8. One Question
The blinding rays falling on my eyes woke me up from my restless sleep the next morning. Stretching my arms wide and covering my yawn with my hand, I sat up straight. It took my hazy head a moment to realise where I was and soon, all my memories came rushing back to me.
I looked down to find myself in my heavy, pink lehenga.
“No idea how I slept in this”, I groaned as I slid out from under her covers and rushed to the bathroom after picking up the small bag I packed for all my first-day necessities. The rest of my bags might have already reached his home, wherever it was.
After a long warm shower, so hot it almost burned my skin but felt so good on aching muscles, I dressed in a simple white top and blue jeans. Letting my hair loose to dry, I walk out from the bathroom to search for Aarav.
It sounds so weird, even in my head. Well, practice makes a man perfect. Wait, does that mean woman are already perfect? Nice!
Anyway, I gotta apologize for yesterday, I should have let the poor man speak – obviously, he is tied down in an unhappy marriage too.
“Excuse me”, travelled a smooth voice from my right, and I turned around to find Mr Singhaniya perched on a chair staring at me.
“Our flight leaves at eleven, so we have to leave in about an hour”
“Got it. Where are we going by the way?”
“My home”, he looked at me as if I was a dumb seagull and the ‘obviously’ was hanging heavy in the air.
“I know that, Captain Obvious. I meant whereas in where is your house?”, I rolled my eyes.
“Okay thanks”, I turned around and then remembered why I was looking for him in the first place and faced him again to say, “I’m sorry for yesterday, I shouldn’t have interrupted you”
“No worries”, he replied and a smile bloomed on my face. Did that mean he was spill?
I rushed towards him and beaming at his clean-shaven face asked, “So you will tell me why your reasons for marrying me?”
“I meant I forgive you, my statement still stands the same”, he said and dipped his head in the files he was reading.
Well whatever, I tried. I wasn’t going to beg him or murder my pride to feed my curiosi… Suddenly, I found myself joining my hands and pleading him, “Please, please, please, tell me”
And do you know what my very new and handsome husband did? He ignored me - on the very first day of our marriage. I can just feel how beautiful this ride is going to be. But I didn’t let that stop me from annoying him until he spilt the tea.
I somehow slid between his knees and pushing my head from under his hands and files, I stared right into his eyes putting all the creepiness I could into that one stare. Thanks to my slim frame and years of gymnastic I did it before he could realize what I was doing. So now, his dark brown eyes stared right into mine and I asked, “Tell me”
“No”, he uttered and started moving away but I held his legs in place and glared a challenge through my eyes. It said, ‘I will keep annoying you until you answer me, and don’t you dare challenge my annoyingness. I can annoy even the most patient monk in this world.’ So maybe, this wasn’t a great route to take, but I am growing woman and my hunger is supposed to be satiated; doesn’t matter that it’s information I hunger for.
“I do not want to hurt you, so move”, he warned through clenched teeth as he shook his leg and if it was any sane person, he would have run away but well, I kinda lost my sanity somewhere in the past three days so… I held him tighter.
“Just tell me and I’ll leave, it’s simple”, I proposed.
He dropped the file on the table and through clenched teeth said, “Fine, get off.”
“You’ll answer me?”, I looked at him, stars shining in my eyes.
“Yes, one question”
I untangled my body from his legs and asked the one question that I wanted a serious answer for, “Why did you marry me?”
“Because I didn’t have any other choice”
I waited for explanation and by the time I realized that there was none coming, he had already packed all his files in his briefcase.
“What do you mean?”
He ignored me.
“Excuse me, can you hear me? What do you mean?”
He ignored me, again.
“Hey! You told me you would answer”
“I said I would answer one question and I did”, he graced me with his final words and walked out of the room.
I was pissed. He was going to pay for this. Nobody and I mean nobody treats Riya Pathan this way.
I held onto my anger as I packed my belongings and ate the breakfast he had ordered for me. But my anger started dissipating as rational thoughts infected my brain. He answered every question yesterday and he would have answered more, if I hadn’t interrupted him. ‘Because I didn’t have any other choice’ is a perfectly applicable answer. If someone asked me, I would have answered the same.
So, in the end, he did nothing wrong, did he?
Oh god! Of all things you could give me, why did you give me a post-accident working brain? Either give me a brain that works when the situation arrives or give me no brain, why would you make me feel stupid and sensible at the same time?
I spend the next sixty minutes mumbling and grudging over my own stupid and sensible brain.
A knock on the door breaks my connection from my internal dialogue – yes, it’s a dialogue; there’s me, the sensible side of my brain and my good old subconscious (Honestly, it’s all a mess) – and I move towards the door to greet my dear husband - who I am trying really to get angry and not get angry at the same time.
“Ready?”, he asked and I nodded.
Walking inside, he picked up the bags and allowed me to walk before he followed. Well, so maybe he didn’t answer my questions but he was a gentleman, at least in the traditional sense of this word.
He sat in silence, still reading those files while I texted my friends as we drove to the airport.
“Can you stop giggling so loudly? And turn your phone mute. I’m trying to concentrate”, he snapped out of the blue.
“Then work on *your* focus and concentration, complainer”, I shot back and then laughed exaggeratedly, even going as far as reading my sometimes incomprehensible texts aloud. So maybe I was being childish, but he was being too. He didn’t answer me, even when I begged him so I had all the rights to annoy him and irritate his peace.
What’s that good piece of ass doing? – Shanaya
Please! Spare my ears with this talk – Krish
We all know, I am the only good piece of ass here, not her asshole husband – Manoj
Just because she was forced to marry him doesn’t make him an asshole – Liam
He was the only sensible one in our group. With the amount of time he spent bulking his body, you would think he had peanuts for brain but nope, he got both. Lucky son of a goat!
Aarav Singhaniya is a great piece of ass and you, Manoj are a *insert poop emoji here*. This is a fact and I stand by it – Shanaya
Why are we even talking about him? – Krish
Oh, shut up, Krish! You aren’t married, you wouldn’t know – Shanya
Because you are? – all three of us texted simultaneously.
Don’t gang up on me! Rex, what are you doing? Got any sleep last night? *wink, wink* - Shanaya
She couldn’t make it any more obvious. I groaned aloud and texted, Pull your head out of the gutter, Shans
Please stop talking about this – Krish
I second that – Liam
I third that – Manoj
Before I could write I fourth that, she texted, Why *crying emojis*
Because it’s uncomfortable - Krish
It’s weird, I have known Rexy my for more than five years and I don’t want to listen to her sexcapades with a man she was forced to marry. It’s too immoral and illegal for me - Liam
It’s confusing. Should I punch that asshole for ruining her and taking her away or am I supposed to laugh at the size of his dick? – Manoj
Exactly, like the protective bear jumps out and we are nowhere near to actually protect her. I don’t like that – Krish
You didn’t actually do it, did you Riya? – Liam
I can actually hear his dad voice right now, before I could reply though texts kept pouring in. Oh gosh! Why am I such a slowpoke?
You didn’t right? - Krish
Tell me, you didn’t give it to him so soon? – Manoj
Give me the deets, babe – Shanya
Please spare me the details. Just tell me no – Krish
Suddenly, the mobile flew out of my hands and landed inside his right pant pocket.
“No”, I screamed. The poor driver turned around to check if everything was alright, but I had my glare set on Aarav.