First Crush

Reading Time: 4 minutes

An interesting love story by Tribhawan, exclusively for Different Truths.

He was 20 going on 21. Four letter word ‘love’ was taboo so far his conservative family was concerned. Eagle eyed parents were always suspicious of his activities as he was prone to defy their orthodox tenets
which were mainly negating the perception of an adolescent’s desires and aspirations. Love has always been a misunderstood emotion creating lot of confusion in the minds of orthodox clans.

He was interested in extracurricular activities, loved to watch movies, used to day dream and was an extrovert. As a normal boy of his age does, he used to fantasize while looking into the mirror and harping on to be the next Hrithik Roshan and Ranbir Kapoor. Three grand, gorgeous and beautiful ladies of tinsel town viz., Aishwarya Rai, Depeeka Padukone and Katrina Kaif had caught his imagination. He
used to adore them like a moth attracted to a lighted with irregular adolescence dreams both wet and dry making him crave for the carnal knowledge and pleasures.

Here was a girl of his age in his residential block. She was an ordinary neighbourhood girl but his imagination could metamorphosis her into a girl with Aishwarya’s infectious smile, Katrina’s figure and Deepika’s dimples. When he saw her first, she was checking a Hanna Montana’s video at a neighbourhood video parlour. A strong urge set upon him which made him to conquer his fears and to approach her. Fear
remains till mind stomps it. Once the fear is stomped, there is no looking back.

“Hello,” he muttered almost in her ears. She was startled and backed off two steps. Finding that a smiling neighbourhood boy, standing in front of her, did not mean any harm; she looked around and said rather sheepishly, ‘hello’. That was the beginning of between the two.

Soon he found out ways to meet her not at a secluded place but at the crowded ones like jagrans, melas, markets, temples etc. They talked but mainly through their gestures, looking odd and funny sometimes
for the onlookers. She always responded to his gestures but was never actually comfortable. A strange fear used to grip her. A fear, which led her to pray for his well being. Once she met him at a corner of the block and he dared to hold her hand first time calling her ‘DAK DAK’ which left her aghast at his brash behaviour. She jerked her hand out of his and almost shouted. “What! I am Reetu, not Dak Dak.”

“No, you are my Deepika, my Aishwerya, my Katrina, all rolled into one. Three in one.” He said naughtily. She coyly asked him, “and who do you think you are? Salmaan Khan?” He saw her run towards her
residence laughing with one corner of her dupatta (stole) in her mouth. His day was made.

The age old dictum ‘hansi toh fansi’ (if a girl , she is yours for sure) was coming true in his imagination. However he never approved that dictum as he always felt that every girl had a right to smile and her smile should never be construed for her easy availability. Smiles are deceptive too, he had read somewhere. He definitely had a strange crush on her as always. He felt to be waiting for her appearances. He always felt to be dancing and talking with her. His mind worked overtime enjoying every moment with her, even forgetting his studies as he used to feel her presence around him every now and then.

One day he took courage and confronted her in the market place under a tree. She was puzzled at first but smiled and beckoned him to come near her thus encouraging him to speak his mind. Mustering enough courage, gulping down his own saliva, he held her hand and said the obvious perennial three words, “I love you.” She was stunned but her eyes betrayed her emotions while some pearls dropped from the corner of her eyes. Perhaps she had heard these sweet words first time in her life. She belonged to a caste which was very aggressive for castes and to protect its honour it could go to any extent. She became uncomfortable and felt as if she was trembling. She said in low tone, “no, I like you but I am not supposed to love you. You are not from my caste.” Profusely sweating & shivering she ran away leaving him brooding over his utterance and worried about subsequent  unawares that a person was watching them across the road.

In the evening he was sitting with his father when a stoutly built man barged in with his dream girl. #@$&#****#@$&#. That was it. The end.

His first crush was guillotined at the altar of caste system leaving him searching for the answers.
At his age was it undesirable to fall in love?  Was it only one sided love? Was it, what aunts/uncles used to call, infatuation? Or was the time not ripe for a budding love to take its roots in the social
system that still abhors relationships between two different castes?

The society has always been unkind to such lovers raising its  head like a hydra time and again, now and then and the history is full of such tales. Isn’t now ripe time that the society introspects and takes
a relook and meaning of love? Let us redefine love where relationships should matter more banishing helplessness, estrangements, allurements, pains, disappointments, insecurity and fear amongst the
potential true lovers. Society is going to flourish only without falling into the trap of love jehadis.

©Tribhawan Kaul 

Photos from the Internet

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Tribhawan Kaul

Tribhawan Kaul

Tribhawan Kaul is an accomplished and published bilingual writer-poet, based in Mumbai, India.His poems have been selected and published in 38 Indian and international anthologies, in print and electronic magazines. Many of his poems have also been translated into French. He writes poems on vast range of subjects, which bring his readers close to , love, compassion, and spirituality. He also writes short-stories on contemporary subjects about which he feels very strongly.
Tribhawan Kaul

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