Chapter 21  Unseen U-turns

Photo by Mart LMJ on

Sikha logged out of work a little early and reached home. After a warm shower, as she started staring at her mobile screen, a sense of nervousness touched her slowly.

Was she doing the right thing? Does it all happen like this out there? Well, if she does not try, how would she know?

Cobwebs of thoughts made her feel nauseous but a strong resolve brewed in her heart. She had to take the risk. She put on a black bodycon dress that accentuated her curves. Sikha wanted to tap into her feminine softness… after all, it was a date. A date! She could not believe it. It had been years of just juggling work and her personal mess that she had forgotten what it was to feel like a lady.  She touched up her cheek with a blush and glided on some mascara, a hint of wine-red lipstick on the lips and she smiled at herself in the mirror.

‘Is this you? Are you still alive within me?’

 A question popped into her mind. As a little tear started to show up in one of the corners of her eye, she started to bring herself back to reality and then without a delay messaged on her cell phone. She then quickly booked a cab as she just did not want to drive tonight. She wanted to be taken care of, to be pampered, and may be able to laugh a little tonight.

‘Am I expecting too much? Well, it is just the first time. I might not even like him! Sikha, calm down! You should not continue all these dresses !’ She thought to herself.

She reached the mutually agreed upon destination which was a café, that she had recommended. She loved the feel of cafes where they serve coffee and you get to read from their extensive collection of classics at ease. The vintage setup and the rustic feel were something that made one believe that it is okay to rest and rejuvenate. She looked around and searched for the person she had been chatting with. She found none.

 The message in the chat box popped up asking, “Did you reach the café? Send me a selfie so that I can spot you ASAP. Can not wait to meet you !”

She giggled like a child and sent a quick selfie. This was getting exciting for her.

‘Maybe he is fun! Well, who asks for a selfie when we are just about to meet ?’ She thought to herself as she reserved a table for herself.

 “Maam, may I take your order, please.”

“Hmmmm … Please I am expecting someone anytime now. Please give me a few minutes.”

 “No problem Ma’am. Please enjoy the ambiance.”

Sikha smiled as she settled down in her chair soaking in all the aura around. She clicked a few more selfies. She really looked different today.

She checked her phone and there was no message yet. She called up next, a little irritated. But no one picked up.

‘He must be caught up in the traffic. I am just being too impatient.’ She ordered herself a red-velvet pastry as she was getting bored. She finished it off and licked her spoon.

When she checked her phone,  she was in shock!  She had been blocked and her call could no longer connect to the previous number.

Did I just got stood up on the date that I had after years? Really ?’ With these thoughts in her mind, tears of humiliation mixed with anger started flooding her eyes. She soon became conscious of the crowd and rushed to the washroom to manage herself. She barged out of it and went straight to the cash counter and made the payment and came out of the café, her face almost red from the plethora of emotions that she was going through.

“Sikha Mishra. What have you done to yourself? Come on in.” She heard a voice and looked across the street.

Manav! What the hell is he doing here.’ She stood there frozen, feeling seen.

Manav crossed the road and walked up to her. “Do you even realize, how dangerous this could have been? Sikha, you are just impossible! Come, I will drop you home.”

 “Wait. Did you just follow me till here? This is too much, Manav.Enough!”

Before Manav could say anything, Sikha was furious enough to reach the taxi stand beside the café and booked a Taxi home. Her eyes were red with anger as she looked into Manav’s eyes. Both of them were unable to do anything to make the situation any simpler.

The taxi then took off and Sikha put on her black goggles while sitting in the rear seat, in an attempt to hide her swollen eyes. After some time, she said, “Bhaiya, aap ye raste se mat lo. Take a U-turn na! Mujhe kahin aur jana he abhi.” ( Please do not drive on this route. Take a U-turn. I have to go somewhere else now.)

Sikha realized she just can not go to her own flat, her lonely space. She needed to take the U-turn and reach somewhere else and … fast!

PS: To be continued.

This blog post is written for #BlogchatterA2Z2023


To read the previous parts please click the below letters



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  1. Five Petals
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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Deepti Menon says:

    That’s strange! Why did her date not turn up? Manav turning up makes things more exciting, I guess!


  2. Harshita says:

    poor girl getting ghosted on her date! how did Manav reach there?


  3. Did Manav trick her or was he there protecting her?


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