Short Stories Series (Poles Apart – Part1)

Opposites attract. They definitely do. Aryan and Preeti were testimonial proof for this assertion. They had absolutely nothing similar, not even common liking for any particular food. But yet, they were inseparable throughout studying in medicine in College. Everyone around them conjectured this pair was made for each other, the forever together conclusions never stopped coming their way. But the duo believed in living in the moment. Be it performing duo wheelies on Aryan’s bike or taking long walks in the rain, they did it all together. Their pair resonated pure couple goals. Aryan was the younger of the two siblings and hailed from an upper middle class background. Being the younger child, he was over pampered and was far-fetched from the word – responsibility. Preeti hailed from a conservative über rich family. Despite being the only child to her parents, she was firmly grounded and level-headed. Her idea of romance was old school, she almost believed in the made for each other analogies her friends kept pitching her and Aryan in. But she was too proud to admit it, she thought it would make her look uncool. Aryan on the other hand was starkly against the concept of marriage, he always harped it was for fools. But something inside Preeti believed he would change someday and pop the magical question to the person he claimed to love more than his bike, which meant the world to him. But fate has its own way of unfolding mysteries. 

Dr. Sahani was having a harsh day so far. There was a casualty in the Operation Theatre early in the morning and he had to deliver a not so positive message to a cancer patient. And his day was far from being over. He had a long list of patients to attend before getting on to his next surgery for the day. He got a quick five-minute breather before he could attend his next patient. He pulled out his mobile and looked through his Facebook timeline and kept scrolling until he heard his desk phone beep.

“Yes”
“Doc, Mrs. Mehra is at the ground floor reception! She is actually here!”
“Why are you acting like a school kid Juhi?”
“Doc I am a huge fan of hers! Have you seen her Page 3 pictures?! I see her in my news feeds all time. He Insta account is so freaking insane!”
“She is our patient Juhi, and you are a receptionist. Act like one, will you?”
“Could I get a selfie at least..”, Juhi heard the engage tone after her plead.

Dr. Sahani spent a couple of more minutes looking at his Facebook feed and stepped out of his cabin to make a cup of coffee when he heard chaos near the reception. He spotted a bunch of people gathered in a circle looking down at a person lying on the floor. He rushed towards the horde and made himself a path to attend the unconscious person who was now lying faced towards the floor. The person was wearing a hooded jacket covering the head paired with jeans and red sneakers. Juhi was kneeling next to him with a fretted expression.

“What happened?”, Dr. Sahani questioned Juhi
She was still looking at the unconscious person with absolute shock.
“Ms. Juhi”, Dr. Sahani almost yelled in her ears, “What the hell happened here?”, he was losing his calm by the minute now.
“I…She…ID….Faint…”
“Speak up woman and I need a proper answer!”, Dr. Sahani roared and instructed the ward boy to take the patient into the emergency ward.
Juhi stood up slowly and murmured,”She walked in and I asked her for her ID. She fetched for something in her jacket and the next thing I know is she fainted”
“I see, so it is a she. Notify the emergency ward doctor and send me my next appointment”, Dr. Sahani replied calmly gathering his patience.
“Doc, she was your next appointment – Mrs. Mehra”

Dr. Sahani looked at the ward boy carrying Mrs. Mehra into the emergency ward. Her body looked weak, almost as if there were bones jutting inside her baggy jeans and jackets. Juhi’s description of Mrs. Mehra had him imagine a very contrasting image as opposed to the person laying in front of him. As the ward boy placed her on the mobile bed, her hoodie came off exposing her pale face. A tornado of emotions burst within him looking at her face. He stood rooted to the floor as the ward boy dragged the mobile bed into the emergency room.

“Three husbands and god know how many affairs later, there goes the slut on a hospital bed”
“Serves her right, that is karma for you”

Dr. Sahani heard a couple of ladies gossiping about Mrs. Mehra. He felt nauseous listening to the ongoing jeering of the imprudent women. He felt warm veins beneath his skin, something within him was set on fire. He walked towards the emergency ward and rushed towards the doctor attending Mrs. Mehra.

“Dr. Talwar what is the situation?”
“Severe case of dehydration Dr. Sahani, Juhi said she was your patient? Was she going through some stress?”
Dr. Sahani paused and looked at Mrs. Mehra. She did look stressed, but why? None of his concern, he reminded himself.
“This was her first visit to me Dr. Talwar, I am not sure of her medical history”
“Nothing to worry Dr. Sahani, she should be fine. I have put her on glucose”
Dr. Sahani took one last look at the Mrs. Mehra and walked out towards his cabin.

Club Havanna, 10pm

Mihir ordered 6 shots at the bar, he knew Aryan needed shots today, this wasn’t a “Beer”able issue. He landed with six shot glasses on the wooden table placed in the VIP lounge area.

“Drink up my man, here’s to you being single for the longest one can be in human history!”, Mihir taunted as he watched Aryan fork the hell out of the wooden table.
“What is your status again? Didn’t Shalini dump you for the hundredth time?”
“Says the Bachelor of the Decade!”
Aryan gulped 4 shots without catching a breath. Mihir waited patiently for his best friend to start talking.

“Three times, bloody hell! She married three times!”, Aryan spat out throwing the fork in the swimming pool adjacent to their table. Mihir watched at the melancholy in Aryan’s expressions.

“11 years buddy, people can marry more than thrice in that time frame. It is totally doable!”
“She could have asked me once Mihir, I would have considered it!”
“Err well, you weren’t really the kinds one could take home to their folks you know. I wouldn’t!”
“Ah well, I would not deny that”
“Heard she is divorcing the third one as well, there you go man your window of opportunity!”
“She said I was unfixable Mihir, besides I don’t know if I feel the same for her anymore”
Mihir played a quick drum roll on the table with his hands,
“Time for some stats people. How many girls have you dated since you’ve been with Preeti?”
“Does a one night stand count?”
“No worries, I will take that for you my man. None! Question number two – How long have you had that 1990’s god forsaken picture in your wallet?”
“What’s your point Mihir?!”
“Aha, glad we came to this soonish. Get your shit together and go talk to her. It’s high time!”
“But I am not the same guy she knew in college anymore!”
“Neither is she the same girl we knew in college anymore, could you imagine Preeti leading the life she has led so far? A regular Page 3 socialite with drinking and serious marriage disorders?! Hell, she wouldn’t even drink a damn beer in college and look at her go now”
“True that, all right I will talk to her once she’s out of the hospital!”
“Cheers to that!”

Same time at the hospital:

“Quick get this done with”, Mr. Mehra whispered in the ward boy’s ears. The latter’s hands were shivering, he needed the money he was being offered but this was someone’s life at stake. The ward boy injected the serum into the glucose bottle and walked out of Mrs. Mehra’s ward.

“You won’t see the light of day for your fourth wedding my dear wife, sleep in peace!”, Mr. Mehra patted his wife’s forehead with this gloved hands.

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