Episode 2: Here
At a boutique launch:
Everybody was awaiting the chief guest’s arrival. The journalists were ready with their cameras. The atmosphere was full of excitement and anticipation. Eyes were fixed at the entrance.
“Hey! Swara Khanna has arrived! She’s finally here!”
Someone from the crowd yelled. At once the event managers, the recipient, journalists, photographers got ready in action. They thronged the entrance, in the welcome of their favourite star.
As the door of the car opened, Swara appeared in a beautiful pink gown, her hair tied up in a side bun. She smiled and waved at her fans gently and one could feel that she wasn’t a human, but a fairy. The crowd stood in awe as she walked past them to the boutique doors.
“Hey Swara! You look gorgeous!”
“Thank you Shaina! The boutique is so great!”
The inauguration ceremony went smoothly. All clapped and cheered when their favorite star cut the ribbon. Swara smiled at the paparazzi as they clicked pictures of her. But had they known her well, they would have found out the fakeness of that smile.
Swara observed Kavita managing everything diligently. Kavita had always been a perfect person, Swara thought. She had been managing every little thing about this star. She worked like a robot who did everything perfectly. She was always this hardworking. Just that, she also had fun, before Swara became famous. Swara had always despised stardom. It was something very new to her. She was young, actually too young for this stardom. Yet, the reality was that she was famous. But this had already cost her freedom. Freedom to do anything. And she had always loved her freedom. While others believed that she had the best fate, she thought otherwise. Simple at heart, she like the simple, beautiful aspects of life. Not this extraordinary, extravagant, and so paparazzical life. No. Certainly not the last one. But then, reality. She hated this word.
“Swara!!” Kavita snapped Swara out of her thoughts.
“The media wants to meet you.” Swara looked at Kavita helplessly. “This way, Swara.”
“Hm.” Swara nodded and followed her.
“Swara ma’am, when is your next single coming out?” Asked a journalist.
“I’m working on it. Hopefully, it will be out soon!” Kavita smiled as she replied.
“Ma’am, aap Mumbai mein kab perfom karenge?”
“Well, this is not in my plans as of now, but we’ll see if this materialises ever.”
Swara watched Kavita as she replied confidently. She had always adored her confidence. Her style. She always believed that not her, but Kavita deserved this stardom.
“Ma’am, are you nervous about your upcoming performance with the Rockstar Sanky? It must be a huge event for you. Isn’t it?”
The question made both Swara and Kavita shocked and surprised.
“Pardon me, you said that me and Sanky are going to perform together?” Swara asked with a shocked expression which made the journalist a bit puzzled.
“Uhm.. Yes ma’am. You and Sanky are going to perform in the Goan concert. Isn’t it?”
“No! Certainly not!” Swara exclaimed.
“But.. Ma’am.. My information is 100% accurate! It can’t be.. wrong.”
“Your information is 100% wrong. There’s no such performance on the line. Certainly not with any Sanky! No! I think you’re mistaken.”
“I hope I’m done in this matter.”
“Ma’am, then when would we see you both performing together?” Asked another journalist.
“Well, not in the near future!” Swara smiled.
“Ma’am, but don’t you think that performing with him will be a golden opportunity for your career?”
“I don’t think so. Swara Khanna is a self-made star. Nobody can make her and therefore, nobody can break her!” Kavita replied, to which Swara only smiled.
In the city of Bristol, England.
A girl of age 24, woke up as the alarm rang. Her pillow was half-wet due to the tears that her eyes had shed last night. She woke up, lazily. Her eyes were all puffy. She didn't even know when she had fallen asleep. As she got out of the bed, her feet struck with the headstock of a guitar that lay broken on the ground. She bent to pick it and stared at it. She threw the piece away aimlessly and proceeded towards the washroom. Under the shower, even she wondered how badly she hated anything that reminded her of her past. Of him. Of them. She sighed as she closed her eyes. After a few moments, she came out of the washroom.
The house she lived in was a 1BHK apartment. The apartment was similar to a dungeon. No proper lightings. Shabby curtains. Old school furnitures. No TV. No radio even. A landline, yes. The walls were empty. No paintings, no pictures. Infact, the house was deprived of any pictures of even the person who resided here. Actually, to be more precise, the apartment deprived of anything that was 'homely'. For any normal person, it would be no less than a prison. And maybe, that was what this person wanted. To punish herself for her past. To suffer. But wasn't she already suffering?
The resider took out her clothes, plain jeans, a simple shirt which didn't match the pair of jeans she just took out, and a leather jacket. She tied her hair into a loose pony. Not even bothering to atleast glance at herself in the mirror for like half a minute or so, she proceeded towards the kitchen. She took out a bowl, poured milk and oats, and sat down to eat. After she was done, she grabbed her bag, and donning her work out shoes, she walked towards the railway stop. Her train was to arrive shortly. She sighed. Looked around. Not much people around, she thought. Sighed again as the train arrived. Another day to survive, she thought as she boarded the train.