A Tiny Little Incident
This is a story about a tiny little incident from the time when I was little. So little that I would sit on the tiny little seat in between my father and the scooter’s handle.
This is a story about a tiny little incident that happened when my stepmother and my step-sister were on the pillion and father was driving fast. Really really fast.
I loved speed. Especially around those long roundabouts in Firayalal in Ranchi. If I knew how to ride the scooter, I would have just kept circling around. I loved the tilt, the force of gravity on one of my buttocks, the joy of memorising the same betel spit patterns on the sides as they repeated every five seconds.
This time, I was overjoyed, thinking father had overheard my wish. He was circling the roundabout. One. Two. Three. Four. The longest streak of betel syrup marking my starting point. Five. Six. … umm …
I blamed my stepmother for losing my count.
I could hear her say, a jee, thoda dheere. Go a little slower, I’m not properly seated. My father didn’t pay heed. He kept speeding like a racer. Like a hero. Stepmom’s cries increased. Hum gir jayenge, hum sarak rahe hain. I will fall, I’m slipping off the seat.
An hour ago I had overheard their fight at home. Both of them were screaming at each other. It didn’t bother me. I was used to it. I don’t know what instigated all of us leave the house and go merry-go-round on a scooter. I looked at my father’s firm hand. Left one holding the clutch, right one accelerating.
Hum sahi me gir jayenge. I’ll really fall off. I’m not properly seated, stepmom pleaded. My father didn’t seem to listen. He didn’t seem to care.
Hum gir gaye, hum gir gaye…I’m going to fall… I’m falling…. I overheard my stepmom. No more cries came anymore. Father drove for another ten meters and then stopped the scooter.
I could hear the cries of my sister from far away. I ran. Father followed. A crowd had gathered. Some of them yelled at my father. Kaise chalata hai. Gira diya saala. How do you drive? Bloody threw them off the scooter. My sister had a huge bulge on her forehead. Stepmom had bruises in her arms, fresh with blood.
She got up, so did my sister, wailing. Both sat on the pillion again, trusting the driver whom I didn’t trust anymore. My father drove straight this time. Straight to home.
Dropping us, he went away for a long walk. Stepmom put Dettol on her wounds, my sister drank water in between her wails. I just looked. And looked. Stepmom looked at me and said, “If you were seated behind, he would have stopped.”
I never sat on the tiny little seat in front again. When father would ask why, I’d say: “I am not little anymore. Make my little sister sit there from now.”
Lasting Longer #last#yqbaba
Last night, lying on my shoulders, you whispered—
“Sorry, I don’t last 'long enough' with you. It wasn’t the same with those I have been with before, where I wasn’t in love and had a thought or two to spare on tasks and things beyond the person immediate. On the impending investment deal. Would it fail, Or sail through? Or the previous partner whom I’d taught percussion while thrusting from behind. It was easy to be lost in thinking, in not being present, because to me, it wasn’t the wild passionate sex but another of those tasks and things, devoid of love and longing. I’d last hours with them, giving beyond measure, beyond their imaginations. They’d call me a Greek God, giggling, chirping, thanking, admiring, felicitating my stamina and longevity with their hands and the mouth.”
“With you, however, I last less than eleven minutes, where you are part-aroused, part-asleep. Before you could explode into a fountain of magma, shaking, breaking, without faking, before the bed could turn into a shipwreck … I come in a gush & stall your machine, leaving you unfulfilled every time, suspended reality.”
"I’m alarmed that I’m so much in love with you. I can’t think of anything else but you when together. Neither deal nor drumming. I think of you, just you, as I come before even arriving."
I hear your whispers with a racing heart. Should I wait for the day you fall out of love with me? It might not bring more pleasure than your confession. It fulfilled me. I say —
“If by not lasting long enough, you end up staying in my life long enough, it’s a good deal. Think about this deal while drumming next time, my Gurugram God.”
It might have been just sex for you. A respite from the monotony and artificiality of this five-star compound pinned in the midst of a Haryana hinterland. A vent of light in the cloud of your confusion in matters regarding the heart and holes. A scent of affection and attraction that held promise to last just long enough. Long enough to part with you the day you take your Air India flight to Massachusetts, a word that your parents cannot pronounce. Or never part, as you’d craved once. I want someone to be crazy about me, you’d said. Did you really? As I type this, I fear it might be none of these but the quintessential sex-deprivation, the characteristic craving for intimacy, for a fleeting experience that borders romance and fills the temporary craters in your heart. For the time being.
The ease with which you let go of me reminds me of nobody but myself. I prided myself in being so detached that letting go was second nature to me. For you, it is the first. At least that is what I felt. I wasn’t heartbroken. I wasn’t in love with you, yet. But I was falling. Slowly, very agreeably, even happily. It did steal away some happiness. I am not sure if it was difficult for you to tell me no. It’s over, this thing is never going to happen again, you’d said. Your voice seemed sure, but the day later, I sensed residual affection. You were unsure. No, no more. Maybe, maybe.
Maybe could have become a hesitant yes, if M hadn’t come to campus and you two hadn’t bumped into each other. Your sense of alarm and discomfort upon encountering him was unpredictable. I lay stumped. Would I behave the same way if A arrived on campus? No, absolutely not. Would I if A knew that I slept with you? Maybe. I see it now. Then we talked. You were agitated. So was I. I never had to deal with as much tension in our conversation, conversation that carried seedlings of our mutual affection and a shared passion for the written word.
I had to nudge you for a while before you agreed to let me partake on your time that day. You were throwing words on a blank sheet of MS Word. When asked, you said you were working on a new story? I hoped it was about me. I felt it was about us. I felt because I felt you felt that something was deeper than just sex, than just a respite for our hungry libidos. I wanted to read what you would write about me. About us. I wanted to read those unpredictable phrases, your gift as a writer, that follow each other with no connection but still manage to crackle, sparkle. Would I ever get a chance to? You didn’t let us be fucked up enough to mark my presence on your folder titled Writings.
Ever since we slept together, you started calling me Happiness. It is the best name ever coined for me. I wish to be called by this name more often. Even so, in your voice—the raspy voice I didn’t like much earlier, but now I miss it when a day goes without hearing it.