Excuse me …

Rosaline has been sitting at the table with her friends for more than an hour now. Laughing and sharing stories with her friends. It was the birthday of Sarah, her best friend and this was her treat, despite the fact that Sarah had already thrown a party. This was how she was though. Segregation was her habit and she felt that it was necessary to classify her friends as well by giving her “friends” a party and her “special friends” a treat afterward the party in the café for a coffee. But to be honest, Rosaline was never like this.

For her things has always been simple. It’s either a friend or not. She was never one to judge others or even classify them as a “special friends” and “friends”. She always found joy in the simplicity of her relationships and cherished every person the same. That was how Rosaline was. Despite the fact that Sarah was so judgemental, Rosaline was still her friend and I guess that is what the old lore of “Opposites Attract” is all about.

Rosaline was sitting right next to her best friend, who so strikingly opposite to her that people often wondered how are they even friends. Sarah was plump and stout and Rosaline was tall and thin. Sarah was the strange one, with her baritone voice and all floral and bright clothing whereas Rosaline was the one with a feeble voice and darker clothing. They were the Laurel and Hardy of the school, just blown up to an excessively large level. And here they were. Sarah drinking her Americano and Rosaline already high and buzzing on her espresso.

Rosaline was lost in her laughter, induced by a joke a friend of Sarah cracked when she felt a tap on her shoulder. The group at once fell silent and when she recovered herself and recollected her senses, she saw that even the smirk of some of the people around the desk has been wiped off.

She turned to find a boy, maybe a little over her age with his hair a tad too long for him to carry properly, His hair seemed as if they had all the freedom in the world and yet like an undisciplined class trying to not make a sound at the arrival of a teacher, his hair seemed to be fixed in a hurry. His eyes were black and his blue jeans were dirty. He wore a black sweatshirt and matching canvas shoes.

“Excuse me,” he said to her and she could feel the tension rising in the air.

“Yes,” she replied.

“I did not mean to irrupt you and your friends here and I am really sorry for that but I just entered the cafe and I could not stop me from coming over here and telling you something which I think that you should be aware of and you clearly are not. You see I would not have disturbed you but I couldn’t help but notice that Julia Roberts looks exactly like you” he said in a single breath and acted as if nothing happened. He stood there and looked at her with an expectant expression but she did not know what he wanted. And in confusion and irritation, she turned to Sarah.

“Do I look anywhere near like Julia Roberts?” she asked but before Sarah could reply, he spoke again.

“I’m sorry but you look like yourself. She looks like you. People will always say to you the other way around but the truth, in fact, is what I just said. Can I have a cup of coffee with you?”

Sarah might have judged him. She might have shouted at him or ridiculed him. She might even have used her pepper spray or called the security. But there was something about that boy that made her feel, weird! Something peculiar. Something which was his own. Unique. Unprecedented. And while Sarah would not have gone for a coffee with him, she found herself collecting her things and leaving her things.

P.s. Happy Valentines Day.

The Lunch Break

Leandre was your average joe, with average qualities and an average life. An average job. Average wage. I need not continue about his life right, you get the picture. Leandre was the guy currently running inside a diner in the afternoon with his sleeves rolled till his elbows, half his shirt peeking out his trousers and his laces undone. His blond hair a mess and dripping. A messenger side bag hanging at his hips, carelessly thrown across his shoulder. A pen held between his lips and sheets of paper in his hands marked red and blue in places.

Leandre rushed inside the diner and sat at the nearest empty table he could lay his eyes on. He wrote frantically with his right hand and rose his left hand in the air as if he was the studious student of the class who had just a single minute till the end of the period and he wanted to make a note of what the professor was saying and ask a question in that one tiny minute. His hour-long lunch break was again bound to pass with him working and drinking a ton of coffee and his stomach empty. A waitress soon attended him, though, much to his comfort.

“What can I do” she began but was cut short by his smooth and unabused voice.

“I need a Cappuccino. Please. Quick. Thank you.” said he with his eyes never leaving the paper. The only difference was that before he had his hand in the air and right now, they were in his hair.

Mumbling figures under his breath and crunching figures in his head, he felt his stomach grumble and revolt. His stomach clearly threatened him to file a case against him in the labor court and like a perfect boss he looked for the waitress to ask for his coffee again. He called her and went back to his work.

“Please,” he said. “Save my life. Cappuccino. Hurry.”

His mind was well trained to look past all the distractions and troubles. He had trained himself to be void of all emotion. He was no longer irritated by the loud speaking and verbal diarrhea-suffering co-worker. He was well trained to look past the construction noises and into his hieroglyphics worksheets. But when another couple of minutes passed and his coffee was nowhere to be found, he lost it. He lost control over himself and he couldn’t control his anger. His anger aimed at himself that he got himself in at work released at the poor waitress. His frustrations released themselves as a river breaks the dam built on her and escapes.

He quietly capped his pen. And waited for the waitress to pass him by, like a rattlesnake waiting for his prey to come near him. And when she did, he pounced. He stood up and look at her in the eyes and raised his voice and said, “MY COFFEE!”

The coffee shop came to a stand still and everyone turned around to look at him. The sound of his voice sent something breaking inside of him. It broke his current state and he noticed that the poor waitress was shivering. Her eyes were brimming with tears and she was scared. Unable to apologize for his actions, he turned to the table and picked up his papers in preparation to walk out of the store. But then, the magic happened.

“Stay here,” a feminine voice said to the waitress and pulled at his elbow; forcing him to turn around and face her. Her circular face with her cheeks puffy, a tiny girl stood in front of the man who was finding it hard to find his words. Her black hair were neatly tied in a bun but a few strands had broken free from the restraints and were caressing her cheek on the right side of her face. She wore a pink chapstick in the name of makeup and her cheeks were red. Wait. Flushed red, in anger.

“What is your problem, sir?” she asked clearly angry. “Can you not see this is a busy day and we have other customers to attend to as well?”

“But…”

“But what? You cannot wait for your coffee? Even if you cannot wait for you fix of caffeine, you could at least be gentle about being rude. Was it necessary to shout on the top of your lungs?” she screamed at him. Which flushed her face a deeper shade of crimson.

“I.. I. I’m sorry.” he said his head hung down.

That cooled her down but still it was not enough to bring her comfort. Her face was starting to lose the recently acquired flush but her gaze was still cold. “You say that to the other girl Mister.And no coffee for you.” she said and walked away.

“Thank you Louna” the other waitress whispered to the girl as she went back to the kitchen.

As Leandre walked out of the coffee shop, the shop filled with applause for the girl who stood up. Strong and confident. And Leandre found himself daydreaming of Louna ever since.

My eBook Is Available!

I know I promised all of you an Angel and Al eBook when I stopped writing Angel and Al on the blog. I said that I felt that the stories are a lot close to my heart and that sharing these stories is like having no pants on in a hustling market. I felt as if I am being exposed and that I am revealing secrets.

It was because they are so cute! “Angel and Al” is like my pet project which I have grown so fond of that I don’t want to share them with the world anymore. That I want to keep them with me forever and never share with the world

But it was also my most successful “series” I ran on the blog here. And I finally decided that not sharing the story of Angel and Al is selfish of me and that it is in fact, an injustice to Angel and Al that I am not propagating their beautiful legacy with the world. I felt that it is my duty to spread the joy and happiness which reflects in the stories and the sense of satisfaction I got when I wrote them.

Angel & Al have grown up. The stories are like my children and to see them grow from individual stories to the anthology is an absolutely amazing feeling. Writing Angel and Al was never “work” for me but I always wrote them with a silly grin on my face. Without further ado, I present to you all Angel & Al.

These are a collection of 30 stories (blogs) from this tiny little blog I have. It is free of cost and will be free forever. It is available on Kobo and Smashwords at least and many more retailers. Just so you guys know, I love you all for all the support you gave me over the years. Thank you so much my dearest readers, for all the support.

A special thank you goes to my personal Angel for whom all of these were written initially. This wouldn’t be possible without you.

You can download the book from Smashwords here. If you prefer then click here to download from the Kobo website. Once again, thank you my lovely blog readers for all the support. Do download, I insist. It’s free and very short. Leave it a review and send me your honest thoughts!

P.s. I know that I haven’t been active on the blog lately. It’s just that I have been receiving no feedback from you guys and I got upset and called it quits for a while. But I promised myself that I will be here for you guys, even if I reduce myself down to a single blog a week, even if you guys aren’t here. Stay awesome!

That’d Be Fun!

“And then the groom kisses the bride and the priest pronounces them husband and wife.”, I said to you as you put your head on my shoulder and we looked up at the night sky. Forming constellations which do not exist and aren’t real.

“But don’t you think it is boring?”, you said and I let out a slight giggle.

“I guess it is.”, I said. “You want to make it fun?”

“Yes. I want something which will be like our personal way of doing it. It’ll be special and it’ll be unique to us.”, you said and turned to your shoulder to look at me. “You’re the writer.”, you said excitedly. “You tell me something which is fun and unique.”

“I can kidnap you Angel.”, I said.

“No. That’s stereotypical. I will kidnap you.”, you said and we both shared a little laughter.

“As you say mademoiselle. Kidnap me in a bike with side car. That’s almost unheard of.”

“What about our apparel?”, you said and I let out a little hmm as I pretended to think.

“You come in your pyjamas. And with your bunny shaped slippers. I will come in tennis shorts and flip-flops.”, I said and we both roared to laughter.

When we settled ourselves down and looked into each others eyes, you leaned closer and asked, “What about our vows?”

I looked into your eyes and traced the back of my hand on your right shoulder and said, “Well, I will vow that forevermore and beyond I shall be your husband. Your words shall be my guide and you shall be my wife. Till the day God himself dies.”

“And my vows?”, you asked.

“Your vows…”, I said and pretended to think once again with my lips pressed together. You looked at me with an anxious look. “You just say that You Do.

I looked at you look at me and in that moment I felt that the day had seized. I knew that I was forever wed to this girl.

Intoxicated

My head spins,

My body loosens up.

A lull falls o’er me

Tranquillity recedes upon me.

I feel jollier than ever before.

This bottle of aged love,

Mature alcohol.

Splendid!

Your love intoxicates me.

I’m Sorry Angel

“I’m sorry Angel”, I whispered into your ear and leaned me forehead against your temple. “I won’t be able to do it.”

To be fair to you, this was pretty random. This indeed was very random. It was so random that at one moment my lips were at your nape and the next moment my lips were at your ear saying that I won’t be able to do it. As a sane person should, you too looked at me with concern in your eyes and looked at me with a bewildered look.

“What you won’t be able to do, my dear Al? As long as I have known you, there has been practically nothing which you have not said that you cannot do or you have not done. What is it Al?”, you said and tried to look into my eyes.

“I know Angel. But… this is different. This is something that I honestly cannot do. This is something that I can really not do.”, I said and my voice became raspy. And tiny little tears welled up in my eyes.

You saw me and knew that this thing was really really bothering me. That thing was more than being just another thing and was a lot more than being just another thing. It was something which resided in my soul and was something which I really really feared was something which I cannot do. Perplexed, amused and bemused you held me tightly in an embrace.

“Whatsoever it is or it was, I am sure that now you can do it and Al you always have me with you.”, you said and I hugged you back tightly and hid my head in your neck and underneath your hair. They tickled and trickled at my nape but I didn’t mind.

“Tell me what happened. We will fix it together, I assure you.”, you said and I loosened my grip on you and looked into your eyes.

“I saw a little girl the other day outside your medical college.”, I said and you shook your head affirmatively. “She had an injury and because of that she was crying and crying and crying continuously!”

You gave my head an affectionate pat and listened to me patiently.

“I just cannot drop our daughter to school for her first day! Shy will cry and cry and cry and cry and ask me to take her back home and I won’t be able to see that.”, I said.

“Al”

“No Angel. You take leave and you drop her.”

“Al.”

“Angel I don’t know. If I go, I know that I will not be able to drop her and bring her back home. Wipe her tears on the way and give her ice-cream to lighten her mood.”

“AL!”, you raised you voice a bit to silence me which strangely is very effective. “We’re 20 Al. We have at least 5 years till we get a baby! Silly boy.”

“O”, I said. “But I am then too not going to drop her.”

“Al you talk of all these silly stuff and make me shy.”, you say slowly slowly blushing to a deep beetroot red. While I sit, unable to contemplate what made you shy.

No amount of asking drew the answer out of you though. I wonder why…?

The Blank Page

I sit here and stare at the blank page. I may be his arch enemy who he has to face everyday as I am the person who is consistently after his existence. As soon as I lay my hands on one of them, I make them not so blank anymore.

But sitting here i front of the blank page right now just gives me a thought. What if he was a real person? Taking the limits of grammar beyond the capabilities it has, I think that the blank paper is something I would love to personify. Quite, literally.

He’s the quietest person you’ll ever met and adapt everything you are and incorporate his existence into the work you’re doing. The blank page is the mute commuter who says nothing but still is so visibly understanding that his silence  becomes his answer.

The blank page is divine! The poor little creature stay behind me, beneath me, around  me and about me. Not just me. Us. Everywhere around us. I am decimating 13 of his kind everyday. If I sit down to write my draft, it would increase in exponential of 1000s. And still here it sits in front of me. Staring me in the eye and challenging me to a duel.

“Let’s see who is the stronger, keener and faster. My existence or your creativity?”

Everyday I draw my guns out and destroy his existence and still the divine white paper, comes up in front of me defiantly and challenges.

Hail him.

Dream

It is a dream. It’s always been a dream.

It’s a secret my heart tells me when I am asleep. He is a little kid, my heart. He behaves like a child and is very shy. My heart stays away from my body with someone beyond my reach. Just, so, close! I can reach up to it and scrape my fingers at it but I cannot get the grip as of now. Tired, grasping and out of breath when I lay on the stone just below my stone, me heart crawls up to me and whispers in my ear a secret.

He is a little shy, my heart. Afraid to voice out his words. Scared that someone may overhear and laugh.Scared that someone will overhear. Scared. He is a lot scared, my heart. Afraid to voice himself out. Afraid for me. Afraid for my rock.

He creeps down the rock and scuttles towards me in his tiny feet and whispers in my ear and runs back. He doesn’t like to leave my rock alone, my heart. Desires unspoken in the public, he gives them a form. Fears unheard of he says with a shivering voice, only when I am asleep.

He did a prophecy, my heart. His whispers are words which come to life. To create is to animate. Give birth to a thought. His thoughts are so cute and so macabre, it’s ridiculous they exist. He’s a bit foolish, my heart. Speaks in a language none understand and is still afraid to speak out loud.

He whispers so little, it’s hardly a sentence. Two syllable. Two sentences.

Two emotions.

He whispered your name. My rock. My rock on whom I will build my church. A dream I have with my. On whom my fingers scrape but I cannot get a grip as of yet. He whispers “Sorrow” and indeed the worst of this breed comes to greet me.

I am an honest and sincere host though. I welcome them both. My rock and sorrow. Embrace them both. My rock and sorrow. I do all the preparations for both my rock and sorrow. I come, and make my move. Between the two I sit and groove. I don’t want them to meet and greet. They’re not a team, I’d like to see.

My rocks weeps. Asks for me to grip and I will. It seems too sorrowful and disheartening.

But he doesn’t know me my heart. He is afraid I will collapse apart. Give up and let go and depart.

He’s naive my heart.

 

One day I will indeed get a grip on my rock. And then I will build my church. The deity: my rock.

Love

Get drunk on words,
Drown in eyes.
Cafuné.

Talk silently.
Read her lips.

Trace the back of her palm with your fingers.
Kiss her chin.

Talk to her after she sleeps.
That’s what love is after all.