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Excitement and joy was all Abhi could feel, yes he was feeling a little nervous after all having a very superstitious grandma, who believed that anyone who gives you things easily wants to sell your life to the devil didn’t help, even though he didn’t agree to what his grandma always said, he was still nervous because getting a good, high paying job like he did was too good to be true, with his pathetic qualifications and lack of experience as Karan, he knew that the chances of getting a job were below 10%, for goodness sake he only reached high school and not forgetting he failed terribly only passed in three subjects and the other six, well let’s just say it’s not something you want to show your parents.
Abhi got to the door of his house, got the key from his pocket, opened the door and entered into his little apartment, if it qualified to be called that, breathing in deeply he knew that he had to call Rachna and tell her about his day.
‘Hello, damsel how are you doing? Hope you are still alive? Oh you probably are because if you are not you wouldn’t call me. ’ Rachna dramatically gasped saying, ‘oh no, who are you and where is my brother? What happened to him? I swear if you- ’
‘Could you please shut up woman. ’ Abhi said cutting her off, ‘it’s me Abhi, and it’s good to know that you worry about me, because judging by my current condition one would think that you want me dead but you don’t want to be convicted for my murder. ’ Abhi sarcastically replied.
‘No need to be sarcastic, you needed my help, I helped you all you need to say is a simple thank you. ’
‘Whatever. ’ Abhi replied rolling his eyes.
‘You know what? If you don’t want to talk to me then why did you call me? Mmmh? You know I have got better things to do like watching Scooby doo than talking to you. ’
‘You still watch that ridiculous cartoon? ’ Abhi asked in disbelief.
‘What do you want Abhi? Speak before I hung up. ’
‘I called to tell you that I got a job. ’
‘Oh really? She asked, genuinely surprised. ‘What job is it? A house help or maybe a garden boy? ’
‘Do you seriously think that low of me? ’
‘I mean no offense but looking at your CV I don’t even know if I can call it that. ’
‘Don’t forget that you are talking to someone who graduated from Harvard University. ’
‘Nah, I am talking to Karan with nothing but a high school diploma. ’
‘Fine, that Karan was able to get a job as a personal assistant of Raj Khurana, owner of Khuran builders. ’
‘Holy poop, how did that happen? ’
‘Holy poop??? Don’t you mean sh- ’
‘Noooo!!! Don’t say that, that’s a bad word, okay forget about that, how did you get the job, with your pathetic results. ’
‘I didn’t need them, I was only asked if I could run, read write, carry heavy objects and use a computer. I said yes and I was hired. ’
‘That’s to good to be true. ’
‘I know right? Even I can’t believe it. ’
‘Are you sure they are not trying to sell your life to the devil? ’
‘Seriously Rachna? ’
‘I was just saying, but on a serious note, congrats on your job, if you were here I would have baked you a cake. ’
‘Like hell you would. ’ Abhi made a sarcastic remark.
‘I am glad you know I won’t waste my precious time baking you a cake. But how did you hear of this job, you have only been there for two weeks if I am not mistaken. ’
‘God just sent me an angel, she told me about the job. ’
‘And does this angel have a name if I may ask? ’
‘Pragya, her name is Pragya. ’
‘Mmmh nice name. So…..Is she pretty? What does she do? Where does she live? What do you think of Pragya? ’
‘Relax woman, I am not a stalker to know all that, and besides I only met her today, how am I supposed to know all that? ’
‘But you have her number right? ’
‘Um… No. ’
‘You fool, you couldn’t just get a girls number, how are you going to communicate with her you idiot. ’
‘That won’t be difficult, I know her work place. ’
‘That’s good, but please get her number tomorrow. ’
‘Why that early? ’
‘Do you like her? ’
‘What? What kind of stupid question is that, I just met her. ’
‘Yes she beautiful? ’
‘Yes I guess, she’s cute, with these big puppy eyes which light up when she is happy, and she has got this contagious smile, her presence just gives you peace you know, even when you are tensed but if she is with you, you just feel at ease. ’
‘That’s it, you like her, get her number tomorrow. ’
‘How do you know I like her? ’
‘I can’t explain that right now, aunt needs my help. ’
‘How is mother doing? ’ Abhi said suddenly feeling low.
‘She is worried, but don’t stress, I can handle her, do you want to talk to her? ’
‘No, not now, I might be forced to come home when I hear her voice. ’
‘I thought so, okay I gotta go now but please Abhi, don’t forget to get her number tomorrow. ’
‘Don’t just say fine. ’
‘I will do it I promise. Bye. ’
Rachna happily hung up knowing that at least there was some progress in their plans, she just hoped that nothing goes wrong.
Mr sun shone brightly in the sky, it was a new day and the khurana mansion was not filled with laughter like it usually is, the happenings of yesterday had affected everyone well except Raj who seemed to be enjoying his breakfast while the others seemed to in deep thoughts.
“Sid, are you going to eat that? ” Raj asked pointing at the sausages on Sid’s plate.
“No, you can have it. ” Sid replied moving the plate of sausages to his father’s side.
“Thanks, I must say, today’s food is really delicious. ” Raj said enjoying his breakfast.
“You do know that you are the only one eating right? ” Simran asked her husband, everyone seemed to have lost their appetite except Raj.
“Oh, is that so? ” Raj asked like he just realized he was the only one eating. “And why aren’t you eating? There is nothing wrong with this food, Pragya has really out done herself this time, and where is she by the way? ” He asked when he noticed she was nowhere around.
“I think she is in Tanu’s room. ” Naina said pushing her food to the side, blinking a couple of times.
“Why is she even bothering herself? Tanu has always been like that, she shouldn’t have gone there, I don’t want her to he manipulated by her selfish sister. ”
“Raj don’t talk like that, Tanu is your daughter she is just going through a phase. ” Naina tried to reason with her son.
“She has been going through a phase since she was three. ”
“I am sure she is just insecure, besides you can’t take what she said to heart, she was not in the right state of mind. ”
“Whatever you say mother, I just want to enjoy my breakfast. ” Raj grew tired of the conversation, he didn’t want to talk about it anymore.
Pragya went into her sister’s bedroom with a bottle of water and some pain killing pills, she knew that after drinking so much Tanu probably suffered from a hung over, without even bothering to knock Pragya opened the door to Tanu’s room and found Tanu wide awake.
Tanu was seated on her bed holding her head when she saw Pragya sje asked, “what happened yesterday? ” she couldn’t remember anything because she suffered from a serious hungover.
“Here have this, it will help with the headache. ” Ignoring her question, Pragya handed her two tablets and a glass of water.
“Are you ignoring me Pragya? I asked you something. ” Tanu yelled irked by her sister’s behavior.
“Hurry up, freshen up, breakfast is ready. ”
Pragya turned to leave when
Tanu held her hand saying, “wait up missy, I am talking to you and as your older sister I demand some respect, I won’t tolerate it if you ignore me like that, you are being disrespectful, and I am sure this is not how mother raised you. ” now she pressed a button she shouldn’t have as this angered Pragya.
Pragya simply clapped mocking Tanu, which angered Tanu even more. “Nice speech sis, wow, brilliant. You are talking to me about respect? The world is sure coming to an end, look who is talking to me about respect when she didn’t care about what her mother, father, grandma and brother felt yesterday, she is talking to me about respect when she insulted her family yesterday. ”
“What are you talking about? ”
“That’s what you get for being so drunk, you insulted every one here yesterday. That’s all you have to know, now please take a bath before coming down for breakfast cause you smell like trash, and if you have a problem with me, I suggest you settle the matter with me, not insulting my family. ” Pragya angrily left Tanu, leaving feeling guilty, she knew that she probably did something wrong for Pragya to get that angry, and if Pragya was that angry surely Sid’s anger was ten times worse than Pragya’s, she quickly went into the bathroom, took a quick shower, got dressed in something decent, she knew she had to apologize.
Tanu, guilty stood in corner watching her family, the only person who seemed to be in a normal mood was Raj who was eating an apple while the rest looked depressed, Simran looked like she was forcing herself to eat, Pragya kept begging Sid to eat something and his response was a simple ‘I am not hungry, ’ hesitantly she moved closer to her family and just stopped in front of them as they all stopped what they were doing and begun looking at her.
“I just wanted to say tha- ” Tanu begun to speak.
“Tanu, before you finish, I just want to say that I am sorry. ” Sid cut in before she could finish, “I am so sorry for being the brother who never cares for you, I am sorry for being the brother who would always sleep in your bed whenever you were afraid of the Boogeyman, I am sorry for being the brother who would always stand up for you and beat up every boy who would make fun of you, I am sorry for being the brother who would always take the blame for you just so that you wouldn’t be in trouble I am sorry for being the brother who would always sleep by your bed side whenever you got sick, I am sorry for being the brother who would happily get punished by mum and dad for your mistake just because he didn’t like to see you getting punished, I am sorry for being the brother who would get beaten by dad just so that he doesn’t find out that you took a few coins from his wallet, I am sorry for being the brother who beat your douchebag of a boyfriend because he hurt you and most important, I am sorry for being such an excuse of a brother, I am so sorry for being the worst brother, I am so sorry for loving you so much Tanu and I am sorry for caring. ” Sid wiped a lone tear from his eyes and he turned to look at Pragya with a smile, leaving Tanu feeling more guilty and shocked, she didn’t know that in her drunk state she said all those hurtful things to Sid, even though sometimes she did feel like he favoured Pragya more, she still knew that he loves her and she couldn’t have a better brother than him
“Are you done baby girl? We don’t want you to be late now do we. ” he said giving Pragya a smile which didn’t reach his eyes.
“Are you okay Siddharth? ” Pragya asked in concern, tears making there way to her eyes.
“Since when did you start calling me Siddharth, since you learned how to talk, you have never called me that, it has always been Sid, you only call me Siddharth when you have done something wrong, like when you accidentally dropped my laptop in the swimming pool or when you thought that dad will scold you because your marks dropped from a 90% to a an 80% in math, or when you accidentally ruined Tanu’s dress. ”
“Please don’t be like this, I know you are hurt, you know I can’t stand seeing you like this. ” Pragya pleaded, she hated seeing Sid like that.
“At least it’s good to know that you care for me, and please don’t cry, you cried enough when you were a baby and the fact that you always wanted to sleep in my bed didn’t help. ” Sid said trying to light up Pragya’s mood giving her a small smile, he wiped her tears and kissed her forehead.
“But you are sad. ” Pragya said with a pout, reminding Sid of how she would look like when she was upset as a little kid.
“No, I am not, I am happy, that I have a lovely sister like you. ” He said pinching her cheeks, he never stopped treating her like a little baby, even if she hated it, she still loved it at the same time.
“Enough you two, now you are making your mother cry. ” Raj said, breaking the sweet moment.
“Dad mom is always crying. ” Sid said smiling in a teasing manner.
“Shut up and go for work. ” Simram told her son wiping a tear.
“Okay, fine, are you done sweetie cheeks? ”
“Let me just get my bags. ” Pragya rushed to her room.
Tanu fumed in anger, all feelings of guilt suddenly flew out the window as she saw the strong bond Sid and Pragya shared, ‘that was supposed to be me not her, she just had to take all the affection, and now Sid hates me and it’s her fault. I will not allow to snatch my brother from me, she already took my father, at least mom is with me, so I think. ’ Tanu thought as she watched Pragya, Sid and Raj walk out the door.
Once Sid, Raj and Pragya were out sight Simran knew it was the perfect time to talk to her daughter. “Tanu, your behavior yesterday is very unacceptable. ” she said shaking her head in disapproval.
“I know mom, I was just feeling so alone. ”
“Tanu I am your mother, you know you can tell me anything. ” She said gently holding her hand.
“Do you love me mother? ”
No one really expected her to ask that. “Of course she loves you after all she is your mother. ” Naina told her granddaughter.
“I know she loves me grandma, but does she love me more than Pragya or does she love pragya more? ”
“What kind of question is that? You both are my daughters and I love you equally. ”
“But Dad loves Pragya more right? ”
“Tanu, your father loves you just as much as he loves Pragya. ”
“But why doesn’t he show it. ”
“He does, you just can’t see it. ”
“Then why is he always comparing me to Pragya? ” this was something that has always bothered Tanu.
“You need to stop comparing yourself to Pragya first, that’s when your father will stop comparing you to her and that’s when you will see the love he has for you. ” Tanu has always been insecure since Pragya’s birth and Simran knew that the reason she was doing all this is just to get some attention, but the problem was that she was doing it the wrong way. “Now eat something you must be hungry, look Pragya made your favorite blue berry pan cakes. ” Pragya’s gesture shocked Tanu, she didn’t know that her sister would do something like that for her, she knew that she made those pancakes specifically for her because everyone in the house preferred Nutella stuffed pancakes, well she really didn’t care how many pancakes she makes for her because to her, she stole her family’s love and affection.