Monday, May 29, 2023

What is the “Value” of Knowledge





Teaching Story



I love teaching – and – I got plenty of opportunity to train and teach during my Navy days and thereafter. 

I have encountered two types of students:

1. Students interested in learning (knowledge oriented students)


2. Students interested in marks/grades (examination oriented students)

This second category of examination-oriented students would often say that I taught much more beyond the syllabus – and – they would ask me of what use was all this extra knowledge from the “examination point of view”. 

To these students – I would often narrate this classic Teaching Story.



There was once a wise man – a Guru” – who narrated “teaching stories” to explain his points.

One day – a man interrupted his sermon – and he rudely said to the ”Guru”:

“You are talking all nonsense. 

I cannot understand head or tail of what you are saying.

And – your so-called “teaching stories” are at best poor jokes – they don’t make sense or have any meaning...”

On hearing this – the ”Guru” smiled at the man.

Then – the ”Guru calmly removed the diamond studded gold ring on his finger.

The ”Guru politely called the man who had interrupted him.

When the man came – the ”Guru gave the ring to the man – and he told the man: 

“Go outside to the flea market and roadside stalls  and ask them the cost of this ring.

Ask them for how much will they will buy this ring. 

I want to sell this ring.

So – if you get a good price – you sell the ring.

The minimum price is One Lakh Rupees. 

Don’t sell it for less than a lakh of rupees...”


The man returned after some time and he angrily said to the ”Guru”: 

“You have made me a laughing stock. 

No one is prepared to pay One Lakh Rupees for this ring. 

They say this ring is not worth even a hundred rupees...”

The ”Guru then told the man: 

“Now go to the best jeweller in town and ask him...”

After some time – the man returned dumbfounded.

And  he said to the ”Guru

“I just can’t believe it – the jeweller paid Rupees Two Lakhs for your ring...”


The ”Guru looked the man in the eye and said: 

“Just as only a good jeweller can understand the true value of my ring  only the truly wise can understand the true meaning of my teaching stories. 

Yes – only the truly wise can understand the value of genuine knowledge...”



Copyright © Vikram Karve 
1. If you share this post, please give due credit to the author Vikram Karve
2. Please DO NOT PLAGIARIZE. Please DO NOT Cut/Copy/Paste this post
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

1. This story is a fictional spoof, satire, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh. 
2. This story is a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
3. E&OE

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Parts and Versions of this story have been posted by me earlier posted in my various writing blogs - including at urls: and etc

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Sunday, May 21, 2023

Short Fiction Story : Parenting


Short Fiction










She comes out of the College Principal’s Office – she goes to her best friend’s room – and – she tells her friend the exciting news.

“It’s a chance of a lifetime – don’t refuse…” her friend says.

“But – what about my daughter – I can’t take her with me…?” she says.

“Your daughter Nisha – she can stay at your husband’s place…” her friend says.

“My husband’s place…? Why should Nisha stay at my husband’s place…?” she says – taken aback by her friend’s suggestion.

“Where else can she stay for 6 months…? There is no place in the hostel – there is a huge waiting list – and – I don’t think she can manage living all alone in your flat – besides  - it may not be safe for a young girl to live all alone too – you know how the environment is nowadays…” her friend says, “I would have kept her with me – but I live in a huge joint family – you know my situation – so – I think keeping Nisha with your husband seems the only option…”

“But – will my husband look after her for six months…?” she says – looking skeptical.

“Why not…? He is her father…” her friend says.

“But – he doesn’t know anything about her – he hasn’t met Nisha for 5 years…” she says.

“That’s because you didn’t allow him to meet her – your husband has visitation rights – but you told him that you didn’t want him to meet your daughter…” her friend says, “I am surprised how he agreed…?”

“That’s because I gave up everything – no alimony – no maintenance – no child support – I didn’t take a single rupee from him – not even my share in the house – nothing – absolutely nothing – when I walked out – I took nothing from him – I just wanted my daughter for myself – that’s all…” she said.

“It must have been painful for him – for a father to be separated from his daughter who he loved so much…” her friend says, “anyway – forget about the past – you call him and ask him…”

“Right now…? You want me to call him right now…?” she says to her friend – feeling a bit uneasy.

“You told me that the Principal wants your consent by closing hours today – so – it is better you call your husband immediately and settle your daughter’s issue…” her friend says, “you have your husband’s number – don’t you…?”

“I don’t know…” she says.

“What…? You don’t know…? Don’t you ever call your husband…?” her friend says.

“I called him around 3 years ago regarding some banking issue – I haven’t spoken to him after that…” she says.

“Look in your contacts…” her friend says, “otherwise – we can find out from somewhere…”

She looks in her contact list on her smartphone – and – she finds her husband’s number.

“It’s there – should I call him now…?” she asks her friend.

“Yes – call him right now – if you want – I’ll leave you alone…” her friend says.

“No. No. I want you to stay here…” she says – and – she calls her husband.

She hears her husband’s voice on the phone.

“Is everything okay…?” her husband asks her – he is surprised that she has suddenly called him out of the blue – and that too – after 3 years.

“Yes – all is well – how are you…?” she asks her husband.

“I am fine…” her husband says, “is there anything I can do for you…?”

“Actually – yes – I called you because I wanted your help…” she says to her husband.

“You want my help…? How much…? I will transfer it today – is it the same account…?” her husband asks.

“No. No…” she interrupts her husband, “I don’t want your money – I want to you to look after Nisha…”

“You want me to look after Nisha…?” her husband says, surprised and a bit confused.

“Yes – can you keep her with you for 6 months…?” she says to her husband.

“Six Months…?” her husband says, flabbergasted.

Her husband is baffled – because – when they split – she didn’t want him to meet their daughter – she said that she didn’t want their daughter to come under his influence – he had meekly accepted – after “hints” and “subtle threats” were given to him by her lawyer – so – for 5 years – he had not met his daughter Nisha – and now – she wanted him to look after Nisha for 6 months – it is all very confusing to him.

His thoughts are interrupted by his wife’s voice.

“I have been selected for a “Faculty Exchange Program” – I am going to New Zealand to teach at a prestigious university over there for one semester – I can’t take Nisha with me – besides – she can’t miss her college for 6 months – so – I thought it was best if she could stay with you…” she says.

“Can’t you make some other arrangements…? Maybe – in a hostel – or – you can hire a full-time maid…” he says.

“There is no time for all that – there is no place in the hostel – and – I don’t want her living all alone in the flat – it’s not safe – Nisha is still a teenager – she’s just 19 – please let her stay with you – after all – you are her father…” she says.

“Okay…” he says, “let me ask Monika…”

“Monika…? Who is Monika…?” she asks – surprised.

“She has moved in with me – we are living together…” he says.

“A woman has moved in with you…? Living together…? I didn’t know all this…” she says in a scandalized tone.

“You haven’t spoken to me for 3 years – you are happy with your career and life – you have moved on in life – and you don’t seem to be interested in us getting back together – well – I have to move on in life too – isn’t it…?” he says.

She remains silent – trying to digest the fact that her husband is living with another woman.

Then – she remembers her urgency – she has to confirm her consent to the Principal before closing time today – she has a just few hours.

So – she pleads with her husband.

“About Nisha staying with you – please tell me as quickly as possible – I will wait for your call – I have to give my consent immediately – before closing hours today – and please say “Yes” and let Nisha stay with you for 6 months – this is a life changing career opportunity for me…” she says – with desperation in her voice, “if you want – I can come there and speak to Monika – there is very little time – I am in a hurry – I have to tell the Principal today itself…”

Her husband senses her desperation.

So – he decides to say “Yes”.

“Okay – yes – Nisha can stay with us for 6 months – you can give your consent right now to your College Principal…” he says.

“But – you were going to ask Monika…?” she says – a bit wary.

“I don’t want to disturb her at work – but – you don’t worry about all that – I’ll tell her in the evening – Nisha can stay with us…” he says.

“Thank you so much…” she says to her husband – she says – feeling relieved.

Then – she hears her husband’s voice on the phone.

“I hope Nisha has no issues staying over here…” he says.

“No. No. I will convince her – she has no choice – Nisha will stay with you – she is a good girl – she will behave herself – she will be no trouble at all…” she says.

“You go ahead and give your consent – and – let me know when you are going to New Zealand…” he says.

“Yes. Yes. I will go right now to the Principal and give my consent – I think I’ll have to leave next week – they said they would fast track the visa etc. – I will call you once my travel plans are finalized…” she says.

“Keep me updated…” he says.

“Yes – and – thank you so much…” she says.

“It’s okay – she is my daughter too…” he says.

After the call is disconnected – she puts the smartphone on the table – and – she smiles at her friend.

“He agreed…” she says to her friend.

“I heard…” her friend says.

“There is a woman who has moved in with him – some Monika…” she says to her friend.

“I heard…” her friend says.

“I’ll go to the Principal’s Office and give my consent…” she says.

“Aren’t you going to tell Nisha…?” her friend asks.

“I’ll tell her later…” she says.

“I think it’s better you tell her now before you give your consent – you never know how teenagers will react…” her friend says.

“Okay – I’ll speak to her at lunchtime…” she says.

“No. You better speak to Nisha right now. I will bring her from the classroom. You sit here and rehearse what you are going to say to her…” her friend says.

Ten minutes later – her friend arrives with Nisha.

“Congratulations…” her daughter Nisha says to her – and she hugs her lovingly.

“You told her…?” she questions her friend.

“Yes – and – I told her about the other thing too…” her friend says.

“Don’t worry, Mamma – I will stay with Papa…” Nisha says to her.

She feels relieved.

She thought it would be so difficult to convince Nisha to stay at her father’s place – especially as he has a new partner now.

But – Nisha seems to have agreed so easily.

She wonders how her friend managed to convince Nisha so easily.

She feels grateful to her friend.

Then – she wishes she could have told her daughter herself.

While she is experiencing these conflicting emotions – she hears her friend’s voice.

“Come on – go to the Principal’s Office and give your consent – then – there will have to do the paperwork for your visa etc.


In the evening – her husband and Monika come to her flat.

She looks at her husband’s live-in partner Monika.

Monika looks ordinary – very ordinary – a podgy unpretentious looking homely woman – in short – she is a “Plain Jane”.

She feels disappointed – her husband could have chosen someone much better than this pedestrian woman.

The woman smiles at her – and speaks very politely.

She wonders if it is genuine or just fake courtesy.

Her thoughts are interrupted by her husband’s voice.

“Call Nisha…” he says, “I want to see her – and I want to her to meet Monika…”

“Yes…” she says to her husband – and she calls Nisha from inside.

She wonders how her daughter will react – meeting her father after five years – and – if Nisha will accept Monika – her father’s girlfriend.

She observes that the three of them – her daughter – her husband – and her husband’s girlfriend – they are decorous to each other – cordial – but not very friendly.

A daughter meeting her father after five years – it may take some time for the ice to melt.

But it seems Nisha has accepted the situation.

They talk about Nisha’s college – her routine – and – her husband and Monika says that they will be most happy to have Nisha stay with them.

One week later – she is on her way to New Zealand – with Nisha settled in her husband’s house.






She arrives from New Zealand six months later – her flight arrived in the wee hours of the morning – she takes the Airport cab from Mumbai reaches Pune – she asks the driver to drive via her husband’s house – so – she can pick up her daughter Nisha and take her home.

It’s 8 AM in the morning when she reaches her husband’s house.

Her husband, his girlfriend Monika and her daughter Nisha are having breakfast.

“Come on, Nisha – finish your breakfast quickly and go get your bag – the taxi is waiting outside…” she says to her daughter Nisha.

“I am not coming with you…” Nisha says.

“What do you mean “I am not coming with you”…? I had told you to pack your bags and be ready – and I will be picking you up in the morning on my way home…” she says to her daughter.

“I have decided to stay here…” Nisha says.

“You have decided to stay here…? What nonsense are you talking…?” she shouts at her daughter Nisha – then – she gives her husband a questioning look and asks him, “what is all this…?”

Before her husband can answer – Nisha interrupts.

“You don’t ask him…” her daughter Nisha says to her, “it is my decision…”

“When did you decide…? I have been talking to you every day from New Zealand – you never told me anything…” she says to her daughter.

“I knew you would be very busy focusing on your work – so – I didn’t want to upset you…” her daughter Nisha says.

“You can’t decide these things – I am your mother – you will have to come with me – get your things quickly – the taxi is waiting…” she says to her daughter – emphatically.

“I am not coming with you – I am staying here…” her daughter says – unequivocally.

“You have to come with me – you have no choice…” she shouts at her daughter.

“I am an adult now – you can’t dictate terms to me any longer – I will decide for myself – and – I have made my choice – I want to live with my father…” Nisha says.

“But why…?” she asks her daughter.

“I like it here – my father is such a nice person – and Monika is so friendly – she is not a control freak – like you…” Nisha says.

“Control Freak…? I love you so much – I have given you the best of everything – I look after you so well – and you are calling me a “control freak”…?” she says angrily to her daughter.

“You are so domineering – living with you – I felt suffocated. Here – with Papa and Monika – I feel free…” Nisha says.

She trembles with anger on hearing her daughter’s words and raises her hand to slap her daughter – when she hears her husband’s voice.

“Cool down – you go home now and settle down – we will talk later…” her husband says.

“No – I am taking my daughter with me right now…” she says assertively.

But her daughter Monika is defiant.

“I am not coming with you – I told you I want to stay here – and we are getting late – I have to go to college – and – they have to go to work – to their offices – you please go…” her daughter Nisha says firmly – and she goes inside.

She feels faint – the ground slipping below her feet – and – she senses her husband’s hand on her arm – supporting her.

“You go home and relax – we’ll sort this out later…” her husband says.

She observes Monika looking into her coffee mug – sipping coffee – as if she hasn’t seen anything – or heard anything.

She feels shattered – overcome by a sense of defeat – as her husband guides her out of the house towards the waiting taxi.






She and her best friend – they sit on a bench in a secluded place in the expansive university garden – and they have a discussion – about her daughter, her husband, her marriage.

“Nisha called me a “control freak”…” she says to her friend.

“It’s okay – you were too attached to her – you tried to monopolize her – let her be – she is at a difficult age – and she is an adult now…” her friend says.

“Monopolize…? I love her so much – I wanted her to do well in life – and – as a single parent – I had to be careful – so – I was a bit strict – that’s all…” she says.

“A child needs the love of both parents – you deprived her of that – I feel you hastily walked out of your marriage – you could have been less rigid…” her friend says.

“So – you are blaming me for everything – you are saying it is my fault that my marriage broke up…” she says – feeling hurt.

“Please try to understand me correctly – I am not saying it is your fault that you and your husband split up – but then – you could have been a bit accommodating – isn’t it…?” her friends says.

“I could have been “accommodating” …? What do you mean…?” she asks her friend.

“He told me you were too dominating – you always imposed your will on him – and – he said he felt suffocated in the marriage…” her friend says.

“My husband told you…? When did he tell you all this…?” she asks – irked.

“After you two split – I met him once at the airport – he seemed relieved that you had walked out on him…” her friend says.

“You met my husband behind my back…? And – you didn’t bother to tell me…?” she says – upset and extremely annoyed with her friend.

“Was there any point…? You are so headstrong…” her friend says.

“Headstrong…? How dare you call me headstrong…? Just because I am gracious to you – that doesn’t give you the license to say anything you want about me, make nasty comments and cast aspersions about my personal life…” she shouts angrily at her friend, “Who the hell do you think you are…? I will not tolerate such slander from lowlifes like you – do you understand…?”

Her friend seems taken aback and hurt by this outburst.

“I am sorry – I will not talk to you again…” her friend says – and – her friend gets up and walks away.


She sits on the bench in the garden – all alone.

Her husband is gone – her daughter is gone – her best friend is gone.

She has no one now.

Never before has she felt so lonely – so alone.




While she sits in the park – feeling depressed and lonely – her friend calls up Monika.

“You did well…” she says to Monika, “Nisha seems very happy with you…”

“Yes…” Monika says, “how is her mother…?”

“She is fretting and fuming all alone – you don’t worry about her…” the friend says to Monika, “now that you have her daughter Nisha on your side – you can go ahead with your plans – I think he will agree…”

“Yes – I will try to convince him – thank you so much – everything is working out so nicely – he loves me so much – and – Nisha is such a friendly girl – she seems to have accepted me. You know – that’s what he was afraid of – what would be his daughter’s reaction if he got remarried…? So now that everything seems okay on that front – hopefully – it will be wedding bells soon…” Monika says.

“Don’t forget to invite me for your wedding…” the friend says.

“Of course – but – you listen – your friend – Nisha’s mother – she shouldn’t know that you and me knew each other – I think we need to keep our friendship under wraps for some time – at least till the wedding…” her friend says to Monika.

“You don’t worry about her – she has broken up with me – and – I am never going to speak to her again…” the friend says.


Copyright © Vikram Karve 
1. If you share this post, please give due credit to the author Vikram Karve
2. Please DO NOT PLAGIARIZE. Please DO NOT Cut/Copy/Paste this post
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.


This story is a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

Saturday, May 6, 2023

Short Fiction : The Woman at the Book Fair

Short Fiction


Story by Vikram Karve



Circa – January 2003


I reached my home opposite the Oval – after work – as usual – at 5 PM in the evening.

I was opening the door to my house – when my neighbour opened his door – and – he said he wanted to speak to me.

“Sure…” I said – and – I invited him to come in.

I closed the door – I asked him to sit on the sofa – and – I sat opposite him.

“Anything urgent…?” I asked him.

“Who was that woman with you last evening…?” my neighbour asked me.

“Woman…?” I said – confused.

“I saw both of you entering the building at 7 PM and I saw her leaving alone at around 9 PM…” he said.

“Oh – her…? I met her at the book fair…?” I said to him.

“Book Fair…?” he asked me – with a clueless look.

“Don’t you know…? The “Strand Book Fair” – it’s held every year in January near Churchgate…” I said to him.

“I was asking you about the woman who with you in your house last evening…” he said – with a questioning look.

“I told you – I met her at the Book Fair…” I said to him.

“And – you brought her home – you spent two hours with her all alone – just the two of you…” he said – in a suspicious tone of voice.

“What are you trying to imply…?” I asked him – a bit miffed.

“You wife is away – and you are having a “good time” with other women…” he said – his voice full of sarcasm.

“Well – if browsing books together is your interpretation of a “good time” – we certainly were having a “good time” together…” I said to him.

“Browsing Books…? Who are you trying to fool…? You and that “dubious” female – you spend two hours shacked up together in your house – and you are making up all sorts of stories to cover up your hanky-panky…? Do you think I am a dimwit…?” he said – in a jeering tone of voice.

“What nonsense are you talking…? Dubious Female…? She is a respectable person – a decent lady…” I said to him.

My neighbour smiled – a derisive smile – and spoke in a sarcastic tone.

“Respectable…? Decent…? Are you sure…?” he asked me.

“Of course – she is a book lover – she has been coming to the book fair for the last 3 days – we were browsing similar books – literature, fiction, short stories – so – we got talking – I told her about my book collection – she wanted to see it – so – I invited her home to see my books…” I said – truthfully.

“Are you telling me that she was looking at your books for over 2 hours last evening…?” he asked me.

“Yes – we browsed books together – she showed interest in short fiction – so – I told her about my favourite short stories – we discussed literature – that’s all…” I said – trying to convince him.

“You pick up a woman at the book fair – you bring her home – you spend two hours with her in private – do you even know who the woman is…?” my neighbour asked me.

“She is a counsellor…” I said to him.

“Counsellor…!!!” my neighbour exclaimed – with a laugh.

“Yes – she told me she is a personal counsellor and therapist – in fact – she told me she had an appointment at 9 PM nearby…” I said to him.

“Appointment…? At 9 PM at night…?” he said – looking incredulous.

“Yes – she told me she does private therapy at home for some special patients…” I said – telling him what the woman had told me.

“Private Therapy…? At Home…? Special Patients…?” he said breaking into a laugh, “instead of making up tall stories – why don’t you admit the truth – that you picked up this woman – brought her home – and you fucked her…”


Till now – I had been tolerating his nonsense because he was my neighbour – and – my wife and his wife were close friends – but now – he was getting on my nerves – so – I decided to end the conversation.

“I think you should go now…” I said to him, “I have to go for my evening walk on Marine Drive…”

“And – I am sure you are going to visit the Book Fair – on your way back…” he said sarcastically.

“Yes – I may browse books…” I said to him.

“And you will pick up that female and bring her over here for a special therapy session in your bedroom…” he said with a sneer – and then – he said to me with a wicked smile, “but – hats off to you – I never imagined you could pick up females at a Book Fair…!!!”

“Please go…” I said angrily.

“I will go – but – before I go - let me tell you – this book-lover woman friend of yours – she not a counsellor or therapist – and she is certainly not a “respectable” lady – she is a “dirty” woman…” he said – with disdain.

“Dirty Woman…?” I said – with a questioning look.

 “She is a woman of “ill repute” – do you understand…?” he said – in a firm voice.

“She is a woman of “ill repute” …? What do you mean by that…?” I asked him

“Don’t act dumb – she is a woman of “easy virtue” – but – since you will feign ignorance – I will put it more bluntly – that woman is a “call girl” – an “escort” – a bloody “whore” – do you understand…?” he said – contemptuously.

“That’s not possible…” I said, “I found her to be a decent woman – quite well-read, erudite and refined…”

“That I will concede…” he said, “she is a refined and polished “hooker” – a high class “prostitute” – I wonder how you could afford her…”


I couldn’t believe what my neighbour was saying – also – I was feeling uncomfortable with the conversation – so – I decided to get rid of my neighbour.

“Please go now – I don’t want to discuss all this…” I said to my neighbour.

“I hope you are not bringing her home for a “therapy” session this evening…” he said – sarcastically.

“Of course, I am going to bring her home…” I said to my neighbour, “we are going to meet at the book fair at 6 PM – and then – I will bring her home – I have already decided the short fiction anthology I want to tell her about – and she has to return the book she borrowed yesterday and take this one…” I said to him.

“She won’t be coming…” my neighbour said.

“What do you mean “she won’t be coming” …?” I asked him.

“I meant “she won’t be coming to meet you today” …” my neighbour said – unequivocally.

“Well – let me tell you that I am sure she is going to come to meet me – she promised me that she would return my book today – when I told her that I normally don’t lend my books because people forget to return them – she said she would 100% meet me at the book fair at 6PM – and then she would come home to browse my books – return my book – and maybe – borrow a new one …” I said to my neighbour.

“You seem to be so sure of her…? Do you even know her name…?” he asked me.

“Nisha…” I said, “she told me her name is Nisha…”

My neighbour gave me a sardonic smile.

“Nisha…? This is the first time I am hearing this. As far as I know – her name is Rita – but even that may be a fake name – I wonder how many names she has – one for each client – perhaps…” he said to me.

I looked at him – a bit befuddled – wondering what to say.

But – before I could speak – he started talking.

“I warned her not to come here again – or to meet you again…” he said.

“What…? You told her not to meet me…? Why…?” I asked him – feeling miffed.

“For your sake…” he said.

“For my sake – what do you mean…?” I asked him – curious.

“You are a married man – with a nice wife and grown-up children. Is it proper of you to indulge in hanky-panky with such wanton women…? Why do you want to ruin everything due to your peccadillos with such sleazy women…?” he said.

“Hanky-Panky…? Peccadillos…?” I said – peeved.

“Don’t worry – I won’t tell anyone about your fucking her in your house yesterday evening – after all – you are my neighbour – our wives are close friends – I am your well-wisher – so – I will overlook your one indiscretion yesterday – but – I don’t want you getting entangled with that filthy whore…” he said, “that’s why I called her last night and told her not to meet you…”

I looked at him – wondering how my neighbour had that woman’s number – so – I questioned him about it.

“You called her…? You have her number…? How do you know her…? You called her a filthy whore – you say she is a woman of ill-repute – a sleazy woman – how do you so much about her…?” I asked him.

“Don’t delve too much…” he said.

“Ah – so you are jealous – and possessive – tell me – are you having an affair with her…?” I asked him.

“Don’t talk nonsense…” he said angrily, “I have nothing to do with her – our company hires her once in a while – to service some of our top clients and business associates – and officials who we have to please…”

“And – how are you involved in all this…?” I asked him.

“Well – in our business – we have to do all sorts of things…” he said – nonchalantly.

“So – that’s the job you do – pimping…!!! It is disgusting…!!!” I said to him, “under your high-sounding title – all you are is a bloody pimp…”

“Be careful what you say…” he said – in a threatening tone.

“I thought you were a respectable man – but you are worse than a prostitute – you are a slimy pimp – that’s what you are…” I said to him in a most disparaging tone of voice.

“How dare you compare me with than dirty woman…?” he said – giving me an accusing look.

I looked at him – and – I gave him a piece of my mind.

I said in a stern voice to my neighbour:

“You keep calling her a “dirty” woman…?

Well – even if – as you say – she is a “dirty woman” – her thoughts are certainly much “cleaner” than yours.

You put on an act of being a “clean man” – but you have a “dirty mind” – you masquerade as a moral puritan – but your mind is full of lecherous thoughts.

We were browsing books together – but you were fantasizing that we were fucking each other – weren’t you…?

You are a disgusting man with a perverted mind – don’t you talk to me ever again…”


After admonishing him – I gripped his hand – I literally forced him out of my house – and – I closed the door.


That evening – I waited for Nisha at the Book Fair.

But – she didn’t come.

I couldn’t call her as I didn’t have her number.


Of course – after my tiff with my nasty neighbour in the evening – there was no question of asking him for her number.


I wish I had asked Nisha for her number the previous evening – but – she had left in a hurry – and – she hadn’t given me her number – nor – had she asked for mine.


I waited for Nisha till the closing time of the Book Fair – hoping against hope that Nisha would come.

But – she didn’t come

So – at night – I came home – disappointed.


It was the end of a short and sweet friendship – all because of my nasty neighbour.


Next evening – a courier arrived – a packet.

I opened the packet.

It was the book she had borrowed – and inserted inside – there was a note written in cursive feminine handwriting.

I read the note:

“You must have come to know about me from your neighbour.

It is true – but – with you – I wanted a nice clean relationship – a friendship based on books – but – sadly – that was not to be.

And yes – I told you my name is “Nisha”.

Yes – Nisha is my real name – you are one of the few persons who knows my real name.

Thank you for lending me your book.

I felt good when you lent me the book – though you said that you normally don’t lend your books.

I really wish we could become “bookish friends” – but it is not destined.

It was so nice talking to you.

Wish you All the Best in your life.

Good Bye Forever.

Your Bookish Friend, Nisha…”






A few months later – I saw Nisha in the lobby of a posh hotel – where my wife and I had gone for dinner.

I looked yearningly at Nisha – wondering if I should say “Hello” to her.

Nisha glanced at me – no trace of recognition – and – she looked away.

My wife seemed to have noticed everything.

She pressed my hand and smiled at me.

“Is that the same woman you had told me about – the woman you met at the Book Fair…?” my wife asked me – as we walked towards the restaurant.


Copyright © Vikram Karve 
1. If you share this post, please give due credit to the author Vikram Karve
2. Please DO NOT PLAGIARIZE. Please DO NOT Cut/Copy/Paste this post
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

This story is a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.
Copyright © Vikram Karve (All Rights Reserved)
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.