“Here is your order, Gentleman” She placed the tray on the table, alerting the guy who was engrossed on his mobile.
“Kunj?” She exclaimed in shocked and in disbelief unable to believe the scenario happening in front of her. In fact it’s not any scene but very much real, the guy who had haunted her in dreams from so long was actually sitting on the chair, right in front of her, that too here in a foreign land. Is this another brutal game of destiny?
“Dr. Twinkle Taneja?? What a surprise! You are here? WOW! Can’t believe this! What are you doing here as a waitress? And when did you come to New York ? Twinkle? Excuse me! Dr. Twinkle! Hellooo! Heyyy!” He finally completed his series of questions in one go; waving his both hands to bring her out of abstraction.
“Heyyy! Kunj! Hi! I can’t believe this! Be seated.” Quickly coming back to earth, she indicated the chair while he gave her the ‘Not before you’ look.
After sitting on the chair opposite to him, Twinkle confirmed this definitely as one of the cruel game of destiny. How much she wanted to run away from him! As if Mumbai was not enough, now in New York ? And this round table seating arrangement reminded her of something else.
Twinkle taneja, a successful obstetrician always had one and only weakness in her entire life and that is the man sitting opposite her. The ‘distraction’, she concluded about him years ago. As her first real crush in school, her world would start and end with KUNJ SARNA . Her thoughts went back to school days, where once she sat across from him in this same manner, and instead of food tray there was a chess board.
Flashback (Twinkle’s POV)
It was a rainy day in Mumbai, and as usual the Physical Training hour was disrupted. However, the Trainer cheered the pupils with the announcement of indoor games. And chess was the main attraction that day. Whoever competed in the match returned to their places within minutes as the opponent was none other the National Level Chess Player Kunj, the pride of XYZ ACADEMY . The whole class gave up the idea and engrossed themselves in other indoor activities like table tennis. And that was when I decided to try her hand in the board game and adjusted the chair to sit while focusing on the eight-by-eight grid. I tactically moved every piece with full concentration and finally I did the unbelievable. I won the match by attacking the king, leaving no chance for Kunj, but to accept his defeat, leaving everyone in shock. But my happiness was not in winning the match but in those minutes in which I sat across him. It was an achievement for me. Only I knows how I managed to survive those forty five minutes having the whole class witnessing the nail biting match.
(End of flashback)
“Twinkle? Back to the earth?” Kunj snapped his fingers to get her attention.
“Sorry. What were you asking?” Twinkle replied, mentally pushing her thoughts aside.
“Ermm.. I asked you many things, first being what are you doing here in this restaurant, in this city? I thought you are a physician, in India.” Kunj again asked in surprise.
“Uh.. Yes I am. Actually, this is my Aunt’s restaurant and I am just helping her here.”
“Cool! It is so pleasant to see you in NY.” He replied sipping the coffee he ordered.
“And what are you doing here?” She asked him finally.
“Well, I was craving for some good Desi food and checked for the best Indian Restaurant in this locality and here I am.”
“No. I meant your visit to NY. Any work or holidaying?”
“I wish. But definitely, not for a vacation! I’m here for a business deal. It’s kind of an amalgamation with an organization here. Hopefully it will be finalized before the Christmas vacations or early next year. So every day I’m attending two-three meetings with the firms here and numerous video-conferences with Dad to update the details. When required I travel to other places in NY. And my team will do the rest of the work.” He sighed explaining the structure of his work to Twinkle.
“Phew! That’s really a tiring one. Totally a business man in action, eh?” She smiled.
“Totally! A busy business man! And what about you, Doctor?”
“Actually, my cousin is expecting her first child and besides my Maasi just went through a surgery. So I took three months off from the hospital and came here to take care of them. But, here they are not letting me do anything. My brother-in-law takes complete care of everything. So I came here to the restaurant today. I feel so bored without work.”
“So, a Doctor is missing her action, eh?”
They spoke for another few minutes but soon the customers started to pour in and they had no other option but to end their conversation.
Later that night, sleep was the last thing to reach Twinkle. She had a tough time trying to forget her meet with Kunj. But it won’t go at all. Her thoughts went down the memory lane remembering all those events happened in Mumbai years ago. Twinkle sure had a crazy crush on Kunj since her 8th grade. Initially she rubbed it off as a teenage infatuation. As the years moved on, her infatuation started to grow into unknown feelings. Something made her realize that, Kunj is not just a mere crush anymore. Though she tried to focus on her studies and maintained the topper stature in class, He was always a distraction for her and she was totally obsessed with him. She remembered her saving all those school magazines which had his photographs, back in her Mumbai bedroom. And those exam halls, she always looked forward to them just for a crazy reason. They always sat on the parallel benches. Like every time he used to copy the answers from her, she had absolutely no complaints in displaying the answer sheets. It felt good. Since Twinkle was a topper and Kunj being the school player, no one doubted them.
After getting into the medical school, she tried a lot to forget him and move on. She even tried dating the guys from the university but it never crossed more than one dinner date. She compared every guy with Kunj, thus the relationships ended up as quickly as it formed; it never lasted more than one week. Although he was always in her thoughts she never let the sadness of missing him take over her. After years’ concentration, when she was all set in her career and fully focused in her job, she met him last year again in her friend’s wedding.
After eight years of schooling, she had hoped all her crazy teenage hormones will be gone. But it became worst than before. After seeing him as the man he has become, she was left breathless. A young business tycoon managing his father’s empire and getting the “Young Entrepreneur of the Year” was no joke. If all that was not enough, the destiny had to play a cunning game and make her meet him again today after a year. From Mumbai to New York ! Seriously? What an improvement!
In the next two weeks, Twinkle met Kunj more often than she would imagine. Since it was fall, the colour and fallen off autumn leaves, New York gave a beautiful vision to human eyes. The season totally added a romantic touch to the whole atmosphere. Twinkle and Kunj bonded quickly and ended up visiting many places and beaches in the city together. They hung out a lot and he became a regular customer to her Aunt’s restaurant, visiting it every evening after his work. Twinkle finally friend zoned her feelings and tried to maintain a calm and composed stature around him.
“So, are you in a relationship? Do you have any boyfriend?” Kunj asked curiously looking at Twinkle, who was busy adding pepper to her soup.
“No. Why?” She asked and continued her work.
“Just asking” He shrugged his shoulders and concentrated on his food.
“And you?” She asked him with a curious look on her face as well.
“Me? I have many boyfriends.” He laughed.
“I meant girl friend.” She replied sternly not encouraging his lame joke.
“Liar. I won’t buy it.”
“Umm… Coz you always had a huge girls’ bandwagon back in school. Even in our class, girls were crazy about you.” She replied, quickly regretting what she said.
“Really? Who were they?”
“That, I cannot tell you. It’s a girls’ secret. Well, umm.. forget it. Forget that we have ever discussed this.”
“Ahh.. Now who is lying here?”
“Not me.” She said and when he gave her a not convincing look, she had no other go but to reveal a little. “Ohkaayy.. There was this girl named Alisha who studied with us for only six months. She had a huge crush on you. Enough?”
“That north indian girl? She was very hot man. If I had known before…”
“Stop right there. She is married and a mother of 3 year old now. And that was just a stupid crush. Now, she might not even remember you.”
Damn! Twinkle clearly knew that she was blabbering now. She has breached the rules of friendship of revealing someone’s secret to someone without seeking that someone’s permission. She remembered how Alisha, her bench mate and friend, had a big crush on Kunj. Since they were backbenchers, they had a fair chance to stare at him across the classroom without getting caught. They used to notice his every action. Like partners in crime! One second, wasn’t it supposed to be Alisha who was doing the staring business? Fortunately, No! Alisha was that awakening factor in her life. When Aliya left the school coz of her father’s infamous transfer, Twinkle realized that whatever she feels for Kunj cannot be considered as a crazy crush anymore. Mainly it was during the flood camp in Himachal Pradesh. ACADEMY’ final year students joined together to help the victims of the flood in the nearby villages. They volunteered in a medical camp and that is when she saw the other side of Kunj, the generous side, the aiding side, the humanitarian side. No one would have believed that this bratty son of one of the richest tycoons’ in India would come out and serve the needy in the muddy and sloppy hill side, as if that hefty amount of donation by him wasn’t the huge thing. How he shrugged it off as nothing and focused only on work, when he almost slipped in elevation point. From then, nothing could stop Twinkle. Slowly, day by day, Twinkle fell so deep for him. And now She knew that this time she fell even more for him and cannot retrieve out of this intense feeling. Maybe that is the reason; she couldn’t come out this distraction.
“H-e-l-l-o-ooo” He stressed out every letter, waving his hands to get her attention.
“What do you think about all the time, doctor? I asked you something. Never mind! Half the time you live in your own world” He shrugged, sipping the coffee.
“Uh Nothing. What did you ask?” She replied, fiddling with the hem of her shrug.
“I asked is there any other girl off the record? You know, the girls.”
It’s me idiot, Open your freaking eyes and see. “No. None! Don’t consider yourself as some heart throb please.” She snapped and looked at the other side of restaurant.
“Damn!” Twinkle shrieked and lowered her head to hide herself, but the damage was already done.
“Twinkle, what are you doing here? Am I missing something?” Mahi, Twinkle’s cousin asked curiously looking between Kunj and Twinkle.
“Hi!” Kunj greeted the pregnant woman and the guy standing next to her.
“Kunj..She is Mahi , my cousin and he is Yuvraj, my brother-in-law. Di and Yuvraj, he is Kunj, my friend..”
“Boyfriend, Twinkle. Hello! I’m Twinkle’s boyfriend, Kunj. Glad to meet you both. Please join us.” He greeted with a warm smile leaving the other three totally shocked.
“Kunj, behave yourself! Di, he is kidding. Please sit down.” She ushered, giving an angry stare at Kunj.
“Oh come on! What’s there to hide, sweetheart?”
“Oh My God! Is this true Twinkle?” Mahi exclaimed and looked at her husband to see the surprise reflecting on his face as well.
“There is nothing, di. Kunj, I’ll kill you.” Twinkle muttered with anxiety clearly written over her face.
“Ouch. Why do I feel that I am on the process of getting dumped by my girlfriend? Do you see any storm coming?” Kunj, with a painful face asked Yuvraj and Mahi, who were suppressing their laughs; totally enjoying the scene unfolding in front of them.
“What the hell! I’m warning you the last time Kunj.” Twinkle gritted her teeth and glared at him.
“Yes. Stop bothering my sister, Mister. And what’s the proof that you are her boyfriend? Tell us your love story and we will believe you then.” Mahi was enjoying every single moment of this.
“Yeah. Tell us your story. Then we will decide.” Yuvraj too joined his wife.
“Yuvraj, there is no story at all. And Kunj, Get lost.. Go to hell. I’m leaving.” Twinkle stood up in her place, ready to leave when Kunj stopped by holding her hands.
“Wait, until I finish my story darling and then we shall leave together.”Twinkle sat down in haste and looked totally disinterested on the prank he was playing.
“Dude, you haven’t started the story yet to finish it!” Mahi corrected Kunj while Twinkle looked at the other side, not want to hear any cooked up stories.
“Well, actually we were classmates in school. She was that topper of our class, who would put down everyone in grades. And yeah, our Class Monitor and head girl too. Phew! Too many posts to…”
“Stop! This sounds more like the description of Twinkle and less of any love story” Mahi complained, not liking the pace of the story.
“That’s pregnant woman’s mood swings for you. Don’t mind.” Yuvraj added, beckoning Kunj to continue with his story.
“Oops! Okay. Where was I? Yes, she was the popular girl in school but a level headed one. Though she was around the class all time, I first noticed her closely when she came out and challenged to beat me in chess. Though, initially she moved her pieces totally in wrong directions, I couldn’t see her lose the match, I couldn’t afford to see her walking away from me. I dodged the game as much I could and when I saw her happy face at winning the match, it really paid off. That smile made my day.”
Twinkle’s heart thudded wildly in her chest as she waited to hear the rest of his shocking revelations. “Not only that. She was an angel in disguise for me in the examination halls and always a helping one. She is so selfless; she tended, cared, and embraced everyone in the “Medical Camp” with love and affection. And that is when I realized, I haven’t only totally fallen for her, but the respect I had for her grew by leaps and bounds. She is entirely a god sent angel to this earth, FOR ME.”
“Awww.. how sweet!” Mahi sighed and held Yuvraj’s hand lovingly. “But I never wanted to divert her from her aspirations. I completely adored her dreams. Hence I stayed away from her and let her live her dream. But when I saw her last year, as a bridesmaid in our classmate’s wedding, I realized how much I missed her in my life. I felt very happy seeing her as one of the successful doctor in Mumbai. But destiny had different plans and played a lovely game with us again. Again, we met last month in this same restaurant in New York, which is still completely unbelievable and out of the box. And this time, I cannot miss the opportunity. I have wasted a lot of chances already.”
“Wow, too many leaps of years’ in the story. But, something is missing. Oh wait! Confession! You skipped that part. Why there is no confession scene in the story yet? When did you confess to your girlfriend?” Mahi asked raising her eyebrows.
“It’s because, you are directly going to witness the original proposal scene now.” Kunj completed, rising to his feet moving the chair aside and knelt down while Yuvraj smiled, Mahi gasped aloud, and Twinkle was totally lost in the moment with her eyes wide and never leaving Kunj.
“Will you marry me, Dr. Twinkle taneja? I love you very much. It Has Always Been You In My Life, Then, Now And Will Be Forever.” Kunj declared holding Twinkle’s hands and suddenly everyone in the restaurant clapped encouraging Twinkle to reply. Twinkle couldn’t hear those loud “owwws” and “awwws” anymore, for that matter even the claps. All she can hear was her heart beating and reverberating in her ears. This was most important moment in her life, for which she was waiting from forever. And when she heard “IT” finally, she couldn’t bring herself to reply. She looked at the sincerity in Kunj’s eyes, which was now anticipating her response. She contemplated in her mind, not knowing how to start with her answer.
And she did reply him, in the most understandable language in the world, the language of love; she finally kissed him to convey her answer.
“It Has Always Been You for Me Too, Kunj.” She said and hugged him and closed all the gaps between them.
“I know!” was all his reply and held her closer to him, not willing to let her go anytime sooner, cherishing every moment of their TOGETHERNESS.
Two Different people,
Two Different thinking,
But one thing is mutual “LOVE”
Guy: “I started Loving My name when you started sharing it.”
Girl:”I started Loving My name,when your name Completed it.”
I hope you all like it .
Don’t forget to vote 🌟and put your precious comments. Waiting for your response.
Loads of Love ❤