Monday, October 15, 2012

When It Rained... (Part 3)

Hello, beautiful world! I guess I've kept it raining for way too long now. *Clears throat* So here is the conclusion to "When It Rained..." that has finally been completed! Please do leave your comments; happy reading!


It had started to drizzle again as we watched Vanessa and Rianna drive away. Vedant, Shivam and I lived nearby so we decided to walk down from the bus stop next to the mall.

“Well, see you guys tomorrow then.” I said, when we reached the street that leads to my house.

“You know, Pooja, our neighbour is having a party tonight.” said Shivam. “Would you like to join us? He asked us to bring guests if we want to.”

“Oh, I am not sure ...” I said, surprised.

“I am sure you’ll have a good time,” Shivam went on. “I’ll walk you home if you want.”

Touched as I was that Shivam invited me to some random neighbour’s party, I couldn’t help but wonder why Vedant wasn’t saying a word. Annoyed, I decided to go just to see what kept him from asking me to come along. When we reached the guys’ neighbourhood, I realized the party was right next door, at Sahil’s place. I’d known him for around two years- he was a school friend’s boyfriend, and treated me like his kid sister. Vedant rang the bell and Sahil opened the door, a Coke in one hand and a warm smile on his face.  “Come on in.” He said. “Everyone is in the living room.”

Just as I stepped inside, a hurricane called Malini hit me. (Read: my best friend from school and Sahil’s long term girlfriend.) She grabbed me in a bone crushing hug and I could see Vedant and Shivam heading towards the living room without even looking back. So much for bringing guests.  

“OhmyGOSH, I’m so glad to see you!” Malini gushed, pulling me along as she chattered non stop without taking a breath.

The place looked impressive. I could tell that most of the credit for the decor went to Malini; I bet she came over early to fix it up for the party. She had somehow managed to color coordinate the cushions and the curtains, the lamp shades and the table cloth, all of which I was sure Sahil would take down the minute she stepped out of the house.

I looked around for a familiar face in the crowd and saw one of those Barbie Dolls from Sahil’s college trying to flirt with Vedant. It was entertaining, watching the look on his face changing from polite, to amused, to exasperated. On an impulsive, I marched up to them.

“C’mon, let’s help set out the food,” I said. Surprisingly, he followed me. Everyone else settled around the table, and we helped Shivam, Sahil and Malini hand out the plates full of kebabs, paneer tikka and what have you. The food was mouthwatering. Night had fallen by the time we finished eating; Sahil got up and made an announcement.

“Alright, people. It’s time for a game- and what could be better than playing ‘Passing the Parcel’?”

Everyone applauded in approval. Well, except me. This was going to be a total nightmare! They were definitely going to ask me to dance, or do something equally horrifying. There was no way I could do anything entertaining, and far from embarrassing, in front of so many people! I could feel my face turning hot. I tried not to let Vedant see how nervous I already was, especially since he looked so psyched about the game.

“People usually cheat, or get others confused, in their hurry to pass on the parcel.” Sahil continued. “So this time, we won’t be using a cushion or a toy- we’ll use a bottle of wine, such that people will be careful and slow.”

I tried to imagine how much it would hurt if I would hit him on the head with the bottle. Probably worth a try, I decided.

“Let’s start!” Malini. I gave her a dark look; she knew I hated such games! How could she do that to me?!

“Oh yes, let’s begin.” said the girl who had been flirting with Vedant. She batted her eyelashes and as we went and sat in a circle she, of course, came to sit on his other side. I felt like strangling her.

Sahil played the music, with his back to us. I wondered if they would let me do his job and let him play in my place instead.

The bottle of wine passed by me once before the music stopped. A girl called Sabina was the one holding the bottle so she was asked to- you guessed it- dance. Lucky for her, she was a trained dancer and performed quite well to Kesha’s ‘Tick Tock’. She joined Sahil when she was through with her task.

I kept praying that I wouldn’t be the next victim. But as my luck would have it, I was. Call it whatever you like, but it so happened that the music stopped just when both Vedant and I were holding on to the bottle. How filmy. And how utterly, awfully mortifying. Someone suggested that we dance together. Everyone started wolf whistling. I could’ve died. I glanced at Vedant, looking miserable.

“Would you like to sing with me?” He whispered.

NO, VEDANT, I WOULD NOT. (I wanted to say.) But singing was way better than being asked to dance, so I agreed. I was pleasantly surprised when he borrowed one of Sahil’s friend’s guitars. Thinking back, I feel it is such a pity that I wasted so much of my energy in freaking out—I should’ve realized just how romantic it was that the guy I actually liked happened to be singing with me on such a breathtaking, rainy day.


The song we chose was symbolic I guess- ‘The Start of Something New’ by Zac Efron and Vanessa Anne Hudgens. I fixed my gaze on the guitar as we began to sing and, before I knew it, I’d forgotten all about everyone around us. I could finally look into Vedant’s eyes by the time we reached the chorus…

“It’s the start of something new,
It feels so right to be here with you.
And now, looking in your eyes, I feel in my heart...
The start of something new.”

Vedant and I were gazing at each other when everyone broke into applause. We reluctantly looked away. Across the room, Shivam, Sahil and Malini gave us a radiant look. I beamed at them, my heart soaring.

"Here's a reward for you," said the guy standing next to me, and handed me a plate with a huge piece of chocolate cake.

My expression changed from one of pure ecstasy (I mean, come on, it's CHOCOLATE cake we're talking about) to one of dumbfounded indignation when Vedant promptly snatched it from my hand and gave it to Barbie with a cocky smile.

"Thank you so much,Vedant! You're so sweet!" She gushed. 

I wanted to stick the spoon down her throat. I glared at him when she walked away. "What did you do that for?!"

"I want to show you something," he smiled at me, apparently unperturbed by my fury.

"Oh?" I raised an eyebrow at him.

"Here, come this way." He pulled me out of the living room and into the hallway. Barbie threw me a nasty look.  We stopped at the foot of the large wooden staircase. "I want you to let me blindfold you."

"What?! Why?"

Okay, now, that was a really weird request. I mean, as far as I knew, he wasn't some psycho stalker dude who lures girls into deadly traps. But why on earth would he want to blindfold me?!  

Thankfully, Sahil walked in on us just then. Bless him, the guy has got perfect timing. He grinned at me. "Don't worry, kiddo. I'm in on this plan." 

"Plan? What plan?!"  Yeah, okay, so I'm Queen of Paranoia Land. Is that a crime now?

"Oh, my God! Would you just do what I say, Nancy Drew?!" Vedant snapped.

"Okay, okay! No need to get so worked up about it." I frowned. He exchanged an exasperated look with Sahil and pulled out a small black scarf with polka dots on it. I stared at him.

"It's my sister's," he grinned. 


He covered my eyes with the scarf and tied it in a knot at the back of my head. I could barely see even though the dim lights in the hallway were switched on. Vedant gently laced his fingers through mine and carefully guided me up the stairs. A hundred different emotions rushed though me at that moment.

For once, I decided to let down my guard and just allow things to turn out the way they were meant to be. This time, I did not try to control what was happening around me, I did not try to make myself prepared for what was yet to come. I just listened to the voice in my head that told me to trust this boy I thought I knew well but actually didn't. And for some strange reason, this was as exciting as it was scary.


At the top of the stairs, Vedant moved away from me and everything suddenly went pitch black. I could almost hear my heart pounding. What the HECK was going on?! "Here's your surprise, Pooja..." He whispered.

I heard a door creaking and an unexpected draught sent chills up my spine. And then I heard soft music. Vedant untied the scarf covering my eyes and I realized where we were standing. It was the entrance to the attic. I stepped in, hardly believing what I was looking at. Lying on the floor was a royal purple blanket on top of which sat a short, ethnic wooden table. It held a lit candle inside an exquisite glass pot. Beside it was a single red rose which was subtly lying on a piece of paper that looked like something torn out of an old, yellowed book. Vedant took my hand again and made me sit beside him on the blanket. He put his phone on the table while it continued to play a really old romantic song, which despite being almost drowned by the sound of the pouring rain, was heavenly in its own magical way.

All I could do was stare at the paper on the table. It was definitely a page torn out of an anthology of Shelley's poems because I recognized these lines and could relate to them only too well.

'I arise from dreams of thee
In the first sweet sleep of night,
When the winds are breathing low,
And the stars are shining bright
I arise from dreams of thee,
And a spirit in my feet
Has led me- who knows how?-
To thy chamber-window, sweet!'

I looked at Vedant. His eyes sparkled. "You're not the only one who loves poetry, you know."

"I guess I can see that." I smiled at him. How had he known that something almost bizzare like a piece of paper could move me so much?

 "There's something else." He said, and pulled out a container from under the table. He took off the lid and what was it? Chocolate cake. Of course.

"Now this is real cute," I teased him. "And how did you know I love chocolate cake?"

"I didn't. It's MY favourite!"

"Oh, wow. How chivalrous." I rolled my eyes and he laughed.

"Well, dig in, my lady!"

As we got talking, I gradually started understanding little things about him better, things we hardly get a chance to talk about.  What's strange is that despite the fact that he told me a lot about himself, I felt like there was so much more to him than he was letting on. Good or bad, I didn't know yet. And I didn't even know if he was deliberately leaving things out. But I was sure I wanted to find out.

We were so absorbed in our conversation that we didn't realize that it was very late, until Sahil sent me a text reminding me to call home and inform someone that I’ll be back in just a while. He told me he and Malini would walk me down. I didn't want to leave just yet. God knew how long it would be before we'd have such a moment again. "I guess I have to go home now." I sighed.

"I know..." Vedant said to me. "But before you leave, there's one last surprise for you."

"Really?" My eyes lit up. What could be a better surprise than this? 

I looked at him expectantly. He handed me a small wooden box. I opened it tentatively; inside it was a miniature accoustic guitar. It was painted a shiny black and it looked absolutely stunning . I could hardly take my eyes off it. Vedant gently put an arm around me. "Do you like it?"

I leaned my head on his shoulder. "I love it."

"Just like my own guitar, it's pretty good at helping me express myself." He pulled out the guitar from the tiny case and turned it over. There were words inscribed in it in beautiful lettering:

'I Heart You.'

I looked at him. I didn't know what to say, or how it say it. But I could tell he knew how I felt. I didn't know what the future held for us. But I let it unfold on its own. Que Sera Sera

And that concludes my story. Hope you liked it! I am finally home, and over with all the exams that kept me from blogging. My next post will be about my visit to China, so stick around! May you have a lovely week ahead!


PS- To read the previous posts, click here:


  1. I love the end Arpi!! That was such an unexpected ending to the story... :)

  2. Finally.... the much awaited final part!!

    Loved loved loved it!!!

    Arpi..I should say it was worth the wait. waiting for another enticing story from you :)

  3. @swarnali and me- thank you so much!! i am so delighted (and relieved!) that you liked it because honestly, once you know there's a certain expectation you have to meet, you want to give it your best shot- and it's a wonderful feeling when it pays off! :)

  4. Such a lovely story!! You write beautifully, Arpita, you kept me thoroughly engrossed!! Great work :-)

    1. oh, thank you! :) i really appreciate the compliment, you've made my day!

  5. now thats a lovely story , long one tooo :) but it did not get boring anywhere and I finished it from start to end .. usually long stories tend to drag ..

    and now looking forward to the gossip in china :) hope you had a great trip and welcome back


    1. thank god it didn't get boring! i am happy to know that u enjoyed reading it; even i sometimes lose interest in stories that are too long and i was a little worried about whether this too would lose it's charm if it's long. glad that it still appealed to u. thank you. :)

      and yes, i had a lovely time there! will post about it this week itself. :)


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