Posts Tagged ‘Love’

I could clearly see the spark I was so familiar with, in her eyes. She was not the real girl I once knew- but even God couldn’t have done a better job at recreating her, the way these scientists had done. She was the first human clone of the world- the clone of the most famous Indian Actress, Aabha- the same Aabha I knew from my childhood days. The same Aabha who is to marry some businessman in a few days…

“You’re very funny and romantic” she said between her guffaws.

“Seems like you liked that story…” I said with a smile.

“They told me you were funny, but they didn’t tell me that you were this cute! I was underprepared- I’m totally bowled over by you…”

“Stop hitting on me, Aabha_639!”  said I winking at her.

“Aabha_639? Call me something else!” she said, “Even if I’m her clone, I certainly don’t have her personality or her memories and I certainly do not want to have her name! Give me a new name, I say! I don’t like the name Aabha!”

“My name is also Aabha!” I said. The famous actress-my childhood huh, friend and me shared the same name- Aabha. Fate plays dirty tricks- the one name you want to forget, is splashed all over the world- even in your birth certificate & driving License! Frankly, I too started to hate the name of Aabha…

“Aah Aabha! Yes! Aabha & Aabha- Classmates for 5 years. The school legends… I forgot to ask you all about it… Tell me the whole story! I want to hear the untold story…”

“I am supposed be analyzing you and not vice versa” I smiled.

“What’s your analysis so far?”

“Hmmm, you look exactly like her, you have copied her body language well… but you don’t talk like her at all…”

“Then tell me all about her! And if I knew more about her, then maybe I can talk like her, act like her… Please tell me…”

I looked in her eyes. The spark that always drew me near Aabha, that made me do anything for her, was there, in her clone as well.  Was this just coincidence? That the scientists had made her clone days before her marriage? Was there a big picture I was not aware of? If there was one thing that I was never sure of, it was Aabha. How did I feel about her? What should I have done? And what not? What should I say to her? If I should speak to her at all? Did I still love her? I was confused. These were not logical questions for the brain, but these were emotional questions of a hurt heart…

I looked at her again. Her eyes induced me to talk. I wanted to get it off my chest at least once in my life… Would I feel miserable that I let out the secret details of a friend, that might hurt her image, if leaked to the media, or would I feel relieved, that I got everything about my crush, out in the open with another human, well, in this case, a clone?

I wanted to feel relieved. I needed closure.

“You promise you’ll keep the details of our talks a secret?” I asked her.

She nodded excitedly.

“Once upon a time…” I began dramatically.



Fugu, a political and poisonous delicacy

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As I entered the contest, with the odds of winning being 1 in 999, Murphy’s Law brought a sneer to my face. Forgive me Pascal, I had just sinned, for I let an irrational thought like Murphy’s Law run through my brain. Murphy’s Law is a Law for people who do not understand probabilities. Probability Theory is my Bible, Murphy’s Law- a blasphemy.

I never believed in Murphy’s Law. I was too smart for it. I had noticed the situations, in detail, where people attribute a certain event to Murphy’s Law. Take the case of queues in Bangalore Railway Station. There are 15 counters, hence 15 queues. Sometimes I hear people grumbling that some other queue was moving faster than their queues. From Murphy’s Law- the other queue is always faster. If this statement is accepted to be true then it meant that 14 queues were slower than that 1 fast queue. So the people in 14 queues were experiencing Murphy’s Law, while the people in that fast queue didn’t. Hence Murphy’s Law is not universal.

The probability theory does a better job in explaining the above 15 queues experience of the people. The odds of anybody being in the fastest queue is 1 in 15. A very small chance. If anybody from the slower queues, visits the station again some other day, then once again, he has the same (even worse actually) small chance of 1 in 15. And chances are that this person will, in most cases, choose the slower queue. Hence this person generally feels that the other queue is faster.

With these positive thoughts in my brain, I entered the contest at the Motor Show. The contest was for the audience at the Motor show, and each audience member was blindfolded by an extremely pretty Korean Girl & the audience member had to select a ball from a bag, blindfolded. The person who got the ball with number 999 was the winner- and the winner would win a 4 hour date with that very beautiful Korean Girl. There were chances that many people might win a date with her on the same night, at the same time- but the announcer assured us all that such a scenario had never happened before. He obviously didn’t understand Probability theory or he was an excellent liar.

I let that beautiful girl blindfold me. I reached out into the bag of balls. Supposedly 1000 balls were here. I held one ball, the probability of it being 999, was the worst. So I discarded that ball, and took another, the chances of this being 999 were better than the previous ball, but still, not good enough. I kept on doing this, and kept on discarding balls, and improving my chances, for three minutes when, I felt her warm soft hand hold my arm. I took out the ball I was holding at that moment- and from the cheer of the crowd I knew that it was the ball number 999. This is why I love Math. Math had won me a date! I’m sure it’ll happen to all the other Math fans out there, one day. Have faith!

After she unblindfolded me, I kept on eyeing her with the widest grin. The organizers of the event asked me to take a seat and wait patiently for the rest of the audience to get their chance. They also explained to me to be gentlemanly in the date with the lady- this they did after realizing that I didn’t understand Korean. I was an Indian visiting South Korea. One of the guys explicitly warned me about the consequences of doing anything stupid with the lady. I wasn’t paying much attention to those organizers- all my attentions were to my dazzling date.

I cheered every audience member who got anything but 999. Nobody else won. So it was going be me- and her, on a date, for 4 hours, from 10 pm to 2 am.


It was an unusually chilly September night. Unrelenting rains had made weather a nightmare. Another unfair unnecessary struggle the poor had to endure. The poor suffer, not because they are the victims of fate. The poor suffer, not because nobody helped them- it’s because they just don’t know how to help themselves. Take for instance, me. I am poor. But I know how to help myself. I was going to start my own business. I was going to be a big businessman. The next Dheerubhai Ambani. The next Bill Gates.

I was going to start a small fast food business on the footpath next to the entrance of a prestigious man’s home. The man was a wildly sought after Math private tutor and he was fat. Huge. Giant Meatball. The Fat tutor taught Math in four different locations in a single day- and as a result, he was generally late for his classes- which meant that the kids had time to kill. Studying would’ve been a good way to kill time. Eating junk food was better- and I would be there, a mere five steps away from them, selling all their favorite poisons.

All the preparations had been made. My dream was slowly coming true- my family would finally give the respect I deserve; the whole city will recognize me. And not look down on me like I’m a thief.

I had promised the fat tutor his favorite snack and a few big currency Notes, every day and he, in turn, agreed to come late, regularly. I had got the push cart- most of the cooking vessels, bought ingredients for three days with all my saved money, with my wife’s blessings. All that remained was an approval from the local cop. He realized the brilliant money-making potential in my scheme- and needed a little moolah, to assure me that it would be me who’d be running the business near the fat tutor’s house and not some other guy who would be willing to pay the cop more money.

The only problem was that I did not have money for the cop.

Neither my employer- the local landlord nor my dad who worked for the landlord helped me. They had plenty of cash to spare- just that they didn’t have any cash to spare for me. No surprises there. I had always found a way to feed my mouth- this time I had to find a way to fuel my dreams. With Lord Ganesha’s help, I could do anything.

Not that I knew Lord Ganesha personally- I just knew where He stacked His cash- in a donation box near the Narrow Street. Every year the local kids would establish an idol of Lord Ganesha during September for a few days, conduct prayers, sacred rituals like Homas, organize entertainment for the God and the believers, and later collect money from the believers, as donation, like a sort of reimbursement for all the expenses incurred for conducting the Lord Ganesha festival.

And I knew where this donation box was hidden at this late hour in the night- the cop would be plenty pleased with me and my donation for him.

The boys usually make a temporary abode, from coconut branches & wooden poles, for the Lord Ganesha on the Narrow Street and sleep in this abode every night, till the festival I over. This they do to guard the abode from miscreants, vandals, dogs and thieves like me. But I knew these boys personally. And they were as lazy as anybody of this new generation.

I lighted my beedi (a cheap Indian Cigarette) as I walked towards the Narrow Street. The chilly wind made the beedi to burn erratically- like all my previous dreams. Not this one, I promised myself. I am not going to be who I am for long- tonight will be my last loot.

Except for a cricket from an unknown location, there was no sound. The chilly wind made no noise. My heart never raced anymore as it used to during my first robbery job. I was calm. Composed. I noticed the sleep movements of the boys from the distance. They were in deep sleep- probably tired after all the ghost stories they tell each other, during such camping occasions. I took cat-like steps towards the entrance of the abode. It was dark, so I had to be extra careful in my steps. Behind the Lord’s idol, on a chair, was hidden the donation box.

I wrapped my hands around the donation box like it was my long lost child and slowly walked away from the abode. Thank You, Ganesha! With every step taking me farther from the Lord, I felt happier. One more step. One more step. One more! Almost! Almost!

“YOU!!!” I heard a kid’s loud voice. It was a familiar voice. I was busted.

I turned around. And found the landlord’s twelve year old son. He had recognized me.

“That’s Ganesha’s money!” he said, “To buy him sweets and fruits!”

“Look son,” I said, “Everybody is feeding Ganesha nowadays, so don’t worry. He won’t go hungry. But do you know who’ll go hungry if I don’t take this box? My pregnant wife…”

“But my dad pays you… and your father. Your mother and your wife they also earn by making Beedis!”

“My father gambles a lot & he never wins- and he has a huge debt… Whatever money comes, it goes…”

“Why don’t you work somewhere else, where you’ll earn more then?”

“I’m an illiterate- like my parents and wife. They ask for a 10th Pass certificate, whereas I can’t even sign my name!”

“But that doesn’t mean you have to steal! That too from Ganesha! That’s not fair!” he said.

“Fair? Fair! Nothing in this world is fair! When you and your older siblings were kids, you had a toy room bigger than my house! See these scars? My father used to beat me up just for looking at you kids playing! For just watching you play and I was getting beaten up! I wanted to play too, instead of cleaning up after your cows and sheep and dogs! So one day, I took your brother’s bicycle… Took it far away from here and played with it for a while and I returned it- and nobody knew better. And I didn’t even get beaten up… This is what I am doing with this donation box… I am taking it for now… Nobody needs this straight away… And I’ll return it back soon…”

“Ganesha will need it….”


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I needed money desperately. I wanted to buy that new mobile phone with Facebook “LIKE” button. I could actually physically feel the pressing of “LIKE” button on facebook in that phone! How cool is that! The only problem, my parents won’t give a dime to buy me a bandage even if my heart was cut out with a butcher’s knife! Ok, Ok, I’m exaggerating, but this is how it is, in my home.

To make matters worse, I have a big brother– an intellectual ass. Everybody loves him! Everybody! You won’t believe what he thinks about facebook!  He thinks it brings out the worst in everybody for everybody else to see, publicly- say for example- those attention seeking cry-babies! A perfectly normal guy has this irresistible urge to be “LIKED” by everybody, all the time! He keeps updating about the routine day-to-day things every other minute and expects others to “LIKE” it. What would you say about these status messages of some of my friends- “I just woke up… and farted, thrice- and my mom walked in! It was super LOLz!” or “Thinking that boys and gals are different, yet very same, but different… you know?”

And because of this intellectual ass I can’t enjoy my life! I can’t enjoy facebook! Ignorance was bliss! It’s so true- but this guy doesn’t let me be ignorant- that jack-ass! I want to be ignorant! I want to enjoy my poisons that I’m addicted to- I have many things to do in my life- many serious things, and I need every little escape from this reality that I can afford. And so I super “LIKED” both those status messages. I don’t care if my friends are greedy for attention and are super-asses. They are my friends. They are who I “LIKE”! They make my life “LIKE”able. Not my brother’s philosophies and theories.

And yet, everybody keeps bragging about how great my brother is, even everybody else in his batch of over-achievers in academics, the sheep-geeks, are praised. But the truth is none of them made it big. Not even my brother. He’s just living somewhere doing something that nobody cares. Sure he has a great girl friend and a cool job- but he doesn’t have what I will have. I will make it big. I was going to be a Grandmaster in Chess. I knew it. I was nearly there- and yet, my parents or brother- won’t buy me that one thing that’ll keep me sane- that phone- facebook- anywhere, anytime. I wanted that phone- Desperately. Very desperately.

So I took matters into my own hands. I was forked for money- but I was not check-mated yet. I had my pawns- my ability to be super good in chess. Alas, Chess has no money, you say? Every talent can rake in the moolah- even farting thrice, in front of your mother- can get you money. You just have to think about the how?

As my dear brother once said- Today, the man has made his life so complicated- that it has become infinitely simpler to fool him than it was ever before. This was how I was going to get my dream phone- Using the fact that Ignorance is not always bliss!

There’s this site called It’s a gaming site. They award you points if you beat other human players in the games they are hosting. If you have collected enough points, then you can convert your points to cash and spend the money on e-shopping. And one of the games they hosted was, you guessed it, Chess! Game On was my War-Cry!


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I had friends. And I knew Girls. But the cross of these two hugely different species? Never! But for three weeks in my life, I had what most boys wanted more than blowing up crackers in cow dung- a girl friend. From my personal experience, there was not much difference- you have a girl friend or blow up a cracker in a huge pile of cow dung- the end result was the same. Let me explain…

Once upon a time, there was me…

Well I had just moved to Bangalore and for a month I lived alone- It was like a single goldfish in a water-bowl- Depressing. I needed a room-mate, desperately. I sent out the following ad in the local newspaper.

WANTED: A room-mate. House 10 steps from a cheap bar. Must love Vodka.

I received a lot of calls. Just too many of them. Didn’t realize that a lot of boys loved Vodka! How stupid! I should have been more specific, more demanding- Must love Tandoori Chicken… and Megan Fox.

My mobile rang. It was from an Unknown Caller. Nothing out of the ordinary. Probably some guy wanting to be 10 steps near a cheap bar. I answered the ring.

And kids- that’s How I met your Mother! Ted Style!!!

Just Kidding!

It was my three-week girlfriend. She just didn’t realize that soon she was going to be my future girl friend, and ex, eventually, when she called me.

Why did she call me? Well, to give me an earful. She was just being a caring samaritan and hence felt the need to tell me that I was the exact reason why India was still a developing country. She asked me what I had to say for myself… I could think of just one thing. I just asked her if she wanted to be my room-mate…

She said- “No!”  Obviously!  Duh! What did you expect, huh? That she said Yes!? Wake up! This is reality! Not my happy fantasy!

Well, an unexpected thing happened anyways. She recognized my voice- apparently I was in her class for three years in high school. Way to go three week girl friend!!! She was the hound of the Baskervilles!

I soon realized who she was and we talked. And talked. And talked…

We met a few times- couple of pseudo-dates, nothing special.

Soon, we began to crawl into each other’s thoughts… like some meaningless vulgar song that gets stuck in your head for days- only with a bigger funny smile on your face. We started dating & got close to each other- but we never kissed. I promise. I wanted to- but without a few drinks on me, I wasn’t much of a self-destructive freak.

I was hoping our meetings would grow to be like those cute romantic comedies- but alas it was all loud comedy for her and silent tragedy for me. No romance for either of us.

Soon the day came when she introduced me to her dad- and he asked my qualifications. We lasted three weeks without knowing each other’s educational background. I was just a Bachelor in Engineering and I had just seven years of wonderful work experience in one of the most prestigious technology companies in the world.

She? She did M.S. @ UCSD, USA.

Good, right? Wrong.

Her dad wasn’t particularly a fan of me. He didn’t seem to be the kind of guy who’d “LIKE” my pictures or status messages on Facebook. He probably would have clicked the “DISLIKE” button if there was one, to my current status message: “Feeling Lucky Tonight!”


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“This is Neethu, my cousin and she’s here for the summer holidays!” announced Leela holding tightly the arms of an incredibly pretty girl. I was dumbstruck, lost for words. I couldn’t even wave a “Hi”. For the record, I have never been infatuated just after one glance at a girl, but I guess I had to run into one such girl in my life- that after all abides by the rule of probability and the law of averages.

“This is Veeru and you be good to him,” Leela said to Neethu, “coz he’s my boy friend!”

Veeru laughed nervously. He didn’t like the term “boy friend”. Even after a year of hearing that dreaded word in the high-pitched voice of Leela, he shriveled like a baby mouse who had just heard a menacing “Meow” from a ferocious cat for the first time in its life.

“And this is Guru…” she said, pointing at me, “He’s quite harmless!”

Leela started laughing hysterically. Unfortunately so did Veeru. I had to join them in their laughter- my laugh was much worse than Veeru’s when he hears “boy friend” from Leela.

“I’m just teasing,” continued Leela, “Guru’s an incredibly smart guy and he has many weird theories and has quite a different take on life! He is a writer too!”

“Really?” asked Neethu looking at me, as if she didn’t believe what Leela had just said.

“Well Guru, now you can bore this incredibly pretty girl over here with your theories, me and Veeru have things to talk about on that rock over there,” Leela said, pointing far away from the tree where we were sitting under, “So behave!  If Neethu cries or shouts for help, we’ll come running over here and will never introduce you to “any other” girls, even the uglier ones!”

I smiled awkwardly. Here I was given a chance to sit alone atop the beautiful Chamundi Hills with an even more beautiful girl, and I was feeling miserable! Why was that?

Soon the happy couple left us giving me only her name to start a conversation. How I wish I knew more about her!

“They really left us alone here with each other, huh?” I started. I was not going get tongue-tied! I am not that weak to get hopelessly lost and act stupid in the company of a pretty girl, even if this girl could be the prettiest girl I’d ever been alone with or ever will in the future!

“Leela has changed quite a lot from the last time I saw her,” said Neethu slowly, “She left me here alone with a boy who might make me cry or make me shout for help… She said so herself and yet, she left…”

I looked at her for a while, trying to figure out what exactly was going through her head. I realized soon that she was genuinely worried about being alone with me.

“Oh probably she was thinking about my welfare, for my Osmosis” I said smiling.

“What? For your osmosis?” she asked with a puzzled look on her pretty face. Oh she was pretty. Now I knew why Keats said, “A thing of beauty is a joy forever”

“Yes Osmosis!” I declared.

She still didn’t understand.  I expected that she wouldn’t understand, but I pretended otherwise. You see, Osmosis is my trademark icebreaker with girls. No matter who that girl is, Osmosis always, I mean, always worked- and that girl would always smile after the explanation.

“You see this picture of mine?” I said showing her a baby picture of mine where I looked hideous, I was one of those ugly babies, you hear about now and then, “You see I am ugly, but now that you have been here for a while with me, I look handsome coz of Osmosis!”

“Huh? I still don’t get it… I know that Osmosis is a process where things in the region of higher concentration move to the region of lower concentration… Like in that potato and sugar-water experiment”

“Exactly! And beauty is flowing from you to me” I said beaming like an idiot.

She looked at me for a few seconds and started laughing.

“That’s a good one” she said.

“Ah it’ not a joke, this is a natural process that’s been proven beyond doubt…”

“So you mean to say, while you are getting more handsome, I am getting uglier, right now as we speak?”  She said accusingly.

“But what are a few drops for an ocean, huh?” I said.

“Then your stupidity is flowing into me as well?” she said with a smarty-pants look.

“It doesn’t work like that- you see, you are filled with so much high quality beauty, stupidity has no place to flow to, you know…”

“Oh my God! You are such a big flirt!” she said, with a smile, “Is this how you talk with all girls? Do you always talk about Osmosis with them?”

“I’m not a flirt” I said. I lied. I was the biggest flirt I knew. “Osmosis is something I made up just now, to cheer you up; you inspired me to invent Osmosis!”

She looked at me with the most amazing look she had given me so far.

“Oh you are good!” she said, “You’re a flirt AND a liar!”

I acted as if I was hurt. I do have a good number of expressions in my armor- I was a natural trickster.

“Let’s ASSUME that I’m a flirt, who I’m not,” I said, “I flirted to make you smile, to make you feel better, but you, on the other hand are calling me a liar, to my face. I mean, we just met!”

“You Drama Queen, Leela told me about Osmosis,” she said laughing, “but she didn’t tell me what it was, she said I’d find out from you within 3 minutes of being with you!”

“Guilty as charged! I’m a flirt, hang me!” said I. I too joined in her laughter.

“You blackmail poor girls with such lines, no wonder Leela warned you about not to make me cry or make me shout for help!”

“Leela was just telling that to scare you.”  I said, “I never made any girl cry- oh wait, except for that one girl back in high school, oh and that girl from movies, even her friends, they cried too, then there was this lecturer, then I guess you can also count that 4-year-old girl whose cheeks I pinched, then…”

“Oh stop it, please, you are gonna make me cry!” Neethu said getting irritated.

I could feel it in my nerves; she was different from the rest of the girls.

“How can you flirt with girls using something like Osmosis, I mean does it work? Do they like go nuts and want to date you or something after that stupid Osmosis line?”

“Has it worked on you, Neethu?” I asked, like a seasoned criminal lawyer.

“Don’t be silly, Guru!” she blushed, “I was just curious if some poor girl had fallen for you or dreaming of marrying you or something…”

“Ah I don’t believe in marriages,” I said, looking all wisely, “so why would I fool a girl into marrying me?”

“Oh come on! You don’t believe in marriages? You want to be alone for the rest of your life?”

“Who said I was going to be alone for the rest of my life?”

She hit me on my arm. It usually takes 3 hours of talk-time at least for a girl to start hitting me. It took Neethu only 15 minutes, a new record. She was going to change my life, in top gear, I could feel it.

“So when you are old and dying, and when you can’t flirt with any girls anymore, won’t you be alone then?”

“Won’t the pretty nurses be around me when I’m dying?” I said with a wink.

She hit me again. It hurt, damn it! But a man is not supposed to show pain, especially when hit by a pretty girl.

“What’s so horribly wrong in marrying someone you love?” she asked.

“Well all marriages are compromises and I don’t like compromises…”

“Not all marriages are compromises!”

“They are honey, even if you take the perfect scenario where there’s no apparent compromise, there are many hidden compromises…”


“Like for the guy, when he decides to settle down with a girl, he’s making a compromise because there is always a hypothetical better girl, who’s out there somewhere, but the guy is not looking for her…” (a variant of an idea from HIMYM)

“Do you really believe that? That’s just sad you know?”

“Ah the hypothetical pretty and better girl!” I said slowly and started drooling.

“Stop that! That’s disgusting!” She started to laugh again. I was beginning to get addicted to that laughter. It was so bubbly…

“Do you want to know a really funny secret about Leela’s wooden frog?” I asked her.

“The wooden frog that she always carries in her purse? Yes!”

“I won’t tell you now, but ask me again sometime in future, maybe when I’m a famous writer or something…”

“What? Don’t make me hit you again! Tell me what the secret is!”

“I can’t!”


“This secret is one of the many threads that will keep you attached to me, if life takes us on different roads and if we ever meet again, like somewhere nice or on facebook, I’ll reveal the secret of that frog to you and it’ll bring you back to this moment, now, when you are happy and laughing with me…”

“I don’t get it! You are one weirdo, you know that! Reveal me that secret, please…”

“Have you ever experienced this feeling- you are working in your cubicle and you are chatting with your school friend via facebook and that school friend reveals a secret about some nickname for a teacher or some guy in the classroom and you laugh out loud and you are amused for hours? That secret takes you back to your school days when you were truly happy and live the same happy moments again. Had you known that secret while in the school, the effect wouldn’t be the same as it was 10 years later, right?”

“Hmmmm” is all that she said and hit me again.

Thus began a new chapter in my life. It was the chapter I was dying to read- one of happiness and guilty pleasure. It was one of effortless flirting with the girl I began to get so attached to, that I had stopped being a flirt with other girls. No other girl seemed as pretty as her. I was feeling that I was becoming more romantic at heart and enjoy little things like Sunrise with her; she was guiding me to learn the osmosis of nature’s beauty. There was osmosis everywhere. My soul was brimming with feelings of happiness, pleasure and osmosis. I always used to think about how to make her laugh. I was so addicted to it- I just couldn’t get enough of it. How she’d hold my hand and take me to my new state of euphoria which I had never felt- not even during Ingrid’s movies or Keats’ poems. I was becoming something like a romantic fool. I had found the girl of my dreams- and I had told her that I didn’t believe in love or marriage. I am the biggest jackass ever to walk the earth and I was my own worst enemy.

And to make matters a bit more complicated, Leela had the audacity to talk about my stupid ways during one of the outings on the Chamundi Hill.

“Manasa had called me today to ask me if she could join us during our trips to Chamundi Hills,” Leela said, “I said no to her…”

“Who’s Manasa?” asked Neethu.

“Oh you don’t know her, but she’s one of the many girls our dear Guru flirted with, for fun only, and the poor girl fell for him…”

Neethu was looking at me in a way that made my soul stir.  I had to defend myself.

“Like all girls, I had told Manasa during the first meeting itself about my intentions- I wasn’t serious. I was just trying to have fun and make her feel better too…” I said.

“You call what you did with Manasa, ‘making her feel better’?”  accused Leela.

“What did I do wrong? She knew I was a flirt from the beginning… I never hurt on purpose. It was her fault that she started to like me- I never encouraged her…”

“Oh you are taking the moral high ground over here? You always do the same thing with these stupid girls. You talk to them. Make them feel better. Make them happy. Make them dream. Make them hope and then you tell them that you are never serious- for your pleasure,” Leela continued, “Guru, I know you didn’t want to hurt these girls, but you have this way with the girls, especially the stupid ones- you mix so many fantastic entertaining lies and weird truths together that you confuse everybody. Sometimes even I’m confused. I don’t know when you are making one of your stupid jokes and when you are serious. But you, you do something to these girls, I don’t understand myself…”

This was news to me. I just didn’t know why Leela had to be this callous to me in front of Neethu. She may be telling the truth- maybe I might have hurt a few girls. But it’s not my fault. Those girls knew from the beginning the kind of guy I was- they willfully let their hearts fall for me and I am to blame for it? Should I stop being me? That’s just ridiculous.

“Well now I know that Osmosis works!” smiled Neethu.

I looked at Neethu, her eyes. What did she mean by that? Hadn’t Osmosis worked on her before? Didn’t she like me and my Osmosis and other theories? Hadn’t she fallen for me like I had fallen for her? It hurt. It started hurting really bad in my chest.

“It works Neethu,” said Leela, “but I was confident that it won’t work on a traditional and family oriented girl like you. So I let you hang out with Guru, when I had to be with Veeru, couldn’t leave you alone at home now, could I? You know Guru, so many guys have proposed to her, not all of them bad either. I would have said ‘Yes’ to a few of them myself. But Neethu said no them coz she loves her family and doesn’t want to hurt them with a stupid thing like Love, let alone a Love marriage…”

“Yes, I believe that both Love & Arranged marriages are equal in some ways” agreed Neethu, “Both have their pros and cons. Sometimes love can go sour and so can an arranged marriage. But I feel that there’s unequal amount of effort required to make things work. With arranged marriages, the families of both the boy and the girl are already happy- so the boy and the girl have to just find ways to love each other and live with each other happily. I am confident that even if the boy has a few different and odd ways, the boy and the girl can engage in a healthy talk and understand each other better. But with Love Marriages, not only do you have to convince your parents to agree, and be comfortable with what society has to nag about, the boy and the girl still have to work at the marriage to make it work…”

“I didn’t know you thought so much about life…” I interrupted her, I couldn’t hear anymore of this nonsense.

“Well thinking is good, you should try it sometimes!” she said nastily.

Leela started laughing like Raavan; it felt as if she did have ten heads like Raavan too.

With Leela’s evil laugh in my head that night, I started to think about things- for the first time in my life. I was thinking of the things I had done and what I shouldn’t have done. I was careless. For a few minutes of fun, I had potentially ruined the rest of my life. I knew I couldn’t be happy without Neethu. No, I couldn’t imagine a second of my life without her. I had to tell her how I feel. But I was weak. Really weak. If I tell her to her face that I like her, she might reject me outright and it would hurt a lot. Just one look of disapproval from her today had made my soul twitch and turn into a million knots. I couldn’t bear a direct refusal from her. No. I should indirectly tell her- even if she says, no, I could still hang around with her- at least I’ll have her in my life and I still could flirt with her coz, hey, I flirt with everybody right? Things won’t be too bad if I could have her at least as a friend in my life. And flirting is the most amazing socially acceptable pleasure I know, and if I could keep flirting with the girl I like, then what more could I ask for, huh?

So I set out to write her a Love Letter. If she knew me well enough and liked me too, then she’ll know that I wrote the Love Letter.  Subconsciously I really did want her to know that it was me who wrote the letter.

The day after I sent her my Love Letter, Leela had called me to her house. I knew I was in deep shit now. Leela would eat me alive for writing a Love Letter to her cousin. But I was a man of my words- I would stick by them, no matter what lay ahead. I went to her home.

I found Leela crying and shouting in her bed.

“What happened Leela?” I asked her.

“My aunt, Neethu’s mom, she died in an accident” she was sobbing hysterically, “And I can’t find Neethu…”

“What? You don’t know where she is? Does she know that her mom…”

“Ya, she knows… please find her Guru, please…”

I was going crazy and all negative thoughts were running through my nerves. I can’t let this negativity bring me down- I had to find Neethu. She was really close to her mom. I knew that. She already had lost her dad, now she lost her mom as well. I couldn’t imagine what was going through her head- I had to find her before she did anything stupid. I called my uncle to tell the Police and got hold of many mutual friends and sent them off looking for her all over Mysore.

I went to betta- Chamundi Hills hoping she was there…

I found her under the tree- our tree. She was holding my Love Letter. And she was crying.

I felt like running away from her. The timing couldn’t have been worse. Writing a love letter to a girl when her mom had died. I thought that I was prepared for the worst when I had written that letter. I knew nothing good will come of me talking to her, but she was my friend as well. I was going to try and comfort her or at least take her to the hospital. People were getting worried and perhaps, rightly so. I called Leela to tell her that Neethu was with me.

I sat next to Neethu. I didn’t dare to touch her- let alone hold her hand. I was too ashamed or too scared, I don’t know which. I didn’t know how to comfort her- coz I was too scared that I might end up hurting her even more than she already is. I was hurting. Perhaps not as much as her.

She was looking intensely at the setting Sun.

“I am cursed.” She said.

“What?” I said.

“This Love Letter killed my mom…” she said.

“I don’t understand…”

“My mom read this letter, got freaked out and drove in a hurry to come and meet me, but instead she met with that accident with that truck…”


My heart had just refused to beat anymore. I was feeling numb and I was feeling cold. I was shivering. How could life be so cruel- the one time I was honest to myself, to somebody else and wrote what was in my heart and this… This happens! Is it even fair? Do I deserve this sort of a reply from God for my Love Letter? God! Does a boy deserve this kind of a torture? Are You a sadist, God? What’s happening here… I wanted to die, then and there…
No. I am not weak. I am better than what I was a second ago. I was motivating myself to rise to the occasion. Because I am not weak. I couldn’t let this kind of negativity bring me down. Neethu needed a friend now. Somebody had to make her laugh. Yes. That’s what I should try to do now…

“You know you should be feeling a bit happy by now…” I said with a faint smile.


“Osmosis you know, it always works.  Happiness is flowing from me into you. So you should show that happiness a little, you know, by smiling,” I said, “Your mom maybe looking at you right now, worried that you will miss her a lot. Show her that you are a big girl now and you can smile through anything. Make her feel relieved, make her feel proud and let her go, give her a proper farewell… Show her the best of your smiles- the one that makes my heart forget the rhythm of life…”

She took a few seconds to respond.

“You never miss an opportunity to flirt, do you?” she smiled, “I know that you don’t believe in ghosts!”

“You know me! I’m a big flirt!” I said lightly, “It’s true that I don’t believe in ghosts, but you do, right?”

“Yes, I believe in souls. Maybe my mom is looking at me right now. But why can’t I feel her?”

“You have surrounded yourself in sadness; free yourself from this pain a little…” I said slowly, “Let Osmosis do its work and let all your sadness flow into me…”

Neethu was looking at the setting sun and we remained silent for an hour or so.

“Thank you, Guru,” she finally said, “Let’s go home…”

With that my chapter with Neethu had ended. All I was ever going be now was just be a friend to her. She really seemed like she needed one. Each day I tried to hang out with her as much as possible and try to cheer her up. Though with me she did seem normal, Leela had quite a different story about Neethu. It seemed Neethu had increasingly become obsessed with idea of the Love Letter and she had started a small investigation of her own. Leela didn’t like the way Neethu was handling all this. This in particular was worrying news for me. Each night I was having nightmares of Neethu finding out the truth about the Love Letter and I woke up drenched in my own sweat.

Two months later, out of nowhere, Neethu had asked me to meet her atop Chamundi Hills. I hadn’t been to Chamundi Hills since the day I brought Neethu back after her mom had died.

She was sitting under the tree, with the same vacant expression I had seen on her two months ago. When I said “Hi” to her, she brightened up.

“I want to break one of our threads now,” she said, “I want you to reveal a secret for me…”

“Leela’s wooden frog?” I asked her, with a silent prayer in my heart.

“No don’t be silly;” she said with a faint smile, “I want to know a bit more about the Love Letter…”

I knew now that she knew the truth about the Love Letter. So there was no point in hiding the facts from her. I was finally going to man up and take the responsibility for the Love Letter.

“I wrote it,” I said solemnly, “I am sorry that it led to…”

“My mom’s death!” she said coldly. My head had bowed in shame and remorse.

“I really liked you and after what Leela told I thought I might lose you, so I wrote that letter,” I continued earnestly, “It was only a gut feeling at the time when I wrote you that Love Letter that I liked you, but now it’s been two months, and I know for sure, that I really like you. Even though I tried hard to ignore my feelings and just be mature about this whole thing, but I can’t. I really like you and I’m really sorry that it has caused you so much pain. I sincerely apologize, Neethu, I’m really sorry…”

“Are you sure that you liking me is not your guilt? It’s not your pity love for a girl you orphaned?”

“Neethu, don’t be so harsh on me! I haven’t flirted with anybody else since I met you. I genuinely care about you- I have liked you since the day I met you. You might think that it’s just an infatuation, but it is not. I love you, Neethu…”

“That’s just what I wanted to hear from you, you idiot!” saying this, she burst into tears and hugged me so tightly that I could barely breathe.

“Our destiny is linked together by that intense Love Letter of yours; it’s not a thread we can break. It has brought me pain- so much pain, it has brought me loss, but it also has brought me hope, it has brought me love, it has brought me you…” she was sobbing, “I really need you now. I don’t know what magic you have done on me, I always think about you, I don’t miss my mom as much as I miss you, even though you are always near, yet not near enough damn it, I have fallen for you, like all those stupid girls… I feel so stupid…. I feel so unloved…”

“I love you Neethu and you’re not stupid. You are just a girl in love, Neethu…”

With that a new chapter got added to my love story. I was in love. I was happy. Neethu was a much more mature human being than I was. She could overlook the silly facts for love. I still had an enormous guilt and felt like a kid around her sometimes. Neethu was my inspiration to be a better human being. I was striving hard to be a better man- a better son, a better brother, a better employee, a better friend, a better lover and a better writer. I had started working on a novel. It was coming out very nicely and ironically it was titled “The Love Letter”. Finally my dream to become a writer of world fame seemed quite possible.  I was finally happy after going through all that hell.

I had made sure that this book wouldn’t hurt Neethu; I made sure that she was the first person to read it and see for herself that I had not written anything about us or her mom. She had to go on a trip to Mumbai at the time, so she took the book along with her. She’d periodically send me notes on my book, chapter by chapter, as to how to improve it and make it better. She was quite talented and had quite a good insight into my work. Thus I spent more and more time on my book, improving it, polishing it and sometimes I’d forget all about Neethu and on those days, she’d call me and give me kisses over the phone. She loved me so much, probably more than I loved her…

One day I went to Sapna Book House to do some book shopping and I was surprised to see a novel with the title “The Love Letter” on the main stand. I jumped towards the stand and took a copy. It was written by Neethu. It was my book! Quickly I turned the pages. The story, the contents, the preface- everything was mine! I couldn’t believe my eyes! She had fooled me!!! She pretended to be still reading the book while she had gone to Mumbai to get it published under her name! That bitch!

Was this her way of way of revenge? I didn’t care; I was going to get back at her for this…

The following lines were written by Neethu:

Don’t worry dear girls; Guru was not able to do anything to me. All the pain he caused to so many girls out there, he won’t be able to do it again- coz of Osmosis. In nature there’s so much death and he was so charming, he wasn’t weak at all, and he was so full of life. Death just moved from a region of higher concentration to a region of lower concentration- I made sure of it- I killed him.

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Writer’s  comments:

Pls read this before Chapters 19-21

The Adventures of O (Chapters 1-3) (Chapters 4-6) (Chapters 7-9) (Chapters 10-12)(Chapters 13-15)(Chapters 16-18)

Chapter 19

Coming of the Armageddon

“I won’t let you do it, P” I was shouting. She was two feet away from me and I couldn’t strike her down. She had already given me commands.

“The Ship will reach Earth in a few minutes, O, don’t struggle, and I’ll give you elixir, just let go of your love… Don’t make it hard on me, please…”

I couldn’t do anything. I was helpless. What could I do? VIRUS! I couldn’t talk to her, without letting P know. And VIRUS is not good enough to stop P…

I was a loser. I was pathetic. I can’t even stop an old woman masquerading as a 16 year old girl.

“P, I can’t do anything. There is one thing that I have learnt- not to sweat over things that are not under my control…”


“If you can’t beat them, join them! So I want to join you, I want that elixir…”

“O, be sure about one thing, if you play games with me, Humans will die even more miserably…”

“What game can I possibly play and win, against you?”

“I hope you do mean that… ”

“I promise!”

While she went to get me elixir, I whispered to VIRUS, “Super-Sweet-S-Style! Kill everything dear VIRUS, nothing should work after you’re done with this ship…” That S had to have such a big code-word to unleash VIRUS in attack mode! VIRUS silently entered the ship’s computer…

“Here’s your elixir, O”

I started drinking it. Yuck, it tasted like Milk

“I’m glad you are seeing the bigger picture… We have to cross the barrier because…”

“Warning!!! Total malfunction of LifePod177. Losing fuel in 3seconds, 2 seconds, 1 seconds… Unable to engage Back up fuel mechanism. Losing all power…”

“You piece of…”

“Cow dung?” I interrupted her, “We’re stranded here. Forever. You cannot signal anybody. No SOS, no, nothing. We’ll lose oxygen in few days and we’ll die, even if we have drunk elixir, without oxygen nothing can live, not even you, right? It’s an end truly Super-Sweet-S-Style!

“Oh that VIRUS!”

“You are a really good programmer, I have to agree, few minutes with VIRUS’ code and you wrote the code that’d kill yourself, which nobody was able to do in millions of years!”

“You know, this is what makes me attracted to you… You are one dangerous dude”

She came near me. I thought she was gonna kick me, but she gave me a really amazing kiss.

“You are becoming a good kisser!” I said.

“I’m learning from the best!”

“Oh, You! Sorry P, but looks like we are going to die together… you wanna die being the world’s biggest assshole or being the world’s best kisser? I can teach you more…”

“You really are sweet, O. But I’m not going die anytime soon. I haven’t survived millions of years just like that…”

“What do you mean? The Oxygen Converter is out, there’s no power! VIRUS totally wiped out all power!”

“I know!”

“Even the Computer system is down- no navigation system, no shield is up to protect us from the sedo-beams, no nothing, everything’s down!”

“I know honey, I’m gonna bring everything up in 2 seconds…”


“Oh I’ve been transmitting power to all the systems in this ship for a while now. Each system has an antenna that can use this Over-The-Air power that I’m transmitting and each system will start running in full working mode…”

“You are kidding me! I won’t let you…”

I ran towards and hugged her, in an attempt to block all the power she was radiating. I was an idiot as I had not considered the outcome. Huge amount of power just went through my body and I was paralyzed for a good amount of time. If it wasn’t for elixir, I would have died, then and there…

“Oh I haven’t activated all the safety commands on you, yet?  Guess I should, and as a reward for your bravery, I will cut off your hands…”


“The massive power knocked off your hearing or what? I said, I’ll reward your bravery by cutting off your hands, O”

She was totally serious. With her beautiful eyes, she was looking into my eyes, smiling, as she held two huge swords of lightning which came out of nowhere, and winked at me. Some kind of green fire or vapor was emanating from her entire body. She looked like she was death incarnate and I was about to die…

“I am going to enjoy this, O. You look so beautiful now. I really love your eyes when you are scared. You know what? I’ll keep this as your memory, whenever I miss you, I will remember you and see these eyes of yours and your scream… You have not yet screamed, O. Why have you not screamed? Do you not want me to enjoy this? Do you not want to end our first meeting with fun? Do you not want me to have a memorable experience of your scared eyes and your screams filled with horror? I said, Scream, O”

She lifted her swords. The terror she had invoked in me was so great that I couldn’t even scream. I was speechless and numb, my heart was pumping like there was no tomorrow and yet, there was not enough blood in me, I couldn’t see any red-color on my skin, or my palms, as I looked at my hands… probably for the last time…

“I said, Scream, O, beg for mercy, I won’t forgive you though, but beg me anyhow!”

Ship was whizzing through space towards Earth. I could see it from the window. Tears formed so quickly as soon as I saw that Blue-Green planet. This monster was going to kill them all and I won’t be able to do anything…

“Scream, O”

Was I worried about my hands?

“Don’t kill them, P, you are no monster, don’t kill them, take my hands if you want, but don’t kill them”

“Well I’ll consider this as begging without the commands, now, with the commands, Scream, O”

I started screaming…

She cut off both my hands from their sockets in a single clean swing. The lightning blades were enough to kill but because of elixir, I survived this too. Now I knew why she gave me the elixir, I was the one who had committed the biggest crime on Earth, so I should suffer the most. She gave me the elixir to go through all this unbearable pain and still live to suffer her sadistic torture…

I heard her laughter, that innocent laughter, the way I used to laugh, when I was a kid. It was beautiful; I wanted to hear it again.

“P, laugh again…”

She looked at me. The Spaceship had landed.

“I’m going out; I’ll destroy your satellites, all the defense labs and I’m going to give out commands. The commands will make every man a murderer and every woman and child, a victim. Each man will kill at least two victims and survive the horror, without eating any food, or water, or going for cloning or saving anybody else, they’ll just sit around, see the world filled with only men, no woman or child to be seen anywhere, and just wait to die…This is your punishment O, you can close your eyes and remember me or be a man, and see the effect of what you have caused. I will go from here once I send out the commands. You can keep this LifePod177 and your hands will grow back, as you have drunk elixir… Use the LifePod177, and you can do anything you want. Maybe you can plan to go across the barrier and find my dad and bring him back. You know this feeling of love for your dad and going to extremes to find him, right, that’s another thing that’s common between us. Or you could become powerful, I don’t know how, but you have to become powerful enough, to find me and kill me… O, can you do that?”

I was passing out…

I was no man, certainly not the man. I wasn’t even man enough to see the destruction I had caused…

I was in love with her and I wanted to die hearing her beautiful laughter. I started remembering her and I heard her laughter. And now I wanted to die.

But I just couldn’t…

E! E! I wanted to fight back. I had promised her…

Chapter 20

The Armageddon

“O! Wake up, O, wake up!”

It was E’s voice.

“I’m so glad to see you E!” Tears filled my heart. I had failed her; I had failed the whole world…

“What happened to you… Your hands…”

“Don’t worry about it… it’s a souvenir of my betrayal…”

“We were looking for you all these days and when we saw some unusual movement in space, we tracked that, it was a space-ship, it landed here and you were in there, I brought you out… But your hands…”

“I have to stop her; she’s going to kill everybody… Tell S to clear out the labs, and launch our back up Satellites from the moon for the commands…”


“Do it, E, we don’t have time…”

E ran off with her phone. I hope I was not too late… I had to get up…

“Queen… You bitch!” I yelled in pain.

“I know, that bitch Queen is one hell of a psycho, she destroyed our satellites a few seconds ago…” This was a strange voice, actually there was no voice at all, and it was as if it was coming from within my brain, this was just a thought, which was not mine.

“Who are you?”

“Dude, it’s me, M!”

M had blocked the blood loss from my shoulder joints and covered my wound with his body.. His cloudlike body, suddenly felt like they were my two hands, only that their ends joined at point.

“How can I hear you?”

“I have connected to your neural network dude, and the elixir? Sweet!”

“You got the elixir too?”

“Yeah, is there a problem?”

“No. Yes, there is! The Queen’s going to kill everybody on Earth! And we don’t have much time!”


“She cut off my hands with her lightning swords and she’s going to kill us all as punishment…”

“So that explains how I can connect to your neural network- because of the cut from the lightning blades, your shoulder joint has become a zone of high green energy… Your shoulder is glowing green man! You have a bit of a Queen in you; you are kinda powerful now…”

“I don’t feel powerful at all…”

“It’s because you are trying to control me like your hand…”


“Just give KO Commands, or just tell me what to do, dude, don’t send your hand motor signals to me…”


“Try, you can do it… we have been talking using these commands only, you can also move around me with same commands…”

I waved my right arm, I mean M.

He started moving. He was huge… I tried to find the end of my right M, I just couldn’t see it. I tried moving my left M. He too moved around. It felt great. I suddenly felt I was powerful…

“We should take on Queen, now, before she sends out the commands… Hey are these the commands being sent by Queen?” I could feel the commands being sent…

“It’s just like she said! Only she has sent me the command to stay awake and not pass out! That bitch! She really wanted to make me see all of it… She wanted to really torture me… We have to stop her…”


“I don’t know…At least we must ensure E’s safety… ”

“The rockets from moon…”

“Have they launched?”

“They have jammed… I just read some responses from the rocket…”

“Even the rockets?”

“No I’m guessing some device was aboard those rockets which was capable of receiving the KO Commands…”

“Damn it!”

“I’m sensing her… She just left Earth…”

“What? She left?”

“That over confident bitch… we can win this after all… You can transmit KO Commands right?”

“Of low power and range, yes”

“Once she sends the commands, then we can give new commands…”

“Can you stretch into thin threads or small balls?”

“I can… what do you have in mind?”

“Turn yourself into infinite amounts of balls, or stretched thin threads, covering every bit of Earth and transmit these KO Commands that I have given… can you do it?”

“I think I can…”

And for those few seconds, when the world was about to plunge itself into darkness, when humanity had become a slave, out to destroy itself, and in the most chilling way possible, the whole of Earth was covered with snow-like cloudy balls, bringing with them the song of life. It was a beautiful sight; I don’t think if the Earth looked more beautiful than it was looking now, through my eyes. We had saved the planet, one more time from ourselves, the blue-green planet- called our home…

Chapter 21


“How does it feel now that your hands have grown back?” asked E.

“It’s OK”

“Are you still depressed?”

“What kind of a question is that E?”

“Hey, sorry! It’s just that I care about you because I love you…”

“Do you always have to use the love card, E? You make me feel guilty…”

“You’re the one who cheated, so you should suffer a little, don’t you agree?” she was smiling.

Yes I had cheated on her. And yet, here she was, with me, trying to make me feel better. But I really didn’t understand her way of making me feel better. But at least I am lucky, lucky because she understood that I had made a mistake… and I had almost paid a huge price for it.

“Stop thinking about it, damn it!” she yelled at me.

“How did I completely forget you when I was with her, just for a few seconds? How could I have sidelined the whole world? I had so many chances to do some serious harm to her, but I didn’t! Was I so madly in love with her?”

“Oh my God! O! It was not love, OK? Love is supposed to uplift you, make you feel better; it makes you a better person… make you do something great.”

“Well when I was with her, I felt uplifted, I felt really better, so that’s 2 out of 3.”

“It did not make you a better person than you already are?”

“No, it did not. In fact while I was with her, when she cut off my arms, I actually gave up… I didn’t want to save the world anymore… I just wanted to die…”

“O!” She hugged me. She was fighting her tears.

“All I want to do is think about her all the time and here her laughter…”

“You are just obsessed about her… She really was a strong woman, I mean she’s really old… Don’t you dare say that you still love her…”

“I think I love her”

“I wanna kick you in the jewels”

“I’m sorry E, but that’s just how I feel…”

“You are obsessed over her, she obviously has given you some commands, and with time you’ll get over it… I know that. You are my boy friend!”

“E, don’t you think I could tell the difference between a command and myself?”

“They’re commands that she gave you, end of discussion. You don’t always have to be this honest with me, O” I could sense she was about to cry.

I hugged her, “You are my girl friend, E. In time I’ll become my old self, I know. I just don’t know how to lie to you and tell you that I was faithful to you on that ship…”

“Then let’s not talk about this ever… OK?”

“To be fair, until I heard your voice, telling me to wake up, I had given up totally. You uplift me to do great things, E and she cuts off my arms and leaves me to watch the whole world die, I think I’m smart enough to know the difference between what you are to me and what she is…”

“Thank you, O. I love you…”

I still couldn’t say to her that I loved her. But in that ship, with P, love came in my words so easily. Should love always make a man better than he already is? I didn’t know. I didn’t want to think about it anymore. I wanted to love E and wanted to forget P. I remembered P, and heard her laughter, to see if I enjoyed her laughter. I was still charmed by her laughter and I was kinda happy again.

It was my guilty pleasure during the following days.

Was I in love with two women?