Rakshabandhan Bash!12 mins 184 12 mins 184
It was a bright and sunny Sunday morning in Delhi, every little nook and cranny was lit up with the sunshine. The air was filled with happiness as there was just one day left for the eagerly celebrated festival of India, that's rakshabandhan. Even after all this joyous environment around the nation, or at least the city Mr. Gupta's house had a completely different atmosphere. "It's my turn to play the game now, Neerja !" shouted Neerav. "But bhaiya, I took it just now. I have 2 more minutes left to play !" replied Neerja. "You said the same just a minute ago. I won't spare you now Ms. Irritative," said Neerav as he tugged at the phone which Neerja held tightly. "Momma !! Bhaiya is not letting me play." Shouted Neerja. "Why's there so much noise out here!" said Mrs. Gupta as she came out from the kitchen. "Mom Neerav bhaiya is not letting me play. I have 2 more minutes left to play." said Neerja with fake innocence in her eyes.
"Neerav, she's your younger sister. You need to sacrifice a bit for her. And you must not fight a day before rakshabandhan" explained Mrs. Gupta. "But mom. Neerja said the same thing just a minute ago." replied Neerav. "Neerav, 2 minutes are just too small. How can you act like this with your sister." said Mrs. Gupta. "But mom even the last time I did so. From the last week she's playing 'just' 2 minutes more and now that's become an hour altogether. Only because she's younger you always take her side !" complained Neerav. "Is this the way you talk to elders! In such a loud voice, at least Neerja knows that we must respect elders." Replied Mrs. Gupta. "But....." Neerav began to say but Mrs. Gupta interrupted him and said, "No buts and no ifs. Go to your room and study. No games for you for a week !" Mrs.Gupta turned around and went to the kitchen. "Only if you weren't such a pest !" mumbled Neerav as he stared Neerja. "La la la la la..... I don't care." Replied Neerja. "See if I get a gift for you tomorrow for rakshabandhan." said Neerav. "I don't even expect it Neerav bhaiya." said Neerja. "See if I bother." Replied Neerav and left for his room in anger.
By the time Neerav finished the studies he realized that maybe he had scolded Neerja too much. It was rakshabandhan tomorrow and he had a chance of convincing Neerja by giving her a wonderful gift though he had said her that he wouldn't. Neerja loves to get dressed and that was a plus point for Neerav. "I can bring her a shiny necklace and that will be enough to get a smile on her face." thought Neerav. "And maybe a readymade card from the nearby store." he continued. Neerav had enough money to buy a simple necklace and a card. He was saving a part of his pocket money each month by which he had collected enough money. "Neerav beta, breakfast's ready. C'mon." said mom from the kitchen. "Coming mom," Neerav replied and headed towards the living room. Mr. Gupta's house didn't have any special dining table, everyone usually sat on the couch while they enjoyed watching the television. "You've completed the homework that your teacher had assigned ?" asked Mrs. Gupta.
"Yes mom, I have completed it." Neerav replied. As Mrs. Gupta served the delicious poha Neerav looked at Neerja. She was still in a fuss and was just making patterns on her plate with her fingers. "It's gonna be a hard time tomorrow for me to convince Neerja." wondered Neerav. "C'mon both of you start eating. Who wants the remote today ?" asked Mrs. Gupta as the tried to make the pin drop silence and the awkward feel vanish. Neerav and Neerja usually had a fight on which channel to watch. But none of them bothered today. "Mmm..... Give it to Neerja, mom. Her favorite cartoon 'Princess Tea Party' must be coming." Neerav replied.
Mrs. Gupta nodded and passed over the remote to Neerja. "I'm not in a mood to watch the television anymore mom. I desire to read a book. Either of you can switch to the channel of your choice. However, even bhaiya's favorite show 'Robots Assemble' is also coming." said Neerja in a sturdy voice and left with her plate in her hands. "You must get her a good gift tomorrow if you want to see her smiling." said Mrs. Gupta. Neerav nodded. "I'm planning to get a necklace for her as she loves getting dressed, is it a good idea ?" whispered Neerav to Mrs. Gupta.
Mrs. Gupta nodded as she agreed with Neerav's choice. "You must go out this afternoon itself to buy one for her. Buying it tomorrow is risky." said Mrs. Gupta. "Sure mom." said Neerav as he nodded. "I can act as if I'm going to my tuitions so that Neerja doesn't suspect." Neerav replied. "Hmm..... Good idea." Replied Mrs. Gupta. Neerav and Mrs. Gupta finished their breakfast and then began the skit that they had discussed. "Neerav, its your tuition time get ready." said Mrs. Gupta. "Ok mom." Replied Neerav. He held a bag in his hands so that he can carry the necklace and also so that it feels he is going to the tuitions. "Bye mom." Neerav said as he waved a bye to Mrs. Gupta. "All the best !" whispered Mrs. Gupta in Neerav's ears. Neerav nodded and set out. He decided to get a card first so he headed towards the nearby store. He chose a card with a crown and flowers.
Now he set out for a necklace hunt. "Bhaiya is there anything cheaper than this ?" "No..no... This is just too retro style !" "This is just too fancy. I need a simple one for a small girl." "This one's just too heavy. She won't be able to balance it." "Nah... too dull". These were the questions that Neerav kept asking at each store. There wasn't a necklace that he thought was suitable for Neerja. Some were too fancy, some too dull, some too heavy, some too old fashioned and some too expensive. As it is said 'Only a jeweler can tell what a gem is worth' but Neerav was indeed not used to buy necklaces due to which he was unable to find a suitable one for Neerja. He had no idea where an ideal necklace could be found. He finally he got a necklace but there was a problem.
"Sorry we do not supply readymade necklaces. You can choose any design and you can take it by tomorrow morning." said the jeweler who wore horn-rimmed glasses. "But sire I don't want any expensive gold necklace. Normal necklaces are usually available!" said Neerav. "Sorry, we don't have orders only for normal necklaces only. We make gold necklaces too and that's time consuming. If you have found a better shop you can shop your necklace from there." said the jeweler. Neerav couldn't take any risk because he wasn't sure if he'll find another jeweler so he agreed. "Ok sire, but I need it by tomorrow morning." Said Neerav. "No problem, it'll be ready. Just choose the design." Neerav nodded and chose a necklace design for Neerja. "I'll be here by tomorrow morning, keep the necklace ready." said Neerav as he left. "Sure !" said the jeweler.
Neerav returnd back home with just a card in his bag. "Where's the necklace Neerav? Did you manage to find one." asked Mrs. Gupta. "Shh...mom talk quietly, Neerja might hear." replied Neerav. "She's fast asleep. She won't hear us." said Mrs. Gupta. "Oh.. well I was unable to find a necklace at first but then I finally found it. But the jeweler will give it by tomorrow morning. He says that he has loads and loads of orders to make so..." said Neerav. "That means you'll have to go there again tomorrow? " asked Mrs. Gupta. Neerav nodded. "I have no idea how you're going manage it now, but its up to you." said Mrs. Gupta and left to do her chores. "I wish the necklace gets ready by tomorrow and I dont face any problems and it goes a 'happy, sweet rakshabandhan'.
It was the beginning of another morning at Delhi or should I say a beginning of adventures for Neerav. Happiness and joy filled the air as people were celebrating the brother sister bond today. "Neerav, get up ! Its morning, you still have to get Neerja's gift." said Mrs. Gupta as she pushed Neerav vigorously. Neerav woke up with shock as he recalled that he is late. "Did Neerja get up?" He asked. "Not yet..... you're lucky that she's still sleeping. But you must hurry beta" said Mrs. Gupta. Neerav nodded, he brushed his teeth quickly and took a quick shower. Mrs. Gupta insisted him to wear the new clothes in case he was late.
Neerav didn't want to wear them but Mrs. Gupta's concern was valid. He held on his bag and wore his shoes. And now he was on his way to the jeweler's store. By the time he reached to the store he was draped in sweat from head to toe. "Sire... Is the necklace ready ?" Neerav asked as he huffed and puffed. "Who are you dear child ?" said the jeweler as he took his horn-rimmed glasses down. "You forgot ! I came to you yesterday to give order for a necklace for my sister, I'm Neerav Gupta." said Neerav with restlessness. "Oh... the boy who wanted a readymade necklace. Ya..ya your necklace is ready. You may take it." He said. "Ok , thanks." Neerav replied and held Neerja's necklace that rested on a blue velvet cloth, sealed in a plastic box. "Thank you God ! Everything is going as I planned !" said Neerav as he looked towards the sky and pressed his palms together to pray to God.
"I'm before time maybe I can laze out a bit" wondered Neerav. "Instead I can just take the long route to home where my friend's house lies. I can meet him and then go home." he continued. He agreed with his second idea and decided to take the long route. "Hey Udit! How're you? Enjoying today's holiday ?" Asked Neerav as he passed by his friend's house. "No Neerav, I wish I had a sister who could tie me a rakhi. I'm sad that I can't enjoy this fest," said Udit. Neerav wondered "I'm stuck here with my sister and he wants to have one !". "Well, you carry on, it is a big festival for you. By the way what gift are you giving to Neerja today ?"asked Udit. "Umm... I'm giving her this necklace." said Neerav as he showed it to Udit. "An empty box won't delight her Neerav, stop joking on rakshabandhan atleast." said Udit as he stared at the empty box.
"What! Bu.. But... it was just here a minute ago." Neerav said as he fumbled. Udit ignored his talk and waved him a bye as Neerav stood in aw. "What do I do now ?" He wondered. Neerav had spent all his savings and he definitely couldn't go home empty-handed, the only way left was to find it! He saw that the lid of the plastic box was loose which was definitely the reason for the lost necklace. He went some steps back then even more and more until he reached the jeweler's store again. He searched every tiny hole that was visible to him. He picked up every tiny shining thing that felt as a necklace to him, but he was disappointed as he could not spot Neerja's necklace anywhere. He lost hope at last and gave up the finding.
While at the house Neerja was awake, Mrs. Gupta waited eagerly for Neerav but he was nowhere to be seen. "Where's bhaiya? Whom will I tie a rakhi today ?" Asked Neerja. "O..oh.. he must be coming. He's gone to take his bag from tuition , he forgot it yesterday." said Mrs. Gupta as she made a fake excuse. Neerja didn't bother and brushed her teeth. She went to the bathroom to bath and was soon ready dressed in a long skirt and top, what we call as lehenga. On the other hand dissatisfied Neerav headed towards his house, when suddenly his leg hit a stone, he lost balance and fell down. His white and golden dhoti kurta was flooded with black and brown spots all over. As he tried to get up he saw his street's stray dog, which the children used to call 'wanderer' holding something shiny in his mouth. Neerav ran towards the dog and tried to make him spit out the necklace but he wouldn't.
He snatched and pulled and grabbed and tucked and finally he had Neerja's necklace in his hands. He washed the necklace from the flowing water of a handpump. He was atleast happy that he had the necklace but he knew that he is late so he ran as fast as he could towards his house and he was finally there. He took out the card from his bag which was hiding in from the last day as he rang the doorbell. Mrs. Gupta was overjoyed but the word 'whelmed' took the place of 'joyed' as she looked at the condition of Neerav and it became overwhelmed. "H..hi mom." Neerav said. Mrs. Gupta smiled slightly and let him in. "Eew... you stink bhaiya. " said Neerja as he saw Neerav. "I know..... you have no idea how much efforts I've put in to get your rakshabandhan gift my sis." Neerav replied. "
You're saying as if a mountain fell on your leg and a dinosaur just attacked you." Said Neerja. "Badder than that sis. Said Neerav as he wondered "She's talking about dinosaurs and mountain, a dog and a stone were just too much." "Well, happy Raksha Bandhan Neerja! " said Neerav as he handed the necklace and the card to Neerja. "Thank you so much bhaiya! I seriously never thought you'll get a gift for me." She said. Mrs. Gupta smiled as she saw the bond between the brother and sister though they keep fighting like cats and dogs each day. Neerja tied a rakhi on Neerav's wrist as he wished him goodluck and Neerav promised to protect her from any kind of danger. Neerja closed her nose as she tied the rakhi because the smell was indeed unbearable. "So no thank you for such a wonderful gift ?" asked Neerav. "Oh..... sure. Tell me what you want." Neerja said. "Just a hug might do for me !!!" Said Neerav. "Noooooo........." said Neerja as she ran away. Mrs. Gupta laughed heartily at the comical scene which continued for a while and wondered, "Though they fight like enemies, they still have affection for each other deep inside."