She checked the time-half past four.None of her colleagues were around.They all would arrive a few minutes before 6 pm.No one except her came in so early!They all had someone to be with but for her the office was her home. She was desperate to call someone to help her and ask for some reassurance but whom could she call and what could she tell.The clock had moved ahead 15 minutes and she moved towards her CEO's room.
She knocked lightly and a loud 'Yes' beckoned her in.A towering man in his early 30's,Akash,her CEO -a handsome man with a vast fortune,was amused to see her.He knew her from the day she took charge for coming to work very early and leaving late.His questions were always answered with a smile so he stopped asking her why she chose to work long hours.She realized her was staring at her and she began...
'Sir,I...errr, I ...
'Sir,I want to ......'
'Gosh,you are trembling..Here, have some water'
'Thanks Sir...'She gulped down the glass of ice cold water and felt better.Finally she found the voice to convey her message.
'Sir,I want to go home'.Sruthi felt like a school kid asking her teacher for permission to see her mom...
Akash was all the more amused.
'Any problem?Are you sick?Shall I drop you at home?-Questions seemed more teasing than serious and came very swiftly
'No Sir,I,err..I can manage..Thanks..'
She turned to leave,tripping over the file cupboard.
'And Shruti take a week off if you want'
'Eh..why..I mean...one week..',she stammered
'You will need it',said akash smiling wickedly...
A chill went down her spine.'Why did she smile so menacingly',she wondered.She pushed that thought out ,she had other things to deal with at the moment.
Grabbing her bag she headed towards the elevator.'How can it move so slowly when she was in a hurry,she thought.Hailing a taxi and directing the driver,she started thinking for the first time after the fateful phone call.The call that jolted her was from someone who said.....,she could not even think of what he had said......How could anyone be so cruel to talk to her like this when she had meant no harm....
It all started when her parents forced her to get married to Sanjay.Sruthi wanted to do her Masters but her parents were eager to see that she was settled.Several fights and arguments later she agreed but not willingly.Threats and tears forced her to give up her dreams of further studies.
She never asked to see who the groom was and never bothered about what he did for a living.She had only overheard people say he was tall and handsome and her cousins joked that he was like the 'Mills and Boons' hero.Her uncle told her Sanjay had started a company recently and showed all signs of becoming a 'super star'!All this made her hate Sanjay even before they tied knot.
Sanjay showered all his love on Sruthi but she despised him from the bottom of her heart.Yet,now,after the call,she was really shaken....
She joined a training center soon after their wedding , canceling Sanjays plan for a dream honeymoon.Sanjay was visibly upset and she was secrectly happy!!!They moved on in different directions from that day and Sanjay's efforts to bring her close to him failed miserably.
Sanjay showered her with gifts and treats.He even got her a mansion as a wedding gift.She had decorated and arranged everything with so much care that he thought Sruthi had changed.He was mistaken,for she behaved totally indifferent towards him.Something in him told that she would come around one day or the other and they would live happily ever after.
She gave a gloomy laugh.The cab driver turned to see her.She straightened herself.'How ironic',she thought.'Sanjay's dream would never come true,never...,ever.....'.She started sobbing....
Though she abhorred him to the core,she was equally distressed.She never wanted to see him like this...He was most dedicated person and yet she didn't appreciate anything he did.It was a way to settle scores with her parents for pushing her into married life when all her friends had joined the university for their Masters.She knew Sanjay was in no way connected to her grudge yet she refused to believe that fact.
The taxi stopped at the signal and she was jolted back to the present.Her home was just around the corner.The signal changed and the taxi purred to life and stopped in front of her home.She checked her watch.It showed five-thirty.She cursed the season.It got dark so quickly in winter.
She opened the gate and each and every step towards the house began to slow down.Sanjay's car was in the portico,the doors open and the inside looked like someone rummaged through the contents.Her heart pounded faster.
She fumbled with the keys and realized the door was open.It was completely dark inside.She suddenly forgot where the switch was.At last she located and flipped it.Just a click,no light.She wanted to scream but lost her voice.Did the voice on the phone really do what he meant.
The ill-fated call that caused all the havoc had laughed evilly before stating that her husband would be revenged for his conduct towards a staff.In spite of cautioning him about the dire consequences,Sanjay had refused to resolve the issue.So he was going to do something that Sruthi would live to regret and that could only mean one thing-Sanjay was dead.......
She flopped down and began to sob and it intensified into a scream and mellowed down to more crying.How she wished she had lived happily with him.Who else could be so loving and caring but him.She had lost the opportunity to live with a wonderful man.She never knew what was going on at his office..It seemed like ages that they spoke to each other.
She left to work before he came and slept till he left to his office.They were literally two strangers living in under the same roof.She tried to recollect when she had last looked at him..Sruthi could hardly recollect.Now she could never see him.....
If only she could turn the clock back and start all over again....
She felt something brush her shoulders-a hand...She screamed..The lights shone bright and she blinked.Her eyes took time to get accustomed to the brightness.She half expected to see the assassin with a bloody knife or a sleek revolver.
She raised her eyes slowly and to see who was there.Tears blinded her eyes.Confused and trembling she stood to see if she was seeing things .The hand extended and she screamed again.The person in front laughed and hugged her.She struggled to liberate from his clutches....She failed and waited for him to pull the trigger or was it the same bloody knife.
'You are so delicate',said the voice.
She looked up .....She wanted to say something but lost her voice once again.
'I know,u are shocked but don't be..Here I am....',said the voice again with a huge grin.
'But,you..you ...God what is happening here...'
'Let's sit and talk' ,said Sanjay as he led her towards the plush sofa.
'Someone called to tell me...'
'....that he was going to finish off your husband because he created some problem with the staff',completed Sanjay
'How did you know!!??'
'Hahahahahaha,so you did not recognize the voice heh!'
How negligent she had been,not even recognizing his voice in spite of being married for a year !Now everything became clear.He had played a trick on her and a very mean one.Suddenly she realized what a wonderful person he was and how hard he tried to keep up the relationship and all the while she had turned a blind eye on him.She did love him after all...
'You have a lot to explain Sanjay',said Sruthi,wiping her tears.
'Relax babe,let me get you something to comfort you'..
A few minutes later,Sanjay came out with two bowls of soup...
'You made this!!!'
'Who do you think was cooking for me all the while!!!'
She felt so bad for neglecting to fulfill even the basic needs for him.She sipped and relaxed for the first time.
'Akash and me are college mates and I never knew he had settled down here.We met accidentally at the gym last week and I invited him home.He saw our wedding pics and ....'
'...and you poured out your tearful story...'
'No,no,no,just the outline' he smiled sheepishly...'We devised a small plan and you know the rest...'
Now she understood the meaning of Akash's smile and the one week off...
'You scared the life out of me..How could you!!?' she said feigning anger.
'Just wanted to know if you loved me or not..'
''So you do love me rite!!'
'Yes,yes I do and sorry for ignoring you all this while but don't you ever try it on me again'.
'Promise,I won't..Ok,get dressed ,Iam taking you out for dinner,Let's celebrate your birthday....'
'My birthday!!Gosh,I forgot..but u...,chooo chweeettttt'.She hugged him tight..Sanjay knew his life would be a bed of roses and that too without thorns .Tears welled in their eyes,unseen to each other.After an year they had found or rather realised true love.....
This work of fiction is off to Sra who is hosting the third edition of Of Chalks and Chopsticks,an event started by Aqua.
Sorry for making you wait this long to get to the recipe.You have all rights to whack me for the nonsense above :)
Comforting Beetroot soup -Microwave Method
Beetroot-1 large,peeled and grated
Potato-1 small,peeled and grated
Onion-1 small,finely chopped
Garlic-2 gloves,grated/finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
- In a microwave safe bowl take 1/2 a cup water and put in the tomato.Microwave on medium heat for 30 seconds or till the skin peels out.Remove from microwave,take off the peel and keep aside.Reserve the liquid from the tomato.
- In the same bowl,put in beetroot,potato,onion,garlic and the the reserved liquid.Microwave covered for 10 minutes on medium .Add more water in between if the mixture is dry .Stir in between a couple of time.Let it stand in the microwave for 2 minutes.
- Remove the mixture form the bowl,puree with blanched tomato and enough water to get a soupy consistency.
- Transfer the soup to a microwave save bowl and heat once again,add salt and pepper and serving.
This soup is also being served @ MEC-Favorites hosted here.Microwave Easy Cooking[MEC] is an event started by Srivalli of Cooking for all seasons.This dish also joins Srivalli for her 365 days of Microwave cooking event.