Shiv and Anandi walked in silence towards his car.She remained silent in the car while he drove back..
He stopped the car near her house and said “Care to tell me why u are so upset ?”
She looked startled “do I look upset ?”
He said “I m not a face reader but I know u enough to understand wat ur feeling…I cant say that I can change whatever has made u sad but I promise I will make u feel better”.
Anandi felt touched “would u take a walk with me ?”
He replied “Gladly”
They got off and walked in the campus.Anandi’s apartment block was inside a huge campus with several gardens and trees. In the center of the garden there was a small gazebo..Since it was well past midnight the area was deserted and all outdoor lights were switched off…Only lights coming from various flats dimly illuminated the garden…They walked and sat on the benches inside the gazebo.There were creepers running all over it.The mixed scent of rose, jasmin and magnolia hung in the air.
It had rained sometime back hence the grass and leaves were dewey and dripped with rain drops.
For a minute she was silent taking in the surrounding…her eyes had adjusted to the dim light and she saw his face he had that mesmerised look again.
She said “I dont know where to start…I had this friend infact u may call him my best friend…we hav drifted apart now..today I came to know about an important event in his life which he didnt bother to imform me.I should not be but this fact has made me upset”.
Shiv gently took her hands “Is this friend the same person u fell in love with ?”
She asked “How did u know?”
“I observe and I m intutive…U seem to be hiding a deep hurt behind ur easygoing attitude”.
“You are right..I am hurt…not because of the rejection but because I lost a friend”.
She explained the whole story to him.
He said “So this Jagadish he said no to u ?? Wat a duffer…No man in his right mind would do that”.
She giggled “And why not ?”
“Because you are a dream come true for any man.From wat I understand u were in love he realised ur intrest and distanced himself from u..You are disheartened because you have lost whatever you had before all this mess”.
She said “Yes”
He exclaimed “That dude is brainless enough not to like you why are u wasting ur emotions over him?”
She said “But he was my best friends…We hav shared so much how can he just forget everything.I am not asking him to love me back but atleast be in touch like old times.”
He said “Anandi maybe he feels guilty and somehow responsible for leading you on.He has become aloof not coz of you but because of himself.He cant meet your eyes now”.
She looked thoughtful “maybe you are right I should let it go.”
He said “Exactly ! But I am still amazed at his stupidity.For any normal guy on this plant just ur intrest in him is enough to encite him”
She laughed “Ur flattering me”
“No I m serious…Had I been at his place, I wouldnt have let u go”.
Heat creeped up her body, both due to his words and the almost dangerous way he said it…She gulped her throat felt dry.
“I would hav stayed right beside you…made sure that u dont go away from me for even a minute”.
“My God!” she whispered feeling almost mesmerised by his throaty voice not to mention brush of his hand on her cheeks which soon reached her lips.
“Yes” He said.
His hands moved and cupped her face.
“You are lovely Anandi…I would hav been counting seconds to be with you.I would hav made sure that no man ever looked at you”.
She felt stunned and it was too hard to think of anything except the way he was stroking her cheekbones with his thumb.
“And ? Wat else you would hav done?” She asked.Her body seems to hav automatically turned and she was leaning towards him.
He said “I would hav made you forget the existance of any other man.I would hav made sure that you know u would be mine forever.”
Their face were so close that their lips almost touched…He leaned and then did it covered her mouth with his.
Anandi was engulfed by pure fire…What started as a gentle touch of lips turned into inferno…shocked initially she soon melted in his heat…Their tongues touched then entwined then explored each other.
He was not gentle instead he devoured her.
A tiny voice inside her head did call out reminding her that this was not right…this was not supposed to happen…she should stop right now.
Instead she wrapped her arms around his neck..caressing his hairs.
He hugged her tighter never leaving her mouth for a minute.
Shaking she pressed harder against him tugging his hairs pullinh him closer as if blocking his escape not that he made any efforts for escaping.
Then suddenly he pulled back ending it as abruptly as it had begun.
Anandi with her eyes closed made a sigh of protest as if being suddenly deprived of her fav ice cream.
Then her eyes flew open.The enormity of what had just happened struck her…
He looked same as before…cheery and relaxed…Still cupping her face he was caressing it with her thumb.
Anandi exclaimed “OH NO !!we…we kissed !”
He said “So we did..Glad u noticed”.
Noticed ?…got an earth shattering volcanic eruption inside her was more like it.
She looked at him “Shiv please leave me I cant think like this”.
“Wats there to think about it…hmmm” He asked.
“Please Shiv someone might see us” She lied.. the truth was if she remained in his proximity longer she would fling herself on him n rip off his shirt and devour that greek God body.
He released her…Without meeting his eyes she said “I should go now”.
He held her hands tightening his grip “You are not going anywhere…first tell me ur are not upset”.
Upset !! who would be upset after being kissed by this dream of a man.
She shook her head “No…I m not upset..nor I hav any regrets but I need some time to think”.
He seemed to relax left her hands..They stood up and walked away from the gazebo.They reached her apartment block…He said “Good night Anandi…Will call you later”.
She smiled “Good night Shiv”.
She stood watching him till his tall frame dissapeared.
She walked back into her flat her thoughts in a jumble and her lips still stinging from the onslaught of inferno called Shiv.
Unlocking the door she walked in and the scene in front of her nearly knocked her off.
“What The !!!” She shouted
Swati and Gaurav who were wrapped in a passionate embrace on the living room sofa sprang apart…They expressions frozen into shock.
Anandi fumbled “I am sorry I didnt mean to walk upon u …I…I better go to my room”.
Averting her eyes she ran off to her room…She locked herself in her bathroom n stood under the shower for an eternity.
She came out toweling her hairs her thoughts clearer.
Swati was sitting in Anandi’s room…Her face still red…
Anandi said “U hav still not freshened up ?”
Swati said “I…I..just..I dont know how it happened..I guess I was too drunk”.
Anandi smiled “Swati Chill !! Nobody is judging u …and no need to give any explanations…Its just that I walked in at wrong time”.
Swati sighed with relief “Well I sort of lost control…He is kind of cute.” And grinned.
Anandi thought “Tell me about loosing control.”
“So you and Gaurav ? huh?”
Swati blushed probably for the first time in her life.
Anandi smiled “Good I am happy for you…wen did this happen ?”
“Ummm spark were flying for sometime and today we got opp to confess and you walked in…where were u btw? U left with Shiv much earlier? So how come u arrived late?”
Anandi flushed remembering the searing kiss.
“Umm we were just taking a walk.”
Swati gave a mischivious smile “Really !! The flat was empty and u both were out taking a walk !! how unromantic”.
Anandi said “Swati u know there’s nothing like that.How come I never noticed sparks between gaurav and you”.
Swati said “Coz nowdays u dont notice anything unrelated to Shiv”.
Anandi rolled her eyes “Ok stop teasing me else I will start teasing u about Gaurav…It too late now..let talk tomm”.
Swati left and Anandi collapsed on her bed exhausted…She slept as soon as her head touched the pillow and she dreamed…She dreamed of Magnolia blossoms,Musky scents, Strong arms rippling muscles and soft luscious lips.
To be Continued…