Loud music blasting through the speakers fueled my anger. I sat away from the party scene like a loner. People were dancing, laughing, chatting over a drink. While I was sitting outside, sulking in my own sorrows.
“C’mon Manik, let’s dance!” Dhruv pulled me from my seat. I wasn’t in a mood to even talk to anyone with a straight face. Let alone be dancing like a maniac.
“No. I’m fine here. You can go.” I said over the music.
“You don’t look fine, buddy. What’s up?” He asked.
“Nothing’s up, Dhruv. Please leave me alone.” I said.
“But -” His voice was interrupted by Cabir. He stepped in between us. “Its okay, Dhruv. He’ll be fine. Go, have some fun.” Said Cabir. Dhruv shrugged and walked away, leaving me alone with him.
I looked at Nandini, past Cabir. She was swaying to the beats of the music with Maddy. His hands rested on her bare waist which was exposed by the crop top she wore. The way he touched her skin, I felt like ripping his head off.
“Stop looking at them.” Cabir said, interrupting my thoughts. He was the only person who knew about my past with Nandini’s. I could trust him with it. At the same time, I couldn’t keep it inside me forever as well.
“Why do you still think about her so much? Look at them. They’re happy together. Its obvious Manik, she’s not coming back to you.” He said. I vigorously shook my head. I wasn’t ready to accept that even after two years of suffering and loneliness.
“Manik, she has moved on. She’s happy, yaar.
She’s probably not even thinking about you at the moment.” Said Rohit. I looked back at Nandini. She was now arguing with Maddy. I could make out by her actions, that she was upset as she pushed him away and walked out.
“You’re right. She does look happy.” I said, a little too sarcastically.
“Okay. Maybe she’s not. But at least she has moved on. Why can’t you do the same?” He asked. I cocked my head to one side and looked at him as if he was crazy. The answer was evident in my behavior.
“That’s because I love her.” I answered anyway. “I will always love her. You won’t understand, Cab. Every time I talk to her about why she left, she just starts avoiding me like plague. It hurts.” I said.
“Well, if its bothering you so much, then you should talk to her about it. You certainly do have a right to know the reason behind this. Ask her, Manik.” He said. I chuckled.
“I would have gotten my answers two years back itself, if it was that easy. But it isn’t. She’s not gonna say it. But I can see how much she’s hurting as well.” I said.
“Yeah, I saw that too. She does think about you. She does have those feelings for you. I’ve noticed the way she looks at you.” He said. “But you have to clear things with her, buddy. Let me give you a tip; girls prefer guys who talk to them first, and not the other way round. Just try once. You might get your answers this time.” He added.
Maybe he was right. No, he was damn right. I had all the right to demand for answers. She was not the only one in the relationship. It was the both of us. It was Manik and Nandini. It was Manan. I had to talk to her in order to clear my mind.
“You’re right. For the first time, Cab, you’ve helped me for real.” I said.
“What the f**k?” He asked, offended. I laughed. “Just kidding. I’m gonna go and talk to her now.” I said, a little too enthusiastically.
“That’s my boy! Man up, dude.” He cheered and pumped his fist in the air, like I was planning to run a long marathon. I got up from my seat with immense courage, but it all vanished as a sudden feeling of nervousness washed over me. I sat down again.
“I can’t do this.” I muttered.
“Where did that confident Manik go?” He asked.
“Screw confidence. I can barely stand in front of her after what happened yesterday.” I said and immediately regretted it. I wasn’t supposed to bring up the kiss in front of Cabir.
“What happened yesterday?” Rohit asked.
“We happened to bump into each other at a café. She took me to her home after that.” I said, and didn’t bother explaining the further incidents.
“What did you two do? Manik, please don’t tell me you guys did some funny business… ” He said, too cautiously.
“Well, we would have, if it wasn’t for a phone call from my mom. We might have crossed the limit yesterday. We kissed.” I confessed. I could see him roll his eyes and lean back on his seat. He shook his head and stayed silent, looking into the distance for a while.
“You’re in deep trouble, mate.” He concluded. I sighed. “But I do have a solution to all your problems.” He added and abruptly got up from his seat. Before I could process, he was dragging me away somewhere.
“What the f**k are you doing?” I asked as he pulled me by my arm.
“You, my friend, need some encouragement to talk to her. I know what exactly can help you.” He said and dragged me towards the. . .
“No no no no no. Don’t even think about it. I’m not drinking.” I warned. He let me go and told the bartender something that I couldn’t make out over the loud music. The bartender was quick enough to hand me a glass of clear liquid.
“Don’t worry. Its not that strong. You’ll be fine.” Cabir assured.
“Are you mad? I’m not getting wasted. How can you even hand me a drink?” I asked. He scoffed.
“Nothing is going to happen to you, okay? Its just a little vodka. Plus, if you get too high, I’ll be there to handle.” He said.
“That’s what I’m worried about. Just keep that back.” I ordered. He shook his head, mumbling a no.
Before I could even protest, he forced the glass into my hand. I eyed him for a couple of seconds and finally, decided to let go.
I closed my eyes shut and gulped down the liquid in one go. It looked like water but tasted completely different. It was bitter with a slight mix of apple flavor in it. I could feel the burning sensation down my throat. Soon, I was craving for more.
“One more.” I ordered the bartender. Cabir looked at me, bewildered.
“One is enough, ya know.” He said as I gulped down another glass of whatever it was. I asked for another one.
“Manik, that’s enough. You don’t want to end up lying here like a dead man, do you?” He asked.
“No. Just chill out. You yourself said, that I needed help. Here I am, taking some help.” I said.
Like that, I was soon, six drinks down. “I’m not the one to be blamed for your hangover, you idiot.” Cabir said. Everything around me was starting to get dizzy.
“Don’t worry. I’m okay. I need to talk to Nandini. Where is she?” I asked to no one in particular.
“I think you should talk to her when you’re sober.” He suggested.
“No. You know, I can’t do that properly when I’m sober. I’m this little monkey in front of her who can barely talk. I have to do this tonight.” I slurred and wandered off looking for Nandini.
Seriously, that was one rough night. . .
What’s going to happen next! Please let me know your views. Sorry for the late update tho. Was busy with assignments.
Credit to: Nish