Sunday, July 25, 2010

THE SECRET


Entry under topic:
Life/Love/Relationship/Personal

THE SECRET
Fiction Short Story
By
VIKRAM KARVE


Every working day, sharp at 8 o’clock in the morning, a smart young girl of 24, a Software Engineer, leaves her chummery, a flat in Aundh which she shares with her colleagues, and walks down to Bremen Chowk to catch her company bus which takes her to her workplace in the IT Park at Hinjewadi in Pune.

This morning she does something different.

She leaves her flat at 8 o’clock, but instead to walking towards Bremen Chowk, she walks in the opposite direction towards Parihar Chowk and gets into a Volvo Bus going to Mumbai.

Half way towards Mumbai, while the bus crosses the Khandala Ghats, the smart young girl calls up her boss on her cell phone and tells him that she is unwell and could he please give her the day off to which her boss readily agrees.  

At 11:30 in the morning, she sits in a plush office, opposite her fiancĂ©, a smart young entrepreneur, who’s made it big, and who owns an ITES company with business all over the world. They have been engaged just a week ago.

“What a surprise…!” the man says, “you should have rung up. I would have taken the day off…”

“Sorry…but I decided to come at the last moment…”

“Anything urgent…?”

“Yes…I want to tell you something…I wanted to tell you when we met before our engagement itself but my mother told me not to tell you…”

“Your mother told you not to tell me…?”

“Yes…she thinks you may break the engagement… but I believe that there is no place for secrets between husband and wife…!”

“Secrets…?”

“Yes…I’ve told you everything about myself…but there is one thing I have not told you…”

“What…?”

“I was in love with someone…”

“Oh…a boyfriend…”

“It was more than that…”

“More than that…?”

“We eloped…ran away from home together…to get married…but they tracked us down the next morning…”

“When did this happen…?”

“Just after I completed my engineering…during my first job…three years ago…in Delhi…”

“Oh…?”

“Please don’t think anything…actually nothing happened…it was just infatuation…we ran away on a bike to Gurgaon…stayed for a night at a hotel…and next morning we were caught and taken back to our homes…believe me, nothing happened…nothing…absolutely nothing…I have not even seen the boy since…they sent him abroad…to the states…”

“And they sent you to Pune…?”

“Yes…they told me to apply for a transfer to Pune…where no one knows all this…”

“So your parents told you to hide all this from us…?”

“Mainly my mother…but I swear…nothing happened between us…it was just puppy love…I am still a …”

“Okay…okay…” the man interrupted, “I really appreciate your honesty…it is good you told me…but I already know all this…”

“You already know all this…?”

“Yes…we got a background check done…”

“Background check…?”

“Just a pre-matrimonial enquiry…”

“Pre-matrimonial enquiry…detectives…you put detectives after us…to check up on my past…?”

“Come on…it’s not that serious…just a small discreet verification…that’s all…”

“I am calling it off…!”

“What…”

“Our engagement… it’s off… cancelled… I am breaking off our engagement…here… take this… take back your engagement ring…” the girl says angrily and she takes off the diamond studded engagement ring from her finger and keeps it on the table.

“Don’t be crazy…!” the man shouts, getting up from his seat across the table.

The young woman also gets up from her seat, looks into the man’s eyes, and says firmly, “No…it’s final…I cannot marry a man who does not trust me…!”

And with these words, the young smart woman turns around, briskly walks out of the man’s office, takes the lift to the ground floor, leaves the building, takes a cab to the Volvo Bus Stand and catches the Volvo Bus back to Pune.

The moment she sits in the bus she deletes the man’s number from her cell phone, switches off her mobile phone and puts it in her purse, and enjoys the journey back to Pune admiring the picturesque refreshing green scenery from the window as it begins to rain.


VIKRAM KARVE
       
Copyright © Vikram Karve 2010
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work. 





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