It is true that one needs to spend a great deal of time and a great part of life with someone, to be able to know a person’s all aspects, especially the darkest ones.
Samay arrived at 1800 hours at the Gautam’s and as expected, Barkha was right at the gate.
Samay : Mr. Gautam never mentioned their captivating gatekeeper….
Barkha : Excuse me! What if the gate keeper was actually ‘captivating’?
Samay : Well, provided the gate keeper was same as now, I would have surely left that Barkha or whoever!
And Samay couldn’t control his hearty laugh at Barkha’s expressions, which was apparently a ticklish brew of annoyance and blush.
Just then Raghaven appeared, noticeably impressed to see Samay.
Samay : Good evening sir, I hope I made it on time. I really didn’t know what you all like so brought some sweets.
Anjum was known in her family for her sumptuous cooking skills. Be it any Indian cuisine, she was a true master at it. And on Raghaven’s special request, she had made a hearty meal of shahi paneer, her specialty, alongside other delicacies.
Raghaven : Well, tell us about your job Samay. When did you decide to become a pilot?
Samay : Sir, honestly speaking, I aimed at becoming a pilot in the Indian Defense Services, but couldn’t get through few eligibility criteria, but that couldn’t take away my earnest ambition to fly. So, I decided to go ahead with the commercial pilot’s training. And here I am.
There were obvious expressions of appreciation reflected on Raghaven’s face. After a moment of silence, Samay couldn’t resist but speak forth what he had been keeping inside for so long. This social tete e tete was not the main purpose.
Samay : Sir, there’s something I wanted to talk about. Rather seek your permission for. Could you kindly request ma’am and Barkha to join us?
As everyone was seated in the living room, Anjum, with her partially tensed look, Raghaven, with an overjoyed self and Barkha, flushing, blushing and everything, Samay spoke:
“Sir, ma’am I don’t know how to make up a conversation to reach at the subject, hence, I would say it the way it is. True to my every word, your daughter is the first and the only woman I have lost my entire attention to, may I please get your permission to marry Barkha?”
Raghaven : (with an affirming node) Samay, son, we have been truly impressed by your demeanor and your appearance since the very first time we were introduced to you and a father’s eyes cannot be kept in dark. Obviously, I saw what was weaving between you two and your coming forward to seek our permission, deepens that liking we have developed for you. But since it is the matter of marriage, we would like to know about your family and meet them too.
Raghaven knew the turmoil going on in Anjum’s heart.
Samay : Sir, I am son of Mr. Bhaskar and Mrs. Kalpana Razdaan. Even though caste does not play an important role for me, yet, we are Kashmiri pandits and have been living in Delhi since over ten years now. I have a sister, she is married and has a son.
Raghaven : Good. So, when can we have the pleasure to meet Mr and Mrs. Razdaan? I am sure they must be as happy as we are on this matrimonial prospect!
Barkha and Samay looked at each other, their worried expressions were eloquent enough to say the rest.
Samay : Sir, I haven’t discussed it with my parents yet. But I am sure they will be as ecstatic as you are. Barkha is the perfect daughter-in-law one could ask for.
However convincing Samay tried to sound, the atmosphere had taken a different turn. Not because of the revelation on Samay’s part, but upon the depth of what Raghaven was able to perceive. He knew his daughter well. He also knew that Samay wouldn’t let go of Barkha. The path to marriage might be troublesome, but it will happen, he believed. It was the thought of ‘later’ that worried Raghaven.
On the other hand, Samay realized, that he had no choice but to reveal it to his parents earlier than he planned, before Raghaven changes his mind. Anjum was already not fully convinced and this scenario only fueled her conviction.
The next day had its own haphazard scheme, as if this was not enough!