I thought she was going a bit too far now and decided to intervene. Signalling Shobha to hold her horses, I stood in front of Anusha.
“Wait a minute, we are here for a purpose, not to argue,” I said.
Anusha came charging towards me but with an intriguing smile unseen by the other two, as she had her back to them. I encouraged her with a wink that brought the smile back but no change in her tone when she questioned me.
“May I know how you are connected with the two of them?”
“Shobha is my wife,” I said curtly and turned away, without showing much concern. I had put the ball back in Anusha’s court for her to play the lead. She was quick on the take.
“What! What is this supposed to mean? Why am I here?”
She looked sharply at Sanjeev; he appeared to be completely shaken up. Shobha looked concerned about him and she glared at me angrily before getting up to speak. But Anusha told her to keep out of it by raising her hand and glaring at her accusingly.
Lest they come to blows, I decided to intervene. “Stop it, both of you, this is a public place, no more of this talk, please,” I said aloud.
Anusha stormed out of the cafe in a fury, throwing the ball back in my court. Thereby telling me, that she had fulfilled her role and it was now for me to conclude as I was supposed to.
“Stop her, stop her,” screamed Sanjeev getting up and begging me to run after her.
I cajoled him to relax, as now it was my responsibility and Shobha did the rest of the convincing.
“She’ll throw me out of the house, please help, where will I go?” he pleaded.
“Ok if that happens, we’ll put a door between my two flats. You and Shobha will live in the one with the clinic, and I in the other.”
“Really! Are you sure?”His eyes were sparkling and so were Shobha’s.
“I promise! Shobha knows I never fail to keep my promises.”I went in peace as I saw him looking at Shobha for confirmation which was affirmed with a nod, followed by a passionate hug.
Thank God, everything was going as per plan. It had taken me 15 years to set this up. I did not ditch Anusha when she was only 20 years old. I left her because I was not worthy of her. When I called her after a gap of 15 years, she was shocked and I heard her phone drop as it hit the ground.
She refused to meet me, but I kept trying to tell her that I had our best interest in mind. “For what?” she’d interrupt, “for ditching me?”
How assuring it was when she remarked, a few days ago, that I looked fitter and younger than before. I now have all, I ever wanted, including my sweetheart. Was I taking things for granted? Yes, very much so.
Whenever you feel that you’re in control of your life, the rug is pulled under your feet, to keep you in control. It is the law of nature and this is what happened to me.
Anusha was nowhere to be found, not even at the other side of the mall, where we had decided to meet.
(To be continued…)