up to her and slapped her tight. She was too shocked too react. “Mishy, Mishy, Mishy, how long you will take to understand you will always remain a wannabe? Joanna is inimitable and you are so very disillusioned that you take out your frustration on an decent guy like Ashish? Get a life okay.” She winked at him again. Ashish was so pleased, he almost clapped. “Well said Jo.” Nilopher clapped on his behalf. She had also overlooked it or else she would have been slapped much earlier. Mishy left immediately and no one cared, not even those handsome guys she was drooling on. Pretence has a short-lived memory.
An hour down, Joanna walked towards Ashish. Ashish didn’t take any further risk and only stuck to Nilopher all the time. “Can I borrow your friend for a while.” “He is all yours, from the last week itself.” “Thanks, nice vodka,” Joanna said. Joanna and Ashish were in the verandah with only stars and the moon for company. “No, thank you, so very much, it meant a lot.” Ashish was absolutely not staring at her and stood far away. “You can look at me once in a while.” He smiled in return. “Can I say something if you don’t feel bad.” “Ashish nodded.” You have such lovely hair, why do you oil it so much.? “My mom tells me that if I don’t apply oil on my hair it will fall.” ‘Mamma’s boy, she is right but don’t you realise you make a joke out of yourself in the process and what’a with the scarecrowish dress?” “It’s from Raymonds. Why, I don’t look good in it?” Joanna smiled, “It’s not about looking good. It’s about feeling good. I can give you some advice, buy them if you feel right,” she continued, “To start with, oiling your hair twice a week is good enough, I do the same and I hope you like my tresses. “They are gorgeous,” Ashish said. “Go to the best of the salons and deck up your hair, and wear fitting dresses.” “But tight clothes are very uncomfortable, they itch,’ he was upright honest. “Well a styles comes at a cost and never be so candid, for every girl is not Joanna.” He kept silent. You can also go for a stubble, it’ll look good on you.” “Your boyfriend, won’t come today,” he asked her all of a sudden. “No, we had a fight,” she said. “I’ll pray that everything gets well soon’, he answered. “I was expecting something like that. Can I kiss you then.’ But she regretted saying it since when she looked at him she realised, he didn’t only say it but meant it as well.
Wow,! that was everybody’s reaction as Ashish came to the party the next Saturday. Suddenly he became the cynosure, the most talked about amongst girls. “Isn’t he the same guy who is sponsoring the expensive whisky for the last couple of weeks.” “Yeah, I heard he is well settled.” “The stubble looks so hot on him.” “5 out of seven single girls enquired about you,” Nilopher whispered to Ashish. “Where is she?” he asked in return. “Good and bad news for you, lover boy. The good one is yes
Joanna and Ashish were in the verandah with only stars and the moon for company. “No, thank you, so very much, it meant a lot.” Ashish was absolutely not staring at her and stood far away. “You can look at me once in a while.” He smiled in return. “Can I say something if you don’t feel bad?” Ashish nodded.
she broke up and the bad one is she throws such tantrums post breaking-up that you should forget about her for a couple of weeks,” Nilopher said. ‘Where does she stay?” Ashish asked. “As a matter of fact nearby. But don’t you think of visiting her, she won’t be her sweet and nice usual self.” “I must.” “Okay, but don’t tell me I didn’t warn you.”
opened the door after several rings. “What are you doing here?” she was indeed upset. “Can I come in?” he asked. Joanna was in shorts and a translucent T shirt that revealed her colourful bra. “You get dressed, I am waiting,” Ashish was hesitant. “I am not going to the party, I’m not in the mood.” “No, I mean cover yourself up,” he said in return. “You know, the problem is neither with my dress nor with my body, it’s in your mind and don’t even dare to think that you have a chance now that I am single. You are way too pathetic for me, now get out.” “I know and I have no inclination to be with you, I have my heroine. You made me strong when I was weak, so I thought I must stand by you in your moment of turbulence,” Ashish said. He was leaving, she stopped him. “Wait here, I’ll change and come,” she ordered and went away. She was back in a few minutes in an allcovered-up dress, “Good enough for you or should I wear a mask as well.” “Better”, he smiled. “Sorry about what I just said. I didn’t mean it.” “Of course you meant it. Don’t worry I am used to this, see no tears this time,” he pointed to his eyes. “I didn’t and I don’t lie,” she answered. “Anyway, I don’t care what you say. My heroine is there somewhere who will love me, pamper me, respect me,” he said? “What’s this heroine thing? You have mentioned it time and again. You are in love with a heroine kya? Who is she? Sonakshi?” she was curious. “Again the same stupid question. Forget it, I don’t discuss it, “Ashish was frustrated.” Please tell me. See, you owe me one, I made a hero out of you for your heroine,” she realised something interesting is coming up. “It’s a concept, heroine is a concept. So she can be any girl but she should possess the qualities of a Hindi movie heroine.” “As in dance, sing, look like a princess, throw tantrums, stand up for her rights, be attractive,” she asked. “Exactly. Such a simple thing and people take so much time to understand. No wonder, I liked you in the very first instance. You are crazier than I am. This is interesting. What a way to get over that bastard,” she seemed super excited. “You think this is a joke,” Ashish was offended.” “Absolutely not. I am sure you won’t go back to the party. Anyway, you went there repeatedly only for me. Here I am exclusively for you.” “What do you want,” he was not sure of her intentions. “Don’t worry, I won’t exploit you sexually. My mom and dad have gone to the church, I want to show you to them.” “Show you to them.” That was obscene to say the least; you should say introduce you to them,” Ashish was not at all pleased. “You don’t know my tragedy.” “You and tragedy, I doubt it.” “Listen up naa?” From my childhood they always said I am crazy. I am sick and tired of it. I just want to show them, a typical Bengali boy with proper education, decent job and excellent upbringing, is even crazier, “She just could’nt control her thrill. “You are worse than my parents,” Ashish was deeply hurt. “But of course, I forgot the icing on the cake. What does the conservative Sen family have to say about it.” “Well,” he smiled, “tomorrow is my first appointment with the psychiatrist.” “This is too good man, this is simply rocking. Please take me along with you, I can’t afford to miss it, “she was on the floor laughing.” “No ways.” “Okay, deal. You very well know my circle is huge, I know a lot of sexy, hot beautiful girls. You take me tomorrow with you and I promise I’ll find your heroine, I cross my heart.” Ashish knew she was telling the truth, thus couldn’t say no.
Joanna opened the door after several rings. “What are you doing here,” she was indeed upset. “Can I come in?” he asked. Joanna was in shorts and a translucent T shirt that revealed her colourful bra. “You get dressed, I am waiting,“Ashish was hesitant.” I am not going to the party, I’m not in the mood.” “What are you doing here,” she was indeed upset. “Can I come in.”