How Can I Forget My First Love – Story - Part VII Manila had completed her probation period today. She was hoping to receive her confirmation letter. Girish Naik, HR Manager, had asked her to meet Fardeen to collect her letter as she was directly reporting to him. Meeting with foreign clients, followed with lunch was scheduled for Fardeen today. Its not possible to meet him so she decided to postpone it to the next day. Farhan was constantly asking her about Dilnaaz, “We should plan a picnic”, he seemed excited. Manila had many things to solve, suddenly there seemed to be dark clouds above her, will it rain heavily or would it be a passing shower, she could not solve the mystery. Fardeen a married man, was echoing in her head like a siren of a factory. Why should it bother her, he is her boss and a friendly one, they like each other, he never minded about her love affair which is going to culminate in to marriage any time, then why is she so upset? In case, he calls her in she will have to say a word or two about his spouse as she had seen her for the first time, so many formalities, she loathed them, but that’s the decorum, every one follows it, she has to silently, she pacified herself. Today she would definitely escape the drama, but there is always another day, the sun does not stop rising. “Manila, picnic yaar, not interview…”, Farhan edged her with his elbow. “Mom..” ‘Stop it babes, when girls do not want to come, there is always mom, dad and an elder brother; but when they decide to go ahead, then all of them go in the oblivion, I will speak to Amar, may be couple of more friends from my side too, do you want me to speak to your friends, I can speak to your ‘Momma’ also O.K. just see how she packs you off for the picnic, I am an expert in handling seniors, don’t you see how well I handle my bro”. Farhan was a good friend and a great company to be with, he makes her smile, laugh, and he is chirpy with her, he has got solutions to all problems. She likes his quote “It’s all in the head, get the dirt out, do not analyze, rationalize and suffer. Make life easy yaar” She had learnt to live life with a dose of fun element. Her eyes were set at the closed cabin, “Foreign clients meeting still on” she reminded herself. “Farhaan, how come you are here, you are going to have it today from your bro”, “Actual discussions are over, now they are discussing Australia and the Match. I do not like wayward discussions, these can be discussed over lunch, but “Gora Babus” are interested in discussing it now, I am hungry, let me buzz Fardeen, he is famous for not valuing time, Manila, just tell me when we can go,”. He lifted her intercom and buzzed him, “Bro, finish with him, we need to go for grub”, “Arre, tu unhe le ja raha hai, main nahi ja raha hoon, bahane banakar baitoonga idhar, teek hain”, “Bro, that’s not fair”, Manila looked at him to pick up the threads.. Farhan rushed to the room. Later she saw the clients walking out with Farhan. She was not happy with the settlement or rather wanted to.. she could not figure out.. Hyder came to her, “Madam, big boss (that’s how staff address Fardeen) is calling you”, “O.K.” Her heart palpitated, she took sips of water and walked lazily to his room. Fardeen and his eyes and the boyish smile, why does it happen to me… why is all this happening with me. She hated herself.. “Madam, does not seem to be in a mood today”, “Why did you call me in Sir?” “Coz, madam is not in a mood, thought of solving the problem which was more important than lunch”, “Have you asked your secretary to call for some food,” “You are concerned, that makes me happy”, “We all work together like a family,” His gaze was steady and that’s what she hates about him. He keeps doing it again and again. “Listen, there is something to cheer you up,” Manila was standing gazing at the floor. She did not understand why she is behaving like this. “You will not ask me what it is”, “Tell me Sir”. He rolled a paper and tapped her nose with it, “Look at me, only then.. “, She retreated her steps and looked at him. “Congratulations, you are confirmed with a raise again. Your efforts are showing results. You have worked hard for the merit that you have earned”, “Thank you Sir,” “This is your confirmation letter”, he gave her an envelope. “Thank you, once again”, “Manila, you will not ask me, what the raise is?” “Do I need to sign any acknowledgement?” He pushed a copy of the letter to her, “Sit here for a moment and first tell me what’s eating you up? Is it my fault that you never asked me about my life? I took the initiative, to tell you, that I missed you, I asked you if you have a boy friend, you too could have asked me, but you chose to answer and not ask, If you had asked, I would have told you, there was nothing to hide, I have accepted your love and you would have accepted me with my wife. Now, you must be thinking, big fat rogue he is, gave me that gift … “, He again tapped her head with a rolled paper, her eyes were moist and she did not want him to see her tears as she has yet to ponder why were they rolling out without her consent? What is the definition of the emotion that she has no hold on? His cell rang, “Malhotra, you received the documents, I am finalizing the deal”, “How about catching up in the evening?” “If not today, later, does not matter, just call inform me, at your service saab”. Fardeen was a good business man, his father leaped to God when he was 23. He has earned a reputation in the market just in a span of a year. His company has earned a huge profit this closing year and the value of the shares was soaring. He tapped her head once again. Manila had controlled her tears by then. “Stop pondering, nothing is lost, did you understand. Do you have a date today?” “No”, “Then we are meeting in the evening at Sterling theatre may be around 6.30. I know you finish office at 5.30, but please hang around for an hour, I will try to make it before 6.30, I need to talk to you, did you get that? List out all that you want to ask me, tell me, so that we can have a healthy discussion and no sulking. I cannot concentrate on my work when I see the chirpiest bird of my office so quiet. Farhan will be coming in any time, I may not be able to talk to you on this topic. 6.30 final, no ifs and buts, I am waiting and I will wait till you reach. I am not going home without seeing you today and that’s final too”. She gave him a blank stare. “Your boy friend must be having tough time with you, I am sure”. She walked out of the room and hurriedly sat on her chair, opened the envelope and read the contents, she was given a raise of Rs.3000/-. She was happy with the raise but was not interested in continuing in the same organization. She could hear Tony say, “Anything for money”. Whenever any female entered the boss’s cabin, he had to pass a comment, it had become a habit with him. Manila had decided to teach him a lesson. To be continued……..